Be My Princess
"The Crown Prince No More"
POV: Candice Regerett
It's probably late at night, but I couldn't tell exactly. Our library has neither a clock nor a
window. So it's impossible to know how much time I've spent at the library this time. I
couldn't care less. The library is my favorite place, in any place. It can be as quiet as it can be,
and crowded all at once.
I am lying in between the shelves, on the mahogany floor, at the farthest corner of our
library, the section for Classics. And I am with a book in hand. It was my third book to read so
I guess I've been at the library for more than five hours, or so.
And then there was the sound of knocking coming from the double doors of the library. I
stood up hurriedly, and tried to fix my hair, my face, my dress, and my posture all at the
same time, before a lady servant of ours called out, "Miss?"
I dropped The Prince, the book I was reading by Niccolo Machiavelli, among the other books
scattered on the floor, and followed the lady's voice at the entrance.
The lady bowed before me. She looked very familiar, but not quite. I can never remember all
our servants for there are so many. Some may look very familiar, but others don't. But I
figured a long time ago that they exchange shifts, and besides the servants in the halls,
there are others in the kitchen and the laundry that I haven't yet laid eyes upon. And in the
nineteen years of living under the roof of my Father's estate, I decided that all the servants
looked the same to me.
She was wearing the servant hall uniform. Black skirt cut just above the knee, and a loose
white long sleeve with collar, tucked underneath the skirt. She wears her hair atop in a tight
bun. She looked like she was on her twenties but I didn't bother confirming.
"Miss, Mr. Carsten has asked for you down in his office."
She did another bow, and hurried out. I didn't even have the time to say my side, but most
probably because I have no side at all. If my Father has asked for me, then I must come
regardless. I glanced back at the corner where I have spent the whole afternoon at, and
sighed all the way out. The halls are lit up by huge chandeliers. I was right. It's night time.
I half-dragged myself towards the opposite wing where my Father's office is located. And on
the way, I've passed along countless servants who bowed the same as the lady from before.
Some greeted me "Good Evening, Miss!" but mostly just lowered their heads.
By the time I've reached my Father's office, there are perhaps five men in tuxedos waiting
just outside the room. Henri, my Father's assistant in everything, gave me a nod before he
knocked on the door to announce my arrival.
Henri has always been there since I can remember. He has worked for my Father for who
knows how long. For quite a while, he held a younger image. He seemed to have grown with
me as time went by, walking just behind my Father. Somehow I feel relieved every time I see
him. At times when I would get some scolding from my Father, Henri would always give me
a comforting pat on my shoulder. And when I look at his dark expressive eyes that are like a
mirror to mine, he would flash me a smile whispering words I have never figured out what.
In a faint distant I heard my Father say, "Let her in."
The door opened and I swallowed, which I do a lot as a habit before entering his office.
Every time my Father would ask to see me, I can't help but feel intimidated. I always replay
the few weeks behind and wonder if I did something wrong to anger him.
As soon as I stepped in, the doors behind me closed. His office was dimly lit and behind him
is a huge window. I first glanced at the night sky from the outside, admiring the stars like
tiny diamonds scattered a million miles away above the estate grounds. Then my eyes
landed on my Father who wears his usual black suit, who sits by his desk that takes up half of
the room. On top of it lay pages of documents, folders, a few books, a laptop, and other
office supplies. He kept no photos in his office. He always kept the house plain and spacious.
He didn't look up as he gestured a hand to a seat facing his desk.
"Take a seat dear darling," he said.
And I obliged. I waited for a few more seconds before he was done signing documents,
which no one knew about. Finally he looked up, his eyes burning mine with his stare. He
looked so daunting with his jet black hair that holds a few strands of silver, bordering his
soft green eyes that remind me always of a mountain wolf. And his eyes weren't the only
He locked his own hands together, the left over the other, and leaned back in his chair. I
"Prepare yourself. We are going to the Palace tomorrow."
Nothing was new. In a month, usually my Father would take me with him once or twice to
the Palace. But lately, we've been visiting a lot.
"How is the Crown Prince, Father?"
He laughed, and it sounded more of a mockery. That's when I knew I did something wrong.
"Oh dear darling," he spoke, leaning in closer so he can focus on me, "We aren't going to
the Palace for the Crown Prince. Not anymore."
As much as I wanted to ask another question, I knew he wouldn't tell me anything concrete
anyway. And we'd go on and on. I would be more confused. And he would be laughing
more. So I settled for that.
"That is all," he said, sighing, "You may go." And yet again he gestured a hand towards the
After taking dinner by myself, I headed back to my room at the second floor. It's located at
the same east wing where the library is. My room could be as plain as the entire house. But
at least I have one picture. It is of Mother and I when I was about eight or nine years old,
which I kept solo on my bedside table. The picture was taken before she died from heart
failure. She always had a weak heart. I held it for a while before I heard a fading hum from
the outside. I walked out of my balcony and stared down to see an old lady by the grounds,
walking towards the direction of the moon. She's singing without words, and it sounded
very sad. She wore not the same servant uniform, so I suppose she's working at either the
kitchen or the laundry. She sounded in pain, and I can't help but feel the same sadness in my
I let the balcony door open for the night, as I crept into bed, smiling while taking in the most
beautiful and tragic melody of the old lady.
"Come, my Love."
POV: James Bret Nikolai Ravn Ostergaard
The last time I was at Wolland, everything looked exactly the same- the rows of
infrastructures that surrounded the city and the vibe of the life I left behind eight years ago.
I sighed in disbelief. Never did I think I'd be back so soon.
"Eight years. Eight years gone and nothing has changed. I start to wonder if the government
is as productive as the people see it to be."
No one replied, of course. I broke my gaze from the car window and stole a glance from
Olivia Reynolds, seated right next to me at the back seat of the Royal Car. I recalled it at
once when I saw three of these cars drive past us at the airport, with tiny flags of Wolland
swaying back and forth as the Wolland air approach us. And then came sturdy men in black
suits with earphones, and on their left chest, just above the pocket of their coat pinned a
miniature of the country's flag, that signifies not only that they work for the Palace, but they
were my ride for the morning as well.
I smiled as I looked at Olivia, facing the window on her right, opposite my direction. But I
can't help but notice her trembling hand, enclosed in a fist. She must be nervous. I held it
and she jerked a little. She looked at me with unstable eyes.
"Hey," I reassured her, "It'll be okay. We're in this together." By that she sighed in relief, and
smiled faintly. I remember exactly why I fell for her. She's so fragile like a glass waiting to
crack at any moment. And I hold this glass, and it's up to me whether I let go and let it
shatter to pieces or embrace it and admire its beauty forever. I feel responsible for her. I feel
protective of her. Her gentleness gives me strength and this strength gives me joy.
I first met Olivia one night when I was playing the piano at some fine restaurant in Scotland
by where she was working. And when I finished with the last note, I noticed her staring at
me from the counter, with tears in her eyes. And when I approached her, she said the music
was so sad I shouldn't play it again. After seeing each other for months, we became official.
And never did I play piano again in front of her. For the last thing I wanted is to see her break
down in tears because of me.
Finally we're almost there. I can see from the distance the tower that is St. Agatha's Church.
And the Church is inside the Palace.
I noticed Olivia's hand shaking once more, and I held it firmly to reassure her I am with her.
We entered the gates with salutes and bows that it's almost possible to describe how much
I've missed them. We are now entering the Palace Grounds as the Royal car drives through
the familiar road. And finally we came to a halt. Olivia was looking at me in awe as she tries
to sneak a view of the Palace from inside the car.
"I was told it looks better from the outside," I joked to lighten the mood, and it did, for right
then I saw Olivia smile.
Before then the car door opened, and I stepped down first, accompanying Olivia after me.
A red carpet is fixed from my step all the way up to the Palace's main door, at Thorssen
Assembly, which is a 63-step staircase. The Svensson Palace, the official residence of the
Royalty, is equally divided into four Assemblies. All these four Assemblies are named after
the Royal Houses in Wolland history. The first is the Thorssen Assembly, which holds room
for official government businesses, and then the Kofoed Assembly connected to the
Thorssen from its right wing where the Royalty welcomes guests from across the world. And
then there's the Lorentzen Assembly opposite Kofoed, connected to the left wing of
Thorssen, where Royal Chambers can be found. This is where the Grand Royal Chambers is
located. It is the bedroom used by the eldest of the House, and in this case, the Queen and
her husband, the Prince Consort. The last Assembly is called Lautsen, connected both to
Kofoed and Lorentzen, where spare chambers for guests can be found. All these four
Assemblies boxes the Thorssen Garden.
We were greeted by the same salutes and bows from Royal guards and servants from either
side. And then there was Jackson, approaching us from the staircase.
Olivia's hand was still on mine.
"Your Highness," he bowed, "The Queen awaits your arrival."
I glanced at Olivia and smiled as she did the same, and together we entered the Palace.
Upon entering so, we were greeted by the grandeur foyer. I felt Olivia hold her breath as we
passed along the waiting room to the Grand Library of Thorssen Assembly, down to the
Royal Quarters where the Queen was at as we were told.
The Royal Quarters is the greeting room used to welcome guests informally. It's also the
common room for the members of the Royal Family. It's located second floor to the north of
Lorentzen Assembly near the Royal Library and the Crown Prince's Chambers.
Jackson entered the room first, and when he came back, he motioned for us to come in as
the Queen was ready to see us.
As I expected, nothing changed. It still looked the same as when I was last in it, during the
heated conversation I had with the Queen and the Crown Prince the night before I left. A
painting of angels in the sky was depicted on the ceiling of the Royal Quarters. And there are
bookshelves on both sides of the room. A huge window is fixed on the farthest end, holding
the view of a lake not too far from Lorentzen Assembly. The first I saw standing, overlooking
this window, was the Queen, my Grandmother, wearing something light and flowing. She
had her short silver hair backcombed to perfection. But I was greeted first by the Prince
Consort, the Queen's husband, my Grandfather. He wore a suit with the Royal Insignia (A
lion breathing fire, with a crown on its head, and a cobra replaced instead of its tail,
encircled by golden embellishments) pinned on the left portion of his chest, shining as the
sunlight blazes through the window. He wore a smile and an open arm.
"My Prince!" he exclaimed upon reaching me for a hug. It was so abrupt I had to let go of
Olivia's hand. He whispered in my ear right then, like a tickle, "How have you been my
Prince? How is Scotland? How is Princess Veronika?" I didn't have the chance to answer, for
right then and there the Queen spoke, "Your Father has been waiting for you, James." It
was a strong voice, but soothing to hear all the same. I fear my Grandmother, as I think
everyone does, but her voice nonetheless is soothing to me, that it made me flashback to
my youth, when my Grandmother and I would spend afternoons of tea and story-telling.
My Grandfather stepped back, as the Queen stood in front of me and held up my face. It was
like she was reading my expression, but struggling. Life as a Royalty, we were trained how
to control expression. One cannot show too little or too much. You cannot be seen scared
for scared your people shall be as well. I left the Palace eight years ago, but I had enough
training to shield my Grandmother's attempt to read my mind. Or maybe what she was
seeing were the gaps in between, from her memories of me. She knew me enough to find
cracks in my expression.
And then she glanced on my left, where Olivia was, fidgeting like a child. My Grandmother
let go of my face and stood in front of her, examining her up and down.
"Grandmother, this is Olivia," I introduced her as I held Olivia's hand. Through this gesture I
saw my Grandmother jump back a little with wide eyes. It's not obvious, but as her
Grandson, I knew her too well. I have instructed Olivia days ago in Scotland on how to greet
the Queen, so she curtsied and spoke, trembling, "How... do you do... Your Majesty?"
My Grandmother smirked, but it was hard to tell exactly what she was thinking.
"She's my fiance," I blurted out to simply test the Queen.
From the corner of my eyes I saw the Prince Consort shook his head Oh no! as the Queen
jerked back, this time becoming too obvious, "What did you say?!" She was speechless for a
while, looking back to Grandfather for help. And with that, he stood by the Queen's side and
held her arm,
"How dare you!" Grandmother continued, seeming like having the Prince Consort beside her
gave her strength to say what she was about to say, "You abandon us for years and you
come back with this rubbish girl!"
Olivia's hand tightened from my grasp.
"How dare you make such a decision without our consent?!" She was angry alright, as I have
expected. But a part of why I came back isn't just to see Father, but to state this fact as well.
For I know, as much as they thought I have abandoned them, that they have the right to
know my marriage before it happens.
"You are a Prince, James! You should know more than anyone else your place! You are
disrespecting this House more than you ever did." She was in rage, and I saw Grandfather
struggling to hold her back mouthing the word Go. Olivia was pulling my sleeves as well.
"Come, my Love," I pulled Olivia with me towards the door, without a glance back from the
"The Worse of Headaches"
POV: Margarett Katherine Ravn-Ostergaard
I couldn't help it anymore. My knees gave up as I crumple to the floor, with my husband, the
Prince Consort, holding me like precious jewelry.
"My Queen," he would say over and over as I try to regain my composure. A Queen never
crumples, at least not in sight. "Did you hear what he said, Nikolai? Did you hear what he had
"How dare he? Without even telling us?" I collapsed in my husband's arms, taking in his
familiar scent of soap, perfume, and power. "Eight years apart and he still gives me the
worse of headaches."
He was rubbing my temples, as he would always do when I feel like letting go.
Our monarchy has had absolute primogeniture for over a century. It means that the right of
succession goes from the oldest child regardless of gender. And I am the oldest of two
sisters. There is Veronika, four years younger than me. She left the Palace when I became
Queen and chose to reside in Scotland.
"Yes, my Queen, it seems so, that James, ever since he was a child, has given you the worse
of headaches. But wouldn't you say you miss him at all?" That was a slap in my face, for it is
nothing but true. I have missed my James, my very first Grandchild, whom I place dear in my
heart. I have invested so many memories with James, that it left me heartbroken when he
chose to leave the Palace. He had always been stubborn as a child, always so curious, always
so determined to get what he wants. Often this has given me countless headaches and visits
from the Royal doctor. But I cannot argue the fact that I have been dreading to see him ever
since he left.
"Stay... my Prince..."
POV: James Bret Nikolai Ravn Ostergaard
As we stepped out of the room, I let out a deep sigh, and turned to Olivia who was shaking.
"Are you okay?" I asked her foolishly as if it's even possible to be okay.
"Come on, we still have one more stop before we go."
I led Olivia down to the Crown Prince's Chambers which wasn't too far from the Royal
Quarters. And down the hallway, a boy, probably nine to ten years old was running towards
our direction. He had a darker shade of blonde and his eyes were as blue as mine. He wore a
casual attire of black shorts and yellow polo shirt. He was surrounded by servants and Royal
guards all at once, keeping up with his pace.
"Hello," he spoke as he stopped in front of me, catching his breath.
"Why hello," I greeted back.
"You are James, are you not?" he asked. And right then I realized exactly who he is. I looked
around his servants but neither looked back at me. I let go of Olivia's hand for a while and
knelt down to meet his eyes. It was as if meeting the younger version of me, to taunt me of
I nodded, "You are Adam, are you not?"
He nodded enthusiastically, with a smile reaching the ends of the world.
"Well hello Adam, I am your brother, James." He smiled once more, bigger, and then jumped
for a hug. It was a different hug from Grandfather's, which held only pain and
disappointment. Adam's hug was sincere with excitement.
"I was told you are arriving today. I knew it." He held me tighter, and I couldn't help but
shed a tear or two. The last time I saw Adam was before I left, twilight, as I watch him sleep
in his room, counting each breath he takes. He was just born then, four months old. And
now he's grown up. I felt proud and guilty at the same time. And then he saw Olivia, as he
broke the embrace.
"And you are?" he asked.
I stood up and introduced them to one another, "Olivia, this is my brother, Adam. Adam this
is Olivia, my future wife." He grinned, being perhaps the only one who will, inside the Palace.
"Well hello there little Prince," Olivia curtsied yet again, "What an honor to meet you."
He smiled and turned to me. "Are you going to see Father?" he asked. I didn't have to
answer for he must have assumed it, "Can I come with you?"
"But of course." He took my hand and pulled me towards the Crown Prince's Chambers. I
looked behind me to see Olivia catching up with a wink as if to say It's okay. Go.
The moment we got there, more Royal guards stood by the door. All at once they bowed.
And then the door opened, revealing the Crown Princess, my Mother, looking as pale as
ever, but looking elegant as well, with her blonde hair curled on one side, contrasting her
black dress. Her expression was blank at the sight of me.
"Mother!" Adam exclaimed and reached for Mother, "Look Mother, James has returned! I
have found him!" Beyond his excited tone, my Mother looked at me the same way the
Queen and the Prince Consort did - disappointed. She managed a smile and glanced towards
Olivia, standing just behind me, but ignored her anyway.
"Come my young Prince..." She took Adam's hand and together they walked away from the
scene. I can see Adam restraining Mother's grasp, but she led on anyway.