"Happy Birthday, Keith."

Story by Adele
Story Copyright 2002
A story based on the series, "Voltron, The Third Dimension"

The characters of Voltron are the property of World Event Productions.  All other characters are the copyright of Adele.  Please do not use them without asking for permission.  Thank you.


Chapter 26
Lotor's Gift

The frightened Princess of Arus stood defensively in the middle of the room of her chambers. She had heard someone approaching the door... and some sort of conversation taking place on the other side of it.

Fearing discovery, she quickly, but reluctantly, terminated her thought conversation with Keith, who was now on route to find her.

Now she stood awaiting the door to open, revealing whom it was who had come to pay a visit to her...an unwelcome visit.

The door finally swished open,
revealing Hagar the Witch.
She quickly approached the
Princess, holding a small box
in her hand.

"Good evening, Princess Allura."
Hagar greeted. "I have a present for
you from Prince Lotor."

Allura tilted her head into the air,
pointing her nose upward in an
obvious display of disgust.
"Whatever it is, I promise you
that I  will not accept it. And you
can tell him that, Hagar."

"Now, now, pretty Princess..." Hagar sneered. "It is not wise to refuse a gift from the Prince of Doom. If you value your people's lives, you will accept it!   Remember Princess, Lotor has chosen to spare Arus...as long as you continue to cooperate."

"Are you threatening me, Hagar?" Allura spewed angrily at the old witch.

"It is not a threat, Princess.  It's a promise!  Lotor will not hesitate to attack Arus, killing hundreds of innocents!  Of course... he would only do that, if you refused to be a good girl." Hagar replied calmly.

Allura's teeth gritted in anger.  Just who did he think he was?  This wicked, so-called, 'Prince' of Doom, that he could boss her around and threaten her people like this?

She decided to keep the peace for now, remembering Keith and the others were on their way.

"Fine, Hagar.  I'll accept the gift.  What is it?" she replied with a sigh of surrender.

Hagar hovered over to the Princess, holding open the box, revealing a shiny, rather gaudy looking diamond ring.  The ring's size was enormous...literally hundreds of diamonds were clustered together to make it up.

Allura gasped at the sight, "I...I can't believe it!"

"Believe it, Princess.  Your beloved is giving you this as an engagement ring.  You will be wed soon, so put it on, and wear it proudly." Hagar said.

"But...I...I never agreed to marry Lotor..." she said softly.

"Allura, what did you intend to do once you were here...take a vacation?  You are Prince Lotor's future queen! You had better get used to the idea!" Hagar chuckled.

"I can't marry him," she said suddenly. "I... I'm promised to...another."

"Your promise to another has been cancelled!" Hagar hissed. "You are Prince Lotor's bride-to-be!  You will comply...or else!"

"Or else what?" she said with a raised voice.

"Or else... your beloved Planet Arus will be nothing but a ball of fire and destruction!  Wouldn't that just make King Alfor roll over in his grave!" Hagar laughed aloud.

"You can't!" she cried, stretching out her hand toward the old witch.  "There are innocent people living there!   You can't destroy their lives like that!   You have no right to!"

Hagar's eyes narrowed as she glared at Allura. "That all depends on you, Princess.  If you love Arus, then you'll do as you're told!"

Allura blinked rapidly several times, trying
to avoid the tears from building up in her eyes.
With a heavy sigh, she reached over and took
the diamond ring that Hagar had been holding
out to her. She placed it slowly on her left ring
finger, cringing as it slipped into place.

Hagar smiled triumphantly.
"Very good, Princess.  You're learning.
You just keep doing what you are told,
and I'm sure Lotor will take that into
consideration when dealing with your planet."

Hagar quickly turned and hovered to the door. "The next to come to you will be the servants, who will prepare you for your wedding.  Try not to give them a hard time.  Remember, Lotor is watching your every move."

The door swooshed closed as Hagar hovered out of the room.  Allura was left to stare at the precious stones on the ring that now decorated her finger.

The tears flowed freely, as Allura began to realize that she would end up being Lotor's wife if the Voltron Force didn't make it  here in time.  She sat down abruptly on the chair in the corner, and closed her eyes...attempting to contact Keith.

"Keith...come in Keith!"
her thoughts rang out with
urgency. "Keith...please answer..."

"I'm here, Allura," his strong and
confident voice rang throughout her
head. "What's the matter?  You sound upset..."

"Keith, you must hurry!  I'm being forced to marry Lotor very soon!  The servants will be by any time now to collect me and prepare me for the wedding!  Please hurry!"

"We're flying as fast as we can!  Can't you stall them?"

"No...not unless I want to see Arus destroyed!  And with the lions away, Arus is unprotected. Keith, Lotor will destroy my people and my planet in a heartbeat!  I don't dare stall!"

"I'll see what we can do, Princess.  You just take all the time you reasonably can.  Don't let him go through with it!"

"I'll do what I can here, but you must hurry, Keith!"

"Will do!"

Allura opened her eyes abruptly, as the door flew opened once again.  Four servant girls stood in the doorway, waiting for Allura to accompany them to the ready room.  She stood to her feet, and walked slowly to the door.

She could feel her doom approaching with each step she took.