“So basically you are absolutely NOT going to meet the pretty young Outsider with the long black hair?”
“No. Why would I?”
“Cos she’s pretty? And seems nice? And we’ve seen you.”
The door opened and a blue-skinned teenager nervously peered out of it and double checked left and right to make sure no one was coming. Seeing it was all clear he made a break for it, slamming the door behind him and running as quickly as he could down the ice-steps in the castle.
“Maynolt Icicle! Where do you think you’re going?” The teenager winced, stopping at the bottom of the stairs and turning slowly around to be met with his father’s un-smiling face.
“E-erm…I’m just going to hang out by the fields.” Maynolt said, doing his best to smile. Well, he reasoned with himself, it wasn’t technically a lie…he was going to the fields…
King Lupian scanned his son over once more, before bursting out laughing, he laughed so hard he actually had to hold his stomach.
Maynolt watched him, not entirely surprised. His father was a very good ruler, whom the entire kingdom respected and only a few disliked. Despite this however he was a bit…eccentric it had to be said.
After a good thirty seconds his father finished laughing, leaning heavily on the scepter he always held in his hand. “Ah, that was brilliant! You should have seen your face! But seriously.” He said, straightening himself up again and setting his features straight. “Why didn’t you just say? You don’t need to sneak around, just tell me if you want to go down the field. There’s no issue, just be back for tea, yes? You know what your mothers like with punctuality…”
Maynolt breathed a sigh of relief. “Y-yeah, sure I will what time is it again?”
“C’mon son! You should know this by now, it’s only been 19 years! 6 as always, hasn’t changed since yesterday. “
Maynolt laughed, fiddling with the end of his jumper. “Right, of course. Can I go now?”
“Of course.” Lupian smiled. As he watched his oldest leave he shook his head good-naturedly, and turned and walked of, his blue, sea-patterned, sequined cape flying out behind him.
Maynolt hurried into the living room and froze. His two younger sisters were blocking the exit and grinning, Maxine mischievously and Savannah slyly. The oldest breathed in before exhaling slowly and then talking.
“Get out of the way, you two.” He ordered, waving a hand at them. “Don’t make me Snow-Ball you.”
“Ooh, a snowball shooting out your hand, how scary.” Savannah said coyly.
“You’re going to meet Lily again, aren’t you?” Maxine said, with a hint of excitement lining her voice.
Her older sister flipped her hair back. “Of course he is. Why else would he have put on his best jumper?”
Maynolt took another deep breath in. Times like this he could swear his sisters were the most annoying Icers in the country. He exhaled, saying calmly. “I am neither denying or confirming the STUPID idea you two IDIOTS have come up with. I don’t even have a girlfriend, as you and father well know. And even if I did, which I don’t, she certainly wouldn’t be one of the Magics…”
Maxine immediately looked confused, seeing this Savannah explained. “That’s a nickname for The Outsiders, you know the group outside the wall?”
Maxine nodded in understanding.
Savannah looked at her brother, who in turn looked irritated. “So basically you are absolutely NOT going to meet the pretty young Outsider with the long black hair?”
“No. Why would I?”
Maxine immediately produced an idea. “Cos she’s pretty? And seems nice? And we’ve seen you.”
A stab of fear caught Maynolt’s heart. “You’ve what?”
“Where you meet her? It isn’t that out of the way. You better be careful of the Market lot taking their wares back. If one of them see you it’s…” And with that she drew a finger across her throat.
Maynolt snorted. “I highly doubt Father would kill me, I am his only son and next in line for the throne, in case you’ve forgotten?”
Savannah and Maxine looked at each other before the older girl said, sweetly, to Maynolt. “But none of this matters because…you’re not going to meet her, are you?” The two of them descended into sniggers. The oldest ignored them as he pushed past them and left the castle.
He was soon on the streets and making his way through the market-square. He slowed his pace; it wouldn’t do for a prince to be seen to be rushing anywhere. People came to the prince, not the other way around. Around him he could see children playing with their ice-powers, shooting each other with snowballs and making fantastic ice-sculptors. Maynolt had to stop a couple of times to chat with market-stall owners who were desperate to sell him there items. He had to decline, as he’d ‘accidently’ left his money-bag behind.
Eventually though he made it to the tall ice-gates, which were chained together by a long chain of ice with a solid metal lock. He turned and walked along the field until he found it, the small hole in the gates. He had no idea how it had happened but boy was he glad it had. Sighing with relief, he took of the ridiculous blue cape his father made him wear to show he was a prince, shoved it through the hole and then crawled after it. He picked it back up, stood up, dusted himself of and smiled.
There it was the caravan his girlfriend lived in with her family. Still smiling he walked towards it and knocked on the door. It was opened by her brother Matthew, the ice-people’s armor maker.
“You want Lil’s don’t you?” He said immediately. Maynolt nodded and Matthew disappeared for a second.
Then there she was, his beautiful girl. With her curly black hair, chocolate-brown skin and full figure some people [Savannah] might not see what he saw. An absolute angel, with sparkling grey eyes.
“Well, are you coming in then?” She asked, teasingly, holding the door open.
The young prince didn’t hesitate for a second. “Of course.”