Washed in oils of honeysuckle and thyme, the crypt ushered her in with antiseptic strength. She asked after the King’s body. None of the responses congealed in her hearing. Phrases like, “legal property of Vojda Research Laboratories,” “insurers,” “exclusive” and “living will,” went over Goneril’s head as she faded to the floor.
She was shaking. “Hold me. To hell with protocol! I need to be held.” A minder enfolded her in his arms. From there, her eyes rested on the brushed silver canister that cradled her husband’s remains. His ashes muffled her distress.
“You mean,” she said, breaking through somehow, “my father is alive because he got better life insurance coverage?”
“Yes, Ma’am,” the Prime Minister said, “and until he has officially recovered, you are Queen, regnant.”
Photo credit: Schloss Belvedere, Wien/ Belvedere Castle, Vienna, courtesy Dominik Bartsch via Flickr. I was fortunate to find the amazing photography of Dominik Bartsch on Flickr. It is difficult to find images that bring the right ambience to a story. But I found everything I needed in one place.