There was madness in the Royal courtyard. Guards spilled out of the castle gate in scarlet and silver, ordered to search the northern regions for hidden enemies. Frightened maids gathered in groups to whisper and observe the happenings. The King stood to the side, examining the Queen with concern, as if he truly cared.
"My wife," he murmured, holding on to her while making a show for everyone to see. He was very skilled at convincing others of his sympathy. "You could've been killed!"
I wondered how the Queen felt, being held so close by the one man who gave her the most distance. Was it a happy moment for her? Or perhaps she writhed as he held her. I couldn't tell from where I stood, which happened to be in the center of all the chaos.
Static surrounded me.
Before I could move, he grabbed my arm, pulling me to the side. I frowned as I unwillingly followed him, watching him guide us to a wall away from eavesdroppers. He then turned toward me.
"Polar bears?" he asked, his silver-blue eyes alight with passion. "You went off of the grounds and into the wilderness, where it isn't safe, just to ride polar bears? You could've been killed!"
"Prince Sebastian," I began, lowering my eyes out of respect when I wanted nothing more than to match his intensity. Such a fierce Prince, he was. "I was only a guest. I shouldn't be blamed! If anything, I should be honored."
"Honored, you say?" I couldn't see his face, but I guessed he was smirking.
"Yes, honored," I told him, absentmindedly lifting my eyes to his. "I killed the dragon and saved not only the guards, but the Queen. And don't you think, your majesty, that nine guards should've been able to successfully kill one dragon? With all do respect, I believe you should be questioning whoever trains your guards."
The Prince lowered his eyes and clenched his jaw. He knew that I was right, and his silence proved it. After another moment, the Prince gave a curt nod and turned away from me.
I watched as he approached his parents and began to have what looked like a serious conversation. I tried to read his mouth, but he was too far for me to make anything out.
"Anya!" I turned around and found Cora running toward me with Titus trailing behind her. I didn't see Luca anywhere.
Cora took me into a hug and then pulled away, punching my arm. "What was that for?" I asked, rubbing the spot she'd hit.
"That's for scaring me half to death! Word travels fast in the castle, you know. I came as soon as I heard what happened," she told me, and turned to acknowledge Titus as he came to a stop beside her.
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She was told to fear him... She was told that his evil would devour her... She was told to stay far away... But what if they were all wrong? What if the Cold Prince could love? What if he loved her? Anya is born with a gift that only the royal famil...