The room was filled with noise and people, women in full ballgowns danced with soldiers in decorative uniform. Bright colours and spinning light brought the room to life, as the music swelled and the doors at the top of the balcony opened.
The princess stood there, in a long silver ballgown with woven metal shoulders. Her auburn hair held back in thick curls, with her silver crown adorning her head. She waved at her people below her, and then began to make her way down to the ballroom.
Behind her, in dark and ornate leather armour, followed her personal guard. Assigned to her by her father the king, this knight stood by her side day and night, with only minimal rest when their duty was taken over by other knights from early morning until dawn, and their duties resumed.
The knight followed the princess to the ballroom, taking up a position at a pillar along the hall. Immediately, the princess was swept away by a solider in his decorative uniform, calling her name as he danced with her. “Alexa, oh sweet and fair Alexa!”
Alexa herself seemed to be unbothered by the attention, and spun from one dance partner to another. A constant smile graced her face, and the music seemed to flow with her as she and her dance partners moved across the floor.
Her guard watched her every movement, their eyes slowly moving across the room and scanning for any potential risk to their master’s well being. They began to pace around the room following her dance patterns, making sure they always had Alexa within eyesight.
A tall, strong soldier pushed her partner out of the way to dance with her. Their eyes snapped to him, watching his every move as he moved away from them, trying to isolate himself and the princess. They moved swiftly across the floor, barely touching people as they made their way to the princess who was looking increasingly uncomfortable. They placed their hand on the soldier’s shoulder, making him glance over at the guard.
“Dance time is over now, back off.”
The soldier let out a dry laugh, turning to face the guard whom he loomed over.
“I’d like to see you make me.”
“I hope you don’t forget your rank soldier.”
“Oh, I know my rank. I also know what I’m capable of.”
Alexa stepped forward, placing a hand on her guard’s shoulder. “If you’ve been asked to leave, then I recommend you do so.”
He turned and looked at the princess, his smile twisting to something darker. “And are you asking me to leave? I don’t think you’re that powerful, I serve your father not you.”
The guard moved swiftly, twisting his arm and driving their elbow down to break the bone. He cried out, but their hand covered his mouth to muffle it. They pulled him towards the door and passed him to the guards standing at attention. As he was carried away, the guard turned back to the princess.
“Are you alright my lady?”
“Yes, thank you.”
She pressed a smile onto her face and made her way back out to the dance floor while the guard took up their position once more at the side of the room. The rest of the night continued smoothly, until the announcement came that the last dance of the night.
Alexa came over to the guard, who was glaring across the room at everyone who dared look at the princess.
“Would it kill you to relax?” she asked teasingly.
“I believe it would kill the both of us my lady, that’s rather the point of my position.”
Alexa smirked and held a hand out to her guard. “Dance with me, I’m much safer when you’re directly next to me anyways.”
The guard rolled their eyes as they were dragged to the floor, holding their arms for Alexa as the music began.
The room seemed to fade away as the pair danced, Alexa focusing on the guard’s eyes, as that was all she could see of her loyal guard. Their eyes swam with mystery and secrets she desired to unlock.
“What’s your name? I’ve never asked have I…I’m sorry.”
The guard blinked, clearly shocked by the sudden question they had assumed would never be asked.
“Teifan, my lady. My name is Teifan.”
“Well Teifan, would you care to accompany to my chambers? The dance floor is tiring, and I desire to know much more about you.”
A smile filled the guard’s eyes, as they nodded and offered their arm to Alexa.
“It would be my pleasure, my lady.”