His Royal Vomitous

Is the Royal Engagement Off?
Esme Platt Seen Fleeing Masen Palace

It appears there’s trouble in paradise. Late last night, paps caught the princess-to-be darting from a chauffeured car into baby sister Bella’s apartment building. It was a rare sighting indeed. The usually impeccably groomed royal fiancée was spotted with wet hair and no make-up, sporting the electric blue raincoat she wore to opening day at the races over a pair of jeans. Noticeably absent from her ensemble? Her engagement ring.

A call to Masen Palace was not immediately returned.

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I call dibs on Carlisle.

royal watcher1

Uh, yeah. It probably WAS her sister. Sorry, not buying this.

Monarch Shutterfly

I took the pics. Trust me—it was Esme. I’ve been stalking Bella’s building for months now. She doesn’t dress well enough for anyone to confuse her with her sister.

hrh princess edward

Meh. Don’t really care if Carlisle’s back on the market. I’m saving myself for the spare.



“You’ll never guess who’s waiting out in the reception area.”

Generally, my admin is hugely helpful and a lot of fun. But I specifically asked that I not be disturbed, so I don’t bother hiding my annoyance at her intrusion.

“You’re probably right,” I say, without looking up from my laptop. “And you know what? I’m way too swamped to care who’s waiting in the reception area. Heidi, I thought I made it clear when I came in this morning—I’m totally swamped. So even if The Queen herself were to show up and ask to see me, unless she has an appointment, I can’t work her in.”

“You did,” she says, “but I’m not here to announce The Queen.”

“Good. Because like I said—”

“Hello, Isabella.”

The male voice I just heard can’t possibly belong to whom I think it does. I take a deep breath and slowly raise my eyes from my computer screen. Sure enough, standing on the other side of my office is evil incarnate in a bespoke suit.

No. This can’t be happening to me.

“Just her grandson,” she finishes. “I’ll be at my desk if you need anything.”

Before I can yell at her, she’s stepping out of my office, pulling the door closed behind her.

For a good minute or two, His Royal Vomitous and I just look at each other. It’s like that game kids play—the one where you stare each other down and see how long it takes before someone blinks. It always used to present me with a bit of a conundrum as my intense need to win battled with my equally intense hatred of wasting time playing games. Whether or not my competitive streak would trump my need to feel productive depended entirely on how worthy I perceived my opponent. After what happened last night, I should be doing everything in my power to get myself out of projectile vomit range—not to mention how inconvenient his visit is given all the work I have to do. Thanks to Esme’s horse-drawn-carriage induced mini-breakdown, I’m nowhere near ready for tomorrow’s meetings.

If there was ever a time it made sense to blink, it’s right now. Then again, my opponent can’t even keep down his dinner. Why should I swallow my pride? My eyes narrow ever so slightly, but they stay open.

He cocks his head to the side then, as if in a silent challenge, he raises his eyebrows and nods toward the center of the room.

Oh, there’s no way he thinks I’m going to genuflect to him. After what he did yesterday, he can’t possibly expect that of me.

A corner of his mouth rises in an arrogant half smile, and I realize that’s exactly what he expects of me. Grudgingly, I rise to my feet and move out from behind my desk. When I’m directly in front of him, I stomp my right foot behind my left heel and bend my knees.

Regardless of how I feel about the monarchy or even His Royal Over-Entitled-ness as a person, I’m well aware of the extent to which my behavior reflects upon my sister. I may not think one’s parentage entitles one to special treatment, but I won’t let my political beliefs interfere with my manners. Besides, does it really matter if I’ve curtsied? I still haven’t blinked.

Another moment passes. Etiquette dictates I’m not to speak unless spoken to. So I wait.

And I stare.

Admittedly, the view isn’t half bad—not that I’d expect otherwise. According to the media, he’s the hot prince. It’s about as laughable as the fact I’m referred to as the smart sister. Esme has a genius I.Q., and I don’t know anyone who’d kick Carlisle out of bed.

I stare some more.

At some point, my big toe falls asleep. I think I could probably wiggle it back to life inside my shoe without him noticing, but on the off chance my shoe comes off in the process, I decide not to risk it.

It’s not long before the rest of my foot follows suit. Damn it.

Just when I think we’ll be standing here forever, he throws his head back and laughs.

Fuck etiquette.

“Is something funny, Your Royal Highness?”


He doesn’t elaborate.

More silence. I start to think he’s doing this on purpose. This time, I do blink.

“With all due respect, Sir, I have a very full day–”

“As do I, Isabella.”

Of course he does. The Royal Pot Stash won’t smoke itself.

He laughs again, and I wonder if the fact I think he’s full of shit shows on my face.

“It appears my reputation has preceded me,” he says.

“No, Sir—only the contents of your stomach.”

“So I’m told. I came to convey my sincerest apologies.”

Note to self—send email to Masen Palace suggesting they update the etiquette portion of their website to include how to respond when a prince shows up at your office unannounced to offer his apologies for throwing up on you.

“Thank you, Sir. It’s very…considerate of you.”

“Esme means the world to me, and since you mean the world to her, I hate that we started out this way. I’d rather not get into it, but please believe me when I tell you there were extenuating circumstances. When you get to know me, you’ll see that the way I behaved last night is more the exception than the rule.”

“When I get to know you? That’s rather presumptuous, don’t you think, Sir?”

“Even if I weren’t in the process of asking you to have dinner with me tomorrow evening—which I am, by the way—the fact your sister is about to marry my brother guarantees we’ll be spending time together.” He starts to leave, then turns back to me, smiling. “I’ll send a car for you.”

He’s halfway out the door when I call to him. “Excuse me, Your Royal Vom—I mean—Highness?”

“Yes?” He stops walking and pivots on his heel, much like a soldier would while marching.

I want to tell him no. Hell, I get as far as opening my mouth and taking in air. Then I think of Esme and how she feels as if nothing about her wedding is in her control. I know she wouldn’t want Prince Edward and I to be at each other’s throats, and it’s in my power to see to it that we aren’t.

“What time should I be ready, Sir?”

“Eight o’clock.”

I curtsy again; he leaves. When he’s disappeared from view, I lean against my desk and slump my shoulders forward. Something about this whole exchange doesn’t feel right, but I can’t put my finger on what. Determined not to waste even more time analyzing it, I take a few deep breaths and get back to work.

A few hours later, I realize I just accepted a dinner date with a guy whom, despite having thrown up on me, won’t permit me to address him by his first name. I’m livid, but somehow I manage to channel my anger into energy and focus on the reports I need to have ready for tomorrow’s meetings.

Much to my surprise, I actually manage to finish them.

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  1. on 28 Jul 2013 at 5:37 pmSusan

    LOL! Love the news story bit mistaking Bella for Esme just because she’s wearing her sister’s raincoat. Of course she had wet hair and no makeup. She had to shower after His Highness threw up on her. Think I discovered something in the commenters too. ;) Always wondered if Bella was right about Edward insisting that she curtsey to him, or perhaps this was the beginning her training. I did catch another Easter egg in his mannerisms.