[UNEDITED FIRST DRAFT] ??? (Brent’s Story Part 2)

Short Story ROUGH DRAFTS – Free for All – See Terms of Use before reading

“…I hate these kinds of parties.” 

Brent laughed and looked up towards the sky at the twinkling stars above. They’re beautiful. A different kind of beauty than Angelica, but still so beautiful. After a moment’s paused. “Is that something a Princess should be saying?” 

“Don’t judge me, Brent.” 

Brent smiled. “As you command!” 

Brent turned to Angelica as she was pushing herself up from the banister.  “Why can’t a Princess complain about something so…shallow?” 

After a quick glance at the bustling ballroom (nobody’s actually going to care…right?), Brent took a step closer into Angelica’s personal space. His fingers curled and uncurled a few times. He wanted to touch her lightly to comfort her, but he wasn’t so sure if he was actually allowed to do that. He turned around and leaned his back against the banister. “It is because you are a Princess.” He flashed his palms into the air, saying, “Princess Angelica, Lady of Astral Isles.” 

“Lady, huh?” 

“Yes, and a fine one at that.” Brent smirked, leaning on his side. 

“Oh, you flatter me!” Angelica exclaimed, covering her face with her fan. 

“But it’s true! Having known you since we were 6, I can assure you that it is not just flattery.” 

Brent and Angelica exchanged looks. Brent’s heart rate was beginning to rise again. The moonlight was adding to her allure. Brent wanted to reach out and caress her cheek, softly kiss her lips, and just show her how much he loved her and would never leave her side. The sudden eruption of laughter back in the ballroom brought him back to reality: I am just a servant boy who cannot marry the Princess. 

“What are you thinking about?” 

Brent grasped the banister with a single hand and looked out to the castle walls. “I’m just thinking you’ll make a fine Queen and Wife one day,” he lied.

“…I’m…I’m sure I will.” 

“There are many suitors here for your hand, you know?” 

“Did my father and mother request you to come get me? For just that reason?” 

Brent jumped up and extended his free hand towards her, “No, Ang —” 

“I understand that one of the aims for the ball tonight was to continue to assist in helping me find a suitor. Even though my parents know fully well who I want to be with, they still are attempting to give me an option to choose. Yet, they know my choice full and well. Do you understand how difficult it is for me? I can’t be with the one I love and I won’t choose someone I don’t. I’ll most likely end up being forced into a marriage to some stuffy, rich nobleman who I could never love.”

Brent’s heart sunk even more, watching Angelica’s eyes glaze over. “Angelica,” he whispered. “I know fully well of that hurt because I can’t be with you either.” He felt as if his own eyes were about to gaze over. However, the Queen’s command echoed in his head: ‘Brent, please make our daughter happy tonight.’

Brent suddenly perked up. He brought his hand on the bansiter closer to Angelica’s and linked their thumbs together. “The King and Queen just want you to be happy, but they also want to do what they feel is best for the kingdom.” 

“I know they do,” said Angelica. She sighed and turned to the castle walls. The ballroom suddenly seemed silent, allowing the sounds of the night to fill up the air. He could clearly her Angelica say under her breath: “Why couldn’t you have been born a noble?” 

Brent placed his hand on top of her’s and grasped it as tightly as his heart felt. “I would if I could.” 

Angelica whipped her head and stared into Brent’s eyes.

I love you, he thought. 

Suddenly, pouring out from the ballroom was a waltz. The heaviness in the air around them blasted away as the air was filled with the layers of instruments. Angelica and Brent both shivered, feeling the tension leave their body. 

“How beautful!” remarked Princess Angelica. “I have not heard this one before.”

Brent’s face lit up. “Ah, I heard from Oran that there would be a new waltz performed today.” 

“Did he say that now?”

“Yeah, he did. He told me a weeks ago.” 

Brent turned back to the ballroom, observing the partnerships that had suddenly formed and the dancing pairs inside. It quickly became apparent who had come to the party with a partner and who hadn’t – numerous beautiful noblemen aligned the walls, looking on the ballroom floor, as if eagerly awaiting their own princess. The few young ladies who had no partners seemed to be eying the men, but it looks like they paid no mind to them. 

“Looks like they’re waiting for you,” said Brent, placing a hand on Angelica’s shoulder. He pointed towards the noblemen lined up against the wall during the wals. 

Brent was yanked forth by Angelica by his wrist and made to face him. “As Princess of Astral Isles, I order you to dance the waltz  with me!” 

Brent lifted his free hand towards the noblemen, his mouth agape. “But, the noblemen –” 

The deeply irritated glare from Angelica’s eyes prompted the Queen’s words to echo in Brent’s mind once more. He couldn’t help but suddenly smile wide. “As you wish, Princess Angelica.” He got down on one knee, gently holding her hand. “May I have this dance?” 

“Yes,” replied Angelica. She placed her other hand into Brent’s. “You may.” 

Brent stood up, his smile growing even wider. “I’ sorry I’m not dressed for the ocassion.” 

Princess Angelica’s unrestrained laugh was even more pleasant to him than the music playing in the ballroom. “As if I care about that!” 

Brent laughed back. “You’re right!” 

The two exchanged playful grins just before Brent started to gently lead the dance.


The ball might have been a week ago, but Brent was still elated from the pure fun he ended up having with Angelica that night…an elation that quickly came crashing down when he saw his schedule. “Are you joking?” huffed Brent. He flipped through the schedules from the previous weeks and everyone else’s, quickly comparing them to each other. She’s doing it again! Brent tore the next week’s schedule off from the board, took one glance at the current week’s schedule and ran out the door.

“Hey, where are you going with that?” asked one of the servants. 

Brent ignored them and continued to run down the corridor and up the stairs. He found Bedelia on the third floor, directing the placement of new flower arrangements, just as this week’s schedule had said. Brent jumped right in front of her and stabbed his place on the schedule. “You’re doing it again?”

Bedelia’s eyebrows raised in surprise. “Did you tear the schedule off the bulletin board?” 

“You overscheduled me again.”

Brents brows furrowed further burrowing into Bedelia’s eyes, rummaging around to gauge just how honest she was being. Even though it surprised him that she seemed genuinely surprised by him taking the schedule right to her, he remained angry. Then he watched her display a slight bit of nervousness with a quick glance over the shoulder at the other servants who were curiously eyeing them both. She forced a calm smile onto her face. 

“Brent, I have not overscheduled you,” she said. “I schedued you for the tasks because you are the most reliable one for the job.” 

“Am I really all that reliable?” said Brent, almost seething. 

“Of course. You are the youngest employee we have,” explained Bedelia. She pushed her glasses up the bridge of her nose. “You have a bright future ahead of you. Now, put the schedule back on the bulletin. I’m sure others will be looking for it.” 

I don’t buy it. Brent forced a smile. “Yes, right away.” He turned around and walked back down the corridor. He looked over his shoulder, seeing Bedelia look at him with a hint of contempt. He turned back forward, expressing his own for her clearly on his face.


Brent did not want to get up from his bed. He turned his head away from the sunny window and closed his eyes, praying to himself that he would just fall back asleep. Then a burst of energy sped through him and jolted up. “I’m off today,” he gasped. 

It had been a bit over three weeks since Bedelia upped his schedule (and only his). He had probably gone to every corner of the castle the past three weeks at this point and was certaintly exhausted. He, however, was finally given a day off – one of the officially mandated ones by the King and Queen. 

The King and Queen had made the decision to give their servants rotating days off every 4 to 6 weeks for increased quality of life. It gave them a chance to get outside of the castle and engage with friends and family who are in the surrounding villages. No one knew exactly when their next full day off was going to be, but they could make a guess. It had totally slipped Brent’s mind.

Of course, he felt supercharged now, despite the lack of decent sleep for the past several weeks – whether Bedelia liked it or not, Brent would finally get a chance to spend time with Angelica. It’s not like they had any concrete plans. After all, he hadn’t seen her in a while. However, he was certain that his company would be enjoyed. 

Brent sat down at his desk and looked over his jewlery-making materials. Is there anything that I could make for her today? He began to pick through each rock, gem, metal, and piece of fabric he had slowly. He then stopped, clacking a hematite onto an onyx mindless. “There’s nothing…” he mumbled under his breath. 

He stood back up, unconsciously slipping the hematite into his pocket. “Well, a morning in the library would not be such a bad idea.” He grabbed one of the few journals on his desk and headed to the castle’s library. It didn’t take too long for him to arrive, as it was only a floor above where his room had been. 

The library seemed otherworldly this early in the morning. The only light was coming in from the windows which aligned the top of the walls. It filled the room with enough light to see, but there were still parts that were shrouded in darkness. No one besides Brent was inside the library, adding to the pregnant silence that seemed as if it would burst at any moment. 

Brent gently tossed his book onto one of the sudden tables scattered throughout the library and turned on the lamp in the middle of the table. He flipped through his notes and stopped short of the last few pages. “Ah.” History of the Isles of the Stars Volume 5. Brent let go of the notebook, fanned its pages as he stepped away. 

Brent ventured towards the darker parts of the library. His fingers gently ran over the spines of each book as he walked past each section, eventually stopping in front of the history section. He reached over to the lamp on the wall beside it and turned it on – it was far too dark to read any of the spines. His eyes skimmed each of the first few letters. His face lit up as he noticed the volume. “Ah, here it is!” Just as Brent pulled out the book, another book to the right of him a good distance away fell from the shelf and onto the ground. He jumped. 

Brent froze in place for a moment before shivering. “Hello?” he called. No one answered. 

Brent, holding the history book close to his chest, walked towards the fallen book. He peered into the shelf it had fallen from – it had a solid backing, just like all the other shelves in the library. He squatted down in front of the book and cautiously touched it. “There’s no way it could have fallen…” he said under his breath. Was it not put back on the shelf properly? Or is it something else? 

Brent lifted up the book. The cloth binding was standarded, but there was something about the deep black of the cover and the silver engravings that made it seem more luxurious. Brent shifted to his knees as he turned to the book’s spine. The Intracties of Dense Other World Magic. “What a boring title!” Brent let out a quiet laugh, flipping through the book. His eyes skipped around with each word. Despite his surface thoughts, something deep within him began to brighten. And that made him wildly uncomfortable. 

Then he saw it from the corner of his eye. 

His hand began to glow that infernal blue flame that had lead to his mother’s death. He gasped and dropped the book. Immeditately, the blue flame disappeared. He looked at his hand and began to cover. What? Why? WHY? Why did that blue flame show up? No, no, I don’t want to hurt anyone. His eyes glazed over and he could hear his mother’s sudden screams of intense agony. His body twitched and trembled…but then he took a few deep breaths and began to calm down. Although he didn’t eventirely calm down and the screams of his mother echoed in his mind, he was able to stand up. He ignored the book on the ground and went back to the table where his notebook was resting. 

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