Chapter 2: The Minefield

“He did it again. Can you believe it?” Soyong furiously paces back and forth by the lake, just in front of the stone with Bong Hwan’s message carved in.

All of her servants keep a healthy distance as they wait on the bridge behind the pavilion. If she hadn’t just shouted, no one would hear her here and she could have some privacy, but Soyong is so angry that she can’t restrain herself.

She is in the final days of her pregnancy: the royal physician says she will deliver the royal baby soon and everyone is fussing about it more than usual. The pressure she feels makes her even more irritated and she finds herself needing to let her steam out — especially when her stubborn husband doesn’t follow her request for distancing.

And it has led her to the lake for another one-way conversation with the lake spirit.

The spirit had once speculated she lived there as a little mermaid, or worse, that she had slipped away to the future through the lake to use his precious body to flirt with men in nightclubs. If only that was true, maybe Soyong would not feel so confused right now.

After the mysterious spirit left her body, Soyong’s mind felt emptier. They used to think together, support each other, or even oppose each other – not with words, but with feelings. They were conflicted at times, but they were together. And now she is left alone with herself in her mind. It feels good in some ways, and yet still odd.

It became easier to think about her experience when she separated Bong Hwan from herself and spoke to him as a spirit in the lake. By speaking with him like this, Soyong feels like she is clearing her mind. And who else would so perfectly understand her distress with Cheoljong other than the person who was irritated by the King the most?

“I asked… I pleaded for him to leave me alone…” Soyong continues her rant. “But that stubborn…” She stops for a moment to consider if she can swear when referring to the King, but her rage is stronger than her desire to follow basic decency, and she lets the insult leave her mouth: “That donkey!”

Even at a distance, Soyong hears the entire crowd of servants gasp.

Immediately Soyong feels guilty. She is not being fair to the poor animal. Donkeys are cute in some ways with their small height and big pointy ears. It’s not even a good comparison either as Cheoljong is tall, and while his ears protrude a bit, they aren’t that big, and are even quite handsome.

Finishing her rant, Soyong hoists her skirts and heads to Daejojeon Hall1Daejojeon Hall – Queen of Joseon residence after the wedding.. Now is no time to feel so stressed, and if Cheoljong doesn’t understand that yet, she will remind him.

Soyong had never seen him in the cherry blossom gardens before, but this very morning they “accidentally” bumped into each other there. And in the previous week, she visited the library thinking that the King would have calligraphy practice in his favorite pavilion, but instead she found him in the library reading books. Only out of pure stubbornness did she stay in the library to catch up on her favorite novel. But she couldn’t focus, frequently stealing glances at her husband

across the long table. They didn’t say a word to each other apart from greetings. The entire situation was ridiculous, and she knows very well he didn’t read anything that day as she can always see through his pretenses.

This has to stop, she thinks determinedly.

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    Daejojeon Hall – Queen of Joseon residence after the wedding.

2 thoughts on “Chapter 2: The Minefield

  1. orladark December 22, 2022 / 8:34 pm

    pearlynose on Chapter 1Sun 10 Apr 2022 12:38PM EDT
    hopefully things would be better for the royal couple after this; maybe find it in their hearts not to be too stubborn and proud. they need to be open with their feelings and not avoid each other. communication is the key, and this is moment is already a good start. hopefully they have more, um, physical connections, er, opportunities to talk 😉

    good read; love this!

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    OrlaDark on Chapter 1Sun 10 Apr 2022 02:25PM EDT
    One is ready to listen but another is not ready to open up, but in the main story they already resolved that, kinda. They definitely gonna have more opportunities to talk, for all those missing months, they need to catch up XD

    Thank you for reading and commenting! As always, it’s much appreciated! <3

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    chellybit on Chapter 1Sun 10 Apr 2022 07:41PM EDT
    Loved it. I hope they will get more affectionate even just for a little more time before SY distance herself again. Like she should let WB take care of her.🥰

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    OrlaDark on Chapter 1Mon 11 Apr 2022 03:47AM EDT
    They had some time after the labor when everything was alright, they are just in love with their adorable child 🥰 I'm planning to cover that time in side stories too.

    Thsnk you for reading and commenting, much appreciated 🙏

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    Ukhoehong on Chapter 1Mon 11 Apr 2022 03:35AM EDT
    In this chapter, I must say SY is such a dork. Can't she feel CJ's love for her? I hope CJ and SY will have more quality in the future. Can we have more of CJ courting SY here or in Meet me halfway?
    And can we read their lovely relationship after becoming parents, before SY is distancing herself again? This must be very adorable. And thank you for the update :-*

    Last Edited Mon 11 Apr 2022 03:37AM EDT

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    OrlaDark on Chapter 1Mon 11 Apr 2022 04:01AM EDT
    Both things (royal family being adorable together and CJ courting SY) are planned for these stories 😉
    I also love that dorkish side of Soyong 🥰
    To be fair, CJ only now decided what he truly feels, their rare meetings hardly long enough to see his love. But she could have st least give him a chance 😔

    Thank you for reading and commenting, your support is always appreciated 😘

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    Lili on Chapter 1Tue 12 Apr 2022 10:46AM EDT
    Hoping more slow burn romance between them or maybe pillow talk, they've get to know each other in deep.. Every interaction between them get me excited 😆

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    OrlaDark on Chapter 1Wed 13 Apr 2022 06:46AM EDT
    Pillow talk is a nice idea, thank you. After all, they must babysit their child at night ❤
    I'm glad their interactions makes you excited 😊 I love them yo bits too ❤

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