“Women... All they want is to be treated as princesses in a castle they never spared a penny for.”0-

"But father, are women not fragile creatures? Don't they deserve to be treated like princesses?" Ten years old Nicholas asked innocently. His brown eyes were glued to his father's back as it shook from laughter. Lord Derrick took a large puff from the wooden pipe and then expelled the smoke through his nose. He turned to face his son, who had his knees to the floor. With feigned curiosity, he asked, "And who told you that?". 

"The new maid, father." Nicholas brimmed with excitement as he told his father about the latest knowledge she had instilled in him. "She said women are fragile creatures, and they deserve to be treated like princesses. She al—" "What is her name?" "Amelia, father." Nicholas smiled. "She is a nice girl, father." oblivious to his father's thought; he chattered on. Derrick stared at his son with well-concealed dismay. No doubt his son was falling for the lowlife female. Earlier that day, he had caught him administering the medication on the little girl's cut. What irked him the most was that his son, the heir to the Zragia empire, was on his knees, with the pauper's leg, on his lap, while he tended to her cut. It was like they had switched places. 

"Son...do you like her?" "Yes, father." He bobbed his head. "Very, very much." He added with a smile. "Good." Lord Derick nodded in satisfaction. "Lord." Someone called from outside the room. Derrick walked closer and clasped his son on his shoulder. "A strongman should have no weakness. Son, remember this lesson." Little Nicholas didn't understand what his father meant, but he responded, "yes, father." "Bring her in now," Derek ordered, and almost immediately, the double mahogany door opened to the most devastating sight Nicholas had ever seen. 

Mansa, one of the shadow guards, walked in holding a platter of silver with Amelia's head on it. He set it on the table beside the fireplace and left after a bow. Nicholas scurried over to the table to take a closer look at the head. He gasped and broke down into a soul-wrecking sob. Derrick shook his head in dismay. He was sure he had made the right decision. His son had never cried this since the death of his sister. 

"I'll give you some time alone. Let this memory be inked into your brain. The next time you forget who you are and let a female sneak her way into your heart, her fate will be worst than this." He paused and held up the pipe he was smoking before, "Women are like tabo pipe, you use them, and once they lose their flavor, you...trash them." He completed and threw the pipe into the fireplace.

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