The King's Royal Daughters

The story evolves around the French Revolution, capturing the joys and sorrows of the French Royal Family.

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4. Chapter 2

         Three days later, the letter’s contents still rested heavily on Julia’s heart and mind. She was torn between the choices of telling her parents about the letter-effectively feeling like she was betraying Charmayne in the process-or keeping the letter a secret.

         The situation outside was getting worse. Mobs gathered at the palace gates, screaming and wreaking havoc. At the head of them all was always a man in twead trousers and a hat.

          Fear made Queen Claudine long to have her children close by, just to ensure that they were safe. Faith, whose husband Lord Francoise was out of town, had moved in with them in order to ease her mother’s worries.

          Julia’s room faced the palace gates, which was mobbed by the masses. She had taken to watching them for some odd reason, and she was doing so now. A movement drew her attention to the gate. The man in trousers and a hat was there, gesticulating furiously into the palace. A hooded figure dashed out into the open from the palace and began picking at the massive lock on the gates, built specially to keep the mobs out.

          Julia watched in horror, frozen to her spot nest to the window. There was a flash of silver, and the lock fell to the ground. A look of glee came over the man’s face and he turned to shout to the crowd. The figure lifted the hood from her face and Julia gasped, falling backward in disbelief.

          Charmayne.

           The crowd roared and surged into the palace grounds. Julia gripped the window ledge tightly as Charmayne stepped into a sedan chair and was carried by the commoners. Julia swung round and seized the rope of the alarm bell and yanked with all her might. The great bell began tolling, the loud echoing sound alerting the guards. Together with it was the cry of a servant, “Lady Charmayne is missing!”

          Julia turned to the window and flung it open. “Sister Charmayne! Stop!”  She cried to the sister below in desperation, her voice very nearly drowned by the sound of the alarm bell.

          Still, Charmayne heard, for she glanced up, sneered at Julia and thrust her arm forward, pointing to the rebels the right way to go. “Down with the royalists, death to the traitors! Support Lady Charmayne!” She called, backed by the jubilant shrieks of the people.

         Julia could hardly bear to listen, or to see, for that matter. Hastily grabbing a few precious belongings and packing them up into a bundle, she raced outside and burst into the napping Marie’s room. Swiftly she shook Marie awake, and helped pack her sister’s belongings too.

        “Mamma! Papa!” Julia yelled in anxiety. Where were they? The roars of the crowd and sounds of battle made Julia develop a headache. Turning lithely into her parents’ room, the sisters found Queen Claudine there, packing a few treasured possessions.

        “Mamma….” Julia gasped, catching breaths to explain, but Queen Claudine silenced her with only four words.

        “It’s Charmayne, isn’t it?” Queen Claudine glanced up at Julia calmly, although there was a pained look in her wide eyes. Julia could only nod numbly.

        “I thought so.” Queen Claudine arose, possessions in a bundle much neater than the two sisters’. “Much comes of scheming, and Charmayne may not prevail for long.”

        Julia and Marie exchanged confused glances, but both knew that it was not the right moment for questions. Queen Claudine gripped her daughters with a hand each.

       “Follow me.” She ordered, eyes shining with the determination of  mother wanting to protect her children from all danger.

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A/N  Comments please. Also check out my other story, Solace in Prudence.

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