Oliver D. Bernuetz's Stories
A Visit to Elkoi
This letter dates from after his exile but was discovered in the same archive as the others.
Thank you for your kind thoughts in my hour of need. Oh how the mighty have fallen! To think that a careless remark likening Moonsons buttocks to his mothers orb could be so ill taken. (Curse my loose tongue! You would think that I would have better things to do at an orgy than to come up with witticisms). Exile is a harsh punishment, I feel, considering the crime. I fear that like a fragile moon flower I shall wilt and perish away from the benign gaze of our beloved emperor. And what of Glamour? Shall I see it again before I die? I hope you will continue to petition Moonson on my behalf and assure him of my full repentance. (And that I shall endeavour to keep a tighter rein on my toungue from now on). But I implore you do not risk bringing Moonsons displeasure down on yourself! Tread lightly lest, like me, you bring his fury down on your own head.
It is actually amusing in a extremely painful sort of way that one such as I who once trailed in the wake of majesty has now been thrust into exile. Whereas before I lived in Glamour, the most magnificent city in all Glorantha and visited awe-inspiring hellholes like Alkoth or beautiful places like Jillaro I am now reduced to visiting pigsties (literally) like the place I am currently visiting. It is called Elkoi and it is on the very fringes of the Empire, in fact technically we are only here to support the local monarch, a slug called Glyptus the Good, whose grandfather was put on the throne by Lunar forces. The reality of course is that this Glyptus cannot squeeze a boil (of which he has many I am sure) without our approval. (I imagine he would have to be shown how to do something as complicated as boil bursting in the first place). We are building a cute little temple to the Seven Mothers here and missionaries are trying to slap a veneer of Lunar culture on the locals like you would slap a coat of paint on an outhouse. I had the dubious pleasure of dining with King Good for Nothing and his equally dubious family as well as with the local Lunar notables. These notables ran the full gamut of the usual cast you meet in the provinces, ranging from well meaning but misguided moony-eyed optimists to jaded, cycnical opportunists just waiting to get out of the place and back somewhere more interesting. Dinner was an immense bore and involved some of the worst dreck and swill that has ever crossed my plate. Afterwards I was given a tour of the town and was shown the sights. The walls are made up of immense blocks of stone that the locals claim were laid by giants. They are nothing compared to the battlements of Alkoth, never mind those of Glamour, but they are interesting enough I suppose. Between the walls are crammed the houses of most of the inhabitants, a primitive, superstitious bunch of savages who have the endearing habit of keeping pigs in their houses. Unfortunately proper sanitation seems to be limted to the Lunar compound being constructed outside the main walls. Just charming. I was assured that Elkoi is the very height of culture and sophistication in Balazar compared to the other two citadels so the Goddess keep me from ever visiting them! The whole place seems like something out of the distant past. Im sure our distant ancestors lived much like this. (Though I am positive they must have smelled better!) All in all a place I would not care to spend a lot of time in. Oddly enough though I am told that parties of Lunar nobles regularly come to Balazar in order to hunt and to get back to nature.
I have resolved to steel myself to exile and make sure that I continue to be a worthy representative of the Empire. I plan to travel east as far as I can go and I will continue to send you letters from the places I visit.
Take good care of yourself and be well!
(Late of Glamour)
This story last modified August 08, 1998
Last updated September 26, 2016
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