“My name is Isabell-Heatherly, and I was born on … ”
“No, no, no. Start from the beginning,” said the police officer.
The alarm bleated, and I woke up. I went downstairs, where mum greeted me with a smile and served pancakes and coffee.
I turned on the television. A reporter talked about nuclear bombs in Poland and how England might be at risk of another world war.
Mum turned off the television. I rolled my eyes, annoyed, and while stuffing my mouth with pancake, asked: “Didn’t the war start five days ago?”
Mum poured her coffee and said it was pure nonsense.
“We’re about to move to Amesbury. It is safe over there. So, I will not have this behaviour later this afternoon. Understood?”
I shook my head and continued eating my pancakes.
That afternoon …
“HEATHER! DOWN HERE! NOW!” screamed mum.
I struggled down the stairs with my luggage, where the chauffeur helped put them in the limousine.
I hurried inside and lifted my feet to the seat.
Mum hit my legs and said: “Surely this isn’t how a lady behaves! Yet alone, a future duchess!”
I rolled my eyes and said: “It’s not my fault that you married a duke!”
My father passed away less than a year ago, and I hated how fast mum moved on.
She calmed down and said: “Well, you’re going to get used to it. This place will be a change of environment.”
After a long drive, we arrived at our destination.
I asked mum why the Duke’s mother wanted us to stay in a house near the military base. It could get bombed.
Mum just stared at me and told me to make dinner as she wanted to go for a walk. A few hours passed, and the food was getting cold.
I was sure mum was lost and prepared to look for her. Suddenly, I saw her running towards me. I was relieved.
I asked mum what took her so long, and she showed me a doll that a neighbour had given her. I told her it looked horrendous. It gave me the creeps.
She slapped me and screamed: “How dare you call your new sister horrendous!”
“Sister? But it’s a doll,” I muttered under my breath.
Moments later, a limousine pulled up. It was my stepfather.
I went outside to greet him as I wanted to ask him if he knew his wife had a doll but thought it was a baby.
He looked confused. I pointed to the window and asked him if mum was holding a baby or a doll.
“It’s a doll,” he said.
“She’s gone mad,” I tell him.
He looked at me and said: “She has been longing for a child ever since the miscarriage. Maybe this is her way of coping.”
I was offended.
“So what am I? A cockroach? I’m her child.”
I stomped inside, found a chair in the corner, and sat. There was something on it. That stupid doll!
“Why did you put this doll on the chair?” I shouted.
Mum rushed in angry, demanding to know why I had sat on “my Madeline”.
I was shocked. Mum had given the doll a name.
I took the doll and smashed it to the ground, and it started bleeding. I ran up to my bedroom and locked the door.
That’s all I remember …
The door opened, and another officer came in. The first officer, taking notes, looked at me and asked me whom I was living with now.
I told him I was living with my stepfather. The second officer sat down on the chair next to mine and said, “M’lady, the records show that you are a child of a prince and blood-related to the royal family.
“But your mother committed suicide. It wasn’t a doll. Some said it was a demon or your family was insane.
“Your stepfather disappeared after your mother’s death, and you’re about to be crowned queen. So, we can’t charge you, but do you remember where you put the doll last?”
I looked at him and told him I returned the doll to the neighbour who had given it to mum. He didn’t like it.
Then it hit me.
“What? Do you want to charge me for the queen’s murder? It wasn’t me. And why am I to be the new queen? I’m not next in line, am I?”
The police officers looked at each other. Finally, the older one said: “Your highness, you were the only one that survived. You are safe now. You might be the youngest queen we’ve ever had.”
“Everyone’s dead?” I was stunned. “What about the war? What’s going to happen? I am not fit to be queen.”
Somehow, I survived. We won the war, and I eventually tracked down my stepfather.
He ran away not because he was a coward but because he wanted to find answers about the doll. But unfortunately, he didn’t find any.
The doll still lives. It is with a lovely couple who handles things like this.
“Is there anything else you would like to know? The citizens should know the truth after 15 years,” I said to the reporter.
“Your highness answered every question I wanted to ask. But I do have one final question,” he said.
The queen smiled. “Please go ahead.”
The reporter smiled and asked: “How is it that you still look so beautiful and young after 15 years?”
The queen laughed.
“It’s not like I am going to be 14 forever. I look very much like a 29-year-old.”
They both laughed.
“I’m just grateful I’m not in the hellhole anymore. I can’t believe for 15 years that they accepted me,” the queen said with a smile.
It was at that instant that the reporter knew he had interviewed the wrong person … or demon.
This is the personal opinion of the writer and does not necessarily represent the views of Twentytwo13.
To give the younger generation an avenue to express themselves, Twentytwo13 now has a dedicated space called Young Voices. If you are a young writer (aged between 12 and 17) and would like to have your article published on our news website, send your contribution to email@example.com.
All articles must be accompanied by the young writer’s full name, MyKad number, contact number, and the mobile number of the young writer’s parents/guardians for verification purposes.