- This fanfic may contain spoilers.
- Supposedly this fanfic was named “cutlery” as a joke between me and a friend because we were planning to scam anyone who will read it as a fun, fluffy fanfic when it’s not. (we even invented a hoax summary XD) The cutlery scene would be visible at part 2 of this story.
- Strawberry according to Google is a fruit that represents rebirth.
- Yves is Frederique’s middle name (thanks vln and evelyn for this info)
- Not really a part of the story (because it’s a fanfic) so if some details were different or wrong in some ways, please excuse this writer’s frisky brain.
It was a day like any other normal day in the empire. Usually at this time he’ll be out with official business as his duty as prince but he was preoccupied by something.
With Christelle’s suggestion, all three of them (Christel, Ced and Jesse) went to the market place to go sightseeing. But most likely to entertain the hostage prince who seems to be lonely for not being able to meet his sister.
Not like he’ll be able to come back even if he cried.
He instructed the knights together with Elisabeth to stand by. For trouble always seemed to follow the foreign prince. It was the condition he and Christelle have agreed on if they want their small trip to continue.
Christelle was not in the least content and suggested that the knights remain hidden so as to not make the purple eyed prince feel even more threatened.
He remembered their brief conversation.
“Why do I even have to care about these things? “ He grunted.
“Because we’re partners,” Christelle answered.
What does it have to do with anything?
He was still feeling annoyed but decided to ask David to call Elisabeth. In the corner of his eye, he found her smirked. For some reason he felt more annoyed than before so he burned the tip of her pink hair. When he heard her groan, He smiled.
“Look at this Prince Jesse! Doesn’t it look like the Prince?”
Christelle was pointing at the fruit art placed on one of the elders’ stores as an advertisement for the fruits. It was made up of pineapple as the face with small cuts of strawberry as eyes and a piece of grape as nose and lemon for the mouth. They were at one of the empire’s market. In all honesty, he was really feeling down considering his last conversation with the emperor and she didn’t permit him to meet Elise. Somehow, he was thankful that he was still able to roam around out of the palace considering what happened.
The people in Juliette Palace have noticed him being gloomy. Canael and Benjamin talked to Lawrence, the chef, to create a creme brulee. Jesse also felt grateful for everyone and for his partners who make time to lighten up his mood.
“Prince?” Christelle called his attention.
He was about to comment about the fruit art saying ‘it’s great’ when he saw the prince furrowed his eyebrows so he pointed to the nearest fruit instead which was oranges.
“I think I like this one better” he replied.
“I guess you’re still a prince” Ced commented.
In other words ‘it’s a good thing you have good taste’ or something like that, Jesse is used to the prince’s words so he wasn’t offended. Jesse simply ignored him. He just felt relieved that the old grandma’s store wouldn’t be burned down.
Jesse came to the corner of the marketplace when he noticed a child selling strawberries.
He felt pity for the child who was too young to be making money so he asked the prince if it would be okay if he could buy it all.
“Are you that hungry?“ the prince looked at him as if he was a glutton.
” Why are you gonna need the berries? Could it be you’re planning for a berry party? With strawberry cake, strawberry mousse, strawberry ice cream? “
His mouth watered by that suggestion. The prince looked at him, waiting for his response so he explained.
” Well, I could tell Lawrence about it and also for the little girl to be able to return early” as he pointed to kid.
Come to think of it, Demy and the others also love strawberries. I”ll give it as a gift because they couldn’t go out with their hyung.
It looks like the prince was still not satisfied with his answer but he never said anything. Rather, he walked towards the child selling the fruits and they followed.
The child seeing them three coming was not surprised and didn’t even bother asking him to buy the strawberries. Instead, she looked directly to my eyes and said
“Please be careful. For tragedy awaits you”
With the mention of tragedy both Chris and the Prince became alert.
The prince was ready to unleash his sword, while Christelle got ready to control the water.
Jesse was concerned for the child who only warned him to be careful and yet being threatened by his partners. He was about to soothe the child to calm down when the child utters another yet revelation.
“Only misfortune lies in fate with thy partners“.
He saw Ced pointing the tip of his blade to the child’s neck.
The last sentence felt like something ticked inside him. He tried to attack the suspicious child. He was convinced that it was a mere puppet, sent by the holy kingdom to make Jesse distrust them.
Then suddenly smoke rose from the ground and everything was covered on white. Everything became blurry in an instant. He gripped his sword tightly as if telling himself to be alert for some tricks or illusions like last time.
He remembers hearing a small voice saying “this will make you understand” before totally losing consciousness.
Still Cedric’s pov,
He couldn’t understand where he was but the structure looked like the great hall where a certain event is happening. He was prepared to fight in case the illusion falls but to no avail.
He observed his surroundings and noticed kids of different ages mingling with one another.Servants with trays of dessert are roaming around.The adults were separated in a circular table where some kind of business is happening. It was a mixture of laughter, pleasantries and all other things but what caught his eye was the silent boy on the corner of the hall standing.
“Jesse?” His eyes couldn’t be deceiving him.
But how could he be this small? What is this place? Is it some kind of trick played by the child earlier in the marketplace? He called his name once again and at the same time the child looked up. Purple eyes glistened as if he was about to cry.
That was when the prince noticed that he couldn’t see him and this was not his time. It was Jesse’s childhood memory.
It was only darkness that surrounded her in this room. She didn’t know how long time had passed. Was it hours? days? At first she was surprised, she even thought she went blind because there was not even a speck of light that visited the room. What kind of witchcraft is this?
She called out
But only the silence answered her.
She called again
“HELLOOOOO! Anybody home? Prince Jesse? Your majesty ?”
Maybe there’s some kind of code or password for something?
“LET THERE BE LIGHT!”
She tried different codes yet still there was no response.
They could be in a different room. She wondered.She was getting bored of this silence when she hears a familiar voice
“Calm down, Frederique. The Lord has plans.”
It’s the cardinal. Relief flooded her, thinking she was helped. She tried calling out to her but before Christelle could say something, someone else spoke.
“You don’t know about that. He has been sleeping for more than a day! Could it be… a curse? Maybe an enemy of a kingdom has planned this?! Or could it be poison?”
Christelle thought she was mistaken for she never heard the empress this worried. The empress was calm and collected even dealing with the issues of the empire. Hearing her being frustrated could only be pertaining to 2 things. The Empire or his son. She guessed it was the latter.
” Yves, you’ve known the chef for a while and she’s been serving your family for ages. It wouldn’t be nice to make assumptions and rash decisions about it” a soothing voice calmed the empress.
Wait…Is he who I thought he is? She felt confused for a moment.
“But Alex, how could I be sure? How could I ever be when our only son couldn’t even open his eyes! He is only 5! At that age, he would have enjoyed playing with his peers but instead he was stuck in a dark, secluded room with no assurance if he would wake up!? “
5 years old?! Now her suspicions are cleared. Not only was she in a different world but now she’s also returned to the past.
” I understand your concerns. I am his father too but we could not let this incident break us. You are this nation’s leader but more importantly you are a mother and mothers need to be strong for their child. I will stay here to look after Cedie, you should go first with Aurelie“
A small light escaped the room and after that everything turned to black again. In this room where nothing can be seen, Christel felt a rain drop and heard the repeated whispers of a father.
“I’m sorry child”
“Let’s try asking him out” one child suggested
“No, we will be in big trouble”
“He looks nice, maybe he wouldn’t mind if we talked with him”
“Haven’t you heard? My parents warned me not to get close or our family could lose the support of the consort”
“I don’t want to be punished but if you don’t mind, go ahead”
No one said anything after that. The kids continued their talk a little farther from where child Jesse is standing.
He knows they’re children but he can’t leave them be. How can they not have any backbone at all?
He saw child Jesse going out to the balcony. And so he followed him. The child was simply gazing the moon when a bird flew onto the railings and chirped as of greeting him.
“Why are you here? Were you lonely too? It’s almost night time, Where are your friends?”
He really does like animals, doesn’t he?
Cedric sighed at that thought.
At some point, Cedie found himself staying beside the child. He knows he couldn’t see him nor sense his presence but he stayed nonetheless.
“Would you like to be my friend? “
How lonely must a child feel to find comfort in animals and ask to be friends? A while ago, Cedric also noticed that the prince doesn’t have anyone accompanying him. I guess he really didn’t have a nanny.
The bird finally responded with a chirp. And the child laughed wholeheartedly.
That if anyone would hear, one might think he gained something more precious than a friend.
The place felt both familiar and unfamiliar at the same time.
How? What Where? There were many questions that ran through his head. Was this hallucination brought by feelings of longing?
Jesse needs to act quickly. Whether he was back or not, he had to see her sister and talk to her. He has to know if she’s okay. The last scene he saw from this world was the balcony of their home and Eunseo’s study shown to him by tsukshim.
But no matter how Jesse ran around the place, his feet will still be back in the front of a small white house where windows are tightly closed and no sign of living could be felt inside.
Jesse sighed and thought of entering the house, thinking that maybe it has the answer to the mystery of why he was back in Korea and yet he couldn’t leave the place where he was at.
Jesse knocked through the door and was shocked to realize he could pass through it without having to open it.
As he entered the house he mouthed
“I’m sorry for entering without permission, I just need to check on something, please don’t call the cops”
As expected, there was no answer or maybe he couldn’t be heard like when he entered the house by passing through.
Jesse felt like he was inside a horror movie where some ghost would suddenly show up.
The house’s living room was full of empty cans of beer and bottles of soju.
Then suddenly there was a bang
“Open up the door! You b*tch!” an angry man shouted.
“BANG! BANG! BANG!”
The loud banging continued like it was ready to break the door.
Jesse thought he was the one who should call the cops, not the other way around. With this kind of set-up, it looks like someone was being abused.
The banging stopped for a while. And grew to be loud again, followed by the sound of murmurs of a child.
Jesse found a man whose hair was a mess with bloodshot eyes and a beard like it hasn’t been shaved for months. His outfit was like he came out from an office, drunk.
But Jesse was more concerned about the person on the other side of the door.
He entered the room and saw a child in the corner of the room. She was covering her ears and she was muttering something over and over again. At first Jesse couldn’t decipher what she was saying until he got closer and heard her.
“It’s okay. Everything will be okay. Tomorrow we’ll be back to normal. It’s okay. Its okay”
Jesse couldn’t breathe. His heart felt like it’s being gripped. How…? Just how many times does the poor child have to comfort herself with this? For how long has she been doing this?
Jesse was frustrated. He couldn’t do anything. He couldn’t comfort the child. He couldn’t call the cops. He couldn’t make the big loud man outside the room stop.
He felt helpless and confused. If he couldn’t help her. Why was he here in the first place? Whose house is this anyway? Then his eyes caught the picture frame on top of the small drawing on the side of the bed.
Ham Ga In?
For a second, everything clicked.
This was Ham Ga In childhood memory in Korea.
He looked at the crying child once again and he tried wrapping his arms around her but as he expected his hand simply passed through her. Out of anger or was it frustration that he found himself muttering words of consolation.
“Yes, soon everything will be okay. It might take a while but the pain you’re feeling right now won’t be forever.”
Like he was stating an oracle, he said everything with sincerity
“You will be happy again. You’ll do things you never imagined. You’ll have new parents, a mother that would be ready to spoil you, then you’ll meet one, no two Princes and you might marry one too. You’ll be able to use water and you’ll meet lovely creatures, attend a ball, Subdue a demon, Control a pirate ship, play detective, Make coffee. You will have many friends. A teacher you can’t count on and someone like a little sister whom you’ll teach how to spend money. You’ll laugh with the vice captain and be best friends with her. There’s many… So much many… ” his voice trailed off. He felt something stuck in his throat fighting the urge to cry.
” You’ll be meant for so many more great things so for now please bear with it. I’m sorry, I couldn’t do anything but swear you’ll be happy. You will find happiness”
Jesse again tried to hug the trembling child who couldn’t see him. He knows she couldn’t feel him but still. He wanted to be there for her.
He looked at the empty white ceiling and thought
Chistelle…No, Ham Ga In is indeed strong.
-End of part 1-