If Mary, Queen of Scots, could have foreseen all the trouble her marriage to Bothwell would cause, one can only hope she'd have made a different choice. Without the support of Scottish nobles, Mary turned to her cousin, Elizabeth, for help. Surely, she must have thought, Elizabeth would assist a fellow queen and cousin.
Without waiting for the advice of her ministers, who would have told her NOT to seek help from Elizabeth, Mary left for England. She was twenty-six years old.
When she arrived in England, Mary asked to see her cousin, the queen. For another nineteen years Mary asked for an audience with Elizabeth. She never got one. Instead, she was confined, in one English castle or another, never free to leave. Effectively imprisoned without charges, and without a trial, Mary ceased to live the life of a ruler.
As time passed, Mary increasingly tried to return to Scotland. There was always a reason why her English captors would not let her leave. The main, unstated reason was clear. Elizabeth and her advisors continued to view Mary - the heir - as a threat to the security of Elizabeth's throne.