It was a shame. It seemed to be turning into a glorious day outside, Bonnie admired the way that the gentle sunlight caught the tips of the trees in the palace grounds as she gazed out of the window. Prince Theodore once again seemed lost in thought. ‘He’s such a mysterious character, there’s much more to him than meets the eye’ Bonnie thought. She desperately wanted to know more of his past but was frightened that she might overstep the mark once more.

“Tell me how old are you Miss McGrath?”

“”20” her answer was blunt and empty.

“Oh” Prince Theodore once again seemed uninterested, but it was a start at least she thought. Bonnie felt that his question had given her the opportunity to ask him one in reply.

“Yourself sire?”

“The same”

“I have a question, might I ask it?”

“So full of questions Miss McGrath. Yes go on proceed.”

“Why did you hold auditions and employ a reader when you clearly have lost your interest in books?”

“What makes you say this? You are hear to read not to make assumptions and presume matters without my permission!”

He snapped. Oh good god Bonnie  thought as she trembled. I have put my foot in it once more.

“Pardon my saying your grace it was merely  an observation of mine.”

“Oh so you have come here to observe me have you? What am I? Some sort of foolish project of yours?”

Bonnie remained cool and collected. Bonnie be calm she told herself.

“No your Majesty. I have little time for such things.”

“Oh is that so?”

She wished for him to continue and ask her something more about herself but he did not momentarily. We are getting nowhere she thought. Each day of failure made Bonnie want to hand in  a letter of resignation. Without this money her Mother and her could not survive.

“You are idle then?”

Prince Theodore’s sharp comment stung like a whip. Bonnie would have struck him down then and there. Her face reddened, her knuckles whitening as she clutched the edge of the chair with an iron vice grip.

“Why so silent Miss McGrath? This is surely a first for you.”

Prince Theodore mocked, a smug grin crept across his beautiful face. Bonnie gritted her teeth in attempt to control the growing explosion.

“YOU are the most infuriating person that I have ever met your Majesty! You spend all of your time wallowing in your self-pity and seem to take twisted satisfaction from belittling me. Well I will stand for it no more d’ you here!”

With that Bonnie stormed out of the room, only to catch a glimpse of the Prince’s reaction. He looked pale and flabbergasted  ‘Good’ she thought. She left the confinement of the palace and returned home fully aware that she was very early. Her Mother would question her of this fact surely? She was right.

“Bonnie dear you are back rather early! What troubles you love?” Maira put one arm around her.

“His royal highness is nothing but a conceited, horrid wee monster with a heart of ice. I will stand for his behaviour no more Mother! D’you hear me!”

“Bonnie sit down at once and cool yourself. I sincerely hope that you did not speak to his Majesty in such a manner! Lord help us!”

“I did.”

Maira gasped placing a hand to her mouth. “Foolish child! That’s it then he will employ you as his reader no longer . You and your temper! What is to become of us?”

Maira uttered a deep sob and placed her head into her freckled hands.

“Mother please don’t cry! You really have no idea, no clue how horrid it really was!” 

Bonnie put one arm around Maira but she pushed it away and stormed into the bedroom. Bonnie felt slightly sick, she had not expected her Mother to react like this. What was to be done?

Bonnie did not return to work the following morning but instead set to on household jobs trying to distract her troubled mind. At around noon, a letter was delivered . She picked up the envelope, turning a shade paler when she recognised the royal wax seal. Oh no! she thought. This is it I am to be dismissed. Mother will never speak to me again. How her nimble fingers trembled. She closed one eye and peeped out the other as she prized open the solid red wax.

To be continued….


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