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Rated: 13+ · Short Story · Romance/Love · #1008159
Electoral Prince George Augustus meets the love of his life. (Historical Fiction)
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Royal Pretender


Author’s Note: This is a piece of historical fiction, inspired by the book, “QUEEN IN WAITING” by Jean Plaidy. It tells the story of George Augustus (George II of England) and his wife, Caroline of Ansbach.

Background: In 1705, Anne Stuart, sat on the throne of England. With no legitimate heirs, the English wanted a Protestant monarch to take the throne upon her death. A law called “The Act of Succession” passed, in which, upon Anne’s death, the British crown would be offered to Sophia, the granddaughter of James 1st.

Sophia was an old woman in 1705, in her sixties. She had married Ernest Augustus, Elector of Hanover when she was younger. George Lewis (George I), her son, had inherited the Electorship upon his father’s death and Sophia lived with him in Hanover. Sophia’s daughter, Sophia Charlotte, was married to Fredrick, Elector of Brandenburg and the first King of Prussia. (Charlottenburg Palace in Berlin was named for her.)

Sophia Charlotte took young Caroline of Ansbach in when her mother died. Caroline was eleven. Sophia Charlotte was as much a mother to Caroline as her own, but upon her death, Caroline, now twenty, went to live with her brother, the Margrave of Ansbach.

Caroline had met the dowager Electress Sophia only once, when she visited her daughter Sophia Charlotte in Berlin. The older Sophia enjoyed the young woman’s company.

George Lewis had two children before he divorced his wife and locked her up in Ahlden Tower. George Augustus, (George II) and Sophia Dorothea.

It was Sophia Charlotte’s wish that Caroline marry George Augustus. She traveled to Hanover to meet with her mother, the Dowager Electress Sophia to make the arrangements. Unfortunately, Sophia Charlotte took ill and died just as she arrived in Hanover.

Caroline and George Augustus seemed destined to never meet.


** The events recounted are accurate, but the author has taken fictional liberties in painting the scenes of history **


**********************


Royal Pretender

George Lewis Guelph, Elector of Hanover, paced his sparse apartments, hands stiffly clenched behind his back, his thick brow wrinkled in displeasure. The elector was in his forties, but felt far older than his years.

“Your Highness, the prince is on his way,” announced Baron von Eltz, quietly shutting the door as he entered the room.

George Lewis grunted. “Good.”

His son was a constant source of grief to him and had been since he tried to free his mother from Ahlden Tower as a young teenager. George Lewis had divorced his disagreeable wife and locked her up as a prisoner for taking a lover. It was the best decision he’d ever made in his personal life. Sadly, his children didn’t seem to understand, and he’d been mildly estranged from them since. Now his heir, George Augustus was twenty-one, and it was time he stopped treating him like a boy. George grunted again as he remembered a recent conversation with his mother, the dowager Electress Sophia, where she had suggested Caroline of Ansbach for his son. George Lewis had blown her off, but secretly took the suggestion to heart.

If only his son didn’t take after his mother – in looks and temperament. George Augustus was a handsome boy and just as frivolous as his pathetic wife, Sophia Dorothea. Their daughter had been named after her.

The stiff wooden door opened and closed.

“Father, you wanted to see me?”

George Augustus was also average in height for a man, getting that from his mother too. Still, his haircut was neat and his features were good. He was a handsome boy.

George Lewis stopped pacing, crossed his arms, and scrunched up his brow. He may not care too much for his son, but at least he deserved a chance to make a better marriage than he had. It was time George Augustus was married. After all, his boy might as well beget some legitimate heirs instead of risking fate with his mistresses. Not that he had many. George Lewis suspected his son kept them only so there would not be talk about his…manhood.

“It is time you were married, Boy.”

“I see.” The young prince took a step back and crossed his arms, skeptical of his father’s motives.

George Lewis shifted his feet. He was never fond of matters regarding love – especially since his own marriage was a disaster. He was a simple man. He did not care for fancy decorations or pricey clothes. He was a soldier first and foremost. Encounters with his son were always awkward.

George Lewis took in a deep breath. “That’s all you have to say, Boy?”

“Who did you have in mind, Father?” George Augustus asked, pursing his lips into a thin line. If only he didn’t feel so inadequate next to his father, who was much taller than him.

“I want you to make a better match than me, Boy. That said, I have Caroline of Ansbach in mind for you. She is young, your age, and the tales of the princess’s beauty are abundant. She…”

“She has even turned down the Archduke Charles, the rightful king of Spain!” George Augustus finished, a twinkle in his sharp hazel eyes. He’d heard stories about Caroline from his grandmother, the dowager Electress Sophia, who had met Caroline in Berlin. Caroline was smart, charming, and a beauty. Could it really be? Just listening to his grandmother made his heart yearn for such a pretty princess to be his wife! Did his ogre of a father seriously mean to make this match with one of Germany’s finest princesses? She was much sought after! Did he actually have a chance of winning her heart? His lips trembled at the thought, betraying the anxiety he felt.

George Lewis held up his hand. “Not so fast, Boy. It’s true she’s turned him down, and she could so to other suitors if we aren’t careful. That said, Baron von Eltz, your old governor, will accompany you to Ansbach. Her brother is now the Margrave there. You will travel in disguise as a nobleman and not tell her your true identity. If you are agreeable to her, and she to you, return to Hanover immediately and we will ask for her hand in marriage.”

George Augustus smiled. “I’m looking forward to it, father.” Indeed, he was. Caroline was a prize he wanted to win! Well, not just win, he wanted her to fall in love with him too. He was halfway in love with her himself.

“One more thing, Boy. Do not tell your grandmother or your sister. I don’t want the women involved.”

“Why?”

“Women prattle, Boy and you don’t want their babbling tongues influencing the princess one way or another,” George Lewis finished.

George Augustus curtly nodded his head in acknowledgement. He was not going to screw this opportunity up.

“You’ll leave for Ansbach as soon as I finish with Baron von Eltz and the carriage has been prepared.”

“I’ll be ready, Father.”

The Elector waved his stubby fingers at the door and George Augustus left.

“You have further instructions, Your Highness?” Baron von Eltz asked, raising his white furry eyebrows.

George Lewis contemptuously smiled. “See to it the boy does not wear his wig. I want the princess to see him – as he is.”

Baron von Eltz nodded his head.

“Go to Count von Platen. He has your traveling papers.”

Baron von Eltz bowed and left. It was a shame that the Elector felt such animosity toward his only son, but he brought George Augustus’s disapproval on himself for treating the boy’s mother so deplorably. After all, the elector had numerous mistresses during his marriage and took every opportunity to flaunt them in front of his wife. It was only natural for her to seek the comfort of another man’s arms. The baron prayed the prince had learned how not to treat a woman from watching his father.

Shortly after midnight, the royal coach pulled out from the stables and began its journey to Ansbach.

***

George Augustus’s lips curved into a wide smile as his carriage rode over the cobblestone roads of Ansbach late the next day. It was a quiet Bavarian village, tucked between grassy, rolling hills. The sun was lazily creeping toward the horizon. People strolled the streets in front of square little houses and shops, and some even waved to his foreign coach. If only they knew he was here to court their fair princess! Yes, these people seemed very friendly. Life appeared slower here and more carefree than in Hanover. But then Hanover was a big city, well respected, and a major Electorship.

He grimaced at the thought of his father’s court. It was deplorable. His father kept three mistresses – one was as tall as he was and her face was marked by the small pox. To the extreme, he had a very fat one who wore too much make up. And to his credit, he had a young woman who was at least was nice to look at.

George Augustus turned his thoughts away from his father as he felt a small bead of sweat on his brow. Baron von Eltz handed him a handkerchief to wipe it off. He was nervous. He’d had a couple of lovers himself, but nothing serious. He liked them, but he was not in love. He kept them simply for the fact the court would not tease him about his manhood. Meeting Caroline was different! This was a woman he wanted to make his wife! She was reputed to be a fair beauty. When his grandmother had returned from Berlin, a little over a year ago, and talked of Caroline, George hung onto every word.

She is smart, yet demur. She has long, silky blonde hair and the sweetest blue eyes, windows into her darling soul. She is a fine shape. If the Archduke was not Catholic, she might not have refused him, but she was unwilling to change her religion for him.

George sighed. There was no fairer prize in all of Germany – kings sought after her. Well, Charles was not king of Spain yet, still, he was the rightful heir. George desperately wanted to win her heart. If she was as beautiful and kind as he heard, he would treat her honorably, cherish her forever, and never humiliate her as his father had humiliated his mother.

“Anxious?” asked von Eltz, pointing to George Augustus’s hands.

George stopped wringing them and slid them under his thighs to help him curb his nervousness.

“Perhaps.”

“The Margrave is at his summer residence in Triesdorf, just outside the small city. It is just up ahead. It is small and he makes a modest living. Do not expect it to be extravagant like Hanover’s court. You must relax,” von Eltz counseled.

“Give me my wig!”

The old baron frowned. “You know I cannot. Your father wants her to see you without it.”

George frowned. “Then she’ll realize how short I am! What if she is taller than me? I don’t want her to judge me…”

Von Eltz interrupted. “Then act like your height does not matter, Prince and she won’t care either.”

The prince was very sensitive to the fact he wasn’t as tall as other men.

“I just want her to find favor with me, von Eltz, that’s all,” George said. “Some women do not like short men.”

He looked out the window. The carriage began its short drive up to the summer residence. Colorful linden trees hinting of the fresh smell of lime lined the sides of the dirt road.

“Remember, you are a prince, but do not forget, in front of the princess you are Monsieur de Busch, traveling for your own pleasure.”

George Augustus slyly smiled. “Do not worry. I will play the part.” He was very determined to win Caroline’s heart.

The carriage stopped. Two men from the palace came walking down the steps to greet them.

***

Caroline Wilhelmina, princess of Ansbach, stared listlessly out of the window of her apartments and watched as a strange, yet royal carriage slowly approached. She was mildly curious. They rarely received visitors in small little Ansbach and not at the summer residence where it was barely staffed.

Caroline sighed and ran a hand through her fine, blonde hair. If only she weren’t so melancholy over losing her mother figure, the Electress Sophia Charlotte. Her own mother had died when she was eleven and Sophia Charlotte had raised her until her own death, a couple of months ago. She missed Berlin, Sophia Charlotte’s court, Leibniz, the great court recorder, and the gaiety Sophia Charlotte brought to her life. Caroline left Berlin in sadness after her death to join her brother in Ansbach, but nothing seemed to help her mood. Even taking a short holiday at Triesdorf with her brother, made her long for happier times.

She noticed the carriage stop. Two men and a valet got out. Noblemen? One was old, and one was…very young. Her inquisitive eyes came to rest on the young nobleman. How confident he must be in himself that he didn’t wear a wig. She liked that about a man. He was a little short, her height, she guessed, still, that not deter her from staring at him. His neat, tapered haircut and his immaculate clothes caught her attention. He took pride in himself and his appearance. Soft shaped almond eyes spoke of his kindness. His cheeks were full of color and his lively expression hinted at his vitality. Even his lips seemed full and pouty. Lips fine enough to kiss. Caroline felt her heart flutter as she realized he was a very good-looking young man.

Get a hold of yourself, Caroline!

She reached out and put her hand on her window sill to brace her now unsteady feet.

From her spot, she saw her brother go out to meet the travelers. They talked for several minutes and the men followed her brother inside. Nervous trepidation filled her. Did William seriously expect to entertain? Their staff consisted only of a butler, maid, and cook here at the summer residence!

She walked over to her washbasin and filled a bowl with water, washing her face. Within minutes there was a knock at the door.

“Caroline, you must come down and help me. Two noblemen traveling for pleasure have notes from Count von Platen, Hanover’s prime minister, requesting we are kind to them.”

Caroline didn’t know what to feel. The young man who caught her attention excited her in a way she never felt before. Just looking at him made her heart beat in a wild step. How could a man capture her attention so completely as he had by just looking at him? In all the men and suitors she had encountered in Berlin, not one affected her like this!

“Caroline?”

Her eyes fluttered as she absently smiled. Her thoughts lingered on the young nobleman. “I’m sorry, William. I was lost in thought. You said they came through Hanover?”

“Yes.”

Again, that took her by surprise. She grabbed her brother’s hand and excitedly led him to the bed. “Do they have news of the Electress Sophia? Sophia Charlotte’s mother? I would love to hear of her. If I cannot be with Sophia Charlotte, I would be honored to hear of her mother. She was nice and kind to me during her visit to Berlin.”

“They might. I didn’t ask. You miss her, I know.”

“Yes, I do. I would be delighted to hear how her mother is doing. The Electress Sophia is just as kind as her daughter was.”

“Come down with me and meet them.”

Caroline slowly nodded her head and looked away from her brother. William sensed she was acting strangely. He reached out and took her chin in his fingers.

“Sister, are you all right?”

“I’m fine.”

“Nervous, perhaps?”

“Maybe,” she admitted.

“There is nothing to fear from them.”

Caroline nodded her head, stiffened her back and stood up, hiding her sudden excitement behind a cool façade.

***

As soon as George saw her, he was captivated! He couldn’t take his eyes off her. She walked into the room and everything brightened. He felt his lips curve into a daring smile. Her soft blonde hair shined in the rays of the lowering sun through the large bay window. The warm velvet of her dress heightened the translucence of her face and neck. His eyes lingered on her firm breasts. Perfectly shaped, perfectly round. Such curvy hips. The stories of her beauty had not been exaggerated. His body quickly reacted to the stunning princess. His pulse raced, and despite himself, he felt his manhood grow hard. He blushed, hoping the princess would not notice.

He still could not tear his eyes away from her though, despite his reaction. When their stares met, he sensed a mix of emotions from her – sadness, curiosity, and excitement? Had he managed to affect her? Despite his lack of inches? Was she as nervous about meeting him as he was of her?

“Monsieur Pierre de Busch, my sister, Caroline Wilhelmina,” said William smoothly.

Caroline curtsied and George felt shivers race down his spine at her grace. He waited for her to recover before he bowed.

Caroline swallowed, then smiled to mask her jittery nerves. This nobleman, with his piercing eyes, moved her in ways a man never had before. His charming smile dazed her senses. His stare spoke of untapped passion that only she could unleash. When he stood up, she held out her hand, as was custom.

“It is a pleasure to meet you, Monsieur de Busch.”

The minute he took her hand in his, a pulsing jolt of pleasure went rippling through both of them. By the sudden gleam in her eye, he knew she felt the same from their touch. With the softest kiss he could provide, his lips brushed against her knuckles.

“The pleasure is mine, Princess Caroline,” his thick, deep voice purred. “It is an honor to meet you. This is a great moment for both of us.”

Caroline blushed! How forward he was! “Your welcome, sweet de Busch. I am delighted to see anyone from Hanover. Perhaps you have news of the Electress Sophia?”

Caroline was very much aware of her brother’s eyes. His protective stare warned her not to linger on this man’s compliments.

“Perhaps I do,” purred George. Even now he longed to tell her that the Electress was his grandmother. Still, he had a part to play and he could barely take his eyes away from her. George admired her in a way he never had a woman before. He had always favored blonde hair, blue eyes, and a curvy body, but she was the living fulfillment of everything he wanted in a woman. There was no doubt he hungered for her. Now, if only she was pleasant and sweet. He would not be married to a shrew that made his life miserable. Oh, he said a silent prayer that she was just as his grandmother described.

“Would you like to eat? I must admit, I do not have a large staff here at the summer residence, so I cannot properly entertain you. We can have a small meal in the garden and you can tell Caroline of the Electress then,” suggested William.

“That would be agreeable to us, thank you,” said Baron von Eltz. His disguised name was Monsieur Stedwig.

William had dinner brought out to the gardens and the foursome ate in the gazebo. The meal consisted of pork, vegetables, bread, and wine. Baron von Eltz engaged William in a conversation about politics, leaving George to talk to Caroline. The baron never seen his charge so animated and excited in all his life.

“Princess Caroline, you seem a little sad,” remarked George, sipping his wine.

“I’m sorry, I did not mean to give you that impression, but I am missing the Electress Sophia Charlotte,” Caroline admitted, finding herself flattered by his interest. He noticed everything!

“I hope to put a smile on your face and keep it there, princess.” His voice was warm and smooth.

“You are kind, Monsieur de Busch,” said Caroline sweetly. “Tell me, did you have a nice journey from Hanover to Ansbach?”

George smiled. Their eyes locked. Caroline couldn’t look away. His soft, tawny walnut eyes showed his intelligence and independence of spirit. He was very comfortable with his nobility.

“I did. Germany has the most beautiful castles – as beautiful as you,” he purred with confidence.

Her cheeks colored at his compliment. “You are too flattering, Monsieur de Busch.”

“You are deserving of every compliment, Princess Caroline. Do you like this wine?” He held up his glass.

“Riesling is my favorite. Do you…?”

He sweetly chuckled. “Riesling is my new favorite. I do prefer a strong red such as cabernet sauvignon.”

“It is my favorite red,” Caroline replied.

“You are a woman after my own heart,” George added.

“Tell me what you thought of Hanover. I have never been,” Caroline said, continuing to eat. They were almost finished.

“The Elector lives at Leine Schloss. It is a magnificent castle. The tallest turret overlooks most of the city. There are many rooms. The tapestries tell a rich history of the Electors. The gardens are lush, full of blooming flowers. The lilacs are my favorite. The court is a bit too licentious for my tastes. They soldier hard in Hanover and their pride is strong,” said George, hoping he did not betray too much. His mind was set. He found Caroline modest, a little quiet, a little sad, which he thought was understandable, but she was smart and demur just like his grandmother had told him. He’d barely known her an hour, but he wanted to make her his wife with no doubts, no reservations.

Caroline nodded her head, listening intently. She found Monsieur de Busch very animated with lively expressions and neat features. He was a very proud man and carried himself with dignity. He was a little short, barely taller than her, but she liked him. She liked him a lot.

William noticed everyone was finished eating. “Is anyone interested in playing cards?”

George reached out and put his hand over Caroline’s. Again, another crashing wave of delight sailed through both of them.

“I would like to play cards very much.”

"Monsieur de Busch is very good at cards,” said Baron von Eltz proudly.

George broke into a devastating grin. “I am.”

William stood up and collected the plates. While he thought Monsieur de Busch a little forward, he seemed to bring his sister out of her sadness and he was grateful for that. “I’ll be right out with the cards.”

Caroline went with him.

George turned to his old governor. “She is delightful!”

Von Eltz chuckled. “That’s a start. Be mindful, you are too flattering to the princess.”

George waved his hand. “She is deserving of every compliment.”

“Please, Your Highness, be less bold.”

George spied William and Caroline walk out the door and nodded his head at the baron. He didn’t think it was possible to follow his governor’s counsel. William and Caroline sat down next to each other and William began to shuffle the cards.

“If you do not mind gentle Margrave, may I sit next to the princess? That is…if she does not mind?”

Caroline smiled. “I do not mind at all.”

William and George exchanged seats and George’s heart thrilled at being so close to Caroline. They began playing cards in a desultory manner. They could hardly pay attention to the game. Both of them were now very attentive to the other.

“So, Monsieur de Busch, did you see the Electress Sophia? How was she?” asked Caroline, waiting for him to turn over a card. The sun was starting to set in the sky. Still, the air was warm, and the greenery of the gardens provided a very nice place to play.

“She is recovering from a cold,” confirmed George. He put a card down.

Caroline followed suit, barely noticing what she placed. “She is a wonderful lady. I met her once in Berlin.”

“She is very learned,” confirmed George, “and very tolerant. You should visit her. I believe nothing could speed her recovery more than your visit.”

“I would have to wait for an invitation from the Elector,” she pointed out. Her brother put out his card and won the round. A new game was started.

“You would be welcome anywhere, fair princess,” George purred.

“You are very kind.” Her heart thumped fiercely under her breast. With every passing minute, she was drawn more and more to him. She felt alive under his penetrating stare. He took her sadness away. His closeness was maddening to her and she even dared to look at his lips, imagining his sweet kiss.

“It would be my greatest pleasure to show you such kindness.”

“It is your turn, Monsieur de Busch,” said von Eltz.

“So it is.”

George laid out a card and lost. Caroline saw he took it in good spirits and laughed. He chuckled with her.

“I suppose I should pay some attention to the game,” he said softly.

He is young and kind and makes me forget everything else on my mind! He is marvelous!

George smiled as she laid out the cards for another game. Her eyes sparkled as the sun got lower in the sky, dancing its rays off the tops of the scented flowers. He longed to run his fingers through her fair, blonde hair and make her pouty lips his.

“We should go in. Night will come soon. Can I show you to your rooms?” William suggested, sharply turning his head, noticing how his sister smiled and laughed at the visiting nobleman. He hadn’t seen her this happy in quite a while.

“May I escort the princess to her room before she retires?” asked George standing up. “I promise to be an upstanding gentleman.”

“If my brother has no objections,” Caroline said, lowering her eyes. She secretly wanted it!

“I trust you, Monsieur de Busch to keep your word,” said William, the tone of his voice firm, brooking no debate. It was highly uncalled for, but just watching the happiness the nobleman brought his sister, he could not deny the request.

“I will.”

George stood up and held out his hand. Caroline took it and rose. They dropped hands and walked side by side into the castle, in front of William and von Eltz.

George was now nervous as Caroline walked up the staircase to her room. His heart beat with love for her. She was beyond every expectation he had. His grandmother would be delighted by his choice!

She paused at her door and he almost ran into her. They both stumbled back and hit the wall. Caroline softly laughed and George put one hand on her upper arm, with the other he grabbed her wrist and pulled her into his body so they were chest to chest. The smoldering ambers of desire in his eyes had now erupted into heavy flames. His breathing became ragged as did hers. Should he do it and take from her what his heart ached for?

Caroline’s body trembled, so close to the handsome nobleman. How bold he was! How decisive! She could feel his ardor, his hunger for her. How could a man be so perfect, yet so young? His fingers dared to caress her chin. She felt her muscles tense under his fingertips. She’d never kissed a man before!

“Would you allow this humble pilgrim the softest caress of your rich, red lips?”

“It would be a sin to do so.”

“The sweetest sin, Princess,” he confirmed. “Tell me to go and I will.”

She opened her mouth, just barely, but no protest came out. His lips fell to hers, tasting the sweetest honey, basking in her fullness. So soft! So gentle! He delivered a feathery kiss and as quickly as he touched her, he jerked away, afraid for the sudden hunger to have more.

“You are the fairest princess in Germany,” he huskily whispered. With that, he spun around on his heels and quickly departed to find his old governor.

Caroline fumbled at the door handle until finally she got it undone and Monsieur de Busch was out of sight. She quickly shut the door and her back came to rest against it. She patted her heart, taking deep breaths. How could she have allowed such a trespass, sweet as it was? What on Earth had he done to her? Her heart beat to a tune she didn’t recognize. She only knew it was a tune she loved.

***

Baron von Eltz had just retired to his chambers. As he washed his face, George boldly entered.

“We have to leave for Hanover at once! I don’t want to wait another day to make her my wife!”

The baron scrunched up his nose as he watched his young charge pace in front of his bed, waving his arms in a very animated fashion. His father would have disliked the gesture.

“This is a very quick decision, Your Highness,” said von Eltz, drying his hands on his towel.

“I am in love with her!”

“Yes, she’s very charming, but don’t you need more time?”

“I have decided,” said George firmly.

Von Eltz studied the prince’s face. He’d seen the boy with his mistresses and other women at Hanover’s court. He’d never acted like this before. It was very quick, but he had no doubts the prince was in love.

“Well then, in the morning, I will tell the Margrave we have urgent business in Hanover and have to leave immediately.”

“Do it. I won’t have a moment’s peace until I make her my wife.”

“Your Highness,” said von Eltz, his voice breaking with concern. “Are you sure you are not being too hasty?”

“I always make up my mind quickly. I do not ponder things like my father does,” George protested.

Von Eltz thinned his lips. Sometimes the prince’s quick decisions got him in a world of trouble. It was his quick decision while on the hunt with his father, to go to Ahlden Tower and free his mother that brought his father’s disapproval.

“We will leave first thing.”

“Good.”

Von Eltz opened a door to an adjacent room that was the prince’s. George left. The baron got situated in his bed. The princess was very attentive to Monsieur de Busch, laughing and smiling. Still, she was known to be clever, and he hoped she would not expect too much of mercurial George should she accept his invitation.

***

The next day, Caroline was surprised that her visitors had gone, even before she had left her apartments. To think she would never see Monsieur de Busch was a bit disheartening after the swelling emotions he brought to her last night.

Her maid, Fraulein von Genninnggen, took breakfast to her room. “I’m sorry Monsieur de Busch has left. Your brother said his business was very urgent.”

“Um…” said Caroline. “Perhaps he was too bold and William asked him to go.”

“That is the way in Hanover, I think,” said her maid. “Besides your brother seemed annoyed they were leaving so soon. He was pleased to see you happy.”

“Um…” Caroline listlessly whispered. Her heart longed to see Monsieur de Busch again.



A week passed and to her surprise, Monsieur Stedwig returned, but without the young nobleman who had awakened Caroline’s heart. Shortly after his arrival, he asked Caroline to see him – alone. Caroline was naturally curious, but when he told her it was about Monsieur de Busch, she agreed to it. She knew her brother would disapprove, so when Monsieur Stedwig joined her in the sitting room, her maid was with her.

Monsieur Stedwig stood up in front of his chair and clasped his hands together. “Please, Your Highness, we must be entirely alone.”

Caroline frowned. “William will disapprove.”

“I have news of Monsieur de Busch, but it must be given to you in private,” he insisted.

Caroline turned to her maid. Fraulein von Genninnggen nodded her head and went to wait in the adjoining anteroom.

“What news do you have of Monsieur de Busch?” she asked.

Baron von Eltz nervously ran a hand through his thinning hair. “Before I put this proposition to you, I must have your word, that if you decide not to accept, you will tell no one what we talked of.”

“I promise,” said Caroline, standing up herself. Her pulse began to quicken.

“Monsieur de Busch was an assumed name. The man you met was George Augustus, the Electoral Prince of Hanover.”

“Oh!” exclaimed Caroline, stunned by the news. George Augustus! Sophia Charlotte wanted her to marry him! She had no idea that he was so pleasant – so nice!

“And are you free from all matrimonial agreements?”

“I am.”

Could it be? Does he wish to marry me?!

“The Electoral Prince heard many accounts of your beauty and wisdom and wished to see for himself. His visit here convinced him beyond reason that what praise he had heard of you was not enough. He has gone back to his father and told him he desires to marry you.”

Caroline was rocked. “I…I…had not expected…”

“Your Highness, a young man in love is very impatient, and the Electoral Prince is both. I assure you, he is in love with you.”

“I must talk to my brother,” Caroline insisted.

“Please, then, keep it between your brother and yourself. Should you turn this proposal down, the Elector has no wish to have it sully his good name.”

“I will return with an answer shortly.”

Monsieur Stedwig nodded his head and left.

Caroline went to her room to take a few minutes to fully comprehend what had been asked of her. She liked Monsieur – no – Prince George Augustus. He was lively and pleasant. His lack of polished manners and boldness did not bother her. It only made him appear that much more ardent and helped to bring her out of her melancholy. She’d thought of nothing but seeing him again.

It was what Sophia Charlotte wanted. She thought her and George would be tolerant of each other – but Caroline was elated. The prince was in love with her! Not only that, the Electress Sophia was very kind. She would have a home in Hanover – a real home.

William trotted into her room. “I’ve just come from talking to Baron von Eltz. He’s told me everything! Caroline, you must accept. The prince is in love with you! Do you know how hard it is to make a love match? Say you will accept!”

She paused for only a second.

“I accept.”

William opened his arms and she ran into him, hugging her brother tight.

TO BE CONTINUED.

 George & Caroline  (18+)
Having only met once, George Augustus is intent on having Caroline of Ansbach.
#1019541 by StephBee - House Targaryen





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