King Orkin, the seventh descendant of the Rian kingdom divided his kingdom into two kingdoms three decades ago on the request of his daughter Gloria to give her husband a share. Dividing the Rian into two provinces formed the northern kingdom called the Glorian and the southern kingdom called the Lorian.
While Queen Gloria ruled along with her husband the Glorian Kingdom, Prince Lorian who is the only son of King Orkin took his father’s crown to rule the Lorian Kingdom. Though Lorian did not agree to the partitioning of the Rian Kingdom, his words weren’t taken into account.
So when Prince Lorian became a king, he vowed to unite the kingdoms and restore the Rian Kingdom to its glory. So for decades, both the kingdoms fought and the Northern kingdom always won because in between the Northern and the Southern kingdoms, there were mountains called Crossover which had the Northern military bases. So when the Southerners attacked, the Northern soldiers killed half of them with arrows before even facing them in person.
This play begins with the death of King Lorian in the Lorian Province.
This scene takes place in the private chambers of Prince Anthony at Lorian’s Province.
How are you, my prince? It has been a dreadful day for everyone in the Lorian kingdom as we lost our beloved King whom we all adored. His highness’s judgment was unparalleled and his wisdom was unquestionable... However, even great men must someday bow to the two ultimate masters’ namely time and fate. Your father, my prince, has shown this world what a good king could ever be and hadn’t he been so strong mentally, chaos would have taken. If not for him, your grandfather’s mistakes would have cost a lot more than land. I must regretfully mention that your grandfather as you know wasn’t as honourable as our king was.
My father was wise and strong. Even though I share the same opinion, what was he doing when my grandfather divided the Rian Kingdom into two? For decades, he fought against his sister and lost thousands of men but never stood up as a victor. To date, General Kingston, Rian Kingdom is still divided. Believe me, I have never thought of uniting the Rian Kingdom until my father in his last moments whispered on his dying bed that he wishes me to win over the Glorians and unite everything forever.
Even great men fail in achieving everything and our King could never win against the Glorians though he tried every time. They believe that the hills of Crossover are protecting them and that their banners fight for justice but they are fighting for your traitor uncle who wished the Rian Kingdom to be divided. Lost in love for his daughter, your grandfather gave the North and it’s banners to your aunt Gloria. I still remember it as if it just happened yesterday. Everyone in the council opposed your grandfather but the order still prevailed. I was one of the generals who fought beside our King and every time we attacked them, they rain fired arrows upon us. Before our men even started the attack, thousands would already be injured and hundreds would lay dead. Tell me, Prince Anthony, how would you fight in order to achieve victory?
General Kingston, even though my father lost every battle, he still managed to destroy a few forces. According to the recent report by our spies, my beloved uncle King Patrick has only a few warriors left and the only thing I need to do is make the sheep welcome a fox for their supper. I have a plan that can unite Rian and fulfil my claim as the king, thereby fulfilling my father’s dream.
[Kingston looked puzzled]
Send a messenger to King Patrick to inform him that I wish to marry his daughter Rose and failing to comply with my order, he shall have to face me. Let him also know that we are aware of the fact that his army is nothing compared to ours and even if we lose ten soldiers to one of his, the rest shall slaughter every last one of them.
This scene takes place beside Lake Reiniger in the Glorian Province. Resting underneath a tree on the banks of the river is Arian.
The jewel of my heart! How long has it been since I embraced you and felt your warmth? There wasn’t a day my thoughts could stay without you and as moments pass by without your presence, my verses are going wilder as they embrace darkness unable to find rays of love kindled by your affection. My throne is your lap while I rest on it fondled by your black silky hair and my castle is your heart where my soul lives forever.
[Rose and Arian embrace]
Nothing in this world is more beautiful than your words and hold not for another moment for I am yours to fill my thoughts with your elixir. This very moment, I would love to cherish your verses as I have spent enough time in my garden asking the birds about you. To my comfort, they have always mentioned that you craved for me maybe because they know our love is eternal but I could not ride to meet you until our General Lancelot was back from the hills. Though by rank he is a general, he is like a father to me and he knows everything about our love. He gladly accepted my choice and exclaimed nothing is purer than an honest girl’s desire.
That is so noble of him. Wise men always recognize true emotions and for his kind heart from this very moment he is also a father to me. Before anything else my dove, tell me as to when you will tell your father about our love? Would he even care to accept a poet, a man who enjoys nothing but beauty around him, singing ballads and writing verses? Wouldn’t he expect his son-in-law to be a ferocious warrior who could lead his army while having an inordinate amount of wealth that could bury this world in gold?
Darling, who said you are not a warrior? Show me a learnt man who would dare say a sword is more powerful than a quill? I trust that my father is one wise man who would gladly accept my choice. Considering the times, he needs a man with intellect, not ferocity, as strategy and tactics together dictate victory. You, my love, are equal to ten ferocious warriors and every Glorian would rejoice when you would be crowned. I can no longer stay away from you and I shall let my father know about you. Let us just hope that the Gods are in favour of our pursuit.
[Arian and Rose spent the next few moments sitting beside the river’s bank under the tree]
This scene takes place in King Patrick’s throne room at the Glorian Kingdom.
Your highness, there is a messenger from the Lorian province who requests an audience with you. Shall I let him in? He tells me that Prince Anthony sent him to convey a message to your highness himself.
General Lancelot, send him in and come back along with him. I want you to listen to what the young prince has to inform me before he is taking his throne. I wish he was not as adamant as his father was, to slaughter his men like pigs for defeating us. I wish he does not continue working on his father’s dream that would never turn to be a reality.
[Exit Lancelot and a moment later enter messenger and Lancelot]
Your highness! I am Prim, sent by Prince Anthony of the Lorian Province to convey that his highness wishes to marry your only daughter Princess Rose. Prince Anthony wishes to end the war forever by forging a relationship through matrimony. Failing to concede, Prince Anthony promises to continue waging wars against the Glorian Kingdom like our late King Lorian until he unites the kingdoms to form the Rian Kingdom.
Perhaps your prince isn’t aware of the fact that the Crossover Mountains have been the line of death for your soldiers and the more they march against us, the more they die. Even if he marches with ten thousand men only a few would be living after our shower of arrows. Why would your prince not be happy with what he has? Why bury his men making their wives widows and their children orphans? What good is uniting the Rian when thousands of them are killed for no reason? Tell your king that.
Your highness, I was also asked to inform you that even though thousands of our men die, Prince Anthony would ensure that the rest who lived after capturing the Crossover Mountains would kill every last one of you. Our Prince is well aware that your forces have weakened over time and is offering you mercy by this marriage. Failing to accept this, King Patrick, your kingdom would be burnt to the ground!
General Lancelot, drag this messenger out of my sight before I order my guards to shove a sword through his heart and order the guards to bring me my daughter at once. I need to talk to her!
[Exit Prim and Lancelot]
[A few moments later enter Rose and Lancelot]
Oh, my sweet little Rose. The day I hated the most has arrived as you would be getting married soon. Though I would miss you talking, holding your cute face, and rejoicing your gorgeous smile, this is for your own good and the welfare of our kingdom. Just a few moments ago, I was offered a deal by King Anthony of the Lorian Kingdom that if I agree to marry you to him, he shall stop waging wars at once as both our kingdoms that were once divided will be reunited.
Forgive me father but I was about to tell you that my heart is not in my possession anymore and has already been stolen from me. I am in love with my dove, the love of my life - a poet who rejoices every moment in life by observing nature and writing heart touching verses. He is called Arian and he is both intelligent and handsome. Believe me, father, ever since I met him, two years ago, I have lost myself to his eternal beauty and his kind heart. Father, I wish to spend my life with him and even if I don’t inherit your kingdom or wealth I would not even care for a moment as that is not what I seek but I cannot stay away from my soul mate and would rather prefer to die lost in the shadows forever than live without him.
Oh! My dear daughter, you have brought upon me such a problem that I am in no state to make a decision. I cannot accept your marriage with your lover and welcome war nor can I kill you by marrying you to King Antony. Tell me, my princess, what do you want me to do now? Lost am I with nothing to do… but the wise judgment being a king would be to serve my people rather than my family. Like it or not I would get you married to King Antony and if you oppose, I would even drag you to get you married to King Anthony as I cannot kill thousands in battle just so that you can have a happy life. Everything in this world comes at a cost but what you are seeking comes at the cost of ruining the Glorian Kingdom once and for all.
Father, I plead you to hear me out. Write back to King Anthony that you would give him all the wealth and province as he is your nephew and you don’t have an heir. Not even for a moment would I object anything. I don’t need anything for this and all that I need is the love and sweet voice of my beloved every day before the sunset. I wish no comforts as I shall live beside him in nature’s own sanctuary, the forests. I shall rejoice with honey instead of wine and eat fruits instead of sweets. I wish no garments or ornaments as nothing is more powerful and pure than love. Mercy father mercy, please don’t shatter my heart and get me married to King Anthony.
Forgive me, my daughter. Your marriage with King Antony is final and I wish nothing more than a happy life for you. General Lancelot, I command you to write to King Anthony that I have agreed to marry my daughter to him and am welcoming him to Glorian Province at once.
This scene takes place in Rose’s private chamber.
My princess, forgive me for saying this but our king has become weak and somewhere within him, our king believes that our kingdom is going to be defeated. Three decades ago when the Glorian kingdom divided from the Rian kingdom, King Patrick was a very different person than what he is now. Decades have passed by and he is lost and tired of the wars. At last with your marriage, he wants to achieve peace but I don’t believe that King Anthony is really a man worthy enough to possess you as his queen. You are far more beautiful and kind than those wicked minds in the Lorian Kingdom. So until I live, I would never let you be the victim and I have come here to help you.
Thank you but what about the message that my father sent to King Anthony? Wouldn’t it be disgraceful to my father if I who am promised to a King ran away? I would never let my father suffer for my own comfort!
I admire your affection princess but this is a turning point in your life. Choose a side and like it or not you must live with it for the rest of your life. If you stay back for your father, you would curse yourself every day as nothing is more painful than letting go of a person who loves you as you do. Life would be a living hell and not a moment would be cherishable.
What about my father’s honour? What about you when he would know that you were the one who helped me leave the castle? Treason is punishable by death and I would not let my desire cost so many lives. Let me live in a living hell forever but I cannot see two of my most loved and revered men lose their honour and die for nothing.
I’ll be fine, princess. So would your father, I would gladly give my life if that can bring you a day of happiness and as of now it is bringing you a lifetime. Hesitate not, princess, ride to your love, race toward him and live a beautiful life. Live with Mother Nature and enjoy your life at your will but not under an oath given by your father.
This scene takes place in the Royal Hall of Glorian Province.
[Enter Anthony and his soldiers]
Finally, we meet Uncle Patrick, fortunately not in war. I am very glad you have accepted my proposal and nothing ever pleased me more. With one good decision, you have saved thousands of lives. Wouldn’t it have been better if this alliance was formed when my father was alive as that would make me the happiest man alive?
Even I wished for peace many times, nephew, but your father never wanted it and all that he ever desired for was to see me hanged in the city centre while my people watched me die in pain. He wanted to burn every single drape with the Glorian symbol on it, destroy our castles, and kill all our soldiers along with the generals for their betrayal, finally ruining everyone in this kingdom. But before his desire was fulfilled, God had taken him to his palace. I wish he finds peace resting in God’s own kingdom at last.
I wish you meant it, uncle. I really do. Now let’s get this ceremony started; I want to see my bride this very moment. Since I have never seen her, I hope she lives up to her beauty as I am told. Storytellers in my throne room end up telling me one story every week about her wisdom and courage. I am eager to see it for myself as to how much of it is true. You might agree that it isn’t often you hear about a princess who is brave and beautiful.
General Lancelot, bring my daughter Rose at once. Tell her that her husband is awaiting her presence.
[Exit Lancelot. Enter Lancelot and Lily]
My King, we couldn’t find princess Rose in the Castle. Our city guards report that she left the city yesterday night with the help of General Lancelot. We have sent hunters to chase her but no news of her till now.
Traitor! How dare you defy my command! How dare you ship away my daughter to a poet who is not even worth a nickel! What about the promise I made to King Anthony? You would be hanged for this treason!
My King, I accept that I helped to send away your daughter and she has my men protecting her and all I ever wanted was for her to be happy. I am standing beside you even now because I would gladly give my life for her but would never allow her to be married to Anthony. This cunning and shrewd prince would destroy her and with the matrimony, he would burn the whole Glorian Kingdom to the ground!
Quite wise of you General Lancelot. I admire you but I am afraid you have failed in your pursuit of protecting your kingdom as the sheep have already welcomed the wolf for their feast. This very moment thousands of my men are at the Crossover Mountains slaying your guards at the barracks. Glorians are being slaughtered and your cities are being raided and our spies are backstabbing your soldiers. Well, betrayal is curiously exciting as it is unexpected.
[Lily stabs a dagger into King Patrick’s heart and King Anthony kills General Lancelot as he was about to attack Lily. While King Patrick lays on the floor bleeding in his last moments]
My father was too noble as he wasted decades fighting against you justly even though I advised him not to. Even to date, people call him a lost king as he lost every war but these same people would remember me as a victor. Maybe because I destroyed you over your betrayal in diplomacy. I hope you find peace in God’s own palace uncle.
This scene takes place in Lorian’s Throne Room.
Oh my, King, your ploy has finally worked out. You have proven to the world that all it takes for any king to succeed in war is proper planning. Your thoughts are exquisite and your planning is unparalleled. Hadn’t it been anyone else, thousands would have been killed; instead you made your enemy welcome you to their kingdom. The Rian has been formed and your family shall prosper.
My dearest friend hadn’t you been one of my storytellers in my court, I would not have ever got this plan. Remember when you told me the story of the princess who escaped the Abyss? That is when I first sorted out this plan. Your words were filled with love and desire and no emotion was ever expressed in my court in such a beautiful manner. I was sure that you could win the heart of the princess and that she would leave her father for you. Meanwhile, I intended to be welcomed offering my alliance and so was I. That is when I killed every last one of them winning my war and uniting the Rian. However, please convey my apologies to Princess Rose. For years, I hated my uncle but never his family. It was he who forced my aunt Gloria to ask for his share in the kingdom.
Anyway my King, the great kingdom Glorian that was undefeatable for decades, finally is destroyed by a poet and a ploy. Well, anything that is built over injustice and dishonesty shall always perish and the Glorian Kingdom is one such exemplary example.
Arian, I know you love Rose with all your heart and that you would take very good care of her. However, I would like you to take ten thousand gold coins for your help. Do not consider this as a payment to your debt but consider it as a gift for helping me. You shall have a castle and would always be my first poet in my court. I hope both of you have a happy life.
[Arian and Anthony embrace]