“Do you understand how hard that is for me to trust someone? In this house?”
“I think so,” Edmund admitted.
“Well you don’t,” she shook her head. “You haven’t seen half the things I have, nor dealt with people half as viscous. You think the family is bloodthirsty now… well… It was worse eighty years ago!”
“I’m sure it was.”
“Begging-your-pardon,” Mrs. Kippling looked at Edmund with red-rimmed eyes, “but no…you aren’t! You never had to deal with the madness of Matron Victrola, or… or Grunder…”
Mrs. Kippling paused, and took a deep breath. Shaking her head slowly, she reached into her bosom, almost to the elbow. After two quick tugs, she pulled a thick yellowed letter out of her blouse, and held it out to Edmund.
“Patron Plinkerton gave me this letter before he died. He said it were a prophesy, and I was to give it to whoever were going to save the family.”
“Are there instructions on how to find the Cavalcadium?” Edmund asked, reaching for the thick yellowed letter.
“Well…sort of,” Mrs. Kippling said, uncomfortably. “In that it probably doesn’t. No, I’m sure it doesn’t. It’s… he made it sound a little personal, maybe? I’m sure I haven’t read it, it’s-not-my-place–You can see the seal is still there.”
Mrs. Kippling pointed a finger at the letter. Edmund turned it over to see the red wax seal; an ornate ‘P’ that obviously marked the correspondence as from Plinkerton’s own hand. It was heavy–heavier than he thought it should be, considering how long ago it had been written.
His finger traced the misshapen blob of wax. Just pop the seal, and he would learn what Plinkerton had wanted him to do.
He looked up at Mrs. Kippling. “No thanks,” he said.
“What?” Mrs. Kippling said, after a momentary pause. “But… but it’s the prophesy!”
“I don’t care,” Edmund shrugged, setting the letter down on the table. He thought a moment, and then nodded. “I think I’m done with adults giving me the answers. If it’s prophesy, than it will happen whether I read it or not. If it isn’t, than it’s not important. Either way, I’d just as soon not read it.”
“But it’s about you!” Mrs. Kippling protested. “At least it could be, and it could tell you what you’re going to do next!”
“Then you read it,” Edmund said, walking to the door. “Then I won’t have to come back and tell you what I’ve done. Besides, I think I already know what I’m going to do next. Thank you for your help, I think you informed me of something very important.”
“I did?” Mrs. Kippling stood dumbly in the dark kitchen as Edmund pushed open the door and headed for the elevator.