For Prince Harry, it wasn't a happy homecoming. His deployment was cut short when his cover was blown by a report on the Drudge Report web site. Fearing for his safety and that of his fellow soldiers, the British Ministry of Defense decided to pull the Prince out and bring him home.
Harry spoke of his deep disappointment. ''I don't know if angry is the right word to say … I didn't see it coming, it's a shame.''
Harry explained how he learned that his tour had ended: ''When I first heard about it, I was on stag, listening to the radio and people were talking about me in code words and I gathered that it was actually about me after a short time. But whatever has happened, has happened, and it doesn't surprise me, there's always someone out there who is willing to ruin the party but, well, job's done."
The third in line to the British throne had said all along that he wanted action and adventure -- and to go to war. In 2007, he was frustrated with a decision by the Ministry Of Defense not to send him to Iraq because of security concerns.
The Prince reportedly threatened to quit the army if he wasn't allowed to serve with his unit. But there was good reason for concern. The threat from the Taliban was real.
According to Newsweek, deputy commander Mullah Abdul Karim said Taliban intelligence had information on ''an important chicken'' among the British troops in Afghanistan. "He is our special enemy," says Karim. Karim allegedly sent his men to look for Prince Harry after learning he was in the country. ''Our first option was to capture him as a prisoner and the second, to kill him,'' Karim told Newsweek.
The chance finally came to serve on the front line in Helmand province. So it's no surprise Prince Harry wanted to continue serving alongside his unit.
''I thought I could see it through to the end and come back with our guys and the Colonel himself. But I'm back here now and I suppose deep down inside it's quite nice, I'm looking forward to having a bath. But no, I would like to have stayed back with the guys," he said.
His father, Prince Charles, along with his brother Prince William, were at the Air Force base to greet him. Prince Charles described how proud he was of his youngest son, and now understood what the families and loved ones of soldiers experienced when they were serving abroad.
"As you can imagine it's obviously a great relief as far as I'm concerned to see him home in one piece," Prince Charles said. "I know what it's like when they're so far away and it's much worse in a way for those left behind."
What's next for this Royal? The Prince has already told his commanding officer that he wanted to go back on the front line "very, very soon." He claims that his fighting days are not over.
''I hope that this has now been proven that the system can work and the British press go along with the deal, everything in place has proved that it can actually work. So I don't see why it can't work again. Hopefully, for my brother as well, there's a possibility that it can work, we just have to wait and see for the future."
Until then, Prince Harry can now enjoy a hot bath and a cold beer.