Chapter 9

Chapter 9

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“So, should I come back at this time tomorrow?” asked Alan, cautiously. 

“That will be fine,” said Siana wearily. 

“Thank you,” he said, “I will see you tomorrow then.” 

“Let me see you out,” she said. 

“There’s no need,” he said. 

“But I—,” she began to insist. 

“It’s alright,” he said, buttoning his outer coat, “I know the way.” 

Siana didn’t move a muscle as he walked out of the living room and headed towards the main door. Not even when she heard the main door shut. She relaxed only when she looked out the window to see his carriage driving away.


Alan frowned in his carriage, thinking. He recalled Siana’s voice pleading for a day to think. Her voice had trembled as though she had been terrified. He hadn’t meant to put so much unnecessary pressure on her and yet, he had. He winced thinking about her words comparing him to Viscount North. 

Viscount North was a vile predator who preyed on women to destroy them. He was a disgusting man with a disgusting fetish. So many women had been ruined at his hands. Alan felt the comparison prickling at his heart. A predator was a predator, no matter how good an intention they held. He should have thought things through. He resolved to be more considerate of Siana’s feelings. He didn’t ever want to be described in the same vein as that despicable beast. 

Alan felt ashamed for being so hasty. He had pushed her far too much, and that too at a time when her situation had hit rock bottom. He thought of her green eyes glaring at him in accusation. He had acted dishonorably; he had been too excited to see her, too full of emotion to control himself. He wondered if he would have done the same if he could turn back time. Probably, he thought shamefully, being a reckless dimwit that I am, I would have probably acted the same way. He sighed. 

Siana knew that his goal had been to become an officer like his father. He had promised to return. Alan remembered their first meeting. He hadn’t been as enthusiastic about his ambition until he met Siana. Alan had a strict father. He trained under him to fight and learn to handle the magical guns. He had craved for approval and compliments from his father, the only man he looked up to. 

He had the power to wield such weapons, and he practiced diligently. The people who had such power were very rare. Most people didn’t find out about their power until they went out to the battlefield and wielded it by accident. Examination for a power holder was expensive, so many didn’t attempt it. His father had discovered his own power when he had touched an enemy’s magical weapon in the battlefield, that was when he was given the title. His father, who had not inherited the title but earned it himself, had always been discriminated by the aristocrats. Only one person had ever shown him any respect and extended a hand of friendship. That was Siana’s father, Viscount Anetta. 

Alan still remembered the day when his father had died and Viscount Anetta had taken him in. His father had always told him that Viscount Anetta was a good man, and when he met him, he knew why. 

“You are Hedge’s son!” Anetta had said, “My, my, how you have grown! I am Bortel Anetta, friend of your father’s. Now son, I know what you are going through isn’t easy, but I hope you will come with me. We will share your pain together.” Alan had been so very grateful for a hand to hold on to, so he left with Viscount Anetta to his house. He was especially anxious to meet his daughter that he talked about. Alan had resolved to be a good friend to her, to repay Viscount Anetta’s kindness. 

He had met her when they had arrived in the mansion. Her light brown hair shining in the sun, and her green eyes glittering like grass leaves in morning dew. “This is Siana, my darling daughter,” Viscount Anetta had said as a way of introduction. “Sia, this is Alan, he will live with us from this day forth. He is my friend’s son. Be kind to him, alright?” 

Siana had approached them with a spring in her steps. “So, he will live with us forever?” she had asked. 

“Yes,” the viscount had replied. 

Siana’s green eyes had turned to Alan, then. She walked to him and handed him the teddy bear she held. She had been so short, only reaching up to Alan’s chest. He had held out his hands to take the bear and smiled. “That’s LaLa,” little Siana had said, “I think she likes you!” And just like that, they had become friends. 

Siana would drag Alan everywhere. She would invite him to her little tea parties to play with her dolls and toys. Alan had never refused and had been a good playmate. After a while, her endless invitations to tea and play had become a nuisance for him. So one day, he had refused her invitation and told her he needed to train, so he couldn’t join her any longer for tea parties. 

“Can’t I come with you?” she had asked. 

Alan had obliged, thinking she would leave in the middle of it after being bored. But he was wrong. When he had trained with dummies and straw people to fight and wield his power, Siana had stayed and watched and waited for him. When he was finished, she had rushed to him with nothing but praise for his skills. It had warmed his heart. 

She had followed him to his training every day from that day on. He, in turn, would try his best just so he could hear her praise him. He had become so familiar with her presence by then that it would worry him if she missed a training. Siana, for her part, didn’t have any friends to call her own. They both became familiar with each other’s presence. 

However, one day Siana had left for a party organized by her distant relatives. She had been gone for a few days. When she returned, she rushed to look for Alan to tell him of her excursions. She told him of the walks in the forests, the cakes, and a new friend she had made. 

“Yulia Brill is her name!” she had squealed, “She is so pretty and kind. We have so many things in common. We decided to meet next week!” 

Alan, listening intently, nodded, while something like jealousy nagged at his heart. “A new friend?” he asked. 

“Yes!” she said excitedly, “I don’t have to be sad and jealous when you can’t play with me anymore. You only ever think about yourself!” 

“What?!” exclaimed Alan, “When have I ever done that?” 

“You are always busy training or otherwise,” she pouted, “It’s the reason I went to my uncle’s house. I couldn’t stand being treated like a nuisance anymore. I want friends too!”

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