Act V The Resolution

The combination of final tension and final peace was generated from a close adherence to the 18 point Hero’s Journey.

The Return Threshold.

Alyse pretends to be Ximene travelling towards Bordeaux camouflaging  Ximene’s true destination of Sicily.

 The Prince escorts them as far as Monsegur, a Cathar holy place, which always provides a spiritual and emotional experience for those who visit it.

Mastery of both worlds.

They arrive at Monsegur on the summer solstice when first light of dawn provides spectacular lighting effects. Ximene intends to use this phenomenon as the backdrop for the consummation of her relationship with John, but they are interrupted.

 Du Guesclin makes yet another attempt to kidnap Ximene.

This time his attack turns into a pitched battle in which the Prince leads his soldiers to a convincing victory

Freedom to live

Ximene awaits John’s return but realises that something must be wrong. Despite objections from Guillam she rides determinedly towards the scene of the battle.

This, she realises is the freedom she sought. Freedom to give her life if necessary to save the one she has come to love.

Here we have the classic denouement.  For Ximene this is, in the Greek sense a “comedy”. In the modern sense it is a triumph of the spirit read triumph of the Spirit.

The Escape

Du Guesclin’s  agent penetrates the Château with the intention of  murdering Ximene. His purpose is recognised and his efforts nullified. The escape is perfectly executed. Ximene is now free

The Holy Place

Ximene’s first night of freedom is spent at Monsegur, a Cathar Holy Place. It is reputed that just visiting this place will have profound efffect on the rest of your life. 

The Solstace

She plans to use this inspiration and combine it with the strange lighting effect which occurs at Monsegur on the summer solstice to form a spiritual and physical union with John. They are however disturbed at the critical moment.

The Battle

The Prince’s Army crushes the combined forces of the Inquisition and Du Guesclin clearing the way for Ximene’s final escape. John however vanishes in the aftermath of the battle. Ximene’s first use of her freedom is both unusual and inspiring. She refuses to take the opportunity to escape preferring to risk her life to try to save the man who has become so devoted to her.

The most dangerous woman in the world

The Treasure of Trencavel

List of Characters

Table Of Contents



List of Places

Table of Contents

Pseudo History


Extract from The Prisoner of Foix--Chapter 43 -The EntranceNo need to buy a Kindle. Read it on your computer or tablet

John Stanley-26th April 1355


'Looks like we are going to see a bit of excitement, John. The Captain tried to get an agreement from the Prince that if there is surf running across the channel to Arcachon we will turn back to Bordeaux, but the Prince would hear none of it. Instead, he has offered to provide insurance for all three ships. If they are damaged or sunk, the owners will be compensated and every sailor who makes the passage will be given a bounty payment. What none of this seems to take into account is that if we sink in rough, fast-flowing waters we might all drown.'

John raised his eyebrows. 'But that is what we are going to do?'

'Yes, despite the fact that surf running accross the entrance is not uncommon and the deep water channel moves continually. In the end, the Prince attacked their captains on their weakest point, their professional pride! He threw down the gauntlet. He offered to take the Sally first through the channel, and to take control during the passage.' He raised his brow. 'We are going into the Bay of Arcachon, come what may! '

Extract from The Eagle of Carcassone -- Chapter 24-- A Real GoddessNo need to buy a Kindle. Read it on your computer or tablet

John Stanley - 22 July 1355

An hour later John walked with Ximene close to the river along the valley below St Feriole. It was the very essence of a summer’s day. The sun was fierce but in the shadow of the trees, it was cool and fragrant. The trees and shrubs along the riverbank hid their progress, from the Château, from St Feriole.

Eventually they reached a point where John thought it was safe to emerge from cover. To his satisfaction the stream extended into a pool with a sandy beach, shaded by trees. Where the stream entered the pool there was a flat grassy area, almost circular. Behind this, the bulk of two mountain ridges provided a splendid backdrop. He looked around once more ‘Not just a good training ground but a great training ground. If the Greek heroes knew about this they might be tempted to join me, to train with me’

Ximene laughed out loud. He turned to look at her. She had removed her outer clothes and was wearing a white chemise, cut short so that it barely reached her knees. Around her waist, she wore a plaited leather belt, obviously fashioned from the multitude of leather straps to be found in the tackle room.

She ran her hands down over her breasts. ‘When you were unconscious I heard you muttering about gods and goddesses, so  I have decided that from now on, for you, I will be the goddess.’

The Prisoner of FoixVol 1 of the series—The Treasure of Trencavel

Aquitaine, an English possession, is in crisis. It is under threat from neighbouring nations and internal dissension.

The Black Prince, King Edward III’s eldest son has been given the task of taking command in Aquitaine.

Suddenly there is an opportunity. Ximene Trencavel is the heiress to the lands of Occitan, to the east of Aquitaine: lands controlled by the Franks. Ximene wants independence, both for herself and for Occitan.

A union between Aquitaine and Occitan would be mutually beneficial. The Black Prince undertakes a secret journey to meet Ximene to negotiate a marriage contract. It is, however, a marriage neither of them really wants.

Meanwhile, the  Franks plot to murder Ximene to prevent ,not just the marriage, but any kind of union between England and Occitan.

The Eagle Of CarcassonneVol II of the series—The Treasure of Trencavel

The loose alliance between Ximene Trencavel and the Black Prince is under threat.

The Prince invades Occitan, to show his support for Ximene but it becomes an invasion which creates more problems than it solves.

The Prince has fallen hopelessly in love with Joan of Kent and Joan is now determined to marry him and become the next Queen of England.

Joan is therefore  determined to convince Ximene that she should not marry the Prince.

Part of her strategy is to encourage Ximene’s relationship with John Stanley—one of the Princes bodyguards—not an easy task as both John and Ximene have doubts about their compatibility.

However, John is grievously injured in a battle and Ximene commits herself to nurse him back to health.