It’s been a couple of hours and the palace has been gravely quiet since the news of the King collapsing has spread. More people troupe into the palace to see the royal family and offer their help.
The farmer, his son and the man who had accompanied him are still in the palace and with the council men in the hall. The await for news of the state of the King.
When the King had suddenly collapsed on seeing Princess Annalisa’s royal dress, Alan De Beaumont who had arrived just then with his family had quickly sent men to get the Royal Doctor to attend to the King.
”What has happened?” Lady Amerlye who was leading servants into the hall but was halted with men rushing out of the hall with the king is startled, she rushes to them ”Pray tell me what has happened to the King?”
”He has received a shock, the royal doctor is on his way, lead us to his chambers. Where is the Queen?” Alan asks as the royal guards stationed for the King lifted him on their shoulders, a few council men is behind them, visibly worried.
”In the Chambers my lord,, i shall inform her and-”
”No! The Queen is in no state to know the reason as to why the King is like this, you must lead her out to another chambers while we attend to the king”
”But i cannot hide this from my Lady, you must understand that she is also worried about the Princess, the entire kingdom is and to see the King in this state— oh , it would be horrible, so horrible!” she covers her mouth understanding that the Queen must be shielded first till the King is out of danger
”Indeed, that is why you must lead her out, tell the Baroness and Duchess to take her out, the servants shall not speak a word.. go, go quickly. Where is the Queen mother?”
”She is asleep, she would not be a bother for she hardly patrols the halls of the palace since the incident, it has taken a toll on her the worry for the Princess, she spends her time tending to the Queen and praying to the gods for safety .. ”
”Go on then, the King must be laid on his bed and be tended to whist the royal doctor is been brought swiftly

”Yes my Lord!” Ameryle turns quickly shooing the servants away back into the kitchen ”Go back, we must attend to the royal family. ” she takes the opposite direction leading to the Queen’s chambers.
Duchess Brienna stares down at the Queen, her look worried. The tray of food has been untouched. ”Your highness my Queen, do not let the tummy suffer while your heart does so too. The Princess would be found, but you must be healthy to receive her when she would be brought back to safety, the gods forbid that we loose you while we get her back”
”I shall eat nothing; no shall i drink. My daughter is out there, possible without food and water for days, without shelter, without warmth- why do i cloth myself with all the luxurious when she may be without and the gods forbid at what state. I shall eat nothing . Have the maid take it away.” she turns her face away. She had been staring at the wall, wearing thesame attire for days and refusing to do nothing other than cry and pray for the safety of her daughter, the Princess of Worcestershire
”But your highness- ” Baroness Bendaly Mamodora rubs the Queen’s hands, ”Surely you must understand that we are worried, we are all worried and we shall wait and tend to you till you are fit, but you must eat” she pleads, Sissie Veronese nods
”Yes my Queen, Princess Annalisa would return soon, but the gods forbid she comes to find her mother in such state worse than she. She would be found, tons of guards are searching for her, the town’s men have also volunteered, she would be found, and even if they miss her, Lord Williams and his friend the Viscount would find her , they are bought risking their lives to ensure-”
”He is the one who has brought danger to the Princess” Lady Mamote of Grewville says with a frown ”He, the Duke’s son has caused this to befall us and if he had left her where she was meant to be the Princess would be safe”
Countess Debrah turns to Lady Mamote ”This is not the time-”
”It is, for they, filled with youthful exuberance dared to lure the Princess away to her danger and evident harm and if-”
”Lady Mamote please” Duchess Brianna says with a tight lip, her eyes glistens with tears ” My son has done nothing wrong other than seek audience with his bride to be my lady, and it was not his fault, neither the fault of the viscount that the princess was kidnapped, and you all know how my son had to fight for his life for so many a days, so do no spew such nonsense as it does come out of your mouth. While you stay and make blame, in his injurious, he has taken to quest to find the Princess- going against the king’s order for his safety and you sit here to call blame when we all are to pray to the gods to bring all of them back”
Countess Debrah places her hand on the Duchess’s hand and then taps it, nodding ”Lady Brianna is right, both our sons are trying to make amends for faults not theirs, risking their lives as well as the royal guards to find the pride of Worcestershire, the heir to the throne, our Princess- all we can do now is pray that they return, and ensure the royal family have people to support them, surely you all can see the sense of this- surely you all must understand unity in the face of adversity”
”The only adversity there i was the decision made to marry the Princes to a Duke, not even a prince” Lady Mamote turns her face away, Sissie Veronese who is seated next to her mother felt irritated
”My Lady, my apologies but i would like to-” Sissie Veronese began but her mother cuts her off quickly.
”Speak not child, your elders are speaking, allow me speak instead” Her mother, Baroness Bendaly cautions her daughter by tapping her hand , she turns to Lady Mamote ”Surely you must listen to yourself before you speak my lady, it is completely absurd to state such things. It is very unfitting.”
”I dare say that she speaks for alot of us” Lady Grim says turning to the other Ladies, a few of them nod in agreement ”For it is not far-fetched a knowledge. What if their alliance was cursed from the beginning, why does it happen so that since their announcement of engagement, nothing has gone right and-”
”Excuse my abrupt cutting my ladies but please state out what has gone wrong since my son has been announced to be the groom of the royal family?” Duchess Brienna asks staring at each and all of them ”Please kindly speak for i am open to listen” she waves her hand and then drops it
”Well, the Princess was almost kidnapped while they went for a royal engagement- was it not so?” lady Mamote asks turning to everyone else seated in the Queen’s chambers
”And who was the one who did safe her from those vagabonds all by himself in the dead of the night?” Sissie Veronese couldn’t help herself, she didn’t exactly like Williams, but- truth be told when it did arises; Williams De Beaumont has been a gentleman to the Princess despite their difference and from what she had seen from that night in the Marquesses ball and with what the viscount Theodore had said, and then the way the Princess has reacted when seeing Williams walk up to she and her cousin Philip to whisk her away to dance with her, she could tell, she could affirm that those two did feel something for each other and if Williams, if the Duke despite his state could risk it all and join in the search for the Princess- then, he was a man and a half, and he deserves no disrespect- he may not be the perfect man but she could tell that he would not harm the Princes- he wouldn’t .
”Lady Bendaly , you let your daughter speak up without being asked to mothers who have given birth to children much older than she is with no respect?” Lady Mamote says looking Sissie Veronese up and down before centering on her mother
Baroness Bendaly cautions Sissie Veronese with her eyes before answering Lady Mamotet ”Forgive my daughter, but her mouth is faster than her with and surely she ought to be angry to see you speak ill of her best friend’s future groom”
”Because she is privileged to walk the same ground and breathe the same air as the Princess in the guise of friendship does not mean that she ought not be shown her place”
”Oh i do know my place my lady, surely not underneath you-”
”Out Sissie Veronese” Her mother tells her nudging her towards the door
”But Mama, you see how ill she speaks of the Duke”
”A Duke that is not related to you, his mother is here to fight on his behalf”
”But mother, he is to be her groom, she ought to accord him some respect- he was wounded and yet he is out there and here she sits trying to blame him for-”
”Sissie Veronese!!!!”
”Fine mother!” Sissie Veronese nods getting up staring at the back of the Queen which has been turned to the wall all the while they sat here. She wishes that the Queen not take all that this Lady Mamote says to heart else she may very well place her wrath on the Duke and possibly on the Viscount and it was not as though she did care for any of them but still, they had done no wrong, well– they haven’t. Because if they be blamed, she too has to be blame. For it was she and the Viscount who had planned to ensure they, the Princess and the Duke be let alone to take one coach while she and the Viscount take another home.
They were trying to help them sort out their grievances, they both could see that both the Princess and the Duke needed an audience alone to speak and resolve whatever issues they did have. How were they to know that the Princess would have been kidnapped? Surely it was not their fault, neither was it hers and the gods for bid that she keeps quiet.
But her mother was stopping her from speaking much. She would leave but she prates the Queen do not think on such thoughts, it would be very unfitting. Very .
”My Queen, i pray you do not listen to vipers trying to ruin the happiness of the Princess in the guise of dangling innocents as the faulters. We would be thinking of a good punishment for the men who have dared to do this not for the ones who are trying to safe her. ”
”Sissie Veronese, you will obey your mother and step out of the chambers as once!!”‘ Her mother raises her voice
Sissie Veronese thins her lips before continuing ”My apologies mother, my apologies my Queen. Please, stay healthy, the Princess shall return safely, our prayers are with her and the gods would protect, but you my Queen must stay healthy” Sissie Veronese says before bowing her away out of the room.
Lady Mamote stares at the Baroness ”With a mouth like that on your daughter, no wonder you cannot find her a suitor for no man, no reasonable man would dare want a red-haired child with mouth as sharp as a razor for a wife” she turns her nose up
”Aye my lady, surely a mouth as sensible as yours didn’t keep your husband at your bed, but gave him opportunity to bed the town women and allowed him leave his seeds as legacies in years to come- surely your children love the communal relationships being shared do they not?”
There was a chuckle and muffled laughters
Lady Mamote gasps ”How dare you insult me!!” she stared wide eyes at Baroness Bendaly with her hand clutching her chest in horror
”Aye! You think this is not public knowledge? Yet you parade around the gardens like a high lady and yet your husband frequent the palours and salons of loose women as though his wife’s body is filled with rabies that he cannot be content. Now i see that it is your mouth!”’
”Lady Bendaly, my goodness!!!” Lady Mamota is shocked and then she went speechless
”Aye! When you live in glass houses my dear lady Mamote, do no throws stones for you do not know who would be at the other end to throw it back. Surely now you would choose your battle in the future wisely and i dare you to ever speak unruly of my daughter again and i shall single handedly drag your dirty linens and sing it like a bird to the town and ensure we write a ballad about the community penis of you An eye for an eye my lady, an eye for an eye.But i have not come here to trade words with you my lady, surely i am more concerned with the situation at hand than private issues. We re here for the Royal family and thus we shall concentrate. We shall not push blame but pray we must so that -the children would return in one piece, it would be a joyous thing.
I do beg all of you and implore you now, do not dare to darken the thoughts of the royal family by stating that the young Duke is at fault- he may not be my son but i would be indeed be pleased to have a son inlaw who dares to risk everything even his life to find my daughter and bring her back to pray, let us all calm down and join hands in prayer. It is a trying time for us all and we shall not let nothing come between unity..”
There is silence as she continuous to talk ”Our husbands, our sons are putting heads together to ensure they are returned, we the wives ought to do better at standing together at this time behind the Queen. Let is not disgrace ourselves further and hold grievances – we are mothers and thus we shall act like that, surely my words does make sense does it not?”
”It does my lady” Duchess Brienna nods ”Thank you”
The others agree, Lady Mamote says nothing as she is unable to say another word.
”Indeed, Now. my Queen?” Duchess Brienna turns back to the Queen,
Queen Donnalyn says nothing, not a word as they bantered with words, she says nothing now even in acknowledgement
”My Queen?”
”I said i shall eat or do nothing, be gone, be gone all of you” The Queen ordered
”No my Queen, we shall wait with you, in pain and in happiness”
Everyone nods in agreement.
The chambers door creaks open, Lady Amerlye pushes her head inside and then stares worriedly at the Queen, she enters ad the goes quietly to the Baroness and then the Duchess, whispering to them. h
”My goodness!” Duchess Brienne gasps ”Dear Lord!” She covers her mouth as they all turn to look at it
”My Lady, you must not let her know, but hurry, the king shall be brought in any second” Amerlye whispers
”But what must we do?” Baroness Bendaly asks
”Anything but bring her out- i shall usher the king myself once you leave”
”Very well.”
Amerlye nods and quickly leaves the room. The Baronesses and Duchess stare at each other
”Speak, of what news as the maid bring?” Lady Grim asks
”Nothing! My Queen, come, if you refuse to eat surely you must indulge us in a walk in the gardens, the sunlight would be good to your skin so as you do not die out of no nutrients. See you pale so” Duchess Brianne tries to get the Queen to rise
”I shall not leave my chambers”
‘Then follow us to the palace’s temple down below, let us all go and pray for the Princess” Lady Bendally pushes
”Yes my Queen, we shall accompany you. Maybe the gods would listen to our fervent prayers”
”I shall not move-”
”Yes my Queen, only to the temple” they help her up, leading her out of the room, ”Only to the temple”
They leave the room, taking her down the passage way, away from the entrance and from seeking eyes, they take her down to the palace temple and pray together.
Amerlye ushers the royal guards who safely and gently lay the King on his bed and then steps away.
Alan De Beaumont takes his friend’s hand ”Has the Royal doctor arrived?”
Earl of Warwick nods stepping away from the door ”Yes”
The royal doctor who had suddenly stepped into the room takes one look at the King and then rushes to his side
”Pray tell, what did happen?”
”There is no time, you must do something for he has refused to come to”
”Very well, clear the room, all must stay away to allow for ventilation – go on now my lords, i shall do my bidding in good time if you would accost me the space” he says turning to them and nudging them away and out of the room. He shuts the door to them.
”What has happened?” Queen Donnalyne asks as soon as she saw them standing at the entrance of her chambers ”Pray tell me what has happened- is it the Princess?” she clings to the Duchess who holds her to herself as the Queen nearly falls.
”No your highness, it is the King, he has taken ill!” Alan De Beaumont tells her carefully ”But he is fine, the royal doctor i tending to him”
”Why was i not told, why?” she raises her voice staring at everyone
”My Queen, you are unwell yourself, we do not-”
”Leave, all of you leave!!!” she demands brushing past them and then demanding the doors be opened so she enters
”Your highness!”
”Do not mistake my state for weakness, i am the Queen, your Queen and i demand you all obey me and step away so i shall tend to my King. ” she turns away from the council men who had lined the door and the women who was tending to her ”I do not want to see anyone lingering behind my doors”she tells the royal guards, they nod and then stare at everyone of them
Everyone moves back and then away, without another word Queen Donnalyne opens the door leading to her chambers, disappears inside shutting it behind her.
The guards , six of them come together blocking the door. On cue, one by one they turn away leaving back to the hall. The De Beaumonts remain.
”We wish to wait and receive word from the Queen”
”We won’t allow you enter as the Queen has ordered”
”We would wait here” Alan De Beaumont says to the guards ”We wait”.
Queen Donnalyne is besides herself as she sits by his side, holding his hands ”My dearest, please come to” she begs, her eyes swollen from tears, her cheeks puffed. The King’s eyes are closed, he is laid on his bed and the royal doctor is attending to him.
“You mustn’t scare me so my Lord, pray open your eyes so I shall stare upon your face, surely you must understand my worry. Please, come to. ” she begs in her tears.
The royal doctor is standing beside her now ”Your Highness, my Queen, do not fret, the King was merely shocked, but he would come to any time from now, it’s been a couple of hours already”
She nods wiping her nostrils ”Shocked about what? He was fine, what happened?”
”Fret not your highness, a little rest would do him good, so would you my lady”
”I shall stay with him till he opens his eyes” she rubs his hands, hoping the warmth of her skin would awaken him somewhat.
“My Queen, allow me give you something to calm your nerves, for the worry shall make you sick. We cannot afford to have you both not functioning at the same time. “
“I shall be well but I would not let my eyes be closed until the King is awaken. Thank you for your services good sir, the guards will see you out and services would be paid for. “
The man nods, “Thank you my Queen. ” takes his bag, and finds his way out of the room leaving the Queen alone with him.
The guards stationed at the King’s chamber’s door opens it and allows him pass, blocking the way almost immediately.
”Pray tell good Sir, how is my friend the King?” Duke Alan De Beaumont asks as he rushes to the royal doctor, The Duchess is beside him, so is Adrian.
”He is well, do not fret. i shall inform the council men for they are worried too.”
Alan nods ”I shall accompany you then” , Alan says following behind the Doctor and disappears down the hall.
Adrian is staring at his mother ”Dear Mother, come, i shall find myself to the kitchen and plead that they give you a meal.”
She stops him ”I am not hungry, i am worried”
”I too, but you shall not starve yourself whilst we wait. You hardly eat nothing worried sick, see your eyes seem hollow and your cheeks out of fat, come, i shall fetch the lady of the kitchen and maids to attend to you” he takes her by the hand
”But the Queen -”
”We cannot go in there now mother, come.” He pulls her away.
”What does this mean?” Lord Middleton asks staring at the Princess’s royal cloth laid on a table as they all stare at it.
”Does this mean that the Princess is dead?”
”Shuuss! Do not speak such nonsense, it cannot be that this is the case” Lord Vasaly cautions the farmer who is staring at the cloth as though he is seeing it for the first time as e stares at his hands
”Dear Lord, we did not realize that it did belong to the Princess”
”I told you father, it looked royal- but..the Princess” the boy stares at his father
”And you said the family was killed, then- she must have been with them” Lord Middleton asks, the others whisper amongst themselves ”It is torn and with stain of blood”
”If the king slumped upon seeing this, the Queen mustn’t see it for she is in no good state, what must we do as council men, how do we address it? What do we tell the people?”
”We shall tell them nothing” Earl of Warwick states ” We do not know for certain if the Princes is deceased or not, all we have is her clothing”
”That is not on her back, i hate to imagine what has been down to her by those vagabond” Lord Vasaly states , ”Good thing the wives of this council are taken to the other room to wait on the Queen when she leaves the King’s side, how do we break this news to her? Not a word has been told to the Queen?”
”Not a word!” Earl of Warwick states ”I did tell my lady to ensure that the news of why the King slumped remains unshared, we must address this sooner or later for the Queen would come to demand why. What must we do? ”
They all stare at the Princess’s cloths
”We must not forgot that your son has caused this too Earl Ador of Warwick ” Johhn, the Marquess says staring at him ”For if he has let the young Duke remain in the palace as the king has ordered, maybe we would have found the princess by now”
”Was it my son who had taken the Princess out of the ball organised by your lady? Do you not have guards within the vicinity of your district, how is it that vagabonds had accessed into the environs to your yard and was able to take the Princess and maim the young Duke? You dare speak to me about my son who i do think was trying to help?”
”My district is well protected, but it is not isolated from the thick forest- if you had not insisted that the King not cover off the vast lands, vagabonds would not have access to my district so easily to cater away with the Princess”
”So now i be blamed for something not my fault? How dare you relate a situation done many a years ago to now? I only sat upon a council once and there were good reasons to have that vast land accessed for the time we have relations with the people beyond the walls, but the deal has ended and may profits made from the alliance. Why then did you not bring this up with the King, now you bring it when the Princess has been kidnapped and even feared dead and you blame my son who was’t even there?”
”Ah! It was done many years ago but still, this all would be avoided”
”You will not blame my son for what he did not do Johnn Marquees” Ador Earl of Warwick states pointing to the Marquess and coming closer
‘I shall call a spade for which it is, and your son , same as the Duke is not left out of this- if the Princess is so harmed, your sons shall be held accountable for what has fallen to the Princess, i shall surely bring it up” They stare hard at each other
”Calm down my lords, this doesn’t warrant this ”Lord Vasaly says
”Not, it doesn’t ‘Lord Middleton joins in ”We have the town in our midst, let us not act with the women of the court who do not have no shame and respect for each other- i pray you both to calm your anger and let us channel it into finding the young ones before it is too late – we all are worried but throwing blames would not bring the princes back, nor the young duke or viscount- we worry for them as their fathers do but fighting would only bring chaos into our midst when we need to be united. Calm down, do no let us use our anger to cause a war amongst families”
”I would not tolerate another ill word used against my son, let it be known that i would address it with no shame. ” Earl of Warwick, Ador states
”I shall say what i want and when i want- let the king come, he shall not be sentimental to things like this- ” Johnn Marquess states
The door opens, the royal doctor enters followed by the Duke and then Adrian
”Pray tell us good sir what state is the King?” they gather him
”The king is resting, he is well, a few hours more would bring him to his feet, pray tell me what did happen to cause the king to go to such state?”
”These good sirs came with the Princess’s cloths, stained with blood and torn” Lord Vasaly points to the cloth ”Surely we do not know how to bring meaning to this or what to make of it”
The doctor goes to the table and lifts the cloth in his hand, looking it over
”They said it was found inside the IN of where the family stayed. They said upon finding the dead family, they buried the bodies of the dead, yet- the cloth was the only thing that did look out of place in their poor IN. The child was barely an adult before reaped away from this world. King collapsed thinking the worst has happened to the Princess then did collapse, and we do think same”
The doctor drops the cloth and turns to them ”What are the royal guards saying?”
”A batch has just arrived and still no word yet, more has been sent to replace them”
The doctor sighs ” Let us hold our faith in hope then, that is all that we can do. ” he says ” i do suggest that you all ensure not to let him be carried away with such thoughts of the Princess being dead. There is still hope. I will return to check on the King, in the main time, as the doctor i will tell you that at this time, the royal family do needs the support and encouragement they might have, so as the Dukes and the Earls..we must stand together to ensure our children are brought back. ” he says ” I shall return with more medicine for the King.” he nods and then leaves the court almost immediately.
Duke Alan turns to them ” Did something happen whilst i was away? Why was there tension in the air as we did walk in?”
”Nothing to dwell upon my lord, come, did you see the King?” Earl of Warwick asks
”No, the Queen is there, we can only do nothing but wait. No word yet?”
There is a solemn quiet.
”We must return to the town, we must gather our people to act as vigilante while we wait the directive from the King” The farmer says ”I shall take my leave”
”Yes, we would send word, thank you for bringing word to us, we shall take it from here” Duke Alan tells them, the guards usher them out of the hall
”What must we do now?” Earl of Warwick asks
”We wait!” Duke Alan says watching the door leading to the King’s chambers ”We wait”


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