Damn, hadn't throught of that, So Napoleon III could, realizing this, offer his service to his cousin?
Pretty much.
While it might be "too late" to do anything about Louis Napoléon's I misspoke in my above post, both boys were "Louis Napoléon" and "Napoléon Louis") marriage to Joseph's daughter, a lack of service in the Carbonari would definitely butterfly away his death from measles OTL and it MIGHT mean he and his wife spend more time together, hence having kids.

IDK why but I'm imagining Reichstadt either arranging a marriage for his cousin (Mathilde) to a minor (but rich) Austrian archduke or at least a prince in Austrian service. Not because he feels indebted to her, but as part of broadening his "alliance" network. The second son of Karl, duke of Teschen, was certainly well off enough (albeit small fry compared to his older brother who got the bulk of the inheritance). Other wealthy archdukes include Stephan of Hungary (once his dad dies, and since his stepmom hated him, and Mathilde's stepmom's cousin, it would be a wonderful way of screwing with the Dowager Palatine, especially since Stephan's match to Olga Nikolaïevna was Metternich's project), Maximilian d'Este (brother of Francesco IV and heir of his late uncle and namesake, Maximilian, Elector of Cologne) and Ferdinand Karl d'Este (although I think that was due to his Hungarian wife). Princes in Austrian service include Ferdinand of Koháry (OTL King of Portugal, personally think he and Mathilde will get on splendidly with their shared artistic interests), the Nassau-Weilburgs (Frankie's former regimental commanders), several minor princes of Württemberg, and some Hessian boys (ICR which ones).

Another "fun" fact is that Reichstadt may help Gustaf V get an annulment from Luise of Baden. Or at least, get grandpa to put enough force behind Gustaf so Gus can marry Marianne of the Netherlands (and get a happier marriage for all involved). Why does Frankie do this? Gus is the guy in charge of Frankie's first army regiment. And Gus liked/was impressed by Frankie, so call it a favour for a friend.

Back to the Bonapartes, Frankie would likely arrange one or two other marriages there as well. This isn't because he likes them, but I suspect Europe is going to be shuddering at the prospect of him marrying, so he'd have to "secure" the succession by other means. First on the roster is likely OTL Napoléon III if his brother has no kids by the time Frankie really gets a head of steam in Austria in the late 1830s/early 1840s. Likeliest candidate? Princess Alexandrine of Bavaria. OTL she was considered for Joseph Bonaparte's eldest grandson, and given Frankie's OTL friendship with here mom and dad, I could see Ludwig I having fewer excuses about why she can't marry. Mathilde's brother might be easier to get an "actual" match for that isn't family. Mostly because his uncle, Wilhelm I of Württemberg, liked him enough. Certainly more than his own son, according to Olga Nikolaïevna's memoirs, so that would probably help him find a bride. OTL Plon-Plon will be so unimportant here that it'll be a miracle if he weds at all. And him not marrying will be no bad thing IMO
 
Absolutely brilliant! Bravo!
Don't mind me, just over here screaming over that fabulous scene
Absolutely well done !
Can you imagine how there's a lot of screaming and muttering (maybe some well timed fainting) going on in the Bourbon family? The adults ha've completely forgotten that they all hate Caroline, and at dinner, they're all sitting there, afraid to touch the food (despite being starving)
 
Damn, Franz got a pagar out of
Pretty much.
While it might be "too late" to do anything about Louis Napoléon's I misspoke in my above post, both boys were "Louis Napoléon" and "Napoléon Louis") marriage to Joseph's daughter, a lack of service in the Carbonari would definitely butterfly away his death from measles OTL and it MIGHT mean he and his wife spend more time together, hence having kids.

IDK why but I'm imagining Reichstadt either arranging a marriage for his cousin (Mathilde) to a minor (but rich) Austrian archduke or at least a prince in Austrian service. Not because he feels indebted to her, but as part of broadening his "alliance" network. The second son of Karl, duke of Teschen, was certainly well off enough (albeit small fry compared to his older brother who got the bulk of the inheritance). Other wealthy archdukes include Stephan of Hungary (once his dad dies, and since his stepmom hated him, and Mathilde's stepmom's cousin, it would be a wonderful way of screwing with the Dowager Palatine, especially since Stephan's match to Olga Nikolaïevna was Metternich's project), Maximilian d'Este (brother of Francesco IV and heir of his late uncle and namesake, Maximilian, Elector of Cologne) and Ferdinand Karl d'Este (although I think that was due to his Hungarian wife). Princes in Austrian service include Ferdinand of Koháry (OTL King of Portugal, personally think he and Mathilde will get on splendidly with their shared artistic interests), the Nassau-Weilburgs (Frankie's former regimental commanders), several minor princes of Württemberg, and some Hessian boys (ICR which ones).

Another "fun" fact is that Reichstadt may help Gustaf V get an annulment from Luise of Baden. Or at least, get grandpa to put enough force behind Gustaf so Gus can marry Marianne of the Netherlands (and get a happier marriage for all involved). Why does Frankie do this? Gus is the guy in charge of Frankie's first army regiment. And Gus liked/was impressed by Frankie, so call it a favour for a friend.

Back to the Bonapartes, Frankie would likely arrange one or two other marriages there as well. This isn't because he likes them, but I suspect Europe is going to be shuddering at the prospect of him marrying, so he'd have to "secure" the succession by other means. First on the roster is likely OTL Napoléon III if his brother has no kids by the time Frankie really gets a head of steam in Austria in the late 1830s/early 1840s. Likeliest candidate? Princess Alexandrine of Bavaria. OTL she was considered for Joseph Bonaparte's eldest grandson, and given Frankie's OTL friendship with here mom and dad, I could see Ludwig I having fewer excuses about why she can't marry. Mathilde's brother might be easier to get an "actual" match for that isn't family. Mostly because his uncle, Wilhelm I of Württemberg, liked him enough. Certainly more than his own son, according to Olga Nikolaïevna's memoirs, so that would probably help him find a bride. OTL Plon-Plon will be so unimportant here that it'll be a miracle if he weds at all. And him not marrying will be no bad thing IMO
Damn, Franz is really takimg a pagar out of talleyrand's book
 
Can you imagine how there's a lot of screaming and muttering (maybe some well timed fainting) going on in the Bourbon family? The adults ha've completely forgotten that they all hate Caroline, and at dinner, they're all sitting there, afraid to touch the food (despite being starving)
XD XD XD XD JAJAJA
 

Ramontxo

Donor
How would this affect the fate of OTL Napoleon III?
Bismark went with Austria against Denmark. Then he went against Austria after promising Nap III support for France for his neutrality (he lied). And then he went against France (with the famous telegram etc). If France is allied to Austria the whole scheme derails.
 
Even whether both take up arms against the Austrians in Italy is questionable. Its one thing to take them up against someone like the duke of Modena or the pope, but another thing to take them up against the head of your own house, even if he's sitting in Vienna and looks like an Austrian.

Italy's a bit of a conundrum in this TL in general, isn't it? The OTL French liberals and Bonapartists were sympathetic to the Italian revolutionaries and went so far as to occupy Ancona in 1832, but here's Napoleon's son heading the government of the Austrian oppressors.
 
One wonders how this might impact the affair of the Spanish marriages and the possible fallout from that. One wonders as well whether Jane Digby finds her way into Franke's bed somewhere along the way.
 
Yes, among the other things https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jane_Digby. She had without doubt an interesting and adventurous life
I'll say

One wonders how this might impact the affair of the Spanish marriages and the possible fallout from that. One wonders as well whether Jane Digby finds her way into Franke's bed somewhere along the way.
If she went to bed with the stuttering/stammering,/can't remember exactly what was the problem except that he and Wilhelm I of Württemberg nearly fought a duel over it at the congress of Vienna[1], bandy-legged Ludwig of BAVARIA, I could definitely see her trying her luck with Frankie.

[1] basically Wilhelm I (never known as the most diplomatic person at the best of times) got pissed at Ludwig at a ball. Wilhelm was chatting up some pretty girl, Ludwig swaggered in and tried to "steal" /talk down Will. Only problem was that Ludo kept tripping over his tongue because of said impediment. Irritable, Will mocked Ludwig's speech problem like "are you gonna talk or spit words at us like bullets all night". Ludo was insulted, cue duel. Except, the next morning, Wilhelm was waiting in (think it was the Prater, I remember enormous crowds had turned out to see it), when already late, Ludwig's second, his brother-in-law, the prince of Hildburghausen, arrived with the news that Ludo conceded defeat. Wilhelm passed some or other comment about his brother-in-law being a coward and a fool to his brother, Prince Paul, then climbed on his horse and rode away.
 
Back on the subject of internal reforms for Reichstadt:

Is it at all possible that he manages to improve Austria's position in the German Confederation here? By the late 1830s, the rulers of Baden, Bavaria, Württemberg, Saxony (and even Hannover) were basically, if not liberals, certainly not the Francesco IV d'Este type conservatives. In fact, several of these "Kleinstaten" IIRC formed a sort of loose "union" in the 1820s/1830s AGAINST Austrian and Prussian. However, by the late 1830s, several of the princes were costing up to Prussia. Is it possible that, with his "regency" (I think Frankie might not officially get the title of regent as a sop to the European powers), his charm and his friendships with several princes (both Bonaparte, Beauharnais - who were being supported financially by Württemberg and Bavaria - as well as older established houses like Nassau, Wettin and Holstein) manages to persuade these Kleinstaten that "Austria's the horse to back"?

It probably sounds like a stretch, but Frankie could probably represent the combination of new and old. Most of these "wingless wasps" as Friedrich III later called them, owed their "royal titles" to his dad, so he'd have the right name to persuade them, particularly if by say 1840 he's actually "done stuff" in Austria that has actually worked. But at the same time, while most of these Kleinstaten would be wary of both Prussia or Austria, the Habsburgs Frankie represents have the best historical claim to primus inter pares in Germany. And more than that, Frankie as regent could be seen as a convenient compromise for many as a way of not taking a particular side. Perhaps especially if he speaks their "language" (not German but a sort of landesvater liberalism), and maybe speaks heavily in assurances of ancient rights and Napoleonic privileges, although (like many politicians) is vague as to what his actual intentions/designs are.

Any help from those who know more about 1830/1840s German politics will be appreciated
 
He'll yeah! Franz using his sheer charisma to sway them to Austria's side! Eventually it Will be Austria the one to Unite Germany and reclaim their Imperial crown as it's rulers
 
He'll yeah! Franz using his sheer charisma to sway them to Austria's side! Eventually it Will be Austria the one to Unite Germany and reclaim their Imperial crown as it's rulers
Whatcan I say, I'm always a fan of a Habsburg empire. But by the time FJ got there "it was going to take a genius of statecraft to save it. But the emperor was no genius". And neither was Metternich, even Richard Metternich wrote "it served his purposes for all Europe to believe he was the canny statesman who outwitted Napoléon and many mistook what they believed to be true for the actual fact".
 
Whatcan I say, I'm always a fan of a Habsburg empire. But by the time FJ got there "it was going to take a genius of statecraft to save it. But the emperor was no genius". And neither was Metternich, even Richard Metternich wrote "it served his purposes for all Europe to believe he was the canny statesman who outwitted Napoléon and many mistook what they believed to be true for the actual fact".
Fully agreed, the Habsburgs are one of my all time favorite Dynasties, be either their Spanish branch or Austrian one, FJ son had the chance to save the Empire and make it prosper but his father sidelined him at every turn, saw him as a dissapointment and forced him to marry someone who was wholly unsuitable for him. Rudolf would have been The Reformer.
 
Fully agreed, the Habsburgs are one of my all time favorite Dynasties, be either their Spanish branch or Austrian one, FJ son had the chance to save the Empire and make it prosper but his father sidelined him at every turn, saw him as a dissapointment and forced him to marry someone who was wholly unsuitable for him. Rudolf would have been The Reformer.
If only he had been. Rudolf had a Austria-Hungary sized chip on his shoulder about "my dad doesn't trust/love me". When one looks at other heirs who had a long time waiting (Edward VII or Friedrich III) they actually were involved in society even if they had no role aside from opening exhibitions or entertaining ambassadors. Rudolf didn't really even do that - not because dad didn't delegate but because Rudolf didn't want to. He's like a Peter Pan who never grew up but also trapped in a rebellious teenager/emo stage where he only wants to do what he wants. And it's gonna be opposite to his dad.

TBH, Rudi - IMO - would've caused even more damage than Sisi had.

Now, compare FF. The guy's not a very nice character, and the story goes that he used to throw tantrums to get his way with his uncle. Which, to avoid those tantrums, his uncle would just avoid FF and communicate via note. But, between him becoming heir and getting married, he did more (according to contemporaries and future historians) than Rudolf had in his time as heir. How did FF do that? By being the anti-Rudolf. Rudolf was, like his mom, fanatically pro-Magyar and liberal, which pissed a lot of non-Magyar and non-liberals off (this being the teenage rebelliousness), as a sort of throwing down the gauntlet "I am what my dad isn't". FJ never deigned to pick it up. FF, by contrast is almost IIRC anti-Magyar (he felt their privileges needed to be curbed or other nationalities raised to same status), and a known-conservative (albeit more in favour of innovation - he'd tried to get FJ to pass several reforms late in the day. And he was a champion of the Austrian navy, and was a voice in favour ofBurstyn's tank design) . While it saw FF branded as a racist and a nutter, I suspect he understood the empire a lot better than Rudi ever tried to do. FF did get things wrong, but Rudi in charge would be... Terrible.

There's only so much Rudolf can blame his parents for. Sooner or later it comes down to personal responsibility.
 
True, but the people around him really didnt help him out of it.
I think this goes back to what kel said, rudolf was a man. And as a man he had responsibilities. That includes growing up and doing something with his life, not just acting like a man whore
 
Yep, it wasnt just his family that needed him to step up, with an entire Empire worth of subjects wanting change and progress.
 
Victoria Regina
*interior* *Westminster Abbey* *the crown has just been set on Queen Victoria's head*
Man: *seated in the galleries* *rises to his feet as peers don their caps and shout "God Save The Queen" *
Prince Eszterhazy: and now the race begins to find the new queen a husband.
Man: I thought they have already found one.
Eszterhazy: several, in fact. But the young lady is a young lady and does as young ladies tend to do.
Man: she's a coquette?
Eszterhazy: if you've met the dragons guarding her, you'd hardly be surprised, your Highness.
Man: that is my aunt you speak of, sir.
Eszterhazy: *looks at the Duchess of Kent* I was not speaking of the Duchess. I was speaking of her... Comptroller and the Baroness Lehzen.
Prince Albert: *about to respond when something lands on his head* *he brushes it off* *something else lands on his head* *he looks up* *there's another man grinning at him from a balcony/gallery*
Eszterhazy: what on earth. How did he get up there?
Prince Albert: I think the better question is why he's up there.
Eszterhazy: *sarcastically* practicing his swandive hopefully.

Few moments later:
*Man from gallery is in the stalls next to them*
Prince Albert: * ignoring him*
Man from Gallery: *wets finger in mouth* *jams it in Albert's ear*
Prince Albert: *near yelps in surprise*
Man from gallery: *claps hand over Albert's mouth* was that the noise you made when they pierced your cock as well? [1]
Prince Albert: have you no sense of decorum?
Man from gallery: plenty. What I don't have is patience for flimflam like this. It's a good English word that.
Prince Esterhazy : I'm starting to regret bringing either of you.
Man from gallery: so why did you then, Prince? Mean... I could tell you the delicious story the Ottoman ambassador told me about your son and Lord Jersey's daughter.
Prince Eszterhazy: is that who you were up there with?
Man from gallery: poor bugger - my new favorite English word. Nicer than cunt. - finds this all... rather overwhelming I'm afraid.
Prince Albert: because we're civilized and don't murder our kings?
Man from gallery: what was that one... Name starts with an 'N'... The British poisoned him with wallpaper. Was it Nikolas? No. It's on the tip of my tongue
Prince Albert: we get the hint, Franz.
Franz: utter tosh, of course. Do you know how much wallpaper you'd have to poison to kill someone?
Prince Albert: no.
Franz: finally, something you don't know. *grins* Don't worry. I don't either. But we have a club. With uniforms. They say "Know Nothings" on the back.
Prince Eszterhazy: *sternly* behave. Now, you were saying the Ottoman ambassador finds this overwhelming?
Franz: kept repeating "all this for a woman" during our conversation. *looks around abbey* it is a bit much, I agree. And by that I mean... Terribly done. Badly dressed. Bad music. No doubt the food will be bad afterwards. Although they're English. Only part I'm looking forward to is when the guy on the horse rides in at dinner.
Prince Eszterhazy: they don't do that anymore
Franz: *pouts* they should. Lots to be said for tradition. Doing things the right way. Way they've always been done.
Prince Albert: *half snorts with laughter*
Franz: *quietly* don't look now, but I think la petite was looking at you JUST a bit too long, Albert.
Prince Albert: great, now she's going to think-
Franz: Albert... If the whole world spent as much time thinking as you do, we'd never get anything done.
Prince Albert: you think.
Franz: I... reflect. I consider. I muse. You think.
Prince Albert: *huffily folds arms*
Franz: don't scowl. Otherwise she's going to think you're cross. Then you will lose to one of the others.
Prince Albert: I am not cross.
Franz: *ignoring him* now... I've found all the others. And may I just say that... Even with a fish hook through your cock you are far better. Don't know how la petite will feel about that, but... They always say, be the boy every girl's mother warned her against.
Prince Albert: who says that?
Franz: well, it's what they say about me. Sans fish hook. I just assumed they said it about all men. Now my feelings are hurt. *makes theatrical mope*
Prince Albert: *rolls eyes as someone female on his other side asks "is your friend alright" *
Franz: *keeping head down* *out of side mouth to Albert* is she pretty?
Prince Albert: who?
Franz: the one asking if I'm alright. *sits up* Really, did that fish hook screw with your brains? Or are you just picking out the names for you and la petite's children. Again.
Prince Albert: *opens mouth to protest*
Franz: I found the list you stuck away inside the translation of Francesca de Rimini. Really? Your mom cheating on your dad wasn't bad enough that now you have to live it vicariously through Dante?
Prince Albert: you really are a dick, you know that? Every time I think you're a person, you pull something like this.
Franz: first, least my dick's fish hook free. Two, no girl wants to marry a guy who already has the names of their kids figured out when he hasn't even asked her to marry him yet. And three, reading Dante is bad for your health. Girls like em dumb.
Prince Albert: I wanted to show her I've got culture. Last time I was here she said she lik-
Franz: and by telling her that, you don't say "I'm a good listener" or "I have a brain of my own", you're demonstrating that you're a spaniel who can be kicked and treated as she likes.
Prince Albert: so where's the list. And my book?
Franz: *grins evilly* burned them both. Security reasons. Spies everywhere. Wouldn't want you to get in trouble with Uncle Léopold or Doctor Stockmar for not sticking to the prescribed reading list. *looks down at the duke of Cumberland rendering homage**his son behind him* your chief competition.
Prince Albert: I know.
Franz: good news for you is he's blind and stupid. His half-sister told me.
Prince Albert: where?
Franz: pillow talk, Bertie. You know... What you do afterwards?
Prince Albert: I thought you stopped doing that.
Franz: uh no. You asked me to stop doing it. I never said I stopped doing it. See... Unlike you, I don't have a nice queen waiting for me to propose. Who needs me to be a virgin when we get married.
Prince Albert: *grimaces*
Franz: *points across aisle* there's competitor number two. He's not serious, but he's Russian. So you never know anything beyond don't trust the bastards.
Prince Albert: *shakes head*
Franz: next to him is Prince Nochin. She's already refused the Dutch boys, but they're nothing if not persistent. He's a sailor, so maybe he's got an anchor in his cock? *grins*
Prince Albert: he likes horses.
Franz: riding them or for other stuff? Because there's a lovely woman on the Wallnergasse in Vienna that charges by the hour for that.
Prince Albert: you are a deeply disturbed individual.
Franz: I try. Now, option four over there is Mr Country Bumpkin, Prince Christian of I don't care where. He's so broke that I had to loan him money for new shoes. And pay for his beer. And cigarettes. Not his fault, of course. But... When you grow up shooting fish in the castle toilet for dinner, that's bound to do odd things to your brains. Assuming of course he had them to start with. He's Danish cavalry, so I don't know if he's stupid or just insane. Either way, never trust a woman around a cavalry man I always say-
Prince Albert: you're a cavalry man, Franz.
Franz: exactly how I know what I'm talking about
*ceremony over* *everyone stands as queen leaves abbey* *she looks up into the gallery to find Albert* *smiles* *walks on*
Franz: she likes you.
Albert: she's just friendly.
Franz: because I always blush when my friends smile at me.

*later* *coronation ball*
Franz&Albert: *at the bar*
Franz: *dragging Albert to the edge of the floor* she's just finished dancing with *distastefully* that cretin, Wilhelm of Prussia. So, now's your chance. Her toes are probably so bruised, she couldn't run away even if she wanted to.
Albert: she has a dance with the prince of Mecklenburg next.
Franz: *casually bumps Mecklenburg as they pass*
Mecklenburg: *falls forward* *face lands in the woman he was talking to's cleavage* *woman slaps him* *her husband is calling Mecklenburg out to a duel*
Franz: *grins* Mecklenburg'a bit busy at the moment *pushes Albert towards Victoria*
Man's voice: what are you up to, sir?
Franz: *innocently* me, nothing, Milord Wellington.
Wellington: *makes unconvinced grunt*
Franz: I saw you with Maréchal Davout earlier. You two seemed... Friendly.
Wellington: we go back a long way.
Franz: my mother told me as much.
Wellington: and who was your mother, sir?
Franz: just a a woman you met at the congress of Vienna. She always spoke very highly of your performance sir.
Wellington: *now looking very worried*
Franz: not like that, sir. Just of how you beat Napoléon and what a kind gentleman you are.
Wellington: gentleman is definitely not a word I suspect to hear in the same breath as Boney the Ogre.
Franz: I rather doubt anyone would describe M. Cromwell as a gentleman either.
Wellington: touché, Mr.?
Franz: Bonaparte. Franz Napoleon Bonaparte, Duke of Reichstadt and an esteemed admirer of your strategy, Milord.
Wellington: *keels over backwards in a faint*[2]
Franz: *innocently* was it something I said?


[1] OTL there is the urban legend that Queen Victoria's hubby is where the term "Prince Albert" comes from.
[2] Wellington was actually an attested hypochondriac OTL, so the idea of him in a faint at hearing his old enemy's son is standing in London isn't that weird. Hell, might even be enough to induce a heart attack

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