To the esteemed Canton Jhaltero -
As I am certain you already know, my name is Aldo Mondragon. I do not have any doubt that a house so wide and insightful already knows well of my deeds and statements. I am writing to humbly request an opportunity to speak with you regarding a mutual acquaintance. Since I have started my diatribes against House Delronge, they have taken great notice and have tried to move against me. I reach out to you with the currency most important in hopes of securing a currency less important – information for gold.
While I am certain that you already have your suspicions on the sources of Delronge’s labor within their mines, I can produce contracts showing that they are utilizing slave labor to undercut your workers. In addition, I can rile the people up to draw the negative emotions towards House Delronge, and we shall see what secrets are found in the turmoil. I can provide evidence of my claims, and a public voice that claims no allegiances to you or your house. In exchange for this information – damning as it could be to the common man – I ask only for financial partnership and a private letter of support.
I seek no actions against your house. You know of me, and I am certain that you can find out anything you wish. But I fear that House Delronge seeks to silence my voice and to hide this evidence. The longer that they are allowed to work in shadows, the harder it will be for your family to compete with them in business.
Your funding would allow myself and my allies to continue to fight against their systems and ideology, and would be used to gather farther information and activities of Houses Thrune and Delronge. You, nor your family, would ever be named or put into harm’s way. Ask your information gatherers – my allies have already broken mercenaries free in the Saltworks and are active throughout the city. Our eyes and ears can be yours as well.
Awaiting your reply,
Dear Lord Mondragon,
I receive your letter gratefully, though I must admit I was somewhat surprised to receive it. A man who has always railed so vehemently against the corrupt nobility of Kintargo, contacting House Jhaltero? We must have distinguished ourselves in some way in order to change your mind so radically, though I can’t imagine how.
I am, of course, aware of Melodia Delronge’s subterfuge. Our houses have been involved in something of a rivalry since long before I was born, and Melodia is simply carrying on her family’s long and storied tradition. It is vexing, but up until now I have had no real method of response. If you truly have proof of House Delronge’s involvement in these activities, I would be quite interested in seeing it.
At the same time, however, I am not sure that I can provide you with anything in the way of support at this point. If you are truly allied with the group that has been taking action throughout Kintargo, and if the things I have heard about this group are true, it would simply be too dangerous for me to offer you any official or financial support. Though I feel your cause is just and I believe that you have no intention of putting House Jhaltero in harm’s way, I cannot take the risk of exposing my family to reprisal from the lord-mayor and the Chelish Crown.
I am sorry, Lord Mondragon. My hesitance now does not preclude the possibility of support in the future – we are in the midst of difficult times. Know that my sympathies lie with you and your allies.
I must ask once more that you consider the benefits of subtle involvement. I cannot understand how one stands to the side in a time such as this, knowing what we both know. I will gather your information in good faith, and while I do not agree with your decision to stand back, I can see your reasons for doing so. Do not take this as anything more than a difference in methodology. I do not fear reprisal from the Chelish crown, but I have very little to lose if they should decide to go after me. After all, it is a man’s duty to put his family first for protection, and I cannot begrudge that.
While you may not support us directly, the knowledge that you are open to dialogue and your sympathies are with us are a comfort in a trying time. Let it never be said that Jhaltero was anything less than civil. I will speak no more of our communication at this time, but know that the eyes of history will look back at those of us who fought and those who stood aside. In due time, perhaps I will have proven our cause enough for action.
Respectfully in your service,