Her room was a bright shade of pink and seemed to be drowning in toys and stuffed animals, most of which was also pink. The only thing that didn’t resemble the unnaturally bright shade was a small stuffed brown bear with a yellow bow tied around it’s neck that often sat on her bed – her very first gift from her parents from just after she was born.
Kai leads his daughter to her bed and she flings herself onto it, quickly scrambling to get under the – pink – blankets. She tucks her brown bear into her side and looks up at him with her hands curled at her chin and her wide eyes patiently waiting for him to sit down and begin.
Bedtime stories with Tara. His favourite time of the day.
Kai balances himself on the edge of his daughter’s bed, wiggling a little to get comfortable and make her laugh, and asks kindly, “What story will I be telling tonight?”
“Can you tell me the story of the princess and the prince tonight, daddy?” Tara squeaks out in a small voice. Every night when she asks Kai for a story, she always does so in a tiny voice that he can barely hear. Kai had asked her once why she was so afraid to ask him to tell her a story, and she had replied that she was afraid he wouldn’t know the story and because of that she wouldn’t get to hear the story she wanted. The Emperor of the Eastern Commonwealth had then proceeded to spend every spare minute he had reading every children’s story he could get his hands on.
“Which princess and prince would that be, sweetie?”
Tara says a little more loudly than her previous sentence— and sounding very proud of herself— “I don’t think you will know this prince and princess because we learnt about them in school today!”
Kai visibly panics for a moment, but reins it in so he looks calm on the outside. He’s never not known a bedtime story for Tara, whether is be about dragons and knights and princesses locked in towers, or mermaids in underwater kingdoms, or even that really weird one about a girl who falls down a hole and into another world. He has always known the bedtime stories that she wants him to tell. But what happens if he doesn’t know this one? Will Tara stop wanting him to tell her bedtime stories?
It turns out that his worry is for nothing, because she answers, “Princess Selene and Prince Kaito!”