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Sarderia
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Inoffensive Centrist Democracy

Postby Sarderia » Sat Apr 18, 2020 9:02 pm

DUCHY OF SAN ANTONIO
COUNTY OF GALVESTON



    BILTMORE PALACE

"Now, now Your Majesty," he began, "You know any industrialist would not agree with a higher cost, and that it would cut profits sizeably. Especially when it comes to something as important as kerosene and coal. You know, Pennsylvania could not supply the North's lighting at night on its own. As there are very few pipelines currently heading there, and I wouldn't use coaches, obviously, I have no options but to transport it by trains. Surely you can... cut some of the funds needed to transport our product to Kansas and Louisiana. About sixty per cent of the current tariff would be a generous amount." Elias is going to be frank; he's fed up with Boykin controlling the transportation industry in and out of Texas. If he would not relent and give him significantly lower cost for freight trains, he would ask a share of the railroad company that Boykin controlled. Expanding railroad capacity. Sounds like another plan to get himself more bucks at the expense of other corporations. And Elias would not bown down to any of it. He has a bargaining power - The West corporation's mines in just a few counties could produce about a half of Texas' coal output. If he did not get a cut, or a share, he's sufficiently prepared for the worst in disrupting the region's mineral output.

    GALVESTON

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Last edited by Sarderia on Sat Apr 18, 2020 9:07 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Alaroma
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Ex-Nation

Postby Alaroma » Sat Apr 18, 2020 9:24 pm

Benjamin Boykin: King of the Texans

Chapter One: Den of Wolves



I raised an eyebrow at the absurdity. 60%? There’s a circumstance in which I’d be willing to discuss prices, but such a drop demands I take shares of his oil company. Chuckling, I nodded slowly. “Well that’s quite the deep drop you’ve just proposed, and I have no gain from that........unless you’re talking about giving me shares of your oil business. My good man, I’m running a business as well. You can’t just propose a cut in fees that drastic, and not tell me what I get out of it. So do tell me good sir, what would I gain? Shares in your company? Some promise of increased tax revenues? I’m frankly quite interested in what the second part of your proposal is.” I kept my tone as cordial as I could, and frankly I hoped for something good. That said, I get the feeling that the turn in the conversation has made my daughter slightly uncomfortable. I think she fears this could go drastically off course.
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Sanabel
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Corrupt Dictatorship

Postby Sanabel » Sat Apr 18, 2020 9:35 pm

Stonewall Jackson



Chancellor’s Chambers, Biltmore Palace

“I will not marry that awful man,” Laura said, as defiant in the second breath as she was in the first.

“You will,” the bearded man replied. “He doesn’t know it yet, but you will. For the family, for the South- for me.”

“But he- he’s a philanderer, and a drunk. I do say, he’s a brute, father!”

“Believe me, Laura, believe me,” it pained him a little bit more this time to say the girl’s name. It was a constant reminder of his sole living relation from his childhood, a woman who abandoned him and her home to live in the north. His sister, Laura Arnold, the girl who practically raised him. The only kindness he received other than the stern lectures from his Uncle Jackson. “As a man of faith,” he continued, “it shakes me to my core to know that I will be giving up such a good daughter to a man of his lot. But I also know, Laura that men change. Your mother certainly changed me,” he nodded.

“Father, I will protest this marriage until the day I die.” She crossed her arms.

“If you do not marry him- well, I shan’t expect you’ll be protesting for very long.”



Coronation Banquet, Biltmore Palace

The legendary Stonewall Jackson sat at the high table overlooking the crowd below. He sat at the seat directly to the right of where the Emperor should have been seated, but it remained empty. Just as he expected, the young new ruler was off God knows where, doing God knows what. The boy had to learn, he had to change, and he had to do it quickly.

As the platitudinous toasts droned on, his mind was on other things, namely his own longevity. Without a strong, proactive Court, the Empire would collapse. Texas, Louisiana, and other Kingdoms and Dukedoms would rise. Inevitably, the old adage attributed to Abraham Lincoln that a “house divided cannot stand” held true, in his mind. Lincoln was a butcher for whom Jackson had little respect, but he was wise enough himself to spot another man’s wisdom, even if fleeting.

The Union would return. That much was certain. With every passing day the new Emperor spent hunting or gambling, the South was one step closer to its own demise. Jackson did not shed the blood of thousands of his countrymen for the South to fall due to the hubris and decadence of petty self titled nobles and royals. He had to whip the boy into shape, pull him out of his youthful folly and save Dixie from utter destruction.

While the city of Lexington, his home and domain did beckon, he knew that any comfort in his old age would be short lived for his younger wife and adolescent children. If he left the Royal Court, the whole empire could collapse, and his beloved Lexington would be one of the first cities to be razed by the uncivilized Yankee with their Irish lackeys.

While thoughts and concerns both personal and national swirled around the Chancellor and war hero’s mind, he overlooked the crowd, considering the extent to which each attendee was a friend or a foe. His mind remained sharp, as he wasn’t touching a drop of liquor, as was his habit and had been his whole life. Characteristically quiet and calculating, he opted to wait for the other attendees to come and speak with him, rather than the other way around.

Alas, if the Boy Emperor did not come soon he would have to send for him or otherwise think of some way to address the crowd.
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Sarderia
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Inoffensive Centrist Democracy

Postby Sarderia » Sat Apr 18, 2020 9:52 pm

DUCHY OF SAN ANTONIO
COUNTY OF GALVESTON



    BILTMORE PALACE

Elias chuckled a bit silently, unnoticed by the King. As I have expected. If you really are running a business, and not a god damned monopoly, my name would be placed above Harrisburg station instead of Boykin. He returned a cordial smile to the King before answering. "My lord, you must understand the costs I have been facing as well. Without the oil and mining industry the Texan economy would fail. But I know you understand me as well," he continued in a cordial tone, "so here is what I propose. We swap our stocks. I will buy forty-five of the Harrisburg Railroad's capital, and I promise to you, from my very sincere heart, that I would keep the shares for a term of twenty years - not giving away Texas' lifeline to outsiders, and you can trust me to expand the railroad considerably. I am thinking of El Paso." Obviously Boykin wanted to go to Arizona as well, and Elias is giving a generous amount by agreeing to finance the railroad's expansion from San Antonio. "You would still have the majority share. In return, I imagine everyone is very eager to jump into the lamp sales business right now. And such lamps need fuel - I will transfer the full ownership of Upton and Howard county drills to your corporation. That is a significant amount of West Kerosene and Tar production. Please, just tell me if you want more... concessions..." Elias did not want to draw the coal card, but it is a rare thing to meet the King of Texas personally, and the opening of railroad business is one of his corporation's long-term goals. He might invite Bernard Kelsey, the railroad baron from the Carolinas, to invest in Texas as well.
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People interpret the Scripture differently. Therefore, it makes sense for a group to uphold the principle, that God accepts everyone regardless of their preferrence - as long as they acceptes His grace and salvation.

Remember:
"God promises to make something good out of the storms that bring devastation to your life."
Romans 2:18
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Alaroma
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Ex-Nation

Postby Alaroma » Sat Apr 18, 2020 10:19 pm

Benjamin Boykin: King of the Texans

Chapter One: Den of Wolves


‘Without oil and mining the Texan economy would fall.’ I thought to myself with no short amusement. The man vastly overestimated how Important those two sectors were. At the end of the day, Cotton was indeed King. Of course we were both trying to change that in our ways, but what’s even more absurd is that he thinks giving up my rails is worth such an uncertain investment. The power it gave me was frankly unrivaled, and he thinks I’ll give it up over kerosene? Really? I can find my own damn Oil if that’s the case. “I don’t think you understand, I would consider all of what you’re offering for a reduction in fees. My railroads aren’t for sale my good man.” Not to mention I could easily expand the railroads on my own, I has every incentive in the world to do it, and he knows that. It’s better to keep everything in house rather than deal with external forces. Also seriously, El Paso? He must know they’re in the works right now to build those lines. Frankly, I had more confidence in my investments into the Timber Industry than this oil stuff.
Last edited by Alaroma on Sat Apr 18, 2020 10:22 pm, edited 1 time in total.
"Yeah, you're right. You got lucky this time. If there were Dutch people there, you would be facing so many rebels!"
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Sarderia
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Inoffensive Centrist Democracy

Postby Sarderia » Sat Apr 18, 2020 10:36 pm

DUCHY OF SAN ANTONIO
COUNTY OF GALVESTON



    BILTMORE PALACE

Damn. He did not even consider losing half of Texas' mineral production as a loss. Good luck importing all that coal from Pennsylvania, then. Elias was frustated with the King's stubornness. He is the overlord of Texas, in title, but the West corporation hold mines and outposts in the Transpecos, did this man not think that I could stop his beloved railroad construction at once? Send those poor workers back at their ranch, or Europe, or China. As if he forgets that I am the Duke of San Antonio. "You are already building into El Paso, then. This is going a lot better than I expected. Coincidentally I own several mines near the Pecos. Culberson, Reeves, Pecos, and Terrell counties to name the least. Now, my offer still stands. Sixty percent in tariff reduction for freight trains," he let Boykin ponder over that for a while, "or forty-five percent of the Harrisburg. I am making no demands, your Majesty. Just a little reminder about the Harrisburg; it runs through San Antonio, and it starts on Galveston." What are the options for me? He has a significant amount of land from Galveston to Beaumont. He could close the bay, and re-route the trade coming from the gulf to Lafayette and Baton Rouge. Elias needs to smoothen his French now.
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If you support capitalism, put this in your signature.
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People interpret the Scripture differently. Therefore, it makes sense for a group to uphold the principle, that God accepts everyone regardless of their preferrence - as long as they acceptes His grace and salvation.

Remember:
"God promises to make something good out of the storms that bring devastation to your life."
Romans 2:18
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Alaroma
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Ex-Nation

Postby Alaroma » Sat Apr 18, 2020 10:55 pm

Benjamin Boykin: King of the Texans

Chapter One: Den of Wolves


I was mildly amused at his efforts. I controlled the railroads after all. All the cotton that came into his city came on my trains, and all the cotton that came in to Houston came on my trains. What was he gonna do, close down the ports? And what, force countless Plantation owners to give operate at lower profit? I could charge him with negligence of his duties, and force him to pay reparations to the Plantation owners at best. I could have the Texan legislature, with its angry Plantation owners, strip him of his property, and send an army to force him to step down at worst. Or I could let the Texas Rangers loose on him. Close down his mines, and what? Let them loose profit, and close? Send his workers home? Drive himself into bankruptcy until I swoop in and buy his mines? At worst, force me to increase production, and people to use charcoal in their homes? He’s not that stupid, he’s bluffing. “Indeed they do, my Goodman.” I gave him a smile, as if to show I know what he’s implying. “Alas, I’m just not seeing the Worth in such transactions.”
Last edited by Alaroma on Sat Apr 18, 2020 10:58 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Sarderia
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Inoffensive Centrist Democracy

Postby Sarderia » Sat Apr 18, 2020 11:45 pm

Image



DUCHY OF SAN ANTONIO
COUNTY OF GALVESTON



    BILTMORE PALACE

Elias West is stunned. He could not comperhend whether Boykin gave a thought about geopolitics and the industry as a whole. His efforts to convince him failed, now he could only try the forceful way. He gave Boykin his most cordial smile, and bowed to the Princess. "This has been a most productive discussion, Your Majesty. Alas, apparently I have other businesses to attend. Thank you for giving me your time. And you as well, Princess." He adjusted his collar and respectfully bowed to the King, before stepping out. Elias took a small note out of his pocket, and approached his personal butler standing near the doors of the ballroom. "Send this to Texas. That should appease the mayors and the councils; and fortify all of our holdings. I don't care who you put to defend the doors, be it Rangers, farmhands, miners, hell, even immigrants."

ANNOUNCEMENT

    By the Order of Elias Harvey West
    By God's Providence, Duke of San Antonio, Viscount of Galveston and Beaumont, and Lord of the Galveston Bay

    ⋆ Starting from TODAY:
⋆ ALL TRAINS and FREIGHT that are stopping, passing, or utilizing the rail station in the city of GALVESTON, city of SAN ANTONIO, and city of BEAUMONT, WILL NOT be required to pay to, and BANNED from paying their bills to, the BOYKIN RAILWAY COMPANY;
⋆ ALL TRAINS and FREIGHT will instead pay their bills directly into the MUNICIPAL GOVERNMENT of the aforementioned cities; the Commonality, Mayor, and Citizens of GALVESTON, SAN ANTONIO, and BEAUMONT shall HAVE THEIR DUE.
⋆ ALL TAXES regarding the acitivity and transport of TRAINS and FREIGHT CARS shall be paid into the MUNICIPAL GOVERNMENT and be used RESPONSIBLY by the local government, to the best of their citizens' interests.
⋆ TAXES for all TRAINS and FREIGHT CARS are cut by TEN PER CENT. The office of the DUCHY of SAN ANTONIO, VISCOUNTY of GALVESTON, and VISCOUNTY of BEAUMONT will instead PAY in their stead.
⋆ ALL SHIPS passing by the BAY of GALVESTON shall be required to DOCK at the PORT of GALVESTON.
⋆ ALL TAXES and FUNDS exerted by the ROYAL AUTHORITY regarding the PORT of GALVESTON shall be paid instead to the MUNICIPAL GOVERNMENT of the CITY of GALVESTON, to be administered by the CITIZENS of GALVESTON.
⋆ ALL PRODUCTS of the MINES belonging to the WEST MINING COMPANY shall be withheld from TAXES. ALL CLIENTS who wished to purchase coal, copper, or other products shall contact WEST MINING COMPANY agents and pay NO taxes to the ROYAL AUTHORITY.
⋆ EXPORTS to the STATE OF LOUISIANA and beyond; the UNITED MEXICAN STATES and beyond; and OTHER EXPORTS passing by the railway stations of SAN ANTONIO, GALVESTON, and BEAUMONT shall be registered and paid at the MUNICIPAL DEPARTMENT OF TREASURY, and NOT the ROYAL TREASURY.
⋆ ALL ROYAL TAXES AND FUNDS due to be paid by the citizens of the DUCHY of SAN ANTONIO, the VISCOUNTY of GALVESTON, and the VISCOUNTY of BEAUMONT, will be paid to the MUNICIPAL GOVERNMENT instead.
⋆ ALL TAXES regarding AGRICULTURE and PLANTATION production in the aforementioned territories and regions will be cut by TEN PER CENT.
⋆ ALL THE ADDITIONAL INCREASE OF FUNDS shall be administered by the MUNICIPAL GOVERNMENT for the good of their CITIZENS.
⋆ A COMMISSION shall be founded to INVESTIGATE, DISCOVER, and DETAIN all practices and persons related to corruption.
⋆ FURTHERMORE, the control over parts of the HARRISBURG RAILROAD and the NEW ORLEANS - TEXAS RAILROAD will be transferred to the MUNICIPAL GOVERNMENT of the aforementioned regions and territories. A DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION shall be formed to manage the railroads on behalf of the CITIZENS. EFFECTIVE IMMIDIATELY.
⋆ THERE shall be NO FUNDS paid to the ROYAL AUTHORITY unless very pressing.
⋆ THE AUTHORITY OF THE CITIES of SAN ANTONIO, GALVESTON, and BEAUMONT reigns SUPREME. There shall be NO coercion from outside forces to SURRENDER back what is the ESSENTIAL RIGHTS of TEXAN CITIZENS.

    For the good of the people,
    Signed,
    ELIAS HARVEY WEST
    DUKE of SAN ANTONIO, VISCOUNT of GALVESTON, and VISCOUNT of BEAUMONT.
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If you support capitalism, put this in your signature.
You can be a Christian and LGBTQ+ at the same time!

People interpret the Scripture differently. Therefore, it makes sense for a group to uphold the principle, that God accepts everyone regardless of their preferrence - as long as they acceptes His grace and salvation.

Remember:
"God promises to make something good out of the storms that bring devastation to your life."
Romans 2:18
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Alaroma
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Ex-Nation

Postby Alaroma » Sun Apr 19, 2020 12:27 am

Benjamin Boykin: King of the Texans

Chapter One: Den of Wolves


Nodding cordially as the Duke made his way off, I went over to Iris. “I need to take care of something real quick. I’ll be back soon.” He went outside, and took some time to reflect. Was the Duke really serious? The man obviously didn’t give a damn about the oil, it was the railroads that was getting at him. He had an eye on the man, but he wouldn’t do anything. And if he does, the Rangers will put a knife in his back. Coming back inside, he rejoined his daughter once more.
Last edited by Alaroma on Sun Apr 19, 2020 12:50 am, edited 2 times in total.
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The Baton Rouge Free State
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Inoffensive Centrist Democracy

Postby The Baton Rouge Free State » Sun Apr 19, 2020 3:44 am

James H. Dillard, Viscount of Norfolk
James began to take a sip when the boy turned and asked the question, he almost fumbled his glass but made sure to hold on to everything, his outside appearance remained pretty much the same during the whole ordeal, although inside he was cursing. He finished gulping down the whiskey in his throat, took a small breath, and then started, "Ahh yes, I am James H Dillard, Viscount of Norfolk, so I certainly come from the east." He took another sip when he realized the boy probably had no way of knowing how he knew who he was. "I uh... actually attended your fathers coronation in 1874, my father and a noble from Texas both briefly fought under Johnston in Tennessee, keeping Shermans red haired ass out of the South. So he invited both of us to come visit him on his plantation and we all attended your fathers coronation, and I must say for a southern king he certainly had quite a decent turnout. Anyway, I think I actually saw you there at that coronation, you were a few years younger albeit, but its unlikely you saw me in all the hustle of the subsequent event." Hopefully, a sufficient answer.

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Alaroma
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Ex-Nation

Postby Alaroma » Sun Apr 19, 2020 8:37 am

Israel Boykin: Prince of the Texans

Chapter One: Den of Wolves



“Oh, I remember seeing the General. No such luck remembering you I’m sorry to say my good man, but here we are.” I was 16 the year my father was coronated, and he was right, it was quite the hassle. I felt a tad embarrassed I didn’t remember the man, considering I thought my memory wasn’t too bad. Of course that’s probably just my self bias getting the better of me. “I thank you for the compliment, though truth be told I’ve always thought of stylistically less refined than the East. Not that it’s a bad thing, I suppose. So tell me you two-“ he said, looking at the Viscount of Charleston as well, “Tell me, I’m told you two hold hubs for the Confederate Navy. Are your warships as grand as they say? I had some encounters with Midshipmen in Galveston, and they can only attest to the finery of your ships.”
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The Baton Rouge Free State
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Inoffensive Centrist Democracy

Postby The Baton Rouge Free State » Sun Apr 19, 2020 11:00 am

James H. Dillard, Viscount of Norfolk
"I can tell you in Norfolk we have over 12 Drydocks and not a day goes by where more than a couple are unfilled. I've been to the Naval fortifications a couple of times, the fort itself has seen better days, but the ships are rather splendid. The day I left we had a good handful of steam frigates in port, and 3 Ironclads, the infamous CSS Virginia, the CSS Richmond, and the CSS Shenandoah. The Shenandoah was actually finished a few months before my fathers death, and I must say its engineering is certainly on par with what I saw in my days in English Boarding School in Southampton. However, I'm afraid the Confederate Navy doesn't have much more to boast about, we still have a heavy reliance on sailing vessels which would be easily outclassed in a battle with the Northerner's steam frigates. If we have any hope of beating them in a future engagement, we'll certainly need further expansion." James took the final sip of the Scottish whisky from his glass and set it on the counter. He looked back up at Israel.

"You know in back in the war we had this special kind of ship that was completely underwater, the CSS Hunley it was called. It was involved in one engagement, and it sunk a union bastard in the Chesapeake bay. I heard it got scuttled in later 1864, it was rather limited in its ability and distance. Its parts were melted down for ammunition for the assault into Pennsylvania. But I've never stopped wondering, if something similar could be put into practice in in the future." He paused for a second, take a visible breath. "Think of it, a fleet of undersea war vessels. It only took 8 men to run the Hunley, if we expanded here fighting ability and implemented an engine, I could see a full warship with multiple torpedo tubes only requiring a mere handful of men, 20 maximum." He was getting somewhat excited with his thought as he continued. "That could certainly cut any sailor shortages with the Union." He chuckled, "I wonder what our ancestors would've thought of our modern technical capacity?" He thought aloud.
Last edited by The Baton Rouge Free State on Sun Apr 19, 2020 11:01 am, edited 2 times in total.

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Union Princes
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Corrupt Dictatorship

Postby Union Princes » Sun Apr 19, 2020 11:36 am

Image


Duke West has an order? Caldwell Colt thought lazily as he lounged in his chair in front of his desk while he looked at the telegram sent by the courier. It was strange he wanted to buy the Colt Revolver rifles. The armories had stopped producing them 15 years ago due to the numerous design flaws that plague its military usage. Harper's Ferry would have been a better alternative for the Duke West. As for the 2200 orders of SAA Colt Revolvers? That was easy money for the captain.

It was late afternoon by the time Calwell Colt sent a telegram to his armories to begin packing the shipment of revolvers and a telegram to Duke West detailing the price and expected arrival for his new guns. $38500 for all 2200 revolvers ($936,452 when adjusting to modern inflation). Of course, ammo is purchased separately so hopefully, the Duke already has his own stockpile if he wanted to save some cash.

With that task out of the way, Captain Colt resumed his focus on his future gun design: a double-barrel rifle. Thankfully, he has his crew to help him get a better understanding of his future customers. The young lads like Flapjack of the ironclad wanted their own hunting weapon for their birthday present while the grizzly veterans wanted more firepower in their inventory. The Colt Revolver rifle was a good attempt but good enough. Colt frowned as he looked at his design. Six bullets are always better than two and the Winchester Repeater had eight in its magazine. If he doesn't produce a weapon in time, the Union Army would be able to load their rifles on Sunday and shoot for the rest of the week at the Confederate soldiers.

But alas, only time would tell. For now, the current design would have to do.
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SangMar
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Postby SangMar » Sun Apr 19, 2020 1:01 pm

Paradise Under-the-Sky (Pop: 893), Arkansas - Christian Franklin



Far off the beaten path, far to the north of New Orleans and easily just as far from it’s inhabitants’ thoughts lay the settlement of Paradise-Under-the-Sky; nestled comfortably within the far flung reaches of Arkansas’ western edge, it was safe to say that it only saw occasional traffic. Though, for those who found it, it was a welcome sight - a small almost invisible dot of normality within an otherwise untamed frontier. There were many things about it that someone raised accustomed to a larger town might recognise. For instance, the town’s oddly familiar grid layout, the small but well-stocked tavern and the kerosene lamps that glimmered and swayed whenever a severe wind came through the town. Which were common, given as how the town was huddled within one of highest sections of the Ozarks - a natural barrier against all enemies...

And trade...

Yes, how could Christian Franklin forget? He’d established the town in this area several years ago now - mainly for the plentiful supply of wood that the forested slopes surrounding it provided. It would’ve remained only a pipe dream too, had he not had a background as a military engineer, and previous experience in building settlements. Yet now, the pipe dream was ever so slightly a pipe nightmare - well, not exactly, but the point stood: trade wasn’t exactly smooth sailing in these parts. That said, being so remote did have its own peculiar set of advantages. Firstly, the Empire held no power here - and anyone who did make it all the way out here would find themselves swiftly outgunned lest they attempt to rectify that fact. Secondly, few people outside of the locals knew of the town’s existence - and even if that changed, it wasn’t like there was anything worth taking anyway.

Simply put, all this meant was that the town was relatively self-sufficient - and it had to be after all. In fact, the town produced nearly everything it needed - from meat by way of cows grazed on the local slopes, to grain grown beside the town itself. Paradise Under-the-Sky was doing well...

Which would be great, if Paradise Under-the-Sky was a regular town, that is. In fact, Paradise-Under-the-Sky was more a permanent camp for Christian’s Franklin’s brainchild - the Tranquil Path. The Tranquil Path was a quasi-military organisation based entirely within the settlement’s limits, it was composed of white abolitionists, free blacks, escaped slaves and a cluster of Cherokee, Osage and Chickasaw people. So really, a microcosm of the American South. Their purpose however, was less diverse: protect the Indian Territory from injustice - by both settler and Native alike, shield innocent people from conflict and finally, prevent harm from befalling traders and those traversing the frontier.
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Alaroma
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Postby Alaroma » Sun Apr 19, 2020 1:39 pm

Benjamin Boykin: King of the Texans

Chapter One: Den of Wolves



Having returned to Iris, I had left her with my champagne. Her hand reached out to give me my glass back, and when I went to take it back, her hand retracted suddenly. I raised an eyebrow at the girl, before she lowered her voice, saying “Daddy, a question.......” she began. Oh lord, it was never good when she began with ‘daddy’, so I prepared myself. “Reckon you could have dealt with Duke West, in perhaps, a more Christian like manner?” My eyes squinted at her, and I motioned for her to explain herself. “Well I’m just saying, you have the obvious right to that railroad, but he obviously slighted by that. He’s a Methodist too you know, a brother in The Christ. Scripture at Matthew 5: 23 to 24 does say ‘If, then, you are bringing your gift to the altar and there you remember that your brother has something against you, 24 leave your gift there in front of the altar, and go away. First make your peace with your brother, and then come back and offer your gift.’ Ain’t it better for your standing as Christians, and Texas, if you come up with some kind of counter proposal?” Oh God, she was moralizing me like I feared. Using the scriptures on me, that girl. She handed me my glass, and smiled warmly at me. “Just something to think about, daddy. He’s right over there.” She pointed where Elias was, amd like that, she went off to join her brother.

Sighing, I thought it over myself. The Duke was obviously not happy about the current arrangement, but how do I address it? Well, the man is interested in economics and his business, and I’m interested in the power balance that the railroads provide. Thinking it over, there’s something that could make this work. I gathered my thoughts together of a rough outline of a proposal, and went over to Elias who was by himself for the moment. “You know Elias-“ I began, putting on the old facade, “my daughter has reminded me that at the end of the day, we’re brothers in the Christ. So, I’ll make you an offer. I’ll give you a 50% in the San Antonio-Galveston line, and waive your fees on all the other lines I run. I’ll also offer a joining between a marriage between one of your relations and mine. To add onto that, I will invite you to set up joint ventures and independent ventures in the Arizona territory, and for you to head a colony there. In exchange, I want a few things. For one, I want control of the entire Navy under state command. I also want it so that you, under legal binding, don’t raise a Military force. I also want the right to conscript men among your population with your approval, and the right to advertise for the service of men without it under the state’s banner. However, a police force such as the Texas Rangers is acceptable as long as the number of them is reasonable, and they don’t have any heavy equipment such as artillery. And to deal with the financial loss, I wish for relatively little. I want yards in Galveston for the point of Naval construction, which I assure you the state will compensate. Beyond that, I wish for one of those oil locations you mentioned earlier as an entry into that market, and a few mines in Transpescos.”
Last edited by Alaroma on Sun Apr 19, 2020 1:42 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Postby The United Empire of Exucular » Sun Apr 19, 2020 2:49 pm

Biltmore Palace

Bernard thought over the Princes question. Charleston did in fact have several ships in its waters. By wars end the Confederate fleet had about a hundred ships of various classes. As there was only a dozen or so worthy ports in the southern states Charleston took its fair share of the fleet. When Bernard came to political power in Charleston he made sure the upkeep of said vessels was one of his first proprieties. Like Norfolk, but perhaps not at the same pace, shipbuilding had begun to grow in importance in recent years as to not fall behind the rest of the states and the world at large.

"Charleston cares for its vessels and their crews well. Several ships came to anchor in Charleston at the completion of the war and since they've only grown in numbers."

Bernard was intrigued with the idea of producing more ships like the CSS Hunley.

"Fascinating. Having a fleet like that would give us quite the advantage out on the seas. More of the Hunley's kind would have been helpful to us in the war when the Northern tried their damnedest to blockade us. They would have chocked us if they had been more successful."
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The Grand Duchy Of Nova Capile
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Postby The Grand Duchy Of Nova Capile » Sun Apr 19, 2020 3:23 pm

BILL MERCER

Charlotte, North Carolina

"Remove yourself from my office at once." It was a bold statement from one looking down the barrel of a LeMat.

"Nay, I'm afeared I cain't, least not til ye've sworn never to go near the Chancellor's daughter again."

"This is about Laura?" the young man exclaimed, his Georgia accent rich. "Stonewall put you up to this, then?"

"He's got bigger plans for his daughter than the editor o' the Charlotte Democrat."

"Laura and I love each other," William Christian retorted, ignoring the revolver inches from his face, "and that's all that matters." Bill winced, having to agree with the man at whom he was pointing his gun. Dixie's upstart aristocracy was a cancer on the South. He lowered the LeMat; physical intimidation was not working.

"If ye so much as write her again, yer replacement's first job will be to edit yer obituary."

"And to publish my denunciation of Thomas Jackson," Christian declared, jumping to his feet, "who has no more honor than a Yankee."

"Ye've got a sister in Virginia, don't ye?" Bill said suddenly, gloved finger brushing the length of his revolver. The hothead's flushed face drained of color. "I'd hate to see her come to harm." The man sunk back into the seat behind his desk and stared blankly at tomorrow's unfinished paper.

"Fine. I will let Laura go. Just leave my family out of this— and never come back here again."

"I hope I shan't have to."

Biltmore Palace

Easily dismounting from his horse, a handsome American Saddleback named Highlander, Bill Mercer let out a low whistle as he surveyed the palatial chateau before him. A negro took his horse and another led him inside. Clad in his old lieutenant colonel's uniform, which was the closest he had to formal attire, Mercer was led through glimmering corridors ever closer to the jubilant din of a party. At last the slave threw open the doors of a banquet hall overflowing with people. Everyone who was anyone in Dixie was here, from the Yankee carpet-bagger barons who'd become honorary Southerners under Vanderbilt to the old heroes of the War— such as Thomas Jackson, who, from his seat beside the Emperor's, watched over the hall as if it were a battlefield, studying the enemy's attack and coming up with a counter. Rebuffing the numerous glasses of champagne which he was offered, William Mercer stole across the room and through countless knots of people until he arrived at the side of Stonewall Jackson.

"Sir," he began, glancing from side-to-side to ensure they enjoyed relative privacy, "I've taken care o' Mr. Christian. Yer daughter will hear no more from him."
Last edited by The Grand Duchy Of Nova Capile on Sun Apr 19, 2020 4:07 pm, edited 1 time in total.
Capilean News (Updated 6 August)
Where is the horse gone? Where the warrior?
Where is the treasure-giver? Where are the seats at the feast?
Where are the revels in the hall?
Alas for the bright cup! Alas for the mailed warrior!
Alas for the splendour of the prince!
How that time has passed away, dark under the cover of night, as if it never were.

The Wanderer

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Sanabel
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Postby Sanabel » Sun Apr 19, 2020 3:34 pm

Stonewall Jackson



Coronation Banquet, Biltmore Palace

While it did not show on his solemn face, Jackson was reassured to have a trusted ally back in the court. While he did not fear the old play-aristocrats and drunken Yankees, he knew they had their own guards, their own fixers, their own hired guns. More importantly, he knew they were all eying him as the man who stood between them and the throne. And while Jackson’s own pistol felt heavy from its place on his person, he was only one man, and an old man at that. A detachment of the Roanoke Rifles wasn’t far off, but it would be hours before they could rush to their Marshall’s aid. Mercer, on the other hand, was his best and last line of defense.

Continuing to eye the throngs of people, the old general nodded stoically. “Good,” he muttered, “good indeed.”

After a moment he turned up to face the other man, an old, trusted friend. He did not rise to greet him, rather he placed a hand on the back of the seat to his right, gesturing for his fixer to take a seat.

“While don’t we take advantage of this moment of relative privacy the good Lord has graciously provided. We’ve much to discuss.”
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SangMar
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Postby SangMar » Sun Apr 19, 2020 3:59 pm

Paradise Under-the-Sky (Pop: 893), Arkansas - Christian Franklin



The clatter of hooves on what constituted Main Street was still a relatively unusual sound to the town’s inhabitants - nearly all of whom were members of the Path, with a few non-members whose skills had been deemed essential mixed in. The sound was so unusual in fact that much of the town stopped for a brief moment, poking their heads out of their cabins or in the case of the people outside of one, just stopping what they were doing entirely. Momentarily, the whole town ground to a halt.

Then it started up again, with a collective sigh of relief.

For this was no cause for alarm, it was merely a caravan of Tranquil Path members returning from the Indian Territory after a brief trading trip. Fortunately, the Native peoples there were quite open to trading with the Path - the latter quite happily trading food for things like tomahawks and bows. As primitive as it may seem, the technology was good - it didn’t require long and carefully planned trips down south or to the east, which was the case with guns and ammunition. There was another benefit to the trade too for the Natives: the Tranquil Path would protect them encroachment by settlers. Though, that wouldn’t be necessary yet - as far as the Path knew, the number of settlers crossing into the Indian Territory by way of Arkansas was small.

Watching the caravan’s return from the town’s main administrative building, was Christian Franklin and his second-in-command - a white northern abolitionist by the name of John. The two men were discussing a matter of minor importance to the town; yet due to the town’s remote location, even these required some form of discussion.

“John, as the Battle-Commander for the Path, you should know most of all that the Emperor’s death could have large repercussions for the region...” Christian began, pulling a torn and slightly faded map from the pocket of his trousers. It was a map of the South, and the current Empire’s domains - officially anyway. Truthfully though, everyone - even up there knew that the Empire was an empire in name only. The real power lay in a collection of piecemeal vassals and wealthy nobles - or businessmen in that day and age. Well, why not both? Nobles and businessmen.

“I know this...” John replied without skipping a beat, nodding his head sharply to his superior’s statement. Honestly, the Path had only heard word of the Emperor’s death a week or so after it occurred; a passing trader had been kind enough to clue them in. “I just feel that we shouldn’t go on a defensive footing just yet. After all, we do not know how well this new emperor will rule. He could be a strong influence for peace across the realm - and furthermore, he could even rein in some of his more adventurous vassals.” But little did either of them know that this new emperor was a mere drunkard, who thought himself much more suited to the ballroom and the bedroom rather than the duties of an emperor.

If they had, they’d have just cause for concerns.

“Okay.” Christian stated slowly, placing the map down onto a worn-looking table, he held it in place with two of his fingers. “This may sound impulsive, but I’m going down to Asheville. John, you cannot stop me from doing this.” John, having accepted Christian’s brash nature several years earlier, didn’t even try - he knew that unless there was tangible danger to the Path itself, his superior would not be convinced. “Don’t look so forlorn, John. We need firsthand information on the new Emperor. Which is why I want someone sent to Texas too.”

Christian wasn’t stupid, he was well aware that as a completely unknown individual of no great wealth or importance, he couldn’t just waltz up to the new emperor and act all buddy buddy with him. Even if the emperor’s “empire” was nothing like a real one. So instead, he’d play the long game - gathering information, trading where he could and hopefully discerning the make up of the new emperor. The Texas-bound Path member would play a similar role - seeking allies, trading where they could and looking for those who could be recruited.

After packing his military uniform, taking one of the Path’s few sidearms - an 1851 Colt “Navy” revolver for defence, and enough rations to last until the next town, Christian set off east. The Path member for Texas departing a little while later - a similar degree of planning going into their journey too.
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Postby St George Territory » Sun Apr 19, 2020 5:39 pm

BILTMORE PALACE
PRINCIPAL CHIEF OF THE CHEROKEE NATION, DR. SAMUEL YOUNGDEER



What is life? It is the flash of a firefly in the night. It is the breath of a buffalo in the wintertime. It is the little shadow which runs across the grass and loses itself in the sunset. - Chief Crowfoot




Samuel had dressed fancifully for the occasion, it was not every day that he may have the opportunity to meet the Emperor, if he were to see him at all. He held back his resentment as his horse trotted along, one hand on the reins the other holding the long trade shirt that covered his traditional suit and tie, with his entourage of a fellow Cherokee and an Osage who had been welcomed to accompany him he could quickly see the palace in all its glory, it's 'kings', 'princes', and other ilk, he turned to his friends and said, "The whites have to many chiefs." To which the men shared a laugh, quickly finding the stable to deposit their horses. "Seems like they've never seen an Indian before." Youngdeer said in Cherokee, the eyes of many of the residents were on the three men.

"They think us savages. I pray for them." William StandingBear, the Osage retorted, in his near immaculate Cherokee, "Let's get in there before they call the authorities on us for some crime of walking." Samuel nodded as they made their way to the palace, finding no difficulty beyond making their way through the drunken party goers and sounds of the celebration. Once inside they found themselves stopped by a tall man, a butler if Youngdeer had to make a guess.

"No red men allowed, you hear, can't have you savages burning the place down!"

Samuel had faced this many times, from his years spent studying in New Orleans he quickly took out his documents to show the man, "I am Chief Youngdeer of the Cherokee, I come to celebrate the crowning of my Emperor, these are my kinsmen, who seek to honour the Emperor." A strong taste of bile could be tasted at the back of his throat, the drunken fool was hardly fit to run anything. With a quick read of the paperwork the man scoffed and spit on Youngdeer's oxford's and walked away, a rather pleasant interaction all things considered. The trio took their hats off revealing their feathers as they made way to try the white art of socializing.
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The Grand Duchy Of Nova Capile
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Postby The Grand Duchy Of Nova Capile » Sun Apr 19, 2020 6:10 pm

BILL MERCER

Biltmore Palace

Mercer fell somewhat reluctantly into the seat beside Jackson's, feeling ill-at-ease in this den of aristocrats.

“Why don’t we take advantage of this moment of relative privacy the good Lord has graciously provided. We’ve much to discuss," Jackson said gravely.

"Yessir," Bill agreed, bright blue eyes identifying countless leaders amid the throng. They then jumped to the raised chair beside Jackson's where the new Emperor should have sat. As Jackson began the discussion, Mercer wondered vaguely what was important enough to keep the young man from his own party.
Capilean News (Updated 6 August)
Where is the horse gone? Where the warrior?
Where is the treasure-giver? Where are the seats at the feast?
Where are the revels in the hall?
Alas for the bright cup! Alas for the mailed warrior!
Alas for the splendour of the prince!
How that time has passed away, dark under the cover of night, as if it never were.

The Wanderer

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Sanabel
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Postby Sanabel » Sun Apr 19, 2020 6:50 pm

Stonewall Jackson



Coronation Banquet, Biltmore Palace

“Mercer,” Jackson began, “Every man at this gathering wishes he were sitting in that chair,” he nudged toward the Emperor’s seat. “Or they want one just like it in their home polity, whether that be in Louisiana or Texas or otherwise.”

He took a sip from his cup. It was vinegar, the old man’s drink of choice. Another eccentricity- just as he thought he had to stand for hours of the day to keep his organs aligned, drinking vinegar would keep his mind sharp.

“You and I have to stop that from happening, do you understand? We have to let the Biltmore boy keep his seat. He may not seem worthy of the Imperial Title now, but I believe he has the makings of a great man, if we nudge him in the proper direction. You see, he’s the last chance that we have. The old Confederacy we fought for, the Southern Race, Dixie, whatever one calls it- it’s all finished unless we ensure the boy maintains his birthright.”

He took another sip of the bitter concoction.

“Do you understand,” he repeated.
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Vienna Eliot
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Postby Vienna Eliot » Sun Apr 19, 2020 8:59 pm

Biltmore Palace

Andrew grimaced. Where was he? It had been almost an hour and the man was nowhere to be seen. He glanced toward the table, at the seat where the new Emperor should have been sitting — occupied by someone else, chatting with the Chancellor. Presumably his bodyguard, and awfully tall. But that didn't matter. What mattered was that Andrew could only make the rounds for so long before people had started asking if he had any idea of the whereabouts of His Imperial Majesty.

"Ladies and gentlemen!" an usher yelled from the entrance to the grand ballroom. Andrew looked up anxiously. "The Emperor of the South!"

George entered slowly as the doors swung open. Standing shorter than many of the men in the room, in his full ceremonial garb — resembling something of a contemporary take on Dutch royal garments — Andrew almost forgot to genuflect, and looked up as he did to see if George was visibly drunk. He didn't appear so, but who could tell? Or, if no one could tell, did it matter?

George halted and stood as the men genuflected and the women curtsied. Andrew stood first. Sure, many of these folks came from money, but most of them would need some guidance as to how the etiquette of imperial royalty. "Your imperial majesty," he proclaimed, hoping to the Lord that George would remember his remarks.

"My loyal subjects," George began. "It is a privilege that I can now speak to you all, greeting old friends and, as I hope, new friends in those parts where it has not yet been my good fortune to go. I cannot find words with which to thank you for your love and loyalty to the Empire and to myself. Your good will in the streets of today grants me hope for the future of the Southern Empire, even in this dark time. I will only say this, that if, in the coming years, I can show my gratitude in service to you, that is the way above all others that I should choose."

George paused for several seconds, looking into the crowd. Someone coughed. Andrew locked eyes with George. To many millions, he mouthed.

"To many millions the Imperial Crown is a symbol of our common heritage," George continued. "And by the grace of God and by the will of the loyal peoples of the South, I have assumed that Crown. In me, as your Emperor, is vested for a time the duty of maintaining its honour and integrity. I will always keep in my heart the inspiration of this day. May we ever be worthy of the good will, which, I am proud to think, surrounds us at the outset of my reign. I thank you from my heart. God bless the South, and may God bless you all."

Andrew rose his empty glass. "God save the South." A chorus repeated him, and the Emperor gradually strode toward his table, greeting his subjects along the way.

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Sanabel
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Postby Sanabel » Sun Apr 19, 2020 9:19 pm

Stonewall Jackson



Coronation Banquet, Biltmore Palace

As the doors swung open, Jackson’s instincts told him the moment had arrived. He sprung to his feet, and pulled the larger man next to him to his feet as well, by grabbing his jacket collar. As usual, he hung his left side a bit higher than his right, to keep his heart properly elevated. He listened, austere as ever, as the boy emperor spoke. When the time for a toast came, he raised his cup of vinegar and took a sip before resting it back in the table.

“Your imperial majesty,” he said while genuflecting as the Emperor approached the table. “We have been awaiting your arrival, and we are pleased to see you are here at last. Congratulations once more on your coronation, I believe your reign will be long and fruitful.” He disliked the pompous, flowery language of the aristocracy, but he couldn’t be curt with the emperor.

Gesturing to the man beside him, he said, “This is Colonel Mercer. The two of you may have met about the court, but a re-introduction is always appropriate. He and I fought alongside one another during the War, and he is pleased, I am certain, to honor your imperial majesty on this banner day.”
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The Grand Duchy Of Nova Capile
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Postby The Grand Duchy Of Nova Capile » Mon Apr 20, 2020 12:12 am

BILL MERCER

Biltmore Palace

“Mercer, every man at this gathering wishes he were sitting in that chair. Or they want one just like it in their home polity, whether that be in Louisiana or Texas or otherwise.” Bill gave a gruff nod of agreement, eyes regarding the innumerable Southron nobles with barely veiled distrust. “You and I have to stop that from happening, do you understand? We have to let the Biltmore boy keep his seat. He may not seem worthy of the Imperial Title now, but I believe he has the makings of a great man, if we nudge him in the proper direction. You see, he’s the last chance that we have. The old Confederacy we fought for, the Southern Race, Dixie, whatever one calls it— it’s all finished unless we ensure the boy maintains his birthright.”

Mercer looked to his employer. Their imprudent boy of an emperor was the last man he would name as an embodiment of the Confederacy— Grant and Abe Lincoln included. The leader of the Confederacy should, in his inconsequential opinion, be a man able to withstand the crucible of battle; a man born great, not made so. A new line of thought flowered in his head. “Do you understand?” Jackson repeated when Bill offered no answer.

"Sir," Mercer said after a pause, "wouldn't ye make a better Emperor than that halfwit?" But before Jackson could make answer, "that halfwit" barged into the room. Mercer was jerked to his feet by the Chancellor and managed to improvise a genuflection before Emperor George's speech began. It was typical politician's hot air, made even hollower by the fact that the Emperor was a mere youth, not a Senator nor a General; and Mercer found himself wishing he had not rebuffed those flutes of champagne, if only so he could join in the toast.

The Emperor approached them, though he was intercepted by several cloying guests along the way, and eventually reached the high table, where Jackson made introductions. “This is Colonel Mercer. The two of you may have met about the court, but a re-introduction is always appropriate. He and I fought alongside one another during the War, and he is pleased, I am certain, to honor Your Imperial Majesty on this banner day.”

Mercer imitated a respectful bow and faced the shorter man. "Congratulations," he said dully, and then, as an afterthought, "Yer Imperial Majesty." Even after years in the Imperial Court, Bill was hardly at home here, and had no desire to converse with the fop before him, so he left it to his master.
Capilean News (Updated 6 August)
Where is the horse gone? Where the warrior?
Where is the treasure-giver? Where are the seats at the feast?
Where are the revels in the hall?
Alas for the bright cup! Alas for the mailed warrior!
Alas for the splendour of the prince!
How that time has passed away, dark under the cover of night, as if it never were.

The Wanderer

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