How long until we get "Conroy is trying to kill the Charlotte and the Kendal boys to get Victoria on the throne" rumors to mirror the "Cumberland is trying to kill Victoria" rumors IOTL.
Oh, we certainly get those rumors, but Conroy has other tricks up his sleeve, never fear!How long until we get "Conroy is trying to kill the Charlotte and the Kendal boys to get Victoria on the throne" rumors to mirror the "Cumberland is trying to kill Victoria" rumors IOTL.
A great little update! So my theory, based on Conroy talking about Viktoria's children and the glance at the abdomen, is that Viktoria is pregnant, with a child that may or may not be the late Duke's and Conroy is scheming to put Victoria, or her yet to be born sibling, on the throne.Not a proper post, and I'm sorry for that - but to hold you all over while you're waiting, we're gonna preview some of the drama about to go down (as made in a TTL movie); I've seen other timelines with little mid-story posts like this, loved them, and wanted to try one!
Scene from the 2016 film Lotte & Leo starring Jessica Chastain (Charlotte, The Duchess of Kendal), Colin Farrell (Leopold, The Duke of Kendal), Helena Bonham Carter (Viktoria, Dowager Duchess of Kent), Mark Sheppard (Sir John Conroy), among others.
[Scene opens on Viktoria, Dowager Duchess of Kent, in the morning room of Claremont. She is sitting alone, dressed in black, and embroidering. The door opens and Sir John Conroy enters - she does not look up and continues her sewing. Her expression is strained.]
[After a pause]
Conroy: You ignore me now, then?
Viktoria: You should not speak to me thus. They could hear.
Conroy: And what shall they hear, if I am only speaking to myself, as certain ladies no longer deign to respond to me? [He goes to the fireplace near where Viktoria is sitting and turns, his back to her, as he looks at the trinkets on the mantle]
Viktoria: [frustrated - they’ve obviously had this conversation before] She is my sister in law, the niece of my dead husband, and the future Queen of -
Conroy: The future Queen of Nothing! [He slams his fist on the mantle -Viktoria jumps- and turns to face Viktoria]. You know she will never be queen.
Viktoria: [becoming distressed, starts to put embroidery down] You should not say such things, John! It is not safe! You will damn me, and my daughter and my -
Conroy: [coming to her, going on his knees before her and grabbing her hands] Have I not always protected you, Marie? Have I not always kept you safe? Did I not defend you from Edward time and again?
Viktoria: [teary, distressed] Yes, of course, but John -
Conroy: This, all of this, is for you and Victoria, Marie. It will keep you safe, safer than that girl and your brother ever could. You will be the mother of the ruler of Great Britain [quick glance at her abdomen], and no one will ever touch you again.
Viktoria: But John, poor Lotte and Leo have been so kind -
John: It is easy for liars to be kind to those who help further their lies. I have saved us, Marie, by removing them. They will be fine - Lotte and her children will be a princess and princes of Saxe-Coburg; they will not hurt for having lost Britain. The King will not harm them, only remove them from the line of succession - as he should. I have it within my power to place us where no one can ever touch us. The King will be generous, and the next ruler - dependant on your children as his heirs - even more so. Everything is before us. [bowing his head and kissing her fingers] Do not doubt me now.
Viktoria: [sighing, eyes closed, she is resigned to her fate] Never.
[There is a sound in the hallway - John, moving swiftly stands just in time for Charlotte, The Duchess of Kendal to open the door. Her eyebrow raises as she takes in the scene - Conroy breathing hard from his passionate speech, Viktoria flushed and teary and refusing to make eye contact. John and Charlotte stare at each other for a moment, silently taking a measure of each other].
Conroy: My lady [bows to Viktoria and goes to leave through the door when he catches Charlotte’s eye again - there is another pause before he lowers his head in a half semblance of a bow before passing her in the doorway and leaving the room].
[Charlotte is silent as she walks to the mantle, where several trinkets and knick-knacks have been knocked down from Sir John’s earlier fist slam. Obviously nervous, Viktoria fidgets, clearly trying to think of something to say.]
Viktoria: Lotte, I -
Charlotte: [quietly, still facing away] Have a care, Victoire.
Viktoria: I - I beg your pardon?
Charlotte: [turning back to face Viktoria, holding a miniature of Viktoria and her daughter in her hands, staring down at it] I do not like your Conroy, Victoire. He reminds me of my father: full of lies dressed as promises. He’ll only disappoint you [pause as Charlotte lifts her eyes to meet Viktoria’s] if he doesn’t damn you. [Viktoria blanches, as it becomes obvious that Charlotte heard at least a portion of the previous conversation.] Spiele nicht mit Feuer - do not play with fire, my dear. It's a game you never win.
Viktoria: [becoming flustered and angry] Sir John is a dear, dear friend - I trust him implicitly. He is nothing but loyal to us. Is my trust no longer good enough for you, sister?
[The two women stare at each other for a moment, before Charlotte turns back to place the miniature of Viktoria and her daughter back on the mantle]
Charlotte: I love you, Victoire, as my sister and my aunt by marriage. That bond is a strong one. [She looks over her shoulder at Viktoria, her face unreadable] But if you try to touch my blood, sister, I’ll burn you both to the ground. [Charlotte leaves the room, slamming the door slightly behind her. In the silent room, Viktoria lowers her face into her hands, shaking].
*Viktoria, Duchess of Kent, was born HSH Princess Marie Luise Viktoria - which is why Conroy is calling her 'Marie' in the scene
Hope you enjoyed this little tidbit! (Not giving anything away and saying it is what officially happened, but it is how the person who wrote this movie TTL saw it going down!)
Thank you for the catch! I will go back and fix it! ♡A fascinating timeline, and something I admit I've wondered from time to time myself! I liked how you worked in the Peterloo Massacre. I'll be interested to see whether the Six Acts come up at all (not sure how relevant they are to Charlotte's story, and I'm mostly interested because I wrote about this period and the Six Acts years ago when I did my History A-Level personal study!).
I look forward to seeing what other ripples there are from Charlotte's survival in this timeline, especially with two healthy sons, and Leopold being politically-minded, as well as George IV's attempts to get his divorce through Parliament - and the effects of Caroline's death, which may be relatively soon, if I remember correctly. And the implications of Viktoria's pregnancy will be very interesting indeed.
(One little observation - you refer to Prime Minister Jenkinson a few times in earlier posts. I'm fairly sure he would only have been referred to as Liverpool or Lord Liverpool, rather than by his family name. The other interesting thing is, depending on whether you're writing from a historical or contemporary perspective, he might not have been called 'Prime Minister.' At this stage it was something of a nickname for whoever led government - which was usually the First Lord of the Treasury. A lot of people didn't like the term prime minister, so I thought that might be a useful thing to know, especially as, depending on the views of the person in question, it can be used sneeringly.)
Two notes on this, first OTL's William IV will only be King of Hanover for 7 years, so he likely gives Hanover a constitution as IOTL and has his entire focus on Hanover instead of the split with the UK. In addition, William's heir won't necessarily be Cumberland. Unless someone raises a fuss about baby Kent's legitimacy, if it's a boy then he'll succeed William in Hanover. If Uncle Leopold and Aunt Charlotte force the Duchess of Kent to send the young Duke to be educated by William in Hanover we might see an heir who will continue his uncle's policies while Cumberland lives as the Queen's unpopular uncle in London.This seems more and more like an absolute trainwreck about to happen. The title does suggest she lives long enough to be queen, but will her father leave her a kingdom poised to be the undisputed #1 world power for a century, or a revolution waiting to happen?
Also, with no sons in the male line before Ernest Augustus' little George, it seems to me tha Hanover itself will take it's OTL path to a largely forgotten state to most.
Thank you dear ♡Fabulous update as always.
My first question concerns the fate of the Kent kids, given Leopold/Charlotte/Stockmar likely believe the Duchess was either in cahoots with Sir John or proved herself too stupid to adequately protect the kids' interests. My out-there theory: if Adelaide's pregnancy doesn't result in a male heir for Hanover and baby Kent manages to be a boy, might we see Victoria and her brother raised by William and Adelaide in Hanover? It could be billed as "Baby Kent is heir to Hanover and let us bring his sister along as a playmate" when really it's getting the Kent kids away from their mother's poor decision making. At least they'll still have Lehzen, so small comforts.
Also, while I assume Gilly will stay on in the household, I wonder if she'll exit her role as a nanny once she has her first pregnancy, to focus on her own family with her kids being playmates for the Kendals. They'll probably pick someone from the school once Gilly finds out she's pregnant, and have a transition period before Gilly leaves to give birth.