"He's here? Where?" "Up there, over to the left, behind the thrones!" "Why doesn't he sit down?" "Come now, His Highness hates being confined to his seat." "Oh,as if you knowhim so well, Cecile." Prince Simon de Vaillant could only hear the chatter of those groups of ladies closest to where he stood, and still he could not hold back awry smile at the tittering and breathlessness that he had obviously elicited. The entire assembly of the ballroom did not cease activity to note his arrival, but the attention of the young women of the court was more than enough to boost his ego---not that it needed it.Such a reaction was something he had been raised to expect and now believed was his birthright. This was in part because of appearance as well as status: Simon knew himself to be a handsome young man---he'd been fortunate enough to inherit the high cheekbones, sloping nose, golden hair and blue eyes that clearly indicated his lineage, while still carrying himself with the half-cocky manner that was apparently irresistible to the young ladies of the court. He strode forward and, rather than being seated on the throne provided for him at the head of the ballroom, leaned his elbow on in with a half-smirk and surveyed the room. This could prove to be an interesting evening indeed.