The Richman and the Alchemist's Niece (Part Eight)
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The Emperor felt better after the execution. His soldiers would deal with the mob, that many-headed monster the Chancellor so feared. But more importantly,  he, Sigismund the Grim, was in control again. He had exercised power over life and death.

    And his mind turned to the Alchemist's niece. He would visit her that very afternoon.

    Alone again, he made his way to the Treasury, where his financial advisors were waiting. The cost of fighting his wars and garrisoning the provinces was substantial. The advisors would try to make him reduce the level of military expenditure, but that he would never do.

    It was almost noon by the time the meeting ended. There were no new initiatives. Taxation would be increased in areas where revolts had taken place. Governors...

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