Eisenkrone Academy

Episode19: The Prince and the Pauper

Things began to slow down at Eisenkrone. No one had time for doing much else than prepare for exams. Cecil and Luke tutored the other members and both Cecil and Lloyd ended up doing quite well. Cecil was however once again unfortunate due to his “belligerent” and “profane” questioning of the one true interpretation of Storm Jesus, and got very poor marks in Catholic studies. Similarly, despite answering most of the questions correctly, he got an unfairly low score in politics class. Lloyd meanwhile managed to get top marks in politics class, mainly due to him cheating. Normally this would of course be abhorrent to him, but when questioned about it by Professor von Zweibrücken, he explained that he thought he was supposed to. Since she repeatedly explained that politics is the art of controlling and gathering of information, so Lloyd assumed that was what he was supposed to be doing. Victoria accepted Lloyd’s explanation, complimenting his keen eye for politics. During her following exams she prepared further tests for Lloyd to further train his intelligence gathering ability.

Meanwhile, Anita’s ploy to befriend Ryoko to get to know Lloyd and learning about
“feelings”, resulted in unforeseen consequences. She actually started to like spending time with Ryoko and they slowly grew to become friends, one of Anita’s first friends who weren’t paid to be so.

One day when she, Ryoko, Cecil and Lloyd were spending time with one another, they were interrupted by Prince Heinrich. He casually insulted Ryoko like he and Anita used to, calling her pig girl and similarly hurtful things. Anita asked him to stop it and to leave Ryoko alone. Annoyed, The Prince tried to make Anita join him, but again she refused and told him to stop. As a response, The Prince slapped her hard across the face, sending her to the floor. An enraged Cecil immediately charged at him but The Prince sent him flying using a jet of fire. Cecil’s trauma of fire reignited and he screamed, clutching himself tightly. Slow, cold anger coursed through Lloyd. He knew that there was only one possible response for that sort of behavior. And so he challenged The Prince to a duel.

The two agreed on the time and place, and The Prince left. Ryoko and Anita desperately tried to talk Lloyd out of it, while Cecil calmly asked if he thought he could take him. Lloyd explained that he couldn’t, but that there were some fights you had to face despite that. The Prince had stepped on everything Lloyd believed in, so he had no choice but to stand up to it the only way he knew how.

The day of the duel soon arrived; The Prince had chosen the roof of the D towers, where spectators could watch his gallant victory. The Principal served as judge for the event and Cecil, as Lloyd’s second stood a bit behind Lloyd, as did Kain behind The Prince.

As the duel began it was immediately clear that The Prince was the superior fighter. He effortlessly danced away from Lloyd’s attacks while sweeping in to cut at Lloyd. Knowing that he couldn’t beat him, Lloyd focused on one single attack. He patiently waited and aimed until the Prince lowered his guard and just as The Prince was about to casually dodge away from the attack as usual, Lloyd channeled the wind through his sword, increasing his reach and cutting The Prince with the elements, scarring him across the cheek.

It was too subtle for the audience to see, but the Prince immediately understood who he was fighting. He took a few steps back, and asked Lloyd to join him, telling him that they didn’t need to fight one another. They were better than the others, they were rulers surrounded by mere subjects. Together they would rule the school like kings.

Lloyd sadly turned him down. That was not what it meant to be a ruler. Instead he once again lifted his sword, hoping to get the point across. Rage filled The Prince’s bloodied face, he lashed out to Lloyd in honest, hurling fire and ice, earth and wind at Lloyd, again and again until Lloyd fell limply to the ground. The Prince continued his attacks, and finally, he drove his sword in to him, driving the blade deep in to the stone itself. He then faced the audience to bask in the triumph of his victory.

An ice cold silence faced him, some forced cheers cried out but they too soon died down. As Cecil ran up to help Lloyd, Anita approached The Prince, dumping him publically, telling him she wanted nothing else to do with him. Furious The Prince left, turning only to glare daggers at the still unconscious Lloyd, swearing that it wasn’t over while clutching his cheek.

A few days after the duel, The Military History Club held another meeting; further investigation of the old clubroom had shown that the old club had worked to predict storms, even during the war. They had even sent warnings regarding the storm at Crystal, but none had listened. They decided that they too would do what they could to fight the storm and those who would abandon their duties as storm knights in favor of senseless warmongering.

But, before that, they had earned a rest from the endless fighting, drama and excitement that surrounded Eisenkrone. The semester was drawing to an end, and a long, peaceful holiday lay ahead of them.

Or was it?
Dum dum duuuuum

End of Season 1.

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Riklurt Sydow

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