He walked the sweet paths through the apple orchid that grew just outside his castle.
The apples were always so fresh and crisp, sometimes he would pick them and bring them to the school for the young children to eat.
See? He had a heart.
He reached for an apple of his own, when he saw a small silhouette picking the apples and placing them into a basket.
“Excuse me,” The duke got closer, seeing it was a young woman. “Excuse me, miss.”
She turned around, chewing on a juicy piece of apple with a smile. A smile that the duke was ready to wipe right off her face.
“What do you think you are doing eating my apples,” He asked, furiously. “From my orchard?”
“This is not your orchard.” She took another bite.
“Why in fact this is my orchard,” He said. “The orchard is on my land, the land that I own. Everything on this land, I own.”
“I’m on this land,” She swallowed the piece of apple. “And you surely don’t own me.”
“Well if I did own you I would teach you some manners,” He snatched the apple from her hands.
She took another out of her basket that he now saw was full of them, and began taking bites again. She bit the apple with such attitude, it made the duke furious.
How did one even bite with attitude?
“I have manners,” She argued. “But I don’t just hand them out to strangers that are rude to me.”
“Well my apologies if I’m not just giddy about you stealing from my land,” He made a gesture to the basket of apples. “Now I suggest you get off it.”
“Fine,” She turned to leave, the basket still in hand.
“Not before you return the apples you have stolen,” He said.
He looked at the girl closely. She acted like a commoner but the way she was dressed said otherwise. She was perfectly put together, in a yellow gown with matching slippers.
Her hair was even neatly tied back and brushed away from her face.
“You have plenty of apples in this orchard,” She argued. “Your selfish for asking for the ones in my basket.”
The duke was appalled.
“This isn’t selfish, those are my apples!” He peered at her. “Tell me your name at once.”
She wouldn’t tell him her name, why did he deserve to know anything about her at all? It wasn’t as if he were asking nicely either.
“No,” She turned and ran from the orchard, still with the basket.
This was why the duke couldn’t suffer through any sort of talk with a woman, they were all loopy!