In order to neutralize the threat from the Catholics, Elizabeth pursues a match with the Duke of Anjou. Walsingham discovers proof of a planed murder of Elizabeth. Elizabeth sends the Duke of Anjou away when she finds a knife in her bed and brings Mary Queen of Scots to trial. She is forced to execute her when Mary Queen of Scots is found guilty. This execution angers the Spanish and they send their Armada to fight the English as a consequence. However, the English can defeat the Armada. The news of Dudley's death leaves Elizabeth heartbroken, but when she meets the step-son of Dudley, the Earl of Essex, she allows herself to be charmed by him.