“Which one do you think is better?” Princess Lydia asked.
We were at the palace again. This time in a room as big as our entire house. The walls were lined with white wedding dresses, they were embroidered with heavy diamonds and jewels which were as uncomfortable as my huge ring which Granny made me wear.
Before I could respond Granny said “They all look wonderful”
“Yes they do. I can’t decide” I said with a fake smile. I’d been fake smiling all day and I hate it.
I was sick to my stomach and Granny had been giving me weird and grim looks all day. I managed to put on a calm and pretty face. I’m just nervous, I told myself. Some girls were deciding what to do with my hair and which makeup look suited me. They were putting my feet through torture, the shoes were something that Lyra would have loved. But I was going to break my ankles trying to walk in those heels.
“How are you feeling?” Granny asked with an irritating smile.
“How do you think?” I answered. I was finally sitting down while the Queen was talking with some maids.
“You know you are going have to change, Annabelle” Granny softened up a bit.
“Obviously, none of this is me” I pointed out.
“No, I mean you are going to really change after the wedding ceremony” Granny informed with a grim smile. She’s been acting strange lately. She always looked smug and proud of herself as if making me miserable was good for her.
“What are you talking about?” I asked.
“When you become a Hydra.....”
I interrupted “Half a Hydra”
Granny continued “You will notice some changes in you personality and....”
“Stop right there Grans” I demanded.
Granny looked around and a few of the girls had turned their heads towards us.
I started to make my way to Princess Lydia who was picking out some veils.
“Your friends can’t help you now, Annabelle” Granny said. I stopped and turned around slowly.
“What did you say?” I asked through gritted teeth but Granny just smiled and walked away.
Did she know something? Just thinking about it made me want to scream. I decided to get some air which was impossible in here. I stepped outside and walked down the hallway. There were paintings of our ancestors and the early years of the kingdom lining the walls.
“Annabelle” someone whispered. I knew it was Dad.
“Yes?” I answered.
“What are you doing here?” he asked.
“Hiding” I said.
“Annabelle, what’s the matter?” Dad pleaded “Why can’t you understand?”
“No, you don’t understand.....” and like that we were arguing in the palace where anyone would have heard that I didn’t want to get married.
“Annabelle, I don’t want to hear another word. Go back to your grandmother, be a good girl and soon you will realize what an honor it is to be in your place”
“I know that! I’m not being ungrateful” I whispered loudly “That’s not what I meant. I said that if we could somehow delay this marriage I might get to have a normal life before.....” I got interrupted.
Someone coughed from behind me. Why is everyone always behind me? Please don’t be someone important, I prayed to the stars.
It was the King. Oh no.
“Your Majesty” Dad said ducking his head.
“An interesting conversation you were having” the King said.
“Your Majesty, I was just explaining to my daughter that......” The King raised his hand a Dad stopped talking. I could see anger in King Jaxon’s eyes and Dad seemed irritated and mad. Now that I think about it that’s how Dad always looks at the King, which is totally not like him.
“I heard enough Antonio” he said to Dad “I want to talk to my future daughter in law. Alone”
Without saying a word Dad walked off leaving me with a man who could kill me on command. Nice parenting Dad.
There was awkward silence between us. Then he started talking.
“What’s bothering you Miss Virgo?” he asked.
I didn’t answer, not because I didn’t know what to say but because there was no point. He doesn’t even care.
“Are you not happy with my son?” he asked, that made me talk.
“Your Majesty, this is a little......strange” I said.
“I mean, it’s an honor but I can’t. I’m sorry” I added quickly and ducked my head. I cursed myself for saying that. I prayed to the stars for help.
“You can’t?” he repeated. He was mad at me, I’m gonna die.
“I see” he said “Off you go”
I practically ran away. I found the room where all the girls were and tried to pretend like nothing happened. I kept twisting the ring on my finger which I should have given back. Granny caught my eye and she gave me a a mean look, what was she up to?
I felt someone poke me. It was one of the maids, before I could say anything she said “Prince Alec requests your presence”
My heart fell into my stomach. All I could do was shake my head saying ‘yes’. She leaded me out of the room, up some stairways and into a room. I’m guessing this was the prince’s study.