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Cuckolding the King

It was a beautiful, sunny July day in 1342. The sun was shining, the birds were singing, the soft aroma of flowers filled the air. However, in the small town of Southampton, despite the idyllic weather, the citizens were in a frenzy.

The King was to visit the county, and was to stay in the houses of the local noblemen, a different noble every night. Now, all were preparing for the king’s visit, as he was to arrive that afternoon, amid much fanfare.

The serfs were busy preparing the homes of the nobles, cleaning the houses, preparing food, getting rooms ready and everything else they could possibly think of. Many worked the fields, getting as much from the land as they possibly could, while others slaughtered the animals which would be cooked for the king. Many worked on the walls which the King had ordered fortified after the city was attacked four years earlier, making it look as though the town was carrying out the King’s wishes with vigour.

Drake Peterson was one such noble. On an ordinary day, he would read over reports, see to the requests of his serfs and collect taxes. Today, he was in the fields, ordering his serfs to find more potatoes. They needed more potatoes, his wife Clarissa had told him. She had planned on having seven dishes that could be served when the King chose to stay at their house, and needed more vegetables, potatoes especially. Drake had been hunting more than usual the last week, and there was wild pig and venison to be had as meat, along with some lamb which a serf was to slaughter that day. Drake told the serfs to deliver them to his wife in the house, and went into town to collect the wine he had ordered. Wine being a major part of Southampton’s economy, Drake felt it necessary to buy only the best to please the King.

Early in the afternoon, the hot sun beating down, the King arrived into the town with much fanfare. All of the residents of Southampton appeared to celebrate Edward III’s entrance, throwing flowers at his feet and bowing as he went past. Drake stood with his wife, cheering with the other noblemen, at the front of the crowd. His wife Carissa was radiant in her scarlet dress, her long blonde hair framing her beautiful face filled with pleasure and pride as the king rode by. Drake noticed the king looking at his wife, admiring her beauty, and he had never been so proud to be able to claim her as his own.

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