She was curled up in an armchair reading yet another book following the same steps of every book she ever read. The bookshelves of the library shook and the explosions could be heard through the closed door. She learned to ignore it just like everything else in the world. Why wouldn't she, if she grew up with the sound. The first time she remembered this happening was when she was far too young to truly understand what was happening. She could have been 5 or 6 years old. Back then she only started to read, as it was also the time when her world turned gray. She ran to her parents which pushed her away too busy telling the guards what to do. It's not as if she cared now, for she knew there was no love between her and her parents. Ever since she could remember she knew her mother would never show her any affection and her father would barely look at her. They might have been the rulers of a kingdom but even when she was so young she knew it wasn't their work that kept her away from them, it was herself. She couldn't change her life, and she surely would have done so by now if she could, but her parents didn't care for what she felt. They were the rulers that couldn't afford to show weakness, but it wasn't that either that kept them away from their daughter. It was the fact that she was born as a woman, not the all-powerful man that could be an heir of their kingdom. She wasn't a prince that would dominate kingdoms, command armies and father sons that would lead after him. She hated them. She hated her parents for making her feel so horrible for so many years. When she was perhaps 7 she learned this truth, and for a time long after she wanted so desperately to change. She could still feel something back then, and instead of happiness or joy as the never-changing books described, she felt hollowness and hate. She wished more than anything to shape herself into the perfect child of her parents. To reform herself from the very base as one would from clay. But after years of isolation, and the constant reading taught her that one cannot change, that there's no escape from a golden cage of who you are. She accepted this truth long ago. Long ago she would try anything to change, to bring the stories from her books into reality. Now, she knew she couldn't and instead simply hated her parents for what they did. Her hate wasn't like a flame, an unquenchable fire that destroyed everything in its path though. It was passive and still. Like a spark hovering just above a sea of oil. Barely visible, and seemingly harmless until those two connected. The hate was slowly eating away her life through the years, there was no more for the hate to eat away. She was left empty. Another explosion caused her to drop a book she was carrying to the floor. She was in a long corridor that she knew well, as it remained unchanged for the last 7 years but barely saw anymore as she was stuck in her thoughts. Behind the windows, the sky was golden which meant it was sunrise or sunset, either way at least a day must have passed since her last visit to the library. She wasn't sure if she was heading back to her room or to the library. She didn't care. She picked up the book she dropped - titled "The Blood Lineage Of The Tyberan Emperors" - and without thinking headed down the long corridor, not realizing where she was heading before reaching the door.
When she opened her eyes, it was too dark for her to see. It wasn't unusual for her to be woken up by the explosions, however, she wasn't sure if that was the cause. She was in her bed, staring at the all too familiar ceiling that she's been seeing for the last 17 years. The moonlight was reflecting off the marble floor, illuminating her room which was as still and lifeless as the rest of her world. The cold wind was stronger than usual meaning that a storm was coming. It was, once again, nothing unfamiliar. She stood up, the cold marble spreading into her feet, and walked over to the great arch from her balcony. Her long black hair was loose on her shoulders as she took in the sight from the skeleton of a once great city. One of the tall spires seen on the skyline was set on fire, an explosion has been set off 4 streets to the west of the spire, and one of the old church bell towers came to life. It was a long time, perhaps years since the rebels caused so much damage to the city. She walked over to the stone-carved railing on the edge of the balcony. As she looked closer she could see the people, rebels and survivors, all similar in appearance - pale, starved and most often black haired - were running in the far away streets. She closed her eyes and listened. The people could be heard shouting and screaming quietly, too quietly for anyone who didn't know it was there to hear. She opened her eyes and looked at the moon before returning to her room. It was a full moon and just as she did with the pale man, she knew it wasn't a coincidence. She once again returned to her life that was too desolate to pay attention to.
342 days before