Bonnie couldn’t believe the words carefully etched upon the paper, the ends of the scrolled writing appeared to be a little square. It had clearly been written by the Prince himself. He must have used a ruler as guidance she thought. It read:

Dear Miss McGrath,

                                      We are not making much progress. You with your fiery temper and I simply being myself. I am writing to you personally to ask you to return to court. I also speak on behalf of my Mother and Father.    

      HRH Prince Theodore  

Oh my goodness! His majesty has actually taken the time to write to me! Bonnie gasped. Surely royalty asked servants to do such things? Had he been prompted to apologise? She wondered. Bonnie couldn’t help but feel slightly flattered. This was a first. After all, how many people can claim that they have received a letter from royalty?  Bonnie decided against telling her Mother. She buried the letter in her skirt pocket and thought it best to return to the palace promptly. Surely everyone deserves a second chance? She thought.

Bonnie returned that afternoon. As expected, she was informed that Theodore had still not left his chamber, no change there then. Still, she thought it best to give him chance and waited in the usual drawing-room eyeing the many books. Bonnie decided against poetry for today, opting for something more refined. She eyed a copy of Macbeth or “The Scottish Play” she d aren’t even say the name. Her family was so superstitious. She recalled one day many years ago, being seated as a child on her Granny’s lap. Bonnie had read the title from the front cover. The look of horror upon her Granny’s face was enough to make flowers wilt. She smiled the memory. How she missed the quaint, intelligent woman. Her warm hugs and small cottage filled with the smell of her baking had been brought Bonnie much happiness.

“Bonita I hear you have arrived. Are you coming to read to me or do I have to wait an age?!” Prince Theodore called.

My he can be exceedingly loud when he wants to be. I think you’ll find that you were holding us back! Bonnie thought to herself.

Bonnie knocked and entered his chamber. “Ah your grace. You have awoken, I’m glad to see it. Do you wish to get dressed or shall I read to you now?  I felt the Scottish Play would be suitable.”

“No I do not wish to get dressed. Well you would pick that you’re Scottish aren’t you?”

“My you are a quick observer!” Bonnie’s voice was filled with an underlying sarcasm.

“May I proceed?”

“Yes, You accepted my apology I see. “

“Yes your majesty. It was very thoughtfully written. I was grateful to receive your letter.”

“Hmmm. Yes Bonita you may proceed. I mean, if you please.”

“Very well.” she replied, pleasantly surprised by Theodore’s sudden politeness.

She proceeded to read and was alarmed when Prince Theodore joined in reciting the play confidently. He clearly knew it word for word, line for line.

“You know this play well your grace ?”

“Oh like the back of my hand.” he nodded. Was that a small smile etching across his moody lips? Bonnie couldn’t hide her awe.

“I am impressed! I feel glad to have found literature which is of interest to you. Why didn’t you just tell me your preferences?”

“I wasn’t aware that I had any…. until now.”

“Well that’s good. I aim to please. Shall we try reading the works of Shakespeare for a while? “

Prince Theodore nodded slowly and Bonnie smiled.

“Are there any other Shakespearean plays you enjoy? You have the full works in the library I see, they look dusty.”

Theodore paused. “Yes my Grandfather used to buy so many books by the yard.  I do quite enjoy Romeo and Juliet.”

“Really?” Bonnie’s eyes widened. I didn’t see you as the romantic sort of man sire?”

Theodore cleared his throat. “I’m not, at least I don’t think I am.”

He obviously has a fine taste for literature, Bonnie thought.

“Do you know it as well as you knew the Scottish Play?”

“hmmm , almost Bonita.”

“Well then. I shall go and fetch it your majesty.”

For once Theodore seemed quite enthusiastic. Bonnie  felt like the had made another small step of progress with Prince Theodore, like a parent helping their young child to walk step by step. Bonnie was getting through to Prince Theodore line by line and slowly starting to melt the ice away from his encrusted heart.

To be continued…..

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