While the Duchess du Linge was grateful to Pirouette for giving her a place in the Royal Household, she found many of her duties most unpleasant. Her main objection was the need to interact with tradesmen. If the Queen wanted a new wig, it was up to the Duchess to contact the wigmakers with specific instructions about the style required. Worse yet, she was required to change the Queens bedsheets everyday, like some common housemaid. I’m sure that there are some who’d be honored to pour the Queen’s bathwater. She thought to herself.
It was while she was in the middle of changing the Queen’s bedsheets that she felt a terrible pain in her chest. Even more alarming was the inability to take a deep breath. Overcome with dizziness, she perched herself on the edge of the Queen’s bed in order to collect herself, but she found it impossible. It was Abigail who found her in this state. “Madam! Are you alright?” Asked Abigail alarmed.
“Yes, yes,” murmured the Duchess. “I just need a moment-” She cut herself off in mid-sentence because the pain in her chest was like a dagger stabbing her in the heart. Abigail immediately called for a doctor. What the doctor did not know, could not know, was that the Duchess was suffering from a viral infection of the heart, leading to a condition called myocarditis. Bleeding and a senna purge were ordered which, of course, had no effect beyond making the poor Duchess feel even more light-headed. She was put into bed and a priest was called to administer the last rites.