Oliver pulled off his jacket, laying over the foot board on his bed to be hung up later, and slowly sat down on the bed's surface. It was refreshing to have left the castle for a little while, he enjoyed these outings and they were often his favorite part of the week. Sometimes he made more than one trip into the village just to get out more. Being part of the castle court helped as it meant he could go wherever he wished without people asking too many questions.
[+purple "We can go back any time that you like,"] he told her, leaning back a bit to rest against the wall while his arms folded loosely over his chest. [+purple "All you need to do is say so. But it's almost dinner time, we should go and see what the kitchen has whipped up."]
On the way back, she quietly holds onto one of his hands, not really realizing she had done. Her ruby gaze takes in everything as they walk back, the soft smile not leaving her lips. As they near the castle, her grip tightens on his hand before she quickly lets go. Her gaze grows muted as the head inside. As the heavy doors slams shut behind them, she manages to not flinch. But inside her heartbeat was quickening. Mentally chastising herself for getting scared for no reason, she forced herself to relax.
Waving goodbye to Jeremy she follows Oliver back to his, now their, room. Sighing softly as the door closes behind them, this time feeling safer, she quietly takes off her coat, and goes to the wardrobe to hang it up, and puts away her new clothing. For a few minutes all that can be heard is the rustling of bags and hangers. Softly she says [+red "Thank you. It was nice to go to the village. I enjoyed it, as well as spending time with you and Jeremy."] There was a slight pause before she added Jeremy to her sentence. Turning to face him, she smiles a little. [+red "I look forward to the next time we go out."]
Oliver continued to watch them as they remained on the ground, making sure they didn't get up again. He wasn't about to let people that he cared about be spoken of so negatively, especially if he could do something about it. Lilli's voice pulled him back into reality, Oliver picking his head up quickly to look at her. He wasn't greeted with a scowl or disapproving look but a smile instead, voicing her wish to learn how to do what he just did. His small size made him quite fast, sometimes difficult to keep up with, but the muscle and training he had gained made him quite a deadly force. Picking off a small group of thugs was really no challenge.
[+purple "Sure,"] he responded, letting his gaze flicker between both of his friends as he adjusted his now-crooked scarf. [+purple "I think I can teach you something."]
He led the two of them through the village and back up to the castle, Jeremy branching off from them once inside in order to get some work done. Oliver took Lilli back to their shared room, heading over to the closet and opening the doors so she could put her clothes away.
Her eyes widen in shock as she watches him take them down with little to no effort. A soft smile Grace's her lips as she speaks. [+red "I think we can add hand to hand combat to the list Oliver."] She had never seen anyone fight that before, and she wanted to learn to do the same.
The leader of the males seemed to take amusement of the situation, not seeing Oliver as a threat. Anyone who had seen the prince in battle would know better and would state that it was quite the opposite. There wasn't much to the thin and small teenager but he was quick and had quite the accurate aim.
[+red "I doubt this would even be a challenge,"] he taunted, arms folding over his chest. [+red "I heard Ashland wasn't that tough, either. Tell me, are you going to continue your spree of negligent homicide and get your friends killed, too?"]
Oliver's gaze grew dark as he stared the male down, fists clenching at his side. How dare this asshole speak about his family and friends that way? A lesson was certainly in store for this group, that was for sure. He shot forward, a fist connecting with the offender's nose first before he swung his leg around and kicked him swiftly in the stomach. When he collapsed, he knocked the other two down in a similar fashion. He may be a bit on the small side but he packed quite a bit of power in his attacks. Movement from his peripheral caught his eye, noticing the leader attempting to get up but a heavy kick to his head knocked him back down again.
[+purple "If you ever speak to me or my friends again, I'll kill you,"] he spat out, his voice a bit on the quiet side. Even though his voice was soft in volume it still held quite a bit of intensity.
She quietly follows behind them, her ruby gaze brightening as she takes in some of the spirits mingling around a few graves. Keeping silent she follows them to his brother's grave, her gaze growing a bit sad as she sees his spirit hovering ny Oliver, and placing a spectral hand on his shoulder. Meeting her gaze the spirit smiles sadly and vanishes. Sighing softly, she follows them to the entrance, her ears lowering in anger as the males try to cause problems.
Before she can react, her view is obscured by Oliver as he confronts them. Concern fills her gaze and she goes to step around him, only to have Jeremy grab her. Sighing in soft irritation at being viewed as defenseless, she stays quiet, and watches them have a short verbal spar. [+red "This is becoming tedious..."] She mutters quietly. Irial lets out a soft chuckle. [+blue "You never were one to let others protect you without due cause."]
The prince nodded, glancing through the bustle of the crowd before leading her through it. Oliver enjoyed spending time in the village, mostly because he wasn't under the constant watch of castle staff, and liked to come down often. The warmer months were his favorite time to venture from the castle as it meant he could stay outside for much longer. In the midst of winter, he could only last an hour or two with warm clothes before he needed to warm up again by the fire.
Both males remained quiet as Oliver led them to the other side of the village. The crowd of people had quite thinned in this area as there wasn't much to it. Very few shops could be seen, instead having been replaced by some cabins and pathways. He expertly navigated the small streets, passing through an iron gate that opened to a cemetery. It was quite small for an eternal resting place, perhaps about an acre, and many of the stones had been weathered with age. He silently headed to the back where a new and rather pristine stone had been placed, displaying intricate engravings around the edge. At the top a name had been etched: Jeffreys.
Oliver took the bundle from Jeremy as he held it out, pulling back the paper to reveal a beautiful bundle of flowers. Many different colors could be seen in the petals, a rather spring-like bouquet having been chosen. He knelt down, carefully placing the flowers in a holder that had been erected for that very purpose, lingering there a moment before rising to his feet. A glance was stolen at Lilli before he led then back to the gate in order to make their way through the village once more.
At the entrance, a group of tough-looking young men stopped them from passing through, one of the males in front giving them a troublesome smirk.
[+red "Mingling with the commoners, are we?"] he sneered, resting a hand on his hip. Within easy reach, on his belt, a sword was strapped. Each one had a rather deadly weapon with them, making it clear that they weren't simple troublemakers. Whatever they wanted, they took with force...and a few casualties.
[+purple "Get out of our way before you regret it,"] Oliver responded, bright eyes narrowing. At the same time, he moved in front of Lilli to protect her, Jeremy immediately going to her side. His gentle hand took her wrist, pulling her back a little bit.
[+green "Stay back, Lilli,"] he instructed softly. He gave her a reassuring smile all the while keeping a gentle and soft hold on her. [+green "Let him take care of this and stay with me so you don't get hurt."]
She quietly follows behind him, flinching slightly as the cool air hits her face. [+red "I think I'm fine. Thank you. We can go wherever you wish."] She says softly, choosing not to address his statement about getting her own bank account skd money.
Oliver remains near the door with Jeremy as she shops, the two talking quietly. He didn't mind helping her gear up for the cold days and nights in his Kingdom, it was better than having her freeze. Unlike her day clothes, these were a bit more private and not something he felt comfortable helping her with, besides he had no idea how to shop for women's pajamas and underclothes. A slight blush tinted his cheeks as he thought about it, trying to force it down before she returned.
Bright eyes flickered over as she approached, taking his wallet and tucking it back into his pocket while glancing over the receipt and doing the same afterwards. [+purple "It's fine, Lilli,"] he reassured her, fixing his jacket before leading the two of them back outside and into the chilly air. More people had begun their own shopping trips, the village seeming to pick up a bit more. [+purple "Soon you'll be getting your own bank account and money to put into it. Besides, the things you got were made to last for years so it's money well spent. Is there anywhere else you'd like to go before I take us to a different part of the village?"]
She quietly searches his face for a moment, wanting to make sure it truly wasnt an issue before accepting his wallet and walking over to a free clerk and asking for help. After explaining what she needed, the clerk happily shows her to different parts of the store and helps her pick out what would look best on her and still keep her warm.
Nearly half an hour passes, and Lilli is finally finished getting what she needed. The only reason it took so long is her need to argue with the clerk, mostly because she didn't want to buy a lot of things and make Oliver think she was trying to take advantage or anything. Sighing quietly she winces as the final price is rung up, nearly $500 worth. Giving the clerk the money, she takes the three bags that were bulging slightly and walks back over to Oliver and Jeremy.
Very apologetic she hands Oliver the receipt and his wallet. [+red "I'm really sorry, I kept trying to tell the clerk that I didn't need all of this..."]
Oliver waited patiently until she took the leather piece from him, letting his arm fall to his side once she did. Lilli was right about that, the store was a bit expensive. In all honestly, most of the places the castle court shopped at were. It didn't bother him, buying his own clothes in these stores or buying hers, as he wasn't about to run out of money any time soon. In fact, a lot of the money that was spent in this little village by the castle court was what kept the town functioning fully.
[+purple "It's fine, Lilli, I don't mind,"] he reassured her. [+purple "Make sure you get everything you need, don't skip out on something just because you think it's too expensive. It may be another week before we come down again and it gets pretty cold at night."]
Jeremy smiled a bit at his friend's words, shifting the bundle he had in his arms. He enjoyed seeing this side of Oliver, especially since it didn't appear very often. [+green "You're being rather nice today, are you falling ill?"] he teased softly. This earned quite the amusing look from Oliver and a gentle shove into the wall nearby.
She hesitates for a moment before gently taking his wallet. [+red "Are you sure? This all looks expensive, and you already paid for my day clothes."] She says quietly. She felt a little bad that he was paying for everything, but what could she do? She didn't carry money.
[+purple "Did you get them?"] Oliver asked his old friend, looking over the bundle that he still held in his arms. Jeremy nodded, giving his usual gentle smile.
[+green "I did. we can take care of it after we're done here. Also, Lilli, you look very beautiful."]
The prince nodded in response to the first part of his answer, leading the two of them to the next shop and stepping inside. Any kind of night time wear or undergarments imaginable were available for purchase, Oliver keeping near the door. He didn't want to invade her privacy nor did he want her to think him some kind of pervert.
[+purple "Jeremy and I will wait here while you go and pick out what you need,"] he informed her, reaching back into his pocket and removing his wallet. He held it out to her for her to take. [+purple "Use my money, there's plenty there."]
She quietly smiles, her ruby gaze warm. Maybe there was a sweet guy underneath after all. Following him outside, she smiles even more upon seeing Jeremy. [+red "Yes, I just need to go into the store here, and then my part of this trip will be done."] She answers softly.
Oliver shook his head, taking a couple of steps back as he reached his hand into his pocket. [+purple "We'll have to go next door for that. You can wear that out if you wish but make sure you gather the clothes you were wearing before. I'll pay for it in the meantime."] His wallet was pulled out, the young prince heading to the desk to purchase her outfit. Once it was taken care of he took a cloth bag from the desk and held it open for Lilli to put her clothes into, then handed it to her. Once they were situated, he led her next door.
Jeremy had caught up to them as they reached the next store, holding a cloth bag of his own as well as a small bundle that was wrapped in paper. He gave them a soft smile, adjusting his glasses with his free hand.
[+green "I see your trip was successful."]
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