“Have we ridden in this carriage before, when we left for our kingdom from Holy City?”
“The dry season was about to come to an end at that time. So, we had crossed past the Slan Kingdom by taking the fastest route as we were in a hurry. We never had the time to make a stop at the Slan Kingdom last time.”
The memory of three years ago seemed almost like a distant memory to him. Yet, he still remembered vividly about how anxious he was throughout the whole journey of taking her back to his kingdom after holding a religious ceremony before Sang-je, as he had agreed on a contractual marriage which she had proposed to him.
However, the whole marriage felt surreal to him for quite a long while, even after a grand royal marriage was held the moment they got back from the Holy City. But now, as he glanced over at the woman who was sitting right in front of him, he could feel a warmth spreading out from his heart, with his mind strongly acknowledging her as his wife. Never in his wildest dreams did he imagine he would be feeling such a way, back in three years ago.
“Then I suppose you hadn’t got the chance to give your greetings to the Sword King as well. When was the last time you saw him?”
“I don’t know for sure. But as the Sword King pays his frequent visits to the Holy City, I suppose you’d met with him during one of your visits.”
“I was asking about Your Majesty, not myself.” Eugene clarified.
“Me? Umm… I wonder when it was. Never since I ascended to the throne. But there was a time when I was sent to the Slan Kingdom as an envoy during my prince years. I bet it’s already been eight years if I remember it correctly.”
“That’s quite a long time.”
The conversation was interrupted when the carriage moved to set off in a procession. Soon, a loud cheer from the crowd was heard from the outside as the carriage entered the capital, after processing past the rampart. When Eugene took a glance out of the window through the slightly drawn curtains, she saw people thronging the streets as well as mailed warriors keeping a tight control over the crowd.
‘King of the Slan….’
Eugene soon felt her heart pounding with excitement as it had been quite a while since her last encounter with one of the characters in her novel. And just like the Desert King, the king of the Slan might also differ in disposition, as opposed to how he was portrayed in her novel. Like turning the page to the next chapter of an adventure novel, she was filled with joyous anticipation.
The welcoming parade then swiftly processed into the castle through the widely opened castle gate. But it was only the carriage that was carrying the guests and the warriors who escorted around it were allowed to pass through another set of doors which led to the inner bailey. Soon, the carriage had eventually come to a stop and its door was opened from the outside. After getting off from the carriage, Kasser had held out his hand to help Eugene step down from the carriage.
As she got off from the carriage, Eugene was taken aback by the number of people who came out just to meet them. She couldn’t help but to feel nervous around them, as it suddenly occurred to her that she was here as a representative of her kingdom.
A middle-aged man who was standing at the front row of the crowd would never feel the need to introduce himself as the distinct color of his hair and his eyes indicated his status in the kingdom. The man with light grayish hair, had come up to them with a warm smile on his face.
“What a pleasure to have you here, King of the Desert. And my greetings to Anika as well. Welcome to our Kingdom.”
“We truly appreciate your kind hospitality, King of the Sword.”
While she had put on a courteous smile on her face, she was inwardly amazed by the presence of the Sword King as she casted a side glance at him.
The Sword King, who appears to be in his mid or late forties, was indeed a handsome man who clearly stood out in the crowd. More so, the young man with the same grayish hair who was standing a step behind him was also a handsome stripling of a boy. The Prince of the Slan Kingdom was indeed the spitting image of his father. And as for the woman who was standing right next to him….
She was the Princess of the Slan Kingdom and also the first Anika Eugene had ever encountered in this world. Eugene felt the tremble in her eyes, looking into Gemma’s jet-black hair. But when their eyes were met for an instant, Gemma had naturally lowered her eyes away from her. One glimpse of her eyes was not enough for Eugene to find out if she was expressing a favor or regret through her gaze.
So far, her encounter with the King, the Prince and the Princess of the Slan Kingdom had not triggered any of Jin’s memories in her mind. Acquainted in the past or not, it seemed like their encounter with Jin couldn’t have been important enough to be etched in Jin’s mind.
“You must be bone-tired from the long journey. Take all the rest you need. The welcoming feast could wait until you recover your spirits.”
“That’s very considerate and thoughtful of you.”
Eugene and Kasser were then kindly ushered into the castle by a servant.