Aspiring writer Ace Sloan sat at the computer, composing his thoughts as he prepared to compose the next chapter of the current draft of his latest novel.
In the next room his childhood enemy, now BFF, worked on perfecting the coverup for their latest hooky adventure. They were old pros at subterfuge by now, but he figured it might take a while for his friend to get everything just so. So he opened his file and started typing.
. . . . .
As the months passed, good King Malcolm grew ever more weary of the rigors and demands of his post.
The daily toils he endured without complaint, unwilling to burden his loving wife with his troubles. And when night fell, he would slip away to seek consolation at the magic well.
Plead as he may, the well only offered trite platitudes.
Unable to find the strength within himself to make a change to better his situation, King Malcolm returned to his work away from the castle, leaving fair Queen Edelweiss to tend to kingdom business alone.
There was peace and prosperity in the Kingdom, but many subjects whispered rumors about the royal couple. They spoke of their love’s demise, calling Queen Edelweiss “the Loner Queen” behind her back. She paid them no mind. It was true that she had little need for company, and running the kingdom was a task which she was more than capable of.
But the wise Queen also saw that her husband had become a shadow of the man she once knew. She mourned for his happiness and feared what may come if the course remained unaltered. She consulted her most trusted adviser, Ser Minnow, who said the same thing he always does:
And she knew, as always, what must be done. So she called for her loyal Knight of the Octagon, and dictated to him a new amendment to the Laws of Succession:
“I hereby declare my intent as rightful ruler of the Kingdom and Steward of the Wolff Legacy that the following changes be made immediately: Instead of burdening the Kingdom’s heir until their final breath, from this day forth the transition of power will come on the eve of the heir’s Elder birthday, at which point the crown will be handed over to the new heir. The next generation will then begin its rule, and the Elders of the last will stay on as royal advisers.” The Queen smiled, and then added, “If they feel like it.”
With that decision the Queen’s spirits lifted almost immediately. The choice of successor, she imagined, would not be so difficult to make. Of the three heirs hopeful, only one seemed truly suited for the task that lie ahead.
It was not Princess Forsythia, who had never been close to her mother. Not for any reasons of ill will; her attention simply rested elsewhere.
Nor was it the brilliant Prince Fennel, whose particular gifts required frequent travel to the far corners of the kingdom.
“I will wait until it is official, of course,” said the Prince, “But I believe we both agree that the needs of the kingdom are best suited with my departure to serve as royal Herbalist and Physician.”
No, it was with the Queen’s youngest daughter that the hopes for the Kingdom’s future must surely lie: The beautiful Princess Freesia.
Well-versed in social mores from an early age and with an allure rivaled only by her mother, Princess Freesia was a true vision to behold.
With cascades of chestnut locks gently framing a face that held innocence and grace in equal meas–
. . . . .
Ace was interrupted by cawing from the other room.
“Dude! Where did you put my freaking Simlish homework?? I only have like one assignment left to get my grade up!”
“Hang on!” he called over his shoulder. He highlighted that last section and hit delete, and started writing again.
. . . . .
No, for good or ill, the Kingdom’s fate was bound to rest in the hands of the Queen’s youngest daughter: The spirited Princess Freesia, who showed up late to these things or not at all.
And, dare I pen this, though it’s true that her Social skills were somehow quite high, she was just as likely to stab a man as look at him. And yet, she also had a certain undeniable charm — one might even call it magnetism — that was rivaled only by her mother the Queen.
With rich chestnut hair that fell loose and free, red lips curled up in a smirk, and fiery brown eyes that twinkled with mischief and danger, Princess Freesia possessed a wild, untamed beauty that could humble and silence even the boldest lothario.
Yes, this was the one to watch. And I–
. . . . .
“Hellooo?” his friend called to him, interrupting the story again. “I found my homework. Did you keel over in there?”
“Was watching.” Ace accidentally spoke the words aloud.
Now she barged into the room. “Watching what?? Seriously, I’m about to give you a good whallo–” she stopped as her eye caught the screen.
“Don’t start!!” he protested in vain. But she’d already begun to register her disbelief.
“Gawd, you have to word-process now? Really?? Are you coming to my mom’s party or not?”
“I’m coming, Princess, I’m coming,” sighed Ace. He hit Save and grabbed his jacket as he watched the actual Freesia exit the room grumbling, the next part of his story already playing out in his mind.
“Gods help us,” he said.