Monsters, Mewmans, Magic
Chapter 2-2: Eyes That Look Upon Me
Logic and emotions.
A mind of a sentient, intelligent being is blessed with the ability to think. By thinking, they can make decisions, evaluate options, evaluate and calculate risk and rewards, bring themselves to create, destroy, or neither. They have the ability to be an individual, separate from hive-minded creatures like ants or bees, but also with enough intelligence to create groups where living itself is improved in a way where everyone can be.... something special.
A being regarded as an individual is the definition of a "person".
And individuality is something that makes one individual different from all the rest, and a major part of those individualities tends to be how a person thinks, and what they think.
The two ways people think is either by emotions or logic.
When a person says they follow their heart, that implies their actions are led by emotions.
When a person says they follow their brain, that implies their actions are led by logic.
This is the crux of individuality, the mind.
And you can always tell what a person holds in their mind in their eyes.
The eyes are a window to the soul, after all.
It is hard to say if it's better to lead by emotions or by logic. Each has it's uses and utilizations, each has advantages and disadvantages. Emotional speeches can gather large groups of followers, they attract attention, are sharply directed towards a cause. Logical speeches and decisions meanwhile, are more reserved, efficient, long term, thought out. People might not agree with them at first, or at all, which is what makes them both risky and rewarding, depending on the outcome. Of course, there are many, many exceptions to this, but philosophy isn't the topic.
In the end, the choice of whether to lead with emotion or with logic depends on your surroundings and on the decisions you intend to make. For example, emotional choices are one that are more suited when it comes to family, as happiness and high spirits are important in such circumstances. On a different note, logical choices are more suited on positions of leadership...
...such as being queen.
Queen Moon Butterfly.
The thirty sixth queen of Mewni. Well, recorded thirty sixth, there were likely more before the documenting began, but nobody bothers with such ancient history any more. Not that it matters in the end.
Queen Moon was, as were all those who came before her, a monarch and supreme ruler of a kingdom which has lasted for thousands of years. She was quite literally just another in the long line or regents who had duties to improve their nation to greater heights. That's the duty of a queen: to look after her subjects, to keep their safety and superiority the top priority, and to ensure no one and nothing could ever endanger that. To guarantee a sturdy economical and political power on the planet they inhabit, and to deliver justice and comeuppance on all those who dare question the authority of mewmanity.
It is no secret to the world that some queens did this job better, while some did it worse; and some just didn't do it at all. Nevertheless, the kingdom survived, prevailed, and improved.
Only for it all to come to a screeching halt; like a light speed travelling object stopping dead still in a millisecond.
And it's not getting any better.
Then the end of magic.
Then her husband.
What's next? A volcanic explosion? The sun going out? An uprising? One of the moons crashing into the planet? Interdimensional collapse?
In truth, Moon Butterfly was not happy with anything.
After inheriting the title and throne following her mother's demise, Moon Butterfly kept her mind logical. All her decisions were methodical, logical, well thought out and effective. She considered herself a pretty solid queen. This wasn't bragging, nor was it ego; it was merely pride for doing better than, at least in her opinion, almost every other recorded queen in mewman history.
At least, that's what she would've said were it not for the past month. So, so many things came crashing down in a span of a month, it was insane. It was completely illogical and absolutely unfair. Sadly, life doesn't seem to particularly care about fairness or logic.
She supposed she had no one but herself to blame. It all started because of him. Were it not for him, none of this would be happening.
After Globgor was defeated, Moon issued an order to have him and the dark queen taken to the dungeons. Eclipsa was given a new cell, due to her door being busted. She claimed to have no idea how this occurred, but Moon wasn't buying it in the slightest. Therefore, Eclipsa was put in a new cell, except this time, there were guards stationed to look after her.
This decision is not one Moon is proud of. Eclipsa was to remain a secret. Nobody was to know of her freedom. In fact, most of the populace thought she was dead. However, once she broke out and ran into the destroyed foyer of the castle, the secret Moon tried so hard to keep was out, and she knows that despite her trying her hardest, rumours will and likely already have begun to spread around the kingdom.
Globgor, due to his ability to size shift, had to be placed in a cell more befitting of him. Since he can practically become large or small, the issue of confining something like that was... a hard call to make. Usually one would just send prisoners like these into crystals, but the Magical High Commission is dead, so that's no longer an option, so Moon had to resort to more... ancient methods.
The suggestion came from Mina. While her first demand was to simply murder both Eclipsa and her husband immediately, thereby releasing us of all issues except the body disposal, Moon denounced this idea. While the idea of simply eliminating both threats was efficient, it would do little in the long run.
Subsequently, Mina asked Moon why this was so.
She made a good point, that old warrior. It is true that simply getting rid of both of them right there and then would be efficient, it would work. Of course, she would still have to explain to the citizens of who this big mean red monster was, since folk are by their nature curious, and depriving them of answers does nothing more than raise distrust in leadership.
However, Moon made her own point.
Just killing the two criminals in some damp dungeon cell without any trial or anyone really knowing anything about it is a strategy, true, but this still leaves a big hole. If they do proceed with that plan, then the population will, once again, ask what the big red mean monster that barged into the castle was, and considering the spreading rumours, saying that it was 'just a monster' and that he was 'eliminated', would be a mistake. This is because killing two prisoners in secret, and refusing to provide the nation with the truth would make the leading government of mewmans seem weak and meek.
The rumours are spreading. She knows it.
Moon could see it. When she'd walk in the halls, when she'd observe the populace from a balcony, she could see it. They weren't saying it, nobody would say it in front of the queen, and they certainly weren't showing it with their body language either.
It was the eyes.
The eyes spoke of doubt, it spoke of fear, it spoke of uncertainty.
Mewmans have always depended on magic. It is what made them the uncontested global superpower in this world. Now that it's gone, people are afraid. Sooner or later, their title and status as the most powerful and leading kingdom will be challenged. What they need now... is to show how competent they are even without said magic.
It is true, the reason Globgor went down at the end was because Mina somehow tapped into her Solarian form. How she did this, not even she knows, and she was unable to do it again since. So, in a way, they were once again saved by magic only.
But this could be fabricated. There weren't many people in the foyer. Most were injured and unconscious. One could easily fabricate the lie that Globgor wasn't taken down by Solarian strength, but by sheer willpower of mewmans. And this is what they did. A day after the dust of the foyer settled, and after the injured were towed away, Moon made that declaration, announcing that Globgor was taken down by Mina Loveberry; but not through Solarian strength, but with her own wits and determination. Then, she revealed who the size-shifter was, and what his goal was.
That was the biggest risk. She could have lied, and she would've. However, the citizens of Mewni were already distrustful of the royal family ever since her daughter's Song Day, where that accursed bard revealed to the world that they hid the fact that Glossaryck was lost. Because of this, she had to tell the truth. Lying about the Solarian form is easy, since Mina Loveberry is known to be a powerhouse even without her magic enhanced form, so the people bought that one easily. However, a lie that Globgor was not who he was in front of a crowd of people in which you cannot tell who is influenced by the rumours of the legendary monster king's escape? Yeah, that one would be a bit harder to deny, especially since he was the one and only size-shifter who was known to have existed in all of documented mewman history! A lie like that would not work.
So Moon saw the solution.
They needed to set an example. An example of strength. A show of power. Eclipsa is a known figure in history. She is the biggest enemy of the Second Era! If she could be publicly dispatched, along with her husband, it would show the world that even though Mewni's at it's weakest, they took out what was the darkness' strongest, and that would send a powerful surge of confidence to the people, and a warning to all those who were thinking of opposing them.
This was the counter-point that Moon brought up to counter Mina's. The debate went on, and everyone else left the throne room once they saw the regent and the legend start to get heated. After a while though, Mina was reminded of who makes the big calls in this place, and she stopped. The decision was made, and Mina would not be killing Eclipsa or Globgor in some janitor closet.
After this, and after some silence on Mina's own part, she told something to Moon. Something Moon never knew.
She, as expected of her, shifted her focus on the objective, which was containing the size-shifter, and she had a way to do it.
Apparently, queen Solaria had a specific cell built in the dungeons. A one of a kind cell, built specifically for a Size-shifter.
Moon could not hide her surprise when she found out this information. Immediately, she inquired the veteran deeper on the matter, but the warrior had said nothing. Her only response was "He was alive during queen Solaria's time, and she had built that chamber since his existence became known to her." No matter what else the diamond cheeked queen asked, the warrior did not budge.
It was an odd thing, that Mina Loveberry. Such an important piece of history... such a powerful figure... just appearing out of nowhere in the days of the Monster Carver.
Nevertheless, Mina walked and showed the diamond queen the cell. It was a large room, located deep underground. It wasn't built as one, though. The walls were clearly those out of a cave. It was obvious that this room was merely excavated from the rock, but not given the luxury of proper walls. The.... chamber itself was very wide, and the door leading into it was made of steel. The door was the size of your regular everyday house door, except much thicker, and likely heavier. Immediately after entering the room, you'd walk upon an old wooden bridge, with ropes as handrails. Very old and primitive. It led to a platform shaped as a circle, with a radius of approximately twenty meters. The platform itself wasn't suspended on a pillar, no. It was held by four metal chains, each on it's own side, making the platform not wobble left or right. However, upon inspection, the chains seemed almost too small to hold this platform of rock together. It looked like the whole thing would break and fall any second. Speaking of falling, below the platform itself, a few dozen meters below, was a glowing, searing, boiling lake of lava. Once Moon saw the two handcuff chains in the middle of the platform, and the bag of what she presumed to be rocks or sand in the center, she understood.
The cell worked interestingly. The Size-shifter was to be chained to the middle of the platform, with his hands being chained to the ground. If he was to increase size, the platform, supported by such weak chains, and therefore able to carry not too heavy a weight, would collapse and plunge the monster into the scorching lava below. Even grabbing the chains wouldn't help, since they wouldn't break off the platform, instead, the part of the chains that would break is the one on the wall, meaning that not only the platform, but the chains themselves would fall too. Meanwhile, the center of the platform also had two pressure plates, one for each leg. As Mina explained, removing all weight from at least one would cause the chains to unclasp and open, once again leaving the platform to fall. Since there's no prisoner here this moment, the bag filled with rocks was set upon them both to prevent activation. If Globgor shrinks, so will his ability to keep both plates pressed.
It was a rather brilliant contraption, a way to stop a Size-shifter from both growing and shrinking.
She admitted to Mina her interest and amazement at such creative a design and Mina, being herself, then went on to praise Solaria as the one to come up with the whole thing. Truth be told however, Moon stopped listening as soon as she heard the old queen's name.
In any case, Globgor was imprisoned into this cell, and Mina explained to him how the cell worked in a unnescessarily barbaric fashion, coupled with some hair whip strikes. She also took the time to add that, should he somehow escape, Eclipsa would be immediately eliminated. Having done that, everyone left the room, leaving Globgor to his new room. He'd be fed, of course, and that would be about any and all company he'd ever get.
Having secured the two new prisoners, the two imposing leaders set off to different paths. Mina told Moon that she had some errands to run, and departed to some other corner of the castle. Moon, meanwhile, sighed heavily as soon as Mina left earshot. The queen then took the time to go into her room and sleep.
Of course, one would say that this is no time to sleep, considering the after-effects she has to deal with. But, for once, Moon Butterfly did not have the strength. The military was ordered to keep the civilians and anyone curious away while construction workers repair the damages.
Her husband, River, wasn't helping either. Ever since he learnt of Star's fate, he barricaded himself in one of his trophy rooms, and he since hasn't talked to anyone. He only leaves to pillage the kitchens, and then retreats to his.... den.
She was in a tough spot now, the toughest so far.
It was the eyes.
The eyes are what made it hard.
Moon was always an expert when it came to looking neutral and emotionless. The art of concealing emotions is one she truly mastered, more or less. Standing still, keeping a neutral frown, half closed eyelids, uninterested glare, stern posture. It took years to master, of course, but her title as 'The Undaunted' helped speed it along for at least a year considering it alone made those who spoke to her at least a bit weary of their wording.
The real issue was that the art of concealment wasn't a forbidden study kept locked up behind ten locks and kept a royal secret. It was an art that everyone could learn, if they gave enough time and enough of their energy. So, the higher-ups and all those who had the 'authority' to speak to the queen used the same method. Straight spines, standing still, neutral frown, uninterested glares, stern postures. Soon, most of, if not everyone who dared talk to the queen had this aura around themselves.
It was mostly the nobles that utilized this method, though. After all, simple folk have not much use in it, since the worst the queen could give them is a pink slip telling them they're fired, but Moon rarely resorted to that. She had respect for the 'lower folk' and their hard work. After all, they were the backbone of any kingdom.
But the real treat were the nobles. The nobles and higher-ups are the ones that needed to watch out most, for they could lose their titles, their prestige, the respect that they've worked so hard to earn. Which was mostly a lie, considering all nobles just inherit titles from their parents, so there wasn't much hard work there. After all, if all you had to do to become a noble was to live, then it's hard to see you doing anything else other than growing up a spoiled brat. That's the one thing Moon disliked about nobles. It was that factor of not having to do anything at all.
Now, one might call Moon a hypocrite for such a thought, for she herself was a queen, the highest noble of all; and she did inherit her title from her mother. However, Moon would disagree. Being a queen takes much, much more than just birthright. It demands you give your life for this kingdom, for your people. They are your number one priority, and it's one you keep until the day you step down. Due to the sheer sacrifice a queen needs to make to become one, it made the title a lot more than just inheritance.
Of course, some queens didn't see it that way, and those were the ones Moon had little respect for.
It wasn't any better with the nobles. The nobles themselves were equally annoying. Those of higher positions often hid their greedy, selfish needs behind a calm and disarming smile, all while offering tea and biscuts, as well as 'advice from personal experience.' They'd come to her, offering advice in exchange for higher positions; even though they'd never outright state such a thing.
Luckily, the era of those feet lickers ended once queen Solaria proclaimed Mina Loveberry as the highest ranking duchess in the entire kingdom, meaning that should Moon's bloodline fail, Mina's the next to take the throne. Despite Moon's hidden dislike towards that warmongering queen, this was the one thing she was thankful towards her for; even though the duchess in question could be tough to deal with.
It was all in the eyes. Everything was in the eyes.
The public, with their untrustworthy, doubting, rumoring eyes, drilling holes into the queen's own.
The royals, with their apologetic, falsely kind eyes, seeking their own saturation.
And Mina's eyes....
There was something about Mina's eyes that made it harder than anything else. Those were the eyes she had the hardest time looking at.
The military of Mewmanity was one built on hierarchy.
Down at the bottom, you had the soldiers, who were divided into 'Units'. Scout Unit, Knight Unit, Pikemen Unit, Archer Unit, Medic Unit, etc.
All units had their individual captain, who was the leader of said unit. All the captains, and by extensions their units, then took orders from the commanders, each of whom had one of each unit.
And at last, all the commanders took orders from the General, who serves as the supreme military leader and queen's personal military advisor. However, make no mistakes, even though the general is the top of the military, he or she still takes orders from the queen, and the queen's word is not to be questioned.
There is one queen, there is always one general, there are usually about eight commanders, and each has one, or ocassionally two, of the same unit.
When queen Solaria promoted to the rank of general, that's where the lavender-haired warrior remained for two centuries, until a certain event transpired.
The creation of a new unit.
Now, every so often, a queen had to get some dirty work done, and the military was usually the best way to execute such dirty work. However, over time, it became tricky to keep the dirt hidden, since an order to the specific commander or captain would be noticed by their superiors, or even their comrades. So, to avoid this, some past and not distant ancestor of Moon created the Royal Unit, which Mina was made captain of.
This Royal Unit answers to the queen alone, and not even the general can give them orders, and in turn, they are allowed to disobey. So, in a way, the Royal Unit, and by extension it's captain is of higher military rank than the general. But, to counteract this, the captain of the Royal Unit has no command over the rest of the military, making the Royal Unit a one-shot division that answers to the queen only.
At least, that's how it is on paper.
In truth, Mina's fame and power of intimidation makes even the current general piss his pants, which technically still gives Mina reign over the entire military, should she so choose.
It was something about her Moon never understood. That Mina.
Mina Loveberry, highest ranking duchess, ex-general and current captain of the Royal Unit, whose soldiers she handpicked personally.
What was it that made her eyes so scary to Moon? Was summoned cold and needles into Moon's spine every time Mina would gaze into the queen's eyes so sternly? A normal and hyperactive Mina was no problem. It was the dead serious, silent Mina that was truly frightening.
Why do those eyes that look upon the queen shake her so?
She did not know.
It's been a week since Globgor's entry.
Moon would sit in a relatively big office room, signing papers and such. Politcal work, but work she had to do regardless.
This is how days went, she'd come in, write papers, some subordinates would stroll in, ask or leave more papers, and she'd keep working.
However, she got time for a little break every so often, which she took. It was a mere ten minutes, but she was sure she'd start breaking spines if she had to keep working without a break.
The truth is, the constant work made her bones ache, made her nerves come closer and closer to snapping, and her subjects picked up on it. Her answers were getting more aggressive, her hands would shake in wrath, and her eyes would melt anyone's soul. It was not a good time to be around her once you'd pick up those subtle clues.
But she was fine with it. She was okay with it all, and the breaks got her to a more peaceful state.
She walked through the castle halls, looking out the many windows to the outside world.
It was quiet outside. It was nightfall, so that was likely why. But silent nonetheless.
This high up, she could not hear the talk of her people from the city below, but she could see the activities.
Carts were rolling, construction sites were working, people were strolling, children were slowly being called by their mothers to retreat home for the night, and the choir of birds fell deaf as their singers fell to sleep. The capital was falling asleep everslowly.
Regardless of the intimate and private peace Moon was feeling in this moment, the thing that made her most relaxed was the lack of eyes. There were no eyes to look upon her, only solace. No cheeky royals, doubtful peasants, angry warriors. It was peaceful.
The only eyes here were her own, tired ones.
She remained there, looking out at the world around her, the world through this window, the world outside of the confines of this nigh-impregnable fortress.
Until a sudden, stern, serious, and ominous voice rang out behind her.
Caught in surprise, shock, and something... deeper, the queen turned around to see who the voice's owner was. There was something beyond surprise and shock, something that disturbed her far, far deeper, but she couldn't discern what.
Just as she laid eyes on the slowly approaching person, they continued.
"It's been a while." The person responded, lifting a hand.
The hand was missing the middle finger.
It can't be.
Her heart raced, her vision blurred, her breathing became quick and uneven. Sweat became to rush down her forehead, and she felt her legs give out.
It was him.
It was impossible! What was he doing here?! There was no way he could have just entered the castle! No, she has to do something, she has to-
Her mind stopped. Her mind couldn't comprehend the situation, it was....
It were his eyes. His eyes were what made her heart stop and her mind freeze. The angry, scornful, envious, prideful, emotional, sad eyes; those were all the eyes she could take, all the eyes she could manage... but his....
His eyes were empty. Those were empty eyes. Eyes that carry no emotion, eyes that carry no passion, no remorse, no consciousness, no empathy, no humanity. His eyes were those of the dead. His eyes looked dead, but they were alive.
He was a living man carrying dead eyes.
"Moon, you okay?" Said the figure of him, sounding concerned.
No way, there was no way he would be concerned. What's going on? Why is-
"Hello? Mewni to Moon?" The figure of him asked once more, only the voice was.... feminine.
Realizing something here wasn't adding up, Moon shut her eyes tightly and shook her head. Opening them again, the cruel illusion her mind played on her was undone, and she saw the truth.
There was no him. The lifted hand was one of greeting, and was missing no fingers.
It was just the captain of her royal unit.
With taking first a few minutes to calm down, the queen replied.
The voice's owner, Mina Loveberry, simply approached the queen without any disturbance, only stopping about two meters apart. The window itself was about five meters in length, meaning both Mina and Moon could now gaze outwards without getting closer. However, instead of looking outwards, Mina simply turned her back on the window and leaned onto the bottom. Having positioned herself, she looked at the queen.
"You on break?" The lavender haired woman asked, her voice carrying curiosity, albeit one that was false. Moon however, did not pick up on it.
"I am." The queen replied, paying Mina no eye contact, and instead looking outwards into the distance. Pulling out a silky piece of cloth, she wiped her brow of sweat.
Mina hummed in response, leaning a bit further back, trying to make the queen look her in the eyes.
"What do you want? I use my breaks to rest and not think about anything, so unless it's something world-shattering, I'd like to ask you to hold it in."
To this, the last Solarian Warrior provided no response, instead simply staring at the wall.
Moon's mind soon became entangled in thought. One that was filled with only one burning question.
What just happened?
How did she..... It made no sense. It felt so real. It wasn't something like getting scared of your own hair in the shower, or thinking you saw a shadow move in the corner of your eye. No. This felt much more real. She could see his form, hear his voice... this never happened to her before, so why did she just see him?
It must be the memories. It must be the hidden fear she still harbors in the depths of her soul.
...Another reason why she'll skin him alive.
As much as the thought of using his skin as a carpet rug was pleasant, she had to admit she couldn't put all the blame on him alone. She was also guilty, to a degree. Had she just aimed at the heart, none of this would have happened. Of course, had she done that, Eclipsa would get out, and that was a no-no; but it's not as if it mattered now, since she's out anyway! It was such a stupid thing of her to do. She should have aimed directly at the heart! Yes, Eclipsa would get out, but she could've just told Rhombulus to wait for her to come out and immediately re-crystallize her! The worst she could get then would be some slaps on the wrists from the Magical High Commission, but that would've been it! But no, no, she was so hell bent on insulting him.
That's what it was all about. Yes, it's true that she didn't aim for the heart so that Eclipsa wouldn't escape, but it was also out of spite. If there's one thing that you can always count a Septarian to have, it's pride. They are prideful, those lizards. Pride runs deep inside their blood, it's the one thing you can always count on. Pride.
How she came to know this? Well, she had Glossaryck to thank.
It was right after she returned from the battlefield.
Right after she blasted his finger off.
"Glossaryck. You've been looking at me for two hours with that expression now. What is it?"
The blue creature looked at the young queen, his eyes looking into hers.
His eyes were.... focused, but they were also unsure. He looked stern, yet concerned.
"I suppose you think that entire sequence of events was perfectly planned on your part, yes?" He spoke, not blinking or changing expression.
""What do you mean? I defeated Toffee and scattered his army thin. You should have seen them, they ran as quickly as their legs could carry them."
"And you let him walk away, your majesty?"
Moon stopped for a moment, mentally reaffirming the clear truth to herself for reasons unknown to her.
"Yes. He was no threat any more."
His eyes changed, and she caught it. It was... anger. But it was no strong anger, it resembled more that of a parent scolding a child for breaking a pot. That was new, it all her years of life, Moon never saw Glossaryck angry.
"And you know this how?"
Straightening herself as to not show how she was intimidated by a small man, she responded in a posh royal voice.
"I saw it in his camp. The regenerative powers of the Septarians are what gave them hope. They said that their ability to undo all damage is far more powerful than the power our spells posses, so I proved them wrong."
Then, she blinked.
And the moment she opened her eyes, Glossaryck's eyes were a few inches away from hers. How he got this close in that small fraction of a second, the new queen didn't know. Nevertheless, the shock sent her recoiling backwards in surprise, with an audible gasp present.
His next words were said in tone that made it very clear it was a warning.
"Be very careful, your majesty. A pride of a Septarian is not something to be taken lightly...." He stopped, turned, and began floating away. "I've seen things you would not believe. I've seen just how dangerous Septarians can be... especially if you do so much as to insult them. Be very, very careful."
It was a warning she should have taken to heart, it seems.
Indeed, it was a warning she should have taken seriously.
That's not saying that she didn't, it's only saying that, after a while, other responsibilities tend to make you forget things you had on your mind. They only seem to come back to bite you once it's too late.
Suddenly, Moon was shaken out of her thought pondering by a hand touching her shoulder. It was Mina's.
"I came to say I understand."
That caught the queen off guard.
"I beg your pardon?" The blue lady inquired, not at all hiding her surprise.
"The reason you lied." Mina spoke, an odd empathy in her voice. "I understand."
This time, it was the queen that had no response. She could only look into the Solarian Warrior's eyes. Her eyes were melanchonic, yet sympathetic.
"I-I....." The queen stuttered, trying to get a verbally understandable sentence out, but knowing not what to say.
"However..." Mina continued, her eyes changing. "Just because I understand doesn't mean I like it."
Moon's surprise stopped, and a small sense of dread entered her. Staring into Mina's eyes, the two of them had a silent, yet sharp staredown.
Mina's eyes were not uncanny. However, they were not so because of how they looked, no. After all, it was a normal pair of eyes. The reason why they looked uncanny is because they reminded Moon of something.
Something familiar.... something that she'd seen before.
She stood there, that Moon Butterfly, looking into the uncanny and now emotionless eyes of the captain. The feeling remained, there was something about Mina, something about her eyes that she was unsure of, something that made her scared.
They stood there, the two leaders of Mewmanity. One through law, the other through experience.
They stood there, one standing tall but shaken with uncertainty in her soul, the other leaning against the wall in a slouched posture, but whose eyes sent a mercilessly cold glare.
Suddenly, a loud boom shook the castle, making paintings, books, vases, and everything that was on some pedestal to collapse. It was so strong, in fact, that it caused even these two heroines... or villains, based on your viewpoint, to lose their footing and fall on their asses.
As they were falling to the floor, a bright red light, as strong as the shiniest ruby, suddenly shone brightly through the window the two leaders were at. From what little they managed to see before the armrest covered their view as they landed on the cold marble floor, the red light was shot like a laser, emanating from a small object that shot off beyond the horizon in a matter of seconds.
And after that, everything stopped.
Mina was the first to spring to her legs.
"What was that?!" She yelled, leaning out of the window so much, that anyone watching would deduce that if Mina leaned even an inch furhter, she would fall.
"I don't know! What do you see?" The queen frantically responded as she slowly got up. It's not as if she wasn't urgent, it's just that getting up in her dress is hard.
"Something just shot-" Mina started, and then stopped suddenly. She then leaned back in, and looked at her majesty. "Moon, what tower did you say you stored the wand in?"
Moon understood immediately.
Mina and Moon ran through the halls of the castle, with Moon shouting at servants to calm down and begin cleaning up the mess, while Mina yelled at the guards they ran into along the way to follow them.
Ever since the battle for Mewni, Moon stored the wand as well as the shattered black remains in a specific tower. It was constantly under watch, and was both locked and guarded. An explosion from there would not be good, considering the chaos that unfolded the last time someone who shouldn't have got their hands on the wand did so.
The tower itself was destroyed, at least the top of it was; the familiar dome gone, and smoke rising from the tip.
Moon was going first, five meters ahead of all else.
Mina was behind her, with a few guards following close behind, weapons drawn for combat.
Moon burst into the room, breaking the hinges and slamming the wooden door onto the floor, ready to tackle anything she saw move.
But what she saw wasn't that.
For Moon, the entire world froze. All sound died, all smell ceased, all touch numbed. All time stopped, all the thoughts dropped. Her breath ceased, her heart slowed down, her brain paused.
Nothing, nothing, nothing, nothing could ever prepare her for what she saw. For what was in front of her now.
From far behind her, Mina yelled.
"Moon! Why did you stop?! What's in there?!"
Moon did not respond.
Seeing this, Mina grinded to a halt. She spread her arms wide behind her to signal the following guards to do the same. Once everyone was set, Mina ordered them to stay put; and began to approach Moon alone.
The queen meanwhile, did not move. She provided no response, for she was still caught in a mixture of every emotion imaginable.
"Moon...?" The warrior kept inquiring. She was two meters away from the door.
"Moon." She repeated, this time in a tone that almost demanded an answer from the royal.
Still no response.
Seeing no alternative, Mina stepped inside the room.
The room was destroyed. Whatever happened here took the whole ceiling and walls out, and the smoke that was carried by the light breeze blew some of the black fume into Mina's nostrils, causing her to cough. Nonetheless, she walked until she was by the queen's side, hellbent on seeing what got the queen so shocked.
When she finally laid eyes upon it, she too was met with a state of frozen disbelief and surprise.
Down on the ground, a pair of eyes met those of the queen.
The eyes were young, and carried immense relief and joy.
"Hey, mom." Said the teen laying on the floor.
The last thing that teen saw before passing out was the blurred image of her mother rushing to her.
Down in a dark room, far away from the castle, a little bug sprung back to life.
It immediately started to fly, thereby joining three others of its kind, and it's behind lit up in a light purple light. However, the poor insect couldn't fly far as it was trapped inside a glass vat.
Across the room, a pair of deadly, primal yellow eyes snapped their attention from the bleak blue papers on a brightly lit worktable onto the fourth revived insect.
Well this took longer than I wanted it too.
My apologies, I was travelling from my home country into a new one, and found myself inside a dorm. Setting up and getting everything into order took much of my time.
But the good news is, I've made a Discord Channel.
The purpose of this is, since many people asked for some way to find out prematurely when a new chapter was coming out, I decided to create a Discord Server by which I could do both that and maybe even stay connected to my readerbase, as well as interact with those who... well, want that.
Anyhow, here's the link: https://discord.gg/DNUPdXZ
If you don't wanna join, that's perfectly fine; I don't judge or shoot. It's up to you.
If you do join though, please be civil and don't kill me. Or anyone else over there for that matter.
ANYHOW, that's chapter 2-2. I should get 2-3 done soon, if God gives.
Not much more to say rn, sooooooo