Here, here it is!
Can't? C-can't love me!?!
Dûrion looked at her dumfounded, “E-excuse me? Y-you can't hear me?” The princess stood there with a look of her trying to concentrate on his words. Dûrion let out a deep sigh, not believing his luck. However, he did feel a sense of relief, as the feeling disappeared and realized he may be moving unto the princess a bit too fast, and did not want to scare her. He looked at the princess with a concerned look, and noticed her ears were a bit black, and upon closer inspection, sees that there were some gunk of black ink in each of her ears...and laughed.
“W-what is, wrong?” the princess asked.
“Nothing, let's get you cleaned up.” He replied as he pulled her along.
“W-what did...you say?”
Moments have passed, and his anger had not even for a little, subdued. Prince Gaethial was not very pleased, hearing that his beautiful princess had been kidnapped. Throughout the whole trip, he remained silent, but his presence had not gone unnoticed. The driver, and even the horses, could feel that hatred within him, hatred toward whoever kidnapped the princess...and the driver somewhat feared for the kidnapper.
After a time of uncomfortable silence, the driver spotted the castle up ahead., and notifies to the prince with a slight hint of hesitation, “T-the castle is in sight, my l-lord.” But the prince replied nothing in return.
The cart finally crawled to a stop, and the prince stepped out without a moment of hesitation. “You, stay here.” he said as he passed by the driver, and barely heard the driver replied with a “Y-yes sir!” He reached the front gates, greeted by two soldiers who had just noticed him and were frantically attempting a salute.
“Move aside,” was all he said as he shoved them out of the way, and gave not a second notice. He was furious at them of course, somehow letting in someone in and escape with the princess. The prince wanted to see it for himself, as he was making his way to the tower where the princess dwelt, and made his way to the top, passing by some worried guards. He found his way to the chamber's door, and shoved it open to a richly furnished room, which was all too empty to him. The prince walked to the opened window, and peered atop the trees ahead of him. Somewhere, pass those trees, was his princess, and the person he sworn he would find and severely punish. After thinking for a moment, he turned and walked out the room and spotted two guards, who stiffened in fear as they saw him. He beckoned one of the men to come closer, and as one nervously did he said to him, “You, I want you to notify my father about the situation.”
The guard looked at him reluctantly, “N-now? B-by myself, sir?” “Yes now!” he yelled, “And make haste!” The guard flinched, and headed off.
Turning to the other guard, “Summon all the men, I've a word to say to all of you.”
“Y-yes sir!” he said with fear in his voice, as he knew they'd be having more than just a 'word.'
Dûrion sat by the river, as the princess, with her hair braided into a pigtail, was watching the fishes circling around. He had just remembered about the mission, and he really did not want her to be held like some hostage, after discovering who she was. However, he did not want to dwell too long on his worries, as his main concern is what was in front of him— Claara. After looking at her for a while, he thought of giving up his life as an assassin and try to relive his past life, the life where she was in it. And it was then, inside of himself, he strengthen his resolve...whatever it'll take, I want us to live peacefully together again, like how it once was!
Another minute with his thoughts has passed, and he heard a menacing growl. Alerted, he reached for his obsidian twin daggers and turned around, moving in front of the princess as he was trying to block any attacks heading toward her, and prepared himself for an assault...but what he saw was an empty forest in front of him. Slightly bewildered, he turned around to the princess and noticed her grabbing her belly with a troubled look. He dropped his composure and turned to the princess, “Claara, are you okay?”
Claara looked at him, and replied, “Yes...just, hungry.”
Dûrion chuckled, not realizing someone as petite as her, could even make such a noise. Discovering he was hungry too, he took hold of her arm, “Alright then, let's go get something to eat!”
The princess merely nodded, and walked with him back to the town.
The elf, whose skin is even darker than the night sky, sat the the table staring at his plate, with but a few crumbs. It was only one play, just one, and he was already stuffed. As for the princess...stacks of plates and bowls crowded her end of the table. “M-my...when you said you were hungry...I did not realize...”, he started tensely, “D-did they feed you at the castle?”
The princess merely uttered a 'yes,' as she continued to gorge on her last plate of morsel. Dûrion chuckled nervously, as something inside of him was alarmed, not only because of how Claara's petite figure can shockingly ingest quite a lot of load without a hint of bloating, but because he knows someone was watching them, and he wanted to get out of the diner as fast as they can. Nevertheless, he did not want to worry the princess, as she looked like she was enjoying herself. So, he just sat there and waited for something to happen.
He sat back and casually examined the room around him, looking to see if he can find the culprit tripping the alarms inside of him. The diner seemed to be packed today, crowded with elves from all over the place. There were a few hooded figures, but did not find them suspicious as they were most likely omniscient scholars...he could tell as they were either bickering with one another about something he never understood, or muttering with oneself, as scholars are known for that kind of behavior. However, he spotted a hooded figure of interest. Not only was he in an inconspicuous corner of the room, quite visible from where he and the princess were sitting, and his jaw hung open as he was gawking at the princess...but he also spotted the subtle differences in his garment. As scholars' robes were all one-piece, his was a two-piece hooded vesture.
It looked like his contractor sent someone to keep an eye on him. Guess this wasn't going to be as easy as he thought it was. He was eying the hooded figure, when he heard Claara calling “Dûrion...”
“You are finished?” he asked.
“Alright.” he said, as he put down 1350 galeons on the table for the meal. They both stood up, and he eyed the figure that had been watching them, who was now counting out his galeons to pay for his meal as well. Dûrion lead the princess quietly outside the diner, and headed right. They navigated their way into the crowded area, and walked on until Dûrion was satisfied, and navigated him and Claara into an alley way between two buildings.
“Be quiet, alright?”
The princess merely nodded.
Dûrion peered around the corner of the building to see if he can spot their pursuer. He could not believe he hadn't noticed him earlier. His contractor and his men knew how he looked like, and knew they would nevertheless identify the princess with him. However, he wondered how much the henchmen had seen, but he wanted to play it safe. After a minute has passed, the individual that was chasing them appeared, and seem to be looking around trying to locate them. He turned to the princess, indicated that she should be back a bit and remain silent, and watched the pursuer coming closer, and closer...and as soon as he was in arm's reach, he quickly jumped out, grabbed the hooded figure and brought him back into the shadows of the alley. Holding into him strongly, and with a dagger on his neck, he greeted the fellow, “Hey, it's nice to meet you. I presume you're one of Lapole's men?”
“Yea,” the man replied, “Lapole wanted me to check on you...” He paused, and looked toward the princess, which he faintly saw in the dark. “So, I'm guessing that's the princess over there.”
“I could say no, but you wouldn't believe me, would you?”
“Heh, of course not, you think I'm the only one spying on you?”
Dûrion raised a brow, “Oh?”
The man in his arms chuckled, “Yea, Lapole gots men everywhere, he even has one disguised as one of the men at the castle.”
“Well, if Lapole is very resourceful, why didn't he do the mission himself?”
“You think I have any idea? I just work for him...and speaking of the job, when are you planning on taking the princess back to Lapole?”
“Yea about that, I'm thinking I'd rather keep her to myself, so you can tell Lapole he'll have to find some other princess.”
The man let out a wide grind, “Ha! Do you know how much influence he has? He's not a wimpy figure with little followers you know...you think you can take on a whole gang of his men?”
Dûrion paused, and turned to the princess, and answered, “As long as she's at my side, I'll take on the whole damn world.”
“Heh, such audacity, I admire a man such as you...but even a legendary assassin such as you can't take on a hundred by himself.”
“We'll shall see when I try it, eh? You can go back to Lapole, and tell him our contract's been withdrawn.”
“Oh really? You're willing to throw away the reputation of an assassin?”
Dûrion paused, he knew the honorary unwritten rule all assassins took, which was to see a contract to the end, whatever it takes...and an assassin who breaks his word is no better than rusted dull knives. But, moments ago he had decided to do whatever it takes for him and Claara to live together like before.
“Yes, as a matter of fact I've already decided to give it up.”
“Pity, we could have used a fool like you in you in our ranks.”
“Ah well, guess you have to find some other sap elsewhere...now begone before I decide your life isn't worth its existence...and I really don't want to have to bother dealing with an unsightly corpse.” he replied, as he shoved away the man, but with his daggers still out in his hands.
Brushing himself up, and replacing his hood, which fell sometime earlier, over his head and said, “You better hope you know what you're doing...wouldn't want you...or your princess to get it in over your heads.” He laughed, and disappeared into the crowd.
Dûrion stood there silent. He wondered if he really was in over his head. Now, not only are royal guards on the lookout, his contractor and his men as well are now part of his ever-growing pursuers...but turned toward the princess and his doubts faded away...he really wanted to be with her. Sighing, he took hold of her hand, and led her into the busy road, and faded away behind the bustling townspeople.
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