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Bonus ch1

The generals and their colonels left the meeting room, but they didn’t disperse, staying just outside the door for a while.

“It’s obvious she is not ready for the job, is too much for her.”  Isis stated.  “She is behaving like a spoiled heiress.”

“Is that really what you think?” Pacorus asked.  “Or are you angry that you didn’t think about those reforms yourself?”

“I don’t think the job is too much for her,” Ixtlilton said before Isis could answer Pacorus, “but I think there’s something bothering her.  I haven’t had an opportunity to check her, but there’s something that doesn’t feel right about her.  She should be completely recovered from the fight, but it looks like she is not.”

“She’s just tired,” Trajan said, “but that’s understandable, she is trying to do everything right now.  In just three months she has done more than my father did in all of his time as Emperor.  It’s as if she is working against time, as if she needed to do everything right now.”

“I think you are all taking this too seriously.  It’s just that for a long time she couldn’t do anything she wanted to do, and now, she’s taking advantage of her new power, she’s doing things her way, no matter the consequences,” Lamia said.

“I think you are being too negative about this,” Ranavalona said, “I really think that what the Empress is proposing makes sense.  Besides, I don’t think she was being childish, it was rather nice of her to send you away, another person would have attacked you both instead of sending you out of the room.  What the hell were you thinking insulting the Empress like that?”

“Is not an insult to speak the truth,” Isis said.  “She asked for our opinion and we gave it to her, if she can’t accept that is her problem, not ours.”

“You are playing with fire Isis, Kaiserin did you a favor when she assigned you to the Palace, don’t let your pride send you to exile to the other side of the Empire,” Trajan advised her.

“Ixtlilton is right, there’s something wrong with her,” Isis concluded.

A weird feeling touched the group, as if confirming that something wasn’t right, the feeling was coming from the other side of the door after all, from the room where Kaiserin was alone.

“I wouldn’t worry for her,” Maddan said, “she is stronger and tougher than any of us, and I’m sure she will be alright no matter what.”

Some of them knew Kaiserin’s story, some of them had heard the gossip and whispers about her past, but all of them knew that Kaiserin was a very powerful woman, someone to be feared and respected.


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