04 November 2007

Diary of a Puppeteer: entry two.

A fine mess. Iniere is dead, killed by a “Brosengae” wench – an auditor from the bank if Tuall’s warning was correct. Nevertheless, the loss rids me of the concern that Trevan’s bumbling might have given him away and opens up a well of opportunity simply waiting to be tapped.

It all happened rather fast. No sooner had Iniere arrived for the meeting he demanded I host than Trevan managed to cut himself on a sword. Where did he get that, anyway? Iniere must have heard the crash, but not the cursing. The fool thought he was “preparing to fight Rhoubhe” by practicing with a blade; it would be funny if it weren’t so tragic, or so crucial that he maintains the illusion. Despite his injury he managed to excuse himself admirably thus preventing a long discussion with Iniere. Which reminds me: I have yet to teach him enough passable phrases with which to extract himself from conversations he should not be in.

Tuall turned up soon after, with news of a “rescue” of the Brosen woman. I had to fight him and Iniere to have as much as half a chance of information, but eventually annoyed each (or cross-pollenated enough suspicion) for Tuall to spill. “Angharad” had been wanting to meet with Iniere about “financial matters” on behalf of the Brosen Royal Bank, but after I left out the banking matters Parnien seemed to assume she was an old flame. “Trevan’s” decree that no-one was to stay in the tower rang in his ears and he set off to meet her, it being too late to expect his betrothed.

I set off later, hoping to listen in to these financial discussions, but Iniere had been slain in his bed at the inn – in the room this “Angharad” had booked previously (or so Tuall later explained). Brosen murdering Iniere makes little sense, unless his businesses had gone bad on him, so a ruse and slights combined; I have no clue who or whence the assassin, but frankly I don’t care. Iniere’s passing leaves a lot of mercantile territory open to the sharks, and I smell opportunity.

A bit of digging has turned up that Iniere’s will is to be read during the Tournament in Anuire, and who the likely inheritors might be. It will take some serious work to disrupt this but… the opportunity is too good to give up. Moreover, one of those who might come into riches is just my type of person – and could get up Agelmore’s nose, too. Yes, the need to go back to Anuire does carry risks; I am in two minds whether to openly seek Agelmore out and head off hostility or hide myself such that he does not notice my return. But such is thinking too far ahead, and Anuire may well have more imminent threats.

In the meantime, however, I have a meeting with Karvol – Iniere’s clerk. The rumour mill suggests he will be lightly pensioned off despite his vast knowledge of the entire Iniere empire. “Trevan” will offer him terms, and backing, to take control of the Nentril-based operations… I intend to somehow sabotage the will reading, encourage enough in-fighting amongst the sharks – the major inheritors – such that a seizure of backwater, minor, incomes would not be noticed. I need Karvol on-side, and for that I will have to promise him a lot – his knowledge and expertise; I must appeal to his rancour at the way he is to be dismissed, to his greed and to his person.

And I have yet to figure him out…

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