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Alamgir Chronicles (IC)

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New Aeyariss
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Alamgir Chronicles (IC)

Postby New Aeyariss » Wed Apr 06, 2022 6:30 am

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Bijan Mansoori



Bijan Mansoori never slept so well. In his dreams, he once again found himself running among the streets of Khusraubad. Far away, over the city, as a massive warship among a horde of fishing boats, the Crimson Citadel towered over the sea of houses. Further in the distance he could see the hulking but simple building of the Temple of Khoda, where the Lord of All Creation dwelt among the mortals. Beyond them were simple, mud-brick houses.

Bijan ran among the street - once again a young boy of no less than twelve, with brown skin and a wave of curly black hair. In front of him, laughing, ran another boy - with shorter hair, but a bit thinner. Both were enjoying themselves greatly.

The front boy suddenly stopped, and grabbed a long stick, then thrust it in front of his face.

"Come and face me, oh warrior of Khoda!" roared the boy in a villianous voice "I, Vijayanta, challenge you in the name of my devas!"

"Your devas are evil!" shouted Bijan, playing his role "I, Hossein, will be your opponent today!".

The two boys were playing a well known story among the Khodaist worshippers. Hossein was one of Farrukhsiyar's generals, a mighty man who slew a giant pagan named Vijayanta, rumoured to fight with a spear as thick as a human hand.

"Very well then!" shouted the boy "Brace yourself!"

And two boys, each carrying a stick, lunged at each other. Within seconds the sticks clashed and an exchange of blows continued, both boys uncaring about pain coming from the strikes. They were not, after all, Bijan and Sasan - they were Hossein and Vijayanta, mighty warriors of two religions locked in mortal combat.

Suddenly, with a swift jerk of hand, Bijan managed to knock the stick out hand of his opponent.

"Foolish Kharlani scum!" shouted Sassan still playing his role "I don't need my spear to defeat you!"

And he lunged at Bijan's legs, grabbing him. The impetus carried him forward towards the ground. The two boys rolled from each other and started laughing again.

"Sassan was your best friend, was he not?" Bijan suddenly realized that Sassan was no longer there with him. Instead, he was standing alone on the city square, with only a hooded man with no discernable features behind him.

"He was..." Bijan sighed with resignation "I wish I could have been more stern with him. Perhaps then I could have saved him. "

The scene shifted again. He was standing in Sassan's room, with only a dim light.

"Why should I continue to worship Khoda?" said Sassan "I find devas to be far more relaxed in their laws. If I pray to them, I can do all I want while retaining the benefits!"

Bijan looked at the floor. Inside hi, various emotions fought like the Kushti wrestlers in a sand ring. The law demanded the reported his friend. But if his friend gets caught, he would certainly be stoned as laws of Prophet - Khan commanded.

He tought in silence.

"Come on!" said his friend joyfully "It is not like I demand you to abandon Khoda. You will still be my friend, right?"

Bijan once again thought. He was an orphan. Sassan was his only friend, only companion he had.

He sighed deeply.

"No" Mansoori exclaimed "I will not."

Bijan once again found himself on the town's square, with the Crimson Citadel in front of him. Behind him, the mysterious man slowly walked forward.

"Two weeks later" the man begun "Sassan slaughtered ten children in as a blood sacrifice to the devas. By failing to report Sassan, you ensured their deaths."

"I know!" roared Bijan, furious that the man had hit his sore spot "THERE IS NOT A SINGLE DAY I DO NOT REGRET IT!"

"If you were given a chance to save far more..." the man spoke "Would you take it?"

"Of course." Bijan calmed down "But who are you to give me such a chance?"

Then the man disappeared.

Light. Light so bright it outshone the sun suddenly flashed into his eyes. Upon opening his eyes, he could see the light coming from the sky. Then he noticed two objects flying underneath.

"Birds?" he thought. He looked at their colorful flapping wings. But then, he noticed the rest. The birds had faces of men, and lion like paws prortrued from their bodies.

"Those are no birds! Those are simurghs!" he said in his head, looking at the coming beasts. And there was only one being that was said to travel on backs of simurghs...

"MY LORD!" Bijan fell on his face, averting his eyes. He did not want to look at Khoda, Creator of the Universe and Lord of the Devas with his own eyes least they burn. Fear suddenly filled his entire being, the primal fear of meeting a being so more powerful than himself.

"Fear not, Bijan!" a voice thundered from above, so majestic as sound of many waterfalls "For due to your lessons I have chosen you. In a day, the Emperor will take Barwala, and when he returns, you will meet him and pass the message from me to him."

"What would you have me say, my Lord?" asked terrified Bijan.

"Corruption eats the heart of the empire. My people do not keep the commandments I have given to them. One official is more corrupt than the other." the voice continued to thunder "They accept bribes and lust after wives of others. Henceforth I shall bring trials on the Empire!"

Bijan, inside, started fearing more. Declaration of divine judgement was no matter to scoff at. He agreed with it though, knowing the kind of people that inhabited the imperial court.

"I will bring many foes against the Empire. Even let them triumph." the declaration sounded "If my people repent of their wickedness, they will triumph in the end, though they will suffer much. If they do not... Karlani empire will fall."

Now, Bijan was utterly terrified. But at the same time, his entire being was filled with willingness to act. To save his home before it was too late.

"I will as you ask, my lord!" he shouted.

"Then go! Be my witness to the Emperor!" the voice commanded and Bijan woke up sweating.

Alamgir Shah Kalrani



Barwala burned. The remains of the siege engines and holes in the walls made by the imperial canons were clearly visible, as were endless fires eating the city, devouring buildings and men. Soldiers, dressed in chainmail, with large oval shields were dragging whatever men they could find to the city's square, setting the men in rows under guard. In the middle of the square, before entire population of shivering men, women and children, stood he. He sat on a horse as white as snow, dressed in a chain mail armour with a simple mirror plate decorated with motifs of lions. Lion - the symbol of Karlani tribe - also waved on his green banner behind him. He had long beard, oval face, and wore an elaborate red turban. A pair of small, deeply set eyes watched the assembled men like a leopard watching his prey.

In front, contrasting with the burning city, stood his elite slave soldiers - the Ahids. Each dressed in chainmail, with sabres drawn and faces as pale as death.

He was Alamgir Shah Karlani, the Padishah Emperor by the grace of Khoda.

"Crooked pagans!" roared the Emperor like a lion, his voice making the making the crowd shiver again "I protected you in my empire. I even let you worship your crooked devas. And you repay with rebellion?"

"My lord..." one of the men said "We rebelled because your taxes were..."

"Silence you pagan worm!" shouted the ruler, making the man fall down in fear "You are not worth for me to step on your neck!"

He had enough. He was angry. Those people violated their covenant with him and were going to pay.

"I will do as law of Khoda commands" he turned to commander of the Ahids, who awaited action "Kill all men above sixteen springs and build a pyramid from their head in the middle of the square. Sell all boys beneath sixteen springs into slavery. You may take the women for yourselves, but remember that you are to grant them a month and provide for them. That is all."

"It will be done, my lord!" the commander of Ahids bowed and moved away to shout the orders. In moments, the Ahids descended on the flock of unarmed men, dragging the first of them. An ahid made him kneel then with one swift movement severed his head from the body. Blood flowed upwards like a fountain.

"Mercy my lord! Please mercy!" shouted men in the crowd, but to no avail. One by one, the ahids dragged them out then beheaded. Meanwhile, the sepoys broke ranks and turned into an undisciplined mob, falling on the houses and trying to loot whatever they could before fires consumed it all.

The emperor turned around, his anger soothed by the carnage. He rode with a security detail of his ahids through the city streets, watching his soldiers kill, loot, enslave and burn.

But then, screams caught his ear. He turned his head to see the source of it.

Next to him, a mere sepoy was dragging a woman - with beautiful face and a wave of curly dark hair. The sepoy was ugly - he lacked couple of his teeth, his beard was unkept as were his hair, and foul smell was coming from him so strong the sultan almost vomited. This man had not seen bath in ages.

"No, please no!" the woman screamed "Please no no no!"

"Shut up you woman!" screeched the sepoy "It is just a month, and then I will f...."

Alamgir paused... because the woman looked exactly like his sister, Khaleda Begum. Long ago, Alamgir's brother lusted after her, and went so far as to force himself on her. Alamgir killed him in revenge, but Khaleda never managed to recover. She committed suicide five months later by throwing herself from a window.

Was this what he was unleashing on those people? How being forced upon impacted a woman he saw with his own eyes. But those were pagans... they worshipped demons, and laws of Khoda ordered that if a man desires a female captive, he could take her as his concubine provided that he cared for her. It was certainly more humane than what some other nations did to female captives.. Yet he still could not bring himself to watch it.

He rode to the sepoy, who instantly fell on his knees.

"I want the woman for myself" he said.

"But my lord I saw her..." replied the soldier, only to be cut.

"Silence!" shouted Alamgir "I am the Padishah Emperor and you are dirt beneath my feet. I can take what I want, and you obey or I will have you beheaded!"

"Of course... my Lord." the man released the woman, who was then grabbed by one o the Ahids.

Alamgir rode out of the town, looking at a massive column of newly made slaves marching alongside his army. In truth, he had no intention to make the woman his concubine - in his mind, he had enough wives as it was. Her new role would probably be to serve one of his princesses.

Then, the seeds of doubt about Khoda's laws were sown in the Emperors head.

Crimson Citadel, Khsraubad



There was no victory without celebration, and Padishah Emperor knew how make the celebrations best. He was met by cheering crowds upon his return to Khusraubad, and in the evening, he threw largest party ever in his palace.

There was everything - dancers, wrestlers, musicians and other entertainers. The entire night will be filled with drinking, eating, watching entertainers then more drinking. All members of the social elite were invited.

It was also the time the first intrigues were started.
Last edited by New Aeyariss on Wed Apr 06, 2022 6:31 am, edited 1 time in total.
Rping in MT (2018) and PT/FanT (1564)


Inyourfaceistan wrote:You didn't know that Cusc is actually a 4-armed cyborg genius commander and skillful warrior created in secret by a cabal of rich capitalist financiers built to lead and army of drones and other renegades against and overbearing socialist regime?
Psalms 144:1 wrote:Blessed be the LORD my strength, which teacheth my hands to war, and my fingers to fight.
Also known as El Cuscatlan, Jesus will offer you eternal life if you believe in him!


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Moralistic Democracy

Life is cheap; Feasts, are not.

Postby Ovstylap » Fri Apr 08, 2022 11:34 am

A month ago, in the hinterland of Barwala
Erbir Mirza ibn Farroukshiyar

The rays of morning sunlight glinted off of helmets, swords, and armour, reflecting brightly for miles around. Already the temperature was beginning to rise, but that would not deter the carrion birds which were already gathering. Hundreds of bodies littered the valley floor, but the cries of the wounded grew ever rarer. They were much quieter now than they had been in the immediate aftermath of dawn. Dismounted lancers walked amongst the bodies, finishing off the rebel wounded with quick thrusts from the spears, or crouched down to deliver lethal cuts. A number of sepoys, having slung their bows, were gathering the Dahari wounded, and taking them to the stream side, where their wounds were washed, and they were given initial treatment. The rising Karlani sun beat down upon the scene, its warm glow already encouraging the flies.

Sitting astride a powerful beige horse on a knoll overlooking the skirmish's aftermath was a half-brother of the Padishah Emperor. A governor of one of the wealthier provinces of the Karlani empire, renowned for its spice trade, and its mines. A distinguished, veteran commander, not yet having seen forty springs. A powerful Zamindar, but one with a reputation for loyalty. Erbir Mirza ibn Farroukshiyar.

His black beard had yet to show signs of grey, though the slight hints were visible at the roots of his hair. He nodded as he appraised the results of his cavalry's attack on the force of rebel infantry who had been marching towards the forces encircling Barwala. It was by a margin of nearly 200 men the largest of the columns that had been intercepted. Using the topography of the local ground, they had attempted to advance through the valleys, to hide their presence from his scouts, but the patrols were extensive and frequent, and they had been spotted over a day's march from the perimeter of the besieging forces. Vulnerable to attack from above, Erbir's cavalry, predominantly non-Khodaist lancers, had swept through the valley upon the open camp of the rebels, after the rebel sentries facing up the valley had been eliminated by some of the more competent Dahari sepoys.

It had been a slaughter. From the initial counts, some seven hundred Barwalan rebels had fallen, including the wounded. Less than two hundred had been taken prisoner. These men having been disarmed and then forced to strip to the waist to distinguish them, were tending to their own wounded, digging graves, and piling up weapons and armour. They were joined by some of the local men from the nearby village, several hundred meters beyond the edge of the skirmish. Only a handful of rebels had made it as far before the lancers had caught them. Over the past hour since the attack had finished, a column of Dahari sepoys had begun to arrive, escorting other prisoners, as well as dozens of camels, donkeys, and other pack animals.

As had happened after the previous few skirmishes and attacks such as this morning's, Erbir's forces had been gathering up arms and armour from the dead, before storing them at the fort of Malkanbani, which had been his first objective several weeks ago, as his forces were ordered by the Emperor to secure the approaches to Barwala. The garrison of 80 rebels had quickly surrendered after Erbir had threatened to put the nearby two villages to the sword, and have the heads launched into the settlement. They had primarily been old men and young lads, after the majority of the garrison had been sent to Barwala itself.

"My lord." Erbir continued to watch over the continued scavenging of the small battlefield. He had seen such scenes many times. Once the Dahari bodies had been fully separated, ready to be washed, identified, recorded, and buried, the rebel bodies would be moved into mass graves, less putrefaction in the spring sun set in and the stream be fully contaminated.
"My lord." Erbir raised his eyebrows, and turned to a young cavalry officer, who commanded a body of thirty Karlani horse-archers.
"Ah, Nimesh, what have you to report?" Erbir smiled as he saw the man fail to suppress a slight smile at being remembered by name. The young man showed promise, and had performed effectively in his role leading scouting and foraging parties.
"From my conversations with other officers and scouts, we have no reason to believe that there will be any more significant attempts to reinforce Barwala, this appears to have been the last force of any substance. No word has escaped Barwala for two months, and most of the villagers expect that it will fall." Nimesh nodded to himself, glad that he had been able to report clearly and with confidence, unlike his first couple of attempts.
Erbir smiled more broadly. "Good, thank you, you've done well Nimesh, attend to your men."

Erbir looked back to the scene below as weapons were piled into chests carried by camels, mules, and the like, and then turned towards the west. Smoke continued to rise from the direction of Barwala, mixing with the haze of campfire smoke from the besieging forces of the Padishah emperor. The Barwala rebellion had been brewing for a month at least before the campaign began five months ago, and now the centre of the rebellion had been besieged for 9 weeks. It was expected to be taken before the month ended. To have campaigned over the winter wasn't ideal, and had been somewhat expensive, but the city as a wealthy one, and Erbir hoped that the Dahari contribution to securing the hinterland of the city, and providing extensive forage, would be amply rewarded with a fair share.

"Ah. A wonderful start to the day my friends, a wonderful start indeed. This rebellion will be over soon, and perhaps we might enjoy some of the spring before we deal with the next one!" The officers and bodyguards escorting Erbir laughed.
"What of the prisoners, my lord Mirza?"
"And indeed of the village, my lord?"

Erbir turned to the officers who had spoken. "I don't expect there will be any more reinforcements of substance marching on Barwala, not many more graves will need to be dug, or loot to be carried. Fire and sword. The villagers had few men of fighting age, and allowed the rebel reinforcements to camp near them. Treat them the same." He looked at the faces of the officers around him. Of the dozen, several were unphased, a couple nodded. Three of them smiled. Hard men. Veterans of campaigns. Most of them devout Khodaists. Few things about war and the men who fought them seemed to surprise Erbir anymore. For a moment he felt twice his age. He nodded, satisfied, and turned away, spurring his horse down the knoll towards the part of the stream where his wounded were being treated.

He briefly looked around at the otherwise picteuresque landscape, smiling at the sight of the valley showing more and more green each day. He had just ordered the deaths of several hundred people, including several dozen villagers. And yet the colour green was making him happy. Erbir shook his head with a slight smile as he wondered at the peculiarities of life.

The Present Day, Crimson Citadel

The human mind is an amazing thing, particularly when the body is relaxed by a good couple of drinks, and the company of friends. At once Erbir could hear the sounds of many instruments, of clapping hands, of laughing dancers, and a great hubbub of conversations. He could hear also the sounds of Barwala burning. The wail of a wounded Dahari lancer as he heard the news of his brother's death whilst he was being bandaged by a stream, just three weeks before the city fell. Flowing water rushing by as the wails turned to sobs. The sounds of roaring crowds acclaiming their Emperor, his half-brother, as they rode down the main street of Khusraubad that morning. The flutes again. The sound of Nimesh saying something to him. Had he already said something?

"Thank you again for inviting me along, my lord Mirza!" Erbir turned and grinned at Nimesh, who had admittedly done a fine job at procuring expensive silk garments for tonight's victory celebration. "You're very welcome Nimesh, I apologise, I was thinking of the events of the last month. I see a lot of potential in you as an officer, but I don't want you to forget about living a nobleman's life, or how to enjoy it!" Nimesh smiled broadly, accepting another drink from a passing servant. He could certainly drink, but before the hour was up Erbir expected Nimesh to be struggling to hold his stomach.

"I have never attended such an extraordinary event, my lord Mirza! It's luxurious!" Erbir laughed, and glanced at Nimesh watching dancers flowing past him.
"Beautiful dancers as well?"
Nimesh turned and took a generous mouthful from his drink. "Oh yes, certainly!" Erbir could see a lot of himself in the man. He took a small sip from his own drink. At least for the next hour or so he intended to remain sober. There were a few people he wanted to observe, and indeed perhaps even talk to. Indeed, he knew that he could introduce Nimesh, one of his successful officers, and out of politeness they would have to give him some interest, whilst Erbir could appraise who they were keeping company with. He had been somewhat out of touch with happenings in the court recently, and how better to get involved again than to make his own judgements? What better way was there to attain the honest truth than from a fresh pair of eyes, eagerly taking in things in the court, without even knowing he was doing it, like any good scout?

"Come, let us head, at least for a while, away from some of the entertainment, towards those who are being entertained." Without looking back, Erbir began to politely make his way through the crowd of courtiers, celebrating officers, revelers, servants, and entertainers. He declined offers of various bites, and drinks, and exchanged smiles, nods, and words with a few officers he recognised from the Barwala, and previous, campaigns.

Towards the higher end of the room was the Padishah Emperor himself, Alamgir ibn Farroukshiyar. No doubt near him would be the Vizier, Farhad. Uncle to the Emperor, and by extension, to Erbir too, not that he expected the Vizier to view him as such in close terms. Then there was Ragoba Amir Jhanda, the feared and respected Amir Bakishi. A ruthless man it was widely agreed, but Erbir could not judge him too harshly- he had done his fair share of ruthless actions too. Though perhaps he did not revel in, or boast of that so much. Other notables too would be near the Padishah throne, all overlooked by the new Marzban-e-Ahidi, Suleiman Dara, ensuring that the Emperor's life was safe.

To himself, beneath the great sound of conversation and music, Erbir whispered:
"Ah how the season of the lion is over. Now is the time for snakes and spiders." Almost imperceptibly, a shiver swept through him, but he walked onwards, disguising it with a swift sidestep to avoid passing through an intense conversation between two elderly courtiers.
Last edited by Ovstylap on Mon Jun 13, 2022 10:54 am, edited 3 times in total.
Please check out New Aeyariss's new RP: The Alamgir Chronicles! A character-based RP in a low-fantasy setting, inspired by the Mughal Empire, primarily focused on court intrigue, and also on factional rivalries, and governing a fractured country.
OOC Link: viewtopic.php?f=31&t=517426
IC Link: viewtopic.php?f=31&t=517468

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New Aeyariss
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Postby New Aeyariss » Mon Apr 11, 2022 6:19 pm

Alamgir Shah Karlani



The sound of music filled the air, as well as joyous laughter of the partying. Glasses were raised, alcohol poured like rain during the monsoon season, and some of the guests were at the edge of their recognition of reality due to amount of beverages they have consumed.

His Imperial Majesty, Padishah Emperor, was not. He sat in front of the massive table, on an elaborately decorated chair, in front of the table, munching his favourite food - Mutton Korma. Taste of sheep's meat mixed flavour of cinnamon and curry filled his mouth, perhaps introducing a taste of how the Third Heaven where Khoda himself lived flelt to a mortal. Korma was absolutely delicious, but then again he did not gather best cooks in the entire Empire for nothing.

Khoda... once again this thought filled his head. Long has passed since that fateful day when he chose to trust in Khoda and devote his entire being to the Ruler of Heavens who rode upon Simorghs. Since that time, he killed thousands in the name of his God, putting entire groups of deva-worshippers to the sword in Khoda's name. And yet... the image of that woman was still in his mind. True to his thoughts he gave the woman as servant to one of his princesses, yet her similarity to Khaleeda Begum did not let him focus on the festivities. How much blood would have to be spilled for peace to finally reign?

His deliberations were interrupted by a man approaching. Said man was tall and well built, wearing but a simple robe, unlike the elegant silk imported from the East that rest of the nobility favoured. Next to him walked a younger man, evidently a protegee of the other one.

Alamgir recognized his relative. Erbir was, after all, his half-brother. Of how many - that Alamgir did not know, as he records of imperial family were so immense that it took the entire ministry to manage them. Usually, not to cause problems in the capital, such half brothers were sent to the provinces to act as zamindars and enjoyed enough power and influence to satisfy themselves. Most of them led unremarkable lives, looting the pagans under them and spending time drinking, hunting, partying and womanising. Erbir was different. Sure - he liked to womanize and did not keep away from a good wine, especially ones from his province - but above all, became well known as valiant warrior. Such skills - weather he liked them or not - Alamgir had to respect.

"This man can be a precious ally if I ever need to contend with my uncle" Padishah-Emperor thought in his head "It is best that I win him now."

"Erbir! Friend! Come sit!" Alamgir shouted, faking great joy "You have performed valiantly and I wish to have you recognised for your service!"

The Emperor then gestured for Erbir and the man who accompanied him to sit next to the current ruler. Though outwardly joyous, a man skilled at reading body language would instantly notice that something was bothering the descendant of Farroukshiyar.

"Let all know the man the Emperor wishes to exalt!" Alamgir gestured at the food at the table "Product of my finest cooks. Enjoy! How are matters in Dahari?"
Last edited by New Aeyariss on Mon Apr 11, 2022 6:19 pm, edited 1 time in total.
Rping in MT (2018) and PT/FanT (1564)


Inyourfaceistan wrote:You didn't know that Cusc is actually a 4-armed cyborg genius commander and skillful warrior created in secret by a cabal of rich capitalist financiers built to lead and army of drones and other renegades against and overbearing socialist regime?
Psalms 144:1 wrote:Blessed be the LORD my strength, which teacheth my hands to war, and my fingers to fight.
Also known as El Cuscatlan, Jesus will offer you eternal life if you believe in him!


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Ovstylap
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Moralistic Democracy

A Flashback and a Korma

Postby Ovstylap » Tue Apr 12, 2022 12:50 pm

Erbir Mirza ibn Farroukshiyar

En route to the High Table

Taking a step back to allow a friend into the circle of officers discussing the Barwala campaign, or more rather boasting of their alleged achievements in it, his boot suddenly tripped another courtier. Having drank too much already, the man, perhaps in his forties, fell towards another courtier, and flung his arms out. Erbir deftly stepped forwards, thought it was more of a slight leap, and threw his arms underneath the outspread arms of the drunken courtier. He pulled him back, bringing him to his feet, and held him there whilst the man retained his balance. The circle of officers laughed at the drunken man, but smiled at Erbir. "Someone's had too much to drink!" "How improper, can't trust these fancy officials at the slightest chance to unwind, eh?" Erbir smiled, letting go of the courtier who turned to face him. Erbir looked at the face of the man, which was darkening in embarrassment, and then down his robes, which were also darkening with a crimson red.

That's when Erbir saw the knife. Rather, it's handle. Protruding from the man's chest, a rib or two beneath his heart. Erbir frowned, and looked up at the clean-shaven man in front of him, looking at the stern-faced Dahari lancer who was looking him the eye. He had a black beard, with droplets of blood in it. "Bastard got me. I thought I had disarmed him of his Tulwar, but he had a dagger. I'm sorry, my lord." Erbir sighed.
"You've done well. You'll be okay. Go and join your ancestors."
"Excuse me, my lord? I've done well? Go and join my ancestors? I was just thanking you for catching me."

Erbir looked at the clean-shaven man with the rounded face in front of him. There was no black beard. He looked at the man's robes. They were only dark with spilt wine. "Sorry, my lord." Erbir didn't know if this courtier was man of noble status, or more of a rich guest, but the courtier wasn't surprised by the title, so Erbir realised he hadn't made a mistake with that. "I said the wrong words. This isn't my first cup. As is that one." He gestured to the almost empty cup of the drunk courtier.
"Mix up of words. At least you can walk straight. Thank you anyway."
Erbir gave a 'humph' in response. "Perhaps have a couple of bowls of fruit, or a cup of coffee, to sober up somewhat. You've still got the desserts to come and we know those are often full of drink."
The man smiled, and parted ways.

Erbir sighed, and looked around. Nimesh was patting the drunk man on the shoulder as he walked by, towards a side table serving honey-water, kefir, coffee, and fruit juices, either for those who desired them, or for those needed them to avoid drunken embarassments. The officers had gone back to talking amongst themselves. By their accents they were from the south of the country, and were not used to the capital. They probably didn't know who he was. One day, Erbir thought to himself. One day they might.

Why on earth was he seeing and hearing things the way he had been since the return from Barwala. It had been one of the more relaxed and less bloody campaigns of his life. He smiled at Nimesh, and buried his face in his cup for a couple of moments, before exchanging it for another one from a passing servant. He opened his eyes wide, and clenched his jaw. All gone. All back to normal. The flutes had given way to a flurry of drums and pipes as a group of dancers began to entertain the large group of well-fed minglers on the dance floor, awaiting the desserts whilst others looked on, enjoying what was for some their seventh course of the main. Nimesh was clearly interested, and had also taken another drink, downing his cup like Erbir had done. I had better do what I am partly here to do before Nimesh becomes to drunk to pick up on important things.

The Emperor's Invitation

Erbir surveyed this part of the room, near the high table. Here the clothes were the most contrasting to one another, and to Erbir's plain, but high-quality robes. The height of style. Style mattered for some. Sense mattered more for Erbir. As did status. As did status. For some reason, Erbir couldn't quite make out the Vizier, but there didn't appear to be anybody disturbing the Emperor at the moment. Perhaps the Emperor had wanted to eat in peace. Still, Erbir would at least go by, and pay a vocal tribute to his half-brother Alamgir, if he was invited over. Otherwise, he would have to do so later in the evening.

He walked, not directly for the throne of the Padishah Emperor, but near to it. Nimesh. I'd like you to meet my half-brother." The cavalry officer lifted a half grin.
"Which one? You must have at least four dozen."
Erbir laughed. "One of the ones I'm not intended on killing." Nimesh laughed, not quite getting the joke- he didn't know enough about Erbir's past.
""Erbir! Friend! Come sit!"Sure enough, the Emperor had noticed him. Nimesh looked towards the Padishah throne, and then towards Erbir. His mouth opened in a silent expression of 'Oh.'
"Oh indeed. Come. Meet your Emperor." Nimesh quickly finished his drink, placing it atop a pile of plates of half-picked at food. Erbir climbed the dais to the Emperor, who sat, commanding the Palace Hall, in front of the massive high table.
"You have performed valiantly and I wish to have you recognised for your service!" Alamgir's voice was joyous, and slightly raised, but without drunkenness. Erbir stopped below the same level of the dais as the Emperor, and performed a proper, deliberate, courteous, but unexaggerated bow. Nimesh attempted the same, but with a flair of unbalance to distinguish it from his potential patron. No doubt the Emperor had noticed, as Erbir had from the corner of his eye.

Alamgir gestured for them to sit with him, and Erbir climbed the final couiple of steps. Quickly appraising the Emperor, Erbir could tell that he was not fully relaxed. That wasn't a surprise of course. Who would relax after going from ordering the deaths of thousands to entertaining hundreds? And no doubt paying for feeding thousands. Alamgir spoke again, loudly and clearly, allowing those nearby to hear him. "Let all know the man the Emperor wishes to exalt!" A number of nearby guests looked towards the dais, watching as Erbir paused in taking his seat, smiling and inclining his head at a handful of those who were acknowledging the praise. Nimesh sat quickly, and clenched his fists in his lap, Erbir's body blocking the sight of this, hopefully, from the Emperor.

Smiling, Alamgir gestured to the smaller table arrayed in front of him, where the finest morsels had been presented, but without there being so much food as to encourage an appearance of greed, or of wastefulness.
"Product of my finest cooks. Enjoy! How are matters in Dahari?"
Erbir took his seat, and clutched his fist to his heart in gratitude to the Emperor. "Thank you, Your Majesty. For the invitation tonight, and to sup with you also. He noticed how the largest portion of any of the food arrayed on the table was the mutton korma, which the Emperor had just placed an empty bowl of back on the table. Graciously, Erbir reached for a small bowl of the chicken korma, choosing a similar dish to Alamgir's favourite, but not depriving him of that he enjoyed the most. Politely, he had a mouthful of the korma, and savored the chicken- so hot and tender that it fell apart in your mouth as if it were melting. The sauce was delicious. He tupped his lips in appreciation after swallowing the food, and placed the dish on a small table beside his chair, where there were some other empty, or part touched dishes from where other guests had sat for a while with the Emperor.

"Dahari appears to be on set to provide its greatest harvest of spices in a decade, from what I have been told. Which means that we might both be appreciating kormas more frequently next winter. It would make a change from underseasoned goat stews on campaign, would it not?" He smiled at the Emperor. "Dahari is well, Your Majesty. It grows in loyalty to its new governor, and to you, my lord. The population is gradually recovering from the putting down of the rebellion, though I always need more people. I believe also, there's more Khodaists in the Subah than at any time in history, according to the clerks." He paused, looking for a reaction from the Emperor. "Considering I myself didn't force any conversions, I would say that is interesting in its own way."

Listening for the Emperor's response, Erbir then gestured to Nimesh. "Your Majesty, so as not to exclude this fine man of Karlani stock, might I introduce Nimesh ibn Joshi, one of my most capable officers in the Barwala campaign. His scouts spotted over half of the rebel forces we destroyed before they could interrupt the siege lines. It was his first campaign." Erbir, on the other side of his body from the Emperor, gestured for him to move next to the Emperor. Nimesh stood, pausing for a fraction of a second, and then moved past Erbir, to go down on one knee before the Padishah throne.

"Your Majesty, it is a complete honour to be invited to your Court, and then to sup with you and meet you personally." Nimesh looked up towards the Emperor. "May I take this moment to congratulate you on your succession to the throne, and on your decisive leadership of the campaign, particularly in the siege of the Barwala." Erbir smiled, nodding. Nimesh knew very little of the campaign outside his own responsibilities, including the siege itself. He had a good way with words it seemed. Flattery for sure, but a perhaps unexpected offer of vocal tribute, that appeared genuine. Ah, of course, Nimesh had only gone and congratulated the Emperor on the campaign before Erbir had!!!

He turned towards the Emperor, and awaited his response, Nimesh remaining on one knee before them both.
Last edited by Ovstylap on Tue Apr 12, 2022 12:51 pm, edited 2 times in total.
Please check out New Aeyariss's new RP: The Alamgir Chronicles! A character-based RP in a low-fantasy setting, inspired by the Mughal Empire, primarily focused on court intrigue, and also on factional rivalries, and governing a fractured country.
OOC Link: viewtopic.php?f=31&t=517426
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New Aeyariss
Negotiator
 
Posts: 7431
Founded: May 12, 2010
Iron Fist Consumerists

Postby New Aeyariss » Fri Apr 15, 2022 11:27 am

Smiling, Alamgir gestured to the smaller table arrayed in front of him, where the finest morsels had been presented, but without there being so much food as to encourage an appearance of greed, or of wastefulness.
"Product of my finest cooks. Enjoy! How are matters in Dahari?"
Erbir took his seat, and clutched his fist to his heart in gratitude to the Emperor. "Thank you, Your Majesty. For the invitation tonight, and to sup with you also. He noticed how the largest portion of any of the food arrayed on the table was the mutton korma, which the Emperor had just placed an empty bowl of back on the table. Graciously, Erbir reached for a small bowl of the chicken korma, choosing a similar dish to Alamgir's favourite, but not depriving him of that he enjoyed the most. Politely, he had a mouthful of the korma, and savored the chicken- so hot and tender that it fell apart in your mouth as if it were melting. The sauce was delicious. He tupped his lips in appreciation after swallowing the food, and placed the dish on a small table beside his chair, where there were some other empty, or part touched dishes from where other guests had sat for a while with the Emperor.

"Dahari appears to be on set to provide its greatest harvest of spices in a decade, from what I have been told. Which means that we might both be appreciating kormas more frequently next winter. It would make a change from underseasoned goat stews on campaign, would it not?" He smiled at the Emperor. "Dahari is well, Your Majesty. It grows in loyalty to its new governor, and to you, my lord. The population is gradually recovering from the putting down of the rebellion, though I always need more people. I believe also, there's more Khodaists in the Subah than at any time in history, according to the clerks." He paused, looking for a reaction from the Emperor. "Considering I myself didn't force any conversions, I would say that is interesting in its own way."

Listening for the Emperor's response, Erbir then gestured to Nimesh. "Your Majesty, so as not to exclude this fine man of Karlani stock, might I introduce Nimesh ibn Joshi, one of my most capable officers in the Barwala campaign. His scouts spotted over half of the rebel forces we destroyed before they could interrupt the siege lines. It was his first campaign." Erbir, on the other side of his body from the Emperor, gestured for him to move next to the Emperor. Nimesh stood, pausing for a fraction of a second, and then moved past Erbir, to go down on one knee before the Padishah throne.

"Your Majesty, it is a complete honour to be invited to your Court, and then to sup with you and meet you personally." Nimesh looked up towards the Emperor. "May I take this moment to congratulate you on your succession to the throne, and on your decisive leadership of the campaign, particularly in the siege of the Barwala." Erbir smiled, nodding. Nimesh knew very little of the campaign outside his own responsibilities, including the siege itself. He had a good way with words it seemed. Flattery for sure, but a perhaps unexpected offer of vocal tribute, that appeared genuine. Ah, of course, Nimesh had only gone and congratulated the Emperor on the campaign before Erbir had!!!


Alamgir smiled when hearing of new people accepting the teachings of his Lord. While the religion did not require it's believes to evangelise, the process of conversion of conquered peoples happened often anyway. In his own mind, the pagans have left a sour taste after Karna's betrayal...

Karna. The Emepror let anger in a second. His former best friend - now Brahmaji Rao, Champion of the Devas - was a wound that refused to heal. In his youth he was more of a brother than any of his hundreds of siblings; now being a foe he had to beat at any cost.

He glanced at Ninesh. It was always good to know men of talent - especially when he thought about the future. His uncle was powerful, and was of imperial blood. If it came to replacing him - he needed men whom he could trust. Men who knew they owed everything to him and that they will fall if he falls.

"Let me congratulate you, Ninesh, personally then!" his majesty exclaimed "It is thanks to men like you - and Khoda's grace of course - that this Empire stands.".

Then the face of the Emperor became more serious.

"While today we feast, don't let this victory make us complacent. We crushed but one rebellion. My former friend" those words were said with rage in Alamgir's voice "Is still on the loose, as are the Chelas. After we feast, we will have to begin a process of cleansing of this empire - one subah at a time. "

Then the seriousness disappeared.

"But this is talk for another time. "
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Sao Nova Europa
Minister
 
Posts: 2261
Founded: Apr 20, 2019
New York Times Democracy

Postby Sao Nova Europa » Sun Apr 17, 2022 4:27 pm

The Emperor had returned from the campaign victorious. In honor of his triumph, victory celebrations were held. Farhad Mirza hated those celebrations. He preferred conversations with imperial scholars on philosophy, astronomy, mathematics and poetry rather than the loud and obnoxious imperial feasts. Yet he had to attend. He was seated near to the Emperor, a privilege few were afforded. He was sipping a cup of tea, eschewing the alcoholic beverages others were consuming. But he did enjoy the food in the table.

The Emperor called Erbir Mirza - Farhad's nephew, though they had a formal relationship only - to seat near him and the two men conversed. Farhad didn't bother to interrupt them and feigned disinterest. Any interruption could have been misinterpreted as anxiousness and fear. And Farhad knew that showing any kind of weakness in the imperial court could prove lethal. He instead sipped his cup of tea and ate a bite of his favorite food. When the Emperor stopped conversion with Erbir, Farhad stood up. "Your Imperial Majesty!" he said. "I congratulate you once again on your glorious triumph. An Emperor has a duty to keep the realm together. Your victory proved that you are worthy of your office. But there is still a lot to be done. The Empire faces many enemies still. We cannot assume that our work is done. Your Imperial Majesty should also do well not to let this victory make you overconfident. Overconfidence can be a great weakness, one which enemies will exploit."

The Vizier paused for a brief moment. "We should honor the warriors who granted the Empire such a triumph. I propose that we provide monetary compensation to the families of the fallen. But enough about my advices. I shouldn't spoil the mood of the party." He sat down again.
Last edited by Sao Nova Europa on Sun Apr 17, 2022 4:31 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Ovstylap
Envoy
 
Posts: 280
Founded: Jun 26, 2018
Moralistic Democracy

An Imperial Conversation

Postby Ovstylap » Thu Apr 21, 2022 6:56 am

Erbir Mirza ibn Farroukshiyar

After having told the Emperor of the conversion to Khodaism, Erbir had watched for the Emperor's reaction, and had been pleased to see the Emperor smile, though he had noted that Alamgir had not directly seemed to have appreciated his own considered choice of food- perhaps the Emperor was simply happy to share with him. This was the problem with the Imperial court, Erbir thought, it made him have to think hard. There was nothing wrong with serious thinking of course, about how to wage a war, to outwit an enemy, how to teach or punish his children, or appease his two wives. But thinking about such unpredictable people as the members of the Imperial court, including the many vipers and cobras among them, that was tiring. In his own thoughts for a moment, Erbir almost failed to see the slight look of anger upon the Emperor's face. Something had distracted him. Perhaps he thought of how many were still hostile to Khodaism, who mistakenly believed it was to be forced upon them. The Emperor listened to the rest of Erbir's report on Dahari, nodding occaisonally, not overjoyed, but not displeased either, which was just as important.

That was when he had introduced Nimesh, with whom the Emperor seemed well-pleased. Erbir had admired Nimesh's way with words, and now desired to congratulate the Emperor on his victory also.

""Let me congratulate you, Ninesh, personally then! It is thanks to men like you - and Khoda's grace of course - that this Empire stands." The Emperor had happily exclaimed this, and Nimesh both reddened in embrassment at such praise but sparkled with joy in his eyes. He looked at the Emperor, ready to give thanks for such praise, in a humble way, but the Emperor's face had grown serious. Nimesh paused for a moment, and flashed a glance to Erbir, who gave a subtle nod. Nimesh drew back, and returned to his seat, his head swimming with pleasure, and with wine. His eyes soon were drawn to a group of dancers, but his ears heard the Emperor.

"While today we feast, don't let this victory make us complacent. We crushed but one rebellion. My former friend...Is still on the loose, as are the Chelas. After we feast, we will have to begin a process of cleansing of this empire - one subah at a time. "
Nimesh looked to Erbir, who was looking intently towards the Emperor. He was nodding. Erbir completley appreciated what Alamgir was saying, the severity of the situation affecting the Karlani Empire could not be understated.

Rebellions were frequent, according to history they always were when a new Emperor came to the Padishah throne. That was to say nothing of foreign enemies. But this matter of religion, it seemed to be more and more an issue by the half-decade. Then the Emperor's face and tone calmed.
"But this is talk for another time."

Erbir nodded, and licked his lips, about to speak, when he noticed that Farhad Mirza, the Vizier, and uncle to both Alamgir and himself, had just stood. Had he noticed that Erbir was about to speak? Still, he was senior to Erbir, and had already began to speak, as eyes were drawn to him. Erbir leant forward to take a dish of a hot vegetable curry, and a little bit of naan bread, whilst listening to the Vizier, who throughout the conversation was no doubt listening, although nothing about him had given it away- indeed he had seemed almost careless to the conversation.

"Your Imperial Majesty! I congratulate you once again on your glorious triumph. An Emperor has a duty to keep the realm together. Your victory proved that you are worthy of your office. But there is still a lot to be done. The Empire faces many enemies still. We cannot assume that our work is done. Your Imperial Majesty should also do well not to let this victory make you overconfident. Overconfidence can be a great weakness, one which enemies will exploit."
Farhad spoke with authority, with dignity, with an almost regal tone. Erbir's eyebrows twitched a bit. Was he jealous of Farhad? Perhaps, of his influence. But it was not influence Erbir truly desired. It was power.

Farhard went on, and the Emperor listened.
"We should honor the warriors who granted the Empire such a triumph. I propose that we provide monetary compensation to the families of the fallen. But enough about my advices. I shouldn't spoil the mood of the party."

He sat down afterwards, and Erbir nodded. "Your Imperial Majesty's triumph at Barwala will no doubt be a study for future historians, poets, and military leaders to behold and acclaim indeed my lord. The Vizier, as he often is, is right. With Dahari in good hands and facing prosperity, may I take this moment, before we return to the joys of this well-deserved celebration, to put myself forward in service of the Padishah throne, in service of you, my brother the rightful Emperor. I am well placed to deal with the Chelas, though should you need me against your traitorous foe in the South-East- I shall not even say his name, I place myself at your service."

Erbir inclined his head towards the Emperor, and then echoed the proposal of his uncle. "A respect for the Padishah throne only goes so far, it is respect for the man who sits upon it, and an appreciation of how many others, especially good fighters, who are loyal to him, that secures loyalty. Compensate the families, as I am in Dahari, and many thousands will be bound to you even more, my lord."

Nimesh nodded too, though he hadn't actually stopped nodding since Erbir had started speaking. He really was beginning to feel the wine, and so took some of the naan bread to absorb his drink, but the crumbs caught in his throat, and he stifled a splutter, and beckoned for a servant to refill his cup, which he drank heartily. Erbir turned his head briefly from the Emperor, seeing the half-eaten naan bread in Nimesh's hand, and the again empty cup being placed back on the table. Once the Emperor had responded to Farhad and himself, it would be time to get away from the High Table, perhaps with some urgency...
Last edited by Ovstylap on Tue Jun 21, 2022 10:09 am, edited 2 times in total.
Please check out New Aeyariss's new RP: The Alamgir Chronicles! A character-based RP in a low-fantasy setting, inspired by the Mughal Empire, primarily focused on court intrigue, and also on factional rivalries, and governing a fractured country.
OOC Link: viewtopic.php?f=31&t=517426
IC Link: viewtopic.php?f=31&t=517468

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New Aeyariss
Negotiator
 
Posts: 7431
Founded: May 12, 2010
Iron Fist Consumerists

Postby New Aeyariss » Mon Apr 25, 2022 12:08 pm

Alamgir looked at Farhad approaching him. Even since his reign begun, Farhad has been the biggest source of suspicion for him - someone knowledge of whom bothered him up at night. The current Vizier was well connected, experienced and calculating - different from usually expressive and impatient Alamgir, who on account of his young age did not manage to create his own political capital as of yet. Even worse, the Mirza was his uncle - which meant that should he plan an usurpation, as a member of the imperial family and son of Kharlan, he had sufficient legitimacy to do it.

But the Vizier was too powerful to cleanse him out right. If the Emperor wanted to depose him, he needed to wait for the right moment - build his political capital, dismantle the network of his uncle and act when it was most convenient for him.


"I will consider your request, honored uncle!" responded the Emperor, while carrefully calculating what could Farhad be trying to gain by proposing compensation. Perhaps gain following of his soldiers? He used to be the Amir Bakishi after all...

He then listened to proposal of sending Erbir against the Chelas. The proposal had Merit. Erbir was skilled, warlike and had proven himself sufficient amount of times to consider apointing him the commander of such expedition. He ignored the mention of his friend turned foe and was about to speak, when one of servants run inside.


"Your majesty, pardon me for interruption!" the servant fell on his face before the Padishah "An envoy from Sher Shah Bari has arrived. He says he has a letter alongside a proposal, and that it is urgent."

Alamgir closed his eyes. Sher Shah was, arguably, his most dangerous foe right now. Not as skilled as Barhamji - there were few such men in the whole Empire - but what he lacked in skill, Sher made in sheer resources. Chelas and Brahmaji were rebels. Sher had resources of his own Empire at his disposal.

"That is surprising. I though that Sher was to busy plotting to besiege the fortresses on our borders." retorted Alamgir "Inform the envoy that I am going to hold a session of the court tomorrow morning and then I will hear him."

The servant bowed again and left. Then, the Shah turned to Erbir and Farhad:

"Looks like wherever there are corpses, the vultures start circling. "
Rping in MT (2018) and PT/FanT (1564)


Inyourfaceistan wrote:You didn't know that Cusc is actually a 4-armed cyborg genius commander and skillful warrior created in secret by a cabal of rich capitalist financiers built to lead and army of drones and other renegades against and overbearing socialist regime?
Psalms 144:1 wrote:Blessed be the LORD my strength, which teacheth my hands to war, and my fingers to fight.
Also known as El Cuscatlan, Jesus will offer you eternal life if you believe in him!


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Ovstylap
Envoy
 
Posts: 280
Founded: Jun 26, 2018
Moralistic Democracy

Postby Ovstylap » Mon Jun 13, 2022 12:13 pm

Erbir Mirza ibn Farroukshiyar
The Envoy


The Emperor had listened attentively to Farhad, and then to Erbir himself, and appeared to be considering Erbir's proposal. Of course, Erbir would await his half-brother's reply, to know the will of the Emperor was almost as important as being trusted by him as well. Nimesh's increasing state of drunkenness was however of increasing concern, but that was something Erbir could put off for a few minutes longer. He would take Nimesh aside as the desserts were brought through, and ensure he took one of the non-alcoholic desserts, perhaps fruit cakes with nut crusts, or lemon pastries. Hopefully Nimesh would pull himself together, even if it meant having to vacate the celebration for a few minutes.

Still looking towards Alamgir, Erbir saw his focus shift, and likewise turned his head. One of the groups of dancers had seemingly lost their rhythm, and the cause was momentarily apparent- a servant had avoided the throbbing clusters of courtiers and revelers, and moved through the floor where the dancers were performing their art, passing through one of the rings of dancers. One of the Ahids, dressed in humble courtier robes, but no doubt armed underneath- Erbir could tell by the grizzled, sober look of the man as he approached the Padishah throne, glanced at the servant, and took a step towards him, noticing his nervous, eager look. The man's arm moved underneath his robe, before he relented as the servant began to bow his head and approach the dais in a now unrushed, humble manner. Still his eyes were upon the servant, as were those of many courtiers nearest the Emperor.

"Your majesty, pardon me for interruption!" exclaimed the servant as he prostrated himself before the imperial dais, before looking up at the Emperor in reverence. "An envoy from Sher Shah Bari has arrived. He says he has a letter alongside a proposal, and that it is urgent."
Erbir looked to the Emperor, who had briefly closed his eyes for a few moments before replying. "That is surprising. I though that Sher was to busy plotting to besiege the fortresses on our borders." Inform the envoy that I am going to hold a session of the court tomorrow morning and then I will hear him." As the servant bowed his head, and retreated down the steps of the dais, still facing the Emperor, Erbir was nodding to himself, considering the new implications.

Perhaps Sher Shah Bari was sending an envoy, as a pretext to making unreasonable demands, before he began an attack. Perhaps instead there was some chance at a temporary guarantee of peace. His curiosity was greatly peaked, but now it would seem the Emperor's mind would be focused on a subject other than the Chelas. Still, Erbir could always raise the prospect again. Another campaign would be good for him, surely? He needed another campaign, even if it brought bad dreams and memories.

Perhaps it was because he was now in the Court, where he did not know whom he could trust, or whom was telling the truth, and even more, who was his enemy, that his heart and mind manifested the memories of suffering from the Barwala campaign. Perhaps he needed to get away again, somewhere where he knew his task, he knew his men, and he knew his enemies. Perhaps the Court was more dangerous than any campaign. And yet, he had barely been back. Erbir shivered again, but could not disguise it- hopefully the eyes of others were upon the Emperor instead, or the retreating servant. Fortunately, Alamgir seemed to be looking at Farhad, as he spoke again.
"Looks like wherever there are corpses, the vultures start circling."

Erbir smiled. "Then it is good that there are those amongst us who can strike down a flying bird from a hundred paces." He bowed his head towards the Emperor. "I shall look forward to hearing of the Shah's proposition. As ever, my sword, and the good men of Dahari are yours, your Imperial majesty." Erbir awaited his brother's leave to depart, and once he had received it, he gave thanks for being able to sup with him for some time, and turned to Nimesh, who was finishing off his last bit of naan bread with some mango chutney.

"Come, Nimesh, the desserts are here." Nimesh looked to Erbir, and nodded, before standing, somewhat unsteadily, and departed down the steps. Erbir stood between him and the Emperor, hopefully blocking the evidence of his officer's drunkenness. Coming into the main hall were lines of servants carrying a great array of dishes. The best-dressed servants brought the finest morsels of each dish to the Imperial dais, arriving just after the last servants had quickly swept away the dishes from the savory courses. To other tables, where guests were seated, or to tables where other dishes and drinks were served, the sweets were brought out. Other servants began to circulate, with platters of small treats, and with various fruits, offering them to the various circles of guests. The music played now was calmer, as people ate, and those dancers that remained performed calmer, softer dances.

Meringues, fruit pies, pastries, and cakes of every variety, nut crusts, sherberts, iced wines and other beverages.Hardened creams, truffles, chewing tobacco, honey cakes, tarts of various fillings, and crickets cooked in syrup. Milk cakes, sandesh, sweet dumplings flavoured with coconut, nutmeg, and saffron, sweet breads, fruit rices, and honeycombs. If a dessert had been experienced in the Karlani Empire, it was available. Coming out now were ever more drinks as well, and it was these that Erbir steered Nimesh away from. After taking a bronze plate, and piling it with non-alcoholic desserts, Erbir passed the plate to Nimesh, and told him to make it was to the lower areas of the hall, and to enjoy his time with fellow junior officers, without needing to worry about embarassing himself. "As long as you are well tomorrow morning for the special holding of the Imperial court, and you do not bring shame to me, you are free to do as you please. Enjoy your evening, Nimesh."
Nimesh looked slightly disheartened, but knew it was his own fault for drinking too much. Nonetheless, he smiled at Erbir and thanked him sincerely, but as he turned to depart, he felt Erbir's hand upon him. "Do not worry, I have been in a state like yours many a time before, I am not angry with you, I understand you. Go and have a good night." Erbir clapped him on the shoulder, and sent him on the way.

As the evening drew on, some of the guests began to leave, including those who had travelled from afar, those who preferred not to drink, those who had had too much, or those who had been there purely to gossip and gather in intrigue, not to mention the elderly. After some time, the alcohol continued to flow, but those who were there for a more serious time had already begun to depart, especially once the Emperor himself left, aware that tomorrow would be a big day.

As such, the evening more and more became a celebration of the young, and of those who had campaigned. Officers who until before had maintained high degrees of professionalism, setting a fine example for their men, and nobly leading them forward, were now engaging in various manners of disrepute, drunkenly boasting, dancing erratically, singing various rowdy songs, and pulling dancers away from their groups. Still, it was not everyone who was revelling in such a way. Erbir spent some time with some more senior officers, talking of the political situation facing the Karlani empire, and engaging in speculation about the rumours spreading of the Shah's emissary. Erbir stayed with them a while, but departed as they began to place bets upon where the next major rebellion would occur, he would not allow himself to be indebted to men he might never see again, nor would he wish to be proved wrong about a matter of military importance.

Moving along, Erbir joined a group dance with a number of officers from the Eastern provinces, who had collectively decided that the Shah's envoy meant that war was on the way, and so they had decided to drink heavily. One of them boasted that Suleiman Dara would lead them to victory against any incursion by the Shah, whilst another stated that he believed that Erbir ibn Farroukshiyar had found privilege with the Emperor. Erbir had joined for a laugh, and smiled as he realised that these Eastern officers did not even know who he was. One day that would change, but for now he was able to grin as the officers spun tales and rumours about the various commanders of the Karlani armies. He found it particularly positive to hear that his reputation as a fair commander, and an honest negotiator had reached the Eastern provinces, though it was to some dismay that one of the more drunk officers said that Erbir demanded too much of his men, and was not pleasant to serve under, according to what he had heard from. After some time, Erbir was distracted by a commotion a dozen metres away.

Excusing himself, he turned to see two Ahids, these ones not hiding their identities, dragging an older man, in a state of near-unconsciousness away. He was perhaps almost sixty. A pair of servants were cleaning up a pool of vomit, presumably from the man, whilst another Ahid was rolling his eyes as he attempted to calm another courtier down, who had some of the vomit on his robes, and was cursing the drunken man being taken away. Erbir came over, and calmly placed a hand upon the irritated courtier's shoulder. "Go and clean yourself up, you've had a good night, no need to bother anyone, I'm sure you have the money to get yourself a new set of robes?" Erbir raised an eyebrow, and, feeling the strength of Erbir's grip, and sensing his confidence, the man nodded and turned away, muttering to himeslf. The Ahid nodded at Erbir, and Erbir gave him a wink, before he turned to see a woman, perhaps in her late twenties, in a wonderful red and yellow dress, holding a hand against her face in embarassment.

Erbir noted her soft, wavy hair, and her delicate appearance, and approached her. "My lady, why are you upset?" He took a coffee from a passing servant and offered it to her. She lowered her hand from her face, and accepted the coffee, before looking at Erbir, and smiling at him. "My husband made a fool of himself, I'm just quite embarrassed, thank you for the coffee, and for asking. Erbir nodded and smiled.
"The drunk one or the angry one?" Erbir asked in genuine curiosity.
"The old, drunk one." She said with a distasteful tone.
"Ah." Erbir nodded sympathetically. "Well it's not to worry." He looked at her intelligent eyes, and could see a touch of sadness in them, what a shame for someone so pretty to be married to an old man, he thought. His thoughts of spending time in observing the court and catching up with its affairs had now departed. He had found his new focus for the night.

Tomorrow would see the Shah's envoy be hosted in a session of the court. Many dozens, no, hundreds of servants would have little sleep as they cleared up after the night's celebrations, which had another hour or so to go before the Ahids and senior servants encouraged the remaining guests to leave. The next morning would be most interesting, both in terms of political developments, and in terms of seeing who had had a little too much fun that night...
Please check out New Aeyariss's new RP: The Alamgir Chronicles! A character-based RP in a low-fantasy setting, inspired by the Mughal Empire, primarily focused on court intrigue, and also on factional rivalries, and governing a fractured country.
OOC Link: viewtopic.php?f=31&t=517426
IC Link: viewtopic.php?f=31&t=517468

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Of the Quendi
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Founded: Mar 18, 2010
Civil Rights Lovefest

Postby Of the Quendi » Wed Jun 15, 2022 3:16 am

On the banks of the Muchukunda River

Yusuf Adil Shah was numbed to the pain of being dragged by the rough hands of his enemies across the soft blood-soaked grounds of the riverbanks. The taste of defeat had numbed him to the pain of the arrow wound in his thigh and the gash across his forehead where the axe of the big Rajput broke his helmet. The sight of seeing Burhan Nizam Shah, his ally and his son-in-law, fall when the enemy turned the left flank, and the capture of his own son Ismail trying to defend his father's escape had inured the king to any physical sensations. What is physical pain to the end of a dynasty, the death and capture of sons and son-in-laws, the bitter taste of defeat. Even the screams and moans of his own soldiers left dead and dying on the field and the laughter and cheers of the enemy among them barely registered in the shah's mind.

Even when the ruffians dragging him came to a halt and dropped him onto the dirt with a laugh and the stench of shit reached his nostrils from the ground Yusuf barely took note. But the voice he noticed at once. "Get him up." It said. Not a yell, not a shout, yet somehow it drowned out the noise of dying and celebrating men, of neighing horse and trumpeting of elephants, of war drums and the sound of the river. All faded away as nothing next to that voice and Yusuf suddenly found himself more alert than ever before in his life with every hair on his body rising to stand attention. Exhausted and injured Yusuf did not doubt that he would have risen on his own accord on the order of that voice if he had not immediately been seized by the, now trembling, hands of the ruffians and pulled upright.

The man sat on a horse as black as coal, garbed in chainmail and plate armor decorated with a depiction of a tiger, his personal symbol. He was beardless, young, handsome and strong too look upon. His armor and his clothing was in pristine condition with not a speck of dirt on them, evidently he had not seen combat today and on his head he wore a saffron colored cap. At first glance little about the man revealed more than an unusually handsome and fierce looking Kshatriya warlord of some standing. His armor and attire was simple enough, even his horse and the sword by his side could have been ridden or worn by any moderately prominent warlord. Only the saffron-colored cap and the saffron flags, the Bhagwa Dhwaj, flowing behind him gave him away at a first glance. But as Yusuf looked into the eyes of his conqueror he knew instantly that this man could never be mistaken for a common Kshatriya or warlord. The fire that burned in the deep dark pools of this man's eyes was unlike anything Yusuf ever before beheld. His heart stopped beating as he sensed the enormity of the power and will behind the eyes of the man who none could possibly mistake for anything other than Brahmaji Rao, the great scourge of the faithful, the Avatar of the Wind God. "Khoda save me." A terrified Yusuf grunted in involuntary terror.

"Your god cannot save you, Yusuf Adil Shah, Sultan of Ark-Killah Kote. No more than he could your brother by marriage Zafar Khan when I put his city to the torch. No more than it did your sons-in-law Burhan Nizam Shah, Sultan of Junnarnagar and Alaeddin Imad Shah, Sultan of Bararpura both of whom has died today." The voice of the Avatar of the Wind God thundered, Yusuf trembling before him. "Other gods, greater gods rule Vrishna now." He added.

With that the Avatar of the Wind God broke eye contact with Yusuf and turned to survey the battlefield. The attention of the terrifying non-human presence behind Brahmaji Rao's dark eyes withdrawn Yusuf took a deep breath and gave a sigh of relief. He allowed himself to observe the young man as he surveyed the field of battle. "You fought well." Came the judgement, almost grudgingly. "If your infantry had been warriors not sepoys your center might have held against me." Said the young ruler, gazing ponderously out onto the bloody field from which the wails and moans of thousands did not seize. Then he turned his attention towards Yusuf once more.

"Still you are defeated. Your army is destroyed, your allies dead and you and your son will join them if I command it. Ark-Killah Kote and Vijayapura are defenseless against me. I may take your fortress and your city and destroy them and all that dwell within them if I so please. The Devas desire it, they long for the blood of Khoda's blind and feckless followers." Declared the Wind God's avatar with scarcely contained blood lust. "And yet." He added. "I feel inclined to be ... merciful?" The man whispered, drawing out the last word as if himself surprised by it. For a moment he fell silent, lost in his own thoughts and neither Yusuf not any of the attendant lords and generals of the Vijayanagaran army dared to interrupt the great prince. "Yes." Whispered the man. "Merciful."

Once again he turned his burning eyes towards Yusuf and the sultan had the strangest feeling of having his mind read. "You will go with my brother Vijay Rao and the advance guard of my cavalry to Vijayapura." Ordered the avatar. "You will yield up the city and its citadel to him and I will spill not one drop of blood of the Khodaists there but allow them to live. I will spare your life and let you live in comfortable exile in my city of Vijayanagar, the true city of victory and I will allow your son Ismail to live and grant him the right to rule as zamindar over a jagir consisting of the Khodaist parts of your former realm, exempting of course the fortress of Ark-Killah Kote where Vijay Rao will rule as Rajah under my authority." Declared the conqueror. Yusuf considered the offer. It was far more than he could have expected and yet even under the strain of the terrifying gaze of the Scourge of the Faithful Yusuf did not forget that he was sultan and shah of many lands, commander of many soldiers, a spark of defiance remained within some part of his should untouched by the power of the Devas residing within Brahmaji Rao. "And if I refuse? If I choose to put my trust in the Padishah Emperor to deal with you "Chakravarti of Vrisha"?" Spoke Yusuf, a man who had not for a day in his forty nine year long life been loyal to any Padishah Emperor. The Chakravarti merely smiled, a horrible sight. "Then you and your son die today, Vijayapura fall before the week is over and Ark-Killah Kote before the changing of the moon, and not a single Khodaist man above the age of sixteen shall live to tell the tale, and Alamgir's revenge will come too late if it comes at all." The Chakravarti replied calmly and coldly. "Think of your people Sultan. I offer them life, I offer them freedom. Do not condemn them to death and destruction."

Yusuf considered it for a moment. Oddly he never doubted the sincerity of his enemy's offer, only the desirability of it. In the end the man who was once the most powerful of the shahs, khans and sultans that followed Zafar Khan after his death asserting autonomy from the empire in its southern regions prostrated himself before the servant of the Devas, in defeat and acquiescence.

~*~


Brahmaji Rao watched as his brother rode away with the former sultan of Ark-Killah Kote. The famous fortress was scarcely fifty miles away. The cavalry vanguard would reach it in three days. It was doubtful that there where men enough to man the walls of the citadel, let alone the city itself and for five hundred miles there was not an army left to challenge the might and power of Vrisha. So why mercy? Brahmaji Rao felt a great headache as voices within him cried out in anger and frustration, braying for blood, the blood of the inaptly named Vijayapura and for a moment Brahmaji Rao felt as if he had made a great mistake and considered summoning back Yusuf Adil Shah to put him and his son to the sword to be followed shortly by all the followers of Khoda in the entirety of their fallen sultanate. He sensed the dissatisfaction of his generals and he knew his soldiers would not appreciate being denied the chance to loot a famously wealthy city, yet something stayed his hand, somewhere within him a force superior to the Devas, the same force that had possessed him to extend the offer in the first place. Was it honor? It had been honor that had turned Karna against Alamgir at Zira. Slaughtering unarmed men, women and children was surely beneath the dignity and honor of a Kshatriya prince, whatever generals, soldiers and Devas thought. Yes, Brahmaji Rao decided, with some relief. It was his honor that had made him show mercy to a brave adversary. Yet it gnawed at him. He had showed no such restraint at Zafarabad and Zafar Khan had been a greater foe than had Yusuf Adil Shah.

"You disagree with my decision Kathiravan, my brother?" Brahmaji Rao spoke, more to focus on something other than his own odd behavior than out of general interest in the youngest of his two older brother's thoughts. Kathiravan turned towards Brahmaji and lowered his head respectfully. "You are my brother and the Chakravarti, nothing you do should ever surprise me and nothing you decide must ever displease me, yet I confess your decision to spare the Adilshahs and their lands to be unexpected." The older man spoke softly almost reverently. Briefly a look of displeasure appeared on Brahmaji Rao's face. The devotion and reverence of his brothers at times came rather too close to sycophancy than he found proper of older brothers. The effects of their captivity no doubt but no less displeasing for it. But perhaps he was being too hard on them. Perhaps it was not a servility instilled by years of captivity but a genuine affection for their brother inspired by their liberation from that captivity that inspired their devotion. "My enemies are legion brother." Declared Brahmaji Rao. "I wish to destroy the Karlani armies, why should I waste my time destroying the cities of their rebellious vassals when there are so much more worthwhile foes to face, honorably on the field of battle." Brahmaji Rao said, trying to convince himself more than his deferential brother.

Kathiravan lowered his head respectfully. "Yes my Chakravarti." He merely spoke. Brahmaji Rao nodded ponderously casting one last gaze at the battlefield. Several more foes destroyed. Of the five sultans that had followed Zafar Khan two lay dead on the banks of the Muchukunda, the third, the most powerful of the five, would soon surrender his city. To move against the remaining two while sending some of his lieutenants to establish control over Junnarnagara and Bararpura was the obvious next move. It would allow him to consolidate control over much of the south. So that was the last thing on Brahmaji Rao's mind. "We march on Amreli!" Brahmaji Rao ordered. Murmurs of surprise broke out among his officers but none questioned their divine ruler. None, but Kathiravan. "But my lord you promised Jahanagir Shah you would not seek to take Amreli. If you move against it Alamgir will take it as a declaration of open war." Kathiravan cautioned. Pleasantly surprised that his brother dared speak up against him Brahmaji deigned to explain his thinking. "Open war with the Karlani is my great desire brother. We have all but cleared the Dakkhin of his restive Khodaist vassals. Now is the time that we move against the so-called Padishah Emperor himself." Brahmaji Rao declared. Kathiravan once more lowered his head in obedience. "Amreli is not a Khodaist jagir my lord. They follow the same gods as does we." He however insisted. Brahmaji Rao merely nodded. "I much prefer to draw my sword against the followers of the false god Khoda but when the followers of the true gods will not side with us we must fight them same as the Khodaists. I pray Amreli will see the wisdom of submitting peacefully and join our righteous cause. If so I shall honor and revere their maharajah above all others when we take Khusraubad. But if he resist he must die so that our cause must live." Brahmaji Rao declared. Kathiravan, having no further objection, nodded. "Yes Chakravarti, I hear and obey your orders." He replied, before turning to issue orders for the preparation of the army.

Brahmaji Rao smiled. Perhaps his brothers might yet prove worthy of command, though this was not the cause of his smile. Within him the displeasure of the Devas at being denied Vijayapura subsided at the thought of Amreli. And from Amreli the distance to Khusraubad was not so very great.
Nation RP name
Arda i Eruhíni (short form)
Alcarinqua ar Meneldëa Arda i Eruhíni i sé Amanaranyë ar Aramanaranyë (long form)

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Rodez
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Corrupt Dictatorship

Postby Rodez » Wed Jun 15, 2022 12:18 pm

Barwala, one month ago
Ather Inotai


The fires in the city of no longer reflected off Ather's blade - so much blood dripped from it. He gazed at the pyramid of heads that he and the other Ahids had constructed on the orders of his lord, the Padishah Emperor, who had just departed the main square minutes ago. Male prisoners above sixteen had been condemned to death, and so the Ahids had faithfully carried out the sentence. Ather recalled his blade rising and falling over the necks of terrified men. The spurts of blood. The last macabre twitch of the severed body.

Barwala, a city of pagans, had rebelled, and now it was no more. What had these people been thinking, exactly? That they would turn back the armies of the empire? Ather shook his head. It was almost disgusting, how easy it had been once the siege engines brought the walls down.

Ather was supposed to love war, as a warrior of the Elodi and a Karlani Ahid. But now he found himself in the midst of a slaughter - indeed, as one of its perpetrators - and felt only a black loathing in the pit of his stomach. This wasn't war, he decided, glancing again at the severed heads. But it was part of the job.

He wiped his blade clean on the tunic of a dead man and for a brief moment caught the eye of Suleiman Dara, the Marzban-e-Ahidi and his commander. It was anyone's guess what Dara thought of the whole affair; the man kept many things to himself.

But then again, don't you? Ather supposed that was true as well. He was not without his own secrets. One in particular stuck in his mind as he trudged back towards the reassembling Ahidi columns, ignoring the looting and rapine being carried out around him by the regular troops and not a few of his comrades. Thinking of her brought a smile to his lips. Soon they'd return to Khusraubad, and if he could steal even a moment in her arms, that would make the horrors of ten thousand heads disappear in an instant.

The Present Day, Crimson Citadel

Ather observed the revelry from a corner entrance of the banquet hall, close to the imperial dais but not next to it. The nobles of the empire and the dancers, courtiers and servants of the Crimson Citadel seemed to move as one serpentine organism, slithering amongst each other and hissing drunken jokes and rumors to their companions. He knew from eight years of experience that this was where the scheming, plotting, seducing and conniving that made the Ahids so nervous would begin. It would continue in dimly-lit cellars or silken bedrooms, but it was at events such as these that the seeds of deceit were planted.

Most of it was harmless, and had little to do with the throne. One noble lusted after another's wife, or a young officer desired an audience with the best commanders. News was exchanged, then rumors of news, then rumors of rumors, as the wine flowed and tempers shortened. But there were always those with bolder ideas, who wanted to get close to the throne for reasons unrelated to court favor.

That was what the Ahids were for.

Ather regretted that Dara had not assigned him to be undercover tonight. He enjoyed that immensely, not only because it allowed him to observe the court in the guise of a courtier, but also because dressing as a civilian allowed him to speak to Thinlay in public occasionally.

As it was, he was in full Ahid regalia tonight, with the chainmail shirt, spiked helm and gilded golden breastplate typical of the Emperor's bodyguards. His shamshir saber and war-axe hung from his belt, and his round shield painted with the lion of the Karlani sat easily on his left arm.

Ather's gaze swept the banquet room from wall to wall, making quarter-second judgements of each face he saw, and coming back to those he found strange or suspicious. By himself, it would've been ineffective to prevent an assassin, but with more than a hundred of his compatriots doing the same - and a score or so dressed as servants or courtiers - any suspicious-looking person would've been hard-pressed to get within a hundred paces of where Alamgir sat on his throne, putting away the Mutton Korma like a drunkard dispatched wine. He was addressing someone - his half-brother Erbir Mirza, Ather realized - and exchanging words with Farhad Mirza, the Vizier. Ather could not hear the whole conversation, but caught the rare word or phrase. The three of them seemed to be discussing the recent successful campaign against Barwala and perhaps what to do next. It was a comfort at least to know that the three men were grounded in reality - the empire had numerous other enemies that needed dealing with, all of them more menacing than the pagan rebels they had just put to the sword. The northern Chelas, Brahmaji Rao in the south and Sher Shah Bari in the east all came to mind. That was why Ather found all this mirth completely pointless. Many of the Ahids agreed, he knew. Why in the name of any god would you celebrate the start of a war? But that was not a question for them to ask, either.

As he searched for potential threats, Ather was also looking for the Princess Thinlay Wangtse, who in a delightful and terrifying twist of fate, had become his lover, a reality the Elodi warrior was still trying to wrap his head around. She was likely here - attendance was surely mandatory for the harem - but he had not seen her yet, and did not want to be obvious in trying to find her. Certainly, he would not speak to her while he was stuck at the banquet, but he might have a chance later that night, after most of the guests had departed.

The sound of retching nearby stirred him from his dark reverie. Ather turned to observe the sight of some minor noble or other emptying the contents of his dinner onto a courtier. The courtier spun, enraged, and clobbered the noble over the head with his open palm, screaming abuse all the while.

Oh damnation. This was the kind of petty nonsense that distracted an Ahid from his job. Ather wished he could cleave both men in two this instant. As it was, he knew he'd have to play judge with them.

He turned to the two Ahids who held the northeastern entrance with him. Ather was a lieutenant, which meant he commanded some authority among the the Emperor's elite corps when Suleiman Dara was not immediately available. "Get rid of the idiot," he hissed. His compatriots looked at each other, then looked at him.

"I mean the drunkard," Ather said, the exasperation dripping from each word. "I'll deal with the other one."

The two Ahids nodded and stepped forward to take the offender by each arm, literally dragging him off into the corridor where a servant would fetch him water until he was able to function. Alternatively, his men could beat him senseless, but the drunk man was probably too high in the aristocratic hierarchy for that. Probably.

Ather sidled over to the courtier, who was still cursing the drunkard. "Sir, I would respectfully ask you to lower your voice. The offender has been removed from the event. I apologize for such behavior."

"You apologize?" The courtier sounded scandalized. "That man should be drawn and quartered like a captured rebel! You can't have morons throwing up in the palace."

He raised his hands in a conciliatory gesture. "Sir, someone will give him some water or coffee -"

"Maybe enough that he'll choke to death?" the courtier retorted. "This robe was a gift to me from my father. It costs a small fortune -"

A new voice broke in: "Go and clean yourself up, you've had a good night, no need to bother anyone, I'm sure you have the money to get yourself a new set of robes?" A solidly-built man in good but not ostentatious clothing had ambled up to the courtier and put a reassuring hand on his shoulder. It took Ather a moment to realize that he was looking at Erbir Mirza, the governor of Dahari Subah, who had just been speaking with his half-brother, the Emperor.

The courtier seemed to relax by degrees, nodded to himself, and moved away to rejoin the revelry. It was a small thing, but Ather felt immediate relief. Perhaps, if he wasn't distracted by the banal perversity of this court of idiots, he might have time to find Princess Thinlay. The thought brought a smile to his lips for the first time that night. He gave Erbir an appreciative nod, to which the zamindar of Dahari Subah responded with a wink.
Last edited by Rodez on Wed Jun 15, 2022 5:42 pm, edited 1 time in total.
Formerly known as Mesrane (Mes), now I'm back
Joined April 2014

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Khasinkonia
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Inoffensive Centrist Democracy

Postby Khasinkonia » Wed Jun 15, 2022 5:31 pm

Thinlay Wangtse of the Shingkhamga
A Feast of Victory, and a Seat at a Table


Though she held the decadent foods that accompanied victory feasts, a part of Thinlay still preferred a quiet meal accompanied by the cool breezes of the gardens. Reflections in the many water features seemed to dance with indecipherable truths, notions from the devas that might translate into new knowledge, new patterns to toy with. Here in these jubilant halls, though, the quiet splendor of the devas gave way to the roar of Khoda’s men. That was the poetic idea in Thinlay’s mind, at least. Ultimately, it was up to some debate whether there was any divinity to be found among the partygoers. To her knowledge, there was little that was sacred to the schemers that filled the court. Some had chosen to be there, others were surely making the best of their situations, but no matter the intent, it was still a sad state to be in — one which Thinlay pitied some of her sister wives for.

She was a student of magic, of the arcane knowledge that the devas and the world itself kept from the sights of those who weren’t looking. Thinlay was not a doctor, and so, though she pitied the affliction of hubris, it wasn’t in her realm to do anything about it. To tell the emperor of any scheme she’d overhear would only make more trouble for her — something she needed like a Sherpa needed a sprained ankle. Accordingly, her ears had become to gossip and rumors like a duck’s feathers to water. Two of her sister wives beside her had been scheming against a third. Perhaps that third could even have been Thinlay herself. She certainly hadn’t retained more than a few words at a time. There were more important things to be attended to.

With nothing to read, there were but two important things at this feast. Thinlay’s eyes served one purpose during these events. A glimpse of Ather was the goal. She had not spotted him yet, though, so there was nothing to be done but enjoy the only part about the feasts she enjoyed. To not gorge oneself at a feast would be foolish, for what other purpose was there, really, to be present there?

There was only one thing that Thinlay could say with certainty that she shared in common with her husband, and that was a love for Mutton Korma. She adored all things mutton, and perhaps he did too — she didn’t really know. It didn’t matter though, other than that the Padishah made sure that the Korma was of the highest quality. Thinlay usually requested Momo be prepared to her specifications when she ate alone, but, love it as she did, the Korma was arguably better. That wasn’t to say her plate didn’t also have Momo on it; she always received some at these feasts from back when she had first arrived and was hesitant to partake in the preferred foods of the palace. Now, the dumplings sat proudly in the sauce alongside the mutton, and Thinlay had lost count of how many servings she had made it through over the course of the night.

On occasion, she drew looks, but in a way that made her want to smile. While most others ate with their hands, Thinlay held a set of ivory sticks in one hand which had become the custom in her home many years before she had been born. She had gotten them custom carved a year ago, having before used bamboo ones that she had essentially prepared herself. Having grown up in Norbuglingka rather than the countryside, eating with her hands never did feel quite right. Even after several years of doing so, Thinlay had maintained her preference and, in her mind, won the ivory sticks as a reward for her persistence. Her use of them was something of a reminder that, even as a sister wife, she could still decide on some things openly.

A satisfied smile slowly came to her face as she spotted the right Ahid. He was far from her, but even as she strained her eyes to try and see him better, she still knew it was him from his stance. There was something to the way he stood that, to her, made it easier to distinguish him from the crowd. Maybe it was because she knew him, or maybe it was because she’d studied his body closer than that of anyone else’s. Whatever the case was, it put her at ease knowing he was present. She knew she was safe, but her heart felt safe too with him around.

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Beutarch
Chargé d'Affaires
 
Posts: 407
Founded: Sep 13, 2016
Father Knows Best State

Postby Beutarch » Wed Jun 15, 2022 7:05 pm

During the Siege of Barwala...



"Kill all men above sixteen springs and build a pyramid from their head in the middle of the square. Sell all boys beneath sixteen springs into slavery. You may take the women for yourselves, but remember that you are to grant them a month and provide for them. That is all."


Pyramids were his lordship's favorite shape. Perhaps he valued the symmetry with which the four sides of bloodied heads came together. Perhaps he saw the will of almighty Khoda in the faces of the slain men. Or, thought the Marzban-e-Ahidi, he found entertainment in guessing which of the men waiting to be slaughtered would wind up at the top of the grotesque mountain. The Marzban preferred to think that it was the third possibility, because it allowed him the opportunity to interface with his master's violent desires.

By the time Suleiman Dara joined his men in the execution of the Barwalans, the deed was almost done. A small number of souls remained, and that number was decreasing rapidly. The commander brandished his gauntlet sword, pushing his way ahead of his bloodthirsty soldiers. Recognizing his rank, they paused their killings to give him a respectful distance and allow him the honor of slaying the remaining pagans, if he so desired. In actuality, the commander only wished to collect one head. The Marzban passed by one of his officers, Ather, their eyes meeting for a moment. A good soldier, Dara thought. His skills are wasted here. At length, he moved to inspect the living pagans. He viewed them as equals for a moment, before his eyes and ears were drawn to one old man. The man's eyes were murky, teeth blackened by pagan chewing leaves and yokel cuisine. His mind remained intact, however, despite the chaos and destruction which surrounded him. Upon seeing the leading Ahid, armor etched with Imperial and Khodaist sigils, he spat on the ground before the soldier.

"Karlani dog! I have no fear of death, for in death I will feel the embrace of the many Devas!"

Though irked by the man's words, Dara appreciated his boldness. He punched the man's sternum, sending the blade mounted on his wrist deep into the man's chest. The Marzban then removed the blade swiftly, bringing it around for a second strike. This, a slash, separated the man's lifeless head from his shoulders. With a wave, he signaled his men to finish off the remaining pagans. When they were done, he held up the head of the old man.

"This one goes on top."


In the Citadel...



The function was exquisite, befitting the glory of the great ruler Alamgir. And yet, Dara could not bring himself to join the festivities. It was not that he agreed with his officers, who were privately disgusted by the celebration of the oncoming war, it was just that he never could bring himself to enjoy such settings. In the days leading up to the event, he busied himself with scheduling patrols and issuing written orders in triplicate, anything to distract him from the approaching mobs of Imperial busy-bodies which he would be obliged to rub shoulders with.

He always preferred to keep himself scarce at the formal events held by the Emperor. Two Ahids responsible for Alamgir's immediate protection stood flanking the Emperor in full ceremonial armor, though they maintained a respectful distance. He trusted those men, along with the others stationed around the room, to maintain order while he concerned himself with the less than visible threats to the Emperor's life. Dressed in the formal uniform which he abhorred, he leaned quietly against a column several paces from the Emperor's seat.

Looking around the room, he observed the Emperor's guests. Erbir and the young soldier he seemed to have taken under his wing, Dara decided, were not dangerous. He was powerful, yes, but in a way that could complement rather than complicate the Emperor's own influence. After some time, he noticed the zamindar move from the table. A courtier was hassling the soldier, but Erbir's approached ended the courtier's whining. Dara could only imagine the drivel spilling out of the rich brat's mouth, but was thankful that the zamindar put an end to it. The old Vizier, however, was a snake. As a young Ahid, he had heard tales of the decadence the Vizier had displayed while on campaign. Carriages lined with silks and whores, meals of fruit and prime cuts of meat while the footsoldiers enjoyed little but shreds of horse meat and the firmness of the road. He could attempt to make up for this by purchasing the hearts of the soldiers, but he would be wise to remember that the Ahids could not be bought.

At length, the festivities began to slow. The very old and very young departed first, followed by the straight-laced Imperial bureaucrats who felt self-important enough to leave before the Emperor. Alamgir himself was a gregarious man, but even he had his limits. After the Emperor announced his intention to retire for the night, Dara ordered several men to escort him out. A small unit of Ahids was summoned, assuming a tight formation about the Emperor's person. The gilded troops, the ruler of all Karlani within their ranks, pressed through the remaining crowds to the restricted wings of the Crimson Citadel. Dara, at the advice of one of the senior servants, allowed thirty minutes for the stragglers to file out. At the end of that time, the room filled only with servants of the Emperor and drunks, he felt sufficiently comfortable to walk about the center of the vast room. Barking orders, Dara strode about as if inspecting the ranks, ordering serving staff and Ahids alike to drag the scant few remaining guests out of the Citadel.

As the Emperor slept, the work of the Marzban-e-Ahidi was just beginning. At least, the part of the job which, unlike attending the Emperor's parties, he enjoyed.
Last edited by Beutarch on Wed Jun 15, 2022 7:09 pm, edited 1 time in total.
I have no idea what to put here.
I guess I am a P2TM Prole, a F7 hermit and an II normie.

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New Aeyariss
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Iron Fist Consumerists

Postby New Aeyariss » Thu Jun 16, 2022 5:31 am

Image


Despite the great triumph at Barwala, it seemed that the Empire's problems were only getting worse. When the Emperor was heading to sleep, this time unattended by one of his numerous wives, a messenger came and informed him of Yusuf Adil Shah's defeat. For a while, only shouts of rage and crashing were heard from the Imperial Chambers. In the morning, rumors said that at mention of his former friend, Alamgir grabbed a katar and proceeded to hack his entire chamber to pieces, uncaring for decorative mosaics and precious carpets. Ahids posted in front of his chambers, when resting from their duty, joked how the Emperor resembled an enraged bull.

When sun hit the noon, the durbar session was assembled. Large crowds of men, dressed in elegant robes, headed to the Peacock Hall, where state matters were usually discussed. The walls were made of white marble, with rich decorations of red paint. Costly carpets laid at the floor. The Emperor, who today chose to wear a large white turban decorated by peackock feathers and a blue robe, sat at a golden throne on a platform, lifting him over other courtiers. Farhad Mirza sat to his right, to his left - The Archpriest of Khoda, a scroll of divine laws resting next to him. Two servants fanned them the entire time to provide comfort for the important persons. In front of them, dressed in ceremonial uniforms, but fully armed, stood ahids ready to react to any treachery.

On his sides, stood hordes of bureaucrats, vassals and other officials, who will be allowed to voice their opinions. Further in stood minor officials, Imperial Wives and lower ranked officers, whose rank did not allow them to partake in the debate, but was deemed high enough for them to be allowed to witness the session.

After the shout prayer performed by the Archpriest in order to obtain guidance of Khoda's divine spirit in this session of the durbar, the voice of the Emperor boomed:

"Bring the envoy in!"

A man, with his complexion visibly darker than the rest of the assembled, almost feminine face features, wearing a yellow robe and a white cap, entered the room. He fell on his face before the Emperor, and when commanded to rise, he stood up.

"To his majesty, Alamgir Shah ibn Farroukshiyar Karlani, Padishah Emperor, conqueror of the enemies, live forever! My lord Sher Shah Bari, sends his eternal greetings!" he exclaimed in a highly pitched voice, making it easy to mistake him for a woman "I am Ramin, an eunuch and slave of his majesty Sher Shah Bari, whom my lord saw fit to put over his entire treasury! My lord, Sher Shah Bari, when he heard of his majesty's victory over vile pagans at Barwala, was overjoyed!"

The eunuch paused:

"Which brought to the mind of my lord the fact that we both, are famliies. Have not twelve, not two, tribes been chosen by Khoda? Even if he wished our nations to remain independent of each other, there is no excuse for history of hostility between us. As such, my lord wishes to convey that he wishes to end the hostility..."

The eunuch gulped, sweat starting to fall from his brows. It was obvious that he was afraid of effects of his next words:

"... with a marriage of him to one of princesses of the ibn Farroukshiyar line. That way, we will truly be family once again, and bury our arms. As bride price, he offers the fortress of Āb Bārīk."

Roars of indignation were heard from the assembled crowds "HOW DARE YOU!" roared one of the men "HE IS TOO LOW TO ASK FOR A PRNC..."

But still, others were curious. Āb Bārīk was one of most important fortresses in the region, controlling a major route of spice trade. If Sher was offering it, he stood to loose a lot. Maybe he was really sincere - or was it all a ruse to lure them into a sense of confidence?

"SILENCE!" roared the Emperor, bringing the durbar to order. It was visible that something was bothering him "Escort the envoy out! We will debate what to do next. Summon him after we have reached conclusion."

Two ahids led the envoy out. Meanwhile, as was customary, every high ranked official would be permitted to take part in a debate. First to raise his voice was Farhad Mirza:

"Your majesty!" he bowed "I know that Sher is insolent asking for a bride of our line, for which he is too low. But a wise man considers all his options."

He rose up:

"Our Empire has enough enemies as we are, and having Sher out of their roster would be an immense blessing. With that accursed pagan" he scoffed at mention of Brahmaji "Doing Khoda knows what in the south, it would be best if we directed our effort at a single direction before fight the others. I believe we ought to accept the offer, and mobilise majority of our fortress for an invasion of Vijayanagara, leaving only token forces to keep Chelas at bay. We will proceed to defeat the Chelas only after Brahamji ceases to be a threat. Then we deal with the Chelas and finally, we can confront Sher at the end. I will personally lead the expedition if your majesty wishes so."

Mumurs once again passed among the crowd. It was visible that that the Emperor was thinking... but other courtiers had their opinions too.
Last edited by New Aeyariss on Thu Jun 16, 2022 5:34 am, edited 2 times in total.
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Ovstylap
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Posts: 280
Founded: Jun 26, 2018
Moralistic Democracy

The Durbar

Postby Ovstylap » Tue Jun 21, 2022 11:03 am

Erbir Mirza ibn Farroukshiyar
The Peacock Hall

Trusting the Kitchens

Erbir stood a few meters in front of a large marble pillar in the Peacock Hall, and watched as the great room continued to fill with an array of courtiers. From visiting Zamindars to stately bureaucrats, intriguing eunuchs, meddling men of money, and nobles who had come to pay tribute to the Emperor, alongside a great many other subjects of the Padishah throne, the room filled ever quicker as noon approached. No doubt there were a few sore heads that morning, but most had taken measures to alleviate their suffering. Thinking of sore heads, Nimesh was absent, presumably like many other young officers who had had the Barwala campaign as their first ever, he was still in the company of one of last night's dancers. He deserved it, thought Erbir, though it was a shame to not have Nimesh's ears gathering in information from the court.

Erbir stood in the front rank of those who had the right to speak, somewhere to the left, and a couple of dozen meters ahead of the Emperor, who was seated upon a golden throne. Farhad Mirza, the Vizier, sat to his right, surveying the growing crowd, whilst to his left the Archpriest of Khoda, who's lips were moving in what was presumably prayer. The Emperor himself appeared to have a slight demeanor of frustration, a passing Ahid had quietly made a remark about the Emperor resembling a raging bull as he passed one of his counterparts, which Erbir had overheard as he was existing the guest room, one of many hundreds, that he had resided in last night. He had spent the night with the wife of some old courtier, having charmed her as the night began to draw to a close, and had arranged for a trusted servant from the kitchens to bring her to him there.

Choosing who to trust was ever a challenge in the Crimson Palace, and Erbir new that his network was small. But where he had strengths, he would lean upon them. There were a few Ahids who he could trust to some extent, but it was among elements of the kitchen staff that his eyes and ears could be drawn upon. Ketak Dixit had a position of considerable responsibilities in the Palace kitchens, helping assist with the provisioning and storing of foods and drinks for major events, as well as the daily functioning of the court. He had previously served under Zamindar Arnav Munim, the former governor of Dahari Subah, before his treacherous rebellion some years ago.

Ketak had effectively run the kitchens of Tirupur's palace, but as Arnav Munim had grown both more paranoid, and more greedy, as he felt his grasp on power slipping, he had worked his staff ever harder, and more unfairly, and had cut funding from the kitchens and other elements of the court to fund his personal guards, and pay bribes to those he relied upon. When Erbir crushed Munim's rebellion, he had rewarded Ketak for his role in poisoning some two hundred of the guards whom Munim had withdrawn into the Citadel. This had coincided with a Erbir's engineers breaching the gates of the citadel with a stash of gunpowder, and the weakened guards had been overwhelmed.

Over the next year, Ketak had grown ever more competent with a well-funded kitchen in the court, and Erbir's oversight of increasing the distribution of food in the Subah as a whole had done much to aid the restoration of loyalty. Ketak eventually was requested to work in Khusraubad, but Erbir had retained a connection with him. Ketak arranged agreements with Dahari merchants to provide provisions of spice and various foodstuffs, at a reliable, if somewhat cheap price, but the income was important in establishing a steady source of money for Dahari's spice trade. Now, with his senior role in the Crimson Palace, Erbir had a connection, and could employ a few servants to act as his eyes and ears. Hence, his ability to have a most enjoyable night last night, as the drunken husband of Erbir's companion had first been beaten by an Ahid, and then dosed with a sedative by a friendly servant, and so had known nothing more when he awoke to find his own wife with him again a couple of hours ago. Erbir smiled to himself as he noticed the old courtier filling a spot about three ranks back across the hall. Even from here Erbir could tell the man appeared down, his shoulders slumped, his head heavy. He grinned again.

The murmurs began to quiet, and heads were turning towards the front, as the Archpriest of Khoda stood, before shouting a prayer to guide the Durbar. It was time to begin.

The Durbar

Two things were on the mind of allthose attending. The pending delivery of a message by the envoy from Sher Shah Bari, the defeat of Yusuf Adil Shah, Sultan of Ark-Killah Kote, at the hand of Brahmaji Rao. The Emperor's outburst of rage that morning at the news had also reached a few ears, including Erbir's. But first, the envoy. The Emperor, enrobed in blue, and wearing a white turban decorated with peacock flowers, called for the envoy to be brought in.

Heads turned as the man on everyone's mind entered. Whispers passed through the court as he gently yet confidently moved along the central aisle. The man had darker skin than most Karlanis, and his face was somewhat feminine. He wore a yellow robe and a white cap- certainly not to Erbir's personal taste. He was somewhat relieved that it was unlikely for this man to deliver a provocation or insult directly to the Emperor- Khoda knew how many problems and rebellions the Empire faced, even aside from Brahmaji and the Chelas. The envoy fell to the ground before the Imperial dais, prostrating himself humbly until ordered to rise by an official.

"To his majesty, Alamgir Shah ibn Farroukshiyar Karlani, Padishah Emperor, conqueror of the enemies, live forever! My lord Sher Shah Bari, sends his eternal greetings!" Erbir scoffed at the man's high voice. 'He'd sooner send eternal armies' he thought to himself. "I am Ramin, an eunuch and slave of his majesty Sher Shah Bari, whom my lord saw fit to put over his entire treasury! My lord, Sher Shah Bari, when he heard of his majesty's victory over vile pagans at Barwala, was overjoyed!" Erbir raised an eyebrow. It was not an unusual for an enslaved eunuch to receive such a prominent position, but to send one as an emissary when one already had such responsibilities? No doubt the 'man' had an interesting proposition.

After a brief pause, the eunuch continued, whilst the Emperor listened. Everyone in the court seemed to lean forward, or otherwise focus in on the next words.
"Which brought to the mind of my lord the fact that we both, are famliies. Have not twelve, not two, tribes been chosen by Khoda? Even if he wished our nations to remain independent of each other, there is no excuse for history of hostility between us. As such, my lord wishes to convey that he wishes to end the hostility..." Murmurs spread throughout the crowd gathered, but soon hushed again as the court official waved his hand for quiet, and as the messenger gulped.

"... with a marriage of him to one of princesses of the ibn Farroukshiyar line. That way, we will truly be family once again, and bury our arms. As bride price, he offers the fortress of Āb Bārīk."

Erbir raised his eyebrows in surprise. He hadn't been sure what to expect when the eunuch had entered, but this was most fascinating. At least it didn't necessarily mean a war was imminent. The crowd however rapidly moved against the eunuch, with shouts of protest and outrage soon turning the formal Durbar into a shouting competition. Without even standing however, the Emperor Alamgir roared for quiet. Immediately, he ordered the envoy out. He was not in a good mood, that was obvious to anyone with eyes or ears, one didn't even need both to tell his disquiet.

Without waiting to be called for, Farhad Mirza spoke. He was a privileged man for sure. A quick thinker to, one had to somewhat admire that in a man. In fact, Erbir absolutely did. Before he could even majorly consider the proposal himself, Farhad was already making suggestions.
"Your majesty!" he spoke with a deep bow of his head. "I know that Sher is insolent asking for a bride of our line, for which he is too low. But a wise man considers all his options."

Farhad climbed to his feet now, addressing the court. "Our Empire has enough enemies as we are, and having Sher out of their roster would be an immense blessing. With that accursed pagan... doing Khoda knows what in the south, it would be best if we directed our effort at a single direction before fight the others. I believe we ought to accept the offer, and mobilise majority of our forces for an invasion of Vijayanagara, leaving only token forces to keep Chelas at bay. We will proceed to defeat the Chelas only after Brahamji ceases to be a threat. Then we deal with the Chelas and finally, we can confront Sher at the end. I will personally lead the expedition if your majesty wishes so."

Erbir nodded, not in agreement, but in thought, as heard the words of the Vizier, who was making what was perhaps an unusually bold and quick move. Erbir's head was moving rapidly, looking to see who was stepping forward, to see the facial reactions of prominent notables, to see if anyone would raise their hand. For certain there was some merit in what Farhad had to say. A temporary peace with Sher Shah Beri would free up forces, if he could be trusted, and a concentration of force on one enemy at a time would of course enable one such enemy to be defeated.

But to ignore the Chelas for now? To send a full army against Brahamji? For a man like Farhad to lead such an expedition? That was dangerous. Incredibly dangerous. Yet still, Erbir did not desire for his own armies to be destroyed having marched across the country to engage Brahamji, leaving his own Subah exposed to the Chelas even as it looked as if it might have its most prosperous harvests in years. The offer itself however was not bad, Alamgir could raise many more daughters, and the fortress of Āb Bārīk was notable both for its defenses, and its dominant position on the spice roads.

Erbir already was having his thoughts come together, and trusted that he would find the right words by the time he was chosen. He stepped forward out of the line he stood in, into the aisle between the two sides of the court, his arm raised, and his head moving, so that his eyes would meet with the court official, daring him to choose somebody else who would raise their hand after him to speak.
Please check out New Aeyariss's new RP: The Alamgir Chronicles! A character-based RP in a low-fantasy setting, inspired by the Mughal Empire, primarily focused on court intrigue, and also on factional rivalries, and governing a fractured country.
OOC Link: viewtopic.php?f=31&t=517426
IC Link: viewtopic.php?f=31&t=517468

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Of the Quendi
Post Marshal
 
Posts: 15257
Founded: Mar 18, 2010
Civil Rights Lovefest

Postby Of the Quendi » Fri Jul 01, 2022 6:20 am

Along the banks of the Bidaspes river
On the border between Amreli and Vrisha


On a small promontory in a bend in the river, overlooking the crossing, Brahmaji was standing on foot wearing his armor and his saffron cap, a huge tiger skin adorning his martial frame his fiery gaze turned northwards, surveying Amreli, or perhaps attempting the pierce the great distance between himself and Khusraubad. Thirty thousand men in turn gazed upon him but this did not phase him in the slightest. When last he had stood on the banks of the Bidaspes he had not had five thousand men with him, crossing into Vijayanagara after the Maharajah of Amreli refused him the twelve thousand men he had asked for to retake his father's province. How different things where now.

A commotion broke out among the front ranks of the army. Brahmaji turned away from the view of Amreli. Several of his guards, led by a huge, fierce-looking Rajput, Ranoji, captain of Brahmaji's guard, approached him. Two noblemen where with them, one a Karlani the other a Brahmin. "Yes." Demanded Brahmaji calmly, enjoying the look of the hulking beast of a warrior Ranoji shivering slightly at so little. Perhaps overcompensating out of fear of having disturbed his master needlessly the huge Rajput forced the Brahmin down into the mud. "This is Moropant Swami Charani, master. We caught him and his followers when they tried to cross the river, he claims to speak for the Maharajah of Amreli." The Rajput declared.

Brahmaji looked down upon the Brahmin. What he saw was an old man, closer to sixty than fifty, with a noble look about him. His hair and beard was long and white, his robes fine but modest and despite being clearly a man of letters he seemed to bear the humility of being forced down into the dirt by a soldier with a dignified, almost godly, acceptance, his eyes closed and his head lowered. "Is that so Brahmin?" Brahmaji commanded of the elderly priest. The man raised his gaze towards Brahmaji who caught a glimpse of a trustworthy man of integrity and honor in the Brahmin's eyes before the shock and terror that struck everyone who first met Brahmaji. "Ye ... Yes, my lord." The Brahmin gasped, clearly intimidated by what he saw in Brahmaji's eyes. Brahmaji nodded, but before he had time to say anything the Brahmin spoke again, this time with greater confidence. "That is to say." He spoke. "Yes, I speak for Amreli, but neither I nor my followers were caught, we came willingly searching for you that I may speak for my Maharajah." The Brahmin declared.

Brahmaji nodded quite impressed by how quickly the Brahmin had recovered from the shock and terror that gripped even the bravest and strongest upon encountering the Avatar of the Wind God. Brahmaji made an almost invisible gesture of his hand, intimating that the Brahmin rise from the ground. At once Ranoji pulled the old man of the ground and then let him go, taking a step back. "Speak then Moropant Swami Charani of Amreli." Brahmaji ordered coldly. The Brahmin gave a half-nod half-bow. "Yes, my lord. Me and my companion ..." The Brahmin gestured towards the Karlani.

That man was much younger and clearly a warrior, he wore armor and an empty scabbard, sheath and quiver revealed that he had once possessed sword and knife and bow and arrows. If this had not been enough the Karlani's muscular physique and a certain martial haughtiness left no doubt about the man's profession. A warrior. Two of Ranoji's guards held him very firmly, clearly aware of this fact. Another barely visible gesture of Brahmaji's hands however and the guards let go of the Karlani so quickly as if they had burned themselves, the man at once standing straight in a defensive posture. "Yes!" Brahmaji commanded, enjoying to see how the warrior trembled a little as the Avatar of the Wind God focused on him.

"Arslan Tegin Karzai, envoy of his Imperial Majesty the Padishah Emperor's army, sent to Amreli by the late Padishah Emperor Jahangir with his father to help train and command Amreli's armies against ... Against our foes." The Brahmin introduced the man. Brahmaji smiled at the last diplomatic omission. Old Jahangir had been smarter than Brahmaji thought it seemed as the Devas within him howled in frustration at the thought of Karlani military assistance in Amreli. "Continue, Moropant Swami Charani." Brahmaji demanded, turning his attention once more to the ambassador.

The Brahmin lowered his head humbly. "Yes my lord. As I was saying, I speak for Amreli and have come here today with Captain Karzai to ask on behalf of the Maharajah what your intentions are my lord. The Maharajah knows of no enmity between his kingdom and mighty Vijayanagara and offers his congratulations with your Lordships triumph against Afar Khan, for which surely all the empire are eternally grateful ..." The Brahmin ambassador began to speak being cut short by Brahmaji. "The point, please."

The Brahmin nodded. "In short, my master asks that your lordship honor your promise to the Padishah Emperor and refrain from invading Amreli, and so my master, and general Karzai, with all possible respect must ... Must ... Demand, that your lordship withdraw this army and accepts the ancient border between Vijayanagara and Amreli." Angry murmurs from Brahmaji's officers greeted this ultimatum but they where cut short by an imperious gesture from the Chakravarti, whose own head was boiling with the rage of the Devas. "Very well, Moropant Swami Charani." Brahmaji calmly replied feeling like his head was about to split open from the rage of the Devas. "Now return to your master the Maharajah with my message." He continued. Raising his voice so that his officers might hear the message Brahmaji spoke. "Tell the Maharajah of Amreli that Brahmaji Rao has taken an oath to the Wind God not to needlessly spill the blood of the righteous followers of the true gods and that he offers Amreli the chance to submit peacefully to his authority as Chakravarti Emperor of Vrisha. If he does so his lands and possessions and kin and treasure shall be protected and he shall know every favor as a true and loyal Vrishan. But if he does not submit, but choose to bow to the so-called Padishah Emperor and his false god, Brahmaji Rao will come into his kingdom with his army and smite him and all who follows him. Deliver this message for me Brahmin." Brahmaji declared, to rapturous applause from his retainers. The Brahmin, seemingly a tad shaken, nodded respectfully. "I shall, my lord."

With a bow the Brahmin turned and began to walk away. As he passed by captain Karzai the young officer turned to follow him. But Brahmaji's guards, who readily parted to make way for the Brahmin did not do so for the captain. The two men exchanged a confused look before turning to Brahmaji, the Brahmin a look of concern in his eyes, but the captain one of faint defiance. "My lord?" The Brahmin inquired cautiously. "Be gone, Brahmin. Deliver my message." Brahmaji ordered, and when the Brahmin hesitated two Rajputs, respectfully but firmly took hold of him and helped him on his way.

Brahmaji turned towards the young warrior captain. "It seems to me it takes only one to deliver a message, would you not agree captain?" Brahmaji half-taunted the soldier, receiving a growl in return. "You mean to slay me, heathen?" Karzai retorted with a courage that Brahmaji found admirable. It certainly contrasted sharply with the fearful deference most of his own men always showed him. "Yes I am afraid I do." Brahmaji Rao declared conversationally. "Today I invade Amreli and the gods require a sacrifice to give me good fortune in the wars to come, you will serve nicely." Brahmaji insisted. Captain Karzai spat on the ground and only a sharp commanding gesture from Brahmaji saved him from being struck down by the guards. "Scum. I came under a banner of truce to parlay and you mean to slaughter me, like some brigand or Phansigar." The young man growled. Brahmaji smiled and shook his head. "Certainly not." He insisted. He gestured for his guards to clear a path for the captain. "You may leave if you so desire captain." Brahmaji said, drawing his sword and stepping closer to the man. Brahmaji smiled as the captain didn't even flinch. Then he dropped the drawn sword in front of the young Karlani. "Or you can fight me in single combat. If you leave, you will receive my weapons, my horse, my personal fortune and my wife, and if I am not mistaken at least a middle sized Subah from your master, and not one man in my army will lay a hand on you." Brahmaji said, stepping away from the captain towards Ranoji his hand extended, prompting the Rajput captain to draw his own sword and offer it to Brahmaji with a deep reverential bow. "Well?" Brahmaji asked. Arslan Tegin Karzai picked up the sword.

He held it like a proper professional. This man was clearly no novice. In fact Brahmaji faintly remembered hearing of a general Karzai with a son who was known as a great warrior back when he served in the Padishah's armies, perhaps it was this man. Brahmaji raised Ranoji's sword in salute. "Whenever you are ready." This the captain didn't need to hear twice, with great speed he charged forward, wielding Brahmaji's sword as if it was a perfect and deadly extension of his own arm. Then he fell to the ground with a faint sound as Ranoji's sword tore through the chainmail of his armor mortally wounding him. Cheers greeted Brahmaji from his army while the Devas roared in approval. He handed Ranoji his sword and stepped towards the fallen warrior who was coughing up an unhealthy amount of blood attempting to hold on to his guts. Brahmaji pulled the helm of the Karlani warrior revealing a long mane of dark hair. With a firm grip of the warrior's hair Brahmaji pulled him onto the very edge of the promontory, pulled out a sacrificial knife and knelt behind him. Roaring with a supernaturally enhanced voice: "Hear me all devas. I am Brahmaji Rao, Chakravarti Emperor of Vrisha and I bring you this sacrifice that you may bless me and my army with victory against our foes." And with that Brahmaji pulled the warrior's head back, slit his throat and ended his life throwing his corpse into the river as sacrifice. Brahmaji rose again. Raising the bloody knife he pointed it across the river, at Amreli. "Advance!" He roared with the sound of thunder to the thunderous applause of his army and soon the waters of the Bidaspes was filled with men and horses crossing over the river. Crossing into Amreli.
Nation RP name
Arda i Eruhíni (short form)
Alcarinqua ar Meneldëa Arda i Eruhíni i sé Amanaranyë ar Aramanaranyë (long form)


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