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Hyena Dandy

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Jan 1, 2011
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So, I noticed that my Dramatic instincts were seeping into my Game of Thrones thing, and since that's intended to be quite goofy, I'm working on excising them with this slightly darker AAR. By slightly darker, I mean "That latin translates into The Sweet Taste of Blood."

I'm making my character in the ruler creator. She's a character I've written many times before, though never in a medieval setting. I am using the age customizer thing, because the character as I've written her has a lot of traits that would put me over the limit. I will use console commands to prevent the king revoking me before I can really get going, but otherwise, we'll play fair.

For the most part, there will be no pictures. Though I will be taking screencaps just to get an image of all the characters.

Prologue - December 26, 1066

Deep in the night, a child screamed.

Her name was Ælfwaru.

She was, of course, too young to know. She screamed as loud as any other child of two weeks.

Lightning struck, illuminating the room, and at nearly the same time, thunder rolled through. It was well past midnight, as much as anyone could tell the time here, and the child was crying. Her father gave a frustrated look to the mother, holding the infant in her arms.

"Can't you find anything to shut her up?"

"It's the thunder, if I could do that, I'd have better things to do than marry " Her mother asked.

He gave a sigh, "I'm sorry. It's just frustrating. We're both tired. Just... See what you can do."

The lightning and thunder came again, even closer if that was possible. The child screamed louder. And there was something, or someone outside. A sound of horses.

"What is it Wulfstan?"

"I don't know." He said, "Stay close."

The door opened... And lightning struck once more, revealing a woman with dirty blonde hair, and her smiling husband.

The peasants watched as the two entered... Followed, once inside, by large, uniformed men.

"Why are you here?"

The woman smiled warmly, it was a kindly smile. "Your child. We heard her screaming. We thought she might be in danger."

The man relaxed, "No danger here. If it's not an imposition, I don't know who you are."

The child continued to cry, "My name is Annabelle. Countess of Devon."

The man gasped, "C-Countess. Of course..." He gave a bow, not quite believing, "But you're Norman. You're speaki-"

"English? I noticed." She laughed, "I thought it would be best to learn the language of the people I am to rule. May I?" She turned to the woman.

"Well go on." The father told his wife, "let her hold her."

Reluctantly, the man held the

"What is her name?"


"Ælfwaru... What a lovely name." She smiled, "Little Ælwaru... I've always wanted a child, you know." She looked up sadly, "My husband and I have tried so hard... But we haven't been able to manage it." She sighed, "I would name her Viola."

He didn't quite know what to say to a noble being so... Forward "That... That's a lovely name too."

The Countess coo'd as she held the child to her, rocking her slowly... In time, the child's crying ceased.

"How did you..."

"I make a study of many things," the countess smiled as the child laughed... "And children are one of them. Isn't that right, little Viola?"

"Ælfwaru." The man corrected, starting to feel a bit nervous.

The countess seemed to freeze for just a second, and laughed, "Of course. Little Ælfwaru" She stroked the child's cheek, "You're going to be a good girl one day, aren't you?" She kissed the child on the forehead, as her husband stood beside her. "You're going to make your mother proud."

"I'm sure she will," the man said, not sure how to deal with this.

"You'll be such a good girl..." The countess stroked the child's cheek, "You'll be smart like your mother and caring like your father."

"Th-thank you," the man said, both him and his wife shifting uncomortably, as if looking for a way out, but the only door was the one with the countess's guards.

"You're going to do so well, won't you Viola."

"Ælfwaru, listen, maybe you should give her back." The father went to move forward... And found himself stopped by one of the guards.

"I'm not sure you understand the way things work," The woman's husband said, h"Now that we control the countryside, that changes things. What's ours is ours, and what's yours... Is still ours."

"That's how it works, dear." The countess looked up sympathetically, "I wish I could say otherwise, but that just is." She looks back at the child, "Isn't that right, my dear." She sat down on an old chair, stroking the child's cheek. She looked up at the guard, and gave an almost imperceptible nod.

And as the Countess cradled the child, swords were drawn. Her husband stood beside her, looking lovingly down at his wife and the infant, as blood splashed the walls.

Deep in the night, a child screamed.

And her name was Viola
Prologue 2:

Excerpts from the Journal of Annabelle of Devon

December 28th, 1066

I know there are those who would say my actions were wrong... Even cruel. They would say I am vile. But I know what I am.

I am a mother.

I know I didn't come about it the usual way, but that shouldn't give anyone pause. Leda had a child with a swan. I'd think that makes me downright normal, by comparison. That she was born to others doesn't matter. The truth is that I am a mother. And my daughter, little Viola... She will grow up in a loving home, with good, Norman parents. She will be so much happier than she would have been otherwise, don't you think? Her family were peasants. They had no value, no purpose beyond that which I would have given them anyway.

I know some will say that little Viola is illegitimate. But what is Legitimacy anyway? Her father and I are married, and deeply in love. Isn't that what counts? That she was born in some peasant shack to peasant parents... Well, we all have a past. The child of a peasant once ruled the empire of the Greeks. All I ask for Viola is a county.

Well, no. I won't lie. I ask for much more for her. My daughter deserves much more. I deserve much more. I will not rest easily, until I know that my little Viola's legacy is secured. She will have my county, far in the future when I have passed on, but if I can, I will get her much, much more.

I will strive to be more than a countess. To be a duchess, a queen, an empress. I have already sent out to the King of Denmark. He has bastard children, who though he has legitimized them, may be thought better of carrying another name. Viola will have a prince for a husband. Perhaps, one day, she will have more. I will give her everything I can. My husband and I will not stop.

I will give the world to her.

She is my daughter.
Thank you, that's what I was going for. Needed a place to store the darker parts of my writing while I do GoCT
Thanks for the compliment. This is really tricky because I know the character of Annabelle so well, that when she develops a trait in the next section, I struggle to keep her voice. Loving your BLood of the Old Kings AAR by the way.

Edit: The, uh, Karling one. I haven't seen the work on the one you haven't done yet.
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It is like one of those horror books that you know you are too scared to read but read it anyway because of the suspense. You might win Character writer of the week or whatever it's called ahaha. Thank you, I've nearly finished book one.
It is like one of those horror books that you know you are too scared to read but read it anyway because of the suspense.

That's one of the nicest things anyone ever said to me. That's going in the signature. Next update in the next post.

18 September, 1067:

Viola has begun to walk. I'm so proud of her. She's growing up wonderfully. Far better than she would have otherwise, I'm sure. She is a truly lovely child.

I know some of the courtiers are suspicious about her. I can't blame them, I suppose. After all, their suspicions are right, in a way.

16 December, 1068:

Count Cadoc of Cornwall has asked me to join him in a plot to see the Duchy of Northumberland granted to a new ruler. I was considering starting such a mission myself. Dear Morcar, the Duke of York, simply has too many duchies for me to be comfortable with. To tell the truth, if it was up to me, we wouldn't have any Anglo-Saxon nobles at all. I know dear William had such difficulty taking the territories he does have, it might be difficult to take more. I fear a revolution, though, and I know I'm not the only one. The way I see it, the Anglo-Saxons still in England should be put to the sword before they revolt. It's not a nice thing to say, I know. I don't really like the thought of it, but it's the most practical solution. The peasants have caused trouble for William already, and I'm sure the nobles aren't far behind.

Viola is slowly learning to talk. She's called me "Mama." It's so comforting to hear my daughter speak to me. I know she loves me.

I'm debating on whether or not I'll tell her. She may find out anyway. I'll give her the journals when I die, at least.

I wonder if she'll understand. If she'll know why I did it. I'm sure she will.

You may think I don't understand. Don't be foolish. I know exactly what happened.

Some people would say I'd go to hell. That doesn't bother me. If a place like hell does exist, then I'll go there happily. When I see my daughter, I can't help but think an eternity of hell is more than a fair trade for just a few moments of her laughter.

7 Jul, 1069

There are rumors of a spy in the castle. That things are going missing and whatnot. Maybe they're looking for information on my daughter, but I'm sure I covered my tracks. The hut was burned to the ground, and blamed on a lightning strike. It was such awful weather. No-one can be surprised that there were casualties.
I do hope that no-one catches this spy before I do.

7 Jan, 1070

I have wonderful news. It seems the spy found my journals... And fortunately, right when he did, I found the spy. It was so exciting, you see. He did try to fight back, but, well, you can't win everything. He didn't avoid detection this long with his physical strength.

My husband and I were finally able to subdue him, and we had our fun with him... There are so many lovely sounds that people make. It's so sad that most never hear them. I've considered starting a catalog of screams. If I do, I can assure you that our spy was dreadfully helpful. Creative even.

Do pardon the smudges, it's so hard to get the blood out.

23 January, 1070:

Message from Count Cadoc. The war to force Morcar to relinquish his duchy has begun. I can't tell you how excited I am. I've raised what troops we can and am sending them on their way. It's times like these that I curse my womanhood, but my dear husband is with me. We love to sit on the hills, drink and eat and watch the melee. Tournaments seem so dry next to that. That's another sort of scream for the list, the screams of the warriors. They're so different from the ones I'm used to. Perhaps they're so caught up in their battles, they have such intensity. It's quite... filling.

6 May, 1070:

Good news, of a sort. Morcar has surrendered, turning over Northumberland.

It's not the best result, I'm afraid. He hands Northumberland over to another Anglo-Saxon, but at the very least it's not the same one. Northumberland is now controlled by Prince-Archbishop Æthelwine. He may be Anglo-Saxon, but he is also a priest. And with the laws of Free Investiture, Northumberland will be Norman soon.

In fact, I've taken the liberty of borrowing some money towards that end... With luck, I can get some people together and see what we can do about hastening the change.

18 February, 1071,

I don't mind what I am, you know. We all are something. We all have something we're not proud of. I'm simply fortunate enough that, due to my station, able to not be proud of myself on a regular basis..

I don't mind it. I enjoy it. And if anything comes after that, it will come. Still, while I don't believe any of it, I can't say I'm not at least curious. Viola is four, now, and her father loves her as much as I do. I can leave her here, with him, at least for a while. They say that a pilgrimage helps. Jerusalem is a holy city, or so the priests say. As much the fingerprint of God on earth as it is a city of stone and brick. Very well, then. If there is a God, he is in Jerusalem.

I will miss my daughter, but it can't be helped. If I am to be the mother she deserves, I must tell her the truth, and to do that I must know the truth to tell it to her. My husband can rule the castle until I return.

30 March, 1071.

I was staying in an inn, but awoke in the middle of the night to the smell of burning wood. Some fool had set the place alite. I joined the bucket chain to keep it from burning. Some call me brave for this. It seemed only the right thing to do. Do you think I'm some monster?

Oh, I'm sure you do. You see what I have done, what I... Love... to do... And you think that I'm a wicked creature... I'm sorry to disappoint you, but I can be quite pleasant when you get to know me. Yes, yes, I like to hear the screams and taste the blood. They just sound so beautiful, and it tastes so sweet... But through all that, you have to understand, that is just one part of me.

I know, even when I don't abide, the difference between right and wrong, and it's wrong to let someone's home burn. You have to understand, I do care if people die. It's a shame that they have to, sometimes, when it's the only way to get what I want. If I could have had Viola without her parent's death, I would have. If I could have the blood or the screams, to make someone suffer and enjoy the pain as much as I do, it would be wonderful. Unfortunately, this is the only way to get what I need.

A few days ago, I found a man struggling for life in a ditch. It pained me to know that he would die, but I had to let him. I had only 7 coins on me, not enough to get him the help he needed. And as he would have died anyway, does it matter how it came about? In the larger view, he died faster than he would have, of exposure or starvation or whatever else comes to pilgrims on this road. He was spared the wasting death, and I had my enjoyment.

I would have helped him if I could. He was just some man in a ditch. But I hadn't the money to help, and he hadn't the strength to survive.

When you think of it that way... It was best for both of us.

8 April, 1071
Jerusalem, finally. I have to admit, the experience is almost overwhelming. The sounds, the smells, the people, the languages... There's just so much of it. It's exciting. I've found a place to stay, and am making my plans. I wonder if this pilgrimage will change me the way I've heard from others. Thus far, I still feel myself.

Not that that's bad. Not for me, anyway.

13 April, 1071
I'm all in a fever, I must have spoken too soon. I'm starting to understand. In this city, I walk the paths that were walked by the saints, even in the footsteps of the lord God himself. All of that history, all of that... Solomon, David, Paul... So much in this one place. I wish I could have told my old self this... But I know I would have just laughed and shaken my head.

I'm so glad I came here. I don't understand how anyone who's been here could possibly not believe. Indeed, in all this... Everything... It's so obvious. The light of the Lord shines upon me. I can see it now, in these ancient streets. God lights the way.

I can't leave it to this. I must bring this back, I must bring the word of God back home to Devon. I have to teach my husband, my daughter... I have learned so many things here, Lydford will be alight with the name of the Lord. I write this with tears in my eyes, as it all hit me. What I did with Viola, it's alright now. It may not have been right to do... But I came thinking that I would change. Instead, I have learned the most vital lesson of all. We are all sinners. I thought I would change. Abandon my ways. Or else come back with the same doubt I had intensified, but instead, I have experienced something totally, radically new. You see, I was a sinner before. And I am a sinner still. We are all sinners, I'm nothing special in that regard. I've known this the whole time. I've said we all have things we're not proud of. I see now that's what it is. I see that all are sinners. I had thought I would change my ways. But I see now that I don't need to.

Because of what I learned.

That God... God forgives.

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Wow...this is haunting. What a great character portrait...really well written. I think you did really well keeping her voice...Holy Shit...now she thinks its even cool with God all the stuff she does.
I'm afraid this is it online, at least for now. Belle is usually used in RPs/RPGs, and is being written into a prospective novel. Though I do have a Vicky II AAR I'm planning that will have her at the very least in a supporting role

Wow...this is haunting. What a great character portrait...really well written. I think you did really well keeping her voice...Holy Shit...now she thinks its even cool with God all the stuff she does.

Thanks, I'm glad people are liking it. Belle is an interesting person to write.
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21 February, 1072

A war just ended. I was so caught up I barely noticed. The count of I have been considering what to do with Æthelwine. The county of Cumberland is now under English control, as it was always meant to be.

My husband seems amused by my new religious fervor, but he takes it in stride. He still does not believe, and neither of us can convince the other. I wish he had faith, but all is well. I love him, and he loves me, and we both love our daughter. That is all that matters.

I am saving money to repay it to the Jews that I took it from. The debt weighs heavy on my head.

Is that wrong? That I am so concerned with debt and yet am so casual with death? Perhaps. Perhaps it is simply that the death is only effecting me. I have made a point to keep my deaths externalized. Perhaps it is the perpetuity. Death is quick, and as long as it may linger, a debt extended could linger more. Viola's grandchildren could still be under it. Perhaps, though, it's not that either. I think it is only that I believe in justice. I am not an unfair woman, you know. I pay my debts and I keep my word. The only thing that I hide is Viola.

Dear sweet Viola... Soon she shall be old enough to need tutoring. I will, of course, handle that on my own. I can teach her to be a good, proper Christian.

She will be just like her mother.

10 February, 1073,

Viola is a bright girl, and is doing well in her studies. I'm so proud to see her coming along. I'm teaching her Latin, so that she can read the classics. The only way to learn is to experience.

But I'm afraid, there is bad news. In January, we began to move ahead on the plot for Æthelwine's death. A manure bomb was laid in an inn he stays in. Manure may not be the most graceful way to bring about an execution, but we supposed it would do the job. We can't leave evidence.

We were fortunate not to be discovered It might have done better had I been there myself. None died in the explosion, I suppose this is some comfort, we only needed one death. The others would have been collateral. Perhaps God is speaking to me through this. I should not have set up something that might hurt others so easily. I must be targeted and precise in my actions. I will not let him get away next time.

If I want something done, I will have to do it myself.

7 Dec, 1073

My husband concealed himself on the hill as Bishop Æthelwine and I approached in our open-topped carriage, the bow drawn taught. I was right beside him, trembling with excitement. I explained to him that I was merely cold, and he gave me a cloak to put over my pink gown, as the bliaud was so light. He was such a kind man.

I know, I know. He was a man of the church, and surely he was favored by God in that respect. Perhaps that is true. But if that is true, then surely it follows that he is in heaven. For a holy man, there can be no doubt that he is rejoicing at the hand of the Lord now. He should be thankful that the meeting was hastened.

He must have suspected something, in the moment, I'm sure of it. The way I looked at him as he draped the cloak over my shoulders... Well, I couldn't conceal it if I tried. I must have looked like a starving wolf looking over a lamb. He even looked a bit afraid, the poor man. But I loved the fear in his eyes. Still, he wasn't so concerned as to try to leave. Perhaps that was his mistake, but my husband does not miss. The arrow struck him in the neck first. He looked at me in shock, but I could only laugh, as the second arrow struck his head. The blood exploded over me, and I could swear a piece fell onto the back of the carriage.

In the moment, I couldn't help myself, I turned and let my hands soak in his blood as it pooled on the back, laughing and licking it off. There is nothing like that taste, like that sensation. It's greater than the sweetest spices of the east. My gown is stained, but I do not care. It rests in my dressing room. Perhaps I will wear it for my husband tonight.

6 June, 1075

Yesterday was a joyous day. I was searching outside the castle for a lost chalice, when I was assaulted by robbers. Playing the weak and frightened woman, alone without her husband (who is in Gwent seeking some way to claim it for me, the dear man) I swiftly handed over the golden cup. It was all I could do to keep from laughing. I'm afraid that I did once they were out of earshot.

I followed them, into the woods, as quietly as I could. They heard nothing, saw nothing. Once they were asleep, I struck... Muffling each of them in turn, binding them. Once they were bound, I had time to enjoy them at my leisure. I undid the gags in their mouths, that I could lose myself in the sounds, and the looks of terror from the others. I filled the chalice and drank deeply.

I left it with them. It would be wrong not to let them keep it. They paid so dearly for it.

7 July, 1075

Dear Viola seemed afraid of people, and slow to speak up. She hides behind my skirt when around the courtiers. This will not do. I cannot let my daughter be a wilting wallflower, she must be strong like her mother. She will be generous and charitable, she will be the perfect young countess, when she is of age, and with luck, when my husband returns from Gwent she will have more than the one county control.

I have explained to Viola the imporantance of being polite to other people. Though she struggles still with the shiness, it seems to be taking well. will arrange for a feast in November, for her to practice with others. She is such a beautiful child, it would be a shame for her not to be seen and spoken with more.

25 Aug, 1075

The Holy Roman Emperor has declared the Prince-Bishop of Ravenna to be the Pope, the one true successor to St. Peter. I'm afraid I can't understand it. How, and why, would he do this? Why would a fellow Catholic create another Pope? It makes no sense to me. I know that God shall forgive him, but I know just as well that I shall not. I simply cannot abide by this heresy. It hurts me to take my attention from Viola, and to cancel our feast, but for now, I have more important things to do. If the Roman Emperor cannot live up to the Holiness of his name, then he must abandon his throne. If he will not do that, he must removed from it. I have sent my spymaster to Nassau and my husband to the Duchess of Meissen. Heinrich must fall.

21 August, 1076

My focus on Heinrich is going slower than I would like. I considered simply getting an assassin, but I still have not paid back the jews. I keep spending to bring people into my plans. Bishops don't assassinate cheaply, you know. I'm afraid that Heinrich is not easily killed either, I have only managed to get one other, his sister Adela, to join me in this. In fact, someone seems to be trying to subvert my husband's attempts to speak to Meissen at every turn, twisting his words until they make me look worse. I know the dear man is trying so hard. He will keep trying, for me, even though he may not believe the cause... He believes in me. I love him for that.

26, Dec, 1076
It has been 10 years since Viola came to us. She has truly been a blessing from God. She is turning out so well, too. To think a year ago I was worried about her shiness. Now I'd say you're a candidate for Sainthood if you can get her to stop talking. Not only that, she is charitable. Praise God for my daughter's virtues. I am so proud of her for what she is becoming. I can see that she still doesn't have the Instinct that her father and I do. But she is young, yet, and perhaps too much so for those feelings. She will know them in time.

She will be more than a Countess when she inherits, that much has been secured. I was invited to Westminster to attend the Christmas mass with William. We spoke afterwards. I could tell he was not interested in my theological talk, but I was entertaining enough for him when I spoke of battles that he saw fit to give me the Duchy of Cornwall. He may have ben a bit condescending, he said I knew much for a woman. But I do not care. Cadoc is now my vassal, and in time, his infant Aodred will serve Viola.

Such beauteous news. It banishes all thoughts of contradiction. The Lord is truly on our side. I have created a motto for our family.

Deum Dirigit Gladius Meus.

God guides my blade.
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That's Annabelle for you. She gives a whole new meaning to the phrase "Killing them with kindness."

Or at the very least, a comma.

1 January, 1078

I am a Duchess. My legacy is secured. My daughter will grow up as one as well. And yet this is still not enough. I continue to try to gain claims in Wales. I have consulted ancient maps, and I believe, perhaps, that if I were to have enough territory... If I had enough territory in Wales, then the Pope would recognize me as a queen, just as he has recognized William as a king, though he was a French vassal. I must keep this secret, of course. But for my Viola, I will give everything.

2 February, 1078

King William has seen fit to declare war for William of Evreaux's claim on Vexin. Dear William, he is such a good king. I will be a good vassal and follow him. He knows what he must due, spread his kingdom far and wide. He is an amazing man. He will be dearly missed.

His son is Robert, Count of Maine. The man is unworthy of the kingdom. This kingdom deserves more than that stuttering sloth. There are rumors, even, that his attraction swings away from women. That doesn't surprise me greatly. I have seen his wife. I question the wisdom of allowing such a woman to be Queen-Consort. She seems worrying interested in ungodly things.

I will pray on a course of action. But my attempts to attack the Emperor are stalling. My attention may be better elsewhere.

1 November, 1079

I visited Cadoc, and he served some lovely sponge cake. It was delicious, though I did find myself biting into some eggshells. Poor Cadoc, he was so embarrassed. I assured him it was alright, there was no cause to worry. It's only sponge cake, there's so much more to life.

I have made a decision about Count Robert. I have already talked to several of his associates about plans. It shows the type of man he is that even his wife is willing to join my plot. Perhaps I underestimated her.

31 December, 1079

Our plot has done little to come to fruition. I received a message from King William today. The man seems to not want his son killed. He is foolish in that respect. His son, as wonderful of a young man as he may be, is not fit to be king. I wish I could convince him otherwise, but he will not listen. Very well. I have abandoned the plot. Let England fall, if its king is such a fool.

I will speak to the vassals. Perhaps there is another way to block Robert from inheritance. I am sending my spymaster to speak to Archbishop Ildebrando on the matter. It may take many swords to solve what one knife cannot.

Viola is getting older. I will allow her education to continue under my Bishop Frery of Exeter. She still lacks the Instinct, but I do not fear. Even if she never grows to be truly like her father and I, I will still love her. She is finishing her education with him. Perhaps a man of God can bring that blessing to her.

18 October, 1080

The war with France goes well. Not victorious, yet, but we have beaten them back. the Battle of Fecamp struck a bloody blow to the French cause, and we hold all of Vexin. It is only a matter of time

My steward was working loyally to collect taxes in Axminster when peasants rioted and killed him. It broke my heart to see him dead by their hands. They will pay for this. The Romans had a practice known as Decimation.

I always wanted to give it a try.

26 December, 1080

I had hoped that Viola would gain the Instinct from Frery. I can see it in his eyes. Instead, she seems to have become lazy. As she returned for her birthday celebration, I struggled to get her to work with me. I have spoken to Frery. If she does not change by June, I may ask her to return to Lydford. I want the best for my daughter.

I acknowledge, though, that perhaps the best may be to allow her to decide. I cannot control her. She must become the duchess she wishes to be. The Lord made her who she was, and made her for me. She will take the next steps. I must have faith that God knows what is right for my daughter. If this is who she becomes, then perhaps that is what is meant to be.

I will wait until June to decide.

6 June, 1081

Frery has decided for me. He fell ill and is now dead. I suppose that that gives me my answer. I will raise her myself once more. I will not try to force the Instinct upon her. I will have faith that God will guide her, as he guided me. Maybe she is not meant to kill. Perhaps she is meant for something other. If that is the case, so be it.

22 February, 1082

Hopeful news. The cook came to me and complained that Viola had struck her son. She is growing up well after all. I have faith that God will allow her to continue on this path. This is indeed a joyous day. And I had been giving up hope. She did nothing worse, true, but that is something. Perhaps it is a sign from God that at least Viola will be alright. I am so proud of her.

19 June, 1082

I bare ill news. It seems that William may have found my secrets. Not Viola, thank God. Other secrets, though. How he did this, I cannot tell. But he did it nonetheless. He is blackmailing me, he says that if I do not form a faction against him, he will not spread word of my... Recreational activities... To the land at large. I have decided to comply. Though I am a duchess, it is only of Cornwall. I do not have the power to fight back against all of England.

I am still convinced that Prince Robert is unfit to rule England. How can the King be unwilling or unable to see this? I could have provided him a pretext to hand the Kingdom over to a more fitting vassal, but instead he confounds me at every turn. He does not understand, he is old, he will be dead soon. And then Robert will be on the throne, and make a mess of it for all of us. I do not wish for Viola to serve under so useless a King.

17 August, 1082

Peasants uncovered the most beautiful statue of Eris in a field nearby. It is glorious, and so very lifelike. I cannot do it justice. Though I am a Christian, I have prayed on the matter. I believe the Lord will forgive me for keeping it. It is just so lifelike, I could swear the goddess would move. It is a symbol of beauty, and, yes, strife. I have placed it beside my throne. I let it remind me of what I am here for. The Lord gave me this chance to serve my house, my daughter, and all of England. I am not a duchess by mere birth. I have earned this. I will continue to earn it. I will not let the King prevent me from ensuring the throne stays in the right hands.

Even if I must take his son's life myself.

I must remember the words that I have now carved in the hall.

Deum Dirigit Gladius Meus.

I have faith that He will guide it into Prince Robert's throat
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I will speak to the vassals. Perhaps there is another way to block William the younger from inheritance. I am sending my spymaster to speak to Archbishop Ildebrando on the matter. It may take many swords to solve what one knife cannot.

William the younger? I am confused :O . I am not trying to pick faults out in your AAR but do you mean Robert?
Yes, I do. I called him William the whole time because I had my cursor in the wrong place, I THOUGHT I'd edited them all out. The same problem is why I have a smaller Duchess portrait for Annabelle this post. I had my cursor over the main one's face for some reason.
It's OK, you only did it once and it is an easy mistake to make. I make hundreds of those mistakes and try to edit them out and probably miss heaps. BTW do you have any goals for this AAR? It seems to me that Anabelle thinks she should rule England. I really didn't expect her sudden change of heart about God either. Besides her bloodlust and other quirks, I think she'd be a rather nice lady. What about her husband? Is he a noble from some distinct family? Or just a butcher's son that Anabelle 'adopted' and fell in love with?