Sunday Surprise

My name is Brenda de Zorig and I’m a journalist for the Konigtown Gazette. I’ve been on the road for years as an actress in an itinerant company, but eventually decided to go back to my hometown to start living of the thing I like the most – writing. So while I write my Masterpiece, I took this job at the Gazette and they send me on various assignments… I thought I might as well starting interviewing random people. Since I intend to write fiction, but truth is always stranger than fiction, I’m eager to hear about people out there – on my world or beyond.

Aristocratic_Lady_15th_b1899sdLet’s see who we have here today… she looks like a lady to me! Hello, there! Tell me something about yourself.

My name is Catherine de Valois. I was born October 27th, 1401 at the Hotel Saint-Pol in Paris to King Charles VI of France and his queen consort Isabeau of Bavaria. I am famous for my first marriage to King Henry of England, but I did not love him. Instead, I found true love when I defied Parliament to marry my second husband, Owen Tudor.

I knew she was a noblewoman! Describe your appearance in ten words or less.

Fair, regal, French, elegant.

Do you have an enemy or nemesis? If so, who are they and how did they become an enemy?

The enemy of France is my enemy. This Henry king of England insists on warring with France. He slaughtered the women and children of Rouen who surrendered to him. Yes, I hate him, even though the Treaty of Troyes forced me to marry him on the 2nd of June in the Year of Our Lord 1420. Fortunately for me, he died of a camp fever on the 31st of August in 1422, sparing me decades of strife suffered by his foremother, great Queen Eleanor of Aquitaine when she married Henry II.

Would you kill for those you love? And would you die for them?

Enough blood had been shed in France over this monster of a king of England. Neither my death nor the deaths of others can bring the innocent back.

I got that. Even if your kingdom has been at peace for years, doesn’t mean I don’t know about power struggles between noble families and royalty. Where do you live?

I am originally from Paris where I lived until my marriage to King Henry after which I lived in London. Upon my marriage to Owen Tudor, I spent the rest of my years in Hertfordshire where I gave him three sons.

Are you involved in a relationship? If so, with who and what is it about them that you find appealing?

My first husband was King Henry of England. I was forced to marry him on the threat of further slaughter of my people. However, I did find true love with Owen Tudor, defying Parliament in order to marry him. As a noble Welshman, Owen too has suffered much from King Henry’s relentless soldiering. He was forced to move to London as a child after his family lost everything in the last real war of independence against England, so we relate very well to one another.

I get that! What is the biggest challenge you face in the story?

Between my father’s mental illness, King Henry’s wars against my people, and the political intrigue led against me by the Duke of Bedford, it is very hard to choose a “biggest” challenge.

Indeed! Do you have a family? Tell me about them.

My father Charles VI of France suffered violent fits of madness ever since I was born. My mother, Queen Isabeau of Bavaria largely ruled France as regent.

My younger brother Charles became Charles VII while I was queen of England – it was he who was the “dauphin” in the famous stories about Jehanne d’Arc.

I gave King Henry a namesake son who became known as Henry VI, the youngest king ever crowned in England.

I have three sons by Owen Tudor: Edmund, Jasper, and Owen (Brother Edward Bridgewater).

Please give me an interesting and unusual fact about yourself.

In 1422 I gave birth to my son Owen in Westminster Abbey while visiting my oldest son King Henry VI. I was literally talking to the king on one of my rare visits to see him (no thanks to Parliament’s hostility against me) when my water broke and I went into labor.

Ouch! Ah, well, us women are born to suffer… anyhow, I see a gentleman here… let’s see what he has to say! Tell me a little about yourself, sir.

I am Henry, by the Grace of God, King of England. I was born the 16th of September in the Year of Our Lord 1386. I died on the 31st of August in 1422.

*wrinkles her nose* I’ve already heard someting similar, with different names… Describe your appearance in ten words or less.

Strong, athletic, battle-scarred, charismatic, with fire in my eyes.

Ahem! Well, fine. Not bad for a king. What is your role in the story?

As the son of Henry Bolingbroke, cousin of King Edward III, I have been a warrior all my life. Upon my father’s ascent at King Henry IV, I fought the Welsh on his behalf, putting down once and for all the last real challenge against English authority by Prince Owain Glyndŵr.

After becoming king of England, I turned my attention to France, fighting to conquer France starting in the spring of 1415. On the 25th of October I won the Battle of Agincourt and married King Charles VI’s daughter, Princess Catherine de Valois on the 2nd of June, 1420.

So, you’re Catherine’s first husband… Where do you live?

When I am home in England, I live in London. Most of the time, however, I live in France, camping with my armies.

Are you involved in a relationship? If so, with who and what is it about them that you find appealing?

It is my divine right to marry Catherine. That she seems to hate me is irrelevant. She will do her duty in my bedchamber or I will treat her as the French woman that she is.

*snorts* Men. They think they’re so important in our lives… What is the biggest challenge you face in the story?

Catherine’s brothers are still alive and therefore a threat to my claim to the throne of France.

Do you have a moral code?

I am a devout Roman Catholic who does my best to live a pious life.

Please give me an interesting and unusual fact about yourself.

I am the first king in English history to mandate government and court documents be written in the English language since the Battle of Hastings in 1066 instead of French or Latin.

Mmm, interesting. It’s always good to hear about other kingdoms and how they deal with administration and all that stuff! Thanks to both of you for talking to me today… Brenda de Zorig signing off.


Book(s) in which the character appears and links

Catherine de Valois

Author bio & social media/website

Born, raised, and educated in Lincoln, Nebraska USA, Laurel A. Rockefeller is an amateur scientist and amateur historian known for her lavish world building in her Peers of Beinan science fiction series and her meticulous research across all three book series: the Peers of Beinan, the Legendary Women of World History, and American Stories.

Laurel is the first novelist to index paperback books using QR technology for smartphones, enabling a truly interactive paperback book reading experience.

Laurel’s books are all available in a broad range of digital formats at major retailers including the Kindle store, Barnes and Noble, Smashwords, and the ibookstore with more limited offerings in paperback, QR interactive paperback, and large print editions.

Gifted British actor and voice actor Richard Mann narrates Laurel’s audio book editions, beginning with “Boudicca: Britain’s Queen of the Iceni” which is coming soon to audible, itunes, and Amazon.

Find Laurel’s books on Amazon at, on Smashwords at, and on GoodReads at or visit her websites at and, her blog at, or on social media.



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  1. Reblogged this on Library of Erana and commented:
    Here’s an interview with my good friend Laurel A Rockefeller, she has an attention to detail not often found and a meticulous world- building skill.


  2. teeny typo: Catherine’s third son Owen was born in 1432!


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