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Author's Notes - The Master Courier’s Gift by A.J. Hall

While Gondal, Angria and Gaaldine are creations of the Bronte children, this particular version of these countries owes rather more to the Marlows’ reinvention of Gondal and Angria in Antonia Forest’s Peter’s Room.

Facilis descensus Averno, noctes atque dies patet atri ianua Ditis.
Sed revocare gradum superasque evadere ad auras, hoc opus, hic labor est.

Aeneid Book VI: “The descent to Hell is easy; the doors of Hades stand open night and day. But to retrace your steps and escape to the air above; that’s a task, that’s where the real work is.”

De profundis clamavi ad te: Out of the deeps have I called unto thee.
Psalm 130 (KJV)
1 Out of the depths have I cried unto thee, O Lord.
2 Lord, hear my voice: let thine ears be attentive to the voice of my supplications.
3 If thou, Lord, shouldest mark iniquities, O Lord, who shall stand?
4 But there is forgiveness with thee, that thou mayest be feared.
5 I wait for the Lord, my soul doth wait, and in his word do I hope.
6 My soul waiteth for the Lord more than they that watch for the morning: I say, more than they that watch for the morning.
7 Let Israel hope in the Lord: for with the Lord there is mercy, and with him is plenteous redemption.
8 And he shall redeem Israel from all his iniquities.

Or, as Disraeli will observe in a couple of centuries or so, “Everyone likes flattery and when it comes to royalty you should lay it on with a trowel.”