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The End Doesn't Justify The Means

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She stood in the shadows of the pillars, having returned to the castle before everyone else as she had wanted to change her shoes into something more comfortable, the ones she had been wearing had been bothering her. However, instead of returning to the others, she had been frozen into place. Her hands felt oddly numb as her heart beat too loudly in her chest.

          Her mouth felt dry. Her eyes unable to move away from the scene before her. Sinbad escorting the young princess Kougyoku back to the castle, holding her hand so tenderly. Damn it, Sinbad. He knew the young woman had an intense crush on him.

          Her stomach turned when he saw the smile that appeared on his face. The smile she thought he only reserved for her. “Princess, I am grateful to you.”

          He pulled on Kougyoku’s hand and swirled her around, pulling her tightly against his body. Looking deep into her eyes. “To take each other’s hand in this way is wonderful,” his voice becoming deeper and charming, a husky undertone to it. “I wish with all my heart that this could never end.”

          A silent tear rolled down Leylah’s cheek. How could she had been such a fool? Her hand clutching the pendant around her neck tightly, feeling her heart breaking.

          “Forgive me, I spoke without thinking first. Now then, I shall take my leave,” he spoke tenderly to the young princess as he let her go, walking around her in the direction of the palace.

          “Lord Sinbad!” Kougyoku cried out to him, and he looked over his shoulder, looking at her with that tender look on his face. “I too wish this could last forever. That is how I truly feel.”

          More fractures appeared in Leylah’s heart as something deep inside of her withered, being replaced by something ice cold. The coldness spreading from her chest to the rest of her body.

          He made a pleased sound, a bright smile on his face that made the young woman gasp in open delight. And more tears ran down Leylah’s cheeks. She took a step backwards, her jewellery making a light noise.

          His head snapped up immediately – Kougyoku too busy hiding her face in her sleeves –, and his eyes zoned in on Leylah’s position. Even in the moonlight, she could see him turn pale. Horror washing over his face. Yes, Sinbad, you got caught.

          Turning on her heels, she disappeared into the palace, moving as fast as she could as she didn’t want to look at him or speak to him right now. Staggering a bit as her head pounded, the taste in her mouth making her stomach turn. She should have known this would happen. There had been a reason why he had the nickname Lady-killer of the Seven Seas. But, he had told her that it would be different. That he only loved and wanted her. That he was hers. It was different for him.

          It had been one thing to innocently flirt with someone, but that, those words he had said to Kougyoku. That hadn’t been innocent flirting. Weren’t the things you said to a woman that wasn’t the one you were in a committed relationship with.

          Roughly she brushed away her tears as she stumbled into her old rooms, the pain in her chest like a feral animal. Clawing and savaging her. So this is why he hadn’t wanted their relationship to be public yet. If it had been, he couldn’t toy around. The bastard. The damn bastard. The trust she had in him, which she had thought to be unshakeable, showed countless of fractures.

          She pulled the pins out of her hair, the emotional anguish choking her. Clings cut through the silent air as she threw the pins around the room. Not caring about damaging the previously precious gifts.

          Fabric ripped as she tore off her dress as well, one she had specifically pulled on for him. Fighting to suppress the strangled whimpers that wanted to escape her throat, she pressed her fists against her lips. Her rage desired an outlet but it was held in control by a numbing sorrow. Falling on her knees, she rocked herself. Her eyes stinging as bitter tears streaked her skin. Why? Why? Why?

          She had survived gruesome wounds, fought countless battles, but never had been be as all-consuming and disabling as the pain she felt right now. Those you cared the most about…could hurt you the most.

          She snarled as the sound of a knock cut through the air. Shoulders tensing as she curled into herself. Go away. Go away.

          “Leylah, let me in.” How dared he to sound wounded, pained, and lost? How dared he sound like a victim while he had the one who had delivered the betrayal?

          “Leylah, my love, let me explain.” The door banged loudly against the wall as she ripped it open, her rage finally taking control, burning hot and violently.

          “My love?!” she raged at him, shoving against his chest and saw his eyes turning huge. Never before had he seen her this angry, or ever had her rage directed at him.

          “You disgusting womanising bastard! Don't you dare come to me and call me that, you filthy liar!” She screeched at him. Lashing out but his powerful hands wrapped around her wrists. He moved her back into the room, the door closed behind them.

          His Adam’s apple bobbed as she cursed and twisted in Sinbad’s hold. Refusing to cry in his presence. He didn't deserve her tears. “Get lost, Sinbad! Go to that little princess of yours. Have that moment that will never end.”

          “Leylah…”

          “STOP SAYING MY NAME!” She tore herself free and stepped away from him. Her body trembling. “You were mine. You said you loved me. But you played me. How many others are there? How many women have you fucked behind my back?”

          “No one!” He roared at me, the vein on his temple pulsing. “Damn it Leylah, it's not what it seemed! I did what I did to win her trust and use her to keep Sindria safe. To keep you safe. To achieve our dreams.”

          A wave of horrified nausea crashed into her, making her reconcile away from him. “You’re using her as a pawn?” Leylah whispered as Sinbad kept staring at her, his eyes clouded with pain. “How many more pawns do you have! Am I just a pawn for you too?”

          “How can you ask me that! You know what you mean to me!”

          “And you still go behind my back, flirt and put dreams in the heads of young vulnerable girls. Break my heart,” she countered roughly, fingers curling into a fist. No. She wasn't going to let him talk this right. Because it wasn't right.

          He let out a pained noise as he raised his arms, dropping them when she stepped back. “We have to make our hands dirty and make hard decisions to achieve our dreams.”

          She felt sick. So sick. Pressing her hand against her stomach. “The end doesn't justify the means, Sinbad! There are lines that shouldn't be crossed!”

          “Do you think I enjoyed it? That it didn't make my skin crawl? Doesn't make me feel guilty?”

          “Don't you dare to try and make me feel guilty for reacting the way I do!” She shook her head, fingers pushing into her wild curls. “I love you so much, Sinbad. But this, this still tastes like betrayal. No matter the reasons or motivations. And seeing you aren't taking care of my heart, not keeping me…”

          “No, no Leylah. Don't do this. Don't do this to us!” Sinbad cried out desperately and grabbed her shoulders. “I love you. You are my heart. Have I made a mistake, yes I did. And I am so sorry.”

          “You're the one who is doing this to us.” She looked away from him, refusing to look into those intense hypnotic eyes. Refusing to be swept along with his power. “I've tolerated and accepted a lot of things from you. Turned a blind eye. Didn't try to change you. But this? No. You swore that you would be mine and faithful. In all ways. You broke your word and in the process, broke my heart. I'm not just going to forgive you just because you say sorry.” She shrugged off his hands and walked away from him.

          “Leave, my Lord. You're not welcome here.” The icy numbness spread as she felt so tired. Drained and defeated. Hugging herself.

          “Don't leave me. Not you. Please, give me a chance to make it right.” She had never heard him beg like this. Taking harsh deep breathes as she kept looking away from him.

          “You left me. Actually…I wonder if you were ever mine to begin with.” She walked into the bathroom and locked the door behind her. Sliding down and buried her face in her hands as she lost the battle against her sobs. Damn you, Sinbad. Damn you.