Here is a new story, it is a prequal to Her Champion. Own nothing and no money will be made from writing….

My tone was filled with my deep pain, the sorrow that was washed over our nation of Gargoyles. My tone was rich and deep as I stood looking over the balcony with our Great Queen Lenore, "There was kindness in his smile, a gentleness. It was the smile of one who laughed with ease and saw the person under the behavior, a soul-connector. He was the kind of person who lived how he believed people should as if he were sunshine that only radiated from the best aspects of those he met, their flaws entirely invisible to his gaze. He was a calm sea, dancing birdsong and the new buds of spring. Yet, most of all, he was my friend. He was our King he will be missed daily," it hurt, I blamed myself.

But for now, I lead Queen Lenore to her room, the small hand of Princess Shaylee nestled in mine. Her eyes so vivid at this moment, her little face filled with anguish. I sighed, "Come, Princess," my body leaning down to grasp her own, soon enough she was nestled into me sobbing. She was five and understood very well what transpired, her father her favorite man had been killed by the Dark Prince.

Queen Lenore walked beside me, her hand in her daughters as I carried the nearly slumbering girl. Her room was grand as it should be, I just set Princess Shaylee on the bed before taking my place facing the Queen.

"My old friend, I ask…" she paused.

It only lasted another minute as she dabbed at her eyes under the black lace. She corrected, "I beg of you to stay, I still need you as much as my dear husband has. You're now Leader of all our great forces and Head of the Queens Guard if you choose to stay," I wanted to run from here, leave the reminders of my failure.

I stood trying to not let her see the internal debate or my eyes on the small sleeping form of the Princess. Her father asked me to stay and care for Lenore and Shaylee, he said he knew I was destined to be here. "My Queen, I should return to Perth. I failed. I stayed here to protect you while our little troublemaker was ill and it led to his death. I know if I had been there he would have been here with his family, I could have had his back and him mine. Together he and I were unstoppable, I do not want to fail you too," she stood moving to me, her slender arms moved to hug me.

She sobbed, "Please, he was your best friend and the love of my life, but we all make these random choices that may lead us home to our father Michael. You never fail, you stayed and protected his family and there is no greater success. Please for us, for my daughter stay and take on these roles," her voice pleading and in truth deep down something was holding me here still. It was not the stunning Queen, even at the Ball she never even caught my eye, but my best friend, my brother in so many ways was so smitten at first glance.

I bowed before getting on a single knee, "I will stay my Queen until you send me away," this was all she needed to hear, my agreement.

I moved taking Princess Shaylee while the Queen fell into a fit filled sleep, the corridors are so cold, not even the flames bring warmth into this Holy Place. I just moved on heading to her private chambers, my heart hurts not only for our Queen but for this sleeping beast. Her father was so involved with her training, letting her be whatever she wished. I glance at Barachel and Levi, "After I place our Princess in her chambers, meet in the red room," they bowed low and moved towards the conference room.

I see Gale, an old friend. "Please get Keziah and Ophir, and whoever is on duty tonight to guard Princess Shaylee," my words barked like a command but my friend knew better, right now we fall in line with the Queen our King never ruled he was a person who was aimed at giving loving support to our great Queen.

I only watched her sleeping for a moment before marching out seeing Helena along with Princess's Shaylee's guard, Keziah, and Ophir. "Guard her, Keziah she needs her night silks placed on. The little beast cried herself into slumber. After please meet me in the red room we have much to discuss," every word sounded harsh but right now we all feel this loss of life, we prayed to Michael the Queen was able to overcome this loss.

What I once treasured is now a memory, a shadow lingering in the depths of my mind. It's a strange thing to lose something which you once had, like a limb torn from your body without the chance to save it. The door that was once open and welcoming was locked and disinviting. He was gone, but now I had to do right by him and protect his Queen and child until Michael called me home.

I stand to look at the four warriors they each stared back at me, "Queen Lenore, she asked me to stay and in the end, I have agreed to do as she asked of me. As of an hour ago, I am now Commander of the Queen's forces and Commander of the Queens Guard. Keziah and Ophir, I hope you will stay on as the diligent guards of our little Princess. Barachel and Levi you will be with me as the remaining two Queens guards," each word said with precision looking each in the eye willing them mentally do be what I have asked of them.

Barachel and Levi, of course, agreed with this great honor, Keziah glared at me, "As if we would say no, her father thought us worthy of guarding her and it has been our honor," like that everything was going to be okay, in time I prayed Queen Lenore was able to recover from this loss.

I lay down, my eyes staring at the chamber ceiling, my room was warm but when I close my eyes sleep does not come so easy. He was gone, he had been in my life since our birth and now nothing. I let out an angry bellow. "DAMN YOU, THEO. YOU LEFT HER ALONE," I was so angry my hands were shaking but it hit me, I was not speaking of him leaving his poor broken Queen behind it was the little demon, Princess Shaylee. He left her alone, left her to mourn him in her own painful way.

Finally, my eyes close.

I was drained, the night was falling as I sit in the red room alone going over battle plans. They attack and we drive them off, but we need more and more plans to keep the ignorant and un-advanced humans from dying out. It had been seven months since Theo was taken, Queen Lenore was faring very well now and we knew it was due to her little Angel, Princess Shaylee.

My eyes dropped a few times, until nothing.

A nudge to my ribs makes me jerk awake to see the Princesses smiling face. How long was I out? I hope it wasn't long. "I had to wake you up because you weren't listening." She pokes my side. How would she know that If I don't even say anything? I guess my eyes being closed sort of gave me away. "Now I have to tell you everything again." She sat herself even closer to me and began speaking.

Keziah, wherever you are, please come soon.

Her face was animated, "I escaped Keziah while Ophir was running my bath," she was missing her front teeth in all our glory lost our infant teeth to have them replaced by stronger Gargoyle adult teeth. But there she was smiling her little tongue poking through the hole, something about the little demon had me. I took stock of her clothes, she was in her robe her small feet bare as I picked her up, so they didn't touch the cold stone floor.

I sighed, "Princess, you must act like a proper Gargoyle. We do not try and escape our bath time and never run these corridors in only a robe. You little demon will be the very death of Keziah and myself," trying not to smile at her toothless grin but the heavy footfalls of her guard are heard. Keziah looked panicked her raven hair falling around her slender face.

"You child, must you vanish."

I offered her the wiggling girl, "She found me in the red room, wanted to alert me she escaped bath time," I knew and so did the Queen how much of a handful her little angel really was, the girl would vanish and as far as we knew her powers wouldn't kick in for some time. Her father's mother was a witch and he never gained powers but Shaylee would, she is the first Gargoyle witch hybrid, she will be powerful when she stops aging.

Time had begun to dissolve into itself, as shapeless as the rain.