Zahra watched the knight and the prince converse.
According to the prince's wishes, Zahra was free to roam the palace as she wished, though she was kept under watch. As she watched Adrian and Alexander talk, she could tell even from her vantage point that not all was right between the two.
Finally, Alexander said something to Adrian that made a smile cross that beautiful face. Heart speeding up a notch, Zahra basked in the beauty of the knight's smile. He was truly handsome.
And then, Adrian mounted his horse and began to ride away. Zahra's heart sank. He really was leaving, wasn't he?
I should have known better than to put any of my hopes in his staying.
Watching the knight leave was inexplicably painful to Zahra. When he and his horse faded into the distance, Zahra straightened. No use wishing she could follow him. No use wishing he didn't have to go away. No use wishing -
Alexander turned and spotted Zahra.
For some reason, when the prince's eyes connected with her own, Zahra fet her heart skip a beat. What was it about him that made her so accursedly giddy?
Wanting to leave but finding herself wanting to stay, Zahra stayed rooted in her place as Alexander approached her.
Here we go...
"He left so you wouldn't have time to talk to him, you know. I think he was afraid that talking to you would weaken his resolve to carry out his duty."
Scoffing at Prince Alexander's words, Zahra waved his comment aside. "You're being ridiculous."
"You don't know him like I do."
"Are you implying that..." Zahra's cheeks burned, and she looked away. "He called me his little sister. Or something like that. You're reading too much into things, Your Oh-So-Royal Highness."
"Do I sense sarcasm? And in any case, why were you watching the knight leave?"
Zahra found herself at a loss for words.