NATION

PASSWORD

[SC ONLY] Troubled Birth

A staging-point for declarations of war and other major diplomatic events. [In character]

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Caerlegion
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Posts: 16
Founded: Oct 03, 2018
Father Knows Best State

Postby Caerlegion » Sun Dec 16, 2018 3:31 am

HMS Prince Aurelius, docked in the city of Cyma, Harren Islands

After receiving the order from Agrippa, Mark stationed the Caerlegion super fleet to the seas near the city of Cyma, the 95th Rifles under the command of Lt Colonel Richard Sharpe boarded the brand new aircraft carrier the HMS Prince Aurelius to be moved near the city of Baruch. Most of the men were scattered to support the Roman FOB (Forward Operating Bases). On-board the Prince Aurelius, the overall Commander of the Caerlegion troops, General Mark Anthony awaited for Lt Colonel Sharpe to meet him on the bridge. Sharpe was considered by many Caerlegion woman to be the most handsome man in the Kingdom, with his blonde hair and blue eyes he certainly was a good looking man, Sharpe entered the Bridge of the Prince Aurelius and he greeted Mark with a firm handshake, Sharpe spoke
“General, nice to see you again. When is your Royal Guard gonna beat my Rifles in the annual forces rugby game?” Sharp said jokingly.

Just as that moment a communique arrived on the Bridge and the men were confused as to who it was addressed, so the Officer on Watch handed the confusing communique to Mark. Looking intensely at the frankly childish scribble, Mark saw the letter was from that Brutish Vikings in the South. The letter was simple and said that they had landed in the city of Yanni and were awaiting the arrival of the Caerlegion troops but Mark then saw who the letter was addressed to “Genal Mick Antony”, Mark looked around and asked if anyone knew a Mick Antony? Everyone on the bridge just burst out laughing, so Mark scrunched up the letter and set light to it before he lit up his cigarette. Mark then informed Sharpe that the fleet were to move near the City of Baruch where he is go to the Grand Hotel in the city to meet with Agrippa.

30 Minutes Later, Near the City of Baruch, Nami Inlets

After an uneventful journey the armada arrived near the city of Baruch. The Prince Aurelius docked and the men disembarked, Lt Col Sharpe being held up by his men shouted with angry “Move you Bastards!” the men quicken paced to avoid the Colonel infamous anger. Sharpe was met by a Roman delegation who informed him to report to the Acropolis Hotel, Sharpe nodded and got in a staff car along with his Chosen Men.

Acropolis Hotel, Baruch

After a long winded meeting with the Roman High Command, Sharpe left the Hotel to prepare his Men for the assault. He entered the staff car and telephoned General Mark Anthony to request the Presence of the Special Forces Unit Viking Squad, who were the best in Caerlegion at Urban Warfare,

“General”, Sharpe spoke softly, “I am requesting that Viking Squad come here to assist the Rifles in the assault of Emi”

Mark replied “That order needs the Kings consent I shall rely your request to him”

Sharpe snapped “We’ll HURRY UP the Rifles are leading the assault”

Mark Anthony on the Bridge of HMS Owain Glyndwr telephoned the King to pass on Sharpe’s request for Viking Squad, His Majesty who is the best strategist in the Kingdom somehow knew that Viking Squad would be needed and already sent them on their way to Harren Islands. This information was passed to Sharpe who by this time was nearer the Forward Operation Base near the City of Emi, Sharpe requested that Viking Squad be parachuted behind enemy lines and relay information of the enemy’s position and weapons.

The Forward Operating Base Near Emi.

Morning had broken and Lt Colonel Sharpe was the first to be up for the assault, the poured over the intelligence gathered by Viking Squad in the city who reported that the enemy had incomplete fortifications but with interest in the tunnel system under the city. Sharpe knew that if he controlled the tunnels he could blow up the city supports the men in the city would lose the defences in and around the city. The men rose and donned their Murky Green jackets and body armour and helmets, the Chosen Men (who were the best shots in the Regiment) wore black arm bands on their right arms. The armoured Division arrived shaking the earth in its quake. He ordered the men to get on the transports for the assault. The men showed signs of fear so Sharpe addressed his men

“Alright Rifles listen up” the men turned and listened intently “I know some of you are scared but remember your training, aim small miss small, and we can kill THOSE BASTARDS!!”

The men roared in glee at Sharpe’s battle speech and the transport set off on the journey to glory.
On the way to Emi the Caerlegion column passed their Roman counterparts who were preparing for their assault after the Caerlegion’s, Sharpe stood up in is staff car and shouted to the Romans,

“Don’t worry yer Bastards we’ll leave some for you!” the Rifles burst into laughter (which helped lightened the mood of the men)

Nearing the incomplete fortifications near Emi, Sharpe ordered the men to dismount the transport trucks and ordered the tanks to smash through them. The men lined up in line and prepared to follow the tanks, Sharpe (who is considered by some to be mad) drew his sword along with a Magnum 45 shouted to the men,

“Rifles, Prepare to Move.”

He signalled to the Tank commander to begin their assault “Move!!” the men walked off behind the tanks who faced little resistance moping up the enemy giving no quarter. Since the defences were weaker than first imagined Sharpe arrived at the tunnel entrance quicker than thought, so he divided his men up into three groups and ordered the Tanks to spilt up to surround the city, just as Sharpe was about to enter the Tunnel the Roman Cohort arrived and assisted the Caerlegion Tanks in surrounding the City. Sharpe and his Chosen Men entered the Tunnels, aided with flamethrowers and gas grenades supplied by the Romans. The Tunnels were dingy and there was little light, Sharpe and his men moved sheepishly through the tunnels. Then the radio crackled into life

“Colonel, Colonel, we have engaged with the enemy but they have the support of light tanks and we was being cut to shreds, we retreated and blew up the tunnel entrance before we burnt some of them and threw some gas behind us”

Sharpe before he could reply heard the rumble of the light tanks he was warned about and ordered the men to retreat whilst he use the flamethrower to try and blind the tank driver, he ordered the men to blow up the tunnel entrance, Sharpe threw some grenades and gas to stop infantry that may be in the tunnels. Escaping the tunnel he blew up the entrance, as he looked he saw some Romans troops laughing and shouted to them

“What are you laughing at you Bastards?”

The Roman troops ceased laughing and quietly scuttled away. Sharpe regrouped with his men to learn that 15 died in the Tunnels, he picked up the radio and ordered Viking Squad to vacate the city before it is blown to hell.
Last edited by Caerlegion on Sun Dec 16, 2018 3:34 am, edited 2 times in total.
When there is War prepare for Peace. When there is Peace prepare for War.

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Auruum
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Founded: Aug 28, 2017
Compulsory Consumerist State

Postby Auruum » Sun Dec 16, 2018 10:45 am

The City of Emi, Two days before the Attack

"Sir, I've just gotten word from HQ, Intel suggests The Romans and their allies are preparing to launch an incursion into the Heartlands." An Orc communications officer reported to the Goblin commander, Zazzlowe. "Do we know where they are gonna hit?"
"They're saying here, Sir. We're closest to the border and the least defended."
"Then It's time." The Goblin said grimly. "Activate Contingency plan Powderkeg."
"Yes Sir."

The City had been notified, Marshal Law was established and the people were told to grab some basic supplies that were set aside for just such an occasion, head for the tunnels, and make their way further inland. By the time the enemy had arrived, very few non-combatants remained. Some stubbornly chose to stay in their home city, others seemed to conscript themselves, forming an even more rag-tag militia than the Mercs or the Harrenite Soldiers that were garrisoned in the city. As part of the contingency plan, traps were put in place. One Abandoned home per block was rigged with traps, Bombs set to go off when the door tugged on their tripwires, Unmanned gun turrets set to fire on anything that moved into their view. Mines were laid on and near the city, in various alleyways and street ways. Car bombs were also set with motion detectors. If the city was to fall today, the victors would have delightful time securing the city completely.

Commander Zazzlowe made a broadcast towards his troops the night before the attack. "Alright Kids, I'm not gonna sugar coat it for you: We're in a bad spot. But this is the job. Two ways its gonna go down, One: You die, You get to go up to whatever heaven you wanna go to. Golden Palaces, Hookers and Blackjack, The works. Or Two: You live and get to spend another day breathing on this fucked world we live in, But you get paid enough cash to buy your own Blackjack and Hooker filled golden palace. I dunno about you, But I like both options."
There was a pause.
"But I'm pretty sure if you kill the most bad-guys, Your Heaven gets to be way better than everybody else's. So give these dirty rotten skirt wearin' Sister fuckers hell, Kids! FOR GOLD AND GLORY!"

The City of Emi, The Day the City Fell.

The fighting was harsh, but the Garrisoned Aurummite/Harrenite Forces kept fighting. For every Roman, Skjolduran, Caerlegion, and Asgarethian killed, more took their place and it wasn't long at all before they were driven out of the city. Some managed to escape and retreat, others were caught and killed, And others still, The Insane, Explosive-Loving Assassins, The Sappers, Threw themselves at their enemies with bomb vests, grenades in each hand, and a wild smile on their faces. But regardless of the fierce fighting, The Order to Retreat was given and the City fell to the enemy.

Thankfully a number of the Tunnels seemed to be yet undiscovered by the enemy and those that managed to escape were able to flee further inland to a designated rendezvous point. Once there the survivors would activate a second set of bombs, Blowing up the tunnel entrances and exits, Covering their escape.

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Friendly Island
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Posts: 43
Founded: Oct 10, 2018
Democratic Socialists

Postby Friendly Island » Mon Dec 17, 2018 6:42 pm

Somewhere near the western shore of Harren Island
Sara grins towards Nathaniel, as the crowd goes back to its revelry.

"I wish to see what the 'Civilized World' can show me~
Can you please take me to see your home?
Take me to see the splendor~
I will wear one of your suits~
This can be arranged?
"

"Yes and we can customize a suit for you. However, I have to warn you that we're preparing for an imminent war for our very existence as a free people. What you will see will be tainted by that prospect, it is not the prosperous and peaceful age of my youth when Balthazar had just come to power."

It was in times like these that Nathaniel was ashamed to be human; to have so much potential as a species yet spend the majority of time, research, money and lives in the pursuit of killing each other in the vilest of ways. We were so advanced, having reached the Atomic Age, yet so primitive because we use that power to annihilate each other, and now a species we fear, in nuclear fire.

"So much of what we do is governed by fear. We believe it isn't so, we tell ourselves we're no longer children who shiver at the thought of monsters under the bed yet a clear look at civilization reveals the truth. Please look beyond the fear, look at the potential within and the beauty achieved despite of it."


Sara Fey, the child-like faun, smiles towards Nathaniel. There's a feeling of warm acceptance. She nods once.

"We shall wait in the eaves~
We do not wish to encroach~
But we shall rise up and strike if you wish~
"

All along the western shore and inland towards the Heartlands there is a low rumbling, as if the earth itself is adjusting and preparing for battle. The individuals who live there start moving closer inland, ready to defend their home and friends from invaders, even the individuals who were partying now move towards the would be battle grounds. The voices of many join as one as they sing a low solemn tune of war.

Sara Fey, the child-like faun, smiles towards Nathaniel. Her smile grows just a bit more.

"When you say the word.
Now~ I will return us to where we left~
I shall await the suit~
"

With that there's a whisper in the trees and they are returned to the grove near the fortress the faun had been spying on.
A friendly little nation in the Sovereign Charter
Tier 1, Level 8, Type 3.5, according to this index
Socialism · Ecology · Order



Friendly Island is a small jungle island nation, notable for its primeval nature and unconventional views. It appears all beings here share a bond which is facilitated by a massive fungal network.

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Harren Island
Secretary
 
Posts: 36
Founded: Nov 02, 2018
Corrupt Dictatorship

Postby Harren Island » Tue Dec 18, 2018 12:33 am

Harrenian Hegemony -
Gautima fumed as he watched the video feeds streaming in to the Academy. He wasn’t fuming because of Agrippa’s smug gloating, or the fact that he had no say in the battle plans, or the forced deification of a defiler, or the obvious snooping, not even the mass slavery of his people. Those were all burned into his mind as grudges to be locked away and ignored until they could be dealt with later. No, what annoyed him now was the way the Harrenian Auxiliaries were being used. Conscripting them and having them fight for you is one thing but throwing them at fortified positions, through minefields and kill zones without the equipment nor the training to deal with them was downright barbaric. As he watched another clump of Harrenians, dressed in the traditional cool blue and advancing in a rush up a green and gently sloping hill, geysered skywards in steaming chunks that splattered back down upon their comrades and the smouldering grass.

He felt his throat tighten when a machine gun opened up, ripping through the line with a shocking suddenness. In seconds, dozens had been mown down. Men dived for cover, some hiding under the corpses of their brethren and others hugging the ground as if they could be swallowed up by it. The tracers stitched across the ground with spouts of dirt as the chattering stream of bullets sought out every last survivor. This had all come from a concealed pillbox in a cluster of bushes that had been bypassed. With a couple thunderous reports and cratering blasts on the hillside, the pillbox blew apart in a spray of concrete and smoke, destroyed by Roman and Caerlegion tanks sitting a couple kilometres back.

Image
Fig. Heartlander machine gun.

Careful to not show any emotion whatsoever. Gautima cleared his throat and then spoke to an underling, “Send my compliments to Agrippa. His clever use of the Harrenian Auxiliaries is revealing the Heartland defences without risking valuable assets. With luck, this shouldn’t take long.”. As hours went by, Gautima forced himself to keep watching. Not because it would be expected of him and the Romans would notice if he didn’t but because he believed it necessary to notice every fallen Harrenian, to remember each and every hardship they faced, to show respect in the only way he was allowed.

It seemed like Emi had fallen. The city itself was enveloped by Caerlegion and Roman tanks, ensuring no surface breakout would be possible. The last of the Harrenian Auxiliaries had perished upon entering the city and falling foul of dastardly traps but Caerlegion rifles and Roman troops were clearing the streets and facing no more resistance. Gautima was about to send his congratulations to Agrippa when a massive resurgence of weapons fire and explosions occurred on the outskirts of the city.

Image
Fig. Heartlanders firing an ATGM at enemy armour.

Flicking camera feeds, Gautima realized what had happened. The Romans and Caerlegion had been successful in forcing the Heartlanders back into their tunnels but had failed to clear them out, in a lot of cases even helping them hold their ground by sealing off passageways and preventing movement through them. The Heartlanders had waited for the APCs and Armour to pass their positions to surround the city and then had all attacked en masse, popping out and using bazookas, RPGs, in some cases ATGMs and more experimental weaponry to fire into the vulnerable sides and rears of attacking vehicles. Gautima didn’t know the exact extent of the damage caused and would have smiled but controlled himself, instead he sent his commiserations to Agrippa and asked if there was anything he could do to help.


Harrenian Heartlands -
As the complex shook and dust trickled down from the domed stone roof, Deputy Director Kane brushed specks off his shoulder and spoke out to nobody in particular, “Bloody cunts should fuck off and leave us alone”. He wiped the map clean and then overlaid a transparent chart of the tunnel network. The Asgarthians were in the process of encircling the city and the Heartlanders didn’t have any mobile elements capable of stopping them. In addition, they had launched an attack directly from the north to draw forces from other sectors and to probe the Heartland defences. The probe was breaking through. Kane gave orders to move the 3rd reserve infantry division north to help repulse that thrust. The first two lines had already collapsed and the last was barely holding.

Unlike Emi, which had fallen hours before, Prokopios wasn’t emptied, a large percentage of the Heartlanders and refugees that had flooded in from the Port Cities had all been given rudimentary training by the Aurummite mercenaries and formed into reserve divisions. Whilst Kane understood Nathaniel’s desire to minimise casualties by falling back to the tunnels early and focussing on a guerrilla war, Kane believed that should be the last phase in a grinding campaign and so was determined to hold Prokopios as long as possible, to bleed the Asgarthians as much as he could.

Another flight of Asgarthian bombers screamed over the city as missiles and guided bombs blew out half-constructed bunkers and collapsed vulnerable sections of the tunnel networks with blasts that sent shockwaves rippling through the ground like aftershocks. “Wish we could shove those bombs up their fucking arses.”. Kane stormed over to a communication desk, snatched a blue plastic phone from his subordinate and then called the secondary command bunker, “Tell Advisor Gazzik that he needs to deal with their bloody planes as a matter of urgency.”.

Image
Fig. The famous 'blue phone', traditionally used by Harrenian heads of state.




An acrid tang pierced his nose as he drew breath, he knew it couldn’t be healthy to keep breathing this stuff in but there wasn’t anything he could do about that for the time being. He gingerly pushed himself up, peeking the top of his head over the rubble in front of him. Until recently it had been a third line bunker, protected to the north by reinforced walls and armed with machine guns and a turret from one of the recovered light tanks that couldn’t be restored to functionality. He brought his binoculars up from under his belly and rested them on a twisted and curled piece of rebar poking up out of the debris. The metal was warm to the touch, making him feel even thirstier as he peered out into the smoky murk, trying to spot any sign of enemy movements.

Seeing nothing through the thick billowing clouds, he left his binoculars and rifle at the top of the pile and slid back down the wreckage, careful not to catch himself on anything. Coming to a rest at the bottom, he continued his work trying to clear the hatch entrance by levering chunks of concrete and shovelling dirt aside with his entrenching tool.

It took him almost another hour but finally, with a sore throat from the dust coating it, his uniform soaked in sweat and stuck to his back and with his muscles trembling, he pried the hatch open. He toggled the radio on his lapel and wheezed, “Tunnel Charlie-44 entrance Bravo has been cleared.”, before collapsing backwards onto the pile of rubble. Not allowing himself to fall asleep, he rolled over and clambered back up to see if the Asgarthians had moved again. It had gone quiet, too quiet.

Image
Fig. The countryside around Prokopios.

Having made it back up to the top, he flattened out, shutting his eyes for a moment to try and clear the bleariness from them before looking through his binoculars. Most of the smoke had cleared by now, apart from a few pillars rising from fiery bunkers and he could see the remnants of the first two defensive lines. The first had fallen almost instantly when exposed to the full might of the Asgarthian assault, then the second line had been overwhelmed by a combined arms assault and the third line had been smashed at range and from the air. Whilst the lines were in ruins, the Asgarthians were bogged down; tunnel networks still existed within, behind and around their positions and they had taken fire from all sides, casualties were mounting and vehicles had taken hits. Whilst the Heartlands’ lines had been broken open and the Asgarthians had a clear run at the city, they weren’t in a position to be able to make use of the breach, at least not for the time being.

A crackle on his radio. Orders. He tried to focus on the words that were spewing forth. It was the sector commander, a Colonel who owned one of the finest vineyards in the Heartlands, Teolly Blanco, and spoke with a Heartlands’ countryside drawl that took a little effort to interpret.

“Hey now, gentlemen, we’ve been giv’n an opportunity to hit ‘em where it hurts and I reckon we shall damn well do it. The reserves ‘ave arrived and I done sent ‘em to Network Alpha. Now, they be fixin’ to attack them Esgarthi Dogs from the north in the rear. Y’all still breathing at Networks Bravo and Charlie, I know you done taken a big beatin’ but don’t pitch a fit now, you gotta attack from the south at the same time as the reserves. Y’all will know the signal. Go git ‘em and show ‘em the faar of the Heartlands.”

He sighed and then heard the scrape of boots behind and below him, peering back he spotted a couple Aurummite mercenaries clambering out of the hatch he’d cleared. “Boy am I glad to see you guys.”. The first mercenary, a troll with sharpened tusks and a mean looking grenade launcher, smiled toothily up at him, “We heard there’s a chance to embarrass the Esgarthi and maybe get some loot. We’re up for that.”. Just as he finished talking a giant black shadow flitted across the landscape and looking up, trying to peer through the sun’s glare, he spotted the armoured side of one of Aurum’s airships glinting as it banked and launched screaming volleys of missiles towards flights of Esgarthi aircraft and down at the soldiers below.

Taking that as the signal, the 3rd reserve division, made up of twelve thousand riflemen, and what remained of the 12th Heartland Rangers along with their Aurummite attachments surged forth to assault the makeshift Asgarthian position from the North and South respectively.

https://i.imgur.com/xuES7aw.gifv
Video of the Heartlander reserves assaulting the Asgarthian position.


Harrenian Nature -
Nathaniel came back to find that everything had gone to shit. Emi had already fallen and Prokopios was in the process of being encircled. He wanted to take Sara’s offer instantly but, despite his belief that she was true to her word was aware that his perceptions and decision-making processes could have been manipulated, so he decided to bring forward his mental and medical evaluation before making any decisions. Entrusting the Heartlands to his Deputy for the time being.

After a thoroughly embarrassing series of medical checks and tests, then an intensive psych evaluation, he was declared to be the same old Nathaniel and so he resumed his position as Director, however he left Kane in charge of the defences to prevent any potential disruption. Again, the temptation to take Sara’s offer but to do so seemed wrong, at least, not without trying the diplomatic option one last time.

He broadcast a message.
“This is Director Nathaniel Lockwood of the Heartlands. I am willing to negotiate the cessation of hostilities, to prevent further loss of life, however, we will not yield our independence nor our territory. This is an appeal to our shared humanity. My offer of a brokered peace stands until Prokopios is encircled.”
Everything hung on the next few hours.
If Asgareth completed the encirclement, the gloves would come off and Nathaniel would call for Sara’s aid.
Last edited by Harren Island on Tue Dec 18, 2018 1:02 am, edited 6 times in total.

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Asgareth
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Founded: Nov 27, 2015
Iron Fist Consumerists

Postby Asgareth » Tue Dec 18, 2018 11:31 am

Aykia, Isle of Gespe, Archoni Isles, Archon/ Asgar House, Asgar, Asgareth, Rusina

The Commander in Chief of the Archoni Isles, Supreme-General Yaznon Paltri was in a secure video chat with the Imperiali.
“Our troops have successfully secured Odele. They are closing in on the city of Prokopios, in the heart of enemy territory. It is understood that the enemy are attempting to flank our men. They naturally outnumber our own, though our troops are naturally superior in every way.”
The Imperiali nodded before speaking
“What do our men require to ensure victory is swift?”
“Continued air support is vital. But even more important, is the continued reinforcements.”
“The 22nd can supply enough men, I am sure. General Sakia has been thirsty for blood for some time.” The Imperiali stated
“The cannibal sir? Are you sure that is wise?”
“Those rumours were disproven in the Evening Crusader, as you well know, Commander.”
“But the pictures” Paltri started, before the Imperiali cut him off.
“Were clearly manipulated by Iryllians. Yes, I agree.”
Paltri nodded in desperation. “Of course sir.”

At that point, a knock on the door of Paltri’s office occurred. After a brief conversation between Paltri and one of his juniors, he turned back to the Imperiali.
“We have just received word from the Director of the Heartlands; Nathaniel Lockwood. He has stated he is prepared to order a ceasefire across Harren if we halt our advance on Prokopios. Apparently it is an appeal to our humanity”
“How quaint.” The Imperiali chuckled. “It is time to send our own message.”



Skies over Prokopios, Harren Island
An hour ago, official orders had arrived at the base of the 15th Air Navy. Their contents had surprised many senior officers, who had swiftly enacted them. Now, Wing Commander Tynak de’Lance found himself up in the air, carrying a special package for the fighters in Prokopios. He stayed high above the clouds, until he was a few miles out. There, he dropped low, as he continued to fly over the city. Below, he could just about make out the moving tanks and armoured vehicles, hopefully assisting the Asgarthian advance. He was well aware he was about to become responsible for thousands of deaths - including the entire Asgarthian force below-, but his superiors had demanded victory, whatever the cost.

The plane drew nearer and nearer to the centre of the city, with the city hall coming into sight. Tynak smirked, as he reached for his radio.
“Command.” He stated.
“Eagle you have permission to deploy.”
“Understood. I’m moving in.”

Within seconds, the plane drew over the hall. Tynak hit a switch, dropping his load. He forced his thruster down as he spoke
“Payload deployed. Eagle away.”

Image




A transmission was sent, in secret, to Director Nathaniel:
Asgareth has received your transmission. We are prepared to open negotiations, when you, and all Harrenites, across the island, lay down arms. Take the detonation of a nuclear weapon in Prokopios of things to come if you fail to do so. Make contact with the city of Aykia within 48 hours. Failure to do so will result in further detonations. Resistance is most unwise.


A second, secret, transmission was also sent, to the Skjoldurians in the city of Yanni. Enclosed was a graphic video of the attack, from the planes rear camera.

To whichever dumb barbarian is in charge today,
Watch this video. Learn from it. Evacuate Yanni and hand over the city. You have 12 hours. We are coming. There will be no survivors.
Last edited by Asgareth on Tue Dec 18, 2018 11:32 am, edited 1 time in total.
Proud (No, really!) Member of the Sovereign Charter.
Drekhi: Asgareth is not a place, it is a vintage

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Skjoldur
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Posts: 36
Founded: Oct 01, 2018
Iron Fist Consumerists

Postby Skjoldur » Tue Dec 18, 2018 6:03 pm

City of Yanni, Harren Island

The flames could be seen from miles away. Torturous stood from on the beach as he watched the city burn to the ground. After several hours of negotiating with the Asgarthiens they had concluded that they could not make a deal. It was a shame really. The deal had been perfect apart from the fact that Asgareth wanted someone to be in overall command of the city, ordering his people about. Of course, Skjoldur would not accept that. Who it their right mind would. Torturous watched as the last of the citizens were dragged into the ship. He would might make them all slaves, he didn’t know yet. He shook his head. He had wanted to establish a little paradise for himself. Somewhere he could retire. Maybe a vacation spot for the nobility of Skjoldur, but it was not meant to be. Everything that could have been useful had been taken, the Asgartheins would have nothing for at least 20 years. Torturous had made sure the ground was now tainted. Only one little bit of civilization was left a piece of wall belonging to god know what. Some of Torturous soldiers had taken the time to graffiti it.
One read
Skjoldur rules
The second
Asgareth sucks dick
And the third was a picture of a group of children running away from a man who look suspiciously like a like a Asgathien official who Tortuous had met at the Roman wedding. He couldn’t quite remember the name De Lace or something like that.

In-between Cyma and Noa, Harran Island

Construction had already begun. The for was already beginning to take shape. Negotiations had taken 20 minutes between the Romans and the Skjoldurian ambassadors. In return for Skjoldur providing men (men that were already on the island) to a fight against the heartlands Rome had payed Skjoldur handsomely, they had also given Skjoldur a military for about the size of a small city, allowing them to create a base. Situated on the coast it allowed ships to go as they pleased and the slave business was already being set up. As the men from Yanni and the men already on their way from Skjoldur began to arrive the fort began to take shape. It had been christened NEW YANNI and was becoming bigger by the day
Last edited by Skjoldur on Tue Dec 18, 2018 6:06 pm, edited 4 times in total.

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Romae in Perpetuum
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Posts: 116
Founded: Mar 14, 2016
Iron Fist Consumerists

Postby Romae in Perpetuum » Tue Dec 18, 2018 6:30 pm

The Acropolis Hotel, City of Cyma, Harren Island

Praefectus Marcus Vispanius Agrippa was irritated at his summons to the command room. He had been expecting a relatively easy day consisting of reviewing the latest ‘assessments’ of the denizens of the hegemony and presiding over a quick victory in the west. He’d even managed to have some ‘entertainment’ discreetly sent to his rooms, the place he had been going before his personal presence had been requested.

He exited the lift in a hurry, closely followed by his personal guard, but took the time to relieve his frustrations somewhat on a nearby Harrenite slave, who was scrubbing the floor, by kicking him in the ribs. Feeling slightly better, he marched into the command centre/executive ballroom and, not bothering to return any salutes, rounded on his aide.

“Paulus. I hope you have a damned good reason for summoning me.” He said irritably “for your own sake…” he added darkly.

“Err yes sir.” The man replied anxiously. “If you would care to follow me.” Agrippa found himself being escorted through a series of ordered terminals manned by Roman, Caerlegion and even a few Harrenite officers, the latter of whom had been vigorously investigated by Intelligence and judged to be loyal.

He was about to question his aide directly, but instead realised he was being brought to one of the main comms terminals, where Senior Centurion Macro was giving his report to command.

“Praefectus, sir.” The centurion said, clearly surprised, as he looked accusingly at Paulus who was edging out of view. Agrippa sighed audibly, if his subordinates were already moving to shift the blame it something had indeed gone awry.

“Centurion.” The Praefectus responded curtly. “Status report, and make it brief I don’t have all day.”

“Yes sir, as you wish sir. We breached the outer defences with no issues, the Harrenites proved themselves useful for painting enemy targets, however those units took substantial casualties in the following engagements.”

Agrippa frowned; dead harrenites? This had better not be it. “No matter.” He replied. “There will be more provided for the next assault.”

“Thank you, sir, but that’s not all.” Macro tugged at his collar slightly. “We enveloped the city as ordered, but when the armoured divisions entered the city, they were ambushed from the tunnel network. The insurgents were equipped with anti-tank weapons and most of our units were attacked in the rear…”

Agrippa clenched his fists tightly, he had deployed the Taurus Mk III for this assault. A tank designed to punch through enemy lines with sheer firepower and momentum, not for urban assaults. He had intended for them to bombard the city from afar, not engage in urban warfare. It didn’t help that those particular units had weaker rear armour to discourage retreat.

“Casualties?” He asked his voice abnormally calm.

“Of the units assigned to take the city, about 35% destroyed or damaged beyond repair with many more suffering varying degrees of damage, sir.” The centurion replied, his eyes fixated on a point just above the Praefectus’ shoulder. “Thankfully most of our efforts were concentrated on the encirclement of the city and positioning to continue the assault. Those responsible for ordering the Taurus units into the city have been punished.”

The Preaefectus snorted contemptuously, he would personally ensure those names would be passed on to Prefect Caelius and his thugs then the real punishment would begin.

“Has news reached Gautima yet?” He asked to his aide, who had been attempting to slip away.

“He watched the results live, sir.” Paulus replied cautiously. “He was sending encouraging messages, up until the ambush. He then merely asked if he could render any assistance.”

Agrippa clenched his jaw and looked towards the Tribune. “Review the surveillance footage. If the man even raised the corners of his lips when that news came in, remove them.” With substantial effort the Preaefectus managed to loosen his jaw.

“Clearly the illustrious premier has too much time on his hands if he is able to lounge about watching my men die for this stinking pile of rocks. He is to review every treason case investigated by Intelligence from here on out and approve the punishments. Furthermore, I require him to perform a public sacrifice to Bjorn the Redeemer, earmark some Harrenite slaves for the privilege, he is to cut their throats personally and give thanks for our victory.” Having allowed himself a small tirade he turned back to the monitor.

“I had ordered the tunnels cleared.” Agrippa said, his voice unnervingly even. “What happened to Lieutenant Colonel Sharpe and his men?”

“They failed, sir.” Centurion Macro replied, eyes brightening at the chance to disavow himself from the fiasco. “Sharpe ordered his men to evacuate at the first sign of trouble, assuring me that the exits had been sealed. Meanwhile the civilian population of Emi was able to escape into the tunnels and the entire city seems to have been booby trapped. We’re sending in expert teams but it’s a slow process.”

“We cannot afford a slow process.” Agrippa snapped. “Every moment we delay gives the rebels and those green vermin more time to fortify and build their damn tunnels.” He turned to the adjacent terminal.

“You.” He barked at its operator. “Bring up the latest aerial scans of the passages. You.” He yelled at a passing officer. “Get me a direct line to the I.R.S Valentinian.” Agrippa turned back to Macro, who resumed his passive stare.

“Centurion relay a direct command to Sharpe. Inform him that next time I give him an order I expect it to be fulfilled and that I don’t give a damn how many of his men have to die to do it. Those exact words. Ah good the map.” He studied it for a while and gestured to his aide.

“Paulus notice how the tunnels seem to branch off extensively to the west. I want intensive thermal scans of that area I have a hunch its where the civilians have conglomerated. Have the Valentinian deploy the bunker busters, those things are designed to devastate goblin cities they should get a few bloody tunnels. This should force the rebels to surface.” Agrippa smiled wolfishly. “When they do, level the city.




City of Emi, Harren Island.

Less than an hour after the fateful command had been given a general transmission was broadcast on all channels in and around Emi. The Roman eagle on a rich red background once again appeared on Harrenite screens, before being replaced with the all too familiar features of Agrippa. He was sitting behind a grand mahogany desk, in an elaborate white uniform, flanked by two guards. Behind him were two flags; on his right the gold eagle of Rome and on his left the checkered blue of the Harren Hegemony.

“People of Emi.” He said coldly. “As always, I offered you mercy, you have declined. Perhaps you believe yourselves safe underground?” He smirked viciously. “My friends, all you have done is save us the bother of burying you…”

As soon as he finished the sentence, the all too familiar roar of jet engines approached Emi from the coast. Unusually for a Roman bombardment they passed the city centre and instead focused on the western sector. The fighter jets released dozens of conical objects that on burying themselves in the ground, rocketed downwards towards the tunnels before exploding. Wave after wave of aircraft passed over the west, steadily working their way towards covering the rest of the city in their burrowing bombs.

As quickly as the attack began it suddenly stopped, allowing the cratered city and the huddled masses beneath a moments respite. But just a moment. Suddenly the iron ring of tanks and mobile artillery that had surrounded the city opened fire, targeting the known tunnel entrances as well as any buildings left standing. A series of secondary explosions wracked the city as the goblin traps unwittingly aided their foes. Footage of the attack was broadcast throughout the entire Hegemony, with the simple caption. Behold the fate of the traitors.




The next morning, city of Cyma, Harren Island

Tribune Paulus carefully entered the office of his commander. Whilst he had seemed better after ordering the levelling of Emi, two Harrenite slaves had been found beaten to death on the same floor as Agrippa’s personal gymnasium and Paulus was taking no chances. Personally, he felt little sympathy for the Harrenites in general, any people weak enough to end up in this situation deserved their fate. But still the battered corpses had turned his stomach somewhat, he was only a staffer after all.

To his relief Paulus saw the Praefectus happily enjoying breakfast. The ‘company’ he had sent to his old man’s rooms seemed to have done the trick. He made a note on his pad to have them disposed of, it never hurt to be careful.

“Ah, Tribune.” Agrippa said. “Better news today I hope?” The tone was light, but Paulus could see the threat in his eyes, maybe it was time to put a report in requesting the Praefectus be allowed some leave, but that was a thought for later.

“The Asgarthians have successfully pushed to the rebel stronghold of Prokoplos and fighting has begun in and around the city.” Paulus replied in a positive tone. “The rebels have dug in to resist, we received a communique from their leadership. A Nathanial wishes to negotiate for the secession of hostilities, but Praetorian Intelligence reports that he has likely been contacted by the fawns of friendly island. I’ve dug up a copy of the Friendly encounter for you, sir.” He placed a folder on Agrippa’s desk.

“Hmmm.” Said Agrippa chewing thoughtfully whilst looking through the file. “If the infection has indeed breached quarantine we may be in trouble. Inform high command about the risk. What have the Asgarthians done about this request for parlay?”

“As you say, sir.” Paulus replied, having sent the warning as soon as he received the report. “The Asgarthians have made a response of sorts, sir… they’ve detonated a nuclear device in the city.”

Agrippa looked up, report forgotten. “I thought you said there was fighting in the city?”

“Was being the operative word, Praefectus.” Paulus said smiling slightly. “They nuked the city with their own men inside.”

Agrippa stared in silence at his aide for a few moments before bursting out into laughter. Paulus found himself joining in and the two continued for a good few minutes.

“They…They blew up their own men, wasted a nuke!” Agrippa managed to get out between fits of laughter. “For a nothing city on a nowhere island. And men call us mad!” The Praefectus managed to get himself under control after a few more chortles before saying. “Well I suppose that buggers the rebel peace conference, if the bastard is still alive.”

“I’m sure intelligence can provide the answer, sir.” Paulus replied, the laughter in the room drained at the mention of the organisation.

“I’m sure they could.” Agrippa mused half smiling still. “Find out for me, if he still lives see if Intelligence can get a message to him, say that Rome is willing to hear him out and will even provide him safe passage to me to discuss matters. Since he won’t believe us offer him my personal guarantee that we won’t harm him. If that doesn’t work” He shrugged. “Kidnap the bastard and we will nail him up outside the academy.” Agrippa took another bite of his breakfast before continuing.

“In the meantime, take the opportunity to reorganise the front for the new Skjoldur arrivals. They’re to push to Momoe, whilst the Roman-Caerlegion forces continue to Agalia as planned. Oh, and begin fortifying the ruins of Emi and Salome. The Valrisk have been far too quiet for far too long, and their pets are about to collapse…”
Last edited by Romae in Perpetuum on Tue Dec 18, 2018 6:33 pm, edited 2 times in total.
Quidquid latine dictum sit, altum videtur.

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Friendly Island
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Founded: Oct 10, 2018
Democratic Socialists

Journey Cluster

Postby Friendly Island » Tue Dec 18, 2018 8:37 pm

Journey Cluster, Harren Island
The baleful call of the Harrens and Friendlies echoed across the lands as they marched eastward across the island, bringing with them music and the remnants of life. They walked through rivers and forests, they crossed lakes and valleys, they walked tirelessly across the island. Coming upon cities and towns the Journey, as they came to call themselves, simply sang and walked through. They looked dirtier than their urban counterparts, most of them were barefoot and wore no shirts. They were on a mission to call and attract anyone who was interested in joining their "Journey for Peace." The individuals seemed rather somber, as if they pitied the others who were suffering from the wars.
Image
The new leader of the cluster finally came upon the crater where Sara Fey had fallen, she didn't have the energy left to send herself away when the bomb fell. The injuries from earlier battles, and multiple trips with Nathaniel wore her down even more. She had remained under the tree where she met the man, waiting for his return and the continued dialogues. . .The new leader fell to his knees and cried golden tears into the charred dirt where he created a small altar out of stacked stones.
The march continued into the cities of Rie and Saya, Ruri and Yui, all the way to Emi. The walkers passed Momoe and Prokopios. They even reached Odele and Yanni. They asked for nothing from those they encountered, and in return they offered everything that they had. The Journey for Peace was reaching out and trying to touch every inch of the island. . .
A friendly little nation in the Sovereign Charter
Tier 1, Level 8, Type 3.5, according to this index
Socialism · Ecology · Order



Friendly Island is a small jungle island nation, notable for its primeval nature and unconventional views. It appears all beings here share a bond which is facilitated by a massive fungal network.

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Harren Island
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Founded: Nov 02, 2018
Corrupt Dictatorship

Burning Dreams

Postby Harren Island » Thu Dec 20, 2018 3:17 am

Harrenian Heartlands -
Nathaniel had been planning to go out and talk with Sara when a new sun erupted to the north west. Tremors violently shook the ground and Nathaniel, with one foot in his hazard suit, lost his balance and fell face first into the wall in front of him. After a crunch that sent shards of pain shooting across his face, he rebounded off the wall, spun and landed painfully on his tailbone. Seconds later with a tremendous whumpf and a deafening, echoing roar, a shockwave washed across the facility, smashing windows and sucking air through the corridors with a rushing scream. Nathaniel disentangled himself from his suit with a couple frantic kicks, ignoring the blood pouring down his face and soaking into his shirt, and stood up, slamming the door open as he hurried outside.

A blazing red and orange cloud billowed upwards, slowly rising and expanding into the shape of a mushroom above Prokopios like bread rising steadily in an oven. It stretched higher and higher into the atmosphere as Nathaniel stood there, illuminated in its scorching glow. Eventually it peaked just over eleven kilometres high. Below, silhouetted by intense, raging fires, the ruined outline of the city exposed the extent of the obliteration that had been wreaked.

He couldn’t believe it. This was completely disproportionate to the level of fighting that had been happening, this kind of escalation was unthinkable. His thoughts flashed back to the conversation he had just had with Sara only hours ago, his own words repeated in his head, “We were so advanced, having reached the Atomic Age, yet so primitive because we use that power to annihilate each other, and now a species we fear, in nuclear fire.”. Maybe the friendlies were right. Maybe humanity shouldn’t be allowed to progress if this is what we do to each other on a whim. Over a million refugees had been in Prokopios, in addition to the locals, the primary army, the University, the library, the archives, all ashes in nuclear fire.

Image
Fig. Forest between Nathaniel's facility and Prokopios itself.

A thought broke his stillness, fallout. He looked at the trees, gauging the wind direction and then up at the ominous, roiling cloud above. Yes, he was definitely in range and the westerly winds would be driving it directly towards him. He knew he had about twenty minutes before the fallout would start landing. He looked around, seeing people milling about in shock, “EVERYONE, GET INSIDE NOW!”. He was about to head in himself when he remembered, Sara, he spun and sprinted west towards the edge of the forest where he’d left her. Most trees had been stripped of leaves and some had even fallen, patches of dried leaves and underbrush had caught alight and were smouldering as if in sympathy with the city to the west. He found her. She was twisted at the foot of a tree, unmoving and still. Pulling up his shirt and covering his mouth and nose with it with one hand, he rolled her over with the other to see if there was anything he could do. Her open eyes stared blankly up at him, unseeing. He paused and bowed his head. He could stay here, he’d die quickly and wouldn’t have to deal with any more problems or suffering, he wouldn’t have to make any more life or death decisions. He cursed himself for even thinking that. It was selfish and irresponsible.

Getting to his feet, he unhurriedly walked back, taking one last, long look at what had become of the city he had loved and spent decades nurturing and the gloomy, wafting spectre floating maliciously above it. He sealed the door behind him with a clank, disregarding his own dried blood on the wall as sirens wailed throughout the facility.




He made his way to the command centre, past wide-eyed and horrified people who looked to him for guidance. He told those he came across to head underground into the tunnels or find a room without windows. An engineering team covered in dirt and dust intercepted him.

“Sir, sir, uuggh, I heard you’ve been sending people to the tunnels. There’s no way through. The tunnels east were cut off earlier by Roman bunker busters and the damage destabilized them all the way out to us.”.

The first engineer took a breath and the second continued, “Whatever just hit us was the final straw, most of them collapsed and we’re trying to dig our guys out.”

The first engineer took his helmet off and scratched his head, hair slick with sweat and thick with grime, “The Western tunnels are gone too and our communication hardlines with Prokopios have been cut. We’re trying to get them back up as a priority.”

Nathaniel cut in as he dodged two troopers darting down the corridor, “Prokopios is gone. Nuked.”

“What?” “By wh---”

Nathaniel cut them off. “Never mind that now. You don’t have time for that. How many people can you fit in what’s left of the tunnels under us for an extended period?”

“Maybe twenty. After that, ventilation won’t be able to cope. Why?”

Stopping outside the door to the command room, Nathaniel dug in his pocket and pulled out a silver key with a blue tag, “Here, take this, it opens the armoury. Take the youngest and healthiest twenty in this facility and secure yourselves in the tunnels below. Stay down there as long as you can before coming back up.” As they nodded, saluted and dashed off down the corridor, Nathaniel called after them, “Good luck gentlemen.”.

Image
Fig. Nathaniel's Command Centre.

The command centre was surprisingly quiet. His subordinates had maintained order in his absence and were beginning to form a picture of events on the situation map. When he entered, he gave orders to collect water and people into rooms without windows and seal them as best they could. He was then informed that an emergency meeting of what was left of the government was in progress. He picked up the traditionally coloured handset and raised it to his ear, half a dozen voices were speaking over one another and failing to make any headway. He rubbed his eyes and then deliberately coughed loudly, “This is Lockwood. Ladon, situation report.”.

The line went quiet before a rough, female voice answered, “Director. Good to hear you’re not dead. Rome offered to meet with you to discuss terms and we received a transmission from Asgareth claiming responsibility for hitting Prokopios and threatening further nuclear strikes. In light of this, we have declared the surrender of the Prokopios region.”

“So, I’ve officially been surrendered have I?”, he asked darkly.

Ladon responded instantly in her gruff manner, “It was the necessary thing to do, Director.”.

He took a moment to think and then sighed, “You’re right. I’m in a bit of a bad mood right now. Please, continue.”.

She cleared her throat before another voice interjected, that of a young man Nathaniel instantly recognised as Rezi, one of his top scientists, “Apologies Ladon, Director, we’ve just finished simulating the effects of the detonation and your position is going to be exposed to upwards of a thousand rads per hour. You don’t have a fallout shelter there, you need to evacuate now.”

Nathaniel sat down. Holding the handset at an angle against his forehead before allowing it to settle back against his ear, “Rezi, I appreciate your concern but the tunnels have all been destroyed. Along with everyone else, I am now trapped here.” He took a look around at the building he was in, mentally evaluating the protection it could yield against the radiation, maybe two point five percent would get through all the stone, dirt and concrete? Still enough to be lethal at a thousand rads an hour. Everyone would have about sixteen hours until reaching the commonly accepted lethal dose.
“In less than a day I shall be dead. Considering that Deputy Kane is most probably dead, I promote Ladon to the position of Deputy and I leave the Heartlands in her capable hands. Furthermore, I recuse myself from any decisions regarding the Heartlands’ future because right now I’m not in a stable state of mind. I wish you all luck.”.

He said his goodbyes and ensured that a line would remain open so that the rest of the people in his facility could contact or record messages for loved ones.

Image
Fig. Extent of fallout from Prokopios.
Up to 206km downwind (1 rad per hour) affecting 4790 square kilometres
Up to 137km downwind (10 rads per hour) affecting 2100 square kilometres
Up to 68km downwind (100 rads per hour) affecting 510 square kilometres
Up to 9km downwind (1000 rads per hour) affecting 23 square kilometres


So, it was over after all and in a way it was a relief, there’d be no more stress or bother and he could finally rest. He was no longer responsible for the lives of millions and their futures were no longer resting on his shoulders. It felt liberating.

In a moment of spite, before he left the command centre, he sent a message to the Romans.

+++ Agrippa, I’d gladly accept your invitation but unfortunately, I am currently indisposed. +++
+++ However, if you deign to send a delegation I will warmly receive them in my office. +++
+++ Kind regards, Director Nathaniel Lockwood. +++
+++ What remains of you when you’re gone. +++




Upon reaching his office, Nathaniel shut and locked the door behind him before collapsing face first onto his bed, only remembering the state of his nose when it screamed in pain. He curled up in the foetal position, tears streaming down his face, creating channels in the dried blood and painfully blocking up his nose. He’d spent his life working for progress, advancement and understanding. He’d spent decades building his dream of a better Harren. He’d tried to argue the good of humanity. For what? He lashed out at the bedside lamp, smashing it across the room into pieces with a kick. Seconds later he was picking up the bedside table itself and hurling it into the mirror at the foot of his bed, sending it tumbling through the air with full drawers sliding out, disgorging their contents in an arc before hitting and shattering the mirror, dropping to the floor with a crash and a tinkle of broken glass.

For what seemed like ages, Nathaniel stormed around his room and office, smashing everything he laid his eyes on and kicking and punching walls and furniture that refused to break. With bleeding knuckles and a slight limp from a strained muscle, he picked up his chair, now with a broken leg, and propped it up against the bed before he sat on it. He sighed. Looking around and taking stock of his surroundings, he noticed with pleasure that the coffee machine was still intact. He smiled, amused that he’d avoided breaking it, probably subconsciously, and then stood up painfully and went and made himself a café latte.

Sipping his steaming drink, he decided that now was not the time to be lounging around. He picked out a clean suit after levering the broken door of his dresser open and then gathered fresh undergarments that had been scattered around the room. When he had done that, he took a quick shower, cleaning his knuckles and the dried blood from his face before getting dressed and then making himself a fresh coffee before heading back to the command centre.

Upon arrival in the command centre, he warmly greeted everyone still there, acknowledging those who were still transmitting messages to loved ones and then activated the facility intercom. “Ladies and Gentlemen, by now you will be starting to feel the effects of radiation sickness. Headaches, nausea. I’ve got a headache myself. Regrettably, things will get worse. We are not protected in this building and our level of exposure will reach lethal levels before daylight tomorrow. We are dead already, it’s a just a matter of choosing how we depart. For those who so desire, I will have drinks prepared in the command centre, drinks that will end things…. cordially. Whatever you choose, know that it was a pleasure leading you all and I apologise for making choices that led to you being trapped in this awful situation. At least we shall die as part of a free Harren. What remains of you when you’re gone.”
Last edited by Harren Island on Thu Dec 20, 2018 3:24 am, edited 4 times in total.

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Asgareth
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Founded: Nov 27, 2015
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Fallout

Postby Asgareth » Thu Dec 20, 2018 5:05 am

Yanni, Harren Island
The city had been set ablaze. The damage was significant, but salvageable. It was fortunate, really, that such a short deadline had been imposed. The technological inferiority of the Skjoldurians had limited their ability to completely destroy the city in the short time frame. Still, much work would have to be done to rebuild. Early estimates believed that an ale-excessed force could complete the city within three years. Priority would be given to new barracks, a new hangar and airstrip, and a new city hall. A makeshift airstrip was created within hours. The few citizens who had managed to flee from the barbaric Skjoldurian onslaught, were thankful for the safety they now experienced at the hands of the Asgarthians. Temporary accommodation was erected for them, and the Asgarthian troops in the city. The Skjoldurian graffiti was swiftly demolished. For some bizarre reason, they had chosen to draw an Asgarthian general, who they had had very little interaction with, as a Santa Claus figure, to the approving cheers of children. The other phrases, mere childish insults, caused much laughter across the city. The cowardly actions of the Skjoldurians had proven to the world what Asgareth had always known. And though Yanni had suffered, it was better off for it.

The city would be rebuilt, in Asgareth’s image. Stronger, bigger, better than before. The Yellow, Red and Orange of Asgareth flew proudly in the sun, marking a brand new dawn for the city.



Aykia, Isle of Gespe
The Commander in Chief, Yaznon Paltri, and the heir to the Imperialiship, Axic, were once more in a private meeting, discussing the events of the day.
“The loss of our men, was an unfortunate necessity. The city of Prokopios has surrendered to our finest empire. This, coupled with the cowardly Skjoldurian retreat from Yanni means we will require more men on the island.”
“The 19th are out for revenge. Revenge against the goblins. Send them. Send them all.” Axic stated eagerly
“Now, Axic. It would be foolish to send so many troops at once. But yes, it ought to be the 19th. Send an additional 100,000. How many remain in Odele?”
“10,000 of the initial 50. 80% ventured to Prokopios.”
“Understood. Enough to defend. Enough to attack.”



A section of the 19th Ground Force were swiftly dispatched, on route to Yanni and Odele, via the 15th Air Force. With them, 30,000 of the aforementioned 22nd were also moved, so as to reinforce the road to Prokopios. The journey would be short, and upon their arrival, the cities of Yanni and Odele would be well protected. General Sakia, the rumoured cannibal, patiently waited on board one of these planes. Soon, he would taste blood.

Figuratively, of course.



Asgar House, Asgar, Asgareth
The Imperiali had once more called a war council, comprised of General de'Lance and Rufus T. Perkins, the defence minister. The three men were in jovial spirits, following the news of the successful detonation. De'Lance and the Imperiali, who had hated each other for three decades, happily poured drinks throughout the meeting, as they celebrated certain victory. But the jovial mood was swiftly damaged when talk turned to Yanni.
“We were incredibly fair! So compromising! More compromising than ever!” The Imperiali slurred, as Perkins informed him of the recent developments in the city of Yanni.
“I know sir, but the Skjoldurians kept moving the goalposts. They wanted to have their cake and eat it. Their view would be that we would own the city under occupation, but that they would run it and were attempting to prevent us from sending a higher ranking official.” Perkins responded. "It seems they believed we would be happy to merely be a symbol."
“The Skjoldurians really thought they would be allowed to outrank our own? It is almost laughable, if it wasn’t so pitiful. But the damage inflicted… I find it surprising, really. The Skjoldurians have still not discovered fire. They could not have done this alone.”
“The Romans?”
“Who else? Only the bald fraud and his band on incompetents could carry out this type of attack. And they would, for it posed no direct threat to Asgareth. What about the city itself. Salvageable?”
“Likely so. We believe we can have it up and running in 5 years. 3, if we open the pub first.”
“Grand! But to business.” The Imperiali frowned. “The Skjoldurians have proven themselves to be untrustworthy, backstabbing traitors. They are unfit to continue to serve as part of the allied forces.”

“Agreed, sir. They are uncivilised. Their existence is an affront to all that is good in the world.”
“So we are agreed? They are now enemies of Asgareth? Sub-creatures, below those of the goblins and friendlies?” de’Lance inquired.
“Indeed. But tell me, what have the goblins said?” The Imperiali asked.
“They’ve said nothing, though I expect they may be a tiny bit upset that a few of their own died in the city. Though given they opted to openly attack our men, I feel no sympathy.”
“Send a bunch of roses. Tell them we meant nothing by it.”
“Won’t they just eat them?” Perkins asked.
“Probably, but who cares as long as I get a good photo opportunity?” The Imperiali smirked. “One last thing. I want a statue of a decapitated Bjorn and Siegfried to be placed in the centre of Yanni. Have the triumphant Asgarthian soldier stand over them.”
“I shall have the resources sent immediately, sir.” Perkins replied.



The Sovereign Bar, Asgar
In the centre of Asgar, there was a pub. There was nothing special about the pub. Ill-maintained and dinghy, it lacked central heating and triple glazing. It was a small, corner house; hardly the glitz and glamour one would expect to find in the centre of an ancient city. Outside, the low rumble of thunder could be heard. The rain poured thick and fast, creating flash flooding in many parts of the city. Vehicles were bogged down in the water, their drivers having abandoned ship almost instantly. The temperature continued to fall, below freezing.

But the bar was a haven. The fire roared, spreading its warmth throughout the pub. The barkeep, known locally as Tim, was somehow busier than usual; clearly making bank as he poured more and more ale. The tables and stools were packed out, with many patrons being forced to stand in small huddles. Coats were hung, or in some cases chucked, in the corner.

In the corner of the room, three men sat huddled around their ales. They were speaking in hushed tones, careful not to be heard.
“General, you cannot be serious?”
“Good men died, because the Imperiali would not stand and fight. He took the easy way out, and the 19th paid the price.” The second man replied. “It is clear. The Imperiali is sick. Too sick to continue.”
“I agree.” The third voice stated. “He is deranged. It is time for new leadership. A new generation.”
The general turned to look. “Indeed. But the question is who? There are many claimants.”
“It should be the blood, not the ghost.” The third man replied.
“Is that so? Despite the proof?” The general asked
“The proof is insubstantial. Besides, we need stability. We are at war on many a front, after all.”

The general sighed. “Very well. It shall be done.” He finished his ale, before rising. “Change is coming gentlemen. I suggest you prepare.”
Proud (No, really!) Member of the Sovereign Charter.
Drekhi: Asgareth is not a place, it is a vintage

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Skjoldur
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Iron Fist Consumerists

Postby Skjoldur » Thu Dec 20, 2018 5:57 am

Outskirts of the city of Mome

Commander Avrid was bored. He had been standing at the observation point for the last hour watching the scrambled defences. He could see the poor people of Mome been forced to drag weapons and other materials towards the front. Shame on the Gobos for making these poor people fight, as if they hadn’t already had enough to deal with. Avrid sighed. He had brought 25,000 men for this mission, but he probably could have done it with a 1000. Avrid had decided not to destroy the town, instead he had ordered a tactical advance and specified artillery attacks on the areas mostly populated by Gobos. After about half an hour the Berserkers reached the outer-defences of Mome. The Gobos put up a surprising defence considering how bad they were close, but they were no match for the Berserkers. They began to retreat but were caught by the Skjouldurians who had flanked the city. They stood no chance and where separated and out of formation. Most were killed or surrendered. A few, around a quarter manged to escape out of the city. Avrid swore as he watched the surviving Goblins form up and retreat from the city. He had really wanted to kill the rest of them. I wouldn’t be long before the Valaski ordered the nations to stop bullying their pet and Avrid wanted to enjoy himself whilst he could.
A few hours later the Skjoldurians had manged to round up most of the survivors of the city. Luckily most of the city had survived untouched and civilian casualties had been at a minimum, Avrid sent out orders to his men to pack up and leave, leaving only a skeleton crew to manage the city. He would then split his forces. He would lead the main force forward to take the next city whilst a few thousand would fall back to the main fort. Avird had offered the people of Mome a choice. They could live in Mome and be ruled by the Romans or they could head to New Yanni that had been equipped to manage the refugees. Skjoldur would then establish the New Harren Army, to help protect the fort. They would be trained and equipped to be a modern-day soldier.
As the men began to leave Avrid turned around to see most of the city had chosen to go as well. The savagery of the Romans had clearly travelled. Avrid smiled to himself, he had taken a city, killed some goblins and saved thousands of people all in one day.


The City of Prokopios
Angar looked in horror at the destruction. What sought of monster would do something like this. Skjoldur had been accepting refugees from the city and trying their best to save them, however for some of them it was too late. Children had die in doctor’s arms, luckily Skjoldur had been accepting this and brought the necessary gear, although not much of it. It was obvious that Asgarthians would drop a nuke. Their small brains couldn’t comprehend proper warfare and they would have ordered a nuke the moment they felt inferior, that’s the problem with having a small penis. As the rescuers headed deeper into the city Angar began to wonder why Asgar saw them as the barbaric ones, they would never drop a nuke on innocent people just because their pride was hurt. Asgar really was pathetic. As they got deeper into the city the rescue teams job changed. Instead of rescuing them all they could do was ease their suffering, it really was barbaric.

User avatar
Friendly Island
Bureaucrat
 
Posts: 43
Founded: Oct 10, 2018
Democratic Socialists

Postby Friendly Island » Thu Dec 20, 2018 7:46 am

Journey Cluster, Harren Island

Those who had fallen, and were falling, were not mourned by the Friendlies. They didn’t seem to care enough to even stop and check for pluses, they simply walked past the dead and dying. Fallout was irradiating many of the individuals in Journey Cluster, most of them Harren natives. There hadn’t been enough time to co-evolve radiation pumps which were instrumental in the Friendlies maintaining such high levels of health despite all of the environmental hazards they were facing. Even then Friendlies, with an advanced biology, were not fully immune to the effects of the radiation and after long enough they too fell in the most radioactive zones. None of these loses were mourned, they were instead acknowledged as those who were instrumental as laying down key parts of the network which was being built.
The was some level of help offered though, to those who were mildly affected by blast or radiation, they were offered the chance to join Journey Cluster and be restored to their healthy state. The spores were able to affect these individuals, as long as the radiation damage hadn’t been too catastrophic. Journey Cluster asked for nothing, aside for the help of those they aided, and in return offered everything they could give.


The songs and dances of the Harrens and Friendlies continued to fill the land, as they marched across the island still. The paths had wound up crossing, and occasionally troops would bump into one another though there was little circumstance in this and they continued onward. It didn’t seem as if they were interested in settling anywhere, they just walked and sang and did what was needed to convert people to the Friendly cause. The Journey for Peace continued to spread its influence, and more importantly spores across the whole island, making a criss-crossing network that connected much of the island as one unit.
Ultimately troops of mixed Friendlies and Harrens arrived at the port cities, after having established a network throughout the rural and suburban areas. In the ports they ignored most of the large buildings not even bothering to dance their way inside, instead headed towards the ships which were docked, they headed to the makeshift airfields. Their songs carried through the sour winds, offering a sweet respite in all of the chaos, and the places of most conflict needed these songs most.
A friendly little nation in the Sovereign Charter
Tier 1, Level 8, Type 3.5, according to this index
Socialism · Ecology · Order



Friendly Island is a small jungle island nation, notable for its primeval nature and unconventional views. It appears all beings here share a bond which is facilitated by a massive fungal network.

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Auruum
Attaché
 
Posts: 83
Founded: Aug 28, 2017
Compulsory Consumerist State

Postby Auruum » Thu Dec 20, 2018 8:42 am

Undermine City, Pillar of Kings, Trade-King’s Office.

Swyndol stared out into the eternal night of the underground city, he had received the reports from Harren just an hour ago, The Heartlands were on the verge of collapse and had surrendered, Nathaniel was very likely dead or dying, as most of everyone there. Gazzik managed to survive but had mentioned that it wasn’t going to be for much longer.

He also mentioned he was very pissed off and ready to keep going.

Finally Swyndol spoke up to the aid that stood near the door. “I want four Imps. Target the fleets of Asgareth, Rome, Caerlegion, And...Skjoldur, just in case they need to be reminded. Nothing fancy, I just want to bloody some noses and send a message.” He said, turning around to fix the assistant with a burning stare. “If they do not want to talk peacefully or issue an apology, surrender, or offer to kiss my bare green ass, then I don’t want to hear a single word from Asgareth or their Cronies. Aurum is cutting them off completely. No Trade, No Aid, Nothing. If their ships come any where NEAR us, I want it sunk and it’s crews to rot at the bottom of the ocean. They clearly have no regard for Aurum’s citizens or goals. We shall act accordingly. Everyone else, maintain our ties, though do let Myraxia know that I am VERY unhappy with their pet’s actions and the actions of their pet’s allies.” Swyndol all but shouted before slumping down in his seat with a heavy and weary sigh. “And give every Harrenite refugee that floats this far south Asylum...let them know we still want to help. Anyone who is healthy and able, we need to evacuate, make sure to offer the Harrenites a place on the transports.” He’d say, dismissing the assistant with a wave.

He had to start turning the odds in his favor. Aurum could not be beaten back or ignored any longer.

Hours later...

Four shooting stars arced across the skies towards Harren Island. The targets were specially picked detachments from the main fleets, close enough to be witnessed by many, but far enough away to limit the destruction. In rapid succession, the missiles detonated just over their targets around Harren Island.

A mostly silent explosion at first sent a minor shockwave outwards, before a micro singularity was formed and began pulling things towards it. Entire destroyers were lifted out of the water and slammed into one another as the waters around them began to broil and evaporate. The violent gravitational storms lasted for mere moments but the effects were near instant and very obvious when the singularities dissipated, dropping the superheated mass of ships and material onto dried ocean floor before the water moved back in to reclaim it, leaving a small monument of destruction where the detachments once were.

No messages were given, No Broadcasts, nothing. There wasn’t a real need. Those bombs came from Aurum, their trajectory could easily be traced back to the Goblins and they made no attempts to hide launching them.

Nathaniel’s Command Center.

The door would be kicked open after Nathaniel had finished his speech, a pale and ragged looking Gazzik standing and wheezing in the door way. “Oh no...We ain’t surrendering...Not by a long fucking shot.” The Goblin doubled over to cough up some black blood. “I’m pissed, an’ ready for round two. We’re dyin’ on our feet, not on our knees, with both birdies in the air!” Gazzik shuffled over to the center of the room. “If we are Losin’, we’re doin’ it fuckin’ right!”

“You wanna really piss off these inhuman mother fuckers...” another hacking cough. “...You persist, like fucking roaches. So what they nuked us, So what we’re all dead! They’re still up there! They’re still high an’ mighty thinkin’ they won, that they crushed you all! GET MAD! FUCK THEM!” Gazzik fell into another coughing fit that brought him to his knees. “What Remains when you’re gone...” he muttered weakly, slowly standing back up and pulling out a pistol from his ruined suit. “If you got the balls to burn out instead of fade away, I’ll be topside...”

And with that Gazziks shuffled out of the center, expiring just as he got past the threshold. An angry glare of defiance on his face.

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Friendly Island
Bureaucrat
 
Posts: 43
Founded: Oct 10, 2018
Democratic Socialists

Postby Friendly Island » Thu Dec 20, 2018 12:01 pm

Somewhere on Harren Island

The screens and speakers near Landon begin to crackle and his as a static washes over them. The sounds of hundreds and thousands of voices can be made out, and that is what makes the static. A face appears on the screens and seems to look directly towards Landon.
"Ladon, successor to Nathaniel, we are Journey. We wish to re-establish our talks and find peace for our home."


The seventy year old woman looked up from her book and pushed her glasses up her face.
"Peace? Peace is an impossibility now after what they've done. Surely you must realise that deary. No, whilst we may bow and scrape with one hand, we shall stab the aggressors in the kidney with the other."
"Even if our government collapses, our cities yield, enemy troops garrison our lands.... we shall make their lives a living hell. They will rue each and every day and even if they take their anger out on our people, the death and suffering will continue. We will take the fight to their shores, harm their people, harm their land. Exhaustion and dread will sink into their very being. Then and only then, will peace be achieved. On our terms. Not theirs."


The face stares as she speaks, nods at that.
"We understand. We shall work together and defeat the monsters. We are spreading across the land, and fortifying our network. We are establishing networks in other lands as well. We shall create a singular network across this world, through which we may travel and converse. We wish to allow you use of us and our networks. We wish for you to remain with us, as our sister."


The woman wiped her bleary eyes and stood up, shutting her book with a snap and looking down at the nearest monitor,
“I am not Lockwood.”. She took her glasses off and folded them before placing them on the table,
“You are dangerous. Dangerous to all sentient life.”


The negative space of a face looks towards the woman for a significant amount of time.
"We are the cure for the evils of your world. We are the hero that everyone needs. We will triumph and remove all the wickedness that your civilized species have brought to this poor world. We still think of you as our sister, though you clearly hold us in lower regard. Take good care of yourself Ladon, and those in your care."

There's another crackle across the electronics before all return to their previous state.


Ladon put down her book and pushed the broadcast button with a thin, bony finger,
“You think very highly of yourselves despite what other sentient life says about you. There’s a reason why courts judge individuals with a jury of peers but you judge yourselves and consider that opinion to be true.”

With a pause she picked up a glass of water and slurped at it noisily before hitting the button again,
“I have met people like you and they are the absolute worst. You’ll ignore what I just said or convince yourself that I am the negative and corrupt individual. So I’ll move on and say only this. I have no capability to harm you. So hurt Asgareth. Hurt Rome. Then maybe in the future we shall talk again.”




The Journey Cluster talks amongst itself for some time after this. It was the same words used when they first arrived here, when Harren was still unfamiliar. The poor old woman was clearly mistaken, and far more stubborn than most. She was offered the chance to ascend above her human limitations, but was set in her old ways, on a dying island.
A friendly little nation in the Sovereign Charter
Tier 1, Level 8, Type 3.5, according to this index
Socialism · Ecology · Order



Friendly Island is a small jungle island nation, notable for its primeval nature and unconventional views. It appears all beings here share a bond which is facilitated by a massive fungal network.

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Myraxia
Envoy
 
Posts: 278
Founded: Mar 26, 2014
Corporate Police State

Postby Myraxia » Thu Dec 20, 2018 4:05 pm

Port Authority Building, City of Galatea

The progress they'd made in just a few days was obvious, even from here. Major thoroughfares cleared of rubble, temporary shelters slowly being replaced with at least semi-permanent structures, and repairs being made to those buildings deemed salvageable. Galatea had begun to return towards something approximating what it had been before the bombs fell. She'd seen the reports - Rie and Saya were making remarkable progress as well. She'd heard the historical lighthouse at Saya was being brought back into something approaching a functional state. if the price to pay for salvaging whatever she could of Harren was working with these Myraxians... well, it could certainly be worse.
It could be the Romans, or the Asgarthi. What scattered reports made it to her desk from the north were alarming to say the least. The Myraxians, at least, weren't assaulting her cities in the name of whatever crackpot regime had replaced Balthazar. She wasn't a fool - her land was, essentially, under occupation, albeit a seemingly benevolent one. For now.
A knock at her door. "Mayor Otome? They're ready for you downstairs."
"Ah, thank you..." she paused. "Alexander. I'll be right down."
Her aide nodded, and withdrew. A good lad, that. Lucky to have avoided the bombs. She knew his parents hadn't been so lucky, but he put a brave face on it. Admirable, really. Tightening her coat, she stood, and headed for the door.

--

The room they'd set up for her press conference was clearly not designed for purpose - it seemed to have been a meeting room of some kind - but it would suffice. She took her seat at the head of the table, cameras set up at the other end. A now-familiar figure in the unfamiliar Myraxian dress uniform greeted her - Colonel Vyr, the acting commander of the Myraxian forces here on Harren Island, who she'd been working closely with to coordinate the repair and rescue efforts to her city. The man seemed well-meaning enough, certainly more personable than his colleague Colonel Razek, who she'd only met a few times. Razek himself glowered in the corner, flanked by his own aides. "Maria," Vyr greeted her. "I'm glad you've decided to accept our offer. I really think it's the best hope for the people of your island."
"As it happens, Colonel, I agree. I wouldn't be here if I didn't. And I can't deny the work your men have put in to rebuild our cities." The man demurred with a nod.
"The beginning of a partnership most beneficial, I hope. Now, are you ready to begin? "
"I believe so. "

--

[Broadcast]
"My fellow Harrenites,
We have suffered. Under the pirate rulers of yore, we suffered. Under Balthazar, we suffered. Many of us continue to suffer, under the boot of the Roman puppet Gautima, or at the hands of Asgarthian pilots who were ostensibly here to deliver humanitarian aid. Today, I say, we shall suffer no longer! Today, I announce to you an alternative. A democratic alternative, but not taken to the extremes of the Port Cities. The Confederacy was rife with indecision and ineffectiveness - our own desire to be free is what led us to be so resoundingly defeated. I give to you, a republic. The Republic of Harren. Presently our new republic controls three cities - Saya, Rie, and Galatea, our capital, along with all the towns and settlements between. I will be personally assuming the duties of President until such a time as the immediate crisis is over and democratic elections can safely be held and a full constitution can be written. And now, I give to you my first two acts as Acting-President of the Republic of Harren. Firstly, it is declared that any citizens of Harren who wish to, and are able to flee their homes in the north and Heartlands, will be welcomed here with open arms, and settlement will be found for them. Secondly, in order to ensure the security of our nation in the face of the conflict that engulfs this island," here she pauses to sign a document. "I have just signed a treaty - the first international treaty signed by the Republic - according this Republic Protectorate status under the Union of Myraxia. Myraxian troops - who have already helped to rebuild our cities - will remain here to defend us until such a time as we can do so ourselves.

Remember, Harren endures! For after all, what remains of us when we are gone? Nothing but our legacy. "




Image

Flag of the Republic of Harren


Myraxian troops in Harren were kept busy the next few days, with rebuilding efforts continuing in all three major cities, and refugees beginning to trickle in from further afield. The fighting appeared to be broadly confined to the northern half of the island, leaving the south in relative peace. When a thunderous crash heralded the approach of a second sun in the north, then, it caught almost everyone in the Republic off guard. An emergency session of government was called - the first ever - as Acting-President Maria Otome met with her advisors and Myraxian representatives to determine if there was any risk from secondary effects of the warhead, or indeed of a repeat strike. Whilst it was determined that the bulk of the fallout would drift east by north east, Myraxian Colonel Vyr refused to rule out the possibility of a repeat strike. Myraxian reinforcement schedules were according adjusted, and priority given to the transfer of several wings of interceptor aircraft, along with an anti-ballistic missile unit from the Strategic Weapons division, from the Bandoan Military District. The Republic, Acting-President Otome vowed, would not be caught off guard.




Intelligence Briefing, Myraxian Command Post, Galatea Port District

"Alright, what do we have today? Captain Areyn?" Colonel Vyr, seated at the head of the table, flags of both the Myraxian Union and the Republic of Harren hanging from the wall behind him, asked the man to his left. Captain Areyn, a wiry man with the black hair and green eyes so common to Myraxians, wore the combat uniform of a Myraxian marine, with badges that indicated his allegiance to the reconnaissance branch. His team had been on Harren since the very beginning, sent to observe the civil war.
"Well, Colonel, it's much the same as yesterday, and the day before that. Refugees are still coming in, more every day, It's impossible to screen them all, although we give it a good try. I'd say we're aware of maybe... 90%? Of the refugees who cross the border. We're still working with what remains of the Confederate Militia to secure that border, but the jungle is difficult to work with. Also..." he trailed off.
"Also...?" prompted the Colonel.
"Well, sir, some of the locals we're working alongside have reported hearing some kind of... singing, deep in the trees. When we push them, they can't pinpoint a source, although they definitely seem distracted by it. I initially disregarded it as some kind of local psychosis, but now my men have started to hear it, too. It hovers just at the edge of your hearing, sir, but it's definitely there. My new working theory is that it's possibly some kind of deliberate psychic effect, possibly an attempt to communicate, or more likely a side effect of something more malicious. We have unconfirmed reports of entire towns going missing in the Tsuru region, although we haven't been able to confirm this."
Vyr frowned. "There's no record of anything on Harren capable of naturally generating such an effect?"
"No sir. Although we have had several contacts with some kind of... faun? Satyr? Humanoid goat race. There's nothing like it in the records we have of local fauna."
"Worrying. The last thing we need here is rogue magic, or unknown species, messing things up. Come to think of it, wasn't there a report about another island with something like this? I'll speak to CFI about it later. Areyn, I want you to take your team, and some local guides, into the deepwoods. Find the source of this... singing. If it is something we need to be concerned about, take whatever action you deem necessary."
Areyn nodded. "Sir."
"Now, onto other matters... make sure we're in contact with the goblins in the interior. Make sure they know the border is open to them if they need it. Poor bastards, barely even an Iryllian deserves getting nuked. Although... what's this report that the Asgarthians nuked their own men?
"Ah, that's correct, sir. Combined Forces Intelligence confirmed it earlier today - Asgarthian units were still fighting inside the city at the moment of detonation. "
The Colonel sighed. "You know, every day, these Asgarthians somehow manage to astound me with new heights of stupidity."
Citizen of Sovereign Charter.

You can find my personal political opinions on this handy graph: http://www.politicalcompass.org/printablegraph?ec=-7.62&soc=0.51

Current Alert Level: Status 1

Status 5: Standing Defense Forces
Status 4: Partial Mobilization
Status 3: Active Conflict, foreign soil
Status 2: Possible homeland threat
Status 1: Confirmed homeland threat, large scale mobilization.
Status 0: Full mobilization



Myraxia is a hyper-industrialized Military Junta on the Eastern Coast of Rusina, located in the Sovereign Charter.

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Iryllia
Chargé d'Affaires
 
Posts: 351
Founded: Mar 26, 2014
Corporate Police State

Postby Iryllia » Fri Dec 21, 2018 5:19 am

The Diplomat

The past few days had been extremely stressful. The death of Balthazar was the least of it really, that was fine. Shit like that happens to people like him all the time. No, he managed to get her involved in it. Now the Romans were out for her head (what else was new) and she'd run out of her last dubious ally. Now she really was alone, should have taken that money and run huh? Well you didn't. She'd ditched her uniform, grabbed what things she could carry and was now bumming it around the city trying to avoid the glaces of the numerous Roman soldiers. Yup, just a normal citizen please don't speak or look at me or enslave me. Just going out on my daily business of fuck all. Kathrin Naumann? Never heard of her.

She sat at a coffee shop in Cyma, one that had escaped the ravages of the conflict. The coffee here was alright, nothing like the stuff back in Forqona but alright. Passable even. The days paper rustled in her hands and she felt almost relaxed for the first time in a long time. Hell if it was raining it'd be just like home. She tried her best to keep up with the news, the clusterfuck of happenings and going ons that changed on an hourly basis. Apparently the Aurumites had issued a statement that diplomatically amounted too "Come at me bro." The Asgari were crying about... Oh yes, the nuke. And here they were crying about dropping it? The quality of writing seemed like the author was drunk at the start, sobered up half way through, then got pissed again by the end of the article. Acadien Dukes... The on going war in Iryllia from a very obviously bias Valyrien source it seems. Myraxian puppet state to the south... Various zones of control... A tabloid column raving about deer people? Huh.

Again her mind wandered to how she was going to escape this whole mess, and what she'd do if she did? It was either start a new life in Aurum, or somehow get back home. Both options required a lot of waiting until things quietened down a little bit. Hopping on the first goblin freighter she could bribe and getting out of dodge. For now however, she had to wait but for how much longer?

The Admiral.

Admiral Alexander Naumann commanded the Iryllian Tenth fleet. A tall regal looking man with grey streaked, faded orange hair. Pale green eyes and a pale freckled face. A dashing fellow in a perfectly cut uniform, almost worthy of an oil painting when the setting sun shone through the bridge of his flagship, the Both Here and There. He lead a fleet of about sixty combat vessels, and a few support ships. Around about a brigades worth of marines for when he needed boots on the ground. He'd successfully navigated the east and northern Rusinan seas, dodging Myraxian patrols and sinking any merchantmen waving their flag. Relatively unscathed even, despite being chased by the Myraxian home fleet for a while. However, his ships were starting to get a little low on basic supplies, particularly food and fuel for his non-nuclear boats. Few maintenance patch ups. He hadn't planned on stopping by Harren Island, but a forced detour further north because of an Asgari-Roman blockade of, according to his charts, a completely uninhabited island. Strange, certainly. Further Asgari Roman expansion in the area too had forced his ships north, the longer route. So stopping for supplies before running the Iron Harbour gauntlet would be preferable.

Hell, his younger cousin worked at the embassy here last he knew, should help smooth things over when an Iryllian fleet just shows up off the coast. He issued the order to contact the embassy first, best let them smooth things over first. Last he knew the current dictator was a bit on the unhinged side. Best give em warning through diplomatic channels. His foot tapped as he waited, frowning when he saw the operator frown. "There's no response sir, no signal or anything." The man said, fiddling a few dials and trying again. "No interference, but on these channels we usually get an automated response back, so that must mean either their station is disabled, or destroyed." The Admiral made an indecisive noise in the back of his throat. "Get me Commodore Patchriyev, go near the north coast, tell me what kind of traffic is coming out of the ports, Fleet onto condition two. Reorganise into pattern sigma and keep us five hundred nautical miles of the coast. CAP up. I want someone to tell me what's going on with this island."
Feel free to ask me anything and everything
Notorious Procrastinator


Sovereign Charter
ALERT LEVEL: PROCRASTINATION

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Harren Island
Secretary
 
Posts: 36
Founded: Nov 02, 2018
Corrupt Dictatorship

Postby Harren Island » Fri Dec 21, 2018 9:34 am

Nathaniel -
Nathaniel admired the Goblin, a futile effort for sure but one that still held meaning. He sat down next to Gazzik in the corridor and smiled forlornly, then he reached out a hand to see if he was still breathing, nope. Nathaniel sighed, “Message received, friend.”, then pushed himself to his feet with visible effort, using the wall to prop himself up. He knew what he needed to do before he died.

Finding his way back to his suit, he recovered his camera footage and the memory drive containing all the sensor data and then gently carried them back to the onsite lab. As the system copied the data, he vomited, feeling his head throbbing in protest as the room spun. When that was done, he reformatted the data and transmitted it to the Heartlands.

Whatever happened now, he had managed to secure potentially revolutionary data and that was a legacy he could live with.



Republic of Harren -
Acting-President Otome walked up the metal gangplank and onto the curved deck of the Versus class submarine, escorted by Colonel Vyr. She almost purred in delight, “and these are mine?”.

“Three Versus class submarines and two Kryxous class frigates.” He straightened his dress uniform with a sharp tug, “Understand that these are an investment, not a gift. Payment will be required in the future.”.

She’d already turned away, walking up to the conning tower, as he followed, and placing her hand against its hull, feeling its cool surface, “It’s such a shame, these would have looked even prettier as a gift.”, taking her hand off the exterior, she turned to him and gently brushed an imaginary speck of dust from his shoulder, she winked, “Sure you don’t want to reconsider?”.

Image
Fig. One of the three Versus class submarines in the Bay of Airi.


Harrenian Heartlands -
Ladon cracked her knuckles before picking up the blue and gold pen on her desk and scribbling, in two sharp movements, her scratchy signature upon the document. She then took off her glasses, holding them aloft in her right hand with her pinkie raised as she slid the paper forward across the table to the only other surviving member of the Heartlands government. “It is done.”.

Rezi, a tired looking man wearing a ragged suit and an old silver watch, looked down at it and then back up at her before pushing it away. “No,” he shook his head and snorted with disbelief, “this will only kill hundreds if not thousands more of our people… for what? Nothing! The war is lost.”.

“The decision has been made and that’s final.” Ladon smiled grimly and reclined backwards, letting her right elbow rest on the arm of her chair, still holding her gold-rimmed spectacles off to the side. She picked up a small bell on the desk in front of her and rang it loudly. A soldier, dressed in Harrenian Blue and wielding a submachine gun on a leather strap, entered the room and looked to her for instructions, she gestured at the document with her glasses as she put down the bell, “Send physical copies of that order to each division commander, I don’t care how, use runners or god damned carrier pigeons if you have to. Nothing gets transmitted.”. He nodded, picked up the document and then saluted before leaving. He didn’t help but notice the name, ‘Order Otoroeru’. “Now we go our separate ways. Good luck with the rest of your life Rezi.” She put on her glasses and sluggishly stood up.

Rezi stood up as well, looking out after the soldier and then back at her as she wrapped her thin, grey hair up in a bun, “Where are you headed? Taking Aurum’s offer?”.

She laughed harshly before stooping to pick up a black briefcase and walking out, pausing long enough to look back and respond, “Darling, it’s for the best that we don’t know each other’s plans.”. Then she was gone. He thought he’d caught a glimmer of sadness in her eyes and for some reason that affected him rather deeply; she’d lived through some of the harshest times on Harren Island and still hadn’t been able to find peace. We’d been close with the Heartlands. We’d been close.

Rezi exhaled, combed his fingers through his hair and then walked out as well. He had his chauffeur waiting to take him west towards the airfield. Towards, he hoped, a new life in Aurum.

Image
Fig. Rezi's Heartlands Government Car.

To the south of the facility, at the edge of the treeline, Ladon was preparing for her own journey. She dumped all of her paraphernalia onto the ground, including her jacket and identity documents. She took off her glasses and threw them on top of the pile, crushing them under her shoe. Opening the briefcase, she took out a container of gasoline, a lighter and a bottle of water. The bottle of water she kept but the gasoline went all over the pile and then with a metallic click, the lighter followed. When it had all burnt to ashes, she undid her hair and stooped, clawing up hot clumps of grime and smothering her clothes, hair and skin. She hissed when it burned her but she continued.

When she was done, she painfully picked up her water bottle and headed south, to join columns of refugees fleeing towards the Republic of Harren. A hundred-mile trip. Two days she thought, then corrected herself, no, three days, you’re getting old, Ladon.



It seemed like the war was over; people surrendered en masse ahead of the Roman, Caerlegion and Skjoldurian advance on Momoe. Most genuinely meant it, finally believing themselves safe and glad that they had survived. Some didn’t.

In one case, eight disarmed, walking wounded Harrenians were captured by a Roman squad. They were escorted to a field hospital to be treated before they could be taken to slave processing. That was when one of them detonated. Doctors, nurses, civilians, soldiers and the wounded Harrenians all caught in the blast. In another, as Caerlegion riflemen were in the process of disarming surrendering soldiers, one of them attacked with grenades, killing troops from both sides including himself. In a third, a bunch of civilians were celebrating the end of hostilities with Skjoldurians in a pub, then a bomb exploded, blowing out the building front and killing everyone inside. In a fourth, an Asgarthian trooper opened a door in an abandoned home and inadvertently pulled a pin from a grenade that had been set up behind it, only he died. In a fifth, as a Caerlegion APC rumbled down a street, ordering civilians to return to their homes, it was hit from above by an RPG from an apartment block.

Events like these happened all across the front, indiscriminately, and all suffered for it, most of all the civilians who had become collateral damage for both sides. Progress crawled to a halt. Any surrendering group could harbour explosives. Each civilian could in fact be a bomb. Approaching to disarm or check for devices was fraught with risk. Buildings were even more dangerous because any could be host to more hidden attackers or traps. Attacks could come from any direction. At night partisans would engage in games of cat and mouse, sniping from range or killing a couple sentries before fleeing organised retaliation. Each of these issues on its own would be a problem but with everything in combination, it became a nightmare for the troops on the ground.



The ship rolled lazily, wind lashing along the superstructure and driving rain into the faces of two figures stumbling and pulling themselves along the railing, trying to shield their eyes with upraised arms. Their uniforms were sodden and sticking to their bodies, darkened by the water but still recognizably blue.

The rain had long since washed away any trace of the earlier battle, brass and blood had been blown overboard. The Heartlander boarders had been astounded by the crew’s tenacity; despite being caught by surprise at night in the storm, outnumbered and facing multiple ranger squads they had put up a hard fight, claiming eight dead and a further ten wounded whilst losing half a dozen of their own before yielding.

The pair fell through a hatch with a slap of wet cloth against the walls as they struggled to maintain their balance with the ship pitching in the heavy waves. In front of them were the rest of the Teomonn’s crew under guard in the shipboard lounge. The first coughed and spat up some water before wiping his wet hair away from his eyes, “Alright you lot. Listen up.”, he waited to ensure everyone was listening before continuing as the floor swayed under him, “We’re passing east up the coast of Point d’vur. Immediately south of us is Larka. You guys hear that? Head south. We’re dropping you all off in one of your lifeboats. You’ll find all of your fallen already in there.”. He checked his watch and then looked to the Captain, secured along with his crew, “Captain Iain Adair, do you vouch for the conduct of your men?”.

Clearing his throat, Adair looked up at the bedraggled man, he hadn’t taken him for Asgarthian but who else would seize a Noctian ship and take it to Point d’vur? “Yes.” Speaking louder so his crew would hear, “We will comply. No one will do anything stupid.”.

“Good.”, the man signalled to his water-logged men and they all started cutting the zip ties and bonds that had restrained the Teomonn’s crew. “Please tell your government that we have no issue with Nocturnalis, this was just unfortunate circumstance for you guys.”

They escorted Captain Adair and his men to one of the two lifeboats, locked in the freefall gantries at the stern of the ship, before helping them board and then launching them. The bright orange boat slid down off the rails and flew through the air in a steepening curve, slamming into a wave and submerging before bobbing back up in a surge of bubbles and white water. It was soon lost to sight as the tanker steamed on.

Ten minutes later, multiple bursts rippled along the side of the Teomonn, opening up her side and gushing fountains of oil into the heaving waves. Minutes after that, the second lifeboat hurtled off its rear in an upswell as she began to list to starboard, still chugging forwards under her own power.

It took her almost half an hour to slip beneath the surface, her screws spinning uselessly when she finally capsized and then driving her under when they bit into the water again, carrying her down to the seabed as she trailed lines of thick black ooze.

The Heartlanders made landfall twenty minutes later. They were on enemy territory now and they knew it. They split up, each taking a gun and what ammunition they had left with a plan to cause as much havoc and bloodshed as they could before dying in the name of the Heartlands. What remains of you when you’re gone.

Image
Fig. A beach along the coast of Point d'vur the following morning.


Harrenian Hegemony -
Wait for it. His fingers clenched on the wheel. He looked down at the watch on his wrist, any minute now. He rehearsed it again, handbrake off, shift into drive, accelerate. Simple. His heart was racing and his leg beat out a rapid rhythm on the pedal. Looking up through his windshield, he grimaced. Where was he? Fuck. Come on, come on, calm down. It’s not hard. He took his hand off the wheel and pulled a bottle out of his door pocket and taking a deep swig. “Don’t drink and drive”, he laughed nervously. He clicked his head to the left and right, with his hands on either side of his neck, gently rubbing. He looked around. Nothing. Come on! He lifted his wrist to stare at the hands on his watch. They had barely moved. He clasped his hand to his face and rubbed, massaging his cheeks and pushing his hair back. Just relax. The gentle thrum and vibration of the engine taunted him. He pulsed the accelerator twice. That made him feel better. For the thousandth time he patted his lapel, feeling the rigid outline of the 8mm and reached in to check it was loaded.

THERE.

Pulling his hand out of his jacket, he grabbed the wheel and shunted the handbrake down. He couldn’t hear his own ragged breath wheeze as he manhandled the gearstick and then slammed his foot down. He was thrown back into his seat but he kept his eyes locked forwards. He jostled around furiously, clutch, steer, shift to second gear, accelerate harder!

With a thump that he felt through his feet on the pedals and the seat of his pants, the windscreen smashed in and a figure spun off the front corner in an arc before roughly landing on the cobbled pavement. He slammed on the brake, coming to a screeching halt and leapt out of the car, not caring that it was still rolling forwards. He snatched the pistol out of his pocket as he hurried over to the form that was limply writhing on the ground. Looking down, he didn’t hesitate. Two sharp cracks and then he dropped the pistol and ran back for the car.

Seconds later, Harrenian marines sprinted out of the Naval Academy and opened fire at the retreating car, their submachine guns wildly chattering as they sprayed bullets down the street. The first stooped by Gautima and clicked his radio on his chest, “The Premier is down. I repeat, the Premier is down. Get an ambulance to the academy ASAP.”. He dropped his gun with a clatter and ripped open Gautima’s shirt, recoiling as blood spurted out from two neat holes in the Premier’s shuddering chest. The Marine took off his own shirt and used it to try and staunch the bleeding, pushing down as Gautima convulsed and spluttered, blood foaming from his mouth. “Hang on sir, help’s coming.”. The second marine arrived and raised Gautima’s broken legs even as he gargled and thrashed in agony, sirens only just now faintly audible in the distance.

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Romae in Perpetuum
Spokesperson
 
Posts: 116
Founded: Mar 14, 2016
Iron Fist Consumerists

Postby Romae in Perpetuum » Sun Dec 30, 2018 8:03 am

Acropolis Hotel, City of Cyma, Harren Hegenomy

Tribune Paulus straightened his uniform in one of the lobby mirrors. It was important to look smart when delivering bad news to your commander; particularly if he had a reputation for mass murder. Exchanging a nod with one of the secretaries Paulus entered the lift and closed the door before anyone else got in. It was for their own protection, Agrippa wasn’t picky about who he took his anger out on.

After a few minutes he quickly exited and, exchanging salutes with the guards, was led into Agrippa’s penthouse. There he saw that Agrippa was meeting with his own liaisons as well as the heads of the allied coalition that was propping up the Hegemony. Paulus could have smacked himself; he should have remembered this was today. His news would have to wait.



“In conclusion gentlemen. There can be no doubt that the attacks on us came directly from the gobbos.” Agrippa continued, not noticing his aides’ entrance to the room. “This unprovoked and savage attack, whilst proving their desperation, clearly merits some form of response. I’m open to suggestions…”

“The attack on our vessels was despicable.” Admiral Pertika began, as he poured himself a drink. “The international community must be made aware that we were carrying Harrenite refugees, orphans, in particular. I have it on good authority that Asgar intends to ramp up pressure on the Valarisk to control their hound. With that said, the liberation of the city of Prokopios inflicted serious damage to goblin forces in the area. Our intel suggests they remain few in number. Thus, I would like to suggest the Skjoldurians deal with this pest.”

“You can go and shove that request up where sun don’t shine” chimed in Urlf who had been sitting in the corner ignoring the conversation. “We don’t do shit for the likes of you”.

“Do we really need to make this another bitch off?”

“Well to be fair i'm half drunk and I don’t like you so…. Yes!”

Agrippa sighed and rested his chin on his fist. Next time he would have the Caerlegionares host this. “I think that can be taken as a polite refusal then?” He said dryly

General Mark Anthony spoke up

“I have been instructed by the King to use the Caerlegion fleet to engage with any Gobblin vessel we see and to send to the Gods”

“So uncivilised. You’d think the Skjoldurians would respect their superiors.” Pertika smirked. “Agrippa, how many cities contain greenies?”

“Presently we have no idea.” Agrippa replies, flicking through a report. “To say the heartlands are in disarray would be putting it mildly, Praetorian Intelligence isn’t even 100% sure which cities are still standing.” Agrippa added, raising an eyebrow at both the Asgarthian and Skjolurian commanders. As to Aurumite fleet movements, they appear to be trying to evacuate civilians but don’t have any major naval presence.”

“Our intelligence shows that they are split up and disarray, as far as we can tell they are trying to gather but after the Asgarthians” Urlf said, gesturing towards Pertika “nuked a city I don’t think they’re any threat”

“It is incredibly foolish to underestimate the goblins. They are creatures of trickery and deceit. I would suggest we assume the worst.” Pertika stated.

“I’m inclined to agree with Pertika.” Agrippa added. “They will almost certainly attempt to aide in the insurgent attacks against our occupying...er I mean liberation forces…”

Mark butted in
“May I suggest that I send some subs to cripple the Goblins whilst they evacuate Harrenites”?

“It can’t hurt.” Agrippa mused. “I’ll dispatch a squadron of my own to accompany you, your orders are to harass the gobbos through international waters. I suggest you make your preparations now, General.”

Anthony nodded and saluted Agrippa, before marching out of the room staff in tow.

“I also must mention that some of the insurgents are surprisingly well armed, someone is feeding them weapons and money, someone needs to deal with that”. Urlf cut in.

Agrippa snorted to himself, someone always seemed to mean someone else. “The gobbos have never been shy about the fact they were arming the Heartlands, they seemed to think that's all they needed to do to repel us.” He laughed aloud.

Urlf nodded “regardless we should be careful. The way we treat these people they are going to rebel soon”.

“The Harrenites will only rebel if you give them the chance. Quash any change of a rebellion, and they will learn their place.” Pertika smirked. “We need to force the goblins out. The rebels are nothing without international support.”

“The Harrenites are a beaten race.” Agrippa said contemptuously. “It is only a matter of time before they come to heel or die. I don’t care which. Regardless Intelligence watches them like hawks and I barely let their premier out of my sight. An organised uprising is unlikely.”

Urlf leaned forward “you underestimate them, let’s not forget this one” he turned gesturing to Pertitka “nuked an entire city killing god knows how many, you Agrippa are enslaving them in droves and the one who just fucked off Mark whatever, he promised them aid and started bombing them the next day they are just waiting for the chance to turn on us.”

The Praefectus stared at the raider coldly for a few moments before he spoke in a soft voice.
“Do not forget where you are Urlf. I’m aware of what these people are and what we’ve done to them, they will pay a high price for their insolence and they know what I am capable of.

Urlf matched Agrippa’s stare “I ain’t insulting any of you, hell i’ve done worse than most but the worse we treat them the more there going to want to get revenge, just be mindful that’s all”.

“Am I right in assuming you therefore believe those dreadful friendlies ought to be better treated as well?” Pertika began. “It is no coincidence that both the friendlies and Harrenities have begun wars. Both creatures seek to destroy civilisation. It would be foolish if we were to lessen our grip.”

“I ain’t saying that” replied Urlf “just be mindful of the fact that if someone lives their life with no hope of happiness, then all their going to do is fight for happiness, give someone something to lose and they will become obedient”.

“They have their lives to lose and that will be enough.” Interjected Agrippa irritably. “Whilst we are on the subject of the friendlies, however, I’ve had worrying reports from the interior of the island. It appears the infection has indeed broke quarantine and is affecting the rural population. They’ve begun a ‘march of peace’, whatever that means, and are encroaching on our military positions. It is time we root out this pest once and for all.”

“Indeed.” Pertika nodded, in agreement. “The friendlies are clearly a threat to all life. Their presence on the island is most troubling. The question, of course, is do we simply focus our attacks on their presence on Harren, or do we once more find ourselves attacking their mainland?”

“A question I am happy to kick upstairs, Pertika.” Agrippa replied. “My jurisdiction is on this shithole, I have no say as to what happens on Friendly Island. Though I will pass your question on to my superiors.”

“If the friendlies spread much further than we have a problem. We’ve seen them near New Yanni and they seem to be gathering more and more civilians, we may need to take everyone from the surrounding towns and villages and take them to the cities just to make sure no one else joins their horde” said Urlf.

The Praefectus tapped his fingers on his desk, pondering the situation.
“No.” he finally said. “The Hegemony in its current state is barely able to feed its current population in the west. I can’t imagine the situation will improve if we start moving farmers off their farms. We also risk infecting the western cities; without them our situation on this rock becomes untenable.”

Urlf shrugged “hey it’s your people your choice, just make sure that you’ve stocked the napalm because we are going to need a lot of it”.

“It may come to that.” Agrippa replied grimly. “For now, I’m issuing a standing order to shoot all infected on sight, as well as sending armed patrols into the interior to disinfect the area. I expect you both to do likewise, otherwise we may have to destroy this island altogether.”

“A simple suggestion, my southern friend.” Pertika smiled, through gritted teeth. “Do not expect anything from Asgareth. What we do, we do because it is best for Asgareth, and for the security this world continues to enjoy. The friendlies pose a direct threat to this security,and our policy regarding them remains as it always has.”

“An Asgarthian being difficult.” Agrippa responded sardonically. “My what a surprise…”

“I’m sure my commander will agree” Urlf interjected wondering why he was the one who had to keep the peace “we have around 100,000 men on the island at the moment, i’m sure we can turn are attention to the friendlies, for the right price of of course”.

“A mercenary attitude, I can respect.” Replied Agrippa. “Your men will assist in the eradication of the friendlies as well as general peacekeeping among the natives, you will be paid as generously as ever. However, we’ve been here for what feels like hours and we’ve yet to comment on the most pressing issue.” The Praefectus pressed a button on his desk and a holographic image of a fleet was projected into the air.
“Our long-range patrols picked up some new arrivals to our happy little island. Iryllians as far as we can tell. Their intentions are currently unknown, but they’ve attempted to contact their old embassy, which I think is a dry cleaner now but that is neither here nor there. Thoughts?”

“The Iryllian presence here is unnerving.” Pertika began. “Their sudden arrival indicates a desperate attempt to unravel all our hard work. The fleet, as far as our sources can tell, is a significant threat to everyone on the island.”

“Usually I’d agree, but their arrival presents us with a unique opportunity.” Agrippa said slyly. “Iryllian agents supported the Hegemony in the initial stages of the war before we...the Myraxians killed Balthazar, if we have our Harranite friends contact the Iryllians requesting aid against the Myraxians they may take care of them for us. Then it’s a simple matter of clearing the Iryllians out. If they refuse or fail, we still outnumber them considerably and can remove them. Should make the Myraxians more amiable anyway; which couldn’t hurt.”

Urlf nodded, looking at his watch he smiled. Is there anything else because the pubs at New Yanni are doing half priced vodka and free karaoke, kind of want to get back”.

“That is all, as far as we are concerned.” Pertika began. “Should the Iryllians fail to destroy the Myraxians, it will be the duty of all of us to finish the pair of them.”

“A duty I’m sure we will all take pleasure in gentlemen.” Agrippa replied, gesturing towards the exit. “Now if you will excuse me, I have orders to draft. The hotel bar is as stocked as ever…”



After stepping aside to allow the liaisons to leave, a task easier said than done considering Pertika was wide enough to function as his own flagship, Paulus approached his superiors desk and stood to attention.

“Ah Paulus.” Agrippa said cheerfully. “I thought that bloody meeting would never end, I was convinced that Skjoldurian fellow would have to be carried out, I suppose its true what they say about them being lightweights. Not to mention the damage that Asgarthian did to my furniture! Make sure the legs aren’t going to snap, will you?”
“That will have to wait I’m afraid, sir.” The tribune replied nervously, attempting to avoid eye contact with his commander. “I’ve just been informed that there has been an assassination attempt on Premier Gautima, he was hit with a car and shot at twice. The premier has survived, but only just. He’s being treated in one of our military hospitals; but they lack the resources to tend to him effectively in the wake of the latest casualties from the Heartlands; which are…somewhat higher than originally predicted.”

The Prefectus silently rose from his desk and turned to the grand window behind him, arms clasped behind his back. The room was deathly quiet for a few moments, Paulus was tempted to break it but immediately thought better of it; lest the old man’s fury be turned on him.
About a minute later Agrippa exhaled heavily from his nose.
“The assassin?” He asked quietly.
“Amateur, sir. He was picked up by Harrenite Internal Security almost immediately. I would have had him sent here, but Prefect Caelius’ men managed to pick him up first. Minerva alone knows where he is now.”
“Get a hold of one of the Praetorian spies in the hotel.” Agrippa said, voice still mortally quiet. “Inform him Caelius is to hold off on interrogating him to death until I have a chance to question him. After that I don’t give a damn.
“At once, Praefectus.” Paulus said quickly. “But what about Gautima? Unless we fly him back to the Imperium for treatment, he has a week at most.”
“Persistent little bastard, isn’t he?” Agrippa said laughing bitterly. “Have him flown to the capital, given the finest treatment and the use of one of my estates in the country for recuperation. Make sure that he’s aware that I gave this order. Oh, and Paulus?”
“Sir?”
“I take it his legs were damaged in the attempt? Inform the surgeons the illustrious Premier is to be left with a limp; nothing too severe but enough to serve as a reminder: without Rome, without me, he is crippled. In the meantime, I require a replacement figurehead.”
“The Imperial Secretariat has already selected one, pending your approval, sir.” Replied the Tribune handing over a dossier. “A Captain Bemus Dio. Highly respected officer yet looked over for promotion by both Balthazar’s and Gautima’s regimes; a maverick apparently.”
Agrippa snorted.
“That’s just code for terrible at playing politics. Promote him to general, give him a fancy uniform and inform him that he’s to be made interim Premier. Fool might even think that means something, be sure to disabuse him of this.”
The old commander clenched his jaw and sat back down. He called up the latest casualty reports on his terminal and began reading through them.
“I underestimated these Harrenites, Tribune.” He muttered darkly. “I didn’t believe them capable of such unorganized extremism. This Gautima business has only served to hammer the lesson home. Draft a request to High Command, I require priority reinforcements for the 2nd Cohort as well as an additional Cohort to strengthen our grip over the interior. Inform General Anthony he is to request a similar number from his government.”
“As you wish, sir. My I ask why we need an extra 100’000 men?”
Agrippa smiled a smile that did not quite reach his eyes.
“The Harrenites clearly do not believe that I am serious when I offer them submission or death, therefore I shall have to prove myself to them. Decimate the entire population of the former Heartlands; 1 in 10 are to die at random men, women and children alike, and give orders to incinerate the corpses; ensure nothing remains after they’re gone.” More bitter laughter. “Send a message to the Asgarthians as well, I’m sure they’ll want in on the action.”

Paulus stood in shocked silence for a split second before coming to his senses.
“Sir. At once, sir.”
For the first time Paulus felt a twinge of pity for the Harrenites. He even momentarily considered going over his commanders’ head for conformation of the order. But that would be pointless; Agrippa was the head of a powerful patrician family and he was the second son of a minor senator. The order was going to be executed whatever he did. May the gods have mercy on us all he reflected marching off before Agrippa decided to teach another, more personal ‘lesson’.
Quidquid latine dictum sit, altum videtur.

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Friendly Island
Bureaucrat
 
Posts: 43
Founded: Oct 10, 2018
Democratic Socialists

Postby Friendly Island » Wed Jan 02, 2019 10:31 am

All at once there is a stir of silence which whispers across the plains and forests of Harren. All the voices which were previously singing songs of sun and songs of peace now hush as something different quietly rumbles across the landscape. Journey speaks with itself silently, a few moments pass and the island begins to stir again as the voices and songs resume, now carrying a different message.
The members of Journey leave the cities and ports and locales they have been invading, in an effort to recruit more members, and now they all head towards Tsuru once again. Their trek is hastened by the fact that many of the members of the collective, as it occasionally refers to itself, are now adapting to what the network allows. After all have gathered, leaving no living member behind, they sing a song of sending and move their entire group to a relatively nearby, yet distant enough island. . .
A friendly little nation in the Sovereign Charter
Tier 1, Level 8, Type 3.5, according to this index
Socialism · Ecology · Order



Friendly Island is a small jungle island nation, notable for its primeval nature and unconventional views. It appears all beings here share a bond which is facilitated by a massive fungal network.

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Asgareth
Envoy
 
Posts: 286
Founded: Nov 27, 2015
Iron Fist Consumerists

Postby Asgareth » Fri Jan 04, 2019 1:12 pm

Outskirts of Larka, Point d’vur
The Story of Larka
Our story begins one peaceful morning. It was a Tuesday, and this will tell you everything you need to know. It was a very foggy morning; our victims, the fishermen, could not see one another if they were more than a yard apart. And yet, those brave men still carried out preparations for today's duties.

Amongst this group, we find some of the victims of our story; a Pastina Binta, an Asgani Tyrip and a Bigip Pakora. The three were merrily discussing yesterdays haul; Bigip was convinced he had successfully found the biggest cod of the season. Pastina and Asgani meanwhile, believed Bigip’s so called cod were actually three cod stuck together with sellotape. None of our victims would ever have the time to find out the truth.

“I hope this fog clears up before we head out.” Asgani stated, in a desperate attempt to steer Bigip away from the conversation for the fourteenth time today. “Be an absolute nightmare to catch anything if we can’t see shit.”
“It’s still early, As.” Bigip stated. “I’m sure by the time we head out it’ll be nice and sunny. It was this bad last week, remember?”
Before poor Asgani could so much as respond, he fell to the floor. Bigip and Pastina heard the noise, and tried their best to save themselves. But those unfortunate souls, along with all the other crews along the harbour swiftly found their fates sealed. Through the fog, a bird watched as a dozen figures Twelve Harrenites breached the shores of Point d’vur. They moved fast, firing their weapons in all direction. The fog played a significant role in their accuracy; or lack thereof. Whilst over twenty lay dead, thousands of bullets would later be discovered. A waste of metal. A waste of flesh.

Across Point d’vur, reports flooded in. Some said the Harrenites were shooting civilians, others stated they were merely torturing and raping them. There were, of course, a few stranger reports; from sightings of dragons, to terrorists eating the hearts of orphans. Yet, despite all these reports, the brave men of the Asgarthian Ground Force did nothing. The terrorists were viewed as nothing more than a small nuisance. The deaths of twenty odd fishermen meant nothing to the average Asgarthian soldier. Civilians, meanwhile, initially supported the Harrenites; disenfranchised after the recent increases in ale prices. Some chucked ammo and guns for our heroes to use, others food and drink (albeit non-alcoholic due to said ale prices).

Unfortunately our Harrenite heroes swiftly become our Harrenite villains. As they drew near to the city of Larka, they ran into a little resistance trouble, outside a pub by the name of “The Dead Goblin”. Smoke grenades were thrown, followed by a flood of bullets. In the confusion, our villains made one vital mistake. They shot a glass of ale.

And this proved to be the turning point in our little story. Instantly, civilians took matters into their own hands. They brutally captured, beat up, tortured, killed, disembowelled and in one case, ate, our villains. Within two minutes, eight lay dead. Four were spared purely because the 17th Ground Force finally began to act. They captured the four villains, who were taken to a secure location. Here, they were swiftly interrogated by our hero, Commander Lynca Yinco.

Our Asgarthian hero discovered much. A man by the name of Ladon had ordered the attack. And he did not intend to stop there. A full-scale invasion of the Archoni Isles was planned; though the villains did not seem able to agree where he intended to hit. The Harrenites were also hiring Noctish mercenaries to attack Western Asgareth. The villains also shared plans for terrorist attacks in the Epiloan Islands and Skjoldur, and a rather elaborate ploy to kidnap Caesar, and replace him with a chicken. Lynca believed there was some legitimacy to the kidnapping. He’d be sure to put it to away for a later day.



Aykia, Isle of Gespe
Yaznon Paltri and Axic Ross were once more in a video chat with the Imperiali.
“The attack carried out on the 12th fleet was cowardly.” Yaznon Paltri stated. “I’d assume Skjoldurian in nature, but they lack the technology. As a result, it’s clear the goblins carried it out.”
“Losses?” The Imperiali enquired.
“One of the older carriers, 3 destroyers, a few support ships and a local fisherman’s boat. We assume he succumbed to his injuries; his body is still missing.”
“The propaganda machines will love that. Goblins kill hard-working, family man.” The Imperiali began. “Axic, you can personally head out and deliver flowers. A perfect photo opportunity. Don’t try to fuck this one.”

Axic blushed, before speaking “Father, the actions of the goblins are too significant to let slide. We must make them suffer!”

“And they will.” The Imperiali started. “But only after I have spoken with the Valarisk. I want to know how they intend to punish these rebels. If the Empress insists on calling herself the overlord of the goblins, she might want to start acting like one. They’re beginning to get a little cocky. Forgetting their place. Inform the military to cut back on the vegetables. Our troops will shortly be getting plenty of greens.”
Proud (No, really!) Member of the Sovereign Charter.
Drekhi: Asgareth is not a place, it is a vintage

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Myraxia
Envoy
 
Posts: 278
Founded: Mar 26, 2014
Corporate Police State

Postby Myraxia » Fri Jan 04, 2019 4:50 pm

Aboard MNV S-036, Combative Class Submarine, off Harren Island

"Conn, Sonar, new contacts. Surface vessels, bearing 030. Sounds like Iryllian hull composition."
"Understood, Sonar. XO, battle stations."
The lighting on the bridge of the submarine flicked to a cool blue, illuminating the faces of the bridge officers with an eerie glow. The boat's commander reached for an intercom.
"Engineering, how's the reactor?"
"Running 100% and stable, Commander."
"Excellent. Keep it that way."
Without turning round, the Commander spoke across the room to his sonar officer. "Sonar, how's our signature?"
"Quiet as a ghost, sir, and twice as stealthy."
The XO - a Lieutenant Commander - tapped his superior on the shoulder. "All stations report battle stations, Commander."
"Thank you, XO. Helm - cut speed to zero. Ballast - take us to periscope depth. Comms - prepare an update package to the Commodore in Galatea."
His crew went to work, guiding the bulk of the Combative Class submarine to just below the surface.




Tight Beam Signal Traffic
TO: Commodore Valyn, CO: Seventh Fleet/Detached Task Force Harren
FROM: MNV S-036

Iryllian surface fleet present in force. Intentions unknown. At present believe ourselves undetected. Have declined to attack, will maintain observation. Location follows. Three-Six out.





Kalitea, near Saya, Republic of Harren

Away from the hubs of activity in the cities of the Republic, Myraxian Pioneers had landed in a further location on the coast of the Bay of Airi. With the Republic of Harren's accession to Protectorate status of the Union, it had been determined that a permanent location for Myraxian military presence would be necessary. Furthermore, upon inspection of what little military infrastructure remained from the Hegemony and Confederate days, it became evidently clear that the surviving facilities would be entirely inadequate for the needs of the Myraxian Naval Force (Task Force Harren being an almost entirely naval operation, with the ground component being provided by Marine Light Infantry). As such, Pioneers were landed from the fleet to begin the establishment of a new facility, near the fishing village of Kalitea. Concrete wharves were set into titanium-alloy frames and laced through with reinforcement, appearing to the villagers to have appeared almost overnight, whilst pre-fabricated structures were thrown up to provide temporary accommodations to the sailors and marines that would form the new Naval Station's complement, as well as the Harrenite refugee workers brought in to assist construction. The site had been chosen for it's deep water channel, allowing all but the largest Naval Force vessels to access the harbour. Whilst the Task Force flagship, the Grave of Empires maintained it's station off Galatea along with it's escort, smaller ships of the Task Force began cycling through Kalitea as fast as the facilities would permit, dropping off supplies and refreshing their own. The nearby village began to grow as well, with Harrenite refugees seeking work with the Myraxians setting up camp around the small settlement.

Docks, Galatea, Republic of Harren

Colonel Vyr raised an eyebrow, taking a moment to smooth down his uniform again. "I'm sorry, Madam, but my personal feelings on the matter are irrelevant here. This comes from above, far above. I assure you-" A marine in full combat dress sprinted onto the curved deck of the submarine, skidding to a stop in front of the Colonel and saluting sharply.
"Colonel, Madam Acting-President. Apologies, but... -" he paused to catch his breath. "I'm a runner from the Grave, sir, you weren't responding on radio. An Iryllian surface fleet's been spotted off the coast. Commodore Ralyn's taking the Task Force out of berthing and going to action stations. He requests you stand your forces to."
Vyr's expression went from warm and friendly to cold and hard in an instant - a shift Maria had never seen the normally friendly Colonel undergo. "Understood, Corporal. Tell the Commodore I'm doing so, and instruct him not to engage unless he is fired upon first. Dismissed." The marine nodded and sprinted off again in the direction of the great bulk of the Myraxian carrier. "Madam-Acting President, I suggest you vacate this boat. It may well come to pass that your new fleet will be needed sooner than you might have imagined." He pulled out his sidearm, checking the load before replacing it in its holster. "My men need me. I suggest you mobilise whatever forces you can muster. I'd hoped to have begun training your officer corps proper before they saw combat, but that option may no longer exist. Madam." He nodded to her and hurried off, muttering something else under his breath. "The last thing this island needs is another war."

CIC, CFC-007 Grave of Empires

The tactical plot was being populated with red-marked vessels - denoting Iryllian ships - far faster than Commodore Ralyn was comfortable with. Already, the number of ships they'd been able to confirm by correlating reports from their observing submarine and hurriedly redirected satellite recon had exceeded the number of ships under his command - some thirty six - and more reports were still coming in. A shout from across the room caught his attention. "Communications intercept! Source... Iryllian surface fleet. Standard diplomatic channel, looks like they're trying to reach... the Iryllian consulate? Didn't they... "
"Get destroyed in the riots that threw out Balthazar? Yes." The Commodore moved to stand behind the junior officer, placing a hand on the younger man's shoulder. "Continue to monitor anything else that comes out of that fleet. There's no way they haven't heard about their own consulate being destroyed. It must be some sort of trick."
He turned to another officer at the same station. "Get me a line to Seventh Fleet HQ at Pyongsan. We need reinforcements down here if we're going to take on that fleet. " He pointed at a third crew member. "And you! Contact the rest of our Combative classes. Have them leave their patrol routes and rendezvous with S-036." He went to move away, before turning back. "And one more thing. Tell them release of nuclear torpedoes is authorised at their discretion."
"Sir."




Harrenite interior, Tsuru region

Captain Areyn lay on his stomach, breathing through a rebreather, and watching the small village below him through a pair of binoculars. The jungle around him was like nothing he'd never seen - strange fungal growths sprouting from the trees, pollen drifting through the air that his local guides - a pair of woodsmen he'd picked up in a small village north of Rie - swore they'd never seen before. He'd ordered rebreathers to be worn at all times as a precaution - if this was some kind of dangerous biological life, or even a new Iryllian weapon, he was taking no chances. Laid out along the ridge beside him were two more of his team, peering down at the village through rifle scopes, whilst his HUD indicated the positions of the other half of his team as they crept through the undergrowth below his position.
They'd tracked the strange singing back to this region - probably centered on Tsuru, though they hadn't been able to get eyes on the town to confirm that. Confirmed sightings of strange goat-like humanoid figures - referenced in CFI case files regarding a joint Asgar-Rome blockade and destruction of a previously considered uninhabited island. They'd relayed this back to command, along with confirmation of some of the strange abilities these creatures seemingly displayed - possibly some form of mind control, definitely some kind of rapid travel ability - and had received their new orders: Capture a specimen, alive if possible.
Through his binoculars, Areyn confirmed what their initial recon of the village had reported - these creatures and their human slaves were preparing to leave. It was unnerving, though Areyn - that human beings could be overwhelmed by these creatures and forced to serve them. There was no way they'd be working with such creatures willingly.
Below, their target pranced into view. One of the goat-people wandered around the edge of the village, singing quietly in that unnerving eerie tone, and trailing it's hand through the foliage. Who knew what it was doing? He keyed his comm. "Team two, report status."
The reply came through with a crackle. "In position. Tranqs ready to go on your mark."
"Copy. Stand by."
Areyn performed one last sweep with his binoculars, looking for anyone else with line of sight to their target. Seeing none, he keyed his comm once again. "Team two. Execute."
With barely a sound, tranquilliser darts shot out the bushes, striking the creature - two in the neck, one in the shoulder. Each carried enough tranquilliser to knock a grown man out for three hours. The creature swayed briefly, then collapsed without a sound. It was then swiftly dragged into the bushes by the waiting Myraxians.
"Command, Pathfinder Four. Specimen in custody. Requesting secure containment unit and transport. Out."




Myraxian forces throughout the island came to alert status in response to the presence of the Iryllian fleet. The flow of refugees was not stopped, although with the news of the guerrilla violence engulfing the cities in the north, more thorough checks were implemented. The Myraxian forces here were used to such measures, being veterans of the years-long campaign against Bandoan resistance fighters, although they remained gentle with the Harrenites they searched. Any armed civilians were disarmed and logged, before being permitted to continue through, their names now present in a Myraxian database in Kalitea. An old lady named Ladon, passed without issue.
And to the south, a sealed containment unit was transferred by helicopter to a waiting Corvette, ready to take it's cargo back to Pyongsan at best possible speed.
Citizen of Sovereign Charter.

You can find my personal political opinions on this handy graph: http://www.politicalcompass.org/printablegraph?ec=-7.62&soc=0.51

Current Alert Level: Status 1

Status 5: Standing Defense Forces
Status 4: Partial Mobilization
Status 3: Active Conflict, foreign soil
Status 2: Possible homeland threat
Status 1: Confirmed homeland threat, large scale mobilization.
Status 0: Full mobilization



Myraxia is a hyper-industrialized Military Junta on the Eastern Coast of Rusina, located in the Sovereign Charter.

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Nocturnalis
Diplomat
 
Posts: 894
Founded: Mar 24, 2012
Iron Fist Consumerists

Postby Nocturnalis » Fri Jan 04, 2019 6:11 pm

Somewhere off the coast of Point D'Vur

The ship rolled lazily among the hurried and stormy waters, wind lashing unmercifully against its hull. The rain and wind slapped hard against the faces of the men on board, uniforms of dark blue rushing busily as they prepared the ship for its clandestine mission. No doubt they were well within Asgari waters, for no others could be so treacherous. It would not be long before one of the many rusty ships of the Asgari navy came down upon them; and while there was little doubt that Asgaris could be taken care of, orders from above had explicitly called for as little international incident as possible, at least until the mission was complete. Several weeks ago, this had been the spot where the Teomonn was hijacked. What the world assumed to be a simple oil tanker had been quite a bit more. Thus the mission, one of extraction and destruction.

Several men stood in front of a large, round shape firmly attached to the back half of the ship. This was to be their in, a rather new and experimental submarine; one that was practically undetectable, but also quite unarmed. Enough explosives had been stowed on board to level a city block, all the better to dispose of the Teomonn's wreckage.

"You have two hours," the commanding officer stated bluntly, "the package is in a secret compartment in the Captain's quarters. Unfortunately, our operative on-board was unable to retrieve the package during the hijacking, although the Harrenites either did not know about it or did not care. All the better for us. The mission is simplicity itself; get in that ship, retrieve the package, and escape. Dispose of the wreckage via explosives, that should at least cover your tracks and send a message. Return to Sam'trak upon completion." The three underlings saluted steely, climbing aboard the small submarine.

A loud beeping sound came from the ship's radar, an Asgari patrol, no doubt. The silent submarine was quickly shoved off of the ship, sinking into the murky abyss with a loud splash. The ship itself sped off into the distance, for its crew and captain had their own mission to complete. The submarine was now on its own, its searchlights scanning the surface of the sea floor, far removed from any prying eyes above.

It did not take long for the crew to find the twisted, gnarled remains of the Teomonn, the ship's remains still issuing forth a thin stream of black oil that eventually wormed its way to the Asgari coasts further south. Pressurized suits and masks were donned as the submarine nestled itself within the superstructure of the Teomonn, the ruins of the ship allowing the small submarine the privilege of entry. One hatch opened and two men exited the submarine. Moments of searching the uppermost sections of the ship yielded the reward they had been searching for: a large, plain-metal box, its contents unknown even to the man that held it. The two men then made their way throughout the shipwreck, planting the explosive charges they had been provided. While the Teomonn would be a symbolic gesture of Noctia's forced involvement in affairs beyond its waters, the ship itself could not be allowed to survive, even in its dilapidated, ruined state. It did not take long for the submarine and its occupants to beat a hasty retreat from the wreckage, back to their main base several hundred kilometers westward.

The explosion could be seen and heard from the coasts itself, sending massive waves of water crashing upon the sandy beaches of Point D'Vur. The message had been sent.

Cyma, Harren Island

A sleepy day for a sleepy port, fortunately quite removed from the current conflict raging the rest of the Harren Island, was startled awake by the sudden appearance of a flotilla of war ships off of its coast, each warship proudly displaying the black-and-blue saltire of the Noctish Navy, only adding more warships to the stack of many warships from various other nations that lined the harbours. The Noctish ships sat in the bay, as if staring down the port-city, perhaps menacingly. The Harren Island was unfamiliar territory for the Nocts, as the island-continent of Eristys was the furthest west any of them had ventured - the Realm had been all too happy to let its foes waste their resources on expeditions to other countries. Getting involved in other nation's affairs was not a Noctish habit, but the current circumstances had made involvement a necessity. Nevertheless, it did not take long for a message, delivered in Rusinian Standard, to reach the ears of those monitoring the ships.

"This is the NNS Venaimin and accompanying ships, representing the Noctish Confederation to investigate the hijacking of one of our own ships." the radio crackled slowly, calmly, "Permission to come ashore."
Proud member of The Anti Democracy League
This nation represents only some of my views.

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Friendly Island
Bureaucrat
 
Posts: 43
Founded: Oct 10, 2018
Democratic Socialists

Postby Friendly Island » Fri Jan 04, 2019 8:44 pm

Tsuru Region, Harren Island

The covert troops felts eyes on them even with their delicate movements and stealthy maneuvers, they almost certainly noted how the animals and even plants seemed to follow the group. There was also a sound, a song even, which was always being sung just outside of hearing, always evading. The whispers which got through seemed to be calling to them, asking for their attention. Despite the world around them behaving so strangely, they didn't seem to be noticed by the denizens of the area.
The people certainly were busy with their work, and it was strangely difficult to tell the humans from the fauns. The people all seemed to work together, following whatever this song which remained elusively out of hearing, and were mostly tending to sick and injured individuals. Drinks were given and ointments were applied to some, while others were seemingly sung to and their outward wounds seem to mend. It became increasingly evident they were treating many people who were suffering from radiation related wounds, before whisking them away. It was also becoming increasingly evident they weren't taking very many things, mostly it seemed some of them took clothing, utensils, and trinkets.
Cas was patrolling a grove, double checking for anyone who may have fallen down. The new people who were joining Journey were sometimes not able to call out as easily and had to be found the old fashioned way. He liked the task and occasionally picked up fallen friends, he had brought someone back to the collective earlier that day as a matter of fact. There was a pricking feeling.
"I've been stuck with something."
"You seem to be drugged.
You are likely to loose consciousness.
Do not resist your captors.
Make peaceful contact if possible.
"
The faun collapsed in a neat pile, leaving his arms and legs out just enough to make them easy to manage. The troops were likely thinking enough to take samples of the airborne spores as well as leaves, mushrooms, and possible animals, nothing seemed to stop them from doing this, in fact it seemed like everything they reached for was given to them. While being taken away the faun's mind remained connected to the network, which conveyed where he was being taken and what was happening. The information seemed to grow more and more sparse the further away from the Heartlands they ventured.
A friendly little nation in the Sovereign Charter
Tier 1, Level 8, Type 3.5, according to this index
Socialism · Ecology · Order



Friendly Island is a small jungle island nation, notable for its primeval nature and unconventional views. It appears all beings here share a bond which is facilitated by a massive fungal network.

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Harren Island
Secretary
 
Posts: 36
Founded: Nov 02, 2018
Corrupt Dictatorship

Postby Harren Island » Sat Jan 05, 2019 10:11 am

Harrenian Hegemony

“What the fuck is that?” Dio fumed as he stared out the harbourside window of his office in the Naval Academy. When his aide, Eiji, started to respond, he cut him off and asked again, even more loudly whilst gesticulating out the window, “What, the FUCK, is that?”. The aide cleared his throat but Dio silenced him with a glare before he could answer, “Stop trying to answer the damn question you dumb fuck, it was rhetorical, I can see it’s a fleet. The point I was trying to make was, how the fuck did we not see it coming ‘till it was IN OUR GOD DAMNED HARBOUR?”.

The secretary outside his office, the one who had worked under Balthazar and Gautima, smiled to herself as she typed on her keyboard. Then the door to Dio’s office opened and Eiji stepped out before shutting the door behind him, she stopped typing and grinned up at him, “How’s the grumpy koala today?”.

“He wouldn’t like you calling him that.” he laughed before setting a file down on her desk, “Bemus wants a line of passive sonar buoys built to stretch across the sea from Milos to Paros. Assign it to Naval Intelligence, let them work out the specifics.”.

She took the file and opened it before cocking an eyebrow. “Quite a project,” she was going to go on but then the door thumped open and Bemus strode forth, “Ah sir, the request from the Noctish flotilla?”.

Dio didn’t stop but called back as he went, “Have the Noctish delegation brought to the mess, oh and send an official invite to Agrippa, I’m sure he’ll want to be involved, even though his men probably just heard this anyway.”. He chortled as he went, imagining Agrippa’s face and knowing he’d probably pay for that but hey, he couldn’t resist.

Image
Fig. The Naval Academy Mess, where Dio invited Agrippa and the Notcish delegation.



Unknown location, Harrenian Hegenomy

His head throbbed as he held it against the cold, damp stone of his cell wall. There wasn’t enough room to even sit down and he was held up against the wall by the unyielding metal of the door itself. He knew his headache was because of his hunger, lack of food always gave him headaches and they hadn’t been feeding him much apart from a thin watery porridge that was more like a drink than food. He licked his dry lips, closing his eyes to try and fall asleep but unable to do so from the crippling pain in his knees, shins and ankles; he’d been forced to stand this way for days, only being let out to eat. He’d been forced to sleep, urinate and deficate on his feet.

Suddenly the heavy metal door swung open and a harsh light flooded the cell and the prisoner instinctively shied away.
“Fuck me, he stinks!” Came an unfamiliar voice.
“What do you expect? The higher ups love the idea of these cells but don’t give a goblins shit about the maintenance…” Another replied
“Can’t we get some slaves to do this?”
“You heard the Prefect, he told us to pick him up, hes worked out some deal with the old man.”
“Bloody patricians...I suppose we have to wash him and all?”
“The hose will do, this scum probably won’t live through this anyway…”
“Good. I always enjoy this part.”


The blast of frigid water made him gasp and it didn’t help his headache at all. They were treating him as if he was nothing and talking about him as if he wasn’t even there. With the door gone he finally collapsed, allowing his legs to curl up. They cramped and he clutched them to his chest but when the cramps passed they finally relaxed. The prisoner then found himself being dragged away by the two men, his eyes finally adjusting to the light he could see the two men were wearing dark military tunics, their shoulders bearing a silver scorpion sigil. He groaned in despair; Praetorian Intelligence. He’d heard of untold thousands being taken by these remorseless killers, and none had ever returned.

The men took him to a separate room where they forced him into an old shift to cover his shame and even permitted him a crust of bread and a cup of water.
“Why we wasting good food on this filth?” One of his handlers asked.
“Prefect said keep him alert, the old man don’t want him collapsing in front of him, would ruin the old bastards fun.” The pair laughed unpleasantly before one slapped him round the head.
“You hear that scum?” He said vindictively. “Do what the old fuck says and maybe he won’t have your balls chopped off, eh?” More cruel laughter.

He devoured the bread in an instant, hoping it would be enough to finally make his headache abate yet embarrassed to have shown how desperate he was. As he washed it down with water, he cleared his throat, speaking through his tight vocal chords, “I don’t want to die and I can’t do any more of that,” gesturing back towards the cell he’d been held in, “I’ll do what you say. Please.”

The duo merely guffawed.
“I love it when they beg, come on scum, you’ve got a very important date to get to.”
“Lucky beggar!” Said the other still laughing. The prisoner was blindfolded and manhandled out of the room. He was dragged through a long corridor and up several flights of stairs. He overheard his handlers taking to an obvious authority figure, none of them sounded happy. Before he knew it he had been shoved down into a chair and he heard more men clattering towards him. Even blindfolded he could feel the tension in the room, before his mask was lifted and he found himself sitting opposite an older looking man, with steel gray hair and dressed in an elaborate white uniform.

Looking around he could see that both him and the man opposite were flanked by Roman legionaries, all of whom were looking directly at him. A cup of, what he assumed to be wine, was placed in front of him and the older man, the latter took a thoughtful sip before asking.
“Do you know who I am?”

“Oh god....”, he looked around at the opulence in the chamber and the ornate uniforms and the man himself, resplendent and terrible, the architect of countless thousands of Harrenian deaths, “oh god! I’m sorry. Please don’t kill me.”. His heartbeat thrummed at a massive rate, causing his head to throb in even more pain. He panted and closed his eyes, hoping that it would all just go away.

Agrippa smirked.
“I'll take that as a yes then.” He placed the cup down. “Do you know what you have done?”
He tried to respond but his racing heart and gasping breaths made it difficult to get out the words, “I... I killed your puppet.”. He saw no point in lying, it would achieve nothing and if he told the truth he might just get out of this alive. “I’m sorry.”
“Oh you’re sorry?” Agrippa said innocently clapping his hands together. “Well that’s alright then. You’re free to go, go on, back to whatever shitstained hovel you call home.”
“Please, I’m sorry,” he knew Agrippa was being sarcastic but he needed to have some hope, some way out, he couldn’t take any more suffering, “I’ll do whatever you want.”
“I’d expect no less from Harrenite scum such as yourself.” The Prefectus said with a sigh. “Let’s start with a few questions, even you should be able to handle that, surely? Who are you? And why did you try to kill poor old Gautima?”

He noticed the obvious implication. Gautima had survived and so it had all been for naught. He started crying. The world and the man in front of him blurred as he tried to respond through hiccoughs, “Izu Otome. Gautima,”, he wiped his eyes and sucked in breath, “Gautima is a collaborator,”, his throat was ragged and tense, “the bastard executed my daughter with his own hands!”. He stared up at Agrippa with bloodstained eyes, “Your orders I believe.”

“Tut, tut, are you people taught no discipline?” The Prefectus gestured vaguely to a legionary, who promptly hit Otome across the face. “As far as I'm aware the illustrious Premier never got his hands dirty since I gave him his fancy title, but I'm sure there's time yet. As you’ve probably guessed the tenacious bastard clung to life like a limpet, currently lounging around on one of my estates on Kos; fine wine, the best food and luxuries beyond your peasant understanding. Meanwhile you have to use your own clothes as a lavatory. Tell me, Mr Otome. Was it worth it?”

Reeling from the blow which compounded his splitting headache he missed most of what Agrippa said but forced himself to refocus, “No, but I had to try. Please, if he’s not dead....”, he left the point hanging like hope on the wind, staring up at Agrippa with pleading eyes.

“Then I have to let you go? Is that what your barbarian laws say?” A slow smile spread over the old man's face. “I am the law on Harren Island now, Mr Otome, and according to that law, you are a rebel and a traitor and you will die. It's just a matter or when...and how long it takes.” He stared coldly at the Harrenite for a few moments before suddenly breaking out into a sardonic smile.
“Don’t worry though, you won’t die without having left a legacy.” He snapped his fingers and one of the soldiers laid several photos in front of the other man.

“Oh dear god,”, he needed to escape, his muscles twitched and he frantically looked around, looking for a way out but only seeing the guards that were watching his every move, “please, please, I’ll do anything.”. He caught a glimpse of the photos on the table showing hundreds of dead Harrenian civilians and he vomited, losing what little food they had just given him. “Please!”.

Agrippa smirked viciously, glad one of the guards had thrust the mans head away from his august personage.
“It was your attempt that convinced me of the necessity of...harsher measures. To teach you pathetic people that resistance can only mean death!”
He leaned forwards, towards the dry heaving prisoner.
“Would you like to kill me, Mr Otome?” The Prefectus asked, voice suddenly melancholy but growing harsher with every word. “Take revenge for your the hundreds of thousands i've killed? Your family? Even your own precious daughter?” He paused a moment. “Do you think it would help?”

Spitting out the last bits that remained in his mouth, he looked up, aware of exactly how pathetic he seemed and ashamed of himself yet still desperate to survive. “Yes, I would, however I want to live more.”. He bowed his head, “I can try to infiltrate the Harrenian resistance for you, I can work for you.”

“There is a resistance is there?” Agrippa asked, his tone growing bored but flecked with disappointment. “Let's start with everything you know about them.”

A straw! He clutched at it, “Yes. Of course there’s a resistance.”, he spoke rapidly, reinvigorated by what he saw as a chance, “I heard it’s being run by Heartlanders mainly.”

Yawning the Prefectus stretched his arms behind his back. “I don’t imagine you’ll be seeing many Heartlanders around anymore, not that you’ll be seeing many people again; aside from the lovely fellows in Intelligence. You still have hope though.” Agrippa looked directly into one of the cameras in the corner of the room. “How disappointing.” He pressed a button underneath the table and the black-uniformed men were back in the room.
“I believe Mr Otome needs more time in his cell if he truly believes I’m that gullible.”

A bag was yanked down over his head and he couldn’t see much apart from blood stains and the rough cloth. Then he was hoisted out of his seat and dragged from the room. “Please, no, I’m cooperating!”

“Have someone clean this mess up, and get me a transport back to Cyma.” Agrippa said tediously to one of his guards as the prisoner was dragged away. “Summon that Dio fellow to me, It's time we had a chat.” Still hearing the man's screams as he was dragged away, followed by some muffled thumps, The Prefectus grinned to himself.
“Oh you’ll cooperate Mr Otome, if not in quite the way you might expect…”



Republic of Harren
Maria Otome watched as Colonel Vyr left, head cocked to one side and eyes tracking him as he made it to the gangplank and hurried off towards his station. Had she detected hesitation there? He was well versed in the ways of war, sure, but her proposition seemed to have disconcerted him. The checking of his weapon had seemed like a nervous tic and she didn’t think imminent battle would have triggered that in a man like him. It was certainly interesting and something she could try and push later, not now. She straightened before signalling to her assistant on the shoreline and strolling towards the gangplank herself, her shoes ringing across the hull of the submarine as she went.

Image
Fig. Republic of Harren Presidential Jeep.

When her feet made contact with the wharf, she grabbed the blue phone from her assistant’s grasp and held it to her ear, “Send a message to the Militia, I want them on standby across the Republic. Then send a message to Element 44, I want to know if the ADPP is ready. Then send a message to our new Naval Academy, send the trainee crews to their vessels now, they can learn from Myraxian crews in action.”. When she heard confirmation of her orders, she put down the phone, “Thank you Phoebe. Let us depart.”.

The two of them clambered up into a blue armoured jeep that was waiting at the quayside and the driver looked up into his rear-view mirror, “The Capital building Madam President?”.

At first she gave a noncommittal, “Mmmm,” before snapping her fingers and then looking him in the eyes, “No. Element 44. Now.”. He tapped his cap and then the car accelerated down the road, the muffled engine chugging as it forced the weight of the vehicle forward. It was joined by two other armoured jeeps at the harbour entrance that followed it out. The small convoy left the city and drove south-west to then follow a cliff-side road towards Rie and then an hour or so later, beyond Rie into the most sparsely populated countryside of Harren Island along thin dirt tracks.

A few more hours later, the convoy came to a gate in a chain-link fence cutting off a massive chunk of rocky and wooded land along the cliffside. A green light was shining on a lamppost above the gatehouse and the guards came out to check their passes. After handing back the passes, the Guard at the open window spoke out, “For your own safety, keep your windows closed, stay inside your vehicles and do not leave the track.”. Then he let them through and waved them on. They drove in, following a steep, winding road up to a newly constructed concrete edifice nestled in a rocky bluff by the lip of the precipice. A garage door swung open at their approach with a sharp electronic whine and harsh, white, fluorescent light spilled out. The jeeps thrummed in, tightly packing themselves into the hangar along with a couple cars as the door grated shut behind them.

Image
Fig. Part of the facility at Element 44

As Maria extricated herself from the tightly packed row of vehicles, a man in a white lab coat with glasses and unkempt hair rushed into the garage area, “Madam President! I sent a status update as requested.”.

Maria came to a halt in front of him as Phoebe rushed over to take up position at her side, Maria cocked her head and looked him up and down, “I would rather hear the status report from you. Personally.”.

“Oh, uh,”, he brushed his hair back and tried to tidy his uniform with one hand, “well, unfortunately, it seems that we won’t have operational.. adequate…. sufficient quantities, now.”.

Her eyes narrowed and her voice dropped as she stepped forward into his personal space, “You said, Doctor, that cultures like these were simple to produce. Simple and cheap enough that high schoolers could make them. Your words. Not mine.”.

Whilst taller than her by far he angled backwards and raised his hands as if to ward her off, “There have been, complications, trying to make… trying to perfect, delivery mechanisms.”.

“YOU said,”, she stepped forwards again, causing him to step back as her voice darkened and her glaring eyes stabbed up at him, “that it would be simple to modify pre-existing designs. That we could begin production almost immediately. What’s happened, Doctor? Why aren’t they ready? Help me understand.”. He bowed his head, dropping his arms and went silent. She shook her head angrily, “Don’t tell me you’re a conscientious objector after what they’ve done, what they’re doing? They’ve murdered, butchered, slaughtered, tortured fellow Harrenians, civilians and military alike. This isn’t even indiscriminate! It would be limited to military deaths only and you’re balking from it?”. She shook her head in disgust. “You’re fired! Get out of my sight.”. He nodded and left without saying a word.

Maria whirled, surprising Phoebe with a snarl, “and you. You said he was the man for the job. You will get this program back on track or you’ll be looking for a new job too. I want the systems ready by the end of the week and mass production started by the end of the month.”. Phoebe swallowed and nodded. She’d seen Maria’s anger before but never directed towards her.



Harrenian Heartlands
Rhea cried out in fear as she was roughly dragged from her mother’s grasp and tossed onto the ground. She scraped the skin off her hands and knees and curled up, crying from the pain, but her mother’s screaming cut into her very core and galvanised her into action. She awkwardly stood up and tried to go to her whilst desperately calling out, “Mama!”, but a boot from one of the armoured men sent her flying backwards onto the floor, writhing and unable to draw in breath. Tears streamed down her face as her diaphragm convulsed uselessly and her fingers grasped desperately at the air. Then sweet oxygen entered her heaving lungs and she could breathe again.

She rolled over and curled up into the foetal position as her mother’s screams turned into howling, anguished shrieks. She closed her eyes and clamped her hands over her ears whilst rocking on the floor, wishing it would all stop, wishing they would just go away. She could still hear the muffled shouts of the armoured men and the shrill squeals that no longer sounded like they came from a human.

Later, she didn’t know how much later, she felt a muscled arm gently curl under her torso. With her eyes still clamped shut and her hands grasping her ears, she felt herself being lifted aloft, slowly and carefully. Then she was wrapped in a warm embrace, with her head resting against the solid chest of a man. She could feel his heartbeat through the fabric of his shirt, slow and steady, calming. She opened her eyes and looked up, into his face, one that she’d never seen before, bearded and round with sad eyes and close-cropped hair. She saw he was speaking and felt the rumble in his chest but couldn’t focus on the words. When she tried to turn, his hand was there, grasping the back of her head firmly but softly, preventing her from looking. He shook his head and spoke again and this time she heard him, “I’m sorry little one but you don’t want to see that.”. His voice was deep and gravelly and in a way, extremely comforting. She cried out for her mother but he only clasped her to his chest and started walking, humming a slow song that she didn’t recognise.

She had fallen asleep but was awakened by angry shouting. Clutching desperately at the blue fabric of the man’s shirt, she quivered and started crying. Suddenly she felt like she was falling but she was still wrapped solidly in his grip, then with a thud she realised that they were now horizontal and it was he who had fallen with blood pouring from his nose. He rolled onto his knees and braced himself with his left arm, cradling her beneath him with his right. Looking out, she saw the armoured men and screamed. The armoured men attacked him, swinging their rifles like clubs, the blows raining down onto him with sickening crunches of bone and loud roars of pain. She felt him collapsing under the assault but before he did, he threw her out sideways to roll away, scraping skin off her elbows on the asphalt.

This time, she watched. They avoided his head but kept beating him until he stopped moving in a coherent manner, then four of them dragged him bloodily across the ground to the foot of a lamppost. She saw him raise a twitching hand as they tied a noose around his neck and began to hoist him up, six of them hauling on the rope and yanking him upwards as he convulsed. They left him there, jerking and limply gyrating as they laughed.

Then they left down the road and she heard shots from the direction they went and more screams. When she finally had the courage to move, she came across more and more bodies, some nailed to crosses, others burnt to death or thrown into the rivers. She saw a lot of dead that day.


Basil coughed roughly as his old pickup truck bounced along the road towards Odele as puffs of black soot belched from its exhaust pipe, its suspension groaning under the weight of the dirt piled on the back. The truck itself had a small rickety cabin at the front, with tinny doors, patched multiple times with nailed on bits of junk and wood. It was dirty, rusty and peeling paintwork flaked off with each bounce along the track. The wheels were thin, too thin to be driving off road but they scraped along nevertheless, grabbing purchase on the loose stones that slipped under the cracked rims and flat tyres.

Image
Fig. Basil's old truck.

He’d made this journey at least half a hundred times in the weeks since the bomb fell and he was weary. He loosened the scarf around his neck and hacked up some phlegm before spitting it out of his driver side window which hadn’t seen glass in years. Reaching a flat open stretch, he put his foot down, hearing the engine whine in complaint as it revved higher. The extreme juddering in the cabin caused dust and dirt to cascade from his clothes like water sliding from a raincoat.

Eventually he made it to his destination, upstream by one of the many rivers that flowed down towards the coast and Odele. When he got there, he turned off the engine and clambered out of the cabin. He wheezed and snorted, grabbing a flask from his glove compartment and drunk some water, clearing his throat and allowing him to draw in clear breaths. He mopped his forehead with a dirty rag and then reached behind his seat for an ancient, mud crusted spade. Then he began to work. Standing atop the pile in his truck bed he shovelled, stroke by stroke, for hours as he emptied the dirt from the back into the river, scoop by painful scoop. Each load splashing down into the running water and carried downstream to settle along the riverbed. Finally, after the sun had set and the last heaps were being scraped from the metal tray, he considered his job done, again.

He stowed his spade and clambered back into the cabin, rubbing his temples before starting the protesting engine and forcing it into gear. Then he started back down the way he came, skidding along the track without weight in the back to help provide grip. His feeble headlights barely lit up the path in front of him but he hardly cared as he careened along it at fifty miles an hour.

He was dozing off when a bright light poured through his windscreen and he slammed on the brakes, thinking the bastards had dropped another one. Then he realised that it was just a searchlight. Looking forward through the glare he could make out a checkpoint. That was new. He came to a stop and opened his door with a creak before pulling himself out and shaking his fist at them. “What in tarnation are y’all playin’ at?” The light was shining from an Asgarthian APC and its soldiers were manning the checkpoint along the road. They came forward to inspect the vehicle, ensuring he wasn’t transporting weaponry or rebels. He laughed, spitting up a little blood, “I ain’t got nuthin’ but dirt. Yer free to lick it if ya want.”. Two Asgarthians grabbed him and manhandled him to the side of the APC before kicking him to his knees and ordering him to strip.

After searching him, his clothes and his truck and finding nothing, he was booted away from the APC by one of the soldiers who had a split lip, “Go on you old, dirty bastard, fuck off.”. As Basil turned away and stumbled towards his truck, the soldier heard a faint crackling from inside the APC. He opened the hatch and rooted around under one of the seats, tracking the clicking back to its source. “Which fucking idiot forgot to turn off the damn Geiger Counter?”. Then realization hit him, he yanked it out and held it aloft, “SARGE! The Geiger Counter is ticking!”.

The sergeant darted over and grabbed it from him before waving it around to get a direction on the reading. Basil. The Sergeant stalked after him, “HALT Harrenite!”. As he drew closer the counter disgorged a torrent of loud, chattering clicks. He stepped back in shock, looking up at Basil and down at his readings. Then he aimed the device at the truck and the torrent of clicks became a constant drone. “Look at these readings! I’m surprised the fucking thing isn’t glowing! What the fuck have you been doing Harrenite?”.

Basil, standing there naked in the cold beam of light, cackled. “Y’all in Odele been tastin’ Prokopios.”.



Harrenian Heartlands-in-exile
Rezi had made it to the airstrip as one of the last Airships was about to depart, taking his driver with him, he had boarded along with other Harrenian refugees and made himself known to the Captain. They had taken off and were now floating over rippling blue waters, sunlight glinting off of the sea like a carpet of diamonds. Such a beautiful sight to exist at the same time as such horror on Harren.

Image
Fig. The view from the Airship Rezi escaped on.

He didn’t allow himself to rest, instead, he wrote a letter to the Trade-King’s office and handed it to the Captain, hoping he’d transmit it but aware that he had nothing of value to trade anymore and considering that was the Goblin way of life, he would probably be considered irrelevant and be ignored.

+++
Esteemed Trade-King,
Let me introduce myself, my name is Rezi Sune and as far as I know, I am the last active member of the Heartlands Government. I would like to meet with you to discuss how we should proceed considering the developments on Harren Island. I pray that you will continue to recognise our sovereignty internationally and continue assisting with further efforts to evacuate Heartlanders.
Acting Director Sune
+++




Villa Agrippae
Awaking to warm sunlight streaming down upon his bandaged chest, Gautima stretched, gasping as his back clicked and his wounds strained. He sat up, now fully bathed in the sun’s beam. He knew it was the same temperature as a nice autumn day on Harren but for some reason it felt colder, maybe it was because of the excess of marble that surrounded him or the knowledge that it belonged to Agrippa, or the fact that Harrenians were among its complement of slaves. He’d found that particularly galling and presumed that Agrippa had acquired them specifically to torment him.

He found himself thinking back to almost a week before, when he’d first been moved to Agrippa’s estate after a slew of operations in a Roman hospital, he couldn’t pronounce the name. It had been weird; Prince Nero had visited him, perhaps interested in Harren, or Agrippa. Gautima had debated using the opportunity to try and go over Agrippa’s head but that could have ended badly. He’d also thought about assassinating the Prince but was too weak and when he truly admitted it to himself, too craven, to do so.

He drained the glass of water on the bedside table and then leant over to pick up an ornate walking stick which he used to push himself to his feet and to assist him as he hobbled out of the bedroom and into the main living areas. He saw at once that a brown envelope had been left on the desk. He’d been hoping to not see it today but it was there again. He gingerly eased himself down onto the cushioned bench and put his walking stick across his knees as he grabbed the envelope and tore it open. Before he looked, he set his face in stone so that Agrippa wouldn’t have the pleasure of seeing his distress, that is, if he’d bugged his own estate.

Agrippa had been ensuring that Gautima was kept up to date with everything that had been happening on Harren Island and today was no different. Photos cascaded from the envelope and spilled across the desk. He forced himself to look at each and every one, burning the images into his mind and adding them to his ever-growing tally of hatred. At what point would the weight of his hatred surpass his instinct to survive? Gautima didn’t know but the fact that he was even asking himself that question meant that he was getting closer to that point. He would get Agrippa eventually. He needed that to be true.

Image
Fig. Gautima in hospital after his operations.

Interrogation scene written with Rome.

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Skjoldur
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Founded: Oct 01, 2018
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Postby Skjoldur » Sat Jan 05, 2019 2:02 pm

New Yanni, Harran Island
Asbjorn wiped his face, the sweat was dripping into his eyes. He had been in surgery for over seven hours now and there was no end in sight. He had been operating on kids as young as four and at this moment he was trying to stop a 7-year-old girl from dying. Fucking Asgarthians, they were monsters, nuking entire cities killing thousands of innocents just because they felt inadequate, and they called the Skjouldurians monsters. As Asbjorn continued with the operation he thought back to when he joined the medical academy. This was not the thing he had signed up for, he had imagined himself operating in a nice proper hospital with all the latest in modern medicine to assist him. Not operating in a small dimly lit room that smelt of blood and piss. As the operation continued Asbjorn could feel himself falling asleep, he knew he couldn’t continue for much longer, but he be dammed if he didn’t save this girl first. Sadly, however it wasn’t to be, in the fourth hour of the operation her heart simply stopped, she couldn’t continue the fight and Asbjorn watched another life pass away, the 3rd today. Asbjorn retired to the makeshift bunk bed he made himself at the back of the operation tent. He lay down took a swig of vodka to help him sleep. He closed his eyes and drifted off to a disturbed sleep.
He was woken up to the sounds of cheering and laughing, something that was uncommon in New Yanni. He left the tent into the fresh are, breathing in every single breath enjoying the fact he couldn’t smell blood. He forced his way through a crowd of people to the front. What he saw lifted even his spirits. Hundreds of troops were at the docks unpacking boxes with the first aid sign on, doctors and nurses flooded from the ships. Skjoldur had sped up its first aid methods, New Yanni’s first aid were to be improved. A fully working hospital was being set up and refuge centres were being established. Anyone who wanted to leave Harran just had to swear loyalty to the Kingdom of Skjoldur and they would be transported to Skjoldur to be given jobs. It wasn’t much but it was all Skjoldur could do to help these poor people.

Harran Ocean, 10 Miles outside Rie
Freydis was happy. Today had been good for her. She had been given the order to raid Myraxian territory on very short notice. She had manged to gather several ships and set off on a short raiding trip. Unplanned they had manged to raid most of the small towns and villages along the coast line and had taken everything possible, they would make good money from this, she laughed to herself, the Romans payed good money for Skoldur to make even more money, she didn’t understand it, but she wasn’t one to judge. As the raiding party got nearer the city of Rie Freydis began to debate whether she should turn back, they had already got what they wanted for today and the Romans would be happy, but she decided to push on, if she could get the city, they would sing songs about her for at least a few years.
She could already hear the songs about her as Rie came into view, she ordered her ships into formation and was about to order the attack when she heard the a yell, she turned around and swore to herself, Myraxian ships were coming appearing heading directly towards her. Freydis grabbed her radio
“abort” she yelled “get the fuck out of here”
Luckily Skjouldurain raiding fleets were very good at scattering, they broke formation sailing so smoothly and agile in a way only Skjoldurian ships could. Most of the ships manged avoid the Myraxians, one however got caught by a Myraxian missile blowing a hole in its engine. Freydis turned around to see what was happening. The Captain a wily and experienced raider by the name of Gregers was forcing the crew, telling them to swim for the other boats, he turned and noticed Freydis he smiled and shrugged he shoulders, turning back to his control he pushed a button on his control panel, the ship automatically went up in flames, leaving nothing behind. Freydis smiled to herself, no Skjouldrian captain would ever let his ship be taken into enemy hands. That’s why the self-destruct button was there, to make sure a captain could go down with his ship, the greatest of honours. Another explosion grabbed her attention as the ship in-front of her was hit by a stray missile, Freydis examined the damage, the hole was huge and would mostly likely mean the ship would have to be scuttled once they got back to New Yanni, but it would make it there, that was the most important thing. As the ships headed out of the range of the Myraxian ships the tension was lifted, one of the younger crew members jumped onto the side of the ship and started to yell obscenities. He was promptly reward by a beating by one of the sergeants, telling him to stop being an idiot. Freydis chuckled to herself, that was a close one, next time she would come back with more ships and avenge the ones she lost today.

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