Disclaimer I don't own Royal Romance or it's character's Pixelberry does
Hana, Maxwell, Drake, and Riley had just arrived at the last address on the list. They were hopeful that Tariq was here and that they could talk him into coming forward with the truth. However, when they go to knock on the door it opens on its own. The group enters the small apartment only to find it empty but an envelope. Riley's mind runs a mile a minute as she quickly tries to figure out a long term game plan.
The first option to run through her mind was to marry Drake and make an arrangement with both him and Liam. She quickly dismisses that thought as being too cruel to Drake. The second thought was to stay in New York and not return to Cordonia. It seemed like at least New York had forgotten her scandal. The only question would be could she live without Liam for the rest of her life. She couldn't let him give up the crown he was too good a king. That left one obvious choice to return to Cordonia as his mistress. Not that she'd give up on trying to find Tariq. Riley paused a moment before deciding on a better option Queen without the crown she'd just help the King carry the weight of his. As she thought more and more she realized it would work simply because all Madeliene wanted was the crown and title. Riley would just have to get the Cordonian people to love her and allow Madeliene to sink her own ship.
Everyone looked at Riley concerned she had sat down on the couch and hadn't said a thing. Hana was the first to ask, "Riley are you ok? We'll find Tariq before Liam gets married I'm sure of it." Riley shook her head no even though they hadn't opened the envelope she knew Tariq wasn't going to come forward someone had tipped him off. Possibly even told him he'd be prosecuted if he returned home or came forward. She sighed replying, "We will have to go with plan b. I will have to earn the love and respect of the Cordonia people. I will have to make Madeliene's title meaningless. I will have to be his mistress for now."
Drake scowled saying, "Come on Brooks. Don't give up we'll find him and you will be queen." She smiled and squeezed his hand replying, "I haven't given up Drake. But, if I am going to come out on top should Tariq not be found I have to put some things into play now while I have leverage." A smirk graced his face as he realized she was no longer biding her time until Tariq was found. Riley had just declared war on Madeliene. "How can we help Brooks," he asked her. She built up her courage before saying, " I will need you to reject Liam's idea for you to marry me. I am sure it would be his first idea a political marriage for me with someone he trusts."
Drake nodded knowing Liam didn't like the idea of her being labeled his mistress. He also knew Liam would likely ask him to do that for him unaware of his feelings for her. Drake knew full well that Riley knew of his romantic feelings so he was touched by her consideration. He would have to look into Kiara since Riley was convinced she liked him and Riley herself was off the market. "Ok, so we're not entering a fake marriage. So then what's the plan" Drake asked. Riley smiled saying, "First we need to get out of here. We can't risk someone calling the police. Let's find somewhere close by to talk before leaving." Nodding in understanding Maxwell puts the envelope inside his jacket and they leave the apartment closing the door behind them. They find a nearby park to talk Maxwell said, "You know we will find him, Riley, we don't need to worry." Riley shook her head no before responding, "Maxwell I haven't given up but, I do need to up the stakes were going back to Cordonia and I need a game plan. I can't focus solely on finding Tariq. I need to focus on gaining the love of the Cordonian people. I also need to show the council that I am the better choice than Madeliene."
Hana's face lit up before asking, "So will we quit looking for Tariq?" Riley sighed, "It will depend on what his message says. I don't want to completely give up. I would prefer to put finding him in the background. We will be working on marketing me and my image as the best thing to happen to Cordonia. All while trying to get the council and Cordonia to see Madeliene for who she is." She took the box out of her pocket she hadn't wanted to leave it in the hotel room. Riley walked over to Maxwell and had him take photo's of the ring before saying, "Now, Maxwell, I need you to find a duplicate of Madeliene's ring for me." Hana, I need you to find a bridal shop. Drake, I need you to call Liam and get him to make time to meet about the envelope with Bastien as well as a second meeting. I have a couple of phone calls to make."
Riley Walked a short distance and called Leo. When he answered she said, "Hey Leo it's Riley I have some questions only you can answer." Leo chuckled before replying, "I doubt that but go ahead and ask." Riley responded, "Can I legally marry your brother in the US?" Now Leo sat down knowing full well he was likely the only one other than his Father who could answer the questions she had. He understood her hesitation to contact his dad he was the one who created this mess in the first place. He wondered what was happening that she was calling with this question. He responded, "Yes he can Riley but, it won't be legally binding in Cordonia. Only a marriage ceremony conducted by myself, Regina or my Father would bind you to him as queen."
Riley sighed saying, "I don't care about the title I care about your brother. I don't want him legally married to her. She's claimed all she wants is the title and I plan on her having only that. Tariq has flown the coupe and I want to spare Liam from marital requirements with Madeline." Leo felt seriously bad leaving his brother with this heavy burden on his shoulders. Even worse their Father literally forced him to marry Madeliene and Leo couldn't understand why. Had Madeliene been forced on him as well? Riley noticed the silence she said, "Leo don't worry I won't leave him alone with her. I want to marry him so Madeliene's marriage is technically illegal and our children will carry the family name. I want to beat Madeliene at her own game. She thinks once she's queen she can make me abandon him she is already trying to intimidate me but I can handle her. I want her to have nothing more than the title she claims to want."
Leo smiled he didn't know who was looking after his brother but someone surely was when Liam found Riley Brooks. Leo responded, "Riley I will send a contract to Liam for him to have Madeliene to sign he will need to get her to do it before they are married. She won't sign anything once she's crowned queen. What do you want on it?" Riley thought a moment before saying, "I want standard stuff like no scandals against myself, Drake, The Beaumont's, Hana and Olivia. Also, she can't have any of us do anything or throw us out only Liam can do that. Plus, I want it clearly stated that there will be no marriage consummation. Our children will be named heirs to the throne. I get to go on all honeymoons and family vacations. Anything else you think is needed feel please free to add Leo I trust you."