don't own a thing twilight related.
Anne had recovered quiet well and had recently sent her baby girl off to Hatfield with a whole court of her own. Princess Mary was also sent with them to look over the young Princess Elizabeth. You could easily see the anger and hurt on her face, but she went along with decision. If she had not her life would have been in grave danger. Anne was sad to see her little girl go, but she was also working on getting Henry back in her bed. She needed a boy.
"How much longer is Henry planning on holding out on Anne?" I asked Edward. We were sitting at the table in my room having a small meal. Anne had decided to take a weekend with Elizabeth and was hoping that Henry would meet them there sometime tomorrow.
"He is actually planning on meeting Anne at some house on her way home," he said before he took a swig from his wine. "Whether he is going for passion or just looks, I do not know." I sadly nodded my head and finished off my cup of wine.
"How does he expect anything to happen, how does he hope to get a boy from staying away from her?" I slammed my cup on the table. I was angry with Henry. It was not Anne's fault that she had a girl. Henry should be reeling with joy knowing she was fertile. He had not given up on Mary quite so easily, and she wasn't even his wife! Not the Queen of England!
I got up from my chair and walked over towards the fireplace, thoughts still running through my head. I heard Edward's chair scrape across the wood floor then his boots as he walked towards me. I turned to meet him before he could swoon me with his light touches and gentle words.
"I will not put up with it Edward. I know what you are going to say and my answer is no." I placed my hands on my hips and stared at him, straight in the eye.
"And how do you know, Bella, what I was going to say?" he said with an amused grin on his face. I walked around him towards the bed.
"It is so easy with you," I said, throwing my hands in the air. "You were going to come up behind me and place your hands softly on my shoulders, whisper in my ear that it will all turn out well. But I am sorry. I have a bad feeling that things are never going to go well with Anne again and," I slumped down onto the bed, "it scares me." I could feel the tears welling in my eyes, but I couldn't cry again. All I felt inside was fear, and anger of course. Still, I couldn't quite place the fear and that made me even more afraid. I knew Henry and his actions. I had watched him and taken part in some of it. Since Elizabeth I could feel a change in Henry and it deeply worried me.
Edward made his way over and sat next to me on the bed. I kept my head down and he didn't try anything which made me happy in a sense. I needed a moment to myself.
"I'm sorry I can't say anything that will make it better," he began. "Things will be tougher from now on, but you have to stand by Anne if she is as great a friend to you as you say. It would not be fair for you to worry away and not help her. Henry will come around, he has to otherwise he will not have the son he so desires." He placed his hand on top of mine and in that little gesture I knew he was feeling some of what I was going through. He and Henry were good friends as well and knew how Henry's mind worked.
"I know, I know." I looked up into his eyes, "please, stay with my tonight?" I needed to feel someone with me. I needed protection from what was to come.
"Of course," was his reply. He blew out the candles and locked the door before joining me back on the bed.
Anna had made it back safe and with good news on the development of her daughter. Henry had met her at some Nobel's house on her way home. I had yet the chance to meet privately with her to talk of what had really happened.
I was sitting in my room reading a letter from my mother when a young lady in waiting came to my door.
"My Lady," she addressed me curtsying, "you are wanted in the Queen's chamber." She left off to do whatever else was asked of her. I placed a marker in my book and set it down on the table, gently running my fingers over the cover. It had become one of my favorite books over night. Anne had recommended it to me, so easily it dealt with the matter of religion and whether or not we should feel obliged to follow. Strong words spread over the pages and I found myself easily entranced by the meaning.
I walked in to Anne's apartment and was surprised to find many men but hardly any women. Anne spotted my quickly and easily called me over.
"Ah Bella. How wonderful it is to see you so quickly. Come sit at our little table. We have just been talking about certain ladies around the court. Norris here finds himself fancying our young Madge. I have been giving him great words of encouragement." She placed her hand on his and let out a laugh.
"Encouragement my Queen! Is that what they call it these days?" He looked up to me and continued, "I believe she meant to say that she was teasing me. I am not very brave around women I hardly know. Please sit Isabella. I would be honored to hear your thoughts on my predicament." He gave me a gentle smile and I smiled back to him. Henry had always been a kind and gentle man, never had a bad moment with him in my company. I sat in the open chair between him and Anne facing his side.
"Well, tell me Norris, how am I to help you?" I gave him a smile and squeezed his arm. He smiled back and fell into his questions.
"You know Madge of course, Anne's cousin. I can't seem to stop thinking of her. She is beautiful beyond words, with an exception to your Majesty of course," Anne laughed and nodded her head as he continued. "But when I find myself in her presence it is as though I cannot find my tongue and I just stumble over words and embarrass myself." His head fell into his hands and I rubbed my hand along his shoulder in comfort.
"It is true, I have seen it personally," Francis Weston said. "It was as if I did not know my friend. He never acts like so with any other women. It is quite odd." The other men around the table, William Brereton and Mark Smeaton, all agreed.
"Norris, it is okay for you to act like so. Especially if you love her," a sly smile appeared on my face and he just looked at me in shock. Everyone else around the table let out a few laughs. "There is no need to hide your feelings Norris, and none of you should be laughing. Wait till you are in his position then you will know how hard it is." I looked at them all, a slight hint of anger in my voice.
"Sorry Bella, you are right," Weston apologized for everyone.
"I still don't see how this is all relevant," Anne began. "It still has nothing to do with me. I find that very unappealing." She turned her head away and searched the room to see if there was anything else that could grab her attention. Of course it was either sit here with us and enjoy herself, or go off to where the other ladies were and take up some sewing. I knew what my answer would be, and so did she.
"Oh Anne, stop. You could be nice to poor Norris here. He needs some womanly advice, and I believe that because you have found yourself a most wonderful husband, God save him, your advice would be the most sufficient." I smiled smugly and the men laughed heartily around the table. Anne's eyes closed in on me before she too let out a laugh.
"Bella if you were not such a good friend of mine I would have taken every word seriously. But I can also see your logic. I do have the most wonderful husband, do I not gentlemen?" She looked at them all expectantly and they all voiced their yes with nods of their heads. "Fine. Norris you must not be so shy, for I know she has had her eye on you since she walked into the castle. There is no need for you to feel like you cannot have her. I easily give my consent. Now, you have to gently woo her. She is young and had not been through as much as we all have. Write her a sweet poem and present it to her when she is alone and not expecting it. After that come back to me and I will see what else I can do." Norris took her hand and kissed the back of it.
"Thanks you my Queen. This is by far the best advice I have received from anyone," he said while looking around the table at his friends.
"Norris, come man. We tried to help you. I told you all the ways to get her into your bed, but you would not listen. Is that my fault?" Brereton said. Everyone laughed at that.
Anne stood up to leave and we all followed suit.
"Well men, it has been quite entertaining this afternoon, but now I must go get ready. Bella you will help me." The men all bowed to us and I curtsied back. I followed Anne to her rooms and shut the door behind us as we entered.
"Anne," I called to her once we were behind closed doors. She turned to look at me and a small smile appeared on her face.
"Oh, I know that tone Bella. You have something to tell me but are afraid to say it because of what I will think. Am I not right?" She was precisely right. I had noticed some odd things about the people she kept in her presence, but I was afraid of what she would think if I told her. "Come now Bella, there is no need to keep it from me." I knew I had to tell her. She would find a way to pry it out of me some way or another.
"Well," I began slowly, "I happened to notice something strange when I walked into your chamber today." I looked up to her face and she looked on at me expectantly, waiting for me to continue. "Anne there are quite a number of more men present on your company than women. Does that not bother you?" She waited no time in answering my question.
"No and I don't know why it would bother you. Please do explain?" She sat down at her little vanity and moved her hand in the way for me to continue.
"I find it odd that you would have more men in your room than women. What do you think Henry believes? Catherine had women in her room always, no men. They only came with messages from Henry or with Henry himself. Do you not think that this could look bad for you?" I did not always know what went on in her mind, and I hoped that I had pointed out something to her that she had not even noticed before. She let me stand there for a few moments in embarrassment before her laughter rang out.
"Of course I have noticed it! I am the one who invited them in. I don't want to always be sewing, it is very boring and you know it as well. The men give me a different entertainment and it's quite enjoyable. Henry has no say in it either. These are my rooms and I may have whoever I want to enter them." She turned her back to me then and looked at me through the reflection in her mirror. "And I would appreciate it if you did not bring this up again. I have been able to take care of myself for the last 10 years. I don't need anyone's help now. Come and brush my hair." I was stunned. There were no intentions in my heart to hurt Anne in anyway. I loved her like a sister. Yes, she was strong and had been able to take care of herself for 10 years now, but there were always moments where she would not think straight and bury herself in a whole. Thankfully she was always able to find her way out, but this time she was digging deep.
I just curtsied to her and walked over to brush her hair. Hopefully she took my words to heart and truly thought on her recent actions.
well here is the next chapter. i hope you guys enjoyed it and i am SO SORRY for the massive delay. its a lot harder to write than i thought, especially when i want it to be really good. please REVIEW and let me know that you are all still out there! thanks a bunch! =]