King: How are things on the border with Stagonia.
Prince Maurice: Very quiet, the patrols have reported nothing. Since the accession of their vile new monarch we haven't seen much military activity at all. Our army is now fully mustered, the border forts are fully garrisoned and supplied.
King: Count dow we have any progress on those mysterious documents ?
Count: Yes, a small step forward with the decipherment. Cantor of the royal society believes that the first line under the phoenix is a latin motto - he's putting all his efforts into that at the moment. Brother James is still sifting through his abbey's archives to find out more about the Sect of the Phoenix. Apparently the it goes back to medieval times - its on the Catholic churches 'banned list', any known members are to be excommunicated.
Prince Maurice: Have you identified the man who was killed ?
Count: We have a name, a certain Count Revolvendors rented the coach in Wittenberg to take him to the Monrovian border. The coachman was badly beaten up and left for dead - he regained consciousness yesterday and we managed to get a brief description of the attackers.
King: Well, what did they look like ?
Count: They were dressed in black and had on black cloaks, he didn't see much.
King: This is very worrying, the remains of the man who we think blew up the gunpowder store at Heidelheim had a black cloak as well. You don't think Milady de Winter's Regulators are at work ??
Count: I certainly hope not. I've had no information from my spy network that they are in the area.
Prince Maurice: Was it that notorius highwayman, Black Jack Davy ?
Count: Not his style, he doesn't usually kill anyone and besides the wound was precise - a sword or kife wound to the heart. I suspect this was a murder to order, by persons unknown.
King: Donutz ! Donutz ! Where is my butler ? Donutz !
Donutz: You called your majesty.
King: We will take tea with the ladies in the grotto in half an hour, please get things arranged. Oh and bring me my wide brimmed hat it's starting to get sunny.
Donutz: Yes your majesty ..
[backdrop: Kingston Lacy House - Dorset]