Debt of Fate
Ch 8: Running away [pt1]
The walls of the royal palace still felt the same to her. From the way, they glittered to the way they made her feel restricted. Nothing seemed to have changed for her.
If there was something different about this place, then it was the lack of servants currently roaming the halls. She remembered it being full of human bodies trying to reach our place or another.
Its so peaceful now. Did the war that was about to happen end? Does this peace mean that we managed to win in the end?
Natasha had so many questions to ask. Now that she had time, she finally recalled why she had been about to be sacrificed in the first place.
The world in this book was about a war against the devils. According to the story, the only way to gather complete victory was to use magic against the devils magic user. But magic was not a normal power and it required sacrifice to achieve.
The original sacrifice was supposed to be the dukes daughter (son). But due to the emperors interference, the sacrifice ended up being the illegitimate princess instead of the intended.
The emperor wanted to ensure that his family had a monopoly on magic. He could not accept the dukes intentions and decided to interfere.
As a result, both their crown prince as well as the dukes daughter (son) ended up possessing magic. That was the permit of the original story and where Natashas role had been intended to end.
But I survived. So what happened to the magic?
That thought crossed Natashas mind before she shook it off. It was ridiculous for her to think all this.
Especially since she had reached the end of the hallway and the room of records was in front of her. This was her first step toward freedom and she opened the room without hesitation.
”So this is the national treasury? It is much more impressive than I thought it to be. Look at all these loots of war. ”
From expensive jewels to expensive weapons, it all lined the wall. Everything inside that room was not only expensive but also quite bold. These were invaluable treasures that would be of no use to Natasha.
All these treasures were not worth selling since they would just bring Natasha back to the start. She did not want to make it easy for herself to get caught.
So she bypassed the countless treasures and headed to the back room which held the currency. Her heart sped up as she neared the pile of money in front of her. Her hand itched to pocket as much money as she could. But Natasha held herself back.
In the end, she just took enough money that would get past the first town. She had enough confidence in her abilities to be able to land a decent job.
”Fuck, I forgot to bring a purse with me. Being with a system has spoiled me much more than I thought it did. ”
Natashas voice had a bitter tone to it when she spoke. She would not go as far as to say that she missed her system, but the lack of options was certainly worrisome.
It also made her realize how granted she had taken her previous luxury. There was a lot she would need to adjust accordingly now. The thought was a little scary.
In the end, Natasha ended up taking the pouch with the royal insignia on it. It was the only option available to her. But as long as she did not take the pouch out, she would not be in trouble.
Sneaking out proved to be as easy as it had been sneaking into the treasure room. Natasha almost felt like she was being watched as she walked out of the palace. But she dismissed her feeling of caution.
After all, she was sure that she would be able to know if someone followed her. Natashas senses were sharper than any humans. The hours she had put into her training ensured that she would always stay cautious.
What she forgot to take into account was a simple fact – the presence of magic and other supernatural phenomena in this world. Her senses were able to detect humans but not the presence of birds and other animals around her.
So she did not notice the bird watching her as she walked out of the royal palace. Nor did she know that she was already being targeted.
If the royal palace had screamed familiar to her, then the normal streets could not be further away from that sense of familiarity.
Natasha had never been a fan of touring the area around the palace since it often led to open criticism. The people who considered her a sign of their emperors mistake let her know with their looks.
As a result, the emperor also did not like Natasha to go out often. And this was the only point they both agreed on.
”This is nice. I never knew freedom could taste this sweet before. Even this street looks lovely now. ”
Natashas current attire of wearing an oversized coat hid her face and any other visible feature that marked her as royalty. If there was one place where she could be recognized, it was this town.
She was sure that no one would know who she was as long as managed to escape this town. Not even Richard would know where she went.
A lot of voices called out to Natasha, asking her to invest in their business. Her overcoat had no insignia but those who had seen her come out of the palace targeted her anyway.
Natasha hurried past the sellers, not wanting to get caught by them. She could see the guards coming toward her at the same time a seller reached out to turn her by force.
”Hey bitch, stop trying to ignore me. Can you not see that I am talking to you? ”
The guards were too close to Natasha now so she made a reckless choice. With whatever energy she had left in her body, she managed to snap the mans wrist. It was all thanks to the countless hours of practice she had put into her technique practice that made it possible.
”Ouch, it hurts. Fuck, what the hell you- ”
Natasha managed to disappear before the man finished cursing her out. Her legs wobbled as she walked further and further and her eyes were getting heavy as well.
In the end, her legs decided they wanted to give in and she collapsed forward. She felt a pair of familiar hands catch her before she collided with the floor.
She looked up into a pair of familiar golden eyes and even her exhaustion did not stop her from recognizing those eyes. Her luck had just turned from bad to worse in a matter of minutes.
”Don you dare take me back to the palace or I will make you regret it. Did you hear my words? ”
Those were the last words Natasha hissed out before she lost consciousness. Her eyes were heavy with exhaustion but the touch of those soft and warm hands around her made her feel better.
Natasha thought she felt the arms around her tighten for just a second but then it all went to normal. And before she knew it, she had managed to fall asleep.
While Natasha was busy taking her nap, everyone else was having a hard time accepting what had happened. No one dared to even take a step forward since they did not want to face Lord Ashleys anger.
This person with an angels face was one that everyone knew to be a devil. His anger and jealousy were something that knew no bounds. He was strong but no one wanted to come close to him. And it was all because they knew his real nature.
”B-Boss, let us carry the lady from here on. I am sure you do not want to have anything to do with her and - ”
”Its alright. I will take things from here so there is no need for you to worry. Also, keep this a secret from the royal guards and especially from the crown prince. I hope I will not have to repeat my orders. ”
No one was foolish enough to go against Sir Ashleys words. They all considered their lives to be worth much more than their loyalty.
Even the soldiers who were supposed to be loyal to the crown could not help but shudder in Lord Ashleys presence.
The teen quickly took his exit with his precious bundle in his arms. Holding Natasha was something he had wanted to do for a while and he could not help but be glad for this opportunity.
It did not matter that his character was being misunderstood once again. He did not care much for the fools who tried to speak behind his back. He could always kill them to shut their mouths.
Behind him, the total palace finally broke down into a panic. The unsettling air was making the air around the palace darker. This feeling was very vivid and Sir Ashley was able to keep an eye on things with his magic.
”It seems like that fool finally discovered that Natasha is missing. I cannot believe he managed to stop me for this long despite being this careless. But I guess it is better for me that Richard is not such a sharp opponent. ”
With a final look back at the Royal Palace, Ashley decided to head back to his palace. He had a feeling that Natasha would not like it if he took her back to the Dukes estate. And that was where his private estate came into play.
He had purchased it as an investment of sorts but it was finally proving to be a worthy one for him.
The guard who was in charge of maintaining the small outside house looked startled as soon as he saw Sir Ashley make his way toward him.
”M-My lord! T-This is- ”
Ashley just raised his finger to his mouth in a motion that said keep quiet before he entered the home. There was no need to be cautious any longer since the house was covered by a forcefield.
In the royal palace, the crown prince raged once he realized Natasha was missing. And everyone had to walk on thin ice as a result of his anger.
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