Chapter two - Fiery intentions

The shadows were creeping closer, they came near and their cold breath was filled with inescapable fear of death. This cold breath caressing her neck's skin she bolted up from the hole she was hiding in. She ran and ran forever it seemed for but the distance between Xiao-lian and the shadows pursuing her was not growing. Grabbing the pole of a lantern she swung around the corner at a crossroads she did not want to give in. They were after her warm a preciously pounding heart but even though she was not as frail as she looked like these days her stamina was giving in. Her breath became rigged a while ago as she continuously tried to breathe more and more. Her cheeks were reddened and her heart she so clung to pounded against it's cage as if it wanted to be released. The sounds of the street and her heavy steps on the hard stones were inaudible against the hammering sound of her racing heart. Xiao-lian dashed around more corners and down empty streets not letting her pursuers gain an inch of that live-saving distance she had gained. However as she continued running even against her body's desire to resign to that fate that had doomed her a small spark of doubt nestled in her mind.

Suddenly she tripped crashing hard onto the stony street, scratching and hitting heavily on the street. The loud thud of her body announced to halt of the unwinnable race she had tried to win. Trembling and whimpering a little as the pain soothed her fear of being caught, she sat up holding her bleeding knee. Crimson wet drops of blood painted the street in it's beautiful colour.

"Ouch. Ouch Ouch..." she whistled as she gently touched the fresh wound. To the audible sound of steps behind her she turned around. Her eyes becoming wide, watering while she screamed to her hearts desire to escape.

"Kyaaaaaaaa!!!!" she trashed away the blankets around. Breathing hard she antsy watched her surroundings. Her usual bed, the long curtains shielding her from the rest of the room.

"Princess! Is something wrong?" a voice asked worriedly as the curtains were pulled back by a small and thickly build woman: "Another bad dream princess Xiao-lian?"

Xiao-lian looked at her maid who was worriedly checking if she was showing any signs of falling ill again.

"Yes..." she replied hesitantly: "But do not worry so much about me. I am fine now." Xiao-lian's usual and gently smile had returned to her pale face. It due to the nightmare was even paler than usual.

Two knocking sounds drew the attentions to the big and massive looking wooden door.

"Excuse me!" A man's muffled voice was heard through the door before the knob was moving.