Prince Cirroc went to his own chambers and sat down with his head in his hands, hiding his face. The Princess was beautiful, he thought. Then again, Princes had died for thoughts like that. Royal princes had lost their heads, quite literally, for falling in love with a King’s wife. It did not matter that the wedding had not been preformed, or consummated yet.A royal prince could loose his head, and the fact that he was the brother of the king would not withstand.
At the moment Cirroc had no one to talk to. Jere was busy with the staff making sure that the Princess and her retinue were settled in alright. He paced his chambers for a time, into his bedroom, back to the anteroom, back to the bedroom.He thought about sending a dispatch to Conleach, Dear brother, your promised wife is beautiful. So much so I want her for myself.Good-bye.Dear brother, your promised wife has fallen ill here and will not be able to continue her journey. Then he thought, ‘no, Conleach would just wait for her.’ He did not call the scribes in.He continued pacing.
In the Princess’s quarters, the maid was working to get them settled. The Princess turned to her chaperone and said, “Isn’t he handsome.”“Isn’t who handsome?” the chaperone responded.She was helping the maid to get things settled.“Prince Cirroc of course,” Aine said.“I hope my husband is as handsome as he is.”
Back in the village, the people went back to doing what they had been doing. The shop keepers went back and opened up their shops again, the stalls in the bazaar were reopened, the tradesmen went back to their trades. All but the pickpockets. They went to their little hidey holes.They’d been having a field day.They had their pick of some of the wealthiest pockets in town.These pick pockets included a young girl by the name of Ada.Being smaller than the others, her take was not so great, but it was good enough. She had enough for at least a warm meal for tonight. Others had managed enough for not just a warm meal, but also a room for the night.So her spot in the stable loft would not be too crowded tonight.
In the village, most of the talk was, “Did you get a look at the Princess?” “No,” was the response.“Her chaperone is going a good job of keeping her out of sight.”“Maybe it’s because she is as ugly as old Cracticus himself,” one housewife said.“I’m not surprised,” another responded“I hear her sister in Cressil is no great looker herself.”
In the citadel, Jere found Prince Cirroc in a brown study. “Well that was not expected,” Jere said. He had eyes too, and could see how beautiful the Princess was.“You noticed her,” Prince Cirroc said. “Yes,” said Jere, “but I value my head. I’d like to keep it.”Prince Cirroc chuckled a bit at that.“But what about supper tonight,” Jere said.“I think a simple supper in the small family dining room,” the Prince said.“But you should ascertain from the Princess what she wants. By the way what’s on the menu?”
“Cook has some simple things prepared, a simple roast with vegetables, some bread and fruit pies,” Jere told the Prince. “Very well,” said Prince Cirroc, “to the ladies quarters with you now to discover if that is acceptable.”
In the Princesses quarters, her chaperone opened the door to Jere, “His highness asks if the princess would prefer a simple supper here in her quarters or in the small family dining room?” The princess voiced her opinion, “Oh, I should love to eat with the Prince,” she said. The chaperone indulged her a little, “We will have supper with the Prince in the small dining room,” she said.But she was concerned lest anything untoward be on the menu.So she asked him, “What is on the menu?” “Meat,” he said, “cooked vegetables, bread and fruit pies.” Anything which would arouse passions?” she asked.“No ma’am,” he said.“And I can assure you that my master has always been a gentleman.I have every reason to believe that he will continue to act so.”“Very well,” the chaperone said, “yes, we will sup with him in the small dining room.”
Jere informed the Prince, and, right on time he presented himself at the Princesses door to escort her to supper. They were in the small dining room that Prince Cirroc would use with his family, when he had one. For now, it was Prince Cirroc, Princess Aine, his major domo Jere, her chaperone; bodyguards for each were standing around the walls of the room.They has already eaten in the kitchen with the servants.They had already tasted from the dishes that were being served to the Prince and Princess. This was done so that if any of the dishes were poisoned or tainted in any way, it would be the servants that would die, and not the masters or mistresses.
Yet, at the same time, Prince Cirroc almost wished that he would be served poisoned food. The Princess was so beautiful, and it was death to love the promised wife of a king.He loved his brother Conleach, as he knew Conleach loved him. But, Princess Aine as so beautiful. And there was her sweet voice as she attempted to make conversation with him.He ordered that only a few of the lamps be lit and the pushed some of those away from him to make it harder to see her in the dark.
She asked him, “How do you like your city?” He mumbled reply. She asked, “Has anything interesting happened since you have been here?” Even in Cressil, she had heard rumors of a murder. Again his reply was an unintelligible mumble. She looked at him as he put some of the meat into his mouth and looked down at his plate, trying not to stare at her.“Is it true that you have this city as a fife from your brother?” she asked.He mumbled again and nodded an affirmative reply.