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The Black Prince did not like to have his strategic decisions questioned. He liked even less to have those decisions countermanded. Especially by a woman. Even if that woman was the Queen.

He had argued to let Hastings fall, to sacrifice it for a chance at Cologne. Elizabeth wouldn’t hear of it. English soil shall remain English, she demanded and she ordered a vigorous defense of Hastings. For his queen to be right, everything the Black Prince read in that book he got from his friend Leonidas had to be wrong.

And yet, after a year in Hastings, he found it hard to argue with her wisdom. It was an eminently defendable city. Perhaps they will be able to bleed the Portuguese dry after all, he thought.

Then again, York was now wide open to the French. The French.