My mother entered my room and I spun around, away from the mirror. She smiled and walked towards me. Her hair was in a neat bun and she was wearing her crown with a magnificent cream dress which had little gemstones along the waist.
"Yes?" I asked when she stood in front of me. She straightened my tie.
"Oh, I have two very handsome sons," she said proudly.
I smirked, "Only problem is –."
She slapped my cheek gently. "This one is too active," she said with a knowing smile.
"You’ve been outside again," she said.
I raised an eyebrow. I had been so careful, so she wouldn’t know. She pulled a piece of grass out of my hair and laughed.
"Luckily you don’t smell like you’ve been this time," she winked and my mind flashed to the night of Chanelle’s party when I was holding Rose. I pulled up my shoulders. "You’re never going to get me any other way, mother," I said and kissed her on her head since she only measured as high as my shoulder. She put her soft hand against my cheek and her expression slowly turned grim.
"What’s wrong?" I asked.
Her eyes were low. "Do you think I should let Eric go through with this?" The question almost threw me off balance.
"I was looking for you two." My mother turned as Eric walked into the room completely suited up in black with a white shirt and black tie. I smiled against my will.
"Hey, Eric, there’s a piece of fluff on your jacket," I lied.
"Where?" Eric’s eyes immediately scanned his jacket.
"Oh!" My mother hit me on the head. "He’s just joking, Eric," she said.
Eric looked at me and shook his head, smiling. Teasing Eric about his obsession with perfection was always fun, that had not changed. My mother turned towards my desk where the engagement gift was. As the future king’s brother, it was my responsibility to have all the little things ready, getting the presents ready, filling in for him when he was unavailable, carrying his wedding rings ….
My mother walked towards the white box with the silver lid and silver ribbon.
"I hope Rosaline likes her gift. It’s always difficult to get a royal gifts, but she’s got such a lovely personality." I smiled.
My mother really liked Rose’s spontaneity. When my mother’s hands gripped the gift, I suddenly tensed. "Mom –." She lifted the box and turned towards me, exposing Rose’s sketch of me that was hidden beneath it. My mother’s eyes were on me and my heart raced as I wondered what to do to keep her from seeing it. I was not in the mood to explain this one.
"Yes, dear?" She asked. I shook my head.
"Mother, shouldn’t we be going, the car has been waiting outside for a while and I would like to be in Cashadin as early possible," Eric said.
My mother turned towards Eric and I breathed a breathe of relief. I silently thanked my brother. "We still have some time. What’s the hurry, son? Anxious to see your fiancé?" My mother smiled. Eric smirked. "Yes," he said and glanced at me. "Shall we?" He offered his elbow to my mother and she held on to it. My mother looked at me from over her shoulder as they walked.
"Don’t be too long now, dear," she said.
Forced breathe in … forced breathe out. I breathed uneasily and felt like I’d start crying any second. I pressed my hand against my window and put the other against my stomach. With my eyes closed, I tried calming down. Deep breaths, I tried telling myself. My whole body felt uncomfortable in the flowing gray dress I was wearing. The dress was gentle on my skin and hung lightly with thin silver straps over my shoulders and there was a silver band around my waist. I didn’t have any shoes on yet, but I still felt like I could stumble with every step. I removed my hand from my stomach and pressed it against my forehead. I couldn’t go through with this.
How was I going to get through this night? Hell, if this was how I was reacting to the engagement party, I might die on the wedding day. I fought the tears best, I could and panted rather than breathed for a few minutes.
There was a gentle knock on my door. "Rose!" the voice called. "Can I come in?" Chanelle, I realized.
I opened my eyes and looked towards the bedroom door. Taking a deep breath, I stood up straight and composed myself.
"Yeah - yes …. uh … come on in," I said and the door opened a bit. Chanelle came in and smiled encouragingly. I could, see she was forcing it. There were some things even Chanelle couldn’t brighten and look past, today was one of those things.
"How are you holding up?" She asked. I shook my head and turned away.
"I’m fine," I lied. I heard Chanelle sigh and looked at her.
Her hair was straight and hung below her shoulders. She had a black dress on that reached above her knees and reminded me a bit of a ballet dress, just more elegant and strapless. "You’re not," she said.
"Please, Chanelle, just … just pretend that I am, okay. I can’t deal with compassion right now. I need you to act like this is what I want for the rest of the day. We can both have a good cry about it after but …." I sighed and pushed my shoulders back. "I need to do this," I said.
Chanelle dropped her eyes and nodded. "Okay," she said and put her arms around my shoulders, pulling me into a hug. I fought the tears again and hugged her back. "Hey, does your BlackBerry flash white for bbm’s or messages?" Chanelle asked.
My brows came together with confusion and I turned around to see the LED on my phone flashing white. "It’s a message," I sighed and reached for my phone. "It’s probably my mom asking if I’m excited," I rolled my eyes and unlocked my phone.
My heart skipped a beat and I stared at my phone for a few seconds, not finding it in me to just open the message yet, just staring at the five letters in bold that made out the name of the one guy I couldn’t get my mind off. I opened the message after Chanelle gave a slight cough and ripped me out of my daydream.
::Even with everything going on, I still can’t wait to see you tonight.::
"Who is it?" Chanelle asked and I blinked before raising my eyes to her. Chanelle’s one eyebrow was raised, she knew something was up. "Uh, it’s . . ." Should I lie? No! It’s Chanelle, she’ll know when I’m lying. "It’s Shane," I said difficultly and cleared my suddenly dry throat.
Chanelle stared at me for a split second too long before replying a quiet "Oh.". I swallowed and bit my lip. Just the thought of seeing Shane made my heart skip a beat and turned my insides painfully. Being with him was so wonderful that it was painful and being away from him was almost unbearable. I had tried pushing him to the back of my mind, but when I was alone and before I fell asleep at night, that’s when he haunted me most.
"Uhm, are you all packed?" Chanelle asked, breaking the small silence and making me snap back to reality once again. I looked over at my bags next to my bed and nodded.
"Yeah, whatever I don’t have, I can get there," I said and sat down on my bed. The silence started again. I forced a smile. "You want to help me with my shoes? I don’t think I’ll be able to go two hours in these things tonight," I said and Chanelle reached for the white stiletto with lace over and a silver heel and plate below. Her eyes widened a bit.
"These are gorgeous!" She said and picked one up. There were little silver strings attached that was supposed to make a bow around my ankles.
"Your calves are not going to make it halfway through tonight in these," she teased and I giggled as she handed me the shoe.
As I slid my foot into it, my thoughts suddenly sprung to Rosie. "Hey, did you talk to Ethan for me?" I asked. Chanelle nodded. I let out a sigh. "Good. I really hope Rosie won’t be angry."
*Sammer: Yay, only took me three days.
*Anne: Thank you. That comment made me smile.
*BriBri: Hahaha. I always look forward to your comments. Haha. They make me laugh.
*Comfy: Haha. Very much.