The Earl and the Crown

Francis Garett, Earl of Warwick, sat on his red velvet sofa in the magnificent Cedar Drawing room of his imposing castle, grinning manically at his 50″ Smart 4K Ultra HD HDR LED TV, as a young Prince Charles had yet another argument with a young Princess Diana in the Australian outback on screen.

You see, Francis hated Charles. He didn’t particularly like any of the Royal Family for that matter. Not because he was a republican, but because he believed that he himself should be King of England. He was not descended from any previous Monarch that he knew of, he just knew that he was the rightful heir to the throne.

But he knew that in order to take his deserved place in Buckingham Palace, he’d need to bump off the incumbent Royals. He’d spent most of his free time for the past five years hatching a plan to kill the direct line of succession without looking like he’d done it so that he could then take their place as King. So far he had not thought of anything, but now this Netflix TV series his wife had forced him to watch might actually come to his aid.

Daisy, Countess of Warwick and the spitting image of Diana Spencer, noticed her husband salivating at the TV screen.

“Francis, darling, are you alright?” She asked her husband earnestly.

Francis turned towards the countess, his face like a Lion that had just found his next meal.

“You know, at first I wasn’t particularly interested in this Crown business, but now I realise it might actually help me achieve my goal. I’m glad you made me watch this now, thank you,” Francis told wife before giving her a gentle kiss on the cheek.

Daisy stared at Francis for a moment, wondering what he meant.

“What goal is this, Francis?” Daisy asked the Earl.

All it took was Francis to grin at her for her to realise. Daisy sighed exasperatedly whilst Francis cackled.

“Oh, come on, you’re not still fixated on becoming King are you?” Daisy enquired, herself knowing that Francis’ obsession was just due to him having delusions of grandeur and not based on anything true.

Francis stopped cackling. “Oh come on!” He exclaimed. “I’m now closer to becoming King than I’ve ever been. Because of this, I may not need to kill anyone.” Francis gestured the screen.

“Liz’s 94 now, the old bat doesn’t have long to live. Maybe COVID might get her? Anyway, all I have to do now is walk over to No. 10 and asked Boris Johnson whether Charles is really the man the people want to be king. Most of them will probably have gone off him now that they know that he was a right bastard when he was younger. It will be an absolute doddle.”

“There’s still the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge dear, plus their children. Surely if there is some doubt about whether Charles should become king, then William would replace him,” Daisy suggested.

“Not if I get in their first. Hopefully the Crown will have put the people off having the Winsdor’s on the throne at all. They might want another family in charge,” Francis replied.

“Or they might not want a monarchy at all,” Daisy reminded the Earl, “not everything will go the way you want it, you know.”

“I could still try and talk to the Prime Minister before Charles is coronated. I’m sure at least some people will agree that Charles is not a nice man,” said Francis.

“Just because he’s portrayed in a certain way in a Netflix TV series doesn’t mean the people who watch it will suddenly not want him to be king,” Daisy said.

“Oh you’d be surprised,” said the Earl, “I think it’s worth a try. All I need to do is go down to Number 10 as soon as the Queen dies and talk it through with the Prime Minster. If he isn’t sure, then maybe we could put it to the people in a Referendum? No murder necessary.”

Daisy glared at her husband, before sipping her Cabernet Sauvignon. “I don’t think it’s wise to appear to have the peoples interests at heart. You hate the people. Remember all those failed attempts to evacuate the people of Warwick and demolish the town in order to extend the grounds, plus the fact that you’ve kept the castle locked up for thirty years?”

“I like the people when they’re useful to me,” the Earl said, “I still think it’s worth a try. I’m going to write it down so I don’t forget when the Queen finally does die.”

Daisy looked at her husband once more, then turned to the TV. She sighed exasperatedly. “I missed the second half of that episode because of you! I’m going to have to watch it again!”

Daisy prepared to rewind the episode, but her husband stopped her. “You can watch it again without me,” he said “let’s just get this marathon over and done with so I can do something more worthwhile.”

Daisy sighed, then put the remote down.

The Earl and Countess of Warwick continued to watch the Crown in silence, and neither of them mentioned Francis’s convoluted plan again.

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