"We understand that they've reached out both to the king and the Princess of Wales. Is that a thawing of relations, or is it just a human courtesy? I think probably the latter," royal expert Katie Nicholl told an outlet.
"I think it is courtesy more than the sign of any softening of relations, particularly between the couple and Princess Catherine," she added. "Whatever has happened, the king loves his son. We know that there were calls at the end of last year, around the time of the king's birthday. Whatever happens between them, Harry will be concerned for his father."
Nicholl continued: "It's still his father. He's still gone in for an operation. Yes, a pretty standard one, but a procedure nonetheless. One wonders if this might just be the opening that's needed for a bit more dialogue between the couple and the king, and possibly even Princess Catherine."
"We've really heard very, very little other than that she's recovering and she's recuperating. We know that Prince William has been to see her. We understand that she's been FaceTimeing with her children. We were given guidance that her hospital stay would be anything between 10 and 14 days. That is a lengthy stay. It suggests a pretty serious operation and some pretty lengthy recovery time," Nicholl observed.
"I think this is just a sign of the times. This is a modern monarchy... doing the sorts of things that other families do... It's extraordinary to have two senior members of the royal family not just in the hospital at the same time, but at the same hospital," the expert pointed out." "I think that's again an indication of the sort of normality that exists behind palace walls and behind those closed doors, that sort of insight into a family that we don't necessarily see, but does exist, and is indicative of a very, very close family."
She concluded: "The king is hugely fond of Princess Kate. He thinks she's a wonderful mother. They share a very, very close bond, as do the queen and Catherine... royal or not, I think everyone's apprehensive and often a little bit nervous before going under a procedure like this, and so probably seeing Catherine was the highlight of his day today. I suspect, knowing the king and his fitness regime — he's [an] incredibly healthy, fit, robust 75-year-old — that he won't be in hospital for very long. I think a couple of days at most."
ET spoke with Nicholl.