There seems to be a shift in time here. Lawrence and Josephine are clearly together, but where? And the fact that Samir is mentioned but not Michael means this episode is after Michael was killed in battle. Donalbain, the child of Lawrence and Josephine who did not make it into the novel, is here. Your guess is as good as mine. Bear with me.
he Queen sat on the hillside, her skirts all spread about her. It was April now, and the grass was green. The leaves of the trees and bushes were also, and little buds appeared on everything. Donal played about her, crawling and laughing and trying to walk. He would stand , wave his arms about in the air, laugh, and say (or rather scream) "Ma!" to the skies and to her. She would laugh too, and put out her arms to let him fall into them.
Once, when the wind blew aside some branches of a bush, she saw Samir sitting and looking up at the sky. She called to him and he stood, surprised at having been seen. He came to her, bowed nicely and sat a couple of feet away, facing her.
It was one of those spring days when the sun's rays are unobstructed and beat down from its angle in the sky. Not hot, but bright, with the wind blowing swiftly, whipping up capes, hair, grass, tree branches and making a world a mystic land of hypnotic motion.
She and Samir talked of the beauty of the day and laughed at Donal's antics. Samir was tall, like Lawrence and Rory, but not so muscular as the former, nor as slender as the latter. The Queen admired the lilt in his voice, the lyrical lilt characteristic of Arabian or Persian accents. He was reserved and quietly intellectual. He spent countless hours reading, drawing, and thinking.
They spoke of Persia for a while. The Queen listened with great interest. She could well understand her husband's great liking for this man. Lately Lawrence had begun to indulge more time in his friends, whom he chose without considering form the finest thinkers in Britain. Samir was one. Rory another, and Lorin, of course. And most recently a fascinating young German knight named Alaric, who told with mystic beauty the tales of the gods of Asgard. Lorin considered the three men in Lawrence's closest circles minstrels, although only Rory ever sang. For when together, Rory, Samir and Alaric all enchanted the King with the legendary and religion of their parts of the world. There were others, of course, but none so patronized by the King.
The Queen watched with uncomprehending wonder as the King seemed to grow happier, at peace with himself, more in love with the world and so much more aware of the happiness that could be gotten from life, that so many overlook as they seek the romantic pleasures of a storybook life.
Next: A war and escape.
Before there was the novel, there were the stories...
by Nan Hawthorne, who also writes under Christopher Hawthorne Moss, Books and Stories b ChristopherHawthorne Moss at http://authorchristophermoss.vlogspot.com