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Alive and Free

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“With all do respect, My Lord, the merchants will not appreciate a raise in taxes or an imposed tarriff!”
Eugene Fitzherbert sat primped and preened with a painfully stiff and starchy collar. His fingers scratched at his neck. While held prisoner during the previous year’s war he had experienced pleseanter afternoons.These economic meetings took forever; a slight yawn escaped his lips. In the war room things went much faster. No, he chided himself for wishing to be breifing for battle rather than safely in his seat. He should be glad that the kingdom’s biggest problem was raising the money to repair the main bridge; but, somehow, he wanted more.
The Flynn Rider that was still so much a part of him wanted to be out there! He wanted to be exploring and running with the open air filling his lungs and the excitement of being free. Eugene sighed that life was over. He had duties to fulfill here, within the castle walls and with responsibilites as Prince.
Prince, he chuckled, he had always imagined being a prince would be fantastic. Making decisions and leading Corona to glory were what he had in mind, rather than sitting here discussing trade tarriffs with the Royal Advisors. He sighed again.
Again, he forced him self to think of the positives. He no longer had to steal. He knew exactly where his next meal was coming from; and, hey, it even came on a silver platter if he wanted it! Flynn didn’t want it though; he often took his meals out in the orchard or courtyard. Rarely did he sit at the large table and have servings dished out to him. Instead, he would bundle some bread and cheese and stroll amongst the kingdom, digesting to the sounds of village life.
“Sire, your attention at this convention would me most appreciated.” The nasal voice of a pudgy advisor jerked him out of his thoughts.
“Oh, I’m sorry, I was just,” He was cut off by the King.
“Leave the boy alone,” his kind voice boomed, “He is a young man, and we all know young men do not wish to be cooped up in discussions all day.” Eugene let out a sigh of relief.
“Go on, Eugene, I assure you you will be caught up on all the formalities later this evening.” The King winked.
“Thank you,” Eugene’s eyes lit up and he did his best to keep from dashing out of the conference room at a full sprint. When he reached the main hall, however, all sense of noble poise disapeared. He ran as fast as he could, nearly knocking over a maid servant as he did so. Flynn whooped with joy as the hot blood coursed through his veins, feuling his legs to move faster. He was able to actually feel his strong young heart pump vigorously. When he reached the edge of the castle grounds, he slowed to a walk. Eugene subconciously brought a hand to his ribs. Never again, would he take the sensations of life for granted. He breathed deep, opening and closing his fingers, enjoying the feeling of life.
The Prince leisurely strolled down the main street of town. Merchants called out from their stalls and music filled the air. The delicious aroma of countless food stuffs for sale filled his nostrils, causing his mouth to water. He stepped into a nearby shop to buy some bread. The purveyor greeted him kindly as he paid for his meal; many of the townspeople knew and welcomed their new Prince as one of their own. Eugene smiled, feeling a sense of ease; it was enjoyable to sit and not have to watch for guards.
Flynn sat on the wall of the fountain in the central square and ate. All around him echoes of merriment and frivolity added to the light atmosphere. He watched as a fishmonger slipped some bones to an alley cat with a smile, and as a small girl picked at the flowers growing on the side of the streets. She reminded him of someone and he smiled.
With a light step, Flynn carried on his way. Whistling a tune and sauntering along, he took the long way back, through the orchards and stables. Many of the growers greeted him as he passed and they waved back. It was autumn and apples were in season. At the edge of the orchard he lifted a small bushell. Climbing an unattended nearby tree, he filled the basket with the fruit.
Once he arrived at the stables, the bushell was promtly deposited outside of a stall with a large, brass ‘M’ nailed to the door. Flynn whistled and a nicker sounded from within. Maximus pokd his large gray head out. He immediately began poking for the apples.
“What, no hello for me?” Max looked at him unamused before nickering brief greeting. “Alright, here,” Flynn held out the red orb.
“Sir, shall I saddle Maximus for you?” Bastion, his young squire asked.
“No, that’s okay; but, get Aires ready. We’re going for a ride.”
“Yessir!”
Bastion was a boy of sixteen, full of fire. He had trouble finding a master due to his attitude. He didn’t follow orders horribly well, was just as comfortable with the girls as with the horses, and never backed down from a challenge. Flynn was always reminded of his own younger self around the lad and figured that’s why he liked the boy so much. Flynn found himself laughing again. Grinning, he followed the boy to the tack room.
Before long, Eugene and Bastion were trotting away from the barnyard. Flynn could feel the same longing that consumed him within Maximus. He patted the horse’s neck, holding in the reigns; but, when out of eye shot, he let the bit loose and Maximus burst into a firey gallop. Max flew through the forest trails, overcoming any obstacles. They leaped with ease over fallen trees and babbling brooks. Thundering hoofbeats on cobblestones and the forest floor mixed into a cacaphony with heavy equine breaths.
They came to a stop across the channel and dismounted at the edge of the river. Beyond the river’s flowing waters lay a whole other world. Eugene sighed once again, tasting the faint echoes of adventure in the breeze.
“I wonder what’s out there.” Bastion remarked, gazing wistfully into the trees on the otherside. Eugene didn’t know how to answer the squire. Should he tell the boy about the liberty and swashbuckling escapades he had experienced, he might be misled to believe that world wasn’t full of perils. So he simply said,
“Nothing that isn’t going to be there tomorrow,”
“Yeah, I know; but, I just want to be there now. I want to save damsels in distress, defeat evil warlocks, pick a fight in a pub.” He threw a mock punch at Eugene’s chest, “You know, manly stuff! You were part of the wilderness once; you’ve got to know what I’m talking about.”

“You’ll get there soon enough,” he placed a reassuring hand on Bastion’s shoulder, “but; for now, you’ve got to practice and prepare for when you do.”

They mounted once again and walked along the river’s edge before turning and heading back. When they reached the stables, Flynn and his squire parted ways. Eugene continued on foot to the palace. Skirting around the side, he entered through the gardens, collecting a small bouquet of what the herbalist called “Phyty…Pytae…something”. The purple blooms were particularly liked by who was waiting for him.

With this thought, Flynn looked up at the balcony above him. His ears detected the faintest sounds of a melody. She was singing. With a grin stretching ear to ear, a heart racing in his chest, and legs pumping beneath him, he ascended the stairs to the castle. Oh, how wonderful it was to be alive!




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imnotstupidjustcrazy said...
Dec. 30, 2011 at 8:38 pm:
Really good!!
 
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