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Two months after, a carriage pulled by two winged horses ran smoothly on the dusty road outside the gates of Griftein Veimu City. A couple with a child tucked in a crib peacefully sat inside. Five more carriages and wagons were in convoy all the way to Wrilon Village.
Louvel and Aenor looked at each other inside and the wife rested her head on the husband's shoulder.
What occurred that day was something they believed could be auspicious but could be tragic for their child and for them as a family.
They also needed his father to check on Freidrech since he was a gifted sage.
If they found out this was an ominous thing, they decided to bring this to their grave. But even so, he would still try to find a way to make it good, even if it may cost his life, for his boy, Freidrech.
He looked at his lovely wife who had an egg-shaped face, big black eyes, and luscious full lips. She was fair-skinned belle but a woman who was not born from a noble family.
She was once a little orphan girl from a northern village left desolate after an evil epidemic occurred. A virus which only attacked the adults, living only the children alive. A nurse named Leisa of Everreach, a daughter of the Count of Everreach saw her and brought her up as her own. She was named then as Aenor of Everreach since then.
The girl who was feeble and skinny became a beautiful swan in her own right. Aenor was a smart girl and curious in many ways. She loved to read books.
Later, she followed her adopted mother's footsteps and became a nurse but went a step higher as an assistant doctor as she recalled the cause of the death of her biological family.
She was assigned as the Queen's lady doctor and the queen requested for her to become her lady in waiting.
One day in a king's royal ball, Sir Knight Louvel of Amberdrift saw her for the first time and fell in love with her at first sight, and later learned Aenor felt the same way about him.
But something happened before they were wed… a painful thing for both of them. Someone raped Lady Aenor. A very prominent married man but in love with her. They never expected for this man to lose control out of drunkenness and forget his title, and betray them to bring this painful episode of their life.
Louvel almost killed this man. Good thing the king intervened before he became a murderer and promised that the man would be sentenced to a public hanging.
They were thankful for the king's promise but… his death wouldn't solve their problem. Rather, it would only worsen their condition. More than one person would be affected, most of all, Lady Aenor's honor and the king's health.
It would hurt her reputation as a woman all through her life even if that man would die if this was brought out in public. While the king would lose someone so close to his heart and could be a cause of his death.
Even though the king was not weak-minded but this person was someone he cherished dearly.
Hence, Louvel, Aenor, and Lady Everreach accepted the appeals of the man's wife to send the man to exile.
The man was sent away with his wife and was told to never come back unless the king said so.
Right now, in the carriage, Aenor noticed Louvel staring at her and smiled at him.
"What?" she asked.
"Nothing. You're just so beautiful. I can get my eyes off you," he said and kissed her on her lips.
Aenor accepted his kiss and gave him a pinch. "Teaser," she said while giving him her sweetest smile.
"I'm not teasing. It's really true," and solemnly added, "I almost lost you."
"Hush, let's not think of the past." Shivers ran to her spine thinking of it and hurriedly brushed it off from her mind.
Lady Aenor laid on Louvel's strong chest and was silently thankful for having him as her husband.
This man was a silent man and seldom speaks. But when he spoke, the king and the other Knights listened. Because of this, they won battles not just from their strength but from his words of wisdom and strategies. He became the Griftein Knights leader in the hearts of the Knights though there was no one assigned as one.
He was born from a noble family but of low rank. His father was a famous sage and was invited by the king to be one of his royal advisers, but he refused. He preferred the peace in the village and to face enemies in a real battle with weapons and magic at the borderlands than the silent war within the royal courts.
But Louvel chose to follow the king after graduating as the top-three student of the royal academy. However, after that depressive incident, he chose to leave the palace.
"I know I can't compensate for what happened, but why must you go?" asked the king.
"I'm starting a family now and my father is now very old. I'm his only child and I've been away from him for so long. Please, let me go. I'm still a Griftein Knight and ready to serve you, My Liege. While in this time of peace, I wish to be with my father and serve him before I lost him forever."
"Is this only all about your father or just an excuse to leave my side after what happened to your wife?"
"I won't lie to you, My king. Walking in this castle and seeing his image at the hallway, pains me, My Liege. So, please, let me go."
"No, I need you here by my side, more than ever. I'll take all those images down if this will stop you from leaving me."
The king did as he promised. Not just the portraits but everything that would remind Louvel of that man. King Threion was adamant and refused to hear of the matter again.
Thus, Louvel had no choice but to stay, yet deep inside him, he was not at peace. Then on a special occasion when Lady Aenor went to the palace, her trauma surfaced and Louvel had to bring him back to Amberdrift right away. He brought this up again to the king indicating Aenor's fear.
The king sent all help for Lady Aenor just to keep Louvel in the capital.
Until such time, a letter came to Louvel, telling him that his father was now very ill. He used this as an excuse to go home, but the king insisted he had to come back.
Alas, the day had come he saw his chance and this time made sure the king wouldn't be able to deny him.
He took off his knight's armor and weapon and fought in the tournament fair and square during the king's birthday celebration and became the champion. The pained king had no choice but to grant his wish as tradition dictated.
Now, they were on their way to Wrilon Village and with all hopes of a peaceful and happy future.
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You can check the characters' names and other terminologies in the Glossary before Chapter 1.
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