Sersaw Kingdom. Capital city: Schway
The king of the kingdom is Inverus III in his early thirties. The queen is Grace Gina from the Marquess of Oban’s family. The princess will turn fifteen this year. The grand party at the Royal Palace is where princess Eleanor will officially become an adult and make her first appearance.
Alice had never met the princess before. The Queen was fabled as the most beautiful maiden of her time, no wonder the princess will be as beautiful as her. Alice couldn’t compare no matter how appealing she looked. If this was a while back before everything that had come to pass in Alice’s life, she would have been broken hearted at the thought that no matter what she did, she couldn’t compare to the princess. Now, she couldn’t care less.
Her life was headed in a different direction and she wanted to make the most of it. Alice, who loved being the centre of attention, ensnaring every gaze towards her, had become something else. She realized that being invisible and standing in a corner, observing people, told you more about what you needed to know. It was a powerful revelation. The glittering party and a prospective husband didn’t sway her as it could have before, she just wanted to learn a lot so that she could find a way to earn her freedom to live her life as she saw fit.
And books. She needed books! She needed to read voraciously to amass the knowledge that she had gained in her previous life. Now that she was in a bigger city, she intended to make full use of it. Her first mission in Schway: Book Shopping.
The situation hasn’t gone as she had wanted it to. She knew it was foolish to go shopping with her brother. What girl goes shopping with her brother? But her mother had threatened to follow her if she didn’t take Alex along. She had obliged, albeit reluctantly.
After arriving in Schway, Alex and Aaron had recovered drastically, thanks to the potent magical treatments from an expensive Royal Therapist. Alex and Aaron had obliged upon the forceful insistence of their parents. Her mother had been ready to ride to Count Thoreau’s estate and take care of him and his sons (well, one son now). If father hadn’t intervened and consoled her, she would have wreaked her vengeance.
Their mother had always been very fiery and headstrong. The artists that requested her to model for their portraits always painted her as a forest-dwelling fairy. Alice, when she was little, had believed her grandmother’s stories of her mother being a descendant of a faraway dragon. Her father, in contrast, had a very calm and serene disposition. He resembled an age-old renowned scholar. Aaron’s nerdiness was an inheritance from their father.
Having recovered, Aaron had been busy attending lectures at the Royal Academy and meeting famous scholars. Even Alex was always busy attending meetings with father in the palace, but on rare occasions, like today, he was free. He was free and a pain in the ass.
All throughout the way to Schway, he had been asking so many questions on Alice’s past life. Aaron had tried to stop him after a while, but he was the eldest. Would he listen? No. Thus Alice had been bombarded with too many questions that she had a headache and was almost relieved when they finally reached Schway. How was she supposed to answer him anyway? What could she say? That she was a cold-blooded assassin who killed without remorse or guilt for a bit of money?
A normal person couldn’t begin to understand. Unless they feel particularly pleased or sorry about it. Suddenly, a strange but familiar voice popped up in her head and disappeared, causing Alice to frown. What was that? Who was that? Where had she heard these words before? She brushed it off as mere overthinking.
When she had inquired about books with Aaron, he had asked her on what kind of books she was looking for and what field she was interested in. He was a scholar to boot. But Alex was more flighty, he didn’t care about what books she wanted to read, but he did help answer the doubts she had on how to acquire certain books.
“There are almost all the books you would ever want in Schway. But if you wanted a rare book, you might want to let the shopkeeper know early so they can acquire them for you. Books from Royal Academies and research institutes are the first to arrive in Schway bookstores,” Alex had said.
Alice was relieved to see her eldest brother roaming around the bookstore and inspect shelves of books like he wasn’t stabbed to near death just recently. Although she would have preferred him not tailing her, she was glad to see him healed.