Luna, Hot Springs and I (Part 1)
Freya wouldn’t have suffered so much if she knew Vyvyan was able to bring back so much gold. Freya was aware she had no means of stopping Nara; hence, she did her utmost to stall Nara. Guns were the foundation of the North. If their guns were widely circulated across the continent, the North would lose their advantage. The North still didn’t have its own military, so if they handed over their advanced weaponry, then wouldn’t that be the same as handing over their only advantage?
Freya could only do her best to keep on buying time to find a solution to repay the financial debt. They would rather pay back Nara and owe somebody else than hand her their weapons. Alas, Freya had nobody to turn to for a loan, and she definitely couldn’t take back the money they went through lots of trouble to redistribute. The Imperial Palace paid more than they gained to compensate the losses of the people. Perhaps Castell was used to spending money at Hilles City, and therefore didn’t consider saving when he spent money here.
Castell was under the impression that the North wasn’t financially lacking, since Freya dared to pull such a stunt. However, the financial burden had always plagued the North. At the time, the North had continued to make payments but didn’t export anything. The North had just settled down and was still in its recuperation period. The internal politics had yet to be settled, let alone foreign trade. As a matter of fact, they struggled to feed themselves; it was too difficult for them to become a nation that participated in exports at that point.
The only item the North exported at the time was weaponry, and they exported them exclusively to Rosvenor, not to mention in limited amounts. The North was unlike Troy City, in that Troy City could steadily provide the elven dye. Further, as it was a luxury item, the price of it was exorbitant. Therefore, Troy City was considered a very wealthy city at that point in time. Furthermore, the statue of Queen Vyvyan and Empress Elizabeth led to lots of politicians and businessmen seeing business opportunities. That was why they swiftly moved to prepare their own homes and businesses in Troy City. The issue Troy City was faced with was it was too small.
Lots of people had their eyes on the hot springs on the hill of Troy City. There were fully equipped facilities nearby the hot spring. Nevertheless, it was still the private property of the lord of the city and off limits to the public.
Plenty of people were shocked to see Troy return to Troy City. There was no news of his return. Even the guards near the city walls were surprised. They didn’t receive any news of his visit, but they sighted the White Deer King; hence, they were sure it was him. They also saw a woman with him, which was commonplace in times of peace. With that said, the two of them didn’t ride the White Deer King. They, instead, walked to the city doors together.
I do really like Luna, but I couldn’t present her to the public, after all, so I couldn’t hold her in my arms atop the White Deer King. At the same time, I wasn’t willing to let her walk alone. I’d rather walk with her to Troy City. Lucia and Nier wouldn’t accept Luna. The primary reason for that was because of what Luna once went through. They would feel insulted if she was put on the same footing as them. While I loved Luna very much, I had to take my two wives feelings into consideration. Luna was a very sensible girl, though. She didn’t ask me to marry her and bestow her with a title. All she asked was to stay by my side.
Luna looked up at the name of the city in pure gold. With a look of both envy and pride, she remarked, “How pretty… This looks to be a very pretty and beautiful city. The residents here must be very blissful.”
“You haven’t even entered the city yet.”
Luna gave me a smile: “I can tell, since this is your city. Moreover, it is named after you. It must be nice to live under your rule. I do not even need to think about that, because you are so kind and gentle.”
I smiled. I really wanted to hold Luna’s hand, but I saw the patrol guards ride over, so I couldn’t continue being intimate with her. Luna, too, wiped away her blissful and sweet smile, reverting to her usual polite and friendly smile as we waited for the guards to come over. They dismounted and went down on their knees to respectfully salute me: “Welcome back to Troy City, Your Majesty. Do you not have any other servants with you this time?”
“Mm, no. This is my personal servant, Luna. Tell the palace to prepare clothes and things to go to the hot spring. We’ll go for a stroll on the streets, and then enter the palace. After that, we’ll go for a bath at the hot springs.”
The guard was caught with surprise. I never had a personal servant after I migrated to the North. Luna gave them a smile. They scanned her then awkwardly turned their head away. They couldn’t be blamed. After all, Luna was still dressed in her burial clothing. It was very thin, so they could see her body in its entirety. Hence, I needed to prepare clothes for Luna. Further, even if she was in a casket the entire time, I thought she should wash up. That said, she’d probably have to wash together with the people around me or me henceforth, for she wasn’t truly alive.
I just made Luna a puppet with my mana. Although she could think and move, she required timely mana replenishments. The dragon blood was active in her body, but its only function was to circulate mana throughout her body. At the moment, she still looked pale as a corpse. As a matter of fact, her veins were purplish black. I didn’t hate that, because that was what I successfully did. That was how I managed to keep Luna by my side. I didn’t mind how Luna was as long as she could stay by my side.
We went to the market. Luna scanned both sides of the street with her curious gaze. When the people around noticed me, they saluted me respectfully. I returned their greetings and led Luna around.
I looked at Luna’s hair that hadn’t been groomed in a long time and touched it. She used to have short hair, because it was more convenient to work in the palace with her short hair. Luna touched her hair with complex feelings and remarked, “Your Majesty… My hair… needs a trim…”
I nodded” “It’s fine. Let’s give you a trim after we have our bath. This is for you, Luna. I bought it for you. The last one I bought for you is gone. I’ll buy everything you need here.”
Luna nodded. She was also aware she wouldn’t have anything prepared, since she was dead. Clothes had been prepared for her in the palace, but there were some things she personally needed to prepare. She was just a personal servant, after all. Her maid uniform was one thing, but she required casual clothes, as well. Luna and I went around. Besides getting the tailor to let me personally take her measurements, everything else went well. Honestly, it was the first time I realised bodies were so alluring. The two of us almost did it in the tailor’s shop…
After we prepared several sets of casual clothes, we bought some of her usual skincare products. The elves brought over elven products when they came to Troy City. They weren’t expensive; I seemed to recall seeing them in the elven lands with Lucia. Before she married me, her family was a middle-class family. I didn’t think anything of the prices of the skincare products in the past, but I did then… Mera’s perfumes were awfully expensive…
I told the tailor to send the clothes to the Imperial palace in the North once they were ready. We then went to the Imperial Palace. In a somewhat awkward tone, I said, “This Imperial Palace is actually… very small… It’s much smaller than the palace in Hilles City… Luna, don’t think poorly of it.”
She vigorously shook her head and sincerely responded, “Why would I think poorly of it? Your Majesty, it matters not even if the Royal Palace in Hilles City was more extravagant and sturdy, for it is not yours. This palace, though, is yours. I am not envious of the Royal palace in the least. This is our true home.”
I smiled. If I didn’t have guards next to me, I’d seriously want to give her a kiss. But nonetheless, I couldn’t even hold her hand then. All I could do was walk into the palace with her following behind. The maids inside greeted me in unison. The head maid came over. Puzzled, she asked, “Your Majesty, the things you have asked for have been prepared. Do you plan to head to the hot springs now? Do you need some servants?”
“Uhm, help this maid prepare her uniform. This is Luna, my personal servant. She will always be with me from now. Prepare food and wine this time. Oh, right, bring some clothes and get the hairdresser to come along.”
I noticed the head maid reveal a surprised and curious gaze when she heard “personal servant.” In fact, there was a hint of jealousy from her. Although personal servants were still maids, they were ranked higher than even a head maid. After all, they had to be my most trusted aide for them to be allowed to take care of my daily living necessities by my side.
Luna bowed to the maids with a smile. Being the head maid, she, too, quickly responded with a nod. She solemnly asked, “So, will she be living with you at Troy City or the North?”
“The North. I’ll bring her with me wherever I go, however, so it’s good for you to know each other.”
“Understood.” The head maid nodded, and then turned around to watch the maids pack.
The cavalry guard unit was ready. There are very few guards stationed at Troy City. Literally all of them were in the North. I wanted to show Luna what I was like as a King, nonetheless. Therefore, I wanted to spend lavishly that time even if it was just the two of us. I was set on heading out in the grandest fashion!