The guards had finally left from their station outside of Princess Priscilla’s door. They escorted her to her room from the banquet over 2 hours ago. Security was tight in the palace and their job was to make sure that the princess was safe from harm.
The thought of the guards protecting her made her smile. She was neither a real princess nor a damsel in need of protection. Little did they know that they really should be protecting themselves from her. Thoughts ran through her head on how to best kill each of these personal guards if it ever came to that. She hoped that it would never come to that but she was prepared.
She arose from her bed with masterful stealth. She quietly changed from her night garments to her black theft’s outfit. She darkened her face with makeup. She glanced in the mirror to admire her work. She pulled the hood over her fiery red hair. She was finally ready to fulfill her con that began months ago to get her in this position. She had spent months staking out her prey in the guise of a Princess being courted by the Prince. She wished she had not just thought about the Prince. How she desired this life to be real and not a falsehood. Her father warned her not to get emotionally involved. She wished she could have heeded his advice. It did not matter, she was fulfilling her mission tonight.
She had picked the moonless night with heavy cloud coverage. The think cover of darkness worked to her benefit. The overcast night will also help muffle any sounds associated with her task. She should be able to pull of her task without any detection.
She gathered the various parts of her crossbow. With meticulous persission, she assembled her devise. She loaded the grappling hook and locked it into place. She would have one attempt at securing it properly. If she slightly missed her shot, the line would both fall to the ground and lead to her detection or it would not fully secure and give out on her in mid stream causing her to plummet rapidly down 6 stories to frozen ground below.
The guards changed shifts right on time. Months of determined observations had paid off for the right opportunity. The time was upon her. She locks the crossbow bolt in place. Aiming carefully for the edge of the church roof, she prepares to fire. She checked the rope to ensure that it secure. She compensates for the slight breeze blowing the first snow of the season. She gently pulls the trigger trusting in her perpetrations. It was a perfect shot just as she had practiced it hundreds of times in the Bronston Forrest.
She began her trek across the court yard on the rope. Her leather glove covered hands grabbed the line while she swung her legs around it. The rope seemed to be fully secure. It was a slow process crossing to the church. She had to stop a couple of times when the guards made the rounds near her. They never looked up just like they never do. After 15 minutes, she finally made it to the roof of the church.
She had to step gingerly across the icy clay roof tiles. Even with her balance training, the roof was a challenge in this weather. Just a few more steps to the bell tower and Aunabella slipped. She was half way off the slope of the roof before she was able to secure herself. A few of the tiles became loose and started to roll. Aunabella had to stop them. If they fell to the ground, her cover will be blown. While hanging by the finger tips of her left hand, she swept her right arm up and stopped them. She swung herself up while pushing the freed tiles. This icy roof was more challenging that she anticipated. She needed to get inside quickly if she planned on getting over the wall in time. But she could not rush and risk dropping the tiles or worse causing more to come free.
It took her 15 minutes to inch up the roof with the four tiles. Finally she reached the bell tower. She set pieces down and carefully pulled herself into the window. She was behind schedule.
She snuck around the bell to the door. She pushed it slightly open with a slight creaking. She had found out that Brother Ben was a heavy sleeper so he should not have been awaken by the mild noise.
She made it down the four flights of stair without a creak. The pure gold cross relic was locked away behind the communion table. She found it a month ago and was able to easily find it in the dark. The lock was difficult to pick but Auna was a master. In thirty seconds, she had the relic. This would be a prize possession for her father. This should allow her people to live in luxury for years to come.
Bright light flooded around her. Temporally she was blinded by the 20 torches being lit at once. When her eyes adjusted, she found herself surrounded by guards. With cat like reflexes, she leap over a guard and glided across the top of the pews. She bounded to the stairs and raced up. The stairs were covered with guardsmen but she danced around them. She was almost to the bell tower when Garz, the Captain of the Guard grabbed her leg.
Garz is a 6’4” muscular soldier. He was as savy and mammoth. Auna was in real trouble in Garz’s grip.
In one fluid movement, she grabbed her dagger and stabbed Garz in the left hand. He yelped in pain and released his prisoner momentarily. It was just enough time for Auna to make it to tower. She found herself face to face with Percy, price of Alashia.
The only thing between her and her freedom was the man she had fallen for. She had to decide quickly what she was going to do. The guard will be on her in a second. She charged Percy and threw a punch at him. He dodged out of the way giving her the opening. She rolled onto the frozen roof and began to slide again. She got her barring and came to her feet. She needed to reach the line to make to have a chance.
The voice of Percy boomed behind her. She realized he was yelling at her. “We know you are not Princess Priscilla. Now come back in and face your consequences you harlot!”
“Why should I?”, she answered.
“Otherwise, the royal archers will shoot you off this roof!”
She glanced around and realized, they had archers on every post and window and these boys were sure shots. She stood no chance of surviving. Slowly she turned and made her way back to the window.
The gigantic hands of Garz grabbed her by the neck. He guardsmen quickly chained her up. The fox had been captured by the hounds. Her heist became her entrapment. The punishment for this level of thief was public execution.