|“||I always give a warning when I can, and here is yours. Get you gone. Return, you will not find me in a warning mood. Go back, and tell him you serve. Tell him I used to serve. We do not kneel.||”|
Chapter Summary Edit
Two months later, Monza is now settled into Fontezarmo as Grand Duchess of Talins, and pregnant with the child of former King Rogont of all Styria ... well officially it is, it could as easily be Shivers.
The city-state is now thriving, with merchants flooding to the city as one of the only stable states in Styria. Ospria and Baol are at war, as are Muris and Sipani. There’s plague in Affoia, a great fire in Nicante. And uproar and turmoil in Puranti and Musselia. Only Talins and Borletta under former Duke Cantain’s young niece are untroubled; Monza orders an ambassador to be sent there to offer her sisterly affections. The one problem in Talins is border skirmishes with neighbouring Etrisani. Disregarding her previous promise of peace, Monza decisively orders that Etrisani be put to siege by the Talinese army. Shylo Vitari, who has now taken a role as one of Monza's counsellors, points out that many people in Styria are blaming Monza for the death of King Rogont and the others. Monza suggests spreading the lurid tale of the real killer, the greatest and most heinous murderer in history; Castor Morveer.1
After the meeting with her counsellors, Monza receive a visit from a representative of from Valint & Balk; Yoru Sulfur. He offers Talins the backing of the old and respected banking house. However, Monza refuses him, wary at supporting either Bayaz or Khalul in their ancient rivalty, as she had refused Ishri just days before. Sulfur’s politeness and sweet smiles quickly harden into thinly veiled threats, until Shenkt steps out from the shadows. Shenkt and Sulfur bristle at each other, clearly there is a long and sordid history between this pair. Monza dismisses Sulfur echoing Shenkt's mantra, she does not kneel.
Afterwards, Monza asks Shenkt why he has helped her. Although he remains cryptic, he reveals that he seeks his own vengeance on Bayaz, and now destoys everything that he tries to achieve.1 Shenkt healed Monza intending to use her as a pawn against Duke Orso and Valint & Balk, but she gets away. However, ironically she fulfills Shenkt's plan all on her own.
|Monza Murcatto||Duke Cantain|
|Shylo Vitari||King Rogont|
|Yoru Sulfur||Castor Morveer|
|Grand Duke Orso|
Locations and Terms Edit
|Borletta||Musselia||Valint & Balk||Puranti|
- Morveer had always wanted for a great reputation as a Master Poisoner, and in death he finally got his wish; "A man who could slip into the best-guarded building in Styria, murder its monarch and four of its greatest leaders and away unnoticed like a night breeze. Who is safe from the very King of Poisons?"
- Shenkt may consume human flesh, but he stands in opposition to Bayaz and Khalul alike, which arguably makes him a good guy in this world.