A letter from Lyse
It took her a long time, and several tries, to write this. Fekemme is writing to his father with about as much difficulty.
Dear Fekemme’s Mum,
How are you doing? I hope you are fine! I am doing fine, too.
I also hope you can read Valdyan letters, but I guess our Queen has taught you if you couldn’t yet, she’s very fierce on letters. I am teaching Fekemme our letters now, too. If not, I guess Fekemme’s dad will let you read Fekemme’s letter, it says the same thing, but gran said I should write you myself.
What I am writing to tell you is that I am going to marry Fekemme, I hope you don’t mind! I really am all stupid about him, I am afraid.
I’m Lyse, I’m nearly thirteen years old, but very big and strong, so I won’t have trouble having babies, the midwife says. I’m not pretty at all, but I’m not dumb at all, and I can read and cipher and I’m also going to be a grand master in the Guild of Anshen. You can also Fekemme’s dad about me, he’s met us when we were in Baraz to give him our king’s letter.
I’m from the boatpeople in Tilis, so we’re poor, and we don’t know much about kings and queens or princes, but my great-aunt is Senthi, and she’s baroness of Sarabal, and she’s going to teach me semsin, and her priestess of Naigha is also her clerk and she knows all about baronessing, which I guess is close to queening, so she can teach me too, so I won’t be totally stupid about the business when we come back to Baraz.
You can also ask the doctor about me! She knows I’m helpful and not afraid to work hard! And Fekemme had taught me to sing in the old language, too, we’ve spent lots of nights singing from after supper until breakfast!
I’m not sure when we’ll be in Baraz, our plans are like this: first we’ll go to Valdis to deliver the letter Fekemme’s dad has written to our king, and then we go back. My gran insists on marrying us, but if we need to do some extra marrying stuff in Baraz, then I won’t mind!
Then we’ll go to Sarabal because that’s where auntie Senthi and Rikhi are. Rikhi is a grand master from Iss-Peran, he is a friend of our king and said that he wants to teach Fekemme special because Fekemme’s semsin is of the earth, just like our king’s and Rikhi’s. And I’m going to learn from auntie Senthi, she’s already really old, over ninety! But she wants to make it to a hundred.
I’m not sure how long it’ll be before we’re done there, or whether we can take some time to come to Baraz before we’re done! I will write more when we know more.
Miallei Lyse from Tilis.