I awoke in an unfamiliar place. It looked like a cell. Dark and damp, everything was slimy and disgusting. There was one other cell directly in front of mine with no one occupying it. To the left of the dungeon, a spiraled, iron staircase led up.
'Strange,' I thought. 'How did I get here? Where am I? Dammit! Who did this to me?!'
I stood up from the disgusting ground and wiped my hands against the clothes I was wearing. They were peasant clothes; simple and ragged. Nothing like I was used to. I surveyed my body, making sure I was alright and everything was intact. I had not a scratch on me.
My head snapped towards the stairs as a loud creaking sound indicated that the hatch was opening.
I watched cautiously as a dark figured descended the stairs. By the frame, it was male and very strong. He walked almost silently.
"Well, well," the man said, his voice a deep rumbling. "If it isn't our thief."
Despite the torch in the wall, I couldn't make out any features of the man. However, I didn't particularly care.
"Who the hell do you think you are?" I asked, crossing my arms.
The man chuckled, walking closer to my cell but I didn't move. I had no desire to see the face of my kidnapper.
"Why, I'm the one on this side of the cell," he said.
I snorted. "Oh, yes, dear kidnapper, thank you... I hadn't noticed." I spoke with sarcasm dripping from my voice.
He came closer and I finally saw his face. The torchlight gave an eerie glow to an otherwise handsome face. A devilish smirk carved his lips.
"So," I stated, pursing my lips and tapping my foot impatiently. "Want to tell me why I'm in commoner's clothes and in a cell?"
"Playing dumb?" he asked, placing his hands on the bars of the cell.
"'Dumb'?" I scoffed. "Excuse you, but I'm not dumb. And it's impossible for me to be anything but myself."
"Ah," he said, nodding his head, but an amused smile spread into his face.
"You called me thief," I said. "Why?"
"That is what you are," he said.
"Hah!" I laughed harshly. "I am not a thief. Why would I steal what I can buy?"
He raised a sharp eyebrow at me.
"Where am I?" I asked.
"Who are you?"
He... He didn't answer my question. I asked first!
"Who are YOU?" I shot back.
"Why did you steal?" he said, still avoiding my questions and making my anger bubble up.
"Why are you assuming I stole? Why do you think I'm a thief? Why aren't you answering my questions? Are you the one who kidnapped me? Do you know who I am? Who are you? Where am I? Is this the dungeon? Why am I in a dungeon?" I bombarded him with questions.
He smiled. "Because my guard chased you and caught you stealing. I don't THINK you're a thief, I KNOW you're a thief. I am not the one who kidnapped you. You were caught. No, I don't know who you are. You are not in a dungeon, this is my holding for criminals before they pass judgment. I'm answering your questions now - you're welcome. And, I am King Alexandrian of Asilixia."
I blinked. 'Wow. Way to answer all the questions at once, King.'
"Your turn," he said.
I sighed. "I am Queen Maximiliana of Trisk. I didn't steal. I don't steal. Am I in Asilixia right now?"
Alexandrian became quiet, staring at me. I huffed in the silence before walking towards him.
"Yes," he said. "You are in Asilixia."
"Why am I here?"
"You were caught stealing," he said, making me roll my eyes and rub my temples.
"What exactly was I stealing then?" I asked in exasperation. Seriously, me stealing? When pigs fly!
"You were stealing my family's royal brooch."
My eyes widened at him. "Really?"
He raised an eyebrow. "Yes."
"Why would I do that?" I asked, but I cut him off before he could answer. "And did you actually find it on me or were you told by a witness?"
He opened his mouth before closing it.
"Are you really Queen Maximiliana?" he asked.
"The one and only," I said. "No one could impersonate me."
"Prove it," he said.
"And how would you like me to do that?" I asked.
"Queen Maximiliana is a war goddess," he said while I flipped my hair over my shoulder in a very dramatic and haughty way. "Beat me in combat and I'll consider letting you go."
I smiled wickedly. 'This is gonna be fun.'