Castle Of Lilies

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Chapter 16

Genevieve's PoV

If marrying Zachary is what it takes to get my mother to not be disappointed in me and to love me then that's what it takes. Even if it means breaking my heart and Lillia's in the process. Walking through the corridors to Zachary's chambers I knock on the door. A few seconds later I hear a "Coming!" From inside. Then the door opens to show a half naked Zachary with a towel around his waist, his hair damp and his muscled chest rippling with water droplets. Snapping out of my thoughts I hand him the folder and say "I accept your proposal. I'll marry you but on one condition."

"And what is that?"

"That I go back to being mute. Before Her I was mute, and I'll only marry if I go mute again."

He looks me straight in the eye and says "Ok. What about Lillia?"

"She was just a phase." I say, hoping that if I say it enough times I'll actually believe it myself. He smiles before saying in a light tone "Come on, I'll get dressed and then we can go and tell your mother." I nod before entering his rooms and sitting on the sofa that he has at the end of his bed. His rooms are sultry, with his walls painted black, a plush red carpet, and a black bed frame and red covers. He emerges from the bathroom dressed in a sharp suit before taking my arm and walking us out of the room, and towards the throne room. His hands are soft but calloused as though he's trained in some sort of sword fighting. But his hands feel strange on my arm, and my body sings for Lillia's instead but I chant in my head as though it's the only thing keeping me alive "Just a phase."

And then we reach the throne room, and to my great shock I see Lillia stood talking to my dad. He coughs his throat and Lillia turns before saying "Thank you Alex. I'll keep in touch."

Without warning the words tumble out of my mouth "Where are you going?"

"Corallone." She says and then she whispers barely audible "Permanently."

Then she passes me and leaves.

Beside me Zachary says "The Princess has accepted my proposal my Queen."

My mother looks shocked before she says "Well this is wonderful news. I'm glad you decided Lillia was just a phase."

At this my father speaks up "Zachary, which Kingdom are you from?"

"Corallone, your highness. I made a mistake and my sister wouldn't allow me back in without marrying."

At the mention of Corallone my heart soars at the fact that we would move back there and I'd be able to see Lillia again.

At this my father laughs out loud, which he rarely does and so it's a shock to us all. My mother goes "Alexander, what on Earth is funny?"

"What's funny? What's funny? My dear Penelope, Lola and Leon will never allow him back in with Gen as his wife unless Lillia allows them, and she sure as hell won't."

My mother looks confused for a second before saying "But what authority does Lillia have over there?"

Again my dad laughs, a sound that echoes through the hall, "She's the Princess. She's the daughter of Princess Hannah that went missing, well turns out she came and worked here and had Lillia. Lillia is in line to be Queen when Lola dies or steps down, if she wants it."

My mother looks horrified as she takes in what Dad just said. Then as though unable to comprehend words she falls silent, her hands curling into her lap. Zachary looks pale beside me before he seems to regain his composure saying "You'll still marry me though? I mean it might still work. If Lillia isn't crowned yet it might."

I nod, knowing that Lillia wouldn't take me back now anyways.

My mother squeals, ranting about when the wedding should be and what food we'd have and all the planning that a wedding entails. But I'm focused on my father who's looking at me with such disappointment that my already fractured heart shatters, leaving me more broken than ever.

Lillia's PoV

As I pack my things I wipe the tears from my face, knowing if I start crying I'll never stop. And I know that if she walked back into this room right now and said that she wanted me back I'd gladly jump into her arms. So I'm going home. My real home, away from Her and the trauma and the temptation. I explained the whole thing to Alex and he agreed with me, and we were just talking about how we'd keep in touch when I'd turned around to them holding hands, him looking ever so smug. And in that one moment, the moment when my eyes joined with Hers I knew she didn't want me. Not anymore. I knew that I was exactly what she'd said I was. An experiment.

And so I throw all my clothes that aren't hers into a suitcase, taking all my makeup and hair things, my jewellery and shoes. Then I grab one book from the bookcase and head to the foyer to wait for my car.

Just as the car pulls up I hear Alex's voice calling my name. I turn to see him with open arms, and I run to them, enveloped in his teddy like body.

"Goodbye Alex."

"Goodbye Lillia."

And so I climb into the car and set off home.

The car journey I take no notice of, mostly sleeping and reading.

Then as we pull up outside the gates I see that the sun is just setting on the horizon and so no wonder I'm sleepy. The guard comes to the window and asks my driver why I'm here, he starts to say something but I say from the back seat "Tell him I've come home. That I'm here to see Queen Lola."

And so the driver tells the guard and the guard seems to be reluctant to let us through but eventually he does and we go through the courtyard of soldiers again. My soldiers.

The doors to the castle open as I get my bags out of the car, and Lola comes out dressed in a nightgown and robe. Smiling I run up to her, her arms wrapping around me. Then she says "My dear why are you here? I didn't think Loutocia was visiting. Where's Alex and Genevieve?"

Smiling bitterly I say "Genevieve won't be visiting. And Alex says he'll visit sometime next week. I can explain in the morning but for now I've come home. And I would love to be a part of my family legally?"

Lola smiles before replying "Of Course dear. We can get you crowned by the end of the week if you wish it. And please do explain in the morning."

Nodding I take my bags and go to my new rooms. A whole set of chambers all to myself. With a foyer, with a little sofa and coffee table. With an en suite and a whole room dedicated to books. Like my own personal library. And I have my own closet and dressing room with dressing table and makeup cupboard. The bedroom has a king size bed and is painted with coral walls with turquoise bedding and curtains, the grey carpet plush and silky.

The bathroom is a deep grey colour with a mirror surrounded by lights. The bath is basically a hot tub it's that big. The dressing room and makeup space is muted pink, with accents of silver. The wardrobe space is white with lights on the runway and the rails. The little library is painted black with accents of gold and copper.

The foyer is painted graphite grey with the sofa and seats coral, the coffee table is glass with a gold frame. Lola stands watching me gasp at all of it. Then as I reach the foyer again I say "Thank you. It's amazing! I love it."

"I'm glad." She replies, "Now you should get some sleep. We can talk more in the morning. Breakfast is in the main hall but if you think you'll get lost then I can send a maid if you want."

Nodding I bid her goodnight and start unpacking my stuff. After doing most of it, I yawn and climb into bed, knowing I'll find it difficult to sleep without Her beside me.

Waking from a fitful night of sleep I rub my eyes and take a second to remember where I am. But with that comes yesterday's turn of events. I push them down and instead focus on the fact that by the end of the week I'll be crowned Princess. Which means I'll have a family, legally at least. So I get dressed into comfy, baggy trousers and a loose top with a large sweatshirt over the top. Then slipping on some slippers I exit my rooms and head butt a poor maid who looks just as shocked to see me as I am to see her. She quickly regains her composure saying "I'm here to escort you to the hall."

I smile warmly at her and she seems to relax a bit, leading the way. As we walk through the corridors I take note of the changes that have been made since we last came. Instead of gold trimming on the seats and floors they've changed to copper which in my opinion is much better. The gold looked harsh and unwelcoming but the copper is calmer and toned down.

A cheer and clapping pulls me out of my thoughts and I see the whole family cheering and laughing at my shocked reaction. They stop and I say "Guys! What was that for?"

June says happily "Welcome to the family dear."

Smiling I say "Well not legally yet, but hopefully by the end of the week."

June raises her eyebrow so I elaborate "Lola said I could be crowned princess by the end of the week if I wanted, which I do." June claps like a small child that's been given cake. Then Lola says "Well we need a lot of help from everyone to plan it all and the announcement could coincide with Miles' engagement party."

"Miles proposed?" I say surprised.

"Yes dear. To Dalia. They seem very happy."

I smile, happy for him that his relationship worked out.

Lola says "We can crown you at the party or we can crown you earlier in the week and simply announce it at the party. Whichever one you want."

Thinking about it I reply with a smile "As soon as possible."

Leon says with a hint of emotion in his voice "Well, that can be as soon as tomorrow."

I nod enthusiastically, "So what exactly does being Princess entail?"

Nathan pipes up saying "Press dear. For a little while a lot of press but one of us will always be with you to control them, and after that it means you can have your pick of suitors and be courted and things like that."

"Courted by who?"

"Anyone really."

Tentatively I say "Girls and boys?"

He chuckles "oh yes. Girls and boys. I mean as long as they're not snobby or horrible."

June says "I almost married a girl. But then I met my Nathan. Best day of my life."

Smiling I grab some food and we all sit eating happily whilst listening to June and Nathan tell us about how they met. Typical grandparent stories. Grandparents. That's nice to think.

After breakfast I hear a familiar laugh and then in walks Miles' and Dalia. Miles looks shocked to see me and Dalia exclaims "Lillia! Hi! How are you? How's Gen? Where's Gen?"

Clenching my fists I say "Hi. I'm alright. I don't know how Genevieve is. I hope she's feeling horrible wherever she is."

Dalia's face falls as Lola says from the opposite side of the table "Lillia, you haven't explained why you're here yet."

Sighing I take a seat and start the story.

By the end of it Miles goes "I'll kill her."

But Dalia puts a hand on his and says "That's slightly extreme honey but I know how you feel. How could Gen do something like this? She was completely in love you when I spoke to her."

I don't reply but instead say in an attempt to lighten the mood "Well guys at your engagement party, congratulations by the way, I am being announced princess. Crowned tomorrow but announced formally on Friday."

They recognise my quick change of subject but go with it anyway saying how happy they are and showing me the ring. A gorgeous ruby, with a petite gold band, it suits Dalia very much.

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