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Almost overnight, the city of Alisandre Capital had been plunged into martial law. Some said it was no surprise, with her father King Proxem Vario’s military background. Ideas had since arrived to Mireille regarding how she might respond as an authority in this situation – but firstly, situations are unique and do not replicate under changed factors. Secondly, she was not at this juncture supposing that she had a more capable or knowledgable mind to lead than her father. Thirdly, while her older sister Soleil may still be missing, Mireille was not really yet harboring any claimant feeling toward her position. That would mean giving her sister up for lost. She was, however, beginning to think that she should prepare her mind, so her mind went there more often.

These new restrictions meant that the royal family was living a little less connected than they were accustomed. Though influx and outreach wasn’t necessarily the predominating theme in the children’s lives, the shift into a state of fear brought with it an instant sense of claustrophobia. Mireille’s younger brothers were more restive, and she spent more time with them. She added in some interim education. She herself was currently studying a cross-sectional history focused on initiatory contacts, which she paraphrased for them. The degree of mystery in this current conflict reflected an element of these occurrences. Something distinguished it from Sturlusson’s – Hirylienites really, though emphatically not all Hirylienites – Phronium Triangle doings, even though that was a leading popular opinion. People leaped to patriotic defense upon the rumor of an accustomed foe, even if many doubted he would even be mentally viable after the stillfreeze. As the story began to change, people retained most of their defensive motivation.

News was now being mainly delivered via furtive disclosures of gathered intelligence inside small rooms, and not really for the children. Mireille had recently seen one of her mentors, Councillor Lysander whose partner was a retired Vanguard officer. His time was spent mostly elsewhere now, but when he did speak with Mireille, he would sigh and often seem to hesitate as though he couldn’t figure out how to tell her something. Oddly selected factoids from different periods in the lives of her mother, grandmother, and father began drifting into the topic focus without any particular segue or reason. Mireille wasn’t exactly sure what she was picking up from that.

Countercultures of surmise expressed argumentative divides regarding the portal transmissions. Over the antiquated and clandestine communication platforms still available, debate bounced around. Some were called dumb while others were called loony. Followers of either camp did research to confirm their pet theories, continually refining or contradicting. Mireille didn’t identify with dumb or loony, but she felt sufficiently alarmed and intrigued. She was aware that her viewpoints were necessarily constrained by her status.

The Princessa climbed out of her sleepless bed and stepped toward the window of her bedchamber, gazing into the nearest flickering window portal in the air. Some said that they were revealing state secrets. Some believed they’d been here all along. The image before her now resembled an old photograph in some way, a texture. She saw the recurring people shapes that were dubbed the Strangers, but also some people with more familiar human proportions. What were they doing? Images in the portals were gaining in clarity and correlation, but Mireille could discern little else to this right now. She was able to imagine the guesses already, unsure yet which were her own. It certainly held the fascination, under the current state of media starvation.

Princessa Mireille decided it would be worthwhile to start a unit for her brothers comparing portal theories to histories. She could already think of something they might want to ask their father. It was too bad they couldn’t also ask Grandmaria Celeste.

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