\SAP-id\ , adjective;
1. Having taste or flavor, especially having a strong pleasant flavor.
2. Agreeable to the mind; to one's liking.
“Are you sure I’ll be safe?”
“Ili, I’ll be by your side the whole time. Any sign of the king’s men and we’re gone. I promise,” Keio reassured, placing the hood of Iliana’s cloak around her head.
Iliana had only ever watched the festival from the castle balcony, seated next to her father. She recalled gazing out at the vast expanse of the kingdom in the darkness, dotted with orange lights from the villages’ bonfires. It resembled the stars in the sky painted across the landscape. The Harvest Feast prominantly stood as the largest celebration of the year. This would be the first time she attended the festivities in person. And although she and Keio were over one hundred leagues from the castle, Iliana still felt her father’s presence looming over her. Her one saving factor was that almost no one recognized her as the missing princess.
Keio acknowledged her trepidation. “Listen, we don’t have to go if you’re uncomfortable.”
“No, I want to go, truly. It’s just...”
“I know. You fear he’s always searching.”
“You know he hasn’t stopped looking for me.”
“He’s not going to concern himself with it this week. We're in the midst of the biggest celebration of the year. The entire kingdom is celebrating, including the king's minions.”
“You’re probably right. Okay, let’s do this before I change my mind,” Iliana spoke with determination, holding her hand out to Keio.
He placed his own hand in hers, leading her out of their cottage and down the hill to the main village.
The bonfire towered over the houses and buildings from its position in the center courtyard. Keio's head was more aflame than ever in the bright glow of the pyre.
Carts and booths selling food, drink, and novelties crowded in the streets which were already choked with townsfolk. Keio found Bex’s stand outside his tavern and pulled Iliana towards it. He held up two fingers to Bex, who handed Keio two mugs filled to the brim with a dark amber liquid. “You’re in for a treat. He only brews this once a year,” Keio shouted to Iliana above the clamour of the festival.
Keio clanked his mug to hers and gulped down a quarter of the mug, watching Iliana take her first taste. The sapid, fruit-flavored liquid filled her senses with instant joy. She took another swig, draining half the mug. Keio stared at Iliana, stunned, and Bex cracked up when she looked up with a wide grin on her face.
"What?" she asked, noting the look on Keio's face.
“How strong did you make it this year?” Keio asked Bex while still staring at Iliana.
"Same as usual."
Embarrassing memories of the beverage's potent effects flooded through Keio's mind. "Oh boy."