CHAPTER 9

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It's been three days since I woke up and I am back to my old self. Although sleeping alone feels weird. I quickly brush it off knowing I shouldn't get used to laying with him. The king is still not back which means more exploring for me. I had gone up to the last floor yesterday and grabbed the book that I found on my first day up there.

I had to elude Oma so many times, for some reason she's always all over the place. I wish she could just be like Cordelia, someone I rarely see and honestly doesn't care about what happens to the king. I wonder how she became that way. She doesn't seek the king's attention and always keeps to herself. I wonder what her story is about. Whatever it is, she would never tell me because she's made it clear that she doesn't like me, or maybe it is just her personality. I can't tell. I am currently in my room going through the book. I open the first page and see the title. "CASTLE WALLS"

Just then I hear a knock on the door, and immediately slip the book under the bed. Nabir comes in smiling with some maids holding buckets of water. That's strange, Nabir just left the room a second ago. I picked up the book, opened it, and she was already back with the maids. It seems like there's something about this book that causes it to, if I'm not mistaken, accelerate time. This mystery needs to be solved. I head into the bath and freshen up when the maids have gone. Coming out minutes later, I wear a red light satin gown.

I then sit on my bed and grab the blue top beside me, focusing on the embroidery. I want to say I'm almost finished with it but I can't because I know I might still have some more ideas once I'm done with the current pattern I am on. I don't know how long I am working but the sound of trumpets get my attention. Dropping my needle and the top on my bed, I go to the window. It is so dark that only moving torches can be seen, but I hear people yelling and screaming for joy. My door opens immediately to reveal a joyous Nabir.

"The king is back, we won," she says smiling at me. I turn back and look out the window watching the torches move towards the castle. After about 15 minutes or so, cheering is heard inside the castle and I come out of my room walking towards the center of the third floor where the entrance to the castle can be seen. I peep and see King Xerxes with some other men, whom I think are his commanders. The other soldiers are still cheering but when the king raises his hand, everyone stops. "My brothers, thank you for being brave in battle and bringing us to victory. The biggest cows shall be slaughtered for you to celebrate, however take your food and drink out of the castle, for within these walls I would love some silence."

"Hail King Xerxes!" the man beside him yells

"Hail King Xerxes!" The men respond, all kneeling in front of him. King Xerxes raises his hand and they all turn around to leave. I hear Oma squeaking and running towards the king and that is when I turn around and head back to my chambers.

"Won't you go welcome the king?" Nabir asks following me.
"Lady Oma is doing that in my stead" I say, opening my door. I sit down on my bed and see Nabir blushing, her chestnut hair failing miserably to hide it. Cocking an eyebrow at her, I ask "Is the commander married?"

She looks up immediately, her face turning red like a tomato.

"He isn't but that is not our concern"

"Is it now" I say, smiling at her. I didn't want to say it earlier but the way she looked at him and smiled to herself said it all.

"Go ahead and see him, I'll be okay for the night"

"My Lady are you-"

We hear a knock on the door and a maid comes in. "The king was injured" My heart skips a beat and I get up from the bed immediately.

"How is he?" I ask her, worry lacing my tone.

"He is fine, he told a guard who then sent me to get a physician but I thought I should tell you first," she says looking at me a bit shy. I smile at her and say
"Thank you. Were you told the nature of his injury?"

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