Eidr sat alone on a rugged stump at the edge of the cliff, his quill poised above a sheet of parchment as the wind tousled his unkempt hair. Below him, the grotto stretched out, a dark and mysterious abyss that had captured the interest of the Runeheim Society of Scholars. To Eidr in that moment, this was a much-needed sanctuary, a place where he could let his mind roam freely, far from the prying eyes of the highborn who now looked to him as the temporary Master of Coin.
His rise from a lowly gravedigger to the position of tax collector was nothing short of miraculous. But it was a miracle he intended to exploit to its fullest extent. The sudden vacancy in the position of Master of Coin, resulting from the execution of one of the previous Masters for slave trading, had presented him with an opportunity like no other. He had planned on using that title, planned on manipulating things as tax collector. But Lady Vindicta had given him something far greater than he had ever had before. He would repay the debt with work befitting.
Eidr dipped his quill into the inkwell and began to draft his proposal to Lady Vindicta Dragomir. He knew that in order to wield power, he must first appear legitimate, which was something he could never achieve in person. His social class had been one of servitude and poverty, but his mind was his weapon. It was his knowledge of academics and logistics that had set him apart.
As he wrote, his thoughts flowed like a river, each word carefully chosen to convey his intentions without ever stating them outright. He spoke of fiscal responsibility, of the need to maintain the stability of the realm’s finances, and of the importance of fair taxation. He emphasized his commitment to upholding the laws and values of the land.
Eidr knew that Lady Vindicta Dragomir was no fool. She would read between the lines, see the potential for mutual benefit in his proposal. He couldn’t afford to be seen as a threat, not with so many eyes on him. He needed her support, her trust, and he had to earn it subtly.
The grotto below him whispered secrets of forgotten ages, and the cliffside stood as a symbol of his ascent from the depths of society. Yet Eidr couldn’t help but think that he still had to descend into it. He still had to investigate the blood-stained grotto beneath him.
With a final flourish, he signed his name at the bottom of the parchment. The proposal was complete, carefully crafted to give him the legitimacy he so desperately needed. He would send it to Lady Vindicta, and for now, let the ink on the parchment speak on his behalf. He would have to get second opinions, his words alone weren’t enough.
As he folded the document and pocketed it, Eidr gazed out at the grotto once more. It was a reminder of the lengths he had come, and the depths he was willing to explore to secure his position. The wind carried his thoughts away into the abyss below. He saw only shadows below.