The Richardson castle was in trouble. The king was angry about where his daughter was and he knew exactly where she was.
“Bloody Alexander! The death of that child will be sweet. No one gets my daughter. No one!” yelled the king.
Hi eyes were widening, full of madness and misunderstandings. His hands were shaking and he was rocking them on top of each other, trying to calm the stress of his hands. His ears heard noises from outside and calmed himself down when he saw three figures crossing into the throne room. His eyes fell upon Alexander and Celia together again and his calmness was shot to pieces.
“Celia, where have you been? With Alexander!?!” asked the frustrated king.
Alfred and Alexander were standing behind Celia and watching the king as he returned the glare.
“I care about the two of them. I have helped them along the way,” cried Celia.
“They are grown men. They can protect themselves, Celia you stupid idiot! You are a woman! You are stay to in the castle and look pretty, you understand me?” asked the king with a deep voice.
“Stop it,” shouted Alex as the king’s face turned to him. Alfred’s face turned to worry and gave looks at Alex and the king.
“You think you can stop the king? For far too long you have been trying to overthrow me and take over yourself and you have been stalking around with my daughter! You’re no longer a knight of Richardson. You have broken too many rules. No one will ever have my daughter. No poor and stupid knight will ever have Celia’s love!” yelled the king.
“Guards, come! Take this man away!” he added and two solidly built guards burst in and grabbed Alex by the back.
The King stood up and cried at Alexander. He felt he was something god-like and boomed.
“I am the king of the castle and you can’t take that away. I’m in full control and you will remember. Your sly ways will be outdone by my ruling. No knight will ever become greater than King Richardson, lord of all the lands. Leave this castle at once and never return for Alfred or Celia again!” he cried out.
Alfred rushed to the King’s side and tried to ease his stress. “Don’t you think you’re taking this too far. He has found the cure. The task you sent him to do, and you’re sacking him!” cried Alfred.
The King’s face was now shaking and his hand quivering; his eyes were like wildfire. There was no way of stopping the madman. Alfred’s face turned to anger and he threw the book at Alex as he caught it with one hand.
“Take it away and break it. You be the hero. Not the king. It was you that burdened the troubles of this world to get this far. It should be you who will break the spell and free this world!” cried Alfred.
Alexander was dragged out of the room and Alfred turned to the King. “You like that kid too much. An old fool you are to give him that book. We’re been searching for it!” cried the king.
“He’s a better man than you, Richardson. Your day will come when your madness finally takes you over,” stated Alfred.
“You are the one who is wrong. You do not understand Alexander’s true intentions,” the king said.
Alfred stopped at the doorway and turned to face the king full of anger and bitterness, “You do not understand your own stupidity, madman!” shouted Alfred.
“Curse you to hell, Alfred the Old!” yelled the king as Alfred stormed out of the room
Alfred had left the room and Celia was the lone ranger in Richardson’s angry tantrum. Richardson was shaking uncontrollably and his mood was not of the father Celia used to known.
“And you, my only daughter. The one I try so hard to protect, yet you surrender to this blinded love of yours. You love this rubbish, Alexander. He is nothing like you think he is,” the king admonished.
“I do. He’s not like the other knights. Even followers of the gods have picked him to save this world. He is special. He will not be beaten by Morcar or you father,” defended Celia.
“Has he said he loves you?” asked Richardson with a smile in his madness.
The mood changed, Celia suddenly become uneasy in front of her father and was lost in his room. The room was quiet for a little while until she spoke again.
“Well no. But he does. He’s so busy with this spell,” she quickly answered.
“Maybe he doesn’t love you. Maybe he’s just using you, like the others. Don’t you see what I see? Funny that it is a knight stringing a princess like that. You are the most blinded human in this world. You’re like your mother, ever hopeful of peace, love and hope, without the mind of a successor. A true warrior who can bring success and power. Everything that you need for life” sneered the king.
Celia looked discouraged as if that was what Richardson wanted. She walked out of the throne room as Richardson leaned back in his seat and smiled about it.
“There is nothing worth wild you seek in the knight Alexander my only daughter, what do you see in him that I don’t?” he wondered to himself.
Alexander was thrown out of the castle gates by the two heavy guards and was left on his bottom with the book. One guard noticed the book and pointed at it.
“What’s that, young boy?” he cried.
“It’s my only item I have on me expect for my own skin and clothes and you won’t take it from a young boy, would you now?’ Alex asked.
The guard turned to the other one and tossed his head.
“No. We won’t this time. You can’t come here ever again and no more of the princess. Don’t worry, we’re taking over from where you left off with the girl,” grinned the other guard.
Alex’s face turned to anger when the guards left off and returned into the castle. He was left with nothing. Except when he saw something flashing in the distance. A brown bag magically appeared on the spot and Alex stepped back in fear. It was on the front wall of the castle and he walked up to look into it. There it was, the six element swords that were in his room.
“So Alfred does use magic in the worst of times,” half smiled Alex.
He liked the castle and people he worked with. He liked Alfred as he liked his father. They had ideas about life and they were clever beings. Most of all Celia, he was kind of the person who couldn’t express his feelings in front of people very well. So he kept them inside so he would cry in the end with a broken heart. Alex stopped in the forest by the lake as he wept a tear. He saw his tear when it turned to ice. He walked back deep in thought.
There was someone watching him he thought to himself. He saw a white glow in the forest and he quickly grabbed his swords and trekked off towards the fight. He reached the forest and started to look in the bag for a sword. He was fiddling around for one and he was tired and weak from the past adventures. He tripped on his own feet and fell to the ground with a thump, the bag fell on him and he lay on the ground. Out of the corner of his eye he saw the white glow appearing and coming towards him.
“What magic is this I see?” he cried in pain
The glow continued to move upon the young knight and revealed its haunting face.
“Ice?” asked Alex weakly and indeed it was him.
“Yes. You are not alone, Alex. Come to my palace and I’ll make you feel safe. You have travelled long and hard and fought many battles along the way. Let me mend your body and mind for a while and we shall see to your heart later on,” said Ice as he held out his hand and Alex held it tight and was pulled up. Ice guided him to his dragonfly at the edge of the forest near the dead trees as the element helped the knight on board.
“Hold on, Alex. Artice is quick on her wings,” smiled Ice as the dragonfly took off.
The dragonfly flew through the air soon Alex saw the Ice Palace. He tried to smile but still was upset about everything.
An hour passed and the dragonfly had made it to the Ice palace. Alex was lowered to the ground with the bag of swords. Ice jumped down and took Alex’s shoulder and eased him towards the palace doors. He held the bag with his other hand and the two slowly made it into the palace. Surprisedly for Alex, the palace was now warmer than before and he was taken to a bed where Ice laid the body of the knight down. The bag was place in a wardrobe and Ice left the room and went towards the dinning room.
The dining room was richly carved with ice sculptures and lit with fires that lit the way for visitors to the table. Light blue the table was and had a special warm ice feeling, another trick of the elements. Ice left the room and soon returned with some little bits of food to keep him amused until Alex woke up from his rest. He soon finished and took himself to the throne room where he sat down and thought things over.
“How on earth are we to find my crystal, in all that snow?” he thought to himself.
A noise at the doorway alerted the element and he saw a half woken Alex wandering in to see him.
“Sleepy-eyed are you?” Ice asked, “You feel better now after a much needed rest Alex.”
“Yes I do feel sleepy-eyed,” answered Alex.
“Come and sit in front of me. The ground is warm, not freezing,” Ice instructed and Alex sat on the floor in front of Ice’s throne.
“Tell me why you are upset. Did something happen when you returned to the Richardson Castle?” said Ice sitting on his ice throne.
“I was fired by King Richardson because Celia liked me,” said Alex.
“There must be more to the story?” asked Ice.
“He’s grown mad, like he doesn’t make much sense,” Alex explained to the element.
“The Richardson Kingdom is falling apart and this could spell badly for Alfred and Celia. They will pay for the problems caused by the king,” Ice said to Alex.
“Do you like her?” asked Ice. “Yes I do like her.”
“Does she love you?” “Maybe. I think so”
Alex appeared to be uncertain about the whole affair and Ice leaned down towards Alex on the floor.
“Well, I have seen a lot of relationships in my time. I think she loves you. Not many princesses would travel lands with any old knight. She can see the love in your heart. She can see inside you. You’re good hearted and even Alfred saw that. That’s why she takes a liking to you unlike the other knights she sees,”
“Do you really think so? She’s a princess and I’m just a knight. I’m nothing to her. I can’t give her money or pearls and diamonds. I’m just a fruit picker’s son,” answered Alex.
“It’s you she likes. Nothing else. It doesn’t matter where you come from Alex. It’s the inside that counts. You should know that by now,”
“How, Ice? I’m nothing. Richardson is right. I’m poor and stupid. I come from living in an Inn. I come from a place where we’re not rich; we don’t know anything about royals and ways of the kingdom. I am to marry someone of my own statue,”
Ice sat and tossed his head at Alex and gave half a smile. He looked at the ice walls and back at the knight in wonder.
“You don’t seem to know much about life and love, do you?” he asked.Alex was silent.
“She sees the person inside of you. She doesn’t care about the muscles, how many Morcars you can defect or cast a spell on. You are a sweet person. She loves you for that. Love is a powerful thing in nature. It has a special bond within this world as well as many other things such as determination, willpower, honesty and hope. It also doesn’t matter where you come from, it’s what’s inside that counts,” said Ice.
“I don’t know about that, Ice. It’s hard to agree. I know what you say its somewhat true but I don’t know. We are from two different worlds,” said Alex.
“Listen to your heart, do what is right in there,” explained Ice.
“I remember someone telling me. Think with your heart when the mind doesn’t answer?” said Ice.
“Yes, how did you know?” asked Alex.
“I have met many fruit pickers in my long life,” smiled Ice.
Alex gave a smile as he remembered that night on the stone with his father, then the smile faded with his new life as a knight.
“Do you ever wish that you could escape the future, the future that could make or break your life?” asked Alex.
“No, it is something I must face everyday. It doesn’t matter how hard it is. I’m working for a living soul that exists on this earth and my role is as important as the other elements are.”
Alex leaned back thinking as Ice got up and walked to an ice window to the left of the throne and Alex had a question to ask.
“Have you found love?’
“No, I haven’t and I don’t think I will,” answered the element. “You can love someone Ice, there are thousands of people out
there. You would have seen a lot of girls in your time,” Alex said.
“I can’t love Alexander,” said Ice to Alex and he turned back to the window with a tight fist, “I can never love,”
“Why can’t you, element of Ice?”
“I don’t know. How can I love someone if I am the person I am,” answered Ice
Alex gave a funny look as Ice continued on in his own words.
“For giving my life to control the weather my reward from the heavens was to live forever on this earth. I can’t love anyone. Because my love will never live forever like me I can’t bear to see my love die and another die over and over like that forever. Alex, it is better to stay alone forever then to be burned in love.”
“You can just have the one love then?” suggested Alex.
“And bear with the loss forever? That would be the most sinful price to pay for the heart. That is when death is bittersweet, it is when you can reconnect with your loved one and be as one again.”
“Well find a new one when the last one dies. Someone to keep you company, Ice,” Alex said.
Ice’s head turned to meet Alex and he walked over to his head and leaned down. He touched the side of Alex’s face and smiled.
“For you are so young I will understand what you meant before, but there can only be one real love, only one can set you on fire. We all have that special one to find and you have one Alex. She waits for you at the castle with Alfred and you must understand that. For us elements there is no special person. We are creators and not lovers. The price for immortality was high, but yet we have never been in love. You cannot miss something that you have never had. Dear Alexander, your heart will fight the same battles that your body will but you must be strong inside to combat the dark storms of the night.
And when the shadows are defeated that is when you find the pure loves of this world. A different love that we brothers of this world have, a love of the world and the nature that we create, Alex.”
Alex was almost in a daze, captured by waves in Ice’s eyes. Thinking of the bittersweet with his love, he had enough thought to ask one more question.
“And what love is that Ice?”
“It isn’t the love you see in her eyes but the love you see around you. Through the animals and the trees, the moon and stars. Across the globe into the hot red sun. Through the deep blue sea and above the high sky. You come to a still landing and you see everything that life has to offer. May it be love or may it be fantasy. For someone like me who has lived forever. You close your eyes and you start to understand the true meanings of life, that our heaven is here on earth and that our nature is all we have. A soul is the pure makeup of who are we. It carries the seeds of life and the power to give or reject. Everyone has a role in life, no matter how big or small it is. The smallest role in life could change the course of time and space. No matter how young or old you are.”
Alex was silent and quiet. It seemed that time stopped for that moment and the stars and the moon were watching through the ice windows of the palace.
“But what about…,” began Alex, “It is not the time to neither speak nor think but just to understand what I mean. What the world means to you. Your future will come in all sorts. The question you must ask yourself is will you be there when the quest is beginning? Will you hold the torch of life for others, to save this world from the clutches of evil?” Ice asked Alex.
He stood up again and walked over to the doorway then turned back to Alex for the last time.
“It can be heartbreaking to be an element at times, but I have my brothers and my dragonfly. They keep me company throughout the seasons, but I wouldn’t be doing anything else than to serve the world and being Mother Nature to this world. Goodnight, Alexander. The quest awaits you,” he said and walked off to his room.
Alex turned to himself on the floor dazed and amazed by Ice’s talk.
“It must be heartbreaking to be who he is, but there are good things to be who he is. If only the world had more people like the Creators of the weather, then this world would shine in all its glory,” Alex said to himself as the night fell upon the room.