This chapter rings very true for Isabella of Castile's daughter. Isabella, too, wanted to convert the natives rather than kill them - at least she did in the New World, if not the infidels in Granada. It makes sense that she would have passed such convictions on to her favourite daughter.

I look forward to more. :)
 
This chapter rings very true for Isabella of Castile's daughter. Isabella, too, wanted to convert the natives rather than kill them - at least she did in the New World, if not the infidels in Granada. It makes sense that she would have passed such convictions on to her favourite daughter.

I look forward to more. :)
Catalina certainly possess much of her mother's personality and convictions, though she is a bit more forgiving than her mother... She will certainly admister the new world fairly well, at least to the point that the Ecomienda system will be rarer, and in general things will be heavily regulated.. Thank you so much for your kind words! There should be more soon if my schedule continues to cooperate...
 
Chapter 16, May 1507
The countryside of Malaga, Kingdom of Castile, May 1507


Catalina was sweaty as she shifted in the saddle. Fortunately, it was not as hot as May in Andalusia could be, yet sweat dripped down her face, nonetheless. Now I know why Maria questioned my decision to do this. Still, I am regent, and I must do my duty to this land and her people. The reason for her discomfort was obvious, she wore leathers under her steel plate armor, with a lance in her right hand, heater shield in her left, and a side-sword at her hip, while her fiery red hair was in a braid that snaked down her helm. The men marched forward in front of her, their boots kicking up dirt as they trod upon the dusty, uneven ground. She gazed upon the men opposite them, there were fewer of them, and they were ill-equipped, none of them armed with Arquebuses. Still, as they slowly marched forward it seemed they were determined to give her men a good fight. While the enemy was still a fair distance away, she endeavored to give the men a good speech. She cleared her throat, and called out,”Men of Castile, I know this is far from the first battle for many of you, and I doubt it will be your last. Today we fight to quell this rebellion and show that the one true God is on our side. Fight well and remember that I would not have you do anything that I would not do myself, so I will join you in the fighting. It will be an honor to fight by your side men!”
When the men cheered she blushed, their reaction was like nothing she had ever seen, the swordsmen pounding their swords against their bucklers, punctuated with cries of,”For God and the Princess Regent.”
Finally, as the distance between the two armies began to close, and the men made ready for battle Catalina thrust her lance into the air and cried out,”Warriors of Christ, advance!!!”
The Castilians did so, though at the methodical pace that the Tercio formation demanded, and soon enough the Arquebusiers set their guns down on the wooden tripods and took aim. Within seconds came their reports, and shouts as they meet their mark. The returning fire was a volley of arrows, which while accurate, was less numerous, likely killing fewer than the Arquebusiers had. With the enemy drawing nearer, the gunmen fired once more and then went behind the pike wall, for the melee was about to start. As the rebels threw themselves at the Castilian pike wall, Catalina looked upon a path of flatter land to her left, perhaps we could use this route to attack the flanks. She turned towards Gonzalo Fernández de Córdoba, who was directing the infantry and called out,”Lord de Córdoba, I will lead the knights against their flanks.”
The man simply nodded at this, and so Catalina turned her mount towards the path and spurred her, urging the knights to follow her as she closed her helm’s visor. They did so, and soon enough they were all galloping towards the western edge of the valley. However, she soon came across a sight that she did not expect, several dozen enemy riders. They were, of course lightly equipped, armed with a spear, and at best protected by leathers and a buckler. She gave a simple command as they continued forward,”Charge!!!” The men did so with gusto, with her at their head, and she would soon find herself in combat herself. She charged her horse forward, and stabbed a Moorish horseman in the armpit, pulling the weapon back as he fell out of the saddle. She then helped a beleaguered knight fighting two of the enemy by driving her lance in the ribs of one of them that tried to wheel around the man. After a short while, the remaining Moorish cavalry was routed from the field, preferring to become outlaws rather than face certain death on the battlefield. With the enemy cavalry no longer a threat, Catalina led the knights around the rear of the Moorish lines, which were already buckling under the effort of fighting a professional, and more numerous force. She once more ordered the knights to charge and they came crashing into the enemy. Her horse outright trampled one man, and as another turned towards her with his sword drawn, she thrust her lance into his chest. When she tried to withdraw the lance it wouldn’t budge, and after trying to yank it out once more she simply pushed it forward. A Moor then attacked her from the left side, his sword coming dangerously close to her shoulder. Seeing this she swung her shield to the left, bashing the sword out of the man’s arm, and he let out a yelp of pain. Catalina wasted no time turning her horse and drawing her sword, she quickly cleaved the man’s skull in.

The battle had ended within minutes of the cavalry charge, as the situation for the rebels was clearly hopeless, and now Catalina stood in her tent, goblet of water in hand. A soldier of middling age soon entered, bowing as he did so and asked,”What of the prisoners milady?”
She took a sip of her water,”Ah them… I want the ringleaders beheaded where they kneel, no ceremony. I would not have them become martyrs for the misguided.”
The soldier nodded,”What of the rest?”
“Ransom them if they can afford it, those who can't will be debtor slaves to the crown for a year’s time. I hear that the mines in the Sierra Nevada are lovely this time of year.”
He smiled,”Indeed milady. You have shown great courage today, and I’d like to thank you, the knight that you saved earlier was my nephew.”
She brushed it aside,”It is nothing good sir, I have merely done my duty to the people.”
 
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Chapter 17, July 1507
Windsor Castle, Kingdom of England, July 1507

Giovanna sat at the table, and picked up a small slice of orange, bringing the sweet fruit to her mouth. Her husband sat across from her, illuminated by candlelight, smiling as she chewed it,”I trust it is to your liking my dear?”
After swallowing the fruit she replied,”Yes it is Henry. I’ve always liked oranges, thank you for shipping some in from Naples for me.”
Henry chuckled,”Of course I would, you are from Naples, so I thought I should get them from somewhere is proven to provide things of quality.”
Giovanna’s face reddened, and she gave a lively laugh,”Oh Henry, you flatter me so.”
“Well it is true.”
Giovanna was indeed very pleased with her Henry, although they both still felt grief from the death of their son John the previous November, Henry had helped comfort her, and she had reason to perhaps be happy once more. She gave him a small smile,”I think I have some news for you, Henry…”
He sipped his wine, his tone hopeful,”What is it my lovely Queen?”
“I have reason to believe that I am with child again. I am not certain, but I have not bled over the last two months.”
Her husband beamed at her,”That is wonderful news, my dear, I promise that you will not want for anything over the next months.”
“Thank you, I just hope that this one goes well.”
“I do as well, though I think God would not be so cruel as to take another child from us.”
 
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Chapter 18, August 1507
Greenwich Palace, Kingdom of England, August 1506

She sat in her chair, her thumb leafing through a book while a child sat on her lap. She smiled warmly as the girl turned towards her, who shared her father’s dark hair,”Mama, would you tell me the story of how father came to be King?”
“Of course Catherine, it is a story of a brave man, who defeated a very bad king.”
“Who was the bad king?”
“His name was Richard, and he stole the throne from his nephews, your uncles, and likely had them murdered in the Tower, and had your grandmother’s other son and brother killed as well.”
The little girl gasped,”That is terrible.”
“Indeed, but soon enough the good people of England had enough of Richard’s tyranny, and when your father landed in Wales, they rose up and fought bad King Richard, who was killed in battle. Then, he married your mother Elizabeth to bring peace to this land and has ruled wisely ever since.”
Catherine gave her a wide smile as she finished, and Giovanna hugged her and they sat in bliss for a moment, for while they were not actually mother and daughter, Giovanna and Catherine Tudor, may as well have been. Such bliss lasted only for a moment, for Giovanna felt a churning in her stomach, and urgently scooped Catherine down to the floor, and barely made it to the chamber pot, which was soon filled with vomit. After she finished retching, she turned to her stepdaughter as a maid moved to take the pot out of the room, and little Catherine stood wide-eyed,”Are you alright mommy?”
Giovanna paused to sip some water from a goblet, the cool liquid cooling her burning throat, and then, after drinking half of it replied,”Yes, I think I will be. It is your brother or sister in my belly, sometimes women are ill when they take with child.”
“Is the baby alright?”
“Yes, luckily it does not seem to hurt them, your grandmother Margaret says so.”
Catherine nodded,”That is good.”
“Indeed, I believe that it is time for Mass, I think you should join your grandmother and I for it. She insists on it.”
The girl gave her a nervous smile, and took her hand, the two ready to take part in the ancient rite of the Church. As they walked out of the door, with the ladies, Giovanna smiled to herself, Even the Lady Margaret has been kind to me. The secret to dealing with her is humility, I may be the Queen of England, but she is the one who helped her son on the throne, so if not for her, I may not be here at all.
 
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