Recently discovered interview with Princess Emileia!
(For those who have not yet read Starstruck, this item contains spoilers!)
This interview was just unearthed from the archives of the Echtran Enquirer, the premier source of news and opinion for Nuathans living on Earth. It was conducted shortly after the events chronicled in Starstruck.
Recently Discovered Princess Grants Exclusive Interview
Gwendolyn Gannett, Echtran Enquirer
I’m sitting here in a charming little ice cream shop in Jewel, Indiana, to chat with our newfound Princess Emileia and Rigel Stuart, the boy who recently saved her life when she was attacked by the dictator Faxon’s minions here on Earth.
Tell me, Princess, how did it feel to discover your true identity after being raised as a Duchas?
With great presence of mind, the Princess immediately shushes me.
“Not so loud! And please, stick to English. I don’t want everyone in Dream Cream to freak out the way I did when Rigel first told me there are … people like us…living on Earth!”
(Given the pains our Nuathan Ministry of Terran Obfuscation has taken to keep that secret, I suppose she has a point. I lower my voice as I continue.)
Is that true, Rigel? Did the Princess ‘freak out?’
“Only for a day or so,” he replies. “Really, she handled the news like a champ—way better than I did when my parents first told me.”
So you were raised Duch— (I catch myself) Like a regular Earthling, too?
“Until I was ten, yeah.”
Back to my original question, Princess—
“Please don’t call me that!” she interrupts me. “Not here. Just Marsha is fine, or M—that’s what my friends call me.”
(Though it seems terribly disrespectful, far be it from me to disobey.)
M, then. How has your life changed since learning the truth?
“If you don’t count people trying to kill me, mostly for the better. I mean, back in August I was a complete nobody on the very bottom rung of the social ladder. Now I hardly get picked on at all—well, except by Trina, but that’ll never change. I even get invited to parties and stuff. Not that my aunt ever lets me go, but it’s still cool to be invited. But that’s not because of being, you know, who I am. Nobody at school knows about that.
(Unfortunately, this would seem to confirm the rumors of her being mistreated by her adoptive Duchas family and the surrounding townsfolk.)
Then why the change?
“Mostly because of Rigel. He’s pretty popular, what with being quarterback of our football team and just generally awesome. I’m just kind of along for the ride.”
“Not true!” Rigel interjects. “You’re the awesome one. It just took people a while to figure it out.”
The Princess laughs at this and claims, “Nobody would ever have called me awesome before—” She breaks off when Rigel raises his eyebrows at her.
(Not wishing to pry, I move on.)
You must be dying to tell everyone the truth about yourself. Is it hard living with such a huge secret?
“Sometimes,” she confesses, “but when I think about what could happen if people found out, I’m a lot less tempted to say anything.”
And what was your life like, growing up as a—you used the word ‘nobody’ in a non-Echtran household? Was it difficult living in such primitive conditions?
She laughs again. “Since I never knew anything else, I never thought of my conditions as primitive. And it’s not like my aunt was ever actually cruel or anything, even if she isn’t always easy to get along with.”
All right, then, next question. Once a certain dictator falls, how do you see your future unfolding? Are you excited at the prospect of someday returning to the place you were born?
The Princess shrugs. “I guess so, though I have an awful lot to learn before I’ll be ready for that! All the stuff people will expect of me, I mean. Besides, I’m pretty happy right here in Jewel for now. For instance, I went to my very first Homecoming dance last week and it was amazing.”
Oh? With Rigel here as your date?
“Well, yes. He and I—”
“Went with a bunch of our friends,” Rigel butts in, cutting her off for the second time, something he’d never dare to do in Nuath, I’m sure. This makes me very curious.
You two have shared a few harrowing experiences since meeting and I’m sure that’s created a bond of sorts. (I notice they exchange a glance when I say that.) Tell me, just how close have you two become?
At this point, Rigel stands up, then the Princess stands, too. “We said we’d give you five minutes,” Rigel says, “and we’ve been here longer than that. You have your story. And please tell your readers she’s tired of being stalked, okay?”
The Princess is much more polite, but it’s clear she’s ready to leave, too, so I don’t detain them.
Overall, I’d say our Princess seems surprisingly content with her new identity and especially with her knight in shining armor, Rigel Stuart. It will be interesting to see how things progress there once she’s called upon to take up the position she was born to—but I’ll leave that story to my colleagues in Nuath, who will be on the spot to witness it firsthand.