The world is ruled by great ones.
Great at spirit and body.
And I don't mean only those who run a tyranny with a heavy hand.
In a world where there are creatures as high as mountains, no one recognizes beings smaller than flower, leaf or blade of grass.
That is why the elves, the smallest of the small, live a peaceful life among meadows and forest fleece; hidden from sight of the great ones.
Taught that the enemy is outside, they live in friendship and cooperation, though there are sometimes discords too. Because every elf is different; and where differences are, there are also conflicts.
Every one, even the smallest community, needs a leader who is the model for the rest. Rasme was perfect for this role: beautiful, always smiling, gentle and with friendly disposition. She was adored and admired by everybody. She was the embodiment of the word "queen".
She had long, slightly wavy, red hair that was in itself an ornament.
Often, she'd put them in a fancy bun, which was adorned with little roses, so that the crown was useless. Her green eyes, contrasting with hair,has an amazing expression.
Dresses for the queen were hand sewn by the best tailors; at her explicit request and according to her own designs. Most often in shades of pink, her favorite color; decorated with flowers, flounces; beautiful like a queen herself.
She lived in a gorgeous, white-painted palace, which was surrounded by a beautiful garden. She lived there with staff and with trusted advisor. There was a huge hall in the palace, where meetings were held; queen was performing once a week from the terrace, discussing the most important current affairs with her people.
Each of over one hundred rooms was and decorated according to the queen's taste:
comfortable, large four-poster beds and handcrafted furniture made from the finest wood.
Even the queen's service lived in luxury. I was a luck to serve Rasme.
Everyone loved her: boys was writing love letters; girls wished to be like her.
Admiration and love, decorated costumes and beautiful palace were on the one side, but it was something else...
Rasme was not dealing with her function. She was a young queen: he did not even pass
one weather cycle since she was chosen. Her strange behavior was either ovelooked by the people who wanted to see her as an ideal, or it was justified by her youthfulness and lack of experience. But Rasme knew...
She knew she was not the one who should be the queen.
It will pass - she told herself with illusory hope. Beginnings are always difficult.
Difficulties, however, prolonged in time, and instead of gradually disappearing,
intensified. Initial shyness and jitters turned into paralyzing fear. Not only the presence of the people aroused panic, but even the thought of it. Outgoing on the
terrace and look at the people gathered in front of her, people whose life and prosperity were now lying on her frail shoulders, accelerated beating her young heart too firmly. She was down to health. Several times she almost fainted in front of the cheering crowd. At times when her ruddy face began to color dangerously similar to alabaster, she could count on the help of her trusted advisor. He was standing next to her and firmly squeezed her cold hand. He was giving her needed reassurance.
Rasme was increasingly embarrassed by her helplessness. She started to doubt that the right person occupies the most important position in the land.
Now, that she was once again about to face the talk, doubt took the form of certainty. She knew it was the worst moment and that she drives those negative emotions and that the thinking makes it even more damaging to her, but she could not
drive away dark thoughts. She sat in silence; blindly staring at the empty wall.
She only heard her shallow breath.
The dead silence was interrupted by a sudden knock on the door. Rasme immediately
got out of the numbness.
- Ready? - she heard a gentle, male voice.
- Yes... I'll be here soon - she said, trying to keep her voice from being heard
despair. She got up, corrected her dress, and left the room. Behind the door, she saw Theron's face. It was calm and it gave her a little reassurance.
Theron was tall and slender. He had short, neatly arranged, black hair and
dark eyes. He acted as an advisor; Rasme "inherited" him after the previous queen. Theron was ambitious and hardworking; according to Rasme Theron was smiling too rare, but she understood that his work required such an approach. She knew that she
can always count on him.
- Everyting is allright? - he asked with professional concern. Rasme confirmed
by nodding and without a word they headed for the balcony.
Rasme tried to sort out her speech. She read it a dozen or so times, but the stress swept away all the information from her memory. She recalled something about a war in the north, which fortunately did not threaten their land. Whether that's all? She did not know.
Fortunately, a piece of paper rested on the rostrum. Theron recorded the most important speeches on it. Rasme took a deep breath and she began to wonder how is this possible that in a normal face to face converssation she can speak as a thoughtful being, but as soon as the number of listeners grows, her tongue begins to scream as if she loses control.
Finally, she reached the terrace. She stood at the rostrum and looked around. Crowd. Several dozen eyes staring at her. She lifted a trembling hand and waved them stiffly, smiling as widely as she could. Strangely, her unnatural behavior has caused people to shouts of joy. When they stopped, Rasme prepared for speech. She cleared her throat, but the first phone stuck her in the larynx. A sudden blast of warm wind brought a saving card. Rasme could do nothing. She just watched as the white paper fell on the nearby tree.
Silence prolonged. Rasme desperately tried to capture the content of her speech. In vain. People stared at the queen expectantly, and she glanced at Theron's face. His face for the first time was not a mainstay of peace. Theron's panic was release to Rasme. Trembling hands began to shake.
-War - she heard suddenly behind her. Theron, a bit inadequate, tried to help her.
-War... - she repeated - there is a war.
The crowd moaned. People began to look after themselves, asking questions that no one knew the answer to. Several people stood up to direct their fears towards the queen. Rasme realized just what was happening. Immediately she began to explain, but nobody was listening to her. Confusion has replaced regular chaos. The queen, unable to withstand the tension, suddenly collapsed into nothingness.
She was lying unconscious in her room to which Theron had moved her. He explained to the frightened crowd the misunderstanding and rearranged the speech for the next day. And now he was sitting next to her bed, watching her breathe. She woke up after an hour.
She immediately remembered what had happened.
- Did... - She wanted to ask about the situation, but he was first.
- I've done everything - he said dryly. He was angry at her. She felt it. His face seemed to say: That's too much. She looked down with shame.
- I'm not suitable for this - she said, more to herself. He pretended not to have heard.
- Rest - he said simply, and left, leaving her alone with her thoughts.
So there was no war. But the Queen's speech had a wide echo in the community. Everyone was relieved that it was only a mistake, and over time, the whole thing began to be commented with an indulgent smile. But everyone was worried about the health of the queen, remembering how her frail body fainted in front of their eyes.