Dear “Mr. White”;

Alas, I’m afraid I have missed you because my contacts have all but stormed your little fortress of misery and found that they were quite unable to find you. Not that I have contacts that might do such a thing. Brother Edward is still quite busy with whatever manner of chore that he has fixated on lately, after all. Still, I’m quite put out by this, my friend. Here I am, looking forward to another dreary report on how we continue to make money, which we do, and yet must relinquish ourselves to this isolated wasteland on account of some old woman, which we certainly do not. And yet, I have no such pleasure this time around as your letter, usually timed to the clock, has yet to arrive. Were we actually friends of some manner, I might admit to concern for your well-being. Instead of wasting both our time on precious nothing, I will fill you in on the events of the last little while. You’ll be sorry to know that there is much to say. Much to be done soon, dear Mr. White. I hope that wherever you are, it was restful because upon your return, there will be a great deal of unrest to contend with.

First of all, there is a viper on the loose, her venom finding its way into some troubling places. Thankfully, none that have direct ties to our operations. Yet. Oh I know you’ll tell me not to jump to conclusions on this matter, considering the company that so of my contacts keep. If you’ll permit me to be so bold, I would trouble you to concern yourself with recalling the lady that you had asked about before. If she is not indeed the culprit, as I very sincerely suspect, I would put forth that she knows more than she appears to. She was seen recently, wandering around the seedier taverns about town, flirting with some of our less than savory clients. Our pretty viper might also be carrying a few deadly tricks up her sleeve and should be at least regarded with the utmost of suspicion. If not her then someone with access to some wicked concoctions has, alas, claimed the life of another friend. An associate of cousin Johnny has been found recently, his habits having caught up to him, or so we had thought. Seems as though his interest in more specialized beverages, enthusiastic though they were, might only have been half the culprit. He was found with a glass dropped at his feet where upon his trusty mutt whom we both never much cared for was also found cold as snow. While no one is going to mourn the loss of a grunt worker or his tick infested demon of a canine, it does lead me to wonder about some of the other losses suffered around here as of late. All speculation but it has piqued the interest of a few in town.

Yet another bit of news has come to light as of recently and given your already enthusiastic enjoyment of their presence, in the aftermath of reading this letter I should expect to find you in a most delightful mood when you surface. Oh do accept my apologies for that rather biting remark. I would re-write this letter but there are only so many ways that one might try to extend their disgust for your temperament in a civilized yet accurate manner. I do find it refreshing that we can be honest with each other about such things.

Getting beyond the pleasantries of our enforced entanglement, you should be aware that the Kent family has been quite active. It seems as though Lady Kent, while still suffering from her mysterious illness or whatever it might have been that they made use of to excuse away her absence, has regained some functionality. I’m sure her husband is beside himself with grief about that. I shall spare you the need to ask why you should care of such trivial matters as there is something that you should be aware of. While I was privy of your previous chance meetings with the head of that wretched household, I was under the impression that he was not altogether aware of your lineage. Perhaps for the best, if you ask me, though it did seem a pity that you let such a business opportunity pass us by on account of a conscience. It seems that there has been some talk of a particularly chilling name circulating within their group as of late. I’m sure it’s nothing but rest assured, there are people who are making sure to catch some of the more interesting gossip. You never know what manner of precious information might happen by.

You may also rest assured that in the absence of our dear Brother Edward, another has come forth to help us with some of the more taxing elements of our ongoing projects. While he lacks Brother Edward’s finer qualities when it comes to his range, you’ll find that he is quite capable. Very eager to please too. A fine quality in and of itself and I find myself rather impressed. While I know that nothing impresses the likes of you, my friend, I dare say that the lad is actually very keen to gain your approval by whatever means might be required. He has quite the eye for handiwork that I’m sure that you’ll find useful in the future.

And alas, I find that I am still rather disappointed that your dear Mr. Glass is still quite unreachable. Of course, I have not been looking very hard. I suppose that arrangements might be made in my own schedule, of course. I am terribly busy, however, so I suppose it is for the best. For now. I wouldn’t want to be catching whatever the dickens has managed to keep our friend so ill for so long. I must say, however, that I find it admirable that he is able to keep up his duties in such poor health. Stout fellow, that Mr. Glass. I should wonder that a man of his equal might only be found in fiction. But that would be nonsense, of course.

Should anything newsworthy arise, I shall keep you posted. I trust that should anything pass by my perfect network and worm its way to you first up there in your castle on the hill, you’ll do well to inform me. I do very much hate to be left out of any potential good news, you know. Makes me feel anxious about what you might be doing up there. Of course, it could be worse. You could be shackled up by that hag that you associate with and then I wouldn’t hear from you for months. I do very much hate that.

Do rest up well, my warden. I might very well lose sleep at night thinking that perhaps you had succumb to the same terrible health as our dear Mr. Glass. I simply cannot have that and our operations would suffer terribly if you were so utterly difficult to get a hold of. Do write as well. I should like to know what manner of event I am missing that has kept you so long.

Yours in obligation,

Mr. “Gray”

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