Welcome to a new chapter of Imperial Struggle, the story of the young Emperor Marco, and the struggles with his new imperial position. Imperial Struggle is my first web novel, so any feedback is welcomed. This is chapter 7, so if you want to read from the beginning please click here
The carriage pulled exactly in front of the mansion. A group of servants was waiting patiently in front of the mansion to receive the Emperor. Darius appeared as well, with a red face and out of breath. When he heard that the Emperor carriage was coming he run out of his office toward the entrance, leaving Armando alone in the office.
Everybody was prepared to welcome the Emperor into the Mansion, but contrary to the everyone's expectations, the one who opened the door was Argento, not the Emperor. Looking at Darius face, he suddenly felt sorry for the prank that Marco thought of by sending him into the Imperial carriage, to deliver the messages.
“Grand Duke of Darin, I’m sorry about the situation that I put you on. I hope that I didn’t distract you from something important. My name is Argento, I’m one of the personal bodyguards of Emperor Marco”, Argento saluted the Grand Duke very courteously.
“It’s my pleasure to make your acquaintance. I heard your presence make quite the commotion this morning in the Imperial Guard”
“Ha, ha. Yes, they seemed quite ruffled about my presence. You have good sources, Grand Duke Darius!”
“Imperial guard is full with the children of nobility and relatives. I have a nephew there as well. But why are we staying outside, please enter” Darius invited Argento to join the mansion.
“I’m sorry, but I have a lot of people to visit today. I just come to deliver this message to you” Argento pulled a scroll with the Imperial seal on it. Seeing this, Darius eye almost popped up of his sockets.
Kneeling down, he received the scroll from Argento’s hands.
“Do you know what is this about?” Darius asked after he received the scroll.
“I do, but I’m not allowed to tell. I heard that Price Armando is visiting your mansion, could you pass this to him as well.” Argento pulled another scroll with the imperial seal on it, giving it to Darius.
Saying his goodbyes, Argento entered the carriage and left, followed by the Imperial guards.
Darius returned to the office, with a confused look on his face. Seeing Darius like this, Armando became confused as well. Where was Marco?
“What happened Darius? Wasn’t the Emperor supposed to arrive? Where is he?” Armando couldn’t help to ask.
“He didn’t come. Instead, I managed to meet his bodyguard. Interesting fellow. The Emperor sent some letters. This is yours, ” said Darius while giving Armando his letter.
Armando ceremoniously received the letter from Darius and looked at the imperial seal for a while, before he broke it down and start to read the letter.
“To Price Armando,
I hope that this letter finds you well, my dear older brother. This is an official invitation, my first one as the Emperor, so I will try to be as official as possible.
Hereby, Price Armando Eldobal, you are summoned to the Imperial Palace, in a week's time, for an official audience with the Emperor. I will await your presence.
Signed, Emperor Marco Eldobal, 21st Emperor of the Eldobal empire.”
Armando raised his eyes and looked at Darius, who just finished reading his letter as well.
“Let me guess. You got summoned at the palace in a week’s time, right?” Armando asked.
“ You as well?”Darius asked.”Actually, I’m not surprised anymore by the actions of the Emperor. I’m just curious who just got summoned beside us”.
“With your connections, that shouldn’t be that hard to find out, right?” Armando said laughing.
Taking into account that these summoning letters were sent with the Imperial carriage, it was very easy to find out who got them. You just had to know where the carriage stopped. Even a child from the street would be able to tell you this kind of information.
While the capital was roused by the strange movements from the Emperor, on the southern road a rider was pushing his horse to the limit. This rider was Scarto, the “Seven Hill” member that visited Marco in the capital together with Argento. He was hurrying to the “Seven Hill” base, to let pass the message of the Emperor to the rest of the “Seven Swords”.
Soon the big “Seven Hill” fortress came into his sight. Scarto took a deep breath and hit his horse, pushing the poor animal for another burst of speed.
Seeing the rider that was approaching with such a speed, the guards from the top of the gate didn’t knew what to do.
“Open the gate!” a voice was heard.”Open the gate now, it’s Scarto!”. The owner of the voice went very fast down, to greet Scarto.
When the guards heard that order they started to open the gate as soon as possible. The man that recognized Scarto was the captain of the Seven Hills.
Scarto passed the gate as a hurricane, stopping his horse in front of the captain. The poor horse, that was barely standing, was taken by some nearby stable boys. Scarto was in the same poor condition as the horse. After he left the capital, he didn’t stop until now. This distance would usually take more than a day, but he managed somehow to do it in half a day. He wanted to transmit the message as soon as possible.
“Scarto, what’s the hurry? Did something happen?” The captain asked with worry on his face.
“Captain, I will answer your questions, but first let me catch my breath? In the meanwhile, gather all the inner circle in the meeting hall. I have words to share with everyone”.
Thank you for reading and thank you for supporting this story. As we can see in the Marco is having some plans that are in motions. What exactly are those plans and what will happen in a week time? In the next chapter we will find out more about the "Seven Hills" members.