3: A Dashing Rescue(r)

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She had to think fast. Where was a place she could go to discreetly escape these girls long enough to lose them? Then it hit her. Alden was always at lunch right about now, but he always came back at about one o'clock to chat with her in his study as she cleaned. It use to be when he trained her in telepathy, but now it was a time to catch up as old friends. In her eyes, he was a good fatherly figure to her, but she could never tell him that, as she was only a servant, and he was the king. It would probably make their relationship uncomfortable. That aside, Alden being at lunch meant that his office was empty, and that she could take refuge there until the girls were gone! Sophie then redirected her mind's map of the castle and did her best to throw the girls off her tail.

Eventually, she made it to the study and opened the door, quickly shutting it behind her. Exhausted, she leaned against the door and gasped for air, listening for the angry footsteps of of Marella and her cronies. Sophie was just about to think she was safe when a charming, familiar voice asked in surprise, "Sophie?" Oh no.

 Sophie was just about to think she was safe when a charming, familiar voice asked in surprise, "Sophie?" Oh no

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Fitz was ready; his trap was set, and he couldn't be more excited. He was finally going to see Sophie's full telepathic ability perfectly on display. The only challenge would be getting her to relax around him so she'd actually show him how incredible she is. He had been nagging his father over the past few days about what Sophie could do with her power, but Alden wouldn't tell him, insisting that his words would be nothing compared to her ability. His father had also insisted that he not go to Sophie directly, as it may upset some of the other maids. Fitz didn't understand why they would be upset, but listened to his father, as the wait would also make the reveal all the more exciting.

Currently, he was sitting at his father's desk, leaning back in the chair with his feet propped up on the smooth wooden table, planning out in his head how this was about to go. She would walk in, be surprised, but she wouldn't run away because he'd charm her into staying. Then he'd ask her to show him how awesome her ability is, and they'd bond over awesome telepathy tricks, making them friends just as she was with the rest of his family. Even Della had a relationship with Sophie. Fitz saw them talking the other day in his mother's personal parlor about the triplets and how loony they were! Fitz was determined to become friends with Sophie was well, as he was clearly missing out on an incredible person. He had only gotten a brief moment with her earlier that week, but even then, he could tell that she wasn't just a special telepath, she was a special person.

He was snapped out of his daydreaming when the door flew open, and he watched Sophie almost fly into the room and close the door behind her. As she rested against the door, Fitz noticed that the gown she was wearing was shredded down to the corset, which was exposed on one side. He quickly moved his eyes to the rest of her, as he didn't want to be rude and stare. The sleeves had been long at one point, but were now tattered and hung unevenly, the ends barely hanging to the rest of the dress by threads, mostly dragging on the ground. Almost an entire side of her skirt was gone, revealing her petticoat underneath, which was torn up past her knee. The rest of the hem was supposed to hit the floor, as that was the fashion, but now came down to her ankles at the lowest point. The shoulder that was exposed, the side where you could see the corset, had a bruise blossoming right over her arm, and he could see a scrape on her neck. There were more scrapes and bruises on the leg that he could see as well as her arms, and her hair was undone, a few stray pins still stuck in it. She looked exhausted, and Fitz watched in awe as she gasped for air, her cheeks red as if she had been running, her chin tilted up to the sky as if she were praying to the heavens.

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