[Raw] Colours of Change – Chapter 21

Colours of Change – Chapter 21

The wooden door opened outwards, allowing the man to see the new Central Party’s guardian. Around the guardian was three other guests, two females and a boy around the same age as the guardian. He only recognised one of them, out of the three other people – Princess Snow. The guardian himself who had the Plant Kingdom’s symbol was very young. He did not seem like a person who would become a guardian. He was far too young. He looked like he was probably sixteen. However, the man did not want to look down on him. That youth may be very strong, just that he did not seem like it.

“Welcome to the Plant Kingdom!” the man that was called a guardian by the guard spread his arms outwards, welcoming them in. He looked at the four guests that were in front of him, with a warm smile. “Nice to meet you, guardian of the Central Party,” he pushed his hands out, ready to shake the youth’s hands, before turning to the princess, “as well as you, Princess Snow.” He bowed down, showing his respect towards a different Kingdom’s royal family. It was not often to see other royal family visiting different Empires and Kingdoms, and that was a rare visit. He had better get to making preparations for the four guests’s accommodation, especially for the princess. He turned to look at the other two guests, shaking their hands.

“Nice to meet you. How do we address you, guardian?” Kierix returned the gesture. He named the man that came to welcome him as guardian, but he did not understand the role of such guardian within the Plant Kingdom.

“I’m Greenwich Arborus. Just call me Mr Green.” Greenwich replied him with his name. “How do I address you? Let’s also get moving, we can speak while we’re walking. The king expects us, so we’d better move fast.”

“Alright. My name is Kierix, Kierix Zephyr.” he reported his name as he began his pace, walking along side Greenwich. Behind him, the three other people just followed. He could hear Alex and Calidis beginning to talk about the Kingdoms they have visited and how the Plant Kingdom looked beautiful. Snow on the other hand walked on his left, remaining silent. In no time, they reached the market district. Behind him, the elephantine wooden doors closed shut. He was walking forward, towards the market district. The market district lied on the outermost part of the kingdom, and was right in front of the gates. He turned to look at the short fence that was minute, compared to the gates. While the gates were huge, the short wooden fences that extended from both sides of the gates were minuscule, and they seemed to extend very far outwards before he noticed the fence actually curved and was not a straight path. The kingdom was huge. How was such a place able to reside on earth yet not spotted? He was fully confused. No human ever reported such a place ever existing.

“We are in our marketing district now, be careful to stay close to me, it would be easy to lose your way, especially with this crowd.” Green turned around his head and advised him, not slowing down his pace forward at all.

Kierix looked behind, and he understood why. Asides from Snow being next to him, the two others that tagged along were nowhere to be seen in the crowd. But it was to be expected. The place around here was so beautiful. Ahead of him was a kind of tree he have never seen before. He have only heard of trees that were absurdly tall, but not those that were both tall and wide. The tree was humongous, from its base, and the branches expanded out very far. It was towering even above where he stood. He suddenly felt very small. The canopy extended out to all directions and covered nearly every single part of the kingdom, but the leaves were spread out well enough to let the ground be properly lit with sunlight. He looked upwards. The light was not blinding from above, but he could see the sky through the gaps that were created by the well-spread branches.

The market district was huge. Even after walking non-stop for twenty minutes, they were still in the market district. No wonder Green asked him to move fast. They probably would not reach the place where they would meet the King within an hour. He was unusually calm however. It was the King of the Plant Kingdom that he was going to meet! Why was he so calm? He did not understand. As they walked, he continued to observe the foreign surroundings. The shops were very uniquely designed. They lined up in a straight line, along the sides of the wide road. The shops themselves were short trees with big trunks, with the inside hollowed,creating space for them to work in. Facing the main grass path, a large rectangle have been cut out from the front, creating a window, allowing them to display their wares and communicate with their customers. They were nothing he have seen before. Humans were never close to designing such things out of wood. He looked to his left, Snow never left his side, but she was very silent. On the other hand, the duo that somehow caught up to them continued to talk. They seemed click well.

“Why are you called a guardian?” Snow suddenly brought up the question. It was bothering Kierix as well.

“Well, the term guardian in our kingdom is more of one that does many things for a king, rather than a person that guards. For example, I help the king negotiate and do trades with other kingdoms. But of course, I do protect the king.” he explained as they left the market district, entering a new location. The path lead towards the forest, and in the dense forest, there were blue flowers growing on the ground, lighting the way. Hardly any light passed through the dense layers of leaves, but with the flowers, they could see their way.

“What are these plants called?” Kierix was curious. They looked rather beautiful, growing in clusters. Even in the dense forest, the dark green of the grass was visible. Looking through the trees that gathered, he could see those flowers filling the different parts of the forest. Butterflies flew around them and rested on them.

“Those are blue glowbells.” Green answered, before continuing. “We are reaching soon, just ten more minutes!”

The huge tree was close to their position, he could see it in view through the countless trees that grew all over the place. Perhaps this place was the safe haven for the endangered animals out in the open. Perhaps he could even find animals that were known to be extinct in these places. He saw animals poking their head out of the trees to look at them. He was interested to know what are they. He heard soft footsteps to his left. He instantly became alert, and he looked to his left, no one except Snow was there. He looked down. He realised what was making the footsteps. Small bunnies were hopping around Snow, following her. They seemed to like her a lot. It was probably mutual, as she let a few bunnies hop onto her shoulders. She looked really happy.

“Welcome to the Tree of Worlds! We have arrived!” Green announced. It had been a long walk, about two hours have past and the sun was already above their head.

The tree of life was very wide. It had a wide entrance, and within was a huge hollow space. It was as if it was the ground level of a big hotel. There were spiral staircases leading up at the sides and there were counters in the middle. The counters seemed like they were information counters, and brochures were stacked in piles in the area.

“We’ll be going up, the King’s residence is at the peak of the trunk. We have ways to climb.” Snow knew about the location, she had read it up and it was one of the most well known places on Earth.

Kierix looked at her with his jaw opened. He have already walked so far, and now he have to climb up. This was definitely a test of tolerance. The walk to the Tree of Worlds was already rather tortuous, and now he had to climb up that majestic tree. He did not know what he was supposed to feel, he felt happy and proud to be able to climb the tree once in his life, but he felt hesitated and annoyed that he had to climb so far. He checked behind him, just to realise the duo was missing once more. He looked back forward, seeing his teacher and his classmate racing up the spiral stairs. He could not believe his eyes, why were they competing? And was he the only one that was tired?! He wanted to cry. Greenwich have begun walking up the stairs, followed by Snow. If he did not follow, he would be left behind. He really wanted to cry.

He was nearly at the top. His legs felt like they were about to collapse from the bones any time. He panted.

“Weak.” Snow sneered at him. She stood up straight and looked down on the person that was panting hard as he slowly climbed to the top. The duo were already there. He could not believe what he saw. None of them looked tired at all! How could that be? He was the only one…

Laughing at the situation, Green looked at the guardian making his way up. He had to admit, the path was a little bit long, but that kid was still young, he had ways to go.

Green moved towards the golden doors and placed his finger in the middle of the doors where there was a square hole. On the golden doors was sixteen triangles in two lines, eight in a line on each door. They slowly filled with colours before the door opened.

“Your Majesty, they have arrived.” Green kneeled down on one knee in front of the door, not moving an inch. Not knowing what to do, the others just stood behind Green.

“You may rise.” A young boy’s voice sounded from the room. Green stood up from his position.

Kierix took a glance, taking a good look at how the Plant Kingdom’s ruler looked like. Having green hair, it was the look of a human, except in green robes, lined with golden inscriptions. The king was rather short… No, that was rude. A better way to say it, he was vertically challenged… But that was the king? He could not believe his eyes.

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