Sins Of A Forgotten King #1

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16. A Beauty In The Castle


♣Mila♣

This had to be some joke. My eyes moved to the mirror that had my reflection. I bit on my lower lip as I stared at myself.

“You look beautiful, Mila,” Rosa said from behind. I smiled awkwardly as the other maid squealed in excitement.

I was trying out the dress for the ball. If I had one thing I didn’t like about it was the style. I felt so suffocated with the corset wrapped around me.

“Could we try another dress?” I asked, knowing the answer. Rosa looked at me and sighed.

“This is the sixth dress, child,” Rosa said as her hand rested under her chin. “What is it that you don’t like?”

“This is too tight!” I exclaimed as the maids helped me out. “Sorry, I’m not used to wearing this kind of clothes.”

Rosa hummed in agreement and then walked over to the stack of dresses. I covered my chest as the maids brought me another dress. Then, turning around, I walked towards them when the doors of the room opened.

Zion stood in shock, staring at me as I cursed and turned my back to him.

“Zion!” Rosa yelled. My face heated up as the maids covered my body. “Child, can’t you knock?”

“Oh, what happened?” Noah said from behind. I looked over my shoulder and saw his face. Noticing me, Noah blushed and looked down. “My apologies.”

Everyone bowed their heads as I sighed.

“King Noah, Zion,” I acknowledge. They both looked embarrassed, so I cleared my throat. “Do you need anything?”

“Yes, we came to see how the dress-up was going. We didn’t know you were still on it,” King Noah answered. I watched as he walked over to the dresses.

“I’m still looking for one,” I said, getting his attention. Noah hummed. I felt Zion’s gaze on me, so I looked to the front and saw a crease on his head.

“Are these the ones you tried out already?” Noah asked. I nodded and watched him move. “You don’t like them?”

“No, it’s just that….” I sighed and walked closer to him. “They’re just too tight for me.”

Noah’s eyebrows shoot up. If I wanted this to work, I had to be honest.

“Then choose what you want,” Zion suddenly said. He was on the other side of the room, looking through some dresses. “How about this?”

I looked at the green dress he pulled out. It was the same color as his eyes.

I moved closer and stared at the dress. It was beautiful, how come I didn’t see this?

“Try it,” Zion encouraged. I looked at his smiling face. Then, with a nod, I grabbed the dress and called for the maids.

We quickly got into dressing up as everyone else waited in the other room.

“Now, this is beautiful,” one of the maids said. Her eyes lit up with sparkles as she looked at me. I smiled as I turned and lifted my hair.

One of the other maids quickly brought me a pair of shoes and some hairpins. Moving around me, they promptly made a hairdo and helped me with my shoes. I turned and smiled brightly as I looked at myself.

This dress was way comfortable. There was no corset, and instead, they wrapped a belt around it. It reminded me of the camisoles we wore to sleep.

“Come on!” one of the maids said, pushing me in excitement.

Hearing my heels click on the floor, Zion and Noah turned to look at me. I blushed hard when I noticed Zion’s warm smile.

“Perfect,” Noah smiles. “That was a good choice.”

“Definitely!” Rosa said excitedly.

I waited for Zion to say something, but he didn’t. So nervously, I smiled and waited for any signs, but all he did was walk over to me.

Zion slowly reached for my shoulders and turned me around. Then, walking to the mirror, he stands behind me, and we both make eye contact.

The dress highlighted his emerald eyes that I had liked since I saw him. Leaving me standing, Zion walks to the table and mumbles something. I frowned as he walked back with a box. Then, calling a maid over, I watch as he opens it and pulls something out of it.

My eyes widened as I noticed the emerald necklace.

“Wait, what are you doing?” I said nervously. Zion chuckled and turned me back around. Then, putting the necklace over my chest, he smiles at me, and once he finishes, he leans and squeezes my shoulder.

“Beautiful,” Zion whispers near my ear. My face turned red as we stared at each other.

My heartbeat fasts as we both get lost in ourselves, but suddenly someone clears its throat, making us snap out of our small bubble.

“My brother still knows how to choose a dress,” Noah chuckled. I frowned as I kept my eyes on the ground. “You look perfect.”

I thanked Noah and dashed to the other room to get changed again. Rosa followed me and started complimenting my looks.

It bothered me knowing that Zion had chosen dresses before. Which strangely were making me jealous.

***

“Do we need to do this?” I asked as I looked between Noah and Rosa.

“Yes, dancing is a must,” Rosa answered, making Noah chuckle.

“She is right, and though you will be my brother’s partner. But, I would still like a dance with you,” Noah explained. I cursed under my breath and moved to the dance floor.

Zion was waiting for me. Looking at him, I notice him fixing his gloves.

“Are you fine with this?” I asked.

“Are you?” Zion spat back. I rolled my eyes heavenward and shook my head.

I stood before Zion and waited for his instructions. Following as he explains, I bow and greet him. Extending his hand, we both get in position.

My body shuddered as Zion closed the space between us. His hand on my lower back gave me shivers and in a good way.

“Loosen up; you’re quite nervous,” Zion whispered. I looked up and saw him gazing at me with tenderness. Immediately my shoulders relaxed, and my body started to loosen up.

I didn’t understand why I was nervous. It was Zion, whom I was dancing with. So I should be used to him.

With a signal, the musicians start playing, and Zion starts moving me. I tried to follow his steps, carefully not to step on him. My eyes were down when Zion’s finger lifted my chin.

“You always have to keep your eyes on your partner,” Zion muttered. “So, look at me.”

I looked away and suddenly stopped. I couldn’t; this was too much for my heart to take.

Zion was affecting me in ways I couldn’t understand.

“I’m sorry,” I said and dashed out of the hall. Rosa called me, but I rushed back to my room. My heart didn’t stop beating as I ran up to the other floor.

Once I reached the room, I shut the door and leaned on it. My hand rested over my heaving chest as I grumbled in annoyance. It infuriated me that a simple dance with him was affecting me.

“Mila?” Zion said from the other side of the door. I jumped in surprise and turned. “Mila, can we talk?”

“W-What do you need?” I stuttered.

“I just wanted to talk. Can you open the door?” Zion said. I sighed hard and unlocked it. Then, peeking, I look at the worried face Zion had. “May I come in?”

Well, that was surprising. Knowing Zion, he would barge into a room without waiting for someone to allow him. So, slowly, I backed away and allowed him to come in.

Closing the door, I start toying with my dress. Zion’s eyes followed my movements as I nervously moved away from him.

I needed some distance, wildly, since my heart was beating like crazy.

“Don’t you want to dance with me?” Zion asked, making me cringe. “I see.”

“It’s not that,” I whispered with my head down.

“Then what is it?” Zion asked calmly. I gulped my nervousness and shyly looked at him.

“I just, I’ve never danced before, especially with a man,” I muttered. Zion looked surprised for a second but then turned back to normal.

“Then would you be all right with Noah?” Zion suddenly blurts. I looked at him. What? “I know I’m not the best choice, but if you want my brother, I won’t mind.”

“Zion, it’s not about whom I dance with. I just…” I couldn’t bring myself to say the damn words because of my embarrassment.

“Then what is it, Mila?” Zion pressured.

“You, I get nervous!” I said quickly. Zion stared at me like I was stupid. “You make me nervous.”

I looked away, embarrassed by what I had just said. But, seriously, did I need to be that honest?

“Then what about Noah?” Zion asked. I felt him come closer.

“I-I get the same, but,” I stuttered as Zion finally stopped before me.

“But?” he said in a husky voice. I bit my lower lip. This was insane.

Feeling his hand under my chin, Zion forces me to look at him. I knew my face was red from embarrassment.

“But what, Mila?” Zion said sternly.

“With you is a different kind of nervousness,” I whispered. Then, reaching for his hand, I lowered it. “You make my heart beat like crazy.”

Zion remained silent, just staring down at me.

Feeling his intense gaze, I quickly try to move away from him, but his arm wraps around my waist. I gasp as he pulls me to his chest.

“Mila,” Zion whispers, sending shivers down my back. I close my eyes and try to calm down.

“Zion, let go, please,” I ordered.

“If I tell you I feel the same, would you still dance with me?” Zion whispered. His breath tickled my neck as his warmth spread all over my body.

“What are you talking about?” I asked. “I have no choice, right? I-I have to dance with you at the end.”

Hearing those words, Zion let go of my waist. I was expecting him to say something, but instead, he left the room. My body wobbled as I reached for the wall and let out a sigh of relief. I didn’t even know I was holding my breath.

With a groan, I pushed myself up and walked to my bed.

***

“You will look beautiful, Lady Mila,” one of the maids said. I smiled softly and stared at my reflection.

The day of the ball arrived, and we were getting prepared. After my small conversation with Zion, we practiced a couple of times, but we didn’t talk. The most we said was instructions on what to do. After that, Zion didn’t approach me, and now I was wondering if he was mad.

A maid brings my dress over as I quickly let the others help me put it on. Once I was ready, we heard a knock on the door. My hands started shaking as I nervously turned around.

“Now, this is one of a kind moment,” Noah said as he kissed my hand. I bow my head, uncomfortable. “You look like a princess.”

I thanked him as Rosa pulled me back and finished the small details. Noah stood in a corner talking with the guards as I finished my final touch.

My hair was braided nicely like a crown, exposing my neck and shoulders. The dress ruffles fell well over my body. It was right, and it wasn’t that heavy. I smiled as they started putting on my earrings, the same earring that matched the necklace. As I wait for the chain, I feel someone behind me.

Startled by Zion’s presence, I turn and look at him.

“Allow me,” Zion said. I nodded and turned back to the mirror. Gazing at his face, I noticed how handsome he looked. His face looked clean shaved, and they neatly arranged his hair.

My cheeks heated up as I tried to calm my trembling hands. Then, feeling the necklace over my chest, I looked up and noticed we were utterly alone.

“Did everyone leave?” I asked breathlessly.

“Yes,” Zion answered. His hands slid down my shoulders and to my arms. Why did it feel different than other times?

The air around us felt pretty romantic for a reason.

“You look breathtaking,” Zion said with a kiss on my shoulder. My cheeks turned red as he met my eyes. “Just like a true princess.”

I turned my head to the side and felt a kiss on my neck. Snapping my head to the other side, I gasp as Zion’s lips are closed to my own. Zion slowly wrapped his arm around my waist and pulled me. His stone hand remained firm on my waist as my heartbeat against my chest.

“You are so beautiful I’m barely able to control myself,” Zion whispered. Our breaths mixed as we just watched each other.

Tenderly Zion’s hand caressed my cheek and then my jawline. I closed my eyes to the soft touch. Then, as I open my eyes again, I see his eyes glued to my lips. I licked them unconsciously, making him look at me again.

I wanted to kiss him, but it was wrong. I was only a saint, and he was royalty.

I tried to move, but Zion kept his hold on me. I needed to stop this.

“We will be late,” I said with a smile. Zion blinked but still moved away. It was slow, like if he was hesitating. “Shall we then?”

Zion looked at me and blinked. I smiled at him, trying to push the awkwardness between us away. Finally, with a nod, he offers his arm, and I take it.

It was quite an odd night, but strangely my beating heart wanted more.

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