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The Raffle


Haruspex

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Death, inevitable Death.
So now you come to take my world;
Hence your blackened cloak unfurled.
And peering down upon my form
- Bereft of pity - eyes o' storm.

Death, inexorable Death.
‘When-? ’ the question, exquisitely for Thee.
My dream retorts 'No! never for me! ’
But now awake, I welcome you so -
Relenting, repenting, with nowhere to go.

Death, adamant Death.
You cast your spell and guide me 'way,
For life and I have had our day.
What fate of me, prey? Oh! to tell!
Glorious in Heaven or gnarled in Hell?

Death, ineluctable Death.
Oh wiry ghoul, 'tis You I follow -
To leave my body, grey and shallow.
‘Come! ’ you bid in thundering tones,
‘Bid farewell, thine shattered bones.’

 

The Imperial palace within Prathen mirrored that of the great temple, throne of the Tyng Sudran faith held sway over all Haru. Where as the faithful chanted within and about an ebony version, the palace was of a khaki or light brown hue. Shaped, and composed of basalt stone, smooth volcanic rock and more modern stone styles, the building stood out amidst the inner and outer wall surrounding it.  A single entry visible to the naked eye lay in the center. At either side, the royal imperial legionary [RIL] guarded the occupants within. Beyond heavy oak and iron doors that were as of yet, opened inwards and inviting, lay the interior corridor that led into the main hall. White stone faced inwards and bathed the insides in a soft glow as light radiated from on high. Black tile upon the floor clearly marked a path towards the center piece of the temple itself. The imperial throne room stretched wide and far, yet levels above arose to look down and within as well.

It was here that the heads, lords, vice-lords and the highest ranking legionary officers could be found. For this day was not as any other. Yet the throne was bare, and with it, the advisory council could not as of yet be seen. Yet the hall was filling, nobility of every rank and standing, chosen for particular gifts or abilities. As the doors to the court closed behind the stragglers, they were left to wonder for now.

Much further up, several floors actually from the throne room, the empress set within a high backed chair, it would serve as a throne for the moment. Her advocate to the left, her wife to the right, and then advisory councilors, national assembly leaders and military officers alike were splayed out by standing before her, seated at a grand table. 

Admiral Tihun had the floor for the moment. Kira made a continue gesture with right hand. He gruffed a moment.

As I was saying your grace, with the dissolution of the treaty with the Khel'tine (Tagmatine), and the loss of the canal travel to the machinations of the Anglians, we are experiencing a series of setbacks to the planned action.

Kira's body language was minimal, yet her voice, carried sharply. There will always be trials Admiral. Ones that we must always overcome. A glance paid to those present, as if she could see through them to their hearts. Our population is growing, with the annexation of the North, even without the heretics present, we need an outlet. Thus the Greater Kaldana territory has become a reality.

She swerved that gaze to Tihun. Continue Admiral.

A slight grasp of his tunic, tugging at the collar before resuming. Even though the setbacks have made the routes longer, the progress to use the domain's media to broadcast the colonization raffle is being prepared. 

Tihun settled down as senior minister Yasa Elemmiire Orn the Second spoke. His advanced age gave him a pass on standing, and his hands rested on documentation. Working with the various ministries, industrial leaders and more, we have devised a simple solution for a gargantuan task your grace. We have devised a raffle, targeting between the ages of 20-30, with the promise of a two point status increase to their standing should they go. I suspect many will.

Once accepted, those who are eligible for the raffle will head towards Perya or Hades depending on which is closest. The rail system and available ocean liners shall transport towards Kaldana City, Levee, and Faide. Lower status citizenry are given the priority in this raffle. I believe Beira Vek Elemmiire can give you more on this.

Beira had a smile like a lit torch, bright and illuminating. Your grace, the plan for the domains listed has been created using the wards themselves, the local leaders of the wards in every city-state shall do a raffle call once per week until a quota has been reached.

A faint nod from Kira. Of our military standing with the GHET?

Kaorin Renor Vlos Elemmiire, The head of Northern Military Command spoke then.

Your grace, on behalf of the currently serving command officers and myself, know that the border is sealed. As per your command, troops will maintain their duties and currently active forces will abstain from being included in being apart of this raffle. There will be no change in our presence there. She contemplated the next words carefully however. Should the GHET enact the Pact of Worms, then our forces are committed to acting on their behalf, to reinforce their lines against Anglian aggression. Our forces at the border thusly cannot withdraw, and because of the pact, of the words written in blood, most high ranking officers will not obey an order to abandon their commands.

Kira mused a bit as Ayn spoke. A first in many of these meetings that she had become apart of.

Your words strike true Fleet-Lord, we must honor the pact and the blood swear that Sa'Karn the Wise gave to the Khel'tine. She glanced about the vast table, watching heads nod. Our grace, daughter of His, Hero of the Imperium, Noble warrior of honored birthrite, made this pact with our Christian neighbors. If we fail in this duty, we are without honour. So we must uphold, even as citizenry make ready to further colonize another territory. 

This is a good moment however, the lands of Kaldana have been wild to long. With a boost to the population, the lands of former Kabarria will flourish, and wave the banner of the Imperium in the process.

As Ayn leaned back, Kira rose to her feet, and slowly walked about the table, hands behind her back, aware of the many eyes that trailed.

A decade, perhaps even two, maybe three, however long it takes, this is the path we have set, to reduce the burdening of the infrastructure within the imperial domain. Admiral Tihun, dispatch those ships that are to defend Kaldana as swiftly as able.  Vice-Lord Mel'Ana Velven, keep your spies and counter-intelligence going as usual. We shall be formal to all whom have a presence within Prathen, just deflect their curiosities.

Ria spoke back. Of the Ateenians? The union with Ajax gives them domain rights.

Words left Kira's mouth. They will learn of the raffle soon enough, everyone will, just not right now. Status quo as normal. Come, we shall now spread word to those gathered within the throne room. While your talents are needed, it is the action of those in stations below yours that shall begin the daunting task of immigration.

The Winter Court

Proceeding the empress, came those who had been in the meeting. Flowing past the throne, each taking their spot as per status as the crowd watched. Murmurs ran rampant about those in attendance, curious as to the summoning and the closed doors. There was no media presence, save for those who operated it under the national licenses and so on. Eventually came the Autokráteira, current Ix-ajaw of House Karn Elemmiire, Ayn Gende Elemmiire.

The woman gracefully settled into a spot nearest the throne. Eventually came that which they had all waited upon. Kira'Karn Elemmiire, Empress of the Haru-Dakat Territories, Sovereign of the Imperial Government and its affairs, Autokrator of Kaldana, and Matriach of House Karn Elemmiire. Adorned in an ebony hued Amelia Cheongsam style dress of lace, with no sleeves, and a looser A-line skirt that flowed seamlessly. A casual settling upon the throne.

A soft press of button upon the throne and a speaker within it, would carry her voice through the interior. You are all nobility, the highest of legionary ranking be it the sea, the air, or the ground. Champions of industry, and others who were deemed worthy of this gathering.

The exodus that my father, Sa'Karn the Wise spoke of, the plan that came before him, through the lines of yore, to the days of the first emperor Hakon Fremar Elemmiire I, is in the process of being enacted. However, it has been slightly altered as you will find out.

The silence was heavy, until a voice and figure belonging to it emerged. This was Kija Varis Zun, Patriarch of House Varis Zun, Commander of the 1st Legion. So we are expanding to the wilds of Kaldana then? How many of the citizenry will be sent?

Kira leaned forward. A raffle is being formed. The plan is to send at least twenty million to the Kaldana territories. 

Another voice, emboldened perhaps by Kija. Hura Sa'Yao of the CSRSM brought a voice to bear. You understand majesty that such will be a massive undertaking. To squander fear, it is being properly coordinated?

Kira smiled thinly. Yes. All ministries will be coordinating this effort, utilizing local ward leaders, media and so on to propagate the idea that this is a fantastic idea for all, while maintaining our naval and border security as per the status quo. To squash any would be protests from the military minded of the group.

Dikan Yaro, a senior minister for the Ninth Circle coughed and then spoke. I think this is ill timed your grace, what of the Kussians? 

She spoke firmly yet with a clarity that hinted at a neutral tone. The Kussian's will be given a referendum, those whom choose to participate in the raffle shall enjoy the benefits of it, those who choose not to, shall have that choice, the same for any imperial citizen. 

Vice-Lord Terak Ve'Elemmiire had been called back from the Tagmatine, especially for this gathering. He had a grasp of the situation, yet he had to ask, so he did. Your grace, I assume that you intend to let the GHET know of this prospect eventually, and properly. Even if we are no longer allies, they are our neighbors.

Kira leaned back into her chair, as if in thought. Right index finger raised up, then she spoke as the crowd listened. For now, the GHET is to be not told the motives for the movements. At a later, appropriate date, I grant you the chance to do so.

Terak offered a bow of his head. As you wish your grace. 

There were of course those whom were outraged, some of the older houses, and others of industry and military, even a few of the mercantile guilds were upset to say the least.

Kira listened to each one of them, in turn, waiting until the end to speak. Your complaints are noted, but this is in motion. Should you..take a more rooted stance against this agenda, I will be forced to remove you from your status within the Imperial domain. It would be a shame to remove an ancient house or bloodline from their place of status. 

She continued as splay of left hand was made. Not to speak of those who could find themselves excommunicated from guild membership, or discharged from the legions vast. I will allow for no deviations from this grand goal. Those of you who choose to stand against the throne, will be ground down to the dust of bones. 

My rule is lenient to a point, but remember that above all, I am beholden to the laws of our people, the paths that have been decided by prophecy, and our faith that guides, as it always has. You may have been fooled by Ji'Mar, or even the attempts we've made to meet the modern world, but remember, we are Haru, and this is ordained edict for our future. A stern gaze paid towards present, those with unworthy constitutions seemed to wither under it. The doors to the court opened.

There are refreshments within the open hall, amenities of the court at your discretion. Do enjoy before leaving for your own holdings. The advocate to the Empress, Kaorin Jargo Vlos spoke up as those gathered, were now allowed to leave.

Edited by Haruspex (see edit history)
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