Roger stepped into his room, slipped off his overrobe (why the Carthakis insisted on wearing those blasted garments, he'd never know), reached out to toss it carelessly over the back of his chair, and froze mid-motion.
There was a letter on his desk.
Roger stared. He absently dropped the robe on the chair and gingerly picked up the folded parchment. It was addressed to him in what appeared to be Duke Gareth's sharp slanting hand; a quick glance at the seal - which indeed bore the Naxen crest - proved that impression correct.
Well, that was odd. Even odder than receiving a letter mid-month, just a week after receiving his aunt's usual monthly gossip report. Duke Gareth rarely bothered to correspond with anyone other than his immediate family, unless it was necessary for the business of the realm.
Well, there was nothing for it. Staring at the sealed letter was getting him no answers. Roger slit the seal and unfolded the parchment.
7 September 430
Forgive my brevity, but a page has just attempted - accidentally, we hope - to blow up the palace. We need you back in Corus as soon as is practicable.
Gareth of Naxen
Roger read the letter again, and then a third time for good measure. With deliberate motions, he re-folded the parchment and slipped it inside his personal notebook.
This was certainly going to throw a kink in his plans.