Birds merrily chirping at the palace grounds took off in fright.
Indira and her cousin jumped, as the Emperor thundered.
“What on earth did you do, I’ra?” Her cousin looked at her in wonder.
Before Indira could respond — so perplexed she was — her husband stormed into her rooms.
“Privacy!” He ordered in an angry voice. All the servants scurried out of the Queen’s Quarters.
Indira and her cousin stood, both in anxious wonder.
“I’m sorry Princess MayRose, but I need to speak to my Empress alone.”
“I understand that, your Highness, but I don’t feel at ease leaving my sister, while you are in this…..mood.”
“I would not assault my own wife, if that is what gives you concern, Princess.”
When MayRose didn’t look convinced, Indira gave her a reassuring smile, and she reluctantly left.
As she was wondering were to stay to be close enough should the Emperor turn violent, she saw the Emperor’s brother coming warily towards the Queen’s Quarters.
“Greetings your Highness”
“What brings you here? ”
“My brother is quite vexed, though he’s not violent outside the battle field and he honours women, I just want to make sure…..” He shrugged helplessly.
Obviously he’s not used to seeing his brother this angry. A realisation MayRose found the least reassuring.
“Very well. We might as well stay here just in case. Hopefully we worry in vain.”
“Hopefully”, He said.
In the inner room, Queen Indira stood calmly as her husband paced infront of her.
Finally he spoke in a strained voice, “Where were you the night before, my Lady?”
“Right here, my lord”
” Nay, my lord”
“Nay? Very well then. Let me rephrase. Who were you with, Indira?” He asked in a dangerously quite voice.
Indira looked into his eyes, now fiery gold and asked, “Am I being accused of something, my lord?”
“Indira.” He looked like he was ready to explode. “Just answer the question.”
“Very well. I went out to see my brother, your highness”
“Your brother in-law, your Highness, or is that no longer permitted?”
Her husband looked shocked and confused.
“But Aunt Omra said….” He whispered
Oh the snake!
“Said what? Your majesty?” Indira was beginning to get angry herself.
“Never mind. Why did you have to sneak out to see him?”
“Because that’s what he requested!”
“And you couldn’t tell me where you were going?”
“I did not see the necessity. He said to tell no one.”
“I realize how this looks to you. But I hope you can trust my sincerity.”
Her husband looked perplexed. Indira knew he trusted her. But the situation looked suspicion especially with his aunt stirring the brew.
She really understood her husband’s dilemma.
To believe her means his “aunt” was wrong.
To completely believe his aunt, means to belief his queen was an adulteress.
I’m going to “properly” introduce myself to Omra.
Her husband was about walking out, but she blocked his path. He looked at her with a startled frown.
Well my lord. No one may never have dared to block your part, but no one has dared accuse me of such a vile thing even if it was implied.
“We are not finished, my lord.”
“What am I being accused of? And who is my accuser?”
“No one has accused you____”
“No one, my Lord?”
“I am Indira, princess of Amfyre Empire, queen of Xenia and Empress of your empire, your Majesty. I will not tolerate any falsehood implied against my person.”
“Indira calm yourself. I did not think you capable of falsehood.”
Indira smiled in grim amusement.
“You did not? Then why did you come in this room in such a fashion, my lord? Did you know what my cousin asked me, What did you do?. Now if my cousin could ask me that, by now news has spread that I have committed such an offence that made you loose your temper. Rumours would be rife by now.”
Indira continued in a much solemn voice, “If we do not discuss and resolve this openly, you will not like how my family will take it. And by then I will not interfere.”
The Emperor looked at her in calm understanding and took a deep breathe while running a hand through his midnight dark hair.
“What do you want from me, Indira?”
Indira walked up to her husband, held his strong hands and looked in his eyes, “Be sincere and open with me, my lord, as I will you. Otherwise, we will have a divided kingdom on our hands and that is dangerous for all concerned”
The Emperor slowly nodded and squeezed her hands in agreement.