It is a travesty to forget. Memories are currency, and in Catagia, Lord Kulverd was a very rich man. Until he forgot. He forgot his place, so the Queen ensured he forgot everything else. Erasure is a harsh punishment, but Lord Kulverd had committed crimes against the Queen that could not be forgiven. He made alliances with the treacherous rebels to put himself on the throne in return for feeding court secrets to their leaders. If memories are worth silver, secrets are worth gold, but neither should be sold against the Queen.
So he forgot.
And it is a travesty to forget.
“Lord Kulverd’s Erasure has a left a vacant spot in my court.” The Queen’s regal voice, never raised but always attended, floated over the heads of the assembly in her throne room. This was not news to anyone. The majority of the people in the room were there to vie for Kulverd’s place. The wealth of a Lordship was one draw, of course, but the secrets were more valuable. As the highest-ranking Lord at court, Kulverd had been privy to the most important secrets in Catagia, and so would be his replacement.
Some eyes turned to the Queen, but most were dancing between the groups scattered around the room. All the most powerful families were present. The fun-loving Tallards fidgeting under the stiffness of court attire. In their customary battle attire (they never would bow to the pressure of the proper wardrobe, even at court), the Walgard family tested the edges of their blades in a false front of boredom. The Pastols, above their peers in attitude if not height, for they were the Queen’s own relatives.
And then there was me, doing my best to blend into the rich draperies surrounding the Queen’s throne on the dais. Even as the Queen’s cousin and closest confidante, born into the powerful Pastol family, I was not comfortable at these official gatherings. The most powerful Talder born to the Pastols in generations, I should have felt my power. Even the Queen herself could not rival my ability to remember. But it had only succeeded in making me feel gangly and overly obvious; more so than even my tall, lanky frame.
“Charidal.” I snapped to attention at the sound of the Queen’s voice in order to avoid a scolding on my posture. The Queen knows I don’t forget my lessons; the lectures about disregarding them are quite frequent.
“Please bring forward the documents,” she beckoned with a wave. I took a few steps forward and placed the bundle of scrolls describing the Trials into her bejeweled hand.
This is the beginning of something that I have been working on. What are your thoughts? Would you want to read more?