by Philip-Todd Franklin
Two days later, standing outside the Palace of Westminster in London, Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher, one of England’s few remaining members of Parliament, was giving an impromptu speech to the press and attending media. At her side stood Matthew le Gros, now calling himself the White Knight, as well as the members of the Union. Only Lady Justice, who was still unresponsive, was not present. The prime minister began speaking of those who had lost their lives during the chaos caused by the destruction of England’s government and the weight felt by all for the loss of the entire House of Windsor and the House of Commons. As she spoke, silence was the only response each time she paused as the information slowly began to sink in. Upon many faces of both young and old could be seen tears. Many were thinking of lost loved ones, friends, and family now gone. She continued speaking of the nation’s loss and the need for strong leadership in the time to come. Glancing at the audience for a moment, Mrs. Thatcher motioned off-stage for four figures to move into the open toward the podium.
As the group began to move, there were gasps from the crowd and a few angry yells, but all were quickly silenced as Mrs. Thatcher raised her voice to be heard over the crowd. “This group that I am to reintroduce to you today I do for you and for acknowledgement of the world. It is my distinct privilege and pleasure to introduce to you survivors of England’s oldest ruling royal family, the Pendragons. Standing before you is Elainia Pendragon, whom you will remember as the wife of Prime Minister Roger Knight. With her are her children Arthur Scott Pendragon and Michael Elle Pendragon, descendants of Arthur Pendragon. If the fast few days of darkness have shown us anything, it is that King Arthur and Camelot were not mythical but legends based on historical fact.”
Elainia was wearing a long, flowing white dress with hints of red and green, whilst her long hair was done up in a very tight bun. At her side she held a royal sceptre from the Tower of London. She glanced at the large crowd, noticing the many flashes of cameras going off. Despite being a politician’s wife for several years, she had stage fright and was unable to speak, merely standing in silence beside Margaret Thatcher.
Arthur was dressed in a royal red suit with gold trim, whilst at his side, hanging in a scabbard, was the legendary Excalibur. He, too, nearly freaked out at the size of the gathered crowd, but he seemed to handle the many cameras a little better.
Michael wore a white dress that was like her mother’s, except hints of blue could be seen amongst the red and green; she also wore the crown of water lilies on her head. She walked over to stand beside her brother and mother, smiling brightly for the cameras yet remaining silent as Mrs. Thatcher once again spoke, introducing the remaining person.
“And at last we have one who started off on the wrong foot, but without whose help all would have been lost. I give you Modred le Fay, once known as the Black Knight, now to be known as the Shining Knight. He is the newest member of England’s own team of action-heroes, the Union. I’m sure he will make us all proud.” With a gesture, the prime minister motioned for the gathered group and the Union to slowly exit the stage.
As if having a second thought, Margaret Thatcher returned to the podium and, hushing the crowd, spoke once again. “I’m afraid that neither I nor the others are going to be able to answer any of your questions at this time. There shall be a proper inquiry on the laws of royal succession in this unprecedented time in our history in a few days, after we have had the chance to pay the proper respects to the queen and all the others we have lost, and to see to the wounded. Above all else, we must rejoice that the darkness has fallen, and that England will prevail.” With those words, the prime minister exited the stage in front of a very silent crowd.
Once the two groups had made their way into the Palace of Westminster and had been able to change into more comfortable clothing, they once again joined each other and were quickly sequestered to a local cemetery. They had left there the still-grieving Lady Serena Fitzmaurice and the now-mortal Nightstalker, who refused to leave her side. They all made their way to a large mausoleum in the centre of the cemetery and slowly entered. Once they were all inside, Mrs. Thatcher stood before the two caskets that held the bodies of Lord and Lady Fitzmaurice, Serena’s adoptive parents. She spoke well of the couple and of their great loss to the nation and the English people.
The whole time Mrs. Thatcher gave the eulogy for Serena’s parents, Nightstalker sat beside Serena as he tried to comfort her, but unsure how to begin. He could only think to wrap his arm round her and hold his grieving friend close.
The whole process took less than an hour, and at the end both Rupert Deane and Matthew le Gros placed each casket into their place in the wall behind them with great care before sealing them within. The friends and companions slowly made their way from the cemetery in comforting silence and, at the prime minister’s advice, once again returned to the Palace of Westminster, for there was still much that both groups would need to do in the coming days, and the Union and the House of Pendragon would play a vital part in the nation’s rebirth.