Once upon a time, in a land ravaged by disease, strife, and poverty, a dying sonless king turned to his ancestors for a final blessing.
To his surprise, instead of a sign, a dark-skinned young boy clad in a cleric white uniform appeared at the feet of his forebears, seemingly asleep or dead. He had messy lavender hair that matched the palenessof his outfit.
“Boy, who are ye?” the king posited.
The boy awoke. He revealed a young girl—who shared his skin and hair color, albeit her hair color was darker—who had been cowered beneath the boy. Unlike him, she wore clothing that hardly covered most of her skin. At most, one could describe her red top and red shorts as rags.
A cape—the boy’s cape—fluttered behind him as he slowly stood up.
“My name is Dios,” he said, his voice steady and calm like a grown man’s in his sixties yet high and light, giving away the fact that he had not passed puberty. “And this,” he said, gesturing to the girl, “is my sister, Anthy.”
The king narrowed his eyes, for such names were foreign to him. But he had little energy to cast them out, let alone harden his heart against two children. Instead, he knelt so that he could fully look into their eyes.
“Why ye here, Dios? My land is dying… I am dying. If you seek help, I can offer none.”
The children glanced at one another, seemingly sharing wordless secrets. Their size made them look equally frail next to the king. Perhaps they felt vulnerable, even. Then they suddenly turned back, still frowning. This time, the sister spoke.
“We can help you,” she said, training her dark forest-colored eyes on the king’s weathered forehead.
“We have the power of eternity. That which shines. Miracles.”
The king leaned in closer, as if he did not hear her. But he did. He just… didn’t understand. “What ye say, child?”
“Do you desire to rule this land once more with nobility?” Dios asked, holding out a fist.
The king closed his eyes. He wondered briefly, if his ancestors had answered him. That, these children
were a result of their listening to his pleas, as desperate, pathetic, and final as they were. If so, then he, almost a husk of a human who could never bear any fruit, would have no reason to reject anything given to him.
The girl, Anthy, spoke again, breaking through his thoughts. “What is your answer?” she quietly asked.
The king slowly pushed against his knees and stood up. He tried to stand tall, tried to recall how proud and strong he felt and appeared to his people when his father placed the heavy gold crown onto his head. The weight of that crown… it was heavy for a reason. Not because it was metal, but because it represented the sweat, the blood, and the tears of his people who depended on him to maintain and obtain resources for the kingdom.
He grasped Dios’s hand. “Please, help me. With this… power of yours.”
The children smiled. Anthy stepped forward and curtsied, slightly pulling the ends of her shorts in the air as if it were a full red gown and not hastily sewed-together fabric. “Then from this day forward, I am your flower, for I am the Rose Bride. Do as you will in the name of nobility and save what you wish to maintain its shining and miraculous eternity.”