Warning: Bad grammar, since English is not my first language
Disclaimer: The characters belonged to themselves. No offence meant. This is pure fiction and NOT historical fact. Despite that, this fic belongs to me.
Summary: It is May 1536, Anne Boleyn, the Queen who is accused of treason, adultery and incest, would soon be beheaded. She reflects on the things she did.
Author's notes: Even though I do not like Anne Boleyn as a person, I do pity her. She did not deserve such a treatment even if she had made (or more accurately, been the cause of) people's (e.g. Mary I and Catherine of Aragon) lives living hells. This is the fourth fic I wrote about the Tudors, and a fifth is on the way. So, I am Tudor-addicted. Reviews are more than welcome!
I swear that I am innocent of the crime I am being accused of. I swear to God that it is just Henry's scheme to get rid of me.
When the King of England is determined to get rid of you, nothing can change his mind. He would try every possible method to reach his aim. I understand Henry, he would stop at nothing.
Just to get rid of a woman he no longer loves, even despises now.
I do not pretend to be someone virtuous and kind. They are simply not the words to describe me, Anne Boleyn, the "Great Whore" who "seduced" the King. But it is over now. Henry's love for me, my glorious days as Queen of England, and my life, all over with only one stroke of the executor's sword.
God cannot change Henry's cold, cruel heart and save me from this misery. I am never a religious woman. That is what old Catherine of Aragon was, but never I.
Catherine of Aragon, I destroyed her life, her peaceful life as Queen of England. I, Anne Boleyn, made England the enemy of all Roman Catholic countries. I turned the King against his own flesh and bones, the Princess Mary, and made her Princess no more.
I have sinned, but do I deserve death?
I silently asked my conscience, did Catherine of Aragon deserve hers? Dying in a cold house, with no one but a few ladies-in-waiting at her deathbed, being denied from her beloved daughter's presence. It was my doings. I used to rejoice at her death. The poor woman, now I sympathise with her.
I should have known better, this thought constantly enters my minds these few days. From my sister's example, I should have known the King's cruelness and selfishness. But I have no one to blame for the start of this nightmare, for I was the one to seduce him.
To promise something that I had yet to give him is stupid. I gave him hopes that I can bear his sons. I made a subtle promise that I would present him the next King of England. At the end, I gave him only Elizabeth, a girl, no better than Mary, or even worse.
I know Catherine would be disgusted if she knew I am comparing the two of us, since she was the Infanta of Spain, daughter of Ferdinand of Aragon and Isabella of Castille, while I, Anne Boleyn, is only the daughter of Sir Thomas Boleyn and his wife Elizabeth.
However, somehow we are similar. We are both the women that Henry once fell madly in love with. Both of us have a daughter. And thereby, both of us failed him, failed our wifely duty—to bear a healthy son.
But Catherine of Aragon, the virtuous and religious Queen, forever got the people's fondness and supports. She defeated our arch-enemy from the north while Henry was away. And I, what did I do? The religion reform is necessary, but few welcome it. I admire the Protestant belief, and Henry split from Rome just to marry me, a woman he hoped would give him a son.
Blood shed, heads chopped off, it was done now. I may be the cause of it, but for all my sins, do I deserve this shameful punishment? Adultery, and with several men including my own brother George?
I could have got away with it, declaring my marriage invalid and my child illegitimate and save myself. However, I decided to do what Catherine of Aragon did for her daughter. For once, I would follow her example and not bend to Henry's will.
Nothing can stop it though. If Henry can declare Mary a bastard and debase her in such a way, then he can do the same to Elizabeth. At the end of our undeclared war, neither Catherine nor I won. Mary is princess no more, and so will Elizabeth. I had a hand in making Mary the King's bastard, and treated her badly. Ordering her to be Elizabeth's servant, it would be a great humiliation for a Princess of England, King Henry's proud daughter. I did it, though, my own ruthlessness got the better of me. I always find that Henry and I are kindred spirits, very much alike in tempers and characters. But he abandoned me for that plain, quiet woman, Jane Seymour. Every time the image of her sitting on Henry's laps came into my mind, I would grow furious.
Jane Seymour, my lady-in-waiting and her scheming family are taking away my throne, my place in Henry's life and my daughter's inheritance.
I wonder what Henry sees in her. Or rather, what makes her so confident that she would succeed in something both the Spanish Infanta and I failed? Henry would soon get tired of her, and she would just end as poorly as me.
For what I did to Mary, I regretted it now. I prayed for her forgiveness, even more than I prayed for the others'. I have done many people wrong in my life. My sister Mary, who I stole the King from and banished; Catherine of Aragon; my brother George, who would be dead because of me; and even Cardinal Wolsey, whose life I destroyed, as I did to many others.
But I still ask, loudly in my mind, do I really deserve all these?
I blame people.
I blame Henry, for his cruelness.
I blame Jane Seymour for stealing my husband.
I blame Thomas Cromwell for planning my ungraceful downfall.
Most of all, I blame myself.
What I did to Catherine of Aragon was exactly what Jane Seymour is doing to me. I made Henry discard her as now Henry discards me. What I did to Mary, will be what Jane Seymour will do to my Elizabeth.
Catherine and I, two women completely unlike each other, actually had the same fate. We both fought for and won Henry's love, but it did not last.
I thought, in my last day on earth, that it is not the matter of whether I deserve this or not, or of who is to blame for it. Instead, it is only a simple fact.
It is pay back, awful pay back.
It is retribution.The End