Queen Pirouette had been in her office for several hours reading reports, dispatches, letters and proposed legislation. When she got the next document in the pile, she read it over twice and without a word, let it drop to the ground. Lady Abbigail Hoffenhoff, her chief lady in waiting and best friend, scooped it up and gave it a perusal. Her reaction was until the queen’s. She put a hand to her mouth and passed it to Lady Granville, the queen’s personal secretary. When Lady Granville read the contents, she suppressed a cry and passed the parchment on to the Prime Minister, always present, nearly always silent. The letter had been written by le comte des Deux Chat, GarGar’s aide de camp.
Glorious news Majesty, it read, the enemy was met today (that is, two days hence) and because of the ingenious military tactics of le comte des deux chats, victory was secured. Bravely he led the cavalry charge against the center of enemy lines. While it saddens me to report that there were heavy casualties on both sides, the enemy left the field in disarray. Thousands of enemy combatants were captured, as was all of their artillery. The joy of this victory; however, has been tempered by the fact the exact location of Lord GarGar, des deux Chats, is at present unknown. Every effort is being made to find out whether he is a captive of the enemy, or of he has fallen in the field of valour. As his aid de camp, I swear that I will spare no effort in order to locate him, and it is my sincere wish the his lordship will be found in good health and high spirits. Your devoted servant, Emile du Par.
Pirouette rose from her desk and calmly said, We wish to be alone. My lord, Prime Minister, give me that letter.” He bowed and extended a shaky hand holding the letter. Once the doors closed behind the Queen’s retinue, she could feel her body trembling uncontrollably. Before she could summon a thought, the door knocked and Zippy, the Queen’s fool, tumbled into the room and then outstretched his arms, “Ta-dah!” He said proudly. Grabbing a letter opener, she threw it at Zippy and shouted, “Get out! Get out before I have your head separated from your neck!”