The Mysterious Reappearance of Princess Amantdeiylaia, an Excerpt
By Amaya Ward
The excerpt is about an alien princess who is ostracized from the outside world and is forced to be isolated by her controlling grandmother.
It was about that time when Princess Amantdeiylaia was taken away to a small cottage with her grandmother. Although there wasn’t much to do, her favorite part of the day was when the wind hit the window’s curtains. The princess sat in her room, though not always alone. The birds landed on her windowsill, giving her company until she’d get too close to them. This startled them, making them fly away—just like everything else in her life . . .
It was something that would bring her joy, but it only lasted for a couple of minutes before being taken away.
Sitting comfortably on the bed she was given to rest on when forced to be with her grandmother, she overheard her name being called. Dreading the person who called her, she tried to ignore it, opting to watch the birds outside.
The girl heard her name being called once more, and her eyes avoided the door where the voice came from. She hoped that if she pretended she couldn’t hear it, then she wouldn’t have to face what was waiting on the other side. She instead diverted her attention to the wooden floors, her eyes scanning the cracks and scratches. The wood was rough on her feet, and she noticed that they probably needed to be fixed since they gave her terrible splinters. The voice only grew in volume, causing her to finally break her avoidance.
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Do you know what it’s like to communicate with your family across a salty ocean’s divide? Do you want the sun and moon to enter your home with stories written in embers? Do you seek voices that will punctuate the darkness? Welcome to the other side of everything. It’s the other side of silence, the other side of childhood, the other side of hate, the other side of indifference, it’s the other side of sides, where the binary breaks down. It’s a new paradigm, a destination, a different perspective, a mindset, a state of openness, the space between the endless folds in your forehead, hopes for tomorrow, and reflections on the past. This anthology of diverse voices is an everything bagel of literary genres and love songs, secrets whispered in the dark of night, conversations held with ancestors under the sea.
“Yes, grandmother?” Amantdeiylaia, the blond princess mumbled. Her voice was soft and held no pride or confidence and its only good quality was how it was hushed and how it never got any louder than this. Footsteps approached the wooden door where she was locked up, and the door opened, revealing an incredibly tall woman.
“What have I told you about ignoring me when I call for you, Amantdeiylaia?” her grandmother scolded, her voice much louder and deeper than her granddaughter’s. She towered over the princess, her shadow casting down on her face and causing her to lower her head in shame.
“I’m sorry, grandmother,” Princess Amantdeiylaia meekly responded. She realized in her thirteen years of life thus far, her grandmother was impossible to please. It was better to just answer her the way she wanted or else she’d face severe consequences.
The princess’s eyes naturally drifted off to where the window was, the only source of lighting in the room besides a candle that was nearly finished on her nightstand. Recognizing the hold she had on her granddaughter, the grandmother immediately grabbed the princess’s face, forcing her to keep her eyes on her. She clicked her tongue, her eyebrows furrowed.
“And what have I told you about not maintaining eye contact when someone is speaking with you?” She awaited a reply from her granddaughter, but only silence followed. The princess’s eyes naturally gravitated towards the wood, or the walls, or the door…
Anything that wasn’t her grandmother.
“Do you hate me? Do I anger you?” her grandmother inquired, her voice becoming softer, luring her granddaughter into a false sense of security.
“Then why do you disobey every teaching I give to you? You must hate me if you don’t think what I’m teaching you is of any value,” her grandmother argued, slapping her granddaughter. The sound reverberated off the walls, and once again silence filled the room. Tears brimmed around the princess’s eyes, her lower lip wobbling. As if her grandmother wasn’t the cause of her tears, she comforted the princess.
“Don’t cry, my granddaughter. It’s unbecoming of your visage,” she said sternly, making the princess want to cry even harder.
“Why can’t I go outside, grandmother? Am I so terrible that I don’t deserve to see the world I live in? I don’t like it here in the cottage! I want to be able to see the world, touch the trees and the grass with my own hands,” she cried out, her voice strained from the yelling. The princess hated loud noises; however, her grandmother acted like a catalyst, igniting all the ugliness she buried deep down inside of her. Her grandmother sat beside her, feigning sympathy for her pleas.
“I realize that you want to see the world, but for people like you—” her eyes scanned her granddaughter’s body, before scoffing at the idea. “You wouldn’t stand a chance! You’re so weak, my darling. You lack basic social awareness and would only cause more harm than good. Don’t forget, this cottage keeps you safe. The world outside is much too dark for a young, dimwitted girl like you. You’re much too simple to go outside,” she said, her voice stern as per usual.
Her grandmother stepped back, leaving her to be alone with her thoughts. When she felt as though she smashed her granddaughter’s fragile confidence to pieces, she left her to wallow in her own self-pity. However, Amantdeiylaia was determined this time, for she refused to stand idly by whilst her grandmother spoke down to her. This time, she would prove to her that she was deserving of happiness.
This time, she would be free.
I have loved to write and draw since I was younger. My older sibling and I would write stories and illustrate them, which opened my eyes to writing creatively—not as a burden put on me by school. I took an interest in comic writing/illustrating when I was eight or nine, and I began writing a story about a princess who was both a damsel in distress and her own knight in shining armor.
Ever since, I’ve loved to write and draw, which has helped me tremendously in creating my novel. I would love to thank my older sibling Cat for helping me become the writer/artist I am. Without you, I wouldn’t be the person I am. I would also like to thank one of my closest friends, King, for helping my art progress, and my best friend Leah for encouraging me to be my best. Also my little sibling Sunny for being my biggest fan/cheerleader. I love you all. <3
Shamu Ward is an aspiring writer and artist from Bronx, New York. She’s currently a senior in high school but is aspiring to become a novelist. In her free time, she writes and draws—when her cat lets her.