All hail to My King! (Part 2)
For the lovely @marilynmonroefanfics 💝💖💘😘
Hope you will love the story!
N.B: This is the second part of I’d put a crown at your feet... So, it will be an AU, like the previous part.
July 29th, 1981. Saint Paul’s Cathedral.
The wedding bells rang again in the sky of the United Kingdom. After years of expectation, Charles of Wales, Crown Prince of the United Kingdom, finally get married. And the lucky woman was the young Diana Spencer, a charming blonde woman whose shy looks enthralled the country.
All the people were delighted to admire this modern fairytale and cheered for the new royal couple.
While the entire kingdom celebrated this event, the royal family prepared themselves for this incredible event. At the altar, Charles waited for his future wife, slightly nervous.
"Come on, Charles, breath! It looks like you're going to faint!" joked Andrew.
"Leave me alone! It's not you who is getting married!"
"Calm down, Charles! He just wanted you to relax!" stated Edward.
Sighing, the prince glanced at his parents: Philip gently smiled at his son, while Elizabeth nodded by way of encouragement. Charles noticed the presence of Piero, who was sitting between Margaret and Anne. The latter beamed at him and slightly waved as a sign of support.
Smiling, the heir apparent to the British throne discreetly waved back before he chatted with his brothers.
Piero genuinely smiled: he was so thrilled when Charles told him about his engagement. He would remember the first day Charles introduced him to the young Diana Spencer...
Flash-back. February 16th, 1981.
"So am I finally going to meet your mysterious friend named Piero, Charles?" asked Diana.
"Indeed, my love. I wished that you met him sooner, but we did not manage to find some time. But, here we are!"
"You seem very attached to him. Do you have a special bond with him?"
"You are not far from the truth. To be honest, Piero is very dear to me and to some members of my family. And I really want to introduce you to him."
"I am honored." gently smiled his fiancee.
A few minutes later, they arrived near a beautiful house in Westbourne. The young woman noticed a car she immediately recognized.
"Isn't that the car of your father?"
"Uh? Oh, indeed: it is his car!"
They got out of their car and went to the door.
"Do you think your friend is going to like the flowers I bring?" asked Diana as she picked the bouquet.
"I am certain he will appreciate, dear."
Clearing his throat, the prince knocked on the door. To be honest, he was a bit nervous introducing Diana and Piero. After all, it was the first time they will meet in person. If only his mother had not discovered the truth about Piero and his father, he would have done it sooner.
Suddenly, the door opened, and Piero appeared with a big smile on his face.
"Charles! How do you do?"
"Good afternoon, Piero. I am fine, thanks. And you?"
"I feel like a million bucks, thanks."
Charles gestured towards Diana, who blushed.
"Piero, I would like to introduce my fiancee, Lady Diana Frances Spencer, to you. Diana, this is Mister Piero De Angelis, artist by profession."
"It is a pleasure to finally meet you, Mister De Angelis," politely muttered Diana.
"The pleasure is mine, my dear. I was impatient to meet you too: Charles did not stop talking about you..."
"In good terms, I hope..." giggled the young woman.
"Oh, you have no idea. I'm afraid that the English language lacks words for our dear Charles to say how perfect you are!"
"You're kind, thank you... Oh, I brought this bouquet for you!" she said while handing the flowers to their host.
"That's very lovely, thanks. Come in, we have so many things to talk about..."
The pair entered the house and followed Piero to his indoor garden, where they sat down.
"So, Diana... Can I call you Diana?"
"Very well. So, Diana, how do you handle the media?"
"The best I can: they can be very intrusive. But Charles is very supportive, so it helps a lot. And I can count on Andrew and Edward to help me!"
"Yes: I've heard that they threw snowballs at photographers during the Christmas Party at Balmoral!"
"Absolutely. Mother was not very pleased, but it was fun!"
"Oh please: don't talk about her! Your mother is such a killjoy!"
Diana snorted. She admitted that her royal future mother-in-law was quite stern and strict, but she never heard someone said it loud... except Margaret!
"Diana spotted my dad's car near your house. Is that normal?"
"Yes, it is right: he is here!"
"Much to my dismay, he is in the kitchen!"
"In the kitchen?" asked the pair, puzzled.
"And why is he in the kitchen?"
Piero comically sighed.
"Because, for God only knows why, your dear father decided to cook for you today!"
"COOKING?" screamed Charles.
"But does he know how to cook?" asked Diana.
"Well, I am afraid that he never saw a pan on his entire life!"
"I HEARD YOU, PIERO!" yelled Philip from the kitchen.
"It was on purpose, darling!" yelled back the man with a mischievous smile.
Diana raised an eyebrow: did Piero just called Philip darling? It was unusual...
Philip appeared with a large plate in his hands.
"Sorry for the waiting... But I wanted to not blowing up the kitchen!"
"You better not soil my kitchen, or I let you cleaning up!"
"No worry, angel: your kitchen is untouched... Oh, sorry: hello, the fiances! How are you?"
"We are fine, and we were wondering about your cooking skills!"
"I did not know you cooked!" genuinely said Diana.
"To be honest, I wanted to try something for our little reunion far from Buckingham Palace. And to please our host, I tried Italian gastronomy!"
Piero looked at his lover, shocked.
"Wait a minute! Did you try to cook something from Italy? From my familial roots?"
"Honestly, Philip... I hesitate between happiness because you honor my culture and dread. After all, I fear a culinary disaster!"
Diana and Charles burst into a fit of laughter when they saw Philip stared in amazement.
"Do you have such little faith in my abilities, my love?"
"Mmmmh... It depends which abilities you are talking about!" smirked Piero.
When he understood the innuendo, the prince consort brightly blushed.
While Diana laughed, Charles cleared his throat.
"Hm, Father, Piero: I did not tell Diana..."
"You did not tell me about what?" inquired the young woman, perplexed.
Charles glanced at his father and his best friend before speaking:
"Well, as you have guessed, my parents' marriage was broken for many years."
"In fact, it is the case, and my mother even had a lover, Mister Acherville. So, this situation strained the relationships between all the members of our family. It lasted 4 years until my dear aunt Margaret introduced Piero to my dad during a party. And since this day... they started a love affair!"
The young woman gasped.
"You mean... Piero is your father's boyfriend?"
"To put it simply, yes. And those two lovebirds are together since 1972."
He gently held Diana's hand.
"Honestly, I really tried to find how to tell you about this. But I thought that the better solution was that you see it by yourself."
Diana nodded, surprised.
"Well, that was unexpected... But, on the other hand, when you introduced me to your family for the first time, I spotted that your parents did not seem close to each other. Of course, it could be explained by the etiquette, but I did not feel any warmth, not a single trace of love. I guess it is the consequence of a dying love... And I know what I am talking about since my parents divorced when I was a child..."
She warmly smiled.
"But, it is a good thing that your father finds someone to love. And I can see that it is a genuine bond."
The three men sighed, relieved. At least, Diana was not against it.
"Well, I guess that it went better than I expected." smiled Piero.
"Son, you choose right: your future wife is a good person. Keep that in mind!" stated Philip.
"I would never forget that, Father," answered Charles.
The dinner went smoothly, between fits of laughter and passionate discussions. During the dinner, Piero gets to know Diana better. Her shining personality, her lovely laugh, her shy smile... Every part of her was astonishing. Admittedly, Charles chose wisely his future wife.
Back to the present.
Suddenly, cheerings can be heard outside the cathedral as Diana appeared, dressed in her white wedding gown. She shyly glanced at Charles with a graceful smile on her face. Walking her down the aisle, her father, the Earl of Spencer, was proud and moved to marry his daughter to the Crown Prince.
Piero looked at the future husband and wife as they exchanged their vows. All with the benediction of the Archbishop of Canterbury. He felt that Charles and Diana would be happy together. As long as they never forget the essential, everything would be fine...
June 21st, 1982. At Piero's home.
In the living room, Philip paced up back and forth, much to Piero's annoyance.
"For Lord's sake, stop pacing like a caged lion! It bothers me, and I can't concentrate on my paint!"
"I know, I know... But I am worried!"
Piero rolled his eyes.
"Thank you, I have noticed! But it would be fine: Diana is with the best doctors! It will be fine!"
"I know... But I can't help!"
Sighing, Piero put his paintbrushes away and said:
"Philip, there is no need to worry: I am sure everything will be okay. Moreover, Charles is with her!"
The prince consort sat down and replied:
"Yes, I should not worry. But Diana's pregnancy was so stressful for her that I don't know how she would handle this birth!"
Piero scratched the back of his head: poor Diana! Her first pregnancy was an ordeal, to say the least! Of course, he, Charles, Philip, Anne, and Margaret were supportive and tried to ease her pains.
He did not want to admit it, but he was a bit worried too...
Suddenly, the phone rang, startling them.
"Do you think it's them?"
"Just pick the phone, and you'll see!"
Philip answered the call.
**"It's me, dad!"**
"Ah, Charles! What a relief! Do you have any news?"
**"Sure, I have! Is Piero here?"**
"Here I am!" said the latter, who arrived near the phone.
"So, the news?"
**"They are wonderful, to be honest. So, I can proudly say this: Dad, Piero, for the third time in your life, you are grandparents! And it's a boy!"**
"A BOY?" happily exclaimed the two lovers.
"What lovely news! What are his names?"
**"We named him William Arthur Philip Louis."**
"A touching tribute to your old father!" smiled Philip, moved by this news.
"And how's the mother?" inquired Piero.
**"Diana is exhausted but healthy and happy!"**
"Brilliant... You see, until your call, your father was scared to the core!"
"Did you really need to tell him?"
**"Well, at least, there is nothing to worry about, dad. Now, I have to leave you: I have to call Mother, and the people are impatient to meet my son!"**
"I understand... See you later!"
Once the conversation finished, Philip happily sighed:
"I wonder how he will look like, this little William!"
"We'll see when we'll meet him. I am sure he would be a lovely child."
"As long as he does not have his father's ears!"
"PHILIP MOUNTBATTEN! Take back immediately what you said... Otherwise, you sleep on the couch!"
"What? No, you would not dare..."
"Watch me..." smirked the artist as he ran to the bedroom.
"Not so fast, young man !" laughed the Duke as he ran after his lover.
To sum up, it was another afternoon like the others for Philip and Piero.
September 15th, 1984. In Kensington Palace.
"It's a boy again!" happily exclaimed Piero as he hung up the phone.
"Well, at least, Lizzie won't fear for her lineage!" snickered Margaret.
"And how they name him?" asked Philip.
"Henry Charles Albert David!"
"ALBERT?" exclaimed Margaret.
The two men looked at her, puzzled.
"Is there anything wrong, Maggie?" asked Piero.
"No... It's just that... Albert was my father's name."
She gently smiled.
"Finally, there is a new Albert in the family. Let's hope this little Harry will have a long and a nice life!"
Philip poured three glasses of champagne and handed them to Margaret and Piero.
"Now, let's raise our glasses to Harry!"
"TO HARRY!" happily exclaimed the artist and the princess.
As they cheered, this trio seemed to live total happiness, ready to deal with all the ordeals of life.
March 12th, 1986. Buckingham Palace.
"I really hope that this evening will be festive: I despise boring events!" sighed Margaret.
"Like all of us!" replied Piero.
"But the Queen required our presence, so let's do it!" said Diana, adjusting her dress.
"You heard the lady? Let's get over this! Besides, French President François Mitterrand would, at least, be more interesting than his American counterpart, Mister Reagan!" declared Philip.
The quartet got out of the car and went to the main room of Buckingham Palace. Walking down the corridors, the staff greeted them with deference:
"Good evening, Sires. Your Highnesses..."
Even Piero was greeted as if he was a member of the Royal Family. After all, the staff knew about Piero's existence since his confrontation with the Queen in 1979. But the artist was polite and kind towards them, so they treated him well and kept his relationship with Philip secret.
Before they arrived at the main room, Margaret asked with a mischievous tone:
"Ready for the show?"
"Shall we go, Maggie!" laughed Piero.
Two servants opened the doors, and they discovered a crowded place.
A servant announced:
"His Highness, Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh, Her Highness, Princess Margaret, Countess Snowdon, Her Highness Diana, Princess of Wales, and Sir Piero de Angelis."
All the people turned around and gasped in amazement when they saw the four newcomers arriving in the room.
Indeed, Margaret wore a turquoise dress, while Diana showed a beautiful turquoise necklace around her neck. As for Philip, he carried a turquoise brooch on his buttonhole, and Piero wore a turquoise tie. All seemed to shine among the guests...
A detail that bothered the Queen to the highest degree: of course, she must have known that those four would show off this evening.
Behind her, her devoted squire/lover, Roger Acherville, muttered at her ear:
"Pathetic! Look at them, dear! They disrespect your authority!"
"I am not sure that it was Diana's idea, neither Margaret... Even it would not be a surprise!"
"I am ready to bet that this parasite De Angelis was behind this farce. And, of course, your dear husband followed like a lost puppy!"
Meanwhile, the other guests complimented the royal newcomers with deference.
"Your Highness, you look ravishing in this suit!"
"Princess Diana, you are amazing tonight!"
"Mister De Angelis, your reputation as a fashionable man was not a rumor but the truth!"
"Princess Margaret, how gorgeous you are!"
Charles went to his wife and gently kissed her hand.
"My dear, you never cease to amaze me!" the prince whispered to her ear.
"You flatterer! I only tried to be beautiful for you!" Diana giggled.
At the moment, Piero saluted Misters Mitterrand and Reagan, as well as their respective wives.
"It is an exquisite honor to meet you, Monsieur De Angelis!" stated the French President.
"My husband and I admire your artistic work!" admitted Mrs. Danielle Mitterrand with a warm smile.
"Indeed, you are a talented man! I really appreciated your last painting, Peaceful Ireland." added the American Head of State.
"Personally, my firm favorite is your sculpture entitled Pure Embrace. It's amazing how you manage to convey the feeling of love through your work of art!" explained Mrs. Nancy Reagan.
"Ladies and gentleman, the humble artist in front of you is moved and honored by your compliments!" said Piero with a deep bow to them.
Margaret triumphally smirked: she knew this young man she met in 1972 will be famous, one day. And she was not disappointed by his incredible success.
A few minutes later, they were all gathered in the dining room of Buckingham Palace, along with Andrew, his girlfriend Sarah Ferguson, Anne, her husband Mark, Edward, and the Queen Mother. The atmosphere was charming and elegant, with passionate conversations.
Suddenly, Mrs. Mitterrand asked:
"Mr. De Angelis, is it true that you have other talents?"
"Oh, I don't know..." slightly blushed Piero.
"I've heard that he has an amazing voice!" added Sarah.
"Oh, what a chance! I would be so glad to hear him singing!" happily exclaimed Mrs. Reagan.
"If Her Majesty agrees, Mister De Angelis can demonstrate his singing talent!" suggested President Reagan.
Under the insistence of her guests, Elizabeth agreed:
"Well, if Mister De Angelis agrees, I allow him to perform!"
"In this case, just provide me a microphone, and let's start the party!" said Piero as he got up.
A few minutes later, everything was ready, and Piero went behind the microphone:
"Tonight, let's be elegant: I shall sing some Broadway classic!"
"Oh, that's exciting!" smiled Andrew.
Piero made a gesture to the musicians who started to play. And as soon as he was ready, the man sang:
You could have a great career, and you should!
Only one thing stops you, dear: you're too good!
If you want a future, darlin', why don't you get a past? '
Cause that fateful moment's comin' at last...
We're all alone. No chaperone can get our number.
The world's in slumber--let's misbehave!
There's something wild about you, child, that's so contagious.
Let's be outrageous--let's misbehave!
Philip nearly choked on his whiskey when he heard the lyrics: it can't be! He dared singing this!
Margaret tried to hide her hilarity but struggled: she should have known that Piero would provoke the Queen, but she did not expect this joke!
Diana and Charles sniggered: they were sure those lyrics were addressed to Philip... in front of Elizabeth!
Andrew, Sarah, and Edward tried to not burst into laughter, but the situation was too hilarious.
Anne and Mark stifled their laughs by covering their mouths, but it was hard to stop giggling like schoolboys.
The other guests snorted with laughter as they found the choice of the song pretty daring!
As for the Queen, she politely listened: she must admit that Piero was a good singer. Yet, she did not know the reason for the hilarity of her guests...
However, the Queen Mother understood what the song implied and tried to not be scandalized. She never accepted the presence of Piero in Philip's life, even if she admitted that he was a good influence on her grandchildren and great-grandchildren.
When it came to Acherville, he was boiling with rage. Among the few anti-Pieros, he probably was the most virulent towards the artist since the revelation of his love affair with the Duke of Edinburgh.
There was no place for two royal favorites at Buckingham Palace, and he swore to himself that he would do anything to oust his archnemesis...
Meanwhile, Piero, who ignored the turmoils of his enemy, continued to sing, much to some guests' entertainment:
When Adam won Eve's hand, he wouldn't stand for teasin'.
He didn't care about those apples out of season.
They say that spring means just one thing to little lovebirds.
We're not above birds--let's misbehave!
It's getting late, and while I wait, my poor heart aches on.
Why keep the brakes on? Let's misbehave!
I feel quite sure un peu d'amour would be attractive.
While we're still active, let's misbehave!
If you would just be sweet and only meet your fate, dear, Would be the great event of 1928, dear.
I always squeeze my Pekingese whenever he's good.
Your pedigree's good.
The hour is prime
We're wasting time procrastinating.
The guests applauded his performance, with some of them laughing at the message of the song.
As the artist he was, Piero saluted his audience before coming back to his seat.
"It was a wonderful performance, Mister De Angelis! Even if the choice of the song was risqué!" chuckled Mrs. Mitterrand.
"Tell me, Monsieur De Angelis: the song was not addressed to our wives?" inquired the French President.
"Oops, I get caught!" said Piero with a mischievous smile.
The two first ladies laughed, followed by their respective husbands.
"Oh, dear: you are one of the funniest men I ever met... Even if I appreciated your gesture, my love only belongs to my dear Ronald!" smiled Nancy while glancing at her husband.
"And my devotion is all yours, my darling!" answered Ronald as he kissed her hand.
"I share her opinion: you may be charming, but nothing would come between François and me!" continued Danielle.
"Ah, ma chère: we are bound to grow old together. A blessing, isn't it?" added François with a tender gesture.
The event went well and lasted until 3am. Once the guests went back to their hotels or their houses, Diana, Charles, Andrew, Sarah, Anne, Mark, Philip, Piero, Margaret, and Edward relaxed while walking through the corridors.
"It was a nice evening! Even if nobody foreshadows our Piero's performance!" stated Margaret, smiling.
"For sure, we will always remember this moment!" laughed Edward.
"I can't believe you dared sing about sex in front of two presidents! We're lucky that nobody knew the truth!" smirked Philip.
"It sounds like you have some plan tonight, Father!" grinned Andrew.
"Don't be too imaginative, young man!"
Suddenly, Diana exclaimed:
"I want to do something crazy!"
"What?" asked Charles, puzzled.
Without a word, Diana took off her shoes before jumping on Piero's back.
"Ouch! Respect the old man I am!" laughed the artist.
"I've always dreamed of doing this!"
"Piggyback ride? Really?" snickered Edward.
"If Piero is an old man, so what am I?" asked Philip.
"A living dinosaur!"
"MAGGIE!" screamed Philip, while the others laughed.
"Great idea, Diana! Let's do this, Andrew!" exclaimed Fergie as she jumped on her boyfriend's back.
"The night is not over, so I guess we can go crazy!"
"I JOIN!" yelled Anne, who jumped on Mark's back.
"I am surrounded by grown-up children!" laughed Charles.
But the little fun abruptly stopped.
"Pathetic! If Sires Reagan and Mitterrand saw you at this moment, they would poorly think of all of you!"
All stopped and turned around to see Acherville, standing behind them, his arms crossed on his chest and an arrogant smile on his face.
"Oh no: here comes the party-pooper in chief!" grumbled Edward.
Next to Acherville were Elizabeth and the Queen Mother.
While Queen Mum was intrigued, the Queen was harsh:
"May I know what you are doing? Acting like children?"
She glared at Diana:
"Get off the back of Mister De Angelis, right now."
Hurt, Diana went down, as Elizabeth pursued her lecture:
"I can't believe that you, the wife of the Crown Prince, acted like a stupid girl and rode the back of this... man!"
"Be careful about what you're going to say!" snarled Piero.
"Show some respect to Her Majesty!" shot back Acherville.
"Oh, shut up, you boot-licker! Nobody asked for your opinion!" snapped Margaret.
The others stared at Acherville with angry eyes. Since the beginning of his relationship with the Queen, this man gained influence over Elizabeth. Much to her family's despair, this upstart had succeeded in becoming the sovereign's right-hand man.
And since Elizabeth had great affection for her favorite, Acherville was not ready to clear off.
"And you, Philip, haven't you done anything to stop them from behaving like immature children?"
"Honestly, Elizabeth, could you worry about more important things than that? May I let you know that it is three in the morning, that there is no head of state around, and that we have the right to let off steam a little! "
"Exactly, it's three in the morning, and you're supposed to go to sleep and not act like schoolchildren!"
"You are lucky that the dinner was a success. Otherwise, there would have been dire consequences ... Especially against someone!" the former squire said, staring at Piero.
"Don't be a smartass! Just because you're the Queen's lover doesn't mean that you are the King!" snarled De Angelis.
"I have no orders to receive from an entertainer!" Acherville replied condescendingly.
Annoyed by the behavior of his mother's lover, Edward intervened in the conversation:
"For heaven's sake, Acherville! Go to hell and leave us alone!"
Everyone turned to the 22-year-old young man who looked pissed off: Edward was a calm and patient person. To see him get angry, you really had to push him to the limit!
"Edward? What does this language mean?" wondered the Queen Mother.
"I wouldn't allow such language from you, young man!" added the Queen.
"But I've had enough of this jerk, that's what I mean! He allows himself to disrespect all of us, whether it's your own children or the palace staff! You bet that everyone hates your playboy, mom!"
Elizabeth replied in an icy tone:
"Edward Antony Richard Louis Windsor, I order you to apologize to Mister Archeville immediately!"
"Apologize to that bastard? I'd rather die!"
Slowly, Diana walked towards her mother-in-law and said with a calm tone:
"And to think that you lectured on how to be a good mother during my first pregnancy! But I see that you have nothing to teach anyone on this subject where you are hardly brilliant, Your Majesty!"
Elizabeth wanted to protest, but she saw in the eyes of her daughter-in-law that she had no interest in interrupting her.
“Now I understand why your children say they grew up without their mother. It's not just because of your many official trips, but because of your indifference to them. I don't understand how you can ignore the flesh of your flesh, to the point of turning a blind eye to their suffering. I would never do such treatment on my children, ever! And I hope you will be a grandmother worthy of your grandchildren!"
Diana turned to Acherville and said threateningly:
"As for you, scoundrel, I strictly forbid you to approach my children, is that clear? Otherwise, I promise to make your life a nightmare, whether you sleep with the queen or not!"
"Well spoken, Diana!" exclaimed Margaret.
As for Charles, he was both surprised and amused: he did not know that his sweet wife hid such a character. And it did not displease him, on the contrary...
“Before I forget: now you will treat my husband, Anne, Andrew, and Edward with the respect they deserve. Remember that I married the future King of England, and his siblings are princes and princesses of the UK."
"SHUT UP, I AM TALKING! And you're going to stop condescending Piero. This man might not be an aristocrat like you, but he's so much better than you. If anything happened to him, I would hold you responsible. And even if you took his place with the Queen, Philip remains the Prince Consort, and you will stop disrespecting him. Am I clear?"
Acherville had a cold sweat: the scathing tone of the Princess of Wales and the hateful look she gave him scared him.
As for Elizabeth, she was amazed. She, who thought that Diana would be an obedient and submissive young girl, had misjudged her daughter-in-law.
Resuming a semblance of dignity, she said soberly:
"Very well, I take note of your complaints, and I leave you. Good evening!"
Then, she turned around and walked away, followed by her mother and her lover.
Once the trio had left, Piero turned to Diana and said:
"Well, my dear, we can say that you have quite a character!"
He took her hands and added:
"Thanks for standing up for me!"
"There is no need to thank me: you have always been so nice to me. Besides, I could not let this man disrespect you! Neither to you nor the others."
“Brother, you married the right person," Andrew said.
"I see it day by day ... However, Diana, Mother is not completely wrong about riding on Piero's back."
"What do you mean?" Fergie asked worriedly.
Charles smiles mischievously:
"Come on, Diana! I am your husband: you are supposed to climb on my back!"
With a little cry of joy, the princess jumped on her husband's back.
Amused, Andrew had an idea:
"Shall we race?"
"YES!" replied the others.
Margaret and Philip teamed up while Edward climbed onto Piero's back.
"Ready? On your marks! 3.2... Hey! Father, that is cheating!" Anne yelled when she saw her father leave before the end of the count.
"Let's catch them!" exclaimed Piero happily.
They all started running through the halls of the palace, laughing. But this mad rush ended in the palace gym when they fell on the sports mats.
There was a silence, then they gave a fit of giggles at the result.
"Well, what a race! We start again when you want!" laughed Edward.
"I'm too old for that kind of bullshit!" Philip grumbled, massaging his lower back.
"Ah, you see! I was right when I said you were a dinosaur!" Margaret laughed, making the others laugh.
Philip looked falsely offended before responding:
"Dinosaurs don't compare with fossils!"
Margaret decided to counterattack:
"So, like that, am I an old fossil? Take that, diplodocus!"
And she threw a pillow in his face.
"YOUHOU! A pillow fight!" cried Edward, who attacked Andrew and Sarah.
"That's all we needed!" Charles exclaimed before Diana slammed a pillow right in his face.
"Take this!" laughed the young woman.
"So, you dared attacking me? Come over here!" laughed the prince while pursuing his wife armed with a cushion.
And it was a crazy pillow fight that lasted several minutes before everyone stopped, exhausted but hilarious.
"Well, you could say it was a memorable pillow fight!" Margaret sighed, smiling blissfully.
"You are right, Aunt Margaret! The best pillow fight of my life!" Andrew laughed.
Glancing at the clock, Charles said:
"I think we should go get some rest! I know tomorrow is a day off, but we need to get our sleep time back!"
"He's right ... Come on, good night!"
After wishing each other good night, they all left for their respective residences. Only Piero and Philip were left alone, enjoying the restored calm.
Suddenly Philip said:
"You know if Diana hadn't yelled at Acherville to defend you ..."
"I would have done it."
"I know, don't worry. Our dear princess was faster than you, that's all."
The artist embraced his lover tenderly:
"I do not doubt for a minute that my handsome sailor would have come to my rescue!"
Amused, the prince stroked the young man's face and whispered:
"I love you, Piero!"
"I love you too, Philip!"
In the end, it was another victory for the pair and a new lease of life for Philip.
Meanwhile, Margaret went back home when Howard greeted her.
"Good evening, Ma'am. Or should I say good morning, given the hour?"
"Oh, dear Howard, you worried about me? What a sweet man!" gently smiled Margaret.
"But Ma'am, that is my duty!" answered the butler, blushing.
"Aw, how cute!" cooed the Princess as she playfully pinched her butler's cheek before heading to her bedroom.
"Good night, Howard! You can sleep: I won't wake up until 2 in the afternoon!"
Still surprised, the butler smiled: he should have known that even if she was 56 years old, Princess Margaret still being cheeky sometimes.
But at least, his life was not monotonous, and she was the most likable employer he ever had. Besides, he knew that he was the privileged witness of an extraordinary love story...
July 23rd, 1986. Westminster Abbey.
Once again, the bells of Westminster Abbey rang in the London sky. A new Royal wedding was celebrated all over the country. This time, it was Prince Andrew who gets married to his girlfriend, the charming redheaded Sarah Ferguson.
While the newlyweds saluted the crowd from the balcony, Piero looked at them with tenderness. They seemed so happy and thrilled to start their new life together...
"And to say that Andrew told me he did not want to be an adult when he was younger..." smirked Philip.
"Well, Sarah made him change his mind!" replied Piero, who smiled while looking at the groom and bride waving at the crowd.
Besides them, the Queen was happy for her third child to get married. However, something still bothered her: Piero.
Since she knew about her husband's affair with the artist, her children demanded that Piero would be present at every event they attended, their weddings included.
A situation that annoyed Elizabeth, to say the least: this entertainer took her place in the family. All with the benediction of her children! Even the palace staff approved their relationship and treated Piero like a member of the royal family!
And her grandchildren... She may have a good relationship with them, but they prefer spending time with De Angelis. They even called him "Nonno Piero"! What an outrage!
Philip and her keep appearances of a happy marriage for the Crown's sake, but it was not the truth for years.
She hoped that Philip would grow tired and break up with the young Mister de Angelis, but nothing happened. Worse, they were in love like the first day.
Luckily for her, she had Roger by her side to support her and provide the love she needed.
As for Queen Mum, she did not approve of neither of the two royal favorites. But she had to admit that Piero is slightly more humble than Acherville. The latter reminded her of the former King Edward VII...
Nobody could tell what would happen in the following years. But for sure, one day, one of the two royal lovers had to be out of the picture...
September 15th, 1987, in Westbourne
In his house, Piero was finishing his next creation. Indeed, the famous German playwright Gerald Höfler asked him to create and supervise the scenery of his next play, A matter of mistakes. As the premiere was planned for mid-October at the London Coliseum, Höfler wanted his drama to be remembered. Until now, he praised Piero's designs, saying they were beyond his expectations.
Once he finished his work, Piero proudly smiled: he was satisfied with his production! He could not wait to show the result!
He packed up his work and drove to the theater. Once he arrived, he went to the room, where he saw the dramatist supervising the rehearsal.
The artist greeted him:
The German man turned around and happily exclaimed:
"Piero, Mein Lieber! What a blessing to see you again! How is your work going on?"
"Well, I can proudly say that I have finished!"
"Wunderbar! Show me your masterpieces!"
Piero handed him his portfolio, and Gerald checked it with impatience. Considering his facial expressions, the artist guessed that the playwright was satisfied with his work.
"Piero, Liebe... You are beyond my expectations!"
"Yes... The colors are harmonious, and it matches every scene... No one ever shows me such wonderful work!"
"Well, I am glad that you liked it!"
Suddenly, the German man came closer to him, inches between their faces.
"I hope that your creations got the praise they deserve..."
"Oh... Yes, of course!"
"That's great!" muttered Gerald while he gently stroke Piero's hand, much to the embarrassment of the latter.
"Uh, Gerald? What are you doing?"
"Just... thanking you..." whispered the playwright, as he leaned closer in an attempt to kiss the Italian man.
Panicked, Piero stood back and stammered:
"Listen, Gerald: you're a good man, and I enjoy working with you! But we can't be together!"
"I know, it might be surprising, but I am with someone, and I am happy with him!"
"Does he deserves you?"
Piero slightly smiled.
"More than you ever imagined..."
"And who is this lucky man?"
"Well... It's complicated..."
"What do you mean?"
"Let's just say that I want to keep my personal life private!"
A smirk came across Gerald's face.
"Or let's just say that you are lying..."
He sensually held Piero's waist, much to the latter's fear.
"Whoever shares your bed - if he exists - I can be better than him... Wanna try?"
As the artist was stammering an answer, a familiar voice boomed:
"Is everything alright, gentlemen?"
The two artists turned around, and Piero was relieved to see Philip arriving.
But the look in his eyes said that he was pissed off... Let's hope that he won't make a scene.
Immediately, Gerald stood back and bowed:
"Your Highness, it is such a pleasure and honor to meet you."
"The pleasure is mine." shortly answered the Duke.
Piero bit his lip, trying to hide his smile: he did not except his lover being jealous to this point. At least, it stopped Gerald's courting.
"May I know what the prince consort is doing in this place?"
"As the patron of the Drama Arts festival, I wanted to see how the artists are doing..."
"We are doing well, Your Highness! Indeed, we will be ready for the premiere, thanks to Mister de Angelis!"
The prince consort retorted:
"So, it explained why you tried to kiss him?"
Gerald was speechless by the bluntness of this statement, while Piero covered his mouth, stifling his laughter. Indeed, he discovered the jealous side of Philip's personality.
"Uh... Your Highness... It was not what you think..."
"Do you consider that I am blind?"
"Was? No, no! I would not dare to say something like that!"
"I am reassured. Now, if you excuse me, I had an appointment with Mister de Angelis. As you may know, he is one of the organizers, and we must refine some details. After all, we want this celebration to be perfect, isn't it?"
The German dramatist stuttered:
"Well, of course, Your Highness!"
"Brilliant. I shall leave you: I think you had a lot of work!"
"Sure... I have to go! Have a good day, Sir!"
Philip left the place, followed by Piero, who smirked. Seeing Gerald being so livid was a funny view.
Once they got in the car, they drove to Kensington Palace. On their way, the Duke suddenly held Peter close to him.
The artist chuckled:
"Don't tell me you were jealous..."
"I swear that if you were not here, I would punch this jerk!"
"PHILIP! Please, don't jeopardize your reputation!"
"As if I care! I would let no one even barely touch you..."
He leaned close to his face.
"You're mine, and mine only."
"And I will always be yours, my Viking Prince... My mighty Mars."
"My little Mercury..." smirked the prince consort before feverishly kissing his lover.
Piero kissed him back, smiling: now, he was confident that Philip was a fiercely jealous lover. It seemed they are going to have fun in the future...
October 20th, 1987, Buckingham Palace.
In Buckingham Palace's reception room, the splendor of the British Crown was set for the prestigious guests: indeed, Prince Rainier of Monaco and his wife, Grace Grimaldi, came to England for an official visit.
All the Royal Family was present to welcome the princely couple. Adjusting his tie in the bathroom, Piero was a bit nervous: he was really admirative of Grace when she was an acclaimed actress. He could not still believe he would meet one of the Hollywood icons.
Suddenly, he felt Philip's hands gently massaging his shoulders.
"Calm down, Piero: it would be fine. You survived your encounter with President Mitterrand and President Reagan, so you can survive this one!"
"I know, I know. But this is so different for me: Grace Kelly is my childhood idol! It seems so unreal!"
The Duke of Edinburgh gently kissed his lover's cheek.
"Have no fear, my angel: everything will be fine. Besides, I am sure the Grimaldi would be pleased to meet one of the best British artists of the century!"
The artist laughed.
"Oh, stop that! You're going to make me blush!"
"And you are so adorable when you do this!" chuckled the prince consort.
Abruptly, someone knocked at the door, and they heard Howard's voice:
"Mister De Angelis, Your Highness: I am here to tell you that their Royal Highnesses Prince Rainier and Princess Grace are about to arrive!"
"We'll be here in a minute. Thank you, Howard!" replied Philip.
He turned to Piero.
"Ready for the show?"
"Do I have the choice?"
"I take that as a yes. Come on, let's greet our guests!"
A few minutes later, they arrived in the reception room. They found Elizabeth, Acherville, Charles, Diana, the Queen Mother, and Margaret talking to each other. They all turned their heads and saw the two lovers arriving.
"There you are! You're in time for our guests!" stated the Queen with a cold tone.
"I am always on time, dear wife!" replied the prince consort.
The main door opened, and a servant announced:
"Their Royal Highnesses Prince Rainier and Princess Grace of Monaco!"
The sovereign saluted the Monegascan royals.
"It is such a pleasure to greet you, dear Rainier and Grace!"
"The pleasure is reciprocated, Your Majesty."
Grace went to salute Piero, giving him her most beautiful smile.
"Good evening, Mister De Angelis. I am so glad to finally meet the talented artist Danielle praised so much!"
Trying to not faint, Piero managed to answer:
"It is an honor to finally meet one of the most amazing women of our time."
He swore he did not know where he found the strength to not pass out: his legs were like jelly at the moment.
"You're very kind, Mister De Angelis."
The diner went smooth, animated by passionate conversations. Much to Piero's dismay, Acherville tried to brag about his cultural knowledge.
"Which artist do you enjoy the paintings, Princess?" he asked.
"Apart from Mister De Angelis? Well, I really enjoyed Delacroix's works of art. I also like Monet, Turner, Gainsborough, Picasso..."
"Really? You like Picasso's art? Honestly, it is not my cup of tea!" replied the squire.
"Why?" asked the former actress.
"Well, he is gifted, for sure, but... There is something in his paints I can't understand: it looks like nonsense."
"It is the purpose of abstract art, Mister Acherville!" replied Piero, making the guests laugh.
Philip glanced at his lover with pride: he perfectly snubbed Acherville, all in front of their companies! He guessed that Elizabeth was not pleased to see her favorite embarrassed.
When the dinner reached his end, all the guests relaxed in the corridors. Rainier went to see Piero:
"May I speak with you in private, Mister De Angelis?"
"Of course, Your Highness!" answered Piero, puzzled.
They walked a little bit before the Prince of Monaco said:
"Mister De Angelis, I might sound rude or crazy, but I would like to order you a painting!"
Piero was astonished: he did not expect this one!
"Well... Of course, what can I do for you? Which type of paint do you want?"
"I would like you to paint a portrait of Grace."
"Yes... I wish to offer this portrait for her birthday..."
The prince had a dreamy smile.
"She is everything I ever wished for. I don't know if you understand what I mean, but... When you find your significant one, you will do everything for this person!"
The artist gently smirked.;
"Oh, I understand, Your Highness. I understand very well..."
"Don't worry, I will work on your wife's portrait. I will make sure that it would ready on time for Her Highness's birthday!"
"Thank you very much, Mister De Angelis! She would be thrilled to have one of your creations." happily exclaimed Rainier as he shook hands with the British-Italian artist.
"The pleasure is all mine, Sir!" replied Piero.
Two hours later, the Monegascan couple went back to their hotel. Meanwhile, Piero walked down the corridors when suddenly, a hand grabbed him by the collar and pinned him against the wall.
He opened his eyes and discovered the furious face of Acherville.
"So, I hope you enjoyed humiliating me in front of everyone! How dare a commoner speaking like this to me?"
"Leave me alone, you jackass!" grimaced Piero while he struggled to get out of Acherville's grip.
"Not so fast! If you want to stay in one piece, here's my offer: get out of here and never come back!"
But the artist was not easily impressed.
"Over my dead body, you sucker!"
Acherville smirked like a predator.
"Well-chosen words, Signore!"
But as the Queen's favorite prepared his fist to punch Piero, a firm hand stopped his gesture.
"Would you care to tell me what are you doing, Sir Acherville?"
The two men saw Philip standing behind Acherville, his hand firmly gripping the squire's wrist. His furious glare terrified the squire.
"Let Piero go, or I swear that your wrist will be the first thing I will break!"
Reluctantly, Roger loosened his grip, and Piero managed to breathe.
"Why don't you mind your business? He humiliated me!"
"Oh, but you managed perfectly to humiliate yourself without his help! Besides, admit it: you just needed an excuse to lash out at him!"
Acherville gritted his teeth: even if Philip was an old man, he had enough strength to follow through with threats.
He pulled his hand back.
"Alright, you win. But it's not the end, Your Highness. One day or another, your little clown had to bow out. And be sure that I'll do anything!"
"Is that a threat?" snarled Piero.
"No... Just a warning."
The squire turned around and walked away. Once Acherville left, Philip rushed at Piero's side.
"Are you alright, Piero?"
"I knew better days... Apart from that, I am okay!"
Relieved, the prince gently held his lover against him.
"Thank God, I arrived before he beat you!"
"I had no worry, you know. Because I knew you would come to save me..."
Piero gently stroked Philip's cheek.
"We survived through 15 years together. It is not like something is going to tear us apart."
"You're right, my little Delacroix."
Lightly leaning his head on his lover's shoulder, the artist whispered:
"I am so grateful to have you here with me, my Viking prince."
"And I am so glad to be by your side, my Italian angel." chuckled the Duke as he kissed Piero's head.
For sure, they are meant to stay together a long time...
December 24th, 1991
The thick snow covered the Scottish landscapes, turning them into fairytale scenery. Even if his Mediterranean roots enjoyed the warmth of summer, Piero has a soft spot for the enchanting British winter. Everything seemed so calm when the snow fell.
While admiring the view, the artist did not hear Margaret coming near to him:
"Looking for your next painting, caro Piero?"
"Hey, don't startle me like that!" laughed the man as he turned around.
"Oh, come on! Don't be such a wimp, darling!"
"Don't be a prick, Your Sassiness!"
The princess laughed.
"Ah, my dear painter! At least, you master the art of banter!"
Margaret looked at the peaceful winter afternoon with a musing smile.
"I always enjoyed Christmas time at Balmoral... It's like time stopped just for a few days, and you can be yourself for this short time."
"I understand what you mean. Everything becomes eerie at this moment."
"And this year, we have The Little One with us!"
The Little One. This was the nickname Margaret gave to Grace Cecilie Margaret, the third child of Charles and Diana. The little princess was born on July 23rd, during a hot summer day: poor Diana nearly passed out of exhaustion! But in the end, everyone was healthy and happy. And to say that little Grace made hearts melt was an understatement.
"Yes, now there she is! Isn't she so cute?"
"You bet she is! You know what? If she looks like her mum when she grows up, she would be England's next darling!"
"I am not sure it will please Charles..."
"Poor nephew: he is not out of the woods with his good-looking children!" laughed Margaret.
"Especially when you decide to dress them like little top models!"
"What? It will be a shame to not dress them like the princes and princesses they are!"
Suddenly, Edward's voice called them.
"Aunt Margaret? Piero? Where are you?"
"We're here in a minute, dear." replied the princess before telling her friend.
"Come on, dear: they are worried about us!"
"Then, let's not be long in coming!"
The duo walked back near Balmoral Castle, where they found the rest of the family enjoying the afternoon.
While Diana held her six-month daughter in her arms, Charles looked after William and Harry. As for the two boys, they built a snowman with their cousins Peter, Zara, and Beatrice, with the help of their uncle Edward. At the same time, Fergie talked with Andrew, Anne, and Mark, while holding Eugenie.
"Here come the two Fashion Icons! What were you doing?" asked Charles.
"We were planning a coup d'Etat, darling!" jokingly retorted Margaret.
"Oh, Dear Lord: trouble is among us!" replied Anne.
"I bet they were kissing!" joked Andrew.
"Do you want me to get killed by your father?" said his aunt.
"And I only belong to him. And no one else!" added Piero.
"Speaking of my dear brother-in-law, where is he?"
"He paid a visit to a friend who lives not far from here. The poor lad suffered a broken leg after a bad fall!" explained Mark.
"Oh, dear! I hope he will get better soon!"
"I think so... Ah, I think Father is coming back!" stated Edward.
Indeed, the Range Rover parked, and Philip appeared.
"Hello everyone! Did I miss something?"
"Not at all: we explained to Margaret where did you go."
"Alright... Wait: where are Elizabeth and my mother-in-law?"
"The Queen is rehearsing her Christmas speech, and the Queen Mother prefers staying inside, as she does not want to catch a cold!"
He went to Piero and gently kissed his gloved hand.
"Aren't you cold, my beloved?"
"I am fine, thanks. Don't worry about me!"
This sweet moment was interrupted by an infamous voice.
"Oh, isn't that sweet?"
All turned to see Roger Achervillle, standing next to a wall, his arms folded on his chest.
"Oh, I nearly hope he fell in a frozen lake!" grumbled Charles.
"May we know what you are doing here?" sighed Fergie, exasperated.
"Nothing special, except that I see this family being soiled by some unwanted people!" snarled Acherville while glancing at Piero.
"As if you were pure as the driven snow! In case you forgot, you are also unwanted in this family! Unlike Piero, no one ever wanted you here!" riposted Mark.
"Remember what happened the last time you tried to threat us..." warned Philip.
"Don't lecture me, you arrogant prick! Unlike me, a real British aristocrat, you are just an immigrant brought near the Crown by pity!"
Suddenly, snowballs were thrown at him by William, Peter, and Zara.
"Leave Grandpa and Nonno Piero alone, you bully!"
"Nobody wants you here, you dumbass!"
"Take that, you killjoy!"
The adults were impressed by their children's rebellion: usually, they ignored Acherville or tried to be polite to a minimum. But this time, they really want to defend Piero.
However, Acherville would have none of it and decided to admonish them.
"Come here, you little..."
"BEBOP, OLD MAN!" yelled Harry and Beatrice, who knocked him over with their sleds.
"Well done, kids!" smirked Margaret.
Furious, the squire got up and turned to the Princess:
"Don't you dare encouraging them, you witch!"
"ROGER ACHERVILLE, HOW DARE YOU?"
All turned and saw the Queen who stood at the entrance of the palace, furious.
"I don't want to hear your excuses! No one ever speaks to my sister with that tone! You are not above her!"
All were shocked: it was the first time they heard Elizabeth yelling at her favorite like that.
"But Elizabeth, she encouraged your grandchildren to disrespect me!"
"Grandma, he wanted to slap us!" protested Beatrice.
"Lizzie, it's a lie!"
But the Queen was furious and did not want to hear his complaints.
"Don't even call Beatrice a liar, again! Let me be clear: you have no authority upon my grandchildren, understood?"
Acherville nodded, defeated.
"Fair enough. Now, shall we all come back inside? The dinner is ready." she said.
All went into the palace, taking off their coats and heading to their rooms. Once they get dressed for dinner, the royal family sat down and started to enjoy the recipes prepared by the cooking staff.
The atmosphere was pleasant, even if all were still surprised by the Queen's outburst of rage.
"So, what do you think Santa Claus will bring you this year?" asked Andrew to his daughter.
"I don't know... A car?"
"Aren't you too young to drive, Beatrice?" laughed Philip.
"I asked for a pair of rollers: I hope I would have them!" stated Harry.
"If you were a nice boy, you would have them!" replied Fergie.
"And you, great-grandmother, what would you like for Christmas?" asked William.
"Oh, my boy, I have no idea... This evening together is already enough. Even if..."
She stopped in her tracks, slightly frowning.
"Is anything upset you, Mother?" asked Margaret.
"Oh, dear... I can't find your father's portrait!"
"Which one?" inquired Elizabeth.
"The one I gave him for our twentieth anniversary. I cannot find it!"
"Is this picture important for you?" asked Acherville.
He immediately regretted his question as the Queen Mother looked daggers at him.
"Indeed, Mister Acherville. This portrait of my dear Bertie belonged to the cherished memories I had of him."
Usually, Piero would smirk at the view of his nemesis being roasted by Queen Mum. But he saw a glimpse of hurt and sadness in her eyes, which broke his heart.
Philip often told him how much she loved her dear husband, and she was still mourning him.
Later that evening, all went to bed. As Philip laid down in his bed, Piero joined his lover and cuddled him.
He glanced at the clock, who indicated midnight and muttered:
"Buon Natale, amore mio!"
Smirking, the Duke kissed him and answered:
"Merry Christmas, my love!"
They both fell asleep as the churches' bells rang gently in the air to celebrate Christmas...
The next morning.
The calm over Balmoral was disrupted by running footsteps and peals of laughter.
"Philip?" muttered Piero in a sleepy voice.
"Yes, my love?" answered the prince.
"Brace yourself: here comes the storm!"
The next second, William, Harry, Zara, Peter, and Eugenie bargained into their bedroom and jumped on their bed.
"GRANDPA! NONNO! GET UP, IT'S CHRISTMAS DAY!" they happily yelled.
"Thank you, I have noticed!" growled Philip, still sleepy.
"Did not you forget something?" asked Piero, smiling.
"Ah, right! One, two, three..."
And all the kids said, with their most angelic smiles:
"I prefer! Merry Christmas too, kids!" chuckled Philip.
"Come on, Grandpa! The presents are here!" squealed Beatrice before running to the dining hall, followed by her cousins.
Once they are alone, the two lovers laughed.
"Well, they are very excited!" said Philip.
"You bet they are! At least, I hope they would keep this ability to be amazed by every single moment like this!" replied Piero.
"I am sure they will. But, before we join the rest of the family..."
The duke cupped his lover's face between his hands and kissed him.
"Merry Christmas, my darling!"
"Merry Christmas, my love!"
Suddenly, they heard Harry saying impatiently:
"Grandpa, Nonno, please stop kissing and come down!"
"Such authority! I wonder from who he takes this character!" laughed Piero.
They got up and put on their bathrobes before leaving the bedroom. On their way, they greeted the staff and wished a Merry Christmas.
When the pair arrived, all the family was gathered in the dining room, with presents near the Christmas tree.
"Ah, here you are! Merry Christmas!" happily exclaimed Fergie, who greeted them.
"Merry Christmas too, dear Fergie!" gently answered Piero.
"I see that you did not open the presents yet!" stated Philip.
"Well, the children insisted that we waited for everyone to be present before doing so!" explained Diana.
"How lovely!" smiled Piero.
The Queen Mother appeared in the company of Margaret.
"Merry Christmas to all of you!" gently said the matriarch.
"Thank you, Grandmother!" replied Anne.
"Can we open the presents, now? Please?" begged Harry.
"What are you waiting for? Open them!" declared Margaret with a mischievous smile.
All opened their presents and discovered what they received. Harry was thrilled to see he finally received his rollers.
Meanwhile, Grace was spoiled with many plushies and other toys.
At the same time, Margaret thanked Piero for the lovely bracelet he offered her.
"Darling, you did not need to spoil me like that!"
"Only the best for a dear friend!"
Suddenly, Acherville cleared his throat, catching everyone's attention.
"Come on, what did he plan again?" sighed Mark.
Acherville walked towards the Queen Mother and respectfully bowed.
"Your Majesty, it's with a great deference that I bring you this humble present for this Christmas Day!" he said while handing her a wrapped gift.
"A present? For me? Oh, I did not expect it from you, Mister Acherville. Nevertheless, I appreciate the gesture!"
She took it and tore the wrapping paper, revealing an elegant small box.
"Charming... And may I know the purpose of this present?"
"Well, as your vanity case must be elegant as you, I thought this small box would be perfect for your dentures!"
When she heard that, the Queen Mother was infuriated.
"SUCH IMPERTINENCE! DON'T YOU EVEN DARE BRING PRESENTS, YOU RUDE SYCOPHANT!"
The other adults present stifled their laughter with difficulty. However, the children did not even try to hide their hilarity and cried out of laughter.
As for Acherville, he was mortified: he counted on this present to win the Queen Mother's alliance, and he failed.
Feeling that it was the perfect moment, Piero walked towards the Queen Mum and said with a respectful bow:
"Ma'am, with your permission, I would like to give you my Christmas present!"
Intrigued, the woman asked:
"So, you have a present for me too? Very well, where is it?"
"If you would follow me, please..." gestured the artist.
Puzzled, the former Queen got up and followed Piero while the other royals looked at each other, perplexed: what was this famous present?
Meanwhile, Piero and Queen Mum entered the familial gallery portrait. She nearly had an attack when she saw the picture of her husband, which disappeared back to its place!
"How could it be?"
"Well, I have to confess: I was the one who took the portrait!"
She turned to him, confused:
"But why on Earth did you do such a thing?"
Piero started to explain:
"Philip told me how unconditionally you loved your husband and how you cherish every memory of him. And you held this painting dear. So, I decided to restore it as a Christmas present for you."
The Queen Mother stayed silent, unable to say a single word.
The artist, fearing that she was upset, said:
"I understood that you may be mad at me and that you would despise me more. But I just wanted to say that I never faked my respect towards you, and I really admire your sincere love for your late husband..."
Suddenly, she turned to him and bowed her head.
"Mister De Angelis, I shall admit that your present was unexpected. But thanks to your talent and kindness, this portrait seems lively again. Like my dear Bertie was here, with us."
She raised her head, and Piero saw some tears in her eyes:
"Maybe I disapprove of your relationship with Philip, but at least, you never try to claim a place that was never yours. And you always show respect to my husband's legacy. Please, be sure you have all my respect and my gratefulness towards you."
The artist was taken aback: he really did not expect this one! She even granted him her respect!
Slowly, he bowed to her:
"I am glad to see that my work was above your expectations, Your Majesty."
"Thank you, Mister De Angelis..."
They came back to the dining room, where the Queen Mother explained the whole situation to her family.
All were surprised and moved by this gesture... except one, obviously!
Later that day, all the royal family went for a walk in the snowy landscape.
Walking next to his mother, Harry asked:
"When people love each other very much, they get married. Right?"
"It often happens, yes," replied his father.
"Well, in this case... Why Grandpa did not marry Nonno?"
Diana and Charles looked at each other, embarrassed. How to answer this tricky question to a seven-year-old boy?
Luckily, the Prince of Wales started to explain, carefully choosing his words:
"Well, as you may know, Grandpa and Grandma were already married when Grandpa met Nonno..."
"But it is complicated for the Queen to divorce. So, even if they do not like each other like they used to, they have to stay together for the public's sake."
"But it is not fair!"
"Unfortunately, it is. Also, nowadays, it is still complicated for same-sex couples to publicly love each other. Besides, nobody is ready for a royal man to be in love with another man."
The little prince protested.
"But all this family is ready! And I am ready too, as I accept them!"
Fondly smiling, the Princess of Wales gently ruffled her son's red hair.
"I know, my little ginger. But we need more people to accept. Unfortunately, it takes time, but one day, it would be different if children like you start to fight for this!"
The young boy nodded.
"I guess you're right, mum."
"But, Uncle Charles..."
"You said that people do not accept same-sex lovers. But then, why people won't accept Nonno and Grandpa?"
"Because they did not see how amazing they are, and that's a shame!"
"I agree!" added Peter.
Anne and Mark smiled at their children's remarks.
At the same time, Piero and Philip, who walked at the end of the group, were moved by their grandchildren's speeches.
"They cannot be more perfect..." smiled the artist, wiping away a tear.
"I know, my love. I know..." gently muttered the prince as he held his lover's hand.
This Christmas went better than expected...
February 14th, 1992. In a mansion in the Essex countryside.
Sitting in his studio, Piero was painting portraits of the royal children. He chuckled as he thought how fast they grew up. Indeed, Peter was 15 years old, while his sister Zara would turn 11 in May. As for William and Harry, they will be 10 and 8 soon, while their baby sister, Grace, would celebrate her 1st birthday in July. Little Beatrice went on her 5th birthday, while little Eugenie would be 2 the following month.
Those children brought happiness in Piero's life: even if they were not related by blood, he loved them as if they were his own family members. And the feelings were reciprocated: all of the children called him Nonno Piero. They were so cute!
He enjoyed taking them to museums or teaching them artistic activities and sometimes brought along his nephews and nieces with him.
Once he finished the paintings, Piero put his brushes away and gazed at his work, satisfied. He was sure it would please Philip's children.
Thinking of his lover, the artist sighed: he wondered what the prince planned for their Valentine's day. Unfortunately, Philip won't be able to be here until the late afternoon, as he had some official events to attend.
But Piero had the habit of suffering in silence: after all, it was the case for twenty years.
The Italian-British smiled: twenty years together. Time flies so fast...
Cleaning up his painting tools, he went to the bathroom and took a shower before putting on his best clothes for his lover.
Satisfied with the result, Piero decided to entertain himself by reading some book in his room while waiting for his lover to come home.
Buried himself in his reading, he did not hear his lover coming back... until he heard some music coming from the garden.
He opened the window and nearly screamed of surprise when he saw Philip, dressed in his best suit, gently smiling at him. At his feet, a radio playing a familiar tune, and the prince started to sing:
Le ciel bleu sur nous peut s'effondrer,
Et la terre peut bien s'écrouler.
Peu m'importe, si tu m'aimes
Je me fous du monde entier!
Tant que l'amour inondera mes matins,
Tant que mon corps frémira sous tes mains.
Peu m'importent les problèmes,
Mon amour puisque tu m'aimes.
The artist was amazed: he did know Philip knew how to sing! And he was surprisingly a good singer. Smiling, he leaned on the small balcony while the prince kept singing:
J'irais jusqu'au bout du monde,
Je me ferais teindre en blond,
Si tu me le demandais!
J'irais décrocher la lune,
J'irais voler la fortune,
Si tu me le demandais.
Je renierais ma patrie,
Je renierais mes amis,
Si tu me le demandais.
On peut bien rire de moi,
Je ferais n'importe quoi,
Si tu me le demandais.
Philip could not help but smirk at his lover: it seemed that his idea worked. Honestly, he was lucky that one of Margaret's friends was a voice teacher. It was out of the question to sing off-key for his sweetheart, especially during Valentine's day.
With those thoughts in his mind, he started the most emotional part of the song:
Si un jour la vie t'arrache à moi,
Si tu meurs, que tu sois loin de moi
Peu m'importe, si tu m'aimes,
Car moi je mourrais aussi!
Nous aurons pour nous l'éternité
Dans le bleu de toute l'immensité.
Dans le ciel, plus de problèmes
Mon amour, crois-tu qu'on s'aime?
It was true: Philp would never want to live any longer if Piero was torn away from him. Since their first meeting in 1972, he knew deep inside that the young man would become an essential part of his life.
He owed him his happiness and life. After all, he tended the emotional wounds of his children and put this family together again.
But what mattered the most for him was that the artist made him believe in love again: when his marriage crumbled down, Philip thought he would never find someone to give his affection to.
But here they were, and that was all that mattered.
Dieu réunit ceux qui s'aiment.
When he opened his eyes, Philip was surprised to notice that Piero was not at the balcony.
"Let's hope I did not scare him with my poor performance."
Suddenly, he heard the door opened, and Piero rushed into his arms, kissing him feverishly.
Chuckling, Philip kissed him back, enjoying the presence of the man he loved the most in his arms.
When they had to take a break, the prince whispered:
"Happy 20th Valentine's Day, angelo mio!"
"I knew you would never forget it!" smiled the artist.
"How could I? You illuminated my life for twenty years, now. Remind me to thank Margaret for that!"
"You will do it tomorrow, my love. Now, what are we going to do?"
"Let's go back inside, shall we? I had a little surprise for you!"
The pair went back to their house and headed to the living room.
Piero gasped in surprise when he discovered the beautiful bouquet of red roses that took center stage on the table.
"Philip... It's amazing!"
"I wanted something simple yet elegant for you. Should I precise that there are twenty roses in this bouquet?"
"You did not miss the detail, right?"
"I am a man of precision."
He cleared his throat.
"Piero, there is something I wanted to give you..."
The latter raised an eyebrow: what could Philip give him?
"What is it?"
"Just before I give you this present, do you remember the little speech of Harry about you and I not getting married?"
"Well, I would try to make up for this mistake..."
He went on one knee and pulled a small velvet box out of his pocket.
Piero clapped his hand on his mouth, astonished.
"Oh, Dio Mio! Philip..."
"I wished that, in another life, we would be able to show our love and unite our lives... And I also wished that I was around your age and not being a septuagenarian..."
"Oh, don't be harsh about yourself: you still look good!"
"I appreciate your kindness... Anyway! Even if we cannot live the way we want, I never regret having you here with me. And as our grandchildren said, it was not fair that I cannot officially give you my last name."
He opened the small box, revealing a beautiful silver ring with the coat of arms of the Duke engraved on it.
"So, Piero Armando Raphael De Angelis, would you give me the greatest honor to be a non-official Mountbatten?"
Trying not to cry, Piero nervously laughed as he answered:
"Do you really need to ask the question? Yes, I do!"
Relieved, the prince put the ring on the artist's finger and got up.
Then, he wrapped his arms around the artist's waist and gently kissed his lips.
Nothing compared to the love he felt for this angel, and he planned to keep him at his side as long as he lived.
April 28th, 1994. Kensington Palace
Philip and Margaret enjoyed a horse-drawn carriage stroll around the large estate of Kensington on this beautiful spring day.
"Finally, a sunny day! I thought it would never happen!" happily sighed Margaret, adjusting her hat.
"You're right! At least, I have a day off, and the far I am from Elizabeth and her boot-licker, the better I feel!!"
"So am I! God, he pisses me off every time I see his face!"
The prince chuckled: he enjoyed badmouthing Acherville behind his back with Margaret.
As she was his ally, his sister-in-law never missed an occasion to slander about their enemy in common.
"Anyway, let's enjoy this wonderful moment! Speaking of that, I wished the rest of the team was with us!"
"Except the children who are at school or kindergarten, where are the others?"
"Let's see... Charles visits Scotland, while Andrew and Fergie pay a visit to charity work in Manchester. Your wife and her jackass-in-chief greet the new ambassador of Morocco. Diana and Piero are currently visiting a hospital for children. Mum had tea with one of her friends, Anne and Mark are with the Olympic team... and Edward has his day off too!"
She mischievously smirked.
"And I know what he is doing!"
"Tell me more..."
"He has a date, sir!"
Philip nearly fell off his seat.
"He has a girlfriend?"
"You bet he has! He and Sophie Rhys-Jones - that's her name - are together for a few months!"
The prince smiled, amused.
"Well, he managed to keep it a secret from me. But I guess he has the right to have his own life: after all, he will be thirty!"
He turned to Margaret.
"Speaking of upcoming events, are you excited to marry your daughter?"
"You bet I am! David is a nice guy: she picked the right man!"
"I'm glad for her!"
The two fancied the calm surroundings when an idea popped into Philip's mind.
"I have an idea..."
"I'm in, no matter what. What do you plan this time?"
The Duke smirked.
"Well, what if we pick up the children from school... with the horse carriage?"
"Like old times? I'm in, Philip! Just before, can we go back to the house? I need more appropriate clothes!"
"Off we go, Margaret!"
An hour later, they were on their way to the schools, with new clothes. While Philip drove the carriage, Margaret checked the schools' addresses.
"Let me see... The first school on our way is where are Zara and Will!"
"Here we go!"
On their way, the royals were met by curious bystanders who greeted them.
When they arrived at the school, all the pupils were amazed by the scene: the prince consort and the Countess of Snowdon driving a horse carriage.
One of the teachers managed to ask:
"Your Highnesses... Is there anything I can do for you?"
"Yes: could you tell me where are my grandchildren?"
At the same time, the two teenagers went out of their classrooms and gasped at the scene.
"GRANDPA? AUNT MARGARET?"
"In-person, children. Now, get in there: we have to pick the rest of the tribe!"
Giggling excitedly, Zara and Will rushed to the carriage and jumped inside, under the cheers of their classmates.
Once the teenagers were settled, Philip pulled on the reins, and the carriage followed its path.
Their next stage was Peter's high school. At their arrival, Margaret noticed the young man talking with some classmates. She smirked as she saw the girls blushing and fidgeting the edges of their skirts while talking to her great-nephew.
"Isn't that sweet? This boy is a heartbreaker!"
"I guess so... But it's time to go home! PETER!" called out Philip.
The young man turned around and waved:
Peter excused himself towards his friends before he went near the carriage and jumped in it.
"Here I am!"
"Perfect, young man! Now, who is the next one?"
"It's Harry and Beatrice, and then we can pick up Grace and Eugenie!"
The youngest royal grandchildren were over the moon when they saw their grandpapa and their great-aunt picking them from school with a horse-drawn carriage.
Soon after, the group went back to Kensington Palace when Margaret exclaimed:
"Hey, I have an idea!"
"What if we pick up Diana and Piero? After all, it's on our way!"
The prince shrugged.
"If you say so..."
"Don't play that game with me, old man! I know that you are secretly pleased with that idea..."
Philip struggled to not smirk.
"If you start sweet talking to me, how could I resist?"
His sister-in-law grinned triumphally.
"I knew it! Alright, let's go to the Evelina Children's Hospital!"
Meanwhile, Piero and Diana finished their visit, guided by a physician.
"Your Highness, Mister De Angelis, I would like to thank you for this significant visit in the name of the staff."
"It's us who should thank you, Doctor Lewis. You and your medical team do an amazing job here." replied the princess.
"She is right: all the recent signs of progress made in research are full of hope!" added the artist.
A young nurse came near them.
"Excuse me, Your Highness ..."
"There is the Duke of Edinburgh and Princess Margaret waiting for you outside with the children."
"SORRY?" exclaimed Diana and Piero, who rushed outside to find that the nurse told the truth.
"Well, dear daughter-in-law, admit that you weren't expecting this?"
"No, indeed!" laughed the Princess of Wales.
"I was not told that we would be entitled to a princely carriage!" Piero smiled.
"Look, Mom: Grandpa picked us up from school like that!" exclaimed Grace.
"My God, that must have caused a sensation!" chuckled the artist.
Piero glanced at Philip with a slight smile on his lips: he would not be surprised that his lover had this idea.
"Come on, both of you: we're going back to Kensington Palace!" Margaret declared.
Immediately, the two friends boarded the carriage, and the small group set off for the return trip.
This vision of the royal family caused the amazement and joy of the people, who greeted them with honks.
For their part, the children waved their hands in the direction of motorists.
Obviously, such an event attracted the curiosity of several journalists who attempted to interview Prince Philip and his family.
"So, Your Highness, how do you feel as you take this walk?"
The prince consort smiled:
"At the moment, I'm not the queen's husband. I'm just a grandfather who came to pick up his grandchildren from school."
"In a horse-drawn carriage?"
"So what? It is an ecological transport, and that makes the children happy!"
"Moreover, it allows us to take advantage of this beautiful spring day!" Margaret added.
Suddenly, a car driven by students arrived near them. One of the passengers opened the window:
"Hi, there! Listen in: it's a bop!"
The other passengers opened their windows, and the royals heard the radio playing Easy Lover by Phil Collins.
"They have a nice music taste!" laughed Piero.
As for the children, they started moving on their seats, shaking their heads in sync with the music.
"Have fun, children!" smiled Diana.
The Duke of Edinburgh briefly glanced at his passengers with a tender smile: if only he could have more sweet moments like that with his loved ones.
As for Margaret, she closed her eyes, enjoying the feeling of the spring sun on her face. This feeling of freedom was a blessing for the young sister of the Queen. Speaking of the latter, she wondered how her sister would react when she would see the images...
Half an hour later, they arrived at Kensington Palace. As they were about to cross the portal, a journalist asked them:
"Your Highnesses, can we have your opinion about the newly elected president of South Africa, Nelson Mandela?"
Philip turned and shouted:
"I wish him all the best: after all, he had a lot of work to do!"
Upon those words, the family entered the park, and the portal closed its doors.
Once they were far from the crowd, the royals went out of the carriage.
"That was so cool! Can we start it again?" asked Peter.
"I'm afraid that your grandmother would not approve!" stated Margaret.
"Let's go inside: I am sure Howard must have prepared his delicious caramel biscuits!"
"YEAH! CARAMEL!" exclaimed Harry, Grace, and Eugenie, who rushed to the mansion.
While the rest of the family went inside, Piero and Philip stayed alone.
"I guess it was your idea?"
The artist smirked.
"You had a brilliant idea..."
The prince gently held his hand.
"I just wanted to please my grandchildren... and my secret husband!"
"I am flattered!" muttered the British-Italian man before kissing his lover.
As they enjoyed this sweet moment, they heard William saying:
'Mum, they are kissing again!"
The two stopped, and Philip started to run after his grandson, a smirk on his lips:
"Come here, you little..."
The 12-year-old boy shrieked with laughter before trying to escape from his grandfather. As for Piero, he gently grinned as he saw his family happy.
The artist noticed some change since a few years after he started dating Philip: he felt that the atmosphere was happier and more welcoming. He must credit Diana and the grandchildren for this difference.
"Nonno! Come inside: it's tea time!" called Grace.
"I arrive, my little fairy!" replied the man who joined the rest of the family.
Meanwhile, in Buckingham Palace.
In the main living room of the royal palace, Elizabeth enjoyed a steaming cup of tea with her mother and Charles.
"How was the meeting with the new ambassador of Morocco?" asked the Queen Mother.
"It went well: Mister Haddaoui is a pleasant gentleman! Speaking of that, he gave me a message from Prince Mohammed. He wanted some news about his cherished goddaughter!" explained Elizabeth.
"That is very kind of him: I will write to him later!" replied Charles.
Suddenly, they heard the BBC anchorman saying a piece of unusual news:
**"Today, an unexpected view happened in London, while the Queen met the Moroccan ambassador: indeed, His Royal Highness Prince Philip was spotted driving a horse-drawn carriage, in the company of Princess Margaret, the Princess of Wales, his grandchildren, and Piero de Angelis, the famous artist..."**
The Queen nearly choked on her tea.
To prove the statement, the channel broadcasted footage of the royals in the carriage.
**"It looked like the youngest members of the Royal Family enjoyed this unique moment as they were spotted dancing on some music played by bystanders. At the same time, some of our colleagues tried to interview the prince consort.
The Duke of Edinburgh replied that he was only a grandfather who picked his beloved grandchildren from school. When he was asked about President Mandela's election, he answered that he only wished success to the new leader of South Africa.
Many people praised this idea, saying that it showed a relaxed side of the royal family..."**
"HOW DARE THEY?" screamed the monarch.
As for Charles, he smirked:
"Well, at least, they looked happy!"
"Of course: you praised everything your father and this... man do!" scoffed his mother.
Exasperated, the Crown Prince snapped:
"Stop badmouthing Piero! At least, he showed me the parental love you denied me!"
"Charles! Please, calm down!" exclaimed his grandmother.
The Queen stayed silent, but the harsh words of her son opened her eyes: unfortunately, she was not a mother in the eyes of her children anymore. As she was not a wife in the eyes of Philip...
So, when she laid in her bed that night, she sighed:
"Am I only a queen, and not a mother?"
Acherville held her:
"Don't bother! They would never compete with you. Forget Philip and his little lover! One day, they will fall apart!"
She nodded but stayed unconvinced: how long will she be alienated from her own flesh and blood? A little voice in her head yelled at her that Acherville was no stranger to this situation...
March 18th, 1996. Los Angeles, The United States.
The least that can be said was that Philip, Margaret, Diana, Charles, William, Harry, Grace, and Piero were warmly welcomed in the United States. Indeed, they were popular in America, especially Piero, whose works of art sell like hotcakes.
All the Hollywood celebrities fought to have the privilege to speak with the royals. Richard Gere, Sigourney Weaver, and many famous names tried to meet them.
But only a legendary pair was honored entertaining those favorite guests in their villa: Marlon Brando and Marylin Monroe, one of the most glamourous couples of Hollywood.
In their seventies, the two legendary actors never lost their glamour neither their fame. And they loved each other like they never had before.
They became friends with Piero when the latter went to the United States to present his creations. At the time, Marlon wanted to buy one of his paintings to give to his wife. They get on well, and the British-Italian artist became a good friend of them. It went to the point that Marylin became a friend of Diana and the godmother of Grace.
In the Rose Charm Villa, all sat in the living room, enjoying a good drink. Piero spotted loving pictures of the couple with their children and grandchildren.
"What do you think of Los Angeles, Your Highness?" asked Marlon while he sipped on his whiskey glass.
"Very lively...and noisy!" smirked Philip.
"Father!" exclaimed Charles.
"Did you really need to say that?" sighed Piero while elbowing his lover.
Diana gently laughed.
"At least, he is honest about it!"
"And you, Mister Brando: what is your opinion about England?" asked Margaret.
"Old, rainy, and boring!"
"MARLON!" exclaimed his wife as she slapped him on the hand.
"Ouch! But darling, I am just joking!"
"That was not funny!"
Willaim and Harry snorted with laughter: it was funny seeing adults bickering!
As for Grace, she was sitting near her godmother and looked at the scene with enjoyment.
"Is your husband always like that, Auntie?"
"Oh, my poor little butterfly: you have no idea! He makes me crazy every day!" sighed the actress.
"Men are all the same!" smirked Margaret.
"What? It is the truth!"
"I am a man, and I feel offended!" replied Charles.
"WE ARE NOT MEN YET, AND WE ARE OFFENDED TOO!" added William and Harry.
All laughed when someone knocked at the door.
"Come in!" answered Marlon.
A maid appeared at the door:
"Excuse me, Ma'am, but you have guests!"
"Oh, really? Thank you, Georgia: let them in, please!" replied Marylin.
The maid stepped aside and appeared Grace of Monaco and Jane Russell.
Delighted to see her friends, Marylin got up from her seat and greeted them with open arms.
"Grace, Jane! What a pleasant surprise!"
"Hello, Blondie! Long time no see!" joked Jane.
"We heard that our dear royals are here, so Jane and I thought that we can pay you a visit!" explained Grace.
"Both of you are always welcomed here! Please, take a seat!"
The two newcomers greeted the rest of the guests.
"Oh, dear Piero! It's been a long time since my visit to England!" smiled Grace.
"A very long time, indeed!"
"Grace showed me the portrait you created for her birthday: I am jealous!" laughed Mrs. Russell.
Piero felt light-hearted: he never expected being surrounded by the three actresses he admired the most! If Philip was not near him, the artist would have passed out!
Speaking of the latter, the prince smirked when he saw his lover awed in front of his idols.
At the same time, the three actresses recalled good memories of their careers.
"Oh, do you remember the shooting of Merry Girls?" inquired Jane.
"Oh, my favorite movie!" exclaimed Diana.
"I really enjoy this movie: it is so funny and brilliantly written!" added Charles.
"It is one of my preferred old Hollywood movies!" outdid Piero.
"It was the only movie we shot together... and my only comedy!"
"We had so much fun on set!" smiled Jane.
"Oh, one of the best moments of my career!" added Marylin.
"You were astonishing in that movie!" smiled Marlon while kissing her hand.
"You flatterer!" she laughed.
They spend the rest of the day in the garden, enjoying a delicious dinner and looking at the Californian sunset.
His elbows resting on the low wall, Philip looked at the scenery with a relaxed smile on his lips. He smirked as he saw Marylin and Piero gently chatting.
"A pleasant view, isn't it?"
The prince turned and saw Marlon Brando joining him, a Martini glass in his hand. The actor smiled as he spotted his wife laughing with the artist.
"We are both lucky, huh?"
"What do you mean?" asked Philip.
Brando sighed before explaining:
"A long time ago, I only have to snap my fingers to have all the women I want. But I was not happy: I felt something was missing in my life."
A sly grin appeared on his face.
"And then, she appeared like a silver lining. Beautiful, smiling, calm, and loving. She was like the sun after the storm. She kissed my wounds and calmed my fears... She gave me beautiful children and offered a better life than I expected."
"I understand what you mean... I feel the same since Piero accepted to be with me... I owe him so much!"
Marlon raised his glass.
"Then, let's have a toast to the loves of our lives!"
The prince smirked and clinked his glass on Marlon's drink.
"To the loves of our lives!"
As they enjoyed the peaceful Californian evening, Philip and Marlon talked about the future. But no one had a clue about what could happen...
August 31st, 1997. Paris, France.
On the Parisian night, a black car drove fast on the roads. Onboard, Charles, Diana, and Piero came back from an official dinner organized by President Jacques Chirac.
This getaway helped Diana and Piero to take their minds off a painful memory. A month ago, they attended the burial of their dear friend Gianni Versace, the iconic fashion designer. The Italian man was killed by a deranged man in Miami for unknown reasons.
Both the princess and the artist were devastated by this tragic loss. And to think that he was already designing Grace's wedding dress... It was not surprising, as he adored the little girl as if she was his own.
As for Piero, he lost a dear friend and a fellow Italian. The artist remembered how much he cried in Philip's arms as he heard the news on television.
To help them cope with this tragedy, Charles suggested they accompany him to France.
This strategy seemed to work, and the Prince of Wales was proud of his plan.
On their way back to their hotel, they were accompanied by Dodi Al-Fayed, the son of wealthy business Mohamed Al-Fayed, one of the other guests at the dinner. The Egyptian film producer has a showy character, which displeased Charles.
"When we will arrive at the Hotel Ritz, I'll show the art collection my father displays in his private room! I am sure a man with artistic talents such as Mister De Angelis would appreciate it!"
"You must be right, Mister Al-Fayed!" politely answered the latter.
"What kind of works of art your father owns?" asked Diana.
Al-Fayed showed his flirtiest smile and answered:
"Let your imagination do the work, dear Princess. But I am sure no masterpiece doesn't compete with you!"
The Princess of Wales blushed with embarrassment while her husband scowled at the Al-Fayed heir. As for Piero, he rolled his eyes: he started to find the man unpleasant.
Suddenly, Diana spotted paparazzi chasing them on motorcycles.
"I must be dreaming! Here they are AGAIN!" she scoffed.
"They are like weed: unstoppable and annoying!" snickered Charles.
"What a lovely metaphor!" laughed Dodi.
The driver started speeding, which puzzled Piero.
"Aren't we going a bit too fast?" he asked.
"Excuse me, could you slow down?" inquired Dodi.
But the car went faster and faster as they entered the Pont de l'Alma tunnel.
"Charles, we are going too fast!" panicked Diana.
"SLOW DOWN!" yelled Charles.
Even their bodyguard barked at the driver to slow down. But it was too late, as they plowed into a pillar.
And the car violently collided head-on with the pillar, half-destroying it.
All the passengers felt the intensity of the impact and suffered many injuries.
While Dodi fell unconscious, Diana, Piero, and Charles stayed conscious.
"Charles? Piero? Are you alright?" asked Diana with a trembling voice.
"I am here, my love... Even if my ribcage might be broken!" groaned Charles.
"I... I don't feel my back, but I am alive..." whined Piero.
Both men turned to Diana and noticed her bruised forehead and her bleeding legs. She seemed shocked but alive.
"Darling, look at me! Stay with us: the emergency services will be here soon!" Charles reassured her.
"But what about the driver? The bodyguard? And Mr. Al-Fayed?"
Piero glanced at the driver and the bodyguard.
"I can't tell if they are still alive or not... And as for Mister Al-Fayed, he passed out!"
Suddenly, a bunch of young French people, around their twenties, rushed near them.
One of them, a black guy, asked:
"Hé, là-dedans! Vous allez bien?" (Hey there! Are you OK?)
Charles managed to ask:
"S'il vous plaît, Monsieur, appelez une ambulance!" (Please, sir: call an ambulance!)
Another youngster, an Arab-descent girl, peaked at the passengers and exclaimed:
"Oh, la vache! Mais ce sont le Prince Charles et la Princess Diana! Et lui, c'est Piero De Angelis, le célèbre artiste!" (Holy cow! They are Prince Charles and Princess Diana! And the other guy must be Piero De Angelis, the famous artist!)
"Lui-même, enchanté!" (Himself, nice to meet you!) grimaced the latter.
The young girl jumped near Piero and gently said:
"Pas de panique, monsieur: mon ami a appelé les pompiers! Ils vont vite arriver!" (Don't worry, sir: my friend called the firemen! They will be here in a minute!)
Meanwhile, the other youngsters pushed the photographers away:
"Dégagez, bande de connards! Vous pourriez les aider au lieu de prendre des photos!" (Move, you morons! Instead of taking pictures, you could help them!)
"Et foutez le camp, l'ambulance arrive!" (Get out of the way! The ambulance is about to arrive!)
At the same time, bystanders looked at the accident scene with horrified looks on their faces. Some of them insulted the photographers, blaming them for the accident.
In the car, Diana struggled to breathe. Trying to reassure her, the young black man took her hand:
"Du calme, ça va aller! Vous entendez l'ambulance? Elle arrive!" (Calm down, everything will be alright! Do you hear that? The ambulance arrives!)
The princess stammered:
"William... Harry... Grace..."
Guessing that she talked about her children, he gently replied:
"Vous en faites pas, ils vont bien!" (Don't worry, they are fine!)
"Aidez-la, je vous en prie..." (Please, help her!) muttered Charles as he passed out.
As for Piero, his vision started to blur. He fought to stay awake, but he felt his body giving up.
As he fell into unconsciousness, he saw the face of Philip...
°°"I am sorry, amore mio..."°°
Meanwhile, at Balmoral Castle.
The Queen was sleeping in her bed, with Acherville at her side. Suddenly someone hurriedly knocked on the door of her bedroom.
Worried, she got up and opened it to see her butler with a concerned expression on his face:
"Ma'am, I am afraid that I have terrible news from Paris about their Royal Highnesses and Mister De Angelis..."
"What have they done again?" grumbled Acherville.
At the same time, Philip, Margaret, and the Queen Mother arrived, panicked.
"What's wrong?" inquired the matriarch.
The servant took his breath before revealing:
"Our ambassador in Paris just called me to say that the Prince and the Princess of Wales, as well as Mister De Angelis, are involved in a terrible car accident!"
Elizabeth gasped in horror while Queen Mum fainted in the arms of a maid. Margaret stayed silent, tears falling in her cheeks. As for Philip, he felt like the sky fell on his head: it cannot be!
Acherville took his head between his hands and muttered:
"May Lord help us..."
He worried that the eventual deaths of Charles and Diana would break Elizabeth's heart. However, he cannot help but think of his potential triumph if Piero succumbed to his wounds. Finally, this prick would be out of the picture once and for all!
Suddenly, the Queen exclaimed:
"Where are the children?"
"They are in their beds, Ma'am. They are soundly asleep!" stated the butler.
"Good. Don't wake them up until further notice. Everyone in the living room, now! We have a situation to handle!"
On their way to the living room, all stayed quiet. They were all scared and worried. If the worst happened, they would not know how to tell the children that they lost their parents and their Nonno in this tragedy...
They sat on the couches, Margaret holding the arms of her mother and Philip. She stuttered:
"How? How could it happen?"
She turned to her mother with teary eyes:
"Oh, Mum! I don't know if I would cope..."
"They will be fine, Maggie. Do not worry!" her mother gently smiled while holding her hand.
As for Philip, he held back the tears that threatened to fall. It reminded him of painful memories...
He silently prayed:
"Mother... Cecile... Wherever you are... Please, protect them! I cannot bear to lose other loved ones in an accident!"
Paris, in the morning.
Piero slowly opened his eyes, a painful headache still hitting him.
He noticed that he was in a white room and concluded that he was in a hospital.
He heard footsteps, and a young nurse arrived near him:
"Comment vous sentez-vous, Monsieur De Angelis?" (How do you feel, Mister De Angelis?)
"Ou... Ou suis-je?" (Where... Where am I?)
"Vous êtes à l'hôpital de la Pitié-Salpêtrière. On vous a amené ici après l'accident de cette nuit." (You are at the Pitié-Salpêtrière Hospital. You have been brought here after you accident, last night.)
The artist remembered everything. The dinner, the paparazzi who were chasing them, the collision, the feel of blood on his body...
"Ou est Charles? Ou est Diana?" (Where Charles is? Where Diana is?)
"We are here, Piero!"
Piero turned his head and saw Charles and Diana, wounded but alive. He let out some tears of relief:
He wiped his eyes and asked:
"How do you feel?"
"A bit dizzy, but apart from that, I feel better!" answered the Prince of Wales.
"I recover from this horrible night!" replied the Princess with a tired smile.
Suddenly, a physician entered the room. He said with a strong French accent:
"Good morning. I am Doctor Bruno Riou. I was the doctor who took care of you after your accident. As you seemed all awake, I come to check if everything is alright..."
"Excuse me, Doctor?"
"Do you have any news of Mister Al-Fayed? And what about our driver and bodyguard?"
The doctor shook his head.
"Your Highness, I have the regret to tell you that your driver and your bodyguard died shortly after the arrival of the ambulance men. As for Mister Al-Fayed, he succumbed to his wounds after he arrived in this service. I am sorry..."
"Oh, Lord! Poor of them!" she cried as she covered her mouth.
Charles reached her hand and gently squeezing it reassuringly.
"My God..." muttered Piero.
He turned to the doctor.
"What about us?"
"Well, His Highness the Prince of Wales suffered a broken wrist and some cracked ribs. As for the Princess of Wales, she has a sprained ankle and some concussions! And you, Mister De Angelis, your back is aching, your knee is sprained, and you have a broken arm! We can say that the three of you are very lucky to make it out of this tragedy!"
"Indeed, Doctor Riou..." nodded Charles.
"What about the youngsters?"
"I think my husband talks about the young people who tried to help us..."
The surgeon chuckled.
"Well, they are fine, and they are hopping up and down with impatience as they want to see you! They are doing it for two hours!"
"Are they?" asked Piero.
They heard a voice:
"Mais laissez-nous les voir, putain!" (Let us see them, damn it!)
"Ah indeed, they are!" chuckled Diana.
"Doctor Riou..." asked Charles
"Please, let them in: we want to thank them for their kindness towards us!"
"If you want, Your Highness..."
As Riou was about to leave, Diana called:
"Yes, Your Highness?"
The physician smiled:
"I only did my duty, Your Highness. Now, I leave with your visitors!"
He stepped aside and let the youngsters enter the room. They arrived with flowers and cakes.
"Salut! Comment ça va?" (Hiya! How you do?) asked the black guy.
"Surveille tes manières, Issah! Ce sont des célébrités, pas tes potes!" (Watch your manners, Issah! They are royals and famous people, not your buddies!) scolded his friend, the Arabic girl.
"Ne vous en faites pas pour ça, mademoiselle: j'ai entendu bien pire!" (Do not worry about it, miss: I have heard worse!) smirked Charles.
"Tu vois, Leïla: ils sont sympas!" (See, Leïla: they are nice!) answered Issah.
"Vous vous sentez mieux?" (Do you feel better?) asked a Caucasian guy.
"Oui, nous allons mieux. Merci, Monsieur..." (Yes, we are feeling better. Thank you, Mister...) asked Diana.
"Frédéric, mais mes amis m'appellent Fred." (I am Frederic, but my friends called me Fred)
"Votre voix m'est familière: n'est-ce pas vous qui avez insulté les photographes?" (Your voice sounds familiar: isn't you who threw insults to the photographers?) inquired Piero.
"J'avoue, c'est moi! Mais ils l'ont mérité!" (I admit it: it was me! But they deserved it!)
"On nous a dit pour votre chauffeur et votre garde du corps, ainsi que pour l'autre personne avec vous. On est désolés pour ça..." (We heard about your driver and your bodyguard, plus the other guy in the car. We're sorry about that..." politely said a Asian girl.
"Nous apprécions votre sympathie, Mademoiselle..." (We appreciate your sympathy, Miss...)
"Jade Zhao, Votre Altesse." (Jade Zhao, Your Highness).
Suddenly, a nurse rushed into the room.
"Pardon de vous interrompre, mais le Président Chirac, la Première Dame, et Monsieur Tiberi, le maire de Paris, souhaitent vous voir. Dois-je les laisser entrer?" (Sorry to interrupt you, but President Chirac, First Lady Bernadette Chirac and Mister Tiberi, Mayor of Paris, wish to see you. Shall I let them in?)
"Laissez les venir, mais ces jeunes gens restent ici!" (You can let them in, but those young people stay!) declared Charles.
"Entendu, Votre Altesse!" (Understood, Your Highness!)
A few minutes later, President Chirac entered the room, accompanied by his wife and the mayor of Paris.
"I am relieved to see you alive and recovering, my dear friends!" declared the French President.
"It is very kind of you to visit us!" replied Piero.
"That is the least we can do, Mister De Angelis!" stated Mrs. Chirac.
Diana cleared her throat before gesturing at the young French people:
"Mister Chirac, those young people here helped us while we were trapped in the car. They provided us help and kindness before the arrival of the emergency services. We owe them a lot!"
The president turned to Issah, Leïla, Frederic, and Jade who looked shy.
"Jeunes gens, vous avez accompli un acte héroïque. En portant secours à ces personnes, vous avez montré le grand coeur qui bat dans la potrine du peuple français. Je tenais à vous adresser mon admiration et mes respects pour votre action." (Young people, you heroically acted yesterday. By rescueing those persons, you showed how big-hearted the People of France is. I wanted to express you my admiration and my respect for your action.)
"Euh... Merci, M'sieur le président!" (Thanks, Mister President!) answered the youngsters, intimidated.
Piero, Diana, and Charles gently smiled. Now, they longed to come back home...
At the same time, at Balmoral Castle.
A maid rushed to the living room and barged into the room where were Elizabeth, Acherville, Margaret, the Queen Mother, and Philip.
In the meantime, they were joined by Anne, Andrew, and Edward. The three siblings feared for their brother, their sister-in-law, and their dear friend.
"Your Majesties, Your Highnesses... and Mister Acherville. Forgive me for this intrusion, but I have some news from Paris!"
"Please, tell me they survived!" begged the Queen Mother.
"Indeed, Your Majesty: I have excellent news. Prince Charles, Princess Diana, and Mister De Angelis survived the accident!"
All let out a sigh of relief. Margaret sobbed of happiness in the arms of Philip. As for the matriarch of the Royal Family, she thanked God for saving his grandson.
Elizabeth let a few tears rolling on her cheeks: she felt grateful to God for sparing the lives of Charles, Diana, and Piero.
She asked the maid:
"May I have the whereabouts of the other passengers?"
"Unfortunately, Your Majesty, they all passed away."
The Queen nodded before ordering:
"Provide me the addresses of their families: I will write them letters of condolences!"
"Yes, Your Majesty!"
While the maid came back to work, Anne cried in the arms of Andrew:
"They are alive... Thank God, they are alive!"
"Yes, they are!" muttered her brother, fighting back the tears.
A few hours later, Elizabeth was at her desk, writing the letters of condolences she addressed to the mourning families.
Acherville knocked at the door:
"May I come in?"
Her lover arrived near her.
"How do you feel?"
"I feel... relieved. I would not know what to do if they did not survive!"
"I see..." muttered Acherville.
She looked at him, puzzled.
"Is there something bothering you, Roger?"
"Nothing gets past you, Lizzie."
"Could you tell me what upsets you?"
Acherville cleared his throat before explaining:
"Listen: I am happy for you that Charles and Diana survived. The children will be so happy..."
"Cut it out and tell me the truth!"
He sighed and said:
"I might sound cruel and heartless, but it is a shame that De Angelis is still alive!"
Elizabeth jumped out of her seat, shocked.
"HOW DARE YOU SAYING SUCH A THING?"
"Come on, Lilibeth: you cannot stand his sight! Remember that he stole your husband and rose your children against you!"
"I am aware, thank you! But I would never, NEVER, wish him dead!"
"Don't lie to yourself! You wanted him out of the picture for a long time! Would you dare to tell me that you never wish something bad happen to De Angelis?"
He regretted his remark when she furiously glanced at him:
"Do you think that I am like you? That I would dare to break my family for my pleasure? No, Roger: I am not you and thank God, I will never be!"
"Look what I did for you: I alienated myself from my children, my sister, and my grandchildren. I made a mistake a long time ago, but I was too blind, or too proud, to acknowledge it..."
She glared daggers at him.
"And you, instead of helping me, you pushed my family away. You treated them poorly, mocked and bullied them! No wonder why they all prefered Piero De Angelis over you!"
The Queen calmed herself. Then, she declared with a firm tone:
"Roger, I think we should have a long conversation. And I must warn you: it will be unpleasant..."
A few days later.
When he entered his house, Piero felt safe: it was good to be home again. He sat down on his couch and relaxed.
The artist was tired: he spent a long time seeing his family. His poor parents, his siblings, and his nephews and nieces wanted to see him. They all panicked when they heard about the accident in Paris. But now, Piero wanted some peace before he would see the Royal Family tomorrow.
As he dozed off on the couch, he heard the door opening. Intrigued, he got up and discovered Philip standing in the room.
"Hello, my love." muttered the prince.
Piero tried to come closer, but Philip was faster and held him in his arms.
"You should not move your leg. After all, you have a sprained knee..."
"Oh, it's okay..."
The artist felt the embrace becoming tighter. Then, he heard soft sobs coming from his lover.
"Philip? Philip, what's wrong?"
The British-Italian artist slightly stepped back and saw tears flowing down the cheeks of his prince.
"My God, Philip! What happens?"
To be honest, it was the first time Piero saw Philip crying like this. He already saw him being sad or upset, but he never saw a single tear in his eyes.
The artist cupped the face of his lover between his hands and gently asked:
"Talk to me, my love. What's wrong?"
Catching his breath, the Duke managed to say:
"I thought... I thought that I lost you! When they told me about the car crash, I assumed that you were going to die!"
He took a breath before resuming:
"I would lose my will to live if you disappear! I cannot overcome this life without you by my side..."
Piero shushed Philip by giving a peck on his lips.
"But I am here, now. I am alive! And I am so glad to be in your arms again!"
He nuzzled against his lover's neck, breathing his scent.
"I won't go away! I would never dream of leaving you. Remember what I told you: I will always be yours, no matter what happens."
Those words calmed Philip as he wiped away his tears. Then, he kissed his young lover on the lips.
"I am so relieved to have you here..."
"So am I."
The prince smirked.
"Come on, let's go to bed!"
The artist raised an eyebrow.
"Sorry to temper your ardor, darling, but the doctor asked me to have some rest. So, no bedroom antics!"
"I think I will survive... More seriously, I think your bed would be more comfortable for you!"
They went upstairs, and Philip gently laid Piero on the mattress before sitting next to his lover.
"How do you feel?"
"I feel relaxed."
"Good... Now, look what I brought you!"
The prince showed a bottle of champagne and two glasses.
"Oh, that's interesting! But what are we celebrating? My miraculous resurrection?"
His lover grinned.
"I would say that we are celebrating our triumph."
The artist was puzzled.
"Nobody told you? Well, I am honored to have this privilege to tell you the great news..." answered Philip as he poured some champagne before handing the glass to Piero.
"So, what can make you so happy?"
Piero did not expect that.
"My beloved, I have the pleasure to tell that you will never see Acherville again!"
The artist nearly choked on champagne.
"That's the truth: Elizabeth and Acherville broke up. Well, she decided to end their relationship."
Piero was speechless: he did not think a second that Elizabeth would break up with Acherville. But, on second thought, it was a relief: now, he would not have this sword of Damocles above his head.
The artist slightly laughed, relieved:
"My my, what a blessing! At least, me, the little entertainer, had the last laugh!"
He turned to his lover and put his arms around his waist:
"Bringing the champagne was really appropriate, darling. This news makes me feel better!"
"I am glad, my love." smirked the prince before pulling the artist into a kiss.
As they laid down on the bed, Philip and Piero relished their victory. Not only life did not tear them apart, but they also defeated their enemy once and for all.
Let's hope the upcoming century would bring them joy and serenity...
June 19th, 1999. Saint George's Chapel.
The crowd loudly cheered and applauded the royal newlyweds. Indeed, Edward, the last child of the royal couple, married his girlfriend, Sophie Rhys-Jones, a young commoner. Now, the people can say that all the children of Queen Elizabeth and Prince Philip were married.
And like every royal event, Piero was among the guests: how could he miss the marriage of Edward? The two had a special bond, as Piero practically raised him as if he was his own son.
As the family went out of the chapel, Diana went near Piero and asked:
"They made a lovely couple, isn't it?"
"I agree, my dear. Those two lovebirds are made for each other..."
"Like you and Father!" muttered Charles, smirking.
"If you say so..." grinned the artist.
He tenderly glanced at the pair. He was glad that Sophie joined the family: she was a sweet and smart young woman. A bit shy at the beginning, but she improved her self-confidence.
Sophie and Piero quickly get along with each other, as the new princess was passionate about arts. They could talk about arts for hours...
Now, as the 20th century was about to end in a few months, there was nothing better than a wedding to close this era.
Westminster Abbey. April 9th, 2002.
This time, the Westminster Abbey bells sadly rang in the Londonian Sky. A huge crowd gathered near the paved forecourt to bid farewell to the Queen Mother.
Among the guests, Piero walked behind Charles and Diana while holding Margaret. He could not still believe that she passed away. Of course, she reached her 101st birthday, but it was a bit sudden. Although, he should have guessed that their meeting in February would be the last one...
Flash-back. Windsor Castle, 20th February 2002.
In the corridors of Windsor Castle, Piero followed the butler who led him to the apartments of the Queen Mother.
"So, you said she required my presence?"
"Indeed, Mister De Angelis. However, I could not tell you the reason for this urgent request. Her Majesty did not want to explain me..."
"Well, I will find out..."
They arrived in front of the door. The butler gently knocked before opening:
"Your Majesty. Sire De Angelis has arrived."
"Let him in, please. Thank you, Francis."
Piero entered the room and bowed in front of the Queen Mother.
"Good afternoon, Ma'am."
"Good afternoon, Mister De Angelis. A pretty cold day, isn't it?"
"Indeed, Your Majesty."
She gestured him to sit.
"Please, have a seat. Would you like something to drink?"
"A cup of tea would be fine, thank you."
As she handed him his cup, Piero noticed how tired and sad she looked. Last year, she nearly had a heart attack when Margaret narrowly survived a stroke. Since this incident, she has suffered several health problems.
Clearing his throat, the artist asked:
"So, Ma'am, you wished to see me..."
"That is correct, Mister De Angelis."
"Without being rude, may I know why?"
The matriarch of the royal family took her breath and started to explain:
"I need to see you again before it would be too late..."
"I beg your pardon? But Your Majesty, you seemed to recover..."
The Queen Mum had a bittersweet laugh.
"Don't judge a book by its cover, Mister De Angelis. Every day, I feel my body being weaker and weaker... Anyway, I need you to tell you this."
She cleared her throat and started her speech:
"Mister De Angelis, when you arrived there, I thought of you as an enemy, a home breaker who steals my daughter's husband. But the time went by, and I saw you repair my grandchildren's broken hearts and heal my son-in-law's pain.
I saw you enjoying life along with my Maggie: she never looked so happier before you came. I saw you leading my great-grandchildren to a better future, surrounded by love and wonder. I saw you being a faithful servant to the Crown and the country, at your level.
I saw you respecting the legacy of my husband and always treating me with regard.
I have been horrible to you, and I am sorry for those harsh words I may throw at you all those years.
I will be grateful for all your efforts to bring this family together.
I don't know, and I am not sure I deserve it, but may I ask you to forgive me?
I accept your answer, come what may."
To say that Piero was astounded would be an understatement. Of course, their relations were more cordial since Christmas 1991. But he never expected the Queen Mother to apologize.
Honestly, he never held a grudge against this woman: she only wanted to preserve her family from another scandal.
He reverently took her hand and said:
"Your Majesty, I appreciate your honesty, and I am moved by your kind words on my behalf. Have no worry: I never had resentful feelings towards you. I understood your motivations: your only priority was to protect your family, and I respect that."
He gently smiled.
"I already forgave you, Ma'am."
The Queen Mum held back a sob.
"Thank you so much, Mister De Angelis."
They talked for hours until Piero took his leave. As he was heading to the door, the Queen called him out.
"Mister De Angelis, may I ask you one last favor?"
"Of course. What is it?"
"Please, look after them for me. I will leave this world in peace, as I know my family will be in good hands."
"I will, Your Majesty. I promise..."
Back to the present.
Looking at the sky, Piero had a small and sad smile: at least, he hoped that she will be reunited with her beloved husband.
"Dieu réunit ceux qui s'aiment..." (God reunites those who love).
Two months later. In the gardens of an Essex mansion.
Entering the place, Philip and Piero wondered why they were invited here.
"Do you know what your son meant when he asked us to come here ASAP?" asked Piero.
"Who knows what Charles can plan? Especially when he has the help of Diana!" snickered Philip.
They arrived into the gardens and nearly fell of surprise when they saw all their beloved ones gathered. All wore their best outfits and sat on white wooden benches.
At the end of the red carpet, Peter stood under an arch covered with flowers.
"Uh, could you explain what you are all doing here?" asked Piero.
"Why do I feel something suspicious?" inquired Philip.
Suddenly, Margaret came between them and held their arms.
"Don't worry, boys: it's just a little something Will and Peter planned for one year, now."
"And what is it?"
The princess smirked.
"Let's just say that we wanted to make your fairytale come true..."
Then, she led the two lovers down the path before letting them in front of Peter.
The 25-year old young man cleared his throat and started to talk:
"Dear family, we are all gathered today in this beautiful place to marry those two amazing men: Piero De Angelis & Philip Mountbatten. For me, they are Grandpa and Nonno."
The two men realized what their family planned behind their backs. Philip facepalmed while Piero giggled.
Peter continued his speech:
"Even if they are together since 1972, all the grandchildren and I decided to plan and prepare the wedding they deserve. And, as the oldest grandchild, I have the honor to marry them!"
"He takes his role seriously!" smirked Philip.
"Shh, don't disturb him!" gently said Piero.
William, Harry, Grace, Eugenie, Beatrice, and Zara proudly smiled: they were pretty satisfied with their organization.
Then, Peter asked:
"Philip Mountbatten, my dear Grandpa, do you take Nonno Piero De Angelis as your husband? Do you promise to love him, cherish him, stay with him in good and bad times, and be faithful until death do you apart?"
"I do!" answered the prince with a genuine smile.
The young man turned to Peter and asked:
"Piero De Angelis, my dear Nonno, do you take Grandpa Philip Mountbatten as your husband? Do you promise to love him, cherish him, stay with him in good and bad times, and be faithful until death do you apart?"
"I do, of course," muttered Piero, with loving eyes towards his unofficial husband.
"If any of you has a reason why these two should not be married, speak now or forever hold your peace!"
"I dare anyone to object to this wedding!" exclaimed Margaret, making everyone laugh.
As no one objected, Peter called his young cousin:
"Eugenie, bring the rings!"
The little girl arrived, presenting a little red cushion where rested two golden rings.
"How did you pay those rings?" asked Philip.
"GUESS WHO?" exclaimed Charles, Anne, Andrew, and Edward with a big grin on their faces.
The prince shook his head with a smirk on his face. Then, he picked a ring and put it on Piero's finger.
"With this ring, I, Philip Mountbatten, swear to love you and only you. I promise to be eternally yours and to stay by your side."
The artist gently picked the other ring and put it on Philip's finger while saying:
'With this ring, I, Piero De Angelis, swear to love you and only you. I promise to be eternally yours and to stay by your side."
With a big smile on his face, Peter declared:
"Now, I pronounce you husband and husband."
He turned to his grandfather.
"You can kiss the groom."
"As if he needed your permission!" snickered Zara.
"Anyhow, they just waited this moment!" snorted Grace.
"Oh, my poor darling: they did not only kiss when they are all alone..." muttered Margaret.
"MAGGIE!" exclaimed Piero and Philip.
"Grandpa, Nonno: are you kissing or not?" impatiently asked Beatrice.
"Yes, ma'am." grinned the prince as he cupped the face of his lover between his hands and kissed him on the lips under the applause of the guests.
While applauding, Margaret tenderly smiled at the two lovers:
°°"After all, they deserve their happy end..."°°
2019, 29th June, at Piero's house.
If you asked Piero to pick three years he loved to remember, he would have pick 2011, 2014, and 2017. Indeed, those three years were when William, Grace, and Harry get married.
As he looked at a photo album, he gently smiled at the beautiful pictures of the first wedding. He fondly remembered the marriage of William, who married his long-time girlfriend, the charming Catherine Middleton.
How intimidated she was when they first met: the poor girl could not stop fidgeting her fingers! But now, they really get along with each other, and she even let him look after their children: George, Charlotte, and Louis.
Piero turned the page and looked at the second wedding in the Wales family. This time, it was his little Grace who married her boyfriend, Arthur Hargrave. This brilliant young man was the perfect choice for her. And he was also very daunted when he met Piero for the first time. The artist thought Arthur would pass out of dread! But now, it was ancient history...
Piero grinned as he remembered Charles and Diana were moved to tears while the Prince of Wales walked his only daughter down the aisle. Everything went perfectly... apart from the best friends of the groom who put on a musical show for the newlyweds!
And now, Grace and Arthur are parents of two children, Marius and Christopher.
As he turned the page, the British-Italian man fondly looked at the last marriage: Harry's wedding.
After a tumultuous love life, the second child of Charles and Diana tied the knot with Aïssa Hoarau, a lovely French mixed-race girl. Like the other fiances, she was nervous when she met "Nonno" Piero. But now, they really get along. Moreover, the pair was blessed with the birth of their first child, Leopold.
However, in every picture, Piero spotted the bright smile of Margaret. Dear Margaret...
The artist tried to hold tears back as he remembered this horrible day of October 2018, when he received the call of David, Margaret's son, who told him that his mother passed away in her sleep.
Piero and Philip were devastated by her passing: after all, she introduced them during this party in 1972. She was their friend and ally against Acherville until his disgrace in 1997 and his death in 2001.
The artist would never forget the tears in Elizabeth's eyes as she buried her little sister. Even if they had a conflicted relationship, the two women were close to each other.
Piero sighed: Margaret has joined their dear friends. His heart ached as he recalled the deaths of Grace, Rainier, Marylin, Jane, and Marlon. All were gone...
The voice of Philip snapped him out of his gloomy thoughts. He quickly wiped away his tears and smiled at his lover:
"What are you doing?"
"Oh, nothing... I just look at some family pictures."
The prince sat near his unofficial husband and looked tenderly at the pictures.
"Some of the best days of my life..."
Philip put his arm around Piero's shoulders.
"I miss her too, you know. But you know, she suffered a lot. At least, she is in peace!"
"I know. It's just that... Maggie became a friend, almost a sister. It was hard to say goodbye!"
"I understood... But don't mess up with your health!"
"Speaking of that, it was a good thing that you retire from official life. After all, you had several heart surgeries..."
"Don't worry for me, my angel. I am a tough guy: I survive!"
The artist put his head on the shoulder of the prince.
"At least, we have more time together..."
"That's the man I secretly married. Thank God, your optimism is still intact!"
The two stayed together, holding hands as they enjoyed the presence of each other. After all, they have all the time in the world...
2021, April 9th. Buckingham Palace.
This morning, Philip felt weak. Feeble would be exact.
At this moment, he knew that this morning would be his last on Earth.
Using his fading strength, he called:
His servant arrived at his bedside:
"Yes, Your Highness!"
"Please, call my family, and tell them to hurry!"
Worried, the servant asked:
"Your Highness, is there something wrong?"
"I feel like... I'm dying."
Horrified, Jordan nodded and rushed outside the bedroom. He picked the internal phone and called all the royal family members.
Within the following minutes, all the adults rushed to Philip's bedroom.
The moment they saw him, they all understood what happened.
"Oh no... Tell me it is not happening!" sobbed Aïssa while holding Harry.
"Father..." muttered Edward, holding back his tears as his wife held him.
As he tried to ease their pain, the Duke attempted to joke:
"Oh, come on! Don't look at me like that: it seems like you're attending a funeral. Well, it will be the case, I'm afraid!"
Elizabeth sat next to him and held his hand:
"You know what it means, Liz: I will leave you soon... even if we were not that close for years."
"A situation that I will forever regret!" confessed the Queen with a sad look in her eyes.
Philip knew what she meant: since the death of Acherville in 2001, she tried to win him back. But it was too late: his heart belonged to someone else.
Speaking of him, where is Piero?
"Piero... Where is Piero? I need to see him!"
"I called him, Your Highness: he is on his way!" reassured Jordan.
"Is Mister De Angelis's presence necessary?" asked the Queen.
"MOTHER!" yelled Charles, Anne, Andrew, and Edward, offended.
"Piero is a part of our family, so he has to be there!" added William.
Meanwhile, at the doorsteps, Piero rushed as fast as he could: when he received the call, the artist knew that something terrible would happen. He prayed that he did not arrive too late.
On his way, Jordan, Philip's young butler, welcomed him:
"Mister De Angelis..."
"Please, Jordan: tell me I am not too late!"
"No, sir: indeed, His Highness required your presence viva voce!"
"I would not be surprised!"
The servant led him to Philip's bedroom. When he arrived, Piero saw the grieving faces of his "family." He understood that the thing he feared the most was about to happen.
He came closer and asked with a trembling voice:
The Duke turned his head and weakly smiled:
"Come closer, my angel!"
As the Queen stepped aside, Piero seated at Philip's bedside and took his hand:
"I went here as fast as I can..."
"I know, I know..."
The prince gently skimmed his lover's cheek, wiping away a falling tear.
"I don't know if I told enough how handsome you are. Even after all these years, it seems like you never aged!"
"Oh, don't be ridiculous: you are handsome, too!"
"Me? I look like a scarecrow! Or a mummy!"
"Please, don't belittle yourself..."
The artist bit his lip, trying to hold back his tears. He knew that this would happen one day, although it hurts.
"I cannot believe you are going to do this to me..."
"What are you talking about, darling?"
"Leaving me. Marylin, Grace, Rainier, Marlon, Margaret... All left, and now I have to tell you goodbye!"
"It is not fair..."
Philip gently squeezed Piero's hand.
"Don't be sad for me, my beloved. If today has to be my last day, then it shall be. Even if I wish I knew you sooner!"
The Duke sighed.
"Almost fifty years together... It seems so short, but I enjoyed every second spent with you!"
"And I am grateful to you for making my life extraordinary!"
All the people present in the room were overwhelmed by this moment. There was no word strong enough to describe the unconditional love between those two men.
Suddenly, the Duke made a gesture, pointing at his nightstand.
"Would you please give me that huge black box which is under the shelf?"
Nodding, the Crown Prince went near the nightstand and pulled out the black box.
"What is it?" asked Andrew.
"You'll see... Open it, son."
Charles opened the box, revealing a beautiful crown. Piero gasped at the sight: he recognized that crown!
"Is everything alright, Piero?" gently inquired Kate.
"What is the problem with this crown?" asked Anne.
The Duke of Edinburgh started to explain:
"In 1979, as I buried my dear uncle, Louis Mountbatten, I realized what were the essential things in my life. But this tragedy opened my eyes to something else: it showed me that I finally found love again. So, after the funeral, I went to the palace, picked this crown, and drove to Piero's place. Then, I put this crown at his feet while I swear that I will always be him, no matter what happens."
He weakly smiled.
"It was like my first proposal... The proof of my unconditional love to him!"
With shaking hands, Philip put the crown on Piero's head.
"All my life, I dedicated my love and faith to you, who gave me the honor of your affection. I never looked at someone else like I look at you. I always stayed by your side, in good and bad times. I may be a prince, but you are, and you will always be my king."
The artist stayed silent, tears rolling down on his cheeks. After all those years, Philip kept this crown which was the milestone of their relationship.
"I may spend all these years in your shadow, Philip, but I never regret it. If I had to do it again, I would keep it the same way..." he whispered, holding back a sob.
The prince gently wiped away the tears.
"Don't cry for me, my love... We'll meet again... like in this song by Vera Lynn."
The artist nodded.
"Could you please sing it for me?"
Piero calmed himself before he started singing:
We'll meet again.
Don't know where
Don't know when.
But I know we'll meet again
Some sunny day.
Keep smiling through
Just like you always do
'Till the blue skies drive the dark clouds far away.
Philip joined him, humming along:
So will you please say hello
To the folks that I know.
Tell them I won't be long.
They'll be happy to know
That as you saw me go
I was singing this song.
All the family members looked at this scene with tears in their eyes as they were about to say goodbye to their beloved father and grandfather: life would be different without him. As for the staff members who listened at the doorstep, they struggled to stifle their sobs. Most of them were the privileged witnesses of this unusual yet beautiful love story. A love story that was close to the end...
We'll meet again.
Don't know where
Don't know when
But I know we'll meet again
Some sunny day.
We'll meet again
Don't know where
Don't know when
But I know we'll meet again
Some sunny day.
Keep smiling through
Just like you always do
'Til the blue skies
Drive the dark clouds far away.
So will you please say hello
To the folks that I know
Tell them it won't be long.
They'll be happy to know
That as you saw me go
I was singin' this song.
We'll meet again
Don't know where
Don't know when
But I know we'll meet again
Some sunny day.
Once he finished the song, Piero closed the distance between Philip and him as he gave his lover one last kiss:
"My handsome Viking..."
"My sweet artist..."
While he gave this ultimate proof of love, Philip Mountbatten drew his last breath and closed his eyes.
As he stopped the embrace, Piero felt something was wrong and asked:
No answer. At this moment, the artist understood that his prince passed away. Sobbing, he hugged the cold body of his lover and muttered:
"Wait for me, my love. We'll meet again, I promise..."
A few years later, in England...
"Are you sure you don't want to stay a bit longer?" asked Charles.
"No, thank you. That's very kind of you, but I am tired."
Charles sighed. Since the passing of his father in 2021, Piero was not the same man. Of course, his grief healed, but the new King of the United Kingdom and Commonwealth felt that his friend still mourned the love of his life.
"You can stay here if you want. We can prepare you a room!" added Diana.
"No, really. I appreciate the gesture, but I need to go home. I have a paint to finish..."
"Alright, as you wish!"
Charles called a servant.
"Would you please escort Mister De Angelis to his car?"
"Yes, Your Majesty."
Piero got up from his seat and kissed Charles and Diana goodbye.
"Will you be there for tea tomorrow?" asked Diana.
"I won't miss it!" smiled Piero.
The artist went out of the palace and got in the car before his chauffeur started to drive him home. While they looked at the car drew away, the royal couple felt a pang in their hearts.
"I feel something wrong, Charles. What if he did something terrible?"
"I don't think he will, Di. But, for sure, he never recovered from the passing of Father."
At the same time, Piero looked at the landscape, thinking about all those years since Philip died in his arms.
The burial was an ordeal, to say the least. The artist had to hold back his grief, as the public was not supposed to know about their love affair.
And to think that Elizabeth tried to prevent him from being among the guests... Her last attack against him, he supposed. Luckily for him, all the family members got his back, and he gained the right to say goodbye to Philip.
He needed time to heal this heart-breaking pain, but thanks to the love of his family, he felt better.
Three years later, the Queen passed away in her sleep after apologizing for all the wrong she had done to her family.
Four months after her state funeral, Charles and Diana were crowned King and Queen consort of England. Of course, Piero was among the guests of the coronation.
Thus far, Charles and Diana were popular and achieved modernizing the monarchy with the help of their family.
As for Piero, he pursued his career and received many praises and awards. His life was complete, at least...
"Sire? We just arrived at your home?"
Piero woke from his daydream and went out of the car:
"Thank you, Mark. Have a goodnight!"
"Have a goodnight, Sire!"
The artist entered his home and went to his office. Once he arrived in this room, Piero picked his diary and wrote down those lines:
As I came to the last chapter of my life, I was often asked what I want people to remember when they think about me. Well, I just require that they would think of me as a man who loved and lived his life as he wanted. For my legacy, I just leave my creations, my memories, and my unconditional love. Love was my motto and guidelight through the years.
Satisfied with this paragraph, the artist took a bath. Then, he went to bed and laid down as he felt powerful tiredness overwhelming his whole body. He closed his eyes and muttered:
"My handsome Viking..."
The next evening.
During the news bulletin, the BBC TV anchor declared with a sad tone:
"Ladies and gentlemen, good evening. As we all know, an official report released by the De Angelis family announced the passing of the famous British-Italian artist, Piero De Angelis. He was 92 years old.
After this tragic announcement, hundreds of people went to his residence, dropping flowers and letters of condolence to his siblings, nephews, and great-nephews. Similar scenes were seen near Buckingham Palace, as Mister De Angelis was a close friend of Their Majesties King Charles III and Queen Diana.
Many celebrities and Head of States sent their condolences to them: from the Pope to the President of the United States, by way of members of the government, all praised the contribution of Mister De Angelis to arts and his dedication to many charities.
As for the members of the Royal family, some of them released official statements.
The Prince and Princess of Wales, William and Catherine, shared their grief and cherished all the moments spend with Mister De Angelis.
The Duke and Duchess of Sussex, Harry and Aïssa, stated to be devastated by the news.
The Duke and Duchess of Norfolk, Arthur and Grace, informed us of their profound sadness.
As Princess Anne and her husband spoke about their sorrow, the Duke and Duchess of York shared their heartbroken feelings about this loss while the Earl and Countess of Wessex said to have lost a father and friend figure.
Later that day, the King and Queen released a statement where they shared their grief and sorrow about the passing of Piero De Angelis. They praised his gentle character and benevolent presence in their lives.
Furthermore, they officially announced that a state funeral will take place the following week, as a tribute to Piero De Angelis's works and achievements at the service of his country."
Meanwhile, in Buckingham Palace.
Charles looked at the window as he watched people leaving flowers and cards at the portal.
He was amazed by the sincere emotion of the people. It was insane to see how Piero was loved in England and abroad.
He sadly sighed:
"I am sure you would have loved it, Piero."
The king heard his wife coming next to him. She gently held his hand, trying to comfort him:
"They knew Piero was an angel..."
The Queen put her head on his shoulder:
"I miss him too, you know. But, at least, they will be together again!"
Charles had a small smile:
"With a bit of luck, Aunt Margaret will welcome him in Heaven!"
"I am sure she would give him a triumphant reception!"
The royal couple stayed silent a few minutes before Diana asked:
"I suppose that we would not tell the truth about Piero and your father?"
"Not yet. I don't think the people will be ready to hear that." replied her husband.
The former Lady Spencer nodded before looking back at the crowd. Even if it was a pity that this love story would be hidden for a long time, she understood that the monarchy must not take any risk...
Three days before Piero's funeral, in England.
All the media went frenzy: indeed, one of Piero's servants sold copies of his diary to some newspapers. In the excerpts, he showed parts where the late artist confessed about his love affair with Prince Philip. This revelation caused a surprise in the United Kingdom and abroad.
However, this situation displeased the royal family:
"HOW DARE HE? SPILLING ALL HIS SECRETS FOR MONEY?"
"Calm down, Charles: it is not good for your nerves!"
"Listen to your wife, dear brother. However, I agree: this man acts like a jerk! Did he lost all the respect he had for Piero?"
"If Mother was here, Andrew, she would have lectured you for hours!" smirked Anne.
"How the public reacts?" asked Edward.
"I don't know... Let's hope they would not react too badly!" replied Sophie.
"I would not cope with the people spitting on Nonno's memory!" stated Grace.
Suddenly, William called them:
"It's the news bulletin! They are about to speak about it!"
All rushed to the living room and sat in front of the television.
The TV anchor started his speech:
"Good afternoon, ladies and gentlemen. The trend topic of the last days is this revelation about the late Piero De Angelis and Prince Philip.
Indeed, thanks to the passages from his diary and the testimonies of former employees of Buckingham Palace, we can confirm that the two men had a love affair that lasted almost fifty years until Prince Philip's passing in 2021.
We asked different people in the streets what are their opinions about this revelation. Here are their answers..."
Different interviews of diverse people were shown and the Royal family was surprised by the reactions:
"When my friends told me about it, I was shocked at first. Then, I read the diary of Piero... and I was moved to tears! They really loved each other, for sure! It was a shame that they were not able to love in plain sight, but I understand." stated a young woman.
"This man lived a pure and sincere love story with the man he cherished. That's the most important thing!" explained an old lady.
"Piero De Angelis was an amazing man. But that is awesome: seriously, he was Prince Philip's lover! Now, I understood why the prince consort seemed more relaxed!" said a young man.
"I hope this story will help people to accept the LGBTQ+ community. Who knows: maybe in the future, we will have a gay king or a lesbian queen?" told a bunch of youngsters.
"I was surprised to hear this story... But after all Mister De Angelis did for the Royal family and the country, I will never blame him. This man was a good person and we must remember him that way!" declared an old man.
The TV anchor reappeared on screen:
"It seems to show that the reactions are positive. On the internet, many messages on social media prove this tendency. The majority of users praise or acclaim this unusual love story. Even celebrities give their opinions, such as Lady Gaga, Ava Max, or Bruno Mars, who approved this romance.
Le's hope that one day, the Royal Family would give us their version of this story."
"It looks like we don't have the choice..."
"Perhaps some of us can give interviews about it!" submitted Beatrice.
"In this case, let's wait a few weeks or months after the funeral!" recommended Peter.
"Good idea, brother! I think it is the best solution!" approved Zara.
Eugenie looked at the picture of Piero and Philip on the table and said:
"I think Piero wished to tell the world about his love for Grandpa. Now that they are both gone, we have the mission to tell the truth and to protect their memories!"
"Well spoken, dear cousin." smiled Louise.
"I wonder what people would do during the funeral..." asked James.
"We will see on time..." replied Kate.
"At least, we can be sure that they won't be disrespectful towards Piero!" stated Arthur.
"At least, indeed..." muttered Aïssa.
The members of the royal family braced themselves for the upcoming funeral. Meanwhile, the country gets prepared to say goodbye to one of his most beloved artists...
Three days later, the day of Piero's funeral.
The warm sun of May was hidden by grey clouds, and a gentle wind blew through the trees and buildings in London. An immense crowd gathered near Westminster Abbey as the funeral procession passed by.
Behind the coffin walked the entire royal family, along with the De Angelis house. All struggled to hide their grief as they were about to bury their dear friend and relative.
Along the way, several cameramen and journalists aimed their lens at the ceremony, broadcasting this event across the globe.
The Archbishop of Canterbury came to meet them, renewing his sincere condolences.
Then, all sat on the benches, and the priest started his speech, heard by the crowd thanks to speakers:
"Dearly beloved, we are all gathered today as we say farewell to Piero De Angelis and to commit him into the hands of God."
He paused a moment before continuing:
"All his life, Piero proved that he was a gift sent by the Almighty. He was a gift to his family, as he brought joy, love, and pride to his parents and his siblings. He was a gift to his friends, as he proved to be a loyal and cheerful companion. He was a gift to the world, as he shared both his talent for arts and his dedication to charities.
Moreover, he was a gift to the man he dedicated his life and love with no hesitation.
Piero stayed discreet during all this time, playing the role of a benevolent and gentle friend to the royal children. To quote Her Majesty, Queen Diana, he became the guardian angel of Buckingham Palace."
Faint sobs echoed on the stone walls as the youngest members of the Royal Family cried their dear Nonno. As for the youngest generation of the De Angelis Family, they wept over the memory of their beloved Zio Piero.
"All who once crossed paths with our dear Piero always talk about a gentle, patient, funny, and loyal man. Some of us do not approve of his decision to be the lover of Prince Philip. But it would be a shame to belittle his peaceful influence on his second family, to quote him."
Outside the Abbey, people were crying or praying. Among them, a young girl named Aliyah. She went with her friends to attend the funeral.
Wiping a tear, Aliyah wanted to do something as a tribute to the late artist.
Noticing a microphone on a speaker, she connected the wire and waited for the end of Princess Grace's speech. Once the silence back, she started singing:
Encore un peu
Encore un peu
She picked this song by Edith Piaf, as she heard that Piero loved the tunes of the French singer. Besides, he wrote down in his diary that Mon Dieu epitomized his feelings during Philip's funeral.
Le temps de s'adorer,
De se le dire.
Le temps de s'fabriquer
Oh oui! Mon Dieu!
Remplir ma vie.
Amazed by this unrehearsed performance, people around Aliyah started to sing along with her.
Le temps de commencer
Ou de finir
Le temps d'illuminer
Ou de souffrir
The voices of this improvised choir reached the ears of the families in the church.
"But what happens?" asked Anne.
"It happens what I hope the most," replied Charles, relieved.
"Nonno would have loved it!" smiled William through tears.
At the same time, all the crowd sang at the top of their lungs:
Même si j'ai tort,
Même si j'ai tort,
There was a silence, then people politely applauded Aliyah's initiative.
At that very moment, the funeral reached its end. The two families went out of the church, following the coffin.
Suddenly, people started to sing L'Hymne à l'amour with emotion. Moved to tears, the royals and the De Angelis did not hold back their feelings and gently waved at the crowd, thanking them for this proof of love.
At the end of this sad day, after Piero's coffin was laid near Philip's grave, all the journalists quoted this inhumation as royal and beautiful. A burial worth of a king...
When Piero opened his eyes, he realized that something was off. He got up and found out that he was not in his bed, neither in his home. Instead, he was in a calm and lovely garden.
The only sound he heard was the warbling of the water. Looking around with amazed eyes, the artist tripped and nearly fell in the fountain.
"Phew! That was a close one! Wait a minute..."
As he looked at his reflection on the surface, Piero almost screamed: he was young again!
At that moment, he understood that he was dead. This thought gave him a lump in his throat: he did not have the time to say goodbye to those he loved...
But another thought soothed his mind: his presence here meant that he will meet again his beloved who died before him.
Suddenly, he heard footsteps behind him, and a voice said:
"I have waited a long time for you, my angel!"
Piero turned around and gasped as he saw his lover, young again and smiling at him.
"PHILIP!" he screamed as he ran into his arms.
The two tightly hugged each other.
"I have missed you so much!" muttered the artist.
"Here I am now, my love!"
The prince gently stroke the cheek of his beloved.
"And as we are finally reunited, we have all the eternity for us!"
"What could be better?"
They shared a kiss, celebrating their love.
Then, they pulled back, and Philip said:
"Let's go, now! I know some people who are very impatient to see you again..."
As Philip and Piero walked down the garden, the prince muttered at the artist's ear:
"All hail to my king!"
First of all, thanks for the reading! I really hoped that you enjoyed the story!
Secondly, I want to precise that this story is an AU and a fiction: don’t take it as pure truth! If you disagree with the subject, please, tell it respectuously!
Anyway, don’t hesitate to send me requests!
See you soon and take care! 😘😍🥰😷
Disclaimer: This aesthetic was made by me!
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