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After being tossed from her horse, Princess Princilla lies in hospital. The question on everyone’s mind—will the princess walk again?

Fear invades the Gaps of Tolerance along the southern banks of the Black Snake River. Now the Court must decide whether to send in more troops.

A telegram from Gruntle reveals Princess Erica is going through another Post Traumatic Stress Occurrence. Is this relapse serious, or just another cry for attention?

Now a budding teen, Prince Aloneous finds comfort with the animals in the stable, but when he awakens he soon finds himself eclipsed by Confusion.

Growth is an experience of loss. All good things must come to an end. Childhood is no exception.

Six days after Spitfire tossed princess Princilla into the corral fence, Queen Pristine and consort Godwyn were back in Entitlement, and reported to the Contentment hospital for Dr. Schnippencutt’s, and Dr. Tscherugi’s post-cast-setting report on the princess’s condition. Awakening from her coma state, Princilla saw the world through layers of gauze bandages, healing her stitched face. The regents entered the room to find Dr. Snippencutt standing at the foot of the hospital bed, explaining the situation to his patient. “Your Royal Highness, welcome back.” He took her hand. “You have been in a coma for three weeks. Can you tell me who you are?”

“I am a princess. Who are you?”
“I am Dr. Schnippencutt, and this is Dr. Tschirugi. Dr. Tschirugi and I set your cast. So, you are a princess—a princess of where?”
“I am the Princess of Entitlement, Princess Princilla Agarapina Marguerite Goldspinner Bonheur.”
“Yes. Do you recognize this woman, and this man, standing at your bedside?”

Princilla was unable to move her neck, but she recognized her mother’s L’Air du Temps perfume. “That’s MaMajesty, Queen Pristine of Entitlement, regent of Abundance, Princess of Perfection, and that’s my Papa Majesty, prince of Grace, Defender of Tolerance, consort of Abundance.”

“Very good.” Dr. Schnippencutt nodded.
Pristine touched the princess’s hand. “Princilla, sweetheart, you recognized us.”
“The princess appears to be fully cognizant, Your Majesty.”
“Yes. She is in control of all her faculties. Now she just needs to heal.”
“Oh, Princilla—you recognize us. How could you do this to us? Here you lay in a cast, communicating through bandages. This is not right.”
“My face.” The princess twitched. “I feel nothing at all.”
“You poor thing,” the Queen stroked her daughter’s hand, “my princess, no more riding for you.”

“Ooh, Ma’ma—the only thing I feel is my face.” Princilla tried to raise her hand, but the right was in a cast, and the Queen held her left. “My face,” the princess moaned, “what does my face look like?”

Dr. Schnippencutt stepped up. “Mistress Princilla, Dr. Chirurgie gave you nineteen stitches.”
“Oh no—not stitches. I wanna go home.”
“The doctors will release you as soon as they can, Princilla. I am so happy you recognized us. Can you smile for MaMajesty?”
The gauze twitched. “B-barewy.”
“My baby, your face in bandages, in the hospital, in a cast.”
Godwyn stepped aside with Dr. Tschirugi. “Doctor, it has been a challenging month. Her Majesty is letting pent up emotion flow.”
“Yes, I see. Might I speak with you and Her Majesty outside, Sir?”
“Of course.” Godwyn approached the bed. “Princilla, your mother and I are going to step out for a bit. We will be right back.”

“If you would, Sir, step into the lightroom, please.” Dr. Schnippencutt switched on the lightboard, clamped an X-ray to it, and grabbed his pointer. “We set the princess in a body cast because, as you see here from these lines, she broke not only her humerus and ulna bones—those are the upper and forearm of her right hand. She also broke her trabecular vertebra—right here.”

“Is the right not her writing hand, Godwyn?’
“I believe so.”
“I hope she will be able to write again. She has such beautiful penmanship.”

“The princess is young. Her ulna and humerus will heal. It is her vertebral trabecular I am worried about.” He pointed to the X-ray, “as you see here, her trabecular vertebra is broken.”

“What does this mean, Doctor?”
“The princess will need rehabilitation if she is to walk again. She appears she have no sensation below the waist.”
“No, Doctor, it cannot be.”
“It is, Ma’am. The princess’s spinal cord took quite a shock when she hit the fence.” Dr. Schnippencutt pointed to the lightboard. “You see this fissure?”
Pristine pointed to a fine line on the X-ray. “This tiny crack?”
“That crack is on the princess’s coccyx, Ma’am.”
“What are you saying, Doctor?”
“We will know nothing until the cast comes off.”
“How long will that be?”
“Eight, maybe nine months.”

Godwyn crossed himself, stepped aside, and went into prayer. “This is an illusion. This is not real. Princilla will walk again.” I am the Defender of the Faith; I must defend. Father-Mother God, from whose lips all things come into being…

“I foresaw this before those horses came through the gates,” said the Queen. “This is what happens when one compromises.”
Dr. Tschirugi stepped in, “perhaps a relaxer, Ma’am?”
“A relaxer?” Pristine turned to the doctor—“a relaxer for what?”
“Perhaps a pill of yellow could make life more mellow?”
“My days are mellow, Doctor.”
“At night, two greens to bring on sweet dreams, perhaps?”
“I have no problem dreaming, Doctor.”

“Mornings are most challenging,” said the consort, “thinking how we are going to get through this has my mind occupied.”
Doctor Tschirugi turned his attention back to the Queen, “Your Majesty, in the morning, two pink to help you think?”
“Doctor Tschirugi, I do not need pills.”
Godwyn stepped in, “what we need is faith.”