Chapter 37

All the courtiers, Lords and Ladies, Dukes and Duchesses crowded about in a grand fury; all asking the same question, all wondering why this event was called on such short noitce, mainly, what event warrented the calling of this ball?

Cassandra played a stationary role at the moment, simply watching as they did from her own throne. Her father announced in his clear, powerful voice that the Prince of Aberdan had his own announcement to make.

By now, Cassandra was well aware of what was to come next. It was ceremonious, already the whole bits of the deal had been pressed out in private. Hadderi stood, but the King also remained standing. The two faced each other, both bowing in their own particular fashion. The exotic Prince, in all his garb of sensual, flowing silk, began to both the King and to the watching audience.

"As Prince of Aberdan, son of His Excellency, King Muhmair, I inquire to you, His Majesty, King Howard of Aedryn, for the hand of your daughter, Her Highness, Princess Marie Diana, daughter of Her Majesty Queen Diana." A gasp rippled around the crowd. But the Prince was not complete. "In our union, I offer your Princess eternal love and happiness, the bondage of our two nations as brotherly countries, wherein there is aid offered to either side in times of need."

Cassandra could not help suspect something. It was simply natural that a deal was in fact struck with the marriage of two Royals, the brotherly bond of countries in which Hadderi spoke. But there seemed to be blanks, purposefully left blank and generic for this exact purporse. Yet, perhaps Cassandra was just being overly-suspcious. What exact deal had her father struck to have her betrothed to Alezander at birth? Was there any? Was it as insignificant and genric as what Hadderi had laid out?

"I accept and approve your offer, Prince Hadderi," replied King Howard formally, the two bowing once more before the Aedryn King moved back to his throne, allowing for Hadderi to move forward himself.

Marie now stood, glowing in that gown of gold she wore for her birthday celebration what seemed like yesterday, beaming with smiles and blushes. She had told Cassandra herself that this was her dream, that she had simply fallen completely for the mysterious, striking man and could already see herself as the beautiful, Aberdan Queen-Goddess, worshipped at the toss of her hair as she sat in mounds of gold and basked in the warmth of the everlasting summer, basked in her husband's love. And Cassandra could easily see it as well.

"Your Highness, Princess Marie Diana," the Prince knelt before her, taking her hands in his.  "Daughter of King Howard, would you be my wife and Queen?"  

"Yes," she almost struggled on her replying lines. "Yes, I will be honored by accepting your offer, Prince Hadderi, Prince of Aberdan."

The End

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