Monday, March 3, 2008
Meet Helena Woulfe from Duking Days
Thanks Ginger for inviting me to post onto your blog this week. Duking Days Rebellion was released last year, a Mainstream Historical with a storyline centering round the Monmouth Rebellion of 1685. The sequel to the Woulfe family story is soon to be released, and Duking Days Revolution takes Helena and her brother Henry into a different life in 17th Century London. I'll let Helena herself tell you what she hopes for her future and that of her brother - Anita Davison
Helena Woulfe Palmer
I lost most of my family after the Western Rising three years ago. My brother Henry and I left Exeter, our home city when a former friend of our family betrayed us and claimed our estate. Robert Devereux, a Monmouth sympathiser and his wife Adella took us in at Lambtons Inn in Holborn.
They and their two daughters went some way to providing us with the family we had lost, but I still dream of seeing my father, Sir Jonathan Woulfe again one day.
Henry became a pupil architect to Sir Christopher Wren, but the only road to respectability for a woman is marriage. My choice was Guy Palmer, an ambitious, and devoted Goldsmith. Married now for two years, we live in King Street, close to the Palace Gate of Whitehall, where my husband’s cousin, Lady Castlemaine used to live.
I should be content, but since a Prince of Wales was born to the Catholic King James and his Italian Queen, Mary Beatrice, rumours abound that Prince William of Orange is going to invade England. The worst news that is my brother, Aaron, who to my delight escaped Sedgemoor, is living in The Hague with other exiled Rebels, plotting the king’s downfall. If the Prince is welcomed, my brother might live a privileged life, but the noose of the traitor overshadows him too.
William is the son of my guardian, Robert Devereux and although there was an attraction between us from the day we met, I did not see in him the qualities I desired in a husband, so encouraged the attentions of the Guy Palmer. I have yet to regret my choice, for our lives grow more prosperous.
Robert & Adella Devereux
Robert and Adella Devereux own one of the best chophouses in Holborn, frequented by the fashionable figures of London, including John Evelyn, Samuel Pepys, Sir Christopher Wren, and John, Lord Marlborough and his beautiful wife, Sarah. Henry and I enjoyed a happy year there, introduced to London life by their two daughters.
Apprenticed to Sir Christopher Wren to learn architecture, my younger brother, Henry prospers. He faced disappointment when his employer’s daughter was married to another against her wishes. I hope he can forget her and find someone who is free to give her heart to him.
He served as my father’s steward at Loxsbeare, and for many years I regarded him as a faithful, if somewhat precocious servant. When Aaron was discovered alive, Tobias travelled to Holland to bring him letters and news from the family. He returned with no news of our father, and even more disappointing, that Aaron had decided to remain in The Hague with Prince William. I welcomed Tobias for his care and kept the secret of his birth as our father’s natural son from both my brothers. However I know Tobias yearns to be accepted by his half siblings and I fear he may do something reckless to gain their attention.
Celia and Phebe Devereux
Celia is my closest friend and the wife of another goldsmith, Ralf Maurice, whereas Phebe is the wilful one who has declared she will marry only for love. I tend to believe her, and it will be interesting whom she will choose.
William of Orange and Princess Mary
The daughter of James II and her husband, who seem to suffer no pangs of conscience at claiming his throne. They justify their actions by declaring they are protecting the Protestant Church, but then didn’t the Duke of Monmouth claim the very same? And none know better than I what became of him and his followers.
Duking Days Rebellion from Enspiren Press is available from Amazon
Duking Days Revolution is coming soon from Enspiren Press