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He doesn’t know what makes him go out to the gardens.

It’s an unconscious urge to be near them, and if Keith, Prince of the Galra Kingdom, predestined for greatness by birth, hadn’t already been trained by the greatest and most talented sorcerers and Druids of the kingdom, he might have been worried he was under someone’s influence.

(All members of the royal family and guard were trained against mind control, a way the Emperor feared would be eventually used to destroy him)

He continues on his way to the gardens, all the while wondering what could possess him to even think about that place.

It’s literally just weeds; some taller than others, some a bit more colorful, but all really just weeds.

Hardly anyone goes there anymore, except when a large ball is hosted, and a place for…indecent activities is needed for the more inebriated.

(there are gardeners, of course, but they’re all fools with tools for digging, spending most of their time drinking the palace’s wines in the cellar)

So it’s to his great surprise when he turns the corner and is met with the sight of a person digging into some of the purple flowers (why should he know the names? They’re just weeds) near a fountain.

“You there!” He shouts. “Who are you?”

They stand up and turn around, hands in the air.

It’s a human girl, with auburn-ish brown hair, cut around the shoulders.

Her fair skin is freckled, and her eyes….they’re mesmerizing.

Gold, with liquid amber sprinkled it, they seem to sparkle like gemstones.

He wants to stare at them for-

“Your Highness.” She bows.

“Who are you?” He demands, his heart beating a bit faster for some reason.

“They call me Pidge.” She says, still bowing. “I am a new gardener.”

“Pidge.” It rolls off his tongue. “That is a boy’s name.”

She looks up, and her face is flushed. “I find it easier with a boy’s name. It attracts less attention out in the…rougher parts of the kingdom.”

“You’ve already been briefed?” He asks.

He does not want this little human-with-a-male’s-name messing up the gardens.

She nods.

“Attend to the roses then. The last gardener all but killed them.”

The girl nods. “As you wish, mi'lord.”

And as he walks away, it’s so very hard not to turn around and continue to stare into her eyes.

Bah, he thinks and continues walking back to the throne room. You’re turning soft.

(softness is not tolerated in court)

The next time he sees the gardens, the purple flowers near the fountain catch his eye.

They are full and purple, seemingly sparkling, the colors weaving in and out of each little petal.

And then he looks closer and the light moves and they look like normal flowers again.