I was born in a warm and beautiful place, so full of plenty that I could not describe the feeling of happiness it inspired in me. My father was treated like a King and my mother like a Queen. Like all Kings and Queens who came before them they tried with every ounce of their beings to help; to enjoy each other and those around them. That is an onerous duty which not all can accomplish or discharge. Like many of their forebears they fell at the hurdle of desire. They wished for something and were surprised when it appeared to be wished away. They lost a piece of their jigsaw which they spent the rest of their lives trying to refind. They also spawned an army of admirers who wished them love and happiness. We, their children, were taken from the warmth and transported to a cold, inhospitable island, where home appeared impossible to return to. My mother loved those around us too well and my father grew mad with a jealous rage. We made friends and tried to adjust, but the channels were so few and the populous so hardened by the cold that our unit fractured and we lost each other. When the part of us that survived returned to England I was left behind. I tried to comfort my father in his loss, as did many attentive strangers. In the end he chose one of them to act as his gaoler and his nurse. In the few letters that he sends to me he assures me this is what he wants. I find that very difficult to believe. Eventually he could not bear to see the look in my eyes any longer, inspired as he was by both love and fear. Too many kind friends held me close for me to close my heart. He despatched me back to my mother’s arms. By that time it was too late. The bond she and I had felt so keenly had twisted. It was my fault, and I have suffered her loss ever since. I had both refused to see the joy that she had for her own desire; and I, having stayed with my father at the point in time she thought I would fly to her, was no longer a trusted ally. Returning to my unit was a mistake. They had grown strong and I was now a broken child in the body of a young man. They resented me and I couldn’t understand why. They told me repeatedly it was because I had disappointed them by failing to follow the protocols which I had missed in the melee. It may have been my own projection or it may have been intuition, but I felt hopeless and alone. Drowning in a public swimming pool while the lifeguards cheered me on. All the snowflakes of my youth had become avalanches. I wasted precious years chasing my tail in bars and restaurants around the world. I dined with the poorest, and watched greedily as the wealthy offspring of oligarchs paid for my meals laughingly. I was a man who knew London well, and its heart was Covent Garden. From Rules to the Lady there is a passage that will never leave my memory. I had walked to the City to pray with the Angels; I’d spent time in Chelsea with the glorious, and Earls Court with the creative. It was the Garden that inspired me the most. I could seem to do nothing wrong there, although it would be years before I discovered why, that story is for another chapter….