By the time he was growing up to be a teenager, The Prince had a very striking habit, a habit that he was not conscious about. When the sun showed itself in the morning, The Prince would spring awake when the dawn starts setting in, as early as the peasants and palace workers sometimes.
Even though The Queen had prepared for him a glaring silk curtain to prevent the sunray from gushing into his chamber, he had the habit of leaving the curtain open for the night, and hugging himself tight to fight against the cold breeze of the night. And when sunshine comes, his eyes would open and stare right at it. The Prince felt good. He felt he had the entire day ahead of him to live for- all the more today will be a special day.
He walked to the verandah and looked up far ahead into the mountains- since his verandah has the best horizontal view compared to the rest of the castle. He saw a tiny dot somewhere beyond the mountains, a tiny dot that he knew was moving. A smile appeared on his face. His rested his chin on the railing, and looked on intently, wondering if that small moving dot represents the distant arrival of a person that he has been anticipating for of late.
But he wouldn’t find out if it is that person or not, because The Queen had barged into the chamber, and had called him for breakfast. By the time The Prince had finished showering and having his breakfast, he would hear the chatter at the palace’s gates, and he knew they have arrived. But whether they were the small dot that he saw in the morning, he did not know. That was how The Prince was, always that little wonder etched in his mind.
But that wonder did not stop him from running ahead of The King and The Queen to greet the person he was waiting for- The Elder Prince.
The Elder Prince is The Prince’s cousin, but a very close cousin, whom he regards as his own brother, given the fact that The Prince himself did not have a brother to begin with. Even though still relatively young, The Elder Prince had his way of being independent, The Prince thought. He had arrived is a small donkey that suited his size, beside his parents who have their own horses. This is the time of the year that The Prince loves the most- when the Elder Prince arrives to spend a short holiday here.
The Prince had plenty of relatives, both through The Queen and also The King, but many are individuals who are living a more grandeur life that The Prince, and The Prince hardly found himself feeling at home or comfortable in such surroundings. There were only two cousins with whom he feels comfortable- with the Elder Prince and the Young Prince, who is yet to arrive.
The Elder Prince loves to taunt The Prince, but at the same time, shares a lot of common enthusiasm with The Prince. He too, like The Prince, arrives from a modest background, and does not come from a grand kingdom. This is why the three of them form a great group, because all three are not pampered princes, but rather belong to modest backgrounds, and do not mind mingling even with the peasants’ daughters and sons whenever they are together.
The Young Prince comes from the most modest background of them all, and is very well versed in all the activities that the peasants’ sons and daughters take up to. He does not sleep in the comfortable chamber, but instead prefers sleeping in a patterned rug in the palace’s living hall. He also had a peculiar habit of attracting accidents. He had the same wondering habits that the Prince possessed, but he was rather adventurous and liked to try out few things much more physically rather than standing at the verandah and looking at sceneries. Instead of looking, he’d rather try to track and figure for himself what these sceneries have to offer from close.
For this very reason, they had the habit of sneaking out when the night begins to set down, and try to find out what is around and beyond the kingdom gates. But they would succeed in only one of the ten attempts they take, as most of the time they would be caught red-handed by their parents.
The Young Prince would, from time to time, poke his fingers to anything he finds peculiar and gets himself hurt or bitten, most of the time with generous amount of blood. The Prince and the Elder Prince have gotten so used to the habit that they would laugh every time such an incident occurs- instead of putting up a worried face. Even the Young Prince had the habit of laughing off any mess he gets himself into.
The three of them would often gather at the Young Prince’s generously built independent house. The Young Prince lives in a village, and not a kingdom. His village is much secluded, and his house a rather big one, with plenty of space to accommodate all the relatives from The Queen’s side who would often come and stay in the house during festivities.
Fireworks, imaginary camps, group activities- these were the best times The Prince had during his early youth.
This particular morning though, The Prince and the Young Prince have come to accompany The Prince through the night as their elders make a trip to the northern borders to meet a famed healer to cure certain health problems. The princes blinked at each other with the prospect of having the whole palace for themselves.
They played, shouted, ran around and ordered the peasants as they wished- they were the kings of the day. They did not sleep when the whole kingdom went to sleep. They stayed through the night, chattering and exploring and doing whatever they can do to further spend the night awake. And as The Prince strolled down to the living hall from his chamber where they were camped, he saw a white figure whizzing past him into another chamber. He was taken aback, shocked.
The other princes asked him what was wrong; so The Prince told them what had happened. But none of them shrugged it off as just an imagination. They dared to take the matter seriously.
“We need to do something,” The Elder Prince said. And they were set to do something- they felt important. They were the kings, they will be the heroes.