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Chapter 47A: The Breadcrumbs and the Trail


October 17, 2016 by Lyn Thorne-Alder

“Well.”  Wiltemika sank down into a chair and held her head in her hands.  “May they be truly gone and not simply waiting for the right time to plague us again.”

“Head Wiltemika,” Libkazaari protested.  “What is going on?”

“With any luck, the evidence I have previously put forward against these three is being used at this very moment to lock them into quite a different carriage than they expected.  But  as Lirnilalie has proven herself far too slippery in times past, I can’t guarantee it.  That woman…”  She sat up straight again, shaking her head so that her beaded braids rattled.  “She would not accede to leave without something.  I just hope that Korten can extract it from her before they leave.  What did we have over to her, anyway?”

“Enerenarie?” Libkazaari asked pointedly.  It was clear the House Monitor was still unhappy.

Enrie cleared her throat.  “Ah, Head Wiltemika, it was a recent copy – by my hand – of an obscure and unsigned treaty, although the unsigned nature of it might not be quite so obvious in a copy?  It’s called – at least in the one text I have – the Coffee Treaty.”

Wiltemika blinked. “I beg your pardon?”

Taikie repeated Enrie.  “It looks as if it’s the Coffee Treaty, or a treaty of some sort drafted around the time of the Coffee War but not signed.”

“And you found this…”

“Lovdyo found it, and I don’t know how  because Ilonilarrona has him so terrified he won’t say a word. I overheard him talking to Kivsi and I went looking,” Enrie explained.  “I found references to it that seemed to vanish while I was looking, but we were having some, uh, difficulties with Instructor Pelnyen and ended up taking some time looking into it.  During that time, someone – I believe it was Reeve Debereb and Associate Governor Ilonilarrona – ransacked the Treaties section of the library, pulling out several books.  They were discussing destroying them.”

“They did find several books that they insisted I pull off the shelves,” Wiltemika agreed.  “And there were many references to the Coffee Treaty in several of them.  But you’re saying…”

“We found references in several places, and pieces of the treaty bound in other books.  One in a Bitrani folk-song book, and so on.  It was a matter of following breadcrumbs,” she added, “and then seeing what we had.”  She decided not to mention she’d found pieces in Pelnyen’s office, or that Riensin had been the one to ransack Lirnilalie’s room.

“And once you had it all?”

“We made several copies and brought one of the copies here.  However, we couldn’t copy the embedded aether which I believe is essential to the documents.”

“You…”  Wiltemika laughed shortly.  “The… of course.  And so the documents we gave Lirnilalie…?”

“You gave Lirnilalie,” Enrie began, because she felt precision was necessary, “a copy of most of the treaty.”

“Missing the front page and the end page,” Libkazaari offered, “which I’m sure she’ll notice soon enough.”

Wiltemika chuckled again.  “Very good.  And the original…?”


  1. Rix Scaedu says:

    Does this mean there could be a paddy wagon waiting outside for them?

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