Hi all, just want to put my disclaimer out there. The following characters are from the world of J.K. Rowlings Harry Potter. Reader discretion is advised.

Also I am looking for a Beta Reader, if interested, please send a message, thanks.

Returning to Royal Duty

"How can I make a move before Hermione comes to the palace tonight?" Draco asked himself, while dressing for the ball. He was frustrated because there wasn't anyone in the palace willing to tell him about what happened before this night, and why the princess had to be hidden away.

"Tubbs," Said Draco to his Valet, "Do you know anything about the Princess Aurora?"

"Just that she will be arriving tonight." Was it a trick of the light, or did Tubbs suddenly look pale.

"Tubbs, what are you not telling me." Draco demanded.

"Your highness, these are now happy times, we should dwell on the future."

"Your future depends upon you telling me what you are not telling me!" Draco howled, angry with his valet and irritated that he had to wear a cravat.

"Your highness, please remember your temper…"

"If you don't want me to have a tantrum, I suggest you tell me what is the huge secret surrounding this princess." By now, Draco had turn and gripped Tubbs' shirt in his hands.

"Ok, I'll tell you, but you must release me first." Draco put the man back on the ground.

"You were still a small boy, when Princess Aurora was born, and so you probably don't remember what happened. Court was held for all those in her kingdom to attend, The Nobility, the Gentry and even the common folk were included, the king and queen were just that proud and happy. The occasion was so joyous that King Stephen even sent for the faeries to attend, all those in his kingdom… except one."

"What faery was this?" Draco asked.

"The faery of darkness and air," Tubbs replied, "Now looking back, I would say that the faery of darkness and air was really and sidhe."

"What is a sidhe?"

"An elf, they are the true rulers of faery, tall proud, excessively beautiful, and very touchy and cunning. There are supposed to be good and bad ones, but I have found that all are rather… twisted." Tubbs answered.

"Anyway, back to this sidhe of darkness and air, she was not included because it was thought she was too evil. Well in the midst of three pixies bestowing their blessings on the young princess, in sweeps Bellatrix, the sidhe of darkness and air. She was not happy to say the least."

"Bellatrix?" Draco asked, as the color slowly started to drain from his face.

"Yes, Bellatrix. Upon entering the royal court, she ups and asked King Stephen why she was not invited. An oversight he said, you weren't wanted the pixies whispered. Well being that her powers were darkness and air, she immediately heard the whispered truth. Sidhe hate lies, they may dance around the truth, even twist it a little, or manipulate deals and bargains to swing their way, but outright lies are something they abhor. Well upon hearing this, Bellatrix cursed Princess Aurora, saying that on her sixteenth birthday, she will prick her finger on the needle of a spinning wheel and die. The king and queen were a little upset to say the least. After cursing the royal infant, Bellatrix left the royal court. What can be done, the king and queen asked. Well as it turned out, Pomona one of the pixies had not yet bestowed her gift on the princess, she couldn't break the spell, but only soften it, so instead of dying she would sleep until a prince worthy of her comes and wakes her with a kiss."

"A kiss!?" Draco said, he didn't know if he should fear Bellatrix or the kiss.

"Yes, so if all things go according to plan, you should have to kiss her." Tubbs replied.

"Well if she's only in the neighboring kingdom, why can't I just go over and… you know." Draco couldn't bring himself to say "marry her."

"Well, that was the other thing, the pixies thought it would be a good idea if the princess stayed with them until she was of age. The king and queen objected to the idea, stating that doll sized beings couldn't properly take care of the infant. As if there weren't enough surprises of the day, but the pixies actually demonstrated that they can change their size to human size and magic their wings away. This is what I meant by members of faery being twisted, they know so much about humans but we know so little about them."

"So the night of the ball, the pixies are going to bring the princess here and expect me to marry her, hence all the increase in guards and why my parents don't want me wandering off."

"Exactly so, sir." Tubbs replied.

"I guess I have my work cut out for me then."

"Your highness, please be careful, Bellatrix is not someone to be taken lightly." With that, Tubbs left the young prince.

"You have no idea friend." Draco said once Tubbs was out of earshot. He looked in the mirror at the finished efforts of his valet. He then looked at his reflection.

"I hate the I feel like I have to protect Hermione, I hate the I have to save her in almost every situation, and I hate that I think I love her."