Albion Rising: A Henry Frederick Timeline

Chapter 15: Siblings



Chapter 15: Siblings

June, 1610

“You know, it’s quite odd.” Elizabeth said, looking straight ahead as she and her brother, the newly made Prince of Wales walked through St James Park, with guards walking in front of them and behind them.

“What is?” Henry asked, his voice deep.

“That we’ve both become good friends with our cousin, Frederick.” Elizabeth replied. What she felt for Frederick was perhaps a bit more than being good friends, but still, it was true. The last person she and Henry had been close to had been one of the Erskine siblings, back in Scotland.

“Truly?” Henry asked. “We’ve always had similar friends.”

“Yes, but not to this level. Not to where we’re both going to be writing to him after he departs.” Elizabeth pointed out. Though she suspected the content of her brother’s letters would be vastly different to what she herself wrote.

Henry chuckled. “I suppose you are right.”

“Why is that?” Elizabeth asked.

Henry sighed, and stopped, Elizabeth stopped as well, and looked at her brother. He was looking at her intently. “What do you make of Frederick?” He asked then.

Elizabeth was slightly caught off guard by the question, but answered honestly. “He is good, charming, not handsome, but rugged, and he is kind. That is the most important thing.”

“Why?” Henry asked.

“Why what?” Elizabeth replied.

“Why is the fact that he’s kind the most important thing?” Henry asked.

Elizabeth laughed. “Because kindness is a virtue. Something that you rarely find in people.”

Henry whistled. “I’ll need to let Gordon know then.”

“George Gordon?” Elizabeth asked, what did Anne Drummond’s love have to do with this?

“Yes.” Henry said. “He’s trying to be mean and harsh to Anne because he’s gotten it into his head that that is how you woo a lady.”

Elizabeth groaned, so that explained why Anne had been so upset recently. “Why does he think that?” She asked.

Henry laughed again. “Damned if I know.” Her brother then changed the topic. “But yes, so you like Frederick because of these qualities then?”

“I do yes.” Elizabeth said. “Why do you like him?”

“For a vastly different reason to you, I imagine.” Henry joked, smiling. “He’s good fun to be around, he knows when to be serious, and he also has a wealth of knowledge about the continent.”

“So, you’re using him?” Elizabeth asked, unsure if she agreed with that. Using someone was not nice.

“In a manner of speaking yes.” Henry said simply. “As he is using me.”

“What do you mean?” Elizabeth asked, she couldn’t imagine Frederick using anyone.

“He is getting close to me, so that he has an ally in England that he can turn to when his time comes to rule Brunswick. He wants to ensure that we have good relations, and he also wants me to put in a good word with father, if he decides to court you.” Henry said simply.

“He’s already started.” Elizabeth replied. At her brother’s raised eyebrow, she added. “Courting me.”

Henry smiled. “Ah, I see. And how do you feel about that?”

Elizabeth blushed, speaking about it would make it real, and she wasn’t sure if that was something she should do just yet. “I…I like it.”

“You are a very appealing lady, it seems.” Henry quipped.

“What do you mean?” Elizabeth asked.

“Well, I heard a rumour that the Elector Palatine wants his son to marry you as well. Indeed, I heard that the King has encouraged the man’s son to write to you.” Henry said.

Elizabeth felt her blush deepen. “I did not know that.” At least not yet anyway, she’d suspected something might occur.

“And what do you make of it now that you do?” Henry asked, grinning.

Elizabeth did something very unladylike; she stuck her tongue out at her brother and then said. “I think it’s something that comes and goes. But it does go to show that England is in demand.” Which was a good thing after all. Marriages were needed to expand the stature of the Kingdom.

“Indeed, it does.” Henry said simply.

A momentary silence fell over them then as they started walking again. Elizabeth glanced to her left and then to her right, and noted the guards who were shadowing them. All of this was because the King of France had been assassinated. Father was paranoid that someone might try to do the same to one of them, and so, they had guards shadowing them always. Even when they went to the toilet.

She broke the silence as they came to an old oak tree, one which had supposedly been planted during the reign of Edward I. As she stared at it, she asked. “And what about you? You are to marry a Polish Princess; how do you feel?”

The King had broken the news during a session of court two days’ ago, and there had been a lot of chatter about that. The Spanish party led by the Earl of Northampton had been terribly disappointed-they hadn’t shown it but Elizabeth could tell-and the opposition party, led by the Earl of Huntingdon-who’d taken leadership over from the Earl of Salisbury-seemed delighted. That was odd given that the Polish Princess was still Catholic.

Henry sighed, which prompted her to look at him. “I don’t know.” He said simply. “On the one hand I think it is a good marriage, and brings us a useful ally in the Baltic against Sweden. On the other hand, the girl is still a Catholic, though Salisbury seems convinced that she will attend Anglican ceremonies.”

The way her brother spoke then made Elizabeth raise her eyebrows at him and asked. “You do not agree?”

“I do not know. I think it is odd that we hear so much about how devout the Catholics are, and how they will never recognise anything other than Rome, and yet a Polish Princess, who’s mother is of the Habsburg line, is somehow supposedly willing to abandon that. It makes me wonder where she actually stands and what sort of person she is.” Henry replied.

Elizabeth considered that, she supposed she could see where her brother was coming from. He was a devout Protestant, like her, and he had never wavered in his faith, never. So, to think that his future spouse could be someone who might well waver, was perhaps not reassuring. She didn’t know what to say to reassure him, so instead she simply said. “I suppose you will need to wait until she is actually here.”

Henry nodded. “Indeed, I think so.” Her brother took a breath and then said. “That is something I’ve been meaning to speak to you about.”

Elizabeth felt her eyes widen in surprise. “Oh?”

Henry nodded. “What should I do to prepare for when she comes?”

Elizabeth was slightly surprised by this question. Her brother had always seemed as if she knew what to do, and how to do it, but then she supposed, his contact with women, apart from her and their mother was limited. Therefore, she took a breath and then said. “Find out what she likes, write to her before you get married, figure out who she is and what she likes, and what she wants, and act accordingly.” She then remembered something she’d read about in a book and added. “And make sure you tell her or show her a bit about you as well.”

Henry nodded. “I will remember that, thank you.”

Elizabeth smiled. “Of course.” She hoped it worked for her brother, there was nobody more deserving of happiness than him.
Chapter 16: A Prince's Request



Chapter 16: A Prince’s Request

July, 1610

Henry shuffled around as he waited to be let in to see the King. He thought over the letter he’d just sent for Poland, and hoped that it didn’t come across as too desperate. He’d struggled through writing it. He had so much to say and had not known how exactly to put the words down on the page. He hoped it made sense and didn’t read like he’d just thrown up words.

He blushed slightly as he thought of some of the things he’d said. As he’d talked about his hopes and his thoughts about what was to come. Hopefully, the Princess didn’t think him a fool. Not for the first time, Henry wished he had his brother’s gift with words. Charles might only be ten, but he was already writing poems and other such things that showed such great detail and thought. Henry was both proud and jealous of his brother.

It wasn’t that he himself was an idiot, he knew his Tacitus, and his Dee, and the classics, but getting that all out onto the page was something he struggled with. He always had.

He stopped shuffling as the doors opened and that oaf Carr bowed before him. “His Majesty will see you now, Your Highness.”

Henry nodded and walked forwards, he pushed past Carr and entered into the privy chamber. The King was sat lounging on a sofa, a cup of wine on the table before him. “Henry.” The King said.

Henry bowed. “Your Majesty.”

He turned as the door closed, and he frowned. Was Carr going to remain here? It seemed so for the King made no move to dismiss the man. “You wished to speak with me?”

Henry nodded. “I did, Sire.” He took a breath, preparing himself for the words he had to say.

“Well, what is it?” The King asked.

“I wish to command the force that Sir Edward Cecil is taking to Julich.” Henry said.

“You do?” The King asked, an eyebrow raised.

“Yes, Sire.” Henry replied. “I think that I am the right person to command it. I am your eldest son and heir; it is only right that a force being sent to keep the peace in Julich be represented by a member of the Royal Family. After all, it is important that we maintain a presence on the international stage.”

Henry took a breath, he’d thought long and hard about this, he’d bounced his thoughts off his tutor Adam Newton, and off of Sir Edward himself, and come to this conclusion. “If Your Majesty is worried about what the Spanish might say, you need not be. Spain has not entered the conflict, as of yet, and therefore has no reason to complain at my presence there. Furthermore, we are also not antagonistic toward the Emperor, and thus have no reason to fear reprisal from Vienna. The purpose of the force is clear, to ensure good conduct and harmony from both sides. A role that the English army has played previously during the wars between Spain and the Dutch Republic.”

Henry took a breath and then continued. “Finally, it would look odd if after swearing to defend the three Kingdoms, I did not do all I could to ensure that they are protected. After all, as Your Majesty has previously said, what happens in Europe can reverberate here as well, therefore it is necessary to bring everything into order and to ensure we know what is happening. The only way we can do that is by having eyes and ears on the ground. And given that the continentals will only respond well to one of their own rank, it is imperative that I go there.”

Henry took a deep breath as he finished speaking. He’d said a lot, but he didn’t think he’d said anything wrong. Indeed, as he looked at the King’s face, he got the impression that he’d said the right things. The King looked thoughtful; his fingers were steepled against his chin. When the man responded, his voice was soft.

“You speak sense, Henry.”

Henry exhaled, and the King continued. “It would make sense for you to go and ensure that our interests are looked after, particularly if the force that is getting sent out is one that is meant to ensure good conduct between the two forces in this war. And you are right to say we have no quarrel with Spain or Vienna, and that neither could take umbrage at our involvement.”

Henry listened, waiting for the other shoe to drop. His father was going to shatter his hopes, he could just tell.

“However, there is one thing that you are missing.” The King said.

“Sire?” Henry asked, steeling himself.

“Sir Edward Cecil is not going in the capacity of our representative; he is going as a private individual who is raising a force of men to fight in the war on behalf of the Protestants.” The King said. “That is to say, he is an aggressor.”

Henry took a deep breath, feeling his cheeks heat up. Had he gotten Cecil wrong? Misinterpreted him? Or had Cecil lied to him?

“Consequently, if we were to let you go for this expedition, we would be making it an English contingent supported by us. That would not do well with what we are trying to achieve. It would not bring peace; it would bring war. Spain would declare war on us, and that would not end well.” The King said.

Henry opened his mouth to protest, to say that perhaps that was no bad thing, that perhaps they needed to go to war with Spain to stop it from causing chaos and havoc everywhere. But he looked at the King and saw something in the other man’s eyes that told him doing so would be foolish. Therefore, he shut his mouth and waited.

The King continued. “Furthermore, sending you off would be quite foolish when you are needed here.”

Henry frowned. “Sire?”

“Your marriage.” The King said.

Henry felt something like a lead weight settle in him. What did his marriage have to do with anything? Poland was not interested in what was going on in Julich, as far as he could tell.

“A proxy marriage will take place in Warsaw at the end of this week with the actual marriage taking place at the end of the month. Consequently, you could not have gone off to Julich, either way. And additionally, we need you here to look over a few things.” The King said.

Henry took a deep breath. He was getting married far sooner than he had expected. He had thought that there might be at least a few months of a betrothal, so that he and his betrothed could exchange letters and get to know one another a bit more. But no, they were being thrown right into the fire. He wanted to ask the King why it was happening like this, but decided against it. Instead, he took a deep breath and said.

“I understand, Your Majesty. My apologies for causing a scene.”

The King waved a hand dismissively. “You are young, you will learn.” A pause and then. “You may go.”

Henry bowed, turned and departed, but before he did so, he saw Carr’s grin, it seemed like the man was mocking him and took every inch of his self-control not to punch him. He walked out of the room and then stormed down the hallway. He needed to blow off some steam.
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I am glad Henry dislikes Carr as much as I do.

Perhaps once Henry and the Polish Princess have a few heirs of their own Henry might be allowed to go fight?

Still he has his Welsh and Scottish tours to look forward too…


Poor Henry, but James is actually speaking some sense here. Although he and Anne Marie will have to get along much quicker than thought!
Oh indeed, james isn’t all hot air,
I am glad Henry dislikes Carr as much as I do.

Perhaps once Henry and the Polish Princess have a few heirs of their own Henry might be allowed to go fight?

Still he has his Welsh and Scottish tours to look forward too…
oh indeed
Good chapter but Henry marrying by proxy in London makes no sense, proxy marriages were normally celebrated in home countries of brides. So it would be Anna Maria marrying by proxy in Warsaw before traveling to London.


Good chapter but Henry marrying by proxy in London makes no sense, proxy marriages were normally celebrated in home countries of brides. So it would be Anna Maria marrying by proxy in Warsaw before traveling to London.

Bear in mind that Henry's likely more concerned with the fact that he's just been told off by his dad not to spot the error in what his dad's said.
But that's ridiculing him in front of Carr which is much worse than forbidding him to risk his life before he has children of his own.