In 1511, Cortez and a noble veteran of war name Velasquez go on an expedition to conquer Cuba. The mission is fairly easy for them to carry out and after they conquer Cuba, Velasquez becomes the Governor of its new capital. Cortes becomes one of his secretaries and gets an estate to himself as a gift from Velasquez. Soon after though Cortes falls in love with a Spanish girl name Catalina Xivarez.
Their relationship gets serious and she becomes his first wife. Velasquez doesn’t approve of his relationship with her at all but Cortes tries to ignores his disapproval. Unfortunately, the two get into a serious dispute over the matter and heated, Cortes opens his estate to be a meeting place for people who were tired of being under the rule of Velasquez.
After some planning, the people who wanted Velasquez out power decided to go appeal to the people in Hispaniola who put him in power. The plan gets to the ear of Velasquez before they can carry it out though and Velasquez intercepts it. Immediately he puts Cortes in cuff and chains.
Thinking that Cortes is the head of the whole conspiracy, Velasquez wants to hang him but doesn’t because he’s too fearful of Cortes’ followers and companions. He ends up leaving Cortes in jail but of his own skill and abilities, Cortes breaks himself out by picking the locks and slips away to a church, knowing that Velasquez couldn’t touch a refugee of the church.
How it Could have Gone Differently; POD:
Velasquez acknowledges the fact that, as Governor, he has almost unlimited power and that even though Cortes had a lot of people on his side, Velasquez could have them all killed or bribed if needed without a problem. He also reasons that Cortes is the head of the snake and that if he cuts the head of the snake, the rest of the body will die down with it.
So Velasquez kills Cortes, hangs him, and makes him an example to the rest of the men who considered going to Hispaniola.