5 Chapter 4
To avoid Ianthe's terrible end, I have to stay clear of becoming Princess Cordelia's maid. If I don't stay by her side, I will not be affected. That's the most straight forward solution.
But no matter how I look at the situation now, my chance of becoming her maid is slim. Princess Cordelia seldom visits Lord Valentine's tower. Even if she does, she never pays attention to me. Her focus is entirely on Lord Valentine.
I really envy those heroine in novels. How can they fit in immediately without an ounce of home sickness? I look up at my 'sky', endless body of deep blue water. Occasionally aquatic animals swim above me, I can't even see the moon. People said no matter how far apart you were with your family, you were still under the same sky, looking up at the same moon. You will be connected through the moon. But I don't even have a moon to remember my family by.
Tears slide down my cheeks. I don't know why I am being so sentimental all of a sudden. It has been more than four months. Maybe it's because the initial shock has passed, my life has fallen into a routine. I start to have more alone time. I have even mastered the required penmanship, so I don't have to spend most of my time practicing it.
No matter how hard I try to hide my feelings, I miss my family. I miss mom and dad. Will they be sad? Their only daughter gone. Or maybe the original Ianthe takes my place as their daughter? This makes me even more conflicted.
I continue to look at the 'sky', trying to catch a glimpse of the non-existent reflection of the moon.
"Ianthe, what's the matter?" A handsome face appears in front of me. Lord Valentine's face is lined with worry.
I quickly brush away my tears and stand up to greet him. "It's alright, my lord. I just... think of something sad."
I offer him a small smile.
Lord Valentine gives me another worried look and then squat down on the floor next to me. He pats on the ground next to him and says, "Sit!"
After sitting down next to him, he snaps his finger in front of me and a few small cubes with drawing appear on his palm.
"Thank you, my lord." Gingerly, I take the cubes from his palm. They have a glassy texture and are of different colors. Some even have tiny stars or bubbles inside the cube. They are pretty.
"They are candies." He smiles warmly. "Try it!"
I place one cube inside my mouth, the cube melts as soon as I place it on my tongue. Mild sweetness spreads inside my mouth. I place another one inside my mouth. This time the sweetness seems to spread down to my heart.
"Thank you, my lord."
"I have just created a spell, can you try it out for me?"
"Of course, my lord. I am your assistant."
He swipes his hand in front of him and after a 'pop' sound something appears on his hand. He really is like a magician. I am sure I am looking at him in awe and respect.
A miniature dolphin is on his hand. A cute dolphin stuffed toy that's made up entirely of water. He places the dolphin on my hand.
"Please try it out for me. Try to hug it, squash it and see if the spell stays," he says.
I look at him trying to guess what he is thinking. I try to do as he said. Magically, when I hug the dolphin, it feels like someone is hugging me as well. It reminds me of mom's warm embrace. Warm seems to seep from the tiny dolphin to me. I widen my eyes in surprise. I bury my head on the water dolphin. I can no longer control my tears and sorrows, I start to sob silently.
"Seems like the spell works just fine," he says cheerfully after a while. "As a reward for your contribution, this is yours, Ianthe."
Upon hearing his gentle voice, my heart seems to be stuffed with something warm and sweet. I know I should rise my head and thank him, but I could not. I am sure my eyes are red and swollen. What should I do?
Just then a loud curse broke out inside the tower. The voice seems strangely familiar. Princess Cordelia?
"What an impatient princess." Lord Valentine chuckles. "Ianthe, let's go and see something interesting."
But my eyes are red and swollen! I nod and try to keep my head down. I quickly grab my hair and try to pull out a few strands to cover my face.
Suddenly something pokes on my cheek. Under the control of reflex, I turn to that side and find out I am now face to face with Lord Valentine. My whole face exposed. My plan to hide my swollen eyes fails.
Lord Valentine gives me a mischievous smile and snaps his finger. "Now let's go and see what our Princess Cordelia is up to."
I stand there surprised and blink my now swollen free eyes. A tiny smile appears on my face and I jog to chase after him.