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The Unity of Ceris (NAU Expansion)


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  • 1 month later...

After a days long negotiation the room had been cleared out and now it was just Mariah Steube and the President of Rewhain, Andelm Regenogen, left alone together. She was wondering why he had decided to clear the room to presumably have a conversation, as it had felt at this point that the Rewhainians were almost hostile to joining the Union. It was something that she personally hadn't expected that much push back on, after all why apply for membership in the first place?

"I'm sure you have a lot of questions right now," Regenogen said, leaning back in his chair. He was man in his mid fifties, his hair a seasoned pepper gray. He was in fact the oldest member of the delegation, most appearing in their thirties, a remnant of the war for independence from the old Hodrean government in the 1980s.

"You could say that, Mr. President." Prime Minister Steube replied, leaning forward in her chair while resting her elbows on the conference table. "I feel confused about the resistance to the Union when your nation approached us."

Regenogen let out a laugh,"Don't take it the wrong way Prime Minister, we are a naturally argumentative people. And to be frank with you... we fought hard for our independence. To be subservient to any form of other government can be a very hard pill for our people to swallow. That doesn't mean that we don't see the NAU in a positive light, but all of us want to make sure that we won't be drowned in a wave of other nations making decisions that go against who we are."

"The Union will always respect another nation's sovereignty, but Mr. President, you have to be aware that joining something like a supranational union will always create a situation where you people might be on the losing side of a vote. Rewhain was Ceris's first democracy, surely you know this reality?"

"Of course we do. But of course not everyone is going to be so excited to see this Union above us."

Steube raised her eyebrow, "A Union you would be a part of and have a vote in. I would think our treatment of participation for Corinium has proved that small states within the Union have a true voice."

"A voice yes, though I think you and me know the true value of Corinium." Regenogen replied. Of course he was trying to goad her into admitting something that might expose something deeper about what the NAU really desired with Ceris.

"Of course we do. Everyone knows. It's hardly a secret that we consider Corinium an important territory for keeping Europans out of Argis. The Corinians know that too. That doesn't change that they are as equal as part of the Union as any other member." Steube said, knowing exactly what he was getting at. "But you aren't worried about poor Corinium's treatment in the Union, you're worried about Seylos."

Regenogen threw up his hands, "You can't exactly blame us. They did conquer us seventy years ago. But more importantly they have more power than all of Ceris."

"For now," Steube replied, "But one day soon, Ceris and Seylos will be on equal footing. If the Seylosians didn't want this, this Union wouldn't have happened. All of Ceris participating in the Union builds something far greater than all of us."

Regenogen stood up from his seat at the table and wandered over to the window of the room, staring out over the view of Lewisport. After becoming the capital of the NAU construction in the city had boomed, and it was easy to spot life booming throughout the city. The president took a moment to appreciate the city before turning back towards Steube, "You seem to be very sold on their vision."

Steube stood up and walked over to where he stood at the window, taking a glance herself, "Our vision Mr. President. I can't exactly serve in my post without being sold myself."

"A very new Ceriser viewpoint!" Reenogen said, with more energy than the rest of the conversation, "A brighter future, new tomorrows, all of that."

The Prime Minister let out a small chuckle, "Just like the Seylosians. But now it's more than them. It can be all of Ceris."

"Never in my life have I seen so many possible enemies from so many angles. The Dolch want us, the Anglians want us, the Stedorians, the Velaharians... Tell me Prime Minister, do you really believe in this?"

She stood there for a moment looking out at Lewisport. For her it wasn't a hard question to answer, "I suppose if you drink enough of it, you begin to like it. And it hasn't steered us wrong yet."

"It's insidious, isn't it?" Regenogen said with another laugh. "I just had to be sure Prime Minister, I hope you understand. I think Rewhain will end up in the NAU, even with our skepticism."

Steube let out a smile. She understood.

 

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  • 1 month later...

After the negotiations Regenogen and his people had returned to their large hotel accommodations within the NAU government complex in Lewisport. For many hours after his conversation with Prime Minister Steube they negotiations had dragged on. While the delegation was at least mostly convinced that joining the Union was the correct idea, many still had concerns about protecting the sovereignty of the nation in the long term. Of course joining the Union didn't just annex Rewhain into another state, but something on the scale and centralized nature of the NAU still meant a lot of law making would occur higher that the government of Rewhain itself. The country had spent hundreds of thousands of lives with its bitter war of independence from the old authoritarian regime of Hodrea, and though NAU sentiment was high, there were still many fears that needed to be allayed regarding how Rewhain could live in it. Most of the peoples of the country, the government included, wanted to make sure that places like Seylos wouldn't... 'accidentally' consume their hard fought culture after joining the Union. Of course Prime Minister Steube, who herself hailed from Ostros, was quick to dismiss such an idea, the possibility remained in their minds. The NAU of course wasn't going to give ground forever, obviously granting every new nation a slew of special exceptions wasn't feasible, but it made negotiations tough.

While going over some documents on a couch in the general area of their diplomatic suite, one of his aides came up to Regenogen and handed him his phone, "Mr. President, it's all over the news."

The president took his aides phone and looked at the headline prominently displayed on it, 'Seylosian fleet beats Anglians off Galahindan coast', "Mein gott... they actually pulled it off."

"News has already reached home sir," the aide said, taking his phone back from Regenogen, "There's even rumors that the Anglian admiral running the whole operation is going to surrender their whole fleet to them, with the Tagmatines coming in force and all."

It was the news though that Regenogen knew would seal the deal finally between Rewhain and the NAU. The Union had just established itself as the preeminent military power in the region, and just the power that would forever protect the sovereignty of Rewhain. With other countries like the Dolch is their wars, or the Stedorians in their culture conflicts vying for control in Ceris... he knew the writing was on the wall. Of course if Rewhain didn't join then the NAU wouldn't do anything to stop them, it was in their nature, but it could end up being a political disaster back home.

"Tell me... Mr. Schumaker is it?" Regenogen asked his young aide, who nodded in response, "If you were in my position, what would you do now?"

"Oh..." Schumaker thought for a moment. His indecisiveness clear to the president.

"Denken Sie nicht darüber nach. Relax, just tell me." Regenogen said.

"Well... I remember how I was raised. My grandparents were always so wary. 'Oh they helped us a bit after independence, but don't trust those Seylosians.'. I know they went through the Mandate occupation back then, but these people just aren't the same. Even the government they have know goes back to the ones actually fighting them," Schumaker said, "I just... don't really understand the fear anymore. As far as the Seylosians are concerned they've made their amends a long time ago. Their people were fighting the Sentists right alongside us. People my age just want Ceris to stop being known as hell."

Regenogen sat back and bowed his head in a moment in thought, "I guess I've never heard it put that way before."

"It's like it was is Aurelia sir," Schumaker said, "Before the Aurelian League. Everyone saw it as worse than Ceris. They had to have armored trains just for passengers! Wer könnte das glauben? But now, it's a different story. I know the OCA is hurting them a lot right now, but it's nothing like it was then. Maybe with the Union it will be the same here."

Regenogen couldn't disagree. With all the violence in Ceris, one thing had come up clear recently, the youth were now one of the biggest segments of the population. A segment of the population that was the most eager to forgive past grudges and build something new. Something that wasn't the chaos of the past seventy years. Ceris had become a battlegrounds of states, of controlling interests far outside the region itself. Now after all this time from the end of the Sentist War, it seemed like only @Tagmatium Rules was truly left on the island. Of course @Iverica had some nominal influence around due to its endeavor in Occlait, but it was the Union that was building the most inroads. And from private sources, it seemed that even the government of Secryae was weighing its options when it came to Union membership.

"Thank you Mr. Schumaker, I appreciate the input. Tomorrow is our last round of negotiations, go ahead and prepare everything I need for that and then take off. I'll need you fresh for tomorrow."

"Yes sir," Schumaker nodded and left the room, leaving Regenogen alone.

He knew that tomorrow, though after some additional negotiating, that Rewhain would agree to signing the treaty to induct it into the North Adlantic Union.

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  • 2 months later...

"Well well..." Duke Alden said while reading the news, "It appears our fate is sealed after all"

Lord August Terance, who had joined the Duke for some of the later negotiations in Cenia took a look as well grimacing. The Duke was right, their fate was sealed. The Dolch had been handily defeated in Iwenland. Of course it's not like anyone had hoped that the Union would lose more that they hoped that they would win less well. Opposition to joining the Union in Uthington came mainly from the noble classes, and they were not excited to join the Union, while pretty much everyone else in the country absolutely was. They viewed membership as a death sentence to their power in the country, as they had seen what had happened in Seylos with their noble class fading from government. They had hoped that poor performance on the part of the Union in fighting could be used as an excuse to convince the people that joining the Union would be a mistake, but after the major victory at Cascadia and now in Iwenland, there was no hope of spinning this in a way that could get them what they wanted.

"Indeed, it seems so," Lord Terance replied dryly, "I suppose this means our hands are forced in the matter, you remember the last time the commoners got upset about not getting what they wanted?"

Duke Alden remembered very well what happened. Around fifteen years ago, general unrest was spreading throughout the country over the people's rights and participation in government. It didn't help that several scandals had rocked the nation earlier from corruption. Protests were getting out of control and the government could sense the start of a possible revolution, something that the country at that time simply didn't have the security forces to handle. The Duke had relented and allowed the formation of a parliament with limited legislative powers, and frustrating allowed them to be a sort of "watchdog" for the Duke's government. It had worked for the most part, but they had been on the precipice of a major disaster, something obviously not uncommon in Ceris at the time. Now the people's interest was even more intense with this Union membership. He had never in his life expected to see the popularity of Ceriser unification again, and with such intensity.

"Yes, of course I do," Alden said, tossing the newspaper on the table in front of him, "I guess we have no choice but to play the game inside the Union."

"Well... it's not like the Union is asking us to change our government," Terance replied, taking the time to light an expensive cigar, somewhere from Florentia if he remembered correctly,"I'm sure we can handle whatever rule changes they have us go through without losing our positions."

"The concern was never about now" Alden replied annoyed, "My true worry has always been about how this Union will infect the commoner's thoughts. Pretty soon they'll be demanding more democracy, more rights. Good lord, imagine having to deal with an actual Prime Minister."

"Like you said, we'll just have to learn how to play the new game, Ceris is changing we knew this wasn't going to last forever, if the rest of the nobility wants to get left behind then more for us."

"How very optimistic of you," Alden said, taking a sip of an expansive whisky. "Perhaps we can arrange for several noble candidates to get elected. The ones we like anyway. I doubt most of them will make it in, but if we get enough it should keep things nice and stable."

"There you go, already thinking ahead," Terance replied with a laugh, then puffing on his cigar. "Have we heard anything about Rewhain?"

That had been one of the last ways to avoid membership. If Rewhain had decline, and it had been a real possibility considering their streak of independence, it could be used as an excuse as well. A flimsy excuse, but an excuse nonetheless. They knew it was a long shot however, with so much conflict happening around Ceris it was only natural for the Rewhainians to look for protection to ensure that independence, and the Union offered that without having to pay a dear price. During the Sentist War many nations were willing to sell their souls for outside protection, but luckily for Ceris as a whole many outsiders began to lose interest.

"They'll sign. They hemmed and hawed for awhile to drag on the negotiations but they'll sign," Alden said.

Terance put out the remains of his cigar and stood up, making sure his clothing wasn't too ruffled, "Very well then, shall I go and prepare for our own signing as well? I imagine we have much work to do here."

Alden nodded, "Yes. I'll contact the good 'Prime Minister of the Union', and tell her our intentions."

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