So, just like all other kids, after sleeping one night outside in his steel armor, our MC, Felix had caught a cold and not some simple one. With a searing headache, muscle pain, running nose and burning skin, he was permanently bed-ridden for at least half-a-week according to Sir Doncan, the Castle doctor. He was also taken to a separate room, so that he doesn't get Aslak sick too.
Among all the people in the Castle, the one person who was the most annoyed with Felix, was none other than Sir Doncan. Along with 2½ dozen wounded veterans, now he had to deal with another kid with fever and headache, talk about misfortune. And that's why, Sir Doncan restricted Felix to get up from his bed for almost an entire week, not only to avoid worsening his condition but also to avoid paying more attention to him when he has other people fighting life-and-death battles.
Even Felix was ashamed of himself and therefore, didn't even as much as utter a single peep when Sir Doncan was around. It was only due to Sir Loann's earnest request that he reduced the resting period to half-a-week, but on the hind sight, it seems that Sir Loann was pretty angry with him getting sick. A hellish training was underway.
During his resting period, other his mother, it was mostly his new step-mother's who were taking care of him and it was also then, when he got to know more about them. The first mistress of his father was, Princess Aarti and his first step-mother, from the kingdom of Sindhu. She was a dark-skinned woman with large brown-eyes and a cheerful personality. With a height of about 5feets 11inches, she is fairly tall but not quite like my mother or Princess Yasmin, but with a perfect bosom, extra-ordinary butt and a near-perfect appearance, she was more than enough to bewitch men to stare at her.
Along with her cheerful-self, she is also caring, even though she can be quite clumsy sometimes. With a strict vegetarian diet and regular exercise, she is more athletic than many other veterans in the Castle and could fight one-on-one with Sir Peder. According to Julian, she had inflicted more damage to Catholic army during the siege of Indu than any other battalions did and had one-handedly defeated half of my father's small squad of veterans. She is also quite open to the masses and only wore the face-veil because it was ordered by Sir Hendrickson and the Arch-Bishop to do so.
Princess Yasmina, the second mistress or step-mother, is a more calculative and careful person than Lady Aarti. With a devastating beauty, awe-inspiring curves and long legs and ... oh... let's not talk about that. She's no less of a curse than the Fabled Crown. Infact, she was so beautiful, that she needed to hide herself in her white long silk gown and a white face-veil and intentionally made it seem like she was fat or ugly by padding her sides, so as to not bewitch the people around her and halt all the works. She only opened her face-veil infront of the Dean household, her servants and a few other persons of authority.
Felix was practically in heaven, yet was so embarrassed with a perpetual red-face and an earnest wish of digging a hole for himself to jump in. The followers of Lady Aarti and Lady Yasmina would always giggle past him and sometimes tease him, on the other hand, Aslak would always come crying to him with fake tears and complain on what a bad brother he was to not accompany him to sleep outside.
Well, it was only useless talks because more than pleasure he fears Demon Loann's hellish trainings. Felix, other than lying in his bed these three days, was also able to learn a lot about the Princesses, their retinue, loots and more. After talking a lot with the Princesses, he got to know more about the background of the 36th Crusade. Most of the information was useless or about tactics and he wasn't quite interested in it, right now. Later, if he ever wanted to step into battlefield or seek revenge for his father, he would need to have these strategies by heart. And the perfect person to teach him those is none other than Lady Yasmina.
He also got to know that Lady Aarti was pregnant for four months, while Lady Yasmina was pregnant for three months. They had been impregnated during the campaign, and quite frankly, it's a miracle that their unborn children were able to survive through the entire campaign.
He was also informed by his mother that the loots or the rewards of the campaign was at least 2.5million Gold in worth, a massive amount even in a scale of an empire and that she was in quite a paradox on where to spend it. She seriously didn't want to keep THAT much of Gold in her treasury, lest it might bring disaster. So, with the advice of Lady Yasmina, it was decided that the money would be spent to either equipping the army or to increase the trade. She decided to go with trade and so, invested 100, 000 Gold in both the market and in docks and ordered for a large Man'O'War, a few frigates and schooners to be built by Sir Hendrickson.
50, 000 Gold was used to further upgrade the Castle defenses and to upgrade the lazy soldier's equipment. Master Torgeir took most of the Black Iron, Chromite-Sulphur, Titanium-infused nodules and Perforated Carbon, to make the GREATEST armors of his life. He obviously took two portions and a bit extra, to make one for Felix and Aslak for their upcoming adulthood ceremony, which was to be held on their 10th birthday.
Loads of arrows and steel were also ordered from renowned trading companies to make new arms and proposals from trading companies flooded the Study Room. Strangely enough though, not a single weaponsmith or armorsmith, builders, architects or people with unique profession arrived at the town of Cainshire, which was also on a complete overhaul. All of these left the treasury with 2.1million Golds.
There was also another place where a bit of the money was spent and that was to build an extra spacious place for the living of the servants of the retinue, a room with three cribs and a big dorm for the Persian slaves to live. In reality, these Persian slaves were not simple. They were experienced mercenaries, most of whom were the fathers or brothers of the servant girls and were quite loyal to the Dean household, Sir Aston and the Princesses for saving their daughters and themselves from being slaughtered by the Catholic army. Loyal, trained, efficient and ruthless, they were no less of a task force for the Dean household, but the only problem is that they don't take orders from just anyone.
As for room with three cribs, it was so because Sir Doncan, 'magically' had predicted that Lady Aarti was pregnant with twins and Lady Yasmina with a singlet, that's why there are three cribs.... But quite frankly, it wasn't much of a prediction because the bump of Lady Aarti's was a LOT bigger than any normal person.
Time passed quite quickly and soon, it was Lady Aarti's day. It was the Month of Festivities and so, the entire Castle was illuminated by candles and torches, giving it a holy feel. The entire Castle was told to be alert all the time and even though, extra care was taken, not many people were informed about it. The delivery went smooth and just like predicted, two twins, one girl and one boy were born on 23rd of Month of Festivities. The girl was named Asha Dean and the boy was named Arvind Dean. Both of them looked quite similar with a big head, tiny feets and finger and a large body. Both of them were almost the same, with no change in skin color, ears or anything, even if there are, they won't be able to notice it right away, with the only point of difference was that the boy had a tiny, very tiny penis, while the girl didn't.
The delivery process went quite smoothly but the feat of birthing twin in these times was not something a weak-hearted lady could do. Even the most hardiest have died during giving birth, regardless of their status and there was no guarantee that Lady Aarti would survive, given the circumstances. But fortunately, she was able to and right after the babies had their first-cry, she herself started crying. It was a moment of pure bliss and happiness. Later, when Sir Doncan diagnosed the babies, he found that not only were the babies filled with incredible vitality and vigor, unlike many babies of that time, but their bodies were also much more adapted for battle. It's seems kinda ... illogical to tell whether a child is 'good' for battle right after being born, but Sir Doncan's assumption was on the basis that both the babies had excellent meridians and veins, a must for later phase Battle Technique training. As a matter of fact, the only reason why Felix and Aslak had delayed their Battle Technique for so long I because neither of them have excellent meridians, so they need to train harder physically to increase their so-called 'talents,' while on the other-hand, these new born infants already have extreme talents, with the girl, Asha having the better meridians and talent than Arvind.
After one month, Lady Yasmina also had her delivery and unlike Lady Aarti's, her went considerably well and okay. She gave birth to a girl and was named Jasmine, a homonym to her mother's home land, Yasmin. She, just like her mother had porcelain-like skin and a very cute-little mouth and face, worthy of being her mother's daughter.
But after diagnosing by Sir Doncan, it was found that unlike her one-month older siblings, Jasmine had a very weak body. It wasn't that kind of weak body which would lead to death, but it was the kind which makes one unable to practice most common and normal Battle Techniques and normal sword or spear fighting, or in better terms, a severe kind of talent.
This was not a problem for two reasons, one, she is a girl and most girls aren't much expected to learn too much Battle Techniques or fight in battles. Secondly, her mother was adamantine on making her having some kind of qualification to be in the battlefield and she decided that she would teach her all the tactics and strategy becoming the tactician of the Cainhorn troop, if it ever comes to cross swords with other nobles.
Nobody quite had a problem with it, except the treasurer, who was a staunch hater of Persians, but who would listen to him. After this tough time, the happiest pairs were none other than Felix and Aslak. Felix, because he always wanted smaller siblings to take care of and not big duds like Aslak, while Aslak was happy because he finally found his guinea pigs to bully and experiment. The next were the mothers and then Lady Faye.
During these 6 months, other than the constant renewal of the town of Cainshire, there are two new things which happened. One of them being, Sir Loann teaching Felix and Aslak the family heirloom, Black Wolfe Technique. A technique which boasts of a perfect coordination of agility and strength, it focuses more on teamwork and cohesion rather than brute strength or mind-boggling agility. Strangely enough, it is not distributed among the common soldiers and is only used by the Dean family, who have been famous for their birth-control.
The other strange thing which Felix noticed was his mother's behavior. 6 months before, when mother Yasmina told him about the dangers of the Fabled Crown, he had a lengthy talk with his mother and persuaded her to get the crown away from her. Lady Faye was quite critical of it, but Felix made her promise it on his name, so whether she liked it or not, she needed to fulfill it and it did work.
But lately, she started fidgeting again. Her actions became more and more strange and Felix, on his command as her son, told her to take a good rest and transferred the command of the Castle and the town to Lady Yasmina. He also had Sir Doncan diagnose her, but strangely nothing out-of-ordinary was found.
But strangely, after the diagnosing she returned to normal, all of a sudden. He was still worried about her health and therefore, had a very old man transfer the crown deep into the treasury. The reason he told an old man was because of what Lady Yasmina told him 6 months ago. The crown loves 'court'-people or in better terms, people wielding power and an old man, on the verge of death doesn't have or need any power whatsoever. Even if the old man turns insane or starts biting people, he was still 'expendable' and Felix was heartless when protecting his family. An unrelated old man is nowhere close to his mother's well-being. But, little did he know that the sentience inside the crown was far more intelligent.
The old man died shortly after transferring the crown, partly confirming Felix and Lady Yasmina's claims, but it definitely made Felix more critical of the Fabled Crown and its dangers.