Lucia rested on my chest. In a soft voice, she asked, “Dear, is there anything you want to tell me?”
I gave her a kiss on her forehead. “No, nothing, Lucia. I was just very worried about you, since I didn’t hear any news of you in the North. I, therefore, had to come back to take a look at you. I just want you to be healthy now, not just for our child’s sake, but more because I want to see you well.”
Lucia smiled. She slowly reached her hand out. I grabbed hold of her hand tightly and placed it on my face. She delicately stroked my face as though she was trying to engrave my face into her mind. Her hand slid across my cheek, nose and finally rested it gently on my lips.
She looked at me softly giggled. “My husband… My prince… You are my husband… if I am the reason you supress things you want to say in your heart, then that is an insult to me… My husband… regardless of what happens… please be sure to tell me… I am your wife… I am willing… to hear everything that involves you.”
I looked into her green eyes. I held her hand tightly and kissed her lips. “No, Lucia. I’m not hiding any secrets from you. I just want to see you blissful and happy.”
Lucia was right. I did indeed have something to tell her. I wanted to bring Ling Yue to see her this time, to get her to accept Ling Yue. It was easy with Nier. What I was most worried about was Lucia being unable to accept Ling Yue. I had even come up with a plan to soothe an angry Lucia to get her to accept Ling Yue.
I felt very ashamed of myself. I acted fearlessly because Lucia loved me, and as a result, I continued to do things that upset her and angered her. I kept making her tolerate my behaviour and whims. If Lucia wasn’t in such a poor state, I wouldn’t be in so much pain.
How could I bring Ling Yue before her, and tell her I wanted to marry Ling Yue when she was so weak? I wouldn’t do that. Lucia’s gaze of despair and agony was the expression of hers that made my heart ache most. Lucia had given up so much for me, our child and our love. There was no way I could elope with another woman. If I did that, I wouldn’t even deserve to be a human being.
I couldn’t bring up Ling Yue at the moment. I might not be able to make Ling Yue my wife, but I couldn’t make Lucia suffer for Ling Yue. I could give up on marrying Ling Yue, but I couldn’t give up Lucia. Giving up Lucia was the equivalent of destroying my conscience.
I didn’t know how Lucia knew I had something I wanted to say. Perhaps it was because of our love. Perhaps we didn’t have secrets between us since way back. Lucia loved me and I loved her. She always watched me, so she would know what I was thinking with just a glance or through my behaviours no matter when, I guess.
“Lucia, there’s nothing. I just want you to be well. I just want you to be well. The North has Freya， and the South has Troy City. We will leave this place after and return home together to our home. I’ll always be by your side in the future. I’ll never leave your side. We’ll raise our child together. I’ll watch the sunrise and sunset together with you. I’ll always be by your side. I won’t leave you again.”
Lucia looked at me. She revealed an blissful and reassured smile. She slowly raised her head. I lowered my head and kissed her lips. Lucia shut her eyes and kissed me passionately. I carefully responded, fearing I’d hurt her. We interlocked our fingers and locked each other’s tongue, begging to be melted together.
“Lucia, I love you, I really do.”
“Uhm. Your Highness, my husband, I love you, too. I really do.”
The two of us were reluctant to part. Lucia’s eyes started to shut a little due to mana deficiency. She has less than an hour each day to be intimate with me. She was very weak during that one hour. All she could do is lean on my chest.
I’d kiss her and tell her stories, hold her hand and comb her hair or do nothing. I’d just hold her in my arms without doing a thing, imagining what sort of child our child would be. Lucia wouldn’t groan or sob. She’d just blissfully hold my hand in my arms. She’d look at me the entire time as though she could never look at me enough. It was as if she was trying to turn her view of me in that one hour into an eternity.
I kissed her forehead. She slowly fell asleep in my arms. I gently pat her back and kissed her lips one last time. I then placed her down and pulled the blanket over. Seeing her sleeping face always gave me an impulse to cry. I didn’t know if I felt guilty seeing her sleep at peace or if it was because I knew the pain she went through.
Lucia never told me about how much pain she was in. She was always smiling blissfully in front of me. Mommy Vyvyan told me that not only was her entire body aching, but she was also struggling to breathe. I couldn’t see that just by looking at her, though. Lucia never showed any weakness in front of me, for she was worried I’d be sad. Everything Lucia did was for me – even in her current situation. She never asked for special treatment.
‘Is her love too heavy for her small body to bear? Is the love I give her too little? I don’t know what I should give Lucia. She doesn’t need any jewellery or compliments. Lucia just wants to be by my side, leaning on my shoulder.’
‘I want to be with Lucia until old age. I want to raise our child with her. I believe that the journey of raising our child together will be the most blissful experience of my life. I’ve captured the North, but I’ve lost my ambitions. I don’t want the North to be this or that. I just want it to become our love nest. I’m satisfied with that much.’
‘I hope Freya can make the North warm again soon. I’ll come up with a way to get the elven spring water to flow into the North again, so that it can become as it is here.’
I stood up. I need to leave for a while now, not because I’m tired of keeping Lucia company, however. After all, who would get think those moments last too long? I just needed to go and do something I should do.
Lucia reminded me; I needed to go and see Ling Yue. I needed to tell her what happened. She waited for me for a long time. It was time I gave her an answer.