There was a time when it looked as though Meghan Markle and Prince Harry’s bold decision to step down as senior royals and relocate to America may have been in vain.
The couple set out seeking privacy from the press and a new life, distant from the prying eyes and harsh judgements of the Royal Family.
But months after their move, the Sussexes were still plagued by paparazzi and mentioned in connection with every royal scandal that surfaced in the tabloids.
Each new report about Harry’s unhappiness in California, and each new lawsuit against an overzealous photographer or reporter seemed to double as an "I told you so" moment for the Royals.
The Queen had reportedly cautioned the Sussexes that they would be unable to escape their problems in California, and it seemed only a matter of time before the rebellious couple would return with their tales between their legs.
Now, however, it seems the Sussexes may have finally gained the upper-hand.
For the past month, the top headlines about Harry and Meghan have been concerned not with galling invasions of privacy but with big-money deals that seem to indicate that the couple will be a major force in American media for many years to come.
First, the Sussexes signed a $100 million deal with Netflix, a move that outraged Harry’s family, as the streaming giant is host to the controversial series The Crown, which takes a fictionalized look at the Queen’s life and relationships.
Then, this week, Harry and Meghan signed a deal with Spotify worth a reported $30 million.
Insiders say it’s not just the insane amount of cash that has the Royals upset, it’d the fact that Meghan and Harry have secured places on two major platforms, which essentially guarantees that they’ll have a louder voice than the Royals in both the US and the UK.
As expected, the Royals have not publicly commented on the situation, and it’s unlikely that they ever will.
But on social media, the #SussexSquad is declaring that the feud is over, and Harry and Meghan have emerged victorious.
"Really they left for their privacy and they got it," one person tweeted.
"You show me one stray picture of Archie?" another added, referring to the Sussexes’ newfound freedom from paparazzi.
"Or leaks of their plans? No one even knew she invested in a luxury brand till it was announced," a third chimed in.
Commenting on the fact that Harry and Meghan have succeeded in keeping the exact terms of their Spotify and Netflix deals under wraps, a fourth user noted:
"Now that’s privacy. And they still do lots of public good. So yeah they won."
It was around this time last year when Queen Elizabeth II stunned the world by delivering her Christmas address next to a collection of family photos, but conspicuously leaving out any pictures of Harry and Meghan.
At the time, it was major news — now, we doubt many people would even notice.
It’s developments like that have us calling this bout in in favor of Harry and Meghan.