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❝ ᴋᴀᴛᴇᴛʜ ❞

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Kinnon rode through the woods that sat beyond the walls of the castle of Kidagu, the sights and sounds of the kingdom fading behind him as he galloped through them. Even through the pounding hooves of the horse, he could still feel the rapid beats of his heart as he got further and further away.

The sadness that swelled within him made him pull up the reigns, causing the horse to come to an abrupt stop. What was he doing? He thought back to the conversation that he had with the Princess only minutes ago. It was almost as if a lifetime had ended and he was remembering it. Did he really mean what he had said to her? No. 

He breathed out. Why was he running? Because he knew what was happening. He knew what had been happening inside of him from the moment he allowed her on the back of his horse the day they met. He didn't initially plan on it happening, but it did. He had shoved it away by keeping his distance. He had kept it within, chaining it in the deepest and darkest corner of his mind. He couldn't release it. He couldn't admit it. He couldn't feel it.

He gently nudged his horse forward into a walk.

The mental plans that he had made to not feel anything as a bounty hunter began to fall apart. He could not become loyal to anyone. Not her, not anybody. But no matter how hard he tried to push it away or chain it up it became clear: he was loyal to one person. And he knew what that meant. He knew exactly what that meant. And her being royal meant exactly what he didn't want it to mean; her being a royal meant that there would be threats against her, and that someday, somebody was going to want her dead. He prayed that they wouldn't hire him for the job.

He nudged the horse to go faster. Sometimes the plans that are made break for a reason. But these plans couldn't break. He couldn't feel anything. If he did, it would claim his life--and ultimately, it would claim hers. And he couldn't allow that to happen. His life didn't matter, but hers... oh, by the heavens above, it mattered. She mattered.

And because she mattered to him, that's when he realize what was happening. That's when he realized that he had to leave. He couldn't let it keep growing inside of him until the point of where he couldn't leave. He had to leave. And he regretted it with every inch of his being.

Kinnon pulled back on the reigns of his horse upon reaching a small wooden house that sat on the outskirts of the kingdom of Kidagu

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Kinnon pulled back on the reigns of his horse upon reaching a small wooden house that sat on the outskirts of the kingdom of Kidagu. Smoke rose from the fire loft in the roof, indicating that someone was home. He dismounted, swallowing back the regret that plagued his entire body. He shoved every thought of the princess and their journey together back into the chains of his mind, keeping them sealed from his thoughts as he approached the wooden door at the front of the house. He stopped in front of it, his body practically urging him to leave it; to not go through with this. 

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