I've dashed off this work as though recording fact, but the greater part of it is imagined, and I hope that the reader will approach it accordingly. I've selected affairs of interest from the Tower's history and woven them together, at times applying dramatic license. Flaws arise in so doing, and it's inevitable that, in certain places, traces of inconsistency show through. Several scenes, where Elizabeth (Edward IV's queen) comes to see the two imprisoned princes and where the two assassins reflect on the murder of the princes, are also depicted in Shakespeare's historical drama Richard III. Shakespeare used direct prose to depict the killing of the Duke of Clarence in the Tower, and then used a suggestive style for the killing of the two princes, drawing on the words of the assassins to render the scene retrospectively. When I read Shakespeare's drama, I found this greatly intriguing, and I've applied the same device myself. However, the content of the assassins' exchange, as well as the description of their surroundings, are of my own imagining, of course, and have no connection to Shakespeare. I should add a word too on the song of the executioner as he grinds his axe. This idea comes entirely from Ainsworth's novel "The Tower of London," and I can claim no originality here whatsoever. According to Ainsworth, the axe blade was chipped on the neck of the Countess of Salisbury. In Ainsworth's novel, the scene in which the executioner grinds his chipped axe runs only a couple of pages, but it impressed me to no end. Furthermore, that casual singing of a crude song as he grinds is but a minor touch, yet I was struck with its power as a dramatical device. It brought to life the entire work. I've emulated that device here, though the song's words and meaning, the conversation between the two executioners, and the rendering of the dark cellar are of my own invention. As I've brought up the subject, I'll note here the song of Ainsworth's jailer.