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Run From the King

Chapter 9

When Eliza inserted the key and turned the lock a guard opened the steel door enclosing them in the three roomed cell. He was a big man and struggled with every breath. It seemed to take him ages to walk up the steps as he huffed and puffed in front of the girls.

Tess turned her head to Eliza, and spoke under breath.

"He use to bring me food. Pretty sure he ate most of it before it got to me."

The man sighed aloud as they reached the top of the steps. He turned to the girls.

"Did you say something?"

Eliza and Tess both shake their heads.

The mans face is red at this point, the walk was never an easy one for him. He opened the door with they key in his hand and was met with another guard standing opposite him.

"Ready?"

The guard who had been waiting for them asked.

"Yea, take her."

The obese guard answered as he popped a candy in his mouth.

"What? Take who? Where?"

The guard with the candy in his mouth turns to Eliza.

"Sorry miss, the witch is being sent home."

"Without speaking to Klaus? He's just sending her away? Just like that?"

The guard plays with the hard candy, rolling it around in his mouth, clicking at his teeth. He rolls it into his left cheek as he spoke,

"The Prince is held up at the moment. He's asked for Tess to be sent straight home after leaving the cell."

Just as he explains, the guard waiting to take Tess back home looks down at her. He was much more handsome. The young man was tall, dark skinned, and had a calming voice.

"I was never told to handcuff you. So I won't, unless you give me reason to."

Tess nods at him, surprised by his kindness and looks over to Eliza.

"I want to say goodbye."

"Fine by me."

The guard replied as he smiled warmly at the girl.

Tess turns to Eliza with an expression Eliza knows all too well. She was worried, but she tried to keep her cool.

"Get back home soon, ok?"

Eliza nods as she embraces Tess for a hug.

"I'll be home soon."

The handsome guard turned to the other and held out his hand.

"One for the road Monty, it's a long drive."

The big guard pulled a candy from his pocket and held it out with some change.

"Bring me back Mowlo biscuits."

Eliza smiles to herself. Mowlo biscuits were her favorite too back home. Vanilla butter biscuits with lemon creme or strawberry creme filling. Her stomach growled loudly then. She holds her tummy and looks over at Tess. Monty holds out a candy for Eliza now but doesn't finish his conversation with the other guard. Eliza takes the candy and pops it in her mouth. It's warm from being in his pocket but it tastes delicious.

"Two boxes, one lemon, one strawberry."

The guard nods before turning to walk towards the main entry way.

"Come, Miss Tess. We should head off."

Tess nods before turning and giving Eliza a reassuring smile.

"Everything will be ok."

She promises.

Eliza watches as Tess follows the guard out of the castle.

"Don't forget, Leo!"

Monty calls out to the other guard.

"I won't!"

Leo calls back over his shoulder.

Monty sighs before turning back to Eliza as they now stood alone in the hall.

"Did you like the candy?"

He asked her.

"Oh..uhm. Yes, it's delicious, thank you."

The guard nods,

"My mum made 'em."

Eliza smiles at the guard. He seemed kind.

The candy clicks against their teeth awkwardly before Monty spoke.

"The Prince told me to stay and wait with you here until he comes back."

Monty explains.

"Do you know when he'll be back?"

"Erm..well. No."

Monty pulls at the neck of his armor, getting uncomfortable.

"Gettin hungry though...s'bout dinner time in'nit?"

Eliza's stomach growls again as the last bit of her candy melts away.

"What time is it?"

"S'bout a quarter to 9."

Monty reads off the clock behind Eliza.

He watches as she turns to check and turns back to him.

"Don't see any harm in having a snack in the kitchen, you?"

He rose his brows as he waited for her reply, hopeful.

"Oh..uhm, no I see no harm."

"Great, I smelled them making roasted chicken and carrots earlier. Smelled fantastic."

Monty says excitedly as he makes his way down the corridors to the kitchens. Eliza followed behind closely, mouth watering as the smells made their way to her. The pain in her stomach had grown worse after the tasting the candy.

"That's my favorite.."

Eliza says it in a soft voice but Monty picks up on it this time,

"I think the Prince planned that."

Monty chuckles.

"Think he expected you to get out of the cell sooner."

He added.

Eliza stays quiet.

Monty finally reaches the doors of the kitchen and makes his way in, holding the door back for Eliza.

"Thanks."

Monty nods.

The kitchen is massive. They reminded Eliza of the kitchens in her own castle. Memories of making bread with the chefs in the kitchens back home made her smile slightly.

"Leftovers from supper?"

Monty asks the chefs. Two look up and freeze as they catch a glimpse of Eliza. Smeared dots of blood still left on her cheek.

"I-in the ovens."

Stutters one of the chefs. Another looks up and immediately bows for Eliza but is soon whipped with a rag by another. It was apparent he was being scolded for acknowledging her title.

Which he was not allowed to do.

Not until she had been forgiven.

Monty ignores them as he makes his way to the oven. Eliza follows. He opens the handle to one of the 5 ovens with the light still on inside and leans down.

"Mmm."

The oven was off, so he pulled the contents out. Leftover chicken that had been pulled from the bone and roasted carrots and green beans in a large container beside the chicken. Monty placed both giant metal containers on the table and finished around for some forks in a drawer. He pulled up two chairs.

He took a seat and, without a plate, dug in. Eliza, starving, followed suit. She started forking chicken and shoving it in her mouth like she hadn't eaten for days. Monty even was surprised. He smiled as the princess tried to shove another piece of chicken in her already full mouth. Eliza stopped, noticing the attention she was getting from everyone and covered her mouth with her hand in embarrassment.

"Sorry.."

She said in a muffled voice over her hand. Pieces of chicken falling into her lap.

The staff started to laugh and smile at her. Soon, cooks started to bring bowls of other foods while she and Monty ate at the side table. One soon brought mashed potatoes, another brought corn, then cake!

"The prince told us you loved lemon desserts, I thought you might like this."

Says one of the chefs as she places a full lemon cake with beautiful white intricate frosting design depicting flowers and petals in the breeze on the table.

Monty smiles eagerly. Eliza's eyes widen.

"You made this?"

The chef nods, smiling,

"Well, Sherine helped with decorating."

A blonde petite cook nods in the corner. She was nervous around Eliza, even now, with no title.

"This is amazing. It's such a beautiful cake."

Eliza smiles warmly at the cooks.

"Please, let's all have a slice. This cake wasn't made for one person to enjoy."

The cooks cheer lightly before grabbing plates and walking over. The cook who made the cake, slices enough pieces for 8. Sherine passed out the plates. The cooks took a quick liking to Eliza. As they asked her more questions and spoke amongst themselves, time began to move much more quickly. Eliza's stomach began to hurt from eating too much too fast. Some of the cooks teased her, even Sherine who grew less nervous around the young royal.

"Ginger tea will help."

Sherine explains as she pours a cup for Eliza and puts it in front of her.

Just as she turns to walk away the kitchen doors open and in walks

The Prince.