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  • Writer's pictureAquarius

The Emperor's Chair

Updated: Apr 4, 2020

Part VII

The time-travelers followed each other single file, trudging quietly along the outer edge of the sea wall, along the Golden Horn hoping to avoid detection by the conquering army. A sea breeze picked up, swirling their cloaks around them as they continued south toward the Imperial Palace. They smelled smoke in the salt air and sea birds screamed in the clouds high above their heads as they approached the southern tip of Constantinople.

Levi stepped off the path to check his map and Zoe scanned the horizon up ahead. They rested for a short time in a clump of tall grasses, drinking water and snacking on cheese and apples. After everyone had rested, they stood up and made their way closer to the Imperial Palace of Constantinople. Levi thought they might be able to find a hole or breach in the wall closer to the chain crossing the Golden Horn if they continued walking. He whistled for Ruby and she turned into a little sunbird, flitting in the air above them on the path.

Levi could just make out the shapes of men and horses in the distance so he slowed down and began looking for cracks or holes in the wall of the city that they might be able to fit through. He spotted a few soldiers lying on the ground up ahead, one with his feet on this side of the wall, and perhaps with his head stuck halfway through a small hole in the wall. Levi sent Hazel on ahead as a scout to examine the dead soldier's legs for possible entry into the city. Hazel strode ahead of them on the trail, swirled her cape around her shoulders and flew off toward the soldier's legs as Sapphire.

Sapphire flew back and reported her findings:

"It looks like there is a small hole in the wall with someone stuck in between. All we would need to do is drag the person back out by their feet. It looks like the hole was made by someone trying to escape."

Levi hurried on ahead, dragged the person out of the hole by his feet and left him on the grass nearby next to a few other dead and dying soldiers that had lost their battle. Sapphire flew through the hole first and had a quick look around on the other side before calling for Zoe, Levi and Ruby. The blue owlet had already spotted the Imperial Palace off in the distance and she was certain that was where Finn and the other half of his Invisibility Cloak were hiding. The travelers slowly made their way through the looted city, weaving a path through wounded soldiers, nurses carrying away the dead, and a conquering army busy with the spoils of war. Levi believed that if they moved quickly enough, then maybe they would not be noticed. He saw the Imperial Palace in the distance and began looking for an entrance. Sapphire flew overhead and searched for Finn. She thought she saw movement within, but couldn't tell for sure. Then the owlet spotted an opening in a large, heavy, wooden oak door that had been left open along the side of the Palace.

Sapphire swooped in through the oak door and flew around the Palace interior searching for Finn. Then she saw a black shape hiding underneath the Emperor's Chair. It was Finn! Finn was underneath the Emperor's Chair hiding under half of his Invisibility Cloak, only now his Invisibility Cloak was black instead of gray! Sapphire saw the jagged, ripped edge of black cloth and immediately knew what had happened with Finn and his Invisibility Cloak. After all, she had the other half! Sapphire flew back out the oak door to tell the others.

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