She’s six when she tells her father “Being a girl is dumb” for the first time; she repeats it every month after that, and she’s seven when he finally says “Would you like to be a boy then?” She only realizes years later what a great man her father is to say “Yes” to her, but by then, she’s nearly forgotten her true name; there is only Harry. She still isn’t a man, but that’s all right, she’s fine with being a woman; being a girl was the problem.
Kate is a stroke of luck; it’s so rare for a woman to love a woman that Harry had given up on finding a spouse, but her father had said “Kate will not run away when she knows your secret,” and Kate really, really doesn’t; she’s nearly as brash and fiery as Hotspur is (and more than a little jealous of Harry being Hotspur) and they look at each other with laughter in their eyes whenever anyone says how well-suited they are with each other; they’ve broken at least two beds and Kate watches Harry with fire in her eyes.
When Hotspur’s told of the king’s words—”Would I have his Harry, and he mine!”—she laughs and laughs and laughs; she goes to court and defies the king to his face. When Vernon describes Harry Monmouth’s speech in glowing terms, Hotspur’s disgusted; she knows about the prince’s drunken carousing, and the idea that in a different lifetime she would almost certainly have married the prince haunts her with the cold certainty that Harry Monmouth is not what he seems, that a marriage to him would have borne a remarkable similarity to an iron cage, and she cannot help but shudder. When the prince says to her, “Two stars keep not their motion in the same sphere,” she cannot help but laugh at the final irony, and there’s a dying spark of victory in her eye as she dies, because she’s been a better son all her life than he, and they were never in the same sphere to begin with, were they?