An Unexpected Prince

Chapter 103: Mother
Chapter 103: Mother

February, 1711


Anne took a deep swig of brandy, and then looked at her son. James, 2nd Duke of Cumberland, he’d grown taller and more handsome compared to when she’d last seen him, and he’d been named Secretary of State for the Northern Department as well. Anne was proud of him for using his natural skills, but she was upset. Upset because he never told her what was discussed in council meetings in his letters to her. That was why she had summoned him here, hoping he would be more open with her in person.

“I wanted to congratulate you on being named Northern Secretary, dear, it is quite the honour.” Anne said.

“Thank you Mother.” Her son replied.

“You must be very busy with the war on and needing to keep a handle on Parliament.” Anne asked.

“Something like that. Harley is useful in that he controls the Commons with a whip hand.” James said.

Anne hummed in acknowledgement, Sarah had said that Harley was someone who they couldn’t control, but who through his greed might well come to them in the end, and thus she was hoping she could perhaps find out more through her son. “So, is there anything that has happened in the council that you wanted to discuss? I know that I often found it helpful to talk with your father about it.” Anne said lightly.

Her son stiffened. “I cannot speak about council business with non-council members, Mother, I am sorry.”

Anne felt as though she’d just been slapped, and not for the first time she wondered why she had agreed to step back from the council when her brother had come of age. “I am merely offering my services as a listening board, son, that is all.”

“I know, Mother, and I appreciate it, but I cannot do it.” Her son replied.

Anne’s temper surged forward, she took a hefty swig of brandy and then said. “I am your mother, James, but I am also the senior Princess of the family, by tradition and right I could make you tell me what has been discussed.”

“No you couldn’t.” James said.

“What do you mean I couldn’t?” Anne replied. “I am the one who wrote the damned rules on this.” It was true she’d sent a whole booklet around the palaces for the staff to read, instructing them on who had precedence and who didn’t.

“The brandy must be clouding your thoughts, Mother.” James said. “Under the rules you wrote, I as Duke of Cumberland have seniority over you. I am the senior Prince of the Blood, and as such outrank you. Therefore, you cannot make me do anything.”

Anne slammed her fist down on the table, causing the brandy glass to rattle. “I am your Mother, James, and I demand to know what is happening!”

Her son remained calm as he replied. “And unfortunately I cannot tell you. Maybe if you made up with the King and were restored to the council I could tell you. But until then I cannot.” Her son made to get up. “Now if that is all you wanted to talk about, I am going to go.”

“No, please don’t go!” Anne pleaded. She quickly thought of another topic to speak about that would make her son stay. “How are your children?”

Her son smiled. “They are good, James has begun talking quite excitedly about things.”

Anne smiled sadly, she had only met her grandson once, and that was when he was christened. She could not go to Whitehall to visit her son, not whilst the Queen was there, and nothing she or Sarah seemed to have thought of had worked. The King and Queen were as close as ever.

As if sensing her thoughts, her son said. “You know you should go and speak with the King. He wants this breach between the two of you closed.”

Anne sighed and took another deep sip of brandy. “I wish it were that simple, but it is not.”

“Why?” James demanded. “He cares for you, and you care for him. What is stopping you from going to Whitehall and talking to him?” There was a long silence as Anne filled up her glass and continued drinking, her son then gasped. “It’s her isn’t it. It’s Lady Marlborough. She’s been whispering poison in your ear this whole time.”

Anne stopped drinking and looked up at her son. “What are you talking about?”

James looked at her, and his face had changed, it was no longer sympathetic, if anything, he looked deeply angry. “You two have always been close, and she’s been your lady in waiting for many years. But you never do anything without talking to her anymore. And she doesn’t like the Queen and Elisabeth for some reason, therefore you haven’t come to Whitehall.” Anne wanted to protest, but she knew deep down that her son was right. James snorted in disgust. “You know what Mother? Maybe get rid of the evil in your home first before trying anything.”

Anne looked at her son and said. “I cannot dismiss her.”

“Why?” James demanded.

“Because she is my friend.” Anne said, though she wanted to say Sarah was so much more to her.

“Then you will not know your grandchildren.” Her son said he got up, and stalked out of the room.

Anne watched him leave and then she burst into tears.
 
I wouldn't be surprised if it's Sarah who lets Anne down... once Abigail's gets the position she wants.
Unlikely ,i imagine she would want to have an alternative if her plan fails,also its not wise to do it since the one who suggested the plan is sarah,if she did that anne will probably reconcile with the king and queen and direct her wrath at her
 
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Unlikely ,i imagine she would want to have an alternative if her plan fails,also its not wise to do it since the one who suggested the plan is sarah,if she did that anne will probably reconcile with the king and queen and direct her wrath at her
Possible though Sarah has no issues orl doing this
 
Unlikely ,i imagine she would want to have an alternative if her plan fails,also its not wise to do it since the one who suggested the plan is sarah,if she did that anne will probably reconcile with the king and queen and direct her wrath at her
Mmh, yes it's probably wiser to keep Anne at hand just in case, even though I doubt she'll be as influential - and so useful to Sarah - as she used to be.
 
Mmh, yes it's probably wiser to keep Anne at hand just in case, even though I doubt she'll be as influential - and so useful to Sarah - as she used to be.
This. And don’t forget one of Sarah’s daughters is lady in waiting to the duchess of Cumberland
 
Chapter 104: Dauphin of Power
Chapter 104: Dauphin Of Power

May, 1711


Louis sat down and looked at his father, the man seemed tired, more so than usual. His face was lined and his eyes looked as if they’d not seen the light in months. He would’ve voiced his concerns, but he knew his father didn’t like it when he did that, so instead he kept silent. He waited as was usual for his father to speak first.

When the man did so, his voice sounded hoarse. “We have summoned you here today to discuss the war and the part you are to play in it.” The King cleared his throat but his voice still sounded hoarse. “The war is currently going well for us; the allies only hold the Brussels-Ghent line and that in of itself looks as though it might fall. Our spies report that the commanders of the alliance are at odds with one another, with the Earl of Marlborough desperate for more control, and the Prince of Orange refusing to give it to him. However, the English have control of the seas and therefore were able to get more soldiers to their allies under the command of the Duke of Cumberland.” The King stopped speaking then and coughed.

Louis took that moment to speak. “I already know all of this Sire, why are you repeating it?” He knew speaking like that to the King was dangerous and he would never have dared speak like that to his grandfather, but his father was not the same sort of man as the Sun King. He was weaker.

“We wished to ensure that you understood the circumstances with which you are being met here today.” The King said. “Our cousin of Orleans has done an able job as the representative of the Crown in the field, but he is needed here, and therefore we wish for you to take up his place.”

Louis wanted to cheer in happiness, he’d been waiting for this for a long time. However, he kept his expression neutral as he replied. “I am honoured that you have considered me for this role, Sire.”

The King nodded. “Understand that you will be instructed by those with greater experience than you. Mainly the Duke of Vendome, and as such you are to defer to his advice, unless you truly think that something needs to be done.”

Louis nodded, he bit back a protest. He knew his father was only doing what his own father had done for him before, and therefore he had to appreciate it. “Understood, Sire.”

“The objective is to break through the Brussels-Ghent line and fracture the Anglo-Dutch alliance. If you can capture the Prince of Orange even better.” The King said, before he broke down coughing. As he wiped away some of the spittle, Louis could’ve sworn he saw some blood on the King’s handkerchief.

“Understood, Sire. Is the Prince of Orange more important than the Duke of Cumberland? It is my understanding that Cumberland is the King of England’s closest advisor and friend, not to mention his nephew.” Louis said.

“Orange is the Commander of the Alliance army; he is the more dangerous threat. Remove him from the field and the alliance will crumble.” The King said.

Louis nodded. “Yes, Sire.” He waited to see if there was anything more that his father wished to talk about, but the King seemed to have nothing more to say. Louis waited and then got up when the King waved his hand.

As Louis got to the door, his father started coughing something fierce, and then he stopped. Louis asked him. “Are you well, Sire?”

“I am fine, now go.” The King barked.

Louis bowed his head, called out and walked out once the doors were opened, but as he did so, he saw his father’s wife appear-she’d clearly been listening close by- and saw them talking, and all he could think to himself was that his father did not look well, not at all.
 
Looks like Louis XV won't last long...
“Understood, Sire. Is the Prince of Orange more important than the Duke of Cumberland? It is my understanding that Cumberland is the King of England’s closest advisor and friend, not to mention his nephew.” Louis said.
I wonder if the Dauphin's going to heed his father's advice.
 
Looks like Louis XV won't last long...

I wonder if the Dauphin's going to heed his father's advice.
Ooooh, the Dauphin wants to prove himself alright, and the Prince of Orange has been a big thorn in France's side for a long time, so there is a possibility.
 
Chapter 105: Drummond's Entail
Chapter 105: Drummond’s Entail



August, 1711


James Drummond, Duke of Perth and former Secretary of State for Scotland looked around the room. The main meeting room in Holyrood Palace-which as governor of the city had been given to him by the King- was quite large, enough to fit a small army in, if he were being honest. However, there were only three other men in it with him. They were his brother, John Drummond, Duke of Melfort a former Lord Chancellor, James Hamilton Duke of Hamilton and William Gordon, 2nd Earl of Aberdeen and the current Secretary of State for Scotland as well as Lord Chancellor of Scotland. James had asked for this meeting to discuss matters he considered to be of great importance, and as such he wasted no time in getting to the point.

“My lords, thank you all for coming. The most pressing matter that I wished to discuss with you all today is the current Darien Scheme. As you are all aware the funding for the scheme was increased only recently, and the focus has changed toward a more northern direction in the new world. However, there still remains no sign of improvement, and therefore we must consider changing the direction of our focus.” James said.

“Where would you say we look to?” William Gordon asked.

“I would recommend that we begin preparing for a taking over of what is currently in French hands.” James replied.

“How?” Gordon asked. “The war is not over, and even if the Forts to the West of New York have fallen, there is no guarantee that they won’t be returned to the French at war’s end.”

“If we show the King that we wish to make something of ourselves in the New World and focus on an area that has potential for growth, I see no reason why he won’t agree to our suggestions that those Forts taken remain in our hands. After all, we need to show the investors that they are making a return on their investment.” James said.

He could tell that Gordon was seriously considering his argument by the way the other man’s fingers tapped the table. He had come to figure out that Gordon only did that when he was in great thought. Eventually the man replied. “I will consider it and present the choice to His Majesty at the next council meeting. But how will you convince the investors that this is a worthwhile cause? They have invested quite a lot of money into the scheme so far.”

“And they have seen little reward. We all know that the French have never supplied their colonies in the New World with enough man power to make anything of them. That would be different in our case. We know where to learn from their mistakes, and we have the manpower there to protect the investment. We would simply need to recall those already in the Darien lands and send them northwards.” James said.

“Such a scheme would take months. We might not have such time.” Hamilton said. “The annual reviews come up in a few weeks. We need a clear solution before then.”

“Then you will have one.” James said, he would get his son to write it up and he’d have his brother Edward look through it.

“Good.” Hamilton replied, and then the man said. “There was something else that I wished to talk about since we are all here.”

“Go on.” James said.

“We all know that increasingly the King is focusing on matters relating to England, which is fair enough, England is the richer Kingdom, but we are lagging behind and that is not acceptable. Scottish men are fighting and dying in the Spanish Netherlands, and a Scottish Commander is fighting for the English in the New World, if this is to continue we must take our place at the table and ensure that our voice is fairly heard.” Hamilton said.

James expected Gordon to protest, but instead he simply said. “I agree with you.”

“What do you propose then?” James asked.

“I propose that we meet with the other great lords in Scotland and begin hammering out a proposal which we can put before the King asking for a union of the lands and Kingdoms of England and Scotland.” Hamilton said.

James thought on this for a moment and then said. “It would work, I am supportive of it, but it would face stiff opposition from the Highlands and from some on the Eastern side who still adhere to the old alliance.”

“That shouldn’t matter too much, we can handle those.” John said, speaking for the first time.

James nodded, that was true, and then another thought came to him. “Before he died, the King’s father tried to integrate the Irish more into the administration of the Isles, perhaps if the King can be convinced of its merits we can also bring the Irish in. We all know how much they hate being left out alone.”

There was some laughter at that, but then Gordon asked. “How will you convince the Irish of its merits?”

“I’ll speak with Arran, he’s got some sense in his head, he’ll make the others see sense.” James said.

“Very well.” Gordon said.
 
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