Chapter 11: My mind is full of you

Going into the ministers’ estates to meet with their daughters whom he has no interest in is a real torment for Wonbeom. He hates every second of it: the way the ministers and members of their families fawn over him, the fake smiles and compliments he receives. But what he hates the most is having to play the game too and pretend he is at least interested in the women who try so hard to look cute and seduce him. And he has to endure it instead of doing really important things, like participating in a search party for his missing wife.

But there is someone else who hates the situation as much as Wonbeom does: Hong Du Il. For different reasons, of course. His old friend whines about Wonbeom and Gyeong-eung abandoning him to do all the work alone while they go to have fun.

“So while I am overworked day and night trying to find the Queen, you two are going to drink wine and have fun in the company of ladies?” he grumbles in indignation. “You get to listen to them giggle at your lame jokes and shamelessly flirt with you,” he continues, imitating a girly voice that no sane woman would use. “Excellent… just ex-cel-lent… even Man Bok has days off at the royal villa! Why am I the only one who is always working?!”

“I would gladly switch places with you,” Wonbeom snaps. “But they have no interest in you!”

His friend winces, placing a hand over his heart, and turns to Prince Yeongpyeong for support, only to see him shaking his head in condemnation.

“But why do you have to take Gyeong-eung with you?!” Hong just can’t stop voicing his frustrations.

“Because I can’t bear it all alone!” Wonbeom explains for the hundredth time.

And that’s the truth. Wonbeom loathes being in the company of flatterers so he needs moral support from his brother. Gyeong-eung is going with him to make sure Wonbeom’s polite mask does not fall and that he does not start drinking too much. But today’s visit is a little bit easier since it’s at the Park estate and Wonbeom remembers that Park Yul Mu asked him to reject his sister. So even if he screws up, it could be counted as a success. He sent them a note this morning so the Parks must be ready to meet him.

Just like for all the other meetings with possible future concubines, Wonbeom wears the hanbok his wife presented to him, the one that has a history behind it. Right now he needs any connection he can have with her to go through these difficult times. He attacked her in the copy of that hanbok during their period of misunderstanding. She later presented this hanbok before choosing to clear another misunderstanding about who she is. And just like in the past, he hopes they will still be able to overcome it.

“Thanks to you two heartless bastards I will never get married!” Hong brings Wonbeom back to the present. He hands him a bouquet of flowers and Wonbeom raises his eyebrows. “Since my date is canceled again, at least the flowers won’t go to waste.”

“I don’t think it’s a good idea…” Wonbeom tries to give it back, but Hong refuses.

“Ya, you really have no empathy for the girl you are about to dump. Flowers are a nice touch.”

Hong always acts like he knows everything about women. Though this does not explain why with all this knowledge he’s still the only single one in the room.

Finally, Wonbeom and his brother are on their way to the Park estate. The late summer day is about to end and soon it will grow dark. Wonbeom hopes he won’t be there for long since nothing special is expected from him there.

Park Yul Mu greets him in the estate’s inner yard with a huge smile on his face. He introduces his sister, young Lady Park Yul Mee, right away. Wonbeom politely smiles, says something nice, and presents her with the flowers. Yul Mee shyly takes the flowers and expresses her gratitude. After that, the brother and sister show their estate a bit before they all settle in the high gazebo. Yul Mee says something about how sorry she is about the bad view since the garden is still a mess, but Wonbeom couldn’t care less. He feels useless, as he wants to do something instead of sitting here and faking smiles. But out of respect to the women who have to meet him because of their families’ pressure, he has to be polite. Yul Mee is probably the only one of them who has really been interested in him.

Even though all the women he has met are beautiful and smart, they don’t arouse any interest from Wonbeom. Not like how it was with Soyong. She managed to catch his attention on their first meeting, and after she was possessed he only became more curious. She has always been a mysterious woman whom he desperately wants to know, but no matter how hard he tries, he can’t understand her completely. Maybe his father-in-law was right, saying that a woman’s mind is as difficult to understand as the Buddha’s teachings.

Yul Mee definitely is an attractive woman, with rosy cheeks and bright lips. Everything about her is the best: the best clothing and the best accessories, the light floral aroma, and her posture. The perfect yangban lady.

But not the lady he needs.

The servants finally bring their food, and Wonbeom hopes the sooner they start, the sooner it all ends. He glances at Yul Mee as she asks about his preferences in alcohol and he freezes.

Behind Yul Mee, with a tray of food in her arms, stands his Queen.

His mouth flies open and he blinks in surprise as his heart pounds in his ears. It’s definitely his wife, in servant’s clothing and a long braid, as if she’s not married. And by the look on her face, the Queen isn’t happy seeing him here.

Wonbeom is about to say something and get up, but she subtly shakes her head to stop him. He gets the hint to do nothing.

“Your Majesty…” He hears Yul Mee’s voice again, and he looks at her briefly. “What do you wish to drink tonight?”

“I will go with anything you choose, Lady Yul Mee,” Wonbeom politely answers, and then his attention is all on Soyong again.

She walks past Yul Mee and goes around the table to sit by Wonbeom’s side, placing everything from her tray onto the table. He can’t take his eyes off her and he notices a wound near her hairline. He wants to touch her, to ask her if she’s alright, but since she is for some reason pretending she doesn’t know him, he plays along for now. However, before leaving she gives him a meaningful look and discreetly places a piece of paper onto his lap.

“Mi-Ah!” Yul Mee calls out and Soyong stops by the lady’s side, seeming to respond to the unfamiliar name. “Can you take care of those flowers?”

Soyong looks at the bouquet that Yul Mee places on her tray, and a mocking smirk that Wonbeom has not seen in a while appears on Soyong’s face. She is still elegant even when she’s pretending to be a servant. The natural grace that only his Queen possesses, even in simple clothing, is something he observed and admired from a distance for the past year.

“Did His Majesty pick them up on his way here?” Soyong can’t help but ask, and Wonbeom chuckles. At least it’s obvious this is not a lost memory.

“Mi-Ah, how dare you!” Yul Mee looks outraged at Soyong’s boldness, but her brother only chuckles, unbothered.

“It’s alright,” Wonbeom laughs it off as well. “Mi-Ah, right? Would it bother you if I did?”

“Not at all, Your Majesty. I am just surprised with the lack of creativity,” she says dryly.

This evening is getting better and better. First of all, his wife is finally found. Second, Wonbeom is enjoying every moment of this sudden jealousy from her. The last time he witnessed it was when Soyong discovered his relationship with Hwa Jin. Back then she was just the Destined Highness, and before her struggle with depression, she was exactly like this: sarcastic and cold. Unlike their last conversation, this shows she still cares. The hope isn’t lost; it is just being reborn.

The servants walk away and Wonbeom’s gaze follows Soyong until she’s out of his sight. He looks at his brother, hoping Gyeong-eung saw the same thing he did. The prince only shakes his head in disbelief, covering his face with a hand. So he’s not hallucinating then.

“Please, accept my apologies on behalf of our new servant,” Yul Mu says with an amused smile on his face.

“You let her get away with too much inappropriate behavior, orabeoni1Orabeoni – how sister refers to her brother in family.!” Yul Mee points out in frustration. “It is not proper for a master to show such interest in a mere servant.”

Upon hearing that, Wonbeom looks at Yul Mu in a different light and sees something he didn’t notice before: he’s a handsome young man. The desire to compete in a sword fight or in intellectual battle suddenly arises in Wonbeom. Just to prove he’s far better.

“You’re exaggerating, sister. I just care about Seo Hwi’s feelings. You know he’s very fond of her,” Yul Mu chuckles. “They spend so much time together. I won’t be surprised if he asks permission to have a wedding here.”

“That’s nonsense!” Wonbeom shouts out, hitting the table with his palm and startling everyone. How many men are courting his wife in this house? But seeing how everyone looks at him with raised eyebrows, Wonbeom understands he overreacted. “What I mean is, they barely know each other, so it’s early to talk about a possible wedding,” he explains in a calmer voice.

“Your Majesty, how do you know how long they have known each other?” Yul Mu asks suspiciously, squinting his eyes.

“You said just a moment ago that the servant is new.” Gyeong-eung comes to the rescue. “And you told us about your bodyguard that you appreciate so much, and how he has been working for you for a long time.”

“Why do we keep talking about a mere servant this evening?” Yul Mee pouts. “Your Majesty, please ignore her impudent behavior. We found her in the woods, and whatever happened to her, she hit her head quite badly.”

Wonbeom feels cold inside, recalling the wound he noticed before. So they found her in the woods after she was attacked and helped her. He is undoubtedly in debt to them for saving Soyong. But why didn’t she come back home? The puzzle has not yet formed into a single picture in his head. He finally reads her note and it states to meet her later at Jo Hwa Jin and Gyeong-eung’s estate. Wonbeom elbows his brother and hands him the note. The prince has the same surprised reaction as Wonbeom. What does it all mean?

He sees Soyong again when the servants bring drink refreshments, but she ignores him this time. And under the stern look of Lady Yul Mee, she leaves the gazebo in a hurry. Wonbeom crafts an excuse about drinking too much liquor to leave the table and attempt to find Soyong. But after wandering around the yard he isn’t able to find her. He wonders if his best option is to leave the estate and wait for her in his brother’s home.

“Did Your Majesty not like our hospitality?” Yul Mee asks, disappointed with their early departure. “You said it yourself: before making a serious decision, you need to know the person better.”

“That is what I said,” Wonbeom agrees. “However, one meeting is enough to determine if there is interest in arranging another one.” Wonbeom looks at Yul Mu and the latter nods, giving him an opportunity to do what they agreed upon before. “My apologies, Lady Yul Mee, but I’m afraid no interest is awakened in me this evening.”

“Why do I have the feeling that Your Majesty isn’t being completely honest?” Yul Mee’s pride is hurt, but she tries hard to hold on to her polite mask. “The interest definitely awakened tonight.”

“You are a beautiful and intelligent woman, Lady Yul Mee. I admire the unity of your family and how you have personally restored this place while your brother spends his days at the palace.” For the whole evening, Wonbeom and his brother listened to how great Yul Mee’s organization skills are and about her further plans for the estate. It really was impressive. But, even keeping all that in mind, just like the other women Wonbeom met over the past few days, she loses to Soyong. “You need to find a man who will appreciate your talents. But it won’t be me, I’m afraid.”

“His Majesty is right, sister. I will find you the best groom in this country.” Yul Mu tries to save the situation. Maybe Wonbeom shouldn’t be this blunt in his rejection, but he doesn’t want to give her a false sense of hope. It’s harsh, but he believes it’s the right way to end things.

“Your Majesty will have to wait and see what I can do,” Yul Mee promises. “I won’t give up so easily.”

“It seems we are both powerless in this case, Your Majesty.” Yul Mu shakes his head.

“I apologize in advance for the disappointment, Lady Yul Mee.” There’s nothing Wonbeom can add. She can stubbornly believe that there is a chance, but his heart already belongs to someone else and he has no desire to change it.

They finally leave the Park estate but don’t go far. Wonbeom doesn’t want to wait for news in his brother’s house. He has just found Soyong and he doesn’t want to separate from her, even for a short time. The moment she steps outside he will have a serious talk with her.

“Why my home of all places?” Gyeong-eung asks.

“Good question,” Wonbeom agrees. “You go first. I won’t leave here without the Queen.”

“I suppose we keep it a secret for now?” his brother asks. “Hong will be happy to know he can finally go on his date.”

“But don’t share this information with anyone else,” Wonbeom says. “Let’s not rush to anything since the Queen is behaving so strangely.”

“When has this woman not acted strangely?” the prince grumbles.

His brother used to hate Soyong with a passion. After their triumph over the Kim clan, his brother started to change his opinion about her. However, he has not been able to stop voicing his irritation over what he doesn’t like about her. But now he does it in a warmer, almost teasing tone, like he’s already accepted her as his family. He grumbles at Wonbeom in the same manner from time to time.

The prince leaves, and Wonbeom is left to wait alone in the dark street. After a short time, he hears a distant argument behind the estate’s walls. He recognizes Yul Mee’s voice, full of accusations, and Soyong’s confident voice in return. How she managed to pretend to be a servant, when she is so outspoken with her supposed masters, is a mystery to Wonbeom.

His long wait comes to an end when the gates open and Soyong walks out onto the street with her head held high. He sees her outraged expression before she turns to the side and leaves.

Wonbeom is about to reveal himself from his hiding spot, but an unfamiliar man runs after Soyong. He calls her Mi-Ah, which seems to be her fake name, and they walk together. Wonbeom has no other choice but to follow them in secret.

The man is not an aristocrat, leading Wonbeom to believe he may be the bodyguard that Yul Mu mentioned so many times, Seo Hwi. Wonbeom takes note of his broad frame and perfect posture. The man holds his sword casually, but it’s obvious by his behavior he’s ready for any sudden threat. Ordinary people would not even notice such things; they would see only a man and a woman in deep conversation, nothing unusual. But Wonbeom’s gaze does not miss subtleties that others might miss, because he knows all these tricks himself.

With great annoyance, he notices how relaxed and comfortable Soyong is around this man. She smiles brightly, looking at her companion while they walk side by side. Wonbeom fights a fierce desire to interfere in their idyllic moment when he hears Soyong laugh. It’s no wonder why Yul Mu gossiped about a wedding. The two of them do indeed look like love birds. Is it possible, having only just found his wife, he is already losing her? The hope that was revived in him when she showed jealousy earlier starts to melt like the first snow.

Finally, they arrive at a guest house and the man pays a hostess for Soyong’s room. Wonbeom hides in the shadows and waits until the man walks past him and leaves. When he’s out of sight, Wonbeom finally relaxes and slips out of his hiding spot. He sees Soyong from behind, still speaking with the hostess, and then, balancing on one foot, pulling out a hidden bag of money from her sock.

“Please, if he comes tomorrow, tell him I left early in the morning and didn’t say where I was going.” Soyong holds out the coins to the hostess. “And that I will find him later myself.”

The hostess smirks but takes the money and doesn’t ask further questions before going inside her house. This is when Soyong turns around and finally sees Wonbeom. She freezes, looking at him in surprise.

“Why are you…” She looks uncomfortable, realizing that he has been following her this whole time. “I told you to wait at Hwa Jin’s…”

Wonbeom silently walks towards her and hugs her, catching her off guard.

It is really her! She’s alive and with him at last, and they will figure out everything else later.

“Your Majesty, don’t do this…” She tries to free herself from his grip, but he only hugs her tighter.

“Please, my Queen, just for a moment longer…” Wonbeom whispers and she freezes in his arms, allowing him to hug her. “I have missed you…”

He’s not sure she will believe his sincerity. He has not missed her for just a couple of weeks; he has longed for her for the past year. No matter how many times he disobeyed her wishes and met her on purpose, Soyong was always distant from him. The pain of her absence in his life only grew the day she came into his study to declare new boundaries, saying that their love is gone.

“It’s still just me,” Soyong says quietly and Wonbeom never ceases to wonder how long she will remind him of this.

“I know. I see it…” He finally pulls away, putting his hands on her shoulders. His gaze wanders from head to toe, searching for any other injuries. When he doesn’t notice any, his attention is on her face again, on her hairline where he spotted the wound before. He raises his hand, wanting to trace the wound with his fingers but hesitantly stops. “Are you alright, my Queen? Does it still hurt?”

“I’m alright now.” Soyong takes his hand and pulls it down. “Your Majesty doesn’t have to worry about it.”

“How can I not worry?” Wonbeom argues. “I was afraid I lost you!”

How can she think so lowly of him? Of course he is worried! No matter what happens between them, he could never stop caring about her. He made many mistakes, among them wording his frustration in the wrong way and she now thinks he doesn’t consider her as part of his family. Now he has to prove to her how much she actually means to him. He waited for a year, giving her the time she needed to calm down and discover who she is now. He almost lost her without a chance to make amends, so he must change his tactic now.

No-tou-chi no more. It is time for him to take everything into his own hands and win her over.

Author’s notes

No-tou-chi no more
Soyong-ah, stay strong, your hubby is out on a hunt… or won’t be strong and give up already XD

I’m so happy to finally write them being together. Whether it’s a fight or something romantic, I really missed that.

I’m must warn you, the next chapter going to be very long (5,5k words) because it’s SY’s pov and starts from what happened at the estate and I had to cover a lot.

PS I love writing Director Hong, he is such a mood lol

  • 1
    Orabeoni – how sister refers to her brother in family.

2 thoughts on “Chapter 11: My mind is full of you

  1. orladark December 22, 2022 / 11:09 pm

    farrahtango on Chapter 13Fri 05 Nov 2021 07:51AM EDT
    ow finally, wonboen can hug SY ❤.

    next very long chapter? aa cannot wait!

    Comment Actions
    Thread Delete
    OrlaDark on Chapter 13Fri 05 Nov 2021 07:58AM EDT
    I hope the next chapter won’t disappoint! <3
    Yes, he is finally able to hold her in his arms, he won't let her go anymore <3

    Thank you for reading and supporting!

    Comment Actions
    Thread Parent Thread Edit Delete
    Cheoljongieee on Chapter 13Fri 05 Nov 2021 08:24AM EDT
    i dont mind the 5.5k words at all, orla! 😂 And wow you include JH song in this fic 😍

    Comment Actions
    Thread Spam Delete
    OrlaDark on Chapter 13Fri 05 Nov 2021 10:35AM EDT
    JH's song comes up so naturally like always belonged here. As long as he has her, nothing is lost and they can work on it 😉

    Thank you for reading!

    Comment Actions
    Thread Parent Thread Edit Delete
    Ukhoehong on Chapter 13Fri 05 Nov 2021 08:40AM EDT
    Ohhh...i am so happy you are back with our royal couple. I love this little funny crack between CJ and SY and how they show their tiny affection toward each other at the end of this chapter. CJ must feel very relieved to have his queen back.

    And the "melt like the first snow" is so sweet. Thank you for including it.

    I won't complain with the 5.500 words chapter. The longer the better. It worths the wait 🙂

    Thank you for this delightful update 🙂

    Last Edited Fri 05 Nov 2021 08:41AM EDT

    Comment Actions
    Thread Delete
    OrlaDark on Chapter 13Fri 05 Nov 2021 10:41AM EDT
    At this point, SY can curse him and he will be happy to hear it too XD
    He's very happy but SY needs to be called out and WB will do exactly that.
    "Like the first snow" is manifest of WB's feelings to SY and here it somehow so sad "is it too late?" 🙁

    Thank you for reading and supporting! <3

    Comment Actions
    Thread Parent Thread Edit Delete
    Elf Bls on Chapter 13Fri 05 Nov 2021 11:42AM EDT
    Thanks as always for the new chapter. ahh finallyaaa they are together again. I really wanted CJ and SY to reunite and finally "Soyong-ah, stay strong, your husband went hunting" lol .CJ has found him and will not let him go anymore. And in the end I'm sure love will prevail as always.

    "I must warn you, the next chapter will be very long"

    You can write as long as you want I enjoy reading it so much. bye to the next part

    Comment Actions
    Thread Spam Delete
    OrlaDark on Chapter 13Fri 05 Nov 2021 11:59AM EDT
    Glad you enjoying this chapter, I'm happy to write them being together at last, I think I missed it as much as CJ missed his Queen lol

    Thank you for reading! <3

    Comment Actions
    Thread Parent Thread Edit Delete
    White_Orchids on Chapter 13Fri 05 Nov 2021 11:51AM EDT
    “Please, my Queen, just for a moment longer…” >> Oh Cheoljong! The yearning! I can’t! 🙃

    Comment Actions
    Thread Delete
    OrlaDark on Chapter 13Fri 05 Nov 2021 11:56AM EDT
    I started to catch up with your fic and you use this quote from the show too, isn’t it beautiful how he longed for her on the show in our fics? She’s his comfort <3

    Thank you for reading! <3

    Comment Actions
    Thread Parent Thread Delete
    White_Orchids on Chapter 13Fri 05 Nov 2021 11:59AM EDT
    Fierce with a sword, but clingy without it. 😂😂

    Comment Actions
    Thread Parent Thread Delete
    OrlaDark on Chapter 13Fri 05 Nov 2021 12:02PM EDT
    Haha, it only proves he is a puppy lol
    He can protect and bark but once SY is around he swoons and crave for attention

    Comment Actions
    Thread Parent Thread Edit Delete
    blip on Chapter 13Fri 05 Nov 2021 01:18PM EDT
    Ohohoho the game is on c:

    Comment Actions
    Thread Delete
    OrlaDark on Chapter 13Fri 05 Nov 2021 04:34PM EDT
    ahaha, yep, the King won't miss his opportunity to win her over <3

    Thank you for reading! <3

    Comment Actions
    Thread Parent Thread Edit Delete
    Freyja_Lawliet on Chapter 13Fri 05 Nov 2021 08:19PM EDT
    Finally our royal couple meet, thank you, Quthor-nim.

    I love every part of this chapter which depicts SY as the smart and graceful woman of her class. I also like how CJ reacts about his wife. finally CJ hugged SY. force SY to hear your whole heart, don't let SY leave your arms CJ.

    Comment Actions
    Thread Spam Delete
    OrlaDark on Chapter 13Sat 06 Nov 2021 07:57AM EDT
    They are a good team, he got the hint and play along without any questions.
    Do not worry, CJ won't let her go now even if she will fight it XD

    Thank you for reading! <3

    Comment Actions
    Thread Parent Thread Edit Delete
    Abby on Chapter 13Mon 08 Nov 2021 01:16AM EST
    I'm happy the long waited reunion finally happens. .and Yes, Cheoljong, it's time for you to win your Queen back..Thank you for your update ❤

    Comment Actions
    Thread Spam Delete
    OrlaDark on Chapter 13Mon 08 Nov 2021 12:24PM EST
    And thank you for reading! She's a stubborn lady so it's not going to be easy but CJ won't stop in face of a good challenge 😛

Leave a Reply