The new queen looked like a statue her underlings had propped up to keep the lords and ladies from squabbling over the throne. No light shined through her eyes, and her features were frozen as if they had been carved from the same granite as the busts of the kings and queens of old. No matter her age, or her apparent lifelessness, the figure of the woman held power from head to toe. The radiating authority was the only thing that seemed to prove the person in the throne proper was living. No one could mistake this young child for anything but a queen.

The whispers grew as the crowd waited for anything to happen. A guard shifting the weight of the heavy ornamental shield he carried could attract the masses attention in an instant. It was unusually quiet for what was supposed to be a joyous event.

Gabriel wasn't having moments of paranoia, he was consumed by it. No matter the extent of his anger, the paranoia would not leave. It was the only thing left to him when his family was killed. Gabriel had nothing else to remind him of his former life. It had been a short life, not exactly peaceful, but it had been right. Having a mother and father was the natural order of things. And those older than you were supposed to die well before you did. This was the way life was supposed to be. But it wasn't the way Gabriel's life had turned out.

No one would ever make the royalty of Arinrold kneel. Instead the public was the one to grovel. Grovel and beg for this girl to be the queen she already was. When she placed her long, delicate fingers on the crown, and lifted it to her head, the gold of her hair almost made the crown disappear. Through all of the ceremony, not one emotion flickered on the girl's features. No light of anticipation when first touching the golden headpiece, no shock at over a thousand men and woman kneeling and begging for her to have complete dominion over the masses, no final triumph at having every man made symbol in her possession that could mark her as the most powerful woman in the land. Nothing passed over the pale face that marked her as a direct descendent of the North Wind. That is what made it so easy to forget the paranoia.

Gabriel started shouldering his way through the crowd, determined to put his plan into action. Everyone was transfixed on the Vessel of the Wind and her indoctrination ceremony to become the new ruler of Arinrold. Sneering at their rapture, Gabriel easily maneuvered between the citizens, despite how many people were packed into the large courtyard. Gabriel's eyes weren't trained on the ceremony: his eyes were focused on his path towards the guards blocking the only access route to the throne, and the frigid girl being crowned.