Sunday, May 5, 2013
The boy becomes King.
I hope you will rejoice with me in the news that your forces have enjoyed a victory in the battle against the tyrannical forces of the Confederation.
The battle fought in the county of Royston now known as the Battle of Hipsley Farm was a desperate affair and whilst we can claim to have stopped the Confederation forces under Lord Ashley, I fear that we have gained a mere pause in their efforts here in the north.
My forces though considerably out numbered fought a valiant action in defeating the enemy advance, yet in doing so our already outnumbered forces are even more so now.
Because of the intensity of the battle and the bravery of your soldiers in your service, our casualty list is considerable.
Therefore I urgently beg of you Sire that you rush all troops you can spare to join us, so that we can not only stop any future enemy advance, we can ourselves begin to push back and eventually defeat the despicable forces of the Confederation.
If I may be so bold Sire as to ask you show some favour on the following individuals who have shown great leadership and skill in helping your forces gain this victory.
Maj General Preston – Commander of the Advance Guard
Major General Clive Aubrey – 6th Brigade
Colonel Sir Alexander Clements – 34th Battalion
I also hope you will show your favour on the following units that fought so magnificently against greatly superior odds,
33rd Foote Battalion (15th Regiment)
34th Foote Battalion (14th Regiment)
36th Foote Battalion (14th Regiment)
For now Sire my Army is following up the enemy, as of this day 28th of March they have taken up position near Bedford (Northampton) , I feel they are awaiting reinforcements either from the North or from Lord Warwick who is operating out to the west near Bambury.
I eagerly await your instructions
I remain your Obedient servant
General Philip Graham – Commanding.
King James laid the message down on his desk, he looked rather pensively at the others sitting across from him.
“Tell me Prime Minister how is it we have fought two battles, gained two victories and in each I have the feeling we were the losers. General Leopold gained us a victory in Lyndhurst, yet he is now stalemated by the enemy at Cadmans Bridge; now we have General Graham having defeated the enemy at, where..” The King picked up the message but the Prime Minister quickly added,
“Hipsley Farm Sire”
“”…Yes, Hipsley farm, now he won there but reading this message I have the feeling he too is now stalemated. If we keep fighting like this we will have armies all over England eying each other and unable to move while the damned French are landing on my shores. It is just not good enough, and I demand an explanation.”
Across from the King sat Prime Minister Anders, the Kings Uncle; Lord Bedford soon to be the Kings Father in law and Amschel Moses Rothschild who was realms treasurer and Foreign Secretary and Brother Paul as he wished to be simply known as, but was in fact the Kings spy master.
Prime Minister Anders smiled to himself, like the others in the room he had noticed the King slipping into the Royal mode, when he was sure and confident everyone in the room was addressed according to their position or title, in those times when he was less sure it was then as Uncle, or father etc.
“Sire you must remember you have only been on the throne for two months, and in that time what was the Army of England has been split into two opposing armies and two almost equally strong armies at that. It takes time to recruit and train a new army, it takes money to buy arms, uniforms and all the equipment required to equip our recruits. In between times the parliamentary armies and our Royalist armies must fight with what we have. What we have are two armies of equal strength in numbers, training and quality, so yes we are going to be forced into battles where the results are often drawn. It will remain thus until one side achieves dominance in numbers, sadly with the French now aiding the Parliamentarian armies, it is likely they will gain the numbers before us.”
The King looked to Amschel Rothschild.
“How are we faring on the Continent, do we have any allies at all?”
Amschel Rothschild symbolically put on his Foreign Secretary hat,
“Allies, no not as such Sire, most countries are taking a wait and see approach, also the French are making threats against any who would possibly support us. We had been gaining some favour with the Saxon Court but France got wind of it and threatened the Elector of Saxony Augustus I who has since withdrawn from all contact with our ambassador. “
James gave a “hummph’,
“Well from what I have heard Augustus was a windbag anyway.”
There was a pause for a few moments, James looked at Lord Bedford and then back to Amschel,
“What of Prussia, surely we have an ally there?”
Amschel Rothschild gave a deep sigh,
“Sire, Prussia represents a problem to us, secretly they are sympathetic to your cause, but of course it is on a purely diplomatic level and I assume is based on the premise that “your enemy is our enemy”, that meaning while we are fighting the French we can benefit in their diplomatic sympathies but that is all.”
“Perhaps we should ask them for more substantial help, after all we have helped them in the past have we not,” asked the King.
“Indeed Sire, we have; but also in the past we have taken advantage of their erm difficulties as well, and sadly your Uncle King Frederick has a long memory.”
“Are you saying he wont help us?”
“Oh the Prussians will help, but at a cost Sire, and I don't think its one we can bear too easily.”
King James looked around at the others in the room, it was clear they all knew and yet until now no one had bothered to tell him.
“Pray tell me what is this unbearable cost?”
“They want full trade access with our Colonies in North America, and they want us to guarantee that their merchant fleets will not be molested by the French navy.”
“Good bloody god, they want to steal our markets and expect us to pay them by way of using our Navy to protect them for the privilege.”
“Indeed Sire, if we allow this they will supply us with North German horses for our Cavalry, artillery and all the weaponry we need.”
James looked to his uncle, Prime Minister Anders,
“What is your opinion of this erm arrangement?
“Sire the reason we have not broached this subject with you is quite simply we find it totally unacceptable, we lose far more in the loss of trade with the Colonies than it would cost us to buy the equipment we need for our armies. And naturally the loss of trade would be permanent, whereas once we have our arsenals producing weaponry we will improve the arms situation quite quickly.”
“I have a mind to visit my dear Uncle, and explain a few home truths to the man.”
All in the room sat up and the mention of a Royal visit.
The Prime minister spoke first,
“Sire a Royal visit to Prussia is totally impossible, even if King Frederick did agree which I seriously doubt, there are protocols that would take months to settle before such a visit was possible.”
“And Pray tell me why would King Frederick object to my visit?”
“Well you see Sire it is complicated by your errr relationship with him. Frederick is very protective of his sister, your natural mother; he has squashed all rumours of your relationship with his sister and he will never allow you or anyone to open that wound”
“Are you telling me, that my natural uncle has prevented everyone from knowing who I am and who my natural mother is?”
“Oh my goodness no sire, everyone knows that Princess Wilhelmina is your mother, but no one speaks of it for fear of gathering the wrath of the King of Prussia.”
“It seems I am quite an embarrassment to my family, wouldn’t you say Amschel?”
Amschel was embarrassed, there was no right answer,
“Only in the diplomatic sense Sire, I know your mother, Princess Wilhelmina is extremely proud of you, and I suspect even the King is; but because he loves his sister so strongly he cannot allow his sister to become a victim of hurtful gossip.”
Lord Bedford spoke
“Bit late for that if you ask me, James here is a man, not some ill gotten article that we all know about but cant speak off. All of Europe knows who he is, who is mother is and even who his natural Uncle is, so why are dancing around this matter.”
“Diplomatic niceties, my Lord; that’s why.”
James sat for a moment, rubbing his chin thoughtfully,
“Very well Amschel, since I am the black sheep we all know about and no one speaks of, it seems no one has regard to my own feelings on the matter, so I am in a mind to disregard all others. Tomorrow Amschel you will tell the Prussian ambassador that they will have the weaponry and equipment we have asked for and are prepared to pay for, or I will publicly announce from the throne of my natural birth mother and the relationship to bloody King Frederick. Which incidently will automatically make my one of the heirs of the Prussian throne. We will then see how sensitive my uncle is to the realities of the world I have had to live in.”
“Sire you canniot do this, Prussia is the only friend of substance we have.”
The Prime Minister spoke, “Sire I agree with Amschel, we cannot do this..”
James raised his hand to quieten the objections,
“Gentlemen, who is King here, who rules, you or I.”
The room fell silent, this was the moment all knew would come yet feared; the moment the King started acting on his own advise.
Edward Anders the Prime Minister tried to speak as Edward Anders the boys step uncle
“James naturally you are King, but you must listen to our advice, we all want what is best for you and our advise is based on getting the best for you and England.”
James rose from his chair, he walked around the room and returned, still standing,
“Your advise has got me nothing and England nothing, we sit here and complain that Prussia is taking advantage of our weakness's yet we fear to tread on hers.”
He turned to Amschel
“You will do as I have said, inform the Prussians of my decision, give us what we require, we will pay for the goods or the family secret is out and aditionally all North American colonies will be closed to Prussian markets; the decision is theirs. I am sick and tired of people taking advantage of me because they think I am a child, and off taking advantage of England because in the past as long as the Lords got gold from whomever England would lay down and play nice.”
He looked around at the others,
“From today gentlemen I will ask you to remember one thing, which should remain paramount on your minds. That is I am King of England, as such I will rule and govern as such. Secondly England is taking its rightful place in the world and not that of being what the High Council had made us; that being the slut of Europe.”
“But Sire, the North American colonies will object if we close their markets to Prussia” Amschel said.
“Then tell them the markets will not be closed, because Prussia will agree to my terms.”
Edward Anders asked,
“How can you be sure of this Sire?”
James looked at him, eye to eye for a moment
“Because Mr Prime Minister King Frederick loves Princess Wilhelmina as his sister more than I do as my natural mother; and if it becomes a contest between us I will match my uncle with pig headiness regardless of who gets hurt. England must rise and family niceties do not come into it. Also Prussia is desperate for foreign markets since most of Europe is closed to them, if we close North America to them then all the efforts they have done over the last few years come to naught.
Lord Bedford, said “And there spoke the King of England at last”.