Chapter One- A Fairy Tale Castle
She'd never been so alone in the entire sixteen years of her life. Where the hell was she, anyway? This walk through the forest by her house was taking longer than usual. She'd been walking for quite some time. Everything was silent, except for the crunching of snow underneath her boots. The bare branches of gnarly trees blocked out the sun- if it was even there. Her gaze swept from left to right. Nothing but spooky trees. They seemed to be whispering, "Why are you here? Get out."
Get out? If she could get out, she would. Her teeth were chattering and her whole body was shivering under her black coat. Her cheeks were bright red like cherries.
Her mind was foggy and her eyelids heavy. Just as she felt she was going to pass out, the abundance of trees ended. She could finally see the sky. A gray mass of clouds hung in the air. A thick blanket, stretching for miles...
And in front of her was the grandest thing she'd ever seen. A beautiful white castle, many stories high, loomed over her. There were turrets at either corner of the castle. They seemed to pierce the clouds. Two stone wolf statues stood on either side of the iron gate, howling at the sky. She touched one of them, stroking it with the back of her small hand. It was extremely detailed, down to each individual hair.
"You're quite early, my dear." She quickly drew her hand away.
"Early? For what?" She turned to the gate. An older looking woman in a beautiful purple gown was standing behind the iron gate. Her gray hair was tied in a neat bun.
"The party, my dear. Isn't that why you're here?" A pause. The woman looked her up and down. "Though you're very young... And that is a peculiar outfit for a party."
"I'm sorry, I heard no such thing of a party... I've just been walking through those woods for quite some time, and I was hoping to find a place to rest. I don't know where I am at all."
The woman squinted. She muttered something inaudible. She unlocked the iron gate and opened it.
"It's like a fairy tale castle," the girl breathed, looking up at the marvelous castle again.
The woman led her inside. The girl gasped. She had stepped into a dark, spacious foyer. Stairs led to an upper floor. The only source of light was a elaborate candelabra on the ceiling. Spooky shadows were cast on the walls.
"I don't believe I introduced myself," the woman said, turning to the girl. "My name is Marie." The girl cocked her head.
"M-Marie? Is that it? You want me to call you that?" She was puzzled. Normally an adult would give her their last name as well, and she would address them as Mister, Miss, or Mrs. As she opened her mouth to speak again, footsteps echoed into the foyer.
"Please, Mother, give her your full name." A voice boomed from the top of the stairs as a figure appeared. The girl looked at the woman, even more confused. The woman sighed.
"I am Queen Marie of Prussia," she said with a smile. The girl's eye twitched.
"Q-queen?!" she stammered.
"That's right." The figure made his way down the stairs. "And I am King Ludwig Otto Friedrich Wilhelm of Bavaria." The poor girl's face turned pale, as if she'd seen a ghost. She was standing before a king and queen?!
"This doesn't make any sense," the girl gasped. She remembered her walk through the forest. There wasn't a castle near her house. What the hell happened?
"You are dreadfully early," Ludwig said, slowly advancing towards her. The girl's heart pounded. "And those are very, very odd clothes for a young lady." He wasn't acting like a king at all. The princes and kings in the fairy tales she read were all gentlemanly and respectful. She looked down at herself. She was in a black trench coat and a pair of dark skinny jeans. Upon her feet were a pair of snow boots.
"What do you mean, these are odd?" she sneered. "I told you, I didn't hear about a-" She stopped as Ludwig came closer. She gasped as she was able to study his face.
His dark hair, though it was pushed back, had a wild curl to it. His gaze was unsettling. Was he intentionally trying to scare her? And his outfit... He looked like some monarch that belonged in the 1800's-
"The 1800's," the girl squealed. Both Ludwig and his mother raised an eyebrow.
"Yes. The year is 1874," Ludwig said, looking at her as if she was a rabid animal.
Something felt familiar... Like she'd seen these people before. In fact, she had.
"My history textbook..." she whispered. Her knees turned to jelly and her mind felt dizzy. She collapsed in a heap, and everything went black. Ludwig gave an asymmetrical smile.
"Looks like she'll be staying for the party after all."