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Luisa stood alone looking out across the fields of Palysos that sat awash in the dying sun, her guard present but not close as their ruler took in the sights of this most beautiful province. Grain and grasses swayed as the heat of the day began to give way to the cool of night. Reaching out and grasping one of the longer blades, Luisa plucked it turning it over in her hands as she considered the position she was now in.

The Republic was stable for now, but now it was faced with a decision for the world at large, one to fight or to abandon those who may need it the most. On one hand was a struggle for which there seemed to be no end, on the other was to be marked as a nation of cowards by the world and the histories that would be written of this time.

"Which do we sacrifice on the altar, others and our dignity to buy us at best more time. Or those bright faced of our youth, to perhaps staunch the bleeding wound that has now appeared. Do we live as cowards or die in some far distant field, which scythe do I bring to the fields of my people?" Luisa silently studies the grass in her hand as she for a moment thinks to herself, clenching her hand she crushes it and holds it aloft, the breeze sweeping it up and carrying it aloft into the setting sun. Turning towards it, Luisa let the final warmth of the day wash over her, her eyes closed. Reaching out and beckoning to one of her guard, who approaches before bowing slightly as she speaks.

"Captain. I need word sent to my commanders as fast as you can relay them, Bettino is to marshal the army and occupy the territories along our boarder with Paranas. He is to build a defensive line there and await further instructions, but he is free to do whatever he thinks necessary to bring our forces to a fighting condition. Tell Sotiris I want a comprehensive plan of attack on my desk before too long. I want the same from Admiral Iraklis, it is time to remind the world whos waters they sail on. As for Maria, tell her that I must look over a few things while mull over her... offer."

Bowing once more, the Gaurd will depart wordlessly. Luisa did not know if her words had stunned him or had brought about a hardened resolve, but at this moment she did not care. "Let those who read our names in the histories know this. The Republic is not a nation of cowards."
It is a nice morning in the city of Kalseran, capital of a now tumultuous republic, the birds sing in their flight and perches across the city, the breeze flutters the flags on the docks and in the large square before the Lady's palace a great uproar shatters the illusion of peace. The Lady Luisa sits before her assembled nobles, all surrounded by the watching eyes of the people of city. This is a rare sight, a public court, and no matter their walk of life, no-one in the city would miss this for the world.

The current uproar comes from one of the older nobles, who has taken to standing before the Luisa "You would drive us to ruin before the armies to the east! We have no place in this war, if Dorist wishes to commit a grand and spectacular suicide then let them! But I say we have no part in it! We must look to ourselves now, with all that is happening it is folly to send our troops north, we must secure our own lands, our own holdings."

There was some murmuring as he finished speaking, but they were quickly silenced as Luisa held up her hand, bringing back a silence to the morning. Standing she approaches the noble, extending her hand she places on his shoulder, offering him a smile before addressing both him and the crowd "This may come as a surprise, but I do agree. It is not in our best interest to send our solders north to die on a field of combat most haven't even seen or heard of. Especially not with a band of traitors holding our southern province hostage. But that is why we are not sending an army of guns and shot, but of wagons and coin. We have not committed to an armed conflict, in its stead we have instead committed to a business deal. And do we abandon our deals?" she waves a hand around to the surrounding architecture "No, we stand by them until the end. I have known merchants who would rather sacrifice a hand then break a contract." She turns once more to the noble "So we will keep to our deal, to the letter if not the spirit."

Luisa strides once more to her seat in the front of the whole display, letting the crowd dominate the reaction to her answer. As she reaches her chair she takes only a small moment to let the sounds of the crowd fill her ears, and to let her eyes land upon a fluttering flag, the amethyst banner fluttering in the wind, the great beast of the sea that stands upon it as the golden symbol of the Republic. Takes a deep breath in, letting the salty air fill her lungs, and for a moment she is alone her problems laid out before her, the rebellion that needed to be crushed with efficiency, the war that needed to become profitable, and the families that would never stop vying for her throne. Luisa exhaled and let her breath sweep away the issues to their base core, she know what needed to be done. There was only the doing now.

Without turning she held her had up, giving all assembled a moment to grow quiet before turning around to face them, gathering herself once more into the imposing figure of the Grand Lady "All will listen and all will here. Before we adjourn this court I have one last decree. General Bettino Gianni will go to those wayward souls, to bring them back to us with no more Republic blood spilled upon our soil. But before he goes let my words carry to those in the south as his vanguard. An offer to all Internal Citizens and full Citizens there. Those who wish it may return before any deal is reached, they will be greeted with open arms with no potential penalty or charge, for they are the Republic and her shores are their home."

Taking her seat she let the sounds of the crowd and the nobles wash over her once more, her face and impassive mask as the snap of the flag was the only sound she truly heard.
The sounds of the waking city danced through the halls of the Grand Palace of Kalseran, twisting with the dawning sunlight across the antique paintings, however this morning both would not find Luisa sleeping. For instead of her bed the light and sound of the burgeoning day would find her in her study as she poured over several stack of paper, seated in front of the large fireplace that had long sense burned out. Various attendants milled about the room, waiting for the Lady's command, most stood at attention but others were letting their eyes wander about the myriad of books that lined the room. Luisa shifted the papers and held out her hand towards a servant who rushed forward to fill it with a earthenware cup, filled with the warm, dark, bitter brew the Lady had become fond of in recent years. Bringing it to her lips she drank deeply as she read the latest report from her northern neighbors.

"I will never understand these northerners obsession with shooting each other" she mused to herself as she handed the mug back to the servant, who once more retreated to the periphery of the room. Yet, as far as the potential war may seem she could not help but reread the report and cast a glance to the large embroidered map that hung over the fireplace. If war were to come, in it most certainly would, it would only be so long before it had the potential to threaten the Republics outlying provinces, not to mention the potential profit loss if it did not go the way of Dorist and Altenten. Both of which could prove troublesome if the noble families kept grumbling they way they had been in recent days.

Setting the report down, Luisa pushed herself up from her chair, with every attendant suddenly jumping to a more attentive position as fast as they could move. Quietly she strode over to one of the large windows, her light dress making a sort of slithering sound as its hem slid across the carpets and hard wood. As she came to the window she cast a glance to the guard that was nearby, a member of the fearsome Seagaurd dressed in the traditional uniform, which was dyed a deep almost black black, like the depths themselves. She couldn't help but consider the tall youth before her, as they were both symbols, both faces to a nameless power that lay behind them, and both beholden to the belief in said symbol. Her mind drifted to the grumblings of the families, they were not yet bold enough to move their pieces on the board, but it would be foolish to ignore their part in the great game of the Republic and yet, perhaps their part could be useful.

Giving the guard, who at this point was beginning to grow slightly worried by the intense silence of the grand Lady before him, a brief smile Luisa finally broke the silence and tension that was beginning to mount in the room. "My good man, would you be so kind as to open the window for me?" Her question was innocent enough, yet was said with the underlying tone of authority. The guard quickly turned to part the curtain and open the window for Luisa, who simply offered another smile as she stepped forward to look down at the public square below.

Even though it was still early, the square was abuzz with the movement of the people. Couriers ran here and there, some ate together, while others simply talked and walked along side each other, hashing out deals, plans, and pleasantries. The wind carried the sounds of the dock-side market a few blocks away, where undoubtedly the vast bulk of the early morning crowds had gathered to buy food and goods from across the Mediterranean and far away places, including goods from the ports in India. Turning she looked upon the assembled attendants, most of whom were indirectly profiting from said market in some way.

"Gentlemen, Ladies" She began to address the assembly "I have a question for you. What is the lifeblood of the Republic? What allows us to enjoy this cool morning, and allows us sip fine drink at night?"

The attendants began to murmur between themselves before an older lord, Giacomo she believed his name to be, finally spoke up. "Trade your ladyship. The movement of Aquans from hand to hand."

"Good, good. A very good answer, I am happy to accept. Even if it half right." She will answer back before glancing once more to look out the window before turning back and walking back into the room, towards the great map "To that end I want messengers sent to the courts of Dorist and Altenten. Tell them we are willing to renegotiate tariff prices on items such as food and weapons, we are not joining their war, but we may still lessen any loss of networks from it. In the same vein we must plan for any eventuality so I want messengers dispatched to General Bettino Gianni. He is to preform a full inspection of our combat readiness, should the need arise, after which he will confer with General Sotiris on how to patch any holes and deliver the full report to me. With that you are all dismissed until the evening meeting, Have a pleasant day."

As the nobles began to shuffle out Luisa beckoned on of the young ladies to stay behind, a young lady by the name of Paulina, who she had often called upon for tasks that needed discretion "Paulina, of you i need more. Set ears about the city, I want to know the names of those who have become discontented with me, take no actions other than information. Stay quiet, stay unnoticed, understood?"

Paulina nods quietly "Yes my lady. By your command I will give you their names."

Luisa will smile and pat Paulina's hand "Thank you my dear, now go, enjoy your day as you please."

With Paulina's departure Luisa will sigh and return to the window, becoming the servant to bring her her drink once more, taking another drink she observes her city once more. Musing to herself that whatever the gods have in store for the coming times, at least it wont be boring.
All aboard the hype train!!!
Alright, so shall we discuss how we male rulers all hate a female democratic country?

"Democratic" is such a strong word
No colonial oppressors other than me? D:

Not any more!
honestly from what im reading so far i am very interested
I am loving this so far, hoping it gets more interest, because it has mine!
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