Royal Wedding Countdown
~T-minus 3 days until Royal Wedding~
It was finally the first week of June, or as everyone in the Kingdom of Arendelle called it, the royal wedding week. Queen Elsa and Prince Hans had been run ragged trying to get everything ready in about a month's time, but now they were finally seeing the light at the end of the tunnel. All the decisions have been made so now it was the wedding planner's job to make sure everything was done on time. The castle staff was also pretty exhausted making sure all the guest rooms were cleaned and ready for the royal guests attending the wedding. Even Anna and Kristoff had put in a lot of effort into helping the staff clean up the castle and the citizens clean up the town. It was safe to say that basically everyone in the Kingdom of Arendelle was thoroughly worn out, and with only three days left, the royal dignitaries and guests would start arriving anyday now.
"Kai! Kai!" Anna excitedly ran up to the royal advisor, "Did you make sure to put my cousin in the guest room next to me?"
Kai bowed, "Yes, Your Highness. Princess Rapunzel and Prince Eugene are set to stay in the bedroom next to yours."
Anna happily clasped her hands together, "Good! Great, actually! Rapunzel and I just have so much to catch up on…I don't know if we'll have enough time to do everything before they leave."
"Princess Anna, may I remind you that Princess Rapunzel is a married woman so it would be indecent for you to barge into their room unannounced. She's not the only person staying in the room, after all-"
Anna lightheartedly rolled her eyes, "I know, I know…Elsa has already given me the 'do not disturb the royal guests' speech. Speaking of which, where is my sister?"
"The last time I saw her, I believe she was headed towards the library-"
Before Kai could finish, Anna was already running down the halls, towards the library, "Thanks Kai!"
"To be alone…oh dear."
Anna threw open the library doors and ran inside, "Elsa! Elsa! Woah…" She froze when she saw her sister lying down on the sofa with her arm over her forehead, "Are you okay?"
Elsa let out a long sigh, "Yes, Anna, I'm just tired…" She sat up with a grunt, "What is it?"
Anna slowly walked towards her sister, "Oh, uh, it's not that important…" She sat on the edge of the table and examined Elsa's tired appearance, "Wow, are you getting enough sleep? You look terrible."
Elsa groaned and laid back down, "Thanks Anna…and no I'm not getting very much sleep at all."
"Well, I think you should take a nap."
Elsa let out a small yawn, "Why do you think I'm in here?"
"I don't know, to read a book? Most people would take a nap in their bedroom…"
"And that's exactly why I'm not in my bedroom…I don't want certain people to find me. And by 'certain people' I mean the wedding planner."
Anna giggled, "So you're hiding from your wedding planner?"
Elsa tiredly rubbed her eyes, "Basically…"
"What about Hans?"
Elsa closed her eyes, "He's a big boy, he can defend himself."
Anna couldn't help but laugh at the ridiculousness of the situation, "You're too much for me sometimes, Elsa…here you are, the great ruler of Arendelle with snow and ice powers and you're hiding from a little woman with a clipboard?"
"Have you seen her clipboard? It's scary."
The sisters froze when they heard the door open, but let out a sigh of relief when Hans's head peeked in, "Oh, are you hiding from her too?"
Elsa sat up and stretched, "Yes and this hiding place is already mine, thank you very much."
Hans closed the door but kept his hand on the doorknob, "Why can't we share it?"
"Because if she catches both of us then we'll have to discuss the color palette one more time, but if she only catches one of us then we can use the 'I don't make any decisions without my fiancé' excuse."
Hans smirked, "Fine, if you need me I'll be in-"
Elsa covered her ears, "Don't tell me, I don't want to know…"
Hans opened the door, "Why, in case she interrogates you?"
Hans defensively held up his hands, "Alright, alright…" But right before he closed the door, he quickly stuck his head back in, "The kitchen!"
Anna bit her lip, "You know, Elsa…the guests are supposed to be arriving today."
Elsa lay back down and closed her eyes, "The first ship should arrive in a couple of hours, it could be our cousin actually."
"Really? Would it be okay if I met them at the gates?"
Elsa let out another yawn, but this one was much less graceful than her last, "Sure, you and I can go together…"
"Actually, I was thinking that you should take a nice long nap and I could handle the guests…that way you won't look exhausted at dinner."
Elsa opened her eyes and smiled as she thought about it, "That…sounds like a good idea. It wouldn't seem out of place or inappropriate if only you greeted them, because I could be busy…thank you, Anna, I appreciate you stepping up."
Anna grinned, "No problem, it's the least I could do…you shouldn't have this much stress for your wedding, it should be a fun experience."
"Don't worry about me, Anna, the fun will come afterwards."
Anna blushed, "Right, the honeymoon."
Elsa tiredly shook her head, "Hans and I aren't going on a honeymoon."
Anna's jaw almost dropped to the floor, "What?! You're not going on a honeymoon?! Why not?!"
"Too much to do…summer's coming up and that's when our ice export really increases. It's one of the busiest times of the year and I need to closely oversee all the trade that takes place during this time. Also, your birthday is coming up in a couple weeks-"
"Forget the trade, heck, forget my birthday! This is a once in a lifetime trip with your new husband, and you're going to skip it just so you can take care of ice trades?!"
"My duty to the Kingdom of Arendelle comes first, then myself."
Anna walked to the door, "Okay, Elsa, if you're sure…" Before she left she looked back at her sister, "I just hope you won't regret your decision."
~T-minus 2 days until Royal Wedding~
It was early afternoon in the kingdom of Arendelle, as Princess Anna and her trusty sidekick were walking down the castle corridors, preparing for another afternoon of guest arrivals, "Okay Olaf, where's the list of the room arrangements? I'm using that as a checklist when the guests arrive."
"I believe it's either in the dining room or you took it back to your bedroom to do a last minute once over."
Anna slapped her forehead, "That's right I did do that…wait right here." About one minute later, she emerged from her bedroom, "Okay found it! So yesterday, only 2 couples arrived which means…we should be expecting about 6 to arrive today. Yikes, today is going to be a busy day." Anna continued studying the list as the duo continued their walked down the hallway.
Olaf scoffed, "We can handle it, I'm sure. How's Elsa doing?"
Anna kept her eyes glued to the paper, "She's tired, but I saw her at lunch today, and she's looking much better than yesterday afternoon."
"I think she'll be much happier once this is all over…or at least until the actual wedding day."
"I agree…" Anna finally took her eyes off the list and looked at Olaf, "Did you know that they aren't planning on taking a honeymoon?"
The snowman rolled his eyes, "What?! That's crazy talk…"
"It's true! Elsa told me yesterday that she will be far too busy to take a couple weeks off."
"Poor Elsa, I'm sure she's not happy with this decision."
Anna shrugged, "She seemed rather okay with it to me…"
Olaf gave her a questioning look, "You remember we're talking about your sister, the one who is a professional at concealing her true feelings?"
Anna bit her lip, "Yeah, she can be a hard person to read…a tough cookie that one is."
The duo stopped their conversation when Kai walked up and bowed, "Princess Anna, the first ship has pulled into the docks and the guests are being escorted to the castle as we speak."
"Where are they from?"
A small smile grew on his face, "…Corona."
Anna happily squealed and took off down the hallway, "Yay! They're finally here! Thanks, Kai!" Anna excitedly ran through the hallways and gracefully jumped onto the stair railing and slide down to the bottom floor with ease. Once she reached the front gate, she quickly fixed her appearance and waited for the couple from Corona. When they finally made their way through the gates, Anna properly curtsied, "Welcome to Arendelle, Prince Eugene and Princess Rapunzel."
The petite brunette princess from Corona excitedly wrapped Anna in a big hug, "Oh please, Anna, drop the formalities we're all family here."
Anna giggled in delight, "I'm so glad that you guys are here!" After their embrace, Anna led the Coronian couple inside, "So where's Maximus and Pascal?"
Eugene chuckled, "We decided that it would be best if we left those two back in Corona."
"Why? They're like your best friends."
"Weddings are not really their thing…especially since this is such a formal event."
Rapunzel lowered her voice, "They kind of made a mess of our wedding and in the process caused chaos to the people of Corona…" She smiled up at her husband, "But it was still a beautiful ceremony."
Eugene kissed her temple, "And it was perfect for us…we're not really a formal couple anyway."
As they made their way down the halls, Rapunzel cautiously looked over at Anna, "So, how's Elsa doing?"
"She's tired but doing a lot better since I took over the room arrangements. Speaking of which, right this way to your guest room."
Eugene cleared his throat and tried at act as inconspicuous as possible, "So, Queen Elsa and Prince Hans, huh? How exactly did that work out?"
"What do you mean?"
Rapunzel threw her husband a dirty look, "Eugene, I told you not to bring it up."
He gave his wife an innocent look, "What? I'm curious as to how the most hated man in Arendelle is now becoming the new King?"
Rapunzel crossed her arms and raised a challenging eyebrow at him, "Probably the same way that the most wanted criminal in Corona is now the only heir to becoming the new King."
Eugene grinned at his wife's feistiness, "Touché, Blondie."
Rapunzel focused her attention back to her cousin, "But in all seriousness, Anna…how did that all fall into place?"
Anna began to wring her hands, "Well, you two fell in love by means of a crazy adventure, right? Just like Kristoff and me…well, I suppose the same happened for those two. I would tell you all the details, but it's not my story to tell."
Rapunzel smiled warmly, "I understand…as long as he's not blackmailing her to go through with the wedding or anything like that."
Anna couldn't help but laugh, "See, this proves we are related…you know, I first questioned his intentions too, but Elsa reassured me that everything between them is genuine and true. So I just went with it and now I'm kind of used to having him around."
Eugene gave Anna a curious look, "So it's not weird knowing your ex-fiancé is going to marry your sister?"
Rapunzel elbowed him in the ribs, "Eugene, I told you not to bring that up either."
Anna giggled, "Its fine…but to answer your question Eugene, I found myself okay with the situation. I mean, yeah I did love him when I first met him, and perhaps I did imagine how our lives would've turned out if Hans and I got married instead, but then I just think of Kristoff and all the 'what if' fantasies go away."
Rapunzel grinned, "How's Kristoff doing?"
Anna scoffed, "He's fine…busily obsessed with either his ice business or helping with the wedding."
The Coronian couple shared a concerned look, until Rapunzel cautiously spoke up, "Is everything okay between the two of you?"
Anna encouragingly nodded, "Oh yeah, everything is swell…it's just, all of this wedding stuff is making me think about our relationship. We've discussed the option of marriage before but he always seemed a little uneasy about the whole thing…I don't think he's ready to trade in his life for a royal title, just yet. And I think I'm starting to feel a little impatient which is not fair to Kristoff because it's a big transition for him, but I don't know…"
Once the group of three arrived at the guestroom, Rapunzel held Anna's hands and gave them a gentle squeeze, "I think this whole royal wedding spectacle is getting you excited for your own wedding, and I can see how waiting for him could seem a little tiresome, but don't worry, everything will happen at its own time and in the end, all the waiting will be worth it."
Anna smiled and gave her cousin a hug, "Thanks, Rapunzel."
Kai approached the group and bowed to all the royals, "Prince Eugene, Princess Rapunzel…Your Highness, the second ship has pulled into the docks and the guest is on his way here."
"Who is it?"
"King Richard of the Southern Isles."
Anna groaned, "Perfect…from my favorite people on the list to my least favorite person in the world…thanks, Kai." Once he left, Anna gave Eugene the room key, "Dinner is at seven, hope to see you both there."
After Anna left, Rapunzel and Eugene quietly began to unpack their things until Rapunzel threw a shoe at her husband's luggage, knocking it over and spilling its contents all over the floor, "Hey! What was that for?!"
Rapunzel leaned against the wall with her arms crossed, "For asking the two questions I specifically told you not to bring up! What was that all about?"
Her husband chuckled as he bent down to pick up his clothes, "Admit it, you were dying to know."
Rapunzel walked up behind him, "I wouldn't say dying to know, but I guess I was curious."
He stood up with his arms full of clothes and a smug look on his face, "See? You're welcome." Rapunzel narrowed her eyes and knocked over the pile of clothing in his arms, "Now, what was that for?!"
"When we were standing outside with Anna, I saw that look you were giving…the bored 'I'd rather be anywhere but here' look."
Eugene groaned as he bent down a second time to pick up his clothes, "Hey, I don't want to hear you and your cousin's girl talk."
Rapunzel rolled her eyes, "Girl talk? We were talking about relationships, adult relationships…you understand that-"
"Sorry, I phased out after the word 'girl-talk'." Her husband stood up and shoved all of his clothes into a drawer.
Rapunzel turned around and continued her unpacking, "You're so immature."
"But you can't live without me…" He walked up to her and gave her a hug from behind, nestling his head on her shoulder, "I love you."
Rapunzel didn't even flinch and continued her task, "I'm sorry I phased out after the word 'but'."
Eugene laughed, "Oh, so now who's the immature one? Cracking the butt jokes are we?"
Rapunzel tried hard not to smile, "I didn't mean it like that…and Eugene?"
Rapunzel turned to her husband with a smile, "I love you too."
Eugene kissed her gently on the lips, "I know, Blondie."
Rapunzel leaned in for another kiss but stopped short, "Now, hang up your clothes properly before they get all wrinkly."
Eugene chuckled, "Only if you give me a kiss first."
Rapunzel turned and began to walk away, making sure to shake her hips, "I'll give you something even better if you do it now."
In less than five minutes, Eugene had completely unpacked his luggage and neatly put away all of his clothing, and Rapunzel could definitely say that was the fastest she had ever seen her husband do something she asked of him.
Elsa was in her study looking over the documents that would be used during the high trade season, but the fact that her wedding was just two days away practically consumed her thoughts. Finally, she gave up and walked over to the large windows that over looked the fjords. Just a few minutes passed by, before her thoughts were interrupted by the knocking on her door, "Elsa?"
"Come in…" She turned around and smiled when she saw her fiancé walk in, but her smile quickly faded when she noticed a distressed look on his face, "What's wrong?"
Hans nervously stood in the doorway, "I wanted to give you a heads up about my father."
At that moment, Kai walked in and bowed to the two royals, "Queen Elsa…Prince Hans, your father is on his way to the castle. Princess Anna is currently awaiting his arrival at the castle gates. Also, Queen Elsa, Prince Eugene and Princess Rapunzel of Corona have arrived and are currently unpacking in their guest room."
Elsa smiled and bowed her head, dismissing her advisor, "That's good to hear, thank you, Kai."
Hans smiled as Kai walked out, "Thank you…" He closed the door and slowly walked over to his fiancé, "Elsa, I want to apologize in advance for anything and everything my father will say or do during his stay here. Also…"
Hans sighed and ran a tired hand through his hair, "My father still believes that everything leading up to this point has been a scheme…now, this may sound bad, but I'm going to have to cater to my father which means I may act different around you and Anna."
Elsa furrowed her brow, "How different is 'different'?"
"Like the old Hans, the fake conniving prince charming you met at your coronation ball. I'm sorry, Elsa, but my father still has the power to strip away my royal title, and so until we're officially married I'm at his mercy."
Elsa's face remained complacent, "Okay."
Hans's jaw slightly dropped in disbelief, "Okay? That's it?"
Elsa walked back over to her desk and picked up a document, "Well, what else am I supposed to say?"
Hans followed closely behind her, "I don't know, but something more than just 'okay'. I feel like you're angry when you say 'okay'."
"No, if I was angry, I would've said 'fine'. But I didn't, did I?" Elsa put down the paper and thoughtfully looked Hans in the eye, "I understand your situation and although I'm not exactly thrilled, I support you."
"Thanks, Elsa." Hans gave her a quick kiss on the cheek and hurriedly walked out the door.
Elsa looked back down at her documents and sighed, "It's fine."
"Elsa?" Elsa raised her head and saw Hans standing in the door way with a worried expression on his face.
Elsa giggled, "I'm just teasing, now go meet your father. I don't want Anna spending a whole lot of alone time with him, no offense."
Hans smirked, "None taken…"
Anna nervously fidgeted at the front gate, waiting for King Richard to arrive. She couldn't pinpoint what exactly she was nervous about, but she just had a bad feeling about this man. Nevertheless, when Anna spotted King Richard enter through the castle gates, she was all smiles as she properly curtsied, "Welcome to Arendelle, King Richard."
The Southern Isles king clasped his large hands together as he approached her with a big grin on his face, "It's a pleasure to be here, Princess Anna, and you look absolutely lovely on this fine afternoon."
Anna bowed her head, "Thank you, Your Majesty."
"Please, call me Richard. We're practically family!"
"My apologize, Your Majesty, but I've been told to remain formal with all wedding guests." Note to self: Treat Rapunzel and Eugene formally when this man is around.
Richard nodded approvingly, "Of course, Princess Anna. I admire your formality; it's nice to meet a woman who knows her place."
Anna dropped her fake smile, "Wait, what?"
Before Anna could say anything she would probably regret, Hans quickly walked towards them, "Father! Welcome to Arendelle." Hans stepped in front of the princess, "Anna, I can show my father to his room."
"Actually I'm supposed-"
Hans faced Anna and although he had a smile on his face, his eyes were cold and serious, "Don't argue, just do it."
Anna narrowed her eyes, "Do what?"
Hans lowered his voice to an icy hiss, "Leave."
Anna turned on her heels and began to walk away until she heard Hans clear his throat. Anna reluctantly turned around and forcefully put the room key in his outstretched hand, "Sixth guestroom on the left in the South Wing."
The father-son duo remained quiet until Anna was back inside the castle. Richard brought his son in for a rough hug, "Hans, my boy, I'm glad to see that you can still stand your ground. I'm proud of you, son."
"Thank you, Father. I would be lying if I didn't admit that I thought that you had abandoned me back in July, but now that everything is falling into place, I can't believe I ever doubted you."
Richard put his arm around his son's shoulders as they made their way into the castle, "My plans are golden Hans, I've never been wrong."
Hans thought back to his dead brother Kendrick, "How are my brothers?"
"Powerfully ruling grand kingdoms with an iron fist…and in two days, you will be among them, except that you will have one of the most powerful kingdoms under your rule. I have the upmost faith in you and you're ability to be a great king."
"So did my mother…" He quickly stopped and mentally slapped himself for bringing up the topic of his late mother.
King Richard let go of him, "Pardon?"
Hans tried to sound nonchalant, "Mother used to say the same thing when I was little-"
His father gave him an understanding nod, "Your mother was a smart woman, Hans, she saw greatness in you before anyone else even gave you a chance. I wish she could see you now…"
"Me too…" Hans was pleasantly surprised to hear his father speak so kindly of his late wife.
But without warning, the King's behavior changed as he scoffed, "On the other hand, without me you'd still be getting beaten up by your brothers. I taught you to stand up and defend yourself, your relationship with your mother made you weak."
"So what are you saying?
Richard nonchalantly shrugged, "I'm just saying that perhaps your mother's death was a blessing in disguise."
Fortunately for Hans, they had arrived at the guestroom. He took in a deep breath and made sure to keep his anger under control, "This is your room, dinner is at seven."
"I'm afraid I won't be able to join you at dinner…I have a lot of things to catch up on. This isn't a vacation for me after all."
"I understand." Hans tried not to seem too pleased as he handed his father the room key and began to walk away.
His father called out, "I'm sorry for bailing on dinner, Hans."
Hans talked over his shoulder, "Your presence will be greatly missed…" Once he turned the corner, he muttered, "Like the flu."
The rest of the day went quite smoothly, the remaining dignitaries arrived by early evening and most were able to make it to dinner. Dinner was uneventful and civilized and afterwards everyone returned to their rooms for an early night, for they knew that tomorrow would be one hectic day.
~T-minus 1 day until Royal Wedding~
It was extremely early in the morning as Elsa, Hans, and Anna gathered in the ballroom under the request of the wedding planner. When the three royals walked in, the wedding planner was already strutting around the room, barking out orders to her staff, "Alright people, let's make this place beautiful! I need you to go into town and make sure the flowers and banners are ready to go by sunrise tomorrow. I need you to go over the final menu with the kitchen staff and makes sure that there is enough food for everyone in attendance. I need you to make sure that everything is running smoothly on the groom's side, and I will personally see to it that Queen Elsa and Princess Anna are ready for tomorrow." She walked over to the two sisters, "Queen Elsa, we are going to do your final fitting fifteen till ten so that we get a true fit to what you will go through tomorrow. Whatever you plan on eating tomorrow, eat today. And Princess Anna…please stay away from any chocolate until after the wedding."
Anna ungracefully yawned, "Why?"
"My staff has been working all night trying to get that chocolate stain out of your dress."
Anna crossed her arms, "Fine, but once we hit the reception, all bets are off."
The wedding planner briefly nodded before she ran off and returned with a man in tow, "Hans this is Klaus, he will be your best friend for today. He will ensure that you are ready for anything and everything tomorrow." Hans and Klaus briefly smiled and acknowledged each other as the wedding planner turned around to address her staff, "This is our last chance to fix anything before the big day, so let's make it count." She turned back around and faced Elsa, "I'll meet you at your dressing room in a couple hours, Your Majesty. Enjoy your breakfast." Then she took off with her giant clipboard in her grasp.
Anna let out another loud yawn, "What time is it?"
Elsa put an arm around her sleepy sister, "Barely coming up on seven…let's just get out of here and eat some breakfast before she thinks of anything else."
As the three royals walked towards the dining room, a feminine voice called out, "Elsa! Anna!"
The group of three turned around, but it was Anna who recognized the voice first, "Rapunzel!" She ran over to her cousin and gave her a quick hug, "What on earth are you doing up this early?"
Rapunzel and Anna joined the engaged couple, and they all continued their walk to the dining room, "I'm usually awake at this time…when growing up I always started my chores at exactly seven a.m. so I'm used to waking up around six thirty in order to get dressed and eat breakfast…I guess I never grew out of the habit."
Elsa smiled, "Where's Eugene?"
"Oh he's still asleep…he's not much of an early riser. But it's fine because I get some alone time every morning to reflect on things going on in my life. It's very nice actually."
"But what happens when you two become King and Queen of Corona? Surely, he can't sleep in all the time."
Rapunzel clasped her hands behind her back, "We've slowly begun breaking that bad habit of his, but it's not easy…what that man lacks in discipline he makes up in heart, though. But enough about me, this visit is all about you two! Are you guys excited for tomorrow?!"
Hans reached for Elsa's hand and smiled down at her, "Absolutely, I've been looking forward to this day for quite some time now."
"Me too…" Elsa smiled at Hans, and then looked back at her cousin, "I'll be happy that we won't have to deal with all the extra stress added on because of this wedding."
Rapunzel gave her an understanding nod, "So where are you two spending your honeymoon?"
There was an awkward silence for a few seconds before Anna cleared her throat, "They aren't going on a honeymoon…"
Rapunzel tried to mask her disappointment, "Well, that's a shame…can I ask why not?"
Elsa gave her a tired smile, "Summer is coming up and that's when our ice export is in high demand, trade is very busy here and I like to keep a close eye on everything."
Rapunzel gave her an encouraging smile, "I understand, that's very noble of you." Elsa sadly smiled and nodded, as the awkward silence came back again. Rapunzel could tell she had hit a touchy subject so she tried to lighten the mood, "So, what's for breakfast?"
It was a whirlwind of a day as Hans and Elsa were dragged around the castle constantly by the wedding planner to ensure that everything would be perfect. By the time it was dinner, the couple was extremely exhausted and they couldn't wait to get through this meal so that they could head straight to their beds for a well-deserved good night's rest. As the guest filed into the dining room, Hans noticed Elsa's shoulders slightly slumped forward which meant that she was not only thoroughly exhausted but also her body was definitely aching. He grabbed her hand and led her down the hall and around the corner. Once they were out of sight he began massaging her shoulders, "How are you holding up?"
She let out a long sigh, "Not bad considering what we've gone through today."
"Just think, by tomorrow all of this will be over. We'll be married and most importantly no more extra stress."
Elsa let out a short laugh, "If we're both more excited for the lighten stress load than the actual wedding, then what does that say for our marriage?"
Hans chuckled, "It means we're going to be a low maintenance couple that would rather stay home and cuddle in front of a fireplace, with hot chocolate and a good book in hand."
"Wait, did you just call us a low maintenance couple? Us? The Ice Queen and the…"
"Ex-criminal? Its okay, Elsa, I know what I was…Speaking of criminals, you haven't had any run-ins with my father, correct?"
Elsa smirked, "No, but Anna certainly has."
Hans sighed, "I already apologized to her about the way I acted at the front gates-"
"You better watch yourself around her, or else Kristoff will come after you."
Hans let out an uneasy laugh, "I consider myself warned…it is inevitable that you will see my father at dinner though and if he can insult Princess Anna in less than a minute then imagine what sort of damage he can cause during an entire dinner."
Elsa turned to Hans with a mischievous smile, "It's a good thing that I might have hinted to Kai to cut the meal short for you, Anna, and me…we might have some important matters to deal with."
Hans let out a sigh of relief as he gave Elsa a grateful hug, "I love you so much right now."
Elsa just laughed as they made their way back into the dining room, "Good evening, everyone. I would like to thank you all for coming to Arendelle on such short notice regarding the wedding. I hope you enjoyed your day here in Arendelle and if you need anything throughout the remainder of the evening, please feel free to ask any of the castle staff. And with that, dinner is served."
Everyone dove into their meals and for a few minutes it was completely silent, until King Richard decided that it was time to stir up some drama, "So, Your Majesty…are you prepared for tomorrow? Do you have everything figured out?"
"The wedding planner has assured Prince Hans and me that she has personally gone over every last detail of the wedding."
Richard put his fork and knife down, "If I may, Your Majesty, but I think I might have noticed something that your wedding is missing."
Elsa also put down her fork and knife, giving Hans a brief concerned look before facing King Richard, "What would that be?"
"Your grand entrance, Queen Elsa."
Elsa clasped her hands together and leaned forward on her elbows, "I assure you King Richard that we have gone over my entrance."
"But, Your Majesty, are you sure you aren't missing something…or should I say someone?"
Elsa didn't answer him right away, she felt as if the air has been knocked out of her. She could feel unwanted pressure build up in her chest as she tucked her shaking hands underneath the table, "I understand who you are referring to but I don't follow how my father's absence has anything-"
"It is customary that a father should walk his daughter down the aisle, no matter if she be a lowly ice harvester or a great queen. But since your father is not with us, I have decided that I shall step in his place."
"I appreciate the offer, King Richard, but you are not my father-"
"According to law-"
"Yes, you are my father by law, but there is a huge difference between birth father and father-in-law. Thank you for your offer, but I shall pass."
"It's tradition, Your Majesty…are you sure that you-"
"What's wrong with ice harvesters?" Everyone at the table turned to Anna, who was sitting with an unreadable expression on her face.
King Richard raised his eyebrows, "Pardon?"
Anna tilted her head, "You said, 'no matter if she be a lowly ice harvester…' What's that supposed to mean?"
"Princess Anna, ice harvesting is one of the lowest forms of work. Any self respecting man or woman would avoid working in such horrid conditions."
Anna furrowed her brows, "Well, someone has to harvest the ice."
"Exactly, someone has to do it, but it is definitely a job for the unskilled. Those who harvest ice lack basic social skills, not to mention basic hygiene…they're destined to remain alone because they just can't handle the etiquette of society."
Anna abruptly stood up, causing her chair to fall with a loud thud, "Do you realize how hard it is to do what they do? All the heavy lifting, the constant laboring, the extreme weather conditions, and the tremendous danger they put themselves through."
Richard raised a scrutinizing eyebrow, "Princess Anna, I had no idea that ice harvesters were so near and dear to your heart."
Anna turned around to walk out but instead she nearly ran into Kai, "Excuse me, Queen Elsa, but there is something that you, Prince Hans, and Princess Anna need to attend to immediately."
Elsa stood up and put her napkin on the table, which was now covered in ice, "We'll be right out, Kai, thank you. I'm sorry, everyone, for the abrupt exit but I wish you all a good night."
As Elsa, Hans, and Anna, walked out; King Richard took a sip from his glass, "My offer still stands, Your Majesty…I'm just trying to do the right thing."
Elsa decided not to answer him, and once they were in the hallway, she made a beeline towards her bedroom, "I need a moment…"
Anna curiously look at Hans for an explanation, "There really wasn't anything for us to do, it was just an excuse to get us out of there…your sister is the one who set that up."
Anna took in a shaky breath, "Oh…if you need me, I'll be in the stables."
Anna practically ran to the stables, she needed to see Kristoff. She hadn't seen him at all these past two weeks and she needed to talk to him now more than ever. When she entered the stables she didn't see her tall handsome ice harvester, instead she found a servant sweeping, "Princess Anna, can I help you with anything?"
Anna continued to look around, "Have you seen Kristoff?"
"He just left, Your Highness, he said something urgent came up. He also told me to tell you that if you were to come looking for him, he apologizes for his absence and that he will see you tomorrow."
Anna tried not to seem too disappointed, "Oh…thank you."
"Did you need anything else, Your Highness? I was just finishing up-"
Anna gave the man a polite smile, "No, no…if you're finished with your chores, you can leave."
The servant bowed and made his way out of the stables, "Yes, Your highness, thank you…have a good night."
"Night…" Anna took in a deep breath as tears began to sting her eyes; ice harvesting is one of the lowest forms of work. Any self respecting man or woman would avoid working in such horrid conditions…it is definitely a job for the unskilled. Those who harvest ice lack basic social skills, not to mention basic hygiene…they're destined to remain alone because they just can't handle the etiquette of society. "They're destined to remain alone…" Anna picked up a carrot and mindlessly threw it up and down; "You know, most people who disappear into the mountains want to be alone."
"Nobody wants to be alone. Except maybe you…"
"I'm not alone…I have friends, remember?"
"You mean the love experts?"
"Yes, the love experts!"
"How could someone who grew up with love experts want to be alone? Maybe Kristoff is avoiding me because he doesn't want to get married and this whole wedding ordeal is scaring him…"
Now tears began flowing down Anna's cheeks as she turned around and threw the carrot at the door, almost hitting Hans in the process, "Whoa! Anna, are you okay?"
Anna turned away and tried to wipe away her tears, "What are you doing here? Shouldn't you be with my sister?"
"I'm giving her some time to cool off, uh, no pun intended. I figured that it would be easier for her to let her emotions all out while she's alone, so she won't have to worry about hurting anyone. I'll check up on her in a few minutes…"
Anna scoffed, "Always the charming prince, huh?"
Hans could hear her sniffling, "Anna, what's wrong?"
Anna turned around to face him, "What's wrong? What's wrong?! Your father has insulted me and the man I love, Kristoff doesn't want to marry me, and to top it all off, my sister is getting married tomorrow to you! My entire life is falling apart right before my eyes!" Anna sat down on a stool and began crying into her hands.
Hans slowly walked towards her, "I thought you were okay with the marriage…Anna, I know I don't deserve this second chance-"
"It's not you I have a problem with…"
Anna sniffled as she wrapped her arms around herself, "Up until recently, I was the only person in Elsa's life…after so many years of being shut out it was so nice to finally be a part of her world again. And now, it just, I don't know…it feels like I'm losing her all over again. She loves you, Hans, and I know that once you two get married you're going to be inseparable…and I'm going to be alone, again."
Hans grabbed a stool and sat down beside her, taking her hands into his and looking her in the eye, "Anna, trust me, Elsa is not going to let that happen. If it weren't for this marriage law, she and I wouldn't be getting married so soon." He looked over at the door and lowered his voice, "Your sister feels that she's not ready for married life and I promised her that if she doesn't feel comfortable with something then I'm not going to force her into doing anything she doesn't want. Hence, no honeymoon…"
"That's the reason you guys aren't going?"
"Well, that and the ice trades…Anna, basically, nothing is going to drastically change from the way things are now. And as for Kristoff not wanting to marry you, if that's true then he's missing out, his loss. But if I were you, I wouldn't turn my back on him just yet."
Anna threw her arms around him in a big hug, "Thanks, Hans. I can't believe I'm saying this but…I'm glad you're the one marrying my sister."
Hans chuckled as he wrapped his arms around her, "Anna, after tomorrow you are going to be my sister-in-law, and I promise that I will always be available if you need a shoulder to cry on or lend an ear if you need someone to talk to."'
Anna smiled, "I've never had a brother before…"
Hans quietly knocked on his fiance's door, "Elsa? Are you in there?"
Hans slowly opened the door, "How are you doing? Whoa…you're smiling?"
Elsa was calmly sitting on the bed with a loving smile on her face, not an icicle in sight, "Am I?" She stood up and slowly walked towards him.
"Elsa, I'm so sorry for what my father said to both you and Anna-" Elsa interrupted him as she threw her arms around him and gave him a big kiss, leaving Hans surprised and confused, "What was that for?"
"I overheard you and Anna in the stables…I wanted to go check up on her but I guess you already beat me to it. What you said in there was so sweet and genuine…I've never been more proud to call you my fiance."
Hans smiled, "You should talk to her…"
"I will, tomorrow, it's getting late…" Elsa sat back down on her bed and let out a tired sigh, "I wish she told me though, I never thought Anna would start hiding her feelings from me."
Hans sat down beside her on the bed, "Well, I guess concealing emotions runs in the family."
Elsa placed her face in her hands, "Perhaps…I just don't want her to turn into me."
Hans wrapped an arm around her shoulders, "Don't put yourself down, you've been working on that…bad habit die hard, right?
"I guess…well, maybe we should get some sleep. Tomorrow is going to be a big day and I could definitely use several hours of sleep."
Hans kissed the top of her head before standing up and making his way to the door, "Goodnight, Elsa."
He stopped at the door, "Yes?"
Elsa played with the ends of her hair, "Thank you for not pressuring me into anything."
"I respect you, Elsa, because I love you. When I came back from Sperca, I returned with the intention of marrying you, even if that meant waiting over a year for you. If you're not ready, then I can wait."
"If you keep this up, the wait won't be that long…perhaps once the ice trades are over with, we can move into the same bedroom."
Hans opened the door with a grin, "Only three more months to go, I'll save the date."