Caterina Rainbell dreamed of becoming a queen since she was young, she has been groomed for the position from the very day she was born. Being the future queen of Floeya came with its benefits, but also a lot of setbacks, Caterina was given the best possible education from young and was more privileged than other normal girls.
The setbacks? Little to no social interaction from anyone, her parents were far too busy to spend time with her, even if they could get time off, they would be called off for other urgent businesses. Her nannies taught her things she needed to know, which were all reinforced by her tutors: be perfect.
As the future queen, you have no use being a failure, any flaws are to be snuffed out or buried. That was lesson one. Cat remembered her nanny teaching this same lesson over and over, she had been shielded from the outside world and was taught to appreciate what she had, which reduced her chances of finding friends.
The country was a prosperous one, located a far distance away from the equator so that every day wasn’t too hot or cold. They didn’t have four seasons, only rainy and dry spells. It consisted of three separate towns and was generally, a peaceful place, although there was the recent rioting in the Wisteria village; Cat never thought much of it.
Over the years, Cat grew older and started on what adults called her ‘rebellious phase’ while some advisers of her father disapproved it, her father decided it was best to let the girl make her own decisions. Cat had a military mind, she was able to pick apart crafted situations on paper and solve them in seconds, add that on to her charisma and elegant charm, she seemed perfect.
That wasn’t the real Cat, while her persona made her appear the definition of perfection, Cat was far from it, behind closed doors; she’s messy, she likes to speak bluntly and loved to cuddle with her cat, Dan. The cat would curl up with her and besides the palace staff, they only social interaction she got. Dan was a grey tabby that was with Cat since she was five, she practically grew up with him.
“Miss Rainbell?” Her attendant, Issac, opened the door to her room and greeted her. “Your parents wish to see you in the library,”
“Mom and Dad?” Caterina confirmed, what did they want with her? “I’ll be there soon,”
Odd, her parents never asked for her, they simply had no time to spend with her, not that Cat would ever admit she needed them. She pushed open the door with a soft creak, peeping her head in. Her parents were sitting with their back facing her, still absorbed in their quiet discussion. Cat’s mother was a tall woman and she was lucky she had inherited that same height and curves her mother had, while her other features followed her father’s, red hair and blue eyes, eyes that were so blue that they would appear violet under certain lighting.
“Cat? Is that you?” Her mother’s head turned to see her daughter’s face, they finally heard her.
“Yes,” Cat closed the oak door behind her and guards placed themselves in front of them, taking her seat across from them, in the middle was a chess table, her father’s own personal touch.
“Do you know why we have called you here?” My mother crossed her fingers together, seeming a little more fidgety than she usually was, the Rainbells were masters of multiple personas.
“Ummm... Not really?” Cat admitted, she fiddled with her hands.
“It’s about your upcoming 18th birthday sweetheart, the age where you...” Cat’s father gestured for her to continue the sentence, it struck her.
“My coronation, the age where I take over Floeya? Don’t you think it’s too soon?” Cat tried to argue, her voice growing strained.
“It’s tradition sweetheart, my father gave me the throne when I was your age. You have to,”
“I don’t think I’m ready though...”
“I know it can be overwhelming, I know the feeling. But, when you meet your betrothed and get married, you will be so much happier and the workload will be lessened,”
“Wait what betrothed? I was never told this!”
“We never had the time to discuss it with you, this is too sensitive a matter to pass on to your tutors, we had to make sure this was handled delicately,”
“Not delicately enough it would seem,”
Cat wanted to swear at her parents, how dare they not even think of her when they planned all this out beforehand. A betrothed? Cat always wanted to marry for love, sure she didn’t expect a prince charming, but, she always wanted to choose; it was one of the few freedoms she had. She had known that her parent’s marriage was arranged, however, they met prior to the marriage, they weren’t total strangers and Cat? Didn’t even know the name of this ‘betrothed’ of hers.
“I know this is a lot to take in Cat, your free to take all the time you need sweetie,” Her mother’s sing-song voice managed to calm Cat down a little.
“I just can’t... I mean it’s all too soon. I’m just not ready...” Cat’s throat was tightening, her hands balled into fists at her sides.
“Cat..” Her mother tried to reach for her, but the redhead stood with a start, looking at her parents like a deer in the headlights before running out of the room. “CAT!” Her mother yelled, but the current queen also gave orders to the guards and they didn’t give chase.
Cat sprinted into her room and slammed the large door shut, she wasn’t aware that she was not alone until Issac spoke up behind her. “Miss Cate, are you okay? I’m sorry I thought you would want to spend more time with your parents, so I took the liberty of sorting our your dresses,”
The princess pressed her back against the locked doors, staring at her attendant, not even knowing where to start in her explanation, she kept her fist over her chest, trying to calm her erect heartbeat.
“Cate!” Issac was by her side in an instant, she didn’t even realize she was on her knees. “Can you stand?”
Cat could only nod her response as Issac gently lifted her towards the love seat in the corner of the room nearest to the door. He left Cat there while he poured lavender tea and bought it to her with a tray, she took the cup with shaky hands and managed to still herself after a few sips.
“Do you want to tell me what happened now, Cate?” Issac was the only person that called her that, he always thought Cat was a weird thing to be called, he pronounced it as ‘Kate’ with a C.
“We need to leave...” Cat announced. Tears threatened to overflow.
“If you wish to go into the village, I can arrange for that-” Issac started, he starting to get up, Cat shook her head.
“Not the villages, I mean away. Out of Floeya, somewhere far away...”
“For how long?”
“However long it takes,”
“Cuz I can’t become queen just yet,” Cat decided, there was no going back now.