Chapter 2 New Life

2648 Words
            Kailee got up from the bed and walked over to the dresser. There were clothes set out for her, along with a note.               More clothes will be arriving soon. This is your home now. Feel free to roam around as you please. One of my men will always be there to escort you. I asked for Lance to wait for you outside of the room. He will take you to the dining hall and escort you wherever you want to go.               I’ll be out most of the day. I won’t see you till tonight.               -Until then-               Kailee sat the note down with a frown. Even if she couldn’t see her husband’s face, she hoped she would be able to talk with him some today. Still, she was free to look around and wasn’t confined to her room. She was excited to get to know this new place. So despite the oddity of her relationship she pushed it to the back of her mind. Well as far as one could push it to the back of her mind.               She put the gown on that had been left for her and quickly pulled her hair back. She slipped on some shoes and was surprised by how well everything fit her. She wondered how he knew her sizes. She was under the impression that this was a spur of the moment agreement that happened. Not that her uncle would have told her any of the planned intentions anyway.               She walked to the door and crept it open. Sure enough, the man she had seen yesterday was standing there leaning against the wall. His brown hair was tousled over to the side and he flashed her a bright smile when he saw her.               “Good morning, Kailee. Would you like some breakfast?” Lance straightened up and stepped away from the wall. He watched the doe eyed girl nod her head to him. He held out his arm and smiled as she grabbed onto it. “Well allow me to escort you. What do you want for breakfast? They’ll make you whatever you want. What are you used to?”               “Oh, they don’t have to bother with anything. I usually just have some toast and tea. They didn’t really need to fuss over me. Just enough to get by.” Kailee was just casually talking as she looked around the place. She was taking in the layout and was intrigued with all the corridors and rooms. It was like a playground for her. She was so entranced that she didn’t notice the frown from Lance over what she had said.               “Well, it will be different here. You can have whatever it is you desire. Except, leaving here.” Lance chuckled, adding that last part quickly.               Kailee looked at the man and took in his appearance. He had the same body structure and appearance of her husband. If he was wearing a mask, she would probably mistake him for her husband. His voice didn’t seem quite the same. Though he could be talking differently around her. The realization hit her that her husband could literally be standing right beside her, and she would never know it.               “I don’t need fussed over. I am already happy I can walk around freely.” Kailee smiled up at Lance who looked at her peculiarly.               “Were you not permitted to walk around freely?” His voice sounded sad as a small frown crept over his lips.               “I was allowed outside just within the inner grounds and the attic. That was it.”                A servant opened a tall door for them as they approached. Her eyes widened as she saw the long wooden table that stretched down the length of the room. There were two other servants inside waiting for them.               “Good morning mistress. What can we get for you today?”               “Kailee, please. And just some toast and tea would be great.” Kailee watched as the older woman looked at Lance nervously.               “Bring her some eggs too and a glass of juice. Oh, and bring us both some of those sticky buns.” Lance’s eyes lit up and the two women chuckled as they walked away. He then turned his attention to Kailee. “You are going to love the sticky buns, they are amazing. You are going to have to start eating better now that you are here. Indulge yourself a little.”               “I don’t want to be burdensome.” Kailee said quietly.               “I hardly believe you can be burdensome.” Lance pulled a chair out to her and slid it in for her. He then went and took a seat across from her. “Besides, this is your home now. Everything here is yours.”               Kailee studied Lance for a moment. She thanked a maid who left her a cup of tea and raised the cup up towards her lips. The hot steam hit her face as she breathed in the heavenly aroma. Whatever tea she used to get was nothing like this wonderful scent. She then looked up at Lance again. “So, how well do you know Trey?”               Lance smiled widely. “I wondered when that question would get brought up. You are looking at this stud here in front of you and are wondering if you can lead me astray? Tsk Tsk Tsk. Trey is like a brother to me. So, I can’t be swayed.”               Kailee giggled and had to sit her cup down to prevent it from spilling. “Well aren’t you full of yourself?”               He shrugged and continued to grin. “When you’ve got it you’ve got it.”               Kailee smiled and shook her head. “So you have seen his face then?” Her eyes flashed up to his green eyes.               “Sure have. And you’ll be glad he covers that ugly mug of his up. And you can tell him I said that too.”               Kailee liked Lance. He was outgoing and had a fun personality. Once more he was also close with her husband. He knew what he looked like. So, there were some people he trusted with his identity. She lifted her tea up to her lips. “He won’t let me see his face.”               Lance nodded already knowing that. She paused as she sipped her tea. “Why is that? Am I someone not trustworthy?”               “It is just the way it has to be for now.”               Kailee’s eyes twitched when she heard that. It was the same thing her husband told her last night. Lance didn’t escort her down the hall when she first got here. Maybe he was her husband and was hiding it from her? Maybe it was his way to gather information about her? She would have to be open minded as she created a list of suspects. She would figure out who the man she married is.               A maid walked in and a heavenly aroma followed her into the room. She walked up to Kailee and set down a plate with eggs, toast and bacon. Then she set down a smaller plate that had a delicious, sweet roll on it. Okay, she could admit it. This was way better than just toast.               They ate in silence. Mostly because she was too busy stuffing her face to be bothered with chatter. And then afterwards she stood up and looked over to the windows in the room. The sun was brightly shining, and the sky was a bright blue. She wanted to explore the inside but there would be other days for that. Today, she wanted to go and greet the day outside.               “Where would you like to go now?” Lance asked as he met her at the door.               “I’d like to take a walk outside.” Kailee said sweetly.               “Whatever you want my lady.” Lance did a half bow and smiled up at her. She only shook her head at him and smiled back.               Lance led her out the doors and into the garden. There were a few men working out there tending to the shrubs and flowers. Kailee’s eyes lit up as she walked on the white pebbled path through the flower garden.               When they reached the center there was a tiny goldfish pond with big lily pads floating in it. A slight breeze played with her hair as she stood there admiring the view.               “Sir, should we prune back the orchards today? Or should we work on the far bushes?” A man called out to Lance.               “One moment Kailee.” Lance walked over towards the man as he began to point out the various tasks that needed to be completed.               Loud flapping was heard and Kailee turned her head to see her young phoenix friend perching on a tree near the pond.               “Sparks. You found me.” Kailee walked up to the phoenix happily. He squawked at her and danced on the branch as he chatted away with her.               “Your color looks a bit off today. Are you feeling alright?” Kailee listened as his squawks suddenly became angry. She turned her head to see Lance walking back up to her.               “Is that a young phoenix?” Lance asked as he stared at the bird in astonishment.               “Well, he is young now because he was just rebirthed recently.” Kailee looked back to Sparks.               “I’ve only ever seen three of them in my life. It is quite rare to see since they are private creatures.” Lance looked over at Kailee. “Is he a friend of yours?”               Kailee smiled and nodded. “My only friend actually.” Sparks flapped his wings and then took to the sky. He squawked at her promising to return again tomorrow. She waved goodbye to him and then folded her hands behind her as she watched the bird vanish in the distance. She looked over to see Lance frowning. “What’s wrong?”               Lance shrugged. “I don’t know. I just thought you would consider Trey a friend now or at the very least me.”               Kailee smiled. “Maybe you can be a friend soon. I do think we will get along well.”               “And Trey?” Lance asked with his head tilted.               “I guess that will depend on him. If he ever plans on having an actual relationship with me or if I am just here to warm his bed.” Kailee said bluntly and Lance began to choke on his spit.               He cleared his throat awkwardly and then looked away from her. “Trey is a good guy. You’ll see. He isn’t the type that…” Lance stopped and glanced over at Kailee. He knew she would understand what he was trying to say.               “Yet to be determined on my end.” Kailee said simply. Her only memory of him was of their night they had together. And he didn’t offer much time for heart to hear talks. She was his wife. So, she would share his bed. But if he ever wanted to have her heart, she would need more from him. More than him tenderly holding her at night.               The wind picked up blowing her hair behind her and swaying her dress in the breeze.               “There is someone here to see the young lady.” A male servant said from the edge of the garden.             Kailee looked up at Lance in confusion. Who would possibly be here to see her? She walked side by side with Lance up to the front of the house. As they got closer, she felt her defenses rise. The man turned and she was looking back into the eyes of her uncle Fredrick.               He looked at her and then to the man next to her. He then plastered a fake smile over his face and turned fully to face them.               “Look at you dear niece. You are glowing. Marriage looks good on you.” He then turned to the man. “I hope you were gentle with her.”               Kailee mentally rolled her eyes. He couldn’t care less how she was treated. It was obvious how he was looking at Lance. Lance was the real target here. He came to get a look at the lord of the manor.               Lance looked at Fredrick with no feelings. “I’m not the lord of the manor. I am the lady’s personal bodyguard.”               Kailee glanced up to Lance and then back towards her uncle. Was Lance really there as her bodyguard or was this just something he was telling her uncle? She was told he was just there to escort her around the grounds and tend to her. Was there more to it than that?               “Oh, my apologies. Well then. When can I expect the lord? Or is he still sleeping off his wedding night?” Fredrick smirked as he looked at Kailee. Knowing Lance wasn’t the lord he was no longer fully hiding his ill feelings towards her.               “My lord is far too busy for you. If you have business with him then you should relay it to me.” Lance looked irritated as he looked at her uncle.               Fredrick sneered at the man and scoffed. He looked at Kailee. “Are you being treated well here?”               It was now Kailee’s turn to scoff. “As if you care. You sold me off for whatever deal you made. I was a property trade and nothing more. I don’t need your truthless emotions.”               “Well, at least we understand each other. No need to any secrecy.” Fredrick turned to Lance. “Let your lord know I need him to sign some paperwork. I need the deed to have the official seal on it. And since he already got his end of the deal and already spoiled it I don’t want it back. I just want the signed and sealed deed. And I want it soon.”               “I’ll relay the message.” Lance once again spoke emotionlessly.               Fredrick nodded his head to Lance and then turned without giving Kailee another look. He climbed into his carriage and ordered the driver to drive off.               Kailee didn’t bother watching him as he rode away. She turned and walked back into her new home. She knew he had traded her for something. Some sort of property. What she wasn’t sure of is why Trey had made the exchange. Why did he exchange his property for her? Did her uncle trick him into thinking he would get the lands that should have been hers? Because her uncle had all of her father’s lands changed into his own name. He robbed her of everything her parents had left her. All she was, was the shadow of a noble name.               Maybe that was it. No other noble young lady would marry a man whose face was shrouded in mystery. Where she had no choice but to go along with the marriage. She was a noble name that came without him having to reveal his identity. This had to have been what it was. She was simply someone who could not refuse.               And her uncle was the snake who knew exactly what poor soul he could pawn her off on.  
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