Thursday, February 07, 2008

Meanwhile, back at the Palace ...

"Hello Darling, I'm home!" he calls as he walks through the door of the private residence at Lambeth Palace. "What's for dinner?"

There's no response, so he goes off in search for Jane. "Jane!" he calls out, "Jane!" He pauses a moment, thinking that he might sound like he's doing a scene out of Jane Eyre. "Jane!" he bellows again.

He waits, thinking he hears something, someone coming down the museum-like hallway, portraits of martyred Archbishops hanging along the walls. Then he sees her.

Or at least he sees someone who could be her.

Or perhaps she took that last reading of "Harry Potter" a bit too seriously.

She's dressed from head to foot in black, draped and swathed in a black garment, her head wrapped tightly in a black scarf and then pouring over her shoulders so that only her eyes are showing - at least, he thinks they are her eyes?

"Jane?" he asks, plaintively. "Is - is that - you?"

The top part of the black robed figure, the part that looks most like the head, nods slowly. He can't really see the eyes, there's this flap that has now come down over them.

"What is this?" he asks, now alarmed.

She raises what appears to be an arm and draws her fingers up slowly to the air, finally pointing past him, like the Ghost of Christmas Past in that blasted Dicken's story. He turns around.

"Good evening, your Grace," says a low and ominous voice from a portrait on the wall. "Sharia Law is now going to be imposed and we thought it prudent to begin the imposition right here at your residence first, since you seem so accommodating." The portrait appears to be a man dressed all in white, his dark beard long and his head wrapped in white. The portrait nods approvingly.

"That's supposed to be the Cranmer portrait," exclaims the Archbishop of Canterbury, "Where the hell is Cranmer?"

"Burned!" bellows the voice of the portrait. "Go!" the voice commands the figure draped in black. The figure turns to leave.

"No!" cries out the Archbishop of Canterbury, turning away from the strange new portrait on the wall to face the woman dressed in black. "No, don't go! I didn't mean it, I didn't mean it, blasted BBC, I shouldn't have said it, please, please come back, don't go, please, don't go!"

The woman silently turns away and he moves to run after her, but the closer he gets to her, the further away she seems. "Come back," he cries out to her, "Don't leave me! I don't know what I was saying. It was just an idea! Rochester is driving me bonkers, you know what he's like - Jane, Jane!"

"Dr. Williams?" a new voice says suddenly, a woman's voice, and he opens his eyes. The Queen of England is sitting on a settee across from him, a china cup and saucer in her hands. "Are you quite all right?"

He blinks. "I beg your pardon, your Majesty," he says, horrified. "I - I must have nodded off a bit there. Oh dear." He looks around and realizes that he is sitting in the Queen's private quarters at Buckingham Palace, here apparently for his monthly chat.

The Queen gently sets her tea cup and saucer on the table beside her and lifts her hand. A footman steps forward. "The Archbishop appears to need something stronger than tea," she says stiffly. The footman nods and departs, seemingly quite clear on what the Queen wants without her saying a word.

They sit in silence for a few moments until the footman returns, carrying a silver tray with a small silver flask and one shot glass. The Queen nods and the footman sets the tray down on another table near the Archbishop of Canterbury. He tries to look up at the footman but his eyes turn to the Monarch instead. She purses her lips together and then says, nodding toward the tray, "for you."

Obediently, he pours himself a full glass of whiskey and, hesitating only a moment, downs the entire glass in one gulp. He is sure he sees one of the portraits gracing the walls around them - is that George IV? - wink.

"Tell me, Dr. Williams," the Queen asks, retrieving her own tea cup and saucer again and sipping it slowly. "How is your wife?"

9 comments:

Rob said...

Classic!

Andy said...

Brava Babyblue!!
I can't believe the ABC would even entertain the thought of sharia.

Sharia would blast Londonistan so far back in time that even the Venerable Beede wouldn't recognize the place.

Rule #1---Ensure brain is fully in gear before placing mouth in motion.

Br_er Rabbit said...

"How is your wife?...."
But the Queen's face slowly fades, and he stirs in listless anomie as he begins to realize that the bedside hotline phone is ringing.
It's Kenneth, from New York.

Br_er Rabbit said...

Rule #2: Be sure the brain is engaged before hitting the submit button.
What's Kenneth doing in New York?

WannabeAnglican said...

Very good! But I would have had Her Majesty asking, "Tell me Dr. Williams, do you miss academic life?"

Anonymous said...

Long kinky hair on the outside of his head - long kinky hair on the inside of his head. The proof is in this latest episode of, "Weird Bishops of the Anglican World."

1662 BCP said...

So tell me Dr. Williams, now that you have submitted your resignation, where will you go in Wales to take-up fly fishing?

Alice C. Linsley said...

Shazam! The power of fiction. As the North African Jew, Jacques Derrida, once wrote "Truth inhabits fiction as the master of the house."

Alice C. Linsley said...

Rowan Williams (and many others should read this news report of how Sharia is used to intimidate Christian girls, and provide grounds for the burning of churches. This was sent to my attention by an Anglican bishop living in a Moslem country. He begs that we in the West open our eyes!
http://www.compassdirect.org/en/display.php?page=lead&lang=en&length=long&idelement=&backpage=&critere=&countryname=&rowcur=