[Left [Pic https://i.imgur.com/sZ5J4Py.jpg]] Lawrence heard the door and smiled towards the two women as they entered, budding them both a good morning before he allowed himself to glance at Jinny a bit longer. She looked far more relaxed without the fancy hair and the fancy clothes but he could tell that she was nervous about something, likely the idea of going for a hunt. After all, she was a woman and while she seemed to crave adventure, never having that would make this quite nerve wracking he was sure.
[B "Jinny, have you ever ridden before? It's perfectly find if you have not. You are more than welcome to ride my horse with me and since you will be here for some time perhaps you would permit me to teach you."] He glanced towards Adelaide. [B "With your permission of course Lady Adelaide."] He took her smile and nod and permission and smiled widely back at Jinny.
[Right [Pic https://i.imgur.com/S7hutov.jpg]] Adelaide looked up from her courtesy and met his smile with one of her own, her cheeks blushing slightly at being told she should call him Elias in private. She nodded and made a note of trying to break that habit when she could.
[B "I apologise. I was informed that one must always be formal in the presence of a prince but I will do my best to do ask you ask."] Adelaide too a seat and glanced over at Jinny who was smiling at Elias' suggestion for their plans. [B "That sounds wonderful. I would enjoy meeting the horse of the royal stables. I must admit it has been some time since I have ridden a horse but I do enjoy it so."]
Some of the servants entered to serve them with some food and Adelaide thanked them in the same way she thanked Jinny whenever she did something for her because manners were important to her, no matter birth rights.
[B "Is breakfast always such a feast?"] She asked with a smile.
Lawrence broke the silence first and Elias glanced over to him, smirking a bit. Lawrence had always been the light hearted one between them but he supposed Lawrence didn't have as much expectation on him as Elias did. Elias shrugged a little, he was nervous in all honesty, he wanted to make sure everything was perfect.
[+green "Ah, we picked a good day I believe. Hopefully, the weather will keep up. Ah, I'm not sure when, I'm unsure how long women take to get ready."] He chuckled a little at that.
He glanced up when Adelaide and Jinny entered, bowing to her and smiling a little.
[+green "Please, my Lady, in private affairs you can call me Elias."] He didn't want the formalities. Besides, when they were wed was she going to call him 'Your Highness' all the time? He hoped not. He gestured to the chairs and nodded as a couple of servants saw to it the women were seated. He took a seat and looked to the window once more.
[+green "Lawrence was just saying how the weather has been wonderful. After breakfast, we shall go to the Stablemaster."] Elias said, hoping he was doing all of this correctly and not being too domineering.
Jinny smiled a little to lady Adelaide and blushed a lovely shade of pink at her comments but of course she didn't press the matter. She followed Adelaide down to the dining hall and courtsied after Adelaide, eyeing Prince Elias and then looking to Adelaide. Honestly, she wasn't sure if his invitation to call him by name extended to her but she would no doubt continue regardless.
She curtsied to Lawrence and bid him good morning with a smile as she took a seat. It still felt incredibly strange for her to be eating at the same table as such nobility and if she was honest, it was incredibly intimidating.
She looked up when he mentioned a stable master and smiled a little. At least Elias was paying attention to Adelaide and what she liked. That was a good sign. She moved some hair behind her ear and looked to Adelaide. This Prince was going to take them on a hunt and if Jinny was honest, she was very frightened. She had never learned how to ride a horse and she could already tell it was going to be a disaster where she was concerned if she came toppling off a steed.
Jinny figured she could walk with them. It couldn't be that difficult.
[Left [Pic https://i.imgur.com/sZ5J4Py.jpg]] Lawrence agreed to meet him at breakfast. Rather than going home that night he retired to the room that Elias usually encouraged him to take when it was too late to go home. He spent a little bit of time thinking about Jinny before he slept that night. It was not normal for him to be so wrapped up in a woman, especially one that he had only just met. However, he slept well and with a smile on his face and when he woke up he was quick to get himself ready and made his way to the dining room where he saw Elias finishing a conversation with one of his staff members.
[B "You look extremely smart this morning Elias. What's the occasion?"] He said with a chuckle as he made his way over to one of the chairs. [B "The weather looks fantastic today. I think it will be a good day for a hunt don't you?"] He smiled and took a sip from the cup in front of him.
[B "Do you know when to expect the women?"]
[Right [Pic https://i.imgur.com/S7hutov.jpg]] Adelaide slept well that night considering that she found herself in a unfamiliar place. She expected to find it difficult to sleep since she had a lot of be nervous about but she didn't wake until morning. She was already up and about when Jinny came around and she smiled towards her. [B "Good morning Jinny."]
The woman helped her get dressed and fixed her hair, making sure that she was suitable for the day of being outside. She smiled towards Jinny. [B "You look radiant yourself Jinny. I'm sure the Prince's friend will enjoy looking at you."] She chuckled and then there was a knock at the door.
Adelaide opened it and once she listened to her she took a deep breath and looked back at Jinny and encouraged her to follow her. The woman led them to the dining room where Elias and Lawrence were already waiting.
She courtseied and looked towards Elias. [B "Good morning Your Highness."]
Elias watched Lawrence and sighed a little. He admired Lawrence for his honesty and his integrity. He had never had a truer friend in anyone but Lawrence over the years. He watched the man and chuckled a little.
[+green “No one ever tell you as a boy how difficult wooing a lady is.”] Of course the two men had no issue with ladies, their high status meant women threw themselves at their feet but it was different when it came to matters of the heart.
[+green “Will I be the only one wooing?”] He asked and looked Lawrence over with a knowing smirk before waving off the question in good humour.
[+green “I’ll expect you at breakfast tomorrow, we can arrange the hunt with Lady Adelaide and her Handmaid.”] Elias explained and nodded to him before heading up to his own chambers. Adelaide has become quite the wonder, an enticement like forbidden fruit and he wanted to do his very best to win her over.
By sunrise, he was up and awake, dressed smartly as he headed down to the smaller dining room. He did not wish to use the larger ones for such a small party of people and he figured it would do them some good to be in a close space. He glanced outside, it was a nice enough day for a hunt. Even if they were not successful it would be nice to get outdoors with Lady Adelaide and show her some of the sights. He did it sit, instead looking out of the window.
[i “You summoned new, your highness?”] A servant entered and Elias smiled,
[+green “Ah, that I did. Send word to the Stablemaster, tell him I will be visiting today and to have his finest horses ready to show me.”] He said and the servant bowed to him before leaving.
Jinny looked to Adelaide and sighed softly. It was only right she was so nervous. Adelaide was such a sweet person, in body and in soul. She looked somewhat relieved that Adelaide was not planning on dismissing her from service anytime soon and she giggled softly when she mentioned feeling nervous.
[+red “Everything you are thinking is natural, Adelaide. But Prince Elias most likely feels the same way. You should rest, I will assist you to change in the morning.”] Jinny curtsied snd went to her own room.
In the morning, she was back into her much plainer garments. Surprisingly she preferred them as they were a lot more comfortable than the gown she had worn the night previously. She had fixed her hair, leaving it half up and half down, making sure it was tidy. She splashed some cold water on her face and then made her way into Adelaide’s room.
[+red “Good morning.”] She greeted with a bright smile. She knew Adelaide must be anxious about another day in a new place and it was Jinny’s job to reassure her as best she could.
She made sure and dressed Adelaide appropriately, helping with her hair and Jinny always took great pride in how Adelaide was presented. She smiled to her,
[+red “There we are, radiant my Lady.”] She complimented and glanced to the door as it was knocked upon. Jinny answered it and an older woman beamed,
[i “The Prince has invited Lady Adelaide to dine with him this morning.”] The woman showed them the way and Jinny immediately curried upon entering the room.
[Left [Pic https://i.imgur.com/sZ5J4Py.jpg]] Lawrence smiled towards his friend and placed a hand on his shoulder. [b “I am sure your charms will begin to work soon enough, especially if you decided to leave that rose on her bed like you suggested. A woman cannot resist flowers, especially roses. Your gardens do grow the best.”] He sighed happily and his thoughts went back to that of Jinny. She really was something else.
He was not really sure what his family would think if he was ever to fall for someone of her status. He himself didn’t care much for titles and birth rights but that didn’t mean his family would be willing to overlook and ignore such things. Still, he was getting ahead of himself and he was glad when Elias changed the subject a little.
[b “I think that sounds like a wonderful idea.”] His hands came to rest on both of his shoulders. [b “Listen, you are doing just fine. Be yourself, how can she resist you? Perhaps you should retire for the night? Get some sleep and tomorrow you can focus on ensuring you woo your Lady.”]
[Right [Pic https://i.imgur.com/S7hutov.jpg]] Adelaide stepped out of her dress when it fell to the ground. There had been a time when she had been embarrassed to be stood in her undergarments in front of the woman, but they had grown closer as they grew up and it didn’t seem to matter anymore.
She looked around at her and placed a hand on her cheek. [b “Jinny, you know you mean more to me than that. I will always need you. I cannot have you leave me, you are like a sister to me.”] She smiled then and pulled her hand back to allow Jinny to let her hair down.
[b “They are. I just hope that this is the real Elias and he doesn’t change once we are wed. Jinny, is it silly of me to feel so nervous about all of this? What if I do not please him?”]
Elias looked to Lawrence and nodded in understanding. Of course Adelaide would be nervous and reserved, he just wanted to know the woman beneath the formalities. He figured it would take some time for her to understand that she didn’t need to be so formal and he looked to Lawrence when he mentioned the handmaiden.
[+green “J understand, it’s only logical she’s reserved but hopefully in time she trusts me enough without her shadow following her.”] He pointed out and raised an eyebrow.
[+green “Interest, Hm?”] He chuckled a little, [+green “I’m sure your own family will find you a suitable match soon, no doubt.”] He said with a small warning. He didn’t want his friend becoming overly attracted, whilst he of course was never concerned with the differences in class, others around them were.
[+green “Lady Adelaide likes the outdoors, she wants to join us on a hunt and I was thinking after we eat in the morning that perhaps we could go to the stable master, organise for her to be gifted a horse of her own. I do not want her to feel like a prisoner here.”] Courting was new to Elias, not something he commonly indulged in and he looked to Lawrence, pondering on whether he was doing all of this right.
Jinny smiled rose Adelaide and eyed the Rose. Jinny unlaced some of the garments she wore and listened to her speak about the Prince and she was relieved to know he wasn’t a brute.
[+red “I’m very happy for you, Adelaide.”] Jinny said to her softly and eyed her when she mentioned Lawrence.
[+red “The Prince’s friend was very kind, he looked after me well and made sure I was not alone.”] She said to her Lady as she I did her hair and smiled a little. She always thought Adelaide looked rather pretty with her hair down. She giggled softly and looked to Adelaide,
[+red “Lady Adelaide, I understand if you do not wish for me to be present at all of your interactions with Prince Elias, very soon my company will not be needed.”] Jinny said with a gentle smile on her lips and an understanding tone.
She adored serving Adelaide, they had become like sisters almost over the years but she knew eventually Adelaide would be a wife and then a mother no doubt with her own family to tend to. Perhaps she would become a governess to her children, if Prince Elias allowed such a thing.
[+red “They are such kind and gentle men.”] She said thoughtfully as she let her own hair down.
[Left [Pic https://i.imgur.com/sZ5J4Py.jpg]] When it was clear Adelaide had retired to her room, he walked Jinny up the hallway and met Elias with a nod. [b "You are welcome. I do hope that I see you again...I'm sure I will in fact."] With that, the two said goodnight and she was tending to her Lady while Lawrence followed his friend. They had much to catch up on since they hadn't had much chance to talk.
[b "What do you expect? She has been raised to be the wife of a Prince. Wouldn't one usually expect the wife of such to be reserved and obedient? Not to mention this much have been overwhelming for her."]
He took a drink and smiled. [b "Her handmaiden is very loyal to her too. It would be wise to allow them to spend time together where possible but if you want alone time I would be more than happy to distract Jinny. She is of great interest to me. Nothing like the other women here."]
[Right [Pic https://i.imgur.com/S7hutov.jpg]] Adelaide blushed once more as he placed a kiss on the back of her hand and she nodded her head softly. [b "I look forward to seeing you again Your Highness. I can assure you that the pleasure has been mine."] With that she smiled a little and made her way into her room. She had no doubt that Jinny would find her way to her room shortly and want to talk about things before retiring to her own room. She had looked quite close to Lawrence most of the night so perhaps she would have something to talk about too.
When she made her way to the bed she found the rose and she leaned down to pick it up and smiled widely as she brought it to her nose to take in the scent of it and lowered herself onto the bed. Elias certainly knew how to romance a lady and honestly she was pleasantly surprised by that. He seemed to want to court her properly regardless of the fact that they were already betrothed.
She placed the rose down on the bed and stood when she heard the knock on the door. [b "Good evening Jinny."] She smiled and welcomed her to help her out of the dress and let her hair down. [b "The Prince is not what I expected at all. He is far kinder than I imagined and he treats his people well it seems. How was your evening with Lawrence?"] Adelaide asked, giving her a knowing look.
Elias walked with Adelaide, much preferring the quiet and honestly slightly glad all eyes were off of them as he escorted her to the room. He looked to Adelaide and felt instinctively awkward as he glanced to her door.
[+green “I will see you at breakfast.”] Elias said to her and kissed the back of her hand.
[+green “It has been an honour to meet you, Lady Adelaide.”] she said to her and he wasn’t lying as he let her step into her room and watched the closed door for a few moments. On Adelaide’s pillow there would be a freshly cut rose from the gardens as a servant had been asked by him to do so.
He glanced to the end of the hall and spotted Jinny and Lawrence, giving a polite nod before head along the halls and corridors towards his own hall. He had to admit Adelaide was truly something else, much more than he had ever expected and he just wished she could find it within herself not be so formal and anxious about everything but of course, what else could he expect? This was awkward for them both.
He waited for Lawrence and smirked when he saw him come round the corner.
[+green “That went very well, all things considered.”] He said to his friend as he gestured into one of the small side rooms and got them both a drink.
[+green “She is beautiful but I cannot help but feel she is slightly reserved.”] Elias said and looked to Lawrence,
[+green “I believe they are joining me for breakfast, her handmaiden as well no doubt given she’s the only person Adelaide knows. I would not like to separate them.”]
Jinny walked with him and paused when she noticed Adelaide and Elias and giggled a little, nodding to Lawrence. It would be a shame to fluster the two anymore than they already were and she looked to Elias as she heard the other two say their farewells and good nights.
[+red “Thank you, again, for tonight, Lawrence. Your kindness has been much appreciated.”] She said to him and watched Adelaide step into her room. She gave Lawrence a parting smile and gave a small curtsy to him, Boeing her head and heading after Adelaide, glancing over her shoulder to him before knocking and entering Adelaide’s room.
[+red “Lady Adelaide.”] Jinny said and smiled to her friend, trying to read her expression. She unpinned some of her own hair, knowing Adelaide wouldn’t mind as she offered to help the woman with the flamboyant dress and the pins in her hair.
[+red “How did you find the Prince?”] She asked with a knowing look and glanced to the door of the room. Her own room was next door but she wanted to make sure Adelaide was alright and she still had duties to attend to when it came to her.
[Left [Pic https://i.imgur.com/sZ5J4Py.jpg]] Lawrence would have chosen Jinny's company over the snobbish women again if the chance came. She was a breath of fresh air, must like Adelaide would be to Elias since none of the women here were so unaware of themselves. The women here liked to show off and had very high opinions of themselves and he didn't seem much for that way at all.
Jinny seemed to relax a little then he could see that she visibly relaxed when people started to filter out but he stayed with her right through to the end of the party, giving Elias the time to get to know his betrothed a little better. He stood and bowed towards her when it was time for her to leave and then he chuckled a little when she mentioned she didn't know where her room was.
[B "It is not a problem at all Jinny, I would be more than delighted to show you to your chambers."]
He nodded and held out his arm to her and led her to the corridor of rooms where they bumped into Elias and Adelaide saying goodnight to each other. [B "Perhaps we should wait at the end of the hall to give them some privacy while they bid each other goodnight."]
[Right [Pic https://i.imgur.com/S7hutov.jpg]] Adelaide blushed a little at his Uncle's words, not sure that she would ever be a strong hand. Her father had told her a wife should be submissive and supportive and should not have opinions on the matters of men. Once his dismissed himself she looked towards Elias with a smile.
[B "I can imagine ruling over everyone and being the heir to the throne constitutes as busy work."]
From that moment they simply allowed themselves to enjoy the gathering. She spoke to a few curious people who wanted to know more about the Prince's bride and honestly it was exhausting and she was glad when the time come for Elias to offer to escort her to her room. He could have asked the servants to do so but he insisted and it brought a smile to her face.
[B "Of course. Thank you."] She said as she followed him down the halls until they reached her chambers. [b "I would like that very much."] She came to a stop and looked towards him for a moment, not really sure of what to do now.
[B "Your Highness, I must once again extend my gratitude for your kindness this evening. You have ensured that I did not experience any discomfort and for that I thank you."]
Elias’ uncle beamed at the young beauty and he looked to Elias with a smile.
[i “Nonsense, you are a breath of fresh air in these dreary events.”] He chuckled a little,
[i “Not to mention my nephew could do with a woman’s strong hand.”] He added because he knew how unwed men could get unruly and wild. He bowed to them both before going to greet another friend.
[+green “My uncle is around more than my brother and father these days.”] Elias said to Adelaide quietly and it was understandable. The King and elder Prince has so much to deal with in politics these days. He was glad it wasn’t him who would be dealing with such things, or so he thought. He glanced over and saw Lawrence and Jinny, glad his friend was making the woman feel welcome.
Elias made his way through the crowds of well wishers as he nodded to them gratefully. It was still such a strange thing to him, to be wed to the woman at his side and all he knew of her was her family name and that she was a stunning beauty.
The night soon span on, dancing and laughter was fortunately the only events going on and the crowds soon began to thin as Lords and Ladies made their way homewards and Elias stood, looking to Adelaide.
[+green “May I escort you to your room, My Lady?”] he asked her, not wanting the servants to take time out and most of them were tired.
[+green “Might I call upon you tomorrow, perhaps you would care to dine with us in the morning?”] He offered as he made his way down the halls. He was grateful for the peace now everything was considerably less lively.
Jinny looked to Lawrence, a little taken off guard and she smiled to him. She looked to the chaos of the Main Hall and nodded. She took his arm and glanced to the two women who looked somewhat offended and she tried to pay it no mind. She looked to Adelaide and Elias and smiled softly to them, glad they at least seemed to be getting along and Adelaide didn’t look disgusted by the Prince.
Jinny was somewhat relieved as events seemed to wind down. She smoothed her dress and looked to Lawrence as she noticed Elias and Adelaide we’re leaving to retire for the night.
[+red “You have my thanks for tonight, My Lor-“] Ashe paused and corrected herself, [+red “Lawrence.”] She said to him and stood to curtsy to him. He had been a true gentleman towards her and she was truly grateful to him for the treatment he had shown her.
[+red “I should attend to my Lady.”] She commented dutifully, but she really wanted to know what Adelaide thought of Elias in private.
Jinny realised she was not sure where her room was, or Adelaide’s and she hesitated for a moment.
[+red “Could I possibly trouble you for one more act of kindness?”] She asked the man and looked like a lost fawn.
[+red “I’m unsure of where my chambers is amongst the halls.”]
[Left [Pic https://i.imgur.com/sZ5J4Py.jpg]] [b "I have only seen you together briefly but I can already see that you are treated significantly better than most here."] He lowered his voice a little so only she could here. [B "Some of the women here are extremely snobbish and enjoy making others feel worthless, which I really do not like."] He was surprised then by the fact that she asked him the same question.
[B "I am lucky. I am privileged but not much is expected from me. My family try to let me be. Elias is a good friend too but there are times I wish things were simpler."] As soon as he finished talking two women came over to force Jinny away from her and he could not hide his frustration although he tried to be polite to begin with, entertaining them until Jinny got back but when they rudely snatched their drinks back and forced Jinny to feel like she couldn't return to his company.
[B "Excuse me ladies but I already have company and I fully intend to enjoy the rest of my evening with her."] He said as he nodded politely and moved towards Jinny, placing a hand on her shoulder. [B "Care to return to the chaos?"]
[Right [Pic https://i.imgur.com/S7hutov.jpg]] Adelaide couldn't really tell if Elias was feeling as anxious as she was . He seemed so calm and collected and confident. It did make her wonder what their relationship would be like and she did hope that they would get some time to experience some form of courtship before they were expected to marry. She didn't have much of a choice on the date but she would like to know him a little better. However, as her father said, she would have a lifetime to get to know him.
[B "I would like that very much. There seemed to be so much to see here. You have a beautiful home and I thank you for making me feel welcome."] By the time she finished speaking they were being approached by a adolescent and she smiled towards him before she chuckled a little bit as Elias replied to him. She took hold of his arm and he led her back into the Great Hall where they were greeted by someone who seemed to know Elias well and he was introduced to her as his uncle.
Adelaide courtseied before him and replied kindly. [B "His highness has been extremely accommodating. I apologise if I stole him away for too long, I asked for him to show me the gardens."]
Elias looked to Adelaide and nodded as they walked.
[+green “The gardeners are wonderful.”] He thought for a while. Adelaide liked the outdoors and he figured he would keep that in mind for small gestures and things he could bond with her over in future.
[+green “No thanks necessary, My Lady.”] He assured her gently.
[+green “I understand how anxious you must be, this is entirely new for you and I wish to make you and your handmaiden as comfortable as possible.”] He said to her reassuringly as he paused and looked to the skies, watching the sunset cast beautiful lights over the gardens.
Courtship was not something Elias was widely familiar with. It confused him as his father had been adamant he was a Prince and betrothed to Adelaide. He stopped before the magnificent pond in the gardens and eyed the waters.
[+green “I promise the palace is much quieter when we do not have such grand events going on and tomorrow you will be able to explore as much as you see fit.”] Elias gave a small chuckle at that because these events could be overwhelming.
[i “Your Highness.”] A small boy, scant fifteen years old had approached and bowed. Elias raised an eyebrow and looked him over.
[i “Your presence is requested in the Main Hall.”] The boy said before dashing off and Elias smiled a little.
[+green “I should have known sneaking off was not an option.”] It would be rude to leave her to wander the gardens by herself and he instead escorted her back in to be greeted by a portly man with a jolly face.
[b “Ah! My boy!”] He beamed and Elias looked to Adelaide.
[+green “Lady Adelaide, this is my Uncle Valentine.”] He introduced and his Uncle smiled to her kindly.
[b “An honour to meet you, My Lady Adelaide! I trust my nephew has been accommodating?”]
Jinny looked to Lawrence and smiled a little, at least glad she wasn’t the only one who seemed a little lost in the grand events. She paused when he asked if she was happy with her life.
[+red “I am very content with my life. I am sure many of us would like to change our birth rights or simple things out of our control.”] She said quietly and still seemed a little nervous about being so open with her opinion.
[+red “Lady Adelaide treats me so well, as an equal. Perhaps not all the time in public but that is to be expected, but in private we are as sisters.”] She didn’t know if Lawrence would find it uncouth.
Jinny turned her gaze to Lawrence,
[+red “And what of you?”] She asked him, it was sometimes difficult to think of the higher born Lords and Ladies wanting to change their lives because it seemed like they had the world at their fingertips. Then again, everyone seemed so content in their lives here, it was difficult to gauge what was real and what was for show. She looked a little surprised when two ladies approached and handed her empty glasses.
[i “Fill them both.”] One of them said and Jinny looked a little confused for a moment before looking around for where she could get their wine glasses filled. The two ladies evidently wanted Lawrence’s company and Jinny smiled a little, giving a neat curtsy before wandering off and finding another servant who helped her fill the glasses and returning to the ladies, handing them over. The two of them snatched up the wine and continued to purr over Lawrence. Jinny stepped away and went back to looking at the gardens from the window.
[Left [Pic https://i.imgur.com/sZ5J4Py.jpg]] With Jinny's preference laid out before him, Lawrence offered her his arm and led her towards the common room which was indeed busy but filled with the quieter guests, those who wanted to talk quietly to guests rather than laugh and dance around the hall. He led her towards an empty seat and gestured for her to sit and he took the seat opposite her, ignoring any curious glances from those around them. Jinny may had thought it obvious that she was a handmaiden but the women here were not used to seeing one so well dressed so there was every likelihood that they were ignorant to her status.
[b "I enjoy these events when I have good company. It took a while for me to get used to the boldness of them though I must admit. Wine is nice but I do not think that any drunk looks good and I do well to mind my manners since I am the Prince's friend."] He looked to her and smiled a little. [b "Tell me a little bit about yourself."] He was curious about her, that much he was sure of. Jinny seemed to grant her request but she kept it brief, seemingly afraid that she might seem displeased with her life.
[b "Do you wish you had a different life?"] He asked curiously. [b "You may speak freely here."]
[Right [Pic https://i.imgur.com/S7hutov.jpg]] Adelaide took a moment to imagine what it must be like to tend to gardens such as these, imagining that it would be quite enjoyable to keep the flora in bloom throughout the year. Perhaps she might have been interested in keeping a garden if she had been allowed to explore the possibility. The smile upon her face must have been enough to inform Elias of her enjoyment and she looked towards him when she heard his voice.
[b "It is wonderful to be outdoors. I feel like I could spend days walking through these gardens. Your gardeners are certainly talented. They have captivated me."] She had noticed that Elias seemed much more at ease out here, perhaps that was because the amount of eyes on them was limited and he didn't have to worry about the judgments. She certainly felt more at ease, although she was still nervous about his opinion of her. No doubt that their father's would be talking inside the hall now, planning when the wedding should take place. Knowing he would be her husband soon did make her feel anxious, knowing the duties that came with marriage.
[b "I appreciate that. You have done more than enough to make me feel comfortable Your Highness and I thank you for that."]
Elias looked to Adelaide as he led her outside to the gardens. He nodded to her,
[+green “Our gardeners have a love of the flora. They are hand picked for their adoration of such things.”] Elias explained and gave a small smile to her. He found servants worked much better when treated better and allowed to pursue their passions. It always worked much smoother and the servants were happier that way.
He looked around the grounds as they walked,
[+green “You enjoy the outdoors, My Lady?”] Elias asked her with a fond smile playing on his lips as he relaxed some. It was much easier to unwind like this, away from the staring faces of the event and the noise and clamour. He was sure Lawrence would keep a close eye over her handmaiden for now. Of course both of their parents would want to set a date and organise a grand wedding, the sooner the better no doubt but he intended to take his time.
[+green “There are beautiful forests around here, you shall see plenty of the scenery when you join us on a hunt.”] Elias said to her because she seemed to enraptured by the scenery and the outdoors which he supposed made sense given she had been so shut away. Tomorrow perhaps, he would take her to the stable master and let her choose a horse of her own, so that she would have a good distraction.
[+green “My Lady Adelaide, anything that will make your stay here more comfortable, you need only ask. The servants have been instructed to take your commands as my own.”]
Jinny looked to Lawrence and smiled. At least the man seemed to speak the truth on a great deal of things.
[+red “I would prefer the quieter room much better.”] She confessed. She took his arm and allowed him to lead the way. Of course, she was insecure and avoided looking to other ladies. She imagined it was starkly obvious she was a handmaiden and did not belong above the rank of a servant but she was still doing her best to carry her Lady’s name with respect.
Jinny looked around the common room and was substantially glad of less people.
[+red “Do you enjoy these events?”] It still didn’t feel right calling him by name and she was doing her best to avoid it. She looked out of one of the grand windows to the grounds in all their beauty. She could see Elias and Adelaide wandering and she smiled softly.
She wasn’t sure she would ever get used to such busy events, such large events where she didn’t know anyone.
[+red “I grew up in a nunnery in the countryside, until I was nine. My Lady’s father selected me for her and I was taken to his castle.”] She murmured,
[+red “Since then I have longed for the peace and the quiet.”] She realised she was thinking out loud and looked thoroughly embarrassed.
[+red “Apologies- I am very happy in my duties to My Lady.”]
[Left [Pic https://i.imgur.com/sZ5J4Py.jpg]] Lawrence nodded. [b "I can assure you that the Lady does care about you equally. I can see it in the way she looks to you for approval and the very fact that you have accompanied her into the event. Do you see any other handmaidens here?"] He asked as he gestured around the room to prove his point. Most of them would have been asked to stay in the servants' quarters until the event was over or to help the women freshen up should they need their hair re-pinning or anything like that. Adelaide seemed different and Jinny had more of a sense of freedom because of that.
He looked up when one of the royal servants bowed towards Jinny and declared that they had changed her room. [b "I think that is further evidence of my friend's kindness. He will have done that to please your Lady and ensure your comfort I am sure."]
Now that most people had finished eating the level of noise in the room had increased and it was obvious that more people had wine in their systems but the way they were laughing and joking and dancing. [b "They can be quite loud. We can retreat to the common room if you wish to go someone quieter. We will not be alone there. You are perfectly safe with me. It's just where people go when they want to avoid the alcohol and noise."] He nodded towards Elias and Adelaide. [b "Looks like they are taking leave for a while too."]
[Right [Pic https://i.imgur.com/S7hutov.jpg]] Adelaide was naive to the fact that people were looking at her. She wouldn't even know why anyone would look at her because in her eyes she was nothing special at all. [b "Me?"] She asked as she looked around the room, unable to believe it. She then looked back to Elias and blushed a little as he complimented her. It was not something that she was used to besides ever receiving a compliment from Jinny or her father and she thought that they were only complimenting her because it was their job to make her feel good.
[b "A walk sounds delightful. I would appreciate the fresh air."] Adelaide followed him outside and she was astounded by the beauty of the gardens. She had not seen anything quite like it before. [b "Wow, Your Highness was not exaggerating when you said that they are beautiful. How are they kept so well?"]
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