"Lady Tyri?" asked Lannik Septim two days later, after much thought. "I'm
sending you to Niya as our most skilled ambassador, to see how the province
feels about a possible alliance between us and them. Needless to say, you
should warn them about a looming threat from Tarim, for my nightmares
have grown steadily worse. I see a man with an axe--nay, two axes--
who slaughters everyone that he thinks has offended the gods or men.
"Talk to the nobles of Niya about how such an alliance would benefit us
both. With our military might combined, Tarim doesn't stand a chance if
she decides to attack. Also, their strategies of war are based on ways
of thinking that are foreign to us, but also suprising and quite interesting.
"I'm sending you aboard a fishing boat, however, as a scullery maid. The
nobles of Niya will recognize you by the silver quarterstaff you carry, and
the gaze of a clairvoyant within your eyes. If you're quartered aboard a
fine skiff, the threat of bandits and pirates will be far greater than it would
if a simple fishmonger's vessel were carrying you." Septim smirked proudly.
So did Gwenyvach. "Washing dishes and swabbing decks? I can play the part."
"Good. I've sent for the ship to be ready within two days' time. We must hurry,
for I fear this man in my nightmares has more influence over Tarach
Hrisskar than either one of them realizes." Septim dismissed Gwenyvach,
his mind set at ease. Niya might not form an alliance, but neither would
she hurt his most accomplished diplomat unless she chose to attack first.