Elsa’s Column: Revenge Served Cold

By Elsa, Queen Emerita of Arendelle

I have two memories of the Exalted, this secret society of the world’s most influential rulers. The first was during Christmas in 1840, while I was queen. His Imperial Highness of the Celestial Empire enjoys receiving letters from the monarchs of Arendelle. That year’s Winter Solstice, he asked me to write him a letter without my Chinese translator, so that he could teach himself Arendellian. Instead, I wrote him a letter all in Chinese characters. He couldn’t stop showing my writing off to his imperial harem (much to his concubines’ annoyance and my embarrassment). It’s a story our diplomats fondly recall from time to time.

The second memory is exactly one year later, after my allied armada of Vakretta, Zaria, and Chatho had repulsed the Russian fleet in the North Sea. I met the tsar in Saint Petersburg for negotiations, and he was rotten, ill-tempered, and bitter about everything the entire time. Despite being the aggressor that tried to divide and rule us smaller kingdoms, the tsar acted as if I had wronged him. I’ll never forget the lady by his side, several years younger than me, who glared at me with pure hatred for daring to resist her father.

Princess Katina Romanov.

I believe that I, and Arendelle’s allies, did the right thing in 1841. None of us were inclined to become client states of the tsar. But it’s clear that my leadership of the alliance that resisted Russia became the fuel for Katina’s fire. She struck first by tasking one of her agents to capture Princess Danielle. Just to remind Elsa and I that she plans to carry on with her Baltic ambitions. What kind of capricious cruelty is that?

Danny is safe now, but no child should have to go through such an ordeal.

I’ve told Anna everything I knew about the Exalted’s members. We agreed that we’d resist appealing to their leader, His Imperial Highness, for help. Yes, what Katina did was despicable. I’m still shaking with anger at how she could employ an agent to abduct our, my Danny. Yet we must think coolly. If we’re too quick to draw in Lord Yixin, what began as a personal dispute could very quickly spiral into a regional, possibly even continental conflict. Then there’s Will Harrison, the young master of that fabled First Family of the Virginian state across the Atlantic Ocean. Given the general atmosphere of the Exalted’s membership, I wouldn’t be surprised if everyone was plotting against each other.

My advice to Anna would be to be extremely careful of him. He is a truly dangerous man.

Thanks to the vast host of nations scrambling to trade with the Qing, the hand of Lord Yixin is in the economies of almost every country Anna deals with. Harrison’s country began business with the Celestial Empire shortly after America’s revolutionary war against Great Britain. Harrison has considerable investments in Canton, thanks to his huge fleet of clipper ships that deal in opium and tea. Last time Anna checked, Kristoff has four large ships – pretty impressive for an Arendellian company. Harrison has nineteen! Arendellian intelligence has known for years that his port in Boston and plantations in Virginia fund his clout in the political organs of the United States.

However, we in Arendelle have been trading with the Qing for more than a century. Decades ago, the emperor granted our kingdom the privilege of “Most Favoured Nation.” It’s only one milestone in a long history of friendship between our ruling houses. I have no doubt Harrison has set his sights on ingratiating himself to Lord Yixin and wrenching away Arendelle’s trade privileges for himself. I dare not think of how deep he’s commandeered his own government for selfish ends.

Katina is already more formidable than any geopolitical adversary Anna has known. Were Harrison to also get involved, or even join forces with her…

Well, our queen, my dear sister, would be in for a titanic geopolitical tussle. One that would need not just me, but Countess Viola, Commander Hilde, and a host of many of our friends to protect Arendelle.


3 thoughts on “Elsa’s Column: Revenge Served Cold

  1. “Elsa, you are absolutely right. First off, Katina had no reason to bring Danny into this. No reason. Second, lets be honest, I think Katina wants us to get Yixin involved. She knows what will happen if we do that. So having that happen is to ONLY BE a last-ditch, no-other-choice move.

    I have faith in Anna that she will get this done, as she always has. I’m just as pissed as you are that Katina sent someone to kidnap Danny, and, to put her in a CAGE? Like some wild animal living in a zoo? ARE YOU NUTS KATINA? That’s disrespectful on so many levels!!!!! You don’t know how bad I want to kick her ass for that!

    Nonetheless, I’m just as worried about this whole Amira situation. The Northuldra Children Protection Act, how the fuck does that even exist. Never got passed but people still want to implement it. At least Amira warned us but A. she attacked us in the process and B. hurt some of our people. Nonetheless, that needs to be taken care of very quickly. But what I worry about is Amira going back to Northuldra and continuing her assault on Arendelle-Northuldra relations, or worse, attacking Arendelle’s University. That would be devastating to both sides.

    To that notion, I want to be in Northuldra with you guys should Amira strike again. Who knows what she might do, honestly, I don’t want to take any chances. Plus, I haven’t been able to visit you, Elsa, in Northuldra yet, nor have I been there in general. Its high time I made a trip up there so I can spend some time with you and at the same time, hopefully, deter Amira. We’ll see, if Anna needs me here though, then that’s where she needs me.”


    Liked by 1 person

  2. You’re very right, Alan. The kingdom rejoices at Danny’s safety, despite her coma and slow recovery. But what lies ahead is grim, no question. What Katina will do to attain her desires makes me shudder. Anna and I haven’t felt this way since Hans’ betrayal, but Russia is a regional great power. We must act carefully and strategically.

    Domestically, we face the question of how Northuldra can properly be integrated with Arendelle. I have complete faith in Anna, but the ghosts of the past haunt our hopes and dreams for the future. Amira is an expression of a betrayed trust. We can’t let her hurt people anymore, but we can show her that Anna and Maren are sincere in what they’re trying to do – not like the Northuldra Children Protection Act.

    For now, we don’t know where Amira is, but she could be in Northuldra. Come with me to track her down – we’ll help Anna find her, and bring her to justice – and if possible, help her back on a path of trust and rehabilitation.



  3. I agree with you about Amira, Elsa. I’ve just read where Anna just had a very stern meeting with the Stein, U of A’s Vice Chancellor and the head of the Girl’s school. She just warned them that this practice they’ve been doing under our noses ENDS NOW OR ELSE. And that Danny has awakened, still feeling a little beat up from this horrifying experience, yet will make a good recovery.

    I think that keeping Yixin out of this for now is a good idea, so we can deal with Katina and Harrison without causing anymore of an International ruckus. I still think that Katina needs to have a message sent to her that says that if you mess with one of us, ESPECIALLY Danny, there will be no place to hide from us looking for you. You don’t ever mess with family, ESPECIALLY DANNY. Period.

    I’m torqued off at Katina too.


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