Prince Charles and Queen Elizabeth II have always been distant towards each other. And the distance between the two royals grew after the death of Princess Diana.

While speaking with Daily Mail, royal author Penny Junor said that the Queen didn’t know how to comfort her son after he learned that the Princess of Wales had died.

“Never was the relationship between the prince and his mother thrown more starkly into relief than it was on that terrible night,” she said.

Even though the two royals were just a few feet away from each other and in their separate rooms, they didn’t go to each other to discuss logistics. According to Junor, the comforting of Prince Charles was ironically passed on to Camilla and the future King’s other friends.

“The comforting was left to Camilla – 500 miles away at her home, Ray Mill, near Chippenham, Wiltshire – and other friends Charles called through what remained of the night,” Junor said.

According to the Los Angeles Times, this wasn’t the only time that Camilla comforted her husband because no one else did. For instance, there was a time when Prince Charles broke his arm after falling while playing polo.

On the evening after he was discharged from the hospital, Camilla rushed to Highgrove. A few minutes later, Camilla arrived in Highgrove to take care of her husband.

The close relationship between Camilla and Prince Charles at that time didn’t anger or upset the former’s husband, Andrew Parker Bowles. This is because Andrew was aware that Prince Charles needed someone like the Duchess of Cornwall.

“Those who know him well, however, reveal that Andrew recognizes that Charles needs someone like Camilla who can understand and relate to him, comfort and cherish him in his loneliness. He also sees there are a certain mutual attraction, compatibility and great intimacy between them… As a fellow officer in the Brigade of Guards, he believes he should accommodate the role his wife is playing for the prince and apparently does so quite happily,” journalist Nicholas Davies said.

Prince Charles Camilla Parker Bowles and Queen Elizabeth II
Prince William, Camilla and Queen Elizabeth II watch the RAF flypast on the balcony of Buckingham Palace, as members of the Royal Family attend events to mark the centenary of the RAF on July 10, 2018 in London. Getty Images/Chris Jackson