Sunshine crept through the sky blue curtains surrounding the bed. Danielle smiled and stretched leisurely, sending a hand searching over the satin coverlet for Henry. Nothing was there. She sat upright clutching the sheets to her. For the past two years Henry had always been next to her when she woke up, weather he had been up earlier, or was just waking up himself. Looking over she saw a small bouquet of red and pink roses and a note. Lifting the posy she smelled the fragrance, and smiling opened the note.
You looked so peaceful this morning, I couldn't bear to wake you. Father called me to a meeting with the ambassadors of Spain to complete the new treaty. I'm sorry for not being here when you wake up dearest, and I have a surprise to make it up to you. Mother wanted to talk with you over tea when you woke up. I love you, and will see you at dinner.
Your loving Henry.
Danielle smiled, and reached over to pull the rope to summon Adelaide, her lady-in-waiting. Danielle pulled on her robe as Adelaide, Eloise, and Rosalie entered. " Your Highness, Her Majesty plans to meet you in an hour in her boudoir." ' Thank you Adelaide. The Lavender today, with the Amethysts.' They curtsied and started to get to work. Eloise started brushing out her hair, braiding it and twisting it up. She placed a small tiara of diamonds, pearls and amethysts and secured it in. Rosalie placed the matching jewelry, shoes, dress and undergarments.
" Adelaide, can you loosen the laces, I'm positively bursting at the seams."
' I'm sorry Your Highness, but it seems that you've put on some weight recently.'
" Well with all the delicious food I'm bound to gain some weight." Adelaide smiled. " Yes Your Highness."
Danielle walked down the hallway to the staircase leading to the South wing, where Their Majesties apartments were. ( The Prince and Princess' apartments are in the East wing.) " Your Majesty, Princess Danielle is here," Marie looked up from her embroidery and smiled. " Mother, you're looking well this morning." Danielle bend down and kissed both of her cheeks. " Dearest Danielle, sit and have something to eat, I bet you're starving," Marie motioned with her hand and a plate was brought forth. Danielle swallowed as the smells rose from the plate. Runny eggs, greasy ham. 'I think tea and some toast will be all I have this morning mother.'
" Danielle are you sure you're feeling all right? This is the second week in a row that you haven't had much for breakfast." She put her tea cup back on the saucer, and took Danielle's hand. " I don't know what is wrong mother, I only feel ill in the morning, and my gowns have become tighter," Danielle began to cry, " I don't want to worry Henry, but I feel ill, and I honestly have no idea what is going on!" Marie stood up, and cradled the weeping Princess.
" Hush darling, there is no need to worry Henry. Beauregard, call the Court physician up to the Princesses room. We'll be there in a few moments." The footman rushed off, and Marie gently hummed to the distraught Princess till the last tears were spent. " Now my dear, it's time we returned to your rooms, so you can be seen." They started walking back to Danielle's room. " But mother, why do I need to go see the physician?"
' My dear did you know that I felt fairly ill when I was pregnant with Henry. For the first few months, I felt ill, but the feeling was gone by lunchtime. Then after a few months the feeling dissipated entirely.' Marie looked at Danielle. The Princess had a hand resting gently on her belly. " You mean, I might be," Marie nodded. They entered the rooms, and the Physician bowed and went with the Princess into the bedroom. Marie sat patiently on the chaise.
" Father the fort is no good to us. The port of New Orleans is our best port in the Americas. Give the Spanish the fort, and we'll move the men to guard New Orleans." Henry looked at his father. Francis saw the wisdom his son had. " The Spanish will assist my men at the fort leave and move to New Orleans. Agreed?" The ambassador nodded. King Francis signed and sealed the Treaty, handing it back to the ambassador. The King and his son walked out of the map room, and into a rushing footman. " Your Majesty, Your Highness," the man bowed, " The Physician was summoned to your apartments Your Highness. Her Majesty is there while the Princess is being examined." The footman barely got the last word out when he was nearly knocked over by the Prince.
Henry never ran so fast in his entire life, except when he had heard Danielle had been sold. He pushed open the doors to his rooms, and saw his mother on the chaise. " Mother! Where is Danielle? Is she all right?" The bedroom door opened, and Danielle and the Physician walked out. " Danielle! Love, are you all right?" Danielle smiled and calmly rubbed her husband's arms. " Darling Henry, I assure you, I'm perfectly fine." The Physician exited just as King Francis walked into the room. " Danielle, are you all right? I've never seen Henry run that fast in his life." Marie took her husbands hand, and had him sit next to her. " Father, Henry I'm fine,"
' Darling, then why was the physician summoned here?'
" The physician was here to examine me and the future Prince or Princess." Francis smiled, as did Marie. Henry was standing still. His eyes widened, then his jaw dropped. " Darling? Henry are you all right?" Danielle gripped his arms, truly worried he suffered some form of shock. " A baby, we're having a baby?" She nodded. Henry knelt down and started kissing her belly. Danielle started laughing. " Henry, I'm sure the baby know that you love it." Henry stood up and started kissing her instead. Pausing for breath. " I suppose my surprise is quite small compared to your beauty, my love, my wife, and mother of my children." Henry walked over to a table and opened the drawer pulling out a book. Bringing it over, he gently placed it in her hands. " Utopia. Oh Henry! Thank you!" Danielle threw her arms around him. Henry chuckled and hugged her close. Their Majesties looked on, proud that their son had followed his heart.
Down in the servant's quarters, Rodmilla listened to her daughter snipe, and gripe about their condition. She had requested another room. " I still can't believe this! I never want to hear Her Highness again about that selfish pig!" Rodmilla sighed. She was slightly proud of Danielle now. She had done so much, for the country, and servant's life here in the palace. " I'm getting my revenge on that brat, even now as we speak,"
' Marguerite? What do you mean you're getting revenge even now?'
Marguerite smiled, " You'll see."