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Shortly after their rendezvous outside of the dining hall, Callan and Ariella arrived at the billiards room. A tall, lanky man stood facing away from them, holding a glass of amber liquid while he stared ahead until he noticed the pair enter.

He smiled as if he was caught off guard, "Ah, mon ami!" he exclaimed, turning to face them.

Cal gave him a warm embrace, "I'm relieved to see you made it here without falling over drunk."

"You mock me, Cal," he chuckled, "I haven't wavered with a drink in my hand since we were boys."

Cal raised an eyebrow and patted his shoulder good naturedly, "I'll take your word."

Jacques tilted his head playfully, "And who might this beauty be?" he asked, glancing over to Ariella, who smiled awkwardly from behind Cal's shoulder.

"Ah! The reason we're here, I'd almost forgotten," he laughed, and led her forward, "This is my fiancée to be, the Lady Ariella du Montamorte."

"Hello, Your Grace," Ariella acknowledged quietly.

"Call me Jacques, I beg you, I've known Callan for so long we must be brothers by now. It's so very lovely to meet you," he said kindly, a hidden mischievousness behind his dark irises.

Ariella smiled shyly and grasped onto Cal's arm, "You as well, Jacques."

There was an uncomfortable silence that fell over them, while Jacques continued to admire Ariella as Ariella inched closer and closer to Callan.

"Well," Cal said finally, "I've brought you both here for a reason. I wanted Jacques here because I think he might be able to help our cause," he said, glancing at Ariella, "And I wanted you here because I might have found a loophole."

Ariella smiled wholeheartedly, "In what way?"

He looked to Jacques, who must've had an epiphany in that very moment, "Oh Lord, Callan, why must you put me in these situations! Do you think my mother would've ever, in a million years, have granted me that money? The woman hated me!"

Cal smirked, and pulled a scroll of paper out from beneath his coat, "See for yourself."

Jacques eyed him suspiciously and took the paper, "..to my son, I leave half of my fortune...to my heiress, Mademoiselle Ariella du Montamorte, I leave my title and estate."

When Jacques finished scanning the document, he raised his head to join Ariella with looking to Cal for an explanation.

"I may have had a final intervention with the Duchess's assets lawyer this morning, who may have received a considerable tax deduction for perhaps, adding a bit of detail into the will."

Jacques stared at Cal in bewilderment, "You've gone mad."

"Well, I for one, owe my happiness to you in more than one way," said Ariella, who looked to Cal with absolute admiration.

Cal kissed her forehead, "You are my happiness."

"Well, I have no doubt that my happiness lies with my mother's money," said Jacques giddily, "Now, If you'll excuse me, I'm going to retrieve an expensive bottle of whisky and a few prostitutes."

Jacques saluted them and walked towards the door.

"Not even a thank you?" Cal chuckled, still holding Ariella in an embrace, "That was the fastest conversation I've ever had with you, babbling fool."

"It appears I am now exceedingly rich, Highness, I must not waste a moment not spending my fortune," he smirked, and turned to walk out of the room.

After Jacques had left, Ariella looked to Cal and smiled softly.

"You're probably wondering why I didn't speak of this earlier," Cal said, looking into her green eyes.

She nodded, "I thought our postponement was due to your father's illness," she looked at him with curious eyes, then looked down.

He lifted her chin, "Not only that, Mademoiselle. My parents have wished me to marry the Princess Sylvie since we were children. And now, you have considerable wealth and a respectable title, there is absolutely no reason why they would discourage our marriage."

"And the agreement with the Princess's homeland? What of that?"

Cal smirked, "I have Katerina and Sylvie has three younger brothers around the same age. There is always the next debutante season."

Ariella watched him with unreadable eyes, "All of this is forming so fast."

"Too fast?" He asked, doubt in his voice.

She shook her head, "Just.. fast," she took his hand, "I am ready to be your wife, Callan, but I haven't the slightest clue on how to be Queen."

"You will learn the ways of our government and we shall rule side by side. I look out for my kingdom and her people, mon amour, and no matter how much I may love you, I would not marry you if I did not think you were ready to be my Queen."

Ariella smiled softly, "Your Queen?"

Cal rested his hands on her hips and smirked, pulling her close to him, "If that is what you want."

"You'll always be what I want," she whispered, and sealed the small space between them with a kiss. She wrapped her arms tightly around his body and held him as close to her as she could, not wanting to waste a moment she had with him.

He picked her up by the waist and set her on top of the billiards table in the center of the room. He wanted to tear her clothes off and admire her beauty once more, but he restrained himself. He pulled himself away from her lips to stop where he knew they were headed.

She looked at him curiously, and pulled him by the collar of his shirt back to her lips.

"-Not tonight, Ariella," he whispered.

"I want you," she sighed whilst attempting to unbutton his shirt.

He placed his hands on her thighs and pushed himself away from her grasp, "Not until we are married."

She watched him for a moment while she tried to steady her breathing, "Fine then," she muttered, and lifted herself off of the billiards table where she found herself stuck between the table and Cal, who was standing directly in front of her.

"Shall I escort you back to your chambers?" He asked, tucking a few strands of her dark hair behind her ear.

"It seems you will be heading that way yourself, Your Highness, I wonder how we ended up in the same quarters of the palace?" She asked sarcastically.

He shrugged while motioning her to walk out of the room, "Must've been a planning error."

She looked at him, smiling mischievously, "Perhaps."

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