"Good evening, Erik."Queen Alexis greets her son from the head of the dining table. The smooth magenta wood normally only stretches 50 metres from end to end, but for this special occasion it has sprouted to the full 100.
"Evening, Mother," he replies stiffly. He aproaches his place to her left, looking especially uncomfortable tonight in a tight pale purple waistcoat and trousers. His chocolate-brown hair is combed neatly to the left, but Alexis can tell by his eyes that he's been asleep somewhere uncomfortable.
Amanda shifts a little in her seat at the Queen's right hand. A pretty girl, much more attractive now than when she'd showed up at the castle door, soaked in sweat and red in the face and dressed in a ridiculous get-up of denin trousers and a skimpy yellow shirt with no sleeves... Now her mouse-brown hair tumbles over her shoudlers in ringlets - an exact replica of the Queen's raven-black style - and she wears a simple white dress with a green sash.
Erik looks nervously at Amanda as he takes his seat.
"My darling," says Alexis. "This is your cousin. Amanda Canster."
Erik looks warily at his mother. "She's... Dad's niece?"
"Yes. She's come to stay with us for a while. Isn't it lovely?"
"Where did she come from?"
"Excuse me," says Amanda, leaning forward and glaring at Erik. "I am sitting right here."
"Amanda is from the Outside," Alexis cuts in cheerfully.
"The Outside?" Erik cries.
"Uh - Hamlet!" Alexis sings shrilly, and the plump but smartly dressed chef pops his head out from the kitchen. "Bring out the oud'heurves!"
"Oud'heaurves? Since when do we have ou'dheurves?" asks Erik.
"Erik, your manners," snaps Alexis. "Thank you. do get on with that!" she calls to the gawking chef.
TO BE COMPLETED... :D