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4 yrs ago
Current To all my RP buddies, I'm gearing up for Camp Nanowrimo in July! My RPs will be slowing down this month and next. PM me for a quick response to an RP I'm in!
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4 yrs ago
Back to the grind! Unavailable to post from 3:30 to 10:30 PM EST! Your Fortune: You will find something lost long ago!
4 yrs ago
Working tonight! Unavailable to post from 3:30 to 10:30 PM EST! Stay classy, Guildies!
4 yrs ago
Work tonight! I'll be unavailable to post from 3:30 to 10:30 PM EST! Will check threads and posts during breaks.
4 yrs ago
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Bio

Roleplay addict, I work two jobs which unfortunately cuts back on my roleplay time.

In my limited free time I GM one ONLY WAR tabletop game, play a shopaholic Zeltron in a Star Wars game, and try to resist the urge to write long stories as the aftermath usually plunges me into a dark and unhappy depressed state.

Or maybe that's normal!

Most Recent Posts

WIP

William "Billy Boy" McMiles


Character Age: 46

Corruption: 15 (Corporate Stooge, State Department Pawn)

Character's Portfolio: - Foreign Investor. William McMiles, an American businessman, is either the luckiest sonofabitch in the whole Traverse Hotel Line, or he has the worst oversight in the business. After serving in the United States War Department organizing barracks and billeting for the mass mobilization effort, William found peacetime work in the hotel industry, developing resorts for tourists hungry to enjoy the fruits of peace in more stable climes. While all of his contemporaries are looking to Cuba to create their playgrounds, Willy has set his sights on the newly-independent nation of Balruba.

William landed at the Balruba international airport three days before hostilities were formally ended, but by that point the war was done. Armed with a corporate bank account and a friendly "driver" with ties to the American Intelligence Community, William is looking at land across the island to develop a new hotel for American tourism. The fact that the hotel may be turned into a hotbed for anti-communist operations is just a small little detail in the big picture. Balruba's beaches can stand to make a lot of money if they're able to come to some sort of arrangement with Willy's corporate backers...
"Three and a half million? I call bullshit." Minister Gishath tapped his knuckles on the table, his face a mask of scoff at the newspapers arrayed before the cabinet.

"Call bullshit," Defence Minister Nezahl said, lighting a cigar before taking a puff. "Go ahead. If I hadn't been to Acrad myself, I'd say they're inflating the numbers for shock value as well. But you haven't seen how tightly Acrad packs their cities. And unless they're sitting on stocks of rifles, uniforms, fuel and food, that army is going to be as effective as a horde of futball hooligans. Destructive, but not about to destroy an armored division. Hastur will be in real danger of running out of bullets within a week when that peasant horde goes to war. We can expect orders for everything an army needs to operate in the field within the week- from both sides."

Prime Minister Tishana continued to glare at the papers- Hasturi propaganda, Acrad Corporate Rags, and Verdasou financial press. Along with a half dozen government reports in various states of mess across the Minister's Dining Hall. It was a working lunch without the lunch, and she was glad that the sky was overcast outside the windows of the Minister's Residence, else she could expect another tension headache. "Three and a half million- even armed with nothing but sticks, batons, and pistols- is still nothing to sneeze at. I expected more time to find a way out of this mess. Hastur wanted our backing for a peace conference and they put a gun to our head to get it. Now we have general mobilization and our two largest markets are shooting at one another. We have a full-fledged depression on the horizon now and no markets to recoup any losses."

"Not necessarily," Gishath said, his jowls jiggling as his jaw twisted into a cheshire smile. "I had a letter forwarded to me from a friend of mine, Laquarius. Elyr is an untapped market in far south Karakus. They're friends of Acrad but within Hastur's diplomatic orbit, traditionally, and Queen Bree is not too happy about being dragged to war. But if she breaks from Hastur or Acrad, they'll need a new food supplier.

"We're a bit stretched at the moment. But if we enforce neutrality and cut ties to Hastur, Elyr would allow the ranchers to recoup some losses. Plus I've received confirmation that several more of the abandoned ranches have been reclaimed from the Overgrowth and will be operating in time for the next harvest. Elyr doesn't have money in spades, but international trade must continue. Especially if we cut ties to Hastur and keep our contracts with Acrad."

Nezahl damn near ate his cigar when the Minister of Agriculture suggested continuing to supply Acrad. "Gishath, I can't send our ships into an active war zone! Once the Acrad and Hasturi ships start trading broadsides, all it'll take is one shooting incident to try and drag us into the war on a favorable side. Not to mention the Coral Market will go into a tailspin when the insurance premiums for convoys spikes."

"Nezahl, if we default on our current trade agreements we'll have the RWP clawing their way to parliament when the depression spikes- this is the only way to keep credit flowing and maybe, maybe go to recession levels instead. If we can start selling warship hulls to Acrad to supplement our income-"

Tishana had heard enough of that talk. "No, Gishath. Nezahl is right. There's a declaration of war, that means the danger of us getting dragged in has become too great to keep going about our business. I want the Harbormaster to begin an impound process- no shipments are going to Acrad or Hastur from our ports. We'll fulfill the contracts, but if they want their supplies, they'll come to us. Dock in port, the teamsters will load the vessels, and send them on their way. If Acrad can neutralize the Hasturi fleet, it'll go a long way to restoring the old trade terms. Now, as for Elyr..."

- - - - -


@Roby6Com



- - - - -


@Blenheim Laquarian's initial response to Queen Bree II was brief, a very diplomatic and wordy note that could simply be read as "Let me call some people, don't go anywhere!" For about two days after it was dispatched via cable, that was the end of it. The wheels of internal bureaucracy were spinning across the sea, even as the papers were being filled with more and more fanciful stories of mass mobilization and border skirmished between Acrad and Hastur.

The Queen's private telegraph sprang to life at roughly 4:40 AM Elyrian time on the third day, the palace staff hurriedly translating what came through.

@Wernher Tishana had to take an aspirin after reading after the Hasturian diplomatic note. The tension headaches she was constantly fighting off when it came to that insufferable oaf across the sea would somehow lead to an aneurism someday- she was certain of it. Even so, she leaned back in her leather chair, massaging her temples as the clink-clang of Vona visiting Tishana's private stock in the corner of her office.

"He's insane," Vona said, helping themself to a dram of whiskey from Tishana's crystal decanter. "The fucking oaf. Dumping his gold reserves into the international market? Practically blackmailing us, and then putting the boards of the shipping associations on notice of all they stand to lose? Does he have any idea what all this meddling will do to him? Hastur's money will be used as toilet paper before the end of the week once he pulls the trigger!"

"And we'll be looking at a recession if we lose trade relations with Hastur. If both Acrad and Hastur go, we're in a depression. It'll be The Eruption without the volcano! So now that we've established he has a tenuous grip on sanity," Tishana said. "Any man who keeps a literal harem in this day in age is either a barbarous warlord or has the best equipment gods ever granted a person. The fact that he's willing to shoot himself in the face so long as the ricochet hits us? We need an answer to that because there's no way in hell I can give him what he's asking."

"Hastur has our capital investments though. It's the largest commodity market on the Exchange. If Hastur dumps that gold, we'll be in a bind. I spent years negotiating that market opening after the eruption calmed. And he's going to burn it all down just because he can't be civilized with Arcad. The only people who have more skin in our game than Hastur are Acrad." Vona took a moment to down the whiskey in the crystal glass, thought for a moment, then refilled it. "You're the head of the Bank, Tishana. What sort of outs do we have from this?"

"No easy ones. But they exist. If Hastur dumps the gold, I'll need to initiate an interest rate spike. Not a small one either. It'll slow the rate of inflation, but everyone from the farmhands to the noble houses will feel it. I can get our friends in the Financial Times to write some puff pieces blaming Hastur- I'll even leak the diplomatic cable if I have to. If we go that route, Hastur will see his foreign investment dry up and he'll wish he still had that gold while Acrad is kicking his ass up and down the continent. Then we buy the gold through proxies. Interested aristocrats. Corporations. Privateer security companies. We cash all that political capital ASAP to get that gold. All of it. And stash it in the vaults of the Glass Bank. That'll be a big check, and it'll give Hastur the buying power to finance his war with little or no notice. But once it's in our vaults we can lock it down and stabilize the currency markets. Pour me one of those for myself while you're over there, will you? Don't skimp either. Been a long day."

"Still leaves us with a sorry economic hand," Vona passed a whiskey-filled glass to Tishana, who spilled only a few drops on her blouse when she started sipping it. "Elections are next year and the RWP will ride that Interest Spike all the way to the Commons. The Plan is still in its opening stages."

"It's still on track," Tishana said. "We just need a new market to replace Hastur once I hit the Spike and the aristocrats need a new market to invest in. And there are a couple of contenders. But first-" Tishana withdrew a quill-pen from its inkwell, "- we need to answer this."



---------------------------------


@TheEvanCat Three days after Kandeh's official billeting, the mail clerk dropped a notice on his desk of an 8-Y - an official correspondence from a foreign diplomatic official. Had it been opened before he arrived due to "state security"? Probably would depend on the inspecting officer. But the envelope was cream colored, high quality, and stamped with a local return address.



---------------------------------


Summary:

- Hastur receives an answer to their ultimatum. "We'll do what we want. And that is be neutral. Don't threaten or provoke us again, or we may not remain neutral or prevent our private corporations from doing business with you."

- Fluff interactions with Saraya



Southern Verdasou

Type of Government: Parliamentary (Plutocratic) Monarchy

Head(s) of Government:
Gishath, Minister of Agriculture
Nezahl, Minister of Defence
Vona, Foreign Secretary
Tishana, Chancellor of the Bank of Glass (Prime Minister)
Kumena, Queen of Verdasou


Economy:
- Imports
* Heavy Weapons
* Manufactured Goods
* Metals

- Exports
* Food
* Shaped Coral and Water Glass
* Financial Services
* Naval Hulls
* Luxury Goods (Tobacco, Coffee, Sugar)

The Verdasoun Economy was once driven by the Privateer Fleet. Its ships once moved luxury goods like spices, shaped coral, and pearls in enormous fleets for great profit. Pre-calamity, they had reached a point where they were moving private cargo between ports for corporations both foreign and domestic for a modest markup, protected by the guns of the Golden Fleet. The Privateers no longer rule the seas unchallenged, but their influence is still felt in the Coral Market. When the convoys of Merchants began returning from long voyages unchallenged during the Age of Piracy, their wealth was jealously guarded by Verdasouns and re-invested. Banks and vaults in Verdasou hold accounts for corporations, rulers, politicians and oligarchs from across the world. The Verdasoun Guilder is one of the primary trade currencies against which other forms of cash are measured against. Indeed, it's a joke among political circles that most Government Ministers of the Economy have direct lines to a one of the Glass Bank's branches rather than an official embassy.

The two primary entities of the Verdasoun Finance industry are the Glass Bank and the Coral Exchange. The Coral Exchange is a stock and bond market that is managed by private corporations, though interest rates and trade taxes are managed by Verdasou’s Minister of Finance.

The Glass Bank is a government run institution. It provides loans to nations and corporations alike (the latter are overseen by the Minister of Finance, the former by bureaucrats), and holds enormous wealth in underground vaults. Bouillon from nations, kings, emperors and private individuals are stored on the remote island under intense scrutiny. While it is not readily available, nations and leaders sleep soundly knowing part of their nation's gold supply is secure deep within the Sunrise Sea.

Finally, the Sunset Shores provide a route for luxury goods that back up the Verdasoun Guilder. Spices, tobacco, and sugar are shipped out from their colony regularly to supply the world’s appetites.

Unique Technologies: Verdasoun technology relies heavily on their magical innovations. Rather than producing explosive gunpowders, their Water Shapers engineer shaped cannons that fire pressurized blasts of water, striking with the force of wrecking balls against concrete and steel when they hit home. When they must rely on modern technology, they import it from trade partners.

Similarly, hulls of ships- both trade vessels and warships- are grown from a fusion of coral and water glass. Such large undertakings require multiple master shapers working for months at a time, so the growth of the navy is directly limited by how many shapers are available at any given time. Warships of the Verdasoun Navy are built with the express purpose of being crewed by Merfolk so that they may double as submersibles.



The shapers are also able to manufacture an artificial crystal substance called "Water Glass" to market for sale, a clear crystal with the strength of some basic steels. While a potent luxury good of aristocrats during the old era, now this skill has fallen to the wayside in favor of more industrious uses of their shaping skills. Shapers are put to work building hulls for the navy and private shipping conglomorates

Primary Species: Merfolk, Human

Population: 17,000,000

Culture: Verdasoun culture is that of two peoples that have joined as one. Having abandoned the madness of their North Verdasoui ancient homeland in North Verdasou before its collapse, the Merfolk were adopted by the human tribes of the Sunrise Shores. This is both literally and metaphorically- the Rahuri tribal law allow any fit adult to adopt an individual into their family. As part of the price for their settlement, the Merfolk had to consent to being joined as family with their new hosts. This Great Joining of peoples gave the Merfolk hope and purpose by adopting the ways of their new hosts.

Rahuri art and culture reflects struggle against the sea- its storms, its monsters, and its deprivations. The worship two deities. Mama Tortue, the Great Turtle, She who Shepherds and Protects. And Tiburon, The Protector, The Shark Whose Maw Consumes. They also practice a form of ancestor worship, seeking guidance from those who came before.

Rahuri hold hospitality sacred. Denying shelter to one who means no harm is a grave taboo, but it is acceptable to shut one's door in the face of danger. They also place special emphasis on curiosity and exploration. The normally insular, isolationist and proud North Verdasoui were content to shut themselves off from the world until their realm was consumed by great Doom. The Merfolk have gone a full one-hundred-eighty degrees in the opposite direction.

Households are made up of a mixture of humans and the adopted Merfolk. The heads of the household can be either male or female, and same-sex couples do exist within these households as a legal holdover from the Rahuri.

Rahuri surnames are tied to location and profession. Rather than Joe Smith, a Rahuri would be titled "Joe, Car Mechanic from Brooklyn."

While the Verdasouns have maintained the culture of hospitality among themselves, their Golden Fleet has brought wealth and splendor unheard of in the past hundreds of years. The Merfolk arrived as beggars, desperate for a homeland. Within a century they began to build the South Coast into a nation-state. The Rahuri and the Merfolk chafed at these rapid changes, but so far the Rahuri have not repudiated their Hospitality. The Caciques have formed a full Parliament in response to the crisis of the Great Eruption to the north, utilizing their power as farmworkers and fieldhands to demand additional political power. This Parliament was granted to prevent a full civil war from breaking out, and the Merfolk Autocrat, the direct descendant of Galina Verdasou who holds the sacred pact of adoption via her bloodline, now gives her Royal Consent to its laws and mandates.

Religion and Other Beliefs: Among the human tribes, ancestor worship is still common and regional folk gods and goddesses are revered in local shrines and temples.

Among merfolk, the people revere two great deities- Tiburon (also called the Great Shark) and Zacama (the mother turtle). Worship of these deities tends to drift with the times. Tiburon is a protector and war deity, a great shark who appears to lead the merfolk in times of unrest and conflict. Zacama is a nurturer and provider, a turtle who helps shepherd the merfolk through times of plenty and calm.

Location/Territories: Across the great ocean from the Empire of Hastur, Southern Verdasou lines the coast of the great jungles of the southern continent. While they claim dominion over the entire southland, the reality is that their control is limited by the travel of the navy.



Climate: Tropical/Sub-tropical. Southern Verdasou regularly suffers from autumn flooding and summer tropical storms.

Military:

The Royal Verdasou Army is a standing army of roughly 132,789 infantry. Trained in jungle and hill warfare, equipped with semi-automatic rifles and grenades, the Army has not been deployed overseas in living memory. Still, it stands ready to defend the nation's jungle borders and ports. The Verdasou Air Corps, such as it is, is a component of the army and is comprised of 322 aircraft deployed in three squadrons- North Division, East Division, and Inland Division.

The Royal Verdasou Navy keeps a standing force of merfolk crewed vessels rating as follows:
- 17 Battleships
- 61 Cruisers
- 182 Destroyers
- 43 Patrol Boats and Costal Cutters

The hulls of naval vessels are shaped over a period of years by Merfolk Water-shapers, combining Water Glass, Coral, metals, and other materials to form ships capable of standing in combat against others. Their merfolk crews, construction process, and the Royal Combat Doctrine means that these ships are capable of submerging beneath the waves before surfacing to engage the enemy.

The Golden Fleet (Privateers) is a division of merchant cartels that voluntarily build their ships to Destroyer specifications. During times of war, they may voluntarily take up arms to harass enemy shipping and defend the homeland. While the ships are undoubtedly out of date by modern standards, they do allow the Royal Navy to deploy their dedicated combat units further afield without fear of the home seas being completely undefended.

Magic Prevalence/Usage: Magic is used in the construction of coastal cities and the grand Coral City. Cities rise and fall beneath the waves, but Water Glass tunnels allow both Merfolk and Terrestrial individuals to travel the streets in safety when floods and storms strike. Likewise, the ships of the Royal Navy use cannons that fire pressurized blasts of water, heavier and more dangerous than the pressures found in the deepest oceans and striking hulls with the force of a wrecking ball.

History / Background Info: TBD

Nation Relations:

Unitary State of Coreshaw - The closest ally of Verdasou, the people of Coreshaw and the Merfolk of Verdasou both seek a return to normalcy on the international stage. Where Coreshaw's diplomats go, they can always count on unspoken support from Verdasou.

Fenice - The one-time colonizers of the Pandyssia have had a complicated relationship with Verdasou. The human tribes and merfolk both were unable to prevent the establishment of their colony by force of arms or diplomatic intervention, and so they began to intertwine their economies and diplomatic systems in order to promote trans-oceanic trade. After the devastation of Fenice by the great volcano, the colony is becoming host to more and more refugees from Fenice's mainland. For now, Verdasou supports them in their exile- but they are definitely looking to leverage this generosity for political favor in the future.

GCR - The so-called Greater Republic represents a threat and an opportunity in the eyes of Verdasou. Their economic and social system is a barricade to a restoration to the world prior to the great eruption, and the Royal Family's gold reserves remain secure in the vaults of Verdasou's Bank of Glass. Verdasou's diplomats hold a winning hand so long as they hold these gold reserves, and they still don't know what they will demand in exchange for their release- but it will be substantial.

The Divine Empire of Hastur - The Divine Empire is a burgeoning market for the newly opened Coral Exchange, and the modernization of has been fueled by Verdasoun currency. The market has gotten so lucrative that some shipping cartels are buying and selling stolen goods, seized by Hasturian warlords from Arcad, with nary a thought to the consequences. Should Hastur and Acrad go to war, the Verdasoun stand to lose much from their aristocrats.

The Republic of Acrad - After the parliament of Southern Verdasou spent so much time and capital trying to reopen the Coral Exchange, the first international buyers of stocks and bonds were the oligarchs of the Republic. Her Majesty's Government looks favorably upon the Republic, even as regional tensions are on the rise. With so much money in the Coral Exchange, there could be an argument made that any attack upon Acrad's ports would, in the best case scenario, lead to severe disapproval from Her Majesty's Government. Worst case? Blockade and war would ensue.

Royal State of Unified Saraya - Her Majesty's Government had long-standing agreements and relationships with the prior monarchy of Saraya. High King Padvia IV fled to his estate within Verdasou, claiming refuge by using prior familial marriages with Rahuri tribes as justification for citizenship. The newly empowered Parliament went to bat for the exiled King and he remains a private citizen, constantly lodging complaints and courting favor to return to his throne.

High King Padvia will be waiting a long time. Due to rising tensions with the Sovereign Istian State, along with "bandit" raids on Rahuri border settlements, the Ministry of Defense has engaged in limited joint defense operations to deter Istian aggression. Her Majesty's government already shares a border with one militaristic tyranny. They have elected to reserve judgment upon High King Angara Kassaji I until they have taken his measure as a ruler. Verdasoun intelligence operations have stepped up their monitoring and fact-finding missions within Saraya at an alarming rate. Should he swing toward outright fascism, Her Majesty may elect to use King Padvia to stage a coup and remove a dangerous element from Her border. If Angara demonstrates a respect for liberal values and the international order, King Padvia will remain in his private abode, politely ignored and rebuffed by the official diplomatic channels. For the moment, Her Majesty has seen Kassaji can be trusted to keep his word, and may be a future partner in much more important endeavors.

Note: Verdasou is being written as a hotbed of political intrigue and espionage. This is where the sausage gets made, so to speak. I intend to not write martial conflict as it's not my preferred cup of tea.
The Palace of Pearls Dining Terrace, Coral City, 8:32 AM (Local Time)



"The use of money is all the advantage there is in having money." - Benjamin Franklin


The coffee was cold by the time the meeting convened, and Queen Kumena asked that a servant kindly put a new pot on for her guests. An oversight on her part- Kumena assumed the courier from The Glass Bank meant the Chancellor Tishana and Foreign Secretary Vona would arrive within the hour. Apparently there was more to the notes coming in than could be translated onto a single piece of paper for the courier. It could've been an entire state dinner about to knock on her door and Kumena would have no more notice than the single 3 x 5 paper, "News from Acrad re: Hastur. State and Bank en route ASAP. Summon Cabinet at discretion."

At discretion meant "wake them up now" in diplomatic speak, and though the people surrounding the dining hall's table were not exactly in their Sunday Best, Kumena opted to wear her own informal sea-silk gown to put them at ease regarding the formalities. The fabric held water against her green scaled skin far longer than most and didn't give off a rank mildew smell, unlike terrestrial fabrics. Cabinet meetings tended to run long, and she'd rather not call a halt for a quick dip in the sea to refresh her gills if it could be helped.

"Well Tishana, Vona," Kumena said as she settled into her own chair, "I'll have cheese, cold cuts and toast on the way from the kitchen. But if this is going to be a working meeting and not a social call, I think we should get to the point of it. What's the news from State?"

Foreign Secretary Vona, a human man easily two meters tall and with the markings of a Rahuri Cacique tattooed on his wrists, opened his briefcase and produced a set of documents.

"We received a long chain of telegraph communications at approximately 11:20 PM Acrad District 1 Time. Or rather, we started to receive the communications then. They only wrapped up some time ago. The Assembly has its knickers in a bunch, your majesty. The Assembly is working immediately to address a crisis in Hastur that is blowing into war."

"On what provocation are they preparing to march?"

"Raiding parties along the border, from what I understand. The Desert Rats, in conjunction with Hasturian Warlords, are hitting oil reserves and selling them to... unscrupulous merchant cartels for quick profit."

"Any of ours?"

Tishana cleared her throat, the human woman accepting a coffee cup from a passing servant with a tray. "No state-sponsored cartels. Certainly none with a clearance for the Golden Armada. But I've had my staff look into the Coral Exchange and it seems the Dresdal Shipping Conglomorate has seen a 5% uptick in price in the past two weeks. It took us the better part of seven years to get international commerce to a level where the Exchange could be reopened and functional, so even that modest of an increase is noticeable. Dresdal elbowed its way onto the Exchange by delivering a few bruisings to its competitors, and they're one of the biggest merchant conglomerates we have doing business with Hastur. Seventeen ships, and 12 are dedicated to moving Hasturian crude."

"But again- none in the Golden Fleet?"

"At this time, no, Your Grace," Vona said, said without a smile. "He's applied for his Letters, but the ships haven't been inspected by the Navy yet. Schedule conflicts, and our own knowledge of his shoot-from-the-hip style. We don't have to worry about Johnathan Dresdal starting a shooting war for us. But this does put our fingers in the pie, so to speak. We may not be buying the crude, but we're moving a portion of it from the sellers to some of the buyers."

"What punitive actions can we take?"

"Legally, plenty," Tishana noted. "We could strip him of his ships per international laws against piracy- but those laws were written before the Age of Ash. Most signatories to those treaties either no longer exist or don't have the power to stop us. The demand for oil is so great right now that only Acrad would demand our compliance under the treaties. Politically though, it presents a challenge. Jonathan Dresdal is a card-carrying member of the Rahuri Worker's Party. We command a majority in Parliament, but the RWP has been making steady gains in elections. Going after him over a treaty that has no teeth would definitely look like a political hit. It'll burn some political capital we can't afford to spend at the moment, especially with all the effort we put into getting the old systems up and running again.

Gishath, the blue-skinned Merfolk Minister of Agriculture, couldn't keep his distaste for the RWP from seeping into the conversation, even unprompted. "We just restored credibility in the Glass Bank and began getting international trade up and running again. Can you imagine what it would do if the RWP got enough power to force through the Welfare Plan they've been making their new platform? It'd set us back to post-Eruption societal levels."

Of course you'd be worried, Kumena thought. Your Farmers Association Party is the old aristocracy's last hope of returning to power- and we can afford to kick you out of the coalition and still hold power. The RWP are ready to tear you down at the ankles if given the chance. I can't believe you're spouting your party propaganda at a cabinet meeting though, as if we believe the lines you feed the Financial Times. We all know the transition to civilian infrastructure and welfare has to take place or we'll end up as a collapsed Empire like Fenice. Only the ashes will come from our own citizens burning the cities down. The RWP will get their cake. They just need to be patient about it.

"Alright," Kumena said. "So Dresdal is waving his jewels in the face of Arcad and we can't strip him of his charter without breaking apart The Plan. Alternatives?"

Surprisingly, it was Nezahl, the human Minister of Defence, who spoke up. His heavy baritone voice carried across the dining hall despite his best efforts to keep it level. "I spoke with Tishana on our trip here, Your Grace, and I may have something. Military action by Arcad against us is unlikely at this time. They were some of the first to get their corporations listed on the Coral Exchange, and many of their oligarchs have personal Vaults within the Glass Bank. A shooting war would sink their recovery efforts and cause more problems for them than solutions. But if you need time, I have a solution to offer. The Navy can quarantine Dresdal's ships when they make port to conduct the inspections to approve or reject them from the Golden Fleet. We'll reject them, obviously, but having his life-blood locked up in dry dock for weeks at a time will put the hurt on him. I'll reject the ships at the end of it, but he'll learn his lesson or have to stop making dirty money off of two superpowers about to blow themselves to pieces."

Queen Kumena nodded. "Do it immediately. Every ship that makes port from his cartel gets flagged, and none of them are to be approved. Vona, I want a note disavowwing his actions prepared at the Foreign Office. If Arcad makes noise, send it over to them. Under the table, get word to Ovald. We'll rein in Jonathan Dresdal as his ships make port, but not before. The vessels in the Verronto Sea are out of our reach. If he needs to scare Dresdal off with warning shots, we'll protest loudly as expected but we won't shoot back. If he shoots back, the guns are illegal and he can be prosecuted as a pirate."

There were murmurs of agreement around the table from the cabinet ministers.

"And now, ladies and gentlemen, in light of the mess Arcad and Hastur may soon start, I would like to take a moment to visit the proposal of the South Osean Treaty Organization. Are we in agreement about invitations to our neighbors?"

---

Telegraph line to the Foreign Secretaries/Speakers of the United State of Coreshaw, Anglonia-Eirin, Kazatrea and Fenice. Dispatched 8:41 PM Verdasou Time.

Illustrious Neighbor,

Her Majesty, Queen Kumena of Southern Verdasou wishes to extend a diplomatic invitation toward your government. Now that the age of Ash and Ice has ended and the sun shines on the world once more, we seek to establish an alliance and ordering of the continent to ensure our shared security and prosperity. Said Conference to begin in three weeks' time, though ambassadors are welcome to travel to Coral City at their leisure.

We pray you shall accept this invitation.

- Foreign Secretary Vona of Southern Verdasou, on behalf of Her Majesty the Queen.


------------------------------------------------------------------------


Summary:

* Southern Verdasou has an independent company (the Dresdal Cartel) moving some of the seized crude oil from Hastur to the international markets. The cartel is viewed unfavorably but is a publicly traded company on the Public Exchange.

* Her Majesty cannot seize the ships without triggering a domestic political crisis.

* Slow, under the table communications will begin with Arcad disavowing the Dresdal Cartel's actions, and establishing a red line from which Her Majesty's Government will take action.

* The Queen has invited United State of Coreshaw, Anglonia-Eirin, and Fenice to a security conference in Coral City with the intention to form a unified economic and security zone in the Southlands.
Very interested! Time to salvage a nation from one of my favorite cancelled RPs!
Vehicles, I'd envision one, maybe two armored vehicles with a slightly larger number of trucks.

I think the salvage'd be something useful to consider. But not sure there's more interest in this RP at this time.
Not necessarily one long combat RP. There will be stops for interaction, more roleplay sections like talking to newcomers the column meets on the road.

Ragnite I'd treat as a finite resource. Every player has 2 units of Ragnite. It could be used in certain circumstances for non-aid things like fueling up a vehicle.
I planned to keep it Canon to the first game. But yes, the presence of some vehicles would make sense. The problem is one of supply. The vehicles might have enough Ragnite to make it to the evacuation point... if the road wasn't clogged with people and the crews weren't harried.
With Valkyria Chronicles 4 coming out in the US soon, I had a thought to revisit an old fanfic plot I'd been kicking around in my head for some time. Just wanted to see if there was any other interest in it...

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The Imperial invasion of Gallia has begun. Not even 72 hours have passed since the first scouts crossed the border, but the Gallian Army is standing ready while the militia mobilizes. While clashes overtake the central plains, the people of the fortress city of Habenstopp have so far seen little in the way of combat, sheltered by the modern fortress on the city's east side. The streets are filled with people going on about their business, and only the Darcsen enclave has shown some anxiety.

You'd be hard pressed to know a war is even going on. Until tonight.

In the shadow of darkness, cannons begin pounding the fortress from beyond the range of its guns, shells detonating with the force of small earthquakes and rendering the fortification to nothing but slag and rubble. An entire armored division is massing to overrun whatever remains come the dawn; it is headed by General Markus "The Jackal" Gudroon, a man with the fervor of a bloodhound, eager to show the Imperial Court his skill and potential. The order comes in from high command: All military units must evacuate to the west, via the old coast road. In one week's time the small Gallian navy will leave its port with the survivors and transport them to Randgriz to continue the fight. You have seven days to travel the Royal Road on foot (or by tread), a journey that would normally take nine days.

The old Royal Road along the coast is a dangerous path in peacetime. Ruinous, lined with cliffs and forests. A region rife with criminals, smugglers and Darcsen rebels. Now with the war on, Imperial ambushes will be added to that list.

Fail, and you'll have the honor of dying for your country. Succeed, and the war will continue for you.

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