A Green And Pleasant Land

Discussion in 'Alternate History Discussion: Before 1900' started by VVD0D95, Jun 28, 2019.

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  1. Threadmarks: Chapter 25: Margaret, Queen of Norway

    VVD0D95 Lemmy is God.

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    Chapter 25: Margaret, Queen of Norway



    June, 1290


    There had been another Margaret who had been Queen of Norway before her. Margaret saw her image every time she walked passed her step-daughter’s room. The painting made the woman look very beautiful, and from what she’d been able to find out about her, she had been, both in spirit and looks. Her husband rarely spoke about his first wife, he rarely spoke at all. But when he did, he always smiled when he spoke of her. On occasion when she missed home terribly, Margaret would find herself wondering why Father had sent her here, to this far away land, to a man who had loved another woman. She would find herself wondering why Mother had agreed to it.

    And then there were times like now, where she was with her ladies, some of whom were Norwegian others who were English and she wouldn’t mind just so much. Especially when they all got along. Her chief lady in waiting was a lady who shared her name, Margaret, whose husband Bjorn was her husband’s chief advisor. He was also Count of Bodo in the furthest part of Norway. Margaret listened as the Countess spoke in hurried Norwegian, a language she had just begun to understand properly and speak fluently with some mistakes. “So, there I was, waiting for Bjorn to come down the steps for the evening meal, when I hear a mighty roar and a thud. I go running to where the noise is, and I find Sven, our steward wrestling with Hilga’s brother, it turns out they’d been having an affair.”

    Margaret gasped. “You mean Hilga, daughter of the Count of Meldal?” Meldal was a powerful man and an ally of Eric’s brother Haakon.

    “The very same.” The older Margaret said. “It seems they’d been carrying on for months now.”

    “How did Hilga’s brother find out?” Margaret asked.

    “He saw Hilga and Sven together the other night during the feast of St John and he put the two together at earlier occasions.” Margaret the Elder said.

    “So, what did you do?” Margaret asked.

    “Well I ordered them apart, heard what I had to hear and then ordered Hilga’s brother back to his chambers, and I spoke with Sven. I told him that Bjorn would deal with him.” Margaret the Elder said.

    “What do you think Bjorn will do?” Margaret asked.

    “I think he will reprimand Sven and that will be that. The Count of Meldal can’t do anything about it, not without angering the King.” Margaret the Elder said.

    “How so?” Margaret asked.

    “Well, Sven and King Eric were milk brothers, and were close friends after that. Sven’s father had served as a steward to King Eric’s father and when he died fighting the Danes, King Eric’s father took Sven in. From there, well they were as thick as thieves. King Eric would’ve appointed Sven to his own household, but his mother stated that it would be better for Sven if he served elsewhere.” Margaret the elder said.

    “How so?” Margaret asked.

    “Something to do with rumours. I’m not sure what they were. But Bjorn was more than happy to take Sven on. He’s a good man.” Margaret the Elder said.

    Margaret nodded, she had not known that story, despite having met Sven several times. She didn’t say anything though, she didn’t want to make it appear as though there was discontent between her husband and her, especially when her husband went out of his way to make her feel as welcome as possible. As she mulled this over, there was a loud crash from outside. One of the guards, went to the door and opened it looked outside, he barked an order at someone and then closed the door before coming back to stand against the wall. Margaret raised an eyebrow. The guard shook his head. “Someone dropped something, Your Majesty.”

    “I see.” Margaret said.

    Helda, Countess of Ler in her own right spoke then. “How are you finding things here then Your Majesty?”

    The way the question was phrased made Margaret think the woman was not just referring to Norway. “Well enough.” She answered guardedly.

    “Indeed, you know if you ever need advice in handling your husband you need only ask. We all saw him grow up.” Helda offered.

    Margaret was tempted to ask, but then remembered she was a daughter of Edward and Eleanor, King and Queen of England, she would not ask. “I will keep that in mind.” She said instead.
     
  2. isabella Well-Known Member

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    But that would be illegal because title or not Rudolf was already elected as Emperor. You can not elect a Holy Roman Emperor if you have already elected a King of the Romans... Otto can not contest an election who already happened but only try to be elected as heir
     
  3. VVD0D95 Lemmy is God.

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    Indeed, that's going to be mentioned later on.
     
  4. isabella Well-Known Member

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    The point is who neither Rudolf or the Prince Electors would accept to do something so illegal (with some electors voting against Rudolf). You will do better to change the elections as one between Otto and Albert for choosing Rudolf’s heir
     
  5. VVD0D95 Lemmy is God.

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    Alright duly noted.
     
  6. VVD0D95 Lemmy is God.

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    Have edited it, so that Rudolph is speaking for both himself and his son. He's speaking for Albert here as the Emperor elect, whilst Otto is speaking for himself for the position of King of the Romans.
     
  7. isabella Well-Known Member

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    Much better now. Would be a pity seeing a so well researched and planned story going totally ASB on some points
     
  8. VVD0D95 Lemmy is God.

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    Indeed, now would it be ASB to see Otto put his name forward for King of the Romans when Rudolph dies and Albert ascends the throne?
     
  9. isabella Well-Known Member

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    Well, first Albert must be crowned by the Pope as Holy Roman Emperor then he must also decide to call the election (and so having a son at least 18 years old as a younger boy would be ineligible).
     
  10. VVD0D95 Lemmy is God.

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    Indeed though he could well have his brother Rudolph junior crowned King of the Romans, something that was agreed upon otl
     
  11. Threadmarks: Chapter 26: Glory Ramachandra

    VVD0D95 Lemmy is God.

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    Chapter 26: Glory Ramachandra



    September, 1290



    Delhi had fallen after a long siege, the Muslims had held their ground quite admirably. After losing two armies in the field, Ramachandra had not thought they would. But it seemed their desire to hold onto power was strong. Eventually they had fallen. Ramachandra had entered at the head of a victorious army, and had ordered the massacre of the Muslim dynasty that had subjugated Delhi and the surrounding areas for two centuries. Once that had been completed, he had been crowned Emperor, using the same rituals that Emperor Yudhistara had used many thousands of years ago.

    Now had come the politicking. Three months after his coronation there were still issues to discuss and solidify. “So, where did this Khalji go?” He asked. Khalji had been a commander in the Sultanate’s army, and had somehow escaped the destruction of his rulers, with his wife, children and some two hundred followers.

    “Sire,” that was his chief advisor Bhima speaking, with Rudra having died during the fighting. “It seems he has fled northwards, towards Kabul. He is looking to seek shelter with the Khan there.”

    “Kabul…” Ramachandra thought on this. “No doubt he will try and rally support from the Muslims who are present there. Perhaps we should write to the Khan of Herat and ask him to deal with this issue.”

    Sarangadeva who had insisted on having a position on his council despite having a young heir spoke then. “That would be most wise, and it would open up the area to further campaigns.”

    “What do you mean?” Ramachandra asked, he knew what the man meant, at least he thought he did, but he still wanted to make sure.

    “What I mean is that, it would make sense to ally with the Khan of Herat, have him fight the Khalji army and then take up from there. Have Your Imperial Majesty’s armies swoop in and restore the true faith to the region.” Sarangadeva said.

    Hammira Varman, King of Chandela spoke then. “Depending on how long it takes for the Khan of Herat and this Khalji to defeat one another, that could be a wise idea. However, I would recommend keeping the focus internally. There is still the presence of the Muslim army in Bengal.”

    “Indeed.” Ramachandra said. “They are the more pressing matter. How many men do they have?”

    Hammira looked down at his paper, and Ramachandra was happy that this man had remained here, he was a good counter to the extreme positions that Sarangadeva often held. “They have twelve thousand men ready and prepared to fight. They have been fighting in Kamrupa at the present moment however.”

    “So, their forces are weak the moment.” Ramachandra said. “I am hesitant to attack them, now when my hold on the throne is so new. In a few more years when I am secure then it would be right to attack.” It seemed natural to say this out loud, none of them men before him could defeat him in a duel or in an open battlefield. But Bengal was an issue.

    “A smart decision, Your Imperial Majesty. The Eastern Gangas have sent their fealty, as have those on the west coast. However, the south remains as do some other minor states in central areas.” Hammira said. “You will need to find a way to bring them in, and also to reform the structures currently existing or abolish them.”

    “But first, you will need to decide on the process for choosing your successor.” Sarangadeva said.

    “Saranga, he’s just won the throne, why do you now speak as if he is about to die?” Hammira asked sounding shocked.

    “He’s right.” Ramachandra said. “Before this campaign was launched, we had an agreement, and now the time has come.” He paused and then said. “I will not lie, I want this succession to be by birth, for no other reason than I believe it will bring stability, and my Kingdom is the biggest and richest Kingdom, alongside my dynasty being the oldest. But I am willing to hear arguments to counter that.”

    Sarangadeva said nothing for a moment and then said. “You are right, and for the moment I believe yourself and your son should be the immediate rulers. But after? After I believe that we must have elections to decide who the next Emperor will be. Otherwise we risk bringing in an incompetent ruler who could lose everything we have fought for.”

    Hammira spoke then. “We could get the same thing through choosing our Emperor. Puppets are a thing whether they are by birth or if they are chosen.”

    Adiratha, the Chief Priest spoke then. “The Vedas do not speak of choosing Kings. They are made or they are born. They are made on the field of battle, or by God. Therefore, it would be against the traditions of this great nation to choose an Emperor.”

    There was a brief silence and then Sarangadeva bowed his head. “I defer to the wisdom of the Chief Priest.”

    Ramachandra nodded and then gestured to Bhima who unfurled the grand document. “A wise decision for the other Kings who submitted have also done so.” He could have laughed at the expression on Sarangadeva’s face, but he did not, instead he simply smiled.
     
  12. Threadmarks: Chapter 27: A Mother's Duty

    VVD0D95 Lemmy is God.

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    Chapter 27: A Mother’s Duty



    December, 1290



    Eleanor looked through the letters one more time. Their daughters had written to them and they’d all come at once. She cherished moments like these, where she could hear her daughters’ voices as she read their words. sometimes she missed them terribly, and wished that it was easier for them to return and visit. Perhaps she might ask Edward to write to King Philip to send Joan and her husband over as the new ambassadors. She smiled at the thought, and felt her smile widen as Edward wrapped his arms around her.

    “What makes you smile so, my dear?” He whispered into her hair.

    “Letters from our daughters.” She replied handing them to him.

    Edward was silent as he read them. Eleanor took a moment to just appreciate the silence, everything had been going completely full ahead recently. They’d raised taxes to improve the roads, they’d also brought new sewage works into London to try and improve the waste disposal in the city. She’d convinced the Earl of Gloucester and the Earl of Warwick of the benefits of such things, and pointed out that the sewage system would remove the excess dirt floating near both of their manor houses in the capital. “Good to know that our daughters are well.” Edward said putting the letters down on the table. He took a seat opposite her and looked at her. “Is something the matter?”

    Eleanor knew there was no point denying it, Edward knew her too well. “I just worry for Margaret. She says she is well, but her tone of voice in the letter suggests she is lonely.”

    Her husband looked at her and then at the letter. “What makes you say so? She seemed perfectly happy from what I read.”

    “I know. But she’s so far away in a strange Kingdom, with strange customs, with only two other ladies from England there with her. Her husband was married to another woman for so long and has a daughter by that woman. I would not be surprised if she is lonely. We both know that King Eric is a cold man.” Eleanor said.

    Edward sighed. “Should I send more ladies to her?”

    “No.” Eleanor replied. “Margaret would not take kindly to that, she is like you in that sense. She has to find a way to figure this out on her own.”

    “Are those your words or hers?” Edward asked.

    “Those were your words to your mother when she asked if you wanted her to send some companions with you when your father exiled you.” Eleanor reminded him.

    She saw her husband pause as he considered this and then he sighed. “True enough. Though I was a young man then, Margaret is a young woman. There are differences.”

    Eleanor took her husband’s hand and said. “I know, dear, I know, but we must allow Margaret to find out where she wants to be. As much as I might dislike it. She is too much like you, for us to help her now.”

    Something passed over her husband’s face at that, amusement, sadness and some other unknown emotion, but eventually his face resumed a blank expression. He picked up the letter from Joan and said. “Joan certainly seems to be enjoying her time in France. Philip has sent her and her husband off to tour the Kingdom and it seems they are winning a lot of positive comments from it.”

    Eleanor smiled. “Indeed, it seems so.” A pause and then. “What do you make of her saying she wants to see her husband as Emperor?”

    Edward laughed. “I think it could happen. If not now, then certainly in a few years. My spies tell me that Emperor Rudolph is close to dying, his son Albert will become the Emperor once he’s gone, and then there will be a contested election between his brother and someone else. That could be the chance they have.”

    “It would not be harmful if Charles of Valois became Emperor either. He seems besotted with Joan.” Eleanor mused.

    “Indeed.” Her husband replied. Then he said. “I’ve been thinking, since Margaret married the King of Norway, we had to break our agreement with Brabant, but their ruler has since married elsewhere, meaning we need to decide who Elizabeth will marry, as well as Edward.”

    Eleanor thought on this and then said. “A marriage to Humphrey de Bohun would make sense.” Her husband raised an eyebrow and Eleanor elaborated. “The younger one not the current earl. De Clare is married to a cousin of yours, de Bohun is also as powerful as de Clare, would it not make sense to reward de Bohun’s long years of service with a marriage to our daughter for his son? Furthermore, the two of them have grown up together, it would not be such a bad marriage.”

    She could tell what she had said was playing in Edward’s mind, he loved Elizabeth best of his daughters she knew, and as such she hoped that thought would play in his mind. “And it would keep her closer to home as well.” She heard him say. “Very well, I shall discuss the matter with Humphrey.”

    “As for Edward, I think a marriage to Alice de Lacy could be quite good.” Eleanor suggested. “She is her father and mother’s heiress, and she is the same age as well.”

    Edward nodded. “Indeed, this is true. Furthermore, de Lacy has been loyal throughout everything that has happened in the past few years and was one of the key supporters of the road developments.”

    “Then it would make sense to reward him by making his daughter a Princess.” Eleanor said.

    “Indeed, quite right.” Edward agreed.
     
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  13. Tyler96 Well-Known Member

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    I have to admit when we first mentioned Charles of Valois and ''Emperor'' I thought we were talking about a claim to the defunct Latin Empire, but he only got that through his marriage to Catherine of Courtenay IOTL so it's off the table here with his different marriage.
     
  14. VVD0D95 Lemmy is God.

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    Indeed indeed. Though, one does imagine he'd find the Holy Roman Emperor title much more alluring
     
  15. Tyler96 Well-Known Member

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    Means a hell of a lot more than being ''Latin Emperor'' does at this point, that's for sure.
     
  16. VVD0D95 Lemmy is God.

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    For sure. And of course, Charles could find support from Bavaria, and maybe even the Rhine
     
  17. Ivan Lupo Well-Known Member

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    At this point, I don't know if Edward and Eleanor were ever happier than they are currently. The succession is secure, their kids are all married or betrothed, and most importantly, they have got each other to grow old with. And at this point, Edward is arguably the most well-respected monarch in Europe. Will you give us an update on their daughter Eleanor in Aragon?
     
  18. VVD0D95 Lemmy is God.

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    Yes I will :)
     
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  19. Threadmarks: Chapter 28: Aragonese Springs

    VVD0D95 Lemmy is God.

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    Chapter 28: Aragonese Springs



    April, 1291


    Eleanor was beginning to think she preferred the warmer climes of Barcelona to the coldness of England. She’d been married to Alfonso for five years now, and over that time they’d had two children, a daughter named Eleanor and a son named Peter, to honour her mother, and his father respectively. As the summer began to approach, they were beginning to make plans to visit the islands under the control of Alfonso’s father Peter, to show the people there that they were remembered. However, before that, there was a lot of other things to be doing.

    They’d taken a break during one such day to sit and rest. Their children were with Alfonso’s mother Queen Constance. Eleanor sat with her hand entwined with Alfonso’s. “You know I heard something from Lady Maria earlier today.” She said in the Latin she was fluent in, she was learning Catalan but it was a hard language to master, and unlike her sister Margaret she had never been very good with languages.

    “And what was that?” Alfonso asked looking at her. His eyes always made her heart beat quicken.

    “She told me that her husband heard that the Emperor died a few weeks ago in Vienna.” Eleanor said. She knew the importance of that, the Emperor had been a supporter for her father by marriage’s claims to Sicily, and had managed to convince His Holiness to allow Sicily to remain in King Peter’s grasp.

    Alfonso nodded. “That is correct. Emperor Rudolph’s son ascended to the throne after a coronation in Rome two days ago. There will be another election for his heir in a few weeks’ time.”

    Eleanor hummed. She had an inkling as to who one of the contenders might be, but she was not sure whether to mention it to Alfonso. Instead she asked. “Will your father support Albert’s brother then for the King of the Romans title?”

    “Yes.” Alfonso said immediately. “There’s nothing more that can be done for anyone else. The Habsburgs control three of the votes immediately, through ties to the Palatine and to Bohemia, and another vote. We’ve instructed our ambassador to Vienna and to Rome to show support for his brother.”

    Eleanor hummed, a sensible decision. She then said. “Another thing I heard was that this tour of the islands is part of your father’s plan to increase the preparedness of the nobles to invade Menorca?”

    Here Alfonso halted, it seemed as though he had been about to answer in the positive, but had stopped himself. “I do not know.”

    Eleanor was surprised, usually her husband knew everything that was happening within the court. Was there something she had missed? “What do you mean?” She asked tentatively.

    “The nobles are acting out again. Some of them are demanding a lowering of taxes, something that is not possible if we wish to ensure the changes to the Kingdom are implemented. Others still are demanding that there be a grand meeting of all the nobility and the King to bring into place some document.” Alfonso replied.

    “A document?” Eleanor asked. “What sort of document?”

    “Similar to the one that constrains your father’s hands.” Alfonso said.

    “Ah.” Eleanor replied, her mind working quickly. “That means that His Majesty is trying to find a way to balance their demands whilst also giving them something to focus their minds on?”

    “Yes.” Alfonso replied. “If they are focused on killing Muhammadeans, they will not have the time to focus on demanding things beyond their purview.”

    “And we can help this by visiting the islands currently under the crown’s control and convincing the nobles of the need for this war.” Eleanor surmised.

    “Exactly.” Alfonso said.

    “Well, I can have my things ready by the end of this week.” She thought to herself.

    Alfonso kissed her hand. “You are simply brilliant.”
     
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  20. Ivan Lupo Well-Known Member

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    Evey single one of Edward's and Eleanor's kids featured so far are extremely intelligent.
     
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