posted on 7-Sep-2002 8:24:58 PM by StardustDreamer
1-5-2

Hey Ppl! I've converted over from FF.net, thanks to my Roswell bff and "sis" Elena aka Jbehrsgurl (read her fics! They are the best on the
net, I tell ya!). I decided to post over here, hoping for more feedback and intiative to continue this fic *wink* . So, anyway! Here's the first chapter to Shadows of Antar . Enjoy! Oh yeah! It's an AU and M/L M/M A/I fic (at least so far). Love ya!


Part 1
*WHAM* went the palace doors as Ava stalked into the main hall to confront her betrothed, King Zan, ruler of the planet Antar.
"Zan!" the blonde princess complained, "You never pay any attention to me!"
Closing his amber eyes for a moment, the young king opened them a few seconds later to find that Ava was still standing before him. He groaned inwardly. It's not that he hated Ava, or really had any substantial reason not to like her, but he couldn't help the way he felt toward her. Ever since he was introduced to his betrothed, he felt nothing but alternating disdain and indifference. However, he knew that it was his place as King of Antar to marry someone with his own status, someone who could produce a proper heir, and children, which was so important to his people and the future of his planet. So because of this strong sense of duty and responsibility, Zan delt with Ava one excruciating day at a time.
"Oh...I'm sorry, Ava. I suppose I've just been busy discussing strategies with my Second-in-Command Rath and the Antarian Army, what with the impending war and problems with Khivar and all," Zan said, the sarcasm evidently beyond Ava's comprehension.
Somewhat pacified, Ava leaned in and smiled at Zan. "Well, just don't let it happen again," she said coyly, letting her chest brush against his arm. "Maybe we should get together tonight and...get to know each other better, since we're going to be wed in less than 30 Antarian moons."
The king tried hard not to let his appall show to his betrothed, and disguised it with a passingly apologetic smile.
"Sorry Princess, but I've gotten many things to work on tonight if I want to be prepared for my meeting with the army force delegates from the neighboring planets tomorrow."
Obviously putoff, Ava straightened up and tossed her hair. "Fine, my lord," she replied stiffly, her blue eyes narrowed. "I'm sure I can find other things to amuse myself with." With that thinly veiled threat, Ava stalked out of the room, surely off to find a man servant or guard to "amuse" herself with.
Zan watched his pouty betrothed leave the Grand Hall with amusement. He knew she felt insulted that he wasn't interested in her "services," but he couldn't force himself to care. He knew eventually he would have to succumb to them -after they were wed- and that was bad enough.
Sighing, he sat back in his thrown, and thought about his situation. He wasn't some naive innocent who knew nothing of the world- he had always known that he would never marry, or be capable of marrying, for love. It was relatively unheard for the Atarian Royalty. Zan often found himself envious of the free life that his people, the commoners, led down in the cities of Antar. He knew that he was considered to be somewhat of a weak leader, at least compared to the previous ruler, his later father. King Zan's liberal and wistful way of thinking was almost impossible for the combative army leaders that had ruled with his father to understand. They were loyal Antarians, however, so they followed his ruling without complaint. Besides, Zan's best friend and second-in-command, Rath, was the true force behind the militarian type forces on Antar. The leaders found no problem in fighting along side him.
Just as Zan found himself thinking of his best friend, Rath himself appeared in the Grand Hall.
"Hello, My King, My Lordship, My Commander, My--" Rath started mockingly, but Zan broke in.
"Oh shut up," Zan said in a foul tone.
Rath said an eyebrow at his long-time friend, and ran a hand through his longish brown hair. "Aren't we in a bad mood?"
Zan relaxed, and gave Rath a rueful smile. "Yeah, I guess so. I was just reflecting on what a bad leader I am."
Rath shook his head at Zan. "Look don't give yourself a hard time-- you've barely been in the throne for two months, that's only sixty moons, Zan! I know it's weird for you, but your the only leader we got. So quit feeling sorry for youself, and--and, lead!" Rath said with surprising feeling. Rath was never one to show much emotion, except for rare occasions with his best friends, being the hard-core Antarian army commander.
Zan nodded. "I know. And it's really not just that...it's Ava, too."
Rath growned. 'Not that dimwit! Look Zan, I really do not envy you for having to marry that piece of work. "
Zan stared at Rath grimly. "Yeah, thanks for the voteof confidence, friend," Zan said sarcastically.
All of sudden, the young king brightened and grinned. "Well, I don't envy you for having to deal with my sister for the next 6 or 7 decades," Zan laughed smugly.
Rath face darkened, thunderclouds in his brown eyes.
"Why did you have to go and mention that? You know that Princess Vilondra and I are extremely less than happy about that marriage arrangement," Rather said moodily.
Zan looked at his friend with no sympathy. "Get over it," Zan said simply," And besides, you have to admit marrying my sister is a better deal than marrying Ava, at least for you. "
Rath thought about it for a moment, and nodded smugly at Zan back. "Yeah...like I said, Ava is a real piece of work."
The two friends, both thrown into responsibility at the young ages of eighteen, sat and reflected, chin in hands, in silence for the moment, both thinking about their futures and wondering about how everything would turn out.
"Hey you know what," Rath said abruptly.
Zan looked up. "Yeah?"
"Let's go have some fun."
"Where at?"
"Where is the only place to have any fun?...the Antarian strip bars."



[ edited 5 time(s), last at 29-Sep-2002 1:02:16 AM ]
posted on 7-Sep-2002 10:25:00 PM by StardustDreamer
THANK YOU SO MUCH FOR THE REVIEWS! *wipes a tear away in happiness* Keep em going, and I'll keep my updates coming. *happy* Love you guys! Here comes part two!

Part 2
Thumping, head pounding music poured out of the small, dimly lit ally way of the Antarian city. Two tall, darkly dressed men with long black capes approached a nondescript door.
"I think we're here," Rath said appraisingly, glancing at the door and taking in the music. He raised a hand to knock on the door, but Zan raised a hand to stop him.
"Maybe this isn't a good idea," the young king said uneasily.
Rath cast a glance at Zan. "Hey, don't worry worry about it, what we really need is a little fun in our otherwise stressful and suddenly complicated lives," he said.
Raising his hand again, Rath knocked on the door-- one long, one short, two quick.
Zan raised an eyebrow at Rath as he delivered the complicated password to get in the bar.
Rath looked back unabashedly, and grinned. "So maybe I've been here a few times..."
Right then, the door opened to reveal a pleasant looking man with two rings through his nose.
"Oh hey Rath my man! Good to see you again! C'mon in, let me show you to your table."
"A FEW times??" Zan hissed,looking around paraniodly, as he was forced to follow Rath quickly through the darkened bar.
As the two members of Royalty sat down in a dark corner in the back of the bar and drank a few pints of mead served by a beautful barmaid, Zan finally felt himself relax.
Rath looked over at his friend. "Feeling better?"
"Well, at least we're hidden in the back," Zan said admittedly, the closest he would come to saying that he might be enjoying himself.
Right then, bright neon lights started flashing around the front stage, and cheers erupted from all corners of the bar.
Slapping Zan on the back, Rath grinned. "Well my friend, get ready for the best part of the night. Here comes the entertainment!"
Out came a gorgeous girl, clad in a sparkling silver top that showed all the right angles, but yet didn't expose anything directly...yet. She also wore a black skirt and thigh high boots. She stopped in the middle of the stage, glanced around with her hands on her hips, and gave a saucy wink to the crowd. Tossing back her honey blonde curls, she strutted out to the edge of the stage, and the music started. The girl started to move to the beat expertly and all the men cheered wildly.
Rath's smile dropped from his face.
"MARIA!!" the young commander of the Antarian elite yelled.
Zan looked at his friend with mingled shock and curiosity, as did the dancer named Maria.
"Rath," she started to stay, but was interrupted by the boo's of the crowd.
Jumping up, Rath moved angrily toward the stage and Maria.
Zan also stood, and felt obligated to follow his friend towards the stage.
Just as Zan caught up with Rath, Rath had caughten up with Maria as she was climbing down the stage stairs, much to the dismay of the angering crowd.
Grabbing her arm, he started to pull her towards the back of the bar.
Right then, the man with the tatoos (who apprently owned the club) appeared from behind the bar.
"Rath," he said in low tones, "If you want to talk to Maria, then you know where to go, just get out of the floor room. These guys are going nuts out here to see some real action, not some jealous boyfriend killing the mood by pulling the entertainment of the stage," Volf finished quietly, casting an apologetic look at Maria when her eyes flashed at the word "entertainment."
"Girlfriend??" Zan questioned, his eyebrows raised.
Ignoring Zan, Rath snapped out of his fury for a second, and nodded curtly at the man named Volf.
"We'll be in the back."
Gripping Maria's arm tighter, Rath marched her toward the back rooms of the nightclub, obviously knowing the way.
Feeling a little awkward and at odds in the floor room with the madding crowd behind him, the young king stood for a moment and weighed his options.
Finally, Zan set his shoulders and followed the argumentative words of Maria and Rath through the dark corridors of the strip club.





[ edited 3 time(s), last at 10-Sep-2002 4:47:27 PM ]
posted on 9-Sep-2002 9:31:34 PM by StardustDreamer
Thanks for the wonderful reviews people! *sniff sniff* I love you all! Rim, Marteloise, Jeremiah, Honey Behr, Angel Eyes, Roswellluver, Gagnes and especially my sis Jbehrsgurl (chica's don't get any better than that!) -- this installment is dedicated to you guys! I know it's kinda short and crappy, but it'll get better next time, I promise...now on with the show! *wink*

Part 3
As Zan found Maria and Rath after following their voices, he knew he had stumbled upon a serious and uncomfortable fight, as he hovered outside the room door.
Zan wasn't sure which he was surprised by more-- that Rath was involved with a commoner girl, or that Rath had been keeping her a secret from him. Judging by the overprotective reaction that had come bursting from Rath when he saw Maria on the stage about to perform, Zan knew that Rath really cared for this girl. Now he understand that Rath wasn't just so resistant and angry about marrying Princess Vilondra because they had all been good friends for so long, but because Rath wanted to be with this Maria girl.
Zan stopped his pondering for a moment to listen to his friend and the girl.
"Maria!" Rath yelled. "I thought I told you to quit this dump! I don't want you..you..stripping here or anything else like that anymore!"
Maria's blue eyes glared at Rath. "That's easy for you to say, Mr. I'm-the-Royal-Commander-of the-Antarian-Army, blah blah blah blah!! And besides, what are you doing here, mister, if it's such a dump!"
Rath averted his eyes guiltily. "I..."
Zan then took it upon himself to stride into the room. "He was trying to help me relax...Maria, is it?" Zan questioned.
Maria and Rath both looked at Zan. Maria with surprise and curiosity, Rath with gratefulness for the excuse Zan had given for him.
"Yes, it's Maria." Rath said for her. "Maria, I'd like you to meet my best friend Zan. Zan, this is Maria, my girlfriend."
"Nice to meet you, Zan," Maria started, and then stopped and her blue eyes widened. "Zan...as in...King Zan?"
The king smiled. "Well, yes, that's my title, but I'm Zan. If we're going to be friends, then that's what I'd like you to call me."
Recovering quickly, Maria stuck out her hand. "Nice to meet you, Zan."
Taking it, he gave Maria a friendly handshake. "The pleasure's all mine."
Witnessing the meeting, Rath smiled to himself. He was glad that Zan obviously approved of Maria, if not his and Maria's now not-so-secret relationship. Rath always knew Zan wasn't into the whole "Royal Supremacy" deal. It would definietly work on Rath's side if Zan liked Maria.
Her smile fading, Maria looked back at Rath. "So, what's the deal then? How is this going to be resolved, Rath? I can't just quit, you know. This is my job, the only one I have."
"Look Maria, I'll take care of you, and provide for you. I just can't deal with you being here."
Maira sighed and sat down at a small table in the room. She was sat quietly for a moment, putting her head in hands. Finally, she looked up and spoke evenly.
"And what about Vilondra, Rath? How long can it last once your married to her. I wouldn't even WANT you to "provide" for me if we're not married, and especially if your married to someone else. All I know is, I want to be with you so badly, but it can't be Rath! It can't!"
Rath walked over and knelt by Maria's side and took her hand.
"Maria...I don't have those answers right now. I do know that I'm trying to working something out right now with that," Rath said, Zan then looking at him sharply, "but for now...we just have to take one day at a time."
Maria opened her mouth to speak, but right then someone came bursting into the room.
"Maria! I heard that something happened with you and I've been half crazy trying to find you," the girl started, and then stared at the people in the room.
"Oh Liz, I'm sorry!" Maria cried, and went over and hugged her best friend.
"Hey Liz," Rath said, smiling at the girl that he had gotten to know after countless meetings with Maria.
"Liz, you know Rath of course. Oh, and this is his friend, Zan."
Zan looked into the girl's beautiful brown eyes and knew right then and there that he would never be the same again.
Zan walked over and took the girl's hand. "Yes, I'm..." he started, but stopped cold.
Shocks of electrical waves coursed through his body, and brilliant colors entered his mind. Zan felt like he was falling, falling and then he was floating. Blinking, he suddenly came back into reality and he held onto Liz's hand a second more. Looking into her eyes, he knew that she felt the same way.
Right then, Maria coughed. "Well, that was interesting," she said, smiling at Liz and Zan.
Rath looked over at his friend and knew something was up, but needed some time alone with Maria. "Zan, I know this wasn't the carefree night I promised you, and I'm sorry for that, but I need a few minutes alone with Maria."
Zan held up his hand. "Say no more. I'll just step outside."
Liz looked at Maria. "Me too, Maria. Let me know if you need me," she said, giving a supportive look to her friend. Liz knew Maria would be fine with Rath, even thouigh they were obviously arguing. Besides, she was still in shock over the heart-pounding experience she had when she touched Zan. The feelings she felt for this near stranger took her breath away.
Liz then smiled up at Zan. "If you want, I know another place we can sit quietly while they talk..." she said shyly, and right then Zan's heart almost beated out of his chest.
He looked down at the brown haired girl and his amber eyes smiled back. 'I'd really like that."
As they started to walk out, Zan turned around and faced Rath. "But Rath,remember. We haven't got much longer if we want to get back before people start missing us."
Rath nodded, and Zan left the room with Liz.


[ edited 9 time(s), last at 9-Sep-2002 10:42:17 PM ]
posted on 10-Sep-2002 9:46:25 PM by StardustDreamer
Hey there! Here's the next installment. It's not great, in my opinion, but it needed to be written. I hope you all enjoy it. Once again, thank you for all the reviews.
Keep it up! Hehe.

Part Four

Zan followed the girl named Liz through the dark corridor and then into an empty room off
to the right. Shutting the door behind Zan, Liz also locked it.
Zan raised his eyebrows when he heard the click of the lock.
Smiling sheepishly at, Liz explained, "You can't really be too careful around here. Whenever
Maria or I go somewhere to talk or change, we always lock the door behind us. This
place isn't really as bad as others, but...you know."
Zan half smiled back at Liz, but looked down for a moment. He then met the girl's eyes.
"This is probably a really personal question, but ...do you strip here too?" he said,
turning a bit red at his own question.
Liz sighed and looked away. "I did a few times when I first got the job here, because you
make so much money doing it. My father was one of the few that contracted the
virus that Khivar dropped on Antar a few months ago and lost his job, so I was the one
who had to find a way to make ends meet. But, I quit that soon after I started. I couldn't stand
it...it just felt so wrong. So now I just wait on tables and bring drinks and straighten up the floor room and in the back rooms. It's not nearly as much money, but we get by."
She finally gained the courage to look back at the boy -well, man- that she developed
such feelings for in such a short time. "I'll understand if you think less of me, Zan..."
Shaking his head with feeling, he strode across the room and took her hand.
"Liz- I don't care," Zan said emphatically. "You had to do what you had to do. That doesn't
matter to me. But I have to, I need to know- are the feelings that I have for you one sided?
Heaven knows, I can't explain the immediate connection between us that I felt, but it's there. I don't understand it,but I don't even know if I want to. It's too special, too wonderful to even
put into words. Liz...I think I love you.
Liz's warm brown eyes looked up into Zan's amber ones, and Zan almost gasped with estasy
when he saw his love reflected in her own eyes, back at him.
"Oh Zan...I didn't dare hope that you felt the same thing that I did. I've never felt love
before, but I know what we have is real. I don't know how or why, either, but I right now
I feel so..I feel like..I'm floating."
The two stood there like that for a moment, just staring in one another's eyes. A loud noise outside
the door suddenly brought Zan's euphoria crashing down to reality. Thudding, realistic
thoughts came shooting through his mind. Antar. Khivar. The throne. Royal Four. Princess Ava. AVA.
Sighing, Zan pulled his hand from Liz's. Aware of Liz's hurt, questioning look, he walked towards
the dirty,only window in the room and looked out at the limited view of Antar, his city, his land.
Finally, he spoke,"Liz. I don't know if you already knew this, or recognized the name, but I'm Zan...King Zan, of Antar."
He heard the sharp intake of breath behind him confirm that Liz had not known, or realized it. Not encouraged by this, but knowing he had to go on, Zan continued," And that's not all...Liz, I'm betrothed. To Princess Ava."
Squeezing his eyes shut, he waited for Liz to reply. The silence in the room was deafening. Finally, Liz spoke.
"I--I-don't know what to say. I should have known that it was to good to be true, I suppose."
Pain in his eyes, Zan held out his hand. "Liz..."
"No." Liz said, holding up her hand to stop him, trying to keep her own pain out of her voice. "I understand. You have a betrothed, your a king. You need someone of your status--"
"LIZ!" Zan said in anguish, "That's not it at all. I don't care about any of that stuff. The arranged marriage was something that was made for me, part of a system of royalty that has existed for generations. I've always just accepted that the decision would be made for me, that I would never be able to change it or that I would even have an opportunity to. Never would I have guessed that I would meet someone like you, Liz. I've only known you for a short time, but I--I feel like I've loved you forever."
"But Zan...we can't be. Your engaged to Ava!"
"I know. But I'm going to do everything in my power from now until the wedding to change that. We have over a month until the wedding, so nothing is final until I say it is. I'm the king. And I want YOU Liz. Not Ava," Zan emphatically.
Tears in her eyes, Liz walked over unsteadily towards Zan and suddenly took a few running steps. Throwing her arms around him, she buried her face into his neck.
Zan hugged her to him, and felt Liz's salty tears against his neck. Lifting her chin up so he could meet her eyes, Zan gently kissed Liz on the lips. Shockwaves poured over them as their lips met for the first time. Kissing again, they felt unimaginable joy wash over them as they continued to embrace.
This how Maria and Rath saw them as they came barging into the room. *BAM* went the door as it flew open, due to Rath's lock breaking powers.
Pulling apart, Liz and Zan looked at them in surprise and guilt.
Raising their eyebrows, Rath and Maria looked at their friends for a moment, until Rath interrupted the silence.
"Normally, I would ask you immediately what was going on, my friend, but frankly we don't have the time. But believe me, we will talk about this later," Rath said, amused but hurriedly. "Right now, we have got to move our asses. We've spent alot more time here then we should have...the palace is going to be wondering where we are."
Rath and Zan quickly made their goodbyes to Maria and Liz and headed for the door, but not before Zan turned around and looked at Liz, his hand on the doornob.
"I will see you again, very soon," Zan promised. "I love you."
Then they were gone, leaving Maria and Liz alone-- both girls pining over and wondering what they were going to do about their Royal soulmates.






[ edited 1 time(s), last at 10-Sep-2002 9:48:23 PM ]
posted on 14-Sep-2002 6:12:31 PM by StardustDreamer
Author's Note: Sorry that this updation has taken so long! Thank you to those who have actually read and/or reviewed my story so far. You're all great people! Enjoy!


Part 5
Rath and Zan breathed a sigh of relief as they entered the palace without being noticed once again. Tonight marked the second consecutive week that the king and his best friend had successfully and without fail gone and visited their secret girlfriends, Liz and Maria. That fateful night that Maria and Rath had gotten into a fight (and therefore causing Liz and Zan to meet and fall in love) had been the turning point in all of their lives. It seemed as if something had just clicked that night between the two couples, and some unknown destiny had fallen into place...(and unknowingly to them, displaced another in the process).
But one thing was for sure, after Rath and Zan had safely snuck back into the palace that first night, they both realized that they had to spend as much time with their other halves as possible. It seemed to Zan that he couldn't get enough of staring into Liz's eyes, or having an ACTUAL intelligent conversation with someone other than his sister Vilondra or best friend, or just sitting in comfortable silence with Liz. Zan knew that Rath felt the same way with Maria (except maybe the sitting in silence part), and it seemed that their similar situation brought them, if possible, even more close. So night after night, Zan and Rath stealthily met Liz and Maria back at the club, and then would creep back into the palace by midnight. They had gotten quite good at it after two weeks of doing it.
"Whew..." Rath said while catching his breath, as he and Zan had made it up to the hallway of where their chambers both were. "Tonight was actually kind of a close one."
Zan nodded but still looked in paranoia after their close call. "I know. Let's not talk about it out here in the hall though. You know how these palace walls sometimes have ears... Let's go to into my chambers for now while we talk."
After locking the door and reinforcing it with their powers, Zan finally felt comfortable enough to talk.
"Rath, I think someone is getting suspicious."
Rath looked over sharply at his best friend. Zan could practically see the militarial wheels turning in Rath's head.
"Why do you think that?"
"Notice how close tonight was? And the night before that? It wasn't just a coincidence that extra guards were posted outside the palace walls last night and tonight. We've never had that before. There were at least 15 more guards than normal out there."
Zan saw something like dismay flash in Rath's eyes. "Look Zan, if you haven't forgotten, there is a war going on out there. Khivar is still after our asses. Maybe that's why they were out there," Rath said lamely, trying to maintain his skepticism towards Zan's argument.
Looking at Rath steadily, Zan said simply, "Rath, I'm the king. You are the commander of all Antarian military forces and the actions that they take. I certainly didn't order those guards out there because of Khivar. Did you?"
Rath stared back at Zan. A moment later, he finally spoke. "Alright. Someone knows then."
Grimly satisfied that Rath recognized the truth in his words, Zan nodded. "Now we just have to figure out who it is, and why they just haven't confronted us."
Rath shivered. "Well, I guess we have one thing to be thankful to 'them' for. I just have no clue as to who it could be. I mean c'mon, we have been pretty careful Zander. Who in the palace is smart enough to figure is out?"
A voice from Zan's master washroom spoke out of the darkness, making Zan and Rath jump up in panic and dismay:
"I am."
Rath and Zan stared at the figure that emerged from the blackened doorway.
Finally, it was Zan who spoke first...


"Vilondra...?"


Author's Note: *Crouches down to avoid any possible rotten tomatoes coming her way* Okay well, I tried to get this chapter out by tonight, and I wanted to hurry up and make way for more Vilondra and other character interaction, so I'm afraid I kind of rushed this chapter. I'm not sure if it's any good, but I tried guys! *happy* I'm going to try and keep updating as soon as possible this time around, so stay tuned. Oh, and please review and tell me what you think so far, and any other ideas or comments you'd like to make. Thanks!






[ edited 1 time(s), last at 14-Sep-2002 10:52:25 PM ]
posted on 18-Sep-2002 1:03:35 PM by StardustDreamer
Part Six

"Vilondra?" Zan asked again, the barely concealed shock evident in his voice.

The beautiful blonde Antarian princess smiled at her brother. "Yes, Zan?" she asked drily

Before Zan could question his sister, Rath broke in.
"What in hell's name do you think your doing Lonnie?" the young commander asked angrily. "Are you responsible for placing all those unauthorized guards out there?"

"Yes, I am," Vilondra stated casually but with slight irritation in her voice. "And they are not unauthorized, considering that I am the PRINCESS of Antar, Rath."

Rath stared at the princess. "Whatever. Either way, what's the deal?! I can't believe you would actually set us up to get caught like that. That is fully wrong, Vilondra. Zan is your brother and I am-"

"My what, Rath?" Vilondra interrupted dangerously, her brown eyes flashing. "My bethrothed? My fiance?"

Rath stared at her in disgust. "No stupid. Your best friend, as I was going to say before you rudely interrupted me," he said pointedly.

Seeing that his sister was chagrined enough to stay quiet for a few precious seconds, Zan jumped in before Vilondra regained composure.

"Quiet, both of you," Zan said sternly to his best friend and his only sibling. "Rath, quit jumping to conclusions. And Vilondra, quit dancing around the inevitable and just tell us what you are up to."

"Or better yet," Rath jumped in quickly, "What you know."
Shooting a "shut up" glance at Rath, Zan drew his attention back to his sister and waited for her to respond.

Looking at them silently for a moment, Vilondra spoke.
"I know about Liz and Maria."
Two pairs of eyebrows rose simultaneously at her, but the owners miraculously stayed quiet and waited for her to continue.

Taking the silence as her cue to continue, Vilondra said,"I know that you've been sneaking out to see the two commoners every night for the past fourteen moons. I know the two commoners names, where they work, live, what they look like, and I know what would consequences that *they* would have to pay if you two get caught, and them caught in the process."

Zan met his sister's eyes, and she blanched at what she saw in them. "What exactly are you saying Vilondra? Are you going to turn us in...or is this some kind of threat...or blackmail? What?" he said slowly, his jaw clenched.
"Zan-"
"No Vilondra, what are you trying to say? Because let me tell you, you can threaten me, and you can threaten Rath, but you damn well better not ever think you can threaten Liz..."

Rath nodded in agreement behind Zan, thinking about his own girl, Maria.
"...Not as long as I'm alive. I don't know what your problem is-- I mean, I know you've been really distant ever since our betrothals to Ava and Rath were announced. I told you that it wasn't my fault...I mean, I certainly don't want to marry Ava. Are you still angry at me? Do you still blame me for not stopping the engagement? Is that it?" Zan caught his breath after his rant, and waited for his sister to reply.

Turn her back, the princess walked towards the double windows of Zan's balcony and stared out into the night.
"No Zan, it's not any of that. I'm not trying to blackmail you, or threaten you. I wasn't trying to get you caught tonight. Don't you think I know that you and Rath are more than capable enough to outwit a bunch of lowly guards and maneuver your way into palace that you've lived and played in all of your lives? I suspected that you and Rath were leaving the palace at night a couple weeks ago. You were both acting differently-- Rath was actually distracted from his strategizing and Zan, you were extremely focused, like you were overcompensating for something. Believe me, I have enough experience in that field to recognize love when I see it. So, to be sure, I waited up one night after that and waited for you both to come home. That was enough proof to me that you were leaving, but I had to be sure of your motives. So...I dreamwalked you."

"WHAT?!" yelled Rath and Zan. Using their Royal powers on one another was something they had banned long ago when they were just children. Vilondra's gift, dreamwalking, happened to be one of the most intrusive things you could do to a persons privacy. It involved going into the mind of someone and looking into one of the most revealing processes of their brain- a person's dreams.

Vilondra knew that this was something they would not appreciate, but flinched and went on with her story. "So, I dreamwalked you both, and saw the two girl's- Liz and Maria. Your dreamselves were only too happy to oblige with an explanation of your two favorite girls, once I prodded them on. Once I got enough information, I could dreamwalk the two commoners also. After I got all of the pieces of the puzzle, I put them together and decided that I needed to talk to you two about it. BUT, I knew that I couldn't just outright confront you about it. You would either get defensive, deny it, or just ignore me and not consider that I was anyway an obstacle. I needed to do something to catch your attention and notice me, and get you thinking."

Rath and Zan looked at each other, both more confused now than they were still angry.
"I don't see what your getting at Lonnie," Zan said frankly.
Princess Vilondra sighed and turned wistful eyes toward him and Rath, the moon reflecting behind her blonde hair and making it glow in the room's dimness.

"Basically...I need your help. And the only way I thought that you two would listen to me and take me seriously is if I proved that I knew about you guys and show that I wouldn't tell anyone. I kind of realize now that I didn't go about it the best way with the guards and all...and I'm sorry. But I really do need your help."

Both boys faces softened from the apology, but wariness was still evident in Rath's eyes.
"Why exactly do you need help with? And more importantly, where do our commoners come into play?" Rath said sarcastically, accenting on the word "commoners" that Vilondra used so often.

"Well..." Vilondra started hesitantly,
"I'm in love with a commoner too."

[ edited 5 time(s), last at 18-Sep-2002 7:36:31 PM ]
posted on 23-Sep-2002 3:40:53 PM by StardustDreamer
1-5-2

Author's Note: I'm back! Thank you guys for the awesome reviews! I write for all of you, so it makes me happy to see your notes. *happy* Anyway, so here goes my next chapter-- hope you enjoy.

Part 7

Rath and Zan stared at Vilondra.

Rath was the first to break the silence by chuckling and shaking his head at Vilondra scornfully.

"Yeah right Lonnie, like I believe that one. Look, you tried to get us caught, okay yeah fine, I'll accept that but don't give me some ridiculous LIE--"

Vilondra shot daggers at her long time friend and betrothed.

"RATH! I'm not kidding. I'm in love. With a commoner. I'm in love with a commoner! Why is that so hard to believe?"
This time Zan spoke up, but rather hesistantly as to not hurt his sister's feelings. "Well, umm sis, the fact that your referring to him as a *commoner* doesn't help your case any."

Vilondra started to scowl at her brother, but instead smiled ruefully at him. Her eyes took on a dreamy look as she spoke.

"Yes, I suppose your right. But...I'm not lying. I really do love him. He's the best thing that has ever happened to me. I used to be so snobbish and ignorant."

Vilondra bit her lip as she thought about when she first met the love of her life only a few short weeks ago.

"I first met him when he was delivering food to the palace. He had gotten lost in the halls and literally ran into me. At first I was apalled but their was something so..so right about him! We started talking and walking around the palace and before I knew it, he was under me screen. He had to leave but I HAD to see him again. So we made plans to meet again at Baarden's Market. Once I saw the REAL Antar I was hooked! I couldn't believe what I had been sheltered from. So we've been meeting secretly for the past few weeks.Rath, Zan- he's shown me so much in so litte time! He's changed my whole outlook on life. That is why I've seemed so "distant" lately, Zan. I've been so overwhelmed with emotion and information. Yes, I'm not happy with the arrangements for Rath and I to be wed. That's obvious...but I'm not angry at you. And it's not why I've been aloof. It's my feelings for Alex (Author's Note: Yes my friends! The commoner is Alex!) that have been driving me mad-- and I just didn't know what to do about it! I couldn't talk to you, or Rath about it for obvious reasons. Ava wasn't even an option-- she would never understand my feelings for a "commoner." And don't even get me started on mother. I mean, I was dying to talk to someone, but I couldn't! All I could or can do is eat, sleep and breathe Alex!"

Vilondra finished her passionate speech and looked beseechingly at the other two members of the Royal Four.

"So do you see now? Why I needed to get you two to listen to me and get on my side? I was SO happy when I discovered that you guys were in the same predicament as I was. Not only could I have someone to talk to about it, but I had two people that actually could empathize with me."

She stopped for a moment and went back to staring out the palace windows as she had before, as if pondering something else.

Rath and Zan looked at one another. They both knew Vilondra well enough to know when she was lying and when she was telling the truth. They were both just so shocked that Vilondra had fallen in love with someone "beneath" her station, like them. She had always been the "Ice Princess" , the little girl who never wanted to get dirty, or mingle with the citizens of Antar or even leave the palace walls. It was surprising to the two young men who knew her better than anyone to see her so changed, even if it was for the best.

"Wow," was all Zan could say for the moment.

After standing in silence for a few minutes, Zan spoke again.

"Guys...what are we going to do? I mean, this is such a mess. You two are betrothed to each other, but are both in love with someone else. I'm to marry Ava," Zan shuddered, "but I'm crazy for Liz. Not to mention that Ava has NO clue about any of this."

"I know," Rath said as he ran a hand through his wavy brown hair,"This has all gotten out of hand! I don't even know what we're going to do. The sad thing is, the entire time we've been talking about this I haven't been able to keep my mind off of Maria."

Zan nodded also, smiling guiltily.

"Me too."

[ edited 2 time(s), last at 29-Sep-2002 1:06:38 AM ]
posted on 29-Sep-2002 10:04:59 PM by StardustDreamer
1-5-2

Author's Note: Hey guys! Man, I am SO slack about updating! Anyway, hope you all enjoy this chapter, even though it is MEGA short. *happy*

Part 8

"God Liz," Maria said, pacing back and forth in her small room. Maria lived in a small home with her single mother. Her mom made a small living as an on again/off again maid in the palace, but Maria was the main breadwinner for her and her mother.

"I am so nervous about all of us getting together tonight...I mean, me meeting Vilondra? Liz...I've been so used to thinking of her as the competition for so long, that I can't comprehend that she's really not in love with Rath too. You know?"

Sitting on the bed, Liz nodded sympathetically at Maria. Ever since their men had informed Liz and Maria about about plans to get together tonight with Vilondra and her loved one, they had been a complete wreck.

"I can imagine how strange it must feel. I have to admit, I'm more than nervous about meeting Zan's infamous sister. From what I've gathered from what he and Rath have said, they are really close. If Vilondra doesn't like me...well, all I can is is that I hope she does!" Liz finished with a laugh and a worried look in her warm brown eyes.

Maria calmed down a little bit when she realized how nervous her best friend was also. When the normally cool,calm and collected Liz got flustered, then Maria knew that it was okay to be nervous and that she wasn't just blowing things out of porporton.

Moving next to Liz, Maria put an arm around her and rested her head against her shoulder.

"Don't worry Liz, I think we'll be okay tonight. Vilondra is going to LOVE us, Rath and I will get to see each other, as well as you and Zan. We'll all meet Vilondra's mysterious guy and think of a plan...wait a minute, I wonder who this mystery guy is anyway?"

Liz shrugged. "Probably some high class guy that fits her station. Zan didn't tell me too much about him, just that it would be surprising when I found out the whole story."

Knock Knock

Maria raised an eyebrow at Liz, who shrugged in return at her best friend.

"It's your home- I'm not expecting anyone," Liz laughed.

Maria went to do the door to answer it, wondering who it could be.

Pulling it open, she was greeted by the grinning, brown-eyed, intelligent face of their other best friend.

"Alex, Come on in!" they both exclaimed.


[ edited 4 time(s), last at 30-Sep-2002 2:09:10 PM ]
posted on 2-Oct-2002 11:19:12 AM by StardustDreamer
Author's Notes: Hey there! Here is my next chapter- Oh yes, just in case your confused: Anamaria and Eliza are just the real form of Liz and Maria's Antarian names...yeah I know your confused now, but later you'll understand what I'm talking about, lol.

Part 9

"Alex! What are you doing here, silly?" Liz asked her best friend, her brown eyes twinkling.

She had known Alex since they were very small. She and Maria were best friends ,but she and Alex had a bond that was made of steel.

Alex put an arm around Liz and Maria and steered them toward the couch.

"Ladies, I have something to tell you that is going to surprise you, okay? We need to sit down."

Sharing a confused look, Maria and Liz obliged Alex and sat down and looked up at him expectantly.

"Well," he started with a deep breath and a grin," I'm Vilondra's secret soulmate."
"WHAT?!" they exclaimed. They had both heard about this boy from Rath and Zan previously, whenever they contacted them to tell them about this meeting and their plan to figure out what to do to secure their futures together.

"You see, I met her during my first job at the palace. You know Maria, right when your mother helped me that position in the kitchen two full moons ago? Anyway, I got lost, and I knew I was in trouble if I botched my first day. So, while I was hopelessly meandering around the palace, I ran *literally* into the most beautiful girl I have ever seen, present company excluded of course," he hastily added with a charming smile. "Well, right from that moment I knew that she was the girl for me, even though she was a princess and I was a lowly assistant cook. We walked around the palace for awhile and talked about everything under the galaxy. I soon had to go, because I was already late enough as it was to the kitchen. Luckily, Vilondra escorted me back to it personally and pretty much wiped any responsibility I had away when the Chief Cook saw the princess herself standing the middle of the kitchen with me."

Both girls smiled at the thought of the look the cook must have had when he saw Alex and Princess Vilondra walk through the door.

"I just knew I had to see her again. Lonnie hesitated when she started to walk away, and believe me, that was enough proof for me that she felt the same way. So I whispered in her ear to meet me the next day at the Market in the north plaza, and unbelievably, she did. She actually crept out of the palace for the first time in her life to meet ME. You two- we had the most fantastic day. I learned so much from her, and I think she learned much from me too. After that, it became routine. She would sneak out and see me, and I would occasionally see her the few times that I went back to work at the palace kitchen. It's been so wonderful. That is, until..." Alex's smile faded and his face darkened.

"Until what, Alex?" Liz asked, concern shadowing her eyes.

Sighing, he looked down and then back up.
"What I am about to tell you- I don't want you to think badly of Vilondra. What happened was necessary. Okay? Just promise me that you won't judge her. Not until you've met her and formed your own opinion, away from this secondhand information."

Maria waved her hand at him impatiently and fixed her blues eyes on Alex.

"Okay okay, we got it drama queen! Just tell us!"

"Well...ummm."

"ALEX!"

"She's secretly betrothed to Kivar," he blurted out.

--------------------

Liz stared at her friend. But before she could even speak, Maria voiced her thoughts for her.

"What did you just say? She's betrothed with the number one enemy of our kingdom, our planet, of our King? Better yet, her own brother?!" Maria asked in disbelief.

"Maria..."

"No Liz! Do NOT defend her. Don't try to tell me that you're seeing logic to this, because I'm not! I know we said that we wouldn't judge her, but come on. Kivar is out to not only take us over, but would do anything to kill Zan and most certainly Rath- and oh yeah, he would love to make us all into slaves!" Maria stormed sarcastically.

She stopped her raving and pacing suddenly, and looked back in disbelief at Alex.

"I don't get it...why aren't you more ANGRY? I'm more furious than you are, and you're in love with her! I mean I know your a fairly patient boy, but this is-"

Alex cut in with exaggerated patience. "Yes Maria...I was getting to an explanation before you so rudely started raging at me."

Liz could see that Maria was clearly chagrined by this.

Her blonde friend stopped and sat down on the couch again beside Liz and they both waited for him to continue.

Now that he had their attention, Alex ran a hand through his dark brown locks and started some pacing of his own.

"After we started to get really close, I learned a lot about Vilondra's family and her brother, King Zan. She explained to me about how she and Zan had never bought into the "Royal Supremacy" that their ancestors and fellow members of Royalty so relied on. This was why it was so hard for her to stomach being forced to marry one of her best friends, Rath, and why Zan detested the very thought of Ava- well besides the obvious reason why he would detest Ava. I met her once at the palace and can I tell you that she is appalling. All that false simpering...and she had the NERVE to actually ask me to come to her room and-well, never mind. That is beside the point. The point is- there is no love involved with these matches, as you well know. A few nights after our first meeting, we realized that unless we could figure something out, then there would be no possible way for us to be together. We schemed for HOURS and could think of not a single plan, save the actually disestablishment of the Royal Hierarchy. And besides that, anything Vilondra attempted to do was relatively futile without the support of her dear brother, and furthermore, her betrothed Rath. She had already suspected by this point that something was going on with them- she knows them well enough to tell. So over the next nights, she learned that they were meeting two girls and then in time, she knew who you were and could, well, she dreamwalk you..."

Liz and Maria gasped. Even though as mere commoners they were not allowed the powers that the Royalty had to access and tap into the gifts that the Antarian race had in general, they knew what the different gifts were and what were involved. Dreamwalking, they knew, was a very intrusive process.

Alex cringed, but continued on, "...and she basically found out everything about you two's relationship with Zan and Rath. She came to me immediately and told me of the two commoner Antarian girls named Eliza and Anamaria that her brother and bethrothed were in love with and of course, I knew who you were right away. And can I say girls, that I am intensely disappointed in you for keeping your trysts a secret from your good friend Alexander!"

Maria snorted. "Uh huh, well Alex you've obviously been keeping your little secret considerably longer than we have."

Liz nodded in agreement and raised an eyebrow. Both were waiting for an answer.

Alex grinned ruefully. "True true...but let's not dwell on trivial details, shall we?" he laughed and said," but like I was saying, I knew exactly who she was speaking of but let it go at that moment. I decided not to tell her that I knew you two right away. We started planning that night about how we would bring this up to Rath and Zan. We knew we needed their help and support to get anything done, so we devised a plan to "break the ice" so she could confront them."

Alex's tone suddenly got more serious.

"That same night that we were planning our "ice breaking" plot, Vilondra was acting really odd and more paranoid about our situation than usual. I confronted her about it, and she burst into tears. She started apologizing and crying about how she wasn't worthy of me, OR Rath. Needless to say, I was shocked. She confessed that she had met Kivar when he first visited the palace half a year ago to make negotiations with King Zan. Vilondra had been crying in the courtyard of the palace, because that was the same night Zan informed her she was to be married to Rath. Kivar was leaving the palace when he saw Vilondra, and he went over to talk to her. I hate to say it, but she was drawn in by his charms. And after all, he came at the right time, when she was most vulnerable and feeling alone. They met secretly after that, and Vilondra was captivated by him for a good while. However, slowly she started to realize Khivar's true nature, especially after the negotiations with her brother failed. The more Khivar learned to trust Vilondra, the less Vilondra trusted him. He started to talk freely to her about his plans to overthrow her brother. I guess Khivar thought that she hated him as much as he did, because of her bitter words towards Zan and Rath when she first learned of the marital arrangements. Vilondra didn't know what to do...she loved her brother and wanted to stop seeing Khivar, but she was scared of what Khivar might do if she cut ties with him. Whatever control she might have over him and his decisions towards taking over Antar would be gone if she cast him away. So slowly, Vilondra weaned herself off of him and came up with excuses whenever he would contact her in secret. She hadn't heard from him in at least 90 moons when she first ran into me at the palace and had quite thought that Khivar had just forgotten about her. But, the night before Vilondra and I started our plot about you two and Zan and Rath, Khivar came to her secretly and told her that she must choose a side. Him...or Zan & Rath. Khivar told her about his ultimate plan and secret weapon to defeat her brother and she panicked so much that she pledged her love to him, out of love for her family and her planet. She thought that it would by her some time to think of how to tell her brother and Rath about her secret trysts with him earlier, and think of a plan to defeat him. So, along with all of her problems with Khivar, she had us to think about also."

Alex finally stopped his long-winded explanation and took a breath.

Maria looked at Liz for a moment, and then back at Alex.

"Alright," she said admittedly, "I guess I can understand why she did what she did..."

Liz nodded, her brown eyes serious. "I had no idea that this was all going on! Zan and Rath are going to be so shocked when they hear about Khivar...I think that we should discuss this tonight when we all get together also. Alex, when you meet with Vilondra before you come here with her tonight, I want you to try to convince her to admit this to her brother and Rath tonight. With all that in the air, I think we can accomplish what we want to a little better. Not only can we decide the best way to be together, but we can hopefully think of a way to put our heads together and outsmart Khivar. Don't you think?"

Alex looked at his best friend gratefully. "Yes, thanks Eliza...and Maria...thank you for being so understanding. I'll just be really happen when everyone finds out who everyone really is tonight, and what's been going on."

All three friends nodded and said their goodbyes, promising not to say a word to their significant others about knowing each other until they all "met" that night.


[ edited 1 time(s), last at 2-Oct-2002 11:23:26 AM ]