…I could see a long white road coming from the gatehouse in the East. A long bailey stretched out both to the east and west, enclosed by a strong stone wall. A rose-gold sun was setting as the last of day was dying but all I could feel pumping in my veins was a pulsating voice that sang, “Life, life, life!”
The closer I approached the higher the walls beyond the gate appeared to be. I knew there would be no chance of my acceptance in such a grand place. It took all my nerve to continue walking. In a lifetime before this moment, which now seemed merely a few days total I had been crushed by the pain and joy of life yet something inside my heart kept me on the journey…as I stood trembling unable to proceed a man I thought to be a beggar on the road spoke to me, “Why do you linger daughter?” His tabard, though of fine wool, was tattered and worn and soiled. Upon it was a coat of arms that I knew not what it meant. The coat, I could see, had once been a rich majestic purple in color but now was faded I supposed by sun, rain, and travel. Upon the coat of arms in fine gold embroidery stood twelve golden crowns upon the head of a magnificent lion standing on its hind…
I fell to my knees and begin to weep. I did not know why. The tears were a mixture of relief, grief, joy, and blood with the salty taste of the human mixed within. They were my tears…they were peaceful, restful, relieving tears.
This man must surely be noble I thought as my tears subsided yet my mind raced. He did not look handsome like I always thought a royal would look nor was he tall in statue. This must not be a princely man I thought, perhaps he stole the tabard. I began to panic a little but as the beggar prince approached me I felt more and more peace within and I simply whispered are you He? A scarred and rough worn hand reached toward me and lifted my face up and the man gently said, “I, AM.”