Hope you enjoy. :) Please read the A/N at the end of this chapter. Thanks.


- Chapter 1 -


"Never ever let a man capture your heart." Laura cautioned.

Sara was only 5 years old when her mother told her that. Laura had a general distrust towards men. Her husband who once promised her everything had failed to deliver. She ran away from her house and disgraced her father to be with him. Yet, when she came to his household, she was not his wife. She was merely a bed-warmer to him.

Young Sara met her mother sad gaze and nodded. For her age, Sara was exceptional smart and mature. She was a keen observer. She knew how to read the tiniest twitch of a person's face and knew how to avoid troubles.

Her father was the patriarch of the household. Everyone listened to him, if not; there will be beating or humiliation. She remembered there was a mistress who tried to run away – as she could not bear the abuses – was stripped naked and tied to a pole in the front garden. The sun was unyielding and scorching. The mistress cried and shouted for help. No one dared to go forward. Her father sneered and warned them that were their outcome if they dare to disobey. After that, Sara never saw the mistress again. Some maids said she died from dehydration. Some said she was sold to the faraway land to be a hooker. Either way, Sara thought it was a horrible end for the mistress.

Her father hated her. He wanted to have a son. A son could who could be the heir of his family name. He thought that with a new young woman, she could bear a son. But unfortunately, Sara was a girl. A girl her father despised. Her father would never look at her for an extra minute. He disregarded her presence.

There were nights where her father drunkenly stomped into the bedroom she shared with her mother. He shoved her into the huge wardrobe and locked it then she heard her mother screamed. They were anguish and painful screams. It scared her. When she her mother brought her out of the wardrobe, her mother cried.

Blood trickled down her mother's white night gown forming a horrid sight. Red angry handprints on her mother's beautiful face. Her mother would have a hard time to sit down. She could only lie on her side. Sara bit back her tears and applied medicine on her mother's wounds. The wounds never had the chance to heal. Her father stomped into their room every other night. Sometimes, he brought a whip. And that's when her mother cried the loudest. The screams rattled her.

Everything escalated when Sara was about 10 years old. Her father no longer locked her in the wardrobe. He made her sit on the armchair opposite the bed. Her mother protested and wanted to protect her from the gruesome scene. Her father laughed it off and slapped her across the face. The slap caused her mother to spin and dropped on the floor. His father grabbed a fistful of her mother's brown locks and dragged her to the poster bed.

Sara wanted to run over to help but her mother's eyes told her to sit still. Using the sash that was hanging around the poles of the bed, his father tied her mother to the bed. Sara saw his father landing a few blows on his mother's stomach. That took the air out of her mother. Her mother lay on the bed limply.

Sara whimpered out loudly. Her father relished at the torture that he was inflicting on them. He grabbed the candle that was just beside the bed and dripped the wax on her mother. Her father turned to face her. He laughed. Sara could not wipe off that sinister face from her mind since. Sara witnessed everything. How her father growled animalistic and how mother withered under her father.

After which her mother could no longer look into her eyes and avoid any physical contact with Sara. Sara was hurt by her mother's action but she decided it was better for her mother. That day onwards, her mother started to wilt. Her beauty faded and hairs dropped. Her once luscious and silky brown locks reduced to dry grass.

Her father stopped coming to their room. Sara was glad. Her father had finally left them alone. Or so she thought. Her mother started to sing lullaby for her. Her voice always soothed Sara and it seemed to take away the nightmares. But one morning, the morning she had a peaceful sleep, she was shaken awake. The cruel-looking maid grasped Sara hair and tugged it harshly. Sara's eyes fluttered open in shock.

"Lady Heather had summoned for you." The maid said and dragged her out of the bed. She searched for her mother but she was not in the room. She was afraid of Lady Heather. Lady Heather, the most powerful mistress in the household, was the most wicked lady she ever seen.

"I don't want to," Sara said defiantly. The maid tightened her grasp. Any tighter, Sara's wrist might snap. "You have no say. Go," the maid scowled her face.

Dragging her down the hall, the maid pushed her into the huge beautiful room.

"Sara, I believe?" Lady Heather smiled, lifted her head up from the tea cup. The smile sent shivers down Sara's spine. Lady Heather rose and walked towards her. Her hips swung elegantly.

Lady Heather hooked her chin up. She was surprised that Sara had such beautiful features. Big brown soulful eyes. Full red lips. High cheek bones. That innocent body would send any man crazy.

"Your father was right after all. You're a beauty."

Lady Heather waved her hand lazily. Out of nowhere, two maids appeared before them. Each grabbed hold of Sara's shoulder forcibly. Lady Heather ripped open Sara's cotton night gown. The dress pooled at Sara's leg. Blood flooded to Sara's cheek. She was flushed and ashamed. The ultimatum was Lady Heather pulled her white cotton shorts down, exposing everything to Lady Heather's eyes.

"You will be a valuable asset to the household after all," Lady Heather evaluated Sara.

Lady Heather knew to control a young mind; she had to break down her down. Humiliate her. Separate her from her mother. Let her live a life worse than a hooker.

That was Lady Heather best at.

Tears were spilling from Sara's eyes. She was only 12 years old. She never saw her mother again. No one told her what happened to her mother. Lady Heather punished her if she asked.

The punishment, though did not inflict any physical wounds, was bad. It shamed Sara. There were times Lady Heather would tie her to the pole in the front garden wearing just her undergarments. The gardeners walked pass and snickered. They looked at her lewdly and voiced out their vulgar thoughts loudly.

Things just fell apart for Sara when she was 12 years till the day she met him.

He was her knight in shining armor. He was going to be her rescuer.

Or so she thought.


A/N

This story set in around the 15-16th century but History is not my forte but I will try not to incorporate too much historic stuffs. This idea came when I was reading some books. Grissom may be Sara's knight or her worst nightmare. XD I am not going to give anything out. As you can see here, Lady Heather is definitely not a good character here. But she plays an important role. I do like her but I think she fitted this role best.

This is a strong T for now and may escalate to a M rating. But it depends.

I know there are a few WIPs I am still working on and I should not start another story. As opposed to what I said previously, I am going to continue to write. Do let me know if you think this is okay for you all.

You reviews and comments are deeply appreciated. :)

Thanks.

Love,
blu3crush.