Chapter Three: The Forest of Colors
Several days passed without anything in particular happening.
During that time, Riz came down with a fever, was restless, received visits from Hine, and other small events happened; however, she didn’t have any dreams of John anymore. When she asked Hine, he told her that John was diligently working at the art gallery. It was somewhat anticlimactic.
Riz returned to her normal life after her body recovered.
Chapter Two: The Sunflower’s Voice
Feeling a vibration, Riz slowly awoke from sleep.
It seemed like she fell asleep while staring at the painting of the fish in her closet.
However, why was the floor rattling and swaying?
It wasn’t just vibrations but also movement— it felt like she was riding a carriage.
The instant she imagined that her consciousness cleared abruptly.
Riz hurriedly lifted her head and looked around her surroundings.
Cramped. It was not a flat place. And was she on a higher level? Was this a seat?
It wasn’t her imagination and she really was in a carriage.
Her body stiffened when she was aware of this.
Why was she riding a carriage?
After a short sense of disorder, the worst scenario came to mind.
Had she been kidnapped by someone?
Chapter One: The Black Iron Star
Time passed— it was her seventeenth birthday.
And Riz was facing an unexpected situation.
It all started a week before her birthday.
She was urged by her mother, Virma, with “Here are five paintings. Now, choose the painting you love from these!” and, when she did just that, for some reason her fiancé was decided upon.
Nothing made sense.
Prologue: The Silver Daughter
A pale dawn. The painting of a traveler, with the color of daybreak trapped in his eyes, was Riz Milton’s treasure.
He was a foreigner who visited from far and distant lands.
At that time, Riz couldn’t pronounce his name properly. It was a difficult language.
During the time she called him the “Dawn-Eyed Traveler” she forgot his real name.
However, she only remembered that it had a beautiful sound, like a stringed instrument.
Okay, now we’ve really reached the end of this long 2 year project. Thank you to everyone who supported this series or dropped by to read it. I’m going to take a long break after this and maybe play some otome games LOL but honestly this is still one of my favorite books and I’m glad I got to share it with everyone. Once again, please consider supporting the artist if you enjoyed this book and I only shared about 1/4 of the illustrations in total so!!
At any rate, please enjoy the author’s comments down below.
“Mm, when they’re lined up like this they look wonderful!”
“Truly. The smell of herbs is somewhat soothing, isn’t it.”
In a corner of the infirmary in the royal palace, Mislee and Nasha clapped their hands happily.
Before their eyes was a fine, newly built medicine shelf. The shelf, which was at the height of the waist of a lady, was crowded with various small and large bottles that were lined up. Inside those bottles were many different kinds of medicinal herbs. There were various uses such as ones to be brewed or grounded and then coated on.
“Until now, we could only deal with small external injuries in this infirmary, but with this the kinds of patients we accept will also increase.”
Mislee placed both hands on her waist and gave a satisfied sigh.
“This place won’t be called a place for soldiers to slack off anymore.”
“Of course. This place is better than the main infirmary too!”
“Ahaha, it’s not like we’re competing with them though. But I really am happy. Thank you very much— Yuna.”
A voice that seemed to pierce the ears echoed in the room.
Yuna heard that for certain.
“What in the world happened?”
“Oh my goodness, she’s collapsed.”
“Lady Celiastina, please hold on.”
Several shouts rained down in a bundle.
The door to the Hall of Blessings opened.
A tranquil air filled the room inside.
On the bed that was set up in front of the altar there were overflowing flower petals and a single girl.
The goddesses drawn on the ceiling watched over the girl while dancing elegantly.
Celiastina was already concentrating.
I wonder if the flower will bloom soon, Celiastina said.
Yeah! I hope it blooms soon. A little girl smiled and replied with that.
A harmless conversation exchanged around a small bud in the backyard of the orphanage. Even now Celiastina could remember it distinctly; the clear smile of the young girl at that time too.
Everything may have started from that moment.
Celiastina’s extraordinarily steep journey began from a meagre but warm and sweet “memory of happiness”. It may have been because the days following after that were so painful that those memories alone shone so vividly in the back of her eyelids.
Everything came quite far from such a place, Celiastina thought absently. And then, even though everything came from such a long distance, right now she was about to return to the “beginning” once again–.
Fate was such a strange thing.
It was late at night on the eighth day since he rushed out of the royal palace.
At last Asyut returned.
The front of the main gates was bright like daytime due to the large torch lights.
Asyut stopped his horse before the gates. Beside him– the carriage carrying the sleeping Yuna, who was dead to the world, came to a stop in the same way. From the window of the carriage the only thing that slightly peeked out from the girl whose body was wrapped in a linen blanket was her defenseless slumbering face. Those steady sounding breaths let him know that she was certainly alive. Peering at her face like that, Asyut gave a relieved sigh. No matter how many times he confirmed this, his anxieties still wouldn’t disappear. She was right beside him but would she stop breathing before he knew it?– That was his anxiety.
Come to think of it, when Asyut just met “Yuna”, they returned to the royal palace with her on a horse like this. That was the beginning of everything. It was at that time that she just transferred to Celiastina’s body. He was certain that she was at a loss inwardly, not knowing anything.
A little break in the weather could be seen.
Linus suddenly stopped in the hallway and gazed surreptitiously at the one streak of light visible from the sky, covered by thick clouds, outside the window.
Truthfully, there was no time to be staring leisurely out the window, because he had to attend an important meeting from here. However, Linus’ heart was oddly calm and it was that reason that made him unable to feel like heading to the meeting room in a hurry.
You and those priests of the royal palace…!
Because of you, that girl, Yuna is–!!
Hariet’s despair-filled cries echoed repeatedly in the depths of Asyut’s ears.
Yuna was in danger.
The instant that thought came Asyut broke into a run from that spot like a shot. Slipping through everyone who was taken aback, he wasn’t even able to care about Hariet, Rendo, and Madela, and left the bar at full speed.
A sharp voice leapt abruptly into his ears.
Aeneas’ shoulders jerked and he came back to himself half in a daze.
When he realized it, he was standing stock-still in that spot with a sword gripped in his right hand.
The muscles in his limbs were horribly stiff and an unpleasant feeling of wasted effort dominated his entire body. At the end of his line of sight, which finally focused, the colleague that he had just been crossing blades with was looking up at him in fear on his bottom. Before long he raised a hand to show his intent to surrender.
(WARNING: This chapter ends on a PAINFUL cliffhanger and it doesn’t get resolved until Chapter Nine so for those who hate cliffhangers please don’t read this chapter until Chapter Nine comes out. Trust me, it’s a really really REALLY bad one. When I read this book for the first time I actually skipped Chapter Eight entirely to read Chapter Nine LOL.)
The next morning Asyut once again proceeded to the medicine store that Yuna’s parents ran.
He may be disliked for appearing right on the heels of yesterday; however, even then he did not care, and Asyut was half-defiant. The interaction at the church with Hariet and last night’s small drinking party pushed Asyut’s back. Hope had not been exhausted yet. A miracle was surely within reach.
He went up a long slope.
Having come to this town, only a few days had passed, and yet he was able to find many familiar faces amongst passers-by who came and went past him. There was the old man who sat under the same building yesterday, the children running around in the back alley, and the housewives chatting beside the well… Indeed, like this “acquaintances” would increase in a flash. And like the young men, who he drank together with yesterday, said, it made sense how any rumors were spread immediately.