Prince Harry's secret meeting request with King Charles and Prince William

Pictured is Prince Harry
-Credit: (Image: Getty Images)

Prince Harry has revealed that he requested a "secret meeting" with his father, King Charles, and brother, Prince William, to discuss "the state of things" during his visit to the UK for Prince Philip's funeral in April 2021. In his memoir, 'Spare', the Duke of Sussex detailed how he saw his grandfather's funeral as an opportunity to reconnect with his father and brother.

This marked his first return to England since he and Meghan Markle stepped down from their roles as senior royals and relocated to the US, where they now reside with their two children, Prince Archie and Princess Lilibet. This was also the first family reunion since Harry and the Duchess of Sussex participated in a revealing interview with Oprah Winfrey.

In this interview, they shared their experiences within the Royal Family and explained their reasons for stepping back and moving abroad. In his book, published in January 2023, Harry confessed to feeling anxious while waiting for William and Charles to arrive at their meeting, even fearing at one point that they had decided against meeting him.

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However, he noted that at one point he observed his father and brother approaching with a "grim, almost menacing" expression. The Duke shared that when he offered them "a weak smile", they did not reciprocate, leaving him feeling "a hugely intense vulnerability" and thinking of his late mother, Princess Diana, hoping she could lend him strength during the encounter, reports the Mirror.

Harry recounted that upon greeting his brother "Willy" and his father, whom he affectionately calls "Pa", their response was a curt and "painfully tepid" word: "Harold." He described: "At last, I saw them. Shoulder to shoulder, striding towards me, they looked grim, almost menacing.

"More, they looked tightly aligned. My stomach dropped. Normally they'd be squabbling about one thing or another, but now they appeared to be in lockstep - in league. The thought occurred: Hang on, are we meeting for a walk...or a duel? "I rose from the wooden bench, made a tentative step towards them, gave a weak smile. They didn't smile back.

"Now my heart really started thrashing in my chest. Deep breaths, I told myself. Apart from fear, I was feeling a kind of hyper-awareness, and a hugely intense vulnerability, which I'd experienced at other key moments of my life. Walking behind my mother's coffin. Going into battle for the first time. Giving a speech in the middle of a panic attack."

‌"There was that same sense of embarking on a quest, and not knowing if I was up to it, while also fully knowing that there was no turning back. That Fate was in the saddle. OK, Mummy, I thought, picking up the pace, here goes. Wish me luck. We met in the middle of the path. Willy? Pa? Hello. Harold. Painfully tepid."

In the book, Harry also revealed that he got the nickname "Spare" by his father, Charles. Harry revealed that after Princess Diana gave birth to him, his dad said: "Wonderful! Now you've given me an heir and a spare - my work is done."

The Guardian newspaper noted that Prince Harry has always felt resentful of his nickname, and aired his frustration in his memoir. The newspaper said: "Harry's resentment of being the 'spare' is the underlying theme of his book, through chapters on his childhood, his schooling, his career as a royal and in the British Army, his relationship with his parents and brother, and his life with Meghan through courtship, wedding and marriage, to their own experience of parenthood. "

The Mirror has contacted Kensington Palace for comment.

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