“Tell me, MASTER Cromwell…”


Thomas Cromwell: The man is impossible. I should have left for Parliament two hours ago, but here I still waiting in my office for my Lord of Suffolk to arrive. The arrogance of the man. He seems to think because I am common born that my time is not as valuable as his.

Charles Brandon: When I received Cromwell’s note this morning that he wanted me to join him by his office after council, I was really displeased because this man unnerves me. He always has reports. His nose is everywhere, and his attitude towards me makes me rage. He’s a lap dog to me,  a very annoying lap dog.  As I arrive at his office, where I am announced by his assistant. ”Master Secretary, his Grace, the Duke of Suffolk is here.” I come in, and he bids me to sit, offering a goblet of wine.I observe it suspiciously.

Thomas Cromwell: What a toad, snubbing his nose at the fine wine gifted to me by the Imperial Ambassador. I look across my desk, and get rigt to the point. ”His Majesty is seeking your support in an important matter of state. I should have been at Parliament over two hours ago, but yet again you are late for our meeting. I am bringing with me this series of parchments which detail the Act of Succession. In effect, it will change the succession of the crown from the LADY Mary to the children His Majesty will seed in our new and gracious Queen Anne.” I pass the parchments over. ”I suggest you review these carefully. His Majesty expects your support in pushing this through the House of Lords.” I drink some wine. It is sweet.

Charles Brandon: I finally decide to gulp down the wine, and it tastes very fine, fruity and good … but with Cromwell, you never know. ”His Majesty always has my support,” I say, even before listening to him … but once he tells me of the new Act of Succession and the fact that the Princess Mary is no longer a Princess, my face changes. My chin drops, damn it. ”He wants me to push this through the House of Lords?” I ask him, mostly reassuring myself of what I must do. Cromwell nods, and I take the papers into my hands, reading them quickly. … Indeed, the word Princess is stripped off Mary’s name, and it’s like a punch in my throat. I care not for religion, but deep down I am Catholic. She’s a catholic treasure to me. ”Queen Anne,” I say and look at him. ”I wonder why His Majesty sends you to tell me this when he can do it himself… Tell me, MASTER Cromwell, is it you who wrote this?”

Thomas Cromwell: He intimidates me not. I look him directly in the eye. ”I am the King’s Secretary and Chief Minister, YOUR GRACE. Obviously, it is my job to draft law at the King’s pleasure, and obviously it is my job to be instructing you of his desires in the matter. His Majesty is a busy man, and does not deal with such trifles. He just wants it done, by me in the House of Commons and by you in the House of Lords. This is his will, and the King’s will is the law, is it not?”

Charles Brandon:  I listen to him and sigh, loudly … It’s clear that we both bug each other, quite a lot. BUT, we are different. Cromwell has to respect me. And me? Well, I don’t have to… ”Yes the King’s will is law, but I wonder if it’s really his will,” I whisper lowly. His face shoots up, looking at me straightly. I sigh again and ask for more wine, which is poured to me immediately. ”I will do as the King commands Cromwell…” He smirks and I look at him, not being able to help it. ”I feel like I should know you by now, but somehow I don’t…” He looks at me emotionless, and I take a deep breath. ”Nevermind, I know what I mean.” I clear my throat. ”Ah, Cromwell… my wife sends her regards.” I laugh sarcastically. There’s no one that dislikes him more than me, but my wife… She dislikes him quite a lot.

Thomas Cromwell: I lean over the desk, and reply feigning concern… ”I do hope she starts her bleeds soon, Your Grace. I am sure you desire more children. It would be a shame if you had to wait too long.”

Charles Brandon: I want to laugh but… ”MASTER Cromwell, how dare you… how dare you speak in those terms of my wife?” I speak sternly, but inside my head I’m laughing, a lot… Tt was funny, but nevertheless, he must know his place. ”You are a servant; you can’t speak to me like that.” I looks at him with all seriousness.. ”Ironic isn’t it? That I have a wife next to me, that loves but you… can you say the same? Oh no wait, you are alone, like a street dog…” I clear my throat ”Now, I know your secret so… you better learn to respect your betters,” I say.

Thomas Cromwell: This man, also born common, forgets his roots. He knows “my secret” not. If he did, I would already be a dead man. No matter, let him gloat. I know who sleeps in my bed, and she isn’t a child. ”Your grace, I was merely stating concern on your behalf. And, my private life is not your concern. As you so commonly point out I am low-born. Obviously, I am not chasing the ladies here at court, but seek my comforts elsewhere..”

Charles Brandon: ”Very well, Master Secretary… I don’t see any point in continuing this conversation,” I say and finish my wine. I stand up and pick up the papers that he so graciously handed me over. ”I shall pass this through the House of Lords; you can tell his Majesty that it shall be done as he says,” I add and head out, back to my apartments. That man, one day, I will get rid of him… piece by piece, I will get rid of him.

Thomas Cromwell:  ”I am so glad we have an agreement, Your Grace. Carry on.”

Thomas Cromwell: “The song is about me, Your Grace.”

Charles Brandon: I roll my eyes and sneer, “No, MASTER Cromwell, it’s about ME.”

~~~~~ FADE TO BLACK ~~~~~

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