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The Phoenix and the Falcon.


Adaptus

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(OOC: Just a little something I'm putting together to go with Adaptus' reemergence. Feel free to get involved as it goes along.)

The last several years of Adapton history had been very dark. At the beginning of 'The Great Lull' the nation turned inwards in an attempt to try and protect itself. The outside world had gone quiet. Adaptus' greatest, and last ally the Greater Holy Empire of @Tagmatium Rules had disappeared, and nothing had been heard of the Emperor in many years. The remaining world around the Federal Kingdom rapidly turned hostile and hawkish. Isolationism seemed to be the only course Adaptus could take. 

However the 'Lull' did not go quite as planned. Adaptus quickly fell under one disastrous regime after another, in typical Adapton fashion. This turmoil culminated in the very near dissolution of the Federation. Causicrussian unrest grew so much that a breakaway movement was forming, with a similar sentiment within Bonesis. Referendums were held and both federal provinces voted to succeed from the Federation. This threw the nation into crisis. With the King at the time threatening armed insurrection against those who had voted to break away. Adaptus came perilously close to another civil war. With police forced being drafted in from other regions to suppress the unrest. But the spiralling escalation quickly developed into a near-anarchic state. The Falcon had truly fallen. 

It was at this time, when the Federation was on the eve of fracturing along the old City State boundaries, came a small light. A parliamentary challenge was mounted, in the then old Houses of Parliament in Adthens, the old capital city. Kristopher Kopis lead a small band of politicians in an attempt to heal the fractures. At this point in Adaptus' history the parliament had almost been dissolved. The nation was under the direct rule of the King, and his own cabinet of appointed ministers. Along with his Lord Protector, which he had appointed after removing the Prime Minister. The group of politicians quickly rallied to the broken northern provinces, promising a change, while Kristopher Kopis launched a campaign within Adthens reaching our to those around him in government to decry the situation and challenge the Kings authority. 

The King, fearing rebellions across the nation called in the Adapton military to resolve the situation. Large detachments of soldiers were mobilised towards the north the to quell the breakaway provinces. While specialist troops were sent to the capital to round up parliamentary conspirators in an attempt to suppress their animosity. Unfortunately, this backfired. Many high ranking military officials were on the side of the parliament. When troops arrived in the north the began to simply stand down, refusing to process any orders further. 

A small section of royalist loyalist troops in Adthens did manage to round up Kristopher and some of his closer allies. A Kangaroo court was quickly rushed together in order to try Kristopher for treason. Only for the court to be sieged by protestors, and soldiers alike. Kristopher was quickly rescued. Around this time a reactionary mob had assembled outside of the Kings palace. After days of protests, at the news of Kristophers rescue, the mob stormed the palace. Guards fled, with no intention of protecting their King. Within hours the palace at been gutted of all its worth, and the King had been apprehended. 

Days laters, a new court, setup with old Adapton principles tried the King for his own treason against the Adapton People. This court took place in Novumcastrum, the old capital of the Atulian Kingdom, and soon to be the new Federal seat of government. The King was found guilty, sentenced to a life of imprisonment. Unfortunately, during transpiration to a holding facility, the King took his own life. 

This turmoil left Adaptus reeling. The breakaway provinces to the north agreed in their local assemblies to postpone independence declarations, if an new election was held. The other provinces agreed. And after several months of campaigning, an election took place in the old Atulian Halls in Novumcastrum. Kristopher Kopis, and his New Democracy party won a landslide victory. 

Upon Kristophers election, he announced a series of sweeping reforms across Adaptus known as the 'Sword Reforms'. The hereditary monarchy system, established after the Adapton Civil war was brought to an end. Adaptus would, like it's neighbours the GHE, accept an elected monarch. But only from a select group of citizens, trusted with the responsibility. Thus, as part of the reforms the College System, or Collegium Ratio in Romance, was established. A carefully crafted system, which allowed any man or woman with the heart, and ability, to become King. Citizens would, through their professional career choices form societies, and academies, through which they progressed. Becoming successful within their chosen careers and professions they could rise up to be magistrates, or eventually principals. Once promoted to the College of Principals, you would now be eligible for Kingship. This system, although not perfect, lead to the establishment of one of the most advanced meritocratic societies within Adaptus. 

In parallel to the college system, there was the professional political route to the newly created position of Grand Consul. The position of Grand Consul was created to replace the old position of Prime Minister as the head of government. Citizens would become politicians, first in their local provinces and then up through to the Federal Assembly. From the Assembly, they could then be eligible for a position of Grand Consul. 

This political system, established by Kristopher Kopis, while very alien, and complex to outsiders, had lead to one of the most stable times in Adapton History. The system was celebrated widely through the country, and a new sense of unity swept over Adaptus. which this time lead to a great revival in Adapton society. Until the rain of Magus the Aggressor

During a period of renewed regional activity, Adaptus began it's journey out of isolationism, as the Falcon learnt of the Phoenix. Cross-national treaties were on the verge of being signed, when hostilities erupted with a separatist group from the northern neighbour of Machina Haruspex. These hostilities allowed Magus, who at the time was a College Principal to secretly manoeuvre himself into power, and proved the final test for Adaptus. As the newly elected King Jovian travelled back to Adaptus from a summit in the Beautiful Empire, his aircraft mysteriously took a detour close to the combat zone with the border with MH. King Jovian's plane was shot down, with separatists the suspected culprits. 

This quickly leads to the College of Principals resigning back to their headquarters to elect a new King. And with his backroom, scheming, Magus manoeuvred himself into power. Elected as King shortly thereafter, he began an intensive military campaign. During which he used the fact his generals eyes were turned away to position himself into a more favourable situation at home. Like previous Kings, Magus attempted to close the Federal Assembly, bypassing their decisions to push towards a grander conflict, in an attempt to use the regional uncertainty to his advantage. Unfortunately for Magus the Aggressor, his actions were noticed early on. His military withdrew from their border conflict, ceasing hostilities and disbanded. 

Magus was eventually arrested, and deposed after a 6-month campaign of hawkish brutality. The College system had survived its first test. And the Phoenix had taught the Falcon a valuable lesson. 

Adaptus took this time to heal. Over the course of nearly 2 years, the nation began to pick itself back up, and find its new footing. Kristopher Kopis retired from his position of Grand Consul at the end of his term. Leaving Adaptus to become an advisor in Occidental Affairs to the @Orioni Empress. 

(OOC: Occident was the old name for Western Part of the European Continent, where Adaptus, Suvernia and the GHET are located. I'm not sure what to call it now.)

ICCeres Stolos was elected the new Grand Consul in the following election. As well as a new King elected a short time later. Ceres lead the Conservative party in Adaptus, and took Adaptus through a process of socially oriented policies. Establishing Adaptus as a hotbed of culture, art and literature once again. The new social progress led to Adaptus once again reemerging from an inward period to the present day. A new renaissance has taken hold. New styles of music and architecture sprang up across the nation. While economically the Federation was beginning to prosper once again. 

As well as the classical aesthetic which Adaptus was renowned for, a new wave of neo-classical modern architecture, and social direction was cutting its way across the Kingdom. The skylines became dotted with unique structures, while at night the neon outlines of buildings, and edgeways pierced the midnight sky. A new dawn settled across the nation. And finally, the Phoenix has taught the Flacon how to rise again. 

Adaptus emerged from the period a stronger nation than ever. Mature, forward-looking, and ever vigilant. Learning from it's past, to help build its bright neon future. 

 

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OOC: Yes, the Occident is still called the same way. It is a region or subcontinent on the larger continent of Europa. I hope you don't mind me editing some typos. I have also noticed many people bold the names of people and organisations, so I did the same here. I am glad you allowed Kopis to survive. If this is a recent event, I can re-use him in one of my news posts. We have an institute of language studies. I'm sure he could give a lecture there.

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  • 1 month later...

Adaptus had emerged back into the world in an air of self confidence. Confident in it's once high standing position around the region, however it was becoming increasingly apparent that things were not as they used to be. It was naive for those in the Federal Kingdom to think so much time could pass, and still hold onto their old world standings. An air of relevant irrelevance had settled in, and in the catacombs of Adapton society conversations had pierced the surface of discussion.

"Who are we?", "what are we?", "where do we stand?" were just some of the topics on the lips of those that mattered, and those who didn't, at least not on the surface. Adaptus was struggling to get to grips with this new paradigm. The west was flourishing, while the east was falling silent. While there was some activity, specifically in the central, southern, and eastern parts of the Europan continent, the Occident was silent. This was uneasy for many in Adaptus. And with the Grand Consul's latest attempts to enter the international scene falling by the wayside, it was hard to picture a way out. This large, still somewhat inward facing nation, on the edge of the Adlantic, with a global reach, eager to flex it's muscles, yet, ignored. Major alliances had strung up, agreements reached, discussions had, none of which had came back to Adaptus. As a result, the nation was somewhat feeling it. While the economy had grown, it hadn't as fast as anticipated. An internal, semi-reliance on self sufficiency had somewhat set in, but it was a reliance that could not presist for long. Trade was needed, immigration was needed to fill the gaps in labour, and most importantly, security was needed. 

Whilst it was hard thought, that many of the newer nations could go toe-to-toe with Adaptus in matters of defence, and international influence. But as a collective, Adaptus was at a major disadvantage. A directed campaign for influence and growth was manageable, but from this singular point in the Occident, with no allies, Adaptus would only logistically hamper itself. It needed a clear route to international outreach. Drastic action was needed. A statement of intent, to either suck nations into the Adapton sphere, or force them to take notice, and pay attention. 

The Grand Consul Mrs Stolos had recently made contact with the the Queen of the Free Port, and in doing so made her sentiments internationally known. Adaptus would not relinquish it's old Europan ideals. Power and influence were key to Adapton survival, especially as a lone nation. Adaptus cut it's teeth in the Cold War era of the Alliance and the League, and those teachings, and those now ingrained sensibilities would stay at the forefront of Adapton policy. A plan, based on these old world ideals was put into motion. Drawn up by Mrs Stolos' Conservative Moderamen, it had been given the somewhat reluctant approval by the King. Directive Hermes as it has became know, was a several stage plan. It involved the flexing of Adapton assets, and the attempt to extend the Federal Kingdoms global reach, as well as diversifying it's access to resources and trade. The plan was almost colonial in nature. 

The first phase of the directive used the cover of the @Derthalen blockade to establish temporary ports on one or two of the islands to the south of the Confederated Empire this would allow the Adapton navy's conventionally powered vessels a staging point for further operations. Mrs Stolos had sent orders to her Security Council to launch the first stage of the operation. Additional logistics, and utility vessels were sent to rendezvous with task force east of Derthalen. They would then begin the process of canvasing the islands for a target. This would be followed by further smaller task forces deployed further west to begin the reconnaissance process once a temporary port and staging point had been established. 

The Grand Consul knew this activity wouldn't go unnoticed, especially when it came to further naval patrols in the west. She prepared her Praetors for the inevitable fallout. But for now, she felt she was acting in the nations best interests, and ensuring it's survival. 

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  • 2 months later...

By now, the Grand Consul was gathering quite a negative following. Her attempts at international outreach had yielded some fruit. A new bilateral alliance and trade agreement with the Free Port had been finalised. But, nothing else had been achieved. The pressure was now ramping up on Ceres Stolos. Even her own Praetors were sizing her up. The situation was not looking good. While internally, the nation was now beginning to prosper, there was still a need to increase the Adapton trade potential, as well as its own consumption requirements. Politically, Mrs Stolos was being seen as all bark and no bite. Adaptons were bored with internal well being. They wanted a grander international presence, and the Grand Consul was not delivering. 

In the wake of pressure from her own Praetors, and the Assembly, she decided help was needed. So she sought counsel with the King. It was a somewhat unheard of affair for the Grand Consul to request direct assistance from the King. After all it was the King's job to protect democracy, not to facilitate it. However, the King called upon the loyalty of the College of Principals. And their wisdom was unquestioned. The King himself being seen as the first amongst the College. And thus, Mrs Stolos made her way to the Palace. 

As she made her way to the King's study within the Palace, escorted by flanking Hypaspistai Guards, glad in golden armour, trailing them with long golden cloaks, and atop their Corinthian helms sat their tall purple plums, accentuated by their carrying of large round Aspis, a long tall Dory, A Kopis tucked under their cloak, and for good measure, and to remind everyone this was the 21st century, hi-tech sub-machine guns, concealed even deeper under their cloaks. Of course, coloured in a dull brownish khaki, not to detract too much from the golden armour. It was rare someone from outside the College entered this part of the Palace. So the sight of this left the Grand Consul in a state of awe. 

As Mrs Stolos was lead into the Study area, she found it was not as she anticipated. High pillars lined the vast open room. In the centre of the room the floor gave way, to an almost abyss like cavern, in which ladders and stairs coiled down. She could see down this monstrous, cavernous depression within the palace was stored a library so vast, it would have taken centuries to rebuild. Nestled amongst the books were almost angelic aides, gliding between ladders, and stairs, and darting in and out of corridors, leading even further into this subterranean archive. Back on the upper level, where Ceres stood, the walls and ceiling were painted to reflect the night sky of Adaptus, accurate to all the constellations. Which only alluded to the rooms vastness even further. 

As Ceres gained her senses, after being taken aback but the study a voice called out to her, from above a small pillar, and behind a curtain. 

"Welcome Grand Consul. I trust your journey here was well?" Came the voice with a regal tone she distinctly recognised. "I will be out in a second, please tell me your main agenda."

Mrs Stolos stumbled somewhat. "Ah yes!" She said as she fumbled through a folder she had. "It was regarding our endeavours pertaining to Directive Hermes..." She trailed off, but noticed the Kings attention was not fully with her. "King Augustus?" She questioned. 

Suddenly, Augustus stood from behind the curtain, lofted by the solid marble pillar he stood on. Stern, and serious his gaze fixated on Mrs Stolos as she reeled at the sight of the King. 

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"Directive Hermes!" He shot back at her. "Your failed attempt at international bullying?"

The Grand Consul was by this time in shock. Not only had the sight on the King in, very, formal attire threw her off balance, his scathing remark had too shook her. 

"Oh I am sorry." Continued Augustus. "I have had a session with the Principals this morning. If I had time I would have donned something less traditional for your visit." He tried to calm her, but never lost his stern tone. 

"Augustus.... If I may." Ceres tried to steady herself. 

"You may not Grand Consul. This nation does not need to ascertain its own sovereignty from the trepidation of a few westward back waters, and young pups. Trade, resources, and security at home needs to be secured first. Look to our open land, south and north. And our former neighbours who have since fell to the abyss that so many others fall to in this region. Fixate our peoples gaze on these areas. Secure them. Use them. I have it in good faith from the Greater Holy Emperor...." He stopped,and allowed Ceres to take a moment to divulge that information. 

"The Gre..Greater Ho.." She again was cut off. 

"Yes Grand Consul. I have heard from the Emperor in the East. He is to direct his government to do the same. We will secure the Occident, as I am sure our other southern neighbours will follow suite once we act. The sub-continent will be divided amongst us. Give this to the people. Use it wisely Grand Consul, and it may also save your career. Now please. get back to the business of running this country. I don't want to see it in turmoil again."

With that the Grand Consul was ushered from the Palace. Somewhat broken, but renewed. 

 

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  • 1 month later...

Deep within the palaces of the High City, winding and flowing deeper and deeper into the hill the High City was built upon, footsteps echoed. The long reverberated clap of each step as the hulking shadow made it's way down the corridors. Trailing behind the figure, a crimson cloak, fined with thick furs around the shoulders of the figure. Accompanying each heavy footstep was the subtle chorus of heavy armour realigning as the body moved. 

As the corridor gave way to a vast open space, light flooded in from unknown sources, this deep in the High City it was almost impossible for so much natural light to illuminate this place. but that was the genius of the High City, and it's almost ethereal mysticism. The figure approached a room, through large marble archways. Upon entering, this other vast, almost physics breaking hall. The outsides of the room seemed to be lined with high columns, and pews etched into the walls. Although the pews were empty. In the centre of the room good a singular marble table. Clean and pristine. Around it stood two other figures. One in gold and another in crimson. As the fur clad figure approached the table it became apparently that a screen seemed to appear on the table as if from no where. Highlighting maps and documents. The maps, clearly showing the unclaimed areas around Adaptus

Finally, the golden figure raised it's voice. 

"Generalis Antonius! Salvē! Great to see you again." Came the golden voice, levelled with a smile. 

"King Augustus. Et Tū. It's been a while. And Taxiles, prompt as ever."

The second crimsoned cloaked figure replied. 

"Aye! It's been a long time since the three of us were together like this. It brings back memories."

It was clear now that this was the general staff accumulated to achieve the securing of greater Adapton lands. Kind Augustus had known both Antonius and Taxiles for many years, fighting alongside them both during the AdSoc Crisis ten years ago, ever since the three had been strong supporters of each other. All within their own rights reaching the highest levels of the College System, all three being some of the first College Principals appointed. The two generals, while very different in their styles, and methods, were considered two of the foremost experts in ground based warfare the Old World had to offer. Achieving their position through one of the most rigorous and demanding meritocracies in the whole of Europe. These along side the King were some of the finest minds the Occident could muster. 

"So." Began the King. "You both know why you're here. Stolos has done her bit. She's put the plans through the Assembly and we have our go ahead. Its now time for us... Well, you two, to do what you do best."

The two generals gestured in acknowledgement towards Augustus. He continued. 

"Taxiles, you will manage the Southern Theatre. This is predominately occupied by religious extremists, believing in a twisted form of Gnosticism. They hold their leader in high regard, as god's representative on earth. They call him Papa Euclid. They're organised, and well equipped, this won't be a guerrilla war. They occupy mostly rolling steps and hills, and open planes, with a semi-dry and warmer climate. They have controlled quite an extensive agricultural, and mining industry, which funds them quite well. They use a series of black markets, and rouge entities to supply themselves with quite a formidable arsenal. They're effectively a pseudo state. So expect an organised response. But nothing you can't handle. Here is all the information you need. The intelligence services are at full disposal of both of you, so use them. You'll find the forces allocated to you within the data.' 

Augustus gestured on the table in front of him. A split second later, a notification sounded on a small device within Taxiles' hand, to which he acknowledged. Augustus then handed across a wax stamped scroll of paper, the supporting physical confirmation of Taxiles' orders. Augustus then turned to Antonius. 

"Antonius. You will be assigned the Norther Theatre. Colder, damper, and forested. Take great pride in this, as this is where your predecessors failed two years ago. The barbarous forests will be your main fighting area. Your enemy will be warlords and rouge generals. Spill-over from the fall of Machina Haruspex, who's fall also capsized their neighbours in Beautancus. Expect ferocity. These people have known nothing but war and turmoil for the last ten years. It's likely they might unite against a common foe. So take care. While they may not be as organised as the southern enemies. They have some serious capabilities. We know first hand from two years ago. This isn't second rate equipment from 2nd world suppliers. This is the highest quality equipment the former MH war machine. Yes, it may not be the most high tech anymore, but it's capabilities is still unquestionably effective. There is also the threat of nuclear and chemical weapons. While two years ago we kept it down to border action and skirmishes. A fully fledged invasion like this could see a harsh retaliation where chemical and nuclear weapons might be used. I'd also expect a guerrilla resistance. We are also expecting some co-ordonation with @Tagmatium Rules in the North. So keep them in the loop, and use their assistance. We are allies after all."

Antonius nodded in agreement. The stage was now set. Both generals had their orders. It was down to them to execute them. The two then made their way out of the vast room. Taxiles and Antonius were very different. Antonius wearing the traditional armour of homelands later periods. Segmented armour plating. thick furs, and more ornate and intricate under clothes, as well as his long trail ian cloak, and straighter shot sword by his side. While Taxiles, taking a more ancient dress. Choosing not to wear his Cuirass or Chest Plate. But wore his long crimson cloak, with no fur. And a bare chest. Somewhat similar to the King. Sided by his more traditional Kopis sword. Yet these two, of very differing styles and backgrounds, stood as the closest of comrades. Some of the finest in their line of work. 

The coming days and weeks would see the largest movement of Adapton troops since the AdSoc crisis. And the first fully united Adapton force since the Long War. The path to a brighter future was now well underway. The Grand Kingdom, would truly be Grand again. But, would it forever be a Kingdom. 

The College had ascended to a higher reverence than originally intended. While benevolence was still the order of the day. It's members were becoming more of a symbol of higher authority, than a defence against tyranny. And as this attitude grew, the gulf between the regular citizens, and those in the College was becoming mystical, almost ethereal. It felt only a matter of time before these College Principals became more than human in the eyes of the people. Adding fuel to the fire were the echos of Empire, and Emperors. Terminology not seen in the Kingdom for over a century. The cultural shift internally was happening at an astounding rate. Almost dangerous in it's advance. 

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Some time had passed since the initial decisions had been made to launch invasions of the surrounding areas. Communications had been renewed to an almost pre-Lull level with the Greater Holy Empire, and the relevant co-ordination had been put in place for the coming actions. Ceres Stolos had done her job well, and kept the Federal Assembly inline with the invasions, and had their support. But had also done well to keep them blissfully ignorant of the true purpose. In the peoples eyes, this was a matter of securing boarders, and liberating innocents from barbarous regimes. When the actual intent was to secure the Occident and it's rich resources and strategic value squarely within the Aroman sphere of influence. 

Mobilisation had been ongoing, and was now complete with the initial invasion forces in both the north and south. Antonius and Taxiles were now at the head of their respected armies now, and were fully prepared. If other nations were monitoring, they would know by now something was about to happen. 

The two theatres couldn't be any more different. The north was hilly, and infested with vast deep forests. Known to Adapton's as the Barbarous Forest, part of which rested in the eastern part of the Causicrussian province. it extended itself north and east. To the west of the forest lay a hilly corridor to the coast. Not ideal for fast mechanised warfare the type Adatpus was famous for, which gave the previous incursion attempts by Adaptus difficulties. However, Antonius had prepared for this situation. He'd spent an extensive period going over the failed attempts form two years ago to learn the mistakes they made. Ever the staunch traditionalist, he still would rely on the Adapton style of warfare, but would adapt it for the environment. A wider air involvement, and dismounted light troops on the ground to push through the forests as quick as possible. The main idea being to spearhead through the forests first to the east, then pivoting back north and then westward towards the coast. Clearing out the forests first, and pushing any fighting contingent of the enemy to the coast to then draw them out of their defensive environments. 

Antonius, in a display of resolve, which only accentuated his position as the leader of the "Old Guard" within the College, sat atop his horse at the Adapton boarder, inside the Barbarous Forest. Towering over his ground troops, as he gave his final inspection. Rows of light infantry stood in silent vigil, starting out into the deeper forest across the boarder line. Antonius still wearing his traditional armour, regardless of it's impracticality. 

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Stopping, and looking at his watch, he turned his horse to face the rows of troops. Donning dark camouflage to work best in the darker forests, they all stood in tight formations. Lightly equipped, and prepared. As a thick fog rolled across the ground, the dull blue light of the monocle systems covering the eyes of the troops was the only form of natural light. 

Antonius raised his hand. 

"Guardians of the Federation. Today we take our first steps towards securing a brighter future for our Grand Federation, and it's people. Beyond these walls of nature lie a people in strife, yearning for the our ideals. Today we deliver them their wishes. Our enemy are hardened veterans of war. Knowing nothing but conflict for the last 10 years. Expect a fierce fight with an enemy who knows these woods better then any of us. But we have our resolve. Our duty. And our superiority in training, and execution to overcome all that comes our way. So lend me your arms, and trust in my decisions, and I am in no doubt we will be the victors!"

A silent acknowledgement rolled through the forests along with the fog as Antonius continued. 

"Ready yourselves Guardians." Antonius looked down at his watch. His hand still raised. Several silent seconds passed, as a low rumble could be heard, gradually increasing in volume. Suddenly several wings of aircraft thundered over head. Distant thuds and rumbles could be heard as artillery and cruise missiles began hitting their marks. Antonius lowered his hand. Instantly the blue lights on the soldiers monocles went out, and the rows of infantry began their slow methodical march deeper into the forest. The Northern War had begun. 

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  • 3 weeks later...

The northern campaign had began, and Adapton troops were moving to secure the northern Occident. While in the south, Taxiles had mustered his own forces. Unlike Antonius, with his strong traditionalist views, Taxiles was much more of an unorthodox beast, this factor helped carry his immense charisma within his troops. He was often known to position himself close to frontlines, or even on occasion, accompanied his troops into battle. 

Unlike the northern frontier, the southern theatre was dry and semi-arid, open planes. The Euclidian's as they were being called, had foresaw the Adapton movements, and had prepared for their actions. The Euclidian leaders had instilled in their troops a religious fervour, and a fanatical anti-Adapton sentiment. Seeing King Augustus as the false King, and their own leader. Papa Euclid the true ruler of the Adapton throne. Sighting his appointment by God, and a false relation to the last Adapton Emperor from some 1000 years ago. Historically, this coastal area directly south, where the Euclidian's originated was once part of the Kingdom of Thessapolis, and often a contested area between Thessapolisians and colonists from the old Phalkia civilisation, from across the Ram Sea. This is where Papa Euclid's claims of the true Adapton King came from. 

As a result, the Euclidian's had launched a series of counter-attacks. Unfortunately, they hadn't foresaw Taxiles' tenacity and brash forwardness. A small town about 50 miles from the coastline, a very dry part of ancient Thessapolis, had became the focal point of the Adapton advance. Taxiles had at his disposal one of the oldest military units in not only Adaptus, but the whole of Europa. The famed Companion Cavalry. Formed by Alexander the Great nearly 2500 years ago, long ago removed from their horses for battled, and now riding the great Taurus tanks of the Adaptors and Tagmatine joint research and develop programmes. These troops were some of the most prestigious the region had seen. 

Taxiles was, as usual, astride one of the forward Taurus tanks approaching the small unnamed town, at the head of a column of around 15 other beasts. Supported by several armoured fighting vehicles carrying Adapton mechanised infantry. A large plum of dust followed their advance. A head of them lay they town, an open, and wide placed town, with many high sandy walls marking property boundaries, a typically planned town from this part of the world. 

Taxiles looked out through the commanders hatch. Wearing nothing but his traditional Thessapolisian cloak, being a Thessapolisian himself, and crotch piece, with boots. He liked to test fate, and show off. In his growly and tense voice, he levelled commands to his men inside the lead tank. 

"Take your lead to the left side! While D Troop moved to the right!" He growled over the tanks radio. The skid steering of the lead tank then pivoted into action, swinging the tank to the left while the turret and Taxiles still peered directly at the town. 

"Target acquisition! Spotter mark those emplacements!" Came another growl. This time the spotter from the other hatch adjacent to Taxiles replied. 

"Marked sir!."

"In your own time! Lead fire!" The Thessalpolisian screamed. No more than a second later could be heard the unmistakable clunk of a round being loaded into the tanks breach. followed by the unmistakable hiss, thud and then roar, of the Taurus tanks Electrothermal Chemical main gun. Followed closely by the other tanks in the column. This was then returned by machine gun fire and the occasional RPG round. 

"Get into the streets! Clear a path for the infantry!' Taxiles announced, still with his upper body out of the turret hatch, with no regard to safety as the lead tank dived into the towns wide street. Suddenly the the noise of the engine and tracks was downed out by the ping and clank of riles and machine gun rounds bouncing off of the tanks hull. "Duck into here now! Make an entrance for the men!" Came from the half naked man atop the tank, not looking as those he was actively climbing out. 

As the lead Taurus ploughed forward, it sounded a corner into what seemed to be small walled compound. "sh*t!" Cried out Taxiles. 

"Generalis! We're surrounded!" Came a scream from the driver. Before he could react Taxiles saw an RPG wielding Euclidian appear at the only entrance and exit to the compound. Now realising they were cut off, Taxiles grabbed his cloak, covering his head and ducked into the hatch. A second later the RPG round impacted the rear of the Taurus. Blowing smoke and dust across the tank. Several moments later a voice from the driver came across the radio. 

"Systems ok. Engine stalled though! Cover us while We start up!" 

While the spotter who accompanied Taxiles up top grabbed a top mounted machine gun and began to fire at the RPG team. Taxiles noticed riflemen appearing from the building to their front. Without thinking he vaulted over the hatch and onto the front of the tank, drawing a side arm from a holster attached to his hip. As the riflemen looked on with slight disbelief as the semi-naked muscle clad man, wearing a clock appeared in-front of them, a slight hesitation rolled over them. But before they could gather themselves. Taxiles opened fire. Four rounds he got off, dropped 3 of the riflemen. Followed by 8 more rounds, which dropped another 3 rifleman. With three still remaining. Taxiles charged at them, still in shock. As he ran at the first man, he grabbed him by his soldiers webbing, flinging his body around and into the second man as he finally levelled his rifle. Knocking them both to the floor. As he spun to run at the third man, he drew a unique looking dark Kopis from under his cloak, swinging it at the fact of the third man, whist using his other hand to bat the muzzle of the rifle away from himself. Finally the Kopis swung in finding it's mark in the left cheek of the Euclidian rifleman. Suddenly the sound of machine gun fire from the Taurus behind him stopped as the Kopis hit home. The dust around them seeming to hang in the air, as silence fell. Taxiles' cloak slowly coming to rest as he raised his body back up. The third rifleman body finally falling to the floor. Taking a deep breath, Taxiles raised his head to the sky, as if looking into a void. 

x0CtpbZ.jpg

After several moments, a voice from the Taurus called out. 

"Generalis? What just happened?" 

Taxiles smiled. "Rejoin your Troop, Companion!"

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Just outside the former Beautancus capital of Ttoille on the edge of a thick wood on a slopping hill. A former villa of a once hard working businessman was now the seat of a command operation for a local warlord. The rain tormented the ground, holding any sense of warmth hostage. The dark dusk of a murky early spring hung in the air. The warlord, helping himself to a clutch of nuts, made his way to an office on an upper floor. 

A few hundred meters to the east, edging the wooded area, the masked muzzle of a rifle perturbed just enough from a shrub, as the rain trickled down leaves and onto the concealed barrel. A Hypaspist, solitary in physicality, but not in his watch. He peered down his scope, tracking all those who made movement through the windows of the villa. This was his 4th day on vigil, and still, he was undisturbed. 

The warlord sat down to a desk, the light wearing of servers came from a room adjacent the office. Flicking open his laptop, he began to work. Combing through reports, and spreadsheets, trying to collate his activities so far. There was a surprising amount of organisation needed to run an anarchistic tribal regime. An adjutant brought a coffee to maintain focus. Chemical weapon smuggling needed his full attention. 

A young man, no older then 27, hunched over a due monitors, in an open plan office. Empty, forsake of himself, and another young man a bank of desks over. A whiteboard behind him, with many scribbles, and diagrams jotted upon it. His eyes flickered, while his hands barely moved. Watching, and waiting. 

The rain, beat down on the edge of the forrest, harder, and harder. The Hypaspist rested his gaze for a second, then returned it. Sighting the light of a laptop through a window, he focused in. He noticed the warlord, and his signature coffee cup by his side. He tapped a small pad on his rifle. His monocle system perking to life. 

The young man, sat watch over his monitors too perked into life. A notification. He read. Instantly he began to spring to life. A bring of information poured across a black terminal screen. He captured it. Opened another tool, and parsed the information he had. It returned him in second a new string. This he then entered into a web page. Instantly springing into life, he began to work. He hurried and scrambled for the headset next to him. Once over his head, he opened another programme. And hit a call button. 

It was almost unheard, because of the rain, but the slim vibrations gave it away. Tapping a pad on his rifle again, the Hypaspist switched attention to his monocle. Eventually. He faintly vocalised. 

"What do you have?"

The young man back in the office replied over the headset. "I have a good setup. I need to prepare a payload. Give me some time.'

The lone rifleman replied. "Plenty time, I've only been here four days." As the rain battered around him. 

"Ok." Came back the young man. "I have one now. It's been pushed. Give it a minute or so." 

Both fell silent. The warlord kept working. Eventually, he took a drink from his coffee, closed his laptop, and then got up, and made his way out of the room. 

"Did you get it?" The silent sniper whispered. 

"I did." Replied the young man. 

Suddenly the young man sprung into action. A SQL connection established in-front of him. A few clicks of a mouse, and a copy was created. A few more, and an query or two later, a new set of tables were added to the database. Finally, for good measure, backups were stopped, and the previous captured were wiped. 

After a few minutes, the young man spoke. "Ok, I have what I need. There isn't anything left. I'll get him where you need him."

The sniper did not reply, but smirked. 

Suddenly, an alarm inside the villa was sounded. The Server room. A woman rushed to the room, to a find the disk failure light flashing on one of the servers. She called out to someone else for assistance. As a second woman came over, another alarm sounded, and then another. This time their power supply backups had gone down. Panic ensued, as computer wizards tried to do what they could. 

Eventually the warlord appeared outside of the server room. Frustrated at the situation. In and out, and in and out, yelling, and stomping around. He was in a panic. They all were. soon he wanders back into the office he sat in earlier This time resting in his seat, head in his hands. 

A crack penetrated the noise of the rain. Breaking it's torrent. The Hypaspist was gone. As too, was the young man. 

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  • 2 months later...

Echos of stilettos sounding off on the marble flooring, a sound quickly becoming familiar to Ms Stolos, as she once again made her way through the vast halls of the High City. Every time she came, it always looks different. As if the entire interior shifted each day. Those occupying the building seemed to instinctively have a sense of direction. Including the silent, angelic aides, adorned in the whitest of white robes, and almost gliding as they moved, seemed to have an innate knowledge of this vast, and complex inter sanctum. 

She approached a relatively small archway. Relative to the usually grandeur of the place. She momentarily hesitated, making a quick peer around her. Finally making her way into the archway. Upon entering the room, she was struck with a brilliant light, that blinded her momentarily as she entered. Her eyes adjusted to see two Hypaspists stood either side of her, in their tell tale immaculate gold cloaks, and weaponry. To her front stood Augustus. Stern and serious as ever. She nodded as she approached. 

"You must have something serious to discuss to be here alone." Ms Stolos began. "What's the agenda today?"

Augusts smirked towards her, in his always confident smile. "I see you're adjusting to this well."

Ceres smiled back. "It's keeping me in a job!" They both gave a near silent chuckle. 

Immediately Augustus got to down to the agenda. 

"We now are closing in on securing our northern and southern borders. Opposition is slight, and our 'liberation' has gone well so far. Fast and efficient. Our task force are operating across the Adlantic now." Augustus noted Ceres' nods of acknowledgement and continued. "This task force, has allowed us a greater level of visibility in the West, that only our cyber operations could give us previously."

Ms Stolos' eyes raised. "Ah, you've found something".

Augustus nodded. "Indeed. It's no secret that slavery has been on the rise in the region during the Great Lull, and its still increasing today."

"Yes, it seems to be a trend." Ceres replied. 

"Indeed. Well take a look at this." Augustus turned to face a wall. 

The Light from the room was almost torn from it, so quickly Ceres' eyes struggled to adjust. What now appeared to be a wall lit up in a rectangular section, as images appeared. There was no definitive source to determine where these pictures came from, but they were there, and moving. In incredible clarity, and precision. And almost as if Augusts' thoughts, controlled them. 

The Image was of a piece of land on the Western Continent of Argis. Just north of the Kezanoi Sea. The image, focused, and zoomed, in, then focused and continued to zoom in. Labels, text and diagrams began to appear, augmenting the image. Now it was obvious to her. @Greater Serbia

"We tracked this convoy leading out of the Serbic state." Augustus exclaimed. 

The image changed as he spoke. Focusing on a large convoy of vehicles beyond the boarder of the Western nation. 

"Bound for Derthalen, and other slave states. Not only does this show Derthalen is willing to breach our terms. It shows other nations are prepared to laugh in our face at our actions. We cannot allow this to continue. I ordered an InfoSec operation yesterday. It returned a trove of information. Whilst it is no secret Greater Serbia is a slave state. The extent has only now been realised. Their policies towards the minority peoples known as the Bosniaks is bordering on genocidal. We need to take care of it. I'd like you to lead the diplomatic attempts to stop this. If that fails I will hand this over to the military. For now an ultimatum need to be made clear."

Ceres' at this point knew exactly what to do. She nodded. 

"I'll make the arrangements Augustus." And with that she made her way out. 

______________

To: @Greater Serbia

From: Grand Consul Ceres Stolos, the Grand Federal Kingdom of Adaptus. 

CC: G7 Nations of Europa. 

It has arrived to our attention, that your nation is currently engaging in the practice of slavery, with the exclusive goal to oppress a minority population, to the point we consider your actions verging on genocide. 

It is with this regard, that I must take these actions. With immediate affect, any trade Adaptus has with your nation is to cease. Further to this, we are in the process of engaging in a trade embargo facilitated by our naval presence in the area. 

We request, with dignity, that you end this practice of slavery, and oppression levelled at your minority population. We encourage further nations of our region to follow our stead in preserving common decency and restoration of civil liberties to the wider region. 

Should your nation refuse or fail to comply with these requests, further actions will be taken to assure freedom is granted to Bosniaks within your nation. 

Sincere Regards,

Grand Consul Ceres Stolos. 

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Two days passed.

The roar of Serbian V8 sedans barrelled down the Central Boulevard in Beograd. Up to 20 dark colored sedans were on the road at once. The National Police cordoned off all roads attached to the boulevard. The Chancellor was in town, awaken by a phone call by the head of the Department of National Safety, Miroslav Stambolic, so he left his summer palace from the highlands of Vojvodina.

"What is the issue here?" asked Milosevic. 

"Those dirty Adaptus hawks are saber-wavering, my Chancellor. They think they can boss around the Serbs, Croats, and Macedonians!" said the head of the DNS, Stambolic.

"Well, we will have to consider the demands of those losers. How are we doing on the hostage crisis, is it going to plan?" Milosevic asked with concern.

"Everything is going well, as I told you a couple days ago, the Bosniaks obtained the guns from our g-men in National Safety. Now we are faking negotiations with those towelheads, the public are making their voices heard on social media, everyone is going to start beating up a Bosnian once the crisis will be resolved." smirked Stambolic.

"Either way, the Bosniaks are going to be finally put down once and for all when we finish the crisis off. Make sure the local Party leaders start agitating the people in surrounding Regions and Districts. We will need a march of clubs, jackboots, and workers to show Kosovska-Mitrovica what it's all about!" chuckled Milosevic

The big, boat-y sedan climbed the ramps leading up to the horseshoe driveway of the Assembly. Milosevic stepped out of the metal behemoth of a car and started walking up the steps to the Assembly. Stambolic stayed in the car as it left the convoy with its own sortie of National Safety protection, speeding off to Mount Triglav, the location for the all-secretive headquarters for the Department of National Safety.

Milosevic, now at the top of the steps, gave the order for the police to allow the people to collect at the bottom of the hill, standing in the streets and square.

He steps up to the podium, and says some words: "My loyal citizens of Greater Serbia, Serbs, Croats, and Macedonians alike! I have come to this momentous occasion, to meet with the Party leaders and your Assembly people! We have much to discuss, concerning the audacity of Bosnians to take us hostage, as whole! Let me make this clear, we will not bend over to their whims!" The crowd makes a roar of support.

The leader of Greater Serbia, along with his numerous White Eagle guards, briskly walk through the ornate and tall halls of the Assembly. Four guards start to open the massive bronze doors to the main committee room. Milosevic shortly addresses the Assemblymen, and leaves to his conference room, to meet with his security and foreign advisers.

"What's the problem?" asked Milosevic

"This, my Chancellor" said the head of the Foreign Department, sliding a paper on the desk.

Milosevic took out his reading glass. He read the paper, and shortly put it down, firmly.

"Who do they think they are?" the Chancellor asked, in a raised voice.

"Well, sir, they are a powerful nation. Their clout transfers to their allies. Luckily the economic sanctions aren't hurting us to the degree they wished, we didn't trade with them very much anyway. @Derthalen will gladly soak up our newly freed goods. We also sent some of our corporate cronies from the Uros Corporation, Srbi Energy, and Srbebacka Bank to @Republika Mazovia, @Arstotzka, and @Imperial States of Europe to talk about trade as well, we'll need new markets to export our oil and manufactured goods." said the foreign advisor. 

"Start talking to our future trade partners, get some support from them. Delay the chances of a military invasion here. Whitewash our treatment of Bosnians, downplay it." Milosevic sternly commands, as he rises up and exits the room.

piss on yo grave

To: @Adaptus

From: Office of the Chancellery, Greater Serbia

CC: @Republika Mazovia, @Derthalen, @Imperial States of Europe, @Arstotzka

We will gladly accept your cessation of trading with our great nation. We will not accept, however, your military posturing towards us, teetering our sovereignty on the tip of your sword of aggression! Your 'further actions' do not scare us. We will consider if it is economically viable, or rather, worth it to emancipate the Bosniak animals. We will consider.

Your weak diplomatic power shows that you need to posture towards us with your boats. You should ashamed of your self for making an innuendo for military intervention in our independent, and wholly sovereign politics. You, sir, as leader of a foreign nation, have no place in dictating our policies at home. Perhaps at the world stage, but not at home.

Should you attempt to land a single marine on our beaches, fly a fighter in our skies, or sail a boat into our waters, we will defend every inch of our land. Every single Serbian, Croatian, and Macedonian will take up arms to fight your invasion. From the soldier with his rifle, to the wife with her pistol, to the student with his bat. Everyone will be against the invaders.

Glory to the Chancellor. Glory to Serbia.

 

 

 

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Inside the High City, in a room, nestled deep within it's cavernous depths. Of brilliant white walls, and columns, lined with gold. A crowed had gathered. Around 300 or so, men, and women, huddled. There were step like podiums carves around the outline of the walls, but no one stat on them. Some stood to get a better view. As one end of the circular room, was a a large slab of solid marble, with some steps leading up to it. 

As the crowd huddled around this marble podium, a young man, dressed in a traditional cloth covering, the toga praetexta as many others in the chamber also wore. Clutching in his hand a rolled up parchment, sealed with wax. The official physical form of Adapton documentation. As he stood up to the marble podium, all others fell silent, and turned their gaze towards him.

"I am honoured, to call this hearing of the College of Principals. All by now have seen the proposals put forth. Upon successful expansion of out Kingdom, north and south, and the liberation of the those lands now drawing to a close. We have found newer resolve thanks to our great Ascendant King. In thanks to that leadership, I would like to pass this hearing over to Elder Principal Dracos, and Speaker of the College."

An older gentleman was helped up the steps of the podium, and the younger man made his way down. Applauds were heard as he made his way to the top of the podium. The young man, as they passed, handed across the wax sealed roll to him, and he took it would humility and grace for such an older man. His long white beard seemed smooth, and well kept, as was his long white hair. With an ethereal grace he took his position, and with energy unfound in most his age, his discourse was carried almost throughout the city. 

"Welcome my fellow principals. I am upon you today to declare our latest agreed edict. It is with my greatest pleasure, and with greatest honour I have been bestowed this opportunity to announce this. With such an occasion, I am hereby opening out discussion for public viewing. And henceforth, our colloquy shall be reverberated."

With, that almost command like gesture, a light was shone from an unknown source into the chamber, as a undisclosed recording device began. Outside of the high city, around Adaptus, the broadcast of the declaration was beamed to public viewing spaces, top buildings, and displayed from drones, which seemed conveniently already in place. 

The Elder Principal continued, as he broke the wax seal, unfurled the parchment, and began to read. 

"Our college, has seen hit, to honour our most esteemed of elected Archon, our Ascendant King Augustus II. Through his grand leadership, our kingdom has swelled not only in size, but also in prosperity, wealthy, technology, and efficiently. As well as from a social standpoint, we have undertaken a new renaissance in visionary social progression, morality, and philosophical outlook. The likes of this leadership has not been seen in decades, if not hundreds of years. While, many leaders, such of our once hereditary King Caralus III. Have bestowed upon our realm, a benevolent and charismatic leadership, which saw our nation through troubled times. It is our Elected Archon, and King Augustus II, who has, not by fate, not choice, steered our envisioned peoples to a brighter future, beyond any of the confines of what previously though achievable." The old man took a slight pause. Taking in the surroundings. Allowing his words to sink into those millions now in audience. 

He continued. "It was agreed, at the last shine of light, in the evening of our last day, by this college, to bestow a new era to our grand Archons leadership, and to further our nation, beyond it's current epoch, into a new and unprecedented future. I, with great pride, herby declare, the ascension of our Ascendant King complete. And we have recognised, in his honour, and this nations honour, to redefine who we are. As such, it is my honour to resurrect the former title of our ancestors, of the Aroman Empire, of which, ourselves, and our gracious and long lasting friends in @Tagmatium Rules integral parts of. The hitherto title, with no worth successors to, of Caesar, unto our Elected King. I herby declare, the appointment of the Imperii Princeps, Caesar Augustus II. And the dawning of a new age for our nation. Our Maximo Foederati Imperium."

The declaration was sudden to most. There was no great cheer, but more a muted yet positive acknowledgement. Augustus himself was present during the assembly of principals. Stood, adorned in his golden robes, towards the back of the room. He knew this was coming. Many in the chamber turned to him. A slow and gradual applause began to reverberate around the hall, as he slowly, smiling, made his way to the podium. 

He approached with a similar humility that graced the Elder Principal. And as the podium was handed over to Augustus. It was his turn to speak. His voice carried by this new, reborn ascendancy. 

"I can only thank you all for this gracious honour, and I accept wholeheartedly. I wish to seek, as your elected Caesar, a brighter future, not only for Adaptus, but for all souls across this Eurth. We have, along with our closet friends in our neighbouring Holy Imperium, brought a new found peace to the Occident, and it is my goal to extend that outward. To bring about the recivilisation of our world." Augustus paused. 

"A first act as Caesar, I feel I must announce to you, our next actions. It is no secret, that our great planet has degraded in it's level of civility for some time now. This dark age, triggered by the Great Lull, is now ending. And we here, will be at the forefront of this new renaissance. We have pledged to protect those unfortunate enough to be unable to protect themselves, and bring light to the barbaric dark of our world. We have partially done this with the chaotic empire that is the Derthalen. However since, we have recognised the nation of @Greater Serbia to also take practice of slavery. Not only that, but the wholesale oppression of it's minority of Bosniaks. with this, it is my sword duty, as not only your Caesar, but as a protector of civilisation in these chaotic times, to assure the continued free existence of this worlds people. Within our Alexandrian Realm, and without it." Again pausing, Augustus, surveyed the room, knowing this way being broadcast globally. He picked up his head, and his face turned stern. 

"Our latest communication, post our declaration to Greater Serbia has been seen as nothing but sabre rattling, and posturing. Well, to be frank, I find their lack of civility in their response an act of treason against reason! To defy modern logic, is to decry yourself of your ability to reason. It is with this I must declare the Greater Serb nation to be a rouge, and dangerous state. An oppressive state, utilising false flag endeavours to oppress its minority to the point of genocide. The time, in this era for words, is dwindling. It is with a heavy heart, I conclude that these despots, and backwater savages know only violence, and brutality. And thus, it is with this thought, I turn to my next actions."

Looking down to his feet, and then back to the people around him, he gave a large sign, still maintaining his stern gaze. 

"My Grand Consul, Ceres Stolos, was this morning, instructed to begin the preparations for removing of Adapton officials in the nation of Greater Serbia. We are henceforth, as a nation, engaging in an active trade embargo, and blockade of the Greater Serbian nations. And, as preservers of justice, freedom, liberty, and humanity, we ask not to do this alone. We ask that those who agree with our ideal, and our morality, follow us, and join us. Our fleet, patrolling the Adalantic has been instructed to make way to the coastline, near the Greater Serbian state, and will begin the process, of trade denial, via the sea first, and then, via the land if need be. We reach out to those like minded friends in Argis, Alharu, and Europa, as well as other regions of in friendly stead, to assist us in bringing about a cease to this barbaric of practice."

Stopping once more, to take breath, and reconcile his thoughts. Taking stead, he continued. 

"I believe, we, as an international community, need to address these issue. I humbly invite, any, and all those willing to partake, to join me, and my Praetors, and Principals, to discuss this further. Members of the TRIDENT and those also feeling our sentiment, in the new world and old, are welcome to converge on the High City. A meeting of minds for this new area is long overdue. I grand you all a good day. And thank you all once again for this bestowment of grace, and authority."

Augustus stood down of the podium, to a round of gracious applause. A new time had began for Adaptus, and hopefully for those of Eurth. It was time to stand up to those who had turned their back on the old Europan values. As the Phoenix had now taught the Falcon all it needed. It was now time for the Falcon to stand proud once more. Taking flight, the Falcon set its sight on the horizon, and the great new adventure that awaited it. Only the future mattered now. And it was sure to build that future in it's bright and noble vision. 

KSFjf5U.jpg

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  • 3 months later...

Once again, in the hallowed halls of the High City, footsteps could be heard echoing through the marble halls. Two men, flanked by the ever present Hypaspists, made their way to one of the smaller meeting halls of the High City. As they approached the arched entranceway. Two angelic figures appeared, and then as if floating, they hurried away, in utter silence. 

The glaring light of this new room for a brief second blinded the two men as they entered. Quickly their eyes adjusted, and as they did, the flanking Hypaspists had now taken up their position to the entranceway. And before them stood a woman. Wearing traditional brilliant white Toga praetexta, with a solid diagonal strip of violet across the chest. She stood, in almost effortless natural beauty, with long light brunette hair, with an ever so slight twist to the locks. Her skin seemed pure, while she stood, not very tall, but very slender. Her figure was impeccable. She was starring at the two men. 

"Principal Aedesia!? I thought you were in Bonesis, at the academy?" One of them men said, with a somewhat shocked, and surprised tone. 

"Afternoon to you too Taxiles." She smiled, and then turned to the second man. "Antonius." She again nodded and smiled. 

Antonius smiled and nodded in return. "Aedesia."

It was clear now, these two men where the two generals Antonius, who had been tasked with securing the Northern territories, and the former Beautancus. Which was in it's final stages. And the general Taxiles, who had been tasked with securing the southern terrorises, and liberating former Alexandrian lands from the Euclidian threat. This also was now in it's final stages. 

The two had been both sent for by Augustus, to report on the current situations in both theatres. However, it was clear this was a front for a more covert briefing. What was unknown to the two was that Augustus would not be present. Assumed still abroad by the two. Both, were somewhat puzzled by the presence of Aedesia however.

Aedesia, a woman of incredible beauty, was usually found in Bonesis, to the north of the former Bonecedonian Kingdom of ancient times. She was a lecturer, at the Bonesis Academy of Art, Literature and Martial Excellence. Her subjects generally included ancient Adapton literature, Neo-Classical Music, and Grand Strategic Warfare, a mastery of such realms made her a natural Principal in the college. Whilst still young, her reputation proceeded her. 

"As you can both tell by now Augustus isn't here for your briefing. However I have this for you both." 

She handed both generals rolls of paper, stamped with wax, and Augustus' seal. They both opened the rolls and read together. Quickly both looked back up in more bemusement. 

"No longer generals?! Is Augustus becoming all nostalgic! I thought Generalis was a prestigious title? The Great Adatpon War is now meaningless to him? He's obsessed with titles!" Antonius scorned. 

Aedesia looked at him softly, but with a stern grace. "Antonius, Legate was the traditional title given to only the most capable of generals in ancient times. Embrace it. If you wish to still refer to yourself as a Generalis, please do, but officially, you are both now the first Legates in a thousand years. Enjoy it." Again, she smiled. Antonius nodded. 

Taxiles then began. "And this..." He started with his gravelly tone. "Principalis Militaris... I suppose congratulations are in order?"

Aedesia giggled to herself. "I suppose they are. Augustus has seen fit to grant me the position of Principalis Militaris, placing the military firmly back under the control of the College, rather than under the Ceres, and the Federal Assembly. As such, all Legates - that's you two - now report to me. And I report to Augustus. I hope you find that a suitable arrangement."

Taxiles closed his eyes, smiled and nodded with a slight chuckle. "Well, I can't grumble at that can I. If there is anyone who knows how to run a military it's you. Just leave the fighting to us I suppose." Again he chucked. 

"Precisely." Aedesia concurred. "Now Antonius, since Beautancus is now subdued, and we are positioning the new puppet government. I need you to move onto your next orders." She handed Antonius another roll of sealed paper. 

Antonius read it, nodded with agreement, and looked back towards Aedesia. "I'll see to it. And congratulations." With that, he turned to Taxiles, nodded, and then left. 

Aedesia then turned to Taxiles. "I have something a bit different for you now." She then handed him another roll of paper. Both of them stood in silence as he read the paper to himself. He then looked up. 

"Agamanon, is an arrogant sod. But I suppose I out-rank him now?" Taxiles asked. 

"No, you won't by the time you get there. He's being given a similar naval position on a par with you. We need legate equivalents in each branch, and he is the perfect fit. You will both be working together. He has been in the area sometime now. You will rendezvous with additional vessels and troops. Some of those troops will be ones you have been with in the southern theatre." 

Aedesia continued. "You will organise the ground offensive, and secure the necessary ground based assets as required. Agamanon will take care of the air and sea side of things. You'll be given command of mostly marines, with the assistance of Hypaspists, and Companion Cavalry. Mostly lighter cavalry. I am, additionally, because of the nature of these operations, giving you and attachment of Apostles."

Taxiles' face turned sour. "Apostles!? Are you serious?"

Aedesia then became stern. "I am deadly serious Taxiles. You'll be given a detachment of Apostles of Plato, 12 to be exact. They will be under your command, however will operate independently. The sensitive nature of the situation calls for it. We require their specialist methodologies."

"I see." Taxiles replied. "Well, so it is then. I best be off then." 

"You best be. Send Agamanon my regards. And make this operation quick. You've been gone long enough in the south, and as your wife, I miss you. So please. Hurry this up." Aedesia then dropped her head. Taxiles then turned and left. Quickly followed by the Hypaspists. 

Aedesia raised her head and watched as her husband left the entranceway and faded into the white light outside of the room. 

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  • 1 month later...

Clambering footsteps against the marble floors of the High City was all that filled the large corridors between rooms in the main chamber, as the Principals ended their latest round of discussions. As the mass of one hundred or so elite of Adapton society adjourned for the day, an angelic figure approached an older silhouette in the procession. This older woman was lead down a separate corridor by the heavenly figure, which seemed to glide across the marble floor rather than walk. The two rounded several corners before descending what seemed like several flights of stairs, however in the High City, it was impossible to have a true orientation of where one was going. 

Eventually, they approached a darker room, one slightly uncharacteristic of the usual aesthetic usually followed by this citadel. In this room stood several clad in military attire, while others donned traditional Principal togas. There were around a dozen others in the room. The older woman could see quite clearly that these were the foremost Principals from the Imperium. All of which, now had their eyes on her. 

Finally, after an arduous pause, the silence was broken. 

"Helen, welcome." Came a voice. 

"Greetings all. This is somewhat odd." Helen replied. 

Just then, the form of a man came forth from a shadowed corner of the room, and approached a large marble and gold table which stood in the centre of the room. Donning robes of pure gold, lined with a crimson beading, the figure startled Helen.

"Augustus! I thought you were abroad?!" Helen quizzed with awe. 

"Aye that I was. However I am required to attend to other, more pressing matters. I feel the West is in good hands between Agamanon, and Taxiles. I'm sure they can carve out a fine presence for us." Augustus somewhat rambled, however, no one here would stop him. "As Principalis Epistula, I have a request of you."

"Of course Augustus." Helen replied with intrigue. 

"I have a message I'd like you to send, It should be forwarded to you soon. Please make sure it reaches its recipient in good time. Once this delivered, I have several communications I'd like you to relay to the following people..." Augustus continued to prate into the night. 

__________________________________________________________

**Encrypted Communique**

TO: His Holy Imperial Majesty, Kommodos III, of the Greater Holy Ahromanoi, @Tagmatium Rules

FROM: High Ethereal Caesar Augustus III, of the Grand Alexandrian Realm, Adaptus.

Greetings Kommodos. 

I hope you are well, and time is treating you with the care and respect such a Holy father deserves. 

I am in no doubt, you and your Ahromanoi are aware of the state of affairs we find ourselves in today. Many of our former allies, neighbours, and friends, have succumbed to time. Stability within our continent on this Eurth is eroding, and our small subcontinent appears to be alone. 

Our joint efforts have gone well to secure our homelands, and our Aroman realms, but I think we both understand that times are changing, and not necessarily along the old lines, and narratives. Power is slowly ebbing away from Europa, and is ever growing in the West. 

We both have had our own agendas in the West recently, and only rightly so. But, I feel, and I no doubt you too recognise this, that there are limitation to our endeavours as single actors. Whilst both our respected sovereigns wield significant dynamisms in our own rights. It's apparent that emerging entities in the West threaten to push our initiatives to the brink of their capabilities. 

I appreciate the Aroman bond we share, and that our histories, and ancestries are bound forever. And that our roots are intertwined. Our closeness and unity has, forever, been the core of the Occident. But it seems, our legacy, however solid, is in jeopardy. 

I would like to request that we both convene, as it seems the time is right for us to do so. Perhaps it may be appropriate to rendezvous at the site of the great city itself. As I believe the time has come, for those bonds to be asserted once again. 

Sincerely, your Frater Aromanus,

Augustus. 

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