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The Estate of Senator Saren Malvec

It is a warm evening, the sun starting to set over the countryside outside Paldred. Saren Melvec owned a large farm growing oliva wheat, tended by several slaves but predominantly members of the lower class, though he only paid minimally. His family had a senatorial seat for last fifty years, making him and two dozen other families part of a small class considered 'new men'. He had just finished strolling through the southern fields when he spotted a car approach the residence. Saren employed ten personal guards alongside an assessor to keep an eye on his workers. The armed men couldn't make out who was coming at them and moved swiftly to stop and surround the vehicle. The individual inside the car was Gathan Darok.

"Get out of my way, I am looking for your master," Darok fumed as he got out of the car. "Do you have any proof that you are meeting with him?" the guard questioned tensely. "Of course not, this is an impromptu visit, now tell Saren I am here to see him." His guards would hear none of it. Saren had just crossed into the main courtyard of the residence when he heard the dispute going on in front. He rushed to see what was going on. "Enough, out of the way!" he commanded, seeing Gathan. "I was not expecting a visit by you today," he said, and then turned angerly to his guards. "Let him go, all of you, check on the last field before letting the freemen leave for the night. Assessor, account for your slaves. Now go." The armed men gave their guest a single stare before following their orders.

"I apologize for their behavior," he remarked, eying them leave. "No matter, we need to talk, in private," Darok responded. "After dinner, Darule has just finished making it. Please join us at the table." The two men would proceed to eat. Night fell over the estate and the two men would stroll around, Kavit wine in their hands. As they walked, the wheat fields waved silently in the distance.

Darok was quiet for a moment before speaking up. "The Republic is at a crossroads," he started, "instability, inaction, corruption, treachery. It could all fall apart at any time." Seren took a sip of his wine. "You know as well as I do that this has been the case since Marrok. He has stood since then, he will continue to do so." Gathan took a bold step. "The Continuing Committee may think Terix was the right choice to appoint because of his military career but he does not know the first thing that involves governing." Malvec stopped. "What are you getting at?"

"We need a stronger Praetor." Malvec interjected, "and who would you suggest?"

"Me."

Malvec was silent, swirling his glass a few times before responding. "You," putting considerable tension on it before breaking out a chuckle. "You have to be kidding."

"I'm not," he snapped. "I want to be Praetor."

Realizing that Gathan was being serious, Seren grew alarmed. "The Praetor has many friends in the military and quite loved by the people. What you are proposing is political suicide."

"I can make friends. I have the means," he said putting his wine glass on a railing and put his hand into an interior pocket of his elaborate tunic. In his hand was what appeared to be a check, made out to the amount of 200,000 Chaks. "What do you say friend?" he questioned as he extended it to Seren.

Malvec wasn't a particularly notable aristocrat. His individual power didn't concern him. He needed his vote.

"No, we can't." He said. "It is nothing against you. I envy your wealth, as do a great many in the Senate but I am loyal to the Praetor." Gathan's smile turned into a cold stare. "I see," he said tensely.

He finished his glass of wine. "Thank you for the meal and for the glass of wine, Malvec. Seeing as there is nothing else to discuss, I must return to Dartha." Seren nodded and brought Darok back to his car.

Gathan got in and his driver, Prelek handed him his cell phone. "Your phone rang while you were with him," he reported. He eyed the missed call entry. "Ah my wife, Vela," he commented. "Let's go," he instructed him as the car drove away from the estate.

As the car left the driveway and onto the main road, Gathan dialed a number.

"I have a job for you. Now listen carefully..."

Hours would pass. A car slowly approached the compound as Seren and his wife slept in the master bedroom, their two daughters in another. The car came to a halt out front and four men emerged: hired thugs come to solve Darok's dilemma. They knocked out the guards and threatened the assessor. With any opposition out of the way, he snuck into the residence. One pair went to the children's bedroom on the first floor and captured them, bringing them back to the car, to be raised by Darok's family. The other pair ascended to the upper level and assassinated both husband and wife and would dispose of their bodies in the field, making it look like an accident by way of being attacked by one of Rihan's violent nighttime birds. Before they left, they placed two notes on the desk.

The following morning, the estate was surrounded by personnel of the local police (Dyyhti'theirr). There wasn't much evidence to go off of, except for the notes left on the desk during the night. One of them was entitled "Last Will and Testament," the other was a letter addressed to one of the highest governing bodies in the Republic: "To the Continuing Committee."

The deceased Senator Malvec had entrusted all his property to Darok and asked the Continuing Committee to accept his resignation and asked them to find a worthy replacement to take his seat.

Never turn your back.

 

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Posted (edited)

In the Markets of Relevek

Gathan Darok was always finding ways to show his extraordinary wealth amongst the rest of the aristocracy. On this day, he brought his wife Vela to peruse the fine wares found at Dartha's, if not Rihan's greatest marketplace. As they wandered the rows upon rows of small stalls, the two of them would see everything from citrus fruits and wines from the interior to lavish gold necklaces, stunning glassware, and fine Tholian silks. Such an array of luxury items were not the only things on sale - loaves of bread and sweet pastries,  satul pottery, and oils. Vela, like many noble women, constantly looked for the latest silks and elaborate fashions from both east and west of the Republic. One such stand had a stunningly gold-embroidered purple silk dress. She pulled her husband to her side.

The merchant, a man by the name of Ajan, watched her for several seconds inspect the dress before interjecting himself. "Ah," he remarked, "you've eyed this fine piece. Just got it from Tholia yesterday. I will not lie, it's one of the best to have been produced this season." He took it off the hanger and presented it to her to put against herself; meanwhile, Ajan's assistant lifted the nearby mirror and brought it over, putting it in front of her. Ajan nodded. "Yes, yes," noting her reactions as she looked at it in the mirror. "It is absolutely is for," he paused, "there is no one else in the capital who has such an astonishing piece. Not to mention, it's unique. There isn't another such piece in all of Rihan," he said. Darok up to this point was just observing the interaction.

Vela asked her husband, "what do you think?"

"It's beautiful. I'd be ravishing on you." She was convinced enough to buy it.

"How much?" Ajan fiddled with his handheld device for a few seconds. "2,100 Chaks."

"Quite steep," she said but the merchant interjected, "yes but you will find nothing this fine or stunning in the Republic." Gathan then replied, looking at his wife. "Do not worry about it, you deserve the dress my beauty," he said as he began counting out his Chaks, handing him several hundred more than the total. Ajan was stunned for a moment and then gave a smile. "It's a pleasure to doing business. Shall I wrap it up for you?"

"Yes, please," Vela responded. As the merchant began boxing up the dress, Darok spied his friend, Senator Vinok, heading up to the second floor of the market. "My love, I must take care of something upstairs," he said. "I will not be gone long, no more than ten minutes." He proceeded to hand her another 1000 Chaks. "If you see something else you like," he remarked. Vela smiled. "Your dress ma'am," Ajan said, handing her the box. Darok then parted from his wife and walked up the nearest staircase and approached Vinok. He was with two others.

"Jovis," he said. "It is good to see you," shaking his hand. "I just finished a meeting with the Festival Committee and the arena games are coming along nicely."

Darok smiled. Vinok, Levok, and himself had put down over 2.5 million Chaks to fund a substantial portion of the upcoming festival: food, wine, games. A true bread and circus for the masses. It had also made the three men far more noticeable, amongst their colleagues. Many in the chamber were vexed at their involvement in something that had always been the responsibility of the Senate-at-large. Gathan didn't care about their opinions at the moment. What was important to him was the two men who were beside his friend: Senators Vargo Dorek and Clavius Romdar. Both men were well-known members of the militant Jaridan coalition - both with vested interests in the military-industrial complex.

"I am sure Jovis has told you of my intentions," he said. Both nodded, but cautious with their words. "It's not that simple," said Romdar. "You're not exactly the most popular person in the chamber at the moment."

"I do not need popularity. Yet. What I need are friends," he responded. "From what Vinok has said, you may be patriotic men who love the Praetor for his military record but less so for his vague policy positions."

"Yes," said Dorek. Jovis handed Gathan a slip of paper who inspected it quickly and looked up at Jovis who nodded.

"Clavius, I understand you are fond of fine horses."

"Quite," he briefly replied. Darok said "I have come into the possession of a Fulgistani Bozaan horse of unparalleled speed and strength. It's even better than the finest Kerosh I bought for my daughter Sarith last year, it's yours if we're...friends." He handed him a photo of the horse. "My son would love to ride him, he's too old to ride his Fvai...he'd definitely love the horse's addition to our stable."

They had an understanding before he would present his 'offer' to Dovek, he was going to sweeten it with one other gift for Romdar. "A friend of ours is working behind the scenes to procure trading rights from the RTC to import the finest Mauridivian coffee. We gave him the funds to get the effort off the ground but I am not interested in the profits from the venture, just the return on the investment. I want to give you my share of the rolling profits, 20%, to you, as a gift."

Clavius was stunned for a moment but then gave a smile. "Thank you," he responded. Gathan had won over Romdar.

Getting Dorvek was going to be trickier but he had something he knew Vargo would take.

"Assuming I succeed our illustrious Praetor, in due time, Vinok here is going to serve as one of the consuls. I know you've lived in Dartha for years and want an opportunity to spend more time out in the countryside," typically when this was said, it was meant to remove someone from the center of power, which was exactly what Darok had in mind. "How would you feel about being appointed Provincial Governor of Mendrik? We already have two members of the Continuing Committee onboard and they can get another 4 to join in bringing it up to the full Senate."

The province of Mendrik was Rihan's heartland, equally as fertile as the plains of Aihai that lie between the capital and Raxna. It was the center of the Republic's wine industry. Besides that, it would be a massive blow to his political rival, Liviana Charvenek, as she and her entire family lineage hailed from Calanista. They had not only ruled that land prior to the Republic's founding, but possessed one of the most important vineyards. Darok had quietly been supporting their rivals, the Fareldi. 

Vinok nodded to Vargo. "You have my support. We can certainly be...friends."

"Good," responded Gathan. He handed both men a small parting gift of 200 Chaks each, a final confirmation of the political contract the four of them had just concluded. He peered away and looked down to the ground level where his Vela had passed his vision, inspecting a fine gold necklace with precious gemstones. "Now," he paused, "I must return to my wife, it appears that she has something else she fancies." The men shake hands and part. Gathan returned to his wife who had just put the necklace on. "It's beautiful," she remarked. "Ravishing my darling. It suits you."

The merchant was asked how much. "1,950 Chaks." Darok handed him 2,000. "Keep the change." He furiously counted the currency as the couple left his vision. A few minutes would pass before both their servant Prelek caught up with them. "A man by the name of Joltair said he has someone who is interested in forming an application with the RTC about Cashari spice."

"I will speak with him tomorrow. Where is Sarith?" Prelek pointed to a young man, a year older than her. "Make sure she gets home, we'll have Karon take us back to the villa."

"Daie," responded their servant who took them to their car where his colleague was waiting. As they were leaving, Liviana Charvanek was just entering the Marketplace herself, in a gold dress. She looked at Vela's gown and eyed the box.

"Gathan," she said coldly.

"Liviana," he responded with equal tone. "You are a woman of fashion. I believe there is something merchant Ajan has from amongst his fine clothing that you'd love to wear." She bit her tongue as she didn't want to cause a scene. She politely thanked him for the suggestion and continued on her way, and immediately went to her trusted clothing merchant, Ruketh.

Edited by Rihan
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      Praetor Thrax resigned himself to the countryside for failing to prevent the strike from occurring. Aratenik was hastily appointed as Praetor as a consensus candidate by the committee. Prior to his rise to the Praetorship, he was a well-regarded scholar of literature, having only been appointed to the Senate during the final year of Merrok's rule. He would bluntly confront his Senate colleagues stating in no uncertain terms that if the crisis were not to be resolved, the Republic would be destroyed. With great reluctance, he was empowered by the Senate to come to a compromise with the masses. Aratenik would summon representatives of the commoners to meet with him and the Continuing Committee. At their first meeting, the commoners demanded a greater role in the Republican government, more employment opportunities, and a better quality of life in exchange for an end to the strike. The deliberations over a compromise would last a week until both sides had given it their blessing.
      The Iumnelai, as the compromise would be known as, formally incorporated a People's Assembly (ætheaa) into the D'Vatta. Its membership would consist of the entirety of the lower classes. They could appoint their own presiding magistrates to moderate sessions of the Assembly and the votes taken by the body would be by secret ballot. The Assembly had the right to petition the Senate on a broad range of matters provided that those motions had received majority consent. Additionally, all slaves eighth generation and above would be emancipated, but not given formal citizenship, and the jobs they would then vacate would be available for commoners to take for themselves, for a wage. The commoners would also see modest increases in the quality of life over the next decade. The Senate would proceed to unanimously approve it. Aratenik's popularity with the commoners skyrocketed, and with that came a host of enemies within the Senate. On the surface, the various coalitions vowed that Aratenik's Praetorship would be one of unified cooperation and for five years this held true - the economy had started growing at a reasonable pace, the military had seen significant improvement, and harvests started returning to pre-war levels. For the Praetor, it seemed as if stability had finally come to the Republic. Alas, this was not to be for the 'peace' between the coalitions was a mirage, plots were being designed in the shadows.
      Aratenik was killed at his countryside villa one evening five years after cementing the Iumnelai. Though his murderer could not be identified, rumors at the time suggested that several aristocrats had bribed the Praetorian Guard to eliminate him. With Aratenik's death, the supposed stability of the Republic was shattered once more. In the proceeding three years, the Praetorship would be held by two Suketh senators, Vrax and Gaius, Aratenik's closest supporters in the Senate. Both had managed to get the position as the Continuing Committee did not want to risk a constitutional crisis. However, their appointments in hindsight were nothing more than expediency. They would both be assassinated by colleagues for their populist policies including proposals to curtail the amount of land an aristocrat could hold, the introduction of a free food distribution program for Dartha's poorest (ironically, this would come to pass under Terix), and making motions passed by the Assembly into formal law. The stability of the Republic was in jeopardy, the threat of constitutional crisis was near the point of nationwide violence as the lower classes had seen the Suketh assassinations as an attack upon their quality of life. To avoid the fallout, the Continuing Committee met and appointed the politically neutral and well-respected Admiral, Terix to the position of Praetor. Upon his ascension to office, his first order would be to call to an end of the Republic's isolation from the world and call for the beginning of a new era of stability and continued economic growth.
      Reemergence
      Terix knows that while he has tremendous popularity with the military and with many segments of the lower classes because of his military career, he knows his relationship with the Senate is tenuous at best. He knows that his appointment is was solely one of political expediency. The Praetor finds himself unofficially in partnership with the militant Jaridan, the largest faction, and the Nej'ahar, made up of the wealthiest members in the entire Republic to get much of his political agenda approved but Terix knows that such cooperation could imperil his chance on moving the Republic forward, even through modest if not slightly liberal, reforms. Although he has not been in the position for long, Senators are already scheming quietly in the shadows. At least two Senators have their eyes set upon the Praetorship and are willing to get it by whatever means.
      Geography:
      The land of Rihan is lush, humid, and full of abundant vegetation. The capital, Dartha, lies at the mouth of the Sherdek River and the Apnex Sea. The river valleys are fertile for agriculture which is dominated upon the Aihai, the flat plains between Dartha and Raxna. The Sherdek has the Jendraax and Vrekess rivers as tributaries. The two other most important rivers are the Dorvek and the Ganser (with the Balsanra and Nelrek as tributaries). While much of the land is either made up of humid forests or calm flatland, there is a single mountain chain that crosses the land from northeast to the west: the D'Kalla, of which Mount Al'kathel is both its highest peak and that of the entire country. During the hot summer months, the Praetor retreats to his residence in the cooler Valley of Chula as do many aristocrats. The Forest of Allerash is covered in thick, strong urukan trees. Other major cities in Rihan include Dinalla, Rateg, Calanista, Chaladra, Tephren, Peldrad, Vendras, Bareldek, Kromtal, Dorvek, Hlarek, Villera, and Torven; all of which dot the landscape.
      Flora and Fauna
      Rihan is home to a rich ecosystem that is largely hostile and predatory. The Eagle, the symbol of the Republic, is based upon the predatory raptor-like bird, the Mogai. Other birds include Ratar, Kalabam, Deletham, and Tliss. In the woodlands, the Raal (a type of bear), the Thrai (a type of wolf) dominate. Meanwhile, Hlai can be found in bountiful quanities on the plains. In the Apnex Sea, Veruul and Osol fish can be found in abundance. The predominant domestic animals of labor are the Travit and the Drabhik. Nobles who own villas in the countryside maintain stables filled with stoic Fvai and Kerosh (horses). On farms, growers cultivate three variants of wheat known as oliva, kheh, and vareet; along with maintaining groves of fig and citrus fruit trees. Some plantations cultivate tivish, a type of cotton, used in textiles.
      Government:
      Rihan's government is structured upon the quintessential concept of a Republic, though not in the sense generally recognized around the world. All power lies within the Senate (Deihuit), made up of 300 Senators (Deihu), all of whom are either well-versed in military skill, in possession of vast wealth, or harken from aristocratic families. The most powerful assignment for a senator is a coveted seat on the Continuing Committee. It is made up of ten individuals (with only the Praetor being guaranteed a seat) empowered to regulate elevation to the various levels of government (including the Lakhræmdæsnen, Bærhiedæsnen, and Temiætidæsnen) and military. It is the members of the Committee who are responsible for confirming the ascent of an individual to the position of Praetor and have the sole authority to expel senators. There are numerous political coalitions that exist within the chamber including Jardian (Conservative), Jol Tan (Far-Right), Suketh (Moderates), and Nej'ahar (Focused on the Economy and the General Welfare), representing the spectrum of political opinion in the country. Membership within the coalitions are constantly in flux and a member siding with one group on a specific matter may not be with them on another.
      While the Constitution (D'Vatta) states that the Senate is the undisputed and sole authority of the Republic, it is the Praetor (Fvillha) who ultimately wields broad power that can be borderline dictatorial. He or she is the Republic's Head of State. The Praetor presides over all Senate sessions, the supreme military commander of the Republic's forces, the highest judicial official with the power to inflict the death penalty, and the authority to interpret and enforce laws passed by the Senate. A Praetor is considered the very embodiment of the Rihan ideals of honor, accomplishment, discipline, and most importantly, the virtues of D'era. Due to the extreme danger that is Rihan politics, it is not uncommon for Praetors to suffer abbreviated terms of office in comparison to other heads of government. To guard their person, the Praetor is protected by the Praetorian Guard (Morairi ih'Fvillha). The Praetor is the only individual allowed to hold the Teral'n, the trident scepter representing the firm talon of the Eagle. A Praetor can only be legally removed by a three-fourths vote of the Senate. In the entire lifespan of the Republic, this has never happened.
      As the ultimate power in the Republic is in the hand of a small oligarchy of wealthy and powerful aristocrats, the lower classes have very little control over the day-to-day decisions of state. However, they do a mechanism to petition and coax the Senate into addressing their concerns through the Assembly (ætheaa), which was established after the Iumnelai. Its membership consists of all regular citizens who vote directly by secret ballot. Petitions that receive a majority are elevated to the Senate for their consideration, though more than 90% of such attempts are ignored from those above the citizenry-at-large.
      The High Tribunal is the highest judicial court in the Republic consisting of twelve Tribunes confirmed by the Senate. For those unfortunate to break the law, punishments can range from years in a dark prison cell to the death sentence or enslavement. For those condemned to death, they are publically executed but the individual is given the right to make a statement before they are killed. The system of justice assumes the individual charged is guilty of the crime unless proven otherwise. Many procure the services of well-skilled intercessors (lawyers) to represent them in the courtroom.
      All citizens of the Republic have the following basic honorable freedoms as outlined in the Statement of Rights: The right of procreation; the right to own property and to manage it as necessary (this includes the right of slavery and the owner's right to discipline); the right to commit honorable suicide; the right to commerce, subject to the needs of the Republic; the right to present a defense in a publicly recorded trial, aside a public defender, before the courts; the right to apprehend and charge as a private citizen, any criminal or enemy of the Republic, and the right to bear arms, for defense or sign of status, in public and in private. Citizens are not permitted to undertake any action deemed to be against the interest of the Republic and the People. The prohibitions are not outlined and this has given the Senate and the courts tremendous leverage in interpreting an action on a broad spectrum.
      Military:
      The Republican military is made up of the Army (Draao), the Navy (Galæ), Air Force (Ralaarihsein), the Special Forces (Krannsu), and the Praetorian Guard (Morairi ih'Fvillha). The various military branches are supported by the military intelligence (Tal Diann) and logistics (Tal Shava) divisions. Over 550,000 Rihannsu are active in the military at any one time. As stated in the constitution of the Republic, the D'Vatta, the Praetor wields supreme military command of all Rihannsu forces. All citizens are obligated to serve in the military upon receiving their formal citizenship (Plyanazi) at the age of 20 for a term of five years. Following their term, some choose to remain in the forces. Many of the nation's finest generals and admirals have risen through the ranks from lowly legionaries or seamen. Service in the armed forces is viewed with Rihannsu culture as a high honor and fulfilling one's duty as dictated by the virtues of D'era. The Shining Star (Ranam Valassa) medal is the highest award a soldier can attain. An awardee is well-respected both within their family and throughout their community.
      Economy:
      The Rihan economy has never been as productive as others in the world due to the use of slaves in place of freemen, though this has changed somewhat since the implementation of the Iumnelai compromise under Praetor Aratenik. Over 60% of the economy is heavily controlled by the aristocratic and mercantile families, both its wealth and means of production. The main segments of the economy consist of agriculture and fishing, mining and metallurgy, industrial and consumer goods manufacturing, and financial services. There is a slew of small businesses and farms run by commoners but these are at a major disadvantage against those own by the aristocrats. The state, under the pretense of D'era, does have an obligation to ensure all citizens are afforded a minimum standard of living. Under Praetor Terix, a long-fought policy of implementing a free food distribution program was passed by the Senate, allowing two-hundred thousand of Dartha's poorest to receive a daily ration of foodstuffs. All trade between the Republic and the wider world is only sanctioned by order of the Senate and operated through the RTC.
      Transport and Infrastructure
      All public transportation, including buses, trains, and river ferries, is handled by the state-controlled Yhfillain while road infrastructure is maintained by Rheilhhu Eyhon. The national airline, Havraær, is based at Dartha's Cliperian International Airport (Ihanv). While the capital is a major seaport, so is the Port of Levaeri to the southeast. Energy is largely provided by clean solar generators scattered across the Republic, though there are few fossil-fuel plants still in operation. Power distribution is handled by Cælis'cæri. Every settled area of the Republic has access to clean water either by maintained wells or through sophisticated aqueducts, reservoirs, and plumbing by Aekhhwi'rhoi.
      Society and Culture:
      The Rihannsu are highly xenophobic and see themselves as superior to others. They were not originally like this but following their forced departure from Adaptus and the Tagmatine Empire due to religious differences, they've come to trust, but only after a very long period of time. Rihannsu are very emotional, war-like, and absolutely dedicated to the virtues that define the way of D'era, a strict code of discipline, duty, and honor. Their culture follows a hard line of social and physical Darwinism. They have a spartan regard toward those that are not physically able or are mentally deficient. They will kill children that do not match the physical model of perfection. In spite of their cold outer shell, they are ardent supporters of family. The first virtue, devotion, is primarily one of family. Citizens of all class levels are given many incentives both economical and social to produce and cherish large families. Rihannsu indeed cherish their families. They are as capable of love as any other people.
      For recreation, most play games such as D'elo, a game of sticks and stones that can be traced back to days prior to the Departure from the Tagmatine Empire. The people are fond of arena games where athletes of both genders show their prowess with weapons and fighting techniques. Blood sports, like Ke`veshrek (a form of boxing) or Tyr’llryanniha (football) are extremely popular and are often broadcasted across the Republic. The Orventis Arena is the grandest of them all, located in Dartha; it can seat nearly 100,000 people. The Rihannsu are major players of tactical and logic-based games including Latrunculo, Masaharis, Parmen Chess, Voraant, Trayatik (dice game), Villrillu (cards), or Khariat (like Jenga). In the same vein, solving puzzles of all forms are popular. Though people may engage in simulated chess and similar games, people desire real opponents, and thus simulation is far less popular in Rihan. S'darha is one of the most important recreational activities the aristocracy partake in. It is an extremely intellectual game that involved the recitation of stanzas from great literature in order to support a given argument or statement. It is a combination of debating, rhetoric, declamation and trivia games. Many of the best S'darha masters have become the most influential Praetors in the Republic as it has helped them in dealing with the dangerous politics of the Senate.
      Artistic abilities show the softer side of the Rihannsu personality, balancing a fierce warrior ethic with the sensitivity of an artist. Sculpting, pottery, and carving are the most popular media — Rihannsu prefer to work in 3-dimensional forms. The artist Raban Gedroe is a notable 3D painter. In addition to the visual arts, there is writing, literature, poetry, drama and Lhi, a game of wits and riddles. Rihannsu also relish nature and enjoy the beauty of it — most are avid hikers, riders, or mountaineers. While less common, scroll painting (a mix of calligraphic writing and light painting) has a long tradition in the Rihannsu culture. Some of the most important literary works include Amarcan's Axioms, the Contemplations of Landar the Elder, the Taer'thaiemenh by V. Raiuhes Ahaefvthe, and Na Temhsah'urri by Reanas.
      Rihannsu cuisine focuses on assorted breads and pastries (baked from grains cultivated on the Aihai), strews like Plou'mek, a range of vegetables including gresh, fish (Osol and Veruul), and meat from Hlai. Soldiers in the military typically consume a mixed stew called Viinerine. A delicacy amongst the aristocracy is Aafvun'in'hhui (mollusk soup). Aristocrats can also obtain aged Travit steaks. To wash down their food, most commoners consume Tarka or a bitter vareet. The more well-to-do consume Kavit, a native variant of wine, that is in high demand outside the Republic.
      The emblem of the Republic is 'the Eagle.'  It is a symbol of military might and honor, displayed everywhere, symbolizes civilian pride in the state. All Rihannsu swear oaths upon the Eagle, and defacing the symbol is a serious offense. The inspiration for the emblem comes from the predator avian that flies over the Rihannsu' adopted home. This bird is known to carry its eggs in its talons, which artists represented as the Senate and the People. The bird itself is spread in an aggressive posture of display, representing the glory and majesty of the Republic.
      D'era
      The Way of D'era is the official 'religion' of the Republic. It's not as much a spiritual calling as much as it is one of duty to the Republic. The Way was formulated during the final days of the Rihannsu living the Tagmatine Empire when its founder, Tellus, seditiously condemned the Iconoclastic Orthodox Church and said that adherence to one god over the overarching strength and duty to the people was unjust. D'era calls upon all Rihannsu to follow the teachings of obedience, discipline, and loyalty. The center of D'era is in Dartha's Central Septum where a statue of Tellus stands for all to reflect upon his words. The Way is led by the Pontix, Lucian Tamok, and various councilors across the Republic. D'era priests are paid by the state. Septums of D'era are located in every Rihan community.
      Praxani: The Rites of Life
      Rihannsu progress through their lives under a structure of rites that related to the four virtues of D'era. These are:
      D'navassa - The Great Beginning Nimaz - Naming D'sora - 5th Birthday Phi'lasasam - The Education Plyanazi - Formal Citizenship Serona - Mandatory Military Service (5 years) So'rdaz - Marriage Union Charozzah - Passing Latta - Death (upper class individuals are buried in family tombs in the Rikolet [the Great Graveyard] while lower-class individuals are mostly cremated) Dartha, The Capital of the Republic
      Dartha is the largest city in Rihan with a population exceeding 3 million. It is the first and oldest settlement, the center of politics, trade, and activity that involves the outside world. The city lies at the mouth of the  Sherdek River and the Apnex Sea. The Forum of Caliax is the beating heart of the capital where the Hall of State, the Central Septum, the Praetor's Palace, and the Arc of D'deridex can be found. In front of the Hall of State is a statue of L'Deus, author of the D'Vatta. The Markets of Relevek are just off the Forum. The Forum is abuzz with trade activity and the rostrum at the middle is always active with Senators speaking the gathered crowds, and even sometimes, the Praetor.
      A few blocks down towards the Sea is Victory Square where there are regular military parades and ceremonies. The Library of Alavhet is on the Via Karzan. The Via Colius is a major thoroughfare that runs east to west through the capital, running past the largest park, the Cor'Lavet. The Via Chula leads out of the capital to the east and towards the Valley of Chula, its namesake. Numerous academic institutions are located in Dartha. On the shores of the Apnex Sea is the Harbor of Oreta. The High Tribunal, administered under the auspices of the Praetor, is near the forum. The Orventis Arena also present.
      Many wealthy aristocrats live in large villas on the outskirts of Dartha, distancing themselves from the cramped, smaller dwellings that make up the majority of housing in the capital. The old walls, the Honn, still encircles the core of the city when it was first founded by Tellus. Amongst the tight shared housing of the lower classes, there are some larger townhouses on the Via Renak owned by the higher classes, offering better proximity to the Senate and the Forum. The neighbors in and around the Renak have exclusive tailors, theatres, and bathhouses (including the most notable Bath of Reldek the Great) are frequented by the political and wealthy peoples of the Republic.
      Under Republic law, all armed military personnel, except for Dartha's City Guard (Morairi ih'Sivas) and the Praetorian Guard (Morairi ih'Fvillha) must remain outside the capital. This was instituted to reduce the risk of a military coup during the early days of the Republic. It remains on the books to this day.
      The Rihannsu Calendar:
      Z'at • D'ruh • Brax • Khuti • Krat • Tasmeen • Havreen • Sharveen • Lior • Irhheen • Ailat • Khaidev
      Important Festivals:
      Eitreih'orheika (Festival of the Ancestors): 21-23rd of Brax • Eitreih'Avilh (Festival of Earth): 1-3rd of Krat • Eitreih'vauthil ch'Rheihhu (Festival of the Republic): 15-20th of Sharveen • Eitreih'hveinn (Farmer's Festival): 10-15th of Ailat
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    • @Mauridiviah's Mundus Liber ranks Prymont 8th globally on Inalienable Rights - ATARA Delegate speaks out controversially on survey's flaws NEW HALSHAM, COURTMARSH - Yesterday, the Mundus Liber Institute published the results for their Inalienable Rights Survey, the third global ranking they've releases this year, which ranks nations across the globe based on rights such as working hours, bearing arms, seeking asylum, and drug use restrictions. The United States was ranked eighth overall, for:  no right to bear arms foreigners not allowed to seek asylum adultery is illegal no capital punishment hard drugs are illegal Previously, Prymont has ranked third on the Freedom Index, and second on the LGBT Rights survey, with this placement of eighth coming as a shock to many. Since 2017, the government has worked tirelessly to promote freedom and rights in the country, reversing the negative effects of the socialist tendencies that held back the country from 1995 to 2017. These positive changes were apparent in the first two rankings, but many have called for Prymont to change their stance regarding inalienable rights with the release of the current survey's results. Culture Minister Brooke Weitz agreed to walk PNN through the laws that limited Prymont's final ranking, and to provide an explanation as to why they are in place. PNN learned that bearing arms is illegal to prevent frequent public shootings that are seen in countries where the right to bear arms are present, and to generally ensure the safety of the general populace; foreigners are prevented from seeking asylum due to former legislation implemented by the socialist Freedom Party, and the current National Party are seeking to overturn it; adultery is illegal to promote healthy relationships for the younger generations; capital punishment is illegal as it is seen as excessively harsh, but minor advocate groups are pushing to legalise it; and hard drugs are illegal to ensure the health and safety of the general populace, and to prevent severe health effects that come with the abuse of hard drugs. It's easy to see why these laws are in place once the explanations have been provided, yet thousands took to Wittier this morning to express their dismay and anger at their government. Foreigners being disallowed to seek asylum came heavily under attack, with many calling for capital punishment to be reinstated for society's worst offenders. There was also some support to legalise adultery, with the more vocal citizens claiming that the government shouldn't interfere in their love lives. Despite this, there was mass support for the right to bear arms and hard drug use to both remain strictly illegal. PNN Radio 1 tackled the issue this morning, with radio host Troy Aunan providing brief clarifications upon Prymont's laws and broadcasting the varied opinions of his listeners. During the breakfast show, which usually features political discussion and special guests, the controversial ATARA delegate, Julian Nordeng, made an appearance. A self-proclaimed deeply patriotic man, Nordeng was quick to criticise the Mundus Liber rankings in his uniquely interesting ways. "I mean, where do we begin?" "How about the most criticised set of legislation, the one surrounding a ban on foreigners seeking asylum in the United States?" "What about it? It's a brilliant idea, one that we need to keep! Have you seen the kind of people that are in Argis? You know, the people that we're keeping out? Ahrana is full of commie pigs. Poland-Lithuanian soldiers are killing their neighbours to spread their commie agenda. Greater Serbian politicians are killing their own people to spread their commie agenda. Argis is riddled with the worst kind of people. Do you really want these people coming into our perfectly safe country, and posing a risk to national security as the Serbian dictator tracks them down and sends suicide bombers?" "Don't you think you're slightly exaggerating there, Julian?" "Am I? Think about it, man! Everyone listening, have a good, hard think about it! Use your brains! Clearly, those Mauridivians are twisting our amazing laws to fit their own communist agenda-" "I don't think Mauridiviah is a socialist country."
      Julian Nordeng expressing his disgust at the Mundus Liber results during his interview on PR1. "Shut up, let me finish! We've been placed in the top three in both of their last surveys, right? We're an amazing country, with amazing people who follow our amazing laws. Who gives them the right to place us so low? Let's look at the results, shall we? Number one, Variota. Bollocks. That plastic surgery abortion known as Dina Diva probably sucked off every commie working for the Mundus Liber to get number one. Adaptus, number two. Bollocks again. They sucked off the commies too, but they weren't as good so they only got second. And then Mauridiviah third! The cheek of it! But that's not all, oh no no no! Ahrana... now, are you ready for this... fourth! They're communist filth! They should be dead last! And then Lysia fifth, how did that happen? The commies were probably too drunk on that water-like Lysian wine to think properly. Sayf is sixth, they're clearly up to no good, probably threatened to suicide bomb the Mundus Liber HQ if they didn't rank well, and Gallambria is seventh. Nobody even knows what they do! We should be number one, plain and simple." A spokesperson for the National Party was quick to release a covering statement, claiming that Nordeng's views were strictly his own and were not shared by the party in any way. The statement praised the unbiased work of the Mundus Liber to spread information about the countries of the world, and assured that they'd work with Nordeng to confirm his opinions and to continue his work to further improve the country. Callers to the show were quick to shun Nordeng, who eagerly fought back before the interview finished.  Nevertheless, Nordeng's comments have only further fuelled the raging fire that surrounds the Mundus Liber in the United States. While many back the decision of the institute, some continue to lambaste them, and call for their local government representatives to debate the rankings in Parliament. The National Party have confirmed that they'll continue to make the country a better place to live and visit for all, and will take on board the criticisms provided by the controversial survey.  
    • Don't mind me. I'm not casting any aspersions or anything. I don't have sole rights to it.
    • I have had a chance to look at the wiki and I am happy to say that I look forward to working with you @Rihan to put my page together once I've gotten my factbook in order.
    • "...all of Kipan is in sadness today. Much of the country has been shut down to mourn the passing of Emperor Ozu, the most enlightened and progressive of rulers in several generations. He, like his predecessor, was a benevolent ruler who truly loved his people and strived to make their lives as comfortable as possible. It was at the start of his reign that he proclaimed that all students had the opportunity to attend higher education, outright eliminating school fees. This triggered a 55% increase in the number of students in just five years. During his later years, he even took a bold step by introducing universal healthcare, covering nearly 95% of the populace. These two reforms alone have transformed Kipan. From the outside world, these actions would seem as if the Emperor was gravitating towards socialism. Ozu always firmly reject such titles, saying that it was in the best interest of the Kipanese people." "This same rationale can be applied to Ozu's deathbed declaration of abolishing his own office. NBK found a clip from an interview it had done with Emperor Ozu six years ago in which he commented on some remarks made by the Kipanese Democratic Movement. He said the following: With his death, Democracy seems all but assured at coming. At the time in which the Emperor implied in his past remarks." "The Emperor's body has been laid in state in the Imperial Palace. Members of the Kipanese population will be able to view his body for the next three days before he is buried in a private funeral that will be attended by the Chamberlain, his surviving immediate and extended family members. A spokesman for the Chamberlain would not comment if anyone of the Hundred, the group NBK is for the time being referring to as those to be convened in Ryuku, would be present." "Individuals should be alerted that demand for rail transport to Miyako from across the Metropolis and across the Islands is extremely heavy. Kipan Railways is attempting to accommodate the surge as much as possible by adding additional services."
    • With the ban of FdL, I've been rewriting my nation to be a former Limonaian colony, instead of a former Lysian colony. This has necessarily required the renaming of my nation's cities. I'm hoping in the next map update, they could be changed. Port Jacqueline would now be New Limone
      New Lyrie would now be New Sermerio
      Orville would now be Oroa.
      Zaleville would now be Umberto. Thank you!
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