A Tale in Which a Great Kingdom Learns One of Their Noble Daughters was of Stronger Mettle than had been Previously Appreciated

World of Storm and Fury: World Facts and Lore: A Tale in Which a Great Kingdom Learns One of Their Noble Daughters was of Stronger Mettle than had been Previously Appreciated
Early in the autumn of the year of her Coronation, the eighteen year old Empress Jillian did move her Imperial Court from Kordalburg, reuniting with her Father the Archduke Griphon at Deerbruck, then proceeding together with him to their ancestral home of Griphon Manor in Ruritania Province of the Kingdom of Lys. Having received the Oath of Fealty to the Eastern Empire by proxy on behalf of King Alfred, the Lion of Lys, Her Imperial Majesty had previously communicated Her Whim to have the King of Lys swear fealty to Her personally. Thus, upon the arrival of the Imperial Court at Griphon Manor, Earl Mowry, the Lord High Chancellor of the Kingdom of Lys, did travel thence from Constantia, and seek audience with the young Empress in regards this Ceremony of Fealty. Herewith be the account of this meeting, as related by the aged and politically astute Imperial Privy Councillor from Lys, Lord Byron.

Seated upon a couch in her apartments at Griphon Manor, dressed rather informally in a short green velvet dress and black silk hose which would have been more typical attire for a younger girl, along with elegant silver shoes, the Empress Jillian did extend her small pale left hand palm downwards, which the Earl Mowry did kiss as he genuflected on his left knee to Her Imperial Majesty. By a languid flick of her other hand, the Empress did grant her permission for the Lord High Chancellor of Lys to rise again, which he did, backing a couple of paces and standing while, to be truthful, the young blonde Empress did then rather slouch back where she sat on cushions and pillows of velvet.

"We do welcome thee to the Manor of Our Father, Lord High Chancellor," the Lys-born and educated Empress spoke with perfect diction and easy use of the Imperial first person pronouns, "Prithee do now speak of what purpose thou hast now traveled hither, on behalf of Our Brother, the King." King Alfred of Lys is of course the brother-in-law of Empress Jillian, through marriage to her elder sister, Queen Marcella.

Now, the aged Lord High Chancellor, who had served in this post under three Kings of Lys by this time, did actually appear somewhat nonplussed, even slightly flustered, at being addressed so by an eighteen year old girl. For until mere months previous, however august her noble pedigree, she had been quite clearly his social inferiour, now the point had just been extremely clearly made just how much his superiour she now considered herself. He might have done well to have considered the implications of this revelation more carefully...Instead, he merely continued according to protocol, "Indeed, Your Majesty, Their Royal Majesties, the King and Queen of Lys, do wish me to extend their warm welcome upon your return to Lys, and do with glad hearts look forward to soon personally extending such welcome. Yet we, of the Government of His Majesty, do feel such welcome ought to be in the form of greeting, rather than as gesture of submission."

"Thou dost now refer to the Oath of Fealty," the young Empress replied calmly from her couch cushions. "Sworn to us by proxy, in the person of Lord Byron," here she did nod her blonde head in the direction of where the Lys-born Imperial Privy Councillor did stand to the side.

"Exactly, Your Majesty," Earl Mowry nodded vigorously, smiling benignly down at the girl seated on the couch. "Inasmuch as the Oath of Fealty be already made, why, for the King to travel up here--"

At which point he broke off abruptly, his visage freezing as the formerly young clear face of Empress Jillian very suddenly darkened and twisted into a look of fury. "Do not interrupt us while we are speaking, Lord High Chancellor!" the Empress sat forward again on her cushions as she spoke loudly in her high-pitched, court-trained young voice. "We are the Supreme Authority in the Eastern Empire, the Annointed of God, Appointed to Rule in His Name!" she said very clearly, growing calmer even as those in the room standing around her grew deathly still and pale. Into the silence, the Voice of the Annointed of God and Sovereign Ruler of the Eastern Empire continued, "'Tis now our pleasure, the Oath of Fealty of the King of Lys having been sworn to us by proxy, to receive in person, such Oath from the King...and Queen of Lys," she added this last on a sudden whim.

Now looking quite apoplectic, Earl Mowry did open and shut his mouth a couple of times, probably thinking better not to say the first two thoughts which came to mind...At the last, he did manage, "The King, and your sister the Queen of Lys, shall be required to make Oath of Fealty to your person...Your Majesty?"

"Indeed, such shall be required of all member nations of the Eastern Empire," Her Imperial Majesty replied primly, perhaps a slight feeling of mirth tugging at the corners of her mouth as she looked up at the red-faced and sweating Lord High Chancellor, a man who was clearly more used to being on the other end of such conversations--in truth, even King Alfred had never interrupted him in public. No King had ever spoken to him so strongly! "We shall in the future require such Oath from Regent Jolon, when we shall have occasion to travel again to Nangrar." Of course, the last time she had been in Nangrar, the better part of a year ago now, she had been naught more than Lady Jillian...

"However," she continued with a smile, the sparkle in her bright blue eyes now not bothering to hide her awareness of his obvious discomfiture, "inasmuch as we do hear of the Condition of our Elder Sister, the Queen, and should not wish to cause Her Majesty to suffer the discomfort of travel while with child," here she drew a dramatic breath, looking up with lidded eyes into the face of the Lord High Chamberlain, as though daring him to attempt to interrupt her again, "'twill therefore be our pleasure to travel ourself to Constantia Palace, there to receive the personal Oath of Fealty from the King and Queen of Lys." At this point, a minute nod indicated she had finished speaking, and she would deign to hear his reply.

"Ye shall then meet the King and Queen in their Palace, to receive Oaths from Their Majesties?" was the best response Earl Mowry could reply with--and quite obviously no one in the room wished to help him in this difficult situation.

"That shall suffice, yes, Lord High Chamberlain," Her Imperial Majesty gave a vigorous nod of her head then, long blonde hair tossed with the motion. "Was there aught else they did wish thee to communicate to us?" she asked sweetly.

"Not at this time, Empress," the Lord High Chamberlain replied with an extremely low bow, answered with a polite nod from the couch. Backing three steps, Earl Mowry at least demonstrated he was well aware his best course was to retreat now...his world was suddenly now turned upside down, when it seemed safer to report this situation to his King, than to risk any further pronouncements from someone he had only belatedly stopped thinking of as merely the Third Daughter of a Duke....
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