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Artemis 9: Part 12

To Make a King

By Arthur ArmstrongPublished 8 months ago Updated 7 months ago 6 min read
2
Artemis 9: Part 12
Photo by Rob Potter on Unsplash

Alison and I left the outfitters draped in our new, sparkling linens and followed Astaria down the torch-lit hallway.

“Your father asked that you meet him, and the rest of the Royal Court, in the Throne room,” Astaria said, as we approached an enormous set of double doors. They appeared to be made of white marble and trimmed in gold roses with emerald leaves.

I adjusted myself nervously in my new boots, “How many people would you say are in there?”

“Probably about a hundred,” replied Astaria.

“A hundred?!” Alison confirmed in shock.

“Yes, the Orion Star System is quite large and requires a good number of able-bodied beings to run it efficiently. Ready?” Astaria asked.

Alison and I looked at each other.

Why do I feel like we’re about to be examined? I thought to Alison.

I feel it to, I heard her reply.

The massive doors swung open to a grand room of more white marble. The ceiling stretched toward the sky and wide, black marble steps lead to a golden throne with a bright, purple velvet seat.

“One hundred” may have been a low estimate, as the massive room was lined, three rows thick on all sides, with human and nonhuman creatures alike.

Our Celestial Sire stood in the very center of the room and called it to a hush, “Please, everyone, I would like to introduce my dear Sun and Moon! The very future of Orion!”

His voice boomed off the walls and echoed through my body. I could feel it in my very bones as the room erupted with applause.

Alison and I approached cautiously and stood before him. I could feel every eye in the room upon us. It felt as if I’d opened the oven to check on the Christmas chicken.

“My dear children, although your time on Earth thus far has been rather unsatisfactory,” I rolled my eyes as he spoke, “The Court has concluded that your trials on Earth count as part of your Royal Tribulations!”

The room erupted with applause a second time.

“I’m sorry, what?” I asked and I looked at Alison, then back to our father.

“Upon Earth, you both faced an incredible amount of narcissistic and even psychopathic abuse. Facing each moment with bravery, tenacity, and an incredible strength of character,” he said smiling.

I froze.

Despite being clothed in grand raiments, I felt stripped bare as I stood before a room filled with hundreds of eyes that were latched upon me.

“You’ve both proven your strength of character and there is only one trial left before you can be crowned King, my Sun,” he turned his eyes to me, “Your Earthly trials had left you bereft of one very important thing necessary for your coronation-“

My eyes widened, “Coronation? I literally just found out yesterday that I’m an alien prince, and now you want me to be King?! You can’t be serious.”

The smile faded from our Sire’s face and became sympathetic, “We know a good thing when we see it, my Sun, I assure you.”

I peered back at him in suspicious silence.

“Your final trial, my children,” he continued to with a wink, “is to realize your own value in this universe.”

“The last trial is one of self love?” Alison disparaged, “What? So we have a to have a spa day?”

The eyes of our sovereign darkened, “No, my dear Moon. I mean, we are going to test the strength of your love for yourselves.”

“Oh yeah, this sounds healthy,” I quipped, my voice dripping with sarcasm.

“We are not insisting upon narcissism. We only need to know if you can recognize your worth and be capable of preserving yourselves,” He said gently, “You both are priceless heirs to the most powerful Kingdom in the Cosmos. We must know if you are capable of recognizing that.”

Alison and I both stared at the Star King in shock. “Sure, no pressure then,” I said and clapped my hands together, “As my first act of self love, I’m gonna go fuck myself.” I spun around on my heels and started towards the door.

Two very tall crystalline humanoids that were carrying large sticks, of what I could only guess was diamond, crossed in front of me.

Oh yeah, this is a good sign. I thought to Alison.

Turn around, he’s smiling at you.

I slowly turned to face the room. Everyone seemed to have a smile on their face. “What? That wasn’t the goal?” I joked nervously.

Everyone just stared. I could feel their eyes piercing my body as if attempting to scorch my soul.

“Come, my Sun, I shall elaborate,” the tall, handsome man said, “Be not afraid. We have the utmost faith in you.”

I couldn’t believe it.

All the horrible things that I’ve experienced in my life, and now I’m being told they all led to this?

“So, they all know everything, huh?” I asked aloud, feeling overwhelmed with such a sudden exposure, “They know that when I was five years old and my brother was fifteen, he struck me in the face while he was ‘babysitting’ me and when I told my father that my brother hit me, my brother called me a liar. My father then proceeded to tell my brother and I to place our hands flat on the table. He balanced a hammer upright beneath his two forefingers, on that same table, and said, “Now, when I let go, whoever is lying to me is the one whose hand this hammer will fall on.”

The room with silent save for the echo of my voice, “I was five years old! How about when I was in my teens and I had to worry about being awakened at three in the morning each day to a leather belt being cracked across my sleeping body because my father didn’t like the fact that my cat had taken a shit in the litterbox at some point during the night?!”

I could hear the heartbeat of every being in the room now, “What about when I was a grown adult living with my parents and I was trying to put myself through college but since it was after ten thirty at night, my father thought it appropriate to point his loaded pistol at my date? I had to place myself in between them to ensure my date’s safety. For a quarter of a century, I was physically and mentally abused by the very people who were supposed to teach me how to love. Now you’re telling me that I have to endure more in order to get a job that I never even fucking applied for? Well, as far as I’m concerned, you and the rest of the Cosmic Cunts can fuck off,” my eyes locked with the King’s as I spoke.

The King’s eyes softened into a smile as the room erupted with applause a third time. I looked around to Alison.

What the fuck is going on?

The king grinned widely, “You have passed.”

I squinted my eyes at him in confusion, “How’s that?”

“You’ve just passed your final trial and with flying colors. I couldn’t be more proud of you, my Sun,” he beamed. The room erupted again. I looked around to Alison,

Is he fucking serious?

It would seem so.

“You immediately recognized your worth and refused to fall privy to trivial nonsense. You are the epitome of the Orion bloodline!” By this point the applause was constant and I could hardly bare it.

“Y’all are fucking confusing as hell,” I said, still trying to figure out what exactly just happened while trying not to have a meltdown.

“Never you mind that, my dear Sun. For now, we celebrate your triumphs!” Star Daddy boasted.

There is definitely something going on here.

I know. But let’s not allow them to know we smell something yet.

Sci FiFantasyCONTENT WARNING
2

About the Creator

Arthur Armstrong

A being of duality, poetic irreverence, and maddening nonsense.

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  • Alex H Mittelman 8 months ago

    Great story!

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