Non of these characters belong to me, they belong to Meg Cabot and Disney. This is a "how they got together one- shot." this is set when the princes are young, presumably at boarding school.

As the royal carriage trotted along the cobbled streets, Clarisse dutifully waved at the adoring public. It was blisteringly hot, the sun beating against her bare neck and shoulders, shining on the perfect world that had surrounded her. She smiled again, beaming almost angelically. The people threw flowers at their king and queen, showering them - reminding Clarisse ruefully of her almost god like reputation.

As martin and Joseph hung off the back of the carriage, he felt uneasy in the glaring sun and scorching heat, the fantastic light blocking his view - making it ten times harder to see anything. He squinted again as he scanned the crowd with his piercing eyes - intimidating authoritarian. The gun in his holster was heavy and cold against his shirt, reminding him of its constant presence.

He seen it coming, he knew it would happen but not as soon as this.

Suddenly, without warning the rebels and vigilantes, few in their numbers, but strong and vicious stormed the royal carriage. He automatically told the royal occupants to get down, reaching into his jacket in a swift move, he rung shots through the air. The riot progressed, people ran in all directions, police fired blank bullets at everyone and anyone, podiums collapsed, people screamed . He saw nothing, cared little for his safety, simply for that of the king and queen - Clarisse in particular. He jumped onto the ground, his shades falling off and smashing on the ground. He lifted himself up and ordering martin to see to the king, gun still in hand he reached into the open top carriage for her. She fumbled for his arm, fear swimming in her eyes. His hand reached for hers. Suddenly she was looking straight into his eyes, registering something he couldn't quite explain. His chest tightened as he paused, suddenly loosing grip on the situation around them. He jolted back into reality, and roughly pulled her from the carriage, and ducking slightly ran her through the riotous crowd - shielding her all to familiar face with his leather jacket.

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As he pulled the door open and ushered her hastily in, she smiled at him thankfully - but in confusion, she stopped.

"where are we?", she questioned, suddenly finding her voice and her authority.

"come on", he said, grabbing her upper arm roughly, " later".

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She sat silently down on the leather couch and as he busied himself in the open plan kitchen, she managed to take in her surroundings. The place was modern, open plan, minimalist. The living space was expensively furnished, framed vintage posters of rock bands and movies covering the walls. Mid-day sun shone in through massive windows, lighting up the white walls and black décor.

"drink?", Joseph smiled, handing her a mug of tea which she accepted gratefully.

"I never expected that", she stated, removing her jacket, " it was all to sudden"

"I did", he said ruefully, moving towards the window, " times are uneasy and it makes my job terrifically hard - I'm just glad the young princes weren't there today".

"as am I", she said seriously, " it's so strained at the moment - the political situation isn't good. I'm glad you where there".

"hmmm", he confirmed, sitting down beside her. She looked up and smiled at him. As he sunk into the comfortable couch, he was struck by her close proximity - struck by the fact he could smell her perfume, feel every slight movement she made as he sat at a relatively safe distance.

"the political situation isn't any good because of my husband", she sighed, " he's-", she stopped, remembering who she was talking to. Someone who she knew she could trust undoubtedly but she couldn't trust herself. She could hardly think of anyone else and to open herself up to him - she feared it might just prove to difficult to hold herself back.

"what is this place?", she questioned, lifting the cup from her mouth and resting it on her lap, grateful she could perhaps change the subject.

"it's my out of palace residence", he smiled, amused at the bemusement on her face, " I liked it when I seen it".

"oh, you never told me", she said, more than a little put out. After all, he was her best friend and she figured they'd shared everything - everything they knew was suitable to discuss.

"I know", he smiled, sipping his coffee, " but I only bought it last month".

"ahhh", she smiled, feeling a little steadier, " it came in handy".

"it did. I'm grateful for the fact it was here now - it might just have saved your life".

"oh Joseph", she laughed nervously, not realising the enormity of the danger she'd just been in, " it wasn't that serious".

"your Majesty", he said darkly, shocked by her lack of concern he accidentally slipped into informality, " Clarisse it was serious - believe me". she hung her head a little, staring into her cup.

"I'm sorry - I just didn't realise. I know that the rebels detest the monarchy - and I don't blame them and Rupert's ignorance of their cause isn't helping much either".

"it will pass", he reassured, almost reaching for her hand but stopping himself in an act of horrible self restraint, "it's just unsettled at the moment - that's all".

"it's more than that", she sighed, reclining her head back lightly and closing her eyes, " he's causing so much strain - he doesn't care for the poor of this country. Yes, they are few in their numbers, a mere percentage of this country but they still exist". he nodded, and even though her eyes where closed, she knew he agreed. She had let out much more than she intended- but she trusted him, more than she trusted anyone else she knew.

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As she woke later that day, the apartment was quiet- the last of the sun shining in, bathing everything in a serene, orange glow. The soft rain splattered off the glass, making the air humid and sticky - ending the day in a show of lights and rain.

She woke slowly, curled up on Josephs leather couch with a blanket that smelled like him over her - she felt quite safe. She smiled, registering the room around her - the surreal fact she was lying on his couch, near him without fearing something would shatter what she felt for him.

She felt the sudden urge to move towards the window - to look out into the beautiful evening. She sat up and stretched out her legs- noticing the fact that her shoes where no longer there but by the side of the couch. She smiled, realising he'd obviously removed them - simply for her comfort.

As she reached the window, the sight was quite breathtaking. She could see police below, clearing up the last of what the rebels had left behind. She could see tourists leaving restaurants', pouring in their vast numbers onto the cobbled main street to prize their way through the quaint lanes and into tourists shops. The soft summer rain covered the people below, their laughter clinging to the hot air and balmy night. She smiled at the show below her - here she could watch the world around her without scrutiny and for that, she was grateful.

Joseph watched her from the other side of the room - she was quite clearly mesmerised by the view below her and hadn't registered his presence.

"it's like your own TV.", she said suddenly, catching him off guard and proving his musings wrong, " you can watch it all and it doesn't stop - it doesn't stop for you, no matter who you are".

"interesting way to put it", he said thoughtfully, walking to the massive window and standing beside her.

"I don't know, but that's how I see it", she smiled, placing her hand on the glass, " it's because I'm used to being the actor - it's a rare occurrence when I get to be the viewer".

"ahh, rare indeed", he smiled, understanding what she meant entirely, " I've just had a call, confirming the safety of his Majesty. I need to go and check on Martin's position, but I've not yet had security clearance to move you back home and that is unlikely till the morning."

"oh", she said abruptly, turning to face him, " don't leave me alone".

"I won't, Tony's coming down from the parliamentary chambers while I'm up their seeing to your Husband - I'll only be gone for a while, your Majesty".

"Joseph", she scorned, anger coming over her face, " I beg you to use my name- Clarisse!"

"I apologise, Clarisse", he said softly, " I will be back quicker than you know, Tony's outside just now - make yourself at home". she smiled at him a little, and as his eyes met hers she turned away, wishing to god she didn't feel like this for him.

Joseph resisted the almost overpowering urge to lift her face and draw her stunning eyes back to his, touch her lips softly with his, tell her how much he loved her.

"you should go", she whispered, almost inaudibly, her voice strained and breathless. He nodded and not trusting his weakness to her, turned on his heels. The walk to the front door had never seemed so long as it did in those five seconds that it took him. The air seemed so thin as he tried to breath - god the power she held over him, the way she made him feel was unbelievable, inexplicable - horridly disabling.

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Clarisse stepped into the massive shower in his bathroom. The searingly hot spray bounced off her skin, massaging her aching shoulders, relaxing the muscles in her body that had been so tense, so on edge when he had been there. She closed her eyes and exhaling deeply, ran her fingers through her hair. She knew what she felt for him, though if she admitted to herself she'd never felt like that for any man - even her husband. She'd never been in love, her life style, position, arranged marriage had never permitted it.

She resolved that in life, her hand was one of the worst. Her life was controlled, regimented, disgustingly observed the world over.

She washed her hair, using his shower gel because he had no use for shampoo. She laughed slightly to herself, she'd have to tease him about that later on. Then she realised that their relationship was more than just professional, they had silently confirmed their friendship through their

actions over the years. It was more than professional because they acted like friends, what other employer teased their employee on such a personal level and vice versa. What employee practically raised their employers children?

She shivered as she turned off the spray, pausing as she tried to shake the thought of him. She reached for the heated towel rail and wrapped the gigantic black towel round herself. She felt safe doing this in his house, safer than she felt in her own home, perhaps it was the relaxing atmosphere that he seemed to emmit had rubbed off on this place.

She stepped onto the cold tiles and padded quickly into the master bedroom. She smiled at it, noticing the picture of Philippe and Pierre on the bed side, beside pictures of his family. She didn't feel rude rummaging through his partially empty drawers. After all, he didn't live here - he lived down the halway from her. He wouldn't mind if she wore his pyjama's, she knew that he'd understand - a comforting thought.

She stood in from of the bathroom mirror, laughing at her curvy figured dwarfed in his huge night wear. She fetched her handbag, took her brush and ran it through her damp hair.

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Joseph unlocked the front door as he dismissed Tony. He felt reassured now, she was safe, so was the king. As he stepped in side, the smell of his shower gel filled his nostrils. The apartment was muggy and sticky, clearly advocating the thought that she'd had a shower. He smiled as he seen her then, brush in hand, tented in his old pyjama's, padding through his bed room door.

"I made use of your bathroom", she said shyly, receeding a little as she notcied him.

"you're quite welcome to", Joseph smiled, taking off his Jacket and throwing it over the edge of the couch, " and the pyjama's suit you". she laughed slightly, making her way towards him. He froze as she did so, frightened that if he moved he might sweep her into his arms and never let go, even if it where against her will.

"is everything ok?", she questioned, noticing his tension and unfortunately aware of what had caused it.

"yes, Clarisse", he lied, smiling slightly. She stopped at the window again, looking out.

"it's deserted out there now", she noted, motioning him towards the window, " it's so peaceful". he joined her, standing a safe distance away and looked out onto the street.

"hmmm", he sounded dumb, that, he realised-but he did not trust himself to speak.

Clarisse felt his sudden presence near her and she became panicky, not because she didn't trust him - she didn't trust herself. She couldn't stop herself as her hand reached for his, gripping it softly.

Joseph didn't startle as her hand wrapped itself around his, but he was shocked all the same. He accepted her clammy hand, looking down and then towards her face. He smiled a little at her, but didn't utter anything in fear it might shatter something which was so fragile. He squeezed her fingers gently, massaged her wrist with his other hand - until he took both of her hands in a fluidly movement and turned her to face him. She looked away as he did it, shyly avoiding his eyes. Shaking, he gently kissed the side of her cheek. Her eyes fluttered closed at his touch - god, how long had she waited for this? Again, she was desperate to run from what she felt for him, but she was tired of running. She turned to face him, and he continued his blessed attack. His lips burned her forehead, kissed the bridge of her nose, her closed eye lids. She opened her eyes and fell into his arms. Squeezing him to her, she could feel his heart beating in his firm chest against her cheek.

Joseph faltered as she fell into his arms, but only for a moment. He suddenly realised what was happening - and god, did it feel wonderful. His hands rested shakily on her back as he held her close. She was shivering, but it wasn't cold.

"Clarisse…..", he trailed off, " oh, Clarisse". He repeated her name in wonderful worship. They had both waited for this, but had often chose to ignore what they felt for each other.

"Clarisse….. God, I've waited so long to do this", he breathed, kissing her hair repeatedly. She smiled against him, eyes still closed - memorising how he felt in her arms and praying that this wasn't a dream.

"Joseph……", she whispered, " Joseph - as have I". he kissed her then, burning, searing, full of love. Their first ever kiss. His presence near her, holding her, engulfing her. His hands tracing circles on her back as his mouth demanded more of her kiss, which she gave - not to reluctantly.

"my Clarisse….", he whispered, pulling back, " beautiful Clarisse". his hand cupped her cheek. She closed her eyes and turned in, kissing his palm.

"this isn't right", he continued weakly. Her eyes opened slowly. They where not angry or hurt but full of resolve.

"Joseph", she said softly, " I don't want to wait any longer".

Did you like this little one shot, I hope you did please R&R.

Yours,

M