She had to forgo the sapphire circlet. It set off the ensemble perfectly, but Caula reluctantly decided it simply wouldn't do, not for a merchants' affair; it would look brash.
Perhaps a broad sash in cloth-of-silver... she moved toward the wardrobe, to survey what was to hand.
“I'm glad to catch you alone,” said a voice behind her. Uriel stood stiffly in the doorway.
“Hm?” she asked, allowing herself a smile.
“Forgive me that I broach a difficult matter, but--”
“Difficult!” she laughed. (She'd already had an earful on the matter from Enman.) “No,” she said tenderly, “no, it's one of the best ideas you've had in years. It'll do the boys a world of good.
Go out and see the Empire! There's no better piece of it than this, I'll grant, but it's a small corner all the same. It does little to foster the cosmopolitan spirit.
And we'll have a bit more peace and quiet in the palace, too... oh, Uriel, I know things have been difficult between us of late, but... why, whatever is the matter?”
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