The Duchess Charlotte held her delicate hands instinctively over her flat stomach. Although the bump was yet to form, already Charlotte could feel the infant begin to grow and develop inside of her. The Duchess was never at risk of any imminent danger, there was also the potential that her large Kingdom would become the target of a heinous attack of jealously or revenge on the people who had fled the Great War. That was not something Charlotte ever wanted to risk happening when her child was born. However much the thought of there being a new life inside of her own body frightened her, the Duchess was also thrilled that she would carry a child who would bear her family name and carry forward the House of Ellechester to greatness.
As she walked through the grounds of her humble home she was overly cautious. As far as she was concerned at any moment someone could try to kill her, or take her hostage, she was a very rich lady, they could demand a ransom, and would George pay up if someone kidnapped her? She was becoming dizzy, she gestured for her ladies to come to her aid and help her back to her private chambers.
She had been lying down for all of five minutes when a stiff knock came from the door. Charlotte did not bother sitting up, whoever had come to see her could speak to her as she was lying, and after all, she was with child. Charlotte heard the soft patter of heels rushing towards her bed.
“Your Highness,” a soft voice said louder than a whisper, with an air of urgency.
“What?” she demanded.
“Your husband to see you, my Lady,” at the mention of her husband Charlotte sat bolt upright.
“Where is he?”
“Just outside your door, shall I fetch him? I was not sure if you were feeling well enough to receive guests, but he did say it was rather urgent,”
“Of course, let him in,”
George came bounding into the room; he stood by his wife’s bed in his military uniform.
“George, what a pleasant surprise,”
“Hold the small talk woman,” he said sharply.
“George?” Charlotte gasped; she was not used to being addressed in such a manner. “Whatever is the matter?”
“Your brother, Benjamin, he has declared war on Oiland.”
“Oh God,” she was speechless. “But George, why are you in uniform?”
“Benjamin has rallied troops from Matilda’s Ebbieo without her permission; we have united with Oiland and Philip to end this as quickly as we can,”
“We are at war with the Bastard House of Oz?”
“Something like that,”