When she opened her eyes, she made eye contact with a middle-aged man who had a frown etched on his face. He had a huge build. He carefully placed his big palm on her forehead.
When she screamed at his sudden move, the man folded his arms in disapproval. He murmured, scratching his short beard; unknown if he had grown out the beard on purpose or not.
He raised his thick forefinger and deftly flicked her forehead. It hurt so much that she stopped screaming.
“Does it feel nice to scream at your father’s face?”
“Dad…?” She looked at him, confusion swirling in her eyes.
He claimed that he was her father. His appearance wasn’t short of stunning: dark brown hair that came down to the back of his neck, sharp features, which made his jaw and shoulders look square, and a body fit to be called muscular.
The sound of her loud scream made his whole body alert and stand up. He definitely must have trained a lot.
But… She wasn’t a toddler, nor had she ever heard of a pervert trying to kidnap a grown-up woman, and claiming to be her father.
The scared woman pulled up the quilt up till her eyes and trembled in fear.
The man glanced down at her and said, “I don’t like the way you are looking at me now.”
“Are you alright?”
She couldn’t hold back anymore and cried out loud, “Help me, old man!”
Then, the door burst open, and a tall young man came in. And then her ‘dad’ shouted frustratedly, “Geez, do you really not recognize your father now, Arielsa?”
The young man, who just stepped in, said, “It’s just Arielsa’s nature to hide, isn’t it? Just like how all knights would hope that Sir George isn’t Harpel’s training chief.”
He seemed to be joking, but his tone was so cold that it sounded as if he was mocking.
“Shut up, Chaers,” said the man, who claimed to be her father.
“Arielsa, you fell off the ladder while picking apples in the greenhouse. You just fainted for a second. How can you forget your dad? You fell from the tree you climbed everyday until you were seven!”
In her head, strange names were swirling.
[Arielsa, George, Chaers, Harpel…]
“Yes, you were picking apples for Duke Kyron!”
The young man, Chaers, came over to my bed and said, “Arielsa, the Duke is looking out for you. I know you want to cut all ties with your stupid dad at this opportunity, but I hope you will understand and go with him. The Duke is a little sensitive.”
George looked at her suspiciously, crossing his arms, which looked too muscular to be crossed. Chaer’s attitude was cold and he seemed to have no idea other than wanting to get the girl out quickly.
To escape, she had to first get out of the room.
[What to do?]
She tried to think of whether it was a good way, but her mind was blank. She couldn’t think of anything.
“You can’t. I have to call the doctor again.”
She tried to think of a good answer, but her head was blank.
“I can’t wait anymore. I will have to call the doctor again!”
It could be a big deal if the doctor gave her some weird medicine.
As George waved his hand in the air, she quickly said, “Ah, dad… it’s okay, it’s okay.”
It was terribly difficult to call a man she saw for the first time as ‘dad’. But as she stuttered and said that, George seemed to be relieved. His shoulders relaxed.
“What a surprise! Are you trying to scare people?”
Tears welled up in her eyes. She couldn’t believe that she had to agree with the settings of these pervy kidnappers!
“Are you alright? The doctor said that there was no scratch.”
“Yes, I was simply surprised. I fell from a tree… But I’m fine now.”
“How surprised can you be that you don’t recognise your own father?”
He raised his big fist towards her as if he were about to flick her forehead again. Thinking that she might die if hit by that first, she shied away like a turtle sticking its neck in.
But to her surprise, he put his huge palm on the top of her head and rubbed it. It was painful, and her hair got messy in the end. She was very embarrassed by his affectionate behavior. Because her own father had never behaved like this man.
George looked at her and said with a slightly complex expression, “If you can stand it, go and serve the Duke. Especially since he is not in a good mood. But if things get a little weird-”
“Come on, Arielsa.”
She looked at George before she was finally forced out of the bed. Out of the door, standing and looking at the strange hallway, George and Chaers left me alone and went ahead.
Walking down the hall of the castle, she felt like a prisoner being dragged along. She could feel her back wet with cold sweat.
Yes, this was a castle.
A medieval castle she has never been to in her life.
These people were calling each other by strange names, including her, and she knew where all these names came from at once.
The situation was seriously wrong.
She shook her head violently.
“Where are we going?”
Chaers, who stopped in front of a door, was nervous about going inside alone. Arielsa froze as she looked at the black door, which even looked more unusual.
But when Chaers opened the door, he quickly pushed her into the room.
Arielsa’s heart plunged with the light sound of the door closing behind her back. Her breath halted.
A sturdy man with pale skin and dark hair, sat at his desk, slightly frowning.
Arielsa thought she must have entered some dream.
The man in front of her was shining. It wasn’t as bright as daylight, but as faint as moon light at night.
Like a luminous jellyfish living in the deep sea.
The air that surrounded his body felt special. It was fascinating and mysterious. The aura, which can naturally cause the viewer to lose his soul, was the evidence that he was the only special person in the world.
She stood in a daze, as if she hadn’t ever seen anything like this. He looked at her as if her stare was irritating. When he lifted his clear amber eyes that seemed to glow on its own and brushed his gaze past her, she made a small noise.
The aura that surrounded him, only helped to accentuate his s*xy eyes, the bridge of his nose, tightly shut lips, his neat and manly jawline, and his forearms, which looked as firm as a stone holding a pen.
She rubbed her eyes with both her hands, her heart screaming, “THIS IS A DREAM!”
But he lost interest in her and looked down at the papers again and said, “Arielsa, do you have anything to say?”
A slightly sensitive, low-pitched, cold voice, that seemed to stop her breath. She was so amazed by the circumstances that followed today, she realized that she was holding back a considerable amount of nervousness. Arielsa looked around the room in confusion, fixing her gaze on the old shield hanging on the wall.
On the shield, was engraved the stag of the House of Harpel, which rules the North.
[Everything looks familiar…]
She was terrified and slowly stepped back in shock.
[My name is Arielsa.]
[That means… the other characters…]
Her ‘dad’, George, a vassage of the Harpel Castle, who was called the ‘Harpel’s Shield’, known for his powerful force and endurance.
And Chaers, the ruthless knight, who pushed her into this room, was the Duke’s right hand man and a book-keeper, called ‘Harpel’s Fox’.
She was in a romance fantasy novel, ‘The Snowing Desert’.
She held her breath, with her mouth wide open.
She managed to squeeze out a little voice and said, “D-Duke…?”
At her call, the Duke Kyron put the pen down and looked at her, his face slightly irritated.
[Are you really the Duke Kyron Harpel, the ruler of the North?]