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Hearing her aunt Lyretta immediately lowered her hands and looked sheepishly at her aunt. She had not meant to lose herself and forget her manners.
Marchioness Alitia walked forward until she faced King Roin and she bowed. When she stood she turned to the Princess and did the same. When she stood she smiled at the princess and spoke.
"Princess, please forgive my little niece. This is her first-time meeting someone as esteemed as you and she momentarily forgot herself." Princess Esmeralda looked back at the older woman as her eye twitched. She was very angry, but now that the marchioness had arrived she remembered her position and restrained herself.
"It is no problem Marchioness; the young Lady simply did not know her place." Princess Esmeralda indirectly mocked Lyretta and then she turned away from the Marchioness and approached her father.
King Roin had not said anything wanting to see how his two daughters would interact. He had not noticed the hatred in Esmeraldas eyes and thought that Esmeralda had received her sister well, albeit a little distantly.
When his daughter approached he took her hand and led her to her seat, he then took his seat at the head of the long table. Lyretta found her own seat and her aunt sat next to her.
Dinner was quiet and conversations went on around them, but no one directly referred to Lyretta or the Marchioness.
After dinner ended everyone bid good bye to the king and wished him a good night. Lyretta hung back and waited until everyone left, eager to have a moment alone with her father.
Princess Esmeralda had also stayed back, as it was her custom to wait for her father to escort her to her rooms after dinner.
Seeing that Lyretta and the Marchioness had stayed back King Roin approached them with a smile on his face. Lyretta smiled back at him while the Marchioness kept a neutral expression.
"Lyretta, I am really glad that you came to see me." King Roin grabbed both of Lyretta's hands in his. Since he thought that his little princess had accepted her half-sister, he was now completely ready to acknowledge Lyretta as his daughter. It was an open secret whose child Lyretta really was, but he had never acknowledged it. Today he would finally do that.
"Thank you, Your Majesty." Lyretta blushed, her heart filling with happiness. Her father had never called her by name only, she resolved to always remember this day.
"Child, I am your father. There is no need to refer to me as 'Your Majesty', from now on call me Father." Lyretta froze as tears instantly filled her eyes. Ever since she was small she had thought of her father, but had never dared to call his name out loud. She had never though that she would get the chance. Today so many wonderful things were happening. A single tear overflowed and fell from her eye. With a watery smile, she complied with her father's request.
"Thank you, Father." Lyretta smiled brightly at her father, thankful that her aunt had allowed her to meet her father.
"Welcome home, my daughter. Welcome home." King Roin saw how happy his daughter was and guilt weighed on his heart. He had left such a lovely daughter by herself for far too long. He had missed her days as she grew up. Suddenly he wished he could have seen everyone single step she took until she arrived to today. A father was still a father, even if he was a king, even if the daughter was illegitimate.
Princess Esmeralda watched in horror as her father unofficially acknowledged the little bastard. What was he going to do next? Confer the title of princess?
Lyretta worked through her heavy emotions and uttered the words she had been so wishing to say since the moment she had seen her father.
"I'm home, Father." when she said that she could no longer hold back her feelings and she reached out to her father and hugged him, trying to make up for all the years she had missed him.
King Roin was surprised, but he returned her hug promptly.
Seeing this final action, now the one who could not hold herself back was Princess Esmeralda.