Brother Egglebert threw up his hands and spoke to the ceiling. “Were you not listing? This is who you are. For the first time you are looking upon your own flesh and blood.”
Arlin’s voice simultaneously raged with anger and quivered with fear. “I don’t believe you. What did you do? What did you turn me into?”
The cleric smiled, “I didn’t turn you into anything. All I did was unlock the spell that kept you locked in one form. Now you are free to control your body as you wish.” When a wave of comprehension didn’t wash across Arlin’s face Brother Egglebert sighed. “Were you not paying attention to the story I just told you? The man who impregnated the queen was not just any man with a spell to look like the king. No. He was a rare being who could shift his shape at will.”
“So you are saying,” Arlin stammered.
“His blood runs through your veins. You are a part of him. Try it. Feel your body, your face. Flex those muscles that you always knew were there but were just out of your reach. Picture in your mind’s eye what you want to look like. Turn into anyone you would like.”
Arlin flexed his muscles. Slowly his face changed. A petite nose emerged between ruddy cheeks. Diminutive ears lowered. Eyes turned to deep blue pools with flecks of gold. Hair elongated to curly strands of hay. The perfect replication of Queen Heather of Catheldor.
“Who was he?” Arlin’s strained once more. This time his face returned to his own. “How were you able to work this subterfuge for so long? What was it all for?”
Brother Egglebert’s face changed to match Arlin’s. “It’s good to share your face, my son. Soon we’ll rule this kingdom together. I was there the day you were born. When your mother was in labor, I was the only one who comforted her. I was the only living soul in that room when you were brought into the world. I with the will of the dark gods I was able to lock your visage. It’s amazing what secrets are contained in the old archives.” Egglebert pulled a tome from the desk. He flipped through the pages showing Arlin the dark secrets and spells contained within.
“Why didn’t you take the kings place? Will anyone else join our schemes?” Arlin viewed the tome beside the priest.
“Royal blood is needed for the crown. The queen had a worthy enough lineage to birth a half son who could fool the powers that be.”
Egglebert shook his head no. Arlin smiled and picked up a letter opener off the desk. He thrust the blade into the old priest’s chest. Egglebert looked to the prince with questioning eyes before he fell. “A rightful heir of Catheldor will rule alone.”