The desert bride Trapped between the sand and storm.

Chapter 7 (The shadow that follow her)

Rainers eyes slowly open to the hot afternoon rays falling on her face. She blinks multiple times, trying to adjust her eyes to the light. But then she realizes that the room she was in isn her room.

She looked around the well-furnished room in amazement; from the king-sized extra-soft bed to the beautiful rug that felt soft to the feet to the giant screen television and the chandelier that reflected the light, everything screamed wealth. It felt so unreal to her; it was like she was in a castle that was far bigger than that of her queen.

But where was she? She walked towards the window and realized that she was really in some kind of castle. The castle stretched across a lot of ground, but as she looked beyond the castle walls, she saw nothing except for sand. With that, Rainers mind began to wonder around like a roller coaster.

Where was I, and where was Mindy? What was she doing to her? Those and more questions were what made her panic. Rainer looked at the room and was relieved to find her spell book lying on the table. She quickly rushed over to her book, picked it up, and held it close to herself.

She walked up to the door to check if it was unlocked or not, and to her surprise, it was unlocked. Rainer slightly opened the door, letting air flow through the small opening. She was a little bit stunned by the fact that everyone was minding their own business; there were no guard stations by the doorside, and everything felt normal. After a while of intense thinking, Rainer decided to go out, but not exposed.

Rainer cast an invisible spell on herself, and when that was done, she went to the mirror to check if it really worked, which it gladly did. Rainer took her spell book with her before finally leaving the room. As Rainer walked through the castle, she felt speechless at its grace and beauty, but her goal was to find her sister, grandma, and that stranger.

As she walked through the castle, she realized that across the floors of the palace, each hall possessed a unique style and decoration with impressive artwork. The ornately carved frames further enhanced the paintings themselves and helped adorn the tall white walls with personality and style. The floor and walls were also designed with beautiful and gracious artwork that had a dripping chandelier that reflected the natural light in the room.

Rainer was left in awe as she explored the castle, but she also began to notice the looks people gave her. She wasn sure if they were looking at her or if it was all in her head, but the gaze she got got her worried. She checked her hands, and they were still very much invisible to her. Feeling exposed and vulnerable, Rainer decided to flee from the midst of the people.

She quickly ran out of the castle; her sister may have been in an underground dungeon or something. She wasn sure exactly where she was headed, but she just didn want to stay there any longer. The outside was beautiful, but Rainer nearly died of fear at the sight of two gigantic scorpions standing just meters away from her. She quickly hid behind a tree, hoping that they were tamed.

But Rainer soon forgot about the existence of the scorpions when she laid eyes on a very handsome man who stood beside the large beast. Everyone she had laid eyes on was unhumanly beautiful, but the man before her looked like a falling god of temptation.

He had dark raven hair that looked disheveled by the wind, with mesmerizing, unusual but strangely familiar gray eyes that were staring right at her; he had a scar that reminded her of someone. He had a well-sculpted face and a well-built body that could put models to shame. Looking at him standing like a model, Rainer could tell that he was tall and very intimidating.

Rainer nearly tripped as he began walking towards her; not knowing if she should run or not, she shut her eyes like a child who thought that by closing his eyes he would become invincible. She prayed that he didn see her, but after a while of closing her eyes and not feeling anything, Rainer opened her eyes slowly, and to her surprise, he wasn there. Rainer wasn sure if she felt happy or sad about this, but what could she do?

She turned around to leave but jumped backwards when she found him behind her, leaning on the tree. He was indeed tall and had a very dangerous aura around him. He had a static look on his face that made it difficult for Rainer to discern his emotion. Rainer looked at her hands, with us being very much invincible to her, then turned around to see if he was looking through her at someone, but there was no one there.

His gray eyes looked at Rainer so intensely that Rainer subconsciously began sliding down to the ground to get away from his gaze, but his gaze still followed her, but this time his lips pulled up into a small smile that didn quite reach his cold gray eyes.

”Are you done playing, little firebird? ” he said, his smile broadening a little bit.

Rainer was left mute; how could he see her? It wasn possible, but yet it was because he could see her. But the question still remains, ”How? ”

”Where am I? ”

”You haven answered my question yet, little one; why are you causing a lot of distress by using your magic? ” He said it, sounding serious, with no trace of emotion on his face.

”Is magic not allowed here? ” Rainer asked, and her eyes widened in shock upon hearing him. He just chuckled upon seeing Rainers reaction.

”Do you always answer a question with a question, little one? ” he asked, making Rainers face turn crimson out of embarrassment.

”No, ”

”No?!, ”

”I mean… no, maybe, sometimes. ” Rainers voice got smaller with every word she said; I wasn sure if she was making sense. He chuckled drily at Rainer, but all too quickly he was back to his static and impassive self.

”Make yourself visible; magic is not allowed here. ”

”Okay, ” Rainer reluctantly agreed. She removed her spell book. ”But where is here exactly? ” Rainer bloated out, looking up at him.

”Where do you think? ” he rephrased,

”The desert? ” Rainer said she was not exactly sure of her answer; it even sounded weird to her ears. No one can survive in the desert, much less live in one, but that was the only reasonable explanation for everything.

”You got yourself an answer; quickly cast the spell; its almost time for lunch. ” Hearing this rain stunned her, but she was quick to snap out of it. She promptly made herself invisible,

”Good, lets go to lunch. ” Make yourself comfortable.

Rainer and I walked into the castle side by side. She then saw a lady who stood in the midst of three more people. She was beautiful; she had long, curly, dark hair just like Rainers, but she had the bluest, most seductive eyes that could put any man under her spell. Her full red lips could make a man dream of how they tasted for months. Her long neck, which stood on her tempting collarbone, was further higtend by her milky soft skin. She wore a very provocative dress that brought out her slender features and left little to the imagination.

”Greetings, my king, ”

Another lady with dark hair and gray eyes was greeted with a small bow. They were followed by two men who had the same features as the king. The people before her were beautiful, but for some reason they all gave Rainer strange looks.

”You can just drop into my castle when ever you feel like it, or haven you all heard of an invitation? ”

He said it with a cold tone, but the people before him just smiled at his words.

”We didn come to see you, brother, but the one who made the entire kingdom tremble by her presence. ”

One of the men looked like the youngest of all four Scouts.

”Well, here she is, ”

With that being said, all eyes that had ignored her were now fixed on her. Rainers body abruptly froze, and she wasn sure how to react to everything before her.

”Catering, go get her ready for lunch. ”

”Yes, my king, ”

Rainer was taken to her room by Catering and some other maids who were assigned to her. As they arrived in the room, Catering sat on Rainers bed with her legs crossed as she watched the maids do their work.

”Um, hello, Catering…. ”

”What did you just call me, girl? ” How dearly do you call me by my name? ”Worthless, ” she sneered,

”First of all, I don see any **ing reason why I can call you that, and secondly, you better be careful with the names you call me, because the next time you call me names, I will not be this nice, ” Rainer warned, looking straight into her eyes.

Rainer caught Guard off guard with her words. They kept staring at each other; no one was willing to back down. Even the maids who were busy with their work turned to see who would back down first.

” Do you think because he brought you here himself means you would be different from the rest of us. No honey, you are just like the rest of us, ” her eyes were lile poison coated bullet while her mouth were the gun which shoot the bullet right at her,

”What do you mean by that? ” Rainer questioned, but Catering just hulfed at her,

”Your bait is ready, my lady, ” one of the maids announced,

Rainer insisted on baiting herself, but despite her refusal, they didn let her. Rainer felt weird and uncomfortable about the way she was touched by the maids. They helped her with her make-up and hair. Rainer wondered why she needed to do her makeup and also do her hair for lunch. Catering didn even lift her eyes away from the book in her hands. But what compelled Rainer to break the long silence that rained in the room was the dress she was meant to wear.

It was a white, sleeveless, see-through gown. There was some golden embroidery at the lower part of the dress that slightly covered her most private part. Her cleavage was on full display due to how low the cut in front was. From the mirror, she could see the dent where her nipple was. She looked beautiful, no doubt, but she also looked like a sloth.

”I can wear this, ” Rainer said firmly.

”The king chose this dress himself for you to wear, ” one of the maids said, but Rainer still stood her ground.

”Im not still wearing it; you can go tell him that Im not wearing that dress; I can put on something else but please not this one, ” Rainer said, hoping that they understood.

The maids looked at each other; it felt like they were communicating through a mind link or something. They all turned to look at Catering, who had a smile on her cherry-red lips. She looked at Rainer before she waved her hand at the maids. One of the maids went out, and shortly after, the maid came back with shocking news.

”The king said that if you don wear the dress given to you, then you can come to the dining hall naked. ” Rainer froze upon hearing those words. She could tell that the maids were hiding their resentment and dislike towards her, while Catering didn bother to hide hers.

”So what do you say? ” Catering asked with mockery visible in her eyes,

Rainer wasn bothered by Caterings question; in fact, it was the king that bothered her to no end. Rainer had so many questions that needed answering. She just took a deep breath, trying to calm her tense nerves before she spoke.

”Can I please get a scarf? ” Rainer asked, making everyone in the room raise their eyebrows at her.

”For what? ” Catering asked,

”To cover myself, so please give me a scarf, ” Rainer simply said, stretching her hand to the maids.

”The king would not be pleased, ” one of the servants said.

”Give her what she wants; shes not a child not to know the consequences of defying a king. ”

Catering walked up to Rainer and signaled for a maid to bring out all the scarf in her waistcoat. Within seconds, so many scarves were being arranged on her bed. Rainer wasn stupid to know that Catering wanted her to land in trouble, but if covering herself meant disobeying the king, then she would do it again.

”Then let me worry about that, ” Rainer said, getting up from the chair and walking towards the bed. She picked up a yellow scarf.

The maids didn fight with her; in fact, they wanted to see what the king would do to Rainer. Soon after, Rainer was escorted to the dining room with Catering by her side. Rainer couldn satisfy her eyes with the beauty of the castle; the dining hall alone was bigger than her house.

Her eyes finally fell on the gigantic table, which could fit a total of twenty people. Catering had gone ahead of her to sit next to the king, but for some reason she moved away.

Rainer walked over to the table with her head held high; she didn want to show any form of weakness to them. Rainer went to an empty seat that was far away from the kings gaze. But as she pulled out the chair, it was pulled back by the young boy, who seems to be a little younger than her.

He shook his head with a smile on his face before pointing to the empty seat next to the king, who sat at the head of the table. She noticed the way he looked at her with those haunting eyes of his; Rainer felt exposed even with the scarf on. When Rainer reached her seat, she tried her best not to look at his eyes.

”I was expecting you to come naked, and why are you wearing a scarf? ” ”I don think it was part of the dress, ”

”No, it wasn , but I was just making myself comfortable.

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