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Diplomatic Mission

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The aeroplane, a small jet of the type often used for internal flights or by high-powered companies for business trips, touched down in Thule airport. The tail of the plane bore the Tagmatine Imperial Standard, the national flag of the Greater Holy Empire. The sides also held the Imperial Insignia, undoubtedly showing that the aircraft was an official jet of the Imperial Government of Tagmatium. After landing, the small plane had taxied down a private runway, away from the main traffic using the airport. A door was opened on the side of the aircraft, and steps were lowered so that the occupants could climb down. At the bottom of the flight of steps stood a group of the famed, but little known, ShadowCorps, wearing the jet black dress uniforms of their unit, a colonel and a lieutenant colonel.


The first Tagmatines off the aeroplane were a pair of the Imperial Household Guard, dressed in red fatigues and black armour, gasmasks and reflective visors obscuring their faces. Both soldiers then stood either side of the steps as the rest of the delegation filed out of their aeroplane.


A large crowd of Vanarambaion citizens were gathered towards the edges of the runway and were held back by several regular units of the Vanarambaion military. The crowd itself was fairly silent, curiously watching the people they had long regarded as their enemies, a people who would stop at nothing to challenge everything that Vanarambaion stood for.


Leading the delegation was a man called Tagmatius Bucket, a long-time member of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and considered something of an expert on Vanarambaion. Closely following him was the Archbishop of Adramyttium, Terrance Saxo, a man virtually unknown outside of his diocese, notably only for his decision to stand against his Patriarch over the issue of the True Church of Tagmatium. Following them were other members of the Foreign Ministry, including secretaries, notaries and various experts on Vanarambaion. Some of them had more clandestine orders from the Imperial Government. The delegation was also accompanied by twenty of the Imperial Household Guard, the elite of the elite of the Tagmatine Army, sworn to defend their charges with their very lives, although none expected that to happen to this mission.


They were greeted by the ShadowCorps officers and quickly pointed to their transports, which would take them to their accommodation.

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The officers greeted each member of the delegation with a slight bow, calling the more high-profile members by name. There was no need to hide that each side had stacks of pictures and filing cabinets full of information on the other party. The Lt. Colonel appeared to be in charge of getting them delegates into their vehicles with a minimum of standing around, while the Colonel waited, bowing to each person as they passed him. Finally, he caught sight of the person he'd spent the last few days getting to know inside and out. "Ambassador Bucket. I am Colonel Li'akan Kilpatrick. Welcome to Vanarambaion. Your transportation awaits you, please step lively. We have rumors of attempts on the delegation, and we'd like to get them into a safe zone as quickly as possible. We'll talk more once we've gotten there." With that, the Colonel bowed, wheeled, and stepped into one of the SUVs. He knew the Tagmatines would recognize his name, and they'd probably been briefed about this one-time successor to the crown, and adopted son of the former Emperor. He'd leave it to their immagination how he remained at his post after the coup.

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As the delegates entered their cars, the drivers started the engines, then radioed a code into their headsets. Rolling down the window separating the cab from the front seat, they introduced themselves as members of the Vanarambaion military, and that if the delegates needed anything, to please not hesitate to ask. Then, rolling up the window, they fell into a pattern behind two motorcycles, with two SUVs on either side of each vehicle, and one motorcycle bringing up the rear. Ignoring the speed limits on the highways on the way toward the capital they sped along at a considerable clip. The few cars along the way slid out of their way. The only pursuit was ended when a news van was run off by one of the motorcyclists.


Several minutes later, the delegation entered the city proper. The streets on the approach to the center of the city had been carefully blocked, and a crowd had gathered nearby to gawk at the newcomers. The procession moved quickly into the center of the city, finally pulling up in front of a huge, columned building. Standing in front was a crowd of what looked to be officials, all decked out in full dress uniform, with a few in regular suits. The differing uniforms denoted the different ranks, familial lineages, and services that each person claimed, but altogether the crowd was a conglomeration of the brightest colored - and highest ranking - officials in the Vanarambaion government and military. Nearly everyone was there, including the current and former Emperors. The caravan stopped, and the doors were opened, and the delegates ushered out to a crowd of faces clearly undecided as to whether this was a momentous occasion or a pain in the rear.

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OOC: I see this happening prehaps three or four hours BEFORE the Tagmatine delegation arrived, in order to give T'Rothric time to be present at the official greating in Thule. I hope this is okay.


The Baron T'Rothric step on to the tarmac followed by his 1st Liegeman, N'Jorth, and his spiritual advisor, J'Thaneath, High Priest of the Stag (OOC: Thaneath has recently been raised to the rank of High Priest, a rank in the Akiiryan religion roughly the same as bishop) A group of bodyguards and aides followed behind. He acknowledged the bow of the waiting Akiiryan ambassador before turning to warmly shake hands with the head of the awaiting Vanarambaion official greeting party. The party was, as agreed, small and far from ostentatious. An old friend of Vanarambaion, the SPA did not see the necessity for grandiose pomp and ceremony every time an official, even one as important as the baron T'Rothirc, arrived to discuss matters of mutual interest. Moreover even the Akiiryan Barons most lacking in diplomatic skills realised that Vanarambaion's extensive ceremonial would be better spent on welcoming the Tagmatine Delegation than on acknowledging the arrival of a close friend.


After finishing his greetings and making some friendly small talk, the baron adjusted his tunic , turned to the Akiiryan ambassador and with a wry smile said,

"Shall we? I would hate to be late for this historic occasion!"


Within minutes they had boarded the waiting cars and were speeding towards Thule.

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The face of the IHHG?s commander was hidden behind his gasmask and reflective visor as he stepped out of the transport provided for the delegation?s security. Underneath it, however, his expression was one of derision. The Vanarambaions? love of brightly coloured uniforms made them look like a stereotypical military dictatorship, each leader awarding themselves with higher and higher ranks and medals, or at least in the mind of the Tagmatine Army, the oldest professional force in the region, or so it often boasted. In this respect, it was lucky that military officials rarely, if ever, led Tagmatine delegations. The Tagmatine Army was an arrogant and conservative organisation, clinging onto ideas when they had long passed out of favour with the rest of the world.


Ambassador Bucket, however, knew of the varied uniforms of the Vanarambaion aristocracy. Indeed, he had written several informative papers on the matter and was considered by most in the Tagmatine Foreign Ministry to be an authority on the subject. As soon as he was ushered out of his vehicle, the ambassador was shaking hands amongst the delegation, able to name some of those present purely by recognising the insignia they wore. Of course, the fact that he had been supplied with every piece of information the Foreign Ministry was able to accrue undoubtedly helped in this hand-shaking exercise. He wondered himself, privately, what the outcome of this meeting would be. Ostensibly it was merely about allowing Tagmatine forces continued passage near to Vanarambaion territorial waters during the on-going Adapton War, but Bucket knew there was more at stake than just the convenience of the shortest route for supply and troop ships. The fact that an envoy from the Baronial Council of the Sublime Principate and that he himself was accompanied by a high-ranking ecclesiastic from the Orthodox Church, even one as wet as Saxo, showed this.


The Archbishop himself stepped out of the limo and almost gawped at his surroundings. He had never visited Vanarambaion before, and nor would he have been allowed to as a member of the Iconoclastic Orthodox Church of Tagmatium. All clergy of that Church had been banned from visiting Vanarambaion since an ancient schism between the churches of Tagmatium and Vanarambaion many centuries ago. The only member of the Tagmatine Orthodox Church that was officially allowed in Vanarambaion was the chaplain of the embassy, although there had been ministers for small expatriate communities, but these congregations had dwindled since the cooling of relations and had entirely fled during the recent civil war. Saxo knew that he may well be in for a difficult time from the fiery Vanarambaion Patriarch, but he knew that everyone would see the others? point of view in the end.

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  • 4 weeks later...

OOC: Sorry, RL jumped up and bit me after the new year. I'm back now though.


IC: The Vanarambaion delegation sent to welcome the arriving SPA dignitaries was far from strictly dressed. Collars were loosened to let the a breeze flow under the sweltering wool dress uniforms, and hats were in hand. However, this was also far from being a sloppy meeting, as the Vanarambaion government knew very well where it's friends were, and that they should be shown every comfort and convenience.


After the customary greetings were exchanged, the Akiiryan delegation was ushered to their waiting vehicles, and on their way to Thule


--several hours later--


The doors to the various cars were held by attendants as the Tagmatine ambassadors and delegation were ushered into one of the huge Roman-style buildings labeled.


Notably absent from the welcoming committee was the Patriarch himself. Whether a carefully crafted reaction to the visiting dignitaries, or a gut response from an angry church official was unclear, but there was significance in it nonetheless.


However, as the delegations moved through the building toward a room set aside for the negotiations, an elderly count broke the ice with the head Tagmatine Ambassador, Mr. Bucket. Jabbering on about this and that, he at least served as a distraction until the doors to the improvised chambers were opened, again by military attendants. Everything around them was resplendant in marble with gold trappings and gemstones tastefully mounted in various places.

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The Tagmatine ambassador listened absent-mindedly to the elderly noble. The man was talking about nothing that Bucket didn?t already know, being an expert on Vanarambaion. One thing that stood out to the ambassador was that distinct lack of any representative from the Vanarambaion church. Bucket cast a glance at Archbishop Saxo, who had also noticed the absence of any ecclesiastical members, but the man probably would put it down to them being busy, rather than any snub at the Tagmatine Orthodox Church. They?d have to see what would happen in that respect.


The room the delegation was ushered into was admittedly impressive, if in a gaudy way. It would definitely serve as a suitably grand backdrop to the first diplomatic meeting between Vanarambaion and Tagmatium since the events of the Cenape islands and Plot 21, or Northern Vanarambaion as it had been known by some nations.


The Tagmatine delegation took its seats around the table which sat in the middle of the room, along with the representatives of the host government. Bucket placed his papers on the table in front of him and shuffled them.


?Greetings, gentlemen. I?m honoured to be attending this meeting, which, as you all know, is the first of its kind between our two nations for too long a time.


?Ostensibly, it is merely about whether we, that is, Tagmatium, can continue to run supply lines for the on-going Adapton war close to the Holy Empire?s territorial, but, potentially, there is a lot more at stake than that.?


?We can all see that the League of the Treaty and the Alliance are now obsolete. The Tinian War weakened both of them, as Ide Jima and Haken Rider, an Alliance member and a League nation respectively, acted independently and without the backing of the rest of the organisations. Following on from that, the events in Adaptus gave us a common enemy, in the form of Winston O?Brian-Smith and his Adapton Socialists. Now, we have soldiers of the Tagmatine Army fighting alongside of their Akiiryan counterparts and ports of the Sublime Principate being used to re-supply Holy Imperial Navy vessels. I don?t think anyone here dreamed of that happening in their lifetimes.


?Further more, there is a new threat to the West, as a whole. The Entente of Oriental States. It has the potential to eclipse the West, if we continue as warring factions. I am not suggesting any sort of alliance, merely drawing the idea to the Holy Empire?s attention.


?As a final thing to be discussed, I feel I must draw the Holy Empire?s attention to the happenings in the south, namely Ide Jima?s actions. We have all seen the Kingdom?s recent actions in Tinian, how they acted virtually unilaterally. They also have drawn a lot of criticism from the wider region, to the point they virtually stand alone.?

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