How To Make The Ice Prince Fall
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    How To Make The Ice Prince Fall Book 1 Chapter 82

    Volume 1 Chapter 82 In The Bedroom

    Update a month ago

    With this last 'please' the guards were defeated. One of them groaned, twisted between his duty and the intense need to help this pretty girl standing before them. Finally, the cuteness won.

    Surely, the earl didn't want his betrothed to be sad. What a man would he be if he could be mad at her when she was already this pitiful? It must be the earl's wish to let his woman through to be consoled by him. Maybe he might even be in a better mood after getting the surprise-breakfast. The last day with this cold man was anything but enjoyable to the guards.

    Persuaded by their own reasoning, the guards opened the door to the earl's chambers. "Please be careful, milady."

    Katherine smiled up at them, trying her hardest to not let it turn into a triumphant grin. "Thank you! You two are the best!"

    The guards stuck out their chests in pride as she strode into the anteroom. Then they closed the door, leaving Katherine alone. There were three other doors going off from the anteroom. Judging by her own chambers, the smallest one to the right should be for the personal servant, which would be Sam in this case. The one to the left should be the bedroom.

    Decisively, Katherine strode to the one in front of her, which most likely had the study behind it. To not warn the earl, she didn't even knock and entered right away. Surprisingly however, the small study was empty. Not even a dusk corn moved in the silence.

    Puzzled, Katherine went over to the desk. There were a few papers, a feather and an inkpot on it like someone had just worked there. Her arms hurt from the tray, so she set it down on the table and curiously leaned forward to study the papers. They were a list of hospitals, bureaus, schools, and other institutions. In an unnamed column beside them, there were several numbers, most of them zeros, but also 9, 11, 3, 8, 5, 14, 2, and so on. One place named 'Helgrind jail' entered her sight, as it had a striking number of 137 attached to it.

    One hundred and thirty-seven, one hundred and thirty-seven what? Katherine asked in her mind. As it was a jail, maybe deaths? But wouldn't the hospitals have more than this? And what is with this school, sixteen? No, it can't be a death-rate... But I don't know what else it can be. These numbers are way too random.

    Next to the strangely high number of the jail was a note written in blue ink. Katherine picked up the paper to look at it more closely. The words were neither big nor small, the dashes elegant. Even still, it wasn't easy to distinguish the letters, as they stood very close to each other, some simplified to small jerks of the feather. Katherine's lips quivered, silently reading out the words 'main source'.

    The question mark behind it was bigger than the text, overshadowing it like an open mouth. Katherine didn't know why a chill swept over her neck as she saw it. Warily, she glanced behind her at the door, but there was nobody else in the room. The window behind the desk was also closed.

    What was all this? What was the earl working on these days? It couldn't be part of his little territory, Katherine thought with furrowed brows. They might not have one single hospital there. It was the countryside! Hospitals and bureaus were more likely to be in big cities like... like the capital.

    Maybe the king gave him some extra work around the capital? Katherine pondered. It was the only reason she could think of why the earl would involve himself in other people's territories.

    The term 'main source' swirled around in her head like an annoying fly. What could a jail be the main source for? Would they let the prisoners knit socks or build baskets to sell? Ridiculous. What could the jail be a source of? Did they have anything besides prisoners? But if it were prisoners...

    Katherine nibbled on her lower lip. Maybe they used them as working power? Letting them help out somewhere under observation? But everything made no sense combined with the other numbers and places. A jail got not much to do with schools. They wouldn't let prisoners and children come in contact.

    Whatever. She wasn't here to analyze Nathaniel's work to begin with, though it made her plenty curious. Just, where was he? He couldn't have left his chambers without the guards noticing, could he?

    Katherine shook her head at the imagination of the earl climbing out of the window. Never ever! Or not because of her at least. She knew that in his heart she wasn't important enough to force him to such measures. As unlikely as it may sound, maybe he was really still asleep.

    Asleep... I wonder if he still looks scary then. If he was sleeping, his eyes would be closed, hiding the danger inside and leaving only his beauty. His white hair did look fluffy on quite some occasions. I wonder how it feels...

    On her tiptoes, Katherine sneaked over to the third door. She didn't bother to pick up the tray again. It might make more sounds and wake him up.

    If - only if - the earl was really still asleep, she wouldn't want to miss this opportunity for anything in the world. However, knowing him, he was more than likely to sit upright in the bed, reading some doc.u.ments. Maybe he didn't expect her to be daring enough to come inside his bedroom.

    Her hand hesitated on the doorknob. Now that she thought about it, going inside was pretty much the lamb entering the lion's den willingly. She knew all too well that Nathaniel was a dangerous man. What would he do if she entered his bedroom unannounced?

    A mixture of nervousness and excitement prickled in her stomach. Only a glance, she convinced herself, if he is awake, I'll just close the door again and knock formally. He won't notice me if I just peek through a slit.

    Quietly, she turned the knob. The door squeaked as she moved it, making her heart skip a beat. Instinctively, she wanted to throw it close again and run, when she noticed that... here wasn't anyone either.

    Nobody sat on the big bed with black bedding and creme colored pillows. Not a bump beneath the blanket either, indicating a sleeping body. Instead, a cold breeze let the ends of the blanket dangling over the bed end flap lightly.

    Losing her fear, Katherine opened the door wider and let her gaze wander over the wardrobe, then the small table with a chair beneath the open window. The chair was placed directly under the window.

    Katherine's brows furrowed. He wouldn't really have left this way, right? Unsure, she went over to the window. It was only the second floor, but because the ceilings were high, the window was four to five meters over the pale green grass. Maybe even six, Katherine wasn't good at estimating such things.

    Jumping from this high was dangerous, so he would need some kind of tool, she deliberated. He also needed something to get up again like a ladder. However, the white wall was blank. Did he go outside or not? If yes, what was his purpose in using this kind of exit? It can't be because of me, Katherine thought and went over to the bed to sit down. It was quite soft, so she bounced up and down for a bit, looking up at the high ceiling.

    Besides her, who else would he want to fool by climbing out of the window? The only ones she could think of were the palace guards. Why were they guarding him anyway? It was strange, like the king didn't trust him even though letting him into the palace. Then again, climbing through the window did look like he had something to hide.

    However, if he really left through the window, why wouldn't he cover up his traces? It didn't match the earl's usual meticulous working stile. It didn't look like a hasty departure either. Was she missing something?

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