I am finally back from my small hiatus from my blog. All will be explained in another post, however I thought I would share this old piece with you all. Amaris, though I haven’t written her in some time, is one of my favorite characters I have ever created. I think this piece, the first introduction to her character, shows something important about her: where her priorities lie. Enjoy!
In the late hours of the night, the first riot began.
At first, it was quiet. The wind blew sand through the dark alleyways and shook the shutters outside of the homes of the people. The Julenne castle stood ominously over the entire city, the bright lights inside casting faint ones onto the grounds all around the village, which had ignited the passion of the rioters.
When the first light when on in the tallest building, everyone else woke up with it. People were exiting their homes during the dark hours, unallowed by King Alexander, and began to shout.
Amaris woke up a few minutes into the beginning of the riot. Her vision was hazy as she stood from her bed to the cold floor. Her head throbbed from the shouting – which she hadn’t realized was shouting yet, for waking from a deep sleep left her in a blinded state.
Her hands reached for the shutters, which kept the bitter air outside, but she felt she needed to have the air hit her face to wake her.
When the shutters opened, she was hit with the air, but also, the swarm of hundreds below her home, all gathered in the city center with torchlights, their cries echoing through the foreboding night.
The man at the center, standing on the statue platform, was screaming out curses to the King.
“Are we going to let this man control when we can and cannot be outside of our homes? Are we going to let him walk all over us as if we’re nothing? He continues to raise taxes, taking our hard-earned money from us and our children, so his child can be a spoiled brat! Are we going to let this keep happening?”
He was screaming, the sweat beading from his forehead was trickling down his face. His words were fueled by rage, the steam from his screams exiting his lungs at an alarming rate. His voice was fading fast, but he kept going.
“He makes us work harder, while he’s sitting on his ass with no intention of doing any work himself! Our fishermen are dying from exhaustion! If we keep working, emptying our waters, we won’t have any fish left to sell! He keeps us indoors during the ‘dark hours’! What the hell is he keeping from us?”
Amaris quickly pulled the shutters closed, but it didn’t drown out the man’s yells, and the cheering that came from the crowd.
In bare feet, she pulled her cloak over her thin, freezing body, and ran out the door. The crowd stood right outside, pressed up against the wooden frame. She shoved her way through the men and women, all cheering for the man at the center.
The walls of the mob were closing in around her as she pushed between the people blocking her. She dug her nails into their sides to press past them, ever so slowly sliding closer to the center. Amaris could still hear the man shouting, getting louder with every word he spoke.
His voice was heavy, scratching in his passionate words to the people around him. The spit produced from him was beginning to freeze to his white beard, but he didn’t notice. He kept screaming, kept the rage burning in the people’s hearts, and made sure that they would be heard by the monarchy that never heard a voice but their own.
Amaris approached him cautiously, knowing that in his passion he wouldn’t cool well.
She reached up to him and took hold of the end of his cloak, looking up towards him with golden eyes. Her voice was calm, but loud amongst the protesters screaming around them.
“You need to come back inside, Father.”
He looked down towards her, his words faded to silence when he saw her. The protesters were loud, but none noticed when he stopped. They continued their cries, hoping that they’d be heard.
“Amaris, what are you doing out here,” His voice had calmed. She ignited a sense of duty to him, to make sure that she was safe. He reached down towards her, taking hold of her wrists, “It’s late, you need to go back to the house, a girl like you shouldn’t be out here – you’ll get hurt.”
“You don’t want me to get hurt, I don’t want you to get hurt. Please, Father, come back to the house…” She pleaded to him.
The way she spoke made him believe they were the only two in the crowd.
“I won’t get hurt, Amaris. Now go back inside.”
“Father. I can’t do that. Please, come inside…”
He looked down towards his daughter for a moment and almost broke for her.
“Amaris, you need to go back into the house. Now. Your mother would not be happy to know that you’re out here-” He interrupted himself, looking into her silver eyes and taking tight hold of her hand, “Please, Amaris.”
Amaris reluctantly agreed, looking around the chaos surrounding them, “Please promise me that you won’t get hurt..”
“I cannot promise anything, but I will try my best, darling..” He placed a kiss atop her raven head, then relinquished the hold on her wrist and hand.
Amaris obeyed her Father, sinking back into the crowd. It did not take long for her to hear his roars above the crowd and the praise that followed behind.
She had always questioned him on why he insisted on leading the riots. Amaris knew that he would get hurt one day. She always feared the day that he wouldn’t come home. She wanted to stay with him, to make sure that no harm would come to him. But Amaris returned to her home despite her wish to stay with her father.