The Dark Prince
Chapter 19 - Cryptic
The Dark Prince
Author :MishaK
© Freeuz Novel Updates

Chapter 19 - Cryptic

Ileus wrapped his arms around her belly and stroked it lightly. 34;We will stop for lunch soon. 34;
Anastasia relaxed in his arms. No one showed her that kind care. Only Nyles did, but her hands were tied. She could only do as much as she was allowed.
When they had crested the hill, the wind slapped them and the sweet little snowflakes, which fluttered to the ground, had turned into icy needles that stabbed at their faces. The descent that took them down the valley was just as steep as the ascent.
Anastasia said, 34;Sgiath Bi is such a brutal place. 34;
34;You have no idea. 34;
She stayed quiet. She had heard about how her mother had met her father and crossed Sgiath Bi to be with him. As they descended, Ileus shifted her to a more stable position in his arms. The horses continued down the steep slope. 34;We will be stopping when we reach the valley 39;s floor. 34;
34;What other hazards do you think we are going to see? 34;
34;It 39;s best not to think about it princess, 34; he replied with unease.
34;I heard that you were recruited in the army almost a year back, 34; she said. 34;How did you manage that?
34;It was fairly easy, 34; he replied. 34;I entered at the lowest level and then went up the ladder using some techniques. 34;
She frowned. 34;You mean seducing Maple was a technique? 34; Once again jealousy flared inside her heart, and she immediately wanted to get down from the horse and run down into the valley. But she controlled herself and the question came out coldly.
Ileus coughed. His fingers touched her thighs as he rested his hands over them. 34;You could say that, 34; he replied. 34;She was an easy woman though, but then this is a trait I find in many women. 34;
Anastasia wanted to elbow him, and with force. 34;Still, becoming a soldier in the Fae army is something because all the soldiers there are way too powerful. 34;
34;You are such a frog in a well, 34; he replied as if mocking her. 34;You think that all your army consists of Faes? 34;
She was offended by his statement but she shrugged. 34;Obviously! We stay in Vilinski, which is a Fae kingdom. Its army is going to consist of our people. 34;
He took in a deep breath and watched his horse as it treaded carefully on the snowy path. 34;What can I say, Anastasia? You have been so well guarded, that you don 39;t even know what is going on in your own kingdom. 34;
She became quiet and held the saddle 39;s horn as they descended. She felt embarrassed but what could she do. Moments later she said slowly, 34;I was restricted a lot. Iskra taught me how to fight, he taught me war strategies, but we never had enough time to talk about people in Vilinski. I am a well-read girl. I have read numerous books that were available in the library, and I do know a lot. 34; She wanted to say that she wasn 39;t ignorant or illiterate. At the same time she did feel like a frog in a well. There were so many things that her cousins never told her. In fact they never let her develop and learn about her kingdom.
34;I know, 34; he said. 34;Your kingdom recruits people from other realms. The recruiting process is not a normal one. The Faes have a huge settlement somewhere beyond Vilinski, where they bring in young people from across the world, including the human realm. These people are given to Faes by their kin as an offering. 34;

A memory flashed. Anastasia faintly remembered something about her mother. She had come to pay tithe to her father. This couldn 39;t be true. She shoved the memory out of her mind. Her mother was a beautiful woman. 34;This is nonsense! 34;
He ignored her and continued, 34;The young people are subjected to rigorous training. Once they pass through it, the Faes take them into their armies. 34; He stopped speaking.
34;So you came in that way? 34; she asked. The whole story that he said sounded so horrible. Why would the Faes do this kind of a thing?
34;No, 34; he said. 34;I took an easier route. 34;
34;Which was? 34; her voice drawled.
34;I killed a new recruit before he could join. 34;
Anastasia shuddered. He spoke so coldly.
34;Does Maple know you are a vokudlak? 34;
He smiled. 34;How could she? 34;
Her breathing accelerated and her lips parted. This was a next level game.
34;How did how did 34;
34;How did I manage to stay like that? 34; he completed her sentence.
She nodded.
He looked ahead towards the valley. 34;After I was recruited in the army, I worked my way up to the palace. It took a gruelling six months to get there. I had to bribe a lot of nobles. However, it was only after Maple noticed me in a competition of sword fighting that she made me her personal guard. 34; He didn 39;t tell her that Maple had wanted to keep a close eye on her. He had used that weakness and gained her confidence. Later, when she trusted him blindly, he suggested that he should keep an eye on the princess. Of course he was doing all that for Maple.
Anastasia felt stifled. She grew so jealous. She did watch them from the sides whenever they were close, and she always averted her gaze. She had found him gazing in her direction sometimes, but he used to stare coldly. She grinded her teeth. 34;I am sure she liked you a lot. She loved to be with you always. 34;
34;Yes, she liked me a lot, 34; he replied. Then he lowered his lips near her ear and said, 34;Are you jealous? 34;
34;What? No! Never! 34; she said loudly.
34;Okay. 34;
His sigh fanned her earlobe and it was the first time she heard his laughter. It was sexy and deep. After that conversation whatever questions there were in Anastasia 39;s mind, disappeared. Did she felt jealous even at that time? But he was so cold when he was her guard that it was nearly impossible to speak with him.
By the time they reached the valley floor, it was so cold and bitter, yet Anastasia was extremely happy. The group had found a copse of trees where they all stopped for a small meal. None got down from the horses and they passed bland oat breads, cheese and chicken. She looked at Nyles and found her to be very quiet. Her gaze went to Darla who was once again glaring at her.
After eating sumptuous lunch, they resumed the journey.
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