Bishop Danes closed his eyes while sitting in his chair. Lying to Brindle had been necessary, he mused, no matter how unseemly that it was. There was no way they could have told his boss what Father Church truly knew. Something’s should never see the light of day.
His mind was racing as his thrummed his fingers together. While committing a parody of prayer, he contemplated what Father Church knew. Several hundred women had fulfilled the prophecy, he reflected, and it was always a woman too. That fact alone made it a mystery within itself.
However, as the prophecy said, they always arrived in the times of mankind’s greatest need. That would definitely fit today, he mused, with everything that was happening. How could history repeat itself like this?
Given the events coming out of Earth, he told himself with a shudder. Things are definitely going to be dark for everyone. If someone doesn’t stop the movement that was taking shape, then the entire galaxy would know a terror mankind has not seen since the time of Hitler.
The Bishop’s mind wandered as the room faded away. In bits and pieces, a scene straight out of the Middle Ages formed. He felt both eyebrows rise as he noted the village around him. Looking down at himself, he saw he was covered in chain mail armor.
Interesting, he thought to himself, starting to walk.
Archaic buildings rose on both side of him as he walked. Two story in height, they were shops on the bottom, houses on the top. Squinting his eyes, he could see the town walls in the distance. Atop them were guard towers for protecting the inhabitants.
People hurried past him, bumping into him constantly. Picking up his pace, he followed them as they moved. Ahead, was a throng of people gathered chanting. Sighing, he continued on his way.
As he approached the rear of the crowd, he couldn’t see what was happening. Squeezing his way through, he made holes in the crowd. When he got where he could see, his jaw dropped. His breath caught in his chest, seeing what was happening before him.
He shook his head, rubbing his eyes. This couldn’t be happening, he reflected, it had to be a dream! He pinched himself, causing a yelp to escape his lips. No, he told himself, it was real…but how?
Sighing, he fought the urge to drop his head in shame. For before him was a single woman, tied to a stake. In the town square, everyone could see her. Her blue eyes looked at everyone with a combination of disbelief and contempt.
They’re going to burn her at the stake, he thought, noting the kindling and wood piled around her feet.
She was dressed in a simple white gown that reached down to mid-calf. Both hand were tied behind her as the town’s Bishop stood before her. Feeling the bile rise in her throat, Danes fought to keep his composure.
This is a shameful act, he thought.
“Why are thou forsaking me?” she screamed.
“Burn her!” one man yelled.
“Heretic!” a woman screamed.
He felt his cheeks burn red in shame. Never in his life, he reflected, had he felt so humiliated. This was when Father Church had been at it’s worst; murdering people for the charge of “witchcraft” that could never be proven. Why was he back her to witness this horrible time?
Looking at the woman, the pieces slid into place. It was she; he realized, the woman! The prophetic female was before him, looking just like every other one in their line! Could he be back here to know who the fulfiller was during his lifetime?
It was her again; the woman, the one from the prophecy!
“Madam,” the Bishop said. “You are hereby charged with witchcraft.”
“Why are you forsaking me?” the woman challenged him, and everyone else present. “Did I not save you from great harm?”
“Burn her!” came the reply.
How could he sit back and watch this happen? The woman before him had done no wrong, but was going to executed! This travesty couldn’t be allowed to take place, could it? Feeling the rage grow in his gut, he spoke up:
Stopping short of lighting the wood, the executioner look at him. His hooded face, and every other eye, bored into him. Anger and disbelief were on their face as they stared. How dare he open his mouth, the faces said, and stop this execution!
“Your highness,” the Bishop said. “This order is signed by your father, the King.”
“This woman has done no crime,” Danes cried. “She should be released!”
“Crown Prince, your Highness,” the Bishop said. “This woman has preached heresy against the church and found guilty.”
“Found guilty of what?” he challenged. “Of being able to defeat our enemies and make us safe?”
“Which is the role of a man,” the Bishop said. “And is directly against the teachings of the church.”
“So,” Danes said, approaching the stake. He looked at everyone before him. “We’ll allow someone to save us from our enemies and then kill them for being a woman!”
“Crown Prince,” the Bishop said. “You cannot change the outcome of this event, Your Highness. Why don’t you go home and rest?”
A growl of rage crossed his lips. He looked back at the woman behind him, and images flashed through his head. Rapid fire, he saw scenes of laughter, of practicing swordsmanship. Images of making long, sweaty love in his bed flashed past too.
Flushing, he realized he was connected to the woman. Their combined passion had been spent many nights. The joy he felt washed over him like a tidal wave. How could he sit back and let them kill the woman he loved?
Her name is Eve, he told himself, not knowing how he knew. Eve Sinclair, and she is the warrior princess that was predicted for decades to come and save the small Kingdom for its enemies…
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