In a large, royal-sized bedroom, King Pike sits at the vanity, looking at himself in the mirror. Queen Cybele awakes and gets out of bed.

Good morning, my love.

Cybele lightly rubs Pike’s neck and kisses him on the cheek. She raises her head to glance at him in the mirror.

I forgot to tell you something. It’s a funny thing really, just a rumor I heard the other day.

What kind of rumor?

That you were seeing my sister before we met.

Pike turns away and gazes in the mirror, his face tight with anger and humiliation.

Well, you cannot always believe rumors, my dear. The grapevine often produces bitter wine.

Cybele places her face beside his and gazes into the mirror, looking right into the reflection of his eyes.

The only weakness I have in this world is the love I have for my sister, and my greatest strength is my will to keep her out of harm’s way.

Cybele kisses his neck and rubs her hand down his chest, unbuttoning his shirt. She digs her nails into Pike’s chest, so violently that he closes his eyes and winces in pain.


If I ever discover that you used my sister as a pawn and caused her any pain whatsoever, just so you could wear that crown on your head—

A KNOCK-KNOCK comes at the bedroom door.


Come in!

Queen Cybele grabs a cloth and wipes the blood off her fingertips, then tosses it at Pike.


Clean yourself up. I like my things pretty.

Karis enters the bedroom.

I am afraid Princess Zoelie did not return last night, Majesty.

Cybele steps closer and grabs her by the breast plate.

She must have been taken, you fool! Where was she seen last?

She did not return from her trip ashore, and—

I know exactly who did this.

Cybele storms over to her closet, opens it, and withdraws a large conch shell and golden trident.


Do not worry about that. Just round up the filthy prisoners and their ships. We are going up.

Karis opens the door and exits with Cybele.

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