Paulina looked at the face of the man she had bumped into with fear. She had a feeling the people here could kill her without batting an eye.
She was a bit surprised to see how good-looking he was. Was everyone in this kingdom this good-looking? She quickly shook the thought out of her head. Whether they were good-looking or not, the most important thing was that they were dangerous. Even the maids were all very pretty, but they acted like evil witches. Not to mention this young man, who was obviously a royal. He looked to be a teenager just like her, or maybe he was older? But he did look a lot bigger.
Blinking back to her senses, she moved back, withdrawing from him. He kept looking at her with an expression she couldn"t read, and his nose was scrunched up as if he didn"t like the way she smelled. She wouldn"t blame him.
"I"m... sorry for..."
"What are you doing here?" He asked in a deep voice that made her scared and withdraw even further from him. Her legs suddenly felt very weak, and she feared that she might fall on her face soon.
"I... am here to see... my mistress." She replied.
He looked at the open window beside them before looking down at her, nothing the red marks and blood on her neck. "Are you a good runner?"
She gave him a confused look, wondering where the question was coming from.
"N--o..." She answered nervously.
"Soon, the bell is going to ring. And when that happens, you are going to be in trouble." He informed her.
"W-hat? Isn"t... that the s-second bell?" She asked, panicking.
He looked at the window again and turned to look at her.
"If you hope to see your mistress again, run as fast as you can back to your quarters before the bell rings again."
Paulina began to fidget. She looked at him, the window, and the mess she had made on the floor.
"B-But.." She pointed at the floor.
"RUN!" He said in a commanding voice that made her flinch.
She helped herself up, falling a few times before she raced back the same way she had come.
He smirked as he watched her run. Did she say she wasn"t good at running? He bet she would outrun some werewolves if her life depended on it.
"William? What are you still doing—" His twin sister paused and sniffed the air.
"There was a human girl here?"
He nodded, still looking at the direction she had taken.
His twin sister"s eyes widened. "What was she doing here by this time? And why was she not wearing a scent patch? Won"t she get into trouble?"
She asked, sounding worried. Then she took her brother"s hand. "Hurry, we should leave now before the bell sounds. The night maids will take care of this." She said, pulling him along with her.
William looked at the mess on the floor before nodding at his sister. As they turned, the bell rang. His head went back to the path she had taken quickly. He hoped she would be able to survive the night.
Paulina, who was still running outside, didn"t know when she began to cry. She ran with all her might to the servant"s quarters, but it seemed like the more she ran, the farther the building was.
Her heart went to her throat when she heard something that sounded like howls far away from her. She tripped and fell from the shock, but got up immediately and continued the race. Her life depended on this. If she died and left the princess, how was she going to survive this awful place alone? The howls drew closer and closer as she ran.
She let out a scream when a hand pulled her to a corner, but her scream was muffled when the other hand of the person covered her mouth.
"Quiet," The person whispered in her ear. She realized it was the same voice of the person she had bumped into in the hall a while ago.
She relaxed but could not stop panting or the tears that were flowing down her cheeks. He draped a cloak around her, also covering her head with it, and turned her around to face him.
"No matter what happens, do not let go of this." He instructed. She felt obliged to nod, even though she had no idea why he was giving her this. How was this supposed to save her?
Suddenly, he pushed her behind him when it seemed like something was approaching them. Since he was very huge, he was able to fully cover her, but she had seen the large paws with sharp claws of a huge animal, and she could swear it wasn"t a dog.
It took everything in her to not scream. She held tightly onto the back of her saviour"s shirt and tried to stop panting. The animal seemed to stand there for a long time before it turned around and left, howling.
When he eventually asked her to run, she held tightly onto the cloak and ran for her dear life. Just what kind of kingdom was this? What was that animal? Why hadn"t it hurt her saviour? Paulina wondered as she ran. She made up her mind that she was never going to step out when it was dark again. Her only prayer was that the princess wasn"t out.
Williams watched as she ran, and he couldn"t help wondering what someone like her was doing in the palace. All the maids and servants were usually werewolves, so what was a human maid doing there? He wondered, and then remembered that his cousin had just brought home a human bride. Perhaps she was the maid of the new bride?
"Did she escape safely?" His twin sister whispered as she appeared beside him, cutting into his thoughts.
When he nodded, she held his hand and began to pull him along with her. "Let"s go. If the last bell rings, it wouldn"t matter that we are royals!" She reminded him impatiently.
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