We Finally Know How Prince Harry and Meghan Markle First Met!

Find out the beginning of their royal love story

Updated 01/24/18

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Unless you've been living under a rock for the past two months, you've probably gotten wind of the upcoming royal wedding between Prince Harry and Meghan Markle. The royal redhead popped the question to the former Suits actress in November, ushering in an unavoidable royal wedding frenzy. Fans are dying to know every detail of the event (which thankfully will be televised), from Markle's wedding dress to the coveted wedding guest list. But, while Kensington Palace has satisfied our wedding curiosity with frequent news and updates, Harry and Markle enjoyed a rather private relationship prior to their engagement. Which begs the question, how exactly did this modern-day fairy tale come about in the first place?

Turns out, the couple actually had a surprisingly normal meeting: They first crossed paths on a blind date. (Talk about the setup of the century.) During the duo's first joint interview after their engagement news broke, Harry confessed that "we were introduced by a secret friend, who we will protect her privacy." Markle concurred during the interview, adding, "It was definitely a setup. It was a blind date. I didn't know much about him, and so the only thing I had asked her when she said she wanted to set us up was, I had one question, I said, 'Was he nice?'" Looks like she got her answer.

Royal wedding fans had their assumptions regarding this mysterious matchmaker's identity, thinking that it could be someone like celebrity designer Misha Nonoo, who has been one of Markle's close friends and whose former husband, Alexander Gilkes, went to school with both royal British brothers. Jessica Mulroney was also another potential candidate, since she doubles as Markle's bestie/stylist and has her fair share of elite clients, like Justin Trudeau's wife. Both ladies might also be in the running to be Markle's potential bridesmaids, and Markle even chose Mulroney to help plan the wedding and attend her dress fitting.

But, unsurprisingly, the identity of the couple's "secret friend" didn't stay secret for long. Plus, TBH, this confidential comrade deserves all the recognition in the world for creating this famous love story. The pal who started it all is (drum roll, please)...none other than Violet von Westenholz. She's known Harry for years, and her father, Baron Piers von Westenholz, has remained close with Prince Charles. Violet's sister, Victoria, was also once pegged as a potential suitor for Prince Harry.

A source told E! News that "Harry was having a really hard time finding anyone" prior to Markle, which makes sense considering his celeb (and, ahem, royal) social status. "It was something he had confided in his closest friends about; he was ready to meet someone, but it was so hard to actually find the right person," the source added.

But the tables turned when Violet met Harry's current fiancé (cue angelic music). Markle and Violet, who works in PR for Ralph Lauren, eventually bumped into each other, as they're both members of London's elite scene. "When Harry told Violet he was having trouble finding someone, Violet said she might just have the perfect girl for him," the source said.

Violet, who needs to add "celebrity matchmaker" to her resume, set up a date between the pair, who knew nothing about each other, in summer 2016. "I'd never, never even heard about her until this friend said 'Meghan Markle,'" Harry said during the couple's first combined interview. "I was like, 'Right, okay, give me, give me a bit of background, like what's going on here?' When I walked into that room and saw her and there she was sitting there, I was like, 'Okay, well, I'm going to have to really up my game here.'"

Two dates in London seemed to seal the deal, and Markle and Harry took a weeklong trip to Bostwana together shortly after. Fast forward two years and the royal couple is currently tasting cakes for their wedding and making public appearances. Time flies when you've found the One! Theirs is a relationship so beloved, it's even getting its own Lifetime movie.

The world is forever grateful that Violet introduced Prince Harry and Meghan Markle, leading to one of the cutest couples and most long-awaited weddings of the decade. She deserves a front-row seat to their May 19 nuptials!

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