I am not the type of person that blames my shortcomings on my periods. I rarely ever do. But that doesn mean my emotions don take me for a ride of their own.

One moment Im happy and the next I want to haul a whole working desk at someones head.

Take for example this lovely morning. I got to work at five with a cup of coffee Id managed to snag from the kitchen on my way here. It did not take even a minute for the news to arrive that I was supposed to have breakfast with River and his family at seven.

Something just positively triggered a very foul mood from on then up until now while Im choosing a more cordial outfit for the breakfast that is about to start in like fifteen minutes.

The courtyard is a huge beehive of different activities and buildings. People with different roles to play in the courtyard have different places in the castle grounds. Someone would hardly believe you if you told them that half of the people working here don know half of the others because of the different roles and the vast distance between each profession.

My mother and I are only able to deal with the royals directly because we handle almost 90% of their social and personal lives and I think the added bonus for the friendliness we enjoy is because I am almost the fifth generation to work with the royals.

It also doesn help that the queen says we
e quite pleasing visually. The queen and I have been more than friendly even in distance. Being her sons best friend since I was young helped me see her like my own mother when she tended to us while my mother was away most of the times.

My fathers departure didn go unnoticed so the kings watchful eye strayed to me while I was in the vicinity together with his son.

You could imagine my mortification when my first suitor got turned away by the king on the grounds that I was still too young to receive suitors and flowers.

I was seventeen at the time, but in his world, he termed me six and asked me to lay off boys until I was atleast twenty five. If only he knew I managed to sleep with his son a year later.

With a heavy sigh and a mental facepalm, I smooth down my grey skirt and check to see that the turtleneck I settled on is well tucked inside.

I check my wristwatch to find that I only have around eight minutes so I hurry into my heeled boots and grab a coat on my way out.

For some reason I feel like today is going to be a long day. And not because I have to deal with Sophias lawyer during the day.

”Hi? ” Lizzy smiles as I walk into the royal home. Being close to the family means that I live on the North wing, just a few yards from the main royal residence.

”Hi, Lizzy? Whats for breakfast? ” Lizzy is nineteen years old and it is very easy to tell that shes excited to be working with the royal family especially for the royals directly.

I like her a lot. Unlike most of the workers that deal with the royal family directly, she is not pretentious. In fact, shes so bubbly and open that it is hard to not like her.

”You ask like youve not been on that table. ” She scolds lightly while holding out her hand to take my coat. When I shrug it off and hand it to her, she smiles as she runs a hand on the soft fabric. ”This looks so nice! ”

”Thanks. ” I tell her with a smile.

”Darling! ” The queens delighted voice startles both of us and I take a step back as she approaches to embrace me in a hug.

She always acts like we only meet once a year.

”Hello? ” I greet her politely as I return the embrace.

When she moves away, she nods at Lizzy who immediately scurries away at her dismissal.

”You look so good, ” she says and leads me to the other side of the residence, immediately causing the hallways to remain calm despite the amount of people lining them as we walk by.

”Thank you, so do you. ” I gesture weakly to the chatruce dress she has on.

”Have you been feeding well? You look a little thinner to me. ” She is not body shaming me, she of all knows my struggles with eating.

Food and I have an on and off relationship. There are times I could eat everything and anything that comes to sight and other times, lets just say a sip of coffee would be the best I can do.

”I still have a little trouble with acidic foods but Im trying my best. ” I tell her honestly. Ive known better over the years than to lie to her.

”We could have you see a doctor, ” she suggests as we turn a corner that will lead us directly to the official dining room. ”Maybe see if we could make a feeding routine as well. ”

She makes me smile when she says feeding. It is almost as if Im a pet that needs to be fed and not a person. Its not offensive, just funny.

”Ill make an appointment. ” One thing about being a royal help is that you learn pretty quickly how to handle your emotions and personal life alongside theirs.

”Mom, ” River hugs his mother when we get into the room. ”Lily. ” He tries to cheer but it still comes out a little sour as he gives me a little rushed hug and steps away.

”Are you okay? ” His mother asks as she takes the seat thats already pulled out for her by her help.

”Yeah, ” River sighs and pulls out a chair for me.

”Thank you, ” I whisper and take my seat.

”Good morning. ” the kings deep timbre rings through the room as we all rise and take a bow.

”Good morning. ” Is our unison greeting as we take our seats.

”You look good Lily, ” he says from his place at the head of the table. ”Have you been well? ”

This is the first time since I came back that weve officially met.

”I have. ” I reply quietly from my side and stick a spoon in my soup. I hate talking about myself too much. It doesn matter how close I am with anyone.

River reaches between us and pats my knee lightly before he withdraws his hand and goes back to his meal. The small action makes my temperature rise. I don know why, it just does.

”Has River told you the good news? ” The queen asks.

Wiping my lips with a napkin, I set it down and lean back a little in my chair. ”Not really. ” I reply, trying with all my might not to turn to him on my left.

”Well, ” the queen begins and sets down her spoon. ”We had a talk with one of our old family friends and we are looking into getting his daughter engaged to River before the month ends. If all goes well and River keeps his word to the proposal, we might get them married before fall. ”

I don know if its only me that feels Rivers uncomfortable posture from beside me or if anyone else in the room can see it.

He dropped his spoon when his mother began speaking and has only now picked it up again.

”Im sure hes going to love her, ” his mother continues. Presumably unaware of the foot tapping that her son has began beneath the table. ”He even said she was gorg- ”

”Mom, ” River pleads weakly from beside me and tries to go back to his meal.

”Don get shy now, you said you were okay wi- ”

”Mom! ” Rivers voice gains a little bit more spark as he drops his spoon again and turns to his mother fully.

As if sensing the tension, the king clears his throat and pushes away his plate.

”River, you need to c- ”

”No, I didn say I was okay with the marriage. I only said I would consider it if it meant that much to you. Don go around saying such things and making people think otherwise. Especially not around Lily. ” Even if the last part of his statement comes out as a plea, I feel hurt by it.

Ive been in the royal family long enough to know my spot. I wouldn spill anything from this conversation, especially not with a matter of this much magnitude.

Pushing back the hurt, I dig my spoon into the soup and begin to swirl it around a little.

”Im sorry, ” the queen says quickly. ”Im sorry too Lily if the matter made you uncomfortable. ” She refers to me directly and reaches forward to pat my hand a little.

”Im alright. ” I smile weakly and continue with my soup.

”Have you had the chance to tour our new grounds? Weve got a new perimeter a few ways from here. ” The king informs me and I shake my head before I begin to speak.

”I heard the good news, ” I beam at him. ”I also saw the pictures but Im planning to have an eyeful myself. We can make it a picnic one of these days? ”

”Ill pass. ” River replies sourly from my side and I nod, not willing to say anything to his rudeness. It doesn hurt to be courteous. And even if it were a matter of pay, he is a prince, he can afford whatever price.

”Ill see when I can move things around so that i can join you. ” The queen says and I thank her sincerely. ”Did you get yourself a boyfriend in Arizona? Im dying to meet him. ”

”Excuse me! ” River says and pushes away his seat. His guard immediately steadies it as he exits without looking back.

”He had a rough night, ” his father explains. ”We had a business meeting that ran all the way to three this morning. ”

”Thats awful, Im sorry. ” I tell him.

”Not that I condone his behavior but if I wasn the king, Id also throw a tantrum. ” This makes both his wife and I laugh.

”Joseph, ” she scolds lightheartedly and goes back to her meal.

”My, have I missed this family! ” A familiar voice cries over the entryway and my hand freezes completely.

I just knew this would be a long day!

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