A light rain fell as the cloaked figure stood at the edge of the cliff and looked down at the sprawling city below him. He could just make out the faint sound of cheering and barely make out movement along the streets as if a parade was marching along.
“There’s not much time left,” the figure muttered, then turned away from the sight of the city and hurried to the white horse grazing a few feet away and climbed up into the saddle. With a deft twitch of the reins the figure sent the horse galloping away from the cliff and down towards the city.
Within the city, the residents had gathered along the streets to watch the parade go by as the various officials and attendants and military figures led the way to the center of the city and the high priest’s temple, where Prince Alexi was going to be crowned following the sudden and mysterious death a fortnight ago of his father, King Ludwig. Despite various rumors about the prince, the citizens, for the most part, were prepared to welcome Alexi as their new ruler.
There were some who were not so thrilled at the prospect of Alexi’s reign, however. Hidden down some dark alleyways and high up in some attic windows and on rooftops, a ragtag group of dissidents watched the parade and waited.
As the parade drew closer to the temple, the dissidents grew restless.
“Where is he?” one asked of his companion as they waited on a rooftop near the temple. “He’s coming, isn’t he? There’s not much time left.”
The parade, at last, reached the temple, and the prince and his attendants for the ceremony made their way through the dense crowd of spectators and climbed up the steps of the temple. The gilt doors swung open to allow admittance.
As they were about the enter the holy building for the coronation, the sound of heavy hooves beating on the cobblestone street was heard, followed by the sounds of startled spectators hurrying out of the way.
A loud and angry cry of “ALEXI!” drew the attention of the prince and his group. They turned and watched in surprise as a cloaked figure rode a white horse up the steps of the temple. When it reached the top, the figure reined the horse to a stop and jumped to the ground. In a flash, it reached beneath its cloak and drew forth a long sword.
“I will not allow you to become king, Alexi,” the figure said, pointing the sword towards the prince. “I will put an end to your reign of terror here and now, before it can begin.”
“Oh, is that so?” Alexi said with a sneer and drawing his own sword from the sheath at his waist. “And who are you to think you can stop me taking the crown and ruling?”
The mysterious figure reached up and pulled off his cloak, and a collective gasp of surprise echoed up from the crowd, as well as from those on the temple steps.
“Prince Henri!” cried out many from the crowd. Alexi
Alexi recovered after a second. “Henri,” he said with a frown. “So, you managed to survive your accident after all.”
“You know very well it was no accident, little brother. And now I’ve come to take my rightful place on the throne.”
With a scowl, Alexi raised his sword. Henri readied his. Giving a savage cry, the two princes charged at each other as the light rain over the city began to fall heavier.
This post is part of the Stream of Consciousness Saturday prompt, “rain/rein/reign”: