Disclaimer: In no way do I own Elisabeth!

This is written in a letter form to her son, Rudolf. This is my first fan-fiction so any comments would be helpful and I would be grateful to receive any! Thank you!

My eyes are dead. Lifeless, soulless and cold. So cold. They echo the feelings inside. The deep, black hole of despair as wave after wave washes over you, a tsunami of endless grief and pain. There is no light at the end of the tunnel. Sometimes I think I view a flickering , shimmering light but it extinguishes, mocking me. Sending me deeper into the abyss, further than I thought possible. Sometimes I wonder why I don't crack and give in to what is ultimately my deepest longing, his one wish. But I will hold strong, if only to spite those whom did not believe I had it within me. This is the biggest pain of all however. Knowing that your existence only lives on through your sheer bloody-mindedness. Even I know that's not even a word though- is this what I've come to? Making up words and having to write to express my feelings for my son. Rudolf, I apologise so deeply it pains me. Like a dagger it pierces me and I wish that one day you will forgive me. I have little, if no right to ask such a thing. Once, you came to me asking for help, reassurance and for me to be, for the first time a mother. Yet I turned my back, thinking of only myself in your greatest hour of need. What right had I? After I had fought to have you near me, to just cast you away like an old shoe that no longer fits. Many wonder if the only reason I fought for you was just to show Sophie I had ultimate power and I could rule both her and my life. After all, I had to prove that I belonged only to me. Occasionally, when I stop running and allow myself to ponder, I wander the same. This hurts. So much. I wish you could see this so you know how truly sorry I am, how much I crave even the slightest forgiveness.

I killed you. I let you go. And now I have to face the sufferance. The guilt of knowing that I ultimately murdered you. Who knows what truly happened that night? All I know is that I drove you to that, turning away from you, letting you fall. And he claimed you for his own. My people may view me as a hard, un-feeling , callous woman now but I care not. If I let them see the true me it tarnishes that reputation and then where would I be… The emotional and physical pain are all consuming, all I have left now. I can trust no-one. I could not do the same to them as I have to you. I have learnt, I have grown up and now, I am a mother. I owe that at least to you, my beautiful, darling boy. I do not show them though, why allow them to see the real me? They would flock around me as I were some creature captivated by her own doing. They would ask questions I could not answer and that would make it worse for both of us. Every night I cry myself to sleep, the only way to release just some of these heart breaking feelings. They cripple me so just thinking of you. I let no-one see ma sob as crying is a sign of weakness. Weakness means you are vulnerable. And an empress must be strong and lead the people to victory.

I apologise so deeply, my brave boy and I beg your forgiveness. Please see past the pretence and the hard, cold woman who dominates the outside to the real Elisabeth on the inside. I know how alike we were, I saw it every day but now I truly appreciate everything about you, your quirks, your smile, your easy-going nature.

I love you.

Elisabeth