Not an answer

Cora –it’s fitting to spell her name as she’s taken to spelling it herself– wrote this before getting the queen’s letter.

Raissei Cora, in Turenay, to Ravei Raisse astin Brun, in Valdis,

Great Queen,

My beloved Queen Raisse, my Elder Sister to whom I will always turn when searching for a shining example of virtue and great wisdom, your younger sister Cora is so proud — for I have managed to already become a journeywoman in the service of the most holy God Anshen.

It happened as follows: two children, twins of about four years old, were bitten by a mad wolf. Their father took them to see Leva: fortunately the wounds were not infected, for the journey took them three days. Then, when the father had to return to his farm, their mother came back.

Their mother, Kisif, is a woman from Velihas who has the most beautiful red copper hair, but also, unfortunately, a body that was wounded when she gave birth to her twins, which discovered when she allowed me to examine her with my spirit and the skills Leva has taught me. Kisif was rendered barren after she had given birth to her firstborn children — something that frequently happens with the women of Velihas, or so I am told.

Then I resolved to ask Leva and Lyse whether the four-year old damage could be healed still, which Leva pronounced to be a hard task and one that was possibly beyond her skills, but that she was willing to undertake this healing work, if Kisif wanted to bear more children. Kisif agreed, and Leva allowed me, that is Cora, and Lyse to be present and assist as nurses (though not as doctors).

The healing commenced after the divine service for the most holy God Anshen, Leva having decided on that most auspicious of days for this great work. Also, it was the tomorrow of the day I had examined Kisif. In the first part, Leva made the hard and scarred flesh of Kisif’s womb soft and pliable again — this took more than two hours and make Kisif have convulsions as if she were in labour again (Kisif says she still feels as if she has just given birth, even now, the next day). The inside of Kisif’ womb now appeared to our spirit as a field ready for sowing. Then, Leva healed the womb and made it firm and proper again on the outside and fertile on the inside. This took three hours, but the work was crowned with success.

However, Kisif had been given a potion consisting of willowbark, bitter bark, ironheart and kalesh, and it turns out that she, who came from Velihas and has a daughter of four years old who already shows her gift, cannot have kalesh. Kisif nearly died, her spirit disappeared when the healing was finished.

I did, in the spirit, hasten after her and into Kisif’s herb garden (which she had shown me some days previous) and found her spirit there and grabbed hold of her. This was very difficult, but Leva and Lyse then helped me fetch Kisif back: this was my journeywoman’s trial, and Aidan is so proud of me! And Sinaya, who is my bath attendant, also saw that I had grown in the spirit.

I tell you this, my beloved queen, not to boast but because I know that you are interested both in what I learn and what happens to me and in these things of the spirit, and I declare I believe that this is the first time Leva had made a barren woman fertile again (at least, it looks that way, Kisif will have to wait until having offered to the Mother at least once, before lying down with her husband again and conceiving, but Leva is very confident, as is Lyse), and it is a great work.

Written by Raissei Cora, on the day of Naigha in Turenay, in the eleventh week after the festival of the most holy Goddess Timoine. Sealed with my own seals of the spirit!

ps. I believe that Raisse has already written you about another matter, namely that I have bought a small house next to Raisse’s house and next to the hospital for me and Aidan to live in. We did put a silver shilling under the doorstep yesterday and found a silver rider that must have been there for at least two-hundred years. I made bold to execute this transaction without asking for your permission because otherwise Lord Radan and Lady Halla would have asked us to live in the attic over Halla’s apothecary, and then I would have been too far from Raisse and the Hospital. There will be a door between our house and Raisse’s so I will still be with Raisse. I hope all is well with the child in your belly and also with the Athal and the kingdom. And doctor Leva has asked me to become her apprentice after the festival of Anshen, instead of continuing at school. Raisse (whom I consider to be my mother now) and Lord Radan are in agreement, as is the midwife Lyse, that this is what I should do and that it is what you would have decided, too, could we have sent a letter to you in time and received an answer back.