Chapter 1 : Rowena
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I moved to swat at the one strand of black, curly hair that kept falling loose from my clip and falling into my eyes. I was trying to embroider with the other ladies and the darned piece of hair kept making me prick my finger with the needle because I couldn’t see.
“Princess you are bleeding.” One of the noble ladies called out.
“Yes Lady Anne, I can feel that I am bleeding. But thank you for so kindly pointing it out.”
“Rowena! Watch your tone.”
“Yes Mother. My sincerest apologies lady Anne, I do not know what came over me to speak out in such a rude manner. I can only hope that you can forgive me.” I said, trying not to roll my eyes. Mother seemed to pick up on my underlining sarcasm, and sighed, but the other ladies were oblivious.
“Of course Princess, I know you meant no harm.”
“Ladies, I believe that we shall stop embroidery and refresh ourselves before supper.” Mother intervened as if afraid I would reply again in an uncivilized manner. The six other ladies rose and curtsied to mother and then to me before exiting the room.
Mother fixed her cold, steely gaze upon me, forcing me to look into her pale gray eyes. I held her stare in an act of defiance.
“Rowena, you must not be so bold. You are a lady and more importantly a Princess. You must make your people like you, adore you even. You must show the world that you are a lady with the upmost proper upbringing, and civilized manners. Boldness does not become a lady of that stature.”
“You only say that because it reflects badly upon you mother.” I replied defiantly after the lecture. My response was the sting upon my cheek after her hand, rings and all connected with it sharply.
“I am your Mother Rowena, and you will listen to what I say. You had best learn to do so now because the Husband your Father Chooses for you will not tolerate your insolence.” She lectured and removed herself from the room.
“My Lady! Are you alright?” A servant who had seen the episode from the adjoining chamber called out to me.
“Yes Raven, I’m alright.”
“Oh my. Your cheek is all red with the imprint from her Majesty’s rings. Let’s us se what we can do to fix that up before supper.”
I felt myself being walked into my Bed Chamber. Raven applied a salve to my sore cheek that eased the pain. Then she dabbed powder all around my face. She added soft rouge to the lips and cheeks to add color. Then I felt her working on my hair, readjusting it so that it was once again placed securely on my head.
“What dress will you like to wear tonight Your Highness?”
“Yes of course.”
Once she had finished with me, I walked out into the Hall. I still felt as though I were in the midst of a dream, although I knew of course, that I was not. My three ladies sat outside waiting for me. Mother was nowhere in sight.
“Shall we depart to the Great hall for dinner ladies?”
I asked civilly.
“As you wish your Highness.” They all mumbled.
Mother was not in the Great Hall at the table either. Father smiled when I entered the room and rose to greet me.
My ladies curtsied low and took their seats at the table below the Royal Table.
“How are you My dear?” Father asked and I told him honestly.
“I have been better father.”
“What is ailing you Daughter?”
“Mother hit me, because I am insolent and my cheek still hurts.” I played the dutiful daughter who accepted her punishment and confessed her fault, while knowing the effect my father would have at the news.
“She did what?”
“Father, I am sure that the punishment was deserved, for my behavior.”
“No. Your Step Mother shall not treat you in such a manor. You are not a child any longer and she is not to treat you like one.”
“I’m alright father. Please do not concern yourself with my petty worries when you have far more important ones of your own.” I said. My plan had worked. He was angry with his Wife, My step mother, the Queen, and would have words with her later. He kissed my forehead.
“Yes, alright. As you wish dear. I would like to present somebody to you.” Father Smiled and signaled to the guard at the door to announce a guest.
“Presenting Lady Helga Hufflepuff.”
A new Lady walked up to our table curtsied low to us both and stayed low.
“Please, Rise Lady Helga.” Father said and she did. He turned to me.
“This is your new Lady in waiting.”
“Pleased to meet your acquaintance.”
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