This may be a sad chapter but don’t stop reading because the ending is always the happiest.
“When did you say Prince Durham would be arriving?” Annabel turns to me as she puts golden clips into her soft, blonde hair. She always has something intertwined into her hair, whether it be roses, clips or jewels it is always something. And it seems the kingdom has made this a some sort of style, the people look up to Annabel which I can agree with. She is absolutely stunning, with bright blonde hair and pale pink eyes that glitter perfectly in any lighting.
I turn to face her, she is wearing this beautiful deep mauve dress with layers, she looks absolutely ravishing. “I didn’t, mother just said to-day.” She walks over to me with perfectly measured steps, her long gown dragging along the floor.
“You must be completely frantic.” She smiles and picks up my crown, it looks immense in her delicate hands.
I am not frantic, I am devastated. This is a wedding arranged by my mother, you see, I turned 18 this past month and I am the only heir to my father’s throne. My mother lost the ability to give birth in the process of my own. “Yes, soon I will be married.” Perfect, “I cannot wait.” I absolutely loathe the idea of being married to any man, alas I don’t have much of a choice in my future.
“And my father says he will be arranging a wedding with a nobel as well, so by this time next year we will both have husbands.” Annabel puts on my crown, the green jewels glisten in the sunlight coming in from my window, “Although I don’t relish having to be intimate with a man.” She giggles as I put on the crown, the large rose in the middle represents the kingdom, and so do the rose markings on my back.
The dress I am wearing perfectly shows off the rose and Thorns that snake up my arm and back, the black and red colours bright against my pale skin tone. As I put the crown on my head the dark wooden door to the left of where I am sitting creaks open, Annabel turns to face it and my mother walks through. Her dull mauve hair put into a bun atop her head, as always. “Oh Annabel.” My mother takes a few drawn out steps over to Annabel, “You look more and more like your mother everyday.”
Elenore, Annabel’s mother, was my mother’s best friend since they were my age. “Oh really? I barely remember what she looks like.” Annabel was 9 when Elenore died protecting my mother from a bullet.
*”The dress will NOT be cleaned.”* My mother’s screeching voice comes back to me. Her tears, her screaming, my father and Lee trying to help her even with Lee’s wife being dead and shot right in front of him. I remember the look in her eyes, the last time she felt anything. The day Elenore died on the outside was the day my mother died on the inside.
“You’re just the spitting image of her, Elenore would be very proud.” My mother says with her hand still squeezing Annabel’s shoulder which starts to turn a rose colour.
“Mother, please release Annabel.” I turn just in time to see her move her hand.
“Yes, well Durham is here.” My mother says as she reaches onto her head where her crown is sitting. It’s a beautiful gold comparative to mine which I had plated in silver, as I plan to do to the Queen’s crown as soon as I am inaugurated.
“Okay then. I will be down in a few moments.” I need a moment to breathe.
“Well then Annabel, let’s go while we wai-”
“No mother. I want Annabel to stay.” I stand, my light green dress trails behind me as I take a step forward.
“That is nonsense.” My mother says, “She will see you-”
“Mother.” I say, “You are forcing me to get married, the least you could do is give me this one comfort.”
“Hera, it will be fine.” Annabel says to my mother “Give us a moment, she is just anxious.” Annabel’s small lips curve as she smiles.
“You have two minutes.” My mother stiffens and walks out of the room, her shoes clicking on the floor with every step. As soon as I hear the door slam shut Annabel starts pacing.
“Are you worried?” She asks as her long gown trails the ground and the sheer covering over her chest moves with the motion.
“Nope.” I say, “Because if he doesn’t like me- well neither of us get much of a say in anything anyways.”