Catherine felt she had not been given much; no proper family, no looks or skills to speak of, not even the age she needed to make her own decisions. She knew she should have been grateful when her marriage to a wealthy, if rather old, man had been arranged, but instead she ran away. Nothing could have prepared her for a chance meeting with the crown prince.
From the moment he came running after her, scarred face drawn with rage, she had been terrified of him. She had heard the stories of his victories in battle, caused by banned magic, and his short temper in person did not reassure her - neither did his explanation that she had somehow caused a disturbance in the age old spell he had illegally cast that was supposed to help him convince his father to allow him to remain heir to the throne.
She had caused the problem and, since he found the magic prevented him from harming her or getting rid of her, he did not give her a choice as to whether or not she would help him. In a children’s storybook working in close relationship to a prince who was magically bound to you would have been romantic or at least exciting, she thought. Reality was different.