The Harvest || h.s.

The Harvest - An event that took place annually in the Kingdom of Adwick, where Prince Harry selected one young lady from all over his Kingdom, from the age range of twenty-one to twenty-six, to live with him on his castle. But, what happened once the Chosen set foot in the castle? No one in the Kingdom had a clue.


Harry Styles AU

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9. Chapter 8

VIII. HORSEBACK RIDING LESSONS

Lena was quietly sitting by the side of the polo field of the castle, reading one of Harry's private collection's books. So far, the library was Lena's favorite place in the castle. She spent almost all day reading Harry's books, getting caught between the pages, lingering on the little notes Harry had left written in the books.

He had found Lena asleep in the library one day, around midnight. He was heading to the master bedroom to get some sleep. She was sprawled out on the floor, surrounded by open books. As Harry could see, she was doing some research.

She has been reading about the history of the castle in which she lived in, the biographies of the previous Kings and Queens, and keeping note of every single detail or fun fact she found about the castle, the furniture, the rooms, and garden. Everything had a special meaning.

Niall and Harry, on the other hand, were ridding on the back of their most beloved horses through the field, playing one-on-one polo. So far Niall was beating Harry, and Harry couldn't be more pissed.

He has been very competitive, ever since he was a child. So Harry couldn't let Niall win, especially so that he could impress Lena.

The game finished, both of them exhausted. They got back down from their horses and took them to the stables.

"That was an insult, Niall. You know I can't, and I won't, lose a polo match."

"Well, you just did my friend." Niall laughed as he groomed his horse. "So how's it going with Lena?" He asked casually after a while.

Harry stopped grooming his horse and looked over at Lena, peacefully sitting on the other side of the field, as she continued reading her book.

"It's been okay. It's not going the way I planned, but it's okay at the moment." He sighed. "She is different, you know? I'm not used to girls like her. They usually just throw themselves at me. She doesn't do that, and that's what I like about her." He glanced at her again.

"Why don't you try to do something nice to her? Try to impress her. Win her heart."

"And how am I supposed to do that Niall?" Harry growled. "You know me. You know me well. I'm not good at these things. I don't open up to people that quickly and I don't expect them to either."

"I can."

"Yeah, and?"

"I can open up to people, and they can open up to me."

"Yeah, and?" Harry repeated, getting slightly impatient with his friend.

"You don't understand it, do you?" Niall questioned. He received a confused look from Harry. "I could open up to Lena, and she to me. I can find out what she thinks about you, what she likes, or expects you to do. That way you can impress her and win her heart."

"Are you sure about this?" Harry questioned, giving deep thought to his best friend's proposal.

"Yeah. I mean, she's my friend now too, so it would be just like opening up to a friend. You know, things friends do."

"In that case, I'd love that. Inform me about everything, please. Every detail. I'd like to make her feel special and happy here, and I won't be able to do it without your help. So thanks, Niall."

The lads finished with their horses, and they changed into their usual clothing. They left the stables together but parted ways a few feet later. Niall returned to the castle, and Harry walked toward where Lena was.

He sat next to her and gave her a warm smile, which she returned before looking down to her book again. Harry cleared his throat after a few minutes and Lena looked up at him.

"I believe Laird has told you this before; I want to teach to how to ride."

Lena looked at him with wide eyes and slowly closed her book. "Um, are you sure? I mean, I never rode one, a-and I don't know if it's safe..."

"It is. It totally is. Don't worry; I won't let anything happen to you." Harry interrupted her, standing up and giving her his hand. She hesitated for a second, but eventually gave up, taking his hand and standing up as well.

He walked her to the stables. "I want you to choose one." He stated.

"Huh?"

"Choose one," Harry said, signaling his hand to the horses.

"What for?"

"To own it. So you can ride it whenever you want. Groom it. Train it. Everything."

Lena walked through the stables, admiring and examining each horse closely. Each one more graceful than the other, she was almost all the way through the stables when she saw a majestic white mare.

She entered the stall where the mare was, raising her hand as she slowly approached her. The horse nickered, allowing Lena to caress her face. She stayed calm as Lena continued to stroke her face. Lena heard a chuckle behind her, and she turned around to see Harry, leaning on the wooden wall of the stall with his arms crossed on his chest.

"Good choice. I got her last week. She's a thoroughbred. One of the best. I haven't named her yet, so you even get to do that." He smiled. Lena thought for a while and looked closely at the mare.

"Amelie," Lena stated with confidence.

"Amelie?"

"Yeah, like my sister."

"That's sweet." Harry smiled. "So, Amelie then. Come on, let's get you into your riding apparel, shall we?"

Some maids, in the stable's changing room, helped Lena into her equestrian clothing. She stepped out of the room, and Harry looked at her from top to bottom, with his mouth slightly open.

"You look amazing," Harry complimented. "That outfit does you justice."

Lena blushed. "Thanks." She muttered.

Harry shook his head and took Amelie out of the stables and into the paddock by the bridle.

"Get on the left side of the horse, that's right," Harry commanded, and Lena did exactly as he said. "The first thing you have to do is put your left feet in the stirrup. Yeah, just like that. And now pull your body upward, get on the saddle." Harry saw how Lena was struggling and decided to help her.

"There you go," Harry smiled, "swing your right leg around the horses' body. Yes, that's right. Now put your right feet in the right stirrup. And now wait here." Harry left for the stables and then came back riding his stallion.

"What do I do next?" Lena questioned.

"See these ropes on the back of her neck? Those are called the reins. Hold them the whole time. Don't let go of them. If you want to turn to the left, it's simple, just tug the reins to the left side, the same with the right side. But first, you want your horse to start walking, right? Gently kick her on the side with your ankle."

Lena kicked her mare, squealing with happiness when she started walking. Harry saw the amazement in her eyes, and he smiled.

"Good job, good job." Harry did the same, and their horses started to walk side by side. Harry's horse walked a bit faster ahead of Lena's mare.

"Hey, that's not fair." Lena protested, but still, an underlying joy could be heard. "How do I do that?"

"What? Make her walk faster?" Lena nodded. "Kick her a bit harder. If you want her to stop, just pull the reins until she stops. Got it?" Lena nodded again.

"Well, let's race then," Harry smirked, and made his horse trot at a fast pace and then run until he was various feet ahead of Lena.

"Harry!" Lena protested. "That's called injustice!"

Scared, Lena kicked her mare's side a bit harder, and she started to trot. Lena gasped as her horse gained more speed but still trotted at a very steady pace.

A few minutes later, she reached the other end of the paddock, where Harry was waiting for her. Harry helped her to dismount the horse, and they both walked their horses back to the stables.

"See? That wasn't that hard, was it?" Harry smirked, and Lena playfully shoved his shoulder, laughing as she did.

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