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The Royals: Part 15: Escape

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Dreck sprinted away from the palace. Random civilians panicked around her. Random sparks flew up all around them. The fire had spread beyond the palace gardens, and had reached the middle district. Soldiers ran about, trying to evacuate and protect the pedestrians. Dreck tried to ignore them and sprint to the poorest district, but soldiers appeared in front of her, trying to force her towards an area where the evacuating citizens were going. Dreck attempted to push past them, but the soldiers held their ground. When Dreck finally realized that their was no use, she began to run towards the evacuation area, but doubled back and ran past the guards. They called after her, but she was already long gone.

Dreck sprinted towards the poorest district. The fire wasn’t as extreme, but it still seemed to cover the entire area around Dreck. Poverty-stricken citizens sprinted about, panicked and confused. There were no soldiers protecting them here. Dreck ran towards her house, down the road, farther and farther. She finally reached her house. It had completely collapsed.

As Dreck ran up to it, she saw Juge underneath it, almost completely buried under pieces of wood. Dreck, terrified and confused, began to quickly toss wooden planks from side to side, trying to free Juge. But it was no use. There were too many planks, and the fire was already about to engulf them. But, just at that moment, Dreck heard something behind her. She turned backwards, and saw her. Rein was running towards them.

She approached Dreck, completely out of breath, and asked her, “Are you okay?!” Dreck, who was too tired to reply, simply pointed at the unconscious Juge under the wood. Rein nodded in understanding, and began hastily throwing away wooden planks with Juge. With their combined effort, they were able to free Juge. But she was still unconscious. Dreck immediately picked her up, and jerked her head towards Rein, as if to say, “Hurry. We need to go.”

Rein looked down, confused and conflicted. Her father probably didn’t know what was going on in the capital. Still. It didn’t matter. She nodded in understanding towards Dreck, and the two sprinted away, Dreck still carrying Juge in her arms. If you looked  at Rein, you could tell she had done a lot to get her. She looked as if she was wearing a dress that had been completely ripped off, leaving her in red rags. The two ran south, towards the open plains.

They kept glancing behind them, fearing that they’d be chased by soldiers. Eventually, they discovered a small shack where the two began to rest. They huffed and puffed. The two had been completely drenched in sweat. Dreck laid Juge on the floor and started to look at her. Her legs and back were covered with scratches and wounds. Dreck just hoped she hadn’t been infected by a stray piece of metal. Other than that, she was fine.

Dreck looked up at Rein. “How’d you even get here?” she asked. “I was there when it happened. The explosion. I was in the back of the palace, in a carriage. The explosion destroyed everything. I might’ve died if the walls of the carriage hadn’t shielded me. I couldn’t see anything around me except for a few soldiers, so I ran away towards the poorer neighborhood,” Rein replied through deep breaths. “Oh…,” Dreck said.  “Do you know what caused that ridiculous explosion?” Rein questioned. “O-Of course not,” Dreck spoke shakily. Dreck thought of the strange stone, and where she had lost it. But, at that moment, Juge began to stir. “J-Juge!” Dreck shrieked in relief. Juge slowly sat up. “W-where are we? Did you do it Dreck? Did you destroy the palace?” Juge moaned. Rein stared blankly at the two of them. “W-What?!” Rein yelled in horror. “I told you to be careful! I didn’t tell you to retaliate like that!” Rein began slowly backing away. “It wasn’t me…” Dreck said quietly. “What?” Rein spoke with fear. “It wasn’t me!” Dreck suddenly seemed to be filled with determination. Rein seemed surprised almost. Suddenly, Juge butted in, “What are you talking about?” “Someone stole the stone. A man. He… resembled a general,” Dreck replied slowly. Juge shrieked in awe and surprise.

“That… that man. He took the stone… I didn’t think he’d do that much…,” Juge clutched her face. “What are you talking about?” Rein was extremely confused. “That man. Fluch Explodieren. He told me that his family was destroyed by Seil. He didn’t describe the details, just how it started with his wife,” Juge looked down as she spoke. “Wait… Explodieren. That name is familiar. Aha! I remember now! The last queen. Tohlen Explodieren,” Rein seemed proud of herself. “The last queen… You did mention how they’d be separated from their family…,” Dreck was in deep thought.

“We need to run. I know that man well. He won’t be afraid to rat us out. And you… Rein. You’ll probably be pinned as well,” Juge spoke with an endearing calmness. “B-but my father? I don’t know what crazy ideas you’re thinking of. But I can’t go with you,” Rein was utterly shocked by Juge’s bluntness. “Do you seriously think you’ll make it through this? Your father is a government official who controls the military. He isn’t even your actual father. Do you think he’ll accept you after this?” Juge questioned. With Juge’s comment, Rein looked down. She was scared. “I didn’t think of it like that,” Rein said. Dreck had been following the conversation blankly the entire time. “Maybe you should come with us. You never wanted to be queen anyway, and you’ll probably be forced to if you return,” Dreck had begun to talk confidently. “Oh… Oh God. I didn’t realize that,” Rein was shaking. “If we want to leave, we need to go now,” Juge glanced out the window. She could tell that soldiers would be searching for them. “I guess. I guess I can go,” Rein nodded as she said this.

“Let’s go,” Juge said. The group of three walked out of the door. “To Strand.”

The journey was not as easy as they made it look. To get through the Juwel Sea and to the Southern Continent, they’d need to go all the way south of Zentrale. It was obvious that the king would be after them. But they made it. Across to the Southern Continent. Soldiers, bounty hunters, and the like. They escaped, in a way. They got past all of the obstacles. News didn’t spread fast between continents, so the group didn’t realize that Seil had completely collapsed into civil war until Dreck and Rein had gone into their elderly years.

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