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The Honorable Connor Roe,

Opris, The Royal Palace

The Fourth of Ara, Sixteen Seventy-Four,

With Evandrus gone I have no real need to be here anymore. With him off in Striecial, there’s no telling when he’ll be back. For all we know they could stonewall him for a month. I mean we’ve only interacted with their colonies with any regularity. Who knows what their mother country is like. They did respond to his letters with and arraigned passage without much fuss. I don’t think anyone has set foot upon their shores before. I wonder what could have caused them to break that taboo. I’ve heard mention that they have had minor skirmishes with a cult. The cult going as far to attack their colonies. If they did spirit away our men, could they made to fight Striecial’s war? And if they didn’t spirit away our men, who did?

I fear that I will miss him. Evandrus and I have grown close over the last year, even more so after his mother’s death. I would even go so far to call him a friend, and as a child to nobility that is a luxury. True friendship is always a luxury. Though true friendship has blossomed between us I am a snake. At my father’s command I had set out to seduce him, to one day be Lord-Consort of the King. In truth father entertains the idea of any of his children being the King’s consort. Father is always trying to foist my younger brothers and sisters off on Evandrus. Even little Emma, by the Lord’s light, she’s only five!

Evandrus even knows that my father has set me this task. I finally worked up the courage to tell him in late Tal. He just smiled at me and said, “Yes, I know.” He knew. He. Knew! I still can’t wrap my head around it. He knew that my father sent me after him. Though, in hindsight, I guess it was obvious with each my siblings after him.

I have never been all that attracted to him to be truthful. He is handsome and I wouldn’t mind warming his bed on occasion. But only as an afternoons distraction, nothing more. And I do say we have had a great time in the ornamental gardens, but, I want a wife and children. With Evandrus I cannot have a child, I would have no children. It would be some royal surrogate no doubt chosen by a comity. And I would bring no real power or stability to Evandrus’ reign.

To be some well cared for consort is not my dream. In time I want to take over my father’s title and estate. I am the first born, the rights of primogeniture grant me his title and land. I have no real need to fight for a nobles affections. It is my brothers and sisters who should be vying for Evandrus’ attention. I should be helping them, not hindering them by being a competitor. I mean, I have the ear of our soon to be king, he trusts me. What I should be doing is turning eye to one of my siblings.

Besides I don’t know how Father could possible think that Iris or I could even turn Evandrus’ eye now. It’s all a moot point anymore from what I can tell. Someone has caught his eye. The special someone who sent him that ring. The sapphire betrothal ring he has yet to take off. Not to mention the letters he makes grand effort to keep hidden. Evandrus has never been one to hide letters, usually he just leaves them on his desk. Not that I try to read his private correspondence or anything. I cannot help it if my eye falls upon a few key pieces of information. But these letters are different, precious somehow. He locks them away in a special drawer in his writing desk. He keeps the key on him at all times, I’m even convinced he sleeps with it.

I have no to desire to stay here and play these courtly games of intrigue. As a rule I don’t enjoy gossip. Though I do revel in the occasional juicy tidbit. Of course I also wouldn’t mind finding out the contents of the hidden letters. Or about the giver of the betrothal ring, but that everyone wants to know about that. But with no one to seduce, Evandrus was fun for a laugh but no one else here has even caught my eye. All the other courtiers are simpering puppies, I don’t think I could find a wife among them.

In all honesty I just want to go back to the estate. I hope Father will give me permission. I am not one for large cities, even less for palaces. I revel in my freedom. To go riding with my favorite horse. To go hunting with my dog. To wile away an afternoon hawking. Those are what I enjoy. The only high society function that I enjoy is a good fox hunt, and only because I trained all the dogs from pups.

In comparison to what is now around me our estate pales. It isn’t a great manor or mansion; to be honest it is only somewhat bigger than a dower house. Roe House doesn’t do much in the way of grand balls and galas. The title had been granted to my grandfather some sixty odd years ago, back during the war. My grandfather had saved his whole battalion with a hasty decision. From what I understand he was able to maneuver his troops in such a way that the skirmish was won before it had even begun. Along with the title came a nice stipend and with a few choice investments, well the Roe family is what it is today.

Father, let Iris stay. She enjoys the romance and gleam of court. Let her have her motor car rides and horse drawn carriages. Let her stay and let me free. It is a solemn prayer, but I fear it will not be heard. Let alone granted.