[DFT] A Challenge of Gothic Proportions

Dragonetti dragonetti at generich.com
Sun Jul 15 11:17:15 PDT 2007

Greetings and felicitations, unto you, young cousin,

While tis true that I have a few years on you, I trust you did not mean to
insinuate diminished mental capacities in this *aged* cousin of yours. I
implore you to re-read my previous missive. You seem to imagine some
accusation of infidelity, that is not there. Indeed, to the contrary, I
applaud and acknowledge Her Excellency's recent elevation. (Note the capital
"M" in that missive.) However, your public displays of affection provides
fodder to those who oppose the current nobility. This just confirms my fear
that your judgment is currently compromised.

Now rest assured, cousin, that I have every faith in the fortitude of the
populace of Bonwicke and the Western region. I am blessed to number many, my
friends in the West and have rallied forces to help protect your lands on
more than one occasion. With the luxury of many months to gather your
allies, I have no doubt you can muster adequate defense. However, from a
swift invasion of an aggressive adversary, I fear your demise could be
equally swift.

Therefore, I issue you this challenge, dear cousin. I propose to bring, in a
mere six weeks time, a small contingent to your borders, with blunted
weapons, to *test* your readiness in *games* of war. If you fail or refuse
this challenge then I shall implore the crown to grant the stewardship of
those unprotected crown lands of the Western region to my care and
management. In the unlikely event that you prove yourself indeed prepared, I
shall beg your forgiveness and commission my most accomplished Bards to laud
your virtues for future generations. What say you? 

I view this as my duty, honor and privilege, to do all in my power to
safeguard the Crown's lands, as I take my vows of fealty to heart. And to
those who shall join me in this noble cause, may your hearts be at ease.
There is no honor lost in hardening the steel of our fighting forces. This
endeavor is just.

So what say you, Baron Kainin? Can you put aside your gentler pursuits long
enough to reassure me?

Again, I await your swift reply.

In the service of kingdom & crown, I remain,
Baron Armand Dragonetti
Lord Elfsea

> From: HE Kainin Tepesa
> Unto my good cousin of the great Barony of Elfsea,
> Baron Armand Dragonetti, Lord Elfsea, greetings from
> the lands of west,
> Cousin, I must admit that your letter has caused me a
> bit of confusion and wounds me a little at the same
> time. I do not understand what has caused these
> concerns of yours, but let me put them to rest.
> First and foremost, good cousin, your information
> seems to be confused at best. The mistress that you
> speak of is none other than my own dear lady wife,
> Baroness Oriana della Francesca who just recently was
> elevated to the rank of Mistress of the Laurel, much
> as your own lady wife was nearly a year ago. Mistress
> Oriana is fair and beautiful to be sure and I thank
> you for the compliments paid her but please correct
> the news that you have heard because like the songs
> say, she is a true Ansteorrian lady and there is steel
> in her bodice.
> As to your other charges,  I can assure you good
> cousin that the Barony of Bonwicke and the whole of
> the lands of the west are just as strong as they have
> ever been. Yes we have been beset by various outlaws
> in the past few years, but we are border lands and we
> are used to these minor difficulties. The people of
> the west are a strong and hearty lot, we have to be to
> live in such arid and dry land and to constantly face
> brigands and raiders. Worry not for the west, we don't
> have the luxury of growing soft here.
> As to the rest, I would wish to discuss this with you
> in person dear cousin. Charges of currying favor are
> unkind at best and an insult to my honor at worst. I
> feel certain that you have misspoken.
> I make my way to the Crown's Round Table this day, to
> attend to Their Majesties duties, I hope that we get a
> chance to discuss this further there.
> In friendship,
> Kainin Tepesa
> Baron of Bonwicke
> --- Lord Elfsea <lordelfsea at gmail.com> wrote:
> > Unto my right noble cousin, Baron Kainin Tepesa,
> > Lord Bonwicke, do I,
> > Baron Armand Dragonetti, Lord Elfsea, by grace of
> > Their Stellar
> > Majesties Ulsted & Ebergardis, send warm greetings.
> > 
> > Noble Cousin,
> > 
> > Let me be direct. I am concerned for you and your
> > lands. I watched
> > most carefully as you renewed your oath of fealty to
> > the Crown of
> > Ansteorra, swearing to care and protect Their
> > Majesties lands in the
> > west. I could not help but wonder at the irony, but
> > perhaps your idea
> > of protection differs from my own.
> > 
> > I love you cousin, and these words, painful as they
> > are for me, are
> > spoken out of genuine concern.
> > 
> > I realize, as do we all, that you have a new
> > Mistress who brings you
> > much joy, but, and please forgive my forwardness,
> > may I suggest that
> > she does distract you a bit too much from your
> > stewardship in the
> > West? Tis true, your taste is exquisite, no faulting
> > you there, but
> > one must remember a bit of decorum. To cavort so
> > publicly, is this not
> > ill-advised?
> > 
> > You also now seem content to focus on gentler
> > pursuits, traversing the
> > kingdom in an obvious effort to curry favor by
> > chronicling the affairs
> > of state for Their Majesties. Transparent cousin,
> > most transparent.
> > But more than that, do not these travels take you
> > far from Bonwicke?
> > It is this that speaks more closely to my *true*
> > concern.
> > 
> > In recent year's, I have observed your lands
> > repeatedly besieged by
> > brigands and nefarious upstarts. My generous nature
> > attributed these
> > difficulties to happen stance, but I now see that
> > there was indeed
> > cause. Your apparent lapse in judgment would
> > embolden any rogue with
> > sinister intent. The criminal Ruspoli was almost
> > your undoing, and
> > then his bereaved widow, out for vengeance?
> > Bonwicke, that shining
> > star of the West, nearly sacked by a woman!?! Heaven
> > helps us.
> > 
> > Now, as I take stock of Elfsea, assessing her wealth
> > and
> > fortifications, I am well pleased. My only concern:
> > Instability in the
> > West. Can you assure me, cousin, that you are indeed
> > in command and
> > have a formidable force at the ready?
> > 
> > As much as I love you, dear cousin, I love Elfsea
> > more and am not
> > prepared to gamble her safety on inattentive
> > brethren. I look for your
> > swift reassurance.
> > 
> > In the service of kingdom, crown and barony, I
> > remain,
> > HE Armand Dragonetti
> > Baron of Elfsea

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