After nightmares wake the Royal couple, they enjoy coupling royally.
William and I slept late the next morning. We enjoyed a leisurely breakfast and were reviewing our morning schedules when Dr. Edwards arrived. Neither of us had an appointment or were due for a checkup so we were both surprised to see her.
“Good morning, Your Highnesses,” she said. “I hope you’ll forgive my intrusion but this will just take a moment. “
The doctor wore a friendly smile but I read tension in her eyes. As an expectant mother, my first concern was for the baby. “Is there a problem with my pregnancy?”
William took my hand and gave it a gentle squeeze. “I’m sure everything is fine, my dear. Isn’t that right, Dr. Edwards?”
“Quite right, Prince William,” Dr. Edwards said. Turning her attention to me, she added, “This has nothing to do with your pregnancy, Princess Olivia. It is proceeding normally, and the baby is developing as expected.”
The doctor waited as I absorbed her reassurances. I smiled my thanks, “I apologize for my reflexive and emotional response, Dr. Edwards. Please do continue.”
“Your response was perfectly understandable, Your Highness. I should have begun by telling you I was not here for anything associated with the pregnancy.”
“Water under the bridge, as they say.” William gave a nonchalant wave, dismissing the matter entirely. “What does bring you here this morning?”
“I received a copy of your guardsman’s report of last night’s incident. I wish to ask you a bit about that.”
My cheeks warmed as I blushed. “It was nothing, Doctor. I simply forgot I wasn’t wearing pajamas. I didn’t mean to—”
Dr. Edwards shook her head, “No, Princess Olivia, I don’t wish to ask about anything quite so personal as that. If I catch your meaning, however, rest assured you’re hardly the first member of the Royal family to accidentally reveal more of yourself than you intended. Why, Queen Charlotte must have done the same thing a dozen times or more. We all do unintentional things when surprised or startled.”
I tried to imagine my mother-in-law doing anything unintentionally and failed utterly. Even so, Dr. Edwards words did ease my embarrassment. “My apologies for interrupting, though I can’t think of anything about the incident that requires your attention.”
“As I understand it, the incident began when both of you awoke screaming at the same time. Is that correct?”
William appeared as surprised as I was by the question, but he responded, “That’s correct. Why is the Royal physician taking an interest in our nightmares?”
“If you’ll bear with me for just a moment longer, I’ll explain everything, Your Highness. Have the two of you had simultaneous nightmares before? Have either of you ever awoken screaming since the marriage?”
Puzzled, William and I both shook our heads.
Dr. Edwards nodded as if our response meant something to her. “Do either of you remember your nightmare?”
“Barely,” William mused. “I recall chasing something and being unable to catch it. Whatever I was chasing was dangerous, important, and catching it was vital to my survival.”
I stared at William in stupefaction. “I had the same nightmare.”
William’s eyebrows rose in surprise. Looking at Dr. Edwards, he asked, “What are the chances that Olivia and I had the same nightmare at the same time and both awoke screaming?”
The smile was gone from Dr. Edwards face. “Slim, Your Highness. Exceedingly slim, given what else I know of last night’s events.”
“What does that mean?” I asked.
“I’ve had several reports of nightmares last night. In all cases those suffering from the nightmare awoke screaming and, many times, their spouse and children awoke screaming at the same time. Every one of them awoke at exactly the same time as the two of you.” Dr. Edwards was silent for a moment, letting her news sink in. “I could explain away your nightmares by blaming Princess Olivia’s pregnancy and declaring Prince William suffered from a sympathetic nightmare. That explanation is illogical and unscientific, but I might have convinced myself it was true. This situation, though…”
“Am I correct in assuming we all shared the same nightmare?” William asked.
“I’m afraid you are, my Prince,” Dr. Edwards sighed. “That is one of three distinct similarities shared by all cases.”
“The actual nightmare and the time we all awoke are two of the similarities,” I said. “What could the third similarity possibly be?”
“It was so subtle that I didn’t even notice it, myself. My lab assistant made the connection but dismissed it as irrelevant. It only came out when he made an offhand comment. After we received our sixth call about the nightmares, he said, ‘I’m glad I’m not Recognized.’ It was only then that I realized the nightmare had only affected Recognized individuals and many of the children of Recognized parents.”
“Many?” I asked. “Not all children were affected?”
Dr. Edwards shook her head, “At the moment, I’m baffled by that discrepancy. I’m certain we will eventually discover a logical reason why some children were spared the nightmare, but that reason has eluded me thus far.”
William gave me a concerned glance, “What does it all mean, Dr. Edwards? This sounds rather worrisome.”
It was the doctor’s turn to wave nonchalantly — a gesture I doubted was sincere. “No, not at all. I’m sure everything is fine.”
“Then why are you here?” I asked.
“I had to make sure your story matched the others I’ve received. I also know how things such as this can throw off a person’s equilibrium. Considering the stresses of your daily duties, I’m prescribing a sleep aid for both of you. It’s entirely safe for the baby, Princess Olivia, so I want each of you to ingest it before turning in tonight. It will ensure you both enjoy a full night’s sleep, one free of nightmares.”
Dr. Edwards gave the medication to us, smiled reassuringly, and left. It was a masterful performance. Had I not seen increased tension reflected in her eyes, it would have set me at ease. As it was, I was more worried than ever.
Did the nightmare affect Jeanine? Find out in Chapter 37, coming Wednesday.