Noble and Gwirion have ties that bind them despite their social standing- Noble is to be King and Gwirion is but the court's jester. An event early in the novel when both of them are mere boys sets up this relationship and the obligations that these two men feel for each other. When Noble takes a wife for more political gain than anything else, the dynamic between Noble and Gwirion changes dramatically.
The new Queen is a challenge to Gwirion throughout the beginning of the book. She works dilligently to put the commoner in his place and to drive him out of Noble's life. Just as she is about to succeed in alienating Gwirion forever, a prank gone bad lands them in prison together. Their smoldering sexual tension comes to fruition, and the unlikely pair fall in love.
Their love is dangerous, and the affair carries numerous risks that could cost them all their lives. "The Fool's Tale" is superbly written, is touching and sexy without being raunchy or too much of a 'romance novel'.
This report prepared by Christa Haynes