By Jane Richards
It was very dark and quiet in the palace now that most were gone on the royal trip to Abydos. Shemsi crept down the back halls, keeping to the shadows as much as possible. "This will teach them," she thought to herself as she gritted her teeth in contempt. "The last attempt to rid Egypt of the Crown Prince may have failed, no thanks to that slip of a princess, Tepi, but this one won't." Shemsi saw a dim torch in a room down the hall. This was where she was supposed to meet the spy from the Hyksos. They had met before, now they again plotted against the royal family.
"Well, it's about time you showed yourself," grumbled a sour-faced man dressed in a dark cloak with a hood."Isn't it a shame you got yourself ejected from the palace as well as from your duties as royal nurse."
"You know that wasn't my fault,Menna," retorted the woman."This attempt won't fail though, I just know it. This time we have more help and a better plan. That daredevil princess won't be able to save him this time! Here's the plans, written to your general,"she thrust a small roll of papyrus toward the man. "Just take it to him and he will put the plan into use," instructed the, now disgraced, sister-in-law to the King as both parted in the darkened room and disappeared down the hallway.
"There! That will teach my brother-in-law a lesson or two. He dares treat my daughter like some outcast. Becket was never included in any of their family games, or invited to sit with them at their private dinners and games in the gardens. Well, at least not very much."
The fact that Shemsi,herself, and a very rude and spoiled daughter might be the problem never seemed to enter her twisted and very hateful mind. Being caught in a palace plot should have been a very serious offense but the King had let her off with just losing her honorary duties as Great Royal Nurse, and being ejected from the palace. In fact, her late husband had left she and her daughter, Becket, quite well off with an estate of their own. He had been a younger brother of the King and a governor of a 'hesep', or province before his death. Even stranger was the fact that he had been killed in battle with the very same Hyksos with which she now plotted.
These things just didn't seem to be realized by the woman as she returned to her house, confident that her plans would asuage some hateful, imagined slight by another family member, who happened to be King.