The Winds of Time
Iuchi Tzipora's Response To Chaya's First Letter Home
The letter is dated Dragon 10, 880
My dearest daughter,
I will write more when I have a few moments – your unexpected departure was followed almost immediately by an unexpected visit from some honorable Phoenix guests. I don’t think the Rokugani realize just how long we have been evading inquisitions. I’m fairly certain they take me for a simpleton.
They tried very hard to be polite, and so we treated them just like family – including serving them a variety of dishes that we’re certain they could not have had at home. Watching them try to eat with our utensils was honestly one of the funniest things I have seen since you went off to school.
Your brother and I were only just barely able to hold back the laughter until after they left for the evening, and then we laughed until the tears rolled down our faces.
Your father worried so. You know how he is – even now, after all these years, he still doesn’t quite understand our ways. Some days, I think he honestly misses the Wall.
But he was able to understand the Phoenix in ways I cannot – his years of stalking and hunting … It may have served us well in allowing them to find nothing out of order. The fact that you weren’t actually here – had I mentioned that they were asking for you? – your absence definitely helped send them off. I am very glad that your letter arrived after they left …
Speaking of your brother – he has been accepted to the Ide academy! Not one of their branches, either! The main academy at Shiro Ide!
Your father continues to be a cantankerous old goat. He hasn’t said as much, but he is obviously concerned about you. The Phoenix guests did nothing to assuage his concerns, and you know how your papa worries.
I am glad you are making friends. As you know, a faithful friend is a powerful defense.
Otosan Uchi! I have always wanted to visit the Imperial City, but have never had sufficient excuse, and the other Clans frown on travel for travel’s sake. I visited Ryoko Owari once when I was younger, and I have no desire to return to that evil place. My mind tells me that the Shadowlands are worse, but my heart finds that difficult to believe.
And so many friends you seem to be making! A princess, and her bodyguards and others who are your equal!
We miss you, and will always keep a stall open in our stables so you can visit.