King Charles III is reportedly "keener than ever" to build a stronger relationship with his youngest grandchildren, Archie, 5, and Lilibet, 3, despite the ongoing strain in his relationship with their parents, Prince Harry and Meghan Markle. The monarch, who scarcely sees the children due to the Duke and Duchess of Sussex's relocation to California, is said to be "not content" with the current distance and wishes to "make up for lost time" in light of his recent cancer diagnosis.

According to royal sources who spoke to the Mirror, King Charles is "absolutely committed to being present in all of his grandchildren's lives." The source added, "He values family above everything and whatever the course of his ­relationship with his son he would never be content with just seeing his grandchildren on the odd video call."

The King's determination to foster a closer bond with Archie and Lilibet comes amidst a tumultuous period in his relationship with Prince Harry. The father and son's relationship has been strained in recent years following the Sussexes' departure from their royal duties in 2020 and the publication of Harry's best-selling memoir, "Spare," which detailed accounts of fights between himself and his brother, Prince William, over the Princess of Wales.

Despite the tension, Prince Harry flew to be by his father's side within hours of the King's cancer diagnosis being made public earlier this year. However, the duke is still being kept at arm's length by senior members of the royal family.

In contrast to his distant relationship with Archie and Lilibet, King Charles has been able to maintain a closer bond with Prince William and Kate's children, with reports describing him as a "fantastic and enthusiastic grandpa" to Prince George, 10, Princess Charlotte, 9, and Prince Louis, 5.

Sources also revealed that the monarch sent his youngest granddaughter Lilibet a "heartfelt gift and card" for her third birthday last week, which she celebrated at her family home in Montecito, California. People reported that Prince Harry and Meghan Markle threw the princess a party with family members and the toddler's friends in attendance.

Queen Camilla has also reportedly encouraged King Charles to step up his efforts to see his youngest grandchildren. Royal commentator Michael Cole told GB News that the King will be upset by the lack of time he has been able to spend with Archie and Lilibet.

"I think the King feels [hurt] by the fact that he does not see his grandchildren in California," Cole said. "It would be quite natural for any man to wish to see his grandchildren. I know for a fact that the King is very keen. He loves his children, he loves his grandchildren, he loves his godchildren. The fact he does not see them [Archie and Lilibet] and that is not his wish, will be very upsetting to him."

Cole also predicted that it would be "a long time before Prince Harry returns to the country with his children."

As King Charles navigates his health challenges and the complexities of his relationship with Prince Harry and Meghan Markle, his determination to strengthen his bond with Archie and Lilibet remains unwavering. The monarch's commitment to being present in the lives of all his grandchildren, despite the geographical distance and familial tensions, serves as a testament to his values and the importance he places on family above all else.

Only time will tell if the King's efforts to bridge the gap between himself and his youngest grandchildren will be successful, as the royal family continues to navigate the ever-changing dynamics of their relationships and the challenges that come with their roles in the public eye.