Authors note: I am so so so so so so sorry this is a really really really late update! My life has been busy in crazy town for a long time! But now I have returned! Enjoy the new post all my KOP people!
Chapter twenty one a threat to the kingdom
The morning after a night of passion and tenderness. Kate awoke on a red velvet couch and she was covered by a silk blanket. Her eyes fluttered open as the golden sunlight spilled into the room through the blue draped window. Her head was rested against Louis' strong chest. One hand laid over his heart, the other tangled in his hair. She looked up at the king as he silently slept with both his hands on her back holding her closely. Not yet fully awake, she didn't quite understand what had happened that night, but by the looks of the man who held her closely in his strong arms, she figured it must have been something wonderful.
She looked up at his tired restful face and thought long and hard of the memories of the night before. This is the man I gave my virginity to, she thought. There was no shame in her for what she did, even though all her life she demonstrated abstinence because of her catholic religion. But she did wonder how her guardians would feel if they knew she gave it up before marriage to the one man they despise the most.
Louis was awoken by the harsh rays of the sun shining down on his face. ?He opened his eyes and looked down at the little woman he held closely to himself, stare up at him with sparkling eyes and a smile on her face.
"Good morning sire, what a beautiful morning it is." She said softly, making little circles in his hair with her hand. He cupped the one she had on his chest in his and kissed it gently. "Good morning sweet lady, did you sleep well?" "I did, this room is so peaceful, but how is it that none of the royal staff has come to find us? Won't they find we are missing from our beds?" "It is not a problem, I have taken care of those concerns so we could have some privacy together." Louis pulled her up to his face and kissed her lips passionately. A giggle escaped her mouth when he began to trail kisses down her neck.
She pushed his head away lightly and sat up looking around the room for her clothing. She spotted her dress lying on the floor across from the couch they had been lying on all night. Her shoes where lying closer by the couch while her knickers where draped over some chairs that sat by the fountain. "I must go, my servants will worry if I am not there for my bath. "She said, throwing the covers off her exposed body. Louis watched her with hunger in his eyes as she walked over towards each garment f clothing completely in the nude. She didn't mind being naked in front of him after what they had done that night, but she was feeling uncomfortable knowing he was looking at her provocatively while she gathered her garments, but a man is a man, they will look no matter what family they come from, or what title they hold.
"I will dress and hurry off to my room your highness, I will see you at breakfast." She said, rushing on her knickers and pulling up her dress over her body. "Don't be long, I have a special meal planned for us this morning." He replied with a smirk. She looked back at him as she opened the door and smiled back in response.
Louis laid back down and looked up at the ceiling staring at the chandelier that glistened and sparkled.
A loud knock echoed throughout the room. "Enter," he called. The heavy door opened with a loud creak. In came D'Artagnan who was looking concerned. "Your majesty, I wish to have a word with you." Louis sat up making sure to cover his lap with the blanket. "Speak now, I have matters to attend to this morning." D'Artagnan sat down on an arm chair across from him and took out of his bag a message. He unrolled it an d began to read the disturbing message to the king. "This message is from several villagers who live the closest by the castle." Said D'Artagnan, clearing his throat.
The message was as follows:
This message is for the monster who sits on the throne.
We have taken your constant slacking off, laziness, unfulfilled promises, and unfulfilled requests for fresh food the people of France have politely tried to give you.
Your musketeers are going to pay for your lack of care today, but tomorrow you will be the one to take the worst of what is to come.
We demand fresh food, clean water, and better paying jobs, or we will retaliate worse than you have ever witnessed. Don't expect to sleep peacefully tonight. Don't expect to be safe in your home. We WILL rise up against you until your lavish palace walls are crumbled and burning to the cold hard earth.
You have twenty four hours to fulfill our requests or we will overrun your kingdom.
The king was horrified with what he was hearing. "When did you receive this message?" "This morning at the beginning of my run Sire." Louis stood up and hurried over to the pile of his clothes by the fountain. "Leave me while I dress. I will see you in my throne room. Bring my advisers." And, Kate?" Asked D'Artagnan, fully aware of the plans the king had with her that day. Louis looked at him and gave him a little black box he had in his robe pocket. "Have her servant girl bring this to her with my apologies." D'Artagnan took the box and lowered his head. He hurried out the door to deliver the message.
Kate was sitting in her bedchamber brushing her hair while her servant girl stood by watching. "You look oh so lovely madame!" She exclaimed. Maria was her servant girls name, an immigrant from Spain. She wasn't much of a people person, but was quite taken by Kate's caring nature. They where almost like sisters. "You must be paid to tell lies!" Kate laughed, looking into her reflection. "I look a monsterous mess!"
"No lady of mine is a monster! But if so, a lovely one!" "Both girls began to laugh at the amusing conversation when a knock was heard on the old door. Maria hurried over for it sounded quite urgent. Ellie, another servant girl, not to familiar to Kate, was standing with a red garnet encrusted box with a whole rose placed on the top for proper presentation. "For the lady Kate from the king." She said quickly, taking a bow before dashing off. Maria shut the door and brought the box over to Kate.
"For you my lady, it seems the king has kept you in his thoughts this morning.
Maria didn't know that Kate had spent the night with the king, such a happening would end up with a labeling of her being a lady of the night, or worse. All depending on what the king saw fit for his own reputation. But Kate was not a woman of the night. Her first love had not laid with her in the time they where together. She remained a virgin and vowed to be one until the time came right.
She took the box from Maria and placed it on her lap Maria stood close looking over the box, wanting a first glance at the treasure hiding within. Kate took the rose off the top and smiled giving it a long smell of the freshly bloomed scent. Her heart raced as she carefully lifter the lid up. Her eyes sparkled and her mouth hung open to the sight of genuine emerald earrings. Bagguete cut, in a silver setting with diamonds on all four prongs of the setting, they where the most expensive looking earring she had ever seen. She held them up in the tiny fabric tray they sat on to better gaze at them in the light.
"Oh how beautiful!" Maria cried.
Kate looked down at the small note on the very bottom of the box that was hidden under the fabric tray holding the precious pieces of jewelry.
She picked the note up and began to read it aloud.
My dearest Kate,
I am burdened by troubles involving the kingdom this morning. I cannot join you for our day together as promised. Please take these lovely pieces of rare gemstones as a gift for my abandoning you, and know that you are more precious than these lovely stones, or any mineral money can buy. Wear them during our evening carriage ride we had planned.
I love you my sweet, and shall see you soon,
She smiled and folded the note up placing it on her vanity table. She picked the earrings up off the tray and carefully, with Maria's help, tried them on. The girls gazed in awe at the sparkle and glow of the deep green studs. "Absolutely lovely! What fine jewels. They look like crown jewels to me." Maria exclaimed, clapping her hands in approval. Kate gazed at her reflection with a finger to her earlobe stroking one of the earrings.
"Yes, they are." She replied blissfully.
The king had certainly left his mark on her. A night of passion, a morning of sweet tenderness, and now two beautiful pieces of jewelry to finish it off. Her mind wondered, How is it that this man is so evil? Could anyone evil be so warm and loving? Perhaps, maybe,he is misunderstood.
Some time ago, she had read on a book of how many world leaders there where who where treated poorly even when they catered to every demand of the people with care and concern. Maybe Louis was one of them. Was she lying to herself? Or was she simply, and literally blinded by love? One can only wait and see.
The noon day was warm and smelled of sweet wild flowers. It came and passed with much happening in and outside the kingdom. Inside, most of the kings advisers where preparing for a meeting the king wanted to hold for a discussion of what he wanted to do about the people and their potential threats.
Outside, the citizens of Paris where rioting outside in the streets of the villages. The town and even in the countryside where few resided. They threw rotten fruits and vegetables at the musketeers, set grocery markets that sold spoiled foods on fire, and attacked citizens who supported the king with weapons ranging from clubs to knives.
Your probably wondering how anybody would possibly support a man who hoarded food all for one person, maybe two, well, they're out there.
The king was in his business hall preparing for the meeting. The business hall was a large room with a large wooden table where everyone involved in a decision where to sit and discuss matters of France.
The king, or course, was at the head of the table awaiting for his men to arrive. He was growing impatient and distressed from hearing all that was going on outside.
D'Artagnan sat to his right with his hat on his lap and a scroll in his hand. He watched the kings facial expressions go from calm to agitated in no less than two minutes.
"Your highness, I assure you, we will fix this problem. Please relax while we wait for the counsel to arrive." D'Artagnan could not help him though, for he was already over the edge.
"Lazy good for nothing hogs!" The king cried, slamming his hand against the worn wooden table.
"The whole nation is making a landfill of my kingdom while they take their time to come to my aid. Outrageous!"
The king blew off his steam until the men began to enter the room with grave looks of concern on each of their faces. Joseph Gail, the second member of the counsel, arrived in his usual fashion.
Dressed in his velvet robes of burgundy and royal blue, his brow combed and cleaned up neatly, close shaved beard, and his tall black cane he carried with him in his left hand held by the Diamond knob. This man was tough, stubborn and just as hard headed as the king himself. But he was, however, convinced easily by Louis if he was approached the right way.
The meeting was in session, and tensions where high from what was going on outside. People shouting, rotten food being thrown at the kings men and constantly, the people cried in pure furry, "We demand to see the king!"
One of the members of the counsel, the fifth one to be exact, was Franklin Prevot. He had in his hand a scroll with a fully prepared speech for the rest of the members to hear. He was one of the first to hear the news of the threats king Louis was facing.
He unrolled his scroll and cleared his tired old throat as he began to read aloud what he had written:
Fellow members of the board, we are faced with a trouble we have not prepared for.
The people of France have become angry with the king due to lack of good food.
We are faced with several threats to our kingdom:
The kings men may be slaughtered when out on their routes to patrol the kingdom,
The streets will be paved with the blood of the innocent citizens who still support the king,
Rioting will increase six times more than before,
In the act of controlling angry citizens, our army will not be able to guard our borders against enemy troops who may try to make a surprise attack on our lands,
Fire may burn houses and businesses, owned by the king,
The people may try to break into the palace and murder our king.
We cannot allow for this to happen.
After much deliberation, I see that there is no other choice but to make a fair agreement with the people about the food issue. Surely, this will be the best way to handle it on the best terms possible. The people will be happier, and healthier, so our doctors will not be overwhelmed by sick patients, and the kings safety will not be threatened by his own people.
The board thought carefully over what Mister. Prevot had said.
Many thought what he was proposing was a very pleasant idea. "Oh yes, very pleasing." One member said, "Indeed, this proposal would be the best course of action possible" said another.
"Than what must be disgust then?" Asked Franklin,"Is there any reason to fight now?"
Joseph cleared his throat loudly, intentionally trying to call attention to himself. He obviously wanted his opinion what had been proposed to be the most important besides the kings.
I say Franklin," he said in his low toned french accent, "This suggestion is one of interest to me," He tapped his glass and sipped his wine. "I believe we have the answer to the problem gentlemen." All agreed, but the king, which was to be expected.
Louis had many problems with Franklin's proposal.
One being that he did not want to cave, two being that he didn't like the financial burden buying all this food would give him, three being that if the people got used to him caving everytime they complained, he would soon have to change the way he had to live to pay for all the things his people requested. His life already had all the finer furnishings, foods, clothing, deluxe features to each and every room, his own golden works of art in his form made by many famous sculptors.
While it would have been true he would have to pay for more care to his people, his way of living would hardly change, with him being the king and what have you. He simply just didn't want to help his people in any shape or form.
The king struck the table with his fist and stood up in a rage. His face had grown angry and his breath quickened. D'Artagnan knew what was coming and braced himself.
"Mister Prevot, I asked you to write me a fair solution to this little problem and you deliver this?" All eyes narrowed down on Franklin like he was being singled out by his fellow members.
"Your highness," he replied in a quiet almost fearful tone, "this was decided with your safety in mind." The king threw his wine glass at Franklin and struck him on the head. Franklin fell back on his chair to the floor. His face from his forehead down to his left eye was cut. One of the members hurried down to his aid while D'Artagnan restrained the king from becoming more violent.
"Sire, violence against your fellow men will not be the answer to our problems," D'Artagnan said.
Louis glared at Franklin, who was struggling to stop bleeding, and then at D'Artagnan. "This problem is not yours but mine, since it threatens my life alone." He looked at Joseph Gail sharply and said with carelessness in his voice, "and I will handle it the way I see fit!" Mister Gail kept a steady gaze at the king.
Louis sat back down at his seat and gestured for hi servant boy to bring him another glass of wine. He sipped the sweet red liquor and looked around at the silent board. "So who protests against me?" He asked sharply. No one answered. He presumed with his own decision. "Lock them up, but this time,..." he paused to look at D'Artagnan shaprly. "Kill them after detainment. That will include women and children." He stood up and left the room with his servant close behind him. No one knew what to do now. The king was going to slaughter people who where innocent, sick and hungry. This was not the solution that was in anyway fair, but no one could expect less from their king.
The first board member stood up with terror in his eyes. "We must stop the king! Paris will be destroyed at this point!"
D'Artagnan looked at a disgruntled Joseph Gail awaiting a reply from him. Mister Gail looked at him and shook his head. "There is nothing more to be done. If this is the kings will, we cannot stop it." Now France was in worse trouble then it was before.