Chapter 23 – Worried
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Chapter 23 – Worried

Having seen that horrifying prophecy, I jumped out of bed and quickly retracted my goddess form. I headed to Claude and Ingrid’s room to check in on them. Even though I knew they were safe and well and preparing to go to bed. I just had to check on them. To physically see if they were okay.

When I reach their stairway, the guards that were on duty standing by the stairway were shocked to find me heading to the top floor so late at night. When they asked me, what I was doing here so late at night. I informed him, that I was here to see Claude and Ingrid.

Letting me through, I quickly made my way before Claude and Ingrid’s room. Gently knocking on the door, I told them that it was me, and I had something important to talk to them about. 

Replying to me with a simple coming, Claude quickly came to open the door. As the door opened, I could see that Claude who was standing by the door, as well as Ingrid who was laying in bed, were both fine. Seeing that they were fine I let out a sigh, but quickly realised that this was just the beginning, I headed inside.

I was debating inside my head, about whether I should let them both know about the prophecy, or to just let Claude know. As Ingrid was pregnant, I did not want to stress her out, but I felt that it would be safer for them both to know.

Observing my conflicted expression Ingrid asked me what was having me so troubled. Her gentle and expression encouraged me to tell her everything. So, I did. I told her about the future that I had foreseen. I told her that I was worried about their safety. I told her I was currently, even tempted to change the future. Even if it meant that catastrophic events would plague the world of Arcadia. I was willing to do so if it meant those that mattered to me were safe.

When I uttered such dangerous thoughts, Ingrid quickly stopped me.

“You cannot do that Ayra. No matter what happens, you can not change the future. To do so would be to doom Arcadia and our future anyways. It is not worth it, to risk the lives of millions of people in Kar and the countless people living on Arcadia. It is not worth it. Ayra, you have to listen to me on this.”

Bringing her hands up to my face, making me look directly into her eyes. I could feel the warmth coming from her hands and I could feel the concern she had for me in her eyes. Still, her voice was as calm and steady as I remembered. As serene as ever before, she continued to warn and discourage me from making a mistake, one that I would surely regret.

“Ayra, you said that all you heard me letting out a scream and then the prophecy was cut off. This means that you were unable to see what had happened. The invaders may have been neutralised and what you heard was just me screaming as I was giving birth. There are just too many things in the prophecy that we do not understand. Trust me, Ayra, everything will work out. You don’t want the baby to come into a future that is full of uncertainty and danger, right?”

The longer she talked the more I was convincing myself that she was right. Her last words regarding the baby finally, got me. I did not want anything to happen to my family, but I also did not want anything to happen to the unborn child. As the future patron goddess of children, I was willing to sacrifice anything for their safety. If my inaction could keep them safe that was what I would do.

Seeing how I was still distressed he decided to sleep on the couch while I sleep on the bed with Ingrid. I finally, fell asleep late into the night holding Ingrid’s hand. Feeling both comforted by her warmth and knowing that she was still with me.

The next morning when I woke up, I was feeling slightly better, but still highly worried about Ingrid’s situation. For the whole day, wherever she went, I went. I followed her everywhere, but she did not say anything about it and allowed me to do as I pleased.

When night came, it was not Ingrid who had been followed for the whole day that got me to leave, but Claude who had sleep on the couch the night before. Citing that I was disrupting his precious time with his wife and a few other jokes that were borderline serious.

I know he was trying to get me to laugh, but I just could not do it. The prophecy just constantly replayed itself in my head. Even if I did not interfere with the prophecy, the least I could do was stay by her side and be there when she needed me. However, there are more than a few times during the day where I could not be with her. During night-time when she went to bed, when I was at the academy, and when I was out inspecting the defences of the palaces. During these times, I had no control over what could happen, and I could not be able to be there for her if she needed me.

Laying in bed I continued to think about the future. The next day would be when I had to go back to the academy. During that time, I would not be able to be with her. While I knew that for the most part, Ingrid was safe and well protected, I cannot help but think about the what-ifs.

Plagued with such thoughts I barely had any for the second night in a row. As I had classes today, I had to get up early and head back to the academy. If Erika did not come to wake me up, I would have stayed in bed.

On the way to the academy, I noticed that there were more pedestrians out on the streets than usual. It was hard for me to move quickly through as I was afraid that I would injure some in my haste.

I arrived in class for homeroom just in time for Professor Ian to call my name as I entered the door.

“It is nice for you to have finally joined us Knight candidate Ayra.”

“Sorry, I am late Professor Ian the streets were more packed than usual. It will not happen again.”

“Well, I sure hope not this is your final week at the academy, or so I heard at least.”

“Yes, it is Professor Ian, and I will try my best.”

“Come on now sit down. I have a few announcements to make.”

Sitting down in a seat with my friends, I could tell that they wanted to know why I was late. However, I signalled to them that I will tell them later before they started to listen to Professor Ian.

What Professor Ian talking about, was relevant to me and my friends as we wanted to graduate earlier to join the independent Battalion. We had already gotten permission from the academy to fast track of course. Now, all we need to do was pass a series of exams that the academy had organised for us.

The exams would be conducted at the academy in three days. The exam was split into two main categories, a written exam, and a series of practical exams. The written exam was the easy part as it tested whether you understood the correct conduct of a knight. It was the chivalry exam we did at the start of the year. However, the passing grade for this was ninety out of a hundred meaning we would have to get more questions right than last time around. The physical exam was spilt into horsemanship, weapon proficiency, and unarmed combat. I was ready for all the areas that would be covered in the exams, having trained hard for the past year. After it was finished IU would officially be registered as a knight.

However, now that I would be gaining the position of a battalion commander it did not matter anymore for me, just something nice to have. For my friends at least it would be a considerable boon as they would be able to become independent and be able to join my battalion.

With homeroom over, we all headed towards the familiar training field. In the past year no matter whether it was sunny or raining we continued to train our physical abilities here. Countless times I even trained my goddess form here with Sir Frederick. As he knew of my secret as a goddess, I had invited him to become an adviser and trainer in my new battalion will soon be given the go-ahead. He still had not given me a reply, but I was expecting it to come anytime now.

In the beginning, Sir Frederick had seemed like an insurmountable wall for all of us in this group, but over time with his advice, we became able to have drawn out duels with him. Sometimes if we were lucky, we would even be able to win. However, it was still rare for him to slip up and give up the win.

After a few hours of training and working out it was finally lunchtime. As I had been in a rush, I had missed out on having breakfast this morning. Leaving my friends in the dust I ran to the canteen as I felt like I would faint if I had to wait a moment longer.

As always, the food that the canteen served was of a high standard. If only they were able to serve the food within ten minutes of ordering this place would be perfect. However, few things in this world were perfect and wait times were always long here especially when you got here late. This was the reason why I had run here. Even then I had to wait twenty minutes before my order arrived. By that time my friends had already put their order in and were quizzing me on why I was late.

So, I told them about how I had seen a future where there were invaders in the palace and how I had heard Ingrid scream after they broke into her and Claude’s room. When I talked about my extreme views, they also agreed with Ingrid, it was just that they insulted me, while Ingrid was gentle about it. While they could be direct sometimes it was better that way.

I guess with Ingrid because she was more mature and highly patient, she would often take her time to get things done. Whereas my friends were the opposite and could be a bit brash sometimes. Their self-confidence was often off the charts and would insult me if they felt like I deserved it.

This was also one of those times. Now that I was away from Ingrid, and the palace it felt like I had finally, calmed down. I really was an idiot. An idiot that had just been inconveniencing Ingrid by acting like a spoilt child.

Now that I was calm, I was able to notice details in the prophecy that I had not noticed before. It was currently, summer so the maids would be in their summer uniform which consisted of a short sleeve dress and apron. While in the prophecy, the maids were dressed in their winter uniforms with consisted of a long sleeve dress and apron. It was clear that the prophecy was at least four months away when the weather became colder, and the maids switched from their summer uniform to their winter uniform.

Now that I had figured out at what period the attack could have happened, I felt more relieved that I had time to prepare for this incursion.