The Notebooks of M---
The notebooks are many. A handful of lines dashed across each page in multiple languages.
Out of the Pawns Three rooks
Out of the pawns three rooks
Across a marble table meet
To carve and plate a city.
Three pawns, three rooks, three reasons.
Even-cut are stone so walls can meet.
Toil chisel, measure square. Build not on songs
Or moon your fortune, but mortar reasons
Cold, tempered, sharp, and fair.
But shadows form the faces of the moon,
And soul to body are thick as family
And thieves. Who can know, though words be fair,
Whether open or hidden is more honest?
In the duty of name and family
Find the portrait of a crown and city--
If fate rewards each endeavor honest.
Out of the pawns three rooks.
((It took a day longer than usual, but have work--twice over. An advisor to a council to the regent-- heavens! And a noble house asks my retainer, as expected. My girl, whatever are you doing? Don’t think that because this isn’t Skuld or Escalant or Telflamm that you can waltz in without learning the steps. I recognize no more than a dozen streets and less than half the noble families. At least Jonni seems keen on educating. Side question, I wonder if it’s right to praise Mystra for these gifts? Surely better than praising the tutors who taught me in Thay. ))
Not even the lion is so capricious.
No such contempt is born in the death of the goat, snatched raw.
The world burns. Yet the golden eyes desire.
((There are great stirrings beyond Peltarch. Like this story of a dragon buried in the mountain -- power is always waking. I must find my diplomatic bearings quickly, it seems. This city seems too unstable to ignore the threat of war.))
A Prayer Against Bondage
Call down the lace, and set
The breakfast table with lilacs.
The bread must be so white, the jam most clear,
For the whip is quick and persistent.
Command the eggs to take a shape
And feign patience equal to the station of
The company--so clever, such fun, so free!
For the whip of memory stirs the prayer, “Here we flee again.”
((Surely I didn’t believe that leaving the Sea behind would end the sad tales, did I? Yet so far from the slavers, I hadn’t counted on three refugees to share a table. How many times must one escape a captor? How long until we cannot remember that cold, sinking dread, that sense of being property? ))