Canned wish fulfillment, viz.: ""He kissed her slender white neck whilst he pulled the gown from her. She stood before him for a moment, proudly naked, before he doused the candle and they fell together on the bed in an ecstasy of long-delayed passion."" Afterwards they get married so it's all right. He is Sir Walter Ralegh (""What a man!""). She is Elizabethan maid of honor Bess Throckmorton (""Ah, women were made for waiting. . .""). Our herione Bess breeches her sons, gardens, gossips, nurses, keeps the estate and patiently waits until her devoted husband carries on the proud business of being lyric poet, soldier, courtier, explorer, and historian, and contends with the arrogant pup Robert Devereux, Earl of Essex, for the favor of the crown. Queen Elizabeth I of England is the Wicked Witch of the West and James I the Munchkins. Everybody else is exactly alike.