Chapter 1: Knightly Captain
Maria ran to her room, closing the door swiftly, and then sank to the floor, her back rested on the door.
She rubbed her face onto her hands, groaning.
"Oh. My. God," she muttered, frustrated.
Because as she recalled a while ago, it just happened again. What happened again? The Captain becoming her "knight in shining armor".
How did that happen? Well, she hit her hand (hard) on the table accidentally. The Captain was there, and helped her hand feel better while being so affectionate and mushy and sweet- which made Maria so nervous.
This has been going on for days.
Like this Monday, when the Captain defended her in the town square by scaring a perverted man away from her.
"I'll just stay here, Captain," Maria said. He offered a smile before going off with the children into the shop. Maria sat on a bench near a cafe and patiently waited.
Minutes later, a man arrived, eyeing Maria from head to toe. He started walking up to her.
"Hello there," the man said, sitting beside her. "Um...hello?" Maria replied awkwardly. "You are a very pretty girl," he said.
"Thank you," Maria muttered. She didn't feel anything jittery like what she felt around the Captain. She felt...disgusted.
"I'm Dennis. You are?" the man said. "Maria," Maria replied. Dennis suddenly snaked his arm around her waist, and pulled her closer to him.
"What are you doing?" Maria said, frustrated. She backed away and then Dennis pulled her closer again, making her face him. He slowly leaned in-
"What do you think you're doing?"
They both looked up to see the Captain.
Dennis pulled away and Maria stood up and went beside the Captain.
"I'm sorry, sir," Dennis said.
"Do you know how wrong it is to harass a woman in public?" the Captain said.
Dennis bowed his head low and went away.
The Captain turned to Maria and gave her a worried, caring, and intense gaze.
"Are you alright?" he said. Maria found herself lost in his eyes and feeling those jittery feelings.
"Yes. Thank you," she muttered. They broke away from their gaze and went back to the shop.
Then Tuesday, when she was baking cookies for the children and accidentally burnt her wrist while removing the cookies from the oven, and the Captain was there, resulting her wrist atop the Captain's hand under the cold, running, tap water, and four or five cookies on the floor.
Maria heard the delightful "Ding!" from the oven.
"Ooh. My cookies are baked," she muttered happily. She was glad to bake cookies for the children. She'll do anything to see those happy smiles on their faces. Especially Kurt's once he eats the cookies.
Maria chuckled at the thought of Kurt. She grabbed the gloves and opened the oven. The cookies smelled really good. She slowly took the tray with about fifteen cookies on it. Suddenly the tray touched her wrist. Maria dropped the tray, making four cookies off the tray. She quickly removed the glove, and saw the burn.
She hissed in pain. She saw the cookies on the floor. "Not the cookies!" she exclaimed.
She turned to see the Captain by the door.
"Are you alright? I heard a noise from here," he said. He walked to her and saw the cookies on the floor.
"Oh," he said. "But are you alright?" he said. He looked at Maria holding her wrist. The Captain took her wrist and saw the burn. "You have a burn," he said. Maria nodded.
"Come here," he said, putting his around her waist. They walked to the sink. The Captain opened the faucet and put her burnt wrist under the running tap water and moving it slowly back and forth. His hand was firm yet gentle under her wrist. Maria couldn't help but just look at him.
Then Wednesday, when the Captain caught her as she fell from the tree during a picnic with the children on the Untersberg.
"Fraulein Maria! Are you okay?" Louisa called. "It's alright Louisa. I can manage," Maria replied from the large branch of the tree. "I'll just- whoa!" Maria exclaimed as she slipped. She closed her eyes, have expecting herself to land on grass. Once she opened her eyes, instead of being on the grass, she was in the arms of the Captain.
"Are you alright?"
"Yes. Thank you."
The Captain put down Maria and they all headed back to the picnic area.
Then later evening that Wednesday as well, she sprained her ankle resulting her being carried by the Captain to her room and him watching over her as she recovered.
She was walking by the gardens and suddenly tripped on a stone. Her ankle hurt.
"Ah!" she said. She held her ankle. It hurt really bad.
"I-I think I sprained my ankle," Maria said. The Captain went to her.
"Put your hands around my neck," he said.
"Just do it."
Maria hesitantly put her hands around his neck. He carried her and they went to her room.
Upon arriving her room, the Captain called Frau Schmidt. The rest of the week was spent in her room, her foot bandaged, and the Captain watching over her everytime.
Then a week after Wednesday, he was pulling her away from the middle of the road before she got run over by the bus, him hugging her from behind. That happened after the children and them went to an ice cream parlor.
"That was delicious!" Kurt exclaimed, putting his hand over his belly. The others giggled. Maria was loking around, not minding where she was walking. She came across the road. The Captain saw a bus slowly moving.
He quickly grabbed Maria by her hand, and faced his back behind the bus as he hugged her from behind at the sidewalk.
They broke away.
"Are you alright?"
"Yes. Thank you,"
Then finally the next day after that (which was Thursday), he was removing her splinter, complete with a kiss on her finger- as requested by Marta.
"Ah!" Maria exclaimed. "What happened? Are you alright?" the Captain said. They were in the sitting room with the children, doing a wood carving activity.
"I think I got a splinter," Maria said, showing her finger. The Captain took her finger and slowly removed her splinter.
Marta saw it, and went nearer. "What happened, father?" Marta said. "Your Fraulein got a splinter," he said. Marta looked at the finger. "You kiss my finger to make my boo-boos feel better, right Father? How about you do it to Fraulein Maria? Her finger might feel better," Marta suggested with a toothy grin. The Captain smiled and looked at Maria. Maria bit her lip as the Captain kissed her finger.
Then that. Plus he had a gentle yet intense gaze on her.
Maria suddenly hit her hand on the table. "Ow!" she said, holding her hand. "Are you alright?" the Captain said from across the table. Maria nodded. The Captain raised his eyebrow and Maria shook her head slowly. He went over to her and massaged her hand.
"Does that feel better?" he said. Maria nodded. She watched as he massaged her hand and his face was focused on what he's doing.
Worse, all of that sent her blushing and her stomach jittering and her heart beating faster.
And he said three words with four syllables every single time her clumsiness got her.
"Are you alright?"
She buried her head between her knees, groaning a bit more louder.
She felt frightened about her feelings, especially those were towards the Captain. And yet, she felt wonderful.
What am I going to do? she thought.
She realized dinner starts in a minute, and forced herself up.
She washed up, and picked any outfit she saw from her closet, slipped on her shoes and combed her hair.
She didn't notice she was wearing that beautiful blue dress since she was in a hurry, though.
After she got ready, he practically ran to the dining area, hoping she wasn't late for meals.
Luckily, she wasn't.
And guess who was also early?
"Good evening, Captain," she muttered before taking her seat across him.
"Good evening, Fräulein," he replied, smiling at her.
Maria smiled back, feeling nervous. She heard the children's chatters and felt a bit relieved, since she wouldn't be alone with him anymore.
The children arrived and took their rightful seats, and the Baroness and Max also arrived after them, taking their seats in either side of Georg.
"Fräulein Maria, please lead the prayer," the Captain said.
"Yes," she said, nodding and clasping her hands in front of her chest and said the prayer before meals.
Everyone responded with their own "Amen"s and started eating their dinner.
The children had happy chatters with each other and their Fräulein, while enjoying their meal.
"So, how was the walk around Salzburg?" the Captain said, starting a conversation with the children.
"Oh, it was wonderful, father!" Liesl said enthusiastically.
"How?" he replied.
"Well, we took a walk around the town square and got to see nice flowers in some shops, and then Fräulein Maria treated us some ice cream-"
"It was delicious!" Kurt exclaimed, cutting Liesl off.
"Yes. It was. And then, we took a visit to the Nonnberg Abbey and prayed with the sisters," Liesl finished, taking a bite of her vegetables.
"Fräulein Maria even taught us a new song!" Birgitta said.
"That is wonderful," Georg replied, giving an acknowledging smile at Maria.
Maria smiled back and continued eating.
Georg noticed that Maria was wearing that beautiful blue dress. She looked even more beautiful.
While eating, Maria didn't notice the Captain's stolen glances at her. She continued eating, helping Gretl eat time to time, and have some small chats with them.
"Fräulein Maria?" Louisa said.
"Yes, Louisa?" Maria replied.
"I was just wondering if we could...um...go swimming at the lake tomorrow afternoon?" Louisa asked. The children created a small chatter in agreement.
"Well, why don't you ask your father?" Maria said, sending a glance at the Captain.
A series of "Can we, father?" started, and Georg smiled.
"Alright. You may," he said.
The children replied with a happy cheer.
"But! Is it okay if I join you?" Georg said, smiling.
"Of course, father!" Kurt said.
"How about you Fräulein Maria? Can you join us too?" little Gretl asked.
Maria nearly shuddered. If the Captain was there and she'll join, she most likely might have a "knight in shining armor" again.
But the children's look were unable to resist. So, she gave a consideration.
"Maybe," she blurted.
"Why 'maybe'?" Liesl asked.
"Well, I don't have a swimsuit," Maria simply replied, hoping the excuse could make her be excused from the swimming activity.
"I can lend you one," Liesl said.
Maria felt nervous. Is she says yes, the Captain will be there. If she says no, she will disappoint the children.
She decided to join in. She wouldn't want to disappoint the children.
"Alright," she replied with a smile.
"Yay!" Gretl said beside her. She smiled in pinched her cheek softly before continuing her meal.
After dinner, Maria went to tuck the children in for bed.
"Good night," Maria told to Gretl and Marta before closing the door.
Once she closed the door, she quickly scanned her surroundings in case the Captain is there.
I need to be careful, Maria thought.
She slowly walked to the stairs, eyes peeled.
As she reached the stairs, she went down the steps very slowly.
She suddenly saw a figure come out from the sitting room.
And he was walking to her.
To the stairs.
Maria mentally panicked and her slow pace became fast, causing her to slip.
He caught her, with that intense and gentle gaze.
Great, Maria thought.
"Are you alright?" the Captain said. Maria nodded.
She stood up and backed away from him a bit.
"Next time, be careful," he said. Maria nodded again, looking at the floor.
The Captain smiled.
"Good night, Maria," he said, patting her cheek affectionately with his two fingers before turning around and climbing up the stairs.
Maria stood there, speechless.
"He called me 'Maria'."
A/N: Heeey! So, here's the story I said that I was supposed to finish. I told myself that I would write a one-shot and the I got this idea, and suddenly I figured that it was too long for a one-shot. So, I decided it to be a chaptered. ;) (I already got it revised! Thanks to all who reviewed. :D) Anyway, I hope you like this chappy! Please R&R. It would mean a lot. :DD