A Tale of Six Princes

It was summer when Prince Bill of Egypt rode into the fair land of Ottery St. Catchpole.

There was to be a tournament of vast proportions that summer, and all the Lords and Ladies were traveling to see it.

When Prince Bill arrived at his father's castle, he was pleased to find his five brothers awaiting his arrival.

Prince Bill was the oldest; he was often called the most handsome as well. His brother Prince Charlie of Romania was fair of speech and heart, and was proclaimed the Quiet One as he tended to think before acting. Prince Percival of London was quite pompous and knowledgeable. The twins, Princes Frederick and George of Wheeze, were most popular among the young ladies as they were also court jesters. The youngest prince, Ronald of Quidditch, was most known for his inventive battle plans.

The six princes were stunned to find that their parents, the Good King and Queen, were expecting a guest, Lady Hermione of the Red Tower of Gryffindor.

Now, the Red Tower in the land of Gryffindor was known to hold many ladies of wondrous beauty, wit and charm. But, there was only one Princess of the Red Tower of Gryffindor. For many years she had been in hiding, never daring to show her true self. Many were thought to be her, but no one was ever truly sure.

Lady Hermione was good friends with Princess Ginevra and, on occasion, Prince Ronald. Ginevra was the youngest of the children of King Arthur and Queen Molly. The two ladies and Prince Ronald had become good friends during their school days, and the three were delighted to be together once more.

Unfortunately for them, the very day after Lady Hermione's arrival Lady Ginevra was to go to town for a dress fitting and would be gone all day. Her father, King Arthur, was to go to London to see Master Fudge, the local fool, on some business and was to escort Ginevra and Queen Molly to the seamstress's.

This meant that Lady Hermione was to spend the day with the Six Princes of Castle Burrow.

Prince Bill was fond of his ale, and would often enjoy it with his brothers, though Prince Charlie enjoyed juice far more.

On this beautiful summer day, Lady Hermione was seated in the Great Hall of Castle Burrow reading her favorite book about the land of Hogwarts.

The six brothers were sitting and drinking, as brothers were wont to do, when Prince Bill made a startling announcement.

"Look at yon lady, Gents," he said to his brothers. "She is no hag, yet our noble brother, Prince Ronald has not yet begun to court her. Why, I say? I tell you this, it is not because of her appearance which is, dare I say it, fair enough. It is, as I see it, because of yon lady's sharp tongue. No man wishes to wed a shrew."

Princes Ronald, Frederick, George and Percival all laughed.

Lady Hermione looked up from her book in anger.

"Sir," she addressed Prince Bill, "Thou insult my sensibilities. I shall tell thee now, in fair warning, why each of thee has not yet wed."

"Sir," she said, turning to Prince Ronald, "Thy speech is uncouth and not likely to attract more than a tavern wench."

"Prince George, I tell thee now, thou are overlooked because thy brother, Prince Frederick, draws the attention to himself."

She looked to Frederick. "Thou hast all the wisdom of the village half-wit."

"And thou, Prince Percival, thou art full of thine own self-importance and know naught of what thy speak."

Hermione looked back at Prince Bill, "Bill, thy speaketh as though thou art a man of great wit and glamour. Know this! Thy arrogance and conceit speak for thou. Thou hast naught to be proud of."

She turned and began to leave the hall.

"And what of Prince Charlie, eh? What have you to say on his character?" Prince Bill said in curiosity.

"Prince Charlie," she stated moving toward the man in question. "He is of noble design and good heart. Mark me…he shall receive all that he desires for he does not think only of himself. He is the prince that shall inherit the treasure!" She leaned forward and pressed her lips to Prince Charlie's cheek before turning and leaving the room.

As she went through the doors into the Entrance Hall she heard Prince Bill say, "The lady has it wrong! I am the eldest, and I shall receive the inheritance."

She turned one last time and said, "Prince Bill, thy arrogance consumes and blinds thee to what sits before thee. This is why thee has not wed." That said, she left and went into the Library.

Prince Charlie knew of what the lady spoke. "Good sir," he said to his elder brother who was pouting in a childish manner. "Thee has proven her point. She is untainted, and not for you. She is no wench, which is all thee draws. Hear my words and remember them…She is the Princess of the Red Tower, of this I do not doubt. She need not prove her worth. It proves itself."

Prince Charlie left the Great Hall in search of the Princess. Upon finding her, he knelt before her and said, "My Princess, thou hast shown thyself at last. I do not deserve thy good favor, but I am wise enough to not turn it away. With thy permission, I shall woo thee. But know this, I never fail a quest. When I seek something, I will not rest until I possess it. Whilst thou allow me to court thee?"

"Good sir," said she, "Thou truly are deserving of thy treasure. Aye, Prince Charlie. Thou may court me."

He gently kissed the back of her hand and left her to her book.

"Noble design and good heart indeed," she murmured, thinking of his fair words and gentle demeanor.