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laughter The king is amazed at her amusement. Tenderly, she tells him they will have sons later. Henry replies threateningly, "Perhaps, perhaps." Lady Jane Seymour innocently remarks that Anne speaks the truth. I was the first-born in my family, she says, followed by five brothers! Boys! Though Henry seems interested in the statistics, Anne sees the intrigue Jane has begun, wondering if she wants to become a royal mistress. Lady Jane is excused, and when Henry leaves, Anne asks for Smeaton to sing a lullaby. Her child must begin life with a song. Elizabeth Henry softens. He returns to his wife, picks up the baby and places an arm around Anne. They are clearly reconciled. The birth of a second child is imminent. Henry visits Comus. The astrologer is reading the stars, holding a horoscope, checking his chart. As Henry reads the horoscope, he complains that it is merely a sermon on the zodiac when all he wants to know is the sex of his forthcoming child. Comus says the signs point to a son but also indicate that the queen is in great danger from this birth. Will arrives with the bad news - 'Her majesty is well. She has been delivered of a son. A dead son." Henry is anguished, incredulous. He rants to heaven, convinced his God has turned away from him. Why? More time has passed. Anne finds Henry alone with Jane. Upset at the carryings-on, the queen wants Jane sent back to her family. Henry asks what kind of love Anne can offer him - constant rages, broken promises, two stillborn sons? Anne reminds him of their daughter Elizabeth, and Henry's anger towards both of them subsides. He is stunned, however, when Anne asks for his love; she wants them all to go to the country to avoid the plague. Henry says he can't leave the court because of his regal duties, and when he learns that she has assumed kingly power without authority, his anger is monumental and he tells her their marriage is cursed by God. The child enters and playfully climbs up on the throne. Henry immediately orders a nurse to take her off. Anne, upset, recalls that she warned him she would give birth to England's heir. Furthermore, if Henry cannot give her sons, Elizabeth will be queen. Henry coldly states: "Lady, I have raised you up. I can cast you down", and storms out, leaving her distraught. So Much You Loved Me Anne asks for Mark Smeaton. She wants to be lullabied but is told that he has been taken to the Tower, accused of committing adultery with the queen. He has been tortured and supposedly confessed. The embittered Anne turns around to find two guards, who have now come to take her to the Tower. Will, there to comfort her, is crushed. He thinks the king will pardon her, but Anne knows better. From marquise, I have been raised to queen. Now, having no higher honour to bestow upon me, he raises me to rank of martyr. She is beheaded. Within hours Henry marries Jane Seymour. A cortège accompanies Henry and his new bride to his bedroom. As servants begin to undress Jane, Comus appears with a potion the king has ordered to insure the birth of a male. Jane confesses that her family pressed her to entice the king. Henry is tired of intrigues. He wants simple truths and an heir. As she climbs aboard the wedding bed, she asks how she may please him. "Simply close your eyes", Henry says, "and pray for a son!" A son is born, although Queen Jane dies in childbirth. Now Prince Edward is to be fully protected. No one may approach the cradle without a signed permit from the king himself. Each morsel of food must be tasted, and no one exposed to the London plague may come near him. Norfolk announces that Parliament has confirmed the illegitimacy of Elizabeth and removed her from the line of succession to the throne. The intrigues to find a new bride for Henry now begin. Cromwell talks of an alliance between France and Spain that spells danger and mentions the fact that the German Prince of Cleves has a daughter, a Protestant and a beauty. Norfolk introduces his young niece, Lady Catherine Howard. It all makes Henry laugh. His one command is: "Bring me my son! ACT II It is Christmas at Hampton Court nine years later. In the meantime, Henry VIII married Anne of Cleves. Although they slept together the marriage, allegedly, was never consummated and was soon annulled. He also married Lady Catherine Howard, but learning of her adulterous past ordered her beheaded. Finally, he married the widow Katherine Parr.