The death of Emillia Thorn
The guards exchanged scared looks when they heard their new orders, uncomfortable with what they would have to do next. “Get me Princess Thorn”, was what the warden had said. “Has he gone mad?”, George asked his fellow guard. “I mean, he did just … he just asked us to get Princess Thorn, right? Please tell me you heard something else? Like “Go and fetch me Vincent’s Horn?” No? Are you absolutely certain?”. His fellow guard remained silent, almost frozen in place. The only sound coming out of his mouth when he opened it, was a tiny, little squeak.
Needless to say, neither one of the guards enjoyed this assignment. Loyal guards as they were, they would follow any command their supervisor gave them. But this? This made even them think twice. What madman would willingly go down the dungeons and come near to Lady Thorn? Could you even call her a Lady at this point? Of course, she still held her title as Lady Thorn, Princess of Kryta and with the disappearance of Edrick, the Bloody Prince, the heir to the throne. Not that that was ever going to happen. It had been months ago already, when the rabble took down the Thorn dynasty. Princess Thorn had been thought to be dead, and when they found … her … a new rule had already been established. Quite fortunate, too, or so George thought. They did not call Lady Thorn the “Ghoulish Princess” for nothing. Or the “Abhorrent Princess Thorn”.
After she had been dismissed and send away by the Mad King, her father, she had made quite the name for herself. Princess Thorn had always been famous, of course. You do not live in Castle Thorn without being known. And you most certainly did not live as the Mad King’s daughter, without people knowing your name. The Mad King’s cruelty and jokes had been no secrets. He had skinned, burned, boiled, skewered, snapped, disembowelled, frozen and catapulted his “subjects”, as he had called them. All for the sake of a good “joke”, or so he had claimed. His son, Edrick Thorn, had been a monster too. But what could you expect of someone who had been raised by the Mad King himself? The Prince had been so far gone into the madness that he had killed his favourite stepmother. He had nailed her hands to a drake, during a game of “Pin the Tail on the Drake”. And yet, the Krytan people had tolerated them. They had feared them day after day, but had been hopeful for a better future, a brighter future. A future under Princess Thorn. The kind Princess who had had to endure the torture of her father. The Princess who had been cut, raped, starved and stuffed to death. And yet, she had been kind.
Emillia Thorn had aided her servants in times of duress. She had protected them from the Mad King and had attempted to blame her own clumsiness for their mistakes. Of course, King Thorn had seen right through those disguises. But he had played along. King Oswald had always loved a nice game, and what a game it had been! Rather than only punishing her servants, he had punished her too. A broken vase? Gone with the servants’ fingers and a nice stew for poor Emillia, to cheer her up. A stain on the carpet? Off with their heads and Emillia had been given to the soldiers for a night. And yet, after all that, she had still defended her people. She had still held her head high. She had been Kryta’s hope, until the Mad King had send her away.
It had been four months after they had killed her father and after her brother, the Bloody Prince, mysteriously disappeared that they had found her. The lost Princess Thorn. The Kind Princess Thorn. Lost she certainly had been, but any kindness that had been there during King Thorn’s reign had washed away. It had been a pair of farmer boys who had found her, kneeling in the mud and crying. She had looked starved, frightened and lonely. A poor girl who had been in need of protection, a fragile girl. When the farmer boys had come closer, they had been able to hear her whisper to herself. “Don’t be sad, Emillia. Why do you cry? Your friends are here, don’t you see? You are not alone, you are never alone”. The boys had exchanged a worried look, not quite knowing what to do. “Who .. who are you talking to?” the youngest had asked. At that, Emillia’s crying had stopped instantly. Slowly, she had turned her head to face the two boys and she had smiled. “Can’t you see my friends?”, she had asked. “Can’t you hear their lovely voices in your head? What was that? Dinner? Yes, yes, it has been a while, hasn’t it? Tasty? I don’t know.” she had said, observing the boys and licking her lips. “Maybe we can just get a little taste? Yes, I agree, we go for that one” and she had pointed her finger to the youngest of two. The boys hadn’t understood. They had been frightened of the girl, but had still thought she had needed their help and aid. Before they had been able to say another word, the Ghoulish Princess Thorn had been on the youngest one. Frozen by fear the other one had watched and when Emillia had been done filling herself full, she had turned to him. “Well then,” she had said, “what are you waiting for? Oh yes, yes! A game! Let’s play a game!”. The boy had run away in fear, crying, screaming and shouting and poor Emillia Thorn had yet again been left alone. “Oh, “she had cried, “but I thought you were my friend”.
The next time Emillia had seen anyone, it had been an army of city guards who had come to arrest her.
As the two guards dragged away Emillia and neared the stage, the Lady Thorn finally spoke. With excitement in her voice she shouted for all to hear, her final last words.
“Ooh, burning? You are going to BURN me?! How delightful! I must say, I do love fire. Oh, the warmth, the crackling, the flames ... And the screams! You really shouldn't have, you are too sweet. NO, NOT YOU! Shut up! No no, please continue. We have an audience waiting, and the show must go on! I can't believe I'll finally be the star! No,no we won't take revenge. Why would you suggest that? Not you! Who I am talking to? Well the voices, of course! They are always so sweet, so thoughtful... SHUT UP! They are quite the happy bunch, hahahahaha, oh stop it, you! What are you all looking at? Let the burning commence!”
And so ends the tale of Princess Thorn.