To the Honourable Lord Alfric Dannett, Lord of Helmcrest Castle,
This letter is to act as a summary of recent events, explaining the conspiracy that lead to your son’s unfortunate demise. Let it be known first and foremost that House Tallystan is not at fault for the death of your heir, nor for the massacre of your smallfolk.
Both House Dannett and House Tallystan have been pawns in the scheming of a young nobleman, one Orten Lugus. As far as we have ascertained, Lugus intended to pit your two houses against one another, starting with the slaughter of your farmers as conducted by hired mercenaries, who have since been dealt with.
Orten’s plan was twofold; firstly, he aimed to woo and wed your estranged daughter, positioning himself as patriarch of House Dannett after your death. Secondly, he aimed to frame House Tallystan in two murders, one of which was the murder of your son, Adham. After taking the noble house to trial, they would naturally be expected to pay significant reparations to House Dannett, further cementing Orten’s position in the Riverlands.
Fortunately, thanks in part to the swift tongue of Archibald Tallystan, and in part to the impressive swordplay of his nephew, Orten Lugus was found guilty of his crimes, and should be well on his way to Castle Black by the time you receive this letter. His sister and co-conspirator, Marita Lugus, has regrettably fled from justice, but I have my best men seeking her out.
I have sent royal messengers to the lord of House Lugus. For his offspring’s treachery, he will pay reparations to both your house and House Tallystan, in the form of gold. While no amount of wealth can make up for the death of your son, I hope this gesture helps set your mind at ease.
As a last, personal note, I have one thing to say. I highly recommend you seek to make amends with House Tallystan and forgive one another for past transgressions. I have no desire to see strife between two houses sworn to the King’s name, much less two houses situated on the border of my own lands. Put your squabbles aside. Were it not for the Tallystan men, your daughter would likely be swearing her vows to the man who killed her brother. Think on that.
Lord Jon Arryn, Hand of the King