The main conflict in the book is the struggle, both to keep the young son of Louis XVI alive and smuggle him to England where he will be safe from the French Revolutionaries. Although it involves covert action and intrigue, this is mainly a political struggle because the British aristocracy does not want to see French aristocrats left without an heir to the throne after the beheading of Louis XVI and his wife, Marie Antoinette. British aristocrats are afraid that the revolution in France will spread to England and they will loose power. In addition to the dauphin, The Scarlet Pimpernel is determined to save as many of the French aristocracy as he can. The conflict is developed by first seeing The Scarlet Pimpernel saving a family destined for the guillotine, establishing a secondary love plot and then watching the conflict build as the French Revolutionists trying to catch The Scarlet Pimpernel.