Albion Rising: A Henry Frederick Timeline

:'(We need a trigger warnings, almost crying at work:'(
Beautifully written and glad Urzula refrained from using her cruel tongue at this time.
Poor Henry and Anne, I can imagine Henry regrets spending more time at war than with his new born son, causing Henry to feel angry at himself, jealous at Anne for having more time with him, resenting his father for not attending his grandsons funeral.
All these emotions will make him an enemy anyone will want to be against, so Spain better tread carefully, maybe Philip will offer up his adviser as a scapegoat along with a few lands and gold as repatriation for this heinous act.
 
:'(We need a trigger warnings, almost crying at work:'(
Beautifully written and glad Urzula refrained from using her cruel tongue at this time.
Poor Henry and Anne, I can imagine Henry regrets spending more time at war than with his new born son, causing Henry to feel angry at himself, jealous at Anne for having more time with him, resenting his father for not attending his grandsons funeral.
All these emotions will make him an enemy anyone will want to be against, so Spain better tread carefully, maybe Philip will offer up his adviser as a scapegoat along with a few lands and gold as repatriation for this heinous act.
Awww sorry.

but thank you :)

and oh agreed, henry is on the war path right now, so they’re going to need to be very very careful
 
Awww sorry.

but thank you :)

and oh agreed, henry is on the war path right now, so they’re going to need to be very very careful
Don’t apologise. You captured Anne’s emotions perfectly and have done a great honour of approaching a delicate subject with care.
 
Chapter 151: A Coup's Afoot

Chapter 151: A Coup’s Afoot



January, 1616


Louis stood still for a moment and admired the sun as it began to peak out from behind the clouds. The light was a darkish shade of red, and the clouds were burning like something from a story. This was his favourite time of day. When everything was just stirring, when he was free to examine and be in awe of everything around him. Before Condé woke up and reminded him of his situation.



Louis was fifteen, he was a man grown, he should be ruling in his own right, and yet, and yet he wasn’t. Instead Condé had kept the regency stating that there were too many threats to France to allow Louis to get involved. What these threats were Louis didn’t know, but he’d tasked the two men standing behind him with finding out, and he decided the time had come to learn what they’d found.



Louis looked away from the clouds and the sky. He looked at Charles d’Albert, the man he trusted the most and asked. “Well?”



Charles was a handsome man, and someone Louis felt great affection toward, despite the man’s relatively short time in service to him. His answer was as ever to the point. “I found nothing but rumours and whispers, Sire.”



“Of what?” Louis asked.



“Of what the Prince of Condé claims are the dangers to Your Most Christian Majesty, Sire.” Charles said.



“And, how based in fact are they?” Louis asked.



“It is hard to say. The Spanish have been meeting with Your Most Christian Majesty’s mother, which Your Most Christian Majesty already knows. But there has been no discussion of war. Instead, that meeting was about confirming the betrothal between Her Highness Princess Elisabeth and His Highness the Prince of Asturias, Sire.” Charles said.



“And?” Louis asked, wondering whether everything his cousin had said was complete nonsense or not.



“Other than that there is no solid evidence that anything is actually happening. It seems to be complete conjecture and nonsense, Sire.” Charles replied.



“I see.” Louis said, so his cousin was lying then. “And the mood of the court?” That was important, he knew that his cousin had managed to get a great many of his people into important positions at court. Only Charles and the other man who was with them, were people Louis truly trusted.



Nicolas de L’Hopital, commander of the Royal Guard answered that question. “Some are beginning to grow disillusioned with Condé, Sire. They feel that he promised much but has delivered little. They fear the Kingdom is drifting. Condé lavish spending on himself and his favourites has not helped matters, nor has the fact that he overrides the Treasury at every turn.”

Louis nodded. “So, is it possible that some may turn if I make a move?” He didn’t want to strike now, not if he knew he would have the support of at least some of the court.



“I think so, Sire.” Nicolas said.



“From whom?” Louis asked.



“The Duc de Rohan, Sire.” Nicolas said. “He is the most prominent member of the court who would change sides if you acted, Sire.”



“Rohan?” Charles said then, sounding surprised. Louis was surprised as well, for he knew that Charles and Rohan didn’t like one another. At least not enough to not make snide remarks whenever they encountered one another.



“Yes, Sir.” Nicolas said. “He has grown tired of Condé’s constant promises that never lead anywhere.”



“Have someone approach him.” Louis commanded. “Let us see what the man has to say for himself.” He was fully aware that sometimes people gave the impression of being for one thing when they actually felt something else. Why they did that he didn’t know. But he would find out either way.



“Sire.” Nicolas said, bowing his head.



There was another matter that Louis wanted to discuss, and it was one that had been bothering him for some time. “Should I go ahead with the Spanish marriage?” He knew his mother had arranged it to bring peace between France and Spain-hence why his sister Elisabeth was also going to be marrying the Prince of Asturias-but something about it sat wrong with Louis. Spain was the enemy, not an ally.



“What would the alternative be, Sire?” Charles asked.



“Nicole of Lorraine.” Louis said. “Finally bring that territory into France.”



“A reasonable match, Sire, but the girl is only seven years of age. You would need to wait for a long time before a marriage could be consummated. The Princess of Spain is of an age with Your Most Christian Majesty.” Charles said.



“Yes, but she’s from Spain.” Louis replied. “Spain is the enemy.”



“But Spain does not always need to be.” Charles said.



“What do you mean?” Louis asked.



“The Protestants are still a threat to Your Most Christian Majesty. As long as they exist, France can never be as whole as it once was. A marriage to Spain can provide you with an ally in beating them down. Cutting them off from potential funding and arms. It can also provide you with an idea of how to handle them and crush them completely, Sire.” Charles said.



“Through taking a cue from the inquisition?” Louis asked.



“Yes, Sire, if necessary.” Charles said.



“I see.” Louis said. “Well, for now, we shall need to play by Condé’s rules, but when we know what the overall situation is, I want us to depart.”



“For where, Sire?” Nicolas asked.



“For my mother’s residence.” Louis said. “She is amassing an army, and I think it is only right that I lead it. We shall ride into Paris at the head of that army, and force Condé from his position.” That was the only way to truly secure things, Louis was convinced.



“Very well, Sire.” Nicolas said. “I shall make sure that the guard is prepared to move at a moment’s notice.”



Louis smiled at the man. “Thank you, Nicolas. I appreciate that.” He turned back to look at the sky and saw that the sun had emerged fully. There was a wind, but the warmth from the sun prevented him from feeling chilly. Soon everything would be right with the world. He could feel it.
 
“The Protestants are still a threat to Your Most Christian Majesty. As long as they exist, France can never be as whole as it once was. A marriage to Spain can provide you with an ally in beating them down. Cutting them off from potential funding and arms. It can also provide you with an idea of how to handle them and crush them completely, Sire.” Charles said.
Oh boy… Don’t do anything too rash, Louis. Your dad did well in stopping that shitshow, don’t restart the whole mess
 
I will say I have a general feeling about this period historically that Spain's 'domination' was more due France shooting itself in the foot rather than the actual 'strength' of the Spanish.
 
Oh how so?

I would argue Wars of Religion really decimated French cohesion, undermining France's power projection capabilities. The recovery from this was then handicapped during the infighting in Louis's regency and early reign. When France had pulled itself together it was arguably the nation that succeed the most from its intervention in the 30 years war and edit the cracks become really visible on Spain's Empire.
 
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I would argue Wars of Religion really decimated French cohesion, undermining France's power projection capabilities. The recovery from this was then handicapped during the infighting in Louis's regency and early reign. When France had pulled itself together it was arguably the nation that succeed the most from its intervention in the 30 years war and edit the cracks become really visible on Spain's Empire.
Hmm this is very true.
 

Karahar

Banned
I would argue Wars of Religion really decimated French cohesion, undermining France's power projection capabilities. The recovery from this was then handicapped during the infighting in Louis's regency and early reign. When France had pulled itself together it was arguably the nation that succeed the most from its intervention in the 30 years war and edit the cracks become really visible on Spain's Empire.
I am not sure that a country split along religious lines will achieve anything useful from the religious war raging nearby. Rather, France itself will burst into flames at the most inopportune moment. And then Paris will not get off with a few years of purges. So not everything is so clear.
 
Chapter 152: Carr's Ahead

Chapter 152: Carr’s Ahead



February, 1616


Robert watched as his son James tottered around, burbling on in that way infants did, and he smiled. He liked being a father. It was far more meaningful to him than any of the schemes that he had previously been occupied with. Getting to watch his son grow in a safe and healthy environment was important to Robert. It was important to him in a way that he’d never thought it would be before.



That combined with the ever-increasing love he felt for Frances was enough to convince him that he didn’t need to be at court, chasing the King’s favour. He had everything he needed right here. He exhaled and smiled as James tottered toward him with a toy in his hand. Robert hugged his son and then let go and watched as the boy tottered around some more.



“Did you find out what my cousin asked you to?” Frances asked breaking his happiness.



Robert turned to his right to see Frances standing against the wall, hands on her hips in a most unladylike manner. “I did.” Robert replied. His wife’s cousin the Earl of Arundel had come to Beecham House a few months ago, asking Robert to look into who could’ve potentially sabotaged the Prince of Wales’ letters during the Orkney campaign, and to be discreet about it. Initially, Robert hadn’t wanted to get involved, he was happy with his lot, but then Frances had pointed out the benefits they could get from finding the people responsible and he’d had to comply.



“And?” His wife asked.



“There are three possible candidates.” Robert said, keeping his eyes on Frances to see how she’d react.



“And they are?”



“Lord Petre, Edward Radclyffe and Thomas Waller.” Robert said.



“Why those three?” Frances asked.



“Well, Petre and Radclyffe are obvious, they are both Catholics and Radclyffe was in charge of handling the post as it came down from Orkney.” Robert said, that he’d appointed the man to the postmaster’s service, he didn’t say. “They’d be the ones most likely to want to cause havoc if it benefitted Spain.”



“Due to their shared religion.” Frances said.



“Exactly.” Robert agreed.



“What about Waller?” Frances asked. “What’s his reason?”



“He wanted a spot in the Prince of Wales’ household but was refused by John Holles, the Prince’s comptroller. He could be acting out of jealousy and spite.” Robert said.



“Really?” Frances asked.



“Oh yes, my friends report that he’s been seen drinking in various darkened taverns, whining about this and that and the other about the Prince.” Robert said.



“And he’s not been arrested yet?” Frances asked.



Robert grinned. “Your father’s spies aren’t as good as mine and anyway, the man makes the King’s ale.” And the King was always generous to those who made his ale.



There was a brief moment of silence as Frances considered this, then she said. “I think we should write Waller off.”



“Why?” Robert asked though he agreed with her.



“It’s too circumstantial, and if he makes the King’s ale, there’s not a chance that he’s going to do something to sabotage that. Besides, I think Petre or Radclyffe have a better chance and better motive.” Frances said.



“I agree.” Robert said.



Frances nodded, she smiled then when James babbled out something or the other, then asked. “So, are you going for both or for just one of them?”



“Just the one.” Robert said. “Radclyffe, Petre will be too difficult to pin down given he’s a member of the aristocracy. Radclyffe isn’t.”



“So, Radclyffe then.” Frances said, some of the tension going out of her. “How are you going to prove it’s him?”



“I’ve got people watching him. Observing his comings and goings. Seeing who he meets with. I’ve got a man who’s just started in his household who will observe his letters.” Robert said.



“Build a case retroactively?” Frances asked.



“Exactly.” Robert said. “Get enough evidence to ensure his downfall.”



Frances nodded, she then walked over to him and placed her hands on his shoulders and looked into his eyes. She was the most beautiful woman he’d ever seen. “Will you go to court to present these accusations?”



“I will have to.” Robert said. It was the only way to get the King to understand the seriousness of what was happening.



“And will you be able to manage?” Frances asked, he knew she was asking because of how he felt about Buckingham, but it still rankled.



“Yes, I am not a child.” Robert said.



“I know, but still, Buckingham is Buckingham.” Frances said.



“Well, I’d be surprised if he was someone else.” Robert joked smiling.



Frances swatted his arm. “Be serious, Robert!”



Robert sighed. “Yes, I know. He’ll try and get under my skin, but I won’t let him.”



“You promise?” Frances asked, a note of pleading in her tone.



Robert took her hands in his and said. “I promise.”



“Good.” Frances said, breathing out.



“Dadda, Mama, look!” James exclaimed then, prompting them both to turn to look at their son. He was holding some sort of paper in his hands.



“What’s that sweetheart?” Frances asked.



James tottered over to them and handed it to her. Frances took it and read it, and then handed it to Robert who read it as well. He then looked at Frances, whose eyes were wide, he then looked at James. “Where did you find this, sweetheart?” He asked their son.



“There.” James said, pointing next to the empty fireplace.



Robert got up and walked toward the fireplace, he stared at it and then leaned forward and looked up, there was nothing there but darkness. He moved back and looked at Frances. “What is it?” Frances asked.



“I’m not sure, but we’re going to need to check who was here before we entered the room.” Robert said. It had to be one of the servants, but who? And whose pay were they in?



“I’ll do it.” Frances said, Robert nodded and then watched as his wife walked out of the room.



“Where Mama go?” James asked. Robert looked down at his son and said.



“She’s gone to do Mama things, sweetheart.” He extended his hand which James took eagerly. “Come, let us go and see what else we can find.”
 
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As it’s Halloween all I can imagine is that Robert Carr is reading this note.
 
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