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Fulgistan

RP Mentor
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Fulgistan last won the day on June 29 2019

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About Fulgistan

  • Birthday 08/12/1999

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  • Gender
    Not Telling
  • Location
    Southeast Alharu

NationStates

  • NS
    Fulgistan
  • Capital
    Bogd Gioro
  • HoS
    Tomur Almas

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  1. Fulgistan

    Doom of Ceris

    Ganlin Republic State House, January 15th, 2020. "Welcome, Prime Minister Verbrugen. Please, take a seat." The poor man looked rattled. His face was ruddy behind a long red beard, and his brow was beaded with sweat. He had good reason to look so poorly; he was, at present, the captain of Ceris' worst-ranked ball team, the failing republic of Edrela, which in recent weeks had seen several prominent local officials kidnapped and assassinated by Rusheau-sponsored militias. And now, the nation's primary water treatment plant had been hijacked and a hostage crisis only ended in the hours before the prime minister's arrival. "Thank you, ambassador." The Ceriser clasped Zhuang Wei's hand before settling down at the conference table. He was the second foreign representative to arrive; Qi Shaoying, the President of Ganlin, had been here when Zhuang Wei had arrived by convoy from the embassy that morning. She looked up from the conference table, and put her third cigarette in the ashtray. "Prime Minister, I'm glad you're well." "Thank you, Madame President. It's good to see you too." The door creaked open again; a gaunt older woman entered the conference room, flanked by a Fulgistani soldier. "Vice President Maria Geller, of Ubraioria." "We were expecting President Wohl, is everything alright?" The woman blinked once, twice, and began. "The president is dead. His car was destroyed last night by an explosive. The Sentists claimed responsibility, and the government has stopped working altogether. It was...difficult to arrange transportation to this meeting. I will do my best to represent the people of Ubraoria nonetheless." "I'm so sorry, Madame Vice President. Please, rest assured than in my capacity as ambassador, I will do everything I can to secure the assistance of my government in relieving the situation in Ubraoria and in all of Ceris. Please, have a seat. Sergeant Zhao, please tell General O'Malley we're ready." The delegates waited nervously at the long, mostly empty table in the hot, bright windowless room. A single TV hung on the wall, tuned to static. Before long, more figures appeared at the door. A trio of men in Criasian dress uniform, a garb more reflective of the early 20th century than the early 21st. One man wore stars and braid on his shoulders, and a neat red moustache on his face. The two other were majors, in the same baggy cavalry trousers and peaked red-star cap. One carried a clipboard, the other a submachine gun. The general took a seat near the delegates, while his subordinates stood on either side. "Good morning, President Qi, Prime Minister Verbrugen, Vice President Geller and Ambassador Zhuang. Thank you all for attending this summit, which has been called in response to the ongoing Sentist crisis in Western Ceris as well as the ongoing hostilities perpetrated by Rusheaun actors in the nations of Ganlin, Criasia, Ubraoria, and Edrela. I am pleased to announce that, in cooperation with the Fulgistani Revolutionary Guard, the Republic of Criasia has developed a comprehensive plan to combat both of these threats and exterminate the presence of terrorism in Ceris, and for redeveloping and restoring the economic landscape of the Western Ceris region. With your help and cooperation, we will win this war, and emerge united, prosperous, and establish a longstanding peace." There was a silence; there was no opportunity to refuse, implicitly or explicitly. The Fulgistanis, with the help of the Criasians and the Ganlinese, were offering peace and security on their terms, with no time to negotiate. Rusheau was in bad shape, but the smaller countries of the West coast were even worse off, and they would not hold out without help. And there was no one else coming. Verbrugen cleared his throat. "What will you need of us?" "You will retain your positions of leadership and ensure the continuation of civic order. Your nations' military assets and personnel will be temporarily reassigned to Fulgistani formations in order to coordinate the war effort against Rusheau and the swift liberation of the territory. You will nationalize major industry as much as you are able, and coordinate production in accordance with the demands of the war effort in whatever capacity you are able. After the cessation of hostilities, a token force shall remain in Western Ceris to ensure the peaceful demobilization of the enemy and the resettlement of refugees. In return, the ICEB will provide Western Ceris with as much material aid for civilian relief as you require, and ensure the safety and sovereignty of your respective governments." "Can you win, General? Will you win against the Sentists and the imperials?" O'Malley locked eyes with Vice President Geller. "Yes, ma'am, I believe we can. With the help of the Worker's Republic, we are increasingly in a position to launch a strategic attack deep into southern Rusheau. The armored units of the Fulgistani Demonstration Army have proven highly effective against the infantry that makes up the bulk of Rusheau Reichsarmee personnel, and we're continuing to muster Criasian soldiers to support a large-scale action. Rusheau is large, but it is ultimately a paper tiger, on its last legs." "Fulgistan has fought the Sentists in the past," Ambassador Zhuang interjected. "We have experience in the deescalation and pacification of terrorist threats." There was silence around the table. "I've prepared a copy of the Western Ceris Treaty for you all, which you're free to examine at your leisure. If there's no further questions, shall we proceed with the formalities?" An antique fountain pen was passed between the delegates, and five signatures went numbly onto the paper.
  2. Minority group wins recognition in landmark legislation Bogd Gioro, Fulgistan Today, one more ethnicity is added to the list on the upcoming 2021 census, the last such survey to be taken before the national centennial. Thanks to the efforts of a small but dedicated group of Fulgistani citizens, there will be another group joining the Fulgistani nation for the first time officially; starting in 2021, residents will be able to denote their ethnicity as "@Llaltan of @Seylosian origin". This group, which consists at present of only 3 individuals residing in the Worker's Republic, has nonetheless always been vocal about its desire for official recognition, and has had one particularly influential advocate in particular. Representing Yulang County, Xiadong Province in the People's Great Khural for over 25 years, Comrade Gerald Carlton is a disproportionately influential legislator relative to his constituency's size. During his term in office, Comrade Carlton has been the champion of causes such as public transportation, the expansion and modernization of public healthcare, the reduction in size of the military and the dissolution of the Demonstration Army, some of which have been more successful than others. Perhaps most famously, Carlton is also outspoken about his Llaltan upbringing, before his adoption of leftist attitudes in college and eventual emigration to Fulgistan. He speaks about his homeland's culture and customs frequently at pubs and community halls around Yulang County, as well as on his biweekly Wulumuqi-distributed radio show, ¿Como Se Llaltas?, a talk broadcast about Llalta in the Mauridivian language, on Tuesday nights. "I've always been adamant about the need to get on the census," Comrade Carlton told me as we went on a leisurely bike ride through his neighborhood in Zhuangli, the county seat. The delegate is a bit of a local celebrity, and passersby cheerfully waved as we made our way down the main street, avoiding the occasional pot-bellied milk cow wandering along. "Llaltans, you must understand, we're a terribly proud and community-oriented people. We like to stay in touch and stay connected to who we are, even if there's only a few of us around. We get together, we go out to dinner, it's a real community, it's flourishing, even though it's just the three of us. What d'you mean it's just "being friends?"" At time of writing, the Llaltan-Fulgistani community consists of Comrade Carlton, Mr. Jonathan Waites, a speech therapist at the Xintou School for the Deaf, and Ms. Corinne Andrews, owner of a Bogd Gioro area garden center. According to Mr. Carlton, the trio keep in touch primarily via email, but have sometimes made rail trips to conduct emergency meetings on the steps of the Great Khural, as they did during today's successful vote. "We do our best to be here, you know, when push comes to shove, as it were," said Mr. Waites over video conference. "You know, spendin' time with my fellow Llaltans, it brings back memories of those halcyon days of my youth. Walking through town...sayin' your good mornings to Bill, and Bill, and Fred, and Walt, and Kate, and Pippa, and Bill...". Mr. Waites continued for some time. "But o'course we're committed citizens now, in our own way. I came because I wanted to heal the sick, but I'm happy to, er, do other things for my country too, I suppose." However sweet the taste of victory may be, there are some indications that the Llaltan census matter may not be entirely settled. “Well, not to be a schismatic or a subversive, but I'm a quarter Eirish, on my mum's side, so I reckon we'll need one for that as well," says Andrews. "I personally believe in the revolutionary takeover and independency of Eire, but since I've only got about a quarter stake in it, I reckon I'll stick to checking a box for now."
  3. Hi @Taimin, welcome to Eurth! Essentially, after you've made your Front Desk post, we ask for 3 writing samples, generally one at a time so that the mentors can provide feedback. These can be in the form of a wiki page (on iiwiki), a news post, RP post, or something else; we mainly want these so that we can see the quality of your writing and make sure you're a good fit for the region. Don't stress too much about it. Also, I'd definitely recommend joining our regional discord; usually any questions you have can be answered there more quickly than on the forums.
  4. To: The Ixeloyanakisē of Metztlitlalio Foreign Affairs office, Oqixatlitetl Yanakisētla'tosollo From: Ismail Tian-Han, Secretary of the Bureau for Foreign Diplomacy of the Worker's Republic of Fulgistan Dear Sir, When the peoples of the wurld act together, they can move mountains. You are correct indeed; the proud continent of Alharu has seen colonialists and imperial agents steal away its potential for centuries. These honorable principles: self-determination, anti-imperialism, and native liberation are among the cornerstones upon which rests the Worker's Republic. It is very much in the interest of our nation to pursue a policy of coexistence and cooperation between Alharu's native states, as the people of Metztlitlalio can no doubt see now. Now more than ever is the time, not for peacebuilding, but for peacemaking, a proactive policy of peace and stability which will ensure that the the oppressed and voiceless peoples of the New Wurld never again turn against each other without need, that in future they might present a strong and unified front against the imperial powers that seek to divide and apportion these the last vestiges of the Old New Wurld for themselves. It is with great pleasure that I accept your invitation on behalf of General Secretary Wu, myself, and the people of the Worker's Republic. We have much to discuss; the Bureau's cadres will be in touch; we are quite certain that a meeting can be arranged before the start of the New Year. Best wishes, 田-韓 司马义 Ismail Tian-Han
  5. Fulgistan

    Doom of Ceris

    Near the Ganlin border with Rusheau "He says he was attacked?" "He and his, ah, his son. They were out working by the border and some men started firing in their direction. He says he's not sure who they were but they didn't chase him or his son when they ran." "That's troubling. What else does he say?" The hesitant, multilingual conversation was not helped by the environment; all around there was the sound, the smell, and the dust of the cavalry column, and Lieutenant Colonel Liang Ping was right in the thick of it. This was the 15th Mounted Rifle Regiment on the march, the unremarkable and obscure Yulang County Silver Clouds. They had arrived in Ganlin at the request of the government, who had been experiencing constant border provocations by neighboring Rusheau, as well as an influx of refugees from greater Ceris. The situation was primed to explode with every passing moment. The same planes that brought the troops brought food and clothing; Ganlin had been eager to accept aide from the ICEB after being informed of the Criasian arrangement, and were also glad to have a few more guns pointed in the other direction, for a change. Under the current plan, the 15th were assigned to patrol the border along the strip of Rusheau land dividing Criasia from Ganlin, in anticipation of more provocations and/or breakout of local hostilities; this farmer's story was not encouraging. Colonel Liang turned to the interpreter, a short, tan Huang man with thinning hair and a short beard, wearing what passed for a uniform in a Ceriser army: camo fatigues of some ancient vintage, a canvas chest rig, a mismatched forage cap with a faded national crest, and combat boots, Ahranaian Royal Army surplus. "Ask him if there's been any trouble with cultists lately." "Yes, he says many problems, but not in his village. He heard about it from his uncle in the next township." "What's that place called?" "Frombach." "Thank you for your time, sir. Have a safe trip home. Someone get him a bag of rice or something off the trucks." Liang shook the farmer's hand; he was at least not visibly diseased, unlike most of the people on the island he'd seen, so he figured it was safe. "Let's get going, Mr. Zhao. We're to be in camp at Kearney by 2100." Tadwick National Airbase, Ganlin Temporary Headquarters of the 9th Airborne Regiment "Soaring Buddha Palm" "Major General Dong, sir?" "Come in, brother." A young lieutenant stepped over the threshold, wearing a varnished wooden rosary over his uniform. His head was bare and shaven, and his brow marked with the six-spotted sign of his order. "We believe that the Ganlin claims of Derthaler elements implanted within Rusheau Royal Army units are accurate, based on field reports. The groups which are most active in the Rusheau border region, especially around the Criasian Gap, are immediately identifiable as distinct from the armed bandits active elsewhere in the country." "Have we made any progress on the Sentists?" "Not much, I'm afraid. We're still working to discover the link between Sentism and the Imperial Truth, if it exists at all. It's not clear if this is purposeful Derthaler subterfuge or a distinct ideology." "They're so elusive. Once we come close to seeing its face, the snake slithers away again." "Quite so, comrade." "Whoever is behind it, it's clear that Rusheau intends to attack. The depression has hit the feudal economy hard; and that storm tore down the coast on its way to Seylos last year. Rusheau is facing a crisis, and they've got nowhere to turn but looting...or to some sympathetic imperial ear." "The Derthaler link is undoubtedly troubling. But then again, it may mean nothing. Their armies fight for gold most of all." "Quite so, brother. That will be all, I think. Thank you, Lieutenant." The young monk saluted and left. Major General Dong looked back down at his desk, topographic maps and intelligence reports strewn about. Tadwick Airbase, Ganlin's only air force base (boasting a meagre complement of 8 ancient fighter craft and a pair of dodgy trainers) was the temporary command center for the Fulgistani expeditionary mission in Ganlin. It was here that intelligence reports from around the country's tiny land area were corroborated, compared, and interpreted. This informed another critical element of Tadwick's force complement; one of Fulgistan's finest airborne regiments, a rapid strike force that could land a relatively modest force to accomplish some critical mission behind enemy lines. In a place like Ceris, this mobile warfare could be very effective, especially against a technologically inferior and less disciplined enemy. As a regiment composed almost to the man (excluding specialists and medical personnel) of volunteer Buddhist monks, the Flying Buddha Palm had discipline aplenty. What is the aim of Derthalen, if they are in Rusheau trying to start a war? What is the aim of the Sentists, if they are not one and the same? "Comrade Dong?" He jerked his head up with a start, his eyes locking on another soldier, urgency in his voice. "What is it?" "Elements of the 15th Cavalry report being engaged by Rusheau Reichsarmee at the border." Major General Dong rose, and they hurried out.
  6. "Comrade Almas? We're about half an hour out." Stirring from sleep, the General Secretary winced as he craned his neck out the window, seeing only the cloud cover above the Mediargic. "Next time, I'm gonna buy one of those neck pillows." "The captain's been in touch with the other plane, they're making good time as well." "Everything's okay? No major disasters related to transporting 21 equines by air?" "Apparently not. And the troops are in good spirits, as well." "Wonderful, wonderful." Tomur Almas took his plastic glasses from the pocket of his suit and cleaned them methodically with his tie. "We're coming to Ahrana in very different circumstances than the last state visit." "Quite so. To think, in so short a time, Ivanoff, then Core, then this one. It is not a system which inspires confidence, or trust." "You are correct, but what does this phenomenon exhibit about the Ahranaian people?" "Hmm...this indicates that the people of Ahrana exhibit revolutionary fervor often and intensely, but that they are unable to produce a democratic people's government in any form, and instead rally behind strongmen." "Quite right. The Party organ in Ahrana failed utterly, and was monopolized by Ivanoff the bandit. This failure to police the party ranks and root out not only rightism but base corruption and ignorance. The corruption runs deep; do you know how many representatives sit in the Ahranaian federal congress?" "I do not." "1550! 1550 petty bureaucrats with no power and little reason to care collecting a salary from the public pocket! It's a farce! It's like some kind of imperial kickback scheme." "That's crazy. I struggle to understand that sort of thing, really." "In what way?" "This sad fact that people could produce, you know, this sweeping social movement only to either preserve or create this sort of hideous, bloated bourgeois democracy. What victories have been won here? There have been tanks in the streets in the past few months. It's really almost pathetic. Tragic, perhaps,it is better to say." "You know, you're very insightful." "Thank you, Comrade." "Comrade General Secretary, Comrade Secretary for Culture, we're beginning our descent." Almas pulled his seat up, putting on his now-clean glasses. Tekin buckled his seatbelt. "Do I look alright? How's my hair? I get bad bedhead." "You're good. And you can always touch it up, you know, slip away for five minutes with a comb." "Certainly, certainly." To: Sigrid Anastasia Anne Victoria Florence-Goring of Strasburg, Federal President of the Ahranaian Federation From: Tomur Almas, General Secretary, Worker's Republic of Fulgistan It is my great pleasure to inform you that on behalf of the Worker's Republic, myself, Secretary of the Bureau for Culture Bayanchur Tekin, and the mounted drill team of the Blue-White Banner Bozaan Regiment, led by Major Zohreh Bozaan. It is a great honor to return to Ahrana once again and to meet with you, Madame President, after this past years Triennial Summit. No doubt this will be an eventful gathering. Best, Tomur Almas 啊吗通姆
  7. Camel Market Ward, Bogd Gioro, Feiguang Province, Worker's Republic of Fulgistan The once-lauded Khiimori Aeronautics concern was much diminished these past few decades. At points, they had been a significant contender on the Alharun aircraft market, not only in fixed-wing craft, but in helicopters as well. Founded by Limonaian Giacomo Collini in 1926, in what was then the tentatively-liberated city of Jintakh, they had gone on to produce several influential designs (mostly for fighter aircraft and light bombers) through the 1930s and 40s. In the late 1950s, jet aircraft appeared on the scene, an advance which proved somewhat of a stumbling block. The firm had the technical knowledge of how to build jet engines, but were not able to secure adequate quality control assurances from the syndicated factories, who were unwilling to work under new regulations without significant compensation. So the jet project remained shelved until the mid-1960s, when Khiimori was able to produce a working copy of an Iverican jet fighter, which became the Khii-33. Such was the state of neglect of the Revolutionary Guard Air Force that this very same airframe remained in service today as a fighter-interceptor. Powerful and venerable though this "People's Workhorse" was, it needed replacing, and soon. The People's Great Khural had at last, at the urging of Generalissimo Choinom and the political officers of the armed forces, approved the allocation of several hundred billion tenges to fully replace the Khii-33 in service by the close 2022. This was no small task, and the committee formed to accomplish it was keenly aware of the risk involved, both political and economic. It was with this in mind that lifelong Party member and head of the Committee to Restore the Air Fleet, one Colonel Li Huanggou, had chosen to consult firstly that most stalwart friend of the Fulgistani people, the Marenesian nation of Bulgenstaz. This was the obvious and safe choice. More controversial, but also more potentially beneficial, was the decision to bring the Elegy corporation into the mix. Omnipresent and seemingly omniscient, the corporation had more than once been denounced by members of the Party as yet one more organ of capitalist domination, of seeking not only to control the means of production, but also to control and commodify human life itself. The recent happenings in the Sunset Sea Islands, as well as the fragmented intelligence reports, did little to quell these concerns. Nonetheless, when Elegy came to the table, they came to win. Moreover, this was an opportunity for the Worker's Republic to solidify itself in the international community, to dispel notions of isolationism or pariah status, and to put three fish together, as the sages might say, to make one fine stew. Expected at Khiimori's Bogd Gioro offices were General Merov Krasnosk of the Bulgenstazi Liberation Army, Venh Seng of Bulgenstazi Military Technologies (the national arms concern) and the notorious Lien Viênxuan of Elegy. Properly, Khiimori's headquarters were in Jintakh, of course, but since the desert mining city had no international airport, and even most Fulgistanis were loath to cross the desert frivolously, Colonel Li had elected to hold the meeting in the concern's more modest, perhaps dated capital offices. A reception hall had been prepared for the delegations, complete with a planned luncheon (for the Huang conducted no business on an empty stomach if it could be helped) and a digital tour of Khiimori's production facilities in the west via video conference. Colonel Li straightened his peaked officer's cap, cleared his throat, and stepped out from the main lobby onto the sidewalk to greet his nation's honored guests.
  8. "You are to hold and delay the advance of the foreign invaders at all cost. Do not allow him to consolidate all of his forces into one against us, and above all do not allow him to penetrate into the North and West beyond the desert." The words of the imperial missive echoed in the mind of Guo Wei, Marquis of the Second Rank and Supreme Commander of all the forces below the Ivory Cape, the peninsula that marked the end of the old Huang territories, and south of which lay the vast swathes of tributaries, colonies, allied tribes, and now, crusaders. Even before the missive reached his hands, Guo Wei and the Southern Army had been on the move to join battle with the enemy. They had marched 110 li* in only three days, and had left behind their baggage train in order to meet the enemy at this critical juncture: at the edge of the rocky plateau that preceded the desert. Thanks to the swift actions of Guo Wei's allied Boshan scouts, the headquarters of the army had deduced that the crusading army could only be making for one place, the wealthy border village of Anchang, and its fertile fields, ripe sorghum stretching for many hundreds of acres. "Assume the fourth defensive formation!" Along the edge of the settlement, ditches had been dug, some wooden palisades hastily erected. It was not enough to stop an advancing army, and perhaps not even enough to inconvenience them much. The Southern Army was by far the weakest force of the Huang; the career soldiery loitered around the capital, or else manned the canal-forts of the desert, meaning that Guo Wei's army was one of convicts, conscripts, tribesmen and pirates. He had no heavy cavalry, no shock infantry, few muskets and only five artillery pieces. The strength of the Southern Army normally lay in its ability to traverse the terrain quickly, and to hold off an often primitive enemy with bow and crossbow fire. They would not have the luxury of an unarmored foe today. As the infantry marched into position, and the horse archers began to trot out past the flanks, Guo Wei gave the order to the mortarmen. "Kai pao!" *110 li = 45 miles
  9. Hi, all. In this RP I'll be initially basing my interests in the small western nation of Ganlin, with its Huang minority and relatively stable government. However, as the situation in Ceris begins to unravel, Fulgistan is going to do its best to evacuate refugees, protect the resources of the island from destruction, and, if necessary, military intervene to suppress Sentist terrorism on Ceris, working in cooperation with regional allies (perhaps under an umbrella coalition). After the conclusion of the crisis, Fulgistan may maintain some token presence in an independent Ganlin/other portions of Ceris, but our ultimate concern is regional security, under whichever government can provide it.
  10. I more mean that it's like a general opportunity to people to speak up and say "Oh, I'd like a lake in my nation, or a river, or a big mountain", etc. just so that we can take this opportunity (our first big map reform in a long time) and have a bit of an open forum on geography so that we can build a better more fun Eurth. Maybe we could even add some natural features (or remove, I guess) in unoccupied territory to vary the climate a bit, or make things more interesting/varied for future players.
  11. I think this might also be a good opportunity to consider global geography; perhaps we could add some more natural features, islands, bodies of water, etc. to the map as we rework the climate to suit everyone's needs and make the region better. Certainly island nations are always in demand.
  12. Crap. I have to one-up this bathysphere thing. If I don't, how can I return to my people? 'Tomur Almas,' they will say, 'it is you who has led us down the path to stagnation and ruin, having failed to present your own enclosed, manned capsule-themed plan for the future. Shame on you, Tomur Almas. Shame unto your ancestors into the 18th generation.' "Er, another round of applause for the scientific achievements of the ICEB. You know, comrades, I've been thinking, awhile, discussing, theorizing, and et cetera for some time now, and I believe the time has come to put this matter before you all as peers, comrades and friends." Slowly, Almas withdrew a second flash drive from his breast pocket. Brushed aluminum, sans logo, capped. No office supply store storage device this; this was, like, an executive flash drive. For important, executive things. Almas politely waited for his Bulgenstazi counterpart to retake his seat, and inserted the drive into the laptop. "Sh*t, did we uh, did we-- is this computer secure? That's like 3 flash drives worth of national secrets we've plugged into this thing now. Y-you figure there should probably be some protocols in place, y'know? Ah well, carrying on." After three solemn clicks, a vision emerged on the projector screen. A vision of the future. "Behold, comrades! Our f-- 'Error: Can't open AlmasPlan.pptx.' What-- what's that about? Can somebody-- sorry, we should really coordinate this next time. I'll find us a media guy." One of the younger translators was finally able to get the presentation open, as Almas attempted to peer over his shoulder. "Right! Without further ado...behold, comrades! Our future! A future in SPACE!" As he spoke, a field of stars twinkled on the projector, as the camera focused on the slowly revolving Eurth, dawn breaking over the East Adlantic. "As the inheritors of a longstanding international tradition and some of the wurld's most powerful industries, it is only right and just that the International Communist Economic Bloc lead the way in space. I propose, comrades, that we undertake, in the oncoming months and years, to establish a permanent manned mission, a space station in low Eurth orbit, as well as a manned and unmanned rocket program to facilitate the construction and supply of the aforementioned. As you yourselves are highly educated, erudite men and women yourselves, I thought it best to place this proposal before you in its earliest stages, as Fulgistan lacks both the monetary and scientific capacity to reliably carry out this mission on our own. I now leave the floor open for comments and questions."
  13. Anhuajing, Present Capital of the Yellow Empire It was always a spectacle when the emperor walked from his residence to the dragon throne. The streets of the capital were thronged by servants of the imperial household, diverting foot and cart traffic, sweeping the streets, and preparing the Toujian Way for the Son of Heaven. The procession numbered over 300, mostly scholars and soldiers. In the center, shaded closely by vast silk parasols, was the emperor himself. Qian Fukou, regnal name Qian Piaojian, was the 5th scion of the Qian dynasty to hold the empire's teeming millions under his rule. A younger man, only 35, but nonetheless an able plotter and commander. His was not a weak dynasty; he would not be a weak emperor, either. The scholars lined the steps leading to the throne room; they were not permitted to enter, unless called upon by the high ministers or the emperor himself. As the sovereign climbed the huge granite staircase, a herald read his titles in auspicious ordering. "The Son of Heaven, Qian Piaojian, King of the Rising and Setting Sun, Lord of 10,000 Banners, Born of the Great Dragon, Appointed of..." There were 88 in total, a sign of prosperity and stability. By the time the herald had finished, Qian Piaojian had finished his ascent, and as the parasols were drawn away to allow the sun to shine on his back, a great drum sounded once, twice, three times. Almost silently, he entered the vast chamber and took his seat upon the dragon throne. A testament to the feats of artistry in the country, the dragon throne of the Yellow Empire stood nine feet tall at its highest point, a construction of gold, amber, tiger's eye and lemonwood. It depicted the Great Dragon, Da Long, rising from the earth as the sovereign sat atop its coils below. In one claw, the Pearl of Heaven, a symbol of just rule. The other was empty, claws outstretched toward the enemies of the nation. Its eyes were egg-sized sapphires, cut beautifully by the finest jewelers in the realm. By all accounts, an awe-inspiring creation. As the emperor took his seat, the hundreds of courtiers in the courtyard bowed in unison. Qian Piaojian did not waste time. "Bring me my master of oracles." The order was hurriedly relayed through shouts and whispers alike, until the man himself soon kowtowed before the throne. "What is your wish, O my lord?" "We have last evening received from a Socklander spy this proclamation from the island barbarians. Translated, it is a declaration of war upon ourselves and the Swordlanders, claiming many crimes against their people and worshippers. It is the will of Heaven that you divine upon the outcome of this declaration." "It shall be so, great king. I require fire and water." A brazier was lit in front of the old seer; into it he would occasionally throw chips of bone; supposedly those of the qilin, snake-turtle, phoenix and tiger. His milky eyes did not blink as he took a handful of water from the jar and cast it onto the fire. As the steam rose, so did his lilting voice over the sputtering flame; every ear strained to discern, for even the most veteran scholar struggled with the archaic phraseology of Oracular Huang. "In the East, five great winds gather strength. Their names are Famine, Strife, Discord, Overthrow, and Death. The winds soon will blow to the heart of the dragon, and seek to overturn his place in Heaven. The very gates of the Jade Palace are shaken by their force." Qian Piaojian considered for a long moment, then inclined his head very slightly forward. "It is so. I shall gather six harmonious winds to blow away the five evil ones." The emperor lifted his right hand, palm downward, the hem of his golden sleeve barely hovering above the floor. "I say: These six will be brought before the dragon throne: Ma Bingpo, Wang Gufeng, Yu De, Boshan Yilin, Fang Rong, and Bai Caoying. So it was said in heaven." "Ma Bingpo! Wang Gufeng! Yu De! Boshan Yilin! Fang Rong! Bai Caoying!" The courtyard reverberated with the unanimous echo of the scholars and the soldiery. The Yellow Empire was a slow and bureaucratic machine, but its enemies would be wise to mistake this preparation; the land of the dragon was on the march to war.
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