She loved being alone. She loved the solitude of her own thoughts, or not thinking at all. She also knew it would not last forever. One day she would have to be what everyone wanted her to be. Everyone except for her. But now it felt like she belonged to herself. And only herself.
What she loved the most was the river. She had a boat that had belonged to her father, and she just lay there and the river took her away. The river never took her too far and she could row home without being gone for too long. But when she did just lie there so was in heaven. All along on the water, all alone with her thoughts. Just her, the boat, the sky.
Once she even snook out at night, the stars and moon guided her and her soul was at peace. Calm, serene.
See, there was this prophecy. Her entire life she had been told that she would fight the Demon Lord of Arustan. Her entire life she had been drilled in the art of war and fighting. No one would believe that when she put on her dress and just lay in a boat dreaming. She did not know when or why, she did not even know where Arustan was! No one knew. Still, they continued to train her and her days were filled with war. The Oracle was never wrong, had never been wrong, would never be wrong. Though her Uncle had sent out riders to every land, but no word of Arustan. But she would be needed, in time. She bloody hoped not, for she hated weapons, she hated fighting and the gruesome training. She hated it all.
Deep breaths, deep breaths. She sat up in the boat and sighed. Her thoughts did betray her from time to time. This was her peaceful time, not the time of war. Not the time of being something she wasn't. Instead she turned the rowboat around and headed home. It would soon be time for evening practice.
"Lord Bantor has the best swordsman in the entire kingdom."
Marona tuned out the rest. Her uncle had taken her to the southern kingdom of Lavisa. She had never been there, but her benefactors (everyone in the kingdom) always wanted her to travel and learn more. So here they were. She to train with some swordsman, her uncle to do whatever he did.
2 weeks later
The light on the ocean made her calm. She had needed that. But mostly it was because of the stranger at her side. She had always been so focused on everything else that she had never imagined falling in love. How could she fall in love? All she did was fight and dream in her boat. But here she was.
She slowly turned to him and he smiled. But his smile turned sad.
"Do not mind it."
"I have to, the prophecy..."
She put her fingers on his lips. "Please just take me away, marry me, make me your princess, but take me away. What about my happiness? My Choice? They can find another warrior, and no one even knows the bloody place anyway."
He turned an eyebrow at that and she blushed.
"If I steal you away across the ocean, trade will suffer."
"Since when does elves need humans?"
He smiled and thatv and by midnight they sailed away. Across the wide ocean, away from her fate. And she had never been happier.
The Elven kingdom across the seas welcomed her with open arms. The harbor was filled with people wanting to see their new princess. Wanting to rejoice in their prince's happiness.
“Long live Princess Marona,” they all shouted.
But they were soon brought bad news. Across the mountains, over the desert, even from beyond the deathly swamplands an army had come. An army filled with hate and destroying everything in their path.
Marona knew at once that she had sealed her own fate, and as they talked they mentioned one of the leaders. The cruelest one of them all, the demon lord of Arustan. The prophecy had been right, the prophecy had guided her here, or him to her. The prophecy was never wrong.
She was married a week later and crowned next to her prince. Then she was given a suit of armor, and the Sword of Peace. The sword bathed in flames that had won the Elves their freedom from the Gods long ago. Her prince kissed her good bye with a smile and she was sent to the front.