The Kingdom of Roesia
Ministry of Planning and Urban Development
“. . . Lord Simon’s abode. I understand from your initial inspections that the house is a trifling example of a well-known architectural period. Moreover, it is in poor repair with an unstable foundation. Lord Simon does yet retain some lingering influence with the Academy. His reputation for magical feats seems largely legendary—promulgated, no doubt, by the man himself. Still, a case could be made that his property should remain untouched, at least in his lifetime. I trust your judgment in this matter, whatever you might decide.”
--Excerpt of Memorandum from Lord Rustilion, Minister of Planning and Urban Development, to Richard St. Clair, Director of Historical Designations, March 1, 1864.
Chapter 1: Twenty-Two Years Old
“Move,” he shouted at the young men who leaned on the banisters, watching the circling men below. Bets changed hands as Simon rushed past. He hit the large staircase that hugged the front of his uncle’s house and half-fell down the steps; he sprawled at the bottom, hands out, and pushed up immediately. He neared the circle of men. He was tall, lean, and fit. He shoveled through them easily, his eyes on the blond woman at the circle’s center.
Continued at Chapter 1, Part 1.