I climb the stairs, yawning.
It had been a brutal day at court. B-R-U-T-A-L.
Everything I said or did was criticized and made fun of by the ma’hars and ma’haras. The more I tried to correct my actions, the more they laughed at me.
“Just because they are old and in their twenties, doesn’t mean they should look down on a fourteen year old. I’m almost a grown up.”
I took all the critiques dressed in compliments and kept smiling. A smile that still feels frozen on my face.
I can’t live with the court but I can’t run away either.
Running away, now there is a thought!
With both hands, I rub my face to try to physically shake the day when I arrive at my living quarters.
I am still in the moment of reaching for the door handle when my mind catches up with reality — the door that I had locked early morning is now wide open. Only darkness waits inside.
I take a step back. I should not go in there. But I am so tired, exhausted really, and just want this horrible day to be over.
Besides, who could have had any reason to come into my room?
Maybe I didn’t lock it as I thought I did. It happened before.
Still, rushing in heedlessly would be insane.
With a shout I run into the darkness, flailing my arms, until I bump into one of the white sofas.
Holding my right shin, and jumping-shuffle around to drop down on the sofa.
I bark a command and the Fla’mma light turns on.
For a few seconds, I have to blink my eyes, unable to see until they adjust to the brightness.
There is no one in the room.
There is nothing missing.
I laugh into the quiet and get up. I was silly to imagine danger where there clearly was none.
Shuffling to the door, I lock it and check it twice to be sure.
I turn around and my gaze runs around the room with the two white sofas and a couple of bookshelves packed until they are overflowing with ancient tomes.
See? Everything is fine.
Then my gaze snags on a black, serrated dagger with blood on its edge in front of the dark brown bookcase.