Prince Xanders brows furrowed darkly, as he turned completely to her.
”I do not remember an encounter with you before this. Let me remember this as a pleasurable one. ”
She smiled. ”Of course, Your highness. I could let go of the matter now, then bring it up in the worst way possible. Need I remind you, Your highness, that there is no place for a scandal like that in the royal court, especially for a kingdom like Fermich? ”
Prince Xanders fists clenched, till his knuckles went completely white. ”You certainly want something. Tell me what it is. ”
She sighed, then leaned forward to him, her eyes fixed on his. He did not move an inch and let her cover the distance. ”Do you really want me to say it here? With so many…ears around? ”
She leaned away slowly, and prince Xander nodded his understanding. ”Come with me. ”
”With pleasure, ” she replied.
Without a word, he turned away and raised his head to a servant right behind them. ”Groom a horse for her. She will come with me. ”
”Yes, Your highness. However, due to the preparations for your nuptials with lady Lisette, people of questionable identities are not allowed to… ”
”I said, groom a horse for her. Immediately. ”
The servant did not need a third order, and he bowed, then quickly left. Lady Sophia gave a small snicker as she watched Prince Xanders apparent discomfort.
His eyes flickered to her momentarily, and he turned away. The horses were soon groomed and brought to Lady Sophia.
A servant went on his knee in order for her to step up. She said nothing, and stood there adamantly, refusing to climb.
”What do you want now? ” Prince Xander asked, as he caught the reins of his horse.
”I shall not step on another human to get on a horse. ”
”Then how do you intend to get on it? ” Prince Xander asked, his patience running thin. He still was not sure what she would demand of him, and he hoped it would be something he could do. Something that would not involve the woman he fancied.
”You could help me on it. Is that too much to ask, your highness? ”
He raised a brow. ”I do not intend to slave away for you because of a dirty secret. Have a servant help you up, and let us discuss this matter and put it to rest. ”
She did not argue, and the kneeling servant stood and helped her up. She climbed silently, and once she did, Prince Xander set his horse off, and started to ride towards the palace.
The grand Palace of Fermich was located in the largest plain fields situated right in the heart of Fermich. The kingdoms strongest defense base covered the strong towering walls, and it was almost impossible to penetrate the stone towers. But aside from protection, the palace held great beauty within its walls, with an orchard filled with some of the rarest species of flowers. The architecture that spanned the large palace, and the calligraphy of legendary poetry across some stone walls was a beauty to behold.
Lady Sophia stopped her horse as they got to the palaces large main gate.
A heavily armed guard walked forward, and once he caught sight of Prince Xander, he gave the sign to open the gates.
”It is His highness! Open the gates immediately. ”
The gates started to open, and Prince Xander rode forward, accompanied by his servants on foot.
”Halt! Identify yourself! ” The guard said, stopping Princess Sophias horse.
”She is with me, ” Prince Xander said, then turned away.
The guard moved, allowing her to pass, and she rode till she was right beside Prince Xander.
The short journey was uneventful, and soon, prince Xander stopped in front of the main palace halls. He swiftly jumped off the horse, his long legs making it seem even more effortless just as a servant helped Lady Sophia down too.
”Take the horses to the stables, and leave me alone. ”
The servants bowed, then walked away with the two horses.
”Come with me. ” Prince Xander said, clasping his hands behind him. He walked ahead of her, and she followed, her smile small and sinister.
They went around the large palace to a secluded detached building, made of dark timber.
”Where is this? ” Lady Sophia dared to ask, like they were on friendly terms with Prince Xander.
He said nothing as he dismissed the guards in front, then stepped into the building. She did not hesitate to follow, her eyes taking it in.
Flowers, small trees and rare plants all sat in precious porcelain vases, one assigned to each plant, and on each one of them was a carved name filled with liquid gold; Prince Alexander Einar.
”Prince Alexander Einar. ” She read aloud, her voice filled with spite.
He suddenly turned to her. ”Are you doing this for riches? ”
She raised both brows, but said nothing.
”Tell me what it is you want to own. Hectares and hectares of land, your own palace, a manor, a stable filled with the best stallions, gold, silver…tell me what it is you want. ”
Princess Sophia smiled. ”I wonder how dear this servant girl is to you for you to be able to give up so many things. Or is it the crown, Your highness? ”
Prince Xander closed his eyes, trying as hard as he could to keep his temper under control. ”Charlotte is dear to me. And as a man… ”
”Of course, Your highness. As a man. But not as a prince. ”
He said nothing as she stepped closer.
”As for what I want… ” She raised her left hand, then slowly spread out her fingers.
He turned to the hand, his eyes thinning. ”Speak. ”
”I want you to place a ring around the finger that holds my vena amoris. ”
His brows furrowed in confusion. ”The vein of love? The fourth finger? ”
She smiled. ”Yes, your highness. In exchange for your secret, rather than a manor and a palace, I want you to marry me. ”
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