Where Loyalties Lie

Where Loyalties Lie

By:  seasonaltherapy  Ongoing
Language: English
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“You are to be his wife in every possible way, except for in your heart.” Ursa Romanova, famously known as the leftover princess, had experienced a war her entire life-- and now, she would be thrown right into the middle of it. After her people's sworn enemy, the Vasils, overtook her country, they demanded only one thing: Ursa's hand in marriage. As Ursa grows closer to her new husband, she finds herself forced to make some difficult decisions: her husband, or her family?

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95 Chapters
Outside the City Walls
The entire palace was in a panic. Servants were rushing around, some yelling orders, some attempting to flee. Two young women in dark clothing ran against the crowd, towards the grand doors of the throne room. It was a struggle, pushing against the flow of people, yet they were successful. The taller woman held back the urge to yell at everyone who was attempting to flee, but held her tongue. Her princess needed their information now. Upon entering, the two young women were met by the sullen king and his only daughter, who was at his feet pleading. The king of their great lands, King Romanov, appeared tired and defeated. The skin under his eyes seemed to hang a darker color, and his beard seemed to turn silver in some places. He had three permanent black lines on his forehead and his eyebrows seemed glued into a furrowed position.“Your Highness, My
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A Fateful Encounter
“Orlov, it really was as you predicted!” Ivan cheered, raising his glass full of beer. Orlov rolled his eyes but toasted alongside his friend. “Was there any doubt, Your Highness?” he replied sarcastically. “The intelligence we received was from a source high up. Of course I had my doubts, but to think-”“No need to dwell on it Kassio, just enjoy the night before we have to do the dreaded peace talks,” Ivan chastised his uptight friend. They sat around a large fire with the other soldiers, who were all celebrating for their own reasons. For victory, for the end of the campaign, for the good food that was to come. “I heard Romanov’s princess is quite the beauty, I can’t wait to see her!”“I heard she was as learned as the top scholar
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An Equal Trade
“Kassio, what do you think she looks like?” he whispered to his friend. They had yet to reach the conference room where they would discuss the Romanovs’ terms of surrender, and Ivan had already successfully annoyed Orlov for the rest of the day with his incessant questions about the mysterious Romanov princess. “I’m sure she’s lovely,” he replied with a monotone voice. “What do you think she thought of me?”“Probably not well, considering you just conquered her lands. The Romanovs are prideful and loyal to a fault.” That seemed to make Ivan’s mood droop. It was as if one moment he was a bright ray of sun, and the next he was a dark storm cloud ready to lay waste. “Come, don’t worry too much about it. Perhaps you left a go
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A Banquet to Remember
The much talked about princess had thrown off the veil as soon as she was out of their line of sight. Her handmaidens had met up with her and followed her to the kitchens. “How did it go, My Lady?” Cecily asked. They were far away from prying eyes now. Emery linked her arm with Ursa’s, giggling. “Was he handsome?” she teased. Ursa smiled coyly. “I can’t say~ you know how heavy those veils can be.” Indeed they did. Those veils were customary for noblewomen when meeting strangers. Although Cecily and Emery were Ursa’s handmaidens, they also came from noble families. To be the handmaiden of the princess was a great honor, it meant that the princess thought highly of an individual and got along well with them. Read more
The People's Thoughts I
The next morning, the Vasils were to return to their capital with their new prize in tow. Hundreds of troops were to be left behind in order to make the transition smoother. Ursa was stunned by how fast things were moving, she could barely pay attention whilst her handmaidens packed her things. “Ursa! Do you want to take this with you or not?” Cecily had been trying to get Ursa’s attention for the past minute or so. Only when Ursa finally started to give signs she was paying attention did she sigh and sit down next to her friend. “What’s bothering you?”It was hard to explain to anyone, even herself. One moment she was the Princess of the Romanovs, heir apparent to her father, and the next she was the soon to be Empress of the Westlands, wife of King Vasil. “If I were to list all of my problems, we’d probabl
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The People's Thoughts II
The King. He had such a terrifying expression on his face as he cut down those who opposed him, as if they were nothing more than a tiny inconvenience to him. But then he turned to her, again his hand outstretched towards her with such unparalleled concern. “Are you okay?” She slowly nodded, accepting his goodwill. He pulled her up onto his horse, forcing her to wrap her arms around his waist.  “You cannot kill them,” she said. He looked over at her. “Why not? They attacked us, they tried to kill you-” “No, they thought they were saving me. These people are probably just farmers who don’t agree with the change of leadership- pleas
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Arrival at Ichares
The rest of the trip had been uneventful. Ursa, Cecily, and Emery ended up travelling with the soldiers instead of in a pretty little carriage. These men were enemy soldiers, and yet they were nothing like what she expected.  While Ursa was sitting by the fire, waiting for Ivan to return with her portion for dinner, a young soldier in his mid-twenties approached her. He sat down on the stone next to her and greeted her with great respect.  “I thought I would come by and greet the general’s wife myself,” he said. Ursa perked up. “Is he not your king as well?” the soldier looked a bit embarrassed at his slip up. “Yes, well- the boys and I have worked with the general- I mean, the king- since he was a prince. We know him more as our general than anything. He d
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A Vasil Wedding Tradition
That night, Ursa got to experience her first Vasil banquet. Originally in honor of their king’s homecoming, it was adjusted to include the news of his impending marriage. Cecily briefly went out to speak with some of the Vasil maids while Emery kept Ursa company. A few moments later, Cecily returned and the Vasil maids trailed behind her. “My Lady, these are the handmaidens that were chosen to serve the future queen of the Vasils. We have come to an agreement that we will work together to dress you tonight,” Cecily explained. The two handmaidens bowed. They were both very different looking from Cecily and Emery. They were gorgeous, with dark skin and flowing black hair tied back into intricate braids. Their uniforms weren’t that of a usual servant, they were made with high class materials and put together by a skilled seamstress. Ursa deduced that these women were probably lik
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A Wedding Fit For An Empress
As promised, the Vasils partied for three days and three nights, ending with the wedding. Solai and Erara returned Ursa’s wedding gown as promised- although in better condition. It wasn’t a surprise, it was a hastily put together dress. It was a traditional long red gown and matching veil. Solai and Erara had added the embroidery of the Vasils’ most famous flower, the Vlora flower, to the train of the dress as well as the veil, adding an ethereal sense of beauty. Ursa was now looking forward to the wedding, if only to wear the dress. Ursa found an interesting piece of mythology about Vasil weddings: They usually occur at noon, which is an auspicious time to the Vasils. Swearing on a never changing sun, so the marital bond is strong forever. The Romanovs tend to hold their weddings at dusk, just as the sun was setting, so the Goddess of Love Silenea could bless the union, as legends
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What Comes At Dusk
“She doesn’t look happy.” Ivan had decided to go pout over by Orlov, giving his new wife some time to herself and her handmaidens. Orlov had been speaking to some noblemen when Ivan rushed over, saying he had urgent business to discuss with him. So it was this. “This is probably just overwhelming. Everything is probably moving too fast for her. Her homeland was taken over, she was betrothed and married, and she’s probably experiencing culture shock,” Orlov reasoned, taking a sip of his champagne. “But I wanted her to like our culture, so she’d feel right at home!”“That doesn’t change the fact that she
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