Chapter 7: Seventh Phase.1

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Status: Finished  |  Genre: Young Adult  |  House: Booksie Classic

Reads: 74

“Presenting our Sovereign Lord!” Eunuch Iroro announced.

The young king entered the polished white marble room, and the venerable elders seated at the table and record keepers at a desk in the posterior of the room stood to pay obeisance, bending their waists in deep digwes.

The room was circular in shape, the ceilings, floors, as well as the highest and lowest points of the walls embellished in neat flourishes. At its center sat a large round table of pure green jade, atop it arranged a multitude of dainty refreshments. Standing around the table were the four elderly Counselors, all with graying beards, rich robes and ornaments evincing their revered statuses. Seated at the head of this gathering of illustrious individuals was none other than the Royal Queen Dowager.

A woman in her early forties, the Dowager Queen was regal in frame and daunting in bearing. Her beauty belied her age, and her appearance could only be described as ravishing; her form graceful, her features soft. Adorned in jewels and finest silks from head to feet, she had gleaming copper red locks in a profusion of curls about her head and shoulders, and captivating amber eyes. Behind her stood two of her attending Aye, both delicately cooling her with great fans of peacock feathers.

“Welcome, Ovye,” the Queen Dowager greeted, lounged in her seat.

The young king stiffened, as he often did since he was a child whenever faced with the Queen Dowager’s domineering presence. He decidedly pushed past the tension, cupping his hands before him and bowing his head in greeting to his mother. “Miguo, Sovereign Mother. To what occasion do my honored Counselors and I owe the grace of your presence?”

The Queen Dowager’s mouth was drawn in that pleasant smile which almost always decked her red lips, the warm look in her eyes a chilling façade. There was a time when he had been deceived by that inviting look and ran to the Dowager’s arms only to be met by a brick wall. Her enticing exterior yet cold emotions had made him grow cautious, her exacting and sometimes cruel nature filling him with dread.

Ovye,” the Queen Dowager replied, “your announcement at court that you will now personally attend these meetings with your Council of Advisors brought me much assurance, but as your mother I cannot dispel my worries for you and for our kingdom. You are taking great strides to becoming a wise ruler, and it is my responsibility to see that your steps are tempered and well informed. It is my will to continue to watch over you, and my duty to guide you through the proper conventions of even a meeting such as this.”

To wit, you wish to check my movements. Holding his head high, the young king fortified his resolve, imbuing his voice with authority as he answered measuredly, “I thank you for your concern, Sovereign Mother. However, your presence here is neither proper nor deferential to my position.” He bowed his head. “I respectfully request your absence.”

The Dowager Queen’s smiling red lips tensed to a grim line, her beautiful eyes cutting to the elderly Counselors.

Ovyeme,” one of the Counselors spoke up, “though our Queen Dowager’s presence here is in opposition with court etiquette, I petition that our Lord be understanding. Our Royal Ladyship has filled the position of Regent for many years now and requires a period to transition.”

“Yes, my Lord,” another Counselor pitched in with a bow of his head. “Our Ladyship’s grace is such that her motherly love bore her here despite Ovye’s proclamation. I pray Ovye will forgive her and honor her by yielding to her affections.”

Motherly love was not a sentiment the young king had ever perceived from the Dowager Queen. But the Counselors were all in agreement and petitioned for him to be understanding. He had no choice but to yield dutifully in filial respect. He took a seat at the head of the table beside the Queen Dowager who sat calmly, smiling, asserting her dominance.

Submitted: July 14, 2019

© Copyright 2020 OE. All rights reserved.


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