Featured image art from: https://www.zerochan.net/2766088
By Elsa, Queen Emerita of Arendelle
Recently, I’ve been hearing some murmurs and rumblings. They’re mainly about why I didn’t attend the Arendelle Philharmonic’s inaugural performance. To be clear, Anna sent me an invitation, and she wanted more than anyone for me to go. However, I turned her down, very reluctantly. It’s perhaps fair for me to explain why.
I was so proud of Anna when she inaugurated Kingdom Hall, a cultural landmark that I never had the chance to complete during my reign. As a small kingdom, we only needed one hub for all our cultural and artistic events, to focus them like a ray of light that could shine our kingdom’s talents across Europe and even the world.
As Anna told reporters, “The cultural flourishing of our kingdom is dependent on our people’s prosperity and openness. My aim is to elevate every citizen to be who they want to be, and think of life and Arendelle’s future both wisely and fearlessly.” That was the message she wanted to send during the other night’s performance.
Of course, the political angle of the event was unavoidable (it was Arendelle’s first major cultural event for the European stage), but even my astute and perceptive successor must have been taken aback by the tension and rivalry between our kingdom’s power brokers and political establishment: whether it was her own long-awaited private talk with Countess Viola – the woman with an eye out for my destruction – or her general, Mattias, facing off against Viola’s right hand, Hilde Von Altheim. Not to mention all the grandees, nobles, statesmen, merchant princes, and journalists and press barons prowling about in Kingdom Hall, fangs sharpened.
Kristoff himself has inevitably been sucked into the political world, as the leader of the Princely House, and my beloved Honeymaren was also there as the bridge between Northuldra and Arendelle. She was rubbing shoulders with all our friends and their interest groups, from businessmen and investors like Uncle Mike and Nahir al-Adil to other creatively minded types shaping our cultural landscape, like our royal biographer Seeker.
What’s the common thread running through all these different enmities and factional jostling?
I’ll tell you what it is: me. Me, Elsa.
Although I’m far more at peace with myself and my powers than I was when I was crowned queen, objectively, I have to conclude that whether it’s in the name of defending me and fighting in my name, or wishing ill or death upon me, I’m the reason why so many are locking horns, and why dark forces like the Mundilfari clan have revealed themselves to move against the resurgence of nature’s power in Northuldra. I don’t mean this in the good sense, but it’s all about me, even when it comes to the conflict between Anna and Viola.
That’s the reason I decided with a heavy heart not to attend the concert.
I’ve already told Sir Alan and Uncle Mike this: I refuse to be the spark that ignites open civil strife among Arendelle’s most powerful women and men. I will be neither catalyst nor pawn. Fortunately, I don’t need to apologize for it because I know my Anna will sort things out.
I’m well aware that Viola and Hilde are a “deadly duo” that plan to turn their armies on Northuldra, and to take me on in battle. I’m confident that I can stop them, but before all that, I have every faith that Anna will be more than enough to best them.
And if she isn’t – well, I’ll be there for Her Majesty and to make sure my queen isn’t further hurt by Viola. Their relationship is strange and dangerous enough already. I love Anna so much.
I’ll continue to advise Anna on matters of state and of the heart, and I’ll come by the palace and this newspaper’s offices as often as I’m able to. But there’s a reason why I’m called Queen Emerita: it’s because I’m an ex-queen. You already have a core, a heart that the kingdom relies on. Please make her the centre of your political outlook, whatever your line of work is. She’s devoted herself to all her people. She deserves the same loyalty.