Lear hated himself for thinking this way – but his father lingered long beyond the time. “He should have gone by now, give me the throne,” he urged the stone walls of his room.
He consoled himself with hunting, drinking, wild days and nights, long parties to the dawn with the royal entourage and hangers-on. “Be not so dissolute,” his father urged. “Be like a king.” Time enough for that. Should he hasten the day?
His mother stared at him sometimes, as if she read his thoughts. Did she crave power? Pah! Women could not rule. He’d marry soon, Lear told himself, and raise a brace of sons to help him bear the burdens of the crown.