Father & Son – King & Prince

Late at night, at the feast

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Prince Dieter of Sweden Z
My father approaches me, and Louise, kingly as he may be, his eyes do not fool me … He has come here, not only for my sister’s sake but to control me. To keep a close eye on me ”As usual father” He smirks a little, he knows I do not always behave as he should like, but he forgets the days of his youth. Most people say we are very much alike. I look at my sisters for a moment ”You should be concerned for my prospects, don’t you think? After all, I am to be your Heir” I raise my brow. He looks at Louise with desdain as I tightly hold her hand into mine. He asks ”And who is this?” Louise is not the type of lady that would be easily frightened, but in this case, she takes a step back. My eyes shoot at my father right away ”Louise Borgia” I whisper, with pride. I’m proud of her. We should leave this public hall, for I know we are going to battle about her, my father and I.

Louise Borgia Z
I am glad I have dressed in my finest tonight. Shimmering gold silk and brocade laden with pearls and my lastest gift from Dieter gracing my throat. Neither of us had any idea that his father would appear and so I am pleased that I shall be introduced to him looking my very best.
I approach the king of Sweden with my head held high. I refuse to be intimidated by him, or by anyone for that matter. My blood is as noble as that of almost any, my family legend, I will not be cowed by him. I take Dieter’s hand and squeeze it tightly as we walk up to the ageing king and I bow my head respectfully, my manners learnt at the court of France impeccable as ever.

”It is a pleasure to meet you your grace”

The look of icy disdain he shoots at me would be enough to make most women tremble. But not I. I take a respectful step backwards but keep my head held high and flicker a look at my prince as I do so. The anger that flashes in his eye at his fathers reaction, I fear, does not bode well.

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Gustav Vasa Z

I listen as Dieter introduces me to his latest mistress and see the diamonds adorning her throat and know immediately that they were bought with kronas from my treasury. That will be the first thing I do, cut his funds. Then I hear her name, and cannot believe my ears. She is the spawn of that devil Cesare Borgia. The Borgia’s are well known for their use of poison and a sick feeling comes to my stomach. Could Dieter and this Borgia woman be behind Erica’s assassination attempt? Snälla Gud, Please God, my son cannot be capable of such evilness. I stare into his eyes looking deep into his soul. ” M’lady if you can excuse my son and I, we have much to discuss. Dieter, let us go somewhere private.” He whispers something to his mistress and we go outside, for I know min son and this will be an ugly argument. I see the anger in his eyes but the boy will learn his place!

Prince Dieter of Sweden Z
”Father” I whisper, trying to control my anger ”There’s nothing you say she cannot listen. Louise is not only my confidant but she is also… well… father… she is to be my wife” I whisper. I can almost hear Louise’s heart stopping. She did not know of my intentions and perhaps, perhaps I shouldn’t have said anything. My father’s eyes go red with anger and despair, he cannot possibly understand how I, the rightful heir to the throne of Sweden, can possibly think to marry a woman whom he considers of low birth. I see him swallowing this rage for a second and whispering ”Son, please, let’s go speak in private” I roll my eyes and follow him to King Arthur’s privaty study.

Louise Borgia Z
I freeze, the entire world around me stopping at my prince’s words. His wife! He had never mentioned the possiblity of marriage, and as such, I had never entertained it. Marrying Dieter would in time make me queen of Sweden, a fact my father is no doubt at this moment, writhing around in his grave with joy at. I turn my head slowly to the man I had grow to love so, knowing my eyes are wide and glittering with astonishment, no words forming on my lips. I want to ask a million questions, I want to throw myself into his arms, I want to kiss him. Yet I can do none of these things. I am brought back to the harsh reality of the situation by his fathers face turning so red I fear he may burst.

As idyllic a thought as marrying the man I love may seem, the truth is, that as a prince, he is of a station above me. Even if my blood runs as noble as almost any I meet, and that I most certainly do not consider myself to be below anybody in the natural order of things . The look on Gustav’s face says as much and I watch him almost bundle Dieter into the study to talk, my hand trailing uselessly after them, my eyes not able to leave the soulful ones still locked to mine. All I manage is to murmer as he is taken away; ”I love you” and pray that this has not all been the most beautiful and terrifying dream, before starting to pace the corridor like a caged lioness, my mind running a thousand thoughs a moment.
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Gustav Vasa Z
I close the heavy wooden door in Arthur’s study and try to control my anger. I have let Dieter get away with too much but he has gone too far now. I pour 2 goblets of wine that Arthur has left and quickly drain mine as I look into the face of a son I no longer understand. I slam it down on the table with a loud thud. ” Dieter, du har gått för långt den här gängen. You have gone too far this time and I will no longer put up with your immature, spoiled, behavior. Remember, I am still kung of Sweden, not you! I do not have to leave my kingdom to you. Your behavior sickens me, a Borgia as princess of Sweden? HAVE YOU LOST YOUR MIND? NEVER!!! I don’t care what women you play with but your marriage will benefit Sweden and not your loins. She will never be a royal, not the spawn of Cesare Borgia.

What are you still doing in England? I have not seen you do one thing to help your sisters or Sven find the murderer who wishes to kill your sister. You are here spending Swedish funds on your mistress, enjoying yourself and learning nothing about becoming a kung. You disgust me! On an event as glorious as this, with the news that Erica carries the English heir you tell me you are going to marry a Borgia?” Laughs angrily and tries to control himself from physically attacking Dieter. ” Your poor mother, what will she say when she learns of how low her son has sunk. You are unworthy to rule any kingdom, least of all mine. You either come back to Sweden alone and learn your duties as my heir or I cut off all your funds from this moment on. We are not England, I can leave my throne to Erica and Arthur, or anyone I find more fit to rule then you. Which gives me a long list.” I pour another glass of wine waiting for the battle to commence with Dieter.

Prince Dieter of Sweden Z
I know my father hopes I’d burst into a volcano of angry words and threats, yet if there’s something I’ve learned in my time in England, is to be calm. I am not calm, all I want to do right now it’s finally end with my father’s life. All he’s done his entire life is treat me as a dog, as a sick, good-for-nothing dog. ME! His one true HEIR. I envy the english Princes, I envy them because they had been treated like the most preacious diamonds on this earth while me, had always been treated as second best, even though I’m First. I take a deep breath and put my hands together, playing with the idea in my head of wrapping them around his neck, he’s never had any sort of respect or love for me, so why should I care? ”Father … I know more about that attempt of murder than you know, Sven has only made a fool of himself here and Erica, along with my little sister. It’s on her person where you should be putting your judgemental eyes on, or haven’t you hear? Ha! Such a chaste little soul, yes… right” I say sarcastically, I can see my father’s face turning more serious rather than angry, he wouldn’t want my sister’s to be taken for Cheapside prostitutes ”Arthur is weak, I’ve seen it. He neither has respect nor real power over his own men, would you honestly leave your Reign to him? Ha” I laugh, if there’s a quality I have is that either by love or fear, I inspire respect on my own people, and I got that from my father, the King ”Whom I marry should not be a concern at the moment … but I do believe our alliance with England is weak, a Kingdom can only be as strong as its ruler” I whisper

Gustav Vasa Z
I look at my son in disbelief, where has he come up with his theories? I shake my head in disgust and drink the wine in one gulp to try and control my temper.

” Dieter, I cannot believe my ears. You are the prince of Sweden, the next king! I have groomed you to take my place, to stand up to the Danes and keep peace in our realm. You cannot just pick a woman as a wife who amuses you while you are in England and flames your loins. What does she bring to YOUR country? NOTHING! It cannot be done, we must stay strong and have a great naval fleet that will bring fear to all of Sweden’s enemies. England is helping us with this. King Arthur looked in charge of his country tonight. Our alliance is a big benefit to both our countries. But all you do is slander your sisters, Sven and Arthur. What have you found out about the attempt on Erica’s life? Did you learn it between your mistresses legs?” I slam my goblet down. No more Dieter, no more. You will return with me to Sweden or you will be cut off from all your funds.”

I am hurt by my son’s behavior. Dieter could be a great king but he is too selfish now and only cares about his own pleasures in life. I love my son but I do not understand him. I do not understand any of this. Where is his loyalty to his sisters and his country?

Prince Dieter of Sweden Z
If I return to Sweden, my plot against my father and sisters will be ruined but if I do not return, he will begin to mistrust me and that’s a price I cannot afford. He seems to be infuriated by my choice in women, I love Louise, for what she is … who she is. But I will not speak of her name in front of him again, in a way he is right, she cannot bring me powerful alliances, but I won’t be needing that when I get rid of this isolated island, I will make my kingly alliances with realms of importance, not poor little England. I’ll make my alliances with Castile, Aragon, Florence, Rome … not England. An island lost in the sea – Would have England become what it became, if Arthur was indeed King? – ”Father” I whisper calmly, seeking to calm him down too. I pour a goblet of wine for him and take a deep breath, deciding to say what he wishes to hear, after all, I am a great manipulator, a deceiver … like my mother, only that he does not realize it ”You are right, I shall return with you immediately to Sweden if you truly wish for that” I look at him, sipping my wine slowly ”But I should not, I should stay here, protecting my sisters … They have too many enemies here, they have not made friends as I have, it seems … it seems Erica is not loved and Clarisa … well. I have found many clues on Erica’s attempt of murder, but I fear for all our lives, England is dangerous, on many aspects. It’s also full of temptations, perhaps Sven shouldn’t be here … I refuse to leave my beloved sisters, they are the two halves that make my heart whole” I speak with a convincing tone of affection and determination, I drink more wine ”Father, I will do as you command” I chuckle ”But don’t you agree with me? Shouldn’t I stay here? Since I arrived … no one tried to do them harm. Who is better than their own brother to protect them? As our ancestors and their ancestor have done for a thousand years”

Gustav Vasa Z
I drain my goblet and listen to my son’s words. Why does he want Sven to go back to Sweden? If he cared about his sisters then he would work side by side with Sven. Dieter is my son, my heir but I do not trust him. I wipe the wine with my sleeve and think. He is up to something, he thinks he knows so much more then I do. Yet, he has never ruled or fought in a war. He just thinks of his own desires and pleasures. I will let him stay and leave enough rope till he hangs himself.

I glare into his eyes and stand at my full height.” Dieter, you have not been home to see the growth of our navy, all due to our alliance with England. He who rules the sea, rules the world. You have a lot to learn about governing a nation. Most importantly that you marry for a strong alliance, not because some maiden has enflamed your lions. Make her your mistress but your wife NEVER! I will leave you in England but watch your step and who you make alliances with. ” Dieter smirks with insolence and I have to control myself not to wipe the smirk from his face. He thinks I am old and do not have the strength to strip him from his inheritance and to be Sweden’s next king but he underestimates his father.

” Dieter, I expect you to protect your sisters and do what is best for Sweden and the Vasa name. Do not disappoint me for you have never felt my wrath and you may ask the Danes what happens to men who defy Gustav Vasa! Now let us join your sisters in unity for support of this child that Erica carries. Do not introduce me to your mistresses, I will arrange your marriage and it may be done very quickly. Now let us leave in agreement to what your position and job is here in England.” I look into the eyes of the son who I love so much but do not trust.

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I sense mistrust in my father’s words, so I decide to plead my case no more and bend the knee. For now “I shall do as you command, father. I shall be the son, the heir you’ve dreamed of” I say, honestly, in the end … I’ve always wanted to be a great ruler and though I think my father is weak, unlike my mother, he is respected by his allies and that’s a thing to admire. Arthur is weak, sooner or later everyone shall see it, I’ll keep my alliance with Prince Henry in the dark, he is the wing which England should be under of. The one Sweden should be making treaties with … We’ll overthrow Arthur, conque England for him, once I have Sweden for myself. It is a pity that my father is not a visionary, he could have been greater “We’d agreed I would come here to protect my sisters and keep Erica’s and Sweden’s interest always first and I shall do so, blessed father” I walk up to him “I’ll make you proud, there will be no more talk of my mistress and I shall await your choice in marriage for myself” I bet he is confused whether to believe or not in my honesty, I am my mother’s son, and since he knows us both well, he could never know when we are being honest or just playing our part. But since it is in my own benefit, I shall play the part he wants me to play … For now.

 

– Fades to black –

Written by: Gustav Vasa Z, Louise Borgia Z & Prince Dieter of Sweden Z.

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