Gamestart for Latimer -- A Pleasant Morning in Amber

Latimer sits at his desk of an early morning, having his breakfast and reading the paper. According to the front page, the King had called a meeting of the Elders. Now in itself this is nothing of note, as the Elders, as the King called his circle of closest advisors, met monthly to discuss and set matters of Royal policy, but today was different. The monthly meeting was four days off, and the King had called a special session.

The Gazette raised several theories as to a possible reason for the special meeting, but no official word from the Crown. Speculation was rampant that A Holiday was to be declared, or the King had decided to find a new wife, or even that a new realm was applying to enter the Golden Circle.

Latimer sighs, looking over the top of the paper to direct a sour glance at the envelope with the King's seal on it, which had been waiting on his desk when he had arrived that morning. The summons, no doubt. He turns back to the paper.

From farther afield comes news that George Shadburne, King of Begma, has sent a delegation to Amber to complain about the depredations of the Cult of Titania. Also, a new Opera by the long-dead master Basuto has been found and put into production at the House of the Angels. Opening night is scheduled for Friday.

Latimer pulls out some parchment and scrawls something onto it for a moment, before folding it up. Summoning his secretary, he asks the youngster to arrange a meeting for later in the day with the delegation from Begma and to send the now-folded note to his sister Mordaleah. The note, hastily but still neatly penned and sealed with the Archdeacon's symbol reads:

Dearest Mordaleah,

I was just reminded of a neglected promise to take you to the Opera, and now a new one is opening this Friday night, supposedly by Basuto. Perchance may you be available to join me to take in this newest treasure? That is, if it is indeed a creation by Basuto after all. Who better to judge than you?


The note is taken away just as a messenger arrives from Abigail with a request for a conference at Latimer's earliest convenience.

Latimer checks to see when the meeting of the Elders is. Scheduled at 1 pm, Latimer would have to make an effort to meet with Abigail before the meeting and have time to get back for it.

Latimer makes sure everything is in readiness for the later meeting, then leaves to meet with the Prelate. The trip is uneventful, and eventually Latimer finds himself in the presence of the Prelate. Abigail is pacing in her office when Latimer is shown in. "Ah, Good day, Archdeacon. How does the World find thee?" she asks absently.

Latimer bows formally to Abigail. "It asks my secretary," he answers. "He knows my schedule better than I." He pauses a beat.

"The Unicorn has a sense of humor," Abigail replies, showing that she does not.

Latimer straightens, with a bit of a grimace. "I am well, Prelate," he adds more straightforward. "And you?"

"What do you know of the Begman delegation?" she asks.

Latimer clasps his hands behind his back, remaining standing until invited to make himself comfortable. "Only hearsay," he admits, watching her carefully. "Theoretically they are here to complain about the Cult. I hope to meet with the head of the delegation this afternoon. Have they made plans to talk with you or Cardinal Synn?" he inquires.

"Cardinal Synn has not relayed anything to me," Abigail replies. "I suspect that they wish to keep this a Crown affair." She looks sharply at Latimer. "Of course, that simply will not do."

Latimer takes a meditative breath, and nods briefly. "Whatever the case may be, it must be dire for Begma to have brought it all the way to Amber to discuss it with the King, and it is possible this is one of the reasons a meeting of the High Council has been called for this afternoon. However, if that is not on the agenda, I will inquire with the King regarding when we will meet with the delegation." A moment’s pause, and then he asks, "Do you have information that is cause for greater concern and stronger action?"

"Nothing specific," the Prelate allows. "It is one thing, though, when the cultists are abroad in shadow, but Begma is practically our own backyard. If they have gotten so brazen, I feel the Unicorn calls us to teach them the folly of presumption."

"I rather expect there is more to it than cultists getting out of hand in Begma," Latimer replies calmly, hoping to diffuse the Prelate's agitation. "Otherwise they would be able to handle it themselves. They have ample ability to do so without Amber getting involved, and asking Amber for help would bruise their ego too much. There is likely something else involved that they are hoping to use to get an edge over Amber, something to outweigh the negatives. If that's the case, the King may be more than willing to hand jurisdiction over to the Church." The barest hint of a smile appears. "Of course, at that point we may not want it."

"The punishment of heretics will never be a duty the Church shies from," Abigail asserts firmly. "I would like to ensure that the Church has a voice in the prosecution of this effort."

[Would Lat know anything about the activities of the cult in Begma through his own contacts? He would keep an eye on things like that, ostensibly because of his position as AD, but more directly because of his pet project.

They tend to stay away from Begma, so a lot of activity there is unusual. Begma tends to be very Orthodox in doctrine, and the QH does not get much call for use there.]

"Of course," Latimer agrees without hesitation, nodding. "The Cult is Church business. If a meeting can be arranged this afternoon with you, the King, the delegation, and me, should I contact you here today?" he inquires then. "I doubt that they should be put off any more than necessary."

"You may reach me here," Abigail replies.

Latimer nods. "I am not unconcerned by this development, Prelate," he says. "I simply believe that there is more involved than a simple complaint from Begma, and wish to gather some more information. However, thank you for clarifying your position in the matter." He bows. "If I may take my leave?"

She nods once, not replying verbally and Latimer departs without any further attempts at humor to lighten his superior's mood. He trumps himself back to the castle, after finding someone to take his horse back. He checks in with his secretary before heading to the Council meeting, but his schedule for today is light, with only a group from the seminary due at 4:00 for an informational interview about the Archdeacon's position and function.

A short message also had arrived in his absence. I would love to join you at the Opera on Friday. Mordaleah

He grabs a quick lunch, and he's off to the meeting, then.

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