Duchess Elisa of Provence 1106AD
Dear Diary, today is the day my life begins anew. My father’s father’s brother’s son’s son has died and through either some quirk of fate, or the hand of the all mighty, I find myself Acfred’s titles. I find myself now Duchess Elisa, Countess of Provance, Forcalquier and Savoy, Barones of Grimaud and Nyons. While it is not a woman’s place to rule, there appears to be no other option, with Acred’s son, Acrfed being only nine years of age. And we are at war.
The first order of the day is to establish a rightful heir. Jaufret, the elder Acfred’s brother appears the most suitable candidate and I grant him the Barony of Nyons, as much to keep him happy and busy as for any other reason. Hopefully he will one day be able to continue his brother’s work.
With the line of succession sorted out, it is now time to do something about the war Acfred left for me. The Muslims are causing problems again and are trying to claim Scicily. It is clearly the duty of all good Christians to help repel them. Oh if only the all mighty had made me a man. Still, I must work with what I have.
Dear Diary, it has been brought to my attention that the men in my council are not as effective as they should be. While I have been advised that the men will think poorly of losing their appointments on the whim of a woman, as they will not voluntarily resign, needs must. There are better men available. Namely, Ubald de Toulouse and Blasi Bosnoid, who I believe is old Acfred’s cousin. Hopefully I can trust a relative to watch my back from plots.
I am not sure dear Blasi is yet content in his new role. Hopefully I can appeal to his male ago and offer him the duties of Master of the Hunt?
After spending a single wonderful day with my children Jaufret, Gilbert and Gracenda, it is back to work. I can see now why a woman should not rule. Still, I have heard news that we will soon confront the Muslims on Sicily. At 67 years of age, the Mayof of Apt is too old to be leading my men into battle as Marshal. And I do not like the way he looks at me. I thank him for his years of service and pass on his duties to Anton de Briancon. At 36, he is experiences and a masterful commander.
Before the war begins, I give a final reflection on family matters: I can not let such matters distract me in the future. I tell my husband Albert that he and I have done our duty and provided three healthy children. We should now concern ourselves with spiritual matters to make sure we have the lord’s blessing. I send a courier to the pope to ask for salvation for my past sins.
With keeping with these actions, I offer old Bertand’s widow, Princess Anna a pardon and release her from the dungeon. I do not know or care for what reason Acfred kept the old woman in chains.