Before long, the princess was lost within the tangle of hallways. The paths and identical tunnels became a jumble in her mind. There was no way to create a map or mark where she had already been, so she simply kept on, quietly, making sure to peek around each corner she came across.
Deserted , she observed. Beyond escape, she had no real plan to speak of.
Find him , she told herself. At the thought, her sharp teeth ground against one another in anger.
The king was here - somewhere on this alien world. The mastermind behind all of her recent woes.
At last, she came across something different - a large room behind an ornate archway. The floor was made of colored tiles, like a rough quilt of stone. As she entered, her footsteps echoed from the tall ceiling.
There was a chair before her - the thick backing swooped and curved into beautiful decorations. The seat faced overlooked the citrine landscape beyond. Shafts of glowing light spread downward and splashed over the tiling.
The girl stopped and tilted her head. From her vantage, she could only see a a set of claws that sat atop the armrest. She held her breath and waited.
"At last," a voice said.
"It's..." she began.
"Yes. I am the man of your dreams."
"Nightmares. I never wished to come here. I never wanted--"
"To become like me?" he cut in. Suddenly, he stood. His dark silhouette obscured the light and displayed the unique shape of his body. Tall spikes grew from his shoulders and arched into dangerous points. "You killed too many of my children to be left to wander."
"The prophesy said--"
"Silence!" he screamed. He turned around and his red eyes glowed with anger. Around his neck, her indigo crystal glinted in the light.