Ahead of the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge’s tour of India and Bhutan this weekend, Right Royal Mother imagines what upstairs at Anmer Hall the night before departure is like as the family prepare to be separated for a week. (Since this post, little has changed with the family except that Charlotte has another tooth).
**The following account is FICTIONAL.**
ANMER HALL, NORFOLK, 8 APRIL 2016
Prince George, aged two and three quarters, is dressed as a Tyrannosaurus Rex and ‘helping’ his 11 month old sister, Charlotte, paint circles in the bidet with their mother, Catherine (Kate)’s Creme de La Mer. William, Duke of Cambridge, is folding boxer shorts to wedge between his wife’s Sweaty Betty running bras and nude tights. Kate is wearing a cashmere dressing gown and sipping a slimline G&T whilst browsing pictures in the right hand column of the Daily Mail of her sister skiing downhill at speed. Lupo the dog is quietly having a nightmare on the bed.
“Are you alright, Georgie?” William crosses the bedroom to the door of the en suite, where Prince George stands, dripping the world’s most expensive bubble bath in sad puddles on the floor. He looks up with noble dinosaur eyes.
“Don’t want you and Mummy to go,” he sniffs. “‘Cos I will be very lonely.”
“That isn’t true,” replies William kindly. “You have Maria something-or-other to run ragged, Lupo to take shooting if you want … and Charlotte. You can take care of your little sister for us, can’t you? It’s a big responsibility.”
George’s quiff trembles. “I’m not a … a … “
“What?” sighs Kate, putting down her iPhone and picking up Charlotte’s pink tutu, which has fallen on the floor.
“A big silly billy.”
“Responsibility. Not silly billy. It means you can do something very important and be very strong – and people want to be around you because they trust you.”
George studies his claws. “Like a dinosaur?”
“Like a king,” says Kate, looking at her husband fondly.
“KATE!” William whisper-shouts. “We agreed not to tell him about that until he can do three poos in a row on the potty.”
Kate’s fond look fades. “That’s not going to be any time soon then. I tell you what,” she says to George, who is remembering peeing all over the angora rug in the playroom earlier that day and looking even more upset, “you can help me pack.”
William stops, mid-boxer roll. He, like the rest of the UK, knows how much thought and preparation has gone into the ’12-15 outfits’ she has prepared. “Kate, darling … are you … are you sure?”
“Yes,” Kate says firmly. “George can do it.”
“But I am a randysawrus rex,” George says indignantly.
“Rex means ‘King’, you know,” Kate says, a little smugly.
“Kate …” William shoots her a warning look. “I told you … “
“Sorry,” she says, briskly. “Now. George. First we need my passport.” She grimaces; the photograph in hers was taken before the days of Richard Ward. “It’s a special books that lets me go anywhere. With special stamps in.”
George cheers up a bit. “Oh! Here it is,” he exclaims, holding the Bing Bunny sticker book he has already defaced.
“Thank you darling. Now, I need some pretty dresses.”
Georgie pounces on the pink tutu. “This one is BEAUTIFUL, Mama,” he shouts. Kate takes it and puts it on (despite being made for a 1yr old, amazingly it fits around her waist). William looks dubious. “You can’t wear that,” he says to Kate. “It shows far too much leg for India.”
“I know, Mummy,” says George. “You can have this if you like.” He strips off his T-Rex costume and passes it to her proudly. “Now you can be a dinosaur princess!” He looks rapt(or).
Kate wraps the rubber scaled Lidl special around her shoulders and looks in the mirror. She’s pretty pleased. Pink and green complement her complexion; they’re strong colours for India; she is wearing a ‘unique piece’ and keeping a little memento of each child close to her. The paps will love it.
She turns to William and says firmly, “I’m wearing it on the plane, Georgie, and when I step off, the crowd will go mad.”
“They’ll think you have, more like,” mutters William. “You look like you did in that 80s roller disco get-up before we got married.”
“Those were the days,” says Kate wistfully, stroking Lupo, who has woken and is sniffing George’s nappy. “Pre-children. Now we’re just old dinosaurs.”
“Don’t worry,” William says, putting an arm around his wife. He finds Sonos on his phone and scrolls until he finds ‘Concrete Schoolyard.’ “Let’s not spoil our last evening together.” He sweeps up Charlotte, holds out a hand to George and the four of them bop around the bedroom to Jurassic Five.
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