Pretty interesting developments there with the Papal states.
will admit that when I looked up June 1843, that was about the most interesting "event" not France related that stood out. And at first I was going to bypass it, until I read that the Rothschilds were involved, and Fra Soliva re-imposing anti-Jewish laws (confining the Jews to the ghetto in Ancona, forbidding Jews from doing any but jobs xyz etc) just made it take on a whole new life. I figured if the papal economy is "booming" (not necessarily but definitely better than OTL), particularly the port of Ancona - which is one of the few places in the Papal States where Jews were allowed to settle by an Edict of 1569 (the others being Rome and Avignon) - that's going to cause people to flock to urban centers from the country. Thing is, various papal decrees down the centuries prohibit Christians from working for Jews, and most of the shipping coming through Ancona was, OTL at the time, being handled by Jews (it was their international contacts, their companies, their banks etc). Which of course means that anyone who can't get a job is going to immediately be saying "it's not fair they've got all the money". Hence Soliva's re-imposition of the laws. It's unfortunately a very "Zimbabwe" strategy of take the money and the jobs from the people who actually worked for it, and give it to the people who don't know how to do anything with it.

What Henri (and potentially others) are asking isn't that Gregory allow tolerance for the Jews or that he must now make the Papal States a two-religion state (Catholicism and Judaism), but rather that he should "walk back" the whole "Christians can't work for Jews" and "Jews can only do xyz jobs". They're not asking for tolerance, they're asking for the pope to muzzle an Inquisitor who is probably older than His Holiness. Metternich himself pointed out that the Pope having policies against the Jews "that such laws were outdated, risked pushing such Jews into the revolutionary camp and counter-productive to the Church because it would make it more difficult to argue about suppression of Catholics in Protestant and Eastern Orthodox states".
For anyone who's interested, here is the full text of the edict:

Edict Of The Inquisition Of Ancona Against The Jews​

We, Fra Vicenzo Salina, of the order of Predicatori, Master in Theology, General in Ancona, Sinigaglia, Jesi, Osinio, Cingoli, Macerats, Tolentino, Loreto, Recanati, and other towns and districts.

It being deemed necessary to revive the full observance of the disciplinary laws relative to the Israelites residing within our jurisdiction, and having hitherto without effect employed prayers and exhortations to obtain obedience to those laws in the Ghetti (Jewries) of Ancona and Sinigaglia, authorized by the despatch of the Sacred and Supreme Inquisition of home, dated June 10, 1843, expressly enjoining and commanding the observance of the decrees and pontifical constitutions, especially in respect to Christian nurses and domestic servants, or to the sale of property either in towns or country districts, purchased and possessed previously to 1827, as well as subsequently to that period, we decree as follows:

1. From the interval of two months after the date of this day, all Gipsy and Christian domestics, male and female, whether employed by day or night, must be dismissed from service in the said two Ghetti; and all Jews residing within our jurisdiction, are expressly prohibited from employing any Christian nurse, or availing themselves of the service of any Christian in any domestic occupation whatever, under pain of being immediately punished according to the pontifical decrees and constitutions.
2. That all Jews who may possess property, either in town or country, permanent or moveable, or rents, or interest, or any right involving shares in funded property, or leased landed property, must, within the term of three months from this day, dispose of it by a positive and real, and not by any pretended or factitious contract. Should this not be done within the time specified, the Holy Office is to sell the same by public auction, on proof of the annual harvest being got in.
3. That no Hebrew nurses, and still less any Hebrew family, shall inhabit the city, or reside in, or remove their property into, any town or district where there is no Ghetto (places of residence for Jews); and that such as may actually be there in contumacy to the laws, must return to their respective Ghetto, within the peremptory period of six months, otherwise they will be proceeded against according to the tenor of the law.
4. That, especially in any city where there is a Ghetto, no Hebrew must presume to associate at table with Christians, either in public houses or ordinaries, out of the Ghetto.
5. That in a city which has a Ghetto, no Hebrew shall sleep out of the Israelite quarter, or make free to enter into familiar conversation in a Christian house.
6. That no Hebrew shall take the liberty, under any pretext whatever, to induce male Christians, and still less female Christians, to sleep within the boundaries of the Ghetto.
7. That no Hebrew shall hire Christians, even only by the day, to work in their houses in the Ghetto.
8. That no Hebrew, either male or female, shall frequent the houses of Christians, or maintain friendly relations with Christian man or woman.
9. That the laws shall remain in force respecting the decorum to be observed by the Hebrews who may absent themselves from their Ghetto, to travel in other parts of the state.
10. That all Hebrews are expressly prohibited from trafficking in sacred ornaments or books of any kind, and from purchasing, reading, or keeping possession of prohibited books of any sort, under the penalty of 100 scudi and seven years’ imprisonment; and they who may have such articles in their possession, must surrender them to the Tribunal of the Holy Inquisition; and in case of failing to do so, they will be subject to the above-mentioned penalty.
11. That the Hebrews, in conveying their dead to the place of burial, shall not observe any pomp or ceremony, and must especially abstain from singing psalms, or carrying torches or lighted tapers through the streets without the boundaries of the Ghetto, under pain of forfeiting the torches and tapers, and suffering other punishments, to which the nearest relative of the deceased is condemned.
They who violate the above articles will incur some or all of the penalties prescribed in the edicts of the Holy Inquisition. And in order that no one may be ignorant of the dispositions above decreed, they shall be formally communicated to the deputies and representatives of the Israelite community of this Ghetto of Ancona, with the Injunction that the same shall be published in the Synagogue, the present edict being affixed thereto; and these dispositions are to be enforced in the same manner as if they were made known to all and every one, and notice must be given forthwith to the Hebrews residing out of Ancona, but belonging to this Ghetto.

Given at Ancona, in the Chancellory of the Holy, Inquisition, on the 24th of June, 1843.

Fra Vicenzo Salina, General Inquisitor,
La Victoire est à Nous [1]
Soundtrack: Donizetti - Maria de Rohan - Bella e di sol vestita [2]

*exterior* *Paris* *night* *view of the Place de la Concorde* *huge bonfire* *we see a chair and some other items in the bonfire[3]* *there's a crowd gathered around it* *cheering as the items are burning* *military bands are playing La Parisienne [4] and there are many waving the tricoleur*

*cut to interior* *several men, including Lamorcière and Dupont-de l'Eure are talking* *none look happy*
Dupont de l'Eure: I would simply like to know where Little Capet acquired ships. French ships. Or should that be how, Arago?
François d'Arago, Minister of the Navy: sir, the navy has proved...divided. While many of the officers are in favour of the new government, given the failures at sea of the king, the crewmen are...a cowardly and superstitious lot. The pope's recent...spate of beatifications has fooled many into believing that they are fighting for a just cause. As a result, instead of damping down the flames, it has done nothing but make them burn more strongly.
Godefroi Cavaignac, Minister of Education and Religion: first we have two kings in France, and now the pope has decided to get involved. This is why we need to remove religion and superstition from the education system in France. We cannot have these...priests running amok in the country where their only loyalty is only to some foreign potentate rather than to Paris.
Lamorcière, Minister of War: I agree, Godefroi's brother cannot be forced to put down one rising after another-
Arago: it's odd how the man who is responsible for the army's defeats is blaming the man who cannot control the navy.
Lamorcière: and what does that mean?
Arago: why didn't the new General Cavaignac secure the ships in the ports of Brest and Cherbourg when he seized the towns? Or at least have the crews brought on land so that they couldn't abscond with a whole ship! With guns. That - after they left port they sailed for Bordeaux and Bayonne to gather reinforcements that they then dumped at Saint-Malo and Lorient that we have ended up starting this whole dance again.
Lamorcière: because General Cavaignac no doubt believed that the navy would at least be on our side once he took the port admiral hostage.
Arago: perhaps it was his summary beheading of the man that sparked it.
Godefroi: François, these legitimists are now a "state within a state", we are sitting with the same problem that Richelieu sat with with the Huguenots-
Dupont de l'Eure: except ours are on two fronts: the royalists out there. And the socialists in Paris.
Lamorcière: the only thing to be grateful for is that the duchesse de Chartres' attempts to raise support are failing. Otherwise we'd have to deal with two royalist armies.
Arago: you're surprised her attempts are failing? On the one hand, you have her son, who's wandering around Compiègne not knowing anything's the matter [5]. On the other hand, the duc de Bordeaux has been actively campaigning in the region for months, built up a strong she - a Protestant - wants these people to get them to support a child? In a region that is fiercely Catholic? Prince Charles [Edward Stuart] had a better chance of conquering England.
Dupont de l'Eure: where are Monsieurs de Nemours and de Joinville?
LeDru-Rollin, Minister of the Interior: Joinville is - theoretically - with the duchesse, we aren't entirely sure of his whereabouts. We know that Nemours has been seen in Brittany, with one of these...groups of volunteers.
Dupont de l'Eure: perhaps we should help them divide. So they can know the division France is feeling.
Arago: *idly* it won't work. the duc de Bordeaux has refused to even receive his cousins. He's made it clear that they can expect no clemency from him, even if they fight for him.
Lamorcière: and the Orléanists just accepted that? Surely they can-
Arago: they can support the Orléans? Why on earth would they do that? On the one side, you have an old king who is unpopular. On the other side is a young king who is not old enough to rule, and he will need a regent. While the laws of a regency were published last August, nobody will trust the Corps Législatif with the regency, now. Which brings us to three options: first is the duchesse as regent, unacceptable to the Catholics; then we have the duc de Nemours as regent, unacceptable to the liberals; and lastly, there is some talk of a conseil de régénce - presided over by Monsieur Guizot and Monsieur Thiers-
Godefroi: Thiers is with the royalists?
Arago: you sound surprised. Thiers is against your newspaper [La Constitutionelle], and his exclusion from the government has made him...more opportunistic. He feels slighted by the regime after all he did for it. So naturally, he's taking the side against the regime
Dupont de l'Eure: what he did is minimal.
Arago: be that as it may, sir, many of his supporters are endorsing him as the candidate they would choose in the election.
Dupont de l'Eure: *to LeDru-Rollin* then perhaps we should publish that he and Monsieur Guizot are working together for a royalist restoration to compromise his chances. The people - regardless of what they believe - will always vote for the radicals because it is only the radicals who have their best interests at heart [6].
Messenger: *enters the room with a dispatch* *hands it to the president*
Dupont de l'Eure: *reads* *hands it to Arago* well, isn't this a pretty kettle of fish...those ships that the rebels stole from France to attacked St Nazaire and blockaded the Loire.
Lemorcière: if they succeed, sir, and Nantes falls, that will mean they have control of the entire coast from Calais all the way around Brest to Nantes. The only port they don't have is Le Havre, and I have no doubt that that will not hold out long. In three weeks they have already taken everything from the coast as far as Falaise, Alençon, Le Mans. Angers declared for them, which means Nantes will be likely to be attacked from both sides.
Godefroi: my brother would never let that happen.

*three days later* *13 June 1843*
*cut to Henri riding on a white horse into the courtyard of the Chateau des Ducs de Bretagne* *to the near ecstatic cheers of the citizens* *there's ringing church bells* *a regimental band playing La Victoire est à Nous [1]* *the citizens eagerly press forward to get a glimpse* *young women are blowing him kisses* *others are holding out their babies for him to bless* *even the captured men of the French army seem to be rather puzzled by what is, likely a frankly bizarre mixture of imperial pomp, an outpouring of national (or at least Breton) feeling and the Ancien Regime traditions* *not to mention that many of them's "only" knowledge of Henri is what they read in the papers* *that call him "Little Capet" and "Henri the Fourth and a Half"* *so instead of walking in shackles behind a cowardly dwarf or a corpulent ogre - as both regimes have portrayed him - they are being led by six-foot-one man with his arm in a sling from a bullet wound riding on a horse* *flanked by Marechal Ney* *and whoever the African guy is on his left*
*cut to the prisoners being lined up - as if on parade - before Henri* *the people are assembled to watch him deliver judgement* *Henri himself is seated on a hastily erected scaffold* *between a standing Ney and the seated African man*
Ney: *in a loud voice* General Cavaignac, step forward.
Eugène de Cavaignac: *roughly brought forward*
Henri: *sharply to the crowd* do not hurt him. He has not hurt me. *resumes speaking to the black man*
Cavaignac: *shakes the arms off* *walks proudly erect towards Henri*
Ney: this is where you bow, General.
Cavaignac: are you my dancing master, Ney? Traitor like yourself.
Henri: *breaks off conversation* *looks at Cavaignac* and what does that make you, General Cavaignac? The man who has levied war against his own countrymen?
African man: *looks at Cavaignac in disgust* and his king.
Henri: it was not against me that he built those abhorrent enfumades [7], Majesté. But against his own countrymen. What would your Majesty recommend we do to such a man.
African man: sire, unfortunately, I cannot tell you what we would do in Haïti, since it would only confirm the opinion of us as savages, I will only say that my mother would've interceded for my father to spare him
Henri: and would he have?
African man: *looks at Cavaignac* if he agreed to swear allegiance to him-
Henri: *about to respond*
Cavaignac: no Frenchman will ever take the advice of a [historically racist expletive that would get me banned] like you.
Henri: *to Cavaignac* so not only do you have no respect for your countrymen, but you have no respect for guests. It's a pity...I had hoped to show mon cousin, the king of Haïti [8] that even the republicans in France have manners.
Cavaignac: I will never serve a tyrant like either of you.
Christophe: we are all born to be tyrants: *looks at Henri* mon cousin, son Majesté, to you who would pour sulphur on the deck of a ship and burn it while the weak and defenseless are trapped below [9]. No man does not abuse power, and history has showed that the ones who rail against tyranny are the same who become the most abominable despots when they seize the sceptre. [10]
Henri: *walks to edge of scaffold* *to crowd* *with Cavaignac* since they say we are a tyrant...that we cannot respect laws...take this man and let him be judged according to the laws of France. Let it not be said that our hand weighted the scale against him. Let him not be tried and drawn and quartered for daring to attack us, but let the courts judge him for his actions against the honour of France.
*numerous boo's from the crowd, who, if not expecting an outright execution, were at least expecting some form of judgement.*
Henri: *holds up his hand for silence* *quietly to Cavaignac* do you see how many of them would approve of me pushing you from this scaffold right now?
Cavaignac: *looks at Henri* *as if expecting him to do just that*
Henri: It is also our desire, that, provided these men either agree to lay down their arms or join us, are to be allowed to depart in peace.
*the soldiers look they can't believe it* *the boo'ing is louder this time*
Henri: *bows his head reverently* *starts reciting in French* Nôtre Père, qui es aux ciel-
Crowd: *obediently bows their heads - numerous members remove their hats - some even go down on their knees* *Ney and Christophe are mouthing the words* *some of the French soldiers are puzzled by this* *only the staunchest anti-royalists, like Cavaignac, leave their heads covered and stay silent* que ton nom soit sanctifié, que ton règne vienne, que ta volonté soit faite sur la terre comme au ciel. Donne-nous aujour hul nôtre pain de ce lour [11]. Pardonne-nous nos offenses come nous pardonnons aussi à ceux qui nous ont offensés [12]-
Henri: *raises his head suddenly* *interrupts the recitation* *loudly to the crowd* not lie to God.

*fade to black*

[1] march of Napoléon's Old Guard (the victory is ours). The tune is originally by the same guy who wrote "O Richard, O Mon Roi". Henri "appropriating" Napoléonic symbolism like this isn't as "cheap" as it sounds. He's basically "earned" the right to do it. He's fought alongside his men, shared their hardships, been raised in "their bosom" as it were with exposure to Frankie, and now Ney.
[2] play on Petrarch's hymn to the Blessed Virgin Mary "Beautiful Virgin clothed with the sun". The opera is subtitled "a duel under Richelieu" (technically, there's a duel in each act). The acts are labelled "Unfortunate Consequences of Duels", "Not Love But Gratitude" and "Senseless Revenge". The aria for baritone (duc de Chevreuse) is shortly after he discovers, his wife the title character, is cheating on him with the comte de Chalais, and that the two of them have resolved to "run away together or die trying". Well, Chalais gets his wish in the finale where he winds up in a duel with Chevreuse, gets killed, then Chevreuse remarking to his wife that she's now "his and his alone", promptly abandons her.
[3] the Second Republic burned not only the throne but even the court carriages in 1848
[4] song of the July Revolution of 1830
French people, brave people,
Liberty reopens its arms.
We were told to be slaves,
We said instead: let us be soldiers!
Suddenly Paris, in its memory,
Has found its cry of glory:

[5] not that impossible. In 1830, at Rambouillet
On the other hand, the two children, the Duc de Bordeaux and Louise Marie-Thérèse, lighthearted and excited by seeing the crowd, leaned their little heads out of the window. And the crowd, seeing them, murmured compassionate words, called them “Poor innocents!” and waved their hands to them.
[6] this was genuinely the opinion of the radicals in 1848
[7] Cavaignac originally used the enfumades in Algeria to "smoke the Arabs out like foxes". While the enfumades were mainly associated with Bugeaud, it is Cavaignac who began them. Unfortunately, two of the biggest critics of the tactics were Ney's son and the Prince de Wagram (who has some very powerful allies through the Clarys, the Bonapartes and the Beauharnais). And I have no doubt that Cavaignac used a similar - or equally ruthless - tactic against his opponents here.
[8] I know this is probably a bit weird (and pre-POD), but I was wondering if it were possible that Victor Henri Christophe (aka Henri II of Haïti) avoids his murder in 1820. He'd have only been 16yo at the time. Likely he has wound up, with his mother and sisters, living in England, then moving to Italy in 1828 with her. Henri de Chambord referring to Christophe as "mon cousin" (rather than the traditional "mon frère") is probably the same how Henri refers to Frankie as "mon cousin". Why is Christophe there? His father fought for the French monarchy before the revolution, it's not unthinkable that Christophe has been making a living in Europe as a soldier (not unlike the Bonapartes).
[9] apparently Napoléon (or some of his generals) ordered this in the reconquest of Saint-Domingue, not sure if there's any truth to it, but it could explain why Henri is giving Christophe such "preference". Not to speak for him, or to "atone" but to underline the fact of Henri's that "I stand by what I said about abolishing the slave trade in France", as well as showing the average Frenchman that an African is capable of more than the base savagery presumed by many contemporaries.
[10] by Joseph de Maistre in his On Monarchy.
[11] give us this day our daily bread. In France, the king was known as the "First Baker of the Kingdom", hence why at the Revolution, they chanted, as they brought Louis XVI and Marie Antoinette back to Paris "here we come with the bakerman, the baker's wife and the little baker's boy!" Henri is doing several things here. He's underlining the king's role as leader of the people (at no point does he force them to recite the prayer after him), the fount of justice (throwing Cavaignac on the mercy of the courts), the fount of honours (his recognition of Christophe), and by reciting the Pater Noster in French rather than in Latin (which is probably his usual setting), he is demonstrating that he is not the "rabid Catholic"/"pope's lackey" that he has been portrayed as and who wants to take away all the rights of non-Catholics in the kingdom. However, by resorting to the Pater Noster rather than giving some high-flown speech on redemption, he once again both elevates political theatre (to the Divine level) and lowers it to the understanding of the simplest Frenchman (even Ney, who professes he isn't particularly religious).
[12] forgive us our offenses, as we forgive those who have offended against us. By Henri doing this, he makes it that this "clemency" is not the king's will, but God's. It's a case of "those who wish for justice will see it, those who wish for mercy will get it".

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France's instability will be prime for Henri to exploit to his advantage. Loved the Batman reference in there!

And Great showing on Henri's part as always.
Henri's actions here will play well with the papers, and the liberal lot. Him fighting alongside his troops will appeal to the worker and the 'rougher' sort.
France's instability will be prime for Henri to exploit to his advantage.
I'll admit, I'm not sure exactly how the Orléans are reacting to this whole thing, which is why I've left them mostly cameo appearances. They might support Henri (Nemours/Amélie), they might not (Adélaïde/duchesse de Chartres has a son to root for, she ain't compromising any more TTL than OTL).
Loved the Batman reference in there!
batman reference?
And Great showing on Henri's part as always.

Henri's actions here will play well with the papers, and the liberal lot. Him fighting alongside his troops will appeal to the worker and the 'rougher' sort.
and the best part is, everyone sees what Henri is doing but he doesn't actually say what he really thinks of matters so nobody can hold him to it in future :p
I'll admit, I'm not sure exactly how the Orléans are reacting to this whole thing, which is why I've left them mostly cameo appearances. They might support Henri (Nemours/Amélie), they might not (Adélaïde/duchesse de Chartres has a son to root for, she ain't compromising any more TTL than OTL).
Makes sense
batman reference?
What he says when he's coming up with his costume. "Criminals are a supersticious and cowardly lot"
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that would be awesome, but I suspect it will fall into the "learned nothing, forgotten nothing" category wouldn't it?
Not necessarily, much would depend from how he restructured Versailles… else he can put his seat somewhere outside Paris but not too far from it…

And I must add who I am absolutely loving Henri and the things who he is doing right now
Not necessarily, much would depend from how he restructured Versailles… else he can put his seat somewhere outside Paris but not too far from it…
What about Lyon? It is not exactly centrally located, the border is close, but it's still the no.2 city of France.
think Lyons is likely too far, but what about Fontainebleau, Meudon or Saint-Germaine-en-Laye?
And I must add who I am absolutely loving Henri and the things who he is doing right now
Thank you very much
Bourrée de Thiers [1]
@isabella hope you still like Henri after this

Soundtrack: Carlo Coccia - Caterina di Guisa - Finale: Ah! M'uccidi [2]

*exterior* *Rennes* *we see a group of canonesses arriving in town* *many of them are young girls* *some are - as expected - serious and spend their time glancing nervously around them* *others are more light-hearted*
*cut to Henri reopening the Abbey of St George [3]* *and bidding the nuns, and their new Abbess, Mother Clothilde [3] welcome to France* *and that he hopes that they will be happy to call this their new home* *he also asks the kindness of the people of Rennes for their new residents* *as well as announcing, that he hopes the sisters will be able to continue their good work in France [3]*

*cut to La Rochelle* *Adélaïde d'Orléans is sitting up in a hospital bed, looking old and wan* *reading a newspaper that announces Henri's new "La Pelicaine" [4] Hospital in Bordeaux has just opened* *with plans to build a new hospital as soon as possible*
Adélaïde: *huffs* pretty excuse for him to import a new bunch of nuns.
Hélène, Duchesse de Chartres: *at her bedside* *quietly sewing coverlets for the hospital bed* so the rumours are true then, Tante? That he intends to re-Catholicize France with filthy Jewish money?
Adélaïde: it seems so, my girl. If there was one thing the Revolution did properly, it was to kick all those fat-arsed layabout whores out of France [5]
Hélène: they say he will be in La Rochelle soon.
Adélaïde: what would he come back here for? He wants to go to Paris. Not to La Rochelle or Bordeaux. Only reason he would come through here is if he gets his arse kicked by those government troops and he needs to board a ship to get away.
Hélène they don't seem to be doing too well.
Adélaïde: nor does he. He hasn't moved past Amboise or Châlons in a month.
Hélène: to be far, everything south of the Loire, Brittany, Anjou, Maine, Normandie, the coast all the way to Belgium is flying the oriflamme now-
Adélaïde: a flag of oppression. Trailed in the blood of the people. The French will accept it no more than they would the white flag of the Bourbons. He will not remain in France long, my girl. Prince Metternich has already refused to meet repeatedly with Jules Bastide's men [6] regarding putting this war to an end, once and for all. But the republic is foolish for wanting the war over. As soon it is finished, so too are they. For with peace, the troops - loyal Orléanists to a man - return to their homes. And the Orléanists will not stomach some Bourbon bastard any more than they will tolerate a republic. It is why the republic is so keen to have the election before they make peace. So that it is a fait accompli when the troops return. But they will have no troops left if they and that bastard Chambord carries on slaughtering his own people like he does. Hundreds of troops - and General Cavaignac - executed at Nantes [7] for nothing more than following orders. And then, the soldiers will be able to restore the Orléans to the throne. *pats Hélène's hand* you'll see.
Hélène: he requests a meeting with me. About my son.
Adélaïde: what did you tell him?
Hélène: of course not. I know what he will ask. And I refuse to subject my son to such a humiliation. I would rather see him torn to pieces and pierced on soldiers bayonets before I give up the rights which rightfully belong to him.
Adélaïde: if only the Rochellois would see the devotion of a mother instead of favouring the policies of a tyrant with a swarm of Jesuits in his train. *she folds her newspaper and we see the headline "Madame Rancune [8] Lands At Marseilles!"

*cut to Chateau de Chambord* *we see Henri strolling in the gardens* *alongside him is the latest pretty, young "flavour of the week" [9]* *while a distance behind him trails the rest of the court* *we see familiar faces: the comte du Saint-Leu and Triel; the duc and duchesse de Uzes, the prince and princesse de Craon, the prince de Polignac talking to his fiancée, Josephine Bonaparte* *true to her genes, Josephine has grown into the spitting image of her paternal grandmother, Hortense; with just a bit of the Clary look about the eyes* *we see the king of Haïti and his wife [10] walking in another part of the garden watching their children, as well as Saint-Leu's, Uzes and Craon's flying kites*
Henri: *teasingly* I cannot believe you like him, Anne. He looks rather...squirrely.
Anne: that's Monsieur le Duc d'Abrantés if you please. *looks at the duc walking some distance away from either party talking to the duc de Choiseul-Praslin and Marechal Ney* and he has made a name for himself as a war correspondant in Italy.
Henri: you mean people are now being paid to lie to the public? Would've solved my financial worries if I'd known that.
Anne: he's not like the rest. Or his mother. He only reported what was really happening.
Henri: his sister was involved with Cavaignac.
Anne: that's his sister. Not him.
Henri: and you are sure about this? Your grandmother would never forgive me if I married you to a fortune hunter.
Anne: please, your Majesty...we have been friends for all of our lives and your approval would mean a great deal to me.
Henri: my approval or my consent?
Anne: *looks at him like "what do you thinK"*
Henri: *chuckles* *turns to the crowd* everyone...we have an announcement to make. After...much convincing by Mademoiselle Anne...we are honoured to announce the engagement of Louis Andoche Junot, Duc d'Abrantès and Mademoiselle Anne de Rohan-Chabot [11]. *looks at Junot* Monsieur le Duc, you are indeed a lucky man. We wish you every happiness and blessing going forward.
*cloud politely applauds as Anne runs over to her now fiancé*
Fritz Baciocchi, Marquis de Talhouët: *comes up to Henri* *quietly* your Majesty, Monsieur Thiers is here to see you. He's waiting for you in the Grey Salon
Henri: is he now?
Fritz: he suggested that it would be more discreet.
Henri: let him wait. I'll finish my walk first. It's nice to hear the birds and the wind for a change. Hear something other than boom-boom-boom of guns for a change, don't you agree, Fritz?
Fritz: *nods* I only wish we didn't have to hear that at all, sire.

*it's close to sundown when Henri finally appears to see a clearly impatient Thiers*
Henri: *walks into salon* oh, Monsieur Thiers, I had no idea you were here. When did you arrive? We hope you haven't been waiting long.
Thiers: *butter wouldn't melt smile* of course not, your Majesty. I've been quite comfortable.
Henri: I often come in here to have discussions with their Eminences myself *on the wall are portraits of three great clergymen in French history under the Bourbons: Richelieu, Mazarin and the Éminence Grise, Father Joseph Leclerc du Tremblay*
Thiers: *indulgently* what do you talk to them about, sire?
Henri: about what would be best for France. They never answer of course.
Thiers: of course.
Henri: *sits down* *says nothing when Thiers sits down as well* now, what did you wish to discuss with us?
Thiers: *looks like a child who has been told he can tell the class what he did on the weekend* *takes a brown leather wallet from the side table and opens it* *he pulls out a sheaf of papers* *it looks a bit like a book without a binding* hopefully, this will satisfy your Majesty's question about what would be best for France.
Henri: is it the long awaited first volume of your history on the Consulate? I am so looking forward to that. I enjoyed your work on the Revolution immensely.
Thiers: *surprised* your Majesty has read it?
Henri: of course. What better way to keep up with the mood in France than to look at the biases that it's best authors display in their works
Thiers: there are no biases, sire, only facts.
Henri: *nods* *but makes no move to take the booklet Thiers is holding [12]*
Thiers: *grudgingly rises and walks the booklet over to Henri*
Henri: *accepts the book* thank you. *reads title* Discours de M. Thiers sur la role du Loie, l'Assemblée National et du roi dans la Constitution. *unexpectedly opens it and starts looking* *Thiers is walking over to his seat* don't sit down, I may regard facts as biases and require you to differentiate.
Thiers: *stands awkwardly*
Henri: *flips through the roughly forty page manuscript* *petulantly* there are no pictures.
Thiers: pardon, sire?
Henri: I like books with pictures in them. Helps me visualize things better. For your volume on the consulate.
Thiers: of course, sire.
Henri: *pauses on the title page before closing it* who was the original dedicatee?
Thiers: pardon, sire?
Henri: the page is thicker, like *holds the booklet to the light* ah, there it is. To S.M. Napoléon II. Empereur des Français. -how did he take this...publication of yours?
Thiers: *nervously* the package returned unopened.
Henri: so you decided to regift it to me?
Thiers: not a re-gift, sire, I simply thought I would bestow it on one clearly more interested
Henri: so what would the king's role be in your...constitution. Since from what I could make out, he would not even be allowed to address the chambers without their permission.
Thiers: your Majesty, I fully support the monarchy, since outside of the monarchy there is nothing but chaos, and considering the way of things today, for yourself and myself, in practice, a republic is absolutely impossible [13]
Henri: but from what I can make out of this...your monarchy would be nothing but a republic with a crown on top.
Thiers: What I am describing is a policy of conservatism; the path of our policy is the policy between two extremes, sire.
Henri: *closing booklet* you irritate the right without appeasing the left, Monsieur Thiers.
Thiers: sire, there is only one way for you to mount the throne, and that is by the means I've outlined. Accept a constitution and I assure you the public will vote for you at the election at the end of July.
Henri: *purses lips* but I am not standing for election.
Thiers: but if you did, the public would be overwhelmingly on your side.
Henri: [royal] we will think on it. We hope that you will join us tomorrow for the hunting.
Thiers: your Majesty is most generous but I should be returning then.
Henri: we will give you our answer then.
Thiers: *just nods defeatedly*

*fade to black*

*next day* *we see Henri and others on horseback in pursuit of a red deer stag* *Thiers is in the coach with the queen of Haïti, Madame Ney, Princesse de Craon and the marquise de Talhouët [14]*
*we hear one of the horns sounding that they've cornered the deer*
Duc de Noailles: *rides up with a grin* Monsieur Thiers, his Majesty has decided to let you deal the stag the deathblow.
Thiers: *in surprise* me?
Duc de Noailles: of course, it is your first hunt, after all. *motions to them to bring one of the spare horses [14] *waits patiently as the horse is brought out* *the stirrups are adjusted for Thiers* *and then they proceed at a trot to the deer*
*it's a magnificent creature, at least sixteen points on the antlers [15]* *Henri, Ney, the king of Haïti, Abrantès, Talhouët, Fitz-James, the ducs de Richelieu and Choiseul-Praslin, the duchesses d'Uzes and de Noailles, Anne de Rohan-Chabot, her brother, Charles de Rohan-Chabot, the prince and princesse de Wagram and the eighteen-year-old prince de la Trémoïlle (and his sister) are all present as Thiers and Noailles ride in*
Thiers: *softly* he's beautiful.
Noailles: imagine what he'll look like mounted on the wall in your library
Henri: *gives his own rifle to Thiers to shoot* *calmly shows him how and where to aim, squeeze the trigger and fire*
*the gunshot echoes* *no more Bambi's dad*
Thiers: *still a little stunned from the recoil on the gun* *looks at the deer that's now dead* *there's a smattering of applause from the company* *nods his head in acknowledgement* *his chest swells a bit more*
Henri: Wagram.
Napoléon Alexandre Berthier, 2e Prince de Wagram: yes...your Majesty.
Henri: you are the Grand Huntsman of France, are you not [16]? Do your duty.
Wagram: *dismounts* *accepts a silver and ivory hunting dagger from a groom* *goes over to the deer and cuts off the right rear hoof off* *he offers them to Henri [17]
Henri: *declines* *motions for him to give them to Thiers*
Wagram: *offers the hoof to Thiers* Monsieur Thiers, please accept this humble offering as a mark of your magnificent kill.
Thiers: *accepts the hoof gladly* *although seems a bit puzzled as to what to do with it*
Henri: and since it's his first hunt, Berthier.
Wagram: *grins* *walks back to deer* *dips fingers in the blood* *returns to Thiers*
Thiers: *worriedly* what are you doing? wai- stop- what-
Wagram: *steps aside*
*we see that Thiers' whole face - even his collar - is stained with the blood*
Ney: *grins* now you are a hunter, Monsieur Thiers.
Thiers: *first smiling a little unsurely* *then breaks into a bigger grin*
Henri: *motions for the servants to gather up the carcass and return it to the chateau*
*they return Thiers to the carriage*
Henri: *dismounts to hold Thiers' horse to allow him to climb off* *the little man is looking pleased as punch with himself*
Thiers: has your Majesty thought about what we spoke of last night?
Henri: of course. But I will not be the king of a party or a class. I will be king of all France...or no king at all-. *faces Thiers fully* *touches his arm like a friend would*
Thiers: this is a wasted opportui- *gasps*
*we see why* *in full view of the court and the servants, Henri has driven the hunting dagger into Thiers' belly and under his ribs*
Henri: -and I would rather be the sweeper of a crossroads, Monsieur Thiers, than what I will be made into your puppet.
*we see Thiers collapsing on the ground, bleeding. Henri calmly withdraws the dagger, wipes the blade on the grass, then returns it to the sheath as if it's nothing* *none of the court even blink*
Henri: *climbs back on his horse* and for your information, Monsieur, the king of Rome did read your idea. He likened you to his father "great in intelligence, small in stature and narrow in mind and heart". My name is already besmirched with the honour of the Frenchmen I have killed, but I will not sully it further by associating with a man who callously celebrated sending thirty-thousand of his countrymen to the knacker's yard [18] because it meant thirty thousand less that he had to share power with.

*fade to black*

[14] the coach - or tapissière - was reserved for those who wished to accompany the hunt but were either unable to ride or couldn't. I've seen nothing that says Thiers was able to ride, hunt or shoot, and even if he was, putting him with the women sends a very clear message about where he's regarded as ranking. Hunts would also keep spare horses for in case one was injured (unfortunately an all too common occurrence)
[15] a deer with twelve points (six prongs per antler) to the antlers is termed a "royal stag", fourteen points is termed an "imperial stag", and sixteen or above is a "monarch".
[16] Berthier's father was Grand Huntsman of France under Napoléon. The two holders of the office under the Restauration both having died, the post is vacant.
[17] this was one of the traditional duties of the Grand Huntsman. At a royal/imperial hunt he's to do this and offer the "prize" to the king/emperor or other highest ranked member of the hunt
[18] knacker's yard: the area of a slaughterhouse where the parts not fit for human consumption are taken to be boiled down or cut up to make useful things (like glue). Also a place where old and injured animals - like horses - are taken to be killed. As for the number (there are some sources that list it as the "true" number of deaths caused by Thiers at the Paris Commune), Henri's maybe not just including the "civil war" but every death since the Thiers-encouraged July Revolution where he wrote in his paper "The legal regime is over; that of force has begun; in the situation in which we are placed, obedience has ceased to be an obligation". This is both Henri dealing with with a potential rival and him taking a long-overdue revenge.

[1] a traditional melody/folk dance from Central France and/or Brittany (descriptions vary). A bourée is a skipping country dance, usually done with clogs (it evolved from the Bransles des Sabots), that became popular at the court of the last Valois thanks to La Reine Margot and remained so until well into Louis XIV's reign when it opened most court balls.
[2] Ah, it kills me!
[3] the Abbey of St. George was closed in 1792 by the Revolution and its property confiscated by the national governmen. If the name "Mother Clothilde" looks familiar, that's because this Henri's OTL wife and former "headmistress" of Frankie's little school in Venice. And while he doesn't go outright and say it, but this is the first volley of his "education attempt" in France. I have this idea that Frankie's set up a teaching college (similar to what they had in Bremen or Switzerland at the time) for young women who wish to become governesses. Unfortunately, to become a governess is still a bit of a scandalous profession for girls in the upper bourgeoisie "the grim existence of a governess" as one contemporary writer phrased it (and would remain so until around the 1850s and 1860s). You only became a governess if "a father dies, a bank breaks , a husband is killed or a brother requires a university education". So calling them "secular canonesses" along the lines of what was established at Mons, or Herford or Quedlinburg sounds more "respectable". These girls are not nuns, they do not take holy orders (unless they so wish), but they are trained in either medicine or teaching. They are free to leave the convent if they marry (governess was usually associated with spinsterhood), but they are basically Henri/Frankie advancing of women's education without ruffling too many feathers. Henri is thus giving Rennes a gaggle of qualified teachers and nurses for their hospitals, where before, as a French contemporary put it "[girls' schools] were usually run by older women and men of disparate qualifications and motivation". The school is distinct from the abbey, perhaps not even located within the abbey premises since then the pope would get involved.
[4] the she-pelican. Dating back to the Middle Ages, the pelican mother has been the symbol of charity who on returning to her nest to find her young dead, strikes her breast until she bleeds. Her blood then revives her offspring. It's why the pelican has been associated with charity, self-sacrifice, and the Resurrection. There was actually a campaign in the later 19th century to have the pelican - not the cross - as the symbol for hospitals/all things medical, but by then, the Red Cross had already got under way, so it was rejected. Although Henri's niece in Spain, for her "Carlist Red Cross" called "La Caritad" did take the symbol of a pelican.
[5] Adélaïde spent most of her time during the Revolution jumping from place to place with her aunt, Maria Fortunata d'Este, Princesse de Conti, and Louise Adélaïde de Condé, another nun. Having gone from being raised in a very secular household (where her father had no great respect for the piety of either his wife or his father) to what must've been an atmosphere "cloying with sanctimonious hypocrisy" (as Nancy Mitford describes Madame de Maintenon) no doubt has played a role in forming her anti-clericalist opinions. The hypocrisy of Adélaïde, that she is lying in a hospital bed, in no doubt a free hospital, benefiting from the care of nuns makes it all the more bitterly ironic
[6] the acting minister of foreign affairs
[7] these troops likely surrendered and went over to Henri's side - no doubt his actions at Nantes (essentially forcing the locals to allow them to leave in peace) made a big impression on many - while Cavaignac was executed. What the Republic is failing to mention is that it was their own laws that found Cavaignac guilty, not some arbitrary justice of the mob (as its probably portrayed). And saying Henri executed that many troops instead of that many troops deserted...more suited to rouse the flagging patriotism to portray this as a "just and holy war".
[8] "Madam Grudge" , points to anyone who knows who this is
[9] Henri is a Bourbon after all. But I think most girls are shocked when "nothing happens". Make no mistake, Henri's no prude, but he's not going to risk a scandal by leaving a wake of bastards like his namesake. Or a woman who can lay claim to be maîtresse-en-titre and so cause problems for any potential marriage. As Peel and Victoria both point out, times are different. But he probably isn't above a little innocent flirtation, maybe some kissing and a (non-sexual) cuddle
[10] Henri II Christophe is going to be under enormous pressure to marry. However, no sane king in Europe is going to let him marry his daughter, but I have this imagine that after (or perhaps before) the childless death of Jacques II Dessalines (only legitimate son of Emperor Jacques I of Haïti), Christophe married one of Jacques' legitimate sisters (both to settle any bad blood between the families as well as because there may have been a desire to strengthen Henri II's claim - not unlike how Henri-Frankie have intermarried the "nobility of the lance and the aristocracy of the cannon" - and neutralize that of any of Jacques' bastard half-siblings). This marriage had no Frankie involvement on it, even if it does seem "right up his street". It could have been financially driven though - one of them, either Madame Dessalines or Madame Christophe ICR which had apparently sent a large part of her fortune in Europe even before the death of her husband - as well.
[11] elder son of Marshal and Lauré "la Petite Peste" Junot. Anne (b.1822) is the second daughter of the duc de Rohan-Chabot and the elder daughter of Henri's ex-governess, the duchesse de Gontaut
[12] Versailles etiquette. Royalty and aristocracy never took something, they waited until it was "handed" to them. By walking the book over to Henri instead of just leaving it on his lap, Thiers has already displayed who is in charge in the room
[13] Thiers did say this OTL. Just with "republic" and "monarchy" switched around

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