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The Wedding Invitation

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ACT I. SCENE I.

Elijah and Lady Fiona are in the downstairs sitting room in Old Guard Cottage, Kensington Gardens.

ELIJAH: Are you sure you don’t want to come to Berlin, Fiona? We should all be together.

FIONA: Elijah, we’ve been through this many times. I don’t want the boys to see my decline. I’d like them to remember me strong and healthy.

ELIJAH: But they worry about you. I know you are trying to protect them, but I fear that this choice will lead to its own ill effects.

FIONA: The worst has not begun, Elijah. I’m still relatively strong and able to join in the fun and games. But it’s happening quickly. The cancer will show no mercy and it will take all the energy I have left to try to ease the pain. That’s not the mother I want in their memory.

ELIJAH: I understand. I’m sorry to put this pressure on you. I worry about you too. It was lovely to have you out in California with us but it is also devastating to realize it will probably be the last trip we ever took together.

FIONA: You’ve always been such a good friend to us. Robert many times called you the brother he never had.

ELIJAH: And he was the same for me. Even more of a brother than my cousin Clyde, whose father was like my father too, indeed the only father I’ve ever known.

FIONA: Oh! I wish I had known Ziggy!

ELIJAH: I wish everyone had known Ziggy!

FIONA: Well, they know his legacy, don’t they? Thanks to you! Ziggy Beer is very popular here.

ELIJAH: I can’t take any credit. Ziggy built the company from the bottom up. I just took the reins after he died.

FIONA: You don’t give yourself enough credit, Elijah. He trained you. He believed in you. He could have left it to Clyde.

ELIJAH: No, Clyde had no interest. Clyde never wanted to run a beer company. He’s an incredibly successful psychiatrist and radio broadcaster, right here in London!

FIONA: I like Clyde. And I like his show. He gives very sound advice. Some of the problems! The people who call in! Their problems astound me. It’s amazing what humans can overcome.

ELIJAH: Fiona, are you sure this cancer cannot be defeated? I know you’ve had a second opinion….

FIONA: And a third, and a fourth, and a ten trillionth! Elijah, I’ve made peace with it. I’ve ensured that my precious boys will be cared for by the best people I know.

ACT I. SCENE II.

A year later. Lady Fiona has passed away. Arthur is lying on his bed (in Berlin) watching a gamer video on youtube. David barges in.

David: Unbelievable!

Arthur: Ever heard of knocking?

David: Sorry! I’m upset.

Arthur: What is it now? Has what’s her name cancelled again?

David: It’s about Harry and Meghan! We’re not invited to the wedding!

Arthur: Oh is that all?

David: No! Apparently we are blacklisted from Eugenie’s wedding too!

Arthur: So what?

David: So what! Arthur, they are our cousins!

Arthur: Not really. I know some years we stood on the balcony in June, but now….

David: What?

Arthur: Well, David… Now that Mum and Dad are both…. Don’t look at me like that. David, you know things are different now. We don’t even carry British passports anymore. We gave it all up to become Schusters. And frankly, I’m glad that we did.

David: I know. I am too. I love Elijah and Margot. But, Arthur, don’t you… Don’t you miss….

Arthur: Of course I miss England sometimes. I miss our friends. But we have friends here too. New friends. I don’t know why you wanted so badly to go to Harry’s wedding. I know you remember the boredom of sitting in the abbey for William and Kate’s wedding. Hours and hours, queuing outside, then finding our seats, then waiting and waiting and waiting. And then the service! Harry’s wedding will be just the same.

David: I know, but you know I always liked Harry especially. He’s my hero. Because of him, I want to serve in the British army. Well, now, I guess… Whatever. The point is, I thought surely he would invite us. He knows about Mum.

Arthur: He also knows about a certain YouTube video where Lord Oskar Jagerhorn is calling him a murderer.

David: Do you really think he saw that? I thought you said Emily’s friend deleted it.

Arthur: She did. But it still got thousand of views and it may even have been archived. Who knows? Anything related to the royal family, and especially Harry or William, tends to get people’s notice.

David: That must be why we’re not invited.