Everything in court was so different from what I was used to. The language and the conversation seemed dry, but once you were used to it, you could understand how these people talked. At home, no one was clever with their insults, unless they were insulting someone who they wanted a debate with. Here it seemed to be a common practice, as every sentance hinted at underlying meanings, which excited me. I was quick of tongue at home, and soon mastered the clever technique of twisting words to suit your purpose.
"Are there many of you left after my father's purge?" The King was making polite conversation while I listened in on conversations involving myself. Many were shocked the King had allowed me in to the castle, and others were wondering if there would be many changes in the law towards things his father had hated. I turned my attention back to the King breifly, amused at his apparent fascination with my lack of awe which so many of the court ladies expressed in his presence.
"Your highness can surely not expect me to answer, knowing the trouble your family has caused my people."
"I intend to change that."
"Hmmm, many in your court have already observed you have different ideas from your father."
He cast his eyes about to the surrounding people, allowing my eyes to stray behind him. To his right were his sister and brother, who I recognised from trips to the market. His sister was engaged in a conversation with a waiter, while the Prince was staring at me, amused it seemed by my lack of interest in his brother's conversation. I flashed him a smile and peered through my lashes, while he blushed slightly and bowed his head. The Princess turned having seen her brothers reaction and her eyes met mine. She was not beautiful, and yet something in her eyes made me feel she was a good woman, with love in her heart. Very different from others in court. I smiled at her, and then turned my attention back to her brother, who had once again struck up a conversation.
"I see you found a dress. It becomes you very well."
"Do you like the food?"
"It is very different from what I am used to. I must consider it a luxury."
"I hope you like dancing. There shall be a dance and entertainment after our meal."
"I like dancing very well, although I am not sure my dancing would suit such fine halls. I do hope the entertainment is not the burning of a warlock on the fire."
"Of course not! You are my guest, and I have told you I do not approve of the laws my father enforced." At that point, the waiters began taking away our food, and the King rose. Everyone in court followed his example, except for me. I waited deliberately, and then stood gracefully when everyone had begun to stare. I saw the Prince hold in a laugh. His eyes were twinkling, and it seemed he enjoyed seeing his brother taken off his pedestal by at least one person.
I smiled and apologised.