“You are being unnecessarily difficult” King Robert Rimmer yelled at his daughter. This wasn’t so hard, he thought. He never complained when it was his turn. So why was it so hard for his own child to come to terms with it.
“How the hell am I being difficult” his daughter Bonnie Rimmer yelled back. “I’m standing up for what I believe in…just like you taught me to do”
“Don’t take that tone with me young lady, and definitely not that language either” Robert said, “When I said ‘stand up for yourself’, I didn’t mean defying everything I have taught you to be including the traditions of this kingdom”
Bonnie scoffed. “Kingdom?” she repeated. “Dad, I know you are old, but you are not that old. It’s not eighteen, sixty four anymore, Dad. What you are asking me to do is stupid. No offense.”
“Oh, I take offense. I take a lot of offense. You act like I’m sentencing you to death.”
“You are asking me to get married to a man I barely know, so yes. You are sentencing me to death’ Bonnie retorted.
“You are doing it for the kingdom, Bonnie” Robert said, deciding to try a new tactic. Talking to Bonnie calmly always worked. Sometimes, the best way to make someone do something is by making then think the idea was theirs. That way, they felt like they were in control. He placed a hand on her shoulder and pulled her down into the couch. “Getting married to Prince Marcus is your duty. It will be good for the kingdom if the both of you get married.”
Bonnie pushed away his hand and jumped to her feet. “Maybe I don’t care about the kingdom” she said.
“You don’t mean that” Robert said.
“Oh I definitely do. I don’t care about the kingdom enough to get married to a man I don’t know.”
“How can you say that? You do know him”
“I met him a couple of times and I found him extremely annoying, boring, and full of himself. Just the thought of getting married to him makes me want to puke over and over again. I cannot even imagine spending the rest of my life with him. You can’t make me do this, Dad. If I ever get married, it’s not going to be for duty so you better drop the topic because I can’t think of anything else more miserable than being in a loveless marriage. You can’t just push someone at me. That’s not the way it works…and you of all people should know that. You have mom”
She turned to go….
“I was in a loveless marriage….once” Robert said.
Bonnie stopped in her tracks and turned to face her father. She was sure she heard him wrong. “What? You were married to someone else before you married mom?” she asked.
“No. I meant with your mom”
“That’s impossible. Why didn’t you and mom ever say anything about it to me?”
“Because I didn’t see the point”. Robert replied. “Telling you about it felt like I was ruining something beautiful. I didn’t even meet your mother until the day of our wedding. We had an arranged marriage. We couldn’t even look at each other. In was in love with another girl and your mother wanted nothing to do with me. She said I had big eyebrows and a low IQ. Anyways, one day I got very sick with fever and your mother…she stayed by my side and she took good care of me. For the first time, I appreciated her. Then the appreciation grew to respect. Respect grew to like…and then like grew to love. A deeper love than I could ever hope for. Give Marcus a chance. Maybe you don’t like him now, but you might grow to love him later. I should have told you about your mother and I a long time ago. Maybe if I had, then you would feel differently about love.
Bonnie was speechless. Her parents were the most in-love people she had ever met and she couldn’t imagine a time when they weren’t in love with each other. Through out the years, their love seemed to only grow stronger and they were inseparable everyday.
“I’m not sure that I feel anything about love. Why didn’t you guys ever tell me?” she asked.
“Because there was nothing to say” Robert replied. “By the time we had you, we had fallen madly in love with each other and I didn’t see the point.”
“Yes. Until now” Robert replied, and stood up. “Look dear, just think about it….maybe it’s not going to be as bad as you think.
“This is ridiculous. Definetely crazy and ridiculous. What the hell am I doing getting married?”
Bonnie Rimmer stared at herself in the full-length mirror and wondered if she was real. She pressed her damp palms against her colorless cheeks and sighed. The neatly arranged cascading raven curls perfectly framed her expertly made-up face. The diamond choker sparkled against her pale throat.
The weighty emerald engagement ring that dragged her down like an anchor sparkled against the late afternoon sun. The rays streaming through the bay window of the bridal suite. She’d grown up here. Never left home or traveled on her own except for school and royal stuff. She was never left alone…always surrounded by guards and maids to attend to her every need like she was a helpless puppy and it was annoying most of the time.
But yet she had stayed and did everything she was asked to do…everything a princess was supposed to do. And now she was doing this too. Her father had succeeded in convincing her that this was the right thing to do ….again. So here she was. She was getting married to a man she didn’t love and barely knew, but her father said it didn’t matter. Love could come later in the marriage and what mattered more now was duty.
“Oh Grams, where are you when I need you?” Tears of grief stung the back of her throat. It had been two months since her grandmother had died; two months that had passed excruciatingly slow and yet flashed by in the blink of an eye. She couldn’t really talk about this with her mother, who sided with her father on this matter.