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love_detectiveWeirDangerous Inheritancethis engrossing novel of historical suspense, New York Times bestselling author Alison Weir tells the dramatic intertwined stories of two women—Katherine Grey 32 страничка


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‘Ned,’ I ask, ‘did the Queen give permission for us to be together?’

‘No, but Sir Edward said he would allow it. He said there was no reason why we should not console one another.’heart swells with gratitude. ‘He is a good man.’

‘He says we may meet whenever we please, so long as I pay the guards and take care to be discreet.’

‘He is a true friend, and has proved it in many ways, but this is the greatest blessing he has brought us,’ I say, and we fall to kissing again until a light tap on the door warns us that Ned must depart.Lieutenant comes with news for me.

‘My lady, I have just heard from the steward at the Minories. The old lady has returned; she has not been in good health, which was why he had not seen her. He told her about my interest in the tombs and the church, and she said she would gladly meet with me to tell me more about their history.’

‘That is encouraging news!’ I exclaim. ‘I never thought to hear more of her.’

‘Well, you shall. I will invite her here, and you may meet her. My orders are to allow no one but your attendants to see you, but I know I can trust you, my lady – and I myself will be present to ensure you behave yourself!’

‘Of course, Sir Edward!’ I say warmly. ‘I will speak to her only of the tombs, I promise.’

‘Her name is Elizabeth Savage. The steward was right – she was the last abbess of the Minoresses’ convent. Naturally, she does not like that to be known, so we will not mention it unless she does.’this old lady help us in our quest? She thinks she is coming to discuss some old tombs, not the disappearance of the Princes. And she will surely be startled to meet me, probably one of the most notorious prisoners in the kingdom right now!1487. Raglan Castle.came regularly to the castle, by letter or word of mouth, and the news nowadays was momentous – but, for Kate, distressing. John was in Ireland with a Flemish army. Under his auspices, Lambert Simnel, despite being branded an imposter by the King, had been crowned as Edward VI in Dublin Cathedral late the previous month. Henry Tudor had mobilised his forces against an invasion.and speculation were rampant everywhere, and the country, which had been in a ferment of uncertainty for weeks, now erupted in panic at the imminent prospect of invasion.though Kate had been careful to express no word of support for John and the rebels, and had voiced her own fears about the conflict to come, William remained cold towards her, acting almost as if it was her fault that her sometime lover was in rebellion against the King. As if she could do anything to prevent it, she thought resentfully. She had not seen John in more than a year and a half, and there had been no communication at all between them. She wondered if he still cherished her memory, as she did his; or if his marriage had jolted him into reality and caused him to put his youthful passions behind him. She wondered too if he had spoken out in her defence after her arrest. The fact that he had stayed in favour with the Tudor argued that he had not. But she could not believe he had forsaken her. He would have reasoned that pragmatism was the safest course for them both.was he backing the claims of Simnel so vigorously, and at such peril to himself? He must have heard that the Tudor had exhibited the real Warwick to the people – something her father should have done with the Princes to quell the rumours that were destroying him. But perhaps her father had known what John’s actions had now proved: that producing the Princes alive wouldn’t have made much difference anyway. Because people believe what they want to believe, she concluded. Even now, there were many, their number increasing, who held that the boy in Ireland really was Warwick.crossed Kate’s mind that John had set up the whole charade as a pretext for claiming the throne himself. People would be more likely to rise up for Warwick, Clarence’s heir, than for himself, whose claim came only through the female line. Even Henry Tudor had not accounted John a threat in the way he accounted Warwick.Kat had written suggested to Kate that there was more to this matter than appeared on the surface.is said that the boy Simnel first claimed to be Richard, Duke of York, the younger of the Princes in the Tower, but the word is that Margaret of Burgundy refused to recognise him as York, so it was given out that he was Warwick.what if Simnel was in fact Richard, Duke of York? What if poor Edward V had died of the illness that was eating up his jaw, and his brother had survived in secrecy? It made sense that he had been taken to Sheriff Hutton and entrusted to John’s guardianship – and that John, with his strong sense of honour, should have resolved to restore the true heir to the throne. Maybe pretending that York was Warwick was meant to dupe Henry Tudor into thinking he was dealing with a silly claim by an imposter. It was convoluted thinking, she knew, but there was so much that was mysterious about this affair of the pretender; and Kate had a strong hope that she might be nearing the end of her mission to clear her father’s dishonoured name. Her excitement conveyed itself to her child, which stirred within her, heavy now under her heart. The answer lay with John, she was sure. She had a strong feeling, in her bones, that Simnel was York in disguise.1562. The Tower of London.never thought I would ever come to regard the Tower as a bower of bliss, but that is what it became for a short time, even for us poor prisoners; and here I have enjoyed two of the happiest nights of my life, for Ned came again four nights later, and we consoled each other in the same loving ways, and were husband and wife in very truth. For that short space, too, we were a family, with our little boy to gladden us and take pride in. He thrives, sweet Edward, which is a joy and relief to us both.between those visits, we sent each other letters, expressing our pleasure to find each other still in health and unbowed after all the long months of anxiety and fear. I long to be merry with you!I wrote to Ned, signing myself your most loving and faithful wife, which I truly am, whatever the Archbishop may say.

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‘You could not know how I missed you too, darling, how I worried about you when I was in France,’ Ned told me, as we lay entwined together that second night, all passion spent. His words ignited a painful memory. It was as if a cloud passed over the sun.could not help myself. I had to ask. ‘Those bracelets …’

‘Bracelets? Those French ones the Queen asked me to commission? There were two for you. Did you get them?’

‘The Queen commissioned them?’

‘Yes, so that she and her ladies should be gay on the progress. That’s what she wrote.’

‘Yes, I did get them. I just wanted to thank you.’ There was no need to question him. All had become clear. Elizabeth, to spite me, must have given her ladies to believe that Ned had sent them the bracelets as love tokens. So all was well between my love and me.last night, Ned arrived to find my door locked and me weeping with frustration inside.

‘Mayhap your guards have taken fright,’ he called softly, and verily I believed they had. But this morning Sir Edward presents himself, looking grave. There can be no more clandestine trysts. A new order has just come direct from the Queen, forbidding Ned and me to meet.miss Ned desperately. But at least our letters are not forbidden. I long to be with you again, my sweet bedfellow, I write. Ned responds in kind and sends me a book. This is no small jewel to me, I tell him. I will read it at once, with my heart, as well as with my eyes.writes of his fears that I will be constrained to forget him. Oh, no, no, my sweet lord, I breathe – that could never happen. I ask in reply:you think I could ever forget all that is past between us? No, surely I cannot, but bear in memory far more than you think. And I have good cause to do so, when I call to mind what a husband I have in you, and my hard fate to have missed the having of so good a one.brief idyll has ended, but soon I am dismayed to discover that there will be consequences. For I am with child again, and once more in terror lest I be found out. Some may think me a fool, but I had been so overjoyed to be reunited with my love that I let caution and reason fly into the wind.first I suspect my condition, I confide my fears to Ned, and he writes back, expressing defiant joy at the news. This will be the true proof of our marriage, he asserts.confess my state to my women – Mrs Ellen, who deals with my linen, has already guessed – and then to Sir Edward. The poor man is utterly horrified.

‘Great God in Heaven, we are all undone!’ he declares, wringing his hands. ‘When this gets out, it will most grievously offend the Queen’s Majesty, and with even more cause this time.’

‘I fear we will be punished heavily for it,’ I say, trembling and nauseous.

‘Aye, and myself too.’ I hang my head. This is not a fit reward for his kindness. Then an idea comes to me – an idea that might just work!

‘Sir Edward, could this pregnancy not be kept a secret? Only my women and my husband know. I am straitly confined here, allowed to see no one, and once the babe is born, it can be sent out to nurse privily, and no one the wiser.’Lieutenant thinks about this, scratching his head in distress. ‘It is the only safe solution,’ he agrees, his ruddy cheeks pale. But we both know we are running a terrible risk.supper, Sir Edward appears again, ushering in an elderly lady wearing a plain grey woollen townswoman’s gown with a white linen coif. Elizabeth Savage at last! Her face is pale and thin, the eyes light blue, the lips drawn down by fine lines; and her hands are clasped tightly before her.curtseys to me. She knows who I am. Her face is impassive, her eyes downcast, unreadable. It is easy to see that she was once a nun.take the chair by the fireside, and invite her to be seated.

‘Mistress Savage, the Lady Katherine is also interested in the tombs, so I thought we could discuss them together,’ the Lieutenant explains.Savage nods, but says nothing. Maybe she was taught in her convent only to speak when necessary.

‘My father once owned the Minories,’ I explain, ‘and I stayed there often when I was younger. There are some great ladies buried in the church. I remember seeing their tombs as a child, but cannot recall all their names.’shadow crosses Mistress Savage’s already wary face. She knows something, I think.

‘They are particularly interesting monuments,’ Sir Edward puts in. ‘Yet it is not just the tombs we wish to know about, but the women who were buried in them. We know you visit these tombs often. We wondered if you had any knowledge of those ladies.’

‘I know nothing, Sir,’ the woman says, too quickly. I notice that her accent is refined, indicating gentle birth. She looks like a cornered deer.

‘Please, Mistress,’ I intervene. ‘This matter may concern a great wrong that was done many years ago to two kinsmen of mine. You will have heard of the Princes in the Tower …’Savage sucks in her breath. Her involuntary response gives her away, and she knows it. ‘What is this about?’ she asks. ‘Why are you asking me about that?’

‘You know something about the matter, don’t you?’ the Lieutenant says gently. ‘We had a suspicion you might.’ It is easy to see that he is experienced in the business of questioning people. ‘Come, there is nothing to fear, I assure you. This is no official inquiry. I, and my lady here, merely have an interest in finding out the truth. We have been investigating the matter privily for some time now. The fate of the Princes is a mystery that has long intrigued us both.’ He leans forward. ‘You were the last abbess of the Minories. You visit those tombs often. I wonder why. I also believe that if anyone can tell us if there is a connection between them and the fate of the Princes, it is you.’

‘I know nothing,’ says Elizabeth Savage, flushing.

‘Is that so?’ Sir Edward asks. ‘Then why are you on the defensive? Why did you look so discomfited just now when the Princes were mentioned? Madam, I know you can help us. And we would respect your confidence.’

‘We read Sir Thomas More’s history,’ I add, ‘and I made the connection between the names Tyrell and Brackenbury and the tombs in the church. I recalled seeing the same names there when I was a child, and it seemed more than coincidental that they appeared in More’s account.’

‘It is, my lady!’ Elizabeth Savage blurts out. ‘But what I know I have kept to myself for many years now. It does a body no good to get tangled up in the affairs of the great. I reckon I managed pretty well when King Henry closed down the Minories, making sure the sisters left without any fuss and the surrender went smoothly. I got my pension, and since then I’ve kept quiet. If I were to tell you the secrets I have harboured all these years, I would need your absolute assurance that they would go no further than this room.’

‘I give you that assurance,’ I promise her.

‘You have my word on that too,’ Sir Edward declares. ‘We have no cause to discuss this with anyone else.’Savage seems still to be struggling with herself, but then her resolve stiffens. ‘Very well,’ she says. ‘I will tell you what I know – and what no one else but me knows, the others having long since gone to their rest.’ And she tells us her extraordinary story.

‘I was born at the turn of the century; my father was a courtier – we were gentry from Worcestershire. My cousin Nan served Queen Anne Boleyn, and later became Lady Berkeley. My father was a younger son with no inheritance to look forward to, and his minor court office paid little, so there was only a small dowry for me.

‘I was a plain girl, and no one offered for me anyway, so it was decided that I should enter the Minoresses’ convent at Aldgate. I was eighteen, and unhappy at the prospect, but in time I finally settled to the life, although that of a Poor Clare nun was no easy one. At the time of my profession, Alice FitzLewes was abbess; she died in 1524, when the community elected Dame Dorothy Cumberford. She ruled for five years until her death, and then I, by the grace of God, was chosen to be her successor. I was not quite thirty, and young for such a high office, but I had a good head for business, which is always a useful asset in a religious. I remained abbess until the friary was dissolved in 1539, and since then I have been living nearby in Hart Street. I do not go to the Minories now just to see the tombs. I like to maintain my links with the convent where I spent so many years, and the church where so many of my sisters lie buried. It is a miracle that it has escaped destruction. So many religious houses have gone.’smiles wanly at us, and for the first time I see a sweetness in that sad, narrow face.

‘I’m sorry, I am apt to wander in my mind,’ she says, ‘and I am not used to company. The tombs. Yes. It is of Abbess Dorothy Cumberford that I must speak. She had been here for many years before she was elected abbess; she was chosen for her age and holiness. She was an angel – and an inveterate gossip, like many nuns. But the tale she told me was no common gossip. Indeed, it was highly sensitive information, and she only imparted it when she knew she was dying – of a canker, bravely borne without complaint, I might add. She wanted to pass on the secrets of our house to someone she could trust. And so she confided them to me, as she had guessed I would be her successor; indeed, she had expressed her wishes in that behalf to the sisters.

‘When Abbess Dorothy was a young nun, there were several ladies of noble or gentle birth living in the great house in the friary close. That was nothing unusual, because in those days widows and spinsters often retired from the world to live in convents as paying guests. But some of these particular ladies had good reason to want to hide from the world, for they knew more than was good for them about what had happened to those hapless Princes. I think you know who they were.’ Again, that sweet smile crosses her face.

‘Chief among them was Elizabeth, the Dowager Duchess of Norfolk. Her daughter, Anne Mowbray, was married to Richard, Duke of York, the younger of the Princes, when they were just children, but died at the age of nine. She is buried in the quire next to her mother; she’d been laid first in St Erasmus’s Chapel in Westminster Abbey, but when King Henry VII pulled that down to build a tomb house for himself, her coffin was brought to the Minories and reburied. It was the Duchess her mother who erected that monument to her beloved child.

‘Naturally, the Duchess had retained an affection for the little Prince who had been her son-in-law; she’d been dismayed when his brother was deposed by the usurper, Richard of Gloucester, and horrified when later she heard dreadful rumours about the Princes being murdered; and, having good connections, she made it her business to find out the truth about their fate.’

‘Did she ever discover what happened to them?’ I wonder.

‘She did, in the end,’ Elizabeth Savage reveals. ‘She heard Sir James Tyrell’s name bruited about as the Princes’ murderer, and made so bold as to question him about what people were saying, but he would not talk to her.’ Just as he had refused to talk to Katherine Plantagenet. ‘Then his sister Mary came to her. Sir James had told her of the Duchess “accosting” him, as he put it, but Mary had her own suspicions, and she unburdened herself to the Duchess. She thought her brother had been involved in some way, and that he had protested his innocence a little too vehemently.

‘Around that time the Duchess and Mary Tyrell got to know Elizabeth Brackenbury, the daughter of Sir Robert, the Constable of the Tower. She too was troubled, and eventually disclosed that her father was stricken in his conscience because he had been obliged to hand over the keys of the Tower to Sir James Tyrell for one night – and when he’d returned the next day, the Princes were gone, vanished into thin air, and Sir James and all his retainers with them. Mistress Brackenbury said her father had feared the worst, because earlier on King Richard had sent a letter in which he effectively commanded the Constable to do away with those poor Princes. Brackenbury refused to obey, saying he would not do it even if he should be put to death for it. How King Richard reacted he never found out, but the next thing he knew was that Tyrell turned up with two ruffians, demanding the keys in the King’s name.’

‘This is very like what Sir Thomas More wrote,’ I say, getting up and pouring some wine from a flagon that Sir Edward had thoughtfully placed ready on the table. I hand a cup to our guest.

‘Thank you,’ she says humbly. ‘You are very kind, my lady. Yes, it is much as More wrote – although he didn’t reveal it all – and soon you will know why. Now Elizabeth Brackenbury was very worried about her father. She told the Duchess and Mary Tyrell how the King had rewarded him for his co-operation and his silence with grants, estates and lucrative offices, but she said he regarded them as blood money and was uneasy about accepting them. He had been loyal to Richard up to the time he ordered him to slay the Princes; now he was afraid of him, for Brackenbury knew too much, and Richard had proved just how ruthless he could be. So after that time, Elizabeth said, Brackenbury took care never to put a foot wrong. He obeyed the summons to fight for Richard at Bosworth, and was killed in the battle.’

‘Did Brackenbury ever uncover any proof that Tyrell did murder the Princes?’ Sir Edward asks.

‘No. All trace of the boys had gone. Even their clothes had been removed.’ Elizabeth Savage shakes her head sadly and sips her wine. ‘After Henry Tudor became king, the Duchess decided to retire to the Minoresses’ convent as a boarder, and she invited Elizabeth Brackenbury and Mary Tyrell to join her.’

‘Why did she decide to go to the Minories?’ I ask.

‘Her kinswoman, Lady Talbot, was already living there, and there was space in the big house to accommodate several ladies quite comfortably. In due course, the other two ladies joined her, and with them came Mary Tyrell’s aunt, Anne Montgomery. Her husband had supported the usurper Richard, but she now wished to dissociate herself from that allegiance, and reckoned that retiring to the Minories was the safest way.

‘Sir James Tyrell, as you probably know, had long been trusted by Richard, and he apparently would have done anything to gain preferment. It was he who had brought Richard’s mother-in-law to him, so that he could lock her up and gain control of her lands. It was to Tyrell’s charge that Richard committed the men arrested with Lord Hastings – you know about Hastings’ fate, I presume?’nod.

‘Tyrell was one of those who guarded his sovereign day and night, sleeping on a pallet outside his bedchamber. Richard trusted him, but he was a villain. Even his sister and his aunt feared him.’, I know he was a villain. Look how he had treated poor Mattie, and how disrespectful he was to her mistress.

‘Tyrell had long hoped for great rewards for his devoted service, but others stood in his way. By the time Richard asked Tyrell to go to the Tower, he was so desperate for advancement he would have agreed to anything. The rest you have read in Sir Thomas More’s account. It is fact, not propaganda, as you have surely guessed.’

‘So Richard did have the Princes murdered?’ I ask. ‘How do you know that for certain?’

‘I will tell you; just bear with me,’ Mistress Savage reproves gently. ‘After he had carried out the murders, Tyrell was rewarded with sufficient grants and offices to ensure that he could attain the high status that he had long sought at court. In fact, he became a wealthy man, richer than many barons. He was Master of the Horse, Chamberlain of the Exchequer and Captain of Guisnes Castle near Calais, where he took up residence. He would write from there occasionally to his sister, bragging about the honours that had been bestowed on him; but she was more concerned with how they had been won, and showed herself cool towards him.

‘After Bosworth, Tyrell came over from Calais and offered Henry VII his allegiance. The King confirmed him in his post, and he went back to Guisnes Castle, where he stayed for sixteen years. But then he made the foolish mistake of helping Edmund and Richard de la Pole, Richard III’s nephews, who were plotting to overthrow King Henry, and that’s how he ended up in the Tower.’ She sighs.

‘Mary did her best for her brother. Out of her small income, she paid for him to have better food and a cleaner cell, and even bribed his guards to let her visit him twice. She found him a broken and defeated man. He had been warned there was a strong case against him, and that he could not look for mercy. He had been questioned about the murder of the Princes, along with John Dighton, who had helped to suffocate them. He told Mary they had both confessed to that abominable crime, and confided to her the details of what had actually happened. She had no doubt that he was speaking the truth: he was a dying man, he told her, and wished to unburden his conscience before he faced God’s judgement. And indeed, he was soon afterwards condemned for a traitor, and died on the block.’Savage pauses for another sip of wine. I notice how abstemiously she drinks: another discipline learned in the religious life, no doubt. I wonder fleetingly if she regrets the passing of those days, or harbours resentment at being turned out of her convent, yet I am much more preoccupied at this moment with the murder of the Princes. It was as I had greatly feared: they were done to death on Richard’s orders. And when I think about it, I realise that he had really had no choice but to eliminate them. Alive, they would have been a constant threat to his crown, because clearly many did not believe the precontract tale. Yet the irony was that, dead, they were even more dangerous, for rumours of their murder effectively cost Richard his throne.

‘Our quest is over,’ Sir Edward says sadly. ‘I had hoped it would have a different ending.’

‘There is one more question I must ask,’ I say. ‘How did Sir Thomas More know all this? Did he ever meet Mary Tyrell?’

‘Yes, my lady, although I do not know if he spoke with her about this matter, and she was dead by the time he came to write his book. But there was another lady living in the house in the close; her name was Joyce Lee, and he was a friend of her family. They were grocers, I think. Joyce later became a member of our Order; I remember hearing that she wore a hair shirt beneath her nun’s habit. More sometimes visited her when he was a young lawyer living at Bucklersbury in London, and it was she who told him the story of the Princes. She was close friends with the other ladies, and they had confided it to her. At Joyce’s behest, More undertook never to publish his account. I don’t believe he ever finished it. Alas, who could have foretold then that he would become a world-famous scholar and statesman, or that he would end on the block? After that, others got their hands on his work, and now it is in print, and all the world can read it. At least he has not named Joyce Lee as his source. She would have been grateful for that.’Savage stands up, her tale finished. ‘I must go now,’ she says. ‘My dog will be hungry. He’s my companion, Old Rex, all I have in the world.’ She smiles uncertainly.

‘I thank you for coming here today,’ I say. ‘We are very grateful for your help in solving this great mystery. You know you can rely on our discretion. We will not say a word about this to anyone.’

‘We shall have to think of another mystery to solve, now that we know the truth about this one,’ Sir Edward jests.

‘You won’t forget your promise, Sir?’ the former Abbess asks. ‘I’ve spent my life keeping silent and I don’t want this getting out. These are matters that bear some weight even today.’

‘No, I will not forget,’ the Lieutenant assures her. ‘Yet I do not think there would be anything to fear.’ Indeed, there would not. For what Elizabeth Savage has just confided can only serve to confirm the Tudors’ title to the throne.

‘Then farewell,’ she says, and makes to follow Sir Edward out.

‘One thing, mistress!’ I cry. ‘Do you know where the Princes were buried?’is no hesitation. ‘Meetly deep, under a stairfoot in the Tower, beneath a heap of stones,’ she says. ‘That’s what Abbess Dorothy always said.’eyes meet Sir Edward’s. He shrugs. We both know it is unlikely that that hidden grave will ever be uncovered.in my bed later, I am conscious of a different atmosphere. It has nothing to do with my anxiety over my condition or what might happen to me if the Queen finds out I am with child. Nor is it connected in any way with Ned. It is something in the very air of the Tower, a strange peacefulness out of keeping with this grim fortress. Somewhere near here, I know for a certainty now, lie the bones of those two Princes of York, cruelly done to death simply because they were of royal blood. Somehow I know I will hear their cries for help no longer. I have found out the truth about their end. They will trouble me no more. Against all my Protestant instincts, I say a prayer for the repose of their souls, as I was taught in the years when I was a Catholic. For that was the faith in which they lived and died.I fall asleep, gently, effortlessly, I find myself dreaming again of the girl in blue; she was Katherine Plantagenet, I cannot doubt it, and this time, she is not reaching out to me. She is pensive and sad, but she is free of her torment, and at peace. The truth, however painful it might be, is infinitely better than the cruel anguish of uncertainty. I do not think I will dream of her again.I get up in the morning, I open my silver casket, take out her pendant and put it round my neck, wondering if I will again experience those awful feelings of despair that almost made me faint when I first tried it on. But there is nothing – not even the faintest echo of those terrible sensations. I did not think there would be now. And I will wear the pendant in the future, old-fashioned as it is, in memory of that brave dark lady in blue.now, I lay it back in the casket with my other jewels. As I am replacing Katherine’s papers, I notice again the date: 1487. That still puzzles me. What happened in 1487?1487. Raglan Castle.had landed in the north-west, in Cumbria, with his mysterious protégé, a great army at their back! The news, brought by fast messenger, stirred William to vigorous activity, checking gates, posterns, locks, bolts, defences, weapons and stores, as if he were preparing for a siege. Every day he rode out, arraying men against the invasion, and when he returned he drilled them in the courtyards at Raglan, then sent them to join the royal forces at Kenilworth Castle, where the Tudor had set up his headquarters.women of the castle were not idle either. The Dowager Countess took command of the kitchens, requisitioning all the bread her servants could bake for the fighting men, then swooped down on the dairy, appropriating cheeses, and the brewhouse, where she demanded that great barrels be filled with ale. Kate, nearing her time, and Elizabeth helped, tearing up strips of material for bandages and winding them into neat rolls for the soldiers to take with them, and mixing salves for wounds in the still room.’s heart had leapt when she’d heard that John had invaded. Every day, she kept thinking of him advancing further south, marching to meet the Tudor’s forces. She could not bear to think she was aiding his enemies. What if he really did have with him York, the rightful King? Even if he did not, he himself, come to that, had a better claim than the Tudor. He had the right of this, so God grant him the victory! It was her constant prayer.was too preoccupied with his defensive measures to concern himself with a wife in the last stages of pregnancy. That was women’s business, and the women would look after her. He ordered Kate to rest, left her to her own devices, and busied himself with arming all the able-bodied men in his household.


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