Her voice is thin and shaky, and she no longer has the presence that once acted as an anchor for the feudal system of Sepheris Secundus. In her later years, the queen has sunk into the throes of a personal crisis. Why do her serfs have to live such grim lives of toil? Is there another way that Sepheris Secundus could be ruled? She has ordered her barons to investigate what actually goes on in the depths of the planet’s mines, but her barons have resisted this and a few of them have sensed weakness and doubt in their queen. Though she would never admit it to anyone, Queen Lachryma is afraid of how she will be remembered, and knows that she is running out of time before she can get to the root causes of Sepheris Secundus’s misery.