Letters from Armorica- Blockade (8 Novembre 34 AF)

First Letter

Dear Journal,

I have not recorded anything in weeks, for I have had little to tell, and little time in which to write. We have been very much in the dark—literally, in that the days have grown shorter and we dare not show lights at night here on the island, but also in that we have had little word from the outside world. But at last we have news, for Marc's men have finally returned from Mont-Havre.

The war, it seems, is going badly for Le Maréchal: he has lost control of the Void to His Cumbrian Majesty's Navy, which is now blockading the Provençese ports, and few of his troops remain in Armorica, for he pulled them out before the blockade came down in earnest. His representative is still ensconced in the Gouverneur's mansion in Mont-Havre with a handful of guards, but beyond that we are free of him.

The war is far from over, for Le Grand Cochon remains as strong in ground troops as he ever was. But lacking control of the Void, he must confine his actions to defense, to the countries directly adjacent to Provençe, and to attempting to break the blockade. He may yet win; but I tell myself that Cumbrian sailors are the best in the world (even if I do hear the words in my father's voice).

All of this is good news for us here in Armorica. We will see no new Provençese troops until the blockade is resolved one way or the other; and at the moment we have little to fear from the Cumbrians, for the Royal Navy is entirely taken up with the blockade.

Best of all, the port of Mont-Havre is open again! Cumbria is desperate for timber and other goods to support their ship-building efforts, and so we have had a few ships Cumbrian sky-freighters come in. The folk of Mont-Havre have mixed feelings about trading with Cumbria at this time, for many there are still passionate supporters of their mother country of Provençe, but even they seem to have lost patience with the Nouvelle Regime. They want to see Provençe win, but they also want to see Le Maréchal lose, as who wouldn't. And so when the Cumbrians come to buy even the most reluctant are choosing to sell.

Soon, I hope, the other great nations will also resume trade with Armorica. That will be good for my friends who remain in Mont-Havre, especially M. Suprenant and M. Fournier the bookseller; and indeed, this may be the perfect time to begin to put M. Fournier's plans for importing Cumbrian books into action. The times are unsettled, but in unsettled times there is also great opportunity.

Amelie and shall shall spend tomorrow in Bois-de-Bas, where we shall attend divine services; and then I will meet with Marc and other men of the village in the hot springs. Oh, I am looking forward to soaking in the hot water! Our little bathhouse is no replacement, especially as the air grows colder. And then, it may well be that we shall leave our island to the snow and rain for the winter, and all return to Bois-de-Bas. If so, there is much to be done to make ready before the snows come.

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photo credit: NaPhi Media Epic sunset on a mountain in Austria via photopin (license)