32 Chapter 31
In the end I fell asleep after staying up for nearly the whole night. I feel so embarrassed. Which carer falls asleep before the sick she is caring for? Even though I have woken up for some time, I pretend to be still sleeping by not opening my eyes and not moving. I hope Lord Valentine has not woken up to realize what a failure of carer I am.
I hear a soft chuckle. "Stop pretending. I know you're awake. You're so bad at pretending to sleep." Lord Valentine gently pats on my head. "You can stop pretending, Ianthe."
"I am sorry, Lord Valentine," I say. I open my eyes sheepishly, my cheeks bright with embarrassment. I open my eyes to find Lord Valentine sitting on the bed and smiling at me. All of the paleness and sickness he had yesterday are now gone from his face. He looks healthy even.
"Are you feeling better?"
"As good as new." He smiles dazzlingly and gives my hand a gentle squeeze. That's when I realized, we didn't let go of each other's hand throughout the night, we're still holding each other's hand. My cheeks get even redder. What should I do now? Should I let go of his hand? Should I ignore that?
"Ianthe, I remember our deal, so you don't have to worry."
Deal? What deal? He doesn't mean the 'bargain' we made yesterday, right? But that's just something he said while he was sick, he was delusional. How can he stay with me forever? He has his own life to go back to!
"Lord Valentine, stop kidding." I laugh embarrassingly. "I even believe you for a second. Your mother is waiting for you to go home."
"This is now my home. Forever," he says cryptically. "You have to trust me, Ianthe." He gives me a wink.
I'm at a loss for words. What does he mean?
"I'm quite hungry. Let's go and eat something, shall we?"
"Sure, but your..."
"I'm alright! I recover pretty quickly."
"We might as well call Cordelia. She must be hungry by now. Wait...where is Cordelia?"
Cordelia is sharing a room with me. If she's not in this room where is she?
"She is probably next door, in my room."
"I see." I let out a sigh of relieve. If she goes missing, I don't know how to explain to her father. "I'll go tell her about our breakfast arrangement!"
And I escape the room. What does Lord Valentine mean by saying he'll stay with me forever? Can my heart stop beating so quickly? I clutch my heart.
"Your heart is not going to jump out," Cordelia says while rolling her eyes. She is leaning on the door of the room next door. "Thank me. I created such a great opportunity for the two of you. You should call me the Kindest Princess in the world from now on."
"Uh-huh, leave all those pet names for your prince, Princess. We're going out for breakfast. Do you want to go with us?"
"Tsk, so you finally remember your great mistress. I thought you two forgot about me amid all your lovey dovey mess. Yes, of course. I'm so hungry."
I don't want to have breakfast with this annoying brat now.
"Princess, go and find your prince for breakfast! You said you didn't want to be the third wheel."
Someone is chuckling behind us. I turn around to see Lord Valentine. He heard what I said! Is he going to think of me overstepping my role? We're not even dating.
"That's right, I don't want a third wheel for my breakfast date. Sorry, dear cousin." Lord Valentine walks over and takes my hand.
My face must be the color of strawberries by now.
"Urgh, even if you pay me, I won't stay for this. I'll just go and find Lance." Cordelia shakes her head and walks away with her clicking high heels.
"Let's have our breakfast date, shall we Ianthe?" Lord Valentine smiles charmingly.
All I can do is nod.
We are about to leave Cregan. Prince Lance is heading back to his country and Cordelia is determined to follow him. To be quite honest, those two cannot be torn apart even by a tornado. And Cordelia is laughing at us for being lovely dovey. We're nothing compared to them.
So now that Cordelia and Prince Lance is dating, how do they solve the immortality problem? I remember that obstacle between the two of them is solved. How? Does Lord Valentine in the novel help Prince Lance? Give him a potion or pill or something?
"What are you thinking?" Lord Valentine asks while trying to soothe my frown by gently rubbing the space between my two eyebrows.
"The plot of the story." My face turns red and I try to push his hands away from my face. I can never get used to this. It's bad for my heart. "I can't seem to remember how Prince Lance gains his immortality."
"Ah, you don't have to worry about that. Cordelia's father has everything planned out for her. He had an immortality potion waiting for his dear daughter's future husband."
"What? Why would he prepare such thing?"
"There is a prophecy about his dear daughter falling in love with a mortal."
"Luckily, you remember the plot. And here I thought I have to think of a way to solve that problem!"
"I don't remember the plot. I just read the novel whenever I forget what happened next."
A book appears in his hand with the words 'Conquer the World-Mermaid Princess & the Narcissistic Prince" on the cover. I can't believe I read such an embarrassing book. I just can't link Lord Valentine with this book. Imagine Lord Valentine reading such a childish story with his calm and collected face. Please earth open up a hole for me to jump into.
I hide my face with my hands.
"You don't have to worry about Cordelia, you should worry about yourself," Lord Valentine says all of a sudden.
"Why?" I ask. "Wait... the assassination is soon?"
"No," he says in his usual calm composure. "It's now."