And then Shaxper knew there would be no final speech to credit the true author of the plays. The theater was burning to the ground, along with his chance at redemption.
The hooded figure silently brushed past him. Shaxper opened his mouth to speak, but the smoke had injured his throat so badly, he was rendered temporarily mute. He reached up and tried to catch the monk by the hem of his cloak, but the stranger pulled away and strode towards a pillar of smoke. He turned and drew back his hood.
The warlike apparition of Edward de Vere, the 17th Earl of Oxford, looked at him for a moment and then quickly dissolved into the inferno.
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