Chapter 3

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I ran faster as I heard someone call out my name but when I turned to look for the person, they weren't there.

"Ana! Please, slow down!"

I just ran even faster until it was like I was flying.

"Ana..." the voice came again. I screamed and took a sharp turn. I slipped on the leaves and landed on my side. I looked up to see the silhouette of a person bending over me, saying muttered words that were too quiet to hear.

I writhed under its gaze, and finally I let out a bloodcurdling scream. The person backed up, and I woke up whispering "Anthony" just loud enough for me to hear it.

Fern looked at me with a concerned face, "You okay? Same dream?"

I nodded and she asked, "Remember anything this time?"

"There was someone chasing me, and I slipped before something happened. Everything is just hazy after that."

Fern grumbled, "Great! More nights with my friend screaming."

I snorted and lightly slapped her arm as I finished breakfast. I then put my working clothes on and I walked to Seb's room.

I was expecting it to be messy like usual, but it was spotless again!

I looked around again and found another letter.

'Dear Servant,

When you walk out of this room after reading this, you will be met by Officer Dylan, the youngest officer.

He will fill you in on something that the King and Queen only want you to do.

They said that they think you would be best for the job.

This room will be clean for a few days.

Your Prince,

Sebastian'

I nearly squealed with excitement.

NO CLEANING FOR A FEW DAYS!!!

I was jumping by now.

I walked out and immediately met Officer Dylan waiting for me.

He was really young for an officer, about the same age as Fern and me.

"Ana Ga'Raith?"

I nodded, and he told me what to do, "We are getting tired of not knowing who donates to the kitchen. Especially during winter. We would like you to be a permanent guard there, but don't let yourself be seen."

"If I may suggest something," I started, "if I don't clean something every day, the donor will see that and probably not donate. If I clean the ball room every day, I can see every person who goes into the kitchen."

Officer Dylan looked at me strangely, "Where did you become so devious?"

I shrugged, and he dismissed me for my day off.

I giggled to myself. Of course they put the donor on guard duty to find them.

I walked out of the castle and into the garden nearby. I sat on a bench and watched the squirrels play.

I laughed as one came up to me, and I stuck my hand out to it. I had tamed a few squirrels, because I had always felt a connection to them. Don't ask why, I just love squirrels. They are playful anytime. It's adorable! They are the only rodents I don't hunt.

I was jolted out of my thoughts when I heard the sound of someone walking towards me. The squirrel in my hand took off, and I brought my hand back to see Prince Anthony walking in the garden. I held my breath, hoping that he wouldn't see me, but to no luck. He walked over to means sat down in the other side of the bench.

"You clean out Seb's room, right?"

I nodded, and he just grunted something.

We sat there in silence for a minute, before I bursted out laughing. The squirrels were coming back, but they were taking each step very slowly and cautiously.

My laughing made them feel safer, so they started bounding up to me. The prince was looking at them strangely, and slightly afraid.

"Why is a mass of squirrels coming towards us?"

I laughed again, "They are harmless. See?"

I held out my hand and three squirrels got on. I cupped my hands together to support them. It was funny.

I put them down and started to get up. The prince almost grabbed my hand but I shook my head no.

"I'm a servant," was all I said before I got up to go get my bow to hunt.

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