As Duke Matias has planned, the fight to claim back the throne of Jennovia has started. As the duke had said, my brother Gladiolus has no claim to the Jennovia throne because he is not my father's son but the son of my mother's former lover, her brother. Because of that the only one who has the right to rule over Jennovia is me, the legitimate daughter of my deceased father.
The uprising was planned by the loyal aristocratic faction of Jennovia. They wanted to dethrone my mother the current empress of Jennovia, Queen Patricia. As they have said, she was the one that cursed this land to have an eternal winter that made it into a wasteland uninhabitable in most parts. The people suffered over twenty years and they have had enough.
Duke Matias had sought help from Grandcrest's King Regaleon, the one that is currently in war with my mother. The king had promised to help with one condition, that Jennovia would consent into the merger of all the countries in this continent to create a new empire that he and his wife Alicia will govern. King Regaleon had promised to leave the governance to me, the rightful heir to the Jennovian throne. The duke agreed to these terms, making me the grand duchess of Jennovia after the creation of the empire.
We are now currently at the last leg of the civil war. With the joint forces of the army that Duke Matias had rounded up and the army that the king of Grandcrest had sent to aide us, my mother's forces was pushed back into the capital city and inside the palace.
"As you now know, many of the Jennovian soldiers under the queen's command had now defected to our side." Duke Matias said.
We are currently in his mansion that has became a stronghold for our forces. It was late at night and they were discussing the plans on the assault on the Jennovian palace. There was a table at the center of the room where a huge map of Jennovia is placed. There was chess like pieces that were placed at the Jennovia palace. The pieces that represent our forces are currently surrounding the palace.
"The queen's forces that stayed loyal to her have now retreated into the palace." Jack said while pointing to the palace in the map.
"They have made their last line of defense at the palace's walls." Duke Matias' son Alfred said. He was a young man that just turned eighteen years old but has shown outstanding contribution leading our forces in this civil war.
"We should not our guard down in our assault on the palace." Duke Matias said. "As you know, the ones that remain loyal to the queen are her fellow Atlantian people. They are people that use magic in combat."
Jack and Alfred both nodded in agreement. The three of them together with some men that leads our forces were deep in their discussion. The night was starting to get deep, and I tried to fight my yawn coming out but was unsuccessful. Tears came out of my eyes after that, and I wipe them off. Jack might have seen me yawn and walked to my side.
"Sati, if you are sleepy, you can go to your room and rest for the night." Jack said with a hint of worry,
"Well, I want to stay here." I replied. "At least I want to know what will happened. All of you are fighting and I cannot do anything to contribute to the battle."
"You know that you are the most important piece in this war. You are our queen." Jack said giving me a sweet smile. "It is our job to protect you, the future monarch of Jennovia."
My heart skipped a beat after seeing Jack's sweet gesture. He had a way with words, making my heart thump fast.
"Do not worry princess." Alfred said, seeing us. "You go and tuck in for the night, I will brief you of our plans once morning comes. Would you like me to escort you back to your room?" he asked politely.
"Well I…" I was about to decline when Jack butted in.
"You do not need to worry your lordship." Jack said with a generic smile. "I will escort the princess back to her room. After all, I am the one tasked by Princess Alicia to guard the princess."
There was an unusual friction between both of the men. Alfred gave in first and sighed.
"Very well." Alfred said. "Have a pleasant night princess."
"Thank you, Alfred." I replied awkwardly. "You as well." I nodded a goodnight.
"Let us go princess." Jack ushered me out of the office.
We were both walking along the corridor that was completely silent because it was nighttime. All I can hear are our footsteps on the floor.
"I think Duke Matias' son is vying to get the position as your husband?" Jack broke the silence. He looked irritated.
"W-What?!" I was surprised with what Jack had said. "No way. I mean… that is impossible." I waved my hand left and right rejecting the idea.
"Why is it impossible?" Jack asked. "You are the future monarch of Jennovia and many will want to have the position as your husband. That means anyone that will be your husband will have the title of grand duchess' consort, giving them power together with the title."
"I-I guess you have a point there." I cannot contest to that.
My future position is something that comes with power. Many will try and get my favor just because of the title I would be having. I felt sad that I would need to be wary of people coming close to me.
"Well, it is not only that, princess." Jack scratched his head thinking that what he had said made me sad. "I mean… you are a beautiful young lady right now. What more when you grow up. I am sure many suitors will line up to woo you in the future."
"Y-You think I am beautiful?" I blushed hearing Jack's words.
"Well yes, of course." Jack replied instantly. "I mean you have beautiful brown hair, and your eyes shines like emeralds when they are hit by the sun. I am sure you will be more beautiful when you come of age."
I was screaming internally after hearing Jack's words. There is still four years left before I come of age. Jack is right when he said that suitors will start to flood when I reach that point in my life.
"W-Will you stay by my side until then?" I asked shyly. I know that Jack only promised to stay with me until I take the throne of Jennovia from my mother. But I was expectant that he will stay by my side even after that.
"Would you like me to stay?" Jack stopped and faced me directly.
"O-Of course!" I replied with force. "I mean… you are one of the people I can trust. I wish you stay with me until I am confident that I can stand on my own." I reasoned out.
'Ahhh… Satiana, why can't you just tell him your feelings?' I scolded myself. 'But what if he thinks that I am still young and tells me that what I am feeling now is just a passing crush. No, let us wait until I come of age. Then, I will confess my feelings to him.' I promised myself.
"Then I will stay." Jack replied.
"What?" I was pre-occupied with my thoughts that I was surprised with his reply.
"I said that I will stay by your side if you need me to." Jack gave me a huge grin. "I am happy you serve you, you know. Princess Satiana." My heart was racing seeing how he was looking directly at me.
"T-Then I am under your care, Jack." I replied with a blush. "M-My room is just around the corner. I will take my leave then."
I rushed out of there, thinking that is I have stayed then Jack will hear my heart thumping out loud.
"Good night princess." Jack yelled from behind.
I opened and closed the door in a hurry. I ran to my bed and jumped on it, burying my face on the soft matters. I screamed out loud, having the mattress muffle the sound. My heart was still racing inside my chest.
'This is not a simple crush anymore.' I thought to myself. 'I am really in love with him.'