Golden Cross - Chapter 18
No eventful time was spent with Ava even after dinner. The two chatted over a game. Then they parted their ways, and each went to their respective sleeping quarters. As the dawn was drawing near, Eugene quietly got up from his bed.
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‘Alright. A man has to be brave.’
He was determined, but his mouth dried up. Putting on outside clothes and placing a small bag over his shoulder, he headed out through the balcony. That was, he was going to climb the wall, rather than taking the normal hallway.
Cold wind was blowing.
His room was on the 3rd floor of the castle. He could get seriously injured should he fall. Despite that, Eugene wasn’t too concerned as he went out by skillfully stepping on the grooves in the wall.
Even at a quick glance, he seemed so talented in climbing the wall that changing his profession to a full time thief could just serve him perfectly. As he had already picked out the path earlier in the day, he began to move towards Ava’s bedroom.
‘Ava. I refuse to sleep anywhere else tonight.’
His heart pounded. As he was still a young man, he did not know a woman, so he was both curious and scared, at the same time. However, no matter how inexperienced a man was, each was born with the instinctive way to act. He was filled with enthusiasm, except the fact that his heart was racing a bit quickly.
Eugene gasped for air as he was climbing the wall in the middle of the night. If he did not have the athletic abilities of a provost, doing such thing would not have been possible.
In no time, Eugene arrived at Ava’s bedroom window, and tapped on it lightly. Tock. Tock. Tock.
As he kept signaling his presence that way, Ava woke up from her sleep, but she looked anxious. In fact, what woman wouldn’t be scared to find some shadowy figure outside her bedroom window. Thinking that she might scream, Eugene moved to speak first.
“Ava. It’s me.”
Ava, who was frozen solid with fear, finally replied.
“Yes. Please open the window.”
“What. Why are you there.”
As Ava opened the window, her heart was still racing. It was more from the shock of finding someone outside in the middle of the night, not necessarily because Eugene was outside her window. Putting on a shawl, she lit a candle.
“What is going on. At this hour.”
Rather than replying to Ava, Eugene first closed the window and lightly hugged Ava.
“Sorry. Scared, huh.”
Ava, feeling embarrassed, tried to make some distance, but Eugene would not let her go. Ava became more relaxed as Eugene gently stroked her arms and back. Also, the warmth from the hug had a relaxing effect, too.
“I came to make good on your last invitation.”
Curious, Ava murmured. However, she soon realized what he was referring to.
“Oh, that, that is.”
Ava’s words came out shaky. Her rounded purple eyes could not easily look directly at Eugene.
“Ah, it’s already very late. And I feel that I’m not really ready, for some reason, either…. How about next time?”
The prey was trying to slip away. Eugene thought for a while whether to chase the gazelle which was running away, or weaken her. He thought about being aggressive, but Ava was a precious person to him. She would most likely understand, but he might be the target of her criticism at a later time. Besides, she was 6 years older than him. He decided to steer her.
“Ava. I didn’t realize you would say that. I was hoping after what you said. Did you just say it on an impulse?”
“No. That’s not it.”
Ava wriggled as she was feeling embraced by Eugene. The more she did that, her beautiful brown hair waved gently.
“What is it then? You don’t like me?”
As he was direct in his questioning, Ava turned her head, her face turning red. As he kept asking, her soft and cute lips shivered, and she spoke.
“….I like you.”
“What? Say it louder. I can’t hear you.”
Eugene held Ava’s chin and made an eye contact.
“I like you. I like you Eugene.”
As her lips slightly shivered while saying that, Ava must have been really embarrassed. Looking almost at the point of crying, she looked very cute, and felt bad at the same time.
“I like you, too.”
In response to Eugene’s reply, Ava relaxed and hugged back. Having verified each other’s feelings, Ava began to make a fuss.
“This is too much. You’re making this older lady so embarrassed.”
Eugene led Ava, who was pounding his chest, to the bed. Then sitting her on the edge of the bed, he stood before her.
“I have a present for you.”
As she was a woman, after all, she became suddenly delighted upon hearing the word present. Her eyes were still moist, but she soon looked delighted.
“What is it? What is it?”
In response to her enthusiasm, Eugene took out an item from the bag. It was a pure gold necklace and a diamond ring.
As if she was under a spell, she looked at the ring and the necklace. This simple, country land lord must have not been living in luxury, yet. However, no woman disliked precious jewels. Placing the items on her knee, Eugene kneeled down.
“Ava. Please marry me.”
Surprised, Ava’s eyes grew as big as the rabbit’s eyes. There permeated silence between them for a while.
‘Is she about to turn me down?’
It was a brief moment before the answer came back, but it seemed like a life time for Eugene. Then suddenly, Ava began to drop sparkling tear drops.
“Ava, why are you crying?”
Surprised, Eugene quickly hugged her.
Ava. What happened.”
“I thought that you might just go away.”
“You’re a swordsman and…. I thought that you wanted to stay with me until the time came for you to leave. But you want to marry me. Aaaaang.”
It seemed that Ava has always been worrying, all this time, while she was seeing Eugene. She has been thinking that there will come an unexpected moment of farewell.
But then as she was asked to marry, it must have made her cry. Her beautiful face was quickly getting wet, but as she was such a beautiful girl, even her crying was beautiful. Watching such a beautiful woman cry for him, Eugene felt a little mysterious.
Ava kept crying like a fool.
Finally, lying beside her on the bed, Eugene embraced her. After having spent some time in that way, Ava’s cries stopped.
“Ava. I just proposed to you, but I haven’t gotten an answer, yet.”
“You fool, what verbal reply is needed.”
Ava suddenly pinched Eugene’s side. After exchanging a few words, their eyes met. Ava, pouting a bit, turned her head.
“I belong to you, now.”
“If that is so then I can do whatever I want?”
“I don’t know. Don’t ask such a question.”
Eugene gave her a kiss and then placed the ring on her finger. Ava smiled, approving of the ring, as she smiled.
“Thanks for proposing.”
Ava was lovelier in his arms. But as everything went well, exhaustion over took him with the sense of relief. As Eugene did not get any sleep, climbed the wall to get here, and even proposed, he was completely exhausted. That was the same case for Ava as she was crying for a long time. Blinking her eyes as if she was sleepy, she appeared to be like a child.
“Ava, sleep in my arms.”
“Is that OK?”
Ava asked just in case, but she already sounded quite sleepy. Eugene gently gave her a kiss. There would be plenty of opportunities to hug her in the future.
The two felt into deep sleep without any worries in the world, in each other’s arms.
The territory of Count Feldentzj-Wittelsmach.
This territory was formed in the year 1758 when Stephan Pon Feldentz and Anna Pon Wittelsmach got married. Both were from baron families, but their influence grew bigger when Feldentz family absorbed Wittelsmach family. When the empire’s count was born in the family, their territory was renamed as the territory of the count of the empire.
Presently, Count Maximillan Pon Feldentz-Wittelsmach was ruling over the territory. Maximillan was the count of the empire who persistently proposed to Ava, and he had big dreams as well as being very selfish. As his territory and Roidenponsk, Ava’s territory, were in close proximity, Maximillan had high level of desire to have Ava. If he was to marry Ava, his power would certainly grow substantially.
“That low life bitch! She doesn’t know her place!”
Maximillian threw the letter which was brought by the butler into the fireplace. The thin piece of paper soon vanished, burning up quickly. It was the letter, written by Ava, rejecting Maximillian’s repeated proposal. As Maximillian understood the importance of marrying her, he was showing unusual patience which was unlike him, but he has reached a boiling point.
“Butler. Go bring Langerzan.”
Langerzan referred to the 3 swordsmen who were recently brought on board by Maximillian. As the members of the secret society of the Orc den, they were using that name in their activities. Langerzan was going around the places in the empire while performing evil deeds, and ultimately was called into the area by Maximillian. The meaning of Langerzan, the team’s name, was ‘long teeth’, and it was derived from the lion teeth shaped daggers used by them.
“You’ve summoned us? My lord.”
A moment later, three men in black clothes entered the office. As they usually looked sleazy, they didn’t seem that professional, but it didn’t bother Maximillian. As far as he was concerned, he was fine as long as they were skilled. Maximillian told them that he was about to launch an attack against Ava’s Rotstein Castle.
“The only strong person at that place is the young provost named Eugene. It shouldn’t be too difficult.”
All 3 of the Langerzan were provosts.
“We certainly want to take on your command, but attacking a castle isn’t something that provosts can do.”
“Don’t worry. I’ve already planted a mole. He will open the gate for you.”
One of the Langerzans was happy. Should the castle wall not be a deterrent, it would be an easy picking for the swordsmen, like them.
“We were planning to go there since one of our elder comrades has disappeared from near Franza, anyway. Hahaha. It will be like killing two birds with a single stone.”
Laughing heartily, the man gulped down the expensive whisky which was in the office. Maximillian cringed at that rude behavior, but he did not chastise him.
“I do not wish the countess to be in anyway touched or hurt.”
“Understood. She will be your woman, how could we touch her. Hahaha. However, since her beauty is well known, we will just steal a look.”
Maximillian looked worried at the swordsman’s disposition.
He clicked his tongue.
“That will be it. Will let you know the specifics later.”
When Langerzan left the office, Maximillian fell in to a deep thought.
He had a plan to go with them this time, too. It was because he felt uneasy in leaving the mission to them alone. The objective of Maximillian was to get Ava to give up, in the end, rather than having her killed.
“Kkkk. She will give up and accept my proposal when a sword is pointed at her neck. Or by pressuring her several times, she would have no choice.”
Maximillian’s eyes lit up with greed. He has been after Ava’s wealth, as well as her. Maximillian’s mouth watered thinking about what he could possess.