Lord Douglas sent his youngest daughter to be a lady in waiting to Lady Furnival. The young girl, known as Asta in the village where she ended up, must have been attractive to Lord Furnival. Lords frequently had children out of wedlock, and Lord Furnival was no exception. He seduced the young lady, and when she became pregnant, sent her to Strombridge where she was held in virtual imprisonment even after the baby was born. Lady Furnival became the reigning authority when her husband died. Since she and her husband had no children, an out-of-wedlock male heir could challenge for the right to rule. Lord Douglas would likely back Crispin's claim and take the power to rule for himself.