Grew Up... royally, in France in the mid 16th century. As part of a political alliance, young Queen Mary was raised in the French royal court and married to Prince Francis. They briefly served as King and Queen of France, but when Francis died at just 16, Mary’s life was sent down a whole new path.
Living... back in Scotland. Following Francis’ death, Mary returns to her homeland to stay with her half-brother James Stewart, the Earl of Moray. Fiercely proud and protective of her country, Mary wants the best for her people. That includes balancing her own Catholic faith with a Protestant sentiment that also exists in Scotland.
Profession... Queen of Scots. In addition to ruling her country, one of Mary’s most important duties is to produce an heir and secure a line of succession.
Interests... royal celebrations and gossiping with her handmaidens.
Relationship Status... the key to everything. As a reigning monarch, Mary’s relationships aren’t just about love, they’re also about politics. Following Francis’ death, Mary could’ve made a marital alliance with another continental European power. Instead, she decides to use her newfound eligibility to make an inroad with England.
Challenge... securing her right to rule England. Lines of succession are complicated, and no one knows that better than Mary. Though her cousin Queen Elizabeth I currently rules England, Mary believes she has a legitimate claim to the throne too. Hoping to ally with her cousin, rather than depose her, Mary proposes that Elizabeth simply name Mary as her successor. It’s a reasonable idea—particularly since Elizabeth herself isn’t married and has no children—but the advisors around them seem determined to prevent these two female monarchs from having the kind of open, honest conversations that might serve them both well. As Mary tells Elizabeth, “Do not play into their hands. Our hatred is precisely what they hope for. I know your heart has more within it than the men who counsel you.”
Personality... young, clever, and confident. Though just 19 when she returns to Scotland, Mary is already wise and worldly. She has a charismatic, fun-loving side, and a romantic nature that can be used against her. But she’s also deadly serious about protecting her country—she’ll even ride into battle alongside her troops. Mary is a savvy political maneuverer who can handle both hard politics and soft diplomacy. Above all, she has a fundamentally good heart. Mary’s desire for power isn’t selfish; she truly believes she’s the best person to lead her people.
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