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The Marenesia Conference (2019)

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The Marenesia Conference, Stage II | IVERICA
1300 Charlie Time (+3) | 5th of November, 2019
Deopolis Int'l Airport, Salvia

---

It was indeed, quite hot. It would be winter in Iverica now. Snowing above the Mariposa line, and just bracingly chilly below it, in the big cities of the South. Salvia's weather was on backwards it seemed. Like summer in the Verde beaches... except in November.

Iverica had tasked Capo-Comandante Ferran-Arnau Macharius with the Seal of the Republic. To represent both Iverica and the greater Federal Commonwealth in the amending of the Tricontinental Treaty. Appropriate, as Macharius was also the acting Secretary-General of the Treaty Council. Though recognised often through Iverican news stories and through press-conferences, he was rarely the sole face of Iverica at a state event. The conference would place him under scrutiny, an uncommon happening to a normally silent and cavalier individual.

At his exit from the ExecMin S-1011 Trestrell, he was escorted by a small party of Republican Tercios, each in their navy blue and burgandy dress uniforms, adorned with aiguillettes and button looped high-collared coats. Their figures were emphasised both by their stature, standing at a minimum of 6-feet and by the rakish silhouette of their peaked red-banded hats. Each hip was fastened with a tan-and-burgandy stained wide belt of leather, which looped once about the right shoulder and then about the hip and had on it a spada-dei-lato on the left in an similarly coloured scabbard and an artificed automatic pistol on the right holstered in leather of the same colour.

Macharius, whom the overtly dressed Tercio veterans were escorting however, contrasted them by the relatively simplicity of his own dress apparel, but distinguished himself in status by his bearing and appearance. He was a decidedly dour man. One who had only found popularity in the niche of Iverican military tradition--without which he would be labelled as too unfriendly and abbrasive for such a high office.

Macharius lived his career. As though he would somehow cease to exist without his office. A testament to that was his shaven head, scarred lip, and hard expression. When he smiled at the cameras, he smiled as though a statue might, contrived by the strike of a chisel, rather than the humours of man. His Comandante's dress uniform was pressed to the sharpness of a razor's edge and was adorned only with what decorations he deemed worthy, the rest only alluded to out of formality by the grid of esoteric chip-ribbons on the left breast. On his right breast hung only two decorations, a Cross of the Order of Saint James (Orden Dei Sant'Iago) with laurelas and swords, and his medallion of office as Capo-Comandante of Iverica's armed services.

The Comandante paused only briefly to be received by the Vice President's delegation. A wan smile here, a firm handshake there, and perhaps a wordless nod of appreciation before allowing himself to be shown to his vehicle (an ExecMin Kopel Destrier), waving once at the cameras as he strode off.

 

---

 

"By the Taco, they sent him? He's respectable sure--I've got nothing but admiration for what he did in the 90's--but he has the warmth of a state-run morgue", exclaimed the ExecMin clerk Tomas to his colleague beside him.

"Come now, he's not so bad. The silence gives him... err... likeable mystique", replied Quinto, the colleague.

Both men had been stood just behind the divider cords, watching from their coveted position just underneath a convenient jet bridge. The heat was still sweltering, but the shade was welcome. Both men had opted to leave their coats behind, instead content to sweat into their now dampened white dress shirts.

"Well why couldn't Deitorr or Morra do it? They're dry serious bastards, but at least they have an endearing wit", pressed Tomas.

"Deitorr has to play nurse with the FedCom. Morra just hit me when I asked her last month", Quinto said rubbing the side of his temple where Morra's purse (he swore there was a millstone in there) had been so expertly swung.

Tomas threw his hands up briefly in response.

"Suppose its not on our heads whom Chief Ayala recommends. Madame points, we ask...", Tomas concluded. He looked of in the distance at the rolling hills of vine and country.

"Might be a bit late to say but, its rather like Argon here, no?", Tomas said, holding his palm over his brow like a visor.

Quinto followed his gaze.

"I suppose. Though the women are... more wholesome", Quinto replied.

Tomas snorted.

"You mean, tight shelled", Tomas snarked. Remembering that one of them had struck him in a bar with a large peppermill. Tomas couldn't see why they were so offended. He had only asked her if she had wanted to peruse Genesis 1:28 together.

Quinto put on a voice that was supposed to sound mentally handicapped.

"hEy mUcHaCha, WhAt sAy yOU AnD mE Do a LiTEL biBliA estoOooDy eH, MiA doLciTa--with pick up lines like those, the only pants you might climb in are Neanderthal lederhosen", Quinto half-snorted.

"Quinto you little shit, don't make me remind you of the time you took us that shady bar in Andalla, cabron---ooooooooooooooooooohh yes, I'm never letting you live that one down. Lets not forget how that little bombshell Anamaylin was actually--"

"Hey that's not--", Quinto interrupted, talking over Tomas.

"Oy hermano, I recall you walked out of that room with a slight limp and some stickies on the seat of your undies, no?"

At this point, people in their small section had begun to cast them looks. Quinto, ignorant of this, had begun to make loud nonsensical ululations to drown out what were probably facts--which only really drew more looks and some open staring as the two sweaty Ivericans competed to embarrass one another.

By the time they noticed the awkward looks they were getting from various foreign nationals, they were out of breath and quite red in the face.

"Err, its f*cking hot. What's say we get out of here, eh?", said Quinto, casting embarrassed looks at the other attendees, all of whom had distanced themselves from the two imbeciles.

"Too right, my balls are damp and itchy", replied Tomas, scratching himself slightly.

The two, a tad late for a dignified exit, made a sheepish and quiet one instead. Gallivanting off to hidden wine bars and delicateserias of Deopolis--hopefully in enough quantities of wine and smoked meat to forget their display. 

---

 

OOC: I was 5 paragraphs in when I noticed that the tone didnt match Salvia's intro. So it begot that^ to try to refocus the light humourous tone. 

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Perhaps it could be considered strange that Arhomaneia was petitioning to join a foreign military alliance. Such alliances had never truly set Europa in good stead – they had been a source of conflict, aggression and disruption between the nations of that continent. Ultimately, they sowed the seeds of the Great Europan Collapse, as the alliances refused to cooperate with each other and the continent spiralled into economic ruin. Only south-eastern Europa under the EOS, the pet project of the Orinese, remained more or less intact throughout the troubles that had beset Europa during this period. The thinking of Tagmatika was that it was less an alliance of equals than a way of the Omorfoautokrateia ( @Orioni) to spread its tentacles across the east of the continent and enmesh those foolish enough to agree to be a part of it.

So, the question begged, why was the Megas Agios Basileos then trying to enmesh itself in a military alliance that wasn't even from Europa, but based in the New Wurld? The answer to that was relatively simple – the alliance with the Exkousiokrateia ton Gharon, the Sovereign Imperium of Machina @Haruspex, was in danger of completely collapsing. The new monarch, Ji'Mar, had consistently run roughshod over the alliance and treated the Heart of Civilisation with no respect. And now the invasion of Koussoeia and the driving of the heretic Christians from their homelands and into Arhomaneia was the latest humiliation in a string of them, as well as a textbook example of ethnic cleansing. The potential for a catastrophic breach in the decade-old alliance seemed to be increasing from month to month and the Agios Basilikon Kounsistorion felt that an alternative to Prathen needed to be found.

And that was the reason why the Megas Logothetes tou Stratiotikou, the Minister for War, was on an aeroplane landing at Deopolis International Airport. It was a small airliner, painted in the light blue-grey of the Basilikoaeroporeia and painted with a black-bordered red stripe along the length of the fuselage which displayed that it was in the service of the Tagmatine government, as well as the tail painted in the flag of Arhomaneia. Along with Honorios Kontarian were a smattering of military officers, officials from his own Logothesion and some from other Logothesia as well as the ever present clerics. They were all there to aid the Megas Agios Basileia's aim to forge ties with the TRIDENT nations. Since October, some of them had already been working with Arhomaneia to rescue the Gerenians from the clutches of the perfidious Gharoi and their Ji'Mar.

That most of the members of TRIDENT were Christian nations, if heretical, was an added benefit and was considered to be much better than the heathen northern barbaroi.

As the Arhomaiki aircraft taxied to a halt, Kontarian couldn't help but notice how bright it was outside the windows. In the Occident, it was creeping towards the shortest day of the year but, here, it was edging towards the longest. He had had to look that up before taking the flight. Old travelogues also said that the water in drains went the other way below the equator. Honorios was taking that with a pinch of salt, however. The crew announced that the aircraft had stopped moving and those onboard started to get to their feet, stretch and gather their immediate belongings.

“It's pretty damn warm out there. It's the height of summer, after all. Apparently.” The speaker was a strategos, a full general. The deep purple trousers he wore may have struck foreigners as clashing with the dark khaki of his jacket, shirt and tie but they demonstrated him to be a member of the Palationoi, the so-called “field army”. His collar tabs were a deep grey, which indicated he was from the armour branch. Isaakios Akilios was a veteran commander, which was shown by a slew of medal ribbons on the left of his chest.

The weather, though, was a strange novelty. Kontarian had never been to the southern hemisphere before. Parts of Europa itself crossed it but they were far away from the Arhomaiki focus of attention. That tended to be the Occident, Burania and Argis.

“Yes, it looks like it, Strategos,” replied the Megas Logothetes, nodding. And slightly dismissively. He was too preoccupied about the meeting to think about the weather. “And we're supposed to be heading into one of the coldest winters on record back home.”

Those poor f*cking Gerenians, he thought. Another reason to dislike the regime of Ji'Mar. Some held that it was more of a shame that they would freeze before they could accept True Religion into their hearts but that struck Honorios as particularly cold, pun not intended. The barbarians were attempting to inflict the worst human misery on the hated Christians. It was small wonder that the Megas Agios Basileos had opened its arms to them, even if they were a mass of heretics. Kontarian hadn't seen any of the refugee camps first hand but his ministry and the armed forces were instrumental in setting them up. They were the best that could be done and a damn sight better than the transit camps in Gharon that they had come from.

In front of Kontarian, the detachment of the guards regiments, the Tagmata, stood up to lead the way out of the aircraft. Often, there were merely a pair or a handful from the guards regiments accompanying envoys from the Megas Agios Basileos. This time, however, there were twelve – two from each regiment – in order to emphasise the military history of Arhomaneia. They would certainly be a splash of colour, as each regiment dressed in a different colour of robes and their armour was either covered in a coloured lacquer or polished to a mirror shine. Perhaps the Agios Basilikon Kounsistorion wished to dazzle its potential allies with the size of its uniform budget. Before anyone disembarked the aircraft, a priest stood next to the plane's door and uttered a prayer for the success of the mission. All of those present bowed their heads and stood in silence whilst he did so. Once he was done, six Tagmata guards descended from the plane and acted as a vanguard.

Not that it was necessary. There was no reason to expect any threat to the illustrious personage who were getting out of the plane. The impact of the heat must have been apparent almost immediately for the men and women of the Tagmata, dressed as they were in robes, lamellar, plate and closed sallet helms. The men and women would likely be dripping with sweat but discipline would make them carry on nonetheless.

As the anthropomorphic paintbox lined up outside of the plane, Megas Logothetes Kontarian and his team got ready and descended from the aircraft. Honorios tried to not feel out of place. He was from an ancient military family but he had never served in any military branch himself. His brother was a Kometes (colonel) in the Tagmata, his father a Tourmarkhes (lieutenant general) in the Palationoi, an aunt a senior officer in the Basilikoaeroporeia. Because of this sidestepping of his family's ancient tradition and his role as a representative of the civilian government, he had always been kept as arms' length by the military, even as Kommodos gave them glory and success.

And now he was potentially tying them to a barbaroiki organisation. He hesitated at the top of the airstair for a moment.

Ultimately, they wouldn't blame Kommodos III in Christ, Agios Basileos kai Autokrator ton Arhomaioi, the Leader of the Free Wurld, if things went wrong and the barbaroi led them astray. It would be the cuckoo in their midst. The old tyrant would dodge that bullet through being above suspicion as the Thirteenth Apostle. It was easier to blame mere mortals.

“Awfully hot out here. A glass of watered wine and ice wouldn't go amiss,” announced a deep voice behind Kontarian. Akilios, despite being of aristocratic background – and a cavalry officer as well – managed to have a way with the ordinary people that most of them did not. He was genial and didn't hold himself above anyone, something that the typical Arhomaiki officer tended not to be. “I would suggest that we close the distance, Megas Logothetes. They might have something to drink, after all.”

Kontarian gave a slight nod and descended the rest of the way down the stairs. The Tagmata bowed to him as he drew level with him and then the vanguard marched ahead. Unlike the @Iverican Tercios, who had a height limit, there was a clear difference between the men and women of the guards. Arhomaneia had had a gender integrated military since the Long War and they were all either decorated veterans or individuals who had excelled beyond the expectations of their instructors to win a position in the vaunted guard regiments.

The vanguard marched forward and the rest of them kept pace behind. The priests followed the vanguard, swinging thimiata, billowing forth clouds of incense and giving thanks to God for a good flight over and praying for a successful conference for God's Chosen Land on Eurth. When Megas Logothetes Kontarian drew level with the @Salvian president and vice-president, he gave a deep bow, lower than the usual that might be offered a barbaros head of state. The Salvians, despite their heretical ways, were still the first country to acknowledge Christianity as their state religion. That meant they held a higher position than the usual, run-of-the-mill savages. After that, the Arhomaioi listened to the welcoming speech and then were lead off to their appointed vehicles.

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Somewhere over the Agrillian Mountains.

An Air Force officer walks out of the flight deck, holding a folder in his hand, and walks up to one of the passengers. "Ma'am, we're about 30 minutes out of Deopolis." - The woman, sitting with a group of advisors and senior military officials, was Charlotte O'Neill, the incumbent Secretary of State for Defence.

"Thank you Graham," she said. Looking through her notes and various files relating to Salvia, she posed a question to one of the gentlemen sitting with her, "Nate, where are we at with Salvians and JOTHRN?", going through his notes and talking to his aides, he constructs somewhat of a blunt answer, "Nowhere, Ma'am." He continues to outline what has happened, "Ma'am, the concern is that, at the moment, we can't ensure that the Salvian's security apparatus is sufficient, to ensure that the Batengdei's can't get to it. Yes, they are 500 miles apart but the general consensus with the other delegates is that we aren't prepared to risk the integrity of the network, to an unproven system." - "OK", she sheepishly replies, "Now, I'm going to be honest, I have no idea what this JOTHRN is all about, or it's capabilities, can I count on you to cover me when we bring it up at the summit?"

"Yes ma'am," he replies.

Twenty minutes later. A voice sounds over the airplane's PA system.

"Ladies and Gentlemen, this is the flight deck, we're on our approach into Deopolis, please ensure that all luggage is stowed, seats are upright and seatbelts fastened

Moments later, the RGAF Altjira VVIP aircraft, is on finals with Deopolis Airport, the pilot, Wing Commander Harry Underwood, a 25 year veteran, butter's the landing. His voice sounds over the PA system again.

"Ladies and Gentlemen, welcome to Deopolis, where the local time is 1430 and the temperature is 35 degrees."

As the aircraft pulls up to its parking spot at the FBO, Charlotte gets up and starts getting herself ready for the onslaught of media and, meet and greets.

"Nate, I'm not ready for this," she said to him.

"Sure you are Ma'am, we've got your six." He responds.

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''Pop the bubbly! And let's get a good snort in!''

Corks could be heard being popped in the airplane. When Dina Diva celebrated, she did it right. And for her, life was one big celebration. The jetliner that she traveled in belonged to Vooters Air, one of her favorite ways to travel. Half the plane was filled by her own crew as even this flight was televised live to the world, her fans needed it, craved it. For those living a mundane life, Dina Diva's life was the living equivalent of crack and her 24/7 live show was the dealer that kept refilling their pipe with new rocks. The other half consisted of the Vooters Air staff, barely legal twinks that were barely clothed, and some of her friends. When you were invited by Dina Diva to party in the sky, you didn't say no. And those working were often paid handsomely as Dina Diva was as generous as she was festive. After all, angry and irritated staff didn't make for a fun time nor looked great on camera.

Originally, the ministers of Defence and the Armed Forces had been planning on going to the Marenesia Conference. But as Dina Diva hadn't been to Salvia before, she had made it so that she was the one going. She wasn't exactly sure what, if anything, fun was able to be had in Salvia but she had packed enough alcohol and drugs for a fun visit. The agent of Het Apparath that had been made to go along to protect her had told her that drugs were illegal in Salvia, something that had been given a long and hard boo from those partying in the plane.

Of course, diplomatic immunity was a great thing and the jetliner was similarly protected. The drugs would stay back but Dina Diva would have her crew carry along enough bottles for her to continue on to have a good time. She didn't expect the Salvians to be as great a hosts as Variotans would be but then again, that'd be difficult for anyone. Even if she wanted to be sober, which she didn't, tapering off would be better anyway. And thus, two crew members were selected to carry along a bag with bottles each. She didn't need glasses in those bags because Dina was classy and environmentally conscious, drinking straight from the bottle helps to save glasses from needing to be washed.

snnnniffffff

The cameras closed in to watch Dina do a line off the bubble butt of a Vooters Air twink, balancing her drink perfectly as she bowed down to enjoy the body snort. Body snorts or body shots, Dina could never decide which one was better so she tended to do them both. Why choose when you didn't need to?

''So guys, it's Dina here. Of course you, like, know that. You're watching my show, after all. So, you might be wondering where I get my coke from. And you know, your girl Dina keeps it real. I only use 100% Variotan cocaine. Buy local, people. I read that some of you, like, fans were all like where can you get the best cocaine? I don't know! I have people to buy it for me, hahahaha. Hold on, I'll ask. Piet! Piet!''
''Yeah?''
''Where do you get my cocaine?''
"SnuifFuif. They give us a discount if I buy a kilo at a time.''
''See people, SnuifFuif.''
''Dina, they can get a discount.''
''What?''
''If they use the code DINADIVA, they get shipping and handling for free when buying online.''
''See, you get the best things when watching me! Haha! Enjoy people and send me vids of you enjoying it! Life's a party, you know, like, a day not enjoyed is, like, a day not lived! Where's that guy gone off to? I'm going to see if he has a innie or an outie! Shotsssss!''

As the party continued on, the plane made its way to Deopolis. The TRIDENT officials would be in for a treat.


Deopolis International Airport

The doors of the Vooters Air jetliner were kept closed for a bit longer than normal. Dina Diva being the World's Greatest Diva, she had to make an entrance that was suitable for her stature. Of course, the Variotans were always very respectful of other cultures and knowing that the Salvians were a more demure people, the entrance had been kept relatively low key.

''So, everyone is on the same page? We walk down, I stand there all, like, strong and military-like and then when I go 'It's Dina Diva, b*tch!', you guys start. Oh, and save me a glass from those bottles if possible.''

The doors opened and Dina Diva and six of her assistants walked down. Two carrying Variotan flags, two carrying pyrotechnics and two carrying a bottle of champagne each. As she walked to a place where they'd be able to do their entrance, the six others hurried to take their place. Two to the sides of her, four behind her. Dina Diva gave them a hand signal.

''It's Dina Diva, b*tch! Wooooo!''

Simultaneously, bottles popped and soaked Dina Diva's shirt as the pyrotechnics sent two jets of fireworks off to her sides and the Variotan flags to her sides were waved around patriotically. Part of the respect that the Variotans had for the Salvian culture had meant that Dina Diva had covered her nipples with nipple pasties that had the Variotan flag printed on them. If any Salvians attempted to see her nipples, all they'd see was the Variotan flag. Whether that'd help stem any arousal was another question.

Dina Diva did a salute as the pyrotechnics and the champagne ended and grabbed one of the bottles off of her assistants as she lowered her arm. She felt very lucky that this ended up going well. During one of the repetitions back in Variota, the pyrotechnics had ended up setting the flags on fire and burned away the hair and eyebrows of one of her assistants. Thankfully, working for Dina Diva came with a great healthcare insurance policy and that person was now resting easily in a recovery center.

The bottle didn't have a lot left in it, barely two glasses and thus Dina just chugged it down. After all, she is nothing if not compassionate and having these people wait any longer than they'd need just so she can swallow between glasses wasn't a compassionate thing to do. The empty bottle was handed off and as her assistants pulled back to the jetliner, Dina Diva went towards the Salvians. Her crew would be shadowing, doing their thing.

Variotan cocaine, it's one hell of a drug.

Spoiler

Thanks to Pry for pointing me to the fact that Katie Price did a SAS thing.

Just imagine Dina Diva wearing this, except with the shirt being completely soaked with champagne and Variotan flags being seen on the place where her nipples are:

celebrity-sas-who-dares-wins-2020-katie-

 

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