The young Henry VIII newly king of England musters what courage he has left to speak the dreaded words to his beloved oldest sister “Our Lord Father and Sovereign is Dead”. Chosing words more delicate and tasteful in nature the deed is done there is no return.
Henry sat at his desk trying to compose a letter to his sister Margaret, Queen of Scotland. She had not been back to England since she left at 13. The late king had made the alliance, to help bring peace between England and Scotland. For the Scot’s loved to invade England’s northern border. He hoped that Margaret would have someone there who would help console her. Margaret and Arthur had been very close as the eldest, and the loss of Arthur and their Lady Mother were hard on Margaret. He hoped he could find the words to bring her some comfort, that father would be happy reunited with their mother again and be with God. He wondered if Margaret would come for a visit now. Henry felt glad to have his grandmother help him make the transition from a happy care free prince to the new king of England. He wanted the legacy that King Henry V had brought to England and throw off the bleakness and taxation of the last year of his father’s reign. Henry knew his job was to keep the Tudor Dynasty that his father started going.
My being is overcome with pain and anguish knowing what must be done. My beloved lord father has passed and Margaret my eldest lady sister must be told. I have postponed this vexing task for as long as mortally possible and I must put quill to parchment.
“ my beloved and virtuous sister, my humble duty remembered . I must speak of words which crush my soul and vex my heart. Our lord father has passed into god’s hands. I beg of thee to keep remembrance of our sister Mary and myself in such time of melancholy. I wish of nothing more than perpetual peace to reign between our two nations. As your brother, I wish to remind you your duty to England. The tragic and untimely loss of our Lord Father shall have no change in the state of affairs with the Scots and I trust you shall bring honor to our family and England. I humbly take my leave and rest your loving brother and sovereign.
Court at Richmond
21st of april 1509”
The deed is done and the words have been wrote. My heart sinks as I take a hearty drink of ale . The ale brings the courage to summon my groom ”Master Thomas, send this missive”.
Margaret watched the messenger leave her chambers with the letter she just wrote. Wiping away the tears from her cheeks, she glanced at the stack of parchment and ink well on her desk. Smeared pages, wax sticks haphazardly strewn on its surface due to the hastiness she wrote the letter to James. She wondered what his reaction was going to be. Would he be mad? or would he understand her place, and let her go home. Her father had been he strength during her journey to this strange land of Scotland. He was even at her side, consoling her when her horses died in a stable fire on her journey to Scotland. Her husband was also at her side. Yet it was her father who saw to it that her saddles and horses were eventually replaced. James as much as he tried, found it difficult to ultimately have the same effect on her demeanor.
She signed looking at the desk and went to sit back down. Henry, she needed to return his inquiring and delivery of the sad news.
”My Dearest Brother Henry,
I am grief stricken with the news of our fathers passing. Knowing that he has gone to our Lord brings me great sadness, as it was in my absence that this has come to pass. I pray there is not much burden on you. Is our lady grandmother helping?
I have written to James, as he is away. I do wish Scotland and England could come to some sense and stop fighting each other. Maybe you could eventually come to terms with James? I have asked him to let me come home to you, to grieve this loss our house has suffered, and England as well. I hope he grants my wish. I am not at home here in Scotland. It is not England. It is cold and dark, and court is grey and dismal. I miss the warmth of Hampton and London. Oh dear brother, I wish to come home.
Your loving sister,
She drew a little rose at the end of her letter. She always liked to add something to her letters to her brother. She hoped it made him happy. Folded, wax and sealed, She ran for the messenger again. She gave the note to the messenger again who looked at her like she was completely indecisive after only have left her presence a half hour before. She was tired. She went back to her window seat and grabbed a fur throw on the way. Huddled in the corner of the window seat looking out across the green hills of the Scottish valley, which was now her home; tears began to roll down her cheeks, as she one again thought of her father and her beloved England.
Henry Tudor, King of England:
Sitting at my writing desk I am handed a parchment sealed with a wax stamp I know too well. As I unveil the missive sadness over takes my heart as the wounds of our father’s death are unearthed. Mary has become my source of comfort and closeness since Arthur’s death but still much of my being yearns to be united with Margaret once more.
My beloved sister Margaret,
In such a time of sadness I wish nothing more than to see thy face. Nothing more than the comfort of your presence could possibly ease the pain and sorrow that is devouring my heart. Speaking for Mary , myself and all of England your absence has left many grief stricken and longing for thy company once more. Thy audience shall be warmly and graciously received upon the occasion that thy Lord Husband allows thee to travel to England.
As for Scotland I wish for nothing more than peace to reign between our two nations Alas thy lord husband wishes not for the same. Mayhap you can remedy this as such an alliance could be greatly enjoyed and loved between our two countries. As we both know the King of Scotland can be most difficult but with your charm and Tudor wits I do hope you can sooth his ill temperament.
Humbly thy loving brother