The king sat on his throne as he tried his best to pay attention as his regent as she droned on and on about the worries of the nobles. Every day he regretted the decision to have noblesse. If they weren't complaining about the stench of the goblin dens or the noise of the barbarian arenas, then they got all uppity about schools for the citizenry. Pelliaos slumped in his throne as Valerie continued about the nobles being nervous about a single king.
He was certainly not single thank you very much! His mind drifted back to the morning when he woke up the sight of a green bare body getting out of bed.
Waking up to see her was a great way to start the day. Then the nymph turned around and it was even better. Nyrissa saw that he was awake and leaned down to kiss him good morning. She had some things to take care of for the day and she wanted to get an early start. The fae promised that she would be back before dinner. With parting farewell, his lover left the royal chambers. Before he rolled back to sleep, one thought crossed his mind with straightforward clarity.
He loved her.
They had a few rough patches, but it only made them…more…better. The tiefling sighed wistfully as he thought back to the evening they had the night before at the dance hall. He danced with nearly two dozen women, and a few men, until he found her. He had every right to be smug when he picked her out of a crowd. She was the only partner for him.
Why were they not married yet?
Pelliaos immediately stood up from his throne, Valerie stopped mid-announcement. "Is there a problem my liege?" She questioned.
"You make a good point Valerie." Pelliaos spoke proudly.
The knight's face twisted in confusion. "As much as I would enjoy taxing philosophers, Galt wouldn't stand for it and we would probably face some backlash for when their next leader comes to power."
Was that what she was just talking about? He'll deal with it later. "Never mind Valerie. We have more important things to do today."
The regent looked at the scroll of duties in her hands with a great amount of concealed distaste. "What shall I add to today's list of tasks my lord?"
"There will be a wedding at 4pm."
The look of consternation on her face almost made Pelliaos laugh. "Whose wedding did I forget to make note of?" Valerie questioned.
"Mine, of course."
The King of the Stolen Lands has absolutely no regrets about this idea.
With her aides behind her, Valerie strode through the halls with the utmost speed without appearing hurried. Having a wedding out of nowhere was a political nightmare. Why did she allow herself to be regent for this kingdom? Maybe because it was a glorified field when they first arrived years ago. Now she has to help her lord oversee 10 territories across their land that was nearly a two-week ride from border to border. Then he decides to throw this in her lap like a town crier throwing papers. The scroll Pelliaos gave her outlined everything he wanted for the wedding.
How in the bloody hell was she supposed to organize a royal wedding in a single day? These events are meant to take years, if not decades for some races. Yet he had the audacity to ask for a wedding by the end of the afternoon? She could already feel the growing headache from diplomats questioning the urgent ceremony.
Irovetti's bastards nearly outnumber the guards in Pitax, is King Pelliaos trying to avoid the same fate for his kingdom?
Like any kingdom of old, a royal has been ensnared by fae spell. What else could we expect for the Stolen Lands of the River Kingdoms?
A tiefling for a king, a fae for a queen and a land literally overrun with First World craziness? Prepare the expeditions to the Stolen Lands!
Those were problems she had to deal with tommorow, for now she had to deal with a wedding today. Valerie entered the temple and dropped a document in the hands of Jhod Kraven.
Jhod read through the document, while Tristian prayed at Sarenrae's altar. "I don't understand how his highness can expect us to prepare for this!" The Elk priest complained.
"We will try to get everything done." Tristian said.
The cleric's statement threw the human priest for a loop. "How?" He questioned. "When did you complete the required rites for a royal marriage?" He paused, discomfort flittered across his face. "Let alone with that woman-"
Tristian tutted from his spot in front of the altar, interrupting the older human's frequent complaint. "Father Jhod, Nyrissa is no longer the same person she once was because of the king." With a small clap, the cleric stood up and read through the king's requests in Jhod's hands. "Besides," He paused, "despite all your rituals it is the love shared between two people that strengthens the union between them."
Shouts and yells rang out from the streets outside the temple. Troops marched past the window in a disorderly, but casual fashion in ceremonial armour. Seeing the commotion, Tristian headed toward the door. "Now if you excuse me Father, I need to talk to Amiri about the military procession before the ceremony."
The moment he stepped out into the street, the cleric of Sarenrae walked right into an argument between two majors wearing polished breastplates.
The mustached major yelled, "We need to six lines of lances leading the bridal party to the castle!"
"And your blocking the road, two lines of soldiers is enough for a wedding, we need the other four lines to patrol the area in case of wedding crashers!" The bearded major roared back.
Amiri stood between them fuming in frustration, the way her hands twitched reminded Tristian that she did the same thing just before she breaks into a berserker rage. "Pardon me Amiri," Tristian spoke up, but he did not back down from the heated glare given to him by the much larger woman. "I thought you might need this, this is just more of the preparations for the wedding. " He passed her the scroll from within his robes. He bowed his head in farewell as he ignored the growing volume of the argument in front of the woman.
The way the cleric outright ignored the situation in front annoyed Amiri something fierce. Why was she the only one who had to deal with these idiots? Her temper had finally had enough when two men in front of her were about to come to blows. Before either could raise a fist, she grabbed them both by their breastplate and pulled them close, their feet no longer on the ground so they could look her in the eyes. "That's enough out of both of you! You making my head hurt worse then when I headbutted an iron golem." She tossed them both onto the ground and scuffed the polish on their armour.
The barbarian woman loomed over the men as she gave her answer to their ordeal. "Get me six of our best fighters, they'll lead the wedding party to the castle ready for a fight." She pointed toward them and their once immaculate armour. "You two, and the rest of your fancy boys can stand guard in the streets surrounding castle. Look nice for everybody watching, while the real fighters guard the Chief and his bride." Before either man tried to disagree, Amiri growled out threateningly, "Backtalk means bruises."
The two men could not leave the presence of their superior officer fast enough. Amiri growled and muttered underneath her breath, "Just a few more months, then someone else can deal with this shit." She turned her attention the scroll given to her, and immediately cursed, quite loudly judging by the fainting dainty woman nearby. The scroll was filled edge-to-edge with writing, it made the woman's head hurt as she tried to read it. Amiri could only recognize few of the words in the mad scrawl. Feast, soldiers and names of her companions.
So Amiri rolled it back up and marched her way through the servants as they darted across the castle square with orderly purpose. Throngs of them surrounded the far corner in the shade of the castle, in an alcove away from the more frantic hustle and bustle. The barbarian shoved her way through the throng, only to see the last person she expected to be lazing about with a god damned drink. "Why aren't you losing your shit about this you little imp?"
Jubilost laid back on a chair in the shade with a fruity looking drinking as he casually read reports that were casually dropped on the table beside him. He looked at her with a single raised eyebrow, "Unlike some oafish idiots," He stated with a rather pointed smirk, "I prepared for this exact outcome. I've had plans for a surprise wedding for the past two months, such as my position as minister." The gnome guffawed loudly. "Some people just can't control their biological urges." He sipped from his glass smugly.
"Always plotting aren't you-you damn rat." The insult had no bite, the two travellers shared an unseen smile. "I need you to read this parchment, whoever wrote it used way too many words." Amiri tossed the scroll.
The gnome skimmed the document in a single moment. "Did you already work out the military procession?"
"Then congratulations!" Jubilost cried out with fake glee. "You've completed everything his Highness wanted you to get done for wedding. Just don't maim anyone until the wedding feast."
Amiri nodded then chortled with pride. "Who needs to learn how to read when I can cleave a man in a single swing?" With that, she turned abruptly and left the gnome still holding the document.
He sighed. "I guess that leaves me to make sure everything else is going according to plan as well." The greatest author and traveller across Golarion, became the newest errand boy as he placed his drink down on the table and stuck to the wall to avoid the chaos of the castle square as he entered the keep. While the party preparations were getting closer to completion, it became more chaotic outside of the castle walls which were blissfully quiet as he made his way through the halls.
Outside of the treasury, he came office of the advisor in charge of such funds, and who knows how they will spend on such an important occasion as a royal wedding? Jubiliost entered the office where Kanerah was busy with a rather neat pile scrolls while her sister Kalikke stood at her side. The latter sifted through the scrolls of parchment with hesitation. "Are you sure we should be spending this much gold on the wedding?"
"A royal wedding needs a certain amount of extravagance." The head of the royal treasury did not even bother looking up from her paperwork. "If we spend too little, it could be seen as a sign that our land is not as profitable as some might think."
Jubilost decided to make his presence known as he slipped into the room. "You always did make job rather difficult. A few tall tales here and there, and other countries either thought we were richer than dragon or poorer than a street rat."
Kanerah paused, "I take it there is additional tasks required for the wedding?"
"A few things from what a skimmed, but seeing that you are nearly buried in receipts and invoices you probably already got everything done haven't you?"
The tiefling woman huffed indignantly, "You are not the only one making plans minister." The way she stated those words made it seem like she actually knew how today will end. As much as Jubilost would love to inform her of her grievous error- he'd rather watch her fail and then hold it over her head.
Without a word, he handed Kanerah the scroll, who barely glanced at it before she passed it to Kalikke. "Be a dear and make sure Harrim gets this. The last thing we need are marriage vows with a cloud of doom overhead."
Kalikke frowned. "He's been getting better sister."
"Run along now, I have work that needs to get done before the ceremony starts in 20 minutes."
Her blue eyes widen in surprise at hearing the time and Kalikke darted away from the office, immediately swerving around the gnome in her way. Soon she was back outside in front of the castle, and the tiefling was taken away by the transformation that had taken place over the afternoon.
All the streets that lead to the castle were cordoned off except one. The latter had a large wooden arch that covered the entire street, decorated from top to bottom in garlands with pink and white flowers. Benches lined the castle square as people filled the seats, many in a rushed state of formal dress.
A smaller arch, wide enough for three people, stood in front of everything, and every decoration practically lead to it. The craved wooden structure stood proudly before the gates of the castle, waiting for the inevitable ceremony. Despite his glum continence, Harrim seemed to be rather proud as he waited for the ceremony to begin. Pelliaos stood at his side, in the dressiest robes that probably cost a tenth of the kingdom's treasury.
"Pardon me, Harrim?" Kalikke tried her best to hide her apprehension. The moment she stepped near the wedding arch, she could feel hundreds of eyes following her every move. The dour dwarf was dressed in what was once a rather spiffy suit, now ragged and tattered with time barely holding together with patchwork. Harrim looked up at her, "Ah the finally piece before we begin the wedding march has arrived." He stated. "Have you brought the wedding rites?"
The tiefling quickly pulled out the scroll and handed it over. Harrim scanned the document with a furrowed brow. "This isn't the rights." Slight frustration coloured his tone, while Kalikke had almost fled the small rise of the wedding platform when the sound of the organ begun to play, signifying the approaching of the soon to be Queen. "They're on the back of the scroll, the last two paragraphs." She spoke hurriedly in a hushed tone before she slipped off the dais and joined her sister in the front row of the audience.
A hush fell over the audience when the fae woman herself entered the plaza. Harrim watched the nymph's face shift through different emotions, before settling in a stony smile. Ruin is coming for us all, he thought to himself as Evindra escorted her cousin down the aisle with an unsettled look on her face as Nyrissa whispered in her ear.
Once the pair arrived at the at the dais, Evindra gave away the bride as if she was pulling a souffle out of an oven. Harrim stood between the bride and groom and he could feel the tension between the two clash above his head, or rather the intimidating presence of Nyrissa upon Pelliaos. When the organ stopped, Harrim read out the wedding rights with resigned reluctance. The flowery words were so positive and hopeful the dwarf fought against the urge to roll his eyes. The regent and councillor are such stickers for wording. After following the poorly written script, Harrim said the final question. "If anyone opposes this marriage-" He drawled. "Speak now or forever hold your peace."
There was a dramatic gasp in the audience as everyone turned to stare at the fae who objected to her own marriage. In the front row, Jubilost watched all this unfold with rapid eyes and a small, smug smile behind his clasped hands. Harrim should've known that the gnome knew that this would happen.
As the officiator of the marriage, Harrim he expected Nyrissa opposition to be more vocal perhaps even a bit destructive. He did not expect her to stand in front of the king and bow deeply towards the crowd, a wing wrapped around her shoulder like a royal cloak. With such majesty that there was many people in the crowd who bowed in return.
"Citizens of the capital, I must apologize." Nyrissa stood from her bow, her elegant voice carried across the castle plaza, despite her soft and tender tone. "Today you have been hurried and rush for a grand occasion, which I truly must thank all of you who put in such time and effort to make this day special for the king and I."
The crowd took her cue and applauded for the servants, workers and organizers.
Nyrissa nodded approvingly at the crowd's reaction. "Despite my current opinion of this event-" Murmurs rumbled in the crowd as the fae continued to speak, "-I will not see all the hard work of today wasted. So instead-" The woman drawled out as she clapped her hands together. Glittering dust rose into the air above the crowd, rays of the setting sun sparkled with rainbows of colour across the across the castle square. "Enjoy yourselves at the king's expense!"
The crowd of citizens, servants and soldiers cheered uproariously, as the glitter fell to the ground, a few stray specks landed in Harrim's beard. He huffed in annoyance, but the glitter refused to budge. That is the end of his patience for today. He slapped the scroll into Pelliaos's chest, "This is your problem now." Harrim stated as he attempted to pluck away the ever-gathering amount of magical dust in his facial hair.
So Pelliaos watched from the door to his castle as his subjects feasted upon his foods, drank his fancy booze, and spent the time dancing the evening away while bards played upbeat jigs that would not be out of place for a harvest festival. In the center of it all stood Nyrissa, who did not bask in the people's adoration. No, she watched the citizens around her embraced the festivities, only to give the tiefling a hard stare when it appeared no one was looking.
Pelliaos was not looking forward to their conversation tonight.
The king entered their shared chambers with trepidation. He clutched the crumpled scroll that listed the various, duties, requests and speeches for everyone directly involved with the wedding. When Pelliaos wrote them up, he was so sure of himself that he had the entire wedding covered.
He felt rather unsure of his actions of the day as he saw Nyrissa sitting on the bed, her back towards him as she brushed her hair. The king could feel the tension between them coming to head with the lack of a party and bystanders between them.
When the door shut behind Pelliaos, Nyrissa spoke, "Honestly, I'm not mad-" She turned to face him with tears in her eyes. They did not seem like they were caused by sorrow. "-If anything, I've never been this happy since the day we truly met." She placed her brush. The way she smiled at him made his heart skip a beat.
Pelliaos strode across the room and the moment he sat down, He reached toward Nyrissa's hand only for her to lightly slap him. The tiefling immediately pulled back in surprise. "Don't think you are off the hook." Nyrissa scolded him with a rather stern look on her face. "You cannot make decisions for me." The fae woman then soothingly caressed the cheek she slapped, a loving tingle spread across Pelliaos's face.
"Not to mention your timing is absolutely terrible my Spring." Nyrissa said softly. "An entire day underneath the Old Sycamore does not put anyone in a happy mood." She sighed as she fell against Pelliaos's shoulder. "You thought the tunnels were bad with all the kobolds and mites? They've only gotten worse."
The king let the silence hang in the air before he asked the one question that he should have asked before this whole debacle. "Will you marry me?"
Nyrissa looked at him with a flat stare into his eyes. "Terrible time to ask." She said, only to immediately smile. "But, of course I will marry you. In six months." The fae chuckled at the king's rather flabbergasted disappointment.
"You already stressed your people out enough as it is. I've seen revolutions happen for less." His lover stated with a small smile jokingly, her past not forgotten but reconciled. "Once the people calmed down, we can have a proper wedding that we can plan-" Nyrissa then made she that Pelliaos was looking directly at her before she continued, "Together." She stated forcefully.
Certain that her message was received she pulled back the covers of bed. "Now I know that we both had a long day and I for one am exhausted." She fell to the bed with a loud puff before she lightly held the open in invitation. "Will you join me for slumber before I drift off cold and alone in this bed?"
Who was Pelliaos Sorrow to say no to his future Queen of the Stolen Lands?
This should have been done weeks ago, but life, insecurities and lovely personal issues kept getting in the way. I liked having the story follow around the king's decree that passed hands to all his advisors, but I had a lot of trouble with the ending. I want to write romance better, but it's a concept that I think that I have idealized far too much because of the lack of it in my personal life.
That being said, this is the end of this story, though maybe if I get bored might toss in an extra chapter or two of stuff I scrapped, "Fae Rules for the Material Plane" and "The Demon's Wager". Once I take a bit of a break from Pathfinder, I might come back to this with a sequel series with the most commonly done crossover of all, Harry Potter.
Media and personal opinion on J.K Rowling aside, I still want to mess with that magical mess of a society.