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The Duke's Toleration


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The Duke of Ablemarle did not have an office in Windsor Castle, at least one that he was willing to tolerate.  It was of use to junior officers perhaps.  Instead, he liked to have meetings upon the battlements because it made him feel powerful gazing at the lands below.

His new  Adjutant, having replaced FitzJames after the Scot went north, moved up beside the Duke.  "Your Grace, do you need to see the plans about security at the baptism?"  He knew the likely answer.

"No, no.  I am sure they are well thought out.  You take care of them." Chris Monck gave out a sigh.  There were too many tedious tasks in his position.

"I have to ask, Your Grace, did you finally hire men to teach that Forensi fraud a lesson?"  To this, Monck turned to his man and asked "what do you mean?  I hired no one."

"Well sir, the Hungarian went out into the woods and returned bloody and disheveled.  It looked as though he had a good English thrashing."

"A pity that I had not thought of it," the Duke conceded.  "The man is the ruination of my lady wife's finances.  He has her believing all manner of nonsense.  Speak to the dead? pah.  Why not speak to Jesus or King Arthur while you are at it?" he derided the Count.  "The French court is into this nonsense.  If it was just turning tarot cards, it would be harmless enough."

"Your Grace, I am not sure the man is stable.  He has been seen talking to himself, and one man overheard that he has convinced the Duchess to meet him in the bowels of the castle for some unholy rite.  Should we tell the Archbishop?"

If the Archbishop was forced to intervene to save his wife from heretics, it would not look good on the family name.  "No no, do not tell anyone.  Let me see what this is about.  See if you can learn the time and location of this ritual from the Hungarian.  Perhaps we can stop it or prove he is a fake."

The Adjutant knew his superior well enough to know that Monck would not be able to stop his wife.  The Duke kept speaking of his control over things when all evidence pointed otherwise.


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