A Letter sent to Benedict by Pattern Magic shortly before Sioned’s return to Amber.
I have set out to write this frequently over the last few years, and each time I have discarded it, displeased with my inability to be articulate. As my father pointed out to me when I originally asked for his help, an apology letter should be honestly written. To be honest, I would have set this aside long ago, if not for the words of my friend, Shallan. All the time in the world may pass, yet an apology is always welcome. I have decided it is best to keep company with those wiser than I, in the hope that by some miracle, it may make me the wiser.
For my unannounced arrival on your “doorstep”, my regrets. I am indebted to you for allowing me through. The confrontation I had been involved in had left me exhausted and psychically erratic. My desire was to be anywhere other than where I was and the easiest path my mind took was to impose upon you, and I am deeply grateful that you chose to respond.
Likewise for my behaviour; an apology. I tend to speak all and everything that is in my mind, and usually at such speed. Of late this has seen some improvement, and after much hard work, I am at least able to temper it via the written word. I am profoundly sorry that everything I said was upsetting or offensive. My only saving graces are to say that, for good or ill, my honesty literally pours from my mouth; and I lack the tact for skilful deceit. As I have been informed during my time in Roshar, I apparently improve upon further acquaintance, or at least become endearing….
My apology, also, for my last words to you. They were presumptuous, and arrogant, but honestly meant. There are many who would welcome your return, and most certainly younger cousins who would benefit from your teaching.
I wish you luck and fortune in your pursuits, and perhaps our paths will cross again. I would like very much to talk of my grandfather. From all accounts, he studied hard under your tutelage, and I have hopes that you would remember something of him.
As a final expression of regret, please accept this small Copper-Mind. Within it is stored memory of the Alethi Codes of War and the The Way of Kings, historical texts of this shadow called Roshar. When it is in contact with your skin, and when you command it, the Copper-Mind will open and you may retrieve the memories. You may return them in a likewise fashion, and they will be removed from your mind in turn. There are academics in this shadow who store vast sums of knowledge, that would otherwise be lost, in small and unassuming copper rings and bracelets. This Copper-Mind has been designed for you alone. No one else may use it.
As for myself, I will return to Amber. Time has moved far more quickly than I expected, and I admit, I have not paid as close attention to it as I should have. I hope this message will find you. If it does not, c’est la vie, as a colleague once explained to me, “such is life”
Siwrne dda, Siwrne saff.
Sioned rch Florence rch Sian, tŷ y Llew.
When Sioned returns to Amber, an egret alights on her balcony handrail and taps at the window. Attached to its back with an intricate kind of harness is a light bamboo tube containing a scroll and a letter:
A gift, in kind.
Here is my brave Glemdenning, rendered clumsily in ink.
The poem was written by one of my captains, lamenting the old war-horses put to pasture. Few in Amber still speak my mother’s tongue, so I will attempt a rough translation.
Tenga is a congenial habitat for heavenly horses;
Tens of thousands of them are always stalwart.
Floating clouds expand across the vast frontier;
Autumn grasses grow tall over the mountains.
I have heard that the pure bloodline of dragon-horses
Lives on in the aging Sushuang horse.
Neighing sadly longing to fight,
It stands tall facing the sky.