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An Open Letter from the Common Folk of Skyrim to Our Most Glorious Emperor Kastav

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Lady N's picture
Joined: 06/26/2010

Author - Chlodovec


To the Most Glorious and Awaited Kastav, by the Grace of Wordly Reman and the Will of Regal Alessia Emperor of All Lands Worth Living.

As is tradition we venerate our Akatosh, our Dibella and our Mara by standing firm and proud in front of their shrines, and just as we gave that same treatment to your Wordly father we also give it to you, Most Glorious Kastav. We are but relatives to common men and women, and arrogant enough to address Your Imperial Highness. But this arrogance does not seek pride or is fruit of passions, but rather it is a product of necessity. Just as your fair judges listen to all parties in the cases brought before them, so we ask you to listen to our woes.

A great anguish haunts our Northern Lands, an anguish that in times of yore we could attribute to a deadly plague, a bad harvest or the warring warlords that your Wordly father pacified. But it is not plague, nor hunger, nor war what anguishes our souls, but a deafening silence. The fields are ripe and harvest time draws near, and yet no able-bodied peasant is on sight. No one can hear the busy carts treading around the estates, and the few fields that receive some attention are tended by a few venerable elders, children who can barely stand up, and sickly people who are a step away from Sovngarde. A bountiful harvest, which should be a reason for celebration, threatens to rot in our fields. In the cities the hustle and bustle of the market has gone silent, and when the fruit in the stands rots no fly pays them a visit, for all have been trapped in the cobwebs of our houses. Thieves complain that there is no one to rob while guards complain that there is no one to guard. All of us that remain exclaim “Where have our men and women gone?”, and we would be most relieved to be responded “to Sovngarde”. Instead all we hear is that they are in Most Glorious Kastav’s mighty barracks, called to them by the unavoidable voice of conscription.

What is the reason, Most Glorious Kastav, for piling up northern warriors in your barracks? Does Your Imperial Highness intend to take them to war? Is Your Highness seeking the great glory of unifying all of Tamriel under a single banner? Does Your Highness seek to inscribe their name in the currents of history with a scaled quill and black ink? If it is so, why it is that we cannot see the dragon-clad banner perched atop the peaks of the Velothi Mountains or hear the drums and horns of war echoing through the deep valleys? The eastern elves keep greying their skin by praising aberrations and their lizard neighbours keep drinking their foul concoctions, unafraid of being invaded any time soon. Most Glorious Kastav, we know as well as Your Imperial Highness that we seek nothing but glory, and that glory-seekers are needed on the battlefields. But there is no sense in calling up able-bodied men and women to arms if one does not intend to bring them to battle. When there is nothing to be fought, the place of the warrior is in their home, not a barrack. If Your Imperial Highness does not intend to make war on the enemies of the Empire, dismiss our warriors so that they may return to contend with the piercing Sun in the harvest.    

But not only our warriors do Your Imperial Highness call upon. We are sure that the grandmasters of your serpentine guard do enjoy the company of hearty Haldred, son of Jarl Boldrik of Markarth, or of bold Grelda, daughter of Jarl Alder of Hroldan. In their bravery and fearlessness, the grandmasters of your guard are certainly seeing the greatest degree of the most common virtues of our people. And yet, we must ask why such paladins of youthfulness should sleep and train alongside the serpentines. Anything they would ever need to know on the craft of war, we can teach them. Not only do they not need the guidance of the serpentines, but the charity that Your Imperial Highness displays by giving them the protection of the celestial haven is doing more harm than good in our halls of leadership. Nobody has seen Jarl Boldrik or Jarl Alder smile or laugh since their children have gone away. And when they see the throngs of warriors marching towards the barracks of the Empire, they cannot avoid thinking of their most beloved offspring. Most Glorious Karstav, we must humbly remind you that nothing makes the mighty bear so rash and aggressive than losing the sight of their offspring.

We wouldn’t want to finish our address without some sincere words. As your royal eyes pierce this blots of black ink all of Skyrim’s sons and daughters who the almighty gaze of your administration has spared from the barracks, are having the honour of being able to read the same as an Emperor. Your Imperial Highness is most surely acquainted with the precious glories of Cyrodiil, but it would be a pleasure to us for you to experience the magnificent sight of an inspired Nord. Your Highness wouldn’t find flesh so tough or a mind as sharp or a will so unbreakable as that of a Nord who feels called by justice and necessity to take on arms. It is in the nature of Emperorship a taste for military pageantry and we intend to please Your Highness in that respect. So much weaponry flows through our hands that our land resembles a river of steel, and all of it is for an armed parade in honour of the returned conscripts. We can hardly wait Your Highness’ order to let them free, and we hope that such an order arrives soon. If not I'm afraid that our swords may be stained by the milk of cows, slaughtered in mindless fury in the name of grief. 

May this letter have reached you in good health and may Sovngarde be barred to anyone who dare alter its contents.

With utmost loyalty and sincerity,

The Common Folk of Skyrim.

Lady N's picture
Joined: 06/26/2010

This piece was written for our 20th anniversary fan art contest! It is strictly property of its original creator - you may not modify, publish, or redistribute it without explicit permission from the artist.