A/N: Just to tell you all, this first chapter is nothing like the original since it was saved over with something that isn't the original! So, if there isn't any consistency with the other chapters, inform me so as I can fix it.
Chapter One Firefly Oasis
Once upon a time, there was two kingdoms, Fiume and Sabbioso. Fiume was a rich and blooming place surrounded to the north by a moutain range and to everywhere else a large river, which was the Fiume River. This was Fiume' main source of food and commerce. It was ruled by an ambitious queen with six children. She was relentless in her travels and often sparked campaigns to stretch out her colonies. Her name was Cygne.
Sabbioso was a desert full of bandits, oasises, and a king. The land was parched and unusuable; the king was without an heir. Sabbioso and Fiume became trading allies. Fiume channeled its river water to Sabbioso, who in turn gave them rare items and spices from the many traders and caravans that came through to the famous Sabbioso bizarre. That solved Sabbioso's land problem, but the king was without an heir. The current king had seven brothers that fought over the crown, he was the youngest and the wittiest. He waited until they killed each other off until one was left and played all his cards on the table. He became the new king after tugging a few strings with rebels against his brother. Braise was crowned the day of his brother's burial, what was left of him.
Kign Braise could only be described as machiviellian. His idea of ruling was to be feared more than loved. His goverment reflected this; the pettiest of crimes recieved a harsh punishments.
Out of compassion, the widowed queen of Fiume, Cygne, married the king of Sabbioso, Braise. She gave him one son, named Lucciola. A few years after he was born, she set forth on a campaign over the north mountains that she would never return from. Fiume was stable, seeing as the next in line to the throne was of a good age and became a righteous queen.
Little Lucciola was motherless and rarely saw his father since he was so busy with the affairs of Sabbioso. He became like his father; cold, feared, and easily angered. Lucciola had short fiery red hair like his father, it flicked his eyelashes and curled at the back of his neck. When standing on the castle roof at sunset, running his hand through it would spark illusionary flames. His eyes, however, were inherited from his mother. Golden and piercing, the prince's stare was the last thing a servant would like to be under.
Soon after Lucciola's tenth birthday, the monarchy of Fiume changed to the second oldest, a son this time, when the queen fell fatally ill and was unable to rule. As first order as king, he blocked the river to prevent a water supply to Sabbioso. His reasons remain unknown. For the last ten years, the water slowly dried up, even the oasises. The water crisis made the city a less hospitable place, the king was now too weak from age to do anything. Days passed and the king seem to disappear. Lucciola dreaded the day he would become king.
Prince Lucciola stood on the terrace of the castle, which was on top a cliff that sloped up from the bustling city. The drop was amazing, but no one (except one of the king's brothers) had yet to fall over it. His red hair was being tossed by the breeze, which was hot and thick with dust. He ran a hand through it, sand flicking off of it. Today was boring, hot, and the prince was restless. He fingered at an empty button hole on his tunic, staring off into the distance. No matter how hard you he looked, he would never see his mother's homeland. Probably because it was in the opposite direction of where he was looking.
Lucciola decided to go to one of the last oasises, only open to the royal family. Actually, he was the only one who knew about it. It was probably the only place in all of Sabbioso that had green still left. Against the side of the cliff, there was a niche that sat hidden from the sun almost all day except for sunset. This cave-like depression in the cliff hosted a multitude of exotic plants and flora only found in Sabbioso. A small oasis that Lucciola claimed his own. It was the only thing that made him smile these days; and the only place that would let him.
The prince sidled down the staircase carved into the cliff, hugging the wall. But he did this in such a way that if anyone were looking they'd see a red-headed, tanned man with a blue tunic and billowy pants walking down the side of the cliff with one of his hands permanently attached to the cliff. Any form of weakness to be shown in him would get Lucciola in deep trouble. Even in his old age, Lucciola feared his father. But that was what Braise did, scare people.
Lucciola stepped off the cliff into a bank of sand, walking to his oasis. He reached the first part of his oasis, the niche was divided by a copse of fragrant berry bushes that also ran across the pond that lay half in the niche and half out. Lucciola smiled, face growing softer than his chiseled and scowling one he wore most of the time. He kneeled at water's edge, cupping a hand to take a drink. The water drizzled out of his hand back into the pond as he noticed some highly abnormal in his oasis.
There was a boy drinking from his oasis, who finally noticed him.
A swallowtail butterfly flapped madly against the wind, seemingly lost in the world of sand and sky. It seem to pause every few seconds to figure where it was going before it finally stopped altogether, landing on a dune. This was not Fiume, the feel of the ground was too coarse. It fluttered its wing, getting the unruly dust off of them. THis was not good, it was in Sabbioso.
Then a faint familiar smell tumbled through the air. In a frenzied rush of excitement, it shot in the air, taking off towards the smell's origin. It flapped madly, this time actually reaching its destination.
It landed on a flower; it's flapping slowed and it seem to relax. When the swallowtail took in its surroundings, it fluttered so violently the flower shook up and down. It was still in Sabbioso!
Sighing, the boy stood, dusting off his legs from the sand that caught in it when he fell from the flower. He was an odd foreigner, his kind not seen in any resemblance here ever. The boy looked about seventeen. His hair was to his shoulder blades, cut at varied lengths. It was its color that stood out though. It was a fusion of black and yellow blond stripes, the ends a royal blue that shined beautifully along with the rest of it. His complexion was fair, slightly tanned from his travel across the desert. His eyes were violet, possibly lumsicent in the dark, reflecting the sunlight gathered in the day. The boy was dressed in a tight-fitting, stretchy, and warm black short-sleeved undershirt, over top of that was a poncho-like overshirt that was an array of black, yellow, blue, and purple colors blended and flowing; the poncho was entirely composed of ruffles and a draping series of seperate cloth; it reached to his hips. His pants were made of the same material as the shirt, ending at just above his ankles; the poncho covered the tops of them. It was possible that the shirt and pants were really a full body suit. But the white silk sash tied around his waist prevented from finding out. The sash's end were draped over the front of his waist and the back, reaching his knees. He went barefoot.
He took a look around, lips pursed. This most definetly wasn't Fiume. He let out an exasperated moan. He was famished, and the flower didn't help any. The boy spotted the oasis, gathering the water in both hands and drinking ravenously. It felt good on his dry throat and it roused his spirits. This was Fiume water, he was sure of it. He wiped the stray drops from his mouth, sitting down and resting his tired limbs.
If anyone observed him closely, they noticed he had two kinds of movements and : slow and calm or quick and flittering. There was no inbetween for him, but that was alright. It was the case for most of his kind anyway. Even his voice took on this restriction. A splash and the boy snapped his gaze towards the direction fo the splash. A red-headed man stood there, glaring at him with such intensity that he skittered backwards in fear. His eyes were wide as the man stepped closer.
"What are you doing here?" he hissed, coming closer at a steady pass, hands balled into fists by his sides.
"I-I was thirsty..." his voice was accented slightly, proving he was not from either Sabbioso or Fiume to the prince.
"This is a private oasis, off limits by anyone except the royal family," he said, stopping and crossing his arms. The boy was jittery, every move sharp and quick. Lucciola's lips became a thin line as he stared intently at the boy practically cowering before him. His eyes were strange; nothing like any that passed through Sabbioso. But he wasn't a stranger of strange eyes, having a pair himself. The boy instantly noticed this and stood up, slowly and suddenly calm.
"Well, then I guess Braise-"
"That's king to you!" snapped the prince, fuming for no apparent reason.
"He's not my king!" retorted the boy, becoming flittering and quick again. Lucciola raised his eyebrows to the sudden change.
"Then who is?"
"That's none of your business, whoever you are!" he said, planting his hands on his hips.
"I'm Prince Lucciola, the next king, you worm," the prince said coldly despite the heat. The boy's eyebrows knitted angrily.
"Well excuse me for not bowing, but I am most certainly not a worm," he snapped back.
"Than what are you? A maggot?" he asked dawning a sarcastic smirk. That made the other's hair bristle with anger. This was becoming amusing, Lucciola's anger waned.
"Are you blind or just stupid?" asked the boy, tilting his head. He made it seem more of a true question then an insult. This made Lucciola's anger rise again. He once again noticed the change of personality.
"What are you? Schizophrenic?" he asked in retort. The other said nothing, just glared at the prince.
"Get out of here, before I call the guards," said Lucciola calmly, acid dripping of his words. That made the boy want to realiate, but he kept his mouth shut and turned around on his heel to disappear around the edge of the cliff.
This was not a good day.
The swallowtail landed on the ledge of an open window of the inn. It briefly flapped its wings before looking down among the throng of people in the narrow street. He swung his leg off the edge, the other folded on the ledge, a hand resting on the ankle. He pursed his lips again, blowign air through them. He had to get to Fiume quickly. Or else. But he was so exhausted from his travels that he needed a least a night's rest. The odd boy smiled down at the inn's swinging sign befre hopping off the second story ledge.
He went in and up to the counter. It was dusty and handprints disrupted the thick layer of dust. The boy raised a black eyebrow, removing the elbows he rested on the counter. The boy tapped the little bell hanging from a stand on the counter; the tinkle summoned a thin old man from the room behind the counter.
He came in, snifflingly and coughing. He hacked before looking at the disgusted boy. His lips curled into a friendly smile, his short grey beard spreading across his face.
"Good day, sir! Are you interested in a room at Sabbioso's finest traveler's inn?" he asked in a rough voice, though chockful of kindness. It made the boy smile to see at least one friendly face that day.
"Yes, please," he said rummaging through the folds of his poncho which held a pocket or two. He pulled out a small satchel jingling with coins. Thank whoever who though of having common currency between the countries. The man nodded as he bent over and picked up a tattered leather book from under the counter. He dropped it on the counter, sending dust every which way. It made the boy sneeze.
"Sorry about that.....sign your name here, Sabbioso law. Instead of like Fiume, where there are no questions asked....." he said drifting off while handing the boy a over-used quill. The boy took the quill and looked at the other entries, snorting. Most took up two lines, either too fancy and loopy to confine to one space or too illiterate and unpracticed to not help it. He inked in his name (taking up one line) in a simple lettering and the man took a look at it after the boy handed the sufficent amount of money for one night.
"Far....Farfalla? Now that's awfully foreign...." the inn keeper commented to himself, "Where are you from?"
"A bit north," Farfalla replied sweetly, smiling before going to his room up the stairs. It turned out to be the room who's window he had landed on.
With much of the day to waste, Farfalla decided to go the world famous Sabbioso bizarre.
He wished he hadn't.
/ll/ Author's Notes
M'kay. Everything's name in this is actually a real word. If there is anything introduced to the chapter, I'll roughly translate. They are all translated from Worldlingo so spare me if the translations are wrong....
Sabbioso: sandy in Italian (they are all in Italian in this particular chapter,...I think o.o;; )
Braise: flame (not in Italian I believe)
And yes, I do know who Farfarello is. And that means 'butterflies' in Gaelic. At least that's what I was told.
As always, review.