At first glance, it becomes evident that she is far from being a flawless individual. Standing before the mirror, she held the reflection of her idol, observing the marks Sahash had attempted to etch upon her face. Beads of sweat formed on her forehead, yet a smile graced her lips as she gently caressed her cheek. Seated on her bed, she gingerly placed the mirror down and proceeded towards the bathroom.


Emerging from the bath, she adorned a loose shirt resembling a swimsuit. Over this, she wore a long flowing gown adorned with golden accents. Completing her ensemble, she donned a maroon cloak, draping it over the trailing hem of her elegant dress.


As she made her way toward the palace, the servants poured out, displaying immense respect. They greeted her as she passed, and her carriage awaited her. Mata, the chair, greeted her with a warm smile, to which she reciprocated. With a haughty demeanor, she looked up and addressed him, “Your Highness, I desire to take a walk as Risha, without concealment. I wish not to be concealed by anyone.” Her mother chuckled affectionately and replied, “Very well, my dear. But be cautious.” Planting a joyful kiss on her forehead, she swiftly exited her room, calling out Risha’s name. The polite Risha promptly appeared, kneeling before her and announcing, “I am at your service, as you commanded.” “Prepare yourself, for I wish to embark on a walk immediately,” she respectfully declared. Risha replied, “As you wish, my lady. I am ready, and we may proceed whenever you desire.” As she finished speaking, Aliya emerged, and she followed closely behind. A white horse stood by her side, while another one awaited the princess nearby. Aliya mounted her horse, and Risha followed suit. Their courtiers rose and waved their hands in farewell as Risha uttered, “The princess requires no escort.” With due respect, they promptly dispersed, and the two began their stroll.


_The Land of Yalaz_

Yalaz was once known as the realm of witches and encompassed three kingdoms. The Kingdom of Manaaj held great significance, boasting a rich history and formidable magical prowess. Its inhabitants, both male and female, possessed the ability to alter their appearance, except for their distinctively imperfect traits such as their crooked gait and eyes, predominantly blue or yellow. They worshipped an idol called Abinbawa Mihar and were often regarded as witches. While many among them abstained from consuming blood, a significant portion partook in this ritual. The kingdom was ruled by the just and valiant King Zahir, supported by his wife, Queen Sarah. Queen Kunjam, King Zahir’s second wife, had two daughters, Sahash and Sanam, the latter being a four-year-old. Princess Aliyaa, born to Queen Sarah, was adored by King Zahir. 


Initially, King Zahir wedded Sarah due to the recommendation of his father’s friend, Tsoho Arar. However, Sarah remained childless for seven years, prompting Arar to offer his own daughter, Kunjam, to the king. Despite this, King Zahir never ceased displaying affection for Queen Sarah. This fact caused Kunjam to fear that the king might favor Sarah’s offspring over her own younger sister. Consequently, she resented Sarah and sought to distance herself from their family. Unbeknownst to all, Kunjam harbored a secret desire for a son who could inherit the throne, but fate dictated that she bore only daughters. The king’s unwavering love for his children eased her worries, save for the initial fear of Sarah giving birth to a male


 heir. When her daughter Sahash turned two, Sarah unexpectedly became pregnant again, displaying signs of sorrow and madness. The king’s ardent love for Sarah was evident, as he comforted her during this difficult time. Unfortunately, it was clear to Kunjam that her children would never surpass Aliyaa in the king’s affections.


As Kunjam’s animosity grew, she became increasingly apprehensive about the king favoring Aliyaa and neglecting her younger sister. Consequently, she constantly schemed against Sarah, refusing to accompany them wherever they went. As she grew older, Kunjam discovered a passion for dance and excelled in this art form. Her breathtaking beauty, surpassing even that of her mother, drew attention. This, coupled with her parents’ visible disdain, fueled her mother’s desire to mar her enchanting face. Kunjam could not conceal the profound hatred her parents held for her. To counter their animosity, Queen Sarah sought solace and protection by frequently visiting her elderly grandfather, where she delved deeper into the world of magic.


On the other hand, Aliyaa possessed a unique, temporary power, which originated from her grandfather, Arar. People were aware that the witches of the Kingdom of Manaaj possessed unparalleled powers, which sparked a desire among others to lay claim to the kingdom.


The second kingdom, Nahaar, was known for its vibrant witches and abundant wealth. However, its witches were known for their bloodlust, ruled by a tyrannical king named Gobrar. His ambitions extended to capturing all the kingdoms, including the united realms of Manaaj and Hizaar, which caused him to constantly clash with King Zahir. Gobrar’s children, Karan and Sai Arman, were unaware of the oppression experienced by the witches under their father’s reign.


The third kingdom, Hizaar, boasted a rich history and strong magicians. Despite its power and wealth, it was not as prosperous as the other kingdoms. King Ahal, who harbored no affection for King Zahir, constantly plotted against him but lacked the time to execute his plans. He had a wife and two sons, Razan and Tazaan, who were merciless, while their mother perpetually conspired against others and remained childless.


Each kingdom possessed its distinct emblem. The people of Manaaj bore a mark on their hands, extending to their wrists, displaying the word “Manaaj.” Nahaar’s emblem adorned the palm of their hands, while the people of Hizaar wore their logo on the nape of their necks. These symbols were evident throughout their respective kingdoms.

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