How To Start A War.

Archduke Franz Ferdinand with his wife Sophie, Duchess of Hohenberg, and their three children (from left), Prince Ernst von Hohenberg, Princess Sophie, and Maximilian, Duke of Hohenberg, in 1910

We all know that the trigger for the start of the First World War was the assassination of Archduke Franz Ferdinand, but what might not be so well known is that pure chance put him in the firing line of the man who shot him.

On 28th June 1914, the Archduke narrowly escaped being blown to bits by a bomb thrown at his car. The bomb bounced off, rolled under the car behind and exploded, injuring members of the Archduke’s entourage. They were taken to hospital, but later that day the Archduke decided he would go to visit them and ordered his chauffeur to take both him and his wife, Sophie, to the hospital.

In real life, Ferdinand’s chauffeur was called Leopold Lojka. In Immortal, my latest novel, Lojka’s place is taken by Malachi. When the bomb is thrown he swerves, avoiding it and so bodging the mission Lucifer has sent him on, but instead of punishment Lucifer gives him a second chance.

Under pressure not to mess up a second time, poor Malachi drives around, hopelessly lost, and stops at a junction to decide if he should turn left or right. He makes his choice, fingers crossed and by an amazing stroke of luck (for himself, not so lucky for the Archduke) drives straight past the Archduke’s assassin.

Princip, the gunman, later confessed that hemmed in by the crowd he could not throw the bomb he had on him he had simply raised his pistol and fired off two shots without aiming. Sophie was shot in the stomach and Ferdinand in the throat. Princip could not have predicted the war that ensued and the incredible loss of life that resulted from his initial action, but had the chauffeur turned right instead of left history might have been very different.

If you would like to read more about Malachi and how he became Lucifer’s errand boy, you can buy my book – Immortal – from Amazon.

My first novel, Black Feather,  is also available from Amazon too.

Nel Ashley is the author of Blackfeather – a Fallen Angel Paranormal Romance  and Immortal, the second book in the Blackfeather Series. She is currently working on her third novel, Persephone Reborn, a vampire romance influenced by Greek mythology.

You can also connect with Nel on Facebook and Twitter


3 thoughts on “How To Start A War.

  1. It’s amazing the part chance plays in events. Though I suspect that if there had been no assassination, war would stil have broken out some time in the next few years. The First World War was driven by a raft of underlying forces – principally economic, political and ideological oppositions – and the proximate trigger was less crucial.

    Liked by 1 person

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.