LATE APRIL, 1540
He was going to have a nice, peaceful dinner with the members of his family even if it killed him! Norfolk had not been able to have one in quite some time. In fact, the only diner recently that he actually enjoyed was with that commoner wench Sarah Chilton… wonders never ceased. Not with all the damn problems he was facing. The frustrated Duke arrived from France and no one knew about it until after a week had passed! Then, he thought he would have a great Christmas gift in March when the whole Anne of Cleves fiasco exploded. He was sure Cromwell was going to be killed until he died… and then killed again! But somehow that man had the Devil’s luck! Calm, Thomas… do not let him get to you. He told himself… but he could not. Cromwell made his blood boiled!
Norfolk believed he was not asking for much. All he wanted was a nice bonfire with Cromwell being the main attraction. Nice and crisp. Then there was that other idiot, Neville! Sadly, Neville was a Catholic – or what passed for a Catholic for him, lecherous fiend! -- hence he could not be the main fuel for a bonfire, but he could get a nice ax… hell, Norfolk would buy a gold one just for the occasion! Neville and that whore of a wife of his are scheming something, I know it, and the bastard is keeping me out of the loop! His informants told him that Neville had been talking to Cromwell, but for what, they did not know! Then again, the Nevilles and Cromwell were like oil and water… completely different. He had to speak with his supposed “ally”.
Norfolk had been on the wrong end of many schemes, the most recent ones the alliance with France and all that happened to Anne Boleyn. But that was Thomas Boleyn’s fault! He told Boleyn, he told him many times to take things slowly, but noooo… that bastard and his equally bastardly son and daughter ruined everything! And Norfolk escaped only by denouncing his own allies! Calm down, Thomas… calm down. He told himself as he reached the dining room. The food looked amazing; everything was proper and luxurious, as it was supposed to be for a family such as the Howards. Their lineage went all the way back to Edward the Confessor. They were practically Royalty!
He had invited his son Henry, his daughter Mary and that flighty little hell raiser Kathryn. This was not only a dinner; he wanted to learn what has transpired with all of them and perhaps unite the Howards in a common goal. Well, at least that was his dream.
His Howards arrived and he smiled to them. My children and… well… Kathryn, welcome! Before we enjoy the food and company, let us give grace. He bowed his head and solemnly: Lord, we thank you for the food we are about to consume and please bless it and all those gathered here. Bless also our King and his family, especially our Lady Mary Tudor. But of course, he could not just ended there, oh no: Also, Lord, I beg you most humbly to bring upon Cromwell dysentery on his way to the gallows. Allow him to burn not only in this world but also in the other. As you know Lord, he is a bastard and deserves that and more. While you are at it, Lord, please grant me the satisfaction of seen that other bastard Neville being disemboweled rather painfully in front of the people of this Country and his body thrown into the Thames! If you can also add some calamity to the Seymours, it would be appreciated. Amen! He said and sat with a big smile on his face. To his family: Come on, let’s enjoy this meal in peace and harmony.