I took his hand as he offfered it towards me, not in the mood for exchanging pleasantries I got straight to the point.
"Why can't you run this place then?" I asked, rather more forcefully than I intended, but it got the message across, why did I have any need to be here when my cousin seemed perfectly capable?
A few seconds passed in which he looked as though I had just asked him to jump off a building then a wave of realisation crossed his face.
"Oh, I'm not your direct cousin, Only blood relatives of the previous ruler can be the next monarch" he continued speaking but i felt my body go cold and never really focused on what he said next.
"I really don't like it here" I told him.
"Me neither, too many stupid rules" came the reply, which snapped something in my brain, causing my next few lines to be even more forceful than the previous statements.
"What?! Oh! You mean like the one that says I can't continue to be Anna's boyfriend? That's not stupid.... That's just unfair and cruel!"
His face sank, instantly bringing a wave of guilt rushing through every fibre of my body.
"She's your girlfriend, I'm so sorry."
Will I be allowed to stay in the Palace?" Anna asked anxiously.
"Not unless you're a maid unfortunately." Ralph answered dismissively
"What?! Anna is not becoming a maid! I love her! How could I look her in the eye if she was forced to serve me?"
"Darling, if that's the only way...," she began
"You're not going to let me sleep in the city with some stranger, are you?" she replied, bringing yet another wave of guilt, what could I do? I had absolutely no idea how I could deal with this situation, no wonder my mother had given it up.
"I can't let you be a maid. I don't believe in having servants at all if I'm quite honest."
"Wait," Ralph interjected.
"It wouldn't have to be real!" Ralph said. "I was just thinking that if your girlfriend couldn't be your maid..."
"She wouldn't be my girlfriend if she did that, would she?" I interrupted angrily.
"What is it?" Anna questioned, looking confused. "What did Ralph suggest?"
"You becoming my girlfriend," Ralph replied unhappily.
Now I was sure, "I hate this place" I growled turning to Anna.