I look at Queen Nuke as she tries to put me in my place even before I’m officially married, I see Queen Lare stand to confront her. I know that if I don’t do something, this might escalate into something more.
“In Roelum, as women we get married as who we are into becoming what we choose to be. Above all laws, marriage is the most important. Today I get married into your family, I become part of you, your friends become my friends, your enemy become my enemy, your family becomes my family and you gain a daughter. Today is my last day as a daughter of Roelum, Our wise queen thought that it would be significant to marry in the Roelum attire, we appreciate your good gesture; we know how generous you are and we are grateful that you have chosen to spoil us with fine linen and gold. That’s why I have kept it in our royal safe as it is a sign of better things to come for both nations.” I bow as I say to my future mother in law.
- The glint in her eyes makes me understand that she knew exactly what I just played. If she says more on the matter, she will be regarded as small minded and petty, I have given her no other choice but to back down, she looks at me straight in the eye and I know that this is not over.
“That is very thoughtful of you, you are as beautiful as you are kind, Queen Lare raised you well even though you came from the lowest barrel, she is the generous one. The ceremony can go on.” She calmly retorts as she goes back to her seat.
I know that comment was meant to hurt me but I have heard it all, it doesn’t bother me. I hear the Prince take a deep breath.
“You are smart, I’ll give you that, but an advice before you enter our royal palace. Don’t try to go with her toe to toe, she will eat you alive.” He whispers to me as the priest comes and joins us with a silver chain, and starts a series of incantations I can’t be bothered to understand.
I stare at him and smirk, I have noticed he hates it when I do that. “I eat a lot of meat, I have strong bones, her teeth won’t be able to cut through.” I say to him and wink, he groans and I roll my eyes at him.
“Roll those eyes at me one more time and I will make you regret it.” He threatens me under his breath.
I giggle and decide to stop teasing him, I have my entire life to do that, the priest finishes and we are made to face each of our parents as Rale’s priest comes forth and does his thing, it is taking longer than I expect, the Prince has stopped talking to me and I have way too much time with my thoughts.
I search the crowd for Paula, we lock eyes, she smiles and gives me a thumb up. I know there and then that I’ll be fine.
The joining ceremony finishes, the families move to be seated together, Queen Nuke puts a red veil on me, she really doesn’t give up.
We sit, as there’s dancing, different performances by both nations troupes and my personal favorite; lots of Alcohol. The table is full, I adjust my veil to take a chunk of Chicken then I remember Queen Lare’s command “Do not eat, I have seen you eat and there is nothing gracious about it.” Her words go through my mind as I relax; then I remember I don’t have to listen to her anymore, how do you eat chicken laps graciously? I ask myself as I take a piece, I usually use my hands but for the sake of appearances, I pick up the knife and fork and cut into the meat, I ignore the eyes on me and hear Paula chuckle behind me.
“You don’t care about any of these, do you?” Prince Erin asks me amusedly as I chew. I swallow before replying, decorum and all.
“I thought you weren’t talking to me, please don’t start now, you should eat more and drink less, don’t you think?” He smirks and goes back to his drinking.
Suddenly I feel an arrow speed past me, I catch it right before Prince Erin’s eyes.