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    Analiesa Josefina
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  1. Finally, she was at rest.
  2. There is no limerick attached to the notice, breaking from tradition. The flier lacks its traditional whimsy, instead replaced with a somber chord. Peace had failed, and war waged on. Hear ye, hear ye, denizens of this realm, It grieveth my quill to convey unto thee a dolorous missive from the hallowed halls of the peace summit. Alas, as the sun waned in the firmament and shadows encroached, the hopes for concord and accord withered like a rose untended. The Duke and the covenant, with hearts heavy and laden with the weight of expectations, did meet in earnest discourse. Yet, in the dim-lit chamber where aspirations for harmony were kindled, the fire of understanding did not blaze. The negotiations, akin to ships in tempest-tossed seas, found no harbor of reconciliation. The parley, fraught with discordant tones, echoed with the mournful dirge of unmet accord. Thus, with sorrowful penmanship, it is proclaimed that the mantle of peace, so earnestly sought, remains elusive. The trumpets of diplomacy fell silent, and the banner of unity lay tattered upon the fields of failed accord. Let it be known, in the scrolls of time, that despite noble intentions, peace hath faltered. May the heavens look with favor upon those who now gird themselves in armor and take up arms in the looming conflict. In the face of impending strife, may God bless and guide those who march forth in the name of a cause yet unfulfilled. In our profound obscurity In blindness self-imposed From our own impurity Our brothers we've opposed. And should the sons of man profane By violence and deceit The world which freely god sustain That we may all receive. And shall all woman's daughters wail for shattered hopes and lives Whilst we let evil's ilk prevail and turn away our eyes. The bells of heaven distant toll To judge myself and you So let us now restore God's peace and make the world anew. SIGNED,
  3. There once was a bard quite spry, who saw a fierce duel draw nigh. Midst the clang and the clash, she composed in a flash, A song about dueling awry! Hark, ye goodly subjects of the Adrian Duma, lend thine ears to a tale of noble strife and verbal tempest! In the midst of the grand assembly, a tumultuous altercation unfurled betwixt the crude crow’s soldier Nikolai Vladov and the fair Lady Lucia Kovachev. Words, like fiery arrows, flew with heedless abandon! Lady Lucia insulted the dignity of Brelus’ defiance, citing the victory of her Savoyard ancestors over the Adrians! Thus, her dignity found itself ensnared in the venomous web of Nikolai's insults. The gallant lords and ladies, in shock and dismay, beheld a challenge declared, and a duel thus summoned forthwith to settle this affront. As the fists clashed and blood splattered, a minstrel, in the spirit of jest, struck up a merry tune to accompany the skirmish of ancient feud. Lo and behold, a song so silly and sprightly, it echoed through the halls of Adrian Duma, softening the blows and turning the duel into a dance of folly. The minstrel sang of squabbles absurd, insults preposterous, and a duel so comical it could be but the jesters' mirth. The lords and ladies, torn between laughter and awe, marveled at the whimsy of the song, as the duel twirled in an intricate dance of jabs and jests. One eve in the court of Adria, ‘neath an inky sky, Lady Lucia and Crow Nikolai locked horns ‘n cried high. There they did battle, the ladies wit sharp and precise, The old Raev’s retort, her honor insulted, sly and concise. Champions clashed, insults were flung, Over ancestral ties, their fight had begun. Lady Lucia's champions, fierce, leal and true, In her honor they defended, fire they would walk through. Swords unsheathed, demands received, the duel did ensue. The old Raev did his very best, with strength and valor - well, he tried. Yet her champions, leal and true they were, frightening bravery was shown with pride. Alas, dear old Raev, he was the first to fall, to the floor he laid and cried.. And strong Lord Kovachev, god he blessed, For his darling Savoyard bride! SIGNED,
  4. nation leaders, rulers, a thread for ur perusal..


  5. There once was a bard named Rowena, whose tunes could make minstrels much keener. On a musical spree, she toured land and sea, now the whole realm sings of her demeanor! Hark, good folk of the realm, and lend thine ears to a most mirthful tidings! By bards decree and with glee unbounded, let it be known far and wide that the esteemed and aspiring bardmancer, the fair Rowena af Caesterwick, hath declared her grand quest to embark upon a wondrous world tour! With harp in hand and a voice as sweet as ambrosia, Rowena doth seek to enchant the hearts of all lands with her melodious musings. From the hamlets to the castles, through thickets and across yon rolling hills, she yearns to sprinkle joy like pixie dust upon the ears of the goodly people. The minstrel's journey shall know no bounds as she doth traverse the map, a troubadour on a tuneful mission. Her lute shall sing tales of love and merriment, and her ballads shall echo through the very stones of ancient keeps. Henceforth, let it be known that Rowena af Caesterwick craves not riches nor jewels, but rather the applause and cheer of every soul who doth witness her bardic prowess. Tarry not, fair citizens, for the caravan of melody and jest shall soon grace thy lands. Prepare thy revelry and make merry, for Rowena's world tour is nigh upon us! So spread the word like wildfire in the meadows, and let it be sung from the mountaintops – Rowena the bardmancer is set to serenade the realms with a melody that shall resonate for eons to come! May her tour be as epic as a dragon's roar and as joyous as a jesters' jamboree! Be thee from the North or South, East or West, should ye desire the dulcet tones of Rowena's minstrelsy to grace thy halls and byways, send forth a missive. Yet, heed this counsel, for the fair bardmancer doth seek but a humble pledge – a vow of personal safety on this tuneful quest. So, ye rulers and sovereigns, extend thy invitations freely, and Rowena af Caesterwick shall dance with delight to the rhythm of thy lands. A guarantee of safety and a concert of merriment await those who dare to welcome this whimsical minstrel into their midst! SIGNED,
  6. Long since deceased, having perished by her own hand, a tormented soul kept from the skies wept for one of her favoured children.
  7. Franziska Elaine, a notorious (recently widowed) gold-digger, packs her bags upon learning of the Kings newly altered marital status.
  8. Mikhaila vas Ruthern slid the notice between the pages of her prayer book, taking note of its information should her younger sister continue to prove difficult. @ncarr
  9. Young Mikhaila, now the heiress to her Grandfather's duchy, clutches the missive with a sickly sensation of anxiety broiling within her stomach. She had never thought such darkness capable of shrouding her otherwise happy life, but alas, the innocence of childhood had since been engulfed. "Vyr Grace," She began, securing herself at her tutors flank. "What will happen now?" @kaylacita
  10. top 5 favourite times of hexer rp GO
  11. TW: Suicide, please do not read ahead if such topics may make you uncomfortable. [Lukrezia, Joos van Cleve] This day, the pain pierced her chest much worse than any day before. Gripping the silks of the dress she adorned, a fist pounded against her heart; the Princess wondered then when it would end. This suffering. Though she tried her best to hide it, others were beginning to take notice; of how hoarse her wheezing became, how sickly she sounded when she coughed, bile-filled and putrid. ANALIESA thought no differently of herself now, the woman who once exuded all confidence and poise. How far I have fallen, she laments. From the dais, she scanned those on-looking debutantes, making a staunch realization then. This world now belonged to the young — she was far beyond those days now. Glancing at the list of the next presenting debutantes brings forth another pang. Her daughters — not all of them. At times, she saw those girls, the ones she lost. Their names were struck from this list. Nevertheless, her voice rose to announce. “... Ladies Aleksandra Milena and Stefaniya Ipera of the Ducal House of Ruthern!” She would not have had them saunter forth any other way. In fact, she trained them for no less than perfection. And just as she could recall, Elizaveta was nearing her debuting age, just before her last moments. Petra would be walking the aisle with them as well, if not for the blasted Mori. The thought brought a tear, but she suppressed it — even with the crowd’s eyes on her remaining children. Perhaps it was the glow beaming from her daughter’s headdress, but a brief flash whizzed past her eye. She blinks, now seeing not two daughters, but all four. “It’s…” She began, her head slightly shaking, “Strange, to see only two daughters before me.” Despite that declaration, Elizaveta stood just to Aleksandra’s left, beaming proudly as she adorned the very titanium kokoshnik her mother had made for her. Petra stood opposite Stefaniya, meek and mild, and in an ensemble more modest than her older sisters. Analiesa wishes to see each detail of this figment. But to her dismay, a portion of their visage is blurred and faded. Even their faces were disfigured and mangled. Still… how beautiful they looked, haunting her. They did that so often, appearing in her lonesome, and as Aleksandra dedicated her debuting token to both departed sisters, Analiesa’s mind began to slip away from the proceedings as a whole. The room darkened, and a constant droning buzz echoed throughout her ears. If she concentrated hard enough, it was almost as if she could hear a voice — her voice. “... It’s lonely here without you, mamej.” Came that demure whisper, and the mere utterance struck her with a deep physical discomfort, the very insides of her stomach twisting into an unbreakable tether of knots. It was the sickness, surely it must be. The withering of her soul had begun to take root, and hallucinations were bound to occur. She saw them — those girls — often, but never did they speak to her. With a degree of rigidity, her grip begins to tighten upon the support of her chair, nails scratching against lacquered wood. “Why did you leave us, mamej?” There, she spoke again! Her warble was no more than a distorted crackling, a harrowing amalgamation of her sisters' voices, but she heard it — Elizaveta, just beneath the surface, always just out of reach, always just out of sight. It was maddening, the constant visions of her two departed offspring, it would be enough to drive any mother to enact terrible, drastic measures. And Analiesa was always known for terrible, drastic measures. “... My mamej, the Prinzenas Royal. I believe she’d like to read this in her own time, your Majesty.” Stefaniya’s voice drew her in like a lullaby, and she realized that Elizaveta and Petra had never been there at all. Waiting expectantly for her recognition were Aleksandra and Stefaniya, the surviving girls of her brood. With the remaining strength that she so desperately clung to, her voice was cleared, and a hand of spindly digits came to take rest at her bosom. Stefaniya, in her youth, was much like Elizaveta. Pure, innocent, and kind-hearted. Something had happened to her, though, following the death of her eldest sister — something had changed inside her, warped and disfigured. Analiesa didn’t like that. She had begun to remind her of Aleksandr. Her elder daughter, Aleksandra, had reminded her much of her father in her youth. She used to believe that she was the product of both their most undesirable traits, cruel, apathetic, and unfeeling — the worst of her, and the very epitome of him. It was almost poetic, how both of them had transformed into a shadow of their sister's former self. Stefaniya, with rage building inside her that Analiesa feared would burn their family to the ground, and Aleksandra, once so stalwart in concealing her innermost thoughts, now freely shedding tears. She loved them, though — even still. [Jan van Eyck] “I believe that we should strive to be honest with one another, Aleksandr. No matter how painful it may be to the soul.” Analiesa had begun. The news of Georg’s disappearance rang throughout her ears not dissimilar to tinnitus. Aleksandr had woven her arm throughout his, and his calloused hand was set upon her forearm. It was strange, this act of affection - it was out of place. “I do not ever agonize as to the state of my soul, Analiesa. I am sorry for your brother.” He droned in that indignant tone she had grown to detest. “Speak, and be honest with me.” “.. We stopped loving one another a long time ago, didn’t we?” She was unsure why she posed it as a question, for she already knew the answer. She and Aleksandr were the very likenesses of mutually assured destruction, and there was no pain that could be inflicted that the two had not already committed on the other. “I could not rightly say.” “Perhaps it was a sense of duty that tethered us to one another for all these years, or even rebellion - to spite those who strove to separate us in youth.” “No. Not that.” He began, and kept her own arm wrapped in his, the other lifting to rest against the railing of the bridge. The two stood upon the great walkway to Valdev, peering over the river as the current shifted. “I do not know that I have ever loved you, nor our children.” - “I wanted you, though. For as long as I recall.” Analiesa felt no pain at this statement. She would have, once, she would have threatened to throw him off the railings and into the river below - perhaps she may have even attempted to. “I had thought hearing that would hurt me, but I don’t think we are capable of that anymore. We have already inflicted too much prior harm.” “I am not to blame for all of your ills, Analiesa. You carry with you a madness that I cannot comprehend.” His gaze was unerring, cold. “But I do regret.” - “More of our time apart, than together.” “Why, if you do not love me?” “I do not wish to be rid of you.” There came a lull of silence where Analiesa did not speak. She wondered if Aleksandr felt uncomfortable with that silence, if he felt the need to fill it - and then, did he speak. “There have been few constants in my life. Your brother was one.” - “With every loss, I feel my world shrink smaller. I am ever without.” “... It is the way of things, Aleksandr.” She began, with a twinge of bitterness interlaced between her words. “But my world ended with the lives of our two daughters, with our … our beautiful girls.” “They were weak.” He spoke in a hushed tone, and Analiesa could have sworn she detected a hint of guilt. “They were ours, they should have been strong - as we have both been.” Analiesa was enraged by this comment, instinctually protective even as her daughters lay buried. “They were only girls!” - “Children.” She lamented, her grip tightening upon the fabrics of his coat - pleading. “We have not been strong, Aleksandr. We have been detached.” “I have been steadfast.” Exasperated, Analiesa severs all forms of contact as she retracts her arm from his grasp. She felt it, again - their presence and her throat tightened at the thought of Elizaveta and Petra bearing witness to Aleksandr’s admission. Such was a secret she would take to the grave, his disregard for their children. She had decided that, following her death, they would be safer with the impression of a loving parent remaining. Such would be a discovery they would have to make themselves. “We have been a misery together.” Insisted Analiesa, the very precipice of emotion beginning to stir in her tear ducts. “Not all the time, Analiesa.” Came Aleksandr’s retort, and he was equally as insistent. “Those years did not last.” - “They ended with Elizaveta’s birth.” “Perhaps.” That was all he offered. There was another lull of silence, and Aleksandr filled it with his voice once more. Analiesa enjoyed the breeze and allowed her eyes to close. “None have ever challenged me, as you and your brother.” “You always hated it when I challenged you.” She stated, fighting a laugh. “It did not stop you. I shall miss it, this place is so dreadfully dull.” - “This place and its people.” “This is not our world anymore, Aleksandr.” - “It is for the young now.” “Not while I’ve still a grasp on it.” He purses his lips and eyes her sidelong. “When we were young -” He began, speaking plainly. “I would have died for your hand. Or else slain your father.” - “I could not tell you why, perhaps ‘tis my own madness.” There came a moment of reflection for Analiesa as the current of the river shifted and sprawled over the bank, and she recalled a conversation she had once had with her elder brother, Georg. “He always knew, you know.” - “He knew that you did not love me, hah, he even said so plainly. He was of the opinion that it was not love, nor desire, but obsession - the obsession with claiming the prize of your generation, and the compulsion to be chosen above all others.” - “It was of no consequence to you that it was I who held the title.” “Georg was rarely right, if ever.” He considered, running a hand through his greying hair. “I did prevail, in the end. Perhaps ‘tis true.” “I feel a fool.” She lamented, “For having fought for you so ferociously.” “You would not have fared better without me.” He murmured coldly, grasping the rails of the bridge. “Perhaps I might have been truly loved.” Analiesa allowed herself a moment to wonder what that life would have been like, had she not been crushed under the weight of parental expectation, the expectation of her Kingdom. Would she have turned into such a vicious woman? Perhaps she would have been loved by all and raised a family with a man who truly adored her. With a man who did not see her as something to be possessed and claimed. “And what might you have made of that love?” - “Your brother truly loved my cousin.” Aleksandr spoke once more, and Analiesa struggled to see into his mind. Usually, she was rather gifted with pinpointing the evidence of Aleksandr’s true feelings. Perhaps she had lost her touch. “Perhaps I would have had a life that I do not hate. Perhaps I may have even grown into a woman that I do not detest.” “Perhaps you might have been nobody at all.” “I may have even preferred it, as that is eventually what I became.” “Such often comes when one wallows in their misery.” “It is a deserved fate.” Analiesa croaked out. “I do not think so.” Said he, with an unusual degree of softness. It made her uncomfortable. “You would not, we are too similar.” - “You could never admit to your faults.” It was true, Aleksandr had never been able to admit to his wrongdoings, and it was something that drove his wife completely mad. Always, it would be her at fault - whatever the occasion, Aleksandr simply always placed all blame onto his spouse. Perhaps he was right, in the end. Perhaps she simply was the catalyst for all catastrophe. “For I know it shall not serve me.” He murmured firmly, unwavering in his beliefs. “Do you ever wish that you had done things differently?” Analiesa prepared herself for an unsavoury retort, they had promised to be honest with one another, after all. “I do not go a day without regret.” “And what are those regrets?” “Much and more.” - “But not those early days with you.” “...No, I do not regret those days either.” - “All I ever wanted was for you to love me as I did you. You completed me.” And it was true, Aleksandr had completed her - but he had also destroyed her. Analiesa clung to the belief that had she not married him, she would not have grown to be so completely detestable. But she did not regret it, no. Aleksandr had given her the seven most joyous things to grace her life - her children. “I fear I know not how.” “Perhaps you will realise it, once I am gone.” “I pray that I do not.” - “‘Tis not a pain I wish to know.” “You cried once, at the thought of losing me,” Analiesa spoke, recalling an instance following her father’s final refusal of their engagement. She had threatened to take her own life, and had even attempted to do so - the only reason she still drew breath was due to the medical expertise of her Aunt, Cardinal Katerina. Without her, she would have been lost for good. “What happened to that boy?” “He grew old.” Those words struck her deeply, and it was only then that she saw him for his true age - how he had wrinkled. Forever in her mind, he had been the young boy atop his horse with a lance poised for his opponent. “...You will care for them, won’t you? Not in your way, but in mine. You must love them. You must, on my behalf.” “They have already suffered far too much cruel and unusual punishment.” “I shall try.” He had appeared sincere in that promise, squeezing her hand before promptly letting go. Analiesa dried her eyes of their encroaching tears and allowed herself a moment to look at Aleksandr, and truly see him for what she knew would be her final time. He always had been handsome, but never had he been kind. Try as she might, though, she could not deny that she still held love for this man, and that was the most pathetic admission of all - that she pined for a man who held her in a regard of apathy. Nevertheless, she placed a hand on his cheek and pressed her lips to his. One final act of affection after thirty years of cruelty. Aleksandr reciprocated for a moment before he retreated, proffering a soft and pitying smile in return. His eyes were dry, but mournful - as if the words he longed to speak simply would not come. He settled for a simple phrase of; “Be well, Analiesa.” - “I shall try.” He reaffirmed. “I thought that I had stopped loving you, Aleksandr.” - “But I do not think that day will ever come.” She hesitated, before uttering a phrase imparted from her daughter. Elizaveta’s final words, and now hers. “Be strong.” She whispered, “But not too strong.” [Rembrandt van Rijn] She had always thought that she had not asked for much from life. She was the daughter of King Karl the Lion - the most powerful monarch of Almaris in his days - and, through her father, she had wealth and power at her uncalloused fingertips. From the outset, her resolve had been to do her duty without complaint: she would wed in an appropriate match, and sire children. When she took Aleksandr’s hand in marriage, she had fought her father’s protests tooth and nail in pursuit of the one thing she did want. To be loved. Her soft sigh was drowned out by the patter of the rain streaking down the window as she stared out from the manor, and onto the strange streets of Valdev. She had thought she had not asked for much, but now she knew she was wrong. Aleksandr had not loved her, and that had taught her that true love was a rarer and more precious thing than her royal father could ever hope to conjure up. He had not loved her, and she found herself more alone than she ever was in the cold hilltop halls of Vidaus. The view of the grey morning outside became distorted as the rain sheened the window. With that pain in her chest and her eyes looking through the rain at something unseen, it even felt as if the years raising her children had been but a brief reprieve from that all-consuming loneliness -- She hoped that her son, Villorik, would not allow for her father’s dream to die with her. As she imagined what the future would be like without her at their side, she assumed that her death would fuel him to unimaginable heights. He would lead the faithful in a crusade against the heathens of Aevos, and blood would coat the steel of his sword. He would never truly come to terms with the death of the three women he loved dearly, though. They would haunt him, as they had haunted her. Viktor would accept the mantle of Duke with hesitation, and yet determination would boil his blood. He was strong, her boy - the strongest of them all, but she hoped that he would not make the same mistakes as she and Aleksandr did. She wished for him to be surrounded by friends and family alike, with his own small brood of children to care for. Even his betrothed, Katia - she hoped that she would be happy stepping into her shoes, and would deign to wear a smile for the courts. Aleksandra would marry the Prince of Merryweather, and while she would not truly grasp the meaning of motherhood, she would adore her children. She imagined her daughter would be much like her in that regard, and it brought a smile to those sore lips of hers. Aleksandra would not deign to resign herself to simply the role of consort though, no, not her daughter. She would continue in her alchemical pursuits and surpass any who came before her, her scientific breakthroughs would change the world. Andrik, her boy - while not of her blood, she had always accepted him as her trueborn son. She had seven children, not six, and he was the one that held the softest piece of her heart. She had always pitied him, being neglected by his own parents, and so it was only natural to raise him alongside his cousins. She hoped that following her death, he too would change, and grow into a man that he himself could be proud of. He would be the one to name a child after her, she knew it to be so. Stefaniya would be by far the most affected by her sudden demise, which brought a sensation of guilt to the bowels of her stomach. She could see how she was slowly turning into a shell of herself, as Analiesa once had. She knew that Stefaniya would, slowly but surely, isolate herself from both her family and her friends. Perhaps she might even turn to violence. Eventually, though, she hoped that her daughter would come to the realisation that Analiesa once had. To be lonely is one of the greatest burdens of all. It was only when she felt the cold stone did she realise she was leaning against the wall for support. Her breath had grown ragged as another pang jolted through her chest, and yet she barely felt it. She knew this reminiscing did nothing but stir wistful regret and worsen her condition, but, as her grip shakily tightened on the wall, she did not stop - she did not pull her mind out of the past, for what was the point? Everyone had come. Everyone had gone. Why is it that I’m the only one left? She was aware of another pang, but she did not feel it - not really. Her vision had grown hazy, and as she looked through the window, it was not her reflection that stared back through the mist and rain, but Eliza’s. “Mamej? Why are you waiting?” She opened her mouth to answer, but she could not draw enough breath. Even if she could, she knew she had no answer. Why … why am I still waiting? The rain continued to patter down against the window as Analiesa slowly raised a trembling hand, and pressed it to Eliza’s reflection. The reflection pressed her own hand back. “I can’t look at you like this anymore, mamej,” the spectre intoned softly, and sadly. “You have spent so long in the darkness.” “So please …” As a voice spoke in equal softness behind her, Analiesa whipped around, though she did not dare move her hand from Eliza against the window. Standing in the middle of the room - barely ten paces away - was Petra. Compared to the dreary bedroom and the pale, rainy day outside, Petra was a bastion of colour; Analiesa had never seen a shade of red so brilliant as the shade of her daughter’s dress, nor a blue so bright yet so deep as her eyes. “ … come into the light.” At that moment, the ghostly memory of Analiesa’s daughter seemed realer than the physical world around her. And so, she knew. Of course. Gently, she closed her eyes. She had tried for so long - since her grandmother Queen Emma had first died, since she felt the first traces of that darkness, she had marched on; then, her truest friends Franziska and Adelajda left Haense behind them, with Adelajda to marry abroad and Franziska to explore the world. In doing so, they had left Analiesa. Then, her royal parents, crushed under the weight of her father’s tumultuous reign, had left her too to take their rest in the beyond; then, her own two beloved daughters - that which she thought would save her from the darkness - died, and Analiesa had been powerless to stop it; and now, Georg was gone, too. Somewhere along the way, she had also lost herself. No, she stopped herself. They’re … “Not gone,” Petra finished. The memory reached out, and the pangs seemed to stop as she touched her mother’s shoulder. “They’re resting.” She had marched through the lonely darkness for so long. She had been strong for so long. Now, though, she was tired of walking, and she knew that the road held nothing but more endless night. And so, she stopped walking. They’re right. Why live on with such suffering and agony? Why allow those around her to witness her decay? That is no way to be happy. To find true happiness, she must join them. Wherever Georg had gone, wherever her daughters had been swept away to, surely it provided better comfort than this. She would not leave them again, she thought — ironically, taking up this plot would mean leaving behind the rest. Briefly, she thinks of them. Soon, she assumes it is better for them this way. Her remaining children are left with a note — it is the least she can do. The Barbanov princess could not remember the last time her heart had felt so determined, yet so woeful all the same. But, Elizaveta’s fading voice acts as a voice of twisted reason. Maybe she was as mad as Aleksandr said, but at least she would no longer be alone. One last vision stands before her — that precious angel of hers, the Cometborn, hovers from across the room with open arms. She is joyous, and she is nearly within reach. Within reach, she could hold her again. Her hands lifted to the noose that hung from the rafters of the manor, and she slipped it around her throat. “I’m coming, Elizaveta.” The stool is then kicked from under Analiesa’s feet, clamouring to the wooden floor with a ceremonious THUD. She struggled, she gasped, and then… She blinked. She knelt, her hands to the floor, and the stool discarded on the ground beside her. Did I …? She began. Slowly - very slowly - she craned her neck upwards. She felt no pangs, no pain, no stiffness. The room was no longer grey and dreary, and it was no longer pale and rainy light that streamed through her bedroom window. Radiant sunlight pooled into the room, silhouetting them - all of them. The sun had never shone brighter, and she never saw darkness again.
  12. The final thread of sanity that the Princess Royal clung to, was severed.
  13. THE AKOVIAN BIRTH On the 6th day of the month Jula and Piov in the year 482 E.S. VA BIRODEO HERZENAV AG EDLERVIK, The love match of His Royal Highness, Stefan Edvard, Duke of Akovia, and Her Royal Highness Franziska Elaine swept the Courts of Hanseti-Ruska with surprise and joy; and so it should be no surprise their union has already come to fruition in the welcoming of a daughter. The Princess’s labor came far earlier than predicted, and proved intense and taxing upon her constitution; however, the child further arrived remarkably robust in health, and as the hours wax on it seems her mother shall return, in good time, to her fullest health, also. Despite this arduous arrival, we are thusly overjoyed to introduce Her Ladyship, GEORGINA HELAINE BARBANOV-BIHAR OF AKOVIA @critter whose first name so honors her paternal grandfather, His Royal Majesty Georg I, and whose second is that of both her mother and maternal grandmother. The child bears a stark resemblance to her father in complexion, and bears gray eyes in a hue precisely his own. We do ask for prayers for both Franziska Elaine’s swift recovery and the continued welfare of the happy couple’s firstborn. Furthermore, the Royal couple announce the following nobility to act as godmother and godfather to their child, respectively. Her Excellency, ALYONA RHETTA GODUNOV His Excellency, VLADIMIR BORIS VAR RUTHERN SIGNED, HRH, Stefan Edvard Barbanov-Bihar Prince of Hanseti-Ruska, Duke of Akovia HRH, Franziska Elaine Barbanov-Bihar Princess-Consort of Hanseti-Ruska, Duchess-Consort of Akovia, Madame Raev
  14. Franziska scratched her head in confusion. “Ea danced with eam husband all night, ea made no such offer to His Majesty!”
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