This silence reigned in the now desolate alleyway for what seemed like hours for the young marquis, though this perceived dilation was not one caused via boredom but the opposite.
Yes, the young Charlotte was enthralled, enchanted even with the small child that lay unconscious on her lap, his body beaten so severely that one would instantly assume that he was dead if not for the subtle motion of his rhythmic breaths.
Charlottes enamoured emerald eyes remained fixated upon Arthurs mildly cute face while a strange sense of heat flushed her cheeks. Whats happening to me? Why do I feel so strange? Charlotte absentmindedly commented before her thoughts quickly became chaotic as the coarse texture of Arthurs bloodied effeminate hair assaulted her senses.
Surprised, Charlottes eyes quickly darted down to the boy in question only to find the strange scene of intimacy the young girl had subconsciously created. Her hands were softly brushing through Arthurs knotted brush of brown. At the same time, her golden blonde hair softly sprawled itself out against his strands, creating a picturesque image of what some art connoisseurs would surely judge to be a metaphor for class division.
"When did this happen?" Charlotte bashfully whispered while her senses were once again plagued by the strange feeling of awkwardness that seemed to pour forth from within her whenever she was near the child. Yet her hands never stopped their brushing, and her gaze even softened, turning into a loving stare that any adult would not mistake to be one of a maiden in love.
Though this may seem all well and good for the unconscious Arthur, this sudden boost in love would soon prove to be more of a curse than a blessing. Sure he had expected to at least earn a small part of the girls affection via the suspension bridge effect, at least going from zero to sixty percent but what really happened was a far cry from what the poor transmigrator had expected. As, for some reason, the meter went from zero to 100 and even beyond that in one session, something that Arthur would surely comment on to be an impossible occurrence as in the game, no one had ever managed to break through the 100% threshold before.
How am I supposed to repay my hero though? Charlotte fervently questioned upon realising that she would surely have to repay this poor boys kindness. From the looks of it, he seems to be a peasant…., Charlotte continued, her hand abruptly recoiling from the boys hair as a stream of memories started to pour into her immature cranium. A scene from her childhood began to play out between a handsome middle-aged man and the young lady.
Charlotte, you have to remember to always stay on guard around the lower class. They
e all a bunch of scheming rodents who will surely take advantage of your kindness, The man sternly commented. However, his face could not be more mismatched from his tone of voice as he placed a hand on the young girls head and began to ruffle through her golden locks with a face of absolute gentleness.
Eh, what do you mean theyll take advantage of my kindness? Oblivious, the young Charlotte continued, her cheeks puffed into a comical pout.
"What I mean is that…. Well, they
e different from you and me. They only look out for themselves and how theyll get their next meal, so if they were to see a lady of your status alone and vulnerable, theyd surely lead you into a trap," The man sighed.
Though it seems like his answer was a bit too much for the young girl who in this memory seemed only to be about four or five years old as tears soon began to stream down the young maidens cheeks. "So…So, are they bad people, do they hate me?" Charlotte wailed. She had already been briefed on what these "Traps" Were in a previous outing with the man, so to hear that an entire class of people would like to put her into such a scenario really shocked her.
Upon hearing the girls question, the mans face momentarily scrunched up as he seemed to evaluate his choices for a response to the sudden question before deciding on an answer. "You could put it like that. The lower class are always the enemies of us aristocrats, as they will do anything to usurp our house of Zepar with their dirtied bloodlines," The man continued, his face morphing from one of sternness to that of bitter disgust.
"Umu," Charlotte cried as the memory seemed to dim and fade back to real life, where she was again greeted by the bloodied face of the peasant child that had fought oh so bravely for her against a fully grown man. Is he the only good peasant? Charlotte remarked though she would be promptly brought out of her thoughts as the silence of the alleyway became filled with the pitter-patter of footsteps.
Is someone there! Charlotte inwardly screamed, her mind still struggling to regain its calm from her previous encounter in this alleyway. What do I do? What do I do? Is it the man from earlier?! Has he come back to kill my Arthur?! Arghhh, Charlotte panicked though she did not move from her seat on the sodden cobbles. I have to make sure that Arthurs safe, Charlotte decided, creating a new resolve in the childs heart to protect this boy that she had only met a matter of minutes ago.
As long as its someone my age, I should be fine, Charlotte breathed, her mind already racing while adrenaline started to pump through her veins. Though it seems like this resolve was all for nothing as what came around the corner was not the figure of the vile fat man from before but, in fact, two slim figures, one male and one female, draped in the emerald green garments of the Zepar knights.
"Young lady, is that you?" The female figured question while the pitter-patter of her footsteps became hurried as she neared the shaking figure of Charlotte, who was struggling to deal with the sense of relief that filled her chest.
e safe, Charlotte sighed, though it seemed like this relief was only temporary as her eyes soon fell upon the broken figure of the small boy. "Yes, can you please help me? This boy needs urgent healing!" The young girl shakily demanded, alerting the two figures to the battered peasant that lay on their mistresss pale white skin.
The two momentarily halted upon hearing their masters demand. Their trained eyes scanned the peasant analysing his injuries before releasing a unified gasp of surprise. "What happened to him!! How is he still alive!!" The girl screeched her body, already rushing to the sight of the battered peasant who looked no older, ran seven and took her into her trained arms. What should I do? I doubt the lord will take kindly to us wasting some potions to heal this child…. Should I just leave him somewhere? The lady questioned, not knowing what to do to escape from her current predicament.
"What happened, young lady!" The man repeated as he neared the shaking figure of Charlotte, whose figure looked like a drug addict going through withdrawal symptoms from the sudden loss of Arthur.
"Young lady, young lady! What happened!" He continued, placing a hand on the shaking figure of his mistress, who had been absentmindedly staring in the direction of the peasant child. "Eh," Charlotte yelped, shifting her fixed stare away from Arthur and towards the direction of the worried guard only to have her eyes go cold while a sudden sense of deep-set fear welled up from within her stomach.
"LET GO OF ME!!!" Charlotte suddenly yelled, surprising all present and releasing her from the grasp of the worried guard, who only became more confused upon seeing the tearful and shaking figure of his master. Did I do that? The man inwardly questioned as he observed the fearful appearance of the daughter of the Zepar family, who seemed to be going through all the stages of a panic attack. Is she scared of me…
Arthur, I need Arthur! Charlotte inwardly screamed, not knowing what brought about the sudden change inside of her that made her so fearful of the guard that she had been so friendly with prior to her kidnapping nor why she instinctively felt that the sleeping boy could save her from this onset panic attack. "Arthur!" Charlotte screamed, demanding the release of her saviour from the worried guard who could only oblige the girls request and place the still sleeping figure of Arthur onto the wet cobbles of the ground underneath, where the shaking figure of Charlotte immediately embraced him.
Instantly a sense of relief filled the young girls body as any sense of fear dissipated. Arthur, Arthur, save me, Charlotte inwardly wailed, not daring to voice out her inner thoughts to anyone present until she understood why she felt this way.
"So, young lady, can you please tell us what happened here?" The male guard from earlier repeated for the mth time, but he was again met with silence as Charlottes body released another involuntary tremble. Arthur, Arthur….
"Maybe shes scared of you~" The woman teased, poking fun at her coworkers predicament, who could only release a wry smile.
"Do you want to ask her what happened then?" The man questioned, already predicting that no matter how much he asked, he would only receive silence from the girl in question no matter how much he asked.
"Sure," The woman smilingly responded, who quickly squatted down in front of the now calm figure of Charlotte, who was profusely hugging the bloodied figure of Arthur. "Young miss, can you please tell us what happened here? otherwise, we won be able to do anything for that friend of yours," The woman beamed, gesturing to the broken figure of Arthur. Though I don know if hell still be breathing by the time we can get him healed,
"Ok," Charlotte muttered, shocking both the guards. Is this because Im a girl? The guard questioned, sending an inquisitive look over to her coworker, who could only shrug his shoulders in response.
Charlotte then went ahead and proceeded to explain the situation from the time she had been kidnapped all the way up to when Arthur appeared in the alleyway, where she momentarily halted in her speech. If I tell them that Arthur could use magic, would they do something to him? Charlotte worriedly questioned, knowing that Arthurs talents would immediately become the focal point of the conversation once she explained just how strong he was.
Father said that it takes years for even the most prodigious of children to reach the elemental harnessing stage where Arthur seems to be at…. Charlotte shakily continued her mind a whirl of thoughts, all of which concerned the broken boy that remained limp in her embrace. Wait… If Arthurs so strong, would that make Father want to have him as that asset thing? If he were an asset or whatever its called, that would mean that I would be able to see more of him…right? Charlotte concluded her selfish impulse to see more of the boy outweighed whatever other options her childish brain may have presented.
"Arthur can use magic!" Charlotte hastily yelled, momentarily stunning the guards before returning to their previously calm but ruthless disposition. She must be joking…. The two unanimously thought before they came across some contradictions in that line of belief. Wait but then how would the young miss be able to escape from the clutches of those pieces of subhuman filth,.
"What type of magic do you mean?" The female guard questioned again though she was shakier with her words this time. If what Charlotte was saying is true, then that beaten boy could very well be the talent of a millennium that would serve as a great fighting force for the Zepar territory.
"Well, he blasted the bad man in the face with water before making some weapons to stab the man!" Charlotte yelled, having already picked up on the doubt subconsciously laced in the guards tone. Don doubt my Arthur, Charlotte inwardly muttered while the strange euphoric feeling from earlier began to flow through her body.
""EHH!!!"" The two guards screamed in unison while their eyes darted away from the girl they had been observing like a hawk since they had arrived over to the desolate alleyway, which they proceeded to scan with a scrutinising gaze.
"Holy **…" The man mumbled upon finding the soaked and bleeding figure of the fat man. "Is he even alive?" He dazedly mumbled while he approached the barely recognisable visage of the body whose face seemed to have prolapsed in on itself from a tremendous force.
Yet, upon seeing the slowly raising chest of the former assailant, any worry that the guard may have felt promptly rid itself from his mind. "Hell have to be executed for treason against the lord…." He commented while pulling the mans body over his shoulder, where he rested like a bag of rice.
"Shes telling the truth. It seems that the boy can use magic!" The guard yelled, confirming Charlottes words, who raised her chest in momentary triumph. They should have never doubted my Arthur….
"Ok, well, now that weve found you, lady Charlotte, we will have to return to the Zepar estate," The guard sighed, reaching towards her madams hand, who once again recoiled not in disgust but rather out of rebellion.
"What about Arthur, Are you going to bring him back to Father and have him healed?" Charlotte questioned with all the ruthlessness of a trained tyrant.
"Er, um, yes," The guard sighed, grabbing the broken child off the ground and scooping him up into a princess carry. Well, its not like I can just leave such a talented child for death. Im sure lord Zepar will want to have him inspected before seeing if he will become an asset to the land…. The guard inwardly sighed while she scooped up the figure of her mistress and placed her above her shoulders. This way, she won be able to escape,
"Well be going ahead now. You should go and look for the other culprit!" The guard waved, leaving the alleyway with the two children in tow.