Prince Playing Peasant

Adalwin goes to the castle of Van Falkenburg to seek a position as stable boy, to help support his family after they had been overthrown in their own castle by his uncle. As he works in the stables, he starts to fall in love with the Princess Linza, and she falls in love with him. But, he's a peasant, and she must marry someone of noble blood. What will happen when she learns that he is just that? What will happen when he attempts to reclaim his right to the throne? All will cry, laugh, and fall in love while reading Prince Playing Peasant.

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2. Chapter 1

The market place was bustling, the mushy, muddy snow pushed to the sides of buildings to accommodate the coaches riding by, the vendors shouting their wares and sales at the top of their lungs. The chilly air nipped at the skin of the buyers, haggling and attempting to lower the prices the vendors had set so high. The smells of delicious baked goods wafted from the baker, mixed with the stench of manure dropped from the animals being sold and the exotic aroma of different spices.

Adalwin weaved his way through the crowds, hunching over to hide his perfect posture. If he was to survive as a peasant servant, he had to start acting and talking like one. He listened to the various peasants and their slang, readying himself for the inevitable moment he had to speak to someone.

He finally decided to adopt a new name, hiding his lineage. He was no longer Adalwin Von Essen, but Albert Klein, a man who came from a small, nearby village to seek employment in the staff of the Royal palace.

Adalwin looked up, and gazed at the castle resting on top of the hill, overlooking the village and market, it's outcropping farms, and finally the woods.

He glanced around the market, memorizing all the sights and streets, in case he was able to leave the castle and visit his family.

Moving against the crowd, Adalwin eventually made it to the castle gates, it's iron fence barring anyone who wasn't of royal blood or their servitude to enter, the castle surrounded by a large stone wall, killing holes dotting its surface.

He called up to the guards at the top of the wall, asking permission to enter.

“State your business, peasant,” one of the guards shouted.

“I wish to enter the servitude of the Van Falkenburg family, into any position they might assign to me,” stated Adalwin, waiting for their judgement of him to reach his ears.

“Alright, you shall be permitted to enter. The servants quarters is to the west side of the castle, and the castle faces the south,” shouted the other guard, and motioned for his companion to give the order to lift the gate.

As the piece of iron lifted above him, Adalwin approached in his hunched manner, making him seem like the peasant he so desperately needed to portray.

He entered the courtyard, and traveled to the left, finding the servants entrance just as the guard had said.

In front of the entrance sat a stout, gray haired woman who was plucking a chicken, the feathers more than likely scratching her hands.

She lifted her head to see who had braved the journey to the servants entrance, and her eyes widened with appreciation at his size, finding it useful in many menial tasks she could put him to.

“I am sorry to disturb you Ma’am, but I am here to inquire about any positions that may be open in the staff of the Van Falkenburg castle, to serve the Van Falkenburg family,” stated Aldwin, praying that there was at least one position left.

“Well, my boy,” grinned the woman, gaps where teeth had once been allowed him to see her tongue. “Today seems to be your lucky day. We just dismissed the previous stable boy, because he kept stealing the food, but I can see that you are a respectable young lad. The job is ours, along with all the tasks that I ask of you. You see,” she said, tottering over to him, “I am not as young as I once was. I can no longer chop wood for the fires, cannot butcher any large game, and I cannot go to the market by myself. Those we will be your additional duties as stable boy, along with caring for the horses, feeding them, grooming them, readying them for their rider.”

Adalwin nodded his head, understanding what a stable boy’s tasks were, having assigned a young lad to the job himself once, before the tragedy happened.

The woman led him behind the castle, to a wooden building that was so wide it could fit three cottages that were the size of the cottage his family stayed in.

He thought of his mother, who faced starvation and frost bite to keep her children safe. He thought of his three siblings, the triplets who had been brought into this world by violence and pain on their mothers part.

“What is your name boy,” questioned the woman, requiring a name in order to hire the young man.

“Albert Klein,” answered Adalwin, utilizing one of the names he had once heard in his previous home.

The woman snorted, seeing as his surname was an injustice to the towering man.

“My name is Ida Bauer, and I am the maidservant to Princess Linza Van Falkenburg.”

Adalwin nodded his head, and assumed that the princess was as insufferable as all the rest he'd met in his own palace. Always talking about the latest fashions, who was impure and who was hiding an ugly mole beneath her powder, and it always irritated Adalwin, wishing he could have met one who enjoyed riding, hunting, swordplay and archery, and reading. Oh how he missed reading. The musty smell of the old parchment, the smell of fresh ink as he wrote his own works of literature and poetry, but he had gladly left it behind to help support his mother and siblings.

They finally made it to the stables, and glanced inside. The horses were magnificent beasts, with coats shining with good health, and their costing more than the clothes on his family’s backs.

“These horses will be in your charge, Albert,” said Ida, and patted a gray horse's snout. “Should you fail in any of your duties, you will be dismissed faster than you can run.”

Adalwin laughed, and patted the horses neck, feeling the thick, winter overcoat and soft undercoat.

“I understand, Ma'am,” he chuckled. “But for your information, this is not the first time I've cared for horses. My history as a stable boy is quite lengthy.”

Ida nodded, and watched how well the horse reacted to his touch, like it was a lover's touch. She wondered just what kind of man he truly was as his face and charm suggested noble heritage, but his clothes and name suggested that he was born in a barn.

Ida abandoned these thoughts for the moment, and led him back to the servants entrance.

“I shall take you to the servants quarters, where you will room with the other male servants.”

She opened the door and entered the kitchen, the heat making Adalwin stagger, the smell of meats and spices permeating the air. Servants ran around like ants in the summer who had found a sweet cube of sugar on the floor. A woman stood in front of a large pot that hung over the hearth, stirring something that resembled stew.

“God's breath! I curse the day these vegetables were picked! May the devil reach up out of his fiery realm to drag these vegetables to the deepest circle of hell,” yelled the old woman, waving the spoon she gripped in her hand like a battle axe.

Adalwin’s eyes widened, and he took a tentative step back. He had never been afraid of any man, but this was no ordinary man, not even an ordinary woman! He had seen his fair share of mad men, but this woman who was cursing vegetables to hell was the one who was more deranged than anyone he had ever seen.

The mad woman turned around to face them, the rage and fury that once lit her eyes was soon replaced with a joy that could only compare to a grandmother who has been graced with the presence of her grandchildren.

“And who is this strapping young lad,” she exclaimed, looking Adalwin up and down. “Is he the young man who has taken up Thoman’s old position?”

Ida looked up at Adalwin and back at the woman, “Yes he is, Aldeva. He will be taking up all of his previous tasks, as well. His name is Albert Klein, and I am escorting him to the servant’s quarters as we speak.”

“Well, we mustn’t let the poor lad starve! Here,” shouted Aldeva, handing him a piece of cheese and a slice of bread. “Have some! You must keep your strength!”

Adalwin looked at the bread and cheese in his hand, thinking that this would make his mother cry with joy and his siblings would break bread and cheese into five pieces, one piece of cheese and bread for each member of their family.

“Is something the matter, dear?”

Adalwin looked back up to see Adelva searching his eyes, piecing together his puzzle of troubles, knowing exactly why he needed the job so desperately.

“Oh my,” she whispered, and took hold of him, bringing him down to a stoop over her, crushing him in a bear hug. “I am so sorry, my child. What are their names?”

Adalwin knew who she was talking about, and saw no harm in giving her their names.

“There is my mother, Ayla, and then my three younger sisters, who were born only minutes apart from each other. Although, they are as different as can be. The eldest, Adela, she is the smartest one in our family. Then there is Annlin, the second, and the girl who acts so much like a boy, you wouldn’t be able to tell she was a girl unless you saw her in a dress. Then the youngest, sweet little Adalsinda, who is so quiet, demure, and beautiful that you know she will be the only girl in the village with suitors at her every beck and call, and the one who will always have the purest of hearts,” whispered Adalwin, picturing his beautiful girls in his mind, and smiling sadly, missing them with every fiber of his being.

Aldeva smiled, picturing his family, the three young girls who were obviously his pride and joy.

“There is no father, is there,” inquired the old cook.

Adalwin’s body tensed, then started to shake from anger and rage.

“No. He was snatched from my life by something I thought I could trust,” he replied, his answer raw and full of deep pain.

“Well, where are your beautiful ladies? Do they live in the village?”

“No, I travelled far out of the forest in order to procure enough money to buy them a house, one that will keep them warm and fed.”

Aldeva’s eyes twinkled, an idea forming in her mind to help ease this boy’s troubles. She had felt drawn to him the second he stepped into her kitchen, and felt like the son she had never been able to have.

“What if I said that my family has an extra room available in their house near the market? Do you believe that they would be interested in occupying that room? To keep it clean,” she said.

Adalwin’s eyes widened for the second time in that kitchen, and disbelief flew across his face.

“Mrs. Aldeva, that is unneccesary, I could never impose my family on yours in such a way!”

The old cook laughed, and shook her head at the boy.

“Nonsense, child. It would honor my brother immensely.”

“Well, if that is the case,” Adalwin hesitated, not wanting to seem like a greedy young urchin who wished to milk a family dry.

Ida cleared her throat, signalling to Adalwin that it was time to make their way to the servant’s quarters.

Aldeva smiled one last time at Adalwin, and asked, “Where is your family located in the woods? I can send my brother to fetch them.”

“They are deep in the forest that outskirts the Watercress castle. That is the castle in which I used to be the stable boy, until the main butler fired me to hire his nephew, who, believe it or not, knew nothing about tending to horses.”

Aldeva’s eyes widened, and her mouth dropped open into a gasp.

“But Albert, dear, that's a two weeks rode even on the fastest of horses!”

“Yes, and it took me a month’s time to reach here. I managed to stock the cottage full of meal, corn and freshly caught game. They should be well off until it is time for them to travel to the city.”

Aldeva smiled, and wondered how such a young man was thrust into the role of man of the house.

“I shall make sure they are well taken care of then,” smiled Aldeva, and firmly pressed Adalwin’s hand, reassuring him that she was a trustworthy person.

Adalwin departed from the kitchen with Ida, admiring the tapestry’s that hung from the walls. He saw one of an intense battle, where the enemy flying red flags was defeated by the victorious army flying blue colors with a falcon holding a snake on the flag. The victorious army was obviously the Van Falkenburg battalion. Another tapestry depicted a forest with deer being hunted by a man and his hounds.

He had viewed at least two more tapestries before they made it to a door, in which Ida pushed it open, allowing Adalwin to enter with his knapsack hanging from his broad shoulder.

He turned to Ida, and pulled her in for a hug.

“Thank you Ida, thank you for allowing me to earn a home for my family.”

“Anytime boy,” teased Ida, and she let go of him, allowing Adalwin to get settled into an empty bed.

Before Ida left however, she told him at what hour he must wake to do his chores, and informed him that the horses stalls had to be mucked, and that wood had to be chopped.

Just as he had finished hiding his prized possessions, a large group of men and boys entered the quarters, each heading to his respective bed. The two men who sat on either side of his bed, was a young boy not much older than his sisters, and an old man who resembled his old butler.

The young boy looked up at Adalwin, and his eyes widened at the sight of the large man with the noble face.

“Hello sir, are you here to fill the stable boy position? That used to belong to Thoman, but he was always very cold and harsh. He also liked to make fun and tease me in very terse ways. You won't do that, will you sir?”

The old man on the other side chuckled, shaking his head. “You will have to excuse Baldwin, son. He is quite lively, is he not?”

Adalwin laughed, and nodded, “he is lively yes, but it's a grand quality to possess, and not many nobles have it, as I've seen in my previous employment.”

This caused the young Baldwin to grin, instantly taking a liking to the new stable boy.

The old man reached over with his hand to shake Adalwin’s hand, introducing himself.

“My name is Hardmod Voss, and that young man,” said Hardmod, pointing to Baldwin. “That young man is Baldwin Vogel.”

Adalwin shook Hardmod’s hand, and grasped Baldwin's hand, shaking it firmly.

“My name is Ada-Albert Klein,” said Adalwin, almost slipping up and giving his real name.

Hardmod narrowed his eyes, sensing something off, not bad, but something was being hidden. What secrets was this man hiding from the world?

Baldwin paid no attention to the near slip-up, and instead focused on how large Albert was.

“How did you come to be so big? What kind of tasks must one do before they become as large as you, or were you gifted by God that way? My mother always says that I'm not done growing yet, and that I need to be patient, but I tired of waiting!”

Adalwin chuckled, and Baldwin's pestering had distracted Hardmod from his thoughts of the strange man in the bed next to his.

All around them, candles flickered out and men climbed into their beds, covering themselves with quilts, but Adalwin didn't even need a quilt. It was so warm, and he felt guilty for being the only one in his family to feel such warmth, when his mother and sisters were huddling together to keep some amount of heat amongst themselves.

As Adalwin laid his head against his pillow, he reached into his knapsack and brought out the pendant which had his family crest carved and chiseled onto the piece of silver. He refused to sell or trade it, reminding him of who he really was, where his home was, and who had snatched it from his father's cold, deceased hands.

He recalled the day like it was yesterday, although it was really many winters ago, 13 to be exact, as he had been counting the years since the injustice had been brought upon his family. 13 years since his father was murdered, since his mother was threatened with the death of her unborn children if she did not agree to marry her husband's murderer. For 13 years they had traveled across the lands, keeping themselves out of reach from the Devil's hungry wrath.

He remembered the day he received the crest from his father.

“Look at me, my son,” said father, his large hand grasping the young shoulder.

“What is it, Father?”

“I have a surprise for you,” said Adalbern, and reached into his pocket, bringing out the piece of silver that had been passed from generation to generation.

“My boy,” started Adalbern, “this is not just a silver pendent. This silver pendent is a symbol of your duty to your people, your duty to serve and protect them. They are not your servants nor are they below you. They are our equals, and if you accept this you acknowledge the importance of such principles, that you will hold them with honor and love. Do you understand, my son?”

Adalwin looked up into his father's eyes, and nodded.

Adalbern smiled, and lowered the chain around his son's neck, and watching as his son admired the crest, whispering the words 'love, equality, protect them.’

Adalwin looked up to his father, meeting his steely gray gaze, and the same gaze he would always look at through the mirror.

Adalwin hadn't known it at the time, but his father had expected his brothers treachery, and decided to hand the key to the throne before his uncle got it.

As Adalwin looked up to the ceiling, he wondered what had become of his people, the people he had sworn to protect that day.

These thoughts swirled in his mind, until he allowed sleep to sink it's claws into him, dragging him through another night of terrors and memories.

 

 

Adalwin woke up, sweat covering his body as he jerked up in his bed, the ghost of his uncle's hands around his neck fading away with the sleep.

He got out of bed and went straight to the block of wood he would be chopping on, and halved many logs for firewood.

Aldeva stopped outside to watch as he made twice the impact on the wood than Thoman, and knew that as long as Albert was around, the castle would be a brighter place for the servants.

As he brought the axe down onto the wood, Adalwin let his mind wander to a small cottage in the woods.

Were his girls alright? Did they have enough food? Did the cold finally steal their lives, or worse, did he finally find them?

He did not want to let his mind toy with these thoughts. They were bad for morale and for his heart.

He reached down to grab another piece of wood, but he soon realized he had cut all the pieces that were left out. Deciding to continue tomorrow morning, he made his way to the stables to muck the stalls, and feed the beasts.

An hour later, and Adalwin was inside the stall of a brown horse, with almost black eyes and white socks. Such a demure thing, unlike the black stallion that was at the farthest side from the door.

As soon as he had put the brush down, a creak sounded through the stables, along with heavy footsteps.

Adalwin bowed his head, knowing full well it might have been the King, and following his instincts as a peasant.

“Saddle my steed, boy,” demanded an irritatingly high voice. “ I wish to go for a ride, and my suitor may join me later.”

“Yes sir,” mumbled Adalwin, refraining from using the term your majesty, seeing as this man was obviously not the King, but a man desperately seeking to be one.

Adalwin waited for the insufferable man who thought himself royal to back away as his horse was saddled and bridled. He even had to help the fool onto the horse!!! How pathetic could a man get?

The man waited in front of the barn for thirty minutes, waiting for his suitor to show up, and when she never did, he gave up and went riding towards the gate, wishing access to leave the castle and enter the town, gladly accepting any form of appreciation and awe.

Adalwin shook his head and laughed once he was gone, and went back to tending to the horses.

“It is quite rude to laugh at others, you know, even if they are as pathetic as that man.”

His head shot up and he looked round, trying to find the source of the voice, until he spotted her, munching on an apple by the black stallion.

“I apologize Miss, it was very wrong of me, and I shall refrain from repeating such an act in front of a lady,” Adalwin said, keeping his eyes down so as not to offend the other person should they be of noble blood.

“I did not say you should refrain from doing so. I meant that if one was to laugh at another's misfortunes, then that person must be joined by a second party who thinks he's a bit of a lap dog.”

Adalwin chuckled, “I might be right in saying he hides dog treats in his rucksack.”

The voice laughed and said, “my name is Linza. What is yours, my comrade of cynicism?”

Adalwin's head shot up, and before him stood a beautiful woman with brown hair, and everywhere the sun hit it, her hair lit up like copper. Her eyes were a soft green, and eyelashes framed the doe-like shape. Her lips were not thin like the other ladies of the courts, but they were plump, soft and glistened in the sunlight from moisture. Her round face was slightly tanned, denoting that her pastimes were spent outdoors.

“Albert, Milday,” said Adalwin as he dropped his head as fast as it had shot up.

“Well, Albert, might you please lift your head? I loathe when people assume that since I am from the palace, they must not look at me.”

Adalwin lifted his head slowly, this time taking all of her image in. She was short, but not petite. Underneath her riding suit, one that was tailored for men, were shapely curves of muscle and flesh.

“So Albert,” inquired the princess, “how long have you been the stable boy?”

“I was hired just yesterday,” replied Adalwin. He had never seen a princess talk to her servants like they were equals before, and it was quite refreshing.

“Finally! I am overrun with joy! Thoman is gone! That weasel of a man always tried looking up my riding skirts as I was climbing onto my horse! But thankfully, I always worse pantaloons underneath all my dresses,” rambled Linza. She hadn't the faintest idea as to why she was spewing these thoughts to a stable boy, but there was something about him that screamed trustworthy. He exuded the aura of a noble, and he had the facial structure of one as well.

Adalwin chuckled as the princess babbled. She rambled as any other princess does, and he had been bored out of his mind then. But this one was different. She showed compassion towards her help, and wasn't afraid of being different, or wearing pantaloons.

Linza observed Albert's face, and admitted he looked as charming as a prince, but also as rugged as a hunter, with a tanned, chiselled face, framed by shiny, black hair that was dripping with sweat from chopping all the wood. His eyes captivated her immensely, as they were the color of steel, of the swords she used while practicing with her father.

A quiet settled over the pair, neither knowing what to say next, although both were raised in courts where one had to make small talk almost constantly.

Linza finally plucked up enough courage to ask him to ready her horse.

Adalwin headed towards the tame, dappled gray horse, when he heard Linza laugh.

“Is there something wrong, Milday,” he inquired, wondering why she would laugh when there was no humor in anything he had done.

“You are saddling up the wrong horse, Albert,” she giggled.

“And which of these beasts, pray tell,” teased Adalwin, “is your steed?”

“That one,” grinned Linza, as she pointed to the wild, black stallion at the far end.

Adalwin’s eyes widened, and he realized that ever since he stepped foot in this kingdom, his eyes had widened more than ever.

“You ride that creature?”

“Yes, is there a problem, Albert,” smirked Linza. Everyone was astonished when she explained that the black stallion was hers, her beautiful steed. She had found him when he was but a foal, and he had been attacked by wolves. Everyone told her to give up hope for him, that he would barely make it through the night. But she nursed him back to health, and he had been vengeful since that day, always loyal only to Linza. That was why she chose the name Wirich, so she would always be reminded that he was a warrior.

Adalwin knew a challenge when he heard one, and he would not lose even if he was a peasant.

“No, Milday,” he responded, “there is no problem. But do you not think he is a bit wild for such a tame creature as yourself?”

Adalwin prayed that she would be alright with his teasing, and that she would not behead him for such folly.

Instead, Linza laughed. It was refreshing to have someone tease her like she was a friend. She had always been treated like fragile glass, and she had always been told that the servants and peasants were below her, that she should not waste her time on them. But in her mind, she thought that needlework and gossip were a waste of time, that swordplay and helping the peasants when she could was worthwhile.

“Oh, I believe I should be able to handle Wirich just fine.”

Adalwin smiled, “as you say, your Highness.”

Adalwin strolled over to the stall in which the stallion stood with pride, knowing his position and beauty.

Adalwin watched as the beast eyed him, cautious of the stranger that was about to attempt to saddle him, but as soon as he brought out an apple, the horse soon warmed up to the strange man.

Linza watched with her mouth agape as Albert brought out her horse, unharmed.

“My, you are truly gifted with horses,” she mumbled, feeling slightly jealous of Albert. Nobody had ever touched Wirich without gaining at least a few bites and bruises, mostly because she was his only companion, and now the new stable boy shows up, winning over the beast’s heart.

“Yes, I have learned how to treat the animal with respect. Sleeping in the stables with them, and helping with their births can bring one to understand them better,” explained Adalwin. He had even sneaked his family in to sleep with the warm beasts, until his employer found out and dismissed him.

Linza was astonished at this man's love and care for the horses, and even more astounded knowing a man this handsome had slept in stables.

Unknowingly, the two had come closer to each other, to a proximity that was deemed inappropriate for a princess, or for a lady. They had tuned everything out, except the other person, until Wirich whinnied for another apple.

Adalwin shook his head of the thoughts that had accumulated in his mind, reminding himself that he was to act like a peasant, and fawning over a princess would do him no good. He was to work for enough money to keep his family safe, not wonder how the princess’s lips tasted.

Linza turned her head to Wirich, and hopped in the saddle, quickly thanking Albert for his assistance. She rode off to the hills, where she would practice her archery with her steed. She needed to get a grip on herself. He was a peasant, and however much she thought them her equal, her father nor the other nobles saw it that way. She had to find a noble suitor to wed.

With each step her horse took, so did his thoughts go, until she was out of sight, and his mind still swirled with images of her, of her beautiful hair and eyes, of her compassionate, free spirit.

Adalwin sighed, and went back to brushing a horse's mane, letting his mind drift once again to a cottage that held his motivation for vengeance.

 

 

It had been a week since his first day as stable boy, and Adalwin had grown accustomed to chopping fresh wood every morning before breakfast, going to the kitchen to eat with Aldeva, who had become almost like a grandmother to him. After he had eaten breakfast, he headed towards the stables, where he would receive poetry when no one was looking, and practiced his swordsmanship with a plan of woods he had carved in his spare time.

Aldeva had informed him that her brother had set out to retrieve his family the day after he had been hired, which gave Adalwin great ease from the pressure in his heart, but then the pain would return as he remembered that their struggle was not over, that his uncle could find them one day and kill them all. One day, however, he would be ready to face his uncle in a duel! He would make his uncle rue the da-

“Boy, are you deaf? I have been calling your name for quite some time, trying to get your attention,” shouted Aldeva, who was shaking her spoon in her fist. Adalwin thought that she could be put on a battlefield and win the battle by smacking their hands and heads with her trusted spoon.

“I am only thinking, Oma,” he answered, and shielded his head from her weapon.

Aldeva’s face softened, her heart going out to the young man who's own heart was hurt by the troubles life gave him, but she knew that he was strong not only physically, but mentally and emotionally.

“Well, cease your thinking and continue eating,” she said as she shoved his food towards him, “you still have to take care of the horses!”

Adalwin laughed at the old woman, and shoveled porridge into his mouth.

As he was putting his bowl down, he heard a voice which had haunted his mind since he was a young boy.

Adalwin's head shot to the door that lead to the dining hall, and cracked it open enough for him to slip through, and he snuck his way against the wall, glancing around the corner to see his uncle, wearing the cloak that had once been wrapped around his father's.

“Badulf Von Essen, what business have you in my castle,” questioned a large man who sat at the head of the table, with a graying beard and hard, blue eyes.

His uncle smiled a fake smile, and bowed, his thin, skeletal body creaking from the weight of the cloak weighing him down.

“It is an honor to be standing in your hall, Adolphus Van Falkenburg, and I am here to discuss your daughters suitors.”

The man who sat at the table narrowed his eyes at the man in front of him, wondering why such an old King would want his daughter's hand in marriage.

“Why do you need to speak of who wishes to marry my daughter? All the men I have selected are well-mannered and will be able to care for her,” explained Adolphus.

“Ah yes, but none have the experience of handling a wife, as I do.”

Adolphus pondered for a moment, and finally decided on something that he believed would suit her daughter, a decision which would frighten Adalwin for not only his safety and his family's, but for the princess's safety as well.

“Very well, Badulf,” proclaimed the King, “you shall be allowed to court my daughter for marriage. But, although I have chosen her suitors, she has free will of who among them her husband shall be. I shall have a servant show you to your new chambers.”

Adalwin quietly hurried back to the kitchen, and out the door to the stables, praying that his uncle would not remember his face.

 

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