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Monday, 06 August 2007
The latest article from the Britannia News Network let us think that a new Ultima Online event is going to begin very soon.


Kronos nearly swallowed his fork.

The front door shook with a quick succession of poundings, iron on oak, he realized, right as they had begun eating. Melissa got up quickly, and he followed. They were almost to the foyer before a voice called out: “Hullo the house!” and the door swung open wide, spilling moonlight across the floor.

The first thing Kronos noticed was the knight, he must’ve been a knight, he assumed, given the full plate armor and regalia. The second thing was the stout, smartly dressed man standing slightly behind him and to his right. He was already talking even as the door swung back a bit.

“Avery, if you could wait for me here?” The man in the armor eyed both of the mages, then turned to face the road while his companion pulled the door closed after him, walking inside.

Melissa blinked; Kronos saw an odd look cross over her face before he realized he’d automatically begun greeting his newfound guest. He quickly devoted his entire attention to completing his greeting/question: “who are you, exactly sir?” and hoped he’d started out with “Excuse me,” at least.

“Ah, yes, you wouldn’t know me. My name is Francesco; I’m the Royal Treasurer.” Kronos and Melissa both bowed: “M’lord! You honor us with your presence!” she said quickly. “Yes, yes, please, what can we do for you?” Kronos was as shocked as she – when was the last time anyone from the Royal Council had visited the townships? Francesco bowed forward a little, “Perhaps we could talk further inside? I prefer sitting when talking, you must understand…” “Of course!” replied Kronos, waving them both back towards the dining room. His mind was reeling, and they quickly made themselves comfortable at the table.

“Now, my understanding, friend mage, is that you’ve built some sort of machine?” Kronos’s eyes widened and Melissa’s hands tensed on top of the table.

“Yes, yes I have m’lord.”

“And it can find blackrock?”

Kronos gulped. “Indeed, I believe it can find blackrock anywhere in the known world.”

Francesco took that in for a moment. “And the unknown?”

Kronos laughed politely, it was an odd question. Francesco continued on, more serious than they’d supposed.

“And it works?”

Melissa unconsciously eyed Kronos and Francesco picked up on it immediately; he shifted forward a bit, looking directly into Kronos’s nervous eyes.

“Well, you see m’lord, that’s the…”

“Forgive me,” he interrupted. “I’m familiar with the situation with your guild. Let me rephrase: Will it work?” Kronos was amazed by the abruptness, the suddenness of it all. Why was this man here at this late an hour to ask him about these things?

“I believe so, sir.” There, he’d said it. He’d said it to the Guild, he’d say it again. It would work. He knew it would. Francesco leaned back in the chair. Melissa breathed in visibly – it was a rather small chair and the Treasurer wasn’t a small man. Kronos wanted to follow up with something, anything, but the man looked like he wouldn’t really care what he said. He was mulling something over.

“Well then. What do you need to finish?” Francesco asked.

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