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First of Her Name

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Lady Michelle,

Thank you for inviting me to your estate in Chicago. I grew up in Chicago, and being in your home brought back a lot of good childhood memories. 

As a mother of two, I can certainly relate to your concerns. Little Malia has a bright future ahead of her, and as a mother, you do not want to imperil that future. Let me say this: You can only do so much as her mother. You can give her the best education, the sagest of wisdom, and the best upbringing. But in the end, there is only one person who can decide her fate: herself. You have to trust her judgment, my friend. One day, she will become Queen. She needs to learn the consequences of her decisions. That is a mark of a true leader. 

I shall pray for you and your budding family. I can assure you that having a child is the best feeling in the world. Always be with your daughter. Remember that she will only be a child once. Before you know it, she has already grown up into a fine young woman. 

Write to me if you need my counsel. I am always happy to guide young mothers like yourself. 





Dearest Hillary,

I hope you are all doing well. I hope to visit my grandchildren soon, but my work in the orphanage and the charity kept me from making a trip to your estate. But I can promise that I will be there with you on Christmas, and I will spoil the two children with lots of presents!

My dear child, I am writing to you because two weeks ago, two nobles from Florida had come to assist in my charity work. They donated a substantial amount of money for the local farmer women. There was nothing out of the ordinary about them, except I heard them discussing Emperor Ronald's failing health. They said that the Emperor was having lapses in his mental capacity, even forgetting whether he had already eaten breakfast or what day it is. But all of this is being hidden from the public by his wife, Empress Nancy because they do not want to trigger a sudden expulsion of the Emperor. His wife and his supporters would rather let him die on his own accord, which, according to the Floridian noblemen, could happen soon. 

There is something that you should know, my dear child. Your Father and Uncle Howard are not blood brothers. Your Father is born of your grandmother, Queen Hannah, and the father of Emperor Ronald, the emperor before him, while your Uncle Howard is a pure-blooded Rodham. Your grandmother told me this before I married your father, and she made me vow never to tell your father. She told me this because she did not want a war to break out because of your father's legitimate claim to the throne.

However, circumstances have changed. Emperor Ronald and his wife are childless, and he has no other siblings. I am sure you are aware of what I am implying here. I want you and Bill to discuss your options. This is an opportunity beyond your wildest dreams, and it is within your reach. 

Think about this, my dearest daughter. I believe that you are destined for this. I once correctly predicted that you would reclaim what is ours, and I was proven right. This time, I know I am right. I can feel it in my heart. 





Bill and I could not believe what Mother just told me. My Father, a half-brother of Emperor Ronald? I must be dreaming! There is no way that can happen! My grandfather has always been fond of Father. Surely, he would have known if my father is his real son. There is just no way that my father is not a Rodham. Otherwise, I am not the legitimate queen of New York. 

I was suddenly panicking. If this comes out, surely, I will be deposed. Mother might have seen this as an opportunity, but this is actually a liability for me. I would be happy to claim the title of Empress of the Americas, but it means that I will lose the crown of New York! 

I suddenly felt lightheaded, and my husband immediately fetched some ale. He is such a sweetheart. He told me that the wise thing to do is to investigate these claims first before I make any decisions. Oh, Bill. What did I do to deserve you?

So immediately, we called upon my spymaster, the young David Brock. He used to be Uncle Howard's spymaster but he turned his allegiance to me and his betrayal contributed to my Uncle's downfall. Now, he is one of my closest counselors and allies. 

In the meantime, I burned Mother's letter so that no one could read it. Bill and I made sure that it turned to ashes completely. Once we got rid of it, he made love to me. That momentarily took my mind off my mother's claims, but at the end of the day, there is still this question of legitimacy hanging over my crown, and I could not shake it off no matter how hard I tried.

I pray to God that my Mother is mistaken. I'd rather pass the opportunity to be Empress than to lose New York.



My poor wife. She had gone back to her queenly duties but she is distracted by Queen Dorothy's revelation. I didn't know what to make her feel better until David had the results of his investigation, except to comfort her at night whenever I am in New York. But even then, she is still distracted when we make love. 

One night, I decided to confront her about it. 

I asked about how she was coping. She said that she was very much concerned that she is sitting on a throne that is not rightfully hers. I told her that her concerns are understandable, but if she didn't have the right to sit on the throne of New York, it means that is the rightful crown of California since Emperor Ronald is the monarch of the said kingdom as well. But my words backfired. It only made her more anxious because she didn't want to leave New York, as it was her home all her life. 

But I spied a ray of hope. 

I told her that we will prove that she is the legitimate crown of New York. I assured her that. And once we do, we will forge an alliance with the other monarchs so they will elect her as the Empress in the event of Emperor Ronald's death. My wife looked at me as if I was insane. But there was no insanity in my words. I was confident that she could do it. 

And with that, she was completely convinced that I was ill. 

But I am not ill. I completely believe that she can be Empress. I swear on my Father's honor, she will be. 



Ruling a kingdom while raising two children is no easy feat. But I love it! I love it despite the insurmountable challenges that go along with it. I love that I am able to lead my people to prosperity and rule them with fairness and at the same time, I adore being with my children after a long day, or after an exhausting trip to the countryside. The contrast between my two duties could not be starker, and that makes me feel accomplished, that I can do two different things at the same time. 

One time, after a long trip from Long Island to settle the disputes between the owner of a large plantation and his farmers, I was met by a galloping Chelsea, who was supposed to be tutored at that moment but clearly wasn't. Behind her was Nicole, the nurse who was taking care of Little Billy in my absence. Nicole was carrying my six-month-old son in her hands, and she handed him to me. Once Little Billy was in my arms, I felt him bounce. 

"My little one," I kissed Billy's forehead. "And my little Princess. Why are you not studying?"

"Miss Wendy is sick, Mama," said Chelsea politely.

"Is it true?" I asked Nicole. 

Nicole confirmed what Chelsea said. Wendy wasn't able to come to the castle because she was struck with flu. It would be weeks before she could be with us again. But I didn't mind at all. It meant that I would be teaching her myself, and I look forward to doing just that. 

I let Chelsea go back to the garden to play. I felt my breast swell in pain. Just in time, Billy started crying. I dismissed Nicole and went to my bedchamber to feed my son. 

Once I was finished, I let out the air out of Billy's stomach and I put him to sleep. His crib was in his room, where Nicole was also sleeping. And not long after, I too felt that sleep was taking over me, so I went back to my bedchamber and took a short slumber. 

When I woke up, I realized that I was not alone. I turned to the side and I found my husband snoring lightly. He must have finished meeting with Prince Terence of Virginia. He looks adorable when he snores. 

I left him in our bed. Meanwhile, I picked up Little Billy from his crib from his room and joined Chelsea in the courtyard, where my feisty little daughter told me everything about the squirrel she and our dog, Buddy, had chased in the woods. She said that she and Buddy weren't able to capture the squirrel because it climbed up the tree so quickly. I laughed a little, but I told Chelsea that the squirrel was afraid of them that's why it ran away. My poor little girl complained that they weren't going to hurt the animal, but just show it the river. 

I was surprised by a gentle tap on my shoulder. My husband was suddenly behind me and sat right next to me in the fountain, sitting Chelsea on his lap. He kissed me on the cheek. To be honest, even though we have been married for at least seven years, I always feel a flutter in my stomach whenever he kisses me. 

Bill told me everything about his meeting with Prince Terence. Our friend had told Bill the same rumor heard from the Floridians, which I first thought was silly but not anymore. Prince Terence had informed me through Bill that King Timothy will support me if I decided to. America will elect Emperor Ronald's successors from the monarchs, and the monarchs themselves will be the electors. In other words, we monarchs will elect one of our peers to become Emperor. And as of this moment, I have three votes for me: King Timothy, Bill, and I. 

My husband also thinks King Barack will vote for me too. Even though I may have the votes to become Empress, I am still not sure that I want to be. I love being a Mother and Queen. Elevating myself to the Imperial Crown might mean I may not be able to spend time with my children as much as I need to. And Bill wants us to have more children. I am not sure how this will work out, quite frankly. 

But there is one thing that might move me to mount that bid. Prince Terence heard that King Donald of Florida, the most tyrannical among America's monarchs, might express his intention to become Emperor at the urging of Tsar Vladimir of Russia. I was outraged by the motivation of Donald to become Emperor. Clearly, if Tsar Vladimir, one of America's biggest adversaries, wants Donald to become Emperor, then he should not be emperor at all costs. However, while my feelings against Donald are strong, I am not sure I am the best man to defeat him. 

Bill told me to keep the option open, as Emperor Ronald is still alive, and Donald may eventually end up not running. But the mere suggestion of him becoming Emperor at the behest of Tsar Vladimir is very alarming. If anything, we patriotic monarchs should organize against him very soon.