To Roland from Portreaux

Emmeline took the first opportunity she had to stop and write an update for her Baron.

To my dear Baron Roland d’Uzec, my Lord and Liege, Wise Defender of his realm, and master of my heart,

I hope this day finds you well and the realm healthy and vibrant. Please know how much it means to me that you have taken time away from your many duties to attend this letter and hear me report to you events that relate to your daughter the Lady Rivanon as well as the ongoing mission that has torn me from Uzec.

Mademoiselle Emmeline de Cerisey, Maitresse en titrê and witch.

Our little band did deal with the mercenaries that were bouncing around Uzec looking for Sister Typhon Né. It did come to blows, but no life was lost and we were able to send them on their way with the truth. What they do with that is, of course, up to them. They, at least, will not trouble us again because I think they understand we cannot afford to be so gentle if there is a next time. These five and their enormous war-pig will trouble your realm no more.

I did have a relatively cordial meeting with Magus Alix of Derrien. Some exasperation with Magus Elemix’s choice to travel alone and with the artifact was expressed. I did try to talk him out of doing that, but alas my cousin is immune to any powers of persuasion I may have. I’m slowly becoming aware of other things he is involved in at the Barony, of which you already know all. Please allow me to apologize for whatever ham-handed or thick-tongued foux pas he may have made. He does mean well. Magus Alix has beseeched me, in a sense, to reduce his pride to something of a manageable size, a task, alas, I’m not certain is within my capabilities.

I again apologize, this time for any excess pressure Magus Elemix may have placed upon your soldiers or road wardens due to the extreme danger in which he chose to place himself.

Magus Alix was also concerned for our mission. She wished to know why we should be allowed to continue our expedition since it is so important, and not send people in our stead. She wished to know my answer so she could give that same answer to the other wizards. I would like to repeat to you what I said:

We go because we gave our word to the Academy we would.
We go because because the Academy chose to believe in us and back us.

Magus Alix seemed pleased with my answer.

We arrived safely at Portreaux and while I felt it necessary to convince Lady Rivanon to alter our initial travel preparations from Derrien and go with something I decided was safer at the last hour, our speedy, successful, and peaceful journey has proven it was the correct choice.

An entertainer must always be prepared to alter her planned set, improvise and react to the needs of the crowd. This applies in all aspects of life and is something I hope Lady Rivanon chooses to absorb and add to her already vast natural talents for planning.

The Contessa Adela de Portreaux, ma maré, is as always a delight for me to visit and I must say that Lady Rivanon and the Contessa always warm to each other quickly despite their differences in personality. It’s true that sometimes opposites do attract.

Contessa Adela has confirmed her recent good news that she is engaged to Count Robert Valois-Dinan. I hear he is a good man. She is clearly surprised and delighted he has come into her life once more. She told me he embodied all the best traits of my grandfather, whom she adored, and so I am very happy for her.

The Contessa’s good news comes hand in hand with news she also received from Thalassa, which I cannot help but also share with you. Her daughter, my aunt, the Magus Bella Dungaroon, is with child! She will name the child, if it’s a girl, after Contessa Adela and wanted the Contessa to know. When she told me the news, she read it straight from the letter and still was reduced to tears of joy. This marks the closing of a rift between Magus Bella and her mother that had divided them Bella’s entire life. Since coming to know each of them, I have loved them both and it makes me very happy to know this may be the end of an unpleasant chapter in our family.

No one can ever be truly certain, but the timing of these good tidings seems to coincide with the end of the curse I mentioned to you.

Hearing this news feels like confirmation to me that it could really be gone. Ever since Magus Revan revealed to me that I was under the effect of a curse that spanned generations, I have quietly feared that my time would end like that of my mother. She too found happiness with a man she truly loved and a life that could have been wonderful. Then she died in childbirth. Now I can see it doesn’t have to end that way for me.

I shall remain in Portreaux a couple weeks as planned, while we await Magus Elemix’s arrival. I’m sure you can imagine the kinds of questions a grandmother will ask of her granddaughter, and so I shall not bore you with those details…

Please think of me fondly; I will return as quickly as I can.

Your Faithful Servant,
Emmeline, your Maitresse en tître,
Mademoiselle d’ Cersey
Barony of Uzec
Duchy of Derrien

The letter was sealed with a modest bit of wax that had the imprint of Emmeline’s seal.

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