|Valley of the Kings
Author: anonymousse PM
Elizabeth, while visiting the tomb of King Tutankhamen, gets lost in the tunnel and emerges in ancient Egypt during Tut's reign. Upon meeting him, she is instantly smitten--but is it worth the risk of changing history?Rated: Fiction T - English - Romance - Chapters: 4 - Words: 3,924 - Reviews: 19 - Favs: 10 - Follows: 12 - Updated: 06-15-10 - Published: 02-27-10 - id: 2780386
|A+ A- Full 3/4 1/2 Expand Tighten|
**Author's note: Thank you, kind reviewer! Since you want more, I'll give you a bit more of what I have. Elizabeth gets ferried across the river Nile and explores the city of Thebes (the ancient name for Luxor), intrigued by the busy marketplace. While she's there, this happens:
There was some sort of commotion in the streets—people were clearing the center, and there was an excited buzz of chatter. Elizabeth hurried to the side with the rest, craning her neck to see over the crowd—what was all the fuss about?
Then she heard the shouts.
"Make way for the Pharaoh!"
Elizabeth's mouth gaped open. The pharaoh! She would finally be able to determine exactly when she was—but more importantly, how many people could see the king of Upper and Lower Egypt in the flesh, in all his finery and power?
Then she saw it: a litter carried by servants, surrounded by officials, advisors, and priests. On the litter, a man was seated on a golden throne. Behind him walked servants and slaves with ostrich feathers, fanning him.
"Make way for his royal highness, King Nebkheperure," called a vizier imperiously.
The name stirred something in Elizabeth's memory, but she couldn't quite remember which pharaoh had had that name. The crowd cheered for their king. Some people sank to their knees in homage. As the king drew nearer, Elizabeth could see why: the golden throne, set with precious stones and embellished with winged scarabs, the king himself sitting still as a statue and stern as a god in his nemes headdress and wesekh collar, holding the crook and the flail—the spectacle was enough to inspire worshipful awe.
As the king drew near enough for Elizabeth to study his face, her heart stopped.
It was a handsome and poised face—full, round lips, almond-shaped eyes lined with kohl, and gracefully arched eyebrows—full of both serene composure and subtle power.
A face Elizabeth had seen before. A face immortalized in gold and transformed into the iconic symbol of ancient Egypt.
It was Tutankhamun.
Her knees went so weak that she sank into a kneel.
***Author's Note: After this scene, Elizabeth somehow gets into the palace, just to see King Tut for a little bit longer. Problem is, I'm not quite sure yet how that happens. (If you have any ideas for me, I would be most grateful!) After they first meet, King Tut is both bewildered and intrigued by her, and this is the conversation that follows.
"Where are you from?" he asked her curiously. "Surely you are not one of my subjects."
"No, my lord," she said, looking at her sandals, "I come from very, very far away. Across the Sahara desert, there is an ocean—and after that ocean is another large continent, and that is where I live, the...um, the Kingdom of America."
She heard the king rise from his throne and come down the steps towards her, but she did not dare look up at him. He seemed to be studying her closely.
"A mysterious kingdom from across the sea?" he scoffed. "That is a very thin story."
"But sire, it's the truth!" she protested.
"You do not need to conceal it from me," he said, softer, almost whispering. "I know who has sent you. I am the prime communicator with the gods; I can recognize a sign when I see one."
Elizabeth stuttered for a moment—she had literally no idea what he was talking about. But it sounded as though he was asking to be in her confidence. She dared for a moment to allow her eyes to flicker to him. His face was very earnest, no hint of condemnation or condescension in them.
"Come now, can't you reveal your purpose to me now that I understand?" he prodded. "I know the gods have sent you to me."
Elizabeth's lips twitched. "What gave it away?" she asked, playing along.
"Your hair, of course," he said, in a tone that suggested it should have been obvious.
Of course, she thought, wanting to kick herself for not remembering. The Egyptians believed that gold was practically sacred—the skin of the gods. They associated gold with the celestial; thus her golden locks must have seemed to indicate that she, too, was of divine origin. It almost made her want to laugh...almost.
"Your majesty is very clever," she said quietly.
He ignored the compliment. "Do you have a message for me from the gods?" he questioned her with narrowed eyes, as though trying to see straight through her.
Elizabeth fidgeted. What now? she gulped.
He picked up on her inability to answer. "No," muttered, almost to himself, "you may have been sent by the gods, but you didn't realize it. You are just as ignorant on their plans as I am. You must have grown up in another land and never realized that you had been marked by Sekhmet, goddess of the sun—who else could have made your hair gleam gold like the sun itself? No, she marked you so that I would know to pay attention to you—but why? What does it mean?"
He circled her, looking her up and down as though he were taking a mental note, trying to see something hidden. It was making her uncomfortable.
"I—I don't know what you mean, my lord," she admitted. "I don't know anything about signs." And blonde hair is perfectly common in the U.S., she thought dryly.
He paused for a long moment, and she did not dare peek at his expression.
"Well," he said finally, in an unexpectedly brisk tone, "as long as we are trying to decipher that question, you may as well stay close by."
She looked up at him, startled. "I beg your pardon, my lord?"
Surprisingly, he smiled at her. She felt her cheeks burn pink, and internally cursed herself for being so obviously besotted like a schoolgirl.
"I would like you to stay here in the palace as my guest," he explained. "If you don't object, that is," he added with a smirk.
She blinked. "Wait—really?"
He laughed—the ringing echoes bouncing off the walls of the throne room. For some reason, the sound made Elizabeth's bones feel oddly liquefied, like she was slowly melting.
"Yes, really," he said indulgently. "Actually, the court is returning to Memphis in a few days—perhaps you would not object to accompanying us?"
Elizabeth's mouth was gaping open widely. When she realized this, she snapped it shut and turned a darker shade of magenta. "Thank you, your highness," she managed to breathe.