Becky English at the Daily Mail had a surprisingly dishy piece about King Charles’s “First 100 Days” on the throne. While the piece was about Charles and there are a great many sycophants being paid to fall all over themselves to praise their new king, a huge chunk of the article was not-so-surprisingly about the Duke and Duchess of Sussex and how the new king feels about the California royals. This piece is so dishy, I’m actually going to break it up into two posts so we can discuss ALL of the gossip. Here’s all the Sussex-related highlights:
Prince Archie & Princess Lilibet’s titles: More troubling is the issue of the Duke and Duchess of Sussex’s children, Archie, three, and Lilibet, one, who can be ennobled now that their grandpa is King. However, I am told that this thorny issue is one that Charles has firmly put to one side for the time being. ‘Anything to do with his grandchildren will be decided once they [Harry and Meghan] stop lobbing salvos into the palace,’ says one royal insider. ‘No decision or pronouncement can be made on that issue until the King is confident that the decision he makes can withstand any activity on either side in the long term — and they are not in that place right now. Monarchs move with great caution and reflection and there is no obligation to rush. The King will, of course, need to make a decision at some point — but the Sussexes’ activity is still so changeable that it’s just hard to take any firm decisions at this stage.’
The peacemaker Sussexes? Recently, I revealed that the Sussexes have told friends that once Harry’s memoir Spare is published next month, their focus will be on healing the family rift. Those on this side of the Atlantic are, perhaps understandably, a little more sceptical. ‘They said their Oprah Winfrey interview was the one time they were going to air these private family issues — and since then we have had a couple of TV projects, podcasts, interviews, the docu-series, the book,’ a well-placed source says.
The Sussexes are fundamentally in conflict with the monarchy: ‘The big question about the Sussexes is whether they can exist outside of a position of conflict with the institution. Everyone hopes they can but I’m not sure they commercially feel able to. Plus, they clearly believe everything they say. The interpretation they have of events is as true for them as it is untrue to everyone else who was involved. But the family want closure, not further acrimony. There will never be a day where, despite their most awful behaviour, the King would not welcome his son into his arms.’
Charles is feeling Harry’s absence: Another source adds: ‘Yes, His Majesty continues to be very bewildered by the whole thing. He hasn’t watched [Netflix’s Harry & Meghan] series and will not read [Harry’s] book — but he knows what he needs to know, and he’s very upset.He loves his son. But one of the King’s great skills is to compartmentalise. While he may be feeling Harry’s absence acutely and be concerned about the potential impact on the institution, he will also be focused very strongly on the job he has to do. There’s nothing he can do about it now, so there’s no point in losing any sleep at this stage.’
They’re worried about Harry’s ‘Spare’: Although Charles came off ‘lightly’ in terms of criticism during Harry’s recent score-settling on Netflix, royal insiders are decidedly ‘apprehensive’ about his memoir, which will be published on January 10. ‘In Netflix, the villain of the piece had clearly moved on to being [William], the Prince of Wales. Harry and Meghan actually had some nice words to say around the King’s role in helping them plan their wedding,’ one source points out. ‘Are they saving their ire for the book instead? Who knows. You can’t not feel sorry for Harry. He is fundamentally the product of a very damaged childhood. But you can also feel sorry for the individual and frustrated at the world he has created for himself, where he sees enemies at every turn. Despite it all, I know the institution would [still] have him back in a heartbeat.’
Open invitations: There is, as I reported recently, an open invitation for Harry and Meghan to attend all family events, including next May’s Coronation, although the guest list is yet to be confirmed. Whether they will come is another matter. Whatever the Sussexes decide, there is no doubt that our first Coronation for 70 years will still be a magnificent spectacle.
King Charles is not “ennobling” his grandchildren Archie and Lilibet – that would imply that Charles is making a choice to “give” royal titles to his grandchildren. Archie and Lilibet are already prince and princess, since the moment QEII died and they became grandchildren of the monarch. Charles is trying to TAKE AWAY their titles. You can tell by the linguistic hoops everyone is jumping through. As for Harry and Meghan’s very alleged desire to make peace – anyone who watched the Netflix series knows that Harry and Meghan want an apology and accountability, but they are expecting nothing and they’re simply going to move on with their lives. Meaning, the ball is in Charles’s court to actually make the approach, apologize, make meaningful changes, hold William accountable, etc. The Sussexes know that probably won’t happen though. And how many f–king times are these sources going to emphasize that Charles will welcome HARRY back with open arms… but not Harry’s wife or Harry’s children? These people suck.
Photos courtesy of Avalon Red, Cover Images.