My Favorite (Deleted) Scene from GILT

Katherine Longshore 8 Tuesday, March 06, 2012

This week, we’re talking about our favorite scenes from our own books.  Like Donna, my favorite scene in GILT is full of spoilers (as much as can be spoiled when most of the story is on Wikipedia), so I’ve decided on another scene.  One that can’t be read in the published novel.

This is the Thames today -- from a similar location
to the one from which Kitty would have seen
Anne of Cleves arriving by barge.
I have a soft spot for Henry VIII’s fourth wife, Anne of Cleves.  She arrived in England not knowing the language, full of what I can only imagine was fear and hope and the burden of being an outsider in a closed world.  And for whatever reason, Henry decided she was ugly.  And though he married her, he soon found a way to divorce her (and marry Catherine Howard instead).

I wanted to put a little of Anne’s story into my novel.  To show a day when she was happy and beautiful, despite what Henry said about her later.  And also to show the gaudy exhibition that was the Tudor court, from the eyes of a mere spectator.

After much lip-biting and heel-digging, I finally cut this scene because it doesn’t move the story forward.  But it is still a favorite because of Anne.  She had class.

“They’re coming!” Joan cried, gripping my arm and jumping up and down.
The crowds along the bank roared as the royal procession made its way up the river.
A flotilla of courtiers and ladies followed like a sea of jewels on the surface of the river.  Gowns of crimson, doublets of blue.  Damask and silk shining and velvet gathering light.  Gold, rubies, emeralds, sapphires and diamonds glittered and pearls shone smoothly.  Goblets of wine were raised over and over again.  Musicians played lutes and sackbuts and some of the people crowding the banks improvised a dance. 
It was better than Christmas, out there on the banks in the sunlight with everyone cheering and singing and the entire Court in watery procession before us.
The royal barge appeared, painted in scarlet and gold, with detailed filigree and intricate designs.  The canopy of cloth of gold was embroidered with the initials of the King and Queen.  H and A.
“HA, HA,” I read quietly and giggled. 
“Shhh,” Alice hissed. “You could go to prison for that.”
“Oh, Alice, don’t be such a bluenose,” I retorted.
“Honestly, Kitty Tylney,” Alice said. “People were sent to prison for making that exact same joke when the first Queen Anne entered the City.”
I shut up.  Sometimes, Alice’s wealth of information could come in handy.
The King and Queen stood on opposite sides of the barge, waving.  The King faced us, his clothes and hair and beard a riot of red and gold.  He looked like a giant standing there, one foot resting on a cushion as if he had just conquered it.
“He never ages,” Joan whispered.  “He’s been King my entire life.”
“Yes, but you’re not that old,” Alice said. “The Duke of Norfolk has outlived five kings.”
“But he’s ancient,” Joan said. “Unnaturally ancient.  King Henry never seems to age at all.”
Even at a distance, I could see the stoop to his shoulders.  The swell of his chest and belly.  He was no longer the lean knight who escorted Queen Jane to London.  He was something else.  Weighted.  Weary.
Without a word or a touch, the royal couple traded places.  The Queen’s gown of cloth of gold and abundance of jewelry glowed in the winter light.  She wore a fashionable French hood, set back off her forehead, revealing a swatch of hair the color of burnished copper.
“Isn’t she beautiful?” Joan said.
“They say she is marked with the pox,” Alice sniffed. “Not that we can see it from here.  Clothes can cover any number of evils.”
The Queen stood straight and tall, and waved regally, but joyfully.  She fingered the enormous jewels at her throat and grinned.
“She looks so happy,” I said.
“She’s happy because she knows nothing.”


Katherine, thanks so much for sharing a deleted scene. My family and I always watch the deleted scenes after watching a movie, just to see a different take on the movie. I think it would be cool, too, if books had deleted scenes at the end.

BTW, I enjoyed this "deleted" scene.

Thank you, Linda! I'm fascinated by what gets cut from movies, too. And I'm so happy to be able to share this scene!

I can see why it was hard to cut this scene! It's beautiful. Anne is, too, poor woman. Do you know what happened to her after the divorce?

I hope she married a kind, gentle farmer who treated her like a real queen. And they had a whole bunch of kids. Who took long naps until they were four or five.

Thanks, Beth! In some ways, Anne was the luckiest of all of Henry's wives. He set her up as his "dearest sister", gave her a couple of castles and plenty of money and she came and went as she pleased. One of the few truly independent women in Tudor England.

Ooh, that's even better than what I'd hoped for her!

Beautiful writing! The visuals are so rich and inviting. It must have torture to cut this---no tudor puns intended.

Wow I can see them coming down the river with their jewels and their wine, you paint such a vivid picture.
I remember watching Henry calling her ugly. What a cad. Any woman that willingly messed with him deserved to lose her head.


Thank you, PB and Heather - one of the things I love about the Tudor era is the wealth of possible visual and sensory details. So much fun to write!

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