Love in the Land of Dragons

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Status: Finished  |  Genre: Romance  |  House: Booksie Classic

Chapter 17 (v.1)

Submitted: November 25, 2015

Reads: 319

Comments: 10

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Submitted: November 25, 2015



Chapter Seventeen

Elizabeth Ander felt like a princess, as she imagined herself living in this castle called the Sanctuary House with a staff of loyal servants standing by to attend to her every need.

First there was Sir Pia, the royal cook, who brought delicious, freshly prepared meals up to her chambers three times a day.

Then there was the royal physician, Dr. Xiu, who had stopped by yesterday to check on her welfare and pronounce that she was coming along exceptionally well, but still ordering a few more days of bed rest.

The castle theologian, the Right Reverend Father Jonathon Polsky, who doled over her to make her as comfortable as possible during this time of recovery.

And last but not least, Elizabeth’s royal personal attendant Miss Chang, who washed and ironed all of her clothes and escorted her to and from the wash room down the hall, so the Princess could attend to the daily toiletries and bi-weekly baths.

And Princess Elizabeth greatly appreciated every single thing they did for her. After all, they each had a part in saving her highness’s life.

But this royal highness was also beginning to feel like a royal prisoner. A Princess held captive in her high tower on the second floor of this Sanctuary bastion.

And Elizabeth felt that if her hair were a lot longer, she would let it down out the window so some Prince Charming could come along and utilize her long locks to climb up to rescue her. For Pseudo-Princess Elizabeth was becoming bored.

She spent most of her time in bed. Occasionally using the spare bamboo cane, that Father Polsky had given her, to wobble her way over to the wicker chair in the corner and gaze out the window to watch storm clouds form over the distant mountains assuring that the monsoon season would soon be upon them.

Elizabeth wanted her life to get back to normal. To return to her teaching duties. To once again help Father Polsky tend to his garden. And she longed for the return of her own real life Prince Charming; Mr. Carlton Chambers. Although she still had some questions concerning him.

After the revelations of his past during their conversations at the picnic, Elizabeth felt she knew more about him personally, but so many more questions concerning his professional life still lingered. In essence, she knew he worked for Standard Oil but what exactly were all of the duties that pertained to that job were still somewhat of a mystery.

In the meantime, she read more books about Chinese philosophy and politics that Father Polsky had brought up from his library and re-read the letter from Chambers so many times she almost had it memorized. It all helped pass the time and, in the case of the letter, gave her something to look forward to.

On the fourth morning of Elizabeth’s road to recovery; as she sat up in her bed reading Carlton’s letter for the umpteenth time, she heard footsteps she didn’t recognize out in the hall. They weren’t the heavy sounds of Father Polsky or Pia, or even the very recognizable steps of Miss Chang. Either way, these steps suddenly stopped just outside her room. Then she heard a light tapping at the door.

“Yes?” Elizabeth cautiously called out.

“I have a special delivery for a Miss Elizabeth Ander,” came the muffled voice from out in the hall.

Elizabeth recognized it was the voice of a female, but this voice sounded lower than usual. Whoever it was were trying to disguise their voice. For what reason, Elizabeth couldn’t even attempt to guess.

So as her inquisitiveness came to the forefront, Elizabeth quickly replied, “Come in.”

The door slowly opened, as a young, pretty woman sporting page boy styled reddish hair, deep green eyes, and a light sprinkling of freckles across a pixie like nose peeked in. A tan pouch was slung over her shoulder.

“Hello, kiddo,” the young woman said in her normal voice with a sly smile.

“Gracie!!” Elizabeth quickly called out in delight, as she got up out of the bed to greet the return of the adventurous aviatrix.

Grace Seton warmly hugged Elizabeth.

“It’s so great to see you again,” Elizabeth excitedly said, “when did you arrive?”

“Oh, I flew in a couple of days ago,” Grace explained, as she helped Elizabeth sit back down upon the bed, then sat herself down in the wicker chair over in the corner.

“I swear I did hear a loud rumbling sound overhead,” Elizabeth noted, “but I thought it was just a dream.”

“That was me and the canary,” Grace happily replied, referring to her brightly colored yellow Airco DH-4 biplane.

“Why didn’t you come up sooner to see me?” Elizabeth teasingly asked.

“Are you kidding?” Grace laughed, “They keep you tightly under guard up here.”

“I do feel like a prisoner,” Elizabeth laughed in return.

“Besides,” Grace continued, “I wanted to make sure you were strong enough before I came up to visit. I did speak with ol’ Doc Sourpuss yesterday and he said you were improving quite nicely.”

Elizabeth giggled at Grace’s reference to Dr. Xiu, “I still have my aches and pains but I am feeling much better.”

“Well, Jeez Louise, Lizzie,” Grace started, “I leave you alone for a few weeks and you go out and get yourself shot? I’ve had a lot of things happen to me but I’ve never been shot. What’s it like?”

“It’s nothing that I can honestly recommend,” Elizabeth noted with a smirk.

“I can understand that,” Grace replied, as she slipped the tan pouch off her shoulder and placed it down on the floor, then reached inside to take out a small gift wrapped box, “but first things first. I really do have a special delivery for you.”

She handed the box over to Elizabeth.

“Who is it from?” Elizabeth inquired.

“Don’t know. It had no return address. Seems you have a secret admirer, Miss Lizzie.”

“I must have,” Elizabeth absently answered, as she turned the box over and over in her hands, as if looking for some clue as to who the sender was.

“Oh for God’s sake, girly,” Grace admonished, “open up the damn thing and see what it is and who it’s from.”

Elizabeth nodded, as she tore the wrapping off and opened the box. She reached inside and took out a small envelope then quickly tore it open to silently read the note inside.

“The suspense is killing me,” Grace frustratingly said, “what does it say?”

“It just says, To Lady Elizabeth. Tamer of Dragons.”

Elizabeth then took out a silver necklace with a gold charm in the shape of a Komodo Dragon attached.

“It’s very beautiful,” Grace noted, “but I don’t get it. What does it mean and who is it from?”

Elizabeth demurely smiled, as she placed the charm around her neck, “I’ll tell you all about it but it’s a long story.”

“Well, I’ve got nothing but time, so lets you and me get out of this prison cell they call a bedroom and go downstairs and sit out on the porch. There you can tell me all about your mysterious admirer.”

“Well Dr. Xiu said I should get a few more days of bed rest and besides I….”

“Nonsense!” Grace interrupted, “Best thing you can do is start moving about and you ain’t gonna accomplish that by lazing around in bed.”

Grace took a hold of Elizabeth’s arm and helped her up off the bed. So with Father Polsky’s bamboo cane in her right hand and Grace holding on to her left, they carefully went out the door and cautiously down the stairs heading toward the front door of the Sanctuary house.

As they passed Father Polsky’s study, Grace held up.

“Just a second, Lizzie. I’ve got to check on something.”

Grace then headed on into the study and straight to Polsky’s desk, whereupon she started searching through the desk drawers.

“Gracie!” Elizabeth whispered, “Father Polsky is going to really be upset if he catches you poking around in his study. Not to mention if Miss Chang caches you!”

“Father Johnny is out in his garden,” Grace whispered back, as she continued rummaging through the desk drawers, “and I can handle Miss Chang.”

“What are you looking for?” Elizabeth continued to nervously whisper, as she glanced about.

“I was looking for this!” Grace proudly proclaimed, as she held up a pint size bottle of Macatchen whiskey before quickly hiding the bottle in her pants pocket.

“Gracie, this is the scariest thing I’ve ever seen! You’re going to get us both in a lot of trouble!”

“So says the girl who was shot!” Grace laughed.

“Touché,” Elizabeth conceded.

And just as they were about to reach the front door, all of a sudden they heard someone angrily call out from behind.

“Where you two going?!”

Immediately, they both turned around to discover Miss Chang accusingly standing directly behind them with her hands on her hips.

“We’re going outside for some fresh air!” Grace sternly stated.

“Girl needs bed rest,” Miss Chang instructed, “Doctor’s orders!”

“Girl needs get outside!” Grace mockingly replied, “Grace’s orders!”

“Oh, you now have medical knowledge?!” Miss Chang sarcastically retorted, as she moved around to stand between them and the door, “Get girl back upstairs! Now!”

“Miss Chang,” Grace began, “if you don’t get out of the way, I swear I’m going to pick you up and carry you out to my plane and take you up for no other reason but to have the pleasure of dumping you out somewhere over Kai Tron province.”

“You just try,” Miss Chang challenged, before Elizabeth interceded.

“Ladies please! Miss Chang, I really feel like I need to get out of my room for some fresh air. I’m getting stronger and I think going outside for awhile will do me a lot of good. Miss Seton has graciously agreed to help me. But if you feel so strongly about it, I’ll go back up to my room.”

Miss Chang stood silent for awhile. Her face frozen in a frown of disgust before giving them a reply.

“You not stay long. Understand?”

“No. I promise. Not long,” Elizabeth sweetly smiled.

Miss Chang then nodded and stepped aside, allowing Grace and Elizabeth to pass. As they went out the door, Grace turned back to address Miss Chang.

“Oh, Miss Chang? Would you be a dear and bring us a couple cups of tea?”

Miss Chang then scowled, turned, and stormed off into the kitchen.

“You really love getting under her skin, don’t you,” Elizabeth noted.

“Every girl’s gotta have a hobby,” Grace replied, as she and Elizabeth sat down on the porch swing out front, “so anyway Miss Lizzie, tell me who your secret admirer is.”

“I’ll make a deal with you, Gracie,” Elizabeth coyly smiled, “I’ll tell you who my mysterious admirer is if you answer some questions of mine.”

“Deal!” Grace quickly replied, “So what do you want to know?”

“Everything!” Elizabeth heartily answered, “I feel everyone around here is keeping me in the dark as to what really is going on.”

“You think that?”

“I do.”

Grace took out the pint of whiskey from her pocket, removed the cap, and took a sip before offering the bottle to Elizabeth.

“No thank you.”

“You say that now, girly,” Grace knowingly grinned, “but when I get done telling you the truth, you’ll be begging me for this bottle. Now, you sure you want me to open up that can of worms?”

Elizabeth reluctantly nodded her head but answered, “I’m sure. So open away.”

“Well,” Grace began, “where do you want me to begin?”

Elizabeth, without hesitation, asked: “What do you know about Carlton Chambers?”

© Copyright 2018 Nikki Evans. All rights reserved.


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