[Violetian RP] Stories from Violetia

Where nations come together and discuss matters of varying degrees of importance. [In character]
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[Violetian RP] Stories from Violetia

Postby Syrasia » Mon Feb 20, 2023 11:36 am


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This is an in-character (IC) thread for nations to post eclectic mixes of story-driven RPs in Violetia. For more information please visit the "roleplay rules" dispatch, and if you want to join our map, check out the "roleplay map" dispatch.

Posts that consist of more than one part must be clearly labelled as such.

This is a thread for members of Violetia only. Please consider joining our region if you are not already a member. You also require a map claim.
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Also Not FNU
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Founded: Dec 31, 2022
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Postby Also Not FNU » Mon Feb 20, 2023 11:38 am

    A Simple Story

Henry Russel Adler was a quiet man. Something all those who had lived around him considered a great irony. Born in 1958 to King Lewis IV and Queen Betty, he was an exceptionally strange child. He never cried, never demanded anything, and behaved, as his mother once described, “an antonym to everything the word ‘baby’ stands for.” His middle years were much the same, sticking to studying under the instruction of his tutors while not doing much outside of occasionally posing the odd question or two. 1976 proved an interesting year, Henry taking up an interest in serving within the Royal Navy. This led to a great level of frustration between him and his father, who for his part feared the possibility of losing his only heir. It would remain a point of argument and annoyance between the two men for years following.

In 1996, at the age of 38, Henry ascended to the throne after his father’s passing. His coronation was regarded as far less elaborate than others of its type, but nonetheless it was fitting of the man. Joining him on the throne was his wife, Queen Jules, and taking the position of Prince of the NEC was his one year old son, Oliver Lee Adler. Most of his early years on the throne saw him intervening with assistance of the Conclave on several deadlocked pieces of legislation, including but not limited to the Universal Equality Act, Equality in Marriage Act, and the Internet Freedom Act. He began being referred to as the “soft-spoken iron fist” of many more progressive pieces of legislation, though he refused to state any true alliance to one party over the other.

To Henry, 2023 was intended to be more of the same, breaking deadlocks and meeting people. Hell, his trip to Syrasia had just proven his intentions, but at the same time he knew that something wasn’t right. Following his return, he found himself unable to shake his fatigue, relegating himself to the Palace’s library where he either sat staring at the large fish tank full of cuttlefish he’d found in his studies, or just staring at the ornate ceiling. Eventually Queen Jules yelled at him about speaking with the Royal Doctor, James E. Lamb. Henry wanted nothing less than to meet with the man, for no other reason than he hated the idea of being sick. He had far better things he could be doing then having a doctor smash his knee with a rubber hammer. By the third time he vomited on the library’s carpeting, he finally gave in.

A trip to Caradon Central Hospital later, and the diagnosis was grim. Kidney failure. It wasn’t necessarily a surprise to the King, he’d always been a smoker, and his consumption of brandy was a tinge questionable more often than not, but he hadn’t expected it to catch up with him yet. There were things he could do to prolong his life, but he refused the idea of dialysis, and he wasn’t keen on the idea of getting a transplant, well aware that he’d likely end up ruining that in the same way he had himself. Perhaps what annoyed him the most was the idea of having to explain to the nation that their King was nothing more than a sickly old man.

The following days at the Palace were exceptionally quiet, Henry continuing to lock himself in the library, slaving away at seemingly nothing. And then came the fateful night, [current day], 2023. No matter where the Royal Guards looked, the King couldn’t be found. Even the library was empty, the doors being left ajar by whoever had last been in there (which was Henry considering he’d been the only one able to get in there in the first place). Soon enough the motor pool was under inspection, and missing from the collection was Henry’s green 1952 A52 model Cosmoliner. He’d left for somewhere, and that somewhere was anyone’s guess. Except for Prince Oliver, he knew exactly where the man was, after all, he was sitting next to him.

Lake Heralder wasn’t a very glorious place, it was a small man made thing, surrounded with oaks that were easily a hundred years old, but it didn’t matter much to Henry, it's always been a favourite location of his. There was a park bench which sat perfectly to give a view of the sunrise coming up from the tree line obscuring it, and as soon as it peeked, the water would glow in a most beautiful way. When he was much younger, he’d come out there to fish, of course accompanied by some form of guards much to his annoyance. Now it was just him and Prince Oliver. They sat quietly, not looking at each other much less speaking. Oliver understood why his father had come here, and he wasn’t about to interrupt the older man’s moment by breaking the peace. As the sun rose higher, gently blanketing the water in warmth, the older man reclined further and further back into the bench, his son dutifully watching that he not fall from his seat.

“Oliver, I’ve lived to see this sunrise a thousand times before, but the beauty of this one is unlike any other.”

No response comes out of the green eyed man, merely nodding in agreement, watching as the King’s eyes slowly begin to close shut. A final deep sigh comes from him before a peaceful quiet takes its place. Henry Russel Adler is dead. Prince Oliver doesn’t cry, doesn’t make much of any emotion, but merely rings Queen Jules.

“He’s found where he belongs.”

Within twenty minutes, the King’s body is recovered by some employees of Caradon Central, but Oliver continues to sit, staring at the gentle orange surface before him. A new era has begun for the Commonwealth, but the young man isn’t yet ready, he’d like to see the sun rise a little further, the wind gently blowing upon him.

Long Live King Oliver.

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Also Not FNU
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Founded: Dec 31, 2022
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Postby Also Not FNU » Sat Feb 25, 2023 12:18 pm

    We Choose

May 27th, 1969. Violeta had never looked more beautiful than from [lunar?] orbit, and now one of those watching from afar was intending to see it from a view that very few prior to him had seen. The Norrs had beaten the Commonwealth by a decent amount, they were second, and as chances stood the program would barely survive until Trinity XIV. Both of the crew knew that, but they were still more than enthused to push ahead. The failure of Trinity VIII still hung over the program, and they knew they needed to succeed or the program was most certainly dead in the water.

Inside of the LK was Edmund Graham, and controlling the LOS was Hugh Winston. Both of the men had been with the NEAA since the very beginning, Edmund having first flown aboard Solus III after narrowly avoiding being selected as the crew member for the Solus I stationary test, which ended up saving him from a fiery grave. Hugh had first flown aboard the Copubalis VI, becoming the first cosmonaut in the Commonwealth to go on a space walk. From there, the two men had been assigned together on Copubalis VIII, the first successful Commonwealth docking of two crafts in space. From the very start of the Trinity program it was clear the men were going to be selected for one of the crews, just not which, a side effect of the secretive attitude of the Head of the Cosmonautics office then actual lack of information. He claimed it kept the two on their toes.

At 9:16 pm UTC, landing procedures began. CAPCOM flooded both of the men’s ears with information. Edmund would first separate the LK, checking manoeuvrability briefly, while Hugh backed away the LOS to give room for the descent burn. At 9:18 pm, pre-descent checks were finalised and the word came in from CAPCOM.

“CAPCOM to Crown, Flight, FIDO, and GUIDO all have green down here, you are go for descent burn.”

With a small confirmation message in reply, Edmund swiftly approached the flight computer, entering in the P63 descent code and pressing the enter key. Slowly a great rumbling came from below him, and the horizon began to change its angle through the LK’s windows. He watched as his speed slowed and increased periodically, the engine burning periodically to readjust the landing angle. Coming back to alertness from the surroundings at 23,000 feet from surface level, he quickly punched in the P64 program, taking manual control of any RCS adjustments as the surface grew closer and closer. He continued the cycle all the way down to 6,000 feet, entering various programs into the flight computer while steadying the little lander on its way down.

At 5,000 feet, word came in from CAPCOM, he was all green for final descent. Entering the V62 program, he gained complete control of his lander at last, able to throttle the engine manually as the need arises alongside maintaining the lander’s orientation. As the surface seemed to reach out to grab him, he came to a stark realisation: The landing site was anything but hospitable, rocks dotted the surface, and any clear zones were still too small to reasonably aim for. He had to put her down soon, otherwise he’d hardly have enough fuel to get back up to the LOS.

“Crown to CAPCOM, landing site is looking rough, are there any nearby alternatives?”

“CAPCOM to Crown, that’s negative, you’re going to have to work with whatever you’re seeing.”

Frustratedly sighing, he steadied himself at the control panel, watching his window markers to see how close he was getting. If he got too close to the surface the chances are he’d blind himself with lunar dust, so he’d have to fly on instruments soon enough. Frantically searching through the window, he found a spot that looked clear enough and began a final deceleration burn. Seconds felt longer than they ever should, but soon enough a bright blue light flashed at him, ‘LCON’, Lunar Contact. Reaching over to the flight computer, he imputed a final code, SB1, firing the SRB’s on the landers leg supports to make sure the craft was planted. He listened as they roared, and as a sickening crunch came from under him.

Shutting down the flight computer and making sure the transmitter was still in good working order, he began preparations for the Lunar EVA, checking that everything was ready before depressurizing the cabin. Looking through the now ajar door, he could see the surface closer than ever before. It was oddly beautiful for something so bland, a mere endless sea of different varieties of grey. Making his way out the door, and standing on the admittedly short ladder, he took great care in pulling the snap ring to deploy the small camera mount on the side of the craft. Waiting until the red light on the side of it began flashing at him, he continued his descent down the tiny ladder until he stood atop the landing pad.

With a little push off, his feet hit the lunar surface. He wasn’t first, he knew that, but he still couldn’t help but feel some type of giddy. It was now that he was supposed to give a speech written by a punch of corporate blockheads for public relations back on Violeta, but he’d torn it to shreds rather than memorising it.

“I’ve taken a mere step, and yet the whole world has progressed forward. It’s wonderful, the world, I can see it in all of its beauty from this grey little rock.”

He paused momentarily, taking in the moment and then continuing onwards with his improved speech.

“It’s a shame that it took politics to get us this far. Bureaucracy more than the human spirit is responsible for this, and it shouldn’t be. Our neighbours in this system shouldn’t be explored out of a sense of being better than someone else, but for the betterment of all mankind.”

Following the speech, the next few hours consisted of setting up experiments, among them retroreflectors, and a seismometer. The planned EVA wouldn’t permit him to deploy the entire kit, but it would be sufficient data to get the lads back home drooling. Despite the flight surgeon’s request for him to return to the LK early, he wouldn’t have any of it. Not speaking further, he walked around the landing sight, gathering surface samples and whatever else he could pocket. From his wrist pouch, he removed a small object, a cosmonaut figurine made of emerald. It had no name, face, flag or identification on it. It was his own form of a memorial, to those who had been unable to live to see this day in the quest to reach into the stars.

With his secondary mission finished, he returned to the LK, doing the best he could to make himself cosy in the cramped cabin. His sleeping bag provided a comfortable warmth, and the hammock gently rocked, providing a further sense of relaxation. Tomorrow would come bright and early, but for the time he had he intended to sleep well.

Part One of Two. These two posts are mainly lore dumps, but are needed to understand a separate post I’ll be making in the News Thread come the time. EDIT: Also I should mention that his landing site is simply known as the Sea of Nihil, or the IRL Mare Serenitatis/a similar equivalent for the region
Last edited by Also Not FNU on Sat Feb 25, 2023 12:25 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Also Not FNU
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Postby Also Not FNU » Sun Feb 26, 2023 9:13 pm

    A Weeping Void

Waking up the next morning was a less than pleasant affair, CAPCOM choosing to take manual control of the comms relay in the lander, and subsequently blasting John Thompson’s “My Way” into Edmund’s sluggish ears, leading to a less then nice fall from his hammock and onto the floor. The process of grabbing some orange juice and suiting up took a little longer that ‘morning’, Edmund taking his sweet time much to the annoyance of CAPCOM. He deemed it a small petty form of revenge, but it was massively cathartic.

After finally making his way out of the lander for the second day of operations, he set about gathering further samples. This included small things such as taking samples from rocks, naming whatever strange things he observed, and generally enjoying the views. It was strange to think that he was the first to see his landing site from the ground, no one else had or likely would ever see what he was seeing, and there was a strange beauty in that. Within an hour of the EVA’s start, CAPCOM set about pestering him again, something about a request to use the comms system externally mounted on the LK to speak with someone back on Violeta. He listened in pain as static filled his comcap before a voice began to ring through, and watched as the red dot on the camera began to blink at him once more.

“Hello Commander Graham, I’m currently speaking to you from Caradon Palace, I must say that your landing has had quite the effect on our nation. I would like to personally congratulate you and Mr. Winston. You may not have been first, but I dare say you’ve done it better.”

“Thank you your Majesty, it’s a great honour to be here, however we’re but a small part of this. Some 400,000 people were involved in the making of this moment, be it contractors or the men and women of mission control. And of course none of this would’ve been possible if the people hadn’t approved us to venture into the stars.”

“You make a good point Commander, godspeed and good luck on the rest of your mission.”

“Thank you Sir.”

As the comms went silent, the camera finally cut out, leaving him in silence for the first time since touchdown. His breath filled his helmet, gently misting against the surface of the glass hemisphere. He hadn’t been lying when he said it was beautiful, the gentle grey surface kissing against the black void of space, and dead ahead of him the little blue marble he called home sat staring back. It was amazing the peace someone could find in a world void of any other living beings. It wasn’t meant to last though, his mission was over, it was time to head back to that very blue ball he had stared at for so long.

Readying himself at the controls, he began to run through procedures. Switching the guidance controller to AGS, and setting the mode to auto, he stood ready at the controls. Though he had only spent two days on the surface, he was both ready and not ready to leave. There was so much more to see, to witness and explore, but he needed to go home, people were waiting for him, and he needed to make sure Captain Williams had kept his word and fed his fish. Looking at the red button glowing next to the lunar contact light, he pressed down, waiting for the gentle thud of the engine igniting and separating from the landing base. Nothing happened. The engine had failed to ignite, and separation had subsequently not occurred.

“This is Nihil Base to John Crown, we’ve got a failure to ignite here, any feedback on your end?”

“That’s negative Nihil Base, we’re getting no read outs at all from the engine, possible issue with the electrical system suspected.”
“Roger that, anything you want me to do on my end?”

“Booster advises an EVA to inspect the engine, they’re not convinced that EECOM’s electrical theory is correct.”


Exiting the spacecraft for an unplanned third time, Edmund set about squeezing his helmet under the LK’s body, trying to better inspect the engine assembly. It takes more effort then he would prefer, even raising the ever concerned voice of the flight surgeon about his heart rate elevating too high, but soon enough he can finally see what’s wrong. That crunching noise he heard when he landed wasn’t the lunar soil, it was the engine getting destroyed by a rock that he managed to land right on top of. He knew there was nothing to be done for it, relaying his opinion to CAPCOM to explain as much, but he was instead ordered back inside the capsule while Booster and EECOM tried to come up with something.

For another two hours ideas came through from CAPCOM, every single one unsuccessful. Even Winston had begun to panic, going off-comm only to return with a hair brained scheme for Edmund to jump from the top of the LK and grab the LOS from a hyper-low orbital pass. It was quickly shot down for it being nothing more than madness.

Eventually the word came through, there was no solution. With the words finally being spoken, Winston was given the orders to commit to a TVI burn on his next orbit, which he initially refused until Edmund agreed. As the LOS boosted away, Edmond went off-comms a final time, stepping outside and staring into the black void above. It was beautiful, horrible yet beautiful. Turning on his communications cap, he spoke briefly.

“What we have achieved today is a mere step towards tomorrow, and though I may not live to see it, I am hopeful that this nation, and the greater world will continue their advance to space. I hope that all who look to the stars may someday be among them in one form or another. We cannot fear the unknown, we must keep stepping, leaping forward into it. This is Nihil Base, signing off.” Walking over to the camera, he unplugs the cables before returning inside of the capsule. He figures he may as well live as long as he can, maybe set a record or two in the process.

Another day goes by, and the silence begins to eat at him. He’s well aware of it, the marks on the wall telling him this is day three of what was meant to be a two day excursion. The food was the only comfort provided to him. What was originally a logbook turned into a collection of last thoughts, with ideas for last words scribbled throughout. He went on a final EVA, sliding under the lander in his clunky suit to look at the engine that had damned him. A few frustrated punches went by before he returned in, hands raw in spite of the suit’s protective covering.

Day four was the last of the saga, the carbon dioxide filters giving way, the air becoming stuffy with it. Turning on the comms connection with what little battery was left, he spoke in traditional Marcionian.

“Dormirò per un po', chiamala eternità.”

Then, with the great hissing of air, the vacuum of space consumed him. The stars accepted him as one of their own, and the void wept with stars.

Part Two of Two. This is the background required for an upcoming news post, and to clarify Edmund’s death: He doesn’t die of CO2 poisoning, but painlessly from O2 deprivation which is terrifyingly the same way that Apollo 11 would’ve ended if they’d landed worse.

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Also Not FNU
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Postby Also Not FNU » Sun Mar 05, 2023 8:12 pm

    The Rising Winds

HMS Valcour was an ancient ship by combat standards. She had become obsolete the moment anti-ship missiles reached maturity, and was nothing more than a massive juicy target and a waste of taxpayer dollars. She’d been a museum since 2006, after the Morons War came to a close with the annexation of the entirety of Beliktra, however she remained under Royal Navy management. While people could walk through the ship, buy silly little trinkets made out of metal from her 1997 refit, and take photos of most parts of the ship, her engine rooms and citadel remained locked tight, maintained and seen only by personnel sent by the Admiralty.

Big guns were always a vital part of Noreaster naval strategy, and subsequently keeping Valcour and Whipple in states in which they could be reactivated if the need arose was a strategic necessity. When they were opened to the public, no one in the higher echelons of the navy actually expected them to ever need reactivation, and yet a service crew had been labouring away inside of Valcour’s engine rooms for nearly a month. They’d been slowly bringing her from cold iron back up to steam. A week of that had just been the preparations, mainly checking the fuel lines, drive shafts and the fuel pumps. When no issues were revealed, the crews began circulating feed water through the boilers, checking to make sure it properly circulated.

Then came the biggest issue with the whole operation: Valcour burned bunker oil, and only a single other ship in the entire fleet, HMS Conquest. This compromised the entire plan, as technically the public was not yet to be informed of this, and sending the Conquest to transfer fuel or have the HMS Timchenko return early from it’s mission would only draw the attention of both sceptics and shipspotters, i.e. too many eyeballs. So, in the dead of night an Admiralty tugboat ordered the fuel tanker MV El Vivo to come alongside the relic of a different era, pumping some two hundred thousand gallons of fuel into the old ship's bunkerage. Ordering the El Vivo to depart, and giving them a government IOU, the work continued.

At 2:48 AM, March 4th, 2023, smoke once more began to spit from the Valcour’s funnel. Wind pushed it higher into the heavens, breaking the plumes of smoke into small bubbles, almost as though the old ship was coughing, and then it ran steady. She was awake, and she was ready. Operation Commonwealth was go.

Valcour will be used to recover HMS Commonwealth, whose restoration process will likely take a decade. See you lot in 2033. Also yes, the time frame of her being brought up from cold iron is accurate to when I posted the Commonwealth's discovery.

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Also Not FNU
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Postby Also Not FNU » Tue Mar 07, 2023 6:47 am

    You What.

“Roger, what in the hell did you say at that press conference.”

“Nothing we haven’t talked about before Director.”

“I need to be sure that what the National Post pressed isn’t them making things up.”

“I said that we’re still dedicated to the lunar program, with the efforts to restart the L2/M1 production line having encountered a few problems, and I offhandedly remarked that it’d be nice to recover Commander Graham’s corpse.”

“You what?”

The next twenty minutes in the offices at Mulaney Space Center are loud, brash, and anything but calm. Everything from threats of being fired and concerns of being shot for stupidity fly between the two men, the argument only ending when Director Henson finally shut Roger up for a moment.

“Well you’ve already f*cked the pooch, and we have the spare budget, so I advise you start figuring out what the hell you’re going to do before the King has us both shot for incompetence and the National Post pisses on our graves.”

Watching as the Director departed the room, Roger was left in perhaps the worst position anyone at the NEAA had been in since the kerfuffle in 71’ over Trinity XVI and XVII’s launches. That incident had almost seen The Conclave charge at the time Head of the NEAA Louis Thompson on treason until King Lewis IV personally intervened. What he had inadvertently proposed was the most complex mission in the history of the agency, and he was starting at ground zero.

In order to recover a nearly 55 year old hunk of junk off the lunar surface, he’d need to design a mission that not only could get to the Moon, but then descend, perfectly grab the LK, return to lunar orbit, get back to Violeta, and then somehow bring it safely to the surface. The crux of the whole mission was actually connecting something to the LK. Trinity IX through XV all used LKI landers, designed with a simple pin connector docking port. When the L2/M1 was first launched in 1971 for Trinity XVI, the lander design was changed alongside the docking port, now being a much more traditional latch and seal design with a crew tunnel between the LOS and LKII. What this meant is that the now again in production LOS was completely useless since it was the L2 model.

Of course, they could always latch onto the frisbee shaped top, but that assumed the flimsy connecting rod held together when directly pulled on, which knowing how well constructed Trinity IX was in general, wasn’t likely. There was no way they could lose additional weight by draining fuel or removing the destroyed engine, that’d require a crew-rated L2/M1, and they’d barely managed to launch one unmanned. Soon enough, Roger has an entire engineering team in his office throwing proposal after proposal at him, none of which are at all feasible (perhaps the worst one being a proposal to build a claw machine-like device to grab all the way to the bottom of the thing).

Enter William Bennet.

Part One of Two. Totally a planned cliffhanger and not me having no clue how to carry on this rambling mess

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Postby Also Not FNU » Thu Mar 09, 2023 2:16 pm

    Sway of Steam

The 72nd Railway Company was a strange little piece of the military. Operating out of Fort Rivia in Trenstley, they acted mostly as the lifeline of supplies in and out for the old stone fortress, but every now and again they got the unusual assignment of acting as chauffeur to men on leave from their postings at the fort. It was a boring job, and it was by far not the most respected MOS someone could get in the Royal Army, but it was still a better job than working sanitation.

Travelling between Fort Rivia and Trentsley’s west-side via the elevated railroad, running trains between the two was easy enough so long as the line was cleared as requested. It wasn’t uncommon though for the city to refuse service to the leave trains, but usually it took until the engine was arriving at Fort Rivia and already loading men for the message to reach the Stationmaster, leaving the men to deal with the angry masses who had suddenly discovered they’d need to walk to their favourite bar. It wasn’t a common occurrence though, the city usually understood the purpose of requesting rail access temporarily, unless it was a particularly heavy day for traffic.

S42-126 was the main locomotive that was operated by the 72nd, engineered by Private Sam Livingston, Private Roger Banks, and Lieutenant George Henry, who respectively acted as Fireman, Engineer, and Overseer. MP’s were also assigned throughout the passenger cars, keeping an eye on the gaggle of men looking for nothing more than to get drunk and come back with splitting headaches that they could complain about to the chaplain to get out of work the following morning. To the knowledge of the crew, 126 was cleared for departure from Fort Rivia at 8:13 AM, after the city confirmed that traffic should likely be clear. Some thirty minutes later, trouble began to brew.

The Trenstley Tracker’s were the main locomotives that ran the elevated railway, old electric multiple units that had seen far better days, but they were cheap and so the city continued to operate them. Their crews were informed that 126 would be remaining in Fort Rivia until 8:13 AM, and therefore they’d have enough time to make the morning run around the loop before 126 needed passage rights, at which point the Outer Line would have to transfer onto the Trentsley Tracker Line. This was due to the way the elevated rail usually ran, which was in a clockwise fashion starting at Trentsley Central Harbour, then along the seawall to East Central, followed in rapid succession by the stop at the Grand Terminal in the south, and then to the Westward Transfer and back around again. In order for 126 to run unopposed, the passing line which would need to be cleared by 8:13 AM. This was easy enough as it meant that the outer counterclockwise Trentsley Outer Line would simply transfer its EMU’s to the Trentsley Tracker Line, leaving the passing line empty for 126. Trouble was that no one had told the crew of Outer Line EMU-10, who had overslept and arrived late to their post, meaning that they were under the incorrect impression that 126 would be arriving at 9:28 AM, the time it had arrived two weeks ago when it last ran, and rather then double checking they trusted in their judgement and began to run their route.

Coming from the opposite end of the track on which EMU-10 was operating was 126, travelling at a solid 65 miles an hour since it wasn’t planning on encountering any turns until reaching Westward Transfer on the otherwise straight line trip between the old brick fort and the liquor cabinets of the west-side. Towing three passenger cars, the brakemen comes to make a report to the MP acting as conductor on this trip; the brake lines have lost pressure, meaning that 126 will need to begin slowing sooner than usual. This is slowly relayed up the locomotive and to Lieutenant Henry, who then cautions Private Banks. In the time it’s taken to relay this message, they’ve failed to realise that their boiler pressure had increased substantially, and that EMU-10 was about to turn into a tin can against 126’s boiler.

It lasts thirty-eight agonising seconds, and then the world goes quiet. EMU-10 is a pile of wires, aluminium, and lithium fires. 126 stands upright still, its buffer beam smashed within inches of the piston heads, and perhaps worse is the boiler is only continuing to rise in pressure. Lieutenant Henry and Private Banks are quick to their feet, ordering the men inside the passenger cars to begin running along the line and as far from the locomotive as they can get, and assisting those who can’t run on their own, handing them off to other soldiers to carry them to safety before inspecting EMU-10. There’s nothing left of the crew other than a gritty red paste.

Inside of the cabin, a still slightly stunned Private Sam Livingston finally came to, still with fuzzy vision, he began to inspect the pressure gauge. The locomotive isn’t long for this world at the rate it’s climbing, and trying to regulate it now would blow it. Yelling out of the cabin, he looks around, spotting a switching point. Slowly opening up the throttle valve in reverse, the locomotive hisses and wheezes backwards, complaining throughout. Finally putting the front-most wheel behind the point, he yells at Private Banks to manually adjust it, watching as the short man struggles to lever it down, before with the assistance of Lieutenant Henry he finally forces the point over. Shouting for the couches to be decoupled, he listens as the chains begin to rattle, identifying that the locomotive is free of its cargo now. He opens the throttle again, edging the locomotive onto the clockwise line, going far enough up the line to find another switch, having the other two men open it for him. The moment he’s back on the Outer Line and past EMU-10’s wreckage, he opens the throttle valve to full, and shoots onwards.

He knew that when a S42 Class boiler detonated, it was never pretty, and so he forced the locomotive faster and faster, fully opening the blowers and dangerously stoking the coals at risk of a firebox detonation. Slowly the speedometer rises and rises, twenty five miles an hour, thirty five, forty eight, sixty, and eventually it hits top speed, seventy-five miles an hour. 126 sways violently from side to side, like a frustrated animal doing some type of ceremonial dance of death. Westward Transfer comes and goes, the locomotive threatening to derail. Sam watches as the signalman at the station violently pulls at some levers, and suddenly 126 is careening out of the city and down the runaway line. He’s been successful in diverting a disaster, and only now does he realise: He’s stuck on a train about to explode going seventy some miles an hour, and the brakes aren’t going to save him now.

And then 126 finally blows.

Part one of two. Part two will be in the News Thread.

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Postby Also Not FNU » Mon Mar 13, 2023 12:31 am

    Steely Eyed Missile Man

William Bennet was one of the lead engineers on the still under development [whatever we’re calling Mars] Rover Program, and much to Roger’s fortune, he was the designer of the planned Skycrane system intended to lower the rover the final 20 metres down to the red planet. What he proposed was about as straightforward as a mission of this complexity could get: Lorraine Propulsion Laboratory would construct an upscaled Skycrane system, increasing the available delta v for the operation as well as increasing the thrust to the point where it could reasonably lift four extra tons of weight back to orbit. The benefit of redesigning a Skycrane for the moon is that they wouldn’t have to worry about extra drag on the way down or up.

After the Skycrane recovered the LK, it would reunite with the TLI stage in LLO and return to LVO. It wouldn’t have anywhere near enough fuel or protection by this stage to deorbit the payload, meaning that a Unionis shuttle mission would need to occur. For sake of convenience it could be done by a departing crew reshuffle for Silvia station, avoiding the excess costs of launching a dedicated mission. Of course, it would be a tight squeeze to fit the LK inside of the Unionis cargo bay, mainly due to the extended position of the landing legs, but that bridge could be crossed when they reached it.

An additional issue would be the Kessler syndrome created by dumping the Skycrane system in orbit. Chances stood that the craft would run out of delta v just within LVO perimeters, meaning there would be no way to further descend the craft allowing it to burn up in the atmosphere. However, with the cooperation of the CAF, it could be possible to use a returning Locusoar to more or less dump it on the way home with no risk or further expense to the crew or agency.

It was a stupid plan, one that regardless of its cost cutting measures would likely cost millions, but it was stupid enough to make it work, and that’s what made it worthwhile. Additionally, it was too much of a PR nightmare for the NEAA to back out now, and Bennet’s concept, though complex in it’s organisation, relying on everything being in it’s right place at the right time, it was still a better idea then flying a giant claw machine to the moon, and so with a big green stamp, Project Homecoming was go.

Part two of two. I know it’s shorter than I could’ve made it but I want to focus on other things and I began to burn out over this, so I’m calling this a finished product.

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Also Not FNU
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Founded: Dec 31, 2022
Left-Leaning College State

Postby Also Not FNU » Mon Mar 13, 2023 12:28 pm

    Sodium Fever

The Nor’easter Nuclear Energy Commission had existed since 1956, when documents from the St. Lee Laboratory first became public knowledge, and the government declared it necessary for a governing body to exist and regulate civilian nuclear plants to make sure not every moron with the financial capital could throw one together. Early plants were large, bulky things, inefficient and questionable in practicality. Some critics of the early attempts went as far as saying that drawing something other than destruction from the atom was a fruitless endeavour, but many pushed on.

In 1958 the Keyfre Hall Nuclear Plant first opened and was connected to the power grid of its namesake city, and was completely successful in powering a small section of the city. It was by no means a very effective reactor, only producing about 60 MWe, but it was the father of all future atomic plants in the country. It was followed up by the St. Kari Atomic Plant in 1961, which generated more than double the amount of electricity at 180 MWe. Both of these plants would be decommissioned in the early 2000’s, but of the two St. Kari’s plant generated nearly 34 billion kilowatt hours over its service life. Developments would continue with reactors becoming capable of generating increasingly large amounts of electricity, so much so that some cities shut down older coal plants and relied solely on the reactors.

Then in 1982, a small-scale meltdown occurred at AtomEast Plant Twelve, just north of Algerton. It caused no lasting damage, and the clean up operations only took a few weeks, but it was still enough to shake people’s faith in the system. In June of 1983, testing would occur at the Heffner Creek Atomic Plant. Heffner Creek’s reactor was unique in comparison to the rest of the country, the only liquid sodium reactor actively in service at any plant. It was believed that the design was meltdown proof, that, even with complete loss of the coolant systems the reactor wouldn’t meltdown, with the sodium absorbing the heat before damage could occur. This had remained theoretical up to this point, but with NNEC officials in attendance, the plant operator intentionally shut down the coolant system in a series of two tests. In both occurrences the reactor failed to meltdown. Success.

It was unfortunately too little too late. Of the 37 plants in operation at the time, eight were temporarily shut down following mass protests in their local areas. It was a disaster on a scale more massive than the Plant Twelve meltdown. Years of progress into a more efficient energy source stabbed in the spine by fear mongering and sheer stupidity. It was only by government order that the eight that had spooled down their reactors restarted, their energy being vital to both the local economies and power grids. It would take until 1985 for things to settle down, when a media press conference held by the NNEC was finally able to dispel the myths created by the accident, and introduce the sodium-reactor concept to the general public.

Circa 2023, and 98 reactors across 56 plants are in operation, but yet the push to continue building remains. Reactor power output had of course increased over time, the days of 60 MWe were long gone, reactors pushing 1,000 MWe were a common place in modern facilities. There hadn’t been another accident since 82’ and as far as total power output went, nuclear was roughly 48% of the country's power, hydroelectric made up another 12%, wind and solar made another combined 8%, and oil and coal burning stations made up the remaining 32%. It was great progress, however many were unsatisfied.

And so was the petition which the Royal Conference had before them. Presented by a nuclear advocacy group simply known as the Friends of Atoms, it called for the government to provide further funding to cities and the greater dependencies which they inhabited to further phase out the usage of fossil fuels, instead transitioning further to nuclear based electricity, mainly for both it’s lack of pollution and efficiency as a source of power. When possible, the Friends of Atoms also presented an argument that any new plants to be constructed under a revised budget should replace traditional uranium and plutonium fuel sources with thorium, creating even less waste. It was ridiculous, expensive, and a questionable undertaking.

So, in doing their job, the RC first presented it for voting by the general public. 76% voted in favour, 24% opposed. This now meant the RC had to seriously review it, and if they approved it then it would pass as law, if it failed to pass in the RC then it’d have to be handed up to The Conclave, and from their if it deadlocked again the King would have to intervene which was a mess that no one wanted. Voting in the RC lasted a week, all 64 representatives taking their sweet time to make sure they were confident in their choice. By the end of it, 47 voted in favour, 17 opposed. Of the opposition was the entirety of both Beliktra dependencies, and one stray voter of Greater Algerton.

With no need for further debate, the proposal underwent a short process of redefinition to make its authoritative properties more clear, and finally putting a dollar sign on the proposal at the request of the Treasury. The Atomic Revitalization Act was go.

I can explain anything that need clarification

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Founded: Jul 28, 2022
Father Knows Best State

Broken Arrow

Postby Norrs » Wed Mar 15, 2023 8:06 pm

10.08.2023 1444 hr UTC
Gate 28,
Pendragon Deerchapel International Airport, Pendragon

It was a rainy day at Deerchapel, with droplets of water on the outer windshield of the N310-300's cockpit and the light drumming of rain peppering the fuselage of the aircraft, the cockpit being cast in a strange mixture of light grey and amber light from outside and the dome light in the cockpit. Captain Minoru Nagasawa and her first officer, Yuuka Matsumoto, weren't particularly concerned about it. It was nowhere near enough rain to cause issues, and it wasn't particularly windy. Besides, at the altitude they'd be flying at, it wouldn't matter anyways. The N310-300 had a reputation for being a smooth flying aircraft since its introduction in 2005, easily being the most advanced SST in service.

The two Norudo pilots were preparing for their next routine supersonic flight from Pendragon to Enkyo. Nagasawa had 10 years experience flying planes, doing it professionally since she was 19 and having flown her first plane when she was 15. Most of her 10 year experience in the airlines had been with Pan-Norudo World Airways, the airline in which the two were flying today. By contrast, her first officer, Matsumoto, was inexperienced, having joined the airline within the past few years and not even past her mid 20's.

Regardless of their past, and the past of the aircraft, the two worked on their checklist. Unlike the N310-100 and -200, the N310-300 did away with the Flight Engineer's panel, being a completely modernized version of the N310-200. As such, the checklist was shorter and simpler.

Minoru flicked the respective switches and buttons in the cockpit as Yuuka called it out, "RAD/INS Switch, INS. NAV Frequency Controller, Set as required. AFCS Panel, all autopilot switches off. Warning Lights. Check off. Flight Instruments. Check. Altimeter, Set Local..." On and on it went.

Once Minoru finished the Captain's preparation, she began going through the Flight Management Computer to input all the things needed, most importantly the route for the autopilot. The route would take just an hour and 18 minutes to complete, lightning fast in comparison to aircraft like the N380 or N340.

As they continued with the latter stages of the checklist, Yuuka began talking with Minoru about more personal matters, "How's your daughter?"

Minoru looked over to Yuuka with her large, dark eyes. Both Yuuka and Minoru were both Norudo, having owl-like appearances that were generally considered unorthodox to many Humans who've never been to Norudo, which on top of the Norudo and Kyoshi crew members made for an interesting flying experience for Syrasians and others who haven't been outside of their respective countries.

"She's fine. She starts her first day of school in a week or two. We have another one on the way too." Minoru continued to set up the FMC. "In about eight months we'll have another little one tearing up the house."

Yuuka shook her head, reaching up with her left hand to flip on the wipers for the pilot and co-pilots windshields. "I could never have kids. Especially not when I'm flying like this." Yuuka then began adjusting the lighting in the cockpit, turning the various knobs to adjust the floodlights and backlighting for the center pedestal, glareshield, and the overhead panel. "How is this?"

Minoru looked around at the various panels and knobs, "Looks good." She then got on the radio, tuning to 118.5 MHz, the frequency for Deerchapel's control tower. "Tower. Clipper 118 with IFR clearance to Momoko, ready to copy."

She then got out a notepad and pen, and began writing down as the tower responded over radio. "Clipper 118, Tower. Cleared IFR to Enkyo-Momoko International. Take off Runway 27 Right and climb to 12,000 feet at no more than 250 knots. Squawk 1665"

After writing down the information and letting Tower finish, Minoru repeated the information back. Cleared IFR to Momoko. Take off Runway 27 Right and climb to 12,000 feet at no more than 250 knots. Squawk 1665. 118."

"Read back correct. Contact Ground on 121.7."

"Thank you Tower. 121.7. 118." Minoru then sighed as she switched the radio frequency back to Ground. "Glad this rain isn't going to mess us up. And by the way Yuuka, it's not /that/ bad." Minoru began inputting the last stuff into the FMC for the departure.

It was then that one of the flight attendants, Rei Kumagai, stepped into the cockpit and notified the pilots about the passengers. "Passengers are all on board. Ramp crew is finishing up with the baggage." The tall Norudo woman was wearing a bright red dress and had an equally bright red bow in her hair, the usual PANOR flight attendant uniform.

"Thank you Rei. Oh, and can you get Yuuka some coffee?" Minoru looked back at the flight attendant, who simply nodded before she stepped out of the cockpit. Minoru then looked back forward as she began adjusting the autopilot. "Yuuka, tell me about our plane today? What's up with her?"

"Uh..." Yuuka frantically searched for the Pre-Flight Notices packet. The co-pilot pulled the packet out from a pocket on the side of the cockpit, flipping it open and gazing upon its contents. Nothing of real note, though the autopilot's V/S wasn't operating. Yuuka sighed, before answering her Captain. "Vertical Speed control for the autopilot is inoperative. Notice says to use VNAV or FLC for altitude change."

Minoru let out a somewhat awful owl-like sound out of frustration before she responded. "Always something broken about Lady Luck here isn't there?" Shaking her rather fluffy head, Minoru reached up and flicked the switch for Ground Call and began talking to the ramp crew. "Estimate when you guys are going to be done?"

"Uh...We're just about done, cargo door is being closed and secured right now. Give it like two minutes."

"Thank you. When you're done, clear for engine start." Minoru then switched the Ground Call back off before looking over to Yuuka, "Can you tell the cabin crew to get ready for pushback?"

Yuuka then nodded, and reached up to switch her microphone to the cabin crew comm. As she did, Minoru got on with Deerchapel ground, speaking smoothly into the microphone as per usual. "Ground. Clipper 118. Request jetway disconnect and start up clearance."

"118. Ground. Jetway is being disconnected and your clear for start up. Run your pushback start up checklist. Thank you."

"Cleared for start on pushback check list. 118." She cued off the microphone, before reaching up and turning on the beacon lights.

Minoru could just barely hear the flight attendants on cabin comms, "Cabin. Arm doors and cross check."

As the cabin crew scrambled to do as they were told, Minoru switched the fuel switches on for the four CJ14A turbojet engines, followed by her switching to idle switches onto high and pulling the DEBOW switches. Once that was done, she called out to no one in particular, "Engine 3 Start." She then flipped the starter switch for Engine 3, which began to spool. Upon N1 reaching 25% RPM, Minoru grabbed the fuel shut off valve lever for No. 3 and pulled it up, allowing fuel to be introduced. A deep hum reverberated throughout the entire aircraft as No. 3 started, with the hum growing louder into the muffled sound of a running turbojet as the RPM settled at its idle speed. Minoru then repeated the same procedure for Engine 2.

Once they were started, Yuuka switched the generator switches on for 2 and 3, as well as the hydraulics whilst Minoru kept an eye on the gauges. Everything seemed good. In fact, everything was superb. Minoru then got on the Ground Call and began talking to the ground crew, "Disconnect Ground Power and prepare for pushback."

Once she got off Ground Call, she then got on the radio with ATC. "Ground, Clipper 118. Request clearance for Pushback. Nose Right."

"Ground, Clipper 118. Cleared for pushback. Nose Right."

"Cleared for pushback, Nose right. 118." Minoru then waited as the pushback tug connected with the nose gear. It was a depressing day outside, but part of her couldn't help but feel excited. She had been saving up vacation time in an effort to spend more time at home with her wife and kids, a goal many pilots nowadays were probably looking forward to. Regardless, she didn't have time to think about it as she reached down and turned the parking brake lever to the left, then pushed it down, releasing the parking brake.

As the aircraft moved back, Minoru and Yuuka went through the checklist for the last two engines, 1 and 4. As they did the pushback, they could hear the flight attendants going through the safety briefing. By the time it was said and done, 5 minutes later, Minoru and Yuuka found themselves doing the after start checklist, with the tug driving off. Everything, once more, was going without a hitch as they went through the after start and pre-taxi checklist. However, in their complacency, a momentary issue would present itself.

As Minoru pulled the wing sweep lever all the way forward past the 20 degree mark and into the AUTO detent, the wings began moving forward. Or rather, the right wing did. The left wing remained jammed for just a second before it also began moving forward with a slight jerk at first. The peculiar moment wasn't noticed by Minoru or her co-pilot, but it was a foreboding warning to an otherwise smooth start to the flight. Once the wings were fully forward to 20 degrees sweep, Minoru reached to the flaps lever and brought the flaps to 10 degrees, or take off configuration. Meanwhile, Yuuka reached forward and pulled the lever for the nose hydraulic down to the TAXI detent. While nothing happened at first, the outer windshield began to lower a few seconds later, followed by the nose of the plane angling downwards. As the nose angle reached 5 degrees, the fore-most joint began tilting the nose's tip upwards to avoid striking the ramp.

Minoru and Yuuka went on with their checklist, checking flight controls, hydraulics, etc. Everything seemed good, nothing out of the ordinary. Even as the rain began picking up ever so slightly. Once everything was sorted, Minoru got on the radio once more.

"Ground. Clipper 118. We're ready for taxi."

"Understood. Ground, Clipper 118. Taxi and hold short Runway 27 Right via Golf, Fox 2, Bravo, Link 11, Alpha, Alpha 3.

"Okay. Taxi and hold short Runway 27 Right via Golf, Fox 2, Bravo, Link 11, Alpha, Alpha 3."

"Readback correct 118. Contact Tower on 118.7 when ready for take off."

"Understood Ground. 118.7. 118." Minoru then sighed, reaching up and turning on the taxi light switch. From there, it was a simple task of taxiing to the Runway, only took 10 minutes, during which Minoru and Yuuka both chatted a little bit about their personal lives.

"So...What's her name?" Yuuka was still staring out the windshield with her big eyes as she awaited Minoru's response.

Minoru glanced at Yuuka, "Who? Our next kid?"

"Yeah." Yuuka nodded at Minoru's retort, before grabbing the packet again and reviewing it. "Rei and I were uh....Talking about it before we got all got on the plane."

Minoru nodded, "Word of advice Yuuka. Wait on the names before you and Rei have kids. Don't want to get everything for a girl and find out later on that its a boy." Minoru turned the plane onto taxiway Alpha, using the turntable to turn the aircraft's nose gear.

"R...Rei and I aren't...A thing." Yuuka ran her hand through her fluffy hair as she read through the packet still.

Minoru then chuckled lightly, or the closest Norudo equivalent to a chuckle, as she kept the plane going straight down the taxiway, "You think I'm the only one who knows? You two are obvious." After a bit of silence, Minoru then piped up again. "You should take some vacation time, you and Rei. Maybe spend some time with Ami and I at Enkyo."

"Yeah. That's probably a good idea," Yuuka leaned back. "You guys have a nice place in Enkyo too right?"

Minoru nodded as she got on the brakes, using the turntable to turn the plane onto Alpha 3 and stopping the plane at the RWY29R line. She then got on the radio after tuning it to 118.7, "Tower. Clipper 118. We're holding short at Runway 27 right and ready for take off."

"Clipper 118, line up and wait, Runway 27 Right."

"Line up and wait Runway 27 Right." Minoru reached up and switched the landing lights and runway turn off lights on, before switching her headset to cabin crew. She spoke in a quick, precise voice. "Cabin prepare for take off."

Following this, Minoru switched the headset back to its normal mode and signaled Yuuka to set the transponder to TA/RA as she throttled up and began taxiing onto the Runway. Using her rudder pedals to turn the nose gear, she then reached over with her right hand, pulling the nose lever down to TAKE OFF as the plane began to line up with the Runway. Finally, she turned on the strobe lights by pulling the NAV light switch down to NAV & STRB.

"Tower, Clipper 118. Lined up and waiting on Runway 27 Right."

"Copy that 118. Continue waiting. Aeroconsortium A320 on final."

"Continue Waiting. 118." Minoru sighed as she turned her head to face Yuuka, "At this rate we're going to be 30 minutes late." The aircraft shook a bit as the A320 flew over, landing gear and flaps deployed. The two watched as the smaller aircraft touched down a couple hundred feet in front of them. After about 20-30 seconds, and as the A320 turned off onto one of the taxiways, Tower came onto the radio again.

"Clipper 118, Tower. You're cleared for take off Runway 27 Right. Do not exceed 250 knots."

"Take off Runway 27 Right, 250 knot maximum. 118." Minoru grabbed the throttles and brought them up to 80% RPM. This was followed by her calling out a 3 second countdown, which cued Yuuka to prepare the clock. "3...2...1...Now."

Upon stating 'Now', Minoru pushed the throttles up to TO/GA and released the parking brakes. At the same time, Yuuka started the clock and monitored the speed of the aircraft to call out speeds.

"80 knots." Yuuka called. There was a steady repeating thump as the plane's tires rolled over the runway's seams, with the repetitive noise gaining speed as the aircraft did. All Minoru could think back to was her childhood of watching N310s and N330s fly out of Enkyo-Haneda International when she was a just a kid. Her thoughts were interrupted by Yuuka's call outs. "V1....Rotate!"

Minoru and Yuuka then both collectively pulled back on the control columns, causing the plane to pitch up as it passed 155 knots. As the plane passed 170 knots, the thumping suddenly ceased, with the plane climbing altitude rapidly. "V2." Yuuka called.

Minoru then made her own callout, "Positive rate of climb. Gear up," before reaching over and grabbing the landing gear lever. Upon pulling it up, a loud rumble was heard from the aircraft as the gear were retracted into the bowels of the plane. At the same time, Yuuka pulled the nose lever up to 0 degrees, causing the nose to begin raising back up.

The crew then worked in tandem to bring the aircraft up into its climb on schedule. It was going to be a long flight...

36 minutes later

The N310 was at 75,000 feet somewhere over the Tvembov northern coastline going at nearly 2,000 knots. It was about 36 minutes into the flight when a strange rattling began to overcome the plane.

Minoru and Yuuka both looked around in confusion as the rattling became ever present. Minoru, looking over to Yuuka's control yoke then broke the relative silence. "Is that your stick shaker?"

"No? Is it your's?" Yuuka looked just as confused as Minoru.

"No, it's not mine either. The hell is this?" As soon as Minoru finished speaking, there was a sudden jerk to the left and a peculiar warning came up on the glareshield. L WING OVREXT. An overextension on the left wing? Impossible at this point in the flight, that was normally during descent.

"What the hell?" As soon as Minoru looked down at the wing sweep indicator, there was a loud BANG, followed by the plane jerking to the left. If it weren't for Yuuka's quick reaction on the rudder pedals, the plane would've gone into a flat spin.

"FUCK!" Yuuka yelled out, "That's heavy. Real heavy." Minoru then got onto the rudder pedals as we as a loud metallic squeel echoed throughout the aircraft.

"Holy shit!" Minoru grabbed the yoke as well, it was taking complete rudder deflection to keep the aircraft going straight. "Yuuka. Get the autopilot. Now!"

Yuuka complied, smacking the autopilot disconnect switch. It was followed by a terrible high pitch ringing noise from the annunciator. Things then went very quickly as the vibrations, which had got even worse, were replaced with another loud BANG!

The plane then rolled onto its left side with the annunciator yelling out various warnings.


Yuuka quickly reached up and pulled the fire shut off switches for engines 1 and 2. Judging from not just the artificial horizon, but also from looking out the window, the N310-300 was now on its side, and judging from the VSI, it was falling rapidly. Both pilots were using all their strength to keep the plane from going into a death spiral into the ocean.

"Fuck! I can't hold it!" Minoru's control yoke was all the way to the right, but the aircraft wasn't rolling. Little did they realize both their sets of ailerons were gone and the only thing keeping them from rolling was their rudder deflection.

Things eventually started getting worse as the plane began rolling to the left again. Minoru took her chance to get on the radio to call for a mayday. "Aleralsk Center, Clipper 118. Mayday Mayday Mayday. I repeat, Mayday Mayday Mayday. Clipper 118 declaring an emergency."

There was a delay, as if the controller wasn't 100% registering what was happening, "Clipper, repeat last. You are declaring an emergency?"

"Yes! Mayday Mayday Mayday! We've lost all roll control and-" Minoru was cut off by another aural warning that was of a much bigger concern;


"SHIT!" Yuuka grabbed the throttles and pulled them back to idle, but the speed kept climbing. Finally, the problem crescendo'ed as the plane rolled over on the left and began spiraling. Yuuka and Minoru didn't have much time to try and recover the aircraft before the right wing was ripped clean off, sending the aircraft into a high speed nose dive. After 5 minutes a terror, the N310 impacted the waters north of the Tvembovian coast at nearly mach 4, 560 knots over its never exceed speed.

Even during their last few minutes, Minoru and Yuuko tried everything to recover the plane, even attempting to deploy reverse thrust on the remaining engines. But to no avail, The two pilots, along with their 4 cabin crew and 300 passengers perished in the crash.

Aleralsk Center continued attempting to contact the aircraft even after it disappeared off radar, with emergency services being called shortly thereafter...

20 kilometers southeast

It was a clear sunny day on the farm of Yaroslav Tchaikovsky. Both he and his son were out working when his son, Anton pointed up at the sky. "Смотреть! Смотреть! Там что-то есть!" (Look! Look! There's something up there!).

As Yaroslav looked up, he couldn't believe his eyes. A large, wedge shaped piece of metal, with what looked like mist pouring from one of its ends fell from the sky, moving back and forth like a leaf until it slammed into a field near the farm with a loud thud. Black smoke and fire lifted from the field high into the sky as the jet fuel ignited.

It was clear something was amiss, but there was no plane. Where'd the wing come from? The mystery was only starting, and the world was going to be lit aflame with anger and fear regarding one of the world's more iconic aircraft...
Last edited by Norrs on Wed Mar 15, 2023 8:06 pm, edited 1 time in total.
the Norudo Commonwealth
VioletiaOverview of Norudo

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New Prydai
Civil Servant
Posts: 8
Founded: Feb 20, 2023
Democratic Socialists

Postby New Prydai » Sat Mar 18, 2023 3:52 am

New Era - 15th March, 2023

With a sigh, Rhys chucked the latest addition of the Caerli International onto the pile with the other five or so newspapers, all from different prints and yet all the same. Every. Damn. One. Each one continued with articles about the death of Sir John, only the Caerli had mentioned the recent expansion of the foreign office and even then it was barely the same quality as the gargantuan mess that was Sir John’s obituary. Damn, he thought, the man’s legacy was hanging around his neck like a hangman’s noose. It was suffocating, you shouldn't be able to run a country from beyond the dead, and yet the man was doing it.

He’d seen the news, marches and counter-marches, vigils and counter-vigils, which had been happening for the last week. Of how the nationalists had been damn near fighting in the streets with the unitists over how the man was the best thing since sliced bread, or how he was worse than Hwlyr itself. There were usually a few spats coming up to independence day, it wouldn't be right if there wasn't, but this was ridiculous. Two men were currently awaiting trial in one of the Federal Department of Justice's stone holding cells after stabbing a man who they were 'defaming' Sir John's legacy. According to the official report that he'd received at 2 in-the-Gwlair-damned-morning, all the man had actually said was he couldn't see what the great fuss was about. Rhys agreed.

Instead of the usual criticisms of his governmental policy and why he was apparently unfit to run the Federation he faced in the Hall of State, he was faced with a barrage of questions on the funeral, whether or not the government would pay for it, why they should and why they shouldn’t. On why it would demean the nation as a whole to not put a statue in his honour, and why to do such a thing would bring about national ruin and deprivation. In the end, he'd managed to get a compromise of a state funeral and a statue with a nice blue plaque, in return for a bill on the treatment of animals to be passed. How those were connected, he had no idea, but it kept all sides suitably grumpy and yet not angry enough to act on it. He wondered if his counterparts across the pond had to deal with something similar when the monarch died.

He glanced at the ornate office clock that stood above the door-way, it said that the time was ten-thirty. He sighed again and looked out the window, the rain was pouring down and yet, people were still lining the streets outside with their little flags that were hanging limply from their poles as the rain soaked through them. He then looked at the little stage that had been set up out-side of the Hall of State. Oh Gwlair, he thought, he was going to have to give that speech wasn’t he.

Speeches had never been a speciality of his, he was able to give the odd rousing call to arms back in the Navy and even when he went into the murky pond of politics he kept to facts and statistics, hiding behind an inscrutable shield of numbers and logic. He had solutions to this of course, he usually delegated that off to some of his more inspiring subordinates. Unfortunately, he had no-one to delegate to here, just him.

With that thought, he rose from his desk, smoothing the leather on the chair as his stiff back offered its protests with the leg soon joining in solidarity. After he got up, he neatly put his paper into his out-tray, opened one of the wooden drawers on the desk and grabbed the black arm-band he’d been given. After that, he went and stood in front of the giant 6ft mirror that had been gifted to bloody Sir John by the Syrasian Royal Family some time in seventies, affixed the black arm-band, straightened his tie and left his office, closing the door behind him as he went.

A few minutes later, he was standing outside on the stage that had been set up for him, an intern holding an umbrella over his head. The crowds in front of him were dressed in a variety of colours, mostly the red, white and green, but each had the sombre black band around their arms, each holding their flags limply as the rain soaked both their flags and spirit.

He glanced at the speech, written by one of the hundreds of speech-writers housed within thick stone walls of the Governor’s Palace, it mentioned such words as destiny, and national glory. He immediately mentally blotted them out from the speech, he didn’t believe that such words that put a gloss on slaughter should be used. He gripped the edge of the podium for balance, glanced at the script, and began speaking.

A few hours later, in the black limo that was at the back of the convoy of hearses, he realised it wasn’t all that bad of a speech despite it’s rather inflammatory choice of words, it hit all the right notes for one, and managed to actually make it seem as though everything would be fine, that they would be able to build better. He just hoped that it was correct
Last edited by New Prydai on Sun Mar 19, 2023 10:30 am, edited 1 time in total.

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Founded: May 07, 2018
Father Knows Best State

Postby Frandonia » Sun Mar 26, 2023 2:58 am

Grbovec Field, Motorož

| 4:45 P.M. |

"It was a normal day like no other. Sunny, warm and with a bit of a breeze, something you'd kind of expect living on the coastline. I had arrived early for practice that day. Being so far away from my home town, I didn't have anything to do in my dorm so I thought I'd spend my time wisely. I kicked the ball around for an hour or so before everyone else started showing up. Alright... Let's get to practicing."

The coach was running late, but despite that, Teo kept kicking the ball around as if practice had already started. Unlike most of his teammates, who stood near the bench, murmuring about something. It didn't take long before he overheard and simply called out "Oi! I know the coach isn't here yet, but that doesn't mean practice hasn't started already! You can read that later, get on the pitch and let's get some work done..." With that, it was already obvious he was not exactly too popular with his teammates. But due to his talent and dedication, he was picked captain of the prestigious NK Zlata Zvijezda (FC Gold Star) youth team.

As everyone got on the pitch, the coach arrived, a man who also managed to U-20 national team, and practice began. Dribbling, passing, defending, penalty kicks, formations, the practice went on for what seemed like forever. As the sun began setting, it ended. Exhausted from all the hard work, Teo simply walked to the bench displaying absolutely no exhaustion despite feeling like he was about to collapse, to get his drink. As he was rubbing off his fur, he caught wind of the paper, his teammates were reading. He sat down and picked it up, reading the page it was set at: 15-year-old Phoenix Bellamy labelled "once-in-a-century football talent".

As soon as he read the headline, he paused for a moment. 15 years of age? That's how old he was. He started feeling tense, as if his chest was closing in. To think someone his age would be given a label like that... Teo continued reading trough the entire article as his teammates began leaving. As he finished, without any words, he set it aside, left the field and went home.

| 9:00 P.M. |

Teo sat quietly in his room. "Practice went fine..." he thought to himself. There's no way. At just 15-years-old, a player that good exists... and they're being considered by the top leagues... Planting his head in his arms, he couldn't help but be filled with envy. So much work to become the best football player only for him to be hit in the face by reality. How can he surpass someone like that? How can he match up to them even...? In a world where youth talent was considered something of a rarity... He himself was considered one of the most promising talents in Illionar, but his confidence in that consideration was shattered after reading the news. He was stuck in the youth team, not even popping into the minds of the board of the club for even considering giving him a chance in the big league due to his age. Sitting in silence for what seemed like hours, tired from practice, he finally dosed off to sleep.
Last edited by Frandonia on Sun Mar 26, 2023 4:44 am, edited 1 time in total.

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Posts: 33
Founded: Aug 17, 2017
Left-Leaning College State

Postby Firnea » Sun Mar 26, 2023 4:23 am

Rise of the Phoenix

Chapter I: Eclipse of Hearts

Sighing quietly, Phoenix returned from the locker room, smiling at the young man that was already waiting for her. She gave him a long hug during which she kept her eyes closed, and finally looked up to the man that was taller by a head, or even more.

"What's wrong, fireball?", he asked. "You seem a little upset."
"Ah... it's nothing." Phoenix shrugged and gave him another smile. "Just a little tired, that's all."
"You sure? Hm. Well, perhaps you'll feel a little better after lunch." He opened his backpack and pulled out a paper bag, containing two baguette sandwiches, one of which he would hand to her. Her amber-colored eyes would grow bigger at the sight of what he had prepared for her.
"Oh, you. Rocket salad, tomatoes, cottage cheese... right, some grated parmesan... pine nuts! And do I smell some fresh basil there?" The redhead's expression would brighten up. "You're the best brother a girl could ask for."
"Just looking out for you is all", he says, ruffling her hair before taking a bite out of his own sandwich.

They would sit down on the curbstone and eat, not paying too much attention to their surroundings. Phoenix occasionally lifted her hand to wave goodbye to her teammates getting on their way home; a few of them turned around after passing them, murmuring about the sight of her older brother, a tall, bearded man with pitch-black hair.

"So, are you sure there's nothing you wanna talk to me about, sis?", he tried again after finishing his sandwich. Phoenix briefly glanced up towards him, sighed again, and shrugged.
"It's just..."
"Take your time. Really. We're in no rush. Take some time to collect your thoughts."
"It's just - why is everyone expecting so much of me?"
"Hm? What do you mean?"
"Well, I... I just feel out of place." She finished her sandwich and rubbed her pakms against each other to free them of bread crumbs. "All these other players... most of them are so much older than me, they've got a ton of experience. But I? I don't. I feel like I was thrown right into the shark tank."
"Experience is important, sure, but it'll only get you so far", her brother suggested with a smirk. "Look, Phoe, you made it to the Raventide pro team. You passed the Murder of Birds academy with flying colors, just like you always do. And from what I hear, you're killing it during practice, every single time. You have no reason to be worried."
"But I am." The girl stared down at the asphalt unyieldingly. "What if I turn out to be... just not good enough? Maybe I was lucky this whole time. Maybe... look, Raven, I just don't want to be a disappointment."

Raven looked at his sister, surprised of what he heard. She had always been a happy-go-lucky kind of girl, bursting with confidence and energy without ever coming across as arrogant. This, however, was a side to her he had not seen yet, and he started to question himself if she has had these doubts for longer than he had realized.

"Phoenix, I want to listen carefully to what I'm going to tell you now", he said calmly, and Phoenix would look up at him again with an undecipherable look on her face. "It wasn't luck that got you as far as you've come. There is no such thing as luck. There is only hard work, dedication, and a pinch of pure, natural talent. You've always believed in yourself. You've always believed you could get where all the greats have made it. You know, the big ones. Emma Rogstad, Rikke Vennerød, Mila Kane. And you will get there, I know you will. But... only under one condition."
"Okay? Which one is it?"

Raven would tap her forehead with his index and middle finger, causing her to flinch in expectation of being flicked. She blinked in surprise, and he smiled.

"Just be yourself. And don't give me that look, I wasn't finished yet. This is not a mere catchword, alright? To most people, just being themselves won't be enough to get far, but to you, it is. Because you're confident, ambitious, and extremely talented. What most people believe to be good luck or bad luck is just a matter of confidence and nothing else. If there's talent to a person, they will always be able to perform at their best. But only if they allow themselves to."

His sister seemed to feel better about herself already, but he wasn't quite there yet, and he knew it.

"And you know what, Phoenix?"
"Even with all your confidence and talent, there will be days where you're just not going to perform as well as you want to, and that's alright. It really is. You're a human being, not a machine. No matter what happens, if you score three goals in a single match or if you don't score for three matches straight, you will never be a disappointment. I couldn't be prouder of how far you've come, despite... everything. Like... I know how you feel like, trust me..."

Phoenix beamed at her brother, but quickly realized what he had said. "What are you talking about?"

"I've been under so much pressure, you have no idea", he said and let out a sigh, and she could hear a little, ever so slight tremble under his breath. "I would have never forgiven myself if you hadn't made it where you wanted to, because it wouldn't have been your fault. But you did, and it makes me so happy, because... because now, I finally feel like a good brother to you. Like... a brother you deserve."

Raven looked back at Phoenix, and flinched when realizing her eyes were watering. Suddenly, she gave him a little nudge to the arm and chuckled, which sounded more like a hiccup, if anything.

"You're such a goof. Of course you're a good brother to me. You've always been. Mom and Dad would be proud of you, Raven. Trust me."

He blinked away a couple of tears, and sighed in relief. "You and me both, Phoenix."
Last edited by Firnea on Sun Mar 26, 2023 4:33 am, edited 1 time in total.

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Founded: May 07, 2018
Father Knows Best State

Postby Frandonia » Sun Mar 26, 2023 1:35 pm

Part 2

Thursday Afternoon

Practice had started at 5 P.M. as always, but Teo seemed completely different. Usually a rather calm and collected player, who took practice seriously, he was rather erratic, often spacing out when on the field. In a five-on-five practice match, he completely spaced out, letting his opponent storm by him, nearly throwing him to the ground. Seeing him like this, the coach (Peter Urhej, 44) called for a time-out and called him to the side, replacing him with another midfielder.

Sitting on the bench, he drank his water as the coach stepped up to him "What's going on with you today? You're playing as if you just started." Teo looked up at the man, who he knew from another club he played for "It's nothing, coach..." "It sounds like something's on your mind. Look, I can't have you at practice if you're not going to participate 100%. You're a talented player and the team is in such a position in the youth league because of your leadership... Go home for today. Clear your head and see if that helps." Teo looked him dead in the eyes with a look of shock. He was being sent home? That's never happened to him. "Hopefully you clear your head by next week's match. It's a crucial match against ND Muja, one of the favourites to win the league title this year."

A day has gone by. And another. And soon after, match day came. It was bad. Teo could barely focus on practice, so much so that his teammate, 16-year-old forward Viktor Habač(English: Victor Habach) asked him if he was okay. They were leaving the dressing room, ready to head onto the pitch for the match against Muja.

"Teo, are you okay? You haven't seemed like yourself for the past week..."
"I'm fine, man... I'm fine. We'll win this."
"... Alright. Let's get another batch of points."


NK Zlata Zvijezda | 1-5 | ND Muja

The match was a complete disaster. The offense was clumsy, passes were barely connecting, the defence was in shambles. Muja completely destroyed the Zlata Zvijezda, which eventually reached the headlines of the local newspaper. The team's morale was gravely hit, and at the centre of the loss sat Teo, the captain responsible for such a huge loss.

A day after the match, he was called into the coaches office for a talk. "Teo, what happened during the match against Muja?" he asked. Teo stayed quiet, only looking down at his hands on his lap. If his confidence wasn't shot already, it dropped dead after such a humiliating match. "We lost 5-1. That's our biggest loss of the league. Muja have overtaken us in the standings, you don't have a shot at going for the title if you don't get your head back in the game. What happened??" "Nothing, coach... It's nothing... Just a lapse in my form, that's all. I promise I'll puck up the pace from now on." "Well I recommend you do because a loss that big can warrant you being stripped of your captain position and as your starting eleven position." "I understand..."

Despite the promise, the next few weeks have been utter torment. For the next four matches; Zlata Zvijezda v Korenje (2-0), Zlata Zvijezda v Monarhija (3-1), Zlata Zvijezda v Hurikan (1-0) and Zlata Zvijezda v Urh (3-0) have all been met with utter defeat for the youth team, and Teo's position in the club was being thrown further and further into jeopardy, being outright berated by his coach and his teammates. As punishment for such poor performance, he was stripped of his captain position after the Urh match and relegated to the bench, his status of being one of the best in the club to one of a washed up talent.

That evening after the match, Teo sat in silence in his room. His position within the team was destroyed. Relegated to the bench was an embarrassment and his respect between his teammates hit a new low. Even Victor began criticizing him. Curling up more and more, he finally let out everything held in him, bawling his eyes out for thinking he wasted his life for the sport, only to, by his standard, end up as a washed up player.

The next day, completely demoralized and just out of it, he arrived at the field for practice. His teammates noticeably, to an extent that he didn't get to say a single word during the whole two hours of practice. Afterwards, as he was about to leave, his coach called him to the bench. They sat down and the coach sighed "What's been up with you this month?" he asked. Teo flinched and looked back at him "I mean, you were one of the most promising talents I've seen during my coaching career. You aren't much in terms of physical strength, but you were very calm and collected, being able to make calculated decisions within a split second to turn matches around. Not to mention your kick power is actually very good for a midfielder. Only for it to completely fall apart at the start of the previous month."

He couldn't help but look at the ground as he heard him say all that. It was hard for a youth player to make it away from home, he himself knew that. Many players he looked up to went down a similar path, leaving home to pursue their dream of one day playing for the national team on the world stage. And here he was... wasting away his talent due to his stupid insecurities "Coach, you heard of Phoenix Bellamy, right?" "I have. She's labelled as a "once-in-a-century talent". I've seen her play on her debut for Raventide City and... she's the real deal." "But... What if I can't measure up to her?"

That's when the coach finally figured it out "I see... So that's what was bothering you." "Huh?" Teo looked up at him, wondering what he meant. "Look, I can understand being overwhelmed by a talent such as her like any other player. You grind away, day after day, improving yourself until you feel so lightheaded from exhaustion, you can't even get up the next day... while someone born with a talent such as football can just breeze trough the leagues without even trying. There were many people before her like that from many nations. But you shouldn't let that bring you down. Every player faces challenges every day, including her. She's only 15 and is set to play in the Premier League with players far more experienced than her. That puts a massive toll on a young player... It shouldn't be taken lightly. So, saying all that, just clear your mind, forget about her and focus on your own path and what's in front of you... Because... The World Youth (U-18) Tournament is coming up and you are one of the main contenders for the national youth team."

Upon hearing that, Teo's eyes light up in surprise. The coach saw it as well. A spark of wonder blinging in Teo's eyes. "So collect your thoughts and I'll see you here first thing in the morning for practice. And you'll have to work hard. Just because I told you this doesn't mean I'll give you back your position just because I feel sympathy. You'll have to earn it back trough dedication. Understood?"


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Founded: Aug 17, 2017
Left-Leaning College State

Postby Firnea » Sun Mar 26, 2023 4:11 pm

Rise of the Phoenix

Chapter II: Destined for Greatness

"Ready, Phoe? Usually, you don't take this long. What's keeping ya, sis?"
"Be right there!"

Raven could hear his little sister chuckle from upstairs, and he couldn't help but smile. Today would be the day she has worked towards for months, years - no, probably, all her life. He took a look at one of the pictures on the wall in the living room, showing a massive hunk of a man with short, black hair and a full beard, a beautiful, red-haired woman with a slender figure, a teenage boy with curtains of long, black hair covering most of his face, and a little girl, smiling brightly at the camera. He sighed and nodded at the picture.

"She's all you ever wanted her to be, and even more", he said quietly. "Don't worry. I will always support her, no matter what. This is my purpose, now... I love you."
"Hey, I'm ready. Let's go, Raven."

Raven quickly turned around to see Phoenix stand by the bottom of the staircase leading up to the bedrooms, and smiled at her.

6 hours later...

The biggest match of Phoenix Bellamy's young career ended with the referee's sharp whistling. 77,800 people in attendance at the Crow's Nest rose to their feet and applauded both the squad of Eldur United, the biggest football club in the world, and Raventide City, Bellamy's team that just barely fought Eldur to a 2-2, thanks to a goal scored by Phoenix in the 84th minute. She sat on the bench when the match started, and was subbed in during the 55th minute.
Really, she had a lot to be proud of, and she had all the reasons in the world to be happy. Alas, she didn't feel happy.
She was disappointed.

"Hey there", a young girl from Eldur greeted her. Phoenix recognized her immediately. That was Rokne Gyldenløve, the Firnean chancellor's daughter. She was only 16 herself, but a reliable central midfielder, and considered to be future star - almost like herself, albeit not quite as flashy.

"Hey. Rokne, right? Good game", Phoenix answered, offering a handshake, which Rokne would give her surprisingly firmly.
"That's me. Good game indeed, firestar. Your aim is incredible. What a shame you're not my teammate!"
"Well, perhaps we're gonna be soon", Phoenix said, winking. "You do realize the World Youth Tournament is right around the corner, right?"
"Oh my! You're actually going? You must be the youngest Firnean player in history to participate!"
"Uhh, you think? Not sure." Phoenix shrugged almost indifferently, leaving Rokne flabbergasted. "What? I don't really pay attention to statistics."
"You're amazing", Rokne chuckled. "Alright then, Phoenix. See you at the tourney. You better show up!"

The next day, Raventide City coach Ulrikke Svendsen confirmed that Phoenix Bellamy has indeed been nominated to play at the World Youth Tournament, and suddenly, everything else once again turned into a side note.

"Firestar nominated for WYT - football's coming back to Firnea"

"Phoenix Bellamy to participate at international tournament"

"What does it take to stop this girl?"

The Firnean headlines had a lot of questions that day.
Answers, however, are difficult to find.

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Tir nan Gaidheal
Posts: 13
Founded: Feb 09, 2023
Civil Rights Lovefest

The Monadh-Og Pact

Postby Tir nan Gaidheal » Sun Mar 26, 2023 4:56 pm

The Monadh-Og Pact

Sir Euan ap Griffis was tired. The plane stank of cheap beer, the turbulence was making his head swim, and he had less than four hours of sleep on the short layover in Vancott International Airport before the now five-hour flight to Tír nan Gáidheal. He was, frankly, not all too pleased with the latest posting to the Old Country.
It wasn’t the sort of work he was used to saying the least, he much preferred his former posting to the federal embassy in Pendragon where the diplomatic budget was… rather liberal on checking its expenses but he’d have to make do, he had a pension to think of after-all. And so, he bore it for the rest of the plane ride until, at around 4 in the morning, he arrived, dazed and in a foul mood, at Port-adhair Monadh Òg, Young Mountain Airport in plain Albian, and was soon accompanied by the rest of the diplomatic team with their ironed suits and new leather cases being nearly soaked through by the rain.
Sir Euan looked up from the rain to notice the large statue of marble, depicting a man atop a horse, spear-in-hand. It was a pristine statue, likely once colored but had since grayed. With a graceful pose and a confident gaze, the deity exudes a sense of power and wisdom, as if he were about to spring into action and vanquish any foe. Clad in regal robes adorned with intricate patterns, King Lugnan holds his shining spear.

As Sir Euan approached the statue, he couldn’t help but notice the fine details carved into every inch of its surface. From the subtle ridges of Lugnan's muscles to the delicate filigree of his jewelry, he nodded at the impressive display of craftsmanship. Saint Luug, he thought. Glory to You. The rain pitter-pattered on the fine marble and trickled down to the deity’s sandal-worn feet.

The rain in Tir nan Gáidheal was relentless, a pounding deluge that seemed determined to soak everything in its path. It was the kind of rain that made you question whether the sky was emptying its entire contents onto the earth all at once. Sir Euan ap Griffis and his fellow diplomats were greeted at the airport by a wall of water that seemed to come at them from all sides, turning the tarmac into a shimmering sea of puddles and rivulets.

At least, he thought, he’d brought an umbrella.

Colom Padraig sat patiently in his office in the Diplomatic Room, sipping coffee from his plain beige mug. He looked in the mirror on his desk, repositioning it an inch to the side and flicking aside a strand of his salt-and-pepper hair. The senior advisers stood all around him, their hands held together at their waist. The Chief Minister of Foreign Affairs, Floireans MacDomhnall, wrote down the time of arrival for the Prydan diplomats. Colom fidgeted with his pencil, and when the door finally opened, he glanced at Sir Griffis.

“Sir Griffis,” he said, with his voice serious and baritone. “I apologize for the rain.”
“No worries, sir. I’ve had to deal with worse weather abroad,” Sir Euan replied, his voice was happy and placating. It was a well-rehearsed one from years in service.

“Right,” Colom said, the tonality arousing his suspicions. He sat perfectly upright, not even allowing his back to touch the chair he was sitting on. His hands were held together on the desk, and he appeared a head taller than everyone else in the room.
“Are we starting so soon?`
“Just a formality,” he said, not bothering to look at the diplomat as he placed on his reading glasses. Sir Euan motions one of the junior diplomatic aides to come forward, and takes the brief-case off of them, opening, and carefully laying down the terms for Colom to read.

“We assume that you’ll have your own terms, of course, but this is what we’d like to be able to confirm will happen. Merely a formality, sir.”
He resisted the urge to grunt, and failed. He stroked his mustache in thought, taking another long sip of his bitter liquid breakfast. In a few minutes, he gently placed down the document, clearing his throat and fixing his diction as he spoke:

“These terms are agreeable. New Prydai and Tir nan Gaidheal have a shared cultural background which cannot be ignored. I wonder, though, how this will affect your present standing with the BSTO.”

“Sir?” Sir Euan smiled. “There’s nothing in the Treaty that disallows us from participating in free diplomacy.”
“Yes, but, as you are aware – Norudo is highly…suspicious of us. Are you sure this is something you want to proceed with?”
“Why, sir, last time I checked, Norudo wasn’t the only power in the world.”
“True,” Colom said, “But with all that being said…why are you really here?”

The tone in Colom’s voice indicated that he saw right through this charade of the happy, inoffensive diplomat role that Sir Euan had so desperately tried to keep on. He glanced with a scowl at the Prydan Diplomat. His glare silenced the entire room.
“What does New Prydai want, besides cooperation?”
"Merely friendship, sir. After-all, everybody needs friends."
“And a net to latch onto if things go wrong,” Colom murmured, unamused.
“Aye sir, you could say that. I happen to merely be an optimist.” Sir Euan replied, the smile waning some-what.
“But sir, even if that is all you wish to see, I’d still like to discuss some terms with your aides. After all, I speak their language, they speak my lingo.”

The large, antique grandfather clock endowed with Gaelic artistry ticked behind them. Colom tapped along to each second that passed. One. Two. Three. Four. Every second, he thought on the terms. Each situation played out in his head – could this be used to manipulate us, target us? Are we being played, or do the Prydans mean well?
Colom blinked, placing the paper back down. He took in a deep breath before speaking, his slow speech making every word feel meaningful and thought-out:
“Very well,” he said, folding his glasses into his shirt pocket. “The floor is yours.”
Sir Euan smiled again, a proper one this time, and took a seat.

“Well sir, we of course know that Gaelland–” he paused, correcting himself, “--Tir nan Gaidheal, has been doing rather well for itself as of late. In fact, you’ve got quite the nice little economy. We would like to help you there, cut out some of the Syrasian imports and open you up to the market slightly.” Sir Euan’s mouth didn’t appear to be slowing down in its vicious use of verbiage. It was, in fact, speeding up.
“Also, we can see that it’s a rather… lonely place here. Little support on this side of the continent, what with all of the PFA on the other side of the globe. We’d like to pursue some, er, avenues of cooperation.” He finally put a pause in his speech. “Nothing too militaristic of course, merely for defense and deterrence. Give a little reminder that the Boreal happens to belong to more than the BSTO.” He paused slightly, seeming to catch a slight breath.
“How does that sound to you, sir?”
The terms loomed over Colom and his men for some time. He fixed his posture in his chair, closing his eyes, and once again his mind began to look over the various circumstances, causes and effects like one big game of political chess. He took a sip from his coffee, but he didn’t react to the taste, as if the action was done purely by muscle memory. His actions, slow and methodical, almost meditative, finally stopped as his eyes opened. He took in another deep breath.

“So, this is either extortion, or you have far too much faith in our little nation. Which is it, Sir Euan?”
“Sir?” He seemed to be somewhat thrown by this.
“We know the costs of freedom, and we remember what it took for us to free ourselves. We didn’t go through what you did; we didn’t have to. But we know how long the chain was around your neck for, we know what it felt like to scrape to masters. We’d like to ensure that now, and forever more, freedom is non-negotiable.”
“It would be useful to know that relations with Syrasia are as strong and brotherly as they ever have been. We have no interest in dismantling relations with them further, ‘lest the entire BSTO turn our mountains to dust.”
“We’d see nought about destroying relations with them, sir. We merely wanted to suggest that their way isn't the only way.”

Colom sighed.
“You are stubborn,” he said. “You have Gaelic blood in you.” When he said that, he almost smiled. Almost.
“So, you want to open Tir nan Gaidheal up to Prydain markets, is that it?”
“Well, I’d like the borders to be open too, sir. And it would go both-ways of course.”
Colom smacked his lips in thought. He stood up from his chair, slowly, unintentionally making his towering and intimidating size obvious.
“Welcome to Tir nan Gaidheal, Sir Euan. I agree to these terms.”
“A pleasure to be here, sir. I’ll have my clerks discuss it with yours and we can go shake hands on a balcony in front of a crowd somewhere. Preferably, once it’s stopped raining?”
“Of course,” he nodded.

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Posts: 24
Founded: Jun 05, 2017
Inoffensive Centrist Democracy

Postby Kiberia » Wed Mar 29, 2023 5:39 pm


SoD Teodoro Esteban López Calderón: "President Miller, I've come with the reports you requested".
President Miller: "Good, give 'em here. I'm trusting this is as detailed as possible yes?"
SoD: "Yessir, The Owellian state is showing patterns of severe mistreatment of its population via its policy and its figureheads. We have reasons to believe that their recent missile tests may be the start of a new offensive program they are starting."
President: "Then I think it's time we intervene. What do you recommend militarily?"
SoD: "Well a full-scale war would have to be conducted. We would be sending in our forces in to overthrow their government. Their numbers are larger, but we have the better equipment and tactics."
President: "Put the military on full alert. I want our Navy prepped for a decisive battle. Get assault teams on standby and air bases on the coasts on alert for possible scrambling. We undertake our operations immediately."

Some time later...

SoD: "Mr. President, our armed forces are ready to beign. We have all three CSG's on standby for combat, and our naval infantry are prepped. You have the authority to declare war. However I must warn that this is going to be seen as aggressive...I spoke to our Secretary of State."

President: "We will have international support. We are fighting to reduce authoritarianism, our troops will fight hard for this. I will make the announcement shortly. Deploy our forces and wait for the declaration to open fire. After centuries, the Kiberian armed forces will truly have boots on the ground. War has come to the shores of Orwell."

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Also Not FNU
Posts: 45
Founded: Dec 31, 2022
Left-Leaning College State

Postby Also Not FNU » Wed Mar 29, 2023 7:21 pm

    Upon Ivory Towers

“The ruling monarch of the North Eastern Commonwealth retains the right to veto, approve, and independently pass legislation within the outlines of subsection A.” Statute 21A, subsection B, paragraph four of the 1982 Revision of the Constitution. Every single member of the Royal Conference and The Conclave knew it by heart. It single handedly could decide the fate of years of debate, or simply allow the monarch to choose to act alone. King Oliver intended to do just that.

In Caradon alone, nearly 8,000 people lived alongside the roadway and on the sidewalks, having either fallen on hard times or encountered some other event which left them homeless. It disgusted Oliver, the concept that the capital of his nation, the beacon of what the NEC was meant to represent, was polluted by unsolved poverty, and that rather than doing anything, local officials continued to sleep upon the problem. His father was much more private in his efforts to fix the problem, usually sticking to supporting newly created shelters, and publicly supporting relief bills for any downtrodden souls. He’d never dared execute his power on the issue though, he saved his moments for what he deemed bigger affairs. Oliver however is a less reserved man then Henry.

He’d read the National Post’s reports on how many homes were completely empty in the nation’s capital. More than 87,000 total houses and apartments had no residents at all, being owned by real estate companies trying to sell them for horrifically inflated prices. At the rate things were going, the lowest pricing you could find for a tiny one room flat was still about half a million dollars. All those prices did was make sure the properties would gather dust and artificially inflate prices further to make the companies a shinier penny.

So, sitting at his desk inside the Palace, Oliver furiously scribbles away at a sheet of lined paper. If the goal of the real estate companies is to have someone inside of the homes, then he’s going to provide them exactly what they’re looking for. Royal Decree No.268, the first in 58 years.

Shitty cliffhanger? Shitty cliffhanger. Part one of two, second part will be in the news

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Posts: 23
Founded: May 07, 2018
Father Knows Best State

Postby Frandonia » Fri Mar 31, 2023 8:07 am

Part 3

Saturday Afternoon

Another match day. It was roughly two months since he had a serious talk with his coach, and for the last four matches, Theo became an important substitute, especially for the central midfield. However, he was still rather far away from regaining his position as captain of the youth team. Since being told he was up for consideration for the national youth team to play in the World Youth Tournament, he worked his butt off to try and improve, trying to steer clear of anymore news from the outside.

Before the match day, several news outlets already began reporting on confirmed line ups of youth teams around the world, especially the "elite" teams of Lunapoli, Syrasia, Blancor, Tvembov and even Firnea, which is where Theo again caught wind of Phoenix Bellamy, who was reportedly confirmed as part of the Firnean squad in the World Youth Tournament. This is where things got serious and Theo could not screw up his chance to represent Illionar on the world stage.

Match day was against ŠD Urh, one of the stronger competitors in the league. With minutes until the match, the entire club team was practicing on their half of the field. As they were called to the bench, the coach announced their starting line up. To everyone's surprise, Theo was named as a starter, playing the role of the attacking midfielder as well as the captain, as his replacement captain called in sick earlier this morning and was not able to attend the match.

With tensions high and being more nervous than anything, Theo's mind pondered weather he would be able to once again lead his team effectively. Luckily, his friend Victor, Zlata Zvijezda's prominent centre forward, was there to comfort him. He whispered in his ear: "You're the one who knows me best. Build your strategy around that."

He was right, amongst everyone on the team, Theo and Victor were long time friends and they know eachother better than anyone. The whistle blew and the match began. As Theo dribbled up the pall to pass it forward, it was intercepted and the opponents attacked, nearly scoring a goal. That was really not what he was hoping for. Gently patting his cheeks, he collected himself once again and the match continued. This time it went according to plan. Knowing how to utilize Victor's individual skills to their advantage, he made a long pass to him, leaving him wide open to shoot, scoring Zlata Zvijezda's first point of the game.


It was the teams day off and Theo was relaxing in his dorm room, lying on his bed and resting, reading an online article: Zlata Zvijezda's redemption as Theo Slakonja leads them to victory! 3-0! He smiled. Finally, he managed to display what he was truly capable of. Just as he finished, his phone rang. It was Victor. As he answered, he was blasted in his ear by excitement from Victor "BRO! YOU'LL NEVER GUESS WHAT I HEARD!" Confused, Theo asked. His eyes widened as he was told, unsure on how to respond.

... He was confirmed as number 10 for the Illionar Youth Football Team in the World Youth Tournament. That evening, he and Victor met in front of the Zadanje Stadium in southern Motorož and went on a walk, Victor offering him a bottle of juice as they walked.

"So how do you feel?" asked Victor
"About what?
"... What do you mean "about what?" You were picked as the captain of the youth team, you muppet!"
"Oh!... Oh, that! Yeah, I'm... surprised?"
"... What's going on?"
"Nothing, nothing! It's just that, I was a substituted for the last four games and I only played one since my replacement. What did they actually see in me to make me a part of the youth team?"
"Well, for starters, you were put into the position unexpectedly. And second, it was a 3-0 win thanks to your leadership. You think the youth football association is not smart enough to see your potential?"
"Did you get picked?"
"Yep! I'm number 14, a centre forward and a starter!"
"Oohhhh thank the lord. I can't be on a team where I don't know anyone."
"Don't worry, some of the other players from our team also got picked. Two from our defence and our goalkeeper are representatives as well."
"Well that's reassuring. Have you read up on some of the teams from other nations?"
"Not much, no. But the news of the tournament were mostly blasted by the Firnean team. Apparently they are by far the favourites to win it this year, being ranked even above Lunapoli."
"Yeah... They probably got Bellamy as a starter..." he murmured bellow his breath
"What was that?"
"Nothing! W-Well... It's Firnea, afterall. Their football players are one of the best in the world and they're the most successful teams. So of course they'd be ranked so highly."
"Yeah, you've got a point. Guess all we have to do is just give it our all. Our youth team hasn't won the title yet. How about we go and show them how Illionar did it in 1986, hm?"
"Absolutely, hehe."

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Silent Huntress Pt. 1

Postby Norrs » Sat Apr 01, 2023 9:18 pm

30.09.2023 1503 hr UTC
RCN Aizu (SSG-124), S.45-class SSN
Altus Ocean, 60 nmi North of Orwellian waters

It was a calm, but tense day on board the Aizu, the submarine was simply cruising along at a mere 12 knots at periscope depth. The Aizu was one of many Norudo submarines that were on patrol in the Northern most reaches of the Altus sea, here location a national secret. Though like many ships, Aizu had to check in with the RCN's Naval Command at some point, and that point was now, 1500 UTC today to be precise.

Commander Tsubaki Akamatsu was the Officer-in-Command of the Aizu, and was in the control room when the message came through. The Communications Specialist simply handed over a folded paper with a communication from the Naval Command on it. Akamatsu, with some surprise going through her mind, unfolded the paper to gaze upon the communiqué.


"Well shit..." Akamatsu swore under her breath. She then folded the paper up, and began issuing orders. "Helm, descend to depth 6-0. Maintain 15 knots heading 1-6-0." She then walked over to the map table at the back of the information center as the helmsman called back.

"Descend to 6-0 at 15 knots, heading 1-6-0. Aye Aye." The submarine then began to dive to a depth of 60 meters and began making its way Southeast. At the same time, Akamatsu poured over the map charts, and began marking out boxes on a map of Altus Sea, outlining the Caution area in orange marker and the No-Entry area in red. Having been at sea for two months now, she was completely unaware that there was now a war going on between Kiberia and Orwelsia. But she knew, whatever was going on, it was important enough for the Commander-in-Chief of the Altus Regional Command to send out a Flash Priority. Not only that, but it was to all BSTO-affiliated submarines, not just those operating under the Altus Regional Command. This was big, real big.

Akamatsu then turned to the Communications Specialist, who was back at her station already. "Comms, get Lieutenant Commander Morimoto down here. And rig the ship for EMCON 2."

"EMCON 2, Aye Aye." The Communications Specialist responded as she tabbed to notify the XO. Akamatsu returned to observing the map, keeping the flash priority paper closed. It wasn't long before LCDR Ema Morimoto, the XO, arrived, stepping in with a rather extravagant stride.

Morimoto spoke with a rather sophisticated, Enkyo accent, "Lieutenant Commander Ema Morimoto reporting as ordered."

"Come over here Ema. Read this." Akamatsu, by contrast, spoke with a more basic accent, though it was clear from her tone that she was deep in thought about the orders. "Something's up. They want us to avoid everything in this grid here." She traced the No-Entry zone with one of her narrow fingers. "And it's not just us either, entire Allied Submarine Force got warned. Boat's rigged for EMCON State Bravo and I'm sure we can expect another communique regarding the Home Fleet."

Morimoto nodded before looking over at the map, "So where are we going now?"

"I'm thinking we'll begin making our way back to port through here." Akamatsu ran her in a roughly straight line that went between Orwelsia and some islands to its Northeast. "Alternatively we could loop around Borealis Major and moor at a Rosaenian base."

"We should go the first route. You know how upset Admiral Igarashi gets when we dock at a foreign base."

Akamatsu nodded, standing up straight. "It's settled then." As Akamatsu and Morimoto then continued into the details of the planned return trip, the Aizu continued her trek southeast in an attempt to return home, hoping to return without incident...
the Norudo Commonwealth
VioletiaOverview of Norudo

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Postby Firnea » Mon Apr 03, 2023 3:46 pm

Rise of the Phoenix

Chapter III: New Horizons

It has been an exciting time for Phoenix. Next to occasionally being drafted to the pro team of Raventide City, she would still be on the Starting XI for the U19 Premier League of Firnea every week, contributing greatly to the team's latest victories.

Thanks to her, Raventide City took their latest three opponents apart, piece by piece. 5-0 against Jotunen Unted. 4-0 against Lokisdalir FC. 7-1 against Starfall City.
3 caps. 7 goals. 3 assists.
It was a massacre, week in, week out.

Following their latest victory, Phoenix returned home taking the tram. Her older would wait for her already, having prepared dinner while she made her way back home.

"Hey, fireball. Sorry I couldn't make it today..."
"It's fine. Don't worry." Phoenix smiled up at him. "I scored a hattrick in the first half. Went pretty good."
"Just as I expected!"
"And, is that lasagna I can smell there...?"
"You bet it is." Raven smiled back. "Sit down, take off your shoes, relax for a bit. Dinner's almost ready."

Phoenix sighed in comfort, dropped her shoes, hung her jacket up to the wardrobe hook, and dropped down on the sofa. She was just about to turn on the TV when a little detail caught her astute eye. Raven must have read the Raventide Herald, the city's biggest newspaper. It was put on the living room table, and the sports section was opened up.
There it was. Page one. A major feature story.

"The stars of tomorrow: find out who's about to shake up the world of football at this year's U18 world cup", she read to herself, and her eyes would flare with excitement, her stomach jumped a little. Having her interest piqued, she quickly read over the article, and soon realized all the participating nations were featured.

"Marco Ferrara, Lunapoli's central back of the future", she mumbled. "At merely 17 years of age, he is already renowned as a nightmare to every striker in the game... huh. That guy sounds like he could be dangerous. Could be interesting, playing against the Lunapolitans."

It wouldn't take her long to find a picture of her own, delicate face, beaming up at the real Phoenix with vast amounts of confidence. Reading an article calling her "Firnea's greatest football history in at least fourty years" made her feel funny.

"Do they always have to hype me up that much?", she grumbled. "If I don't perform well, they're gonna call me the biggest fluke in at least fourty years. For crying out loud... huh? What's this?"

Another picture suddenly flashed up before her like a bright neon sign. A boy with grey fur and large fox ears...

"Teo Slakonja", she muttered under her breath, and blinked in surprise when she read the image description. She's heard of that name. But this?
"That can't be."

She blinked again, trying to make sure she didn't read wrong, but, certainly, she hasn't. This player of her own age was nominated as his team's captain.
A world youth tournament captain at the age of 15.

"Phoenix, didn't you hear me? Dinner's ready."
"Huh? Sorry, I must have zoned out", she said, shrugging. "Hey, uh, Raven - have you ever heard of this player before? Teo Slakonja, from Illionar?"
"Sure have, and I know you have, too. Anything wrong about him?"
"No, not at all."

Phoenix closed the newspaper, grabbed her fork, and smiled at Raven once more. "I'm just excited, that's all."
"Excited? About the tournament?"
"Yep", she replied, nodding as she dug into her lasagna. "Seems like there are a few insanely good players out there."

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Postby Frandonia » Sat Apr 08, 2023 5:42 pm

Part 4: A Step Forward

It was a rather warm day today. Practice was off this week in order for the players to rest up after playing many matches on a tight schedule. Theo was lounging around in his dorm room, lying face first on his bed with one of his arms dangling off the side of the bed. Him and Victor did have a rather crazy night yesterday playing games and such, so he was basically half dead, sighing into his pillow.

"Uuughhhh... I feel like crap." he mutters and flips over, staring up at the ceiling. At that moment, his bell rang. From the reception, they told him that he got a mail delivery. A letter arrived from him. He doesn't usually get any mail apart from a rare postcard here and there from his brother overseas. Maybe it's another one. He trundled down three floors and looked into his mailbox. It was a letter from the Illionar Youth Soccer Association.

"Ooooh! It's that time of year, isn't it?" he said excitedly before rushing up to his room. Quickly tearing open the top of the letter, he pulled out a piece of paper and read it. His eyes became wider and wider the more he read. He came to the part that most interested him.

Teo Slakonja | 15 years old | Number 10 | Attacking Midfielder

"There we go... Now I got proof that I'm part of the team, hehe" he said confidently. Flopping down onto the bed, he stared up at the ceiling, only imagining how this could go. Many footballers he looked up to were major parts of their youth teams. Charles Ekholm of Rosaenia, Pataki Zoltán, a playmaker who pulled Blancor to the title in 1950, Emma Rogstad of Firnea, who battled towards Firnea's first ever title... He'll play in the tournament they all played in at this age. It was the most excited he's ever felt.

A month passed before national team practice began. During the early hours of the morning, all players of the national team gathered at the home ground of the senior national team. 28 members lined up, ranging from 15-17 years of age. There were three coaches managing the team and Theo was soon called forward to receive a captain's armband, causing quite a few of his teammates to give him odd looks. He was one of the youngest players, yet was already chosen captain. Many of them had a look of envy on their faces, causing Theo to tense up a bit. Tho he wasn't unfamiliar to strange looks, the situation he was put in made him very uncomfortable. He didn't know anyone apart from Victor, but he has read about many of them performing very well in the youth leagues in Illionar. Practice soon started and they both found that drills here were much, much more difficult than for their local clubs. Two exhausting hours of non-stop training drained them very quickly and they soon found themselves almost asleep, collapsed on the floor of Theo's room. With how tired they were, they both agreed that Victor would just sleep over at his dorm before heading home tomorrow. Luckily practice was held every other day, so they were able to rest the next day and prepare for practice. However, during his day-off, something bothered him. The U-17 Youth Football Tournament was nearing and he couldn't stop thinking about that young Firnean superstar. Just how did she play? How will it be to play against her and the Firnean team? Was he good enough to challenge them? It kept him up until about 1 AM when he realized he had to get to sleep to prepare for practice tomorrow.

"I really wonder what'll happen at the tournament..." he pondered for a few minutes before closing his eyes and drifting off to sleep.

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Postby Firnea » Sun Apr 09, 2023 11:13 am

Rise of the Phoenix

Chapter IV: Dress Rehearsal

The day had finally come. The day Phoenix would meet her teammates for the World Youth Tournament, the U-17 cup she always dreamed of participating in, without really believing it would actually happen.
But it was real. She had worked hard to get here, and her efforts had paid off.

It hadn't been the first time for her to visit the Eldur Coliseum, but she couldn't help but to feel impressed, almost intimidated by how prestigious and gigantic this stadium was. History was made here on countless occasions.
To think she might actually have the chance to write her own name into the history books one day... her heart started to race just from the quick thought.

"Hey, redhead, over here", a blonde girl shouted, and Phoenix flinched, finally being torn out of her daydreaming. Hastily, she pulled herself together and hurried over to the rest of the Firnean U-17 team, where the coach, a rather young, broad-shouldered man was already waiting, and clearly, for her.

"Sorry about that", Phoenix mumbled, but, to her relief, the blonde gave her a gesture, saying "you're fine", essentially. The coach cleared his throat.

"Alright, alright, alright. It seems as though Phoebe won't make it in time, her parents already informed me... and Andy Windsor is out with the flu. So, I suppose that means we're complete, for now. Alright, kids, welcome to Eldur Coliseum! I know most of you have been here before, but in three days, this is where we're going to play against the pro team of the Dvergar Rangers to prepare for the World Youth Tournament. Compared to rest of the Premier League, they're rather average, but make no mistake about it: they're still a pro team, and while I know that most of you are pro players, these players have a lot more experience than all of you do. I'm expecting you to take this seriously. Did I make myself clear?"

The team agreed unanimously. Phoenix noted the blonde girl next to her to be especially eager about it, and finally, she realized who she was. Her name was Vivi Vennerod. She was a left winger playing for Ransholt Forest.
Suddenly, Phoenix began to recognize all the boys and girls around her, and gulped heavily. All of these guys are so good! Gosh, what am I even doing here?

"Alright, time to practice! Give it your all, kids, and perhaps you'll be in the starting eleven this sunday!"

Phoenix swore to herself that she would indeed give it her best shot.

- - - - - - - - - -

Practice went as well as Phoenix could have hoped for. Out of all the forwards nominated for the tournament squad, she scored the most goals by far, even outclassing Bianca Rogstad, a fifth-generation football talent, and younger sister to Rebecca Rogstad, Eldur United's very own striking sensation.

"Alright, gather around, everybody", the coach ordered after blowing his whistle, and the teens, all of them visibly exhausted, sat down in a circle around their coach, who would let his gaze wander over his clipboard.

"So, you all did great today, but as you all know, we have to make decisions here. Please don't be disappointed if you're benched for now."

Phoenix sighed audibly. She knew she did well, but perhaps, that wouldn't be everything her coach was looking for. If I didn't make it, I'll scream into a pillow, she thought, and her expression darkened.

"Alright, our starting keeper: Niklas Berger from Gardheim Olympic."

Phoenix gave Niklas a cautious look. He seemed to be incredibly relieved, and she just had to smile. She knew exactly how he felt.

"On to the back four. Left back: Punk Vespertine, Midstrand FC. Right back: Skye McKenna, Staghelm City. Center backs: Raissa Arestad, Eldur United, and Theodore Riverwood, Gardheim Olympic."

The defenders high-fived each other and applauded their efforts. Phoenix noticed something right away. Two Gardheim players already... I might end up as the only one representing Raventide, if at all!

"Let's continue with the midfield. Central midfield - to the surprise of no one - Rokne Gyldenløve, Eldur United. Left wing: Vivi Vennerod, Ransholt Forest. Right wing: Janus Boye Solvang, Dellinger Wanderers - yes, yes, I know, it's just Janus to you. Attacking midfield: Lilith Ray-Stuart, Embervale FC."

The excitement nearly became too much for Phoenix. She inhaled deeply, trying to calm herself, but to no avail.

"And finally, our two forwards. Phoenix Bellamy, Raventide City, and Bianca Rogstad, Mosfort Metro."

Phoenix' heart skipped a beat. Maybe even two. She didn't scream out in joy, she just exhaled heavily, smiled from ear to ear, and fell on her back, laying down in the grass and staring up into the blue afternoon sky. Bianca took her hand and congratulated her; Phoenix replied automatically - she didn't even hear herself answer. Rokne, whom she'd met before, ruffled her scarlet red hair, and Phoenix allowed herself to close her eyes and enjoy the moment.
She did it. And she would show the world what she was capable of.

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Postby Also Not FNU » Thu Apr 13, 2023 12:41 pm

    Inky Black Abyss

PS New Petrino, an icon of Nor’eastern naval prowess, and a symbol of post-war prosperity. Travelling from Caradon to destinations across the Meridis and Boreal, she’d seen substantially less traffic with the outbreak of the war, despite the lack of any routes going that far north. Paranoia was a strong thing, and it seemed that it’d be the reason for the Nor'easter Company’s once a year dip in profits. This particular voyage had been mostly without issue, an intranational trip from Caradon to Korovosky, that had only been impeded by one of the diesel engines beginning to suffer a failure with its fuel injectors, a problem that the engineering crew couldn’t fix at sea. Subsequently, the ship had been operating at suboptimal levels, power having to be drawn from the ship's main engines, crippling her usual cruising speed from 29 knots down to 26, much to her captain’s annoyance.

Captain Harold V. Sailloue was a veteran of the Nor’easter Company, having served as captain on various ships since 1992, starting first on the William Henry, and then in 2003 being moved to the New Petrino following Captain Edward W. Kalvin’s retirement. He’d had no incidents yet, and he intended for this voyage to be the same, however the spotty electrical supply was severely hampering the safety of the vessel. One moment the GPS and Radar showed clear readings, and the next they were completely dead. Though the route was a routine voyage, the turn required to enter Korovosky overlapped one of the nation’s main international shipping lines, and the last thing he wanted was to be unable to communicate while making the crossing, especially should Jorge arrive.

MS Mare Nubium, a symbol of pride for the Caliber Oil Company, and the largest tanker in the entirety of the Commonwealth. Travelling from Algerton via the Grand Canal to locations all around the world, namely Kiberia and Illionar, the ship had the capacity to carry some 3.15 million barrels of oil and made a steady 16.5 knots as it trundled along. Currently at her maximum capacity, and en route to the dangerous waters of the North Boreal, the whole crew of the vessel wandered about the vessel, tending to their duties and keeping keen eyes on the ship’s supports. She had just undergone an eight-month long inspection to make sure she was still seaworthy, however a few issues were found with her outer hull, minor corrosion making it necessary to replace some of the ship’s hull. While the repairs were well done, and most definitely to RTB standards, crew members couldn’t help but feel uneasy as the ship groaned.

Its captain, one John J. Jackson was new to the vessel, having previously worked on the substantially smaller MS Georgton and the MS Pride of Vladrinsk, both one million barrel tankers, the sheer size of the Mare Nubium was shocking. It also took substantially longer to turn the vessel, an understandable side effect of her full load. She’d barely made it through the shallow stretch of the Grand Canal, but even in deeper waters she handled horrifically, even accounting for her size. Though it was suffering no issues, the vessel was still dated in some aspects, mainly not having upgraded it’s radio systems to the newly recommended Revechi Electro Model 19, instead sticking with it’s older Louton Mk.8, while not inherently dangerous, the radio did have a bad tendency to overheat, forcing it to be shut down until the circuits reached more reasonable temperatures.

Roughly 100 miles from Korovosky, the bridge of the New Petrino goes quiet as the ship prepares to cross the Great Channel, the nation’s main naval highway into international waters. It was routine, first proposed by the RTB in 2012 and approved in 2014, however that never removed the tense attitude the ship seemed to adapt when crossing it. Reducing to just above half-ahead, creeping down to some 17 knots, the massive vessel makes its turn, swinging the bow around to 300°, the engine is pushed back to full ahead, climbing in speed greatly as the propellers churn away at the dark ocean. It’s nearly midnight now, and the skies couldn’t be any clearer, however Jorge had just begun to arrive. Jorge had long been a scourge of sea goers in the Caradon Sea, his foggy mass dumping visual range down to point blank ranges. Normally captain’s would merely switch over to radar and GPS guidance upon his arrival, but the spotty electricity of the New Petrino had rendered them useless. All communications were going in and out through the radio room.

Aboard the Mare Nubium, four members of the engineering crew sit in her bow storage room. They’ve been ordered here by Captain Jackson, looking for spare bottles of coolant, as the ship's AC system was acting up again. Meanwhile in the wheelhouse, Jackson listened to the radio for reports of the New Petrino. He’d been warned that the ship would be crossing, but as chances stood she’d cross well ahead of the Mare Nubium, and subsequently he could maintain his current speed and heading. Visual range had suffered greatly, but the radar still showed clear waters, leading to him relaxing as the ship pushed on through the inky night.

At roughly 12:28 AM, two vacationers aboard the New Petrino spotted a faint light dead ahead of the ocean liner’s bow, however believing it to be the lights of Korovosky, they continued their night walk, after all, if anything was wrong the crew would know about it. Back aboard the Mare Nubium, the radar began to blink faintly, a large blip coming directly side on to the tanker. Jackson, reasoning it to be a fishing boat, sends an order down the engine room to reduce to slow ahead, while meanwhile the engineers in the bow continue their hunt for any signs of AC coolant, it was becoming a bit insufferable. Then, at 12:32 AM, the bow light of the New Petrino rips through the fog, and panic sets in for Jackson. Ordering for hard left rudder, he feels as the ship tries desperately to move itself out of the way, but it’s of no use. New Petrino’s current course has them set for a T-Bone impact, and at the speed the Mare Nubium is travelling, she doesn’t have sufficient steering authority. A minute later, and the tanker violently rocks to the side, the New Petrino’s bow crushing against the side of the much larger vessel. Both ships fall quiet, their respective captains ordering full stop, however the damage is already done.

Water rushes into the gash in the Mare Nubium’s side, shooting down the corridors at an unholy pace. For the four engineers in the tanker’s bow, the door to the storage room is forced shut, and after being unable to push it open, they make the choice to seal the door fully. Their crew mates will come for them as soon as the bilge pumps have pushed the sea out, or at least, that’s what they reckon. Aboard the New Petrino, things aren’t pretty. 112 people are injured by the force of the impact alone, being thrown against walls, railings, and machinery. Another 27 are presumed dead, part of the crumpled section of the ship's bow, with another 13 being severely injured from the crash. Captain Sailloue only knows that there’s been an impact, and it’s bad, however aboard the Mare Nubium, Captain Jackson begins to order an evacuation, the ship is beginning to list, with only the wedged bow of the New Petrino keeping them somewhat level, but oil is pouring out as the sea pushes its way inwards. Some 1,575,000 barrels of oil are beginning to make their way into the sea, and Jackson figures the longer they wait, the more risk they either light aflame, or drown in the sea, and so the lifeboats are launched.

In total 12 of the 16 crew, including Captain Jackson are aboard. Four men are missing, but they’re presumed by the others to have been caught up in the initial impact, either killed by the force, or drowned by the flooding. And as the little lifeboat backsaway, they can see the glossy texture of the sea, and the smell of crude floods their nostrils. Finding the emergency radio, Jackson tunes it to New Petrino’s private radio channel.

“12 men evacuated, 4 presumed lost. Request immediate pickup, current location is less than 100 metres from the bow of your vessel, over.”

“Roger, will assist as soon as damage assessment is complete, move to midship at best speed, over.”


As the little orange lifeboat makes its way around, preparing to be winched up by awaiting New Petrino crew members, they watch the Mare Nubium with fascination as it slowly succumbs to the waves, only leaving an oily puddle in its absence. Captain Sailloue orders their location marked down while the GPS still has power, and after confirming the Mare Nubium’s survivors as aboard, orders the engine to half ahead. Currently the bilge pumps are operating without issue, however he’d rather not test his luck by forcing more water through any leaks the tin can of the bow has.

It’s a quiet, solemn night as the crippled ocean liner crosses the final 75 miles to Korovosky. Accommodations are made for the crew of the Mare Nubium, however Jackson heads to the bridge. Conversation is hard to make, the liner blowing its horns as it grows closer and closer to the city. It’s an old regulation of the RTB, however it’s the first time either captain has heard a vessel sound off, and it’s a mixture of terrifying and annoying. He does however try to speak with Sailloue.

“Captain Sailloue, what the hell was your crew doing, what the hell were you doing.”

He watches as the old man’s face grimaces, a mixture of frustrated, annoyed, and stressed.

“That’s for the investigators to decide. Go rest, we’ll be arriving in about two and a half hours.”

“Your career is over Captain, the COC isn’t going to let this off nor is the RTB.”

“We’ll see when the report comes out. Leave the bridge.”

After the brief confrontation, the ship falls silent once more. Arriving at 3:37 AM, the media had already gathered, and the gears of bureaucracy began to stir.

Chances are this is part one of three to four. We’ll see how the world reacts to this one. Before you ask, yes, the four men are alive. For now though, I’m going to work on a news post, and try to figure out the next steps. Also, this post is nearly 2,000 words long, which I think is a new PB.
Last edited by Also Not FNU on Thu Apr 13, 2023 12:41 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Also Not FNU
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Postby Also Not FNU » Thu Apr 27, 2023 8:10 am

    Stage Set

Gold Robbers. That was the nickname of the 107th Railway Company. It was fitting, considering their sole purpose was to run from city to city with a single railcar full of the cloth version of the stuff. It wasn’t glorious work, none of the Railway Company’s were glorious, ignoring the 72nd of course. Bastards were all anyone talked about these days, be it Crown and Country or The Enlisted Man. No one held it against them, but it got old reading about Livingston day after day. Most of the men knew him, and every single one of them knew he just wanted to be left alone. Of course, it wasn’t much better for Banks or Henry, but the media didn’t hound their homes.

Besides the Trentsley incident though, things had been running smoothly. Currently orders had arriven for them to run a triple load, some 120 million dollars to be moved in the cover of night via the company’s S32, work number 043. It was an unexpectedly large supply, ordered from the mint in Algerton straight to Caradon via the express line’s secondary loop, usually meant for trains running late. It was one of the few sections of the country’s rail network where the S32 could easily reach its maximum speed, the flatness and lack of curves making it ideal for quick acceleration. Additionally, the line was generally secluded, trees covering the flank sides of the railbed, almost making a tunnel of foliage, an always beautiful sight when they weren’t running behind.

Delivery was expected in three days by the Royal Treasury, and so for now the men relaxed. It usually only took a couple of hours to load the locomotive, and a few more to get to Caradon, so they weren’t under any particular stress. Additionally, it would give the men time to reinspect S23-043. She traditionally was operated by the National Railway Society, but she had been temporarily transferred to the 107th after the company’s D09-127 kicked the bucket curtsey of an engine detonating because of a improperly installed fuel ejector throwing the engine off-balance, shattering the crankcase. Until the new one arrived from the factory, they had to make do. It wasn’t necessarily a downside, there was some romantic charm to it, but the complexity of the locomotive and the paranoia that still lingered from S42-126’s detonation did prove an interesting challenge.

Hank Patterson was not a particularly peaceful man. Born in Algerton in 1966, he had grown up in the Dockyards of the Hollowed Sea. It was a pitiful place to live, the 60’s having proven rough for the Commonwealth, with the worst of it felt on Algerton’s poor underbelly. People started pointing fingers as soon as things got rough, and for the working men of the docks, that finger was aimed solely at the Monarchy. Things weren’t much better by the mid 70’s, failed attempts to reinvigorate the economy only further magaling Algerton’s slums. It wasn’t until King Lewis personally intervened by having the Royal Conference approve several economic aid packages that things began to even slightly improve, but by that point the damage had already been done. Bitterness was the only emotion anyone felt towards the whole ordeal, and in Algerton there was no greater question then “why didn’t the King step in sooner? Did he not care?” To many, the answer to that question was a profuse yes.

Patterson ended up joining an organisation with a very similar mindset, they called themselves the Brothers of the Nor’eastern Republic. Staunchly anti-monarch, and believing the economic recession of the 60’s and 70’s was the fault of an outdated government, they reigned terror across Greater Algerton for years, only coming to an end when in 1982 the government announced it would be further revising the constitution, further limiting the powers of the monarch and redesigning the functionalities of both the Conclave and Royal Conference. For many of the BNR’s members, this was enough to bring them some semblance of peace. Granted there weren't many BNR members left, not after the raids carried out by the Royal Army in 80’ and 81’, but the announcement motivated some of the holdouts to finally go home and wash the blood off their hands. Not Patterson though, he still had bones to pick.

Continuing much smaller operations throughout the late 90’s and early 2000’s, mostly petty thefts and the occasional attempted car bombing (which usually went awry, the knowledge base of the BNR having shrunken substantially). It was enough to keep the BNR’s efforts in public consciousness, but it was a losing battle. Raids on members' homes continued, and the organisation continued to shrink until in 2015 the government declared the organisation a non-threat. By this point even Patterson had somewhat lessened his dedication to the cause, too many near misses with RA parties near his premises. In the past five years he’d moved some twelve times. It was tiring. For a man of only 57, you wouldn’t be weird for mistaking him as a 70 year old.

In spite of however much he attempted to separate himself from his past, he couldn’t help but feel like he’d given up far too easily. The BNR hadn’t gone out in a blaze of glory, but instead had laid down on its side and whimpered a final breath, surrendering itself to its fate. It was almost disgusting to him that he’d permitted himself to let the BNR crumble. And so, he began making phone calls to old acquaintances, the BNR would have its day, and the good news for them was that the 00:10 ‘Gold Robber’ from the mint in Algerton to Caradon was scheduled to leave in three days' time. Patterson had a train to catch.

Part one of three. Let me clarify something: I am currently fixing my transportation information, but the locomotives featured in this post are steam. Now, before I give someone a stroke, out of the literal thousands of locomotives in the country, 40 are steam, and of those 40 a total of 17 are in actual commercial operation, the rest operate on heritage lines as tourist attractions a la Bluebell. All 17 in commercial operation are restrictively used in and around Algerton, mostly just to move coal trains for companies that are too cheap to upgrade. Coal is a finite resource, and soon enough it’ll be phased out in the NEC, but for the time being (i.e. until I bother with a transportation bill finally outlawing the operation of coal-fired locomotives outside of Heritage service), these 17 continue to operate. 17 of thousands.
Last edited by Also Not FNU on Sun Apr 30, 2023 5:40 pm, edited 1 time in total.



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