The night guard stood in my doorway. It was four in the morning and my day usually started at eight or nine in the morning.
"She demands you report to her at once." He said with a small bit of terror in his eye. "And bring your shield because she was throwing things," He stopped and looked down at the floor, then back up a me, "heavy things. She wanted me to leave and send you to her." My eyes rolled at the dramatic way he spoke but as sure as the sky was a lighter shade of blue than midnight, I was soon heading for Nefertiti's room. To be honest, I expected to hear, well, crashing or the sound of something breaking when I knocked but instead, I received the usual, ever present, silence. When I pushed open the door, there she was, sitting at her vanity in a black silk robe, short brown hair and bangs uncovered, bare foot, and facing the door with bags under her eyes, arms crossed, and looking ready to murder someone. I bowed and looked around at the floor. There was broken glass and pottery, bits of metal and something that smelled lightly of roses that had spilled on the floor but had been shattered on her mirrored wall. I bowed and wondered about why she would be having such a temper tantrum so early in the morning that it could be considered an extremely late night. She stared at me with angry eyes. Had I done something to offend her?
"How may I be of service, your highness?" I asked quickly. She stared at me still, almost as if she was sizing me up.
"He's incompetent and creeps me out and I think he's a pervert." It took me a moment to process this. None of her maids were with her, no other guard. "I think he's pervert." she said again. She must have been. She was actually speaking to me. "He doesn't make me feel safe."
"With all do respect, your highness, he's a eunuch like myself." I stood at attentions I lied to her face,and she scoffed.
"You're my new night guard tonight." She flipped her low brown bangs out of her face. I stared for a moment. "WELL?" She snapped.
"I was just," sleeping. I was sleeping before you called on me you little sh**.
"Thinking that I should carry you over to your bed so that your feet don't get cut." I saved myself from the moment and walked over. She pouted like a little kid and held up her arms. Years later, the memory still looks really weird, like a sixteen year old with the personality of a six year old. She was light as straw when I picked her up and set her down. Now I knew, the princess was speaking to me.
"Nuhad," she called as I stepped over by the door to begin guarding properly, ringing one of the strings that would call the cleaning staff to come. She knew my name?
"Yes, your highness?" I responded.
"Are we friends?" she asked. I wanted to say no. Nobody interrupted me from my sleep. Not only that but how could we be friends; how could this girl possibly ask such a strange question when she ignores me every moment I spend with her? But what could I say?
"Yes, your highness." I ended up answering. When she closed my eyes, I wanted to sleep as well. But not only could I not sleep because of that one little thought of someone sneaking in and assassinating her while I'm on duty, but how could I possibly clear my head of the one lingering piece of inner dialogue that froze my eyes awake, "How could this brat possibly call us friends or even acquaintances…" And so, awake I stayed. I called for people to come in and clean very early in the morning. They were like masters of silence to the point where I knew that this wasn't the first time they had to clean up something loud while her highness was sleeping.
At six in the morning, a maid came in with a giant flask full of coffee. At seven, one of her maids came in and woke her. She groggily sat up with baggy eyes and pillow fought hair, rubbing her white eye and yawning. Then the strangest thing happened. Nefertiti smiled at me.
Everything was different from that moment forward.