Thursday, August 17, 2006

" A PRINCESS TALE " Part Eleven

As Siegfried put his hand on the doorknob, he sensed a quick movement behind him. Johann pounced quickly and Siegfried felt the dagger penetrate his back, his place of vulnerability. The last perception he had as darkness overcame him was of a laughter, joyous yet malevolent. After moving Siegfried`s body to a closet that was practically invisible at the far recess of the room, Johann donned the magic helmet Tarnhelm and exited the room to meet his bride.

Elaina was standing in a reception line between her father and the King of Neder. Johann, now indistinguishable from his nemesis Siegfried, kissed Elaina on the cheek and approached his father, the Neder King. Johann bowed to the King and spoke, “Your Majesty, Johann has asked me to speak to you. To spare any embarassment, he has decided to leave us before the reception. I did my best to dissuade him, but he felt that his earlier rejection by Elaina may mar the day`s happiness. He said not to worry; he was going on a solitary hunt and would be home in a matter of weeks.”

The Neder King replied “Thank you, Siegfried. That sounds very much like my son, always thinking of others. I accept his decision and I say let us make haste with the reception. I know that you must want to complete the formal ceremonies so that you and the Princess may be alone.” Smiling, the King continued, “After all, even an old man like myself remembers his wedding night.”

His son, disguised as Siegfried, bowed to the King and took his place in the reception line next to the Princess Elaina. He smiled and took her hand, feeling the power emanating from the golden ring on her wedding finger.