In exactly 364 days, 8 hours, 6 minutes and 30 seconds would be the intended crowning father had talked about since I turned 4. He wouldn’t sing me lullabies when I would cry but instead talked to me about how it was my unavoidable destiny to rule over the peasants and take over his throne. I dreamed about the throne every night, the chair was carved of fine oak, crested with several jewels, the decorative metals formed an elegant coat of arms. Every child asked Santa to either bring them a toy car or a superhero model on Christmas but I always asked Santa to bring me the key to the throne that is the crown.
“Dear Cousin, Our highness Uncle Enrich has summoned for us.”
“Tell father I shall be there in a moment,” I had already embraced and prepared for the treachery awaiting me in the royal court room. My dreams had been shattered by my very own father who had already instilled great hopes and desires into my mind since I turned 4. He was proceeding to announce his unfair decision tonight and appoint cousin Malfoy as the next heir. Deception by your very own father? Does that even make sense?
“We need to hurry cousin, you know how Uncle cannot wait when he has important decisions to make.”
“Yes I know, he is indeed my Father. I know him more than you ever could! Do not try and take over this at least.”
“What do you mean? Henrich, you know I never would,”
“Oh Please, keep your false sentiments to yourself.”
I take in the full appearance of my Cousin. He was what the ladies would describe to be a perfect gentleman. Tall, incredibly handsome, tanned, soft and polite. He often used the words: thank you, my pleasure, excuse me and pardon me to seem like he was one of the sweetest man, my sister Mary once said “when he smiled the room lit up, when he cried my heart ached, every time he speaks his tongue rolls out the words in a perfect way.” He was muscular and his muscles ripped when he stretched his arm especially when he was frustrated, his face was covered by a dark jet-black beard that clung to his face like winter ravaged ivy tendrils, his hair was shaggy and his curls midnight black, when he stared at you, you could see right through his dark brown eyes, his cheekbones were prominent and every lady in the castle talked about his well – defined chin and nose. They called him the Knight in shining armor. Every time I heard that, all that I could think of was ‘Pfftt.’
I personally thought it was all a façade, as much as he looked like a man straight out of Vogue he was just as manipulative and deceitful. The only concept he followed was hijacking what wasn’t rightfully his. When I had turned 16, father adopted him following the tragic death of Uncle Henry and Aunty Lydia, I was glad that he found a home especially with us. But, soon I found out that he was like a flower on a surface but his roots were like snakes between grass. He had taken over everything step by step. First my room, next my father and finally my life. If mother was here today, if only she was! She would never tolerate such betrayal and would perhaps put some sense into father.
Training day finally approached, every year I beg father despite being underage to prove my knowledge, strength and ability to take over the throne. Today, after years of constant begging he eventually concurred. I was proceeding to go against cousin Malfoy despite the difference in our age. I could finally meet up his expectations and prove that I am as good as he is. I admire him, hopefully I could be as good as he is one day. I adore how father treats him just like his own son.
My thoughts are abruptly interrupted by the sound of the loud trumpet, indicating the start of the training. To say I am scared is an understatement, if I obtain 400 points during training I can beat Cousin Malfoy’s score of 399 and prove my worthiness of the throne. Cold sweat glistened on my eyebrows, my hands clasped tightly in front of my stomach and I couldn’t stop fiddling with my knuckles, my fingers weaving in and out of each other.
“Gather around comrades, we are about to witness Prince Henrich try and beat the unbeatable score of our very talented, brave and noble Prince Malfoy,”
Why wasn’t I described with these kind of adjectives?
Training commences and I attempt to defeat every hurdle at my way, my focus is on my destination and the ribbons call out to me. I need this victory. I move fast, my instincts moving faster, I dodge the arrows being thrown my way 75 points done, roll over the poles and even jump over the electric fence 200 points done, I take the electric wires and figure out how to untangle them without electrocuting myself 120 points done. Any mistake made would not only make me lose my chance towards the crown but also my health. I had 395 points, if I passed over the fishing net and avoid trampling over the fish I would automatically receive 20 points.
I was anticipating holding the crown in my hands. But, what was that ahead of me? I detect something hard my way not exactly familiar with what it is; causing me to tumble over the fish net losing precisely 3 meters away from the finish line.
No! No! No! I object!
I had advanced to this length but how did this occur? I look up and from the corner of my eye notice Cousin smirking. Wasn’t he proud of my progress? Why would that thought flow to his mind? Was greed more significant than family?
Just when I think I am the master of my thoughts fate takes a new turn, the events trundle through my brain like a through train, with no intention of stopping. I couldn’t witness Malfoy taking over what is mine, not this time. I needed to do the unavoidable.
“Dear cousin, I need my robe. Can you fetch it for me?”
Have you ever heard of red cable ties?
I stare at him and know this is what I desire, I desire to hear his suffocation and cries, I want to know the second he gives out his last breath so I could savor and cherish it, I don’t care about how irrational my decision is, this is just a moment to finally receive what belongs to me. I use my fast instincts and reach for the nearest thing on my bedside table. The cable ties, lying innocently on the counter if only they knew how guilty they would be any time now.
I leap at him, pulling the cable ties around his head, his head spins back horror evident in his eyes. He tries gasping for air but I pull him back roughly and grab the scruff at the back of his neck. I can hear his heart, once quickly beating now slowing in tempo, he tries to claw my hands but I don’t care, I can see the color draining out of his face just like it drained out of mine when I saw his smirk 2 years back. Slowly, he was fading. The image of him dropped dead on the ground is too intense to be described. I did it? Did I just do it?
I have to play innocent, I give out a loud shriek and act as terrified as I could. “Something happened to Cousin M...a...l…fo...y…”
“Servants I need you!”
Nightmares are more of a night terror as someone may feel they might die from the pain in their brain, I try desperately to wake up, screaming trying to set free from the cage. The nightmare was always the same, me, cousin Malfoy and the red cable ties.
I quickly wake up sweating, my heart beating at an uncontrollable rate, every time I wake up from this nightmare I remember that this nightmare indeed is real and worse than I could imagine, instead of waking up with relief that the nightmare is over I get the trauma fresh and raw as if a pair of individual eyes were staring right at me. I force myself out of bed, crawling while trying to catch my breath. My back hurts and my entire body feels paralyzed.
Two weeks have passed and every day the image of him replays in my mind. I could still smell the dry blood that filled the air and the screams of father when he saw Malfoy dead. I now know I have the upper hand, but is it really right to kill? Of course it is Henrich, he was going to take over what was yours. You always win!
Then why was I feeling this way? The guilt came to me and stayed in my chest. What I had done couldn’t be un-done, I can’t make amends I was just as terrible as Malfoy or even worse. The guilt was like gasoline in my guts, my insides dying slowly, the fire going down my throat ready to burn me out.
Would I enjoy this sort of crowning?
Professor Emeritus, our royal professor responsible for various magnificent creations. He built all the technical devices that we use in the castle. Last year he rambled on about the time machine he had been working on for at least 10 years, he ran around the castle singing out his success.
I believe I know what I have to do.
“Your highness, Prince Henrich may I know why you need to do this?”
“Do not question me! I am still trying to process my dear cousin’s death.”
“My apologies Sire, time travel and teleportation both rely on boosting the organism. When the particles cycle into wave form, you need to be very careful; one wrong move and you may reach into a place you do not want to go to.”
“I desire to travel to 2022!”
Surprisingly, this wasn’t science fiction. There were no swirling lights or a bright tunnel instead there was just a pain as though you’re being squeezed into something too small for your body. Every bone of mine was being pulverized, every living tissue shredded like the chicken I had yesterday on my royal tacos. When I first landed, I did not understand anything.
Who am I? Where am I? Why am I here? A whole list of questions play on my mind in a continuous motion.
I look around and take in my surrounding. The castle walls looked familiar, built of stones of varying size and shape. From where I lay it looks uniform gray like a mosaic of humble rocks, it looked ancient and the design so intricate on every corner of the room. Was this the street right outside the castle? Everything unfolded back in mere seconds as I feel a sudden jolt backwards.
My crowning! I am here to see my crowning. Joy overtakes me, happiness bubbling out.
But, what waits ahead leaves me speechless, my heart beats against my chest and feels hollow, my eyes seeing what is ahead of me now seems so far away, my mind one step at a time starts to shut down unwilling to think anymore. It couldn’t be?
I thought he was dead, but there he is, right in front of my vision on the street smiling at me.
“Everyone let’s celebrate! Today is the crowning of my one and only son and the true heir of my throne Prince and soon to be King Malfoy.”