As with all their parties my attendance was 100% pure obligation! Mother and father insisted I go as I was “blooming into womanhood” – is how they put it. And since our kingdom was one of their smaller ones in the alliance and I hadn’t received any betrothals or proposals, they felt it was best I go and “make the most of it.” Meanwhile, they were conveniently on holiday travels.
As I walked in the entry way, I followed the hoards of guest that always gawked at the grand staircase weaving in spirals to the grand hall. The walls were decorated of old sea ship captain portraits and nautical memorabilia. Ah, the Argos – famed sea captains – except for the father – he passed away last year. Now, the two supposedly gorgeous Argos princes were competing to rule their castle. Argos, do keep their kingdom matters pretty private. But everyone assumes the prince who finds a queen first – wins. As for me… why be around strange people just to get to know them? Stuck up, want-to-bes, is what they all were. I was not about to dance with princes I’d never met, with sweaty hands and sometimes bad breadth. As the guests began dancing in the grand hall, I scurried past and peaked around long taupe curtains waving in the sea breeze. Perfect! No one was on the balcony – a large extension of old shag orange carpet, iron railing, a 4 chair metal dinning table and a perfect view of the sea.
It was my fav — the sea extended for miles and the evening sunset created dancing sparkles. I could feel the waves crashing. I took a deep breath – letting them renew me. I plopped in the puffy blue lounge chair and kicked off my purple blingy flip flops. After all, who needs formal shoes? I had more important plans!
Opening my drawing journal that I had snuck in my purse, I began putting the final touches on my garden drawing. Not just any garden, but with fountains, fairies, and plants not of the world, giving it intrigue.
Over the past year during my party “visits” I was an artist uncover – slowly drawing a crazy garden. Me, the architect – [insert freakish laughter here] placed the garden to the right of their castle – with almost “a- for-real” looking design. I sketched large roman letters, “Where Love Ends” as a joke. Since the castle was where all loved seemed to end.
As the slow dance music and the sea lulled me to sleep, I drifted into my garden dreams. And it was perfectly acceptable since their butler Par would wake me in the morning and request a carriage to take me home.
The next morning I heard clanking dishes. “Par, it’s much too early. It’s still dark,” I said, curling to one side of the chair. I felt a silk blanket fall on me. Par was never that thoughtful, but it was really nice.
Next thing I remember – the clanking dishes again and an annoying bright sun. I opened my eyes and saw a young man in a black suit at the dinning table, intently reading. He sat on the edge of the chair, like he could jump at any moment.
“What are you doing here?” I asked.
“I was wondering the same,” he said, quickly swigging a few sips from a juice glass.
“Where is Par? I must see Par,” I said.
“You know Par?” he asked.
“Yes, we have a deal. I go home before the family awakes, and he tells no one,” I said clinching the blanket.
“Don’t worry. Your secret is safe with me.” He chuckled.
To be continued….