The night was cold and Celia was thinking of the day’s adventure. She didn’t know what to do now that Alex was gone from the castle and with Morcar and Draken still at large. She played with her bare feet in her room and looked blankly at the ground. A tap at her door was heard and an elderly man popped his head around the door when it opened.

“Hello there Celia, I’ve heard you’ve had quite an adventure today. Can I come in?” Alfred called from behind the door.

“Come in,” called Celia still with her head down towards the ground.

Alfred made himself at home. He sat on the bed next to her and patted her on the shoulder, “What’s the matter, Celia? You’re not so happy today. Did something happen while you were away?” asked Alfred.

 

“I’m confused that’s all.” “What do you mean?”

 

“Father said something that made some sense. Alex never said he loved me. Maybe I’m being a fool wanting to be with him, Alfred. Now he’s left the castle maybe it is best that we part with him,” she sigh.

“Well I know Alex very well and he does love you but finds it hard to express feelings. He’s busy with the elements and Morcar and Draken are on the loose. Understand?”

Celia was still quiet so Alfred continued, “The words do not mean much when someone shows you their love.”

 

“What do you mean Alfred?’ asked the princess more interested.

 

She turned to face him. Alfred smiled at her and nodded his head, “Alex wouldn’t have gone racing around a mountaintop if he didn’t love you. His actions is proof that he does love you. Even I don’t know where Alex is and what he plans to do with himself,” Alfred told her.

“How can we be together when my father forbids it?” “There will be a way Celia. I promise.”

Celia looked at Alfred and leaned on her bed, worried, “Are Morcar and Draken going to return her again?” she asked the old wizard.

“The future is always uncertain until it happens Celia. I think Morcar and Draken will not mend their broken pride until they have a new plan to thwart the elements. For now we have to wait and see what Alex has in mind for the future,” Alfred answered her.

“Will there be peace again, like before all of this started?’ she asked the wizard.

“There will peace. One day” said Alfred hopeful.

He turned away from the princess’s growing concern appeared on his face. He knew the future wasn’t going to get better by any means.

That night Alexander was resting in dining room and Ice walked into the room and greeted him.

“You have done very well for yourself today. From what Artice tells me you’ve becoming a expert with the ice sword,” Ice said.

 

“A little luck played for me today. I did what I set out to do and I did it,” answered Alex with gloom in his voice.

 

Ice sat down next to Alex and looked at the worried face of the knight, “All is not well in the Alexander Kingdom. What happened out there Alex? Was it with Celia? Did you talk to her?” he asked him.

 

“No, nothing happened. She didn’t seem to notice me,” Alex answered.

 

“Notice you?” half chuckled Ice, “You did rescue her did you not?” he asked.

 

“Yes but she wanted to go home. It was strange, did something happen during the past couple of days?” Alex asked.

 

“I think someone changed her mind about you. Like someone who would listen to her. I think don’t Alfred would do that. She’ll be fool of a girl if she listened to her father. He doesn’t understand many things in these dark times. You will talk to her to see what the matter is, Alex, that’s the only way to do it. To talk things out,” Ice suggested to the young knight.

 

“When I have the time, that is,” said Alex.

 

“Too true,” Ice said standing up from his seat, “We must find my own crystal first.”

 

“I think we need to find these crystals to protect them from harm. Who knows what powers the crystal may have,” said Alex.

 

“Yes, who knows what they might do,” Ice said to himself thinking out loud.

 

Alex sat up next to Ice and strolled to the edge of the room and looked at him, “Where is the first crystal then?” he asked.

“The first one is easy. The ice crystal is in my garden. It shouldn’t be too hard to find,” said Ice as Alex smiled.

 

“Great. Let’s go get it,” called Alex and the pair quickly moved towards the back of the palace.

They moved into a back room full of chests of items, gold and jewels. “You have a good collection there,” Alex pointed out the chests to Ice.

 

“I’m keeping to legend and myth. Someone said there were chests of gold waiting at the ends of the earth. I only got them when I first heard the rumours. It would annoy me if I travelled far in vain for nothing,” Ice answered him.

The pair soon stepped down into the garden and to Alex’s surprise the garden was bigger than he expected.

“It’s the size of the forest, Ice. You never told me that!” snapped Alex.

“Sorry. Artice has good eyes. She can pick small things to eat so maybe she can find the crystal somewhere,” said Ice.

“What if it’s buried six feet under Ice. We would have to shovel our way here forever,” complained Alex.

 

“I do think it was in recent times I left it around here,” Ice said. “In recent times?” asked Alex half jokingly.

 

“In recent eras, I believe,” answered a half frowning Ice.

Alex searched the first couple of metres of snow for the crystal then tossed in a shovel he was using.

“I’ll use Artice for now, she might pick up something,” he said to Ice who was also searching for the crystal in the snow.

Ice cried out in the air for Artice, “Artice, we need your hand for a search!”

 

Artice soon appeared and landed next to Ice who held out his arm, “Go and search for yourself. You can have all the fun,” he said as Alex climbed aboard.

Artice took off into the air and zigzagged along the snow searching for anything without snow. Alex appeared to look tired and bored by the search. It took at least an hour before Artice hit jackpot. The dragonfly quickly landed sending Alex into a whirl, “What’s going on,” he cried to the dragonfly. The crystal was showing half out of the snow.

“Bingo!” yelled Alex over 100 kilometres from where Ice was. Artice flew straight back to the palace as Ice gave a nice smile. Artice landed and Alex held up the crystal to Ice’s view. The element walked over and clapped his hands in excitement.

“You found it. I knew you could,” said Ice as Alex studied the crystal.

 

“It took a while,” reminded Alex passing the crystal down to Ice gave a smile.

“Oh yes, a long time it was,” Ice said.

“Where are the others? I hope they’re easier than this one. Not stuck out in the snow,” asked Alex as Ice looked at the Ice crystal.

Ice pulled a thinking face then clicked his fingers quickly, “I don’t know. Maybe if we ask the other elements, they may know the whereabouts,” he suggested.

 

Alex sat down to recollect his thoughts as Ice looked at him thinking. “We will win, Alex. I know we will. It’s a tough search but I do know we’ll get there someday,” smiled Ice looking at the crystal.

Meanwhile Morcar and Draken had returned to their secret lair near the area of dead trees. Draken settled melting in front of a big fire. Draken was wondering why Morcar wasn’t that upset about their loss when he decided to ask him.

“Why didn’t you mind that Alex won and took Celia home? You seemed pleased when he won, why?”

“Well that’s a good question Draken, as you two were battling it out. I found these two interesting jewels,” smiled Morcar as he showed two of the elements crystals.

“When did you find them, you were on my back the whole time?” asked Draken amazed.

 

“It was you who was beaten by a tiny dragonfly. When your wings were frozen I saw the jewels and took them. The water and earth crystals are the ones I have here. What an easy find, don’t you think, Draken?” cried Morcar as Draken smiled.

“Yes, very easy. We are already on the way to defeat the elements and Alexander!” cried Draken happily.

 

“Yes with all six crystals, I can suck the power out of the elements to the crystals then to me!” shouted Morcar as the two dark figures exchanged laughs in the night.

 

The morning rose as King Richardson was in the garden looking at the plants and flowers. It was one of those rare moments when he wasn’t upset he was in peace with himself and floated away with the beauty that the garden gave to him. He walked around to the sun dial to see the time. He then found something in the garden. It was a shining ball of some sort and he walked into some plants to investigate the matter.

 

“Is this some sort of crystal?” he asked himself. Then the crystal sparked as the king dropped it.

 

“It sparks too, strange thing,” he said to himself. He got a cloth out from his pocket to pick up the strange crystal.

 

He looked at it and walked out of the garden. He was watched however by Alfred and turned the corner to see the king wander the halls with the crystal in his pocket.

“Everything seems to be peaceful for now,” he said to himself.

 

He walked to the throne room where Celia was. She was sitting in her father’s throne thinking to herself. He walked up to her as she smiled and said “good morning”.

“You miss Alex? It’s a sunny day outside. You should be out there enjoying yourself instead of being stuck indoors,” advised Alfred.

 

“I do. I wonder if he feels the same thing for me,” said Celia thinking.

“Well, I guess he does. I know he does. In time you will meet again. This Morcar and Draken affair will take a while, until the elements and Alex can beat them at their own game of tricks,” commented Alfred, “Come with me and we’ll be both go outside.”

Alfred and Celia walked outside where Celia saw Richardson with the mystical crystal. She nudged Alfred and pointed at the crystal for Alfred to see.

“What is it?” asked Alfred hindered by his poor eyesight. “It’s an element crystal,” whispered Celia excited.

“We have to get it somehow,” thought Alfred. “That will be hard,” said Celia.

 

“I have a plan. Care to join me,” asked the old wizard as Celia gave a smile.

 

The two of them walked away from the throne room to Alfred’s work room to start the plan. Inside, Celia was sitting on the bed and Alfred sat at his desk.

 

“Right, this plan is going to be difficult. If we get the crystal from your father then you get to see Alex again and talk to him. There is a major problem in getting the crystal,” Alfred

 

“What?” Celia asked.

 

“Getting into Richardson’s pocket and getting away from the throne room. He’s glued to that spot nowadays,” Alfred explained to her.

 

“I will work out how to get the crystal and I need your aid in this,” Alfred said.

 

“How can I be of service?” she asked him.

 

“I need to use, what you call, innocent flirting. A distraction as you say,” Alfred said worried.

 

“You want me to lie to my own father?” queried Celia.

 

“No, no. It’s not lying,” defended the old wizard, “It’s sort of, well um, role playing if you say.”

 

“I thought you didn’t like my ways, Alfred,” said Celia with a lifted eyebrow.

“Don’t you think I’m accepting your stupid stunts with the knights just to get attention. This is an important job for the world and getting this crystal is important,” Alfred snapped back.

Celia smiled and faced the door, “When do we start?” she asked.

Alfred and Celia started to walk towards the garden. Alfred got the young girl into garden and she stood by the shadow clock.

“Right you start your lines when King Richardson passes by here. You are to distract him somehow. Pretend that Alex is here or something,” thought Alfred.

 

“How are you going to steal the crystal?” Celia asked the old wizard.

 

Alfred turned and covered Celia’s mouth.

“It’s not stealing; it’s exchanging the crystal for something less dangerous. It will do the King and the elements good this idea I have in progress,” Alfred told Celia.

“Exchanging; that’s the excuse you’re using for stealing,” smiled Celia.

 

“Don’t speak a word about it again. I feel strange doing this, you know,” Alfred confessed.

 

Alfred walked off to the doorway of the garden and turned back to Princess Celia.

 

“Don’t speak until you hear your father’s footsteps,” reminded the wizard.

 

“As you like it, Alfred the Old,” answered the princess watching the wizard disappearing out of the garden.

 

Alfred paced off to the throne room and watched King Richardson looking over papers. He was against the wall and tried to listen in to what Richardson was doing.

 

“Stupid papers. There are no good knights in the land. What’s wrong with this kingdom?” the king thought to himself.

 

“It’s you, you silly bugger,” Alfred said to himself.

 

Richardson rubbed his eyes and sat the papers on his throne chair when he got up. He lowered his head and shook it in tiredness.

 

“If I have a small walk, maybe it would pick me up,” thought Richardson and he walked out of the room.

 

He walked outside his room, passing Alfred unknowingly and moved towards the garden, “Celia better think of something good. Now to find that Thunder crystal,” Alfred said to himself and advanced into throne room.

Celia was in the garden ready for her cue to start the plan that ‘goodie’ Alfred made up. Richardson was near the garden as Celia saw him and started to speak to herself.

“Oh, Alex, what a surprise to see you” she said to herself.

King Richardson heard and thought of it for a minute. His face was curious then he shook the thought away and pressed on.

“Alex? No,” he said to himself.

Richardson had a drink of water. When he drank some of it he heard some more.

 

“Oh, Alex, you really want to do it? Here in the garden. Mmmm,” said Celia to herself.

 

She could think what her father was thinking. All these thoughts in his head she was laughing at as she spoke more of it. Richardson heard the claims as he walked towards the garden. He burst into the garden.

“What is going on?” he boomed at his daughter. “Nothing,” smiled a cunning Celia.

“I know you don’t trust me father. I was testing you. You never trust me,” said Celia as Richardson turned away.

“Don’t ever think of what you may want to do with Alex. I can’t trust you at times, Celia. You get up to trouble when you’re with Alex and Alfred,” he spoke as he walked out.

 

Celia smiled as she thought of Alfred and the Thunder crystal. “I hope you got that crystal,” she said to herself.

 

Alfred had the crystal in his hands as he put the fake one in the place of the real one.

“That should do it,” smiled the old wizard.

He walked out of the throne room with the real crystal as he passed Richardson with some sort of angry expression. Alfred turned the corner with a worried look wondering what had happened as he met up with Celia.

“So how did you get Richardson away from the throne room?” he asked.

“Having some fun with Alex, pity it wasn’t real,” smiled Celia. Alfred knew that look in Celia’s eye. Her flirting tool had come in useful.

“Keep you strange thoughts to yourself; come now we have to find your knight in shining armour. Although he doesn’t own one anymore,” chuckled Alfred as the two hurried off to find Alex.