" I didn't expect you to be the one who would stab a sword behind my back. "
As my vision blurred, his face which held regret and trembling body is all I see. The loud bashing and thumping of footsteps and knuckles rang behind the door.
" My Lady! Lady Clarisse! "
My faithful and most trusted aide shouted behind the door, yet this is all futile as this magic barrier is only dispelled when I'm already gone. I smiled as I recalled on how I lived in here and how I established this place. The man who was the culprit of my end was slowly walking towards my fallen body and he slowly kneeled in both knees besides my unmoving body.
" I'm sorry, Lady Clarisse. I was blind, and I followed them without knowing I was manipulated. I will forever remember this and suffer for atonement. If only I knew that you loved this place to the bottom of your heart that you even erected a barrier when your already in this state. It's already too late to bring back what I have done. I deeply apologize from the bottom of my soul. "
He explained as his shoulders tremble and tears stream down his face. I smiled and looked at him, My life here was an experience and everyone was serving under me in their utmost service. I have no regret for this at all.
" Stop them from invading. That's my final order. "
I used my last strength to deliver my final message to him. I felt my body gave out and my vision all fell black.
" Wake up! Why must you be this lazy ! "
The sudden splash of cold water woke me from my slumber.
' Wait? Slumber? Didn't I die? '
I opened my eyes and looked around the unfamiliar room, the walls were white and lined with gold and the ceiling held a painting of Ice and Snow spirits and fairies surrounding a family crest. The crest was that of a Wolf with Ice rose crown and snow thorn surrounding it in a circle. I lifted my hands and found them as white as snow, I sat up in the bed I was sleeping as locks of slightly curled Snow White hair cascades by my shoulders.
" Your awake now? What are you waiting for? Get out of your bed. "
I looked at my right to see a fumming brown haired maid holding a basin which I would guess where the water came from, I glared at her as I stood up from the bed and walked towards the blue cushioned chair near the bedside table.
" Hand me a mirror. "
I ordered as she flinced, and reluctantly searched for a hand mirror.
' It seems like the previous owner of this body is too lenient to her servants that they dare raise their mouths, don't they know that when your serving under someone you musn't talk to them unless they talk to you first, they need to re-learn manners and etiquette.'
I thought as she handed me a gold plated mirror and gave me a observing glance, I payed her no mind as I examined the body whom I currently reside. As soon as I saw the reflection, I immeadiately touched my face, She has snow white skin with no visible blemishes. Her long white-silver hair was shiny and soft to the touch as it flow naturally from her back, but the only feature this body that got my attention is her pair of icy-cold light blue eyes which doesn't hold any life.
" What are you doing? Is this the first time you saw yourself, or you just spent you life laying down that you forgot your own face? "
She said as she folded her arms towards her chest, I looked at her through the mirror as she slowly backed away in fright but she pretended it didn't affect her as I turned my body to face her.
' What happened to this woman?! She used to be so quiet and didn't even dare to look and protest before?! '
The maid thought as she saw the lady? whom she serve stood up, her usual gloomy aura was gone and her pair of eyes who woudn't look at others eye looked directly at her as she suddenly felt the pressure of a true noble lady who is about to discipline a servant.
" What authority do you hold to talk to me? "
I said as she stood up properly, " I do not hold any authority. " I nodded, " That's correct. But you still dare to pour cold water, raise your voice, and look at me disrespectfully. " As I placed the hand mirror down and approached her, I heard her breath hitched as she looked down.
" Tell me, who am I? "
I asked as she looked at me like I lost my mind before she quickly looked down again, " You are Princess Annizabel Floreline Frostine, the only daughter of Duke Nicholas Wren Frostine. Duke of the North and the frost-blade swordmaster of the Empire. " She said as I tried to remember the last time I heard such name. My head was suddenly pierced with a sharp pain as I tried not to cry out and remember, I placed my right hand to support my head to guise it as though I was thinking.
' Lori! Come here and read this! this is my latest novel.
The title is The Maiden in Disguise and its gonna be the next part of the book we wrote together!
The pain was followed by a sudden rush of this bodies memories as my forgotten and buried memories came at the same time.
" She is a daughter of a Great Duke yet she's so weak. "
" I think she will faint when she saw the Duke come back from the night hunt, don't let her out until his grace returns. "
" Born in a powerful and influential family yet this meek and quiet, why would the Duke still insist on such a heir, this Duchy will fall into ruins! "
" Why should I serve such useless lady? "
The pain subsided as I looked the maid that was calling me with a looked contempt, I let out a breath and sat down again, " Yes, I'm the only lady of the house. Annizabel Florence Frostine bearing the Frostine Blood of Ice swordsmanship and Noble Blood. The heir of the Dukedom, and yet you dare did such thing to me? " I spoke slowly to add pressure to my words and she slumped to the floor with her head bowed.
" I apologize my lady! This servant is out of her mind to do such thing to her grace! "
She explained as she trembled, ' Yes, that's how you are suppose to act as the maid of the only Princess of her house, yet she died and never experienced an ounce of respect. ' I thought as I felt guilty for taking her place, I saw through her last memories as she was burning hot with fever while crying, ' Is this my end? No one knows what I've been experiencing, nor did I see a shadow of my Father. The servants didn't care for me and treat me without respect. I wish that, if someone would fullfil what I wanted to achieve and recieve the respect and love I wanted to let me rest in peace. ' She wished as she drew her last breath without anyone beside her nor knowing her pain.
" Go and prepare me a dresss, I'm going out. "
I ordered as she stood up quickly and almost tripped over, But I caught her just in time. " How can a maid be so clumsy? " I said as I let her go, her face shock and daze before getting out of trance and quickly walked towards the dressing room and I followed behind her. When we entered, the room was large and rows of dresses was in the racks. The styles of the dresses were old and out-fashioned, ' Just where did they use this bodies allowance the Duke gave to her every month were used? Did the Duke forgot her existence the she only bought one piece of dress every month? ' I thought as I picked myself on a comfortable dress.
" I'll wear this. " I said as I show her the dress, she smiled " Yes, my lady. " and helped me put it on. This dress was a light floor length outer blue dress with a layer of white and light blue fabrics with a snowflake pattern for the inner layer, it was trimmed with a gold thread in a flower pattern and clear crystals in the middle. I sat down and she immeadiately brushed my hair, She then proceed to loosely braid two strands of my hair and pinned it behind my hair and placed a pin which looked like crystal branches, She did a final brush on the remaining untied hair and placed the comb down.
" I haven't asked for your name. "
I said as I stood up and walked towards the large white doos leading outide the room, she followed quietly, " You can speak. " I permitted, " My name is Veronica, my lady. " She said and opened the doors which lead out to a large hallway with blue carpet layed down without any bumps. " Where are you going, my lady? " She asked cautiously. I looked at her before turning to the left, " My office. " She was taken aback, " Your office my lady?!" She exclaimed.
I didn't pay her mind and walked towards my office, ' Of course, She was the only Lady of the house. And the Lady is tasked to maintain the dignity of the inner parts of the family. The Duke also said that his Daughter is the only one who can control the inner part of the Dukedom, yet the head maid took over because Annizabel didn't understand how the system works. And this lead to her financial need down the drain as the Head Maid embezzle a large amount of money from Annizabels account. ' I thought as the large doors of her office was in front of her with loud laughters erupted behind it. I looked at Veronica who is currently biting off her nails and looking nervious, I placed my hand to hers as she stopped and looked at my eyes.
" The Head Maid was the one who lead them, I couldn't stop them as I would be silenced by death if I ever mention this to you, my lady. " She said as the look on her eyes pleaded that she was innocent, " You only did it to save your life, Life is precious. " I said as I walked pass the door and went to the place I know would help me with this problem, and also the man who will do so.
" My Lady...This...isn't this the main office of the house? What are we doing here? " She asked as she looked back at me and the door. " Am I not allowed to enter any room of the mansion? " I asked her, she only shaked her head as NO and stood quietly. I was pleased as she finally stopped talking, I opened the door only to be greeted in a room full of nearly unconscious officers with a pile of paperwork still in their table, attendants in the floor and scattered papers. I sighed as I felt the piercing gaze of the man I was looking for as I helped the slumped down workers lay their backs against the wall as I healed them while I was moving their bodies.
I can only heal their body aches and other things but fatigue is only properly healed with a ton of sleep, ' Geez, It's like a black company employee and atmosphere in here. It was much more worse on the company I worked at, they worked us 24/7 without over-time pay. ' I sighed as I finished healing the others and stood up to meet the Manager of this place.
" Count Fabian Astor, Chairman of the Main Office of House Frostine. "
I said as light green with a tint of golden brown eyes looked at me. His curly emerald colored hair was cut short and neat, his bangs hang on the frames of his chain glasses. He continued to write his report as he asked me,
" What does my lady need in the main office? " He was rude regardless I'm not here to rage because of his discourtesy. I placed both of my hands infront of his desk, " Look at me properly. " I ordered as he stopped writing and looked at me, " I'm here to file a case of embezzelement. " I said as he looked confused, " Embezzelement? Of whom? " I smiled at him that caused him to straighten his back. " Embezzement of my own money for the last 15 years. " His eyes visibly widened, " Who would dare to embezzele the funds of my lady? " He asked as he stood up and adjusted his glasses.
" The Head maid, Sophia. " I said in a matter of fact tone, He looked at me in suprise, " My lady, are you sure? " I nodded and said where exactly is the account book hidden in the library, " The account book is in the library, Look in the History and Information section on the 5th row, Book of Flaire. They placed the account book inside that. " He looked down and looked up directly at me, " I will conduct the search my lady, Please wait for the news. " He said and ordered one of the consious personnel to call the guards, " I want this case to be quiet as possible. " I said as I picked up a fallen document near his table.
Formation of Riezes
" What...Is the Dukedom currently in war with the Rieze?! " I asked in a hurry as I examined the reported information, " Yes. I thought my lady knows? That is why we are currently like this. " Fabian said as he fixed his hair, " They are about half the troops his Grace bought in the north-east. " He explained as he took the paper from my hands and whispered in a low voice, " We are planning to attack before the sun rises. " I gripped his hands and took the paper and layed it flat on the desk, " That won't do Fabian, Our men will suffer great damage if you go forward to that tactic. " I said as I asked for a map on the location of our troops and theirs, " Look here, This is theirs and ours. Our men have 20,000 troops while the Rieze has 10,000, that's already a large feat for a small Kingdom to sustain. " I said as I circled an area behind the main battlefield on which they would all meet.
" What are you trying to say my lady? " He asked, confused on what I'm pointing out. I sighed and pointed to the enemy forces, " The enemy has 10 mages. " I said which earned a reaction from Fabian, " How did you know that my lady? " He asked me in a interrogating way, " Why would a small Kingdom wage war in a vast territory we govern? Of course they would have a pair of Mages in their ranks. " I said in a mater of fact tone, He still doesn't seem to buy it but I payed no mind.
" The main problem is that, these mages can summon something unnimaginable. Those mages will have a sacrifice of 50 soldiers each to summon 10 beings that would need a troop of 1,000 men in our side to deafeat it. " I circled the map which held 10 small circles, " 5 monsters will be at the front of our men while the other 5 will be summoned by the tail of our forces, if that happens our formation will be ruined and that we will habe to deal a lost of atleast 5,000 soldiers. " Fabian couldn't believe what I said and came to a realization that it might be possible.
" How long until we reach their forces? " I asked and saw the guards came back from the opposite direction holding a book, I told Veronica to hold it for now.
" We have 4 days until we reach them. " I looked at him in disbelief, " We don't have time to chit-chat here! My problems will be dealt with once the Duke comes back. For now, focus on delivering and sending information to the Duke! " I ordered just in time as the other collapsed officers woke up, they stood up and heeded my words.
" The Duke must attack them at night, because if you wait for the mages to kill the sacrifices it would be too late. " I said and silently placed a spell on the vicinity that If someone were to say any information gathered here, they would be transported in front of her.
" Go get the communication orb from Michael. " I said to the standby guard, " Hurry! " He quickly bowed and run off. " Would Michael allow the use of that orb? " Fabian asked as he wrote down new information from a messenger bird. " If he wants to stay lazy and doing nothing but still gets payed in the Duchy. He would. " I said as Fabian smiled as my words were true.
" How dare a maid like you to treat a princess like this! "
She knelt and begged for mercy, " Princess! This lowly maid deserves punishment! "
I didn't spare her a glance as I examined myself in the mirror. Hair as white a snow with a spark of silver, Icy pale-blue eyes, natural pink lips and white skin.
She looked nothing like me, I panicked inside.
" You, Who am I? " I asked as I looked at her through the mirror. She looked up only to bow again, " You are Princess Annizabel Floreline Frostine, the only daughter of Duke Nicholas Wren Frostine. Duke of the North. " She said.