Two Penniless Princesses by J. M. Synge
Chapter 3. Falcon and Fetterlock
'Ours is the sky Where at what fowl we please our hawk shall fly.' --T. Randolph.
Beyond York that species of convoy, which ranged between protection and supervision, entirely ceased; the Scottish party moved on their own way, through lanes and fields at times, but oftener through heath, rock, and moor, for England was not yet thickly inhabited, though there was no lack of hostels or of convents to receive them on this the great road to the North, and to its many shrines for pilgrimage.
Perhaps Sir Patrick relaxed a little of his vigilance, since the good behaviour of his troop had won his confidence, and they were less likely to be regarded as invaders than by the inhabitants of the district nearer their own frontier.
Hawking and coursing within bounds had been permitted by both the Knight of Berwick and the Canon of Durham on the wide northern moors; but Sir Patrick, on starting in the morning of the day when they were entering Northamptonshire, had given a caution that sport was not free in the more frequented parts of England, and that hound must not be loosed nor hawk flown without special permission from the lord of the manor.
He was, however, riding in the rear of the rest, up a narrow lane leading uphill, anxiously discussing with Father Romuald the expediency of seeking hospitality from any of the great lords whose castles might be within reach before he had full information of the present state of factions at the Court, when suddenly his son Malcolm came riding back, pushing up hastily.
'Sir! father!' he cried, 'there's wud wark ahead, there's a flight of unco big birds on before, and Lady Jean's hawk is awa' after them, and Jeanie's awa' after the hawk, and Geordie Red Peel is awa' after Jean, and Davie's awa' after Geordie; and there's the blast of an English bugle, and my mither sent me for you to redd the fray!'
'Time, indeed!' said Sir Patrick with a sigh, and, setting spurs to his horse, he soon was beyond the end of the lane, on an open heath, where some of his troop were drawn up round his banner, almost forcibly kept back by Dame Lilias and the elder Andrew. He could not stop for explanation from them, indeed his wife only waved him forward towards a confused group some hundred yards farther off, where he could see a number of his own men, and, too plainly, long bows and coats of Lincoln green, and he only hoped, as he galloped onward, that they belonged to outlaws and not to rangers. Too soon he saw that his hope was vain; there were ten or twelve stout archers with the white rosette of York in their bonnets, the falcon and fetterlock on their sleeves, and the Plantagenet quarterings on their breasts. In the midst was a dead bustard, also an Englishman sitting up, with his head bleeding; Jean was on foot, with her dagger-knife in one hand, and holding fast to her breast her beloved hawk, whose jesses were, however, grasped by one of the foresters. Geordie of the Red Peel stood with his sword at his feet, glaring angrily round, while Sir Patrick, pausing, could hear his son David's voice in loud tones--
'I tell you this lady is a royal princess! Yes, she is'--as there was a kind of scoff--'and we are bound on a mission to your King from the King of Scots, and woe to him that touches a feather of ours.'
'That may be,' said the one who seemed chief among the English, 'but that gives no licence to fly at the Duke's game, nor slay his foresters for doing their duty. If we let the lady go, hawk and man must have their necks wrung, after forest laws.'
'And I tell thee,' cried Davie, 'that this is a noble gentleman of Scotland, and that we will fight for him to the death.'
'Let it alone, Davie,' said George. 'No scathe shall come to the lady through me.'
'Save him, Davie! save Skywing!' screamed Jean.
'To the rescue--a Drummond,' shouted David; but his father pushed his horse forward, just as the men in green, were in the act of stringing, all at the same moment, their bows, as tall as themselves. They were not so many but that his escort might have overpowered them, but only with heavy loss, nd the fact of such a fight would have been most disastrous.
'What means this, sirs?' he exclaimed, in a tone of authority, waving back his own men; and his dignified air, as well as the banner with which Andrew followed him, evidently took effect on the foresters, who perhaps had not believed the young men.
'Sir Patie, my hawk!' entreated Jean. 'She did but pounce on yon unco ugsome bird, and these bloodthirsty grasping loons would have wrung her neck.'
'She took her knife to me,' growled the wounded man, who had risen to his feet, and showed bleeding fingers.
'Ay, for meddling with a royal falcon,' broke in Jean. ''Tis thou, false loon, whose craig should be raxed.'
Happily this was an unknown tongue to the foresters, and Sir Patrick gravely silenced her.
'Whist, lady, brawls consort not with your rank. Gang back doucely to my leddy.'
'But Skywing! he has her jesses,' said the girl, but in a lower tone, as though rebuked.
'Sir ranger,' said Sir Patrick courteously, 'I trust you will let the young demoiselle have her hawk. It was loosed in ignorance and heedlessness, no doubt, but I trow it is the rule in England, as elsewhere, that ladies of the blood royal are not bound by forest laws.'
'Sir, if we had known,' said the ranger, who was evidently of gentle blood, as he took his foot off the jesses, and Jean now allowed David to remount her.
'But my Lord Duke is very heedful of his bustards, and when Roger there went to seize the bird, my young lady was over-ready with her knife.'
'Who would not be for thee, my bird?' murmured Jean.
'And yonder big fellow came plunging down and up with his sword--so as he was nigh on being the death of poor Roger again for doing his duty. If such be the ways of you Scots, sir, they be not English ways under my Lord Duke, that is to say, and if I let the lady and her hawk go, forest law must have its due on the young man there--I must have him up to Fotheringay to abide the Duke's pleasure.'
'Heed me not, Sir Patrick!' exclaimed Geordie. 'I would not have those of your meinie brought into jeopardy for my cause.'
David was plucking his father's mantle to suggest who George was, which in fact Sir Patrick might suspect enough to be conscious of the full awkwardness of the position, and to abandon the youth was impossible. Though it was not likely that the Duke of York would hang him if aware of his rank, he might be detained as a hostage or put to heavy ransom, or he might never be brought to the Duke's presence at all, but be put to death by some truculent underling, incredulous of a Scotsman's tale, if indeed he were not too proud to tell it. Anyway, Sir Patrick felt bound to stand by him.
'Good sir,' said he to the forester, 'will it content thee if we all go with thee to thy Duke? The two Scottish princesses are of his kin, and near of blood to King Henry, whom they are about to visit at Windsor. I am on a mission thither on affairs of state, but I shall be willing to make my excuses to him for any misdemeanour committed on his lands by my followers.'
The forester was consenting, when George cried--
'I'll have no hindrance to your journey on my account, Sir Patrick. Let me answer for myself.'
'Foolish laddie,' said the knight. 'Father Romuald and I were only now conferring as to paying the Duke a visit on our way. Sir forester, we shall be beholden to you for guiding us.'
He further inquired into the ranger's hurts, and salved them with a piece of gold, while David thought proper to observe to George--
'So much for thy devoir to thy princess! It was for Skywing's craig she cared, never thine.'
George turned a deaf ear to the insinuation. He was allowed free hands and his own horse, which was perhaps well for the Englishmen, for Ringan Raefoot, running by his stirrup, showed him a long knife, and said with a grin--
'Ready for the first who daurs to lay hands on the Master! Gin I could have come up in time, the loon had never risen from the ground.'
George endeavoured in vain to represent how much worse this would have made their condition.
Sir Patrick, joining the ladies, informed them of the necessity of turning aside to Fotheringay, which he had done not very willingly, being ignorant of the character of the Duke of York, except as one of the war party against France and Scotland, whereas the Beauforts were for peace. As a vigorous governor of Normandy, he had not commended him self to one whose sympathies were French. Lady Drummond, however, remembered that his wife, Cicely Nevil, the Rose of Raby, was younger sister to that Ralf Nevil who had married the friend of her youth, Alice Montagu, now Countess of Salisbury in her own right.
Sir Patrick did not let Jean escape a rebuke.
'So, lady, you see what perils to brave men you maids can cause by a little heedlessness.'
'I never asked Geordie to put his finger in,' returned Jean saucily. 'I could have brought off Skywing for myself without such a clamjamfrie after me.'
But Eleanor and Annis agreed that it was as good as a ballad, and ought to be sung in one, only Jean would have to figure as the 'dour lassie.' For she continued to aver, by turns, that Geordie need never have meddled, and that of course it was his bounden duty to stand by his King's sister, and that she owed him no thanks. If he were hanged for it he had run his craig into the noose.
So she tossed her proud head, and toyed with her falcon, as all rode on their way to Fotheringay, with Geordie in the midst of the rangers.
It was so many years since there had been serious war in England, that the castles of the interior were far less of fortresses than of magnificent abodes for the baronage, who had just then attained their fullest splendour. It may be observed that the Wars of the Roses were for the most part fought out in battles, not by sieges. Thus Fotheringay had spread out into a huge pile, which crowned the hill above, with a strong inner court and lofty donjon tower indeed, and with mighty walls, but with buildings for retainers all round, reaching down to the beautiful newly-built octagon-towered church; and with a great park stretching for miles, for all kinds of sport.
'All this enclosed! Yet they make sic a wark about their bustards, as they ca' them,' muttered Jean.
The forester had sent a messenger forward to inform the Duke of York of his capture. The consequence was that the cavalcade had no sooner crossed the first drawbridge under the great gateway of the castle, where the banner of Plantagenet was displayed, than before it were seen a goodly company, in the glittering and gorgeous robes of the fifteenth century.
There was no doubt of welcome. Foremost was a graceful, slenderly-made gentleman about thirty years old, in rich azure and gold, who doffed his cap of maintenance, turned up with fur, and with long ends, and, bowing low, declared himself delighted that the princesses of Scotland, his good cousins, should honour his poor dwelling.
He gave his hand to assist Jean to alight, and an equally gorgeous but much younger gentleman in the same manner waited on Eleanor. A tall, grizzled, sunburnt figure received Lady Drummond with recognition on both sides, and the words, 'My wife is fain to see you, my honoured lady: is this your daughter?' with a sign to a tall youth, who took Annis from her horse. Dame Lilias heard with joy that the Countess of Salisbury was actually in the castle, and in a few moments more she was in the great hall, in the arms of the sweet Countess Alice of her youth, who, middle-aged as she was, with all her youthful impulsiveness had not waited for the grand and formal greeting bestowed on the princesses by her stately young sister-in-law, the Duchess of York.
There seemed to be a perfect crowd of richly-dressed nobles, ladies, children; and though the Lady Joanna held her head up in full state, and kept her eye on her sister to make her do the same, their bewilderment was great; and when they had been conducted to a splendid chamber, within that allotted to the Drummond ladies, tapestry-hung, and with silver toilette apparatus, to prepare for supper, Jean dropped upon a high-backed chair, and insisted that Dame Lilias should explain to her exactly who each one was.
'That slight, dark-eyed carle who took me off my horse was the Duke of York, of course,' said she. 'My certie, a bonnie Scot would make short work of him, bones and all! And it would scarce be worth while to give a clout to the sickly lad that took Elleen down.'
'Hush, Jean,' said Eleanor; 'some one called him King! Was he King Harry himself?'
'Oh no,' said Dame Lilias, smiling; 'only King Harry of the Isle of Wight--a bit place about the bigness of Arran; but it pleased the English King to crown him and give him a ring, and bestow on him the realm in a kind of sport. He is, in sooth, Harry Beauchamp, Earl of Warwick, and was bred up as the King's chief comrade and playfellow.'
'And what brings him here?'
'So far as I can yet understand, the family and kin have gathered for the marriage of his sister, the Lady Anne--the red-cheeked maiden in the rose-coloured kirtle--to the young Sir Richard Nevil, the same who gave his hand to thee, Annis--the son of my Lord of Salisbury.'
'That was the old knight who led thee in, mother,' said Annis. 'Did you say he was brother to the Duchess?'
'Even so. There were fifteen or twenty Nevils of Raby--he was one of the eldest, she one of the youngest. Their mother was a Beaufort, aunt to yours.'
'Oh, I shall never unravel them!' exclaimed Eleanor, spreading out her hands in bewilderment.
Lady Drummond laughed, having come to the time of life when ladies enjoy genealogies.
'It will be enough,' she said, 'to remember that almost all are, like yourselves, grandchildren or great-grandchildren to King Edward of Windsor.'
Jean, however, wanted to know which were nearest to herself, and which were noblest. The first question Lady Drummond said she could hardly answer; perhaps the Earl of Salisbury and the Duchess, but the Duke was certainly noblest by birth, having a double descent from King Edward, and in the male line.
'Was not his father put to death by this King's father?' asked Eleanor.
'Ay, the Earl of Cambridge, for a foul plot. I have heard my Lord of Salisbury speak of it; but this young man was of tender years, and King Harry of Monmouth did not bear malice, but let him succeed to the dukedom when his uncle was killed in the Battle of Agincourt.'
'They have not spirit here to keep up a feud,' said Jean.
'My good brother--ay, and your father, Jeanie--were wont to say they were too Christian to hand on a feud,' observed Dame Lilias, at which Jean tossed her head, and said--
'That may suit such a carpet-knight as yonder Duke. He is not so tall as Elleen there, nor as his own Duchess.'
'I do not like the Duchess,' said Annis; 'she looks as if she scorned the very ground she walks on.'
'She is wondrous bonnie, though,' said Eleanor; 'and so was the bairnie by her side.'
In some degree Jean changed her opinion of the Duke, in consequence, perhaps, of the very marked attention that he showed her when the supper was spread. She had never been so made to feel what it was to be at once a king's daughter and a beauty; and at the most magnificent banquet she had ever known.
Durham had afforded a great advance on Scottish festivities; but in the absence of its Prince Bishop, another Nevil, it had lacked much of what was to be found at Fotheringay in the full blossoming of the splendours of the princely nobility of England, just ere the decimation that they were to perpetrate on one another.
The hall itself was vast, and newly finished in the rich culmination of Gothic work, with a fan tracery-vaulted roof, a triumph of architecture, each stalactite glowing with a shield or a badge of England, France, Mortimer, and Nevil--lion or lily, falcon and fetterlock, white rose and dun cow, all and many others--likewise shining in the stained glass of the great windows.
The high table was loaded with gold and silver plate, and Venice glasses even more precious; there were carpets under the feet of the nobler guests, and even the second and third tables were spread with more richness and refinement than ever the sisters of James II had known in their native land. In a gallery above, the Duke's musicians and the choristers of his chapel were ready to enliven the meal; and as the chief guest, the Lady Joanna of Scotland was handed to her place by the Duke of York, who, as she now perceived, though small in stature, was eminently handsome and graceful, and conversed with her, not as a mere child, but as a fair lady of full years.
Eleanor, who sat on his other hand beside the Earl of Salisbury, was rather provoked with her sister for never asking after the fate of her champion; but was reassured by seeing his red head towering among the numerous squires and other retainers of the second rank. It certainly was not his proper place, but it was plain that he was not in disgrace; and in fact the whole affair had been treated as a mere pardonable blunder of the rangers. The superior one was sitting next to the young Scot, making good cheer with him. Grand as the whole seemed to the travellers, it was not an exceptional banquet; indeed, the Duchess apologised for its simplicity, since she had been taken at unawares, evidently considering it as the ordinary family meal. There was ample provision, served up in by no means an unrefined manner, even to the multitudinous servants and retainers of the various trains; and beyond, on the steps and in the court, were a swarm of pilgrims, friars, poor, and beggars of all kinds, waiting for the fragments.
It was a wet evening, and when the tables were drawn the guests devoted themselves to various amusements. Lord Salisbury challenged Sir Patrick to a game at chess, Lady Salisbury and Dame Lilias wished for nothing better than to converse over old times at Middleham Castle; but the younger people began with dancing, the Duke, who was only thirty years old, leading out the elder Scottish princess, and the young King of the Isle of Wight the stately and beautiful Duchess Cicely. Eleanor, who knew she did not excel in anything that required grace, and was, besides, a good deal fatigued, would fain have excused herself when paired with the young Richard Nevil; but there was a masterful look about him that somewhat daunted her, and she obeyed his summons, though without acquitting herself with anything approaching to the dexterity of her sister, who, with quite as little practice as herself, danced well--by quickness of eye and foot, and that natural elegance of movement which belongs to symmetry.
The dance was a wreathing in and out of the couples, including all of rank to dance together, and growing more and more animated, till excitement took the place of weariness; and Eleanor's pale cheeks were flushed, her eyes glowing, when the Duchess's signal closed the dance.
Music was then called for, and several of the princely company sang to the lute; Jean, pleased to show there was something in which her sister excelled, and gratified at some recollections that floated up of her father's skill in minstrelsy, insisted on sending for Eleanor's harp.
'Oh, Jean, not now; I canna,' murmured Eleanor, who had been sitting with fixed eyes, as though in a dream.
But the Duke and other nobles came and pressed her, and Jean whispered to her not to show herself a fule body, and disgrace herself before the English, setting the harp before her and attending to the strings. Eleanor's fingers then played over them in a dreamy, fitful way, that made the old Earl raise his head and say--
'That twang carries me back to King Harry's tent, and the good old time when an Englishman's sword was respected.'
''Tis the very harp,' said Sir Patrick; 'ay, and the very tune--'
'Come, Elleen, begin. What gars thee loiter in that doited way?' insisted Jean. 'Come, "Up atween."'
And, led by her sister in spite of herself, almost, as it were, without volition, Eleanor's sweet pathetic voice sang--
'Up atween yon twa hill-sides, lass, Where I and my true love wont to be, A' the warld shall never ken, lass, What my true love said to me. 'Owre muckle blinking blindeth the ee, lass, Owre muckle thinking changeth the mind, Sair is the life I've led for thee, lass, Farewell warld, for it's a' at an end.'
Her voice had been giving way through the last verse, and in the final line, with a helpless wail of the harp, she hid her face, and sank back with a strange choked agony.
'Why, Elleen! Elleen, how now?' cried Jean. 'Cousin Lilias, come!'
Lady Drummond was already at her side, and the Duchess and Lady Salisbury proffering essences and cordials, the gentlemen offering support; but in a moment or two Eleanor recovered enough to cling to Lady Drummond, muttering--
'Oh, take me awa', take me awa'!'
And hushing the scolding which Jean was commencing by way of bracing, and rejecting all the kind offers of service, Dame Lilias led the girl away, leaving Jean to make excuses and explanations about her sister being but 'silly' since they had lost their mother, and the tune minding her of home and of her father.
When, with only Annis following, the chambers had been reached, Eleanor let herself sink on. a cushion, hiding her face against her friend, and sobbing hysterically--
'Oh, take me awa', take me awa'! It's all blood and horror!'
'My bairnie, my dearie! You are over-weary--'tis but a dreamy fancy. Look up! All is safe; none can harm you here.'
With soothings, and with some of the wine on the table, Lady Drummond succeeded in calming the girl, and, with Annis's assistance, she undressed her and placed her in the bed.
'Oh, do not gang! Leave me not,' she entreated. And as the lady sat by her, holding her hand, she spoke, 'It was all dim before me as the music played, and--'
'Thou wast sair forefaughten, dearie.'
Eleanor went on--
'And then as I touched mine harp, all, all seemed to swim in a mist of blood and horror. There was the old Earl and the young bridegroom, and many and many more of them, with gaping wounds and deathly faces--all but the young King of the Isle of Wight and his shroud, his shroud, Cousin Lily, it was up to his breast; and the ladies' faces that were so blithe, they were all weeping, ghastly, and writhen; and they were whirling round a great sea of blood right in the middle of the hall, and I could--I could bear it no longer.'
Lady Drummond controlled herself, and for the sake both of the sobbing princess and of her own shuddering daughter said that this terrible vision came of the fatigue of the day, and the exhaustion and excitement that had followed. She also knew that on poor Eleanor that fearful Eastern's Eve had left an indelible impression, recurring in any state of weakness or fever. She scarcely marvelled at the strange and frightful fancies, except that she believed enough in second-sight to be concerned at the mention of the shroud enfolding the young Beauchamp, who bore the fanciful title of the King of the Isle of Wight.
For the present, however, she applied herself to the comforting of Eleanor with tender words and murmured prayers, and never left her till she had slept and wakened again, her full self, upon Jean coming up to bed at nine o'clock--a very late hour-- escorted by sundry of the ladies to inquire for the patient.
Jean was still excited, but she was, with all her faults, very fond of her sister, and obeyed Lady Drummond in being as quiet as possible. She seemed to take it as a matter of course that Elleen should have her strange whims.
'Mother used to beat her for them,' she said, 'but Nurse Ankaret said that made her worse, and we kept them secret as much as we could. To think of her having them before all that English folk! But she will be all right the morn.'
This proved true; after the night's rest Eleanor rose in the morning as if nothing had disturbed her, and met her hosts as if no visions had hung around them. It was well, for Sir Patrick had accepted the invitation courteously given by the Duke of York to join the great cavalcade with which he, with his brothers-in-law, the Earl of Salisbury and Bishop of Durham, and the Earl of Warwick, alias the King of the Isle of Wight, were on their way to the Parliament that was summoned anent the King's marriage. The unwilling knights of the shire and burgesses of Northampton who would have to assist in the money grant had asked his protection; and all were to start early on the Monday--for Sunday was carefully observed as a holiday, and the whole party in all their splendours attended high mass in the beautiful church.
After time had been given for the ensuing meal, all the yeomen and young men of the neighbourhood came up to the great outer court of the castle, where there was ample space for sports and military exercises, shooting with the long and cross bow, riding at the quintain and the like, in competitions with the grooms and men-at-arms attached to the retinue of the various great men; and the wives, daughters, and sweethearts came up to watch them. For the most successful there were prizes of leathern coats, bows, knives, and the like, and refreshments of barley- bread, beef, and very small beer, served round with a liberal hand by the troops of servants bearing the falcon and fetterlock badge, and all was done not merely in sport but very much in earnest, in the hope on the part of the Duke, and all who were esteemed patriotic, that these youths might serve in retaining at least, if not in recovering, the English conquests.
Those of gentle blood abstained from their warlike exercises on this day of the week, but they looked on from the broad walk in the thickness of the massive walls; the Duke with his two beautiful little boys by his side, the young Earls of March and Rutland, handsome fair children, in whom the hereditary blue eyes and fair complexion of the Plantagenets recurred, and who bade fair to surpass their father in stature. Their mother was by right and custom to distribute the prizes, but she always disliked doing so, and either excused herself, or reached them out with the ungracious demeanour that had won for her the muttered name of 'Proud Cis'. On this day she had avoided the task on the plea of the occupations caused by her approaching journey, and the Duke put in her place his elder boy and his little cousin, Lady Anne Beauchamp, the child of the young King of the Isle of Wight--a short-lived little delicate being, but very fair and pretty, so that the two children together upon a stone chair, cushioned with red velvet, were like a fairy king and queen, and there was many a murmur of admiration, and 'Bless their little hearts' or 'their sweet faces,' as Anne's dainty fingers handled the prizes, big bows or knives, arrows or belts, and Edward had a smile and appropriate speech for each, such as 'Shoot at a Frenchman's breast next time, Bob'; 'There's a knife to cut up the deer with, Will,' and the like amenities, at which his father nodded, well pleased to see the arts of popularity coming to him by nature. Sir Patrick watched with grave eyes, as he thought of his beloved sovereign's desire to see his people thus practised in arms without peril of feud and violence to one another.
Jean looked on, eager to see some of the Scots of their own escort excel the English pock-puddings, but though Dandie and two or three more contended, the habits were too unfamiliar for them to win any great distinction, and George Douglas did not come forward; the competition was not for men of gentle blood, and success would have brought him forward in a manner it was desirable to avoid. There was a good deal of merry talk between Jean and the hosts, enemies though she regarded them. The Duke of York was evidently much struck with her beauty and liveliness, and he asked Sir Patrick in private whether there were any betrothal or contract in consequence of which he was taking her to France.
'None,' said Sir Patrick, 'it is merely to be with her sister, the Dauphiness.'
'Then,' said young Richard Nevil, who was standing by him, and seemed to have instigated the question, 'there would be no hindrance supposing she struck the King's fancy.'
'The King is contracted,' said Sir Patrick.
'Half contracted! but to the beggarly daughter of a Frenchman who calls himself king of half-a-dozen realms without an acre in any of them. It is not gone so far but that it might be thrown over if he had sense and spirit not to be led by the nose by the Cardinal and Suffolk.'
'Hush-hush, Dick! this is dangerous matter,' said the Duke, and Sir Patrick added--
'These ladies are nieces to the Cardinal.'
'That is well, and it would win the more readily consent--even though Suffolk and his shameful peace were thrown over,' eagerly said the future king-maker.
'Gloucester would be willing,' added the Duke. 'He loved the damsel's father, and hateth the French alliance.'
'I spoke with her,' added Nevil, 'and, red-hot little Scot as she is, she only lacks an English wedlock to make her as truly English, which this wench of Anjou can never be.'
'She would give our meek King just the spring and force he needs,' said the Duke; 'but thou wilt hold thy peace, Sir Knight, and let no whisper reach the women-folk.'
This Sir Patrick readily promised. He was considerably tickled by the idea of negotiating such an important affair for his young King and his protegee, feeling that the benefit to Scotland might outweigh any qualms as to the disappointment to the French allies. Besides, if King Henry of Windsor should think proper to fall in love with her, he could not help it; he had not brought her away from home or to England with any such purpose; he had only to stand by and let things take their course, so long as the safety and honour of her, her brother, and the kingdom were secure. So reasoned the canny Scot, but he held his tongue to his Lilias.