Christmas Candle

The Final Daye of Marche, 1558

Where were we when we met last...?

I remember when we were still slinging swords outside the castle, and every rain we survived together... I dreadfully miss you more than my heart and destiny can handle when you are away; it has been so long since we spoke last, and as the days grow longer, I come to wonder, what mysteries have you uncovered? Where does your heart wander now?

Our crows remind me that nary a day passes without a thought of you. I know you are searching the ends of the earth for me, and even though we cannot speak, or talk, or see, we'll be together again yet. I have never forgotten how your hand feels clasped in mine.

I'll always keep the hearth warm and the throne cold for you, my love, no matter how far you journey - but I do miss you, and wish you would come home again... I'll keep this missive short, as I cannot bear to think on our distance any longer. It is the price to pay for falling in love with an errant or knight, but a high price indeed..

I have never forgotten you, my dear. I shall never forget you. I hope our speediest crows can still find you.

Loyally yours, and with warm tea in hand,
Your Beloved, Darkbane

The Twentey-Firste of Januarye, 1557

Oh, my sweetest Journal...

It has been so long since we have hosted a true Feaste! As the storms and winter rains still rage, and the lands are covered in snow, so still shall we wait for an appropriate season for guests to arrive. Twyla has prepared each guest bedroom with care for when the unexpected do drop in, living or dead or otherwise - sumptuous new velvet curtains with brocade to keep out the light, a polish in the stained glass in the hallowed halls, a fluffed pillow every night by the roaring fire and a tray of hot tea and warm borscht waiting for them by the candles...

A dreary sigh, as it will be quite some time before any borscht shall be eaten within the Estate, for a while.

To occupy oneself, one plans one's rose garden: A difficult task in the winter, to be sure, but a satisfying one. It is my earnest affair to have a true hedge labyrinth in the Castle grounds this year - something I shall have to enlist Minotara to, as she's the only one with an eye keen enough to spot the perfect dips and dells on the vast, rolling premises of the Castle.

To wit, I shall open more of the castle to visitors: It does get so lonely on the Castle grounds, and we have plenty of staff on hand to guide the wayward and lost out of any dangerous swamps or venomous plants they may come across in their promenades...

Yours, in solitude, but not quite;
The Majestic Darkbane

The Twentieth of Septembre, 1556

My dearest journal...

It pains me to know I cannot recieve guests for the forseeable time, as the rains around the castle have become too egregious, and neither Tabitha nor the groundskeeper can keep the moat from overflowing. It's much too dangerous to invite visitors, so I must make do with visiting other worlds via the books in my library.

It has been a while since I've dusted off the library, and there are many treasures yet to remember: the roof, however, has leaked in with the rain, and the damp has yet to be banished. Perhaps I shall requisition some candles and get to polishing the room myself.

There is so much to be done around the castle, and yet I feel a strange temeriousness... This loneliness penetrates my heart like the rain pores through the cracks in the castle walls. Perhaps writing to the other empires of the realm will do me good. In the meantime, it is my dearest wish to curl up at the window with a cup of spruce tip tea: perhaps with a lemon slice or a dollop of clover honey from the palace's gardens.

Lady Darkbane