Despite those scattered weeks of deprivation and dread, Princess S thrived at college. She questioned and learned and took delight in all the world around her. Eventually she fell in love, as princesses do, not with a prince or knight, as was the norm in her day, but with another princess. And she felt the need to keep quiet about her love until she understood what this would mean for her kingdom.
When college was over, she planned a long journey across the sea to England. No one knew that she was leaving behind her lady love, and she was very sad. But off she went, and was very excited to be in the home of the literature she loved. She made new friends and had adventures. But one day, she received a scroll from the King, telling her that he had found out about her lady love, and soon came a message from Lady M, telling her that she was unworthy to return to the kingdom. Even Princess A sent a scroll accusing Princess S of causing hurt and havoc in the kingdom. She was banished from her homeland.
Princess S was sick at heart. The only members of the royal family who communicated with her were the dowager Queen and the old King, her father's parents. For this she was grateful. Though she knew that she was a good and worthy princess, her heart was heavy, and she alternated between eating to fill the new empty place inside her and depriving herself, so that she might someday be allowed to return home.
The years passed, and when her sojourn in England was over, Princess S traveled over the vast ocean to Boston, where she made her new home. She made friends and found work, and tried to free herself from the terrible bondage that eating to fill the empty spaces had become. When she continued to be unsuccessful, her wise counselor suggested that she see a healer to find whether it was heartsickness that stood in her way.
The healer helped Princess S explore the empty sad place inside her that had grown there when she was not allowed to grieve for her mother, the Queen. Princess S cried and grieved, moaned and mourned, until the healer agreed that she was ready to try again to go forth in health.
Then Princess S received another scroll from the King, informing her that he and Lady M were selling the ancestral castle and asking what to do with her belongings that were stored there. Princess S replied, and then there were other scrolls exchanged between her and her estranged family. Soon, she was invited to visit the new castle, and something resembling normalcy returned to their relations. She was even asked to attend Princess A's wedding, though when she did, Lady M made sure that she was not permitted to take full part in the festivities, much to the dismay of the old King and Queen. But Princess S was grateful to be part of the family once again. Her exile appeared to be over.
Then trouble came again to the kingdom. The King renounced his father and mother and renounced his brother, Prince H, who had joined him in business. Harsh words were spoken and a judgment against the King was issued in the court of the land. But the King, instigated by Lady M, evaded paying the judgment and banished his parents and his brother to exile in the south.
Princess S was sick at heart. The old king and queen had always loved her and cared for her, even through her long exile. When Lady M would try to tell her of their perfidy, Princess S refused to listen. And that was the act that led to her second and final banishment from the kingdom of her birth.
To be continued....