The Emperor’s Daughter Chapter 188
188 Reunion With Dear Friends 3
I tried looking at the books in the history section trying to find what I was looking for. I got some books about Jennovian history and politics in the past decades but there are no books about the Great War.
I sighed, thinking that they might have burned anything that talks about Atlantia. While reading one of the books I took from the shelf, I felt something fury touch my legs. When I look down I see a snow white cat twirling on my feet.
"Snow!" I was shocked that I screamed her name. I picked her up and petted her instantly. "I missed you so much." Tears started to form at the rim of my eyes.
'Long time no see Alicia. I missed you too, so much.' Snow purred while a petted her in my arms.
"Your highness!" I saw Martha pop up from a bookshelf corner and rushed to me. "I heard you scream. Is there something wrong?"
I quickly tucked Snow in between the books in the bookshelf. "Ohh, ah no. There's nothing wrong." I said. "What I meant was snow is starting to fall outside. I was just worried that we would get snowed in here."
Martha looked outside the window and indeed snow was starting to fall. "It is only light snow your highness. Don't worry."
"Hmm okay." I nodded. "By the way Martha, can you please get me something warm to drink and send it to the reading lounge? I will be going there soon after I pick the books I want to read."
"Of course your highness." Martha bowed and left.
"Phew, that was close." I sighed in relief.
'It's good you send that maid away. I don't feel good when she is near.' Snow said while looking out of the bookshelf she was hiding.
"I guess it's because she is carrying janetite stone that prevents magic users from using magic." I explained.
Now that Martha is far away from me, I tried using my magic powers. I concentrated on my right forefinger to generate a small flame. And after just a few seconds, a flame came out from my fingertips.
"My magic is working again." I said with a smile.
'Hmm it feels warm when I am around you.' Snow jumped into my embrace. Her little gesture made me smile.
"Your highness." I hear the young knight called.
I was caught by surprise and I extinguished the flame on my fingertips instantly. But Snow was still in my embrace.
"Umm, this is... well I just saw this cat and" I was thinking of an explanation when I heard Snow giggled.
'Hehe you don't need to get flustered you know.' Snow jumped from my embrace and walked towards the young knight.
"Ehhh wait" I was flustered on what to say when I saw the young knight kneeled down and picked up Snow in his arms.
"It's good that you have met each other at last?" The young knight smiled warmly at me.
"Ehhh what do you mean?" I was confused. When did Snow get to meet a Jennovia knight and got close to him?
The young knight slowly walked towards me and put Snow in my arms once again.
"She has missed you so dearly. It's good to see that she is in good health now that she is with you once again." The young knight said. He stretched his arms and caressed my cheek. "Well Snow wasn't the only one that missed you. Everyone back in Alvannia and also Grandcrest missed you and worries about you."
The young knight's gesture surprised me that I involuntary stepped back. My back hit the bookshelf behind me and it shook hard, making the huge heavy books from the upper rows fall down and I let go of Snow. I brace myself with my arms from the falling books overhead. The young knight held the bookshelf in place so as to not let it fall and quickly embraced me to shield me from the falling books.
'Thud thud thud' The sound of the heavy books hitting the young knight's body is heard.
"A-Are you alright?" I asked. But the young knight did not answer and still held me close in his embrace.
There was silence between us for a few minutes. My heart was thumping fast with our bodies this close to each other.
"I have sworn to protect you with my life." The young knight said with a sad tone. "I'm sorry. I am sorry that I wasn't able to keep my sworn oath. I wasn't able to do anything to protect and save you the time you were abducted."
I can feel his body trembling while I was in his embrace. The sense of familiarity was so powerful now after I heard his words.
'There are only two people that sworn their oath to protect me with their lives.' I thought.
It was Regaleon and William, my former and current personal knight. But with his words it is easy to know who he was from the two.
"William?" I whispered. "Is that really you?"
The young knight slowly let go of me and looked at me right in the eye. His smile was warm and friendly, it was definitely like William's.
"Yes it's me." William said coarsely.
My eyes went wide with surprise. "Will, it's you? Is it really you?" I raised my hands and caressed his cheek. "But how?" His face is different. No one can recognize him with such a disguise.
"His majesty, King Regaleon lent me his face altering magic." William said. "He has embedded his magic in this ring. He said that while I wear this, I can change my appearance and the magic won't get affected by janetite stone."
William raised his hand and showed me the ring he was wearing. He quickly took it off and his appearance changed instantly. He was now reverted back to his true appearance. Blonde golden hair and sky blue eyes. It was really him, my best friend Will.
"It really is you Will." I was so happy that I instantly hugged him. "Oh I missed you so much."
I can feel William patting my head gently. "And I missed you too."
After being in this posture for a while, I realized that I shouldn't be doing such intimate things with other men. I instantly pushed William.
"I-I'm sorry for the sudden embrace." I said. "It's just that it has been so long since I saw someone close and dear to me. And I am so happy to see you." I reasoned.
"It's okay." William scratched his head in shyness and I saw his face blush. "I need to get back to my disguise." He put on the ring and his appearance returned to that of the young Jennovian knight.
"By the way, why are you here?" I asked out of curiosity.
"His majesty sent me here with Snow to accompany you in your mission. With Jack's help, I was given a false identity and was made into a low rank knight entrusted to guard you." William replied. "His majesty wished he was the one to come here but he cannot leave the 'Chief in Command' seat while the war is going on. And so he has sent me, the one he mostly trusts to protect you."
Just by hearing that Regaleon wished to be the one to come here already made my heart feel happiness and warmth. Even though he can't come, I know he was thinking about me.
'Has your little reunion ended?' Snow said with a bored tone. 'Well if it is, I need to show you something. Come on follow me.' Snow ran to the far side of the second floor.
"Snow wants us to follow her." I told William and he nodded.
We followed Snow in navigating the towering bookshelves that felt like a maze. And after a few twists and turns we ended up at the far wall of the second floor. At the wall hang a huge painting. It was a painting of a battlefield. Many soldiers are seen bloodied or dead and others are seen battling with soldiers with a different uniform.
In the painting at the far right, there was a small hill. There was a statue of a woman with her arms lifted up. She was holding something bright and the light from the object she was holding was shining through the battle field.
"I guess this is the battle in the Upgrove Plains." I said while looking at the scene in the painting.
"The last battle in the Great War?" William asked in wonder.
'I feel something suspicious from here.' Snow said.
I put my hand over the painting and I felt something odd. It was like some kind of electricity surging thru my palms.
I hovered thru the painting and tried to find where it was most strong. And my hands reached the right upper corner where the statue of the lady was. I looked closely at the object that the statue was holding in her hands and unconsciously touched it. And I was surprised that is was some kind of jewel.
My finger was drawn to it like a magnet and a spark ignited when the jewel and my finger touched.
"Ahh." The spark left a tinge of pain in my fingertip and I withdrew my hand instantly.
"Alicia, are you alright?" William was by my side in no time. He nestled my hand within his and examined my fingertip.
"I'm okay." I assured him.
But then there was some kind of movement. The huge painting lifted up on its own and behind it was a door that leads to a staircase upwards.
William and I looked at each other in wonderment of our discovery. Good thing that this was the far side and usually deserted area of the second floor.
"Where do you think this leads too?" William lit up a torch that was found inside and lighted up the way.
"Well there is only one way to find out." I said and started to climb the stair case.
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