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Delegation to Miiros


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?Recent events concerning our erstwhile ally, Suverina, has meant that we have some common ground with Miiros,? said the Foreign Minister. He was sat in his usual position in the meeting room, three chairs down from the Holy Emperor on the right hand side of the table. This was the position traditionally taken by Foreign Ministers, and had been so since the founding of the true Imperial Government in the 1600s. ?Therefore, I propose that we send a delegation to the Free City, to strengthen our ties.?

 

The rest of the room considered this proposal in silence for a moment. It was an interesting prospect and could only really boost Tagmatium?s position as well as placing pressure on Suverina. However, it was a nation that epitomised the kind of capitalism and debauchery that the Greater Holy Empire, as a devout Christian and Socialist nation, despised.

 

?You want to talk with that nation?? asked the High Chancellor, obviously appalled by the idea. ?They?re nothing but a godless, money-worshipping bunch of pagans! Why would Tagmatium, a glorious Christian nation ever want to deal with such a foul nest of heathens!??

 

The Minister of Foreign Affairs and the Holy Emperor shared a glance. Wilson had come the day before and put this proposal before Commodus and now both men wished to see the reaction of those they had both agreed on to send and the Imperial Government at large.

 

?Indeed, High Chancellor,? said the Holy Emperor. ?However, you must agree that it will strengthen the Greater Holy Empire?s standing in the east. No matter that they are more or less the antithesis of our honoured and most ancient nation, but whatever boosts the position of Tagmatium must be accepted.? The way Commodus had stressed ?must? made it clear to the High Chancellor that further disagreement along those lines would not be tolerated and he fell silent.

 

?Akiiryu may not agree. They have maintained a similar stance to the Entente of Oriental States, and they may not look to kindly on any dealings with them,? said the Vice-Chancellor.

 

?Vice-Chancellor, I do not propose any sort of alliance or agreement with them, merely to test the water,? replied the Minister of Foreign Affairs. ?I don?t think we would consider it at this stage, and I really do doubt that the government of the Free City would do, either, at this stage.?

 

The room nodded again. This was reasonable. Miiros may be an entirely alien place, but having friends, or at least acquaintances, in far places wouldn?t hurt anyone.

 

?Of course, we must now decide who is to be sent upon this delegation, if the Miirosi accept this idea,? said the Holy Emperor. ?It will be the Vice-Chancellor, an under-minister from the Foreign Ministry and the Minister of Trade. I think that?s all that will be needed for any delegation.?

 

The room fell silent. None really wanted to be sent to the other side of the region, especially when there were more important tasks to do in the Occident and the West.

 

?I would like to go.?

 

All heads turned to the bottom of the table. The chair, directly opposite the Holy Emperor, was reserved for the Patriarch of the Iconoclastic Orthodox Church of Tagmatium. By and large, the Patriarch was occupied with ecclesiastical business and didn?t attend Imperial Governmental meetings, even though, on paper at least, the position of Patriarch was effectively equal with that of the Holy Emperor, although Elect of God in Europa, wielded temporal power and the Patriarch wielded spiritual power, although most Patriarchs knew not to push this. However, this time Patriarch Cosmas had decided to attend a meeting.

 

The Holy Emperor looked slightly shocked. ?Why, your holiness??

 

?Because, your Imperial Majesty, I think it would do those Miirosi good to see the light of Christ,? answered the Patriarch. ?It is a land of sin and vice, where they worship both the old, false gods of Old Rome and other, more despicable deities which even encourage sin. It is better that they see the light now than never, and this delegation will provide the best route to do so.?

 

Commodus lent back in his chair, thinking. The rest of the Imperial Government were exchanging glances. Sending the narrow-minded head of the Tagmatine church could, feasibly damage relations, but if the Holy Emperor refused his request, then it would undoubtedly damage the standing of the Orthodox Church in Tagmatium and cause a breach between the Imperial Government and the Church, which would be unthinkable.

 

?Very well, Patriarch Cosmas, you may accompany the delegation to Miiros?, said Commodus. ?I ask you, however, to bear in mind the differences between our cultures and try not to cause any friction.?

 

?As you wish, your majesty.?


To: the Free City of Miiros

From: the Greater Holy Empire of Tagmatium

Re: Delegation

 

Honoured friends,

 

I request that, in the interests of building the bonds of friendship between our two uniquely different cultures and nations, the Imperial Government be allowed to send a delegation to meet with the government of the Free City.

 

The delegation will be led by Vice Chancellor Philip Commenus and will have representatives from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the Ministry of Trade, as well as a small party from the Iconoclastic Orthodox Church of Tagmatium, headed by his eminence, Patriarch Cosmas.

 

Eugenius Wilson,

 

Minster of Foreign Affairs of

 

The Imperial Government of

 

The Greater Holy Empire of Tagmatium

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The mood in the Executor?s office was fairly casual, as per usual. The sun shone through the large picture windows and skylights, bathing Andrea deVries? cabinet with natural light. They all sat in their usual spots on the sofa?s arranged in one of the office?s alcoves, with Andrea herself sitting in a grand, plus chair at the head of the group. She took one final sip of her tea before setting the cup down on a glass table beside her. ?So, we are all agreed that something needs to be done about the income tax rate?? she asked, to a murmur of consent from her advisors. ?Wonderful! I am confident the private sector will pick up the dropped government programs. Right, Marcus??

 

The Guildmaster, Marcus Torbin, gave a mild chuckle before answering. ?But of course, Madam Executor. The Trader?s Guild will be happy for the new markets.? He picked up a glass of water and took a healthy sip before returning it to its table. ?I do not see why you won?t let us take a bit of the education burden off of the government though!?

 

?Ha!? scoffed the Education Minister, Cerina Raleigh. ?I bet you?d like that, wouldn?t you, you old goat!? The group laughed before the Executor continued.

 

?On to the next order of business. Melissa, what do you have for me today?? asked the Executor, looking over to her Foreign Affairs Minister, Melissa Vander.

 

?Well Madam Executor, we recently received a rather intriguing communiqu? from the Greater Holy Empire. It appears that they would like to send a delegation of important officials to build, and I quote, ?the bonds of friendship between our two uniquely different cultures and nations.?? A few confused whispers floated around the room before the other ministers spoke up.

 

?Bonds of friendship? HA! The Tagmatines would rather see Miiros sink into the Rosario!? remarked Defense Minister Haggerty angrily. ?I say we let them stay over in the Occident where they belong. They can have their little churches and equality while we run a real country.?

 

Marius Holster, Environmental Minister, gasped with a shocked expression. ?John, I hardly think that?s fair to say! The Tagmatines are a noble people with a fine nation, I cannot believe you are getting swept up in this anti-socialist rubbish sweeping the city! Miiros should not ignore such opportunities to find common ground.?

 

?He?s right,? said the Guildmaster, speaking up again. ?Better relations with Tagmatium could give Miiros an upper hand in the Occidental markets. They DO control that pesky canal of theirs and the fees make trade around the Raga a pain. Why not hear them out at the very least.?

 

The Executor spoke up again. ?Yes, we should at least be civil about this. We have many differences, but any sort of partnership between Miiros and Tagmatium could boost the power of both nations.? Andrea adjusted in her seat and crossed her legs. ?Melissa, just who are they sending anyway??

 

?Hmm, it is quite the list. It says here that the delegation will include the Vice-Chancellor, some representatives from the Foreign and Trade Ministries along with?? she trailed off, staring at the page with a wrinkled brow.

 

The Executor looked at the minister, confused. ?Well? Along with who??

 

?A small delegation from the Tagmatine Church headed by Patriarch Cosmas.? As soon as the Patriarch?s name was uttered, a communal cringe went around the room.

 

?Must they include religion in EVERY little thing?? remarked Haggerty again. ?It is ridiculous!?

 

?It is of no major matter, John. This just means we?ll have to cancel the scheduled diplomatic trip to the brothels and skip the virgin sacrifice before dinner,? quipped Cerina. A round of laughter went around the group before anyone could speak again.

 

?Well, I do not see why we should deny them. Let the holy man come to Miiros. It could do him good to experience other cultures and religions,? said the Executor. ?Prepare a response, Melissa. Tell them that I, along with yourself, the Guildmaster, and? the Culture Minister, Alyssa Manus, shall meet them here.?

 

?It shall be done, Executor,? replied Vander.

 

?Wonderful. Well, I feel we have covered enough today. Let us adjorn this meeting and get some lunch!? The Cabinet agreed and soon the group moved themselves to the executive dining hall, where they would muse for hours how many ways they could seriously offend the Patriarch Cosmas.

 

To: The Greater Holy Empire of Tagmatium

From: The Free City of Miiros

RE: Delegation

 

Noble Tagmatium,

 

The Free City would be both honored and delighted to receive your delegation in the interests of friendship.  Executor deVries, along with Guildmaster Torbin of the Miirosi Traders' Guild, Cultural Ministress Manus and myself will be glad to meet your delegation at the Executor's Tower.  We shall send an appropriate vehicle to collect your delegation from the Orthen International Airport with an adequate escort.

 

We look forward to seeing your delegation,

Melissa Vander, Foreign Affairs Ministress

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?Why do you think the Patriarch wishes to go, Honorius??

 

The Minister of Overseas Geological Oddities, pipe firmly clamped in his mouth, walked along side the Minister of War. Both men were musing over Patriarch Cosmas? decision to accompany the delegation to Miiros. Both men guessed that it would end in tears, especially for the Patriarch.

 

?Because the stubborn old codger wishes to spread the light of Christ,? replied Kontarian. ?In a land which is perfectly happy in darkness, so to speak.?

 

Narses lapsed into silence, puffy on his pipe. As Minister of Overseas Geological Oddities, he wasn?t, strictly speaking, really supposed to attend every meeting of the Imperial Government, only ones that really concerned his ministry, which hadn?t happened since Dacvi. However, the Holy Emperor permitted him to attend them because he proved to be fairly knowledgeable on other things, not just rock formations in far-flung lands. Both men walked along the marble corridors of the Imperial Palace Complex, and periodically Imperial Household Guardsmen stationed at irregular intervals along the corridor snapped to attention as the ministers walked past.

 

?It may well prove to broaden his mind,? said Narses around his pipe, not sounding as if he believed in his own words.

 

Kontarian chuckled to himself. ?I really do doubt that. He?ll probably be incredibly offended by what he sees and demands that the whole place be torched and started again. Pretty much like what Heraclius did.?

 

?That was nearly eight hundred years ago. Do you think they would have forgotten about that??

 

The Minister of War shook his head. ?It took Tagmatium that much time to patch it up with the Akiiryans.?

 

?They may over look it. After all, whilst that was going on Heraclius was killed in the Battle of the Isthmus.?

 

?Maybe so, I just do hope that particular episode in our two nations? history does cause any friction.?

 

?What do you think they?ll be discussing during the delegation, anyway??

 

The Minister of War shrugged. ?No idea, Paul. Your guess is as good as mine. I expect some trade, but mainly I think it?ll just be an exercise in strengthening relations between our two nations, as we really haven?t had much contact in recent years. Occidental happenings concern the Greater Holy Empire more than Oriental business, and vice versa for Miiros.?

 

Narses nodded. Kontarian hadn?t really told him anything that he hadn?t guessed himself. ?When are they leaving for Miiros??

 

?Don?t know. I expect later this week, but it?s on a need-to-know basis, and as we?re both from Ministries which aren?t concerned, we don?t need to know.?


To: the Free City of Miiros

From: the greater Holy Empire of Tagmatium

Re: Delegation

 

Honoured friends,

 

We are honoured that the great city of Miiros has accepted our proposed delegation to strengthen our two nations? friendship and bonds. The delegation will depart later this week.

 

We must also ask about the security arrangements. We do not doubt that the Free City will provide an outstanding level of security for our delegates, but the Imperial Government must still take precautions, we do not wish to see a repeat of the event in Tamurin. Therefore, we ask your permission for our delegation to be accompanied by a company of the Imperial Household Guards. We hope that you do not take offence from this request, but Tagmatium is merely trying to protect its delegates.

 

Eugenius Wilson,

 

Minster of Foreign Affairs of

 

The Imperial Government of

 

The Greater Holy Empire of Tagmatium

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?The Tagmatines are coming here? Here?!? asked the eccentric Ministress of Culture excitedly. ?By the Good Goddess, this is wonderful!? She ran over to the aide who had brought her the news from the Executor?s Tower and gave her a huge hug. The other woman looked rather awkward as Ministress Manus clutched her tight. The Alyssa Manus was rather infamous for her sense of compassion and hospitality and many people thought her to be a bit senile. The woman was, after all eighty-eight years old, but there existed no single person in Miiros that knew more about Miirosi culture from the past or present.

 

?Ministress Manus,? began the young woman, her memo and lungs being crushed by the exuberant old woman.

 

?Oh no, you must call me Alyssa!?

 

?Alyssa, I cannot breathe!?

 

?Oh!? shouted Alyssa as she released the aide, who promptly began gasping for air. ?Sorry about that, love. I got carried away. But it has been ages since a major power has visited Miiros! There?s so much planning that need be done!? Manus began zipping around her office, rummaging through files and muttering to herself about where they should eat, getting muesuem trips worked in, and visiting either the Orthen Philharmonic Orchestra or a Mina Chord concert.

 

The aide stood in the doorway forgotten, waiting for the old ministress to remember she was still present. After a few minutes, the aide finally cleared her throat loadly, snapping Alyssa back to attention. ?Alyssa, please keep in mind that things must be kept professional. The Tagmatines are here for a diplomatic visit, not a vacation, and furthermore the Patriarch Cos,? she could not finish before getting interrupted.

 

?Oh come now, deary! I know there must be business conducted, but that doesn?t mean I can?t get the delegation to see a bit of the city before they go! What better way to learn about a people than to see their civilization in full bloom? Maybe the Tagmatines will invite me to their country after this! I hear the cathedrals there are?? The Cultural Ministress trailed off for a moment, a look of mischief and opportunity lighting her gray eyes. ?Did you say the Patriarch is attending? Oh ho! What luck! We can visit the temples now! With effort I can even find him a church to visit.?

 

The aide sighed as she was forgotten again and she knew that somewhere, Executor deVries was laughing. Now she knew why no one else would volunteer to take this memo to Alyssa Manus.

 

 

To: The Greater Holy Empire of Tagmatium

From: The Free City of Miiros

RE: Security

 

Miiros gladly grants permission for the presence of Tagmatium's Imperial Household Guards.  We understand the needs for security in this troubled day and age and this will also allow interaction between not only our delegations, but our security forces as well.

 

We look forward to seeing your delegation later in the week.  From what I have heard, the Ministress of Culture has quite the exciting itinerary planned for after the talks are done, should the delegates wish to see some of the Free City.

 

Melissa Vander, Foreign Affairs Ministress of Miiros

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  • 2 weeks later...

Vice-Chancellor Philip Commenus stepped off the aeroplane and stretched. He hated long-haul flights and the jet-lag they induced. It wasn?t so bad going west-to-east as it was going east-to-west, but he still felt it. The Vice-Chancellor hadn?t had the chance to sleep on the flight, either; Commenus had had the misfortune to sit next to the delegation?s expert on Miiros, who had explained at length Miirosi history and culture, preventing the Vice-Chancellor from napping on the flight. The one point Commenus had been able to doze off; he?d awoken with a cricked neck. All in all, he was now in a foul mood.

 

The sight of Miiros was astounding, though, especially at night. The Vice-Chancellor was well travelled, but he had never seen anything like this. The whole night sky was lit by the city lights, neon signs and the lights of vehicles. It was, in an odd way, amazingly beautiful. He stretched again and rubbed his neck. Bloody uncomfortable seats?

 

The Patriarch was in a similarly foul mood as the Vice-Chancellor, but his hadn?t been induced by the flight to the Free City. Rather, it was at the Free City itself. It was a stinking hole of pagans, heathens and general heretics. A blasphemous nest which could now see the light of God. Next to Cosmas stood a pair of the Imperial Household Guard accompanying the delegation, both of which were at the cityscape before them in amazement.

 

?Christ, it?s amazing?? said one of them.

 

The Patriarch rounded on him. ?Sergeant, if you would be so good as to not blaspheme in my presence. I know the Holy Emperor tends to ignore that sort of thing, but one must not take the Lord?s name in vain. And this place is not ?amazing?, it?s a veritable cesspit of heresy, debauchery and sin.?

 

The sergeant looked fairly contrite, as far as could be told from the reflective visor and gasmask of his helmet. ?I do apologise, your eminence. I?ve never been beyond the Occident before.?

 

?And it?s a shame you didn?t stay there. I shall say prayers for our souls whilst we are here, so that we are not seduced by the decadent lifestyles of this forsaken land,? replied the Patriarch primly, although he didn?t doubt that his soul would be proof to the foul temptations that would undoubtedly be put before them by the heathen Miirosi. ?I shall also be sure that I take ever step to make sure I can convert these heathens with reason, so that their souls may be saved.?

 

In front of the delegation stood the Miirosi welcoming party, led by a minor member of the Foreign Ministry of Miiros.

 

?Good morning, Vice-Chancellor Commenus. I?m here to welcome you on behalf of the Free City. If you?d care to follow me, you?ll find the vehicles which will take you on to the main meeting.?

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  • 2 months later...

?I do hope your flight was enjoyable,? continued the foreign ministry employee, attempting to make small talk as she led the Tagmatine delegation from the plan to the cars. The middle aged woman was mildly attractive, however, dressed very professionally. She smiled pleasantly at the delegation members as they talked, hoping to relax them; she knew trans-Europan flights could be quite vexing. ?We have prepared a limousine and town cars for you; they are all armored so rest assured. The commuters are ruthless, however, we did not feel that military vehicles were necessary.?

 

The delegation stopped before the vehicles and the doors were opened for them by the drivers. The cars were all quite luxurious, with supple leather interiors and a fully stocked wet bar in the limo. All vehicles had onboard phones, headphone jacks with independent stereos (each stocked with a wide selection of MP3s), and plenty of cup-holders and power hookups for laptops. ?Spared no expense,? the foreign ministry official chimed in cheerily as the delegation crawled inside.

 

?Good morning,? announced a small intercom in the passenger?s compartment as it cracked into life. ?I am Marcus, your driver for the duration of your stay here in Orthen. Presently we will be leaving Orthen International Airport and traveling through the finance and temple districts of the city before arriving at the Capitoline Square and your hotel. We thought that you would want to rest before meeting with the Executor. Be aware that the Free City has complete wireless access to the internet, if you would like to use any computers you may have brought along. Now please enjoy the sights and the ride.?

 

With that the cars pulled away from the plane and set out for their destination: the seat of Miirosi government. The ride through Orthen went smoothly, since the bulk of traffic had mired itself in the theatre and residential districts. The cars drove beside immensely crowded sidewalks, wide enough to count as one way streets in some smaller cities. There were no crosswalks, but instead walking bridges went over the roads to keep pedestrians from impeding traffic. Occasionally a commuter train would burst from an underground tunnel and race along the surface before burrowing itself underground once again. Omnipresent, the artificial lights of the city illuminated the streets brilliantly, turning night into a magical time with shimmering buildings and twilight streets.

 

One thing apparent in the streets of Orthen was the painstaking attention the Miirosi paid to beauty in their city. Fountains and sculpture graced nearly every square, no matter how inconsequential, and plant life thrived in this urban jungle. Trees had been planted along the roads and outfitted with their own lighting, ivy spilled from overhangs, artificial waterfalls and reflection pools were plentiful, and every building appeared a work of art of varying degrees of mastery. Of course, this route had been selected to show off some of the best aspects of the city.

 

Through the finance district the delegation enjoyed the colossal towers of corporate Miiros. The various businesses of the Free City spend billions trying to outdo one another in architecture and it showed. Nowhere else did the buildings reach so tall. In the temple districts the buildings gave way to more sky, although the stars were smothered by the glare of the metropolis. Grand temples to ancient gods stood here, ostentatious and outrageous in decorum. Bacchus, Juno, Venus, Miir, Mars, Ros, and Jupiter were only a few of the deities represented. There were also smaller, humble missions present in the area. These were the outposts of Christianity, Judaism, and Islam.

 

The diplomatic convoy finally entered the government district, the Capitoline. After entering the square, the Tagmatines were observing some of the most awe-inspiring architectural feats in Miiros: the Tower of the Executor, the Dome of the Senate, and the Statues of the Three Goddesses. Rising from a supremely landscaped park, the Tower of the Executor dominated the Orthen skyline. Seat of the Executor and all her ministries, the tower embodied government in the Free City. Its glass spires defied gravity as they soared proudly into the heavens, sculpture and plants all playing into the design. The Dome resembled a stadium, although the only sport played within was politics. The legislators of Miiros, however, could not possess a more opulent arena. In the center of the square stood a dais, where three colossuses proudly stood. There were two levels and on the lower, with their backs facing one another, were the Twin Goddesses Miir and Ros. Miir, an angelic figure, stood with feathery wings wrapped around herself in a pose of humility and reflection bathed in a soft blue spotlight. At this angel?s feet, the word ?knowledge? was engraved. In contrast, Ros stood provocatively bathed in a red hue. Her expression was haughty and suggestive and her leathery wings stretched proudly outward and at her feet was the word ?glory.? Above the two on her own special pedestal stood the Spirit of Liberty, a robed angel with a spiked crown, who bathed with white spotlights. Like Ros, her feathery wings were stretched outward as if she were about to take flight and in a raised hand she clutched a golden sword, while the other held a shield. Inscribed on the shield were the words: ?Tyrants begone. Here I reign.? Of course, the word at her feet was ?liberty.?

 

The cars drove around the square briefly before pulling up the hotel. The building was majestic enough, but it paled in comparison to the three monumental structures it shared the area with. A swarm of servants descended upon the vehicles to attend the delegation, removing any luggage and ready to help take the diplomats to their rooms. This time, the Foreign Minister herself waited for the Tagmatines.

 

OOC: Not sure if it would make sense to rush them into a meeting after a long, bothersome flight. It would probably make for cranky dignitaries. If you?d like, I can change it and skip right to the meeting. I am profoundly sorry for taking like? half a year to get back to this. Sorry if it?s overly heavy of the descriptions. You?re the first visitors. XD

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  • 2 weeks later...

The Tagmatine delegation sped towards the meeting. Most were feeling run-down from the long flight, all except those who had often been on cross-Europan diplomatic trips. The Vice-Chancellor, a veteran of many such embassies, was sharing a limousine with the Patriarch, as befitted the head of the Iconoclastic Orthodox Church of Tagmatium.

 

Commenus was slightly bereft of small talk with the Patriarch. He?d always considered Cosmas to be a remarkably inflexible, old-fashioned man, almost out of place in the current Greater Holy Empire. ?Remarkably beautiful for such an urban environment, isn?t it, your holiness??

 

The Patriarch turned on him. ?Vice-Chancellor, this place is nothing more than a den of harlots and temptation. Look upon what they worship as deities?- he waved his hand expansively, taking in the statues going past the windows of the limousine ? ?nothing more than ideas personified, and ones which embody the most sinful of human emotions. I hope that the light of Christ comes to purify this land before long, as it?s an abomination unto God to have such a lair of decadence and sin existing upon the earth.?

 

The Vice-Chancellor rolled his eyes and hoped that the Patriarch wouldn?t spoil the delegation to the Free City. The man was as stubborn as a mule.

 

Commenus was thankful when limos pulled to a stop and a herd of Miirosi attendants rushed forward to deal with the Tagmatines, as it meant that he would not have to make conversation with the Patriarch any longer. The man?s dogmatic nature irritated him. There was a moment of confusion as a Miirosi honour guard came forward to open the door of the Vice-Chancellor?s vehicle and nearly ran into the detachment of the Imperial Household Guards who were attempting to do the same. After a hurried, whispered conversation the Tagmatines stood back and allowed the Miirosi to open the doors, both saluting as the second most powerful man in the Greater Holy Empire stepped out of the car. He headed towards the Minister of Foreign Affairs, shaking her by the hand.

 

?Foreign Minister Vander, I presume? So good to finally meet you.?

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