Details about Prince Harry and Meghan Markle’s early relationship have been revealed in a new book.
The latest extracts from Finding Freedom, published in The Times, claim the couple were “immediately obsessed with each other” after their first date – while a romantic getaway to Botswana was just their third date.
Three months into their relationship is when the couple are said to have professed the words “I love you”, with Harry saying them first and Meghan responding immediately afterwards.
An extract about their first date says: “Despite the palpable attraction between them, there was no goodbye kiss, no expectation, just a hint that something was there and they hoped to see each other again soon.
“No one expected what happened next.
“‘Almost immediately they were almost obsessed with each other,’ a friend said. ‘It was as if Harry was in a trance.’
“Meghan called one of her girlfriends. ‘Do I sound crazy when I say this could have legs?’ she asked.”
Harry apparently planned the Botswana trip as a surprise for Meghan, telling her only to arrive at London and that he would sort the rest.
The couple flew to Johannesburg together and later got on a two hour private flight to Maun International Airport.
The duo stayed in the luxury tent in Okavango Delta, a 5,800 square mile wetland in Botswana’s safari country.
The book adds: “A friend said: ‘She came back smiling and just completely spellbound.’
“Her phone was full of photos – the nature they had seen, candid snaps of herself, and selfies with Harry.
“According to the friend, if Meghan didn’t have to return to Canada for work and Harry to his life in London, ‘they would have happily spent the entire summer there together’.
“Meghan said that she and Harry talked so much, about things she rarely shared with anyone.
“‘I’ve never felt that safe,’ Meghan told her friend, ‘that close to someone in such a short amount of time.'”
The couple managed to continue their whirlwind romance quietly for six months – flying back and forth secretly between London and Toronto before their relationship was leaked to the tabloids.
“For Meghan, she was all in,” the book says.
“Nothing could get her to slow down, not even a friend who cautioned her about getting involved with Harry. ‘They hate royal wives and girlfriends. They will come after you,’ he said. ‘Look at Diana.'”
The couple confirmed their romance in November 2016 and a year later were engaged.
They then married in 2018 before Meghan, who was given the title of the Duchess of Sussex, gave birth to their son Archie in May 2019.
In March this year, the couple announced they were stepping down from royal duty and relocated to Los Angeles.
The book, which a spokesman for the couple said they were not involved in, details the couple’s relationship and the strains they allegedly faced as working royals.
“The Duke and Duchess of Sussex were not interviewed and did not contribute to Finding Freedom,” said a spokesman.
Buckingham Palace has declined to comment.
Finding Freedom is due to be published in August and is being serialised in The Times and The Sunday Times.