Author's Note- Heya dearest readers! This one-shot is the first of its kind for me and I hope you all like it. Possibly I'll try and write more of these as they are so fun. This one will not have anything else after it, as it is not a super-original piece and I don't really feel up to writing more of this. I believe its appeal is in its mystery. The basic idea of this is a big mix of things: similar to the books Heir Apparent by Vivian Vande Velde and The Reality Bugby D.J MacHale, along with the song "The Son and Heir" by T.A.T.U, which is a remake. But don't freak, it's not a songfic or a fanfic. Enjoy and see you on the other end!
The position he found himself in was too crazy to be real, but too lifelike for a dream. He was in a cavernous room that threatened to swallow him at any moment in the outskirts of a sleepy town. There were some kind of carvings and patches of color on the far-away walls. Those and the everywhere-but-nowhere light that barely illuminated them were weird enough by themselves, but they could not compete with the most prominent feature that dwarfed anything that dared to stand up to it.
A mountain stood in the middle of everything. Not just any mountain, but the largest mountain, well the largest anything, he had ever seen. Of what this mountain was made of remained to be seen, but it probably was not something ordinary, considering everything else around it.
He warily circled the base of the mountain, looking for the easiest way up. None presented itself so he finally decided to begin his ascent, though he was not sure if he had been around the whole mountain. He approached the place he had decided to begin from, staying alert the entire time. When he was close enough the touch the side, he stopped, and a shiver ran the length of his taught body.
He was finally able to see what the mountain was made of, and it was not pretty. This cavern, it seemed, was also a tomb, for the mountain was a colossal pile of bones. Mixed in among the bones were broken wooden spears, the kind that could be fired from a crossbow. He ran one finger along the edges and another against the point of an intact arrowhead and both came back wet with blood. It seemed he was in for one dangerous climb.
He picked his way carefully among the broken, lethal remains. Forced to crawl up on his hands and knees so he was not shredded to pieces, the going was slowing and exhausting. The mountain was like a giant, hazardous sand dune, for each time he moved upward he would sink into the spears and bones and send more tumbling down onto him.
Hours later it seemed, light from above him was growing brighter, illuminating his way and giving him the strength he needed to complete the last few feet of his ascent. Finally, he managed to pull himself onto the top of the mountain. He lay on the ground where he had fallen, which seemed to be made of something like concrete, but was brown and completely clear of bones or spears, panting and glad to not have become part of the mountain yet. Eventually he managed to stand up and survey his surroundings.
He was on a square platform that he guessed to be the top of the core of the mountain. From were he was standing he could see around the whole mountain and was again struck by the sheer size of the cavern. But what really stood out was an intricately carved, purple and gold plinth in the center of the square. The light seemed to emanate from within it and, though its illumination reached the floor of the cavern, it was not too bright to look at directly. It surprised and captivated him. He walked towards it slowly, forever cautious.
There, resting upon a purple satin pillow, lay a scintillating crown that seemed to be the source of the light within the cavern. It was simple and elegant with three huge amethysts set on three upward points of the crown and tiny diamonds sprinkled along the wide, golden band below and among the points. It was the most beautiful and alluring thing he had ever seen.
He wanted it, needed it, and felt that it should be his. It must have been what he was meant to obtain. He reached out to take the crown and managed to touch the center amethyst that was warm to the touch. It was his only mistake.
Immediately, all of the light in the cavern vanished. He froze, fingers still touching the crown. The fingers, he realized, that had dried blood on them from when he had first touched the arrowhead. Not knowing what to do and unable to see anything at all, he remained in place, the crown growing cold beneath his fingers. It was the most terrifying moment of his life. The weight of the cavern seemed to press upon him, and his height and the vast emptiness disoriented him.
After an eternity, a faint light began to appear high above him. With it came a single voice, whispering something he could not hear. Soon others joined it, just as quiet at first, but continually growing louder and louder, until he felt he was drowning in a dark sea of sound. They were male and female, old and young, but all were saying the same thing.
"The Son and Heir," the mantra soon began pounding in his bones, spoken hundreds of times with each beat of his heart. It was not threatening, merely questioning, and almost curious.
Then a new, strong voice rang out. The others stopped the moment before it had started. It sounded clearer than the others did, almost as if it was somehow closer. Recognition trickled slowly to him, but the answer continually flitted outside of reach. Exhaustion must be the cause, he thought.
"Yes or no?" it intoned, rumbling through his chest.
Instinctively, he knew this was the most important question he had ever been asked. Also in that instant, he knew where he had heard the voice before, and suddenly he was scared.
Well, he thought, this is my last try anyway so I might as well get it over with. Even so, he chose his answer carefully.
He gave his answer and knew instantly something was not right, as an animal knows when there is danger. A new sound reached his ears, exactly the one he had been hoping not to hear in this place. It was an arrow slicing through the air.
He tried to hide, but was afraid to move in the pitch black and did not know from which direction the arrow came. But it was too late anyway for the source of the approaching whistling was already too near. Oh well, he thought, at least I will know for the next game. Then his world dissolved into black.
He opened his eyes to the harsh white light he had come to know after such dark and quickly shut them again. After detaching everything first, he got up slowly as usual, to avoid dizziness. Facing the bed, he did not know someone else was with him until he heard his voice. It had been a surprise, but he did not jump. It was unexpected, but not unusual.
"How was the Game?" it asked. "Sorry for your Loss." He turned around to face the man.
"How did you answer?" It would have been a simple enough question expect for one thing.
The man was holding a gun.
Author's Note-WAIT!! Short request before you go off to do whatever. Please send me feedback. I would love to know what you liked/didn't like, what needs improvement, how my descriptions were, if it was mysterious/thrilling enough, what the strongest/weakest parts were, any grammar improvements/corrects, etc. Feel free to answer any or all of these, or even any different, random ones. If you don't have a lot of time/are too lazy, I'd love just a rating from one to ten. All you have to do is put the number; I swear it will take you nearly no time at all. Thanks and hope to see you in other fics! (Also check out my fanfiction account, which has the same username)