Morning came sooner than I expected. I was still overcoming the memory of that strange event last night. That sudden meeting with that candidate was something I didn’t expect at all, not when I was at my most vulnerable state.
The more I thought about it, the more I found myself pulled toward his dark emerald eyes. But they were not the only features to admire. His thick brows, long nose, sharp jaw with stubble and those full lips were sure a pleasure to look upon as well. He was that much enticing!
I surprisingly had found myself enjoying that conversation with him. He was too witty and smart-mouth for his own good. I doubt he’d have the courage to talk to me that way once he knew who I was. And, by now, I was certain he already knew. Someone in the palace must have surely informed him about me.
I sighed as I was fiddling with the spoon at the breakfast table. Today’s breakfast consisted of egg omelet, toast, butter, and milk. I had yet to meet grandfather today. I was planning to do so after I was finished with my food.
I took a spoonful of the remaining egg and drank the rest of the milk before wiping off my face with the napkin.
I stood up as the maid started cleaning up the table. I turned around to see the guards coming through the dining door and bringing a pale looking grandfather of mine.
I flicked my wrist to immediately dismiss the guards as well as the maid when they made him sit on one of the dining chairs. Once the door was closed, I rushed to Grandfather. His breathing was ragged and he was sweating profusely. And, he dared to leave his room in that state!
"You would never listen, would you?" I quickly placed a chalice of water close to his lips.
He drank it in a few gulps before sighing in relief. He relaxed breathe calmed me and I took a seat beside him. I felt his forehead and it was burning.
"Who told you to come here, Grandfather? I was just going to visit you."
He looked at me with those old, worn-out blue eyes that made my frozen heart clench.
"I... I wanted to... have br-breakfast with... my granddaughter."
I sighed and shook my head. "All you had to do was send the words and I would have been in your room."
I started preparing a plate for him when he spoke.
"You wouldn't... have approved... my demand."
I stopped buttering the toast before looking at him with my furrowed brows.
"I wanted to go out of that room." He finished in one breath as he smiled.
Certainly, I wouldn't have. Nobody would if their grandfather was facing life risk like this. His health mattered to me the most and he knew that. But his childish demands were growing each and every day. I didn't know how to make him understand that I wanted him alive for a few more days and leaving the confine of his room could make his situation far worse.
He was no ordinary man. He was blue-blooded royal and our kind was difficult to defeat. We were not humans, not vampires, not faes, mermaids or werewolves, not even witches, though, sometimes we were considered close to those witches. One of my ancestors was a witch, as rumored. But, even she was already paired with a strong blue-blooded royal. I heard, he was one of the firstborns. So, there we were.
We were like a hybrid, the strongest kind of at that. We were strong, much stronger than those ordinary royals. We were invincible if I dared to say. But, even the strongest of the creatures had some major weaknesses and ours were our velhems.
Yes, the most trusted and the most important part of us blue-blooded royals are our most vulnerable part as well. Velhems are like our life support. We could live without air but without one of our velhems, we were as weak as a dying creature. So imagine, if all two of our velhems are gone. We wouldn't survive for more than a few hours and die of extreme heat that was produced from the inside of the body. Nothing could save us in the world at that moment, absolutely nothing!
My grandfather had lost one of his velhems. Thus, he was so weak and dying every single day and it was my fault. If only I was close enough to the palace...
"Aravena?" I eyes snapped back to him and his smile.
How could one smile when they were on the brink of death? How strong one could be? I wouldn't know if I didn't see him.
"You will never pull such stunt ever, Grandfather!"
His lips pulled up into a smirk as he blinked softly. "Is that an order, my dearest?"
I secretly sighed in relief to hear his soft, frail voice back to normal. It was a good sign.
I poured the milk on the chalice. "If that's what it takes. As your Queen, you are bound to obey me anyway."
"And, if I don't?" He raised a taunting brow of his.
I picked up the toast and brought that close to his lips.
"Then, I'd have to tie you up in your room and never let you see the sunshine."
He chuckled and opened his lips, accepting the food. He munched on it quickly before replying. "You really can not steal my ideas."
I raised my brows as I continue to feed him. "Your idea?"
"Oh, what you just said is a much lighter version of what I used to do to the prisoners back in my days." He gulped down the milk.
I couldn't help but chuckle. "You were one sadist king. No wonder you had so many enemies and now I have to deal with their off-springs."
"At least some of those off-springs are better to look at than their fathers."
I laughed. "You are worst, Lord Galvin!"
Today was a tiring a day. At first, I had to visit the royal stadium where all the competitions would take place. People were still decorating the venue. The color theme wall red, blue and white. The biggest tapestry showing off of the big blue diamond was hung on the front of the entrance so that everyone could see it. It was the royal sign of Ravendale, after all, and the symbol of us blue-blooded royals.
This recruitment ceremony was the only event in every forty-year the royals of Ravendale allowed commoners of all class and ages to enter the palace premises. So, it was up to me now to uphold the tradition that my ancestors performed in their time.
And, this year, I wanted it to be the grand event of the kingdom. I wanted it to be the one everyone would remember for the next century. That's why I had these people work so hard on each and every detail of this event. And, I must say, it was a very tiring process. But, everything was going according to my plan so I had nothing to complain as of yet.
After I was done with the venue, I came back to the palace for the meeting with my nobles and lords to know the economical progress of each part of Ravendale.
I knew how these lords were. Most of them were cunning and vicious but no one would be daring enough to defy the queen. They needed to save their heads so they should have known to behave.
After the meeting was finished, I made a move to leave when Nordan spoke.
"My Queen, may I speak with you for a moment?" His head was bowed before me.
I looked at the others and they scurried off as quickly as possible. I turned back to the noble.
He cleared this throat. "It is about the ceremony, your Grace. If I mention more precisely, it is about the new candidate."
Now, that perked my interest. "Yes?"
"Today is his audition ceremony. Pardon me for asking but, would you tell me when the ceremony will be held? It's almost noon and I'm afraid the candidate must be wary about the situation."
I just smiled. "You seem quite concerned about that commoner." Nordan bowed deep, almost hiding his face. "Well, his audition ceremony will be held and on right time. No need to worry."
I turned and left the room without listening to his reply.
"What! Are you serious?" Vena screamed making both Ara and I flinch.