Unicorn's Blood

By Patricia Finney

By the writer of Firedrake's Eye: a masterpiece of voice, historic aspect, and mental perception to rival Peter Ackroyd and A. S. Byatt

England within the mid-1580s confronted an array of foreign foes and was once torn internally via non secular strife. At its heart was once a moderate lady of outstanding highbrow brilliance. Her stature approached that of a deity -- Queen Elizabeth I, the Virgin Queen. yet this icon used to be greater than a mirrored image of the Queen's own air of mystery, it was once a political construction, designed to carry a fractious humans together.

Unicorn's Blood is ready a deadly mystery, the life of a personal diary stored via the Queen as a tender princess. may still this stolen magazine, embroidered with a unicorn that has a ruby for a watch, fall into the incorrect arms, its intimate revelations may spoil the whole edifice of Tudor government.

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Ames insisted that every one he was once to do used to be ask the favour of an viewers for Ames himself. After being saved looking ahead to 3 quarters of an hour whereas the Queen walked within the backyard, Dr Nunez finally knelt prior to her as she sat less than her textile of kingdom within the Presence Chamber. She was once totally dressed and never in mattress, so this was once now not a certified session. notwithstanding, it used to be deepest: she ordered all her gentlewomen and gents out, leaving in basic terms her muliercula interpreting quietly on a cushion within the nook, taking a look whatever like a wide stiff puppet in her light blue damask garded with cloth-of-gold. “Doctor, how is that nephew of yours? ” The Queen demanded after she had stared down at him for absolutely 5 mins. Nunez blinked stupidly for a second. How had she recognized? How did she . . . Who was once the undercover agent in his loved ones? For a heartbeat he felt offended that she must have info on him and flaunt it after which he concept extra rigorously. obviously she might have a secret agent upon him, given his actions. It was once in terms of a praise that she used to be letting him comprehend it. In case it may truly be an issue to do with one among his many different younger nephews, Nunez requested hesitantly, “Your Majesty? Williams? Francis? ” She waved an extended white hand. “No, no, Doctor,” she sniffed, “I can listen approximately both of them from Walsingham. I suggest the run of the Ames clutter, the valiant little scrawny one with the working nostril. the one who secure me from the Papist murderer, 4 years in the past. ” “Er . . . ” acknowledged Nunez unhappily, pondering which story Walsingham had advised her: the single for common intake which acknowledged that Simon had died of lung-fever 4 years in the past, or the key. definitely he had no longer stored her in the dead of night. Or had he? Walsingham was once tremendous close-mouthed approximately his counter-intelligence operations. Nunez lifted his head and checked out the Queen. thought of dispassionately, she used to be a rare sight: relatively a small red-haired girl, because it have been, virtually eaten alive by way of the extravagant heraldic beast of her kirtle and dress, and her face rayed like saint in an outdated photograph with the fragile cambric garden of her veil. It was once an intricate confection, a carapace like a hermit crab’s and designed intentionally to conceal the truth that underneath all of it was once simply the tender flesh of a lady; a compound of 4 humours, wetted with a few divinity and loads of unwomanly mind. And but the time he had attended her for her belly cramps, she had nonetheless been greatly the Queen, regardless of being in mattress and in discomfort. flip her from her realm in her petticoat, as she had boasted as soon as, and he or she may nonetheless be a such a lot bold woman. Hoping it used to be now not precise – as he had heard – that she may learn minds, Nunez cleared his throat back. She was once ready patiently for his resolution. even if Walsingham had instructed her the reality or now not, it was once now not his enterprise to deceive her. “He is definitely, Your Majesty. He has married . . . ” The excessive arched eyebrows got here jointly. The Queen was once tremendous averse to any of her servants’ marrying. “. . . as we're enjoined very strictly by way of our religion,” Nunez further, and questioned on the stickiness of his mouth and the warmth generated through the furnace of his center, which made him sweat.

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