ROSTOCK, Germany — Karin Vogel wakes up in this graffiti-pocked east German city and drives to the hospital where she is a therapist who counsels elderly people in chronic pain.
If a few thousand people would just disappear, Ms. Vogel would be leading a far more enchanting life. She would be the queen of England.
Everyone knows that should 85-year-old Queen Elizabeth II die, her son Charles, if living, would succeed her. Second in line is Charles's son Prince William, whose wedding to Kate Middleton Friday will be a global media event. William's little brother, Prince Harry, is No. 3.
Ms. Vogel, 38, holds a different distinction: By the account of some genealogists, she is the last person in line to the throne.
Ms. Vogel stands behind the many who, like her, are descendants of Sophia of Hanover, a relatively obscure German princess selected by the English Parliament in 1701 to inherit the crown. Sophia's genes have dictated the succession ever since.
As for Ms. Vogel, the end of the line is just fine.