Chapter 1: Bride choosing competition
"Have you heard about the latest news circulating all over the Kingdom?"
Amira heard a feminine voice whispering. She creased her eyebrows in confusion because she hasn't heard anything.
It was possible for Amira not to hear the "news" because she preferred staying at home most of the time with her grandmother other than gossiping around.
Amira ignored the girls and continued to select the knitting fibre that her grandmother had sent her to buy.
The sun was setting in the west and that meant that she needed to hurry up, or else she would miss the local carriage and that would be a disaster because she'll be forced to walk on her way back home, which is also dangerous because they're surrounded by bloodsuckers.
"No, I haven't heard anything."Another feminine voice answered, different from the previous one.
A deep frown settled on Amira's face when she heard her response.
'So I am not the only person who doesn't know about the news.'She thought.
"Hey young miss, you have been holding the white fibre for some time now."Amira's mind jolted back to the present when she heard the merchant's husky voice.
"Sorry about that, Mr.I was trying to compare the texture."She placed the medium-sized fibre back on the wooden bucket and picked up the other, studying it carefully.
"Is that so? I can bring more fibres from the store if you don't like this ones."The man said as he turned around and walked towards the store hurriedly.
"Hey, wait."Amira was too late to stop the man because he was already gone. She didn't want to disturb the poor merchant since she had already liked the fibre that she was holding in her hand.
Amira closed her eyes slightly and heaved a sigh.
"Oh my goodness! Don't tell me you haven't heard about the crown Prince's bride competition."
The girl with brown hair said with a slightly raised voice which made Amira turn her head momentarily to look at them.
Amira was even more alert when she heard the "news."
"Huh? Is that true?."The black-haired girl asked her friend who was now giggling. Amira was more attentive than before because she was interested to know if it was true or if it was just a rumour like other rumours.
"Of course it's true."The rumours monger rolled her eyes slightly, then brushed the brown hair strands from her face and tucked it behind her ear carefully.
"Anyone is allowed to contest, you can try your luck too."She winked at her friend.
"Hello miss."Amira turned her head instantly when she heard the merchant's voice, a small smile settled on her lips.
"You didn't have to bring your stock from the store, Mr." She said with a gentle voice.
"Sorry for disturbing you. I have already chosen three fibres."She handed the merchant the fibres so that he could check and prove that it was indeed three.
"The price is two silver coins."The merchant said.
"What! I thought it was one silver coin."Amira tried to negotiate the price because the last time her grandmother sent her to the market the fibre was somehow cheaper compared to this new price.
"It's hard to find fibre in the market miss, that's why the price has doubled."The merchant explained to her calmly.
"Okay, I understand."She nodded and gave the merchant two silver coins.
Amira had walked all over the market looking for fibre, indeed, it was nowhere to be seen and thanks to the heavens she had carried some extra silver coins.
She placed the fibres in the small worn-out bag she was carrying and zipped. Amira turned her head to check on the girls who were gossiping about the crown prince.
Her heart sank when she realised that they were already gone.
"Are you looking for someone young miss?"The merchant asked with a raised brow when he realised that Amira was darting her eyes all over the market as if she was looking for someone or something.
Amira heaved a sigh as the grip on the bag's handle tightened until her knuckles turned white. A gentle smile settled on her face like always.
"I can help you if you allow me to. I know everyone in this market."The merchant said proudly.
"Thank you for your kindness Mr." She took in a deep breath.
"Can I ask you something?"She said.
"Go ahead. I'll be glad to answer your question."The merchant said, "That's if I know the answer."He shrugged his shoulders slightly, picked up a piece of clothing and began to wipe the dust from his products.
"I heard two girls talking about the competition of choosing the bride for the crown prince."She paused and sucked in a tight hair.
The merchant stopped whatever he was doing to look at the girl with slightly raised eyebrows.
"Is that true?"She asked with a raised brow. Her features stayed gentle like always as she waited for the merchant's answer.
Amira knew that if the gossip was true, the merchant might have heard about it because he's in the market where people like gossiping.
"Yes, it's true."He nodded his head in confirmation. He continued to wipe the dust from his commodities and arranged them in a captivating position so that they would attract more customers.
Amira was silent for a moment as she thought about the sudden news that she wasn't aware of. She cleared her throat when a question popped into her head.
The merchant looked her way with slightly raised eyebrows because he couldn't understand what was the problem with the young miss.
"When will the competition begin?"She asked calmly, however, it was hard to hide the curiosity that lingered in her voice.
"It's tomorrow."The merchant answered as if he was not interested in the conversation anymore.
Amira's eyes popped out when she heard the merchant's answer. The merchant creased his eyebrows when he saw Amira's reaction and that made his mood shift from being uninterested to being interested.
"Why are you interested in knowing about the competition?"The merchant stopped whatever he was doing to focus on the young miss because he found it amazing.
"Huh?"Amira's mind jolted back to reality when she heard the merchant's questions.
"Are you planning to take part in the competition?"He asked with a raised brow.
This novel is taking part in Romance Carnival contest. Show some love for this book guy.