His Royal Summons

Heat is Rising

”Princess Natalia? ”

Natalia paused her writing and looked up. She set her pen down and leaned back.

”A decision has been made, Noel ” Natalia gave a small sad smile. ”Its all right. Just tell me. ”

”King Stephen and King Evan have both agreed to your terms. They have inked the betrothal agreement. As agreed, you will be given three months to get to know Prince Patrick. At the end of the three months, both royal families will decide on a date for the betrothal ceremony. ”

”Noel, do you think I did the right thing? I mean this is the modern era and arranged marriages are no longer practiced. ” Natalia looked at Noel, trying to read his reaction.

”Princess, you are just fulfilling your duty as a filial daughter. It is not my place to say whether this is the right thing or not. ” Noel replied diplomatically.

”Thank you for the update, Noel. You may go. ” Natalia returned to perusing the document on her table. At the soft click of the closing door, she laid her pen down on the table again and rested her head on the headrest. Natalia looked up at the ceiling. She could slowly feel her freedom as a single woman start slipping away. How did that obnoxious man get back into her life? He is like an itch that never leaves.

A notification sounded on her mobile phone. It was an incoming message from an unknown number. Natalia picked up her mobile phone and opened the text message.

”Good morning, Natalia. This is Patrick. You would have heard by now that your demands have been accepted by our fathers. I look forward to getting to know you better. By the way, remember to save my number. And don save it as obnoxious. Its Patrick. Ha Ha Ha. ”

”Ooooo this man! ” Natalia swore beneath her breath. ”Arrogant as hell! ”

Natalia selected the option to delete the phone number. Her finger hovered over the delete button for quite a while before deciding to save the phone number. She smirked as she saved the number under AOP.

No, Patrick, you are not obnoxious. You are an Arrogant, Obnoxious Pig, AOP. Natalias eyes sparkled as she grinned widely.

***************************************

”You are a very busy woman. You were busy the whole of last week. You were busy this Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday. Shall we have dinner tomorrow? ”

Natalia read Patricks message. Hmmmmm shall we reject him again? Natalia thought to herself. As Natalia walked out of the office, she bumped into Noel.

”Princess ” Noel greeted here with a slight nod of his head. ”King Stephen is on the way to the office. He did not sound happy. He wants to meet you in his office in ten minutes. ”

King Stephens office is situated on the right wing of their palace. It would take King Stephen a good ten minute walk from their private accommodation to the office.

”Ummm, okay, Noel. Please let me know when my father is in his office. I will meet him there. ” Natalia said as she went back to her own office.

”Oh dear. Perhaps Patrick has told papa of my refusal to meet for dinner. ” Natalia thought to herself as she walked to the window that overlooked the gardens. The gardens were looking exceptionally beautiful this spring with the flowers in bloom.

She turned to answer her phone when she heard the buzz of the intercom.

”Princess, King Stephen would like to meet with you in his office now. ” Noel informed her.

”Im on my way. Thank you, Noel. ” Natalia replied. As she placed the phone back on the receiver, she straightened her dress and patted her hair to make sure all the lose strands are in place. She took a deep breath and proceeded to her fathers office.

***************************************

At her knock on the door, King Stephen called out for her to enter.

”Good morning, papa. You wanted to see me? ” Natalia asked as she entered King Stephens office.

”Have a seat, Natalia. ” King Stephen gestured to the seat in front of his table. Then he continued speaking, ”We just received news that King Evan is not doing well. ”

”Oh ” Natalias mouth made a small O. ”How bad is King Evan? ”

”Its just a slight relapse. Hes back in Grisling Castle resting. King Evan has requested for your company. Hes like you to stay in Grisling Castel for the three months that you requested to get to know Patrick better. ”

”Ah…..papa? I don think that would be a good idea. I prefer to stay here. ” Natalia sat up straighter as she tried to persuade her father. ”I could drop by like every other weekend to visit King Evan. ”

”That would be too much of a hassle. I rather like the idea that you take some time off to visit Grisling Castle. Youve not been there since you were twelve years old. Take Bibi with you. ” King Stephen commanded happily. He looked smug and satisfied with his command.

”Really, papa. I could do the weekend commute easily. I don want to trouble King Evan. Hed have to go to all the trouble of entertaining me every day. ” Natalia again tried to get out of having to stay over in Grisling Castle for three months.

”Ive decided. You go to Grisling Castle with Bibi. Mama and I will travel together with you to pay King Evan a visit. We travel tomorrow. ”

Natalia rolled her eyes as she got up. ”Okay, papa. I will go pack. ” Natalia said petulantly as she left King Stephens office.

***************************************

”Bibi, I really don know whats gotten into papa. Hes so excited about me living in Grisling Castle for three months. Doesn he know hes sending his daughter to live with the devil? ” Natalia complained as she started picking out the dresses that she will be bringing with her.

”Princess, he is excited because hes finally going to meet his friend after so many years. Talking to each other on the phone is different from meeting each other face to face. ” Bibi said as she went about folding and packing the dresses into the luggage.

Natalia paused what she was doing and turned to look at Bibi. She walked to Bibi and clutched Bibis hands in hers.

”Bibi, Im afraid to go through with this. What if Patrick is only doing this to make King Evan happy? What happens when King Evan dies? Will Patrick go back to his celebrity girlfriend and discard me? ”

”Princess, I think you are overthinking too much. You are beautiful and educated. You are kind and loving. I think Patrick is a smart man. He would not let go of something so precious as you. ” Bibi patted Natalias hands. Then she pulled Natalia into a hug. She patted Natalias back like how she used to do when Natalia was small.

”Princess, you are a prize that any man would want to win. ”

***************************************

As their car approached Grisling Castle, Natalia could see how much King Stephen was looking forward to meeting his old friend.

”Papa, if you smile any wider, all your teeth will fall out. ” Natalia teased her father.

”Nonsense. These are my real teeth and none of them are falling out. ” King Stephen retorted smilingly.

King Evan was standing by the porch as they drove up. He was holding a walking stick and he looked frail. But there was a wide smile on his face.

”My friend! ” King Evan opened his arms wide as King Stephen alighted from the car. When both men embraced, Natalia could feel tears started filling up her eyes. Ah…..precious friendship.

”Hello, lovely Mary and beautiful Natalia. ” greeted King Evan.

Natalia approached King Evan and gave him a hug and kissed him on the cheeks.

”Hello, King Evan. You are looking just as handsome as when I met you when I was a little girl. ” King Evan smiled at Natalia.

”You are as sweet as ever and a real charming princess. You know how to tug at an old mans heartstrings. ” King Evan kissed Natalia on her cheeks.

”Come, come, dear friends. Let us go inside. ” King Evan led them slowly into the castle. ”Patrick should be arriving soon. ”

***************************************

Bibi was putting the finishing touches to Natalias hair. She had braided Natalias hair and twisted the braid into a bun. She then pinned some flowers on Natalias hair. The pinned up hair left Natalias neck exposed. On Natalias ears were tear drop earrings which drew ones attention to her long slim neck.

”Bibi, I think I will forego any necklace tonight. I think less is better. ” Bibi nodded at Natalias decision.

Natalia chose to wear a red off-the-shoulder midi dress. It was a close fitting dress that sculpted itself to her slim body. She looked elegant and sexy at the same time. With one last look at the mirror, Natalia proceeded downstairs to the dining hall. She walked passed portraits of past kings and queens of Grisling on her way to the stairs. She wondered whether her portrait will be hung along the corridor.

As Natalia stepped off the last step of the stairs, she straightened her back. She resolved to make the best of the situation that shes found herself in. She closed her eyes to calm herself down. Then Natalia smiled, opened her eyes and walked into the dining hall.

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