And Yu-Shan Wept
Attendants and Staff
Household Staff Circa RY 768
I’ve not in Gem long, shortly after Magister Jun sponsored me into the Guild it was decided by the leadership that I travel far from the eyes of the Realm. As one of the Exalted it was required of me to travel to Nexus and present myself to the Directorate and show my loyalty. I acquired my first slaves at this time. Natuski was a reward I allowed myself for meeting with the approval of the Guild leadership; even today I see wisdom in that impulse. Shortly before my departure Magister Jun pressed a heavy bag of silver into my hands and instructed I acquire some strong bondsmen to aid me in my journey to the South. I found two brothers of the born of Linowen stock – another wise purchase.
Listed in order of procurement:
Natsuki, Cook (Age 27)
Born a Realm citizen, Natsuki has some knowledge of those most dangerous to me and is well educated besides. Her’s is not so rare a fall from grace, she served as a chef for one of the Great Houses, creating great art in her own way. However, one day, the weak child of the Dynast grew sick after supper and nearly died. Because it was a stomach flux – she was blamed for his illness and sold into slavery as punishment. Much of my own skill in compounding arose from these humble beginnings as her student. I treat her well, better than most servants are treated, but she is like a crushed flower. Her heart is always saddened – I feel these blues are a fair balance to the fierce reds that scream from Kalb.
Running Brook and Ghost Wood, Servants (Ages 22 and 23)
These brothers were born of the Linowan tribes to the far North. They served a master once before me, in the Scavenger Lands, they knew their home was not so far and the terrain was similar – but following the rivers back to their home proved their folly – as many slavers bring their wares to market by barge. I need not go into their punishments, it is only important that they lived. Now so far to the south where water rarely falls, much less flows, they are like lost children. There are no trees here, only dunes and the scorching sky. They now huddle under my protection for fear of a world they no longer understand – this pleases me greatly.
Gopala, Mahout and Stable Master, (Age 52)
Most would caution against buying a slave so late in years, but there is strength in the man and all beasts love him dearly, none so much as I. When I saw him at the market he was bowed but unbroken deemed unskilled and worthless by the masters. I paid his owner the price asked without haggle and right before the man’s eyes paid Gopala the same amount for the skills hidden to others eyes. I am loath to feel the touch of day; my auspicious birth so close to death has cursed me in the Sun’s eyes, even as Luna is a balm to my skin. It is Gopala that allows me to function; he is my mahout, bearing me about the earth when I cannot even bear to look upon it. I love the man like the father I never had and the day he leaves me … it will be the first time I have lost one so cherished.
Kalb, Clerk and Informant, (Age 31)
The crown jewel of my staff in more ways than one. Kalb was once a minor noble here in Gem, one who foolishly committed crimes against Rankar VII is the form of tax evasion, blackmail and sedition. His head was slated for the block – his body to be consumed by scorpions as dark and hungry as the night. The price I had to pay for him was far greater than mere money, but well worth a princeling on a leash.
Kalb, dog, allowed no other name on pain of death and should he ever use his family name again they shall share in his disgrace. Great rewards and great risks, he is the largest gamble I’ve taken in my short life – but the things he knows of the city are priceless. Likely patrons, local customs, and a mind full of secrets. He owes me his life – pray he is as loyal as his new moniker would suggest.