The Lance Of Summerset A Tale Of The Crystal Chalice * Chapter 1 of The Lance of Summerset* Castle Fairchild * The quarter moon shined brightly as it made it’s way out of the clouds. The clouds drifted by slowly, their tops silvered by the moon, and the bottom a lush soft violet, colored by dawn’s early light. Slowly the violet got darker and redder as the sky lighted. The sky turned violet and the clouds turned dark purple and crimson, as dawn took the land. Aceland Fairchild stood on the terrace of her bedroom atop the third tower of the castle, gazing out at the dawn. How long had it been? Five years, ten, she couldn’t remember, all she could remember was his smile, and his sapphire eyes. She had dreamt of him again last night, and to her, he was still holding her on the terrace. Aceland was twenty three this summer, and the oldest of three daughters, and much to her parents dismay, still unmarried. She was a modest five feet four, and a very light build, and this morning, she was dressed in a two-piece violet camisole of silk lace. Her bleach blond fine hair fell to her waist, and her hands clutched the rim of the balcony, as her amber eyes traced the horizon. “If only he was really here.” She thought to herself, “I’d love to share the beauty of the world with him, not to mention everything else I’d give him.” A soft giggle escaped her lips. “God how my body aches for him, and I yearn for his embrace; though, I’ve never even touched him. Someday’s I feel so stupid. I’d give anything to hold him once in my arms, to feel the touch of his lips. And for all I know, he’s probably forgotten all about me, though I tell myself that he never could. Am I just flattering myself? Maybe, but it’s all I have, dreams, fantasies, and the memory of my sixteenth birthday. Father wanted me betrothed, so mother sent invitations to all the lords, and barons of the land, why even the Crown Prince came. It truly was a great day. Though amongst all the pomp and flourish and festivities was a depressed sixteen year old foolish girl. I remember it well, I gave my parents such a headache, for I was bound and determined to live my way, well Aceland, look where it got you, ha. Oh well. What I thought to be the worst experience of my life, turned out to be the best day of my life.” It was an ordinary day like any other, or was it? Blam...Blam...Blam “Aceland dear, it’s time to get up.” It was 10 am on a Tuesday and Aceland was still asleep. She thought that maybe if she slept through the next couple of days she could be sixteen without the ordeal her parents were going to put her through. It was Jessica Fairchild her mother. Aceland pulled the covers over her head and tried to forget that she was awake. Click. Jessica turned the latch and came into the room. She walked over to the terrace and pulled the thick red velvet curtains open. As sunlight poured into the room. “Mother, can’t I sleep longer?” “Certainly not! we’ve a lot to do today. Your birthday is tomorrow and we’ve got to get you ready. I’ve got to get your dress made, and we just got word that the Prince is coming this afternoon. There’s feasts to prepare, and your father is trying to arrange a joust. I mean one would think you’d want to sleep right through your birthday. “ “Mother! I told you, I don’t want all this fuss!” “Young lady! ’All this fuss’ is so you can meet all the royalty and nobility of our land, and find a suitor! Your sixteen now, and it’s time you found a husband.” “But mother I don’t want to be paraded around and sold to a man like a horse! If I ever marrie I want it to be for love!” “Now look here young lady, it was all I could do to convince your father not to arrange a marriage for you, so the least you could do is behave your self and at least meet everyone. I’ll be back in ten minutes with your breakfast, and I expect to see you in the wash room do you here me?” “Yes Mother.” Aceland trudged into the wash room and filled the tub and got in. “The Prince is coming la te da. I met that arrogant snob when I was twelve. He was a brat at fourteen, and he’ll be a brat at eighteen. Oh well I guess the sooner this bissness is over the sooner I can ride my horse and forget about it.” She thought to herself. The day wore on and Aceland would grin and bear it as she was placed here and lead there, and poked and prodded, and generally just unpleasant, as she was fitted for the newest Tudor. “What color do you want it dear?” “Oh I don’t know mother. Purple I guess.” “Oh I have the perfect thing.” And finally as day became dusk their was a flourish of trumpets, as Crown Prince Arendel Summerset arrived, with a couple of Dukes and Barons and of course their sons. Duke Donavin Fairchild, was a fair and kind man in his mid forties, he was six feet tall with the build of a blacksmith. His hair was jet black and his eyes were a golden brown, and he was seated at the head of the long dinning table, with the Prince opposite him. and all were enjoying the newest mead. “My good Prince, it may interest you to know that I’m arranging a jousting tournament for tomorrow afternoon, I hear your Majisty is quite skilled with a lance.” Spoke up the Duke. “The Prince aye. He’s good but give my lad a chance, and he’ll unhorse him.” Spoke up Baron Clancy. “Clancy your son unhorsed mine at Yuletide, but don’t think the Prince will be so easy.” Replied Duke Fester. “I’m sure that all will have fun and no wadger’s or challenges this night, for we joust in honor of the Duke’s daughter My Lords.” Spoke up the Prince. "Now if my brother were here, he’d surly win the day, for I’ve never seen him lose a joust.” Donavin looked at the Prince and asked, “How fares thy brother?” “Stewart is well, he couldn’t attend for he is campaigning in the east to raise support for father.” “I dare say the prince is right for I saw Stewart win the kingdom joust last Beltane’ , and a finer knight I’ve never seen.” Added Duke Fester. “Tis true Fester I’ve heard many a tale of Stewart Summerset.” Followed Baron Clancy. “Gentlemen please.” The Prince interrupted, “We are not here to discuss my brother. My Lord Fairchild, how fares Aceland, it’s been almost four years since I saw her last.” “She is well My Prince, she should be joining us soon, I understand her mother is having a little trouble with the dress fitting, though I trust they will all join us soon. And Lady Jenifer, and Lady Kelly are helping with the feast, which will be served in a candle mark. The Aroma of fresh venison and corn filled the dinning hall as Jenifer Fairchild and Kelly Fairchild and several servants brought heaping platters into the dinning hall. Seated around the dinning table were Prince Arendel, Duke Donavin, Duke Regonald Fester, a fat burly 5’8” red headed man with blue eyes, his son Richard Fester, a seventeen year old 5’9” curly red head with blue eyes and very skinny. Baron Justin Clancy, a skinny 6’ 1” blond blue eyed man, and his 3 sons Mark Clancy, a 6’ slender brown eyed blond of eighteen, David Clancy 5’8” blue eyed brown haired sixteen year old with the build of a black smith, Anthony Clancy, 5’7” light build fourteen year old with brown eyes and hair. Baron David Thomson, a 6’ burly black smith with red hair and green eyes, and his two sons Maximillion Thomson a burly red head of 6’ with blue eyes and Conrad Thomson a burly blond of 5’10” with green eyes both at seventeen with only ten months separating them , and Duke Johnathin Cromwell the Prince’s body guard and weapons trainer at thirty eight, a burly man of 6’ 2” red hair and emerald eyes. Jenifer and Kelly Fairchild took their seats. Jenifer Fairchild was thirteen with a light build 5’ 6” deep red hair and emerald eyes. Kelly fairchild was ten years old with a fragile body of only 4’ 7” Jet black hair and sky blue eyes. Platters were set and conversation was thick of battles, and prowess, The Prince trying in vain to stear the conversations towards Aceland and finally giving up. When the door opened and Duchess Jessica Fairchild a 5’ 7” light build blue eyed fire red haired Lady glided in wearing an emerald Tudor, with white lace trim, and announced stopping all conversation. “My Lords and Ladies, May I present the Lady Aceland.” And the Prince his jaw a gape, stood up so fast his wine goblet crashed to the floor, as Aceland entered the room. She was dressed in a violet Satin Tudor with a silk vermilion laced ruff about the bodice, and white lace trim at the wrists. All stood as her mother led her to her seat. Aceland sat next to her father with her mother sitting beside her and her sisters opposite her, And Donavin, looking at his daughter said. “My lady, do you remember the Crown Prince Arendel Summerset?” “Of course I remember the Crown Prince father.” And she turned smiling to see him still standing, and she almost thought trembling. “I am honored and pleased to see thee again Prince Arendel, please continue your discussion of the troubles in Thrace and what the King is doing about it.” She had to admit to her self that he did look quite hansom, he was 5’ 11” with blond hair, light gem like green eyes, a muscular build and he was dressed in a bright Crimson doublet with dark brown breaches and boots. Arendel almost caughed, “My Lady? You know of the troubles in Thrace?” and he slowly returned to his seat as she replied, “I’ve heard that a marauding band of bandits has been raiding the farm’s and stealing cattle there, is this true?” “In part My Lady, that is how it started, but the latest is that the bandits are actually Karthinian heathens led by a black knight, and they have recently sacked Thrace. My father has sent forty men at arms to quell the situation, but tis your birthday My Lady, we should not talk of such things...” “My birthday is tomorrow My Prince, and I should like to hear what news you bear of our kingdom...” “Aceland!” Donavin interrupted. “My Prince, you must forgive my daughter’s tongue, she...” The Prince spoke up finishing Donavin’s sentence, “Has always been inquisitive my dear Duke, and no apology is necessary. And I must admit my dear Duke your daughter’s beauty surpasses the beauty of a rose and I’d like to offer a toast to the most elegant lady I’ve ever seen.” Arendel grabbed a goblet of wine that a servant replaced and said, “To My Lady Aceland Fairchild, a rose of beauty. And a great honor indeed to be jousting for thine honor.” A resounding “Hazar” went through the hall. As quiet returned Lord David Clancy spoke up asking, “Is it true My Lady that who wins the joust shall gain your favor?” Aceland glared at her father with a start, saying, “My Lord, do not give my favor so easily as that.” “Aceland.” Donavin scolded, But it was Duke Cromwell that spoke up saying, “My dear Donavin, your daughter has a very sharp tongue indeed, and mayhapt she is right, for what strong spirit would show favor on luck.” “Luck!” Cried David Clancy, “I’ll have you know I’ve never lost a joust.” “And you’ve never jousted the Prince, my young Lord.” Countered Duke Cromwell. And the Prince countered, “My Lord I should not make such a bost if I were thee, for if I were fighting for My Lady’s favor I’ll not yield thee a quarter.” And Conrad Thomson countered with, “Begging your hiness’ pardon, but what makes you so invincible.” And as the arguments continued Aceland ran from the room. The Prince stood slamming his fist into the table knocking over many a goblet screaming, “Bloody Hell! You halfwits! We are here to honor her not drive her away in tears, I’ve half a mind to take your challenges and send you all to Hell itself!” Causing many a Baron and Duke to apologize to the Prince for their disrespective sons, as the Prince said, “Don’t apologize to me you fools. We must all apologize to Duke Fairchild, his family, and most importantly Lady Aceland! Dear Duke, I am heartly sorry for upsetting your daughter, how can I make amends?” Donavin was at a loss, but the Duchess answered saying, “Gentle Prince, I thank you for your kindness, and in truth Aceland has not been all that well today. I think she’ll feel better on the marrow, Jenifer please go attend her, and convay the Prince’s apology.” At that Jenifer took her leave and the evening drew to a close. Jenifer was pounding on Aceland’s door, when at last she let her in. “Aceland, what in God’s name is wrong with you? The Prince is fighting to defend your honor. The Prince, for crying out loud, the most dreamy man I’ve ever seen, and you run off! I’d kill to be you right now!” “Oh yeah, the boy that beat me at steeple chase and said that, ‘A women’s duty was to stay in the kitchens and raise children, not compete in a man’s sport.’ Now praises me like I’m some trophy he’s going to win, so that I might be his object, to cook and...I think not!” “Aceland, he’s the Crown Prince! One day he’ll be King and you’d be Queen if you married him.” “Just leave me alone Jenifer! I only hope to get through the next day without being sick!” Aceland woke up alone in her room, still in her new Tudor, an hour before dawn. She Quickly striped and got into her drab gray and brown riding leathers and quickly slipped out of the castle and headed for the stables. She saddled her tan mare, Starlight, and in the predawn twilight she lead Starlight out of the stables, “Starlight, I think we should run away until this day is over.” Just then as the sky became violet and crimson, Aceland, her hair stuffed in a riding cap and flying every which way from the base, stopped suddenly, her jaw open and her eyes wide, for riding out of the dawn, straight towards her was a jet black horse with a white mane and tail and a knight in golden plate armor riding him. The knight bore the Royal Standard and brought the horse to a stop in front of her. He glanced down, and raised the visor of his golden sallad saying, “Gentle maiden, I prey thee where is the Prince? I must speek with him, can you take me to him?” She looked at his angular face and his Sapphire blue eyes with awe, his blond hair peeked around his gorget. Finally she realized he’d asked her a question, “Ye... yes My Lord, I’ll take you too him, but first I’ll take you to the stables.” He swung from his horse with such grace that her breath stopped and she was amazed that his horse had no bridle. He made a clicking sound and his horse followed him at a walk. She led him to the stables walking along side him and she felt her cheaks flush. He stood 6 feet tall and the armor made him look more stately than anyone she’d ever seen. His stride was full of grace and for the first time in her life she felt like she was truly in the presence of Royality. They left the stables and she brought him into the main hall of the castle and asked a servant to get her father and the Prince. She led him into a small planning room where they waited. He pulled off his gauntlets gorget, and helm, as his long fine light blond hair spilled out. A few minutes later Donavin Fairchild, Arendel, and Johnathin Cromwell entered the planning room, as Donavin, a little startled, spoke, “My Lord Prince Stewart, what brings you from the battlefield?” Aceland sunk into a chair, her face flush, “Prince Stewart Summerset?” She thought to herself, “I knew that Arendel had a younger brother, but this couldn’t be a boy of seventeen.” “Greetings and salutations My Duke Fairchild, I’m sorry to say that I bring ill news. Brother, Thrace, Tarence, Fay, and the common welth of Kadarn have fallen to the Karthinians ever present advance. A thousand of our men at arms have died in the attempt to stop them, and the King has declared war. I was sent to fetch you, for we shall join my force of 10,000 troups in a fortnight to stop this invasion.” “Dear God brother! All that destruction in but two weeks time.” “I’m afraid so my brother, and we’ll need every available men at arms.” Donavin looked at Stewart and said, “My Prince, ill news you bring indeed, but if you need men at arms, I can send my entire garrison of two thousand.” “Nay gentle Duke, leave thyself not undefended, though I’ll except one thousand.” “Done!” Arendel looked to Aceland and said, “My Lady, I’m very sorry that it seems your birthday falls on the eve of War.” Stewart suddenly remembering why his brother was here in the first place, turned and gave a sweeping bow saying, “My Lady Aceland, tis an honor to meet thee, my brother speeks highly of thee, and I am very glad to have had thee as my escort, may I?” At that he extended his hand and rising up from her seat Aceland presented her hand, as Stewart took it and gently kissed it wile gazeing into her amber eyes for the first time, and said, “My Lady, your eyes could warm a winter frost, and are more beautiful than the sun at dawn.” Aceland’s heart lurched into her throat and she could feel it pounding faster and faster, as her face flushed and she studied his eyes and face. “Thank you My Lord.” was all she could get out. “Prince Stewart, we were to have a joust to honor my daughter’s sixteenth birthday, do you think perhaps...” Stewart still messmorized by Aceland’s eyes said without turning, “But of course gental Duke, we could still joust to celebrate M’Lady’s birthday., for we don’t need to leave until tonight, and I would not deprive a Lady of such grace on her birthday.” Arendel balked unseen at his brother, saying finaly, “So, you’ll join the joust Stewart?” Stewart glanced at Arendel, “What’s the matter Arendel, afraid of gental sport with your brother? Of corse I’ll enter the joust. Tis a splendid way to honor a Lady on her birthday, My Lord Duke Donavin I commend you, for what beter way to alow each and every knight errent and knight alike a chance to show their valor to the most elegant Lady in the realm.” Stewart turned back to Aceland saying, “A sad day indeed My Lady, will be that you take a husband, for the hearts of every knight in Chrisendom would surely shatter.” Aceland’s face was reder than it had ever been in her life, and her heart hammered so fast that she thought it would surly burst, and in the heat of the moment and with a flurry of words, Aceland, without even knowing what she was saying blurted out, “My Lord Prince Stewart Summerset, I am not worthy of such praise, I was intending on running away when you met me and I am not in any shape to be seen as a Lady. Though I am ashamed of my actions and the wordsI have said, I am but a foolish girl, and I have not appreciated what my parents have done this day. No elegant Lady am I. I am but...” Stewart stoped her with a negating wave of his hand saying, Gental maiden, you do not give yourself credit. Your behavior of late matters not, for confusion and worrie, when everyone is telling you what to do is normal. I myself ran and locked myself in a closet when I was twelve, because the King and Queen wanted to teach me about court. My Lady when I looked into your eyes I saw a Lady that would fight the entire Karthinian Nation for what she believed in, and your eyes shame the dawn itself, your poise standing here is equal to my mother the Queen’s. Know that you truly are beautiful My Lady, no matter your dress.” “Aceland wanted to either melt, or run away, she didn’t know which, for she had never been praised like this let alone from a Prince of the Realm. Her words tumbled from her lips so fast that she could never remember what she said or where the curage came from but trembling she blurtted out, “My Lord Prince Stewart, would you carry my favor?” Arendel’s jaw dropped, Duke Donavin smiled wide, and Duke Cromwell could not supress a startled giggle. Stewart bowed low saying, “My Lady, it would be the greatest honor of my life, to bear thy favor, and I am not sure if I am good enough for thy boon, but I shall strive to do thee justice, and I shall defend thy honor with my very life.” Stewart kissed her hand again and Aceland thought she would surly faint dead away at the touch of his lips on her hand, as a plesent chill ran slowly up her spine. How she managed to stay concious she didn’t know, maybe it was because she couldn’t take her eyes from his gental, kind and loving saphire gaze. “It seems My Lord Donavin that Prince Stewart has already won the day.” Chided Duke Cromwell. “Indeed he has My Lord Johnathin,” chuckeled DDuke Fairchild. “For I’ve ner seen Aceland in such a state.” Aceland and Stewart were so caught up in eachothers gaze that neither heard, Arendel, however, could feel his blood boil. He could stand his younger brother besting him in combat, but he couldn’t stand being bested in the art of corting. After all, it was Arendel that spent most of his life in court, and attending balls and feasts, where as Stewart avoided those duties like the plague, and spent most of his time fighting, or playing herald. Slowly he composed himself and said, “Brother, we should discuss the War.” Stewart turned to his brother and said, “Quite right. Did you bring any other Dukes with you?” Donavin answered saying, “Prince Stewart, you must be famished riding at this hour of the morning. Come to the dining hall and I’ll send for Duke Fester, Baron Clancy, Baron Thomson, and their sons. I expect Duke Kelly, Baron Macnamara, Duke Tremble, and Duke Moberry to arive before midday. The joust I’ve secuduled for midday after noon fast, for you can’t joust on an empty stomick.” Stewart brust out laughing, “Nay good Duke you can’t joust on an empty stomick.” Donavin looked at his daughter saying, “Aceland,” “Yes Father.” “You may take your leave to get ready for the festivities.” “Thank you Father.” And as she curtisied and started to leave, “Oh, and Aceland dear,” “Yes Father.” “Happy Birthday.” “Thank you father.” She left the planning room running in a daze, as she headed towards her room, she ran into her mother, and huged her saying, “Oh thank you Mother, this is the best day of my life.” Completely stunned her mother said, “My, what brought this on, yesterday it was all I could do to make you stand still for a dress and now...” “Oh mother, I just met the most wonderful Prince in all the realm, and he likes me. Me, of all people. Oh thank you.” “Your welcome sweet heart, but I thought the Prince was...” “Oh he’s incredible. I’ve never been complemented like that. I’ve never felt like this about anyone, and when he kissed my hand ...oh mother I can’t tell you.” “Arendel kissed your hand?” “Oh no mother Prince Stewart, he’s incredible.” “Prince Stewart Summerset! You mean he’s here, I was told that he...” “Oh mother I can’t believe how wonderful he makes me feel and... oh no... Mother I asked him if he’d bear my favor, and he said yes. He said yes. Mother I don’t know how to make a favor, or what material to use, or how to present it, especially to a Prince, what am I to do?” Jessica realizing that it was useless trying to find out what had transpired this morning, simply sighed, looked at her daughterand said, “Come on dear, up to your room, and get into your dress, and I’ll get some material, and we’ll talk about favors and decorum at a joust.” And they went up to Aceland’s room, Jessica stopping briefly to get a servent to bring bolts and sewing needles and thread to Aceland’s room. Aceland ran into her room, starting a bubble bath, and jumped out of her riding cloths, she was just climbing in when her mother came in with a servent trailing after withan assortment of material. “Well young lady that was fast.” Jessica said while picking Aceland’s ridding cloths up so that she could straighten the dress underneath them. “I say Aceland, the first thing you need to remember is a little control. Princes aren’t acustomed to ladies rushing at them in a flury and making a big ta due ehen they’re trying to joust.” “Oh mother I know that. I’m just trying to hury now, because I don’t want to miss a moment with him, even though I don’t know what to due around him, I mean he had, or rather has, my head in such a worel that I don’t even remember what I said, oh I must have seemed like such a fool!” “Oh, nonsense dear, Prince Stewart is a very attrative young man and quite used to cortly things, I’m sure you came off as the perfect Lady...” “But mother, my words came so fast that I don’t even know...” “Aceland, did the Prince seem to notice that?” “Well, no, not really, I mean he didn’t say anything except to praise me in the most elegant fasion, and his eyes, his beautiful saphire eyes never left mine.” “Aceland dear, just what did he say to you?” And as Aceland finished washing up, she recanted everything that happened just after Stewart had kissed her hand, while Jessica lissoned intently, and straighted Aceland’s dress. “My daer daughter, you have done what the Queen herself thought impossible!” “What’s that?” “Aceland dear, don’t you realize what you’ve done.” “No mother.” “You’ve won the heart of the stubornest Prince in all the realm! From everything I’ve heard about Prince Stewart, he had sworn to never take a wife, though he’s one of the greatest poets in the land and the Crown Prince’s younger brother, he spurns all the egible ladies at the high court, I don’t think he’s ever been to one of the grand balls, and the Queen has been beside herself watching Ladys fall at his feet, and he always being the gentleman, but brushing them aside, in the most polite way of course. Aceland, Stewart has never carried any favor before, and countless ladys have tried.” “What does that mean, I’m not beter than all the ladys of the High Court.” “It means, my dear, that you are to him, and that all this senceless woring about your behavior or speech is silly, because he wouldn’t notice if you fell short in any mannor of edicite.” “Oh mother I hope your right, I mean I just think about the way he looks at me, and the things he said, and I just want to pull him into my arms and kiss him, but I know that is not proper, and I’m not good enough for him, mother he rode up to me in gold plate armor, on the most beautiful horse, it was like something out of a dream.” “Aceland dear, from everything you’ve said, no matter how crazy or incredible it may seem, no matter how you feel or how unbelieveable all this is to you, you are going to have to face the fact that you are good enough for Prince Summerset. And I have to tell you, my dear, I couldn’t have raised a finer Lady, I’m very proud of you and I love you very much.” With that Jessica kissed Aceland on the forehead and finished getting her into the new dress. “Mother, what do you know about Prince Stewart?” “Oh Aceland, there will be plenty of time for that, but first we must adress this favor issue, I’m not a mirical worker you know, and the joust is in just a few hours. Now, what to you is the most romantic symbole?” “What do you mean romantic symbole?” “Well if a man were to express his love what to you would be the most romantic thing he could do?” “Um... giving me a rose... I guess, I maen no one has ever tried to be romantic. I’ve dreamed of getting a rose from a man, though I’ve never gotten one.” “Ok, now what do you think would remind Prince Stewart of you?” “I’m not sure... he did mention that my eyes shame the dawn itself.” “Ok dear, I’ll embroider a rose on a feild at dawn, how is that for an idea.” “Oh it’s wonderful mother.” “Ok, with that decided I need you to pick a material that you like.” “Well I really do like the purple satin that you made my dress out of.” “Are you sure you want it made of the same material.” “Why not? It’s beautiful.” “Quite right dear and it will make a perfect sky. Now you understand that I don’t have enough time to put the family crest on it.” “Is that important mother? I don’t know anything about favors.” “I’m sorry dear, I don’t mean to wory you, I’ll take care of it.” “Mother, how would I give it to him?” “At the joust, Stewart will present himself to you, and he will present the tip of his lance to you, you just put it around the tip and he will take it from there.” “Mother, how do I put it around the lance?” “It will be a scarf, and so you just loop it around.” “Oh, I see. Tell me about him.” “I will dear, but first. Katherin dear, bring me a couple of embridery hoops, and I’ll need your help if you don’t mind.” “Of course mistress.” With that the servent left and came back a few minutes later to find Jessica sewing a violet scarf. “What help do you need mistress?” “Katherin, take up that end and start embroidering the family crest, though leave enough room for a border. Aceland dear, pick out some lace for a border.” Aceland looked around and found white and pink and vermilion lace, when Katherin looked up and said, “I beg your pardon mistress, but in the sewing room we do have a small bit of gold lace that would look beautiful with this. I’ll fetch it if you like?” But Aceland was already heading for the door. “I’ll get it mother.” Aceland raced through the hall and almost ran smack into her younger sister Jenifer. “Well look at you! yester eve wanting nothing to do with the whole castle, and now dressed up and running thither and yon, with no thought or care, and your hair all ashemble. I guess my talk with you worked after all.” “Oh Jen, you wouldn’t believe it! I just met the most elegant man in my life. He practly rode straight out of my dreams! Oh, but I don’t have time for this I’ve got to get some material for mother.” “Aceland!” But she was already rushing to the sewing room, and Jenifer took off after her, finally catching her at the door to the sewing room. “Oh no you don’t!” Jenifer placed her hand on the door pinning it shut. “Jenifer let me pass!” “Not until you tell me about this mystery man that suddenly changed your entire attatude.” “Jenifer!” Aceland blew out her breath and looked Jenifer straight in the eye. “Jenifer I don’t have a lot of time. Ok, I’ll tell you this much, you can have Arendel, all you want becaues I’ve found someone better.” Jenifer almost choaked “Better? Who on earth could be better than the Crown Prince?” “His brother.” Jenifer was so stunned that she stood mute and her hand fell away from the door, giving Aceland the chance she needed to run into the sewing room. Jenifer spun through the door just as Aceland was coming out with the gold lace. “You mean you actually met Prince Stewart?” “Uh huh.” and Aceland ducked under Jenifer’s arm and strode back up to her room, Jenifer hot on her heels. Aceland rushed back into her room finding Katherin and her mother bissily working. “Here is the lace mother.” “Thank you dear.” And as Jessica reached out to take the lace the door burst open and Jenifer came running in. “Aceland tell me about him!” Jessica laughed, saying, “Jenifer, thank you for coming it saves me the troubble of sending for you.” Jenifer looked at her mother perplexed, “You were going to send for me mother?” “Of corse. While I work on Aceland’s favor, I’ll need you to work on her hair.” Jenifer’s eyes flew wide, “Aceland’s favor! Aceland your giving him your favor?” Aceland just sat on her bed smiling, “Of corse I am. Didn’t I say he was the man of my dreams.” “Now mother, what can you tell me about him?” Jessica laughed at the exchange and waited for Jenifer to seat herself behind Aceland and start working on her hair. (Authors note *Here be Dragons* all that is written thus far)