18. Misunderstanding

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Watching Alice sleep at the dinning table has been quite amusing to me. The servant boy 'Arthur' and another young servant girl come to clear the table. I hold my finger in front of my mouth to symbolize them to do so quietly.

After the table is cleared and I've finished my last cup of wine I get up from my seat. I walk over to Alice to wake her. She's still soundly napping on the dinning table. I don't want to scare her so I gently lay my hand on her shoulder. She seems so small compared to my big hands.

I grip her shoulder lightly to wake her, to my surprise she leans her head against my hand and lightly rubs her cheek against the back of it.

Not being completely sober myself, I take my time to look at her. She looks so peaceful. Her small breaths brushing along my fingers.

I snap out of it. "Alice,"

"Hmm?"

"Wake up," I whisper.

She grunts and lifts her head.

"Why is the room spinning?"
"Because you drank to much." I take my hand of of her shoulder.

She gets up from her chair wobbling and walks towards the door swayingly. I grab her hand lightly and she sleepily turns to look at me. I then take her hand and lock her arm into mine before leading the way. No need for her to fall now. She simply lets me lead the way.

I keep looking downwards towards Alice as she leans into my side while I take her back to the chambers. Mrs Jane walks past us quietly bowing and whispering good night, before winking at me. Ugh.

We keep going and again my glance lands on the small figure lightly leaning into my side while her small hand hold on to my arm as we walk. She's never been this comfortable around me before. Must be the wine, no one could ever feel comfortable around anyone like me. Not with the things I've done.

I open the door to the my chambers. It's already late, and the countless candles, and the fireplace are the only source of light in my chambers.

I slowly stop on my tracks as I feel Alice unhooking our arms. She wanders towards my bed, sits down, lays sideways and curls up into a ball.

"That's the wrong bed."

I can see that her eyes are still open but she doesn't answer so I make my way towards her. Towering over her I repeat myself.

"I don't want to be in that room." She lifts a finger of he bed and points towards her chamber door.

"Why not?" Her neckline has slid down the side of her shoulder, revealing a bit of cleavage.

She really is a remarkably beautiful woman.

"I'm lonely in there. And sometimes the evil King comes in and yells," she murmurs. She's differentiating between me now and when I'm mad. I sigh. She's confused.

"Ok, then stay here," I say before turning, wanting to head for the armchair. I hear something shuffle and a small hand grips mine. "Don't leave me alone," she whispers.

What?

"Please," she says almost inaudible, her massive eyes looking up at me, reminding me of a young pup.

Christ.

"What do you want me to do?"

She doesn't answer but she lightly pulls me towards the bed.

I could have resisted but with the wine coursing my veins, I didn't care. I sit on my bed and wait. Her glazed, drunk eyes look up at me as she scoots over to the other side of the bed and pats the bed next to her. She wants me to lay down?

I exhale and lay down. Could this be a trick? Is she pretending to be drunk? This could be exactly what she wants. My trust.

And in return I'll wake up with a dagger in my chest.
She isn't armed and she already seems be falling asleep again. If she tried anything I'll lock her up forever, without even thinking about it.

I lay next to her and so the games begin. She snuggles up next to me and leans her head on my chest. I stiffen but then relax my body again.

"Please protect me from the evil king...," Alice asks under her breath.

"Sure," I whisper even though she's probably already fallen asleep.

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*Alice's POV*

I try to swallow. My lips and mouth are extremely dry, but my surrounding is warm.

I peel open my eyes. It's dark, but I can hear the birds starting to chirp. Soon the sun will start to rise and cast its light upon the earth.

A small repetitive stroke of wind flows along the back of my neck. A breath. My eyes widen. What's going on?

I push a heavy arm of me and sit up. A small gasp manages to escape my mouth. The kings eyes shoot open. Oh no. I get off the bed and make a sprint towards the entrance door.

„Stay!" the king yells but I don't care. I head towards the bathing room, because it's the only one which I'm sure of where to find it.

I run past a few knights and into the bathing room, pushing a small cupboard behind the door. I need to be alone. I hurry towards a filled basin and splash my face with water. Once. What happened yesterday? Twice. Why don't I remember anything? And a third time. Why on earth was I in the kings bed?

Oh god. I look down at my body. My dress doesn't sit right but I don't feel any different or pain down there. Please, oh please tell me we didn't have sex...

I turn to the mirror. My hair is a mess and my stomach is complaining. I feel sick.

I drank! Ok, calm down. It probably wasn't that bad. I must've gotten to drunk and now I can't remember anything.

But why was I in his bed? I need to know.

I comb my hair with my fingers and straighten my dress. Wouldn't want the whole castle to think we had slept with each other.

I walk to the door and move away the cupboard and slip out of the bathroom. I hurry back and almost stumble into the big chamber doors. I take a big breath and push one of them open.

The King is sitting on the bedside rubbing his head. Maybe he's just as hungover as I am. He turns to look at me.

"Did we have sex?" I blurt out. I clasp my hand over my mouth. Way to ease yourself into the conversation, Alice.

He chuckles. I can feel the blood rush into my head and ears making my face turn red.

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