“I’m quite sure I don’t know, Madam. I deliver the Post. I don’t rummage through it.” The courier groused impatiently.
Trudy nodded again and accepted the sack. The courier nodded and walked back out into the night leaving Gertrude to open the long letter that accompanied came with her package. It was addressed to her; her late husband had taught her to read and while it had seemed frivolous as a shepherd’s wife, it was proving a practical gift for her new life in the city. But there was no indication of the identity of the sender. She skipped immediately to the end of the letter and it was signed only RH in large elaborate script.
She sighed and glanced about once more before heading back inside. Regardless of the Watch, one did not tempt fate by staying in the open at night. The sack was of medium size; it couldn’t have weighed more than a pound or so but it gave no indication what was inside. She set it aside for now and sat down to read the letter by the light of an oily candle.
I was grieved to learn of the passing of your late husband. He may have mentioned to you the fanciful tales of the bedraggled man he dragged from the bog and you may or may not have dismissed them as he did. But I assure you as I did your late husband, I would have died were it not for his timely aid and I do intend to repay my debt. I regret it was not in time that he might enjoy it himself but I pray you will accept repayment in his stead. It does not begin to cover all that I owe and I apologize but I may also have inadvertently brought trouble to your doorstep in addition to this token. I will explain, but first, the more pleasant news.
The bag I have paid to have delivered to you is ensorcelled. It will hold far more than it should and never grow any heavier that it is now. Fascinating objects, and terribly convenient both for logistics and for keeping private what you carry. Within you will find a sum of finances. You will observe that they are in the form of multiple currencies as it is intended to be expended in travel. I thought it terribly sad that your husband who seemed to have worked so long and hard in such a foul land (no offense intended) had never even been beyond Stirland. I told him that when I returned to my family lands I would fix this oversight and he would see with his own eyes the sights he had only read of. I will not repeat what he said in response but incredulity might be a genteel way of expressing it.
I have included below an itinerary you and your new husband may find enchanting and spectacular and encourage you to take flight and enjoy what the world outside of your swamps has to offer. I have also included travel papers identifying you as the Lord and Lady von Schirach of Kiel. A sleepy little town west of Krugenheim, quite lovely, but tiny and unlikely anyone should know of it. I invite you to look upon this as a grand adventure but regret to inform you it may be of necessity as well. I now come to the ill tidings and encourage you to destroy this part of the letter hence you have read it.
The Grand Theogonist Volkmar the Grim has been goaded into declaring a Crusade and is coming with a host from Altdorf to sack Templehof. I’m sure as a loyal subject of the Empire you welcome the Inquisition especially given Templehof’s recently shall we say tempestuous political climate. Unfortunately, the Grand Theogonist and his zealots can be a bit fanatical and they may go a smidge over the line in their exterminatus. I would encourage you to be enjoying warmer climes prior to their arrival just in case. As for the aliases, it is exciting to be someone else, I frequently find the time to mingle among the common folk under various guises and it is simply invigorating. Alas it has come to my attention that some personages have entered into the knowledge of my indebtedness to you and I fear they may wish you harm knowing it would offend my honor and draw me into their clutches. Again, I am so terribly sorry that any of this has gotten back to you but when you first see the many-colored banners of Bretonnia or walk the sandy shores of Estalia I assure you whatever troubles you have left behind will disappear entirely from your mind.
Know that I understand my suggested itinerary can seem quite daunting but there really is so much to see out there and the—I say fortunate—repercussion of this vast abundance of beautiful vistas is that it takes a considerable amount of time to journey between them. And thus we come to the sum of finances I have included and its special conveyance. I hope you not think me to extravagant but a large and lengthy journey will require considerable resources and there are always those who prey upon the well-endowed. You will find it simple to withdraw what you need privately and securely from the bag I have provided without revealing the extent of your largess to hungry eyes.
I do hope you and your esteemed new husband will enjoy the journey ahead of you and the grand adventure it represents. My condolences again on your late husband, he was a fine man and shall be missed. Be safe and travel soon, I would recommend you tell no one of your journey however as the aforementioned personages I have the baleful chance of being acquainted with might espy to involve you in matters that are entirely too bothersome to contemplate.
My best to you both, bon chance!