Perfect Image

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Chapter 6- Perfect Girls Compromise

Back in Floeya...

Jackson Rainbell has had a hard time calming down his wife, Eloise who was still sobbing as the search continued for their daughter, Caterina. The matter that the princess has fled the country has not been released to the press, no doubt the news would cause even greater unrest.

“It’s all my fault, I should have made more time for her. Prepared her better. I’m a failure as a mother...” Eloise’s eyes were downcast as she voiced this to her husband.

Jack hated seeing her like this, Eloise has been blaming herself for Cat’s disappearance but, never even considered him into the equation, it wasn’t her fault; it was his. He was the one that insisted that they waited until the last minute to tell Cat about her betrothed, he was the one that didn’t make time for their daughter.

Eloise has become somewhat of a recluse upon Cat’s leave, she had refused to eat her daily meals and no longer does her share of the work, she hasn’t appeared at any interviews or meetings. She wouldn’t even talk to Jack anymore, which was why he thought it better to just leave her be for the time being and focus a chunk of resources into finding Cat. The family had made sure some of their credit cards would be untraceable just in case they needed to escape with haste. Issac swiped a couple and the council has yet to find out which ones.

Jack has yet to address the media on the current state of the royal family and has been trying to delay it for as long as he possibly can, but he needs to make a statement soon. The Diala family will not be happy about any of it. The Diala family has have been a loyal supporter of the Rainbell royal family for generations, living in the Quarts village, they are the second richest family in the country. With their backing and creditability, it would make the Rainbell royalties look better in the eyes of the media.

Cat was going to get married to their third son, Austin Diala, who was one of the more humbler ones the family and although they had never met, Austin was infatuated with the princess. Jack would sometimes find himself thinking if their relationship would ever turn up like his, he and Eloise were comfortable around each other, but that was about it.

They eventually grew closer as the years went on by and became each other’s confidants and best friends, it took them a while to get to where they were but, Jack says it was all worth it. Now that so many decades have gone by, Jack thought the whole tradition thing was overrated, his advisors thought it best to abide by it. Then again, Cat has always been her own person, no matter how many times she exceeds expectations, she always wanted her own personality.

“Sir, you have a call,” Jack didn’t like having secretaries, his advisors were already annoying enough, still there were just too many things to handle all by himself.

“From?” Jack didn’t bother looking up from his paperwork.

“Issac,”

Jack was about to fall off from his chair, he ended up shoving a bunch of the papers off the table when he had tried to steady himself, his secretary seemed concerned but made no move to help.

“Cancel all my meetings for today,” He declared, trying to seem composed. “Now put him on the screen,”

With a tap of a button, an unknown number flashed across the large screen in his workroom, Jack dismissed his secretary with a wave. Whatever Issac had to say concerned about Jack, he always knew the boy was resourceful, seeing how he got Cat out of the country undetected.

“Mr Rainbell?” That was Issac’s voice alright.

“Issac. Yes it’s me, why are you calling? Where’s Cat?” Jack was speaking so fast even he didn’t know what he said.

“Sir, I’m calling about that. I need you to stop seeking us, your stressing her out. She’s finally at a place where she can experience something she never had in Floeya: independence. She doesn’t even want me to tend to her anymore, well at least not like I used to. I feel like she needs this, this time to find herself, this time to decide who she wants besides her. I also don’t support your decision on her supposed fiance,”

“Caterina knows her duty, it’s not like her to defy it. She was always the perfect daughter and the perfect princess,”

“She knows that. Cate’s sick of being just ‘perfect’ she wants to be herself. So I am begging you, sir, give her a year. When she turns 19 and if she decides to come back she will,”

“What if she doesn’t want to come back?”

“Trust me, sir. She will.”

------

Cat woke up in a cold sweat, she threw the covers off her and glanced around the room in a panic, she placed her fist over pounding heart and willed herself to calm down. She noticed how Dan was staring at her from beside the bed, his head tilted as he gazed at her with his ice blue cat eyes. He can tell she was distressed and placed himself in her arms, purring and rubbing himself against her, Cat smiled softly and started stroking him.

She had been reliving that same night she left Floeya every single time she closed her eyes, only in her dreams; she never made it out. Her parents dragged her back and chained her to the throne, forcing her into a loveless marriage, forcing the weight of the crown on her at such a young age. Cat knew her parents cared for her, but, they never thought about her enough to ask what she wanted.

Dan leapt out of her arms as she got up and exited the room, expecting to see Andrain starting on his famed omelettes that Cat has fallen in love with. Instead, she saw Damien, along with the Kevins twins at the table, each of them staring down at their phones with razor sharp focus.

“Umm, morning guys. Where’s Andrain?” She inquired.

“Huh?” It was George that looked up, Cat found it easy to tell him and Karl apart since George was more attentive and had more freckles than his brother. “Oh, Cat your up. Andrain went out for his morning jog. He should be back soon-” The redhead paused, Cat blinked at the awkward silence.

George stood and the other two finally looked up from their phones, Karl looked at Cat as well and his face distorted into one of fear.

“CAT GET AWAY!” Karl warned.

“Excuse me?” Cat stood against the wall as George came up to her and touched her chest, she stood rooted to her spot before smacking George across his face and yelled. “PERVERT!”

“Ouch...” George whined as he explained to the startled Cat. “There was just a tuff of cat hair on your chest so I just kinda acted without thinking. But do you have a cat? And also, god dang it woman you didn’t need to use so much force...”

“You could’ve just asked you pervert!” Cat clutched her chest and backed away from George.

“KARL HELP ME BEAT THIS PUNK UP!” Damien exclaimed and Karl nodded, then they both proceeded to kick George in the stomach, Cat couldn’t say he didn’t deserve it. “THAT’S FOR VIOLATING WOMAN’S RIGHTS!”

“WHAT THE FUCK IS HAPPENING?” Andrain had no idea why he was yelling, he just opened the door to the apartment and saw that things went to shit. “WHY ARE YOU BEATING GEORGE UP?”

“WHY ARE WE ALL SCREAMING?” Karl questioned.

“EVERYONE CHILL!” It was Cat’s voice that finally brought order to the chaos, there was just something in the way she puts force behind her words that even made the normally rebellious boys obey her.

“Okay someone update me on what’s happening, cause I feel like I’m losing my voice,” Andrain spoke up after moments of awkward silence.

“Alright, George touched Cat’s boobs just because he saw cat fur on her chest and wanted to ask if she owned a cat. She does by the way,” Damien was the only one who answered.

“I’m sorry...” George uttered. “I couldn’t help myself. You know how I get around animals,”

“You go full furry mode,” Karl back at it again with the burns.

“Dang it I told you before I’m not!”

“You’ve always been such a whiny little bitch about it,”

“Shut up asshat!”

Cat never really knew a word to describe Karl and George’s dynamic together, if she had to sum it up though, she would say that had an ‘uneasy’ relationship. The two never seemed to be able to hold a conversation without Karl (most of the time) making a snark statement about his brother. Cat personally thinks Karl rejoices in George’s misery.

“Dan is here, but, I think all the commotion scared him away. I’m sorry George,” Cat looked around for the grey tabby that was nowhere to be seen.

George pouted and Cat flashed him a kind smile. Dan appeared a second later as if he knew that Cat was looking for him, George gasped so loudly that Karl visibly winced and George went up to the feline. Dan seemed a little startled as the eager twin picked him up, the cat was trained to never hurt anyone (unless they threaten Cat) thus, Dan didn’t react much.

“I feel like that cat likes everyone but me,” Andrain remarked with a glare at Dan, who glared back, Cat was sure she saw sparks.

“Maybe your just not an animal person,” Damien reasoned, Andrain raised a brow at him.

“Animals love me, come on,”

“You did kill that fish one time,”

“I was ten okay? The fish flopped out of my hands and off the balcony of our five-storey summer house, I couldn’t help it,”

“And that time you sat on George’s hamster,”

“We were five! And I look when I sit now okay?”

“So you killed two animals?” Cat titled her head as she regarded Andrain.

Andrain tensed and Damien, along with Karl looked away as if they didn’t want to be involved in the conversation, Andrain was no doubt going into a stuttering mess trying to explain. His ‘friends’ were surely not going to back him up, Cat was still looking at him, expecting an answer.

Suddenly the beat of Taylor Swift’s “Gorgeous” starting playing in the background, Cat laughed nervously and scooted to the dinner table she picked up the phone and saw that Issac was calling her. She excused herself and retreated to her room, while Andrain sighed in relief at the interruption.

“Issac, why are you calling?” Cat asked as she closed the door behind her.

“Cate, before I say what I have to say. I need you to promise me you won’t get mad, cause your really scary when your mad and I don’t wanna relive the trauma,” Issac really didn’t need a repeat of when Cat was only six.

Cat was somewhat of a quiet kid then, she never spoke and was usually seen as an obedient kid, when Issac was first assigned to her, he saw her in the same light. Then, he knew better, the day was like any other, Cat was indoors (the library to be exact) and had her nose buried in another romance novel. Issac never knew the fuss the princess would make about those books, they were never real anyway.

So he told her just that.

They started at each other for what seemed like an eternity, Cat unleashed the world’s loudest word vomit and was glaring daggers at him the whole time she even punched him in the chest and then launched herself at him. He fell over and apparently got his arm broken by the future queen of Floeya, he was flabbergasted that such a young child was able to injure him so much.

He learned the hard way not to make Cat furious, cause it was not a pretty sight and yes he is still traumatized to this very day.

“I talked to your father,” Issac admitted.

“WHAT?” Cat exclaimed. “The whole point of us running was so that we don’t have to talk to them anymore!”

“I told him to not look for us anymore,”

“Oh okay, and what did he say?”

“He agreed-”

“That’s great!”

“But...”

“I knew it,”

“He needs confirmation from you that you will return to Floeya after a year of your freedom. We have also come to an agreement that if you manage to bring someone who you have fallen in love with. He will cancel your engagement. So, what do you say Cate? Will you agree to those terms?”

Cat already knew her answer.

“Hell yeah.”

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