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About Draeris

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    the good ol' days

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    Krisztián M. Károly, Msgr.
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  1. Krisztián shakes his head at the missive “Define ‘The Imperial State’?” his frail hand shakes in slight frustration, reaching for a cigarette “This is basically slander. Didn’t they cut tongues over this in Haense?”
  2. Carnatian cattle farmers in the outskirts of Owynsburg, 1747 NOTHING LIKE KAEDRIN AN ODE TO MY HOME One can easily be distracted from radiant beauty by the affairs of the everyday: where a thick mantle of responsibility and duty await all Orenians waking up at dawn. For most of us residing in the cities: we no longer think about the effort, the manpower and the creativity required to shape your humble abode. We no longer care about the bee resting on a flower, or the aesthetic of well-dressed cosmopolitans chatting in a bustling tavern. Why would we? The stream of duty takes us all to our daily routines, and once they’re finished, we long nothing more but to return amongst our brethren and kin. Everyday I wake up before the city does: so that I may quickly dress and eat, before riding off to whatever corner of the Empire needs me. Witnessing the Senate in session in Helena, or attending a masquerade in Hanseti-Ruska. Chatting with lady Devereux in Curon, and passing by former Suffonia for old time’s sake. But as I travel and talk and write, worry and ponder and think: I too stop thinking about the beauty of home. In the days between being informed about your promotion, and it being published in a bull: one can detox from the functionary life. The joy of your progress is not yet impeded by the weight of your new mantle: you are free, and you are happy. This serenity perhaps enlightened me enough to see how beautiful my daily life is, and that of many of my Rhoswenii friends. Because nothing can quite capture the feeling of Kaedrin: not even the jewel of the Empire known as Helena, or the newest city on our map in Curon. Don’t get me wrong: Helena certainly is a jewel, and Curon definitely embodies imperial prosperity. In today’s Empire, ugliness appears scarcely. But even though most of our Empire is beautiful: not much is as beautiful as Kaedrin. For when I depart from my daily chatter with Mariana Dubois, I see an idyllic farmland stretching around her estate. Small creeks and flowers decorate the pittoresque path to the city of Owynsburg: slowly becoming bustling once more. For a couple of minutes: you stroll through a remarkable painting. While I prepare a sermon with my Acolytes Ludomir and Franz in St. Catharines: I feel the mountain breeze going through my hair. I look through the opened stained glass windows, and am greeted by a clear blue sky and an ever pleasing sun. When Edgar de Sarkozy asks for a moment in private, he takes me just outside the cathedral: where a contrast of sharp shadows and noon sun decorate my brick staircases running through my yard. When I taste wine with Richard Helvets and his lovely wife Lorena, I am surrounded by an extravagant display of colours and decorations in Varoche palace. A perfectly balanced interior that doesn’t impose on you like in Helena’s, but gives far more warmth than the dark lumbers of Haense’s. A fine abode to conversate and to feel comfortable in, but which is also the seat of Rhoswenii power. Whether I look out of the window there, or stand outside of the palace gate: these magnificent mountains greet me again, with the familiar contour of the Cathedral speaking to me softly: “Home.” But fluffy clouds, green grass and a radiant sun are only half of the beauty resting in the former Commonwealth. Where Helena is bejeweled by its architecture, Kaedrin shines through its people instead. Nowhere else did I find this warm hospitality: as a Carnatian peasant, or as a Bishop. I remember running into Henry Frederick Helvets vividly. He was a prince and governor-general of Kaedrin, jogging past me as I arrived at Owynsburg from Helena. Despite it being our first interaction: he greeted me warmly and asked me about my day, before knowing that I was to be his new Bishop. A small albeit remarkable interaction, but one simply impossible to replicate with the social etiquettes of Helena or the cold culture of Haense. This proved to be just the appetizer for me however: for I have yet to meet a rude Kaedreni, at a point where nearly the entire population consists of familiar faces. Random strangers would accompany my relatives in the tavern, help me decorate my home or escort me to previously undiscovered corners of this paradise. They would involve me in their games, their stories and their grief. No place becomes home quicker than Kaedrin, because everyone treats the other as family. But I of course cannot just talk about my personal experiences, when their hospitality is the reason for my people’s comfortable existence. Even as peasants we lived comfortably in Kaedrin, obtained literacy and were given a seat at the table. The Kaedreni and their recent ancestors had no obligation to cater to a weak and troubled culture like ours, but chose to help it recover regardless. A rare type of gratitude is felt for this: one that feels impossible to repay. My father once rightfully said: “never lose the opportunity to see something beautiful, for beauty is God’s handwriting”. This divine presence is felt in the piety and purity of the Rhoswenii folk: being the best congregation one may wish for. Substantial but polite in debates, gossipy but within the realm of the civil and decadent but handled in a fashion that is respectable. Temperance is another wealth that Kaedrin possesses in excess. Kaedrin is a place where the friends are the trustiest and the wine is the headiest, where my love is felt the liveliest, and my life is spent the loveliest. Wherever I might be, there truly is nothing like Kaedrin. Now that I can see once more, I always look behind me on the road and think: never will I forget the beauty waiting for me at home.
  3. The Carnatian would sign a cross, baffled by this tragedy “Another sheep culled from the Canonist flock.. May God give her rest. the poor lass..”
  4. A frail Carnatian looks over his tower window at C street in Owynsburg, seeing the sun rise and his congregation milling about below. Mornings like these were always blessed: but this morning was slightly more blessed than the others. With a weak smile, he pens a letter to His Holiness, thanking him for the given trust.
  5. The author couldn’t hear Otto in his palace, but Otto could probably smell the rotting scent from the human carcass in the palace courtyard!
  6. “Such a seemingly emotional man couldn’t possibly be nominated judge?” the Carnatian would lean over the railing, watching the ongoing Senate session “Bah, democracy wills it I suppose.”
  7. Joseph Adler to Otto Sigmar: “cease these executions at once!” TEACHING HANSETI-RUSKA A STUBBORN CASE OF BRUTALITY WITHIN OUR BORDERS AUTHOR: His Eminence Krisztián Cardinal Ves Secretariat to His Holiness PUBLISHED BY: HELVETS HOUSE OF LITERATURE ST. OWYNSBURG, STREET C, NR. 1 12th of Owyn's Flame, 1762 His Imperial Majesty is an unicum in the Canonist faith: beyond being its defender, it carries a mandate handed to GOD. Through this mandate, he appoints functionaries in his privy council: who in turn delegate authority to lesser functionaries or democratic institutions. This process birthed the Senate, the Circuit courts and the Supreme Court: and it has made life significantly better for all ever since. The excellence of such institutions rely on the cooperation of mankind. In most of the Empire, it works: from the agrarian hills of Kaedrin to the bustling construction sites of Curon. All adhere to the consensus of civility, from the sovereigns to the Senators and the peasants beneath. A man in Kaedrin can rely on the prospect of a fair trial, a ruling in accordance with imperial law and the proper execution of said ruling. One may notice that since this system prevails: less blood has been spilled on the steps of Varoche Hall or Owynsburg. But what if an Imperial subject breaks this consensus, and deems itself more capable to deliver justice than the imperial framework? I am, of course, talking about the Kingdom of Hanseti-Ruska. Having personally witnessed two executions without trial, a child nearly being imprisoned instantly by their military, as much as hearing accounts from Vanir and Amador on other occasions: I find myself disgruntled with this arrogance. Why is a person within the territory of Hanseti-Ruska, less likely to receive a fair trial than a man in Curon or Helena? This isn’t a case of wayward vigilantes or mutinies in the military either. The Lord Regent and the military leadership all gather to see a rain of arrows pierce the back of an untried man: only to collectively loot his carcass afterwards. Is his body buried? Nay, an awards ceremony is held after by the Marshal. People feast while a man’s body rots in front of the Haeseni palace, a man that never faced justice beyond his initial arrest. How is this acceptable in 1762? Unsure how to answer that question, I wrote with utter disgruntlement to His Holiness and His Excellency the Archchancellor in hopes to bring this ongoing issue to light. Why is the Bishop of Ves meddling with extrajudicial executions in Hanseti-Ruska, one may ask? I refer to my previous publication ‘We may drown’, where I implore all Canonists to carry the mantle of civic duty and vigilance. As a witness, man of the cloth and imperial citizen: should I let this barbarism occur in my own country? Should I furthermore tolerate this slander against the very procedures that tried me fairly, ruled me innocent and spared my life? How fearful do my fantasies run, imagining being the defendant in such a high profile trial in a jurisdiction like Hanseti-Ruska. Would I face such a fair trial there? Would I be able to write this? I doubt it. Which is what upsets me the most. What would have been a stark difference in outcomes: within the same country. Fortunately the Kingdom of Hanseti-Ruska knows many good faithfuls that care as much as I do. And I ask of them humbly: please do not be silent about issues such as these, dare to reach out when the institutions above you falter to meet the imperial standard. Demand the same civility that your peers abroad enjoy, for you might be missing out on the greatest delivering of justice and fairness known to mankind. The same applies to the worrying rise of Sigismundic Canonism within their borders. It is not long ago that severed heads were placed on our altar in Helena, citing that Haense will rule again. Is this the doing by the government like the extrajudicial executions? Of course not. But it is a testimony to the boiling rage underneath the northern ice: a rejection of modernity in its most vile and seditious form. It is within my personal belief that there is no historical reason behind the rise of this Sigismundic heresy, beyond it being an instrument to create yet another divide between ‘them’ and ‘us’. ‘Why seek these false trials, if true northern justice can be served?’ you are asked. ‘Why listen to Canonist Helenites, when our northern mystics know it better!’ you are being told. But is this true? And are Imperials truly that different from the average Haeseni? These distinctions seemed entirely irrelevant to its creators when the existence of the Kingdom was threatened, and Imperial troops were needed to protect it. They serve a specific purpose only: to keep you away from Imperial enlightenment, so that you are isolated and easier to rule over. So that you can witness the slaughtering of a man without due process, and feel you have nowhere to go to protest. GOD bless the architects of rapprochement. Men like Terrence May or Conrad Barclay: considering the Empire as whole. Families like Kortrevich and Vanir, who frequent the capital as if it is a city of their own - because it is. Our country is for all of humanity. Time will run out for those that thrive on barbarism and isolation, for a new generation awaits with proper respect for mankind’s oneness and its architects. GOD bless Joseph Adler, who took my correspondence seriously and sought to protect fair and free justice because of it. A question is lingering however: if His Excellency is to speak, will the Lord Regent listen?
  8. His Eminence reading over his notes in the Bishopric of Ves, 1761. WHO ARE THE IMPERIALS? A chronicle highlighting the characters populating the Holy Orenian Empire AUTHOR: His Eminence Krisztián Cardinal Ves Secretariat to His Holiness PUBLISHED BY: HELVETS HOUSE OF LITERATURE ST. OWYNSBURG, STREET C, NR. 1 THIS CHRONICLE IS DEDICATED TO THE BRAVE PEOPLE OF OREN PREAMBLE The extensive machinations of the Imperial empire provide us with detailed census data, geographical outlines or written epics. They are the building blocks of how we perceive the Empire today, and what will come for it tomorrow. Albeit crucial, it is easy to forget the tales of the men making this all happen. The Imperial functionary, the diligent farmer and the vigilant guard: all a part of a great mosaic that make mankind’s greatest feats possible. This chronicle will explore these characters all across the Empire, and celebrate their existence in utter gratitude and reverence. IMPERIAL CITIZEN: His Grace, John d’Arkent, Duke of Sunholdt, Baron of Selm Chief Justice of the Supreme Court, former Arch-chancellor, former Vice-Chancellor, former First Minister of Curon. The lord of Selm was born in 1699 in Arkent to Joseph Marna or Joey the Pretender, and a kitchen wench of little repute named Diane. She formed most of his parenting, with his father preoccupied with the politics of the realm. With grey eyes, brown hair and facial hair, a straight but frail composure and a warm aura: John d’Arkent might be your typical Helenan cosmopolitan. A man that wakes up for the finer things in life, such as the whiskey that flows in our markets, but most importantly, to see his children’s health. He feels a calling to ensure that his offspring inherit a better world than he has, proudly boasting eight in total. To John d’Arkent, a better world for his children would entail their protection from another Pertinaxi reign. To maintain the quality of the noble aristocracy, and redefine how blood is valued in our Empire. He maintains liberal values, but staunchly demands for his peers to adhere to the upholding of institutions such as the Imperial throne. A meritocracy in the imperial context, where a father can trust that his children can succeed through sheer diligence and loyalty. He stands as a diligent man, working against the manifestation of his greatest fear: that the Time of Troubles return to wreak havoc on his offspring and his grandchildren, far beyond his own lifespan. More interestingly, the lord of Selm fears that the inheritors to the current Empire will not see its formula to success: casting aside the icons of greatness and prosperity for other tried experiments. But his political mind can be distracted by the simple temptations in life. He sees the Helenan class as a singular band of companions: who he drinks and feasts with. A man usually weighed down with fears of the future: finds bliss in these moments of simplicity. Hearty smiles, quality wine: the beauty of Helenan life. His greatest challenge was as Arch-chancellor for Alexander II, as it was poisoned with chaos and terrible affairs. Holding his cabinet together nearly cost the mental health of John, if not his own fingernails. He stood isolated, surrounded by incompetence and deception. Opposed to that stands his greatest victory: leading the Empire to the end of the Troubles. A lifelong professional dedication, accomplished through sheer merit and luck. With the end of the fifth Norlander war, John d’Arkent walks victorious through life. There is one man deserving of his wroth, that being Duke Godric and the citizens of Morsgrad. He feels that they constructed an entitled and delusional world that destroyed the civility around it. Furthermore, he despises the murderers of his daughter: the Belmonts. This horror had brought him closer to the psyche of a companion, Ester Rose. Both losing their daughters to Barbary. Though she is long dead at Godric’s hands some twenty years ago, he feels more attuned to her sorrow with the loss of his own daughter. He goes through life with a single wish: that the story of his comrades and him in their most heinous of struggles, is a worthwhile lesson for our progeny. That the terrible chapters of mankind’s history do not repeat, and that those that carry mankind further heed the warnings from the past. He furthermore hopes to die before any of his children: this also being his sole ambition left in life. The man feels accomplished and enfranchised: a true Imperial contributing to a collective destiny. The lord of Selm truly embodies a cosmopolitan. Feeling at home in every corner of the Empire: seeing no difference in worth between the many cultures that roam. He considers humanity ‘one nation and one culture’, even though he recognizes that each have their own lovely quirks. But to move beyond the point of recognizing these differences, seems to be of no interest to d’Arkent. For “nothing is more glorious than the providence of our imperial unity, a single humanity.” To assert anything else, like autonomy from the Empire or an identity that is distinctly separate, is to stand in the way of progress, and progress does not infringe upon anyone, so he believes. We either move together as one humanity, or we fall divided. If he could say one thing to all of mankind, it would be that mistrust is a breeding ground for hatred and deceit. To let one’s guard down and invite your fellow man into your house for a drink, and expect nothing from them. That would be a fine day for John d’Arkent, Baron of Selm.
  9. WE MAY DROWN SAILING OVER THE WAVES OF HATE THE PUBLISHED EDITION OF THE SERMON OF His Eminence Krisztián Cardinal Ves Secretariat to His Holiness Spoken to his congregation in the Cathedral of St. Catherine’s in the Kaedreni capital of Owynsburg, 1760. PUBLISHED BY: HELVETS HOUSE OF LITERATURE ST. OWYNSBURG, STREET C, NR. 1 THIS SERMON IS DEDICATED TO THE BRAVE ISA SOLDIERS OF ORENIA The biggest fear of modern man is failure. The idea that despite the gallant defense by our brave soldiers, the care of our imperial functionaries, the voice of our elected representatives and the refinement of our cultural icons: we may not stay afloat, but instead, drown. Drown in the sea of hatred towards our modern existence: where the dark age concepts of absolutist rule and clerical autocracy swim freely. To mention this possibility is often seen as a form of distrust to the fine gentlemen in Helena: who sap their strength to march on from the fruits of their success. It is indisputable that mankind has progressed immensely since the end of the Lord-Protector’s reign: since we may exist in a blessed reality of wealth and enlightenment in excess. These gentlemen in Helena know, as much as those in our Canonist flock, that nothing is guaranteed or eternal. And while I spoke of gratitude towards these successes in Helena, I feel it is wise to go beyond gratitude: and seek to defend our bastion of civility. Defend against whom? You may ask. Imagination in your heads leads you from Haenseni separatists to Norlandic slaughterers. But do not heed these threats exclusively, for an enemy is amidst our flock. Not just the hecklers in my previous sermon, calling Helena a godless city. Not just the practitioning heretics beyond our borders: no, these are your common men and women who manifest in your circles. They are not your caricature type of evil: spitting on Imperial monuments every day. They are the priest that refuses to be accountable to the state, they are the guard that fantasizes of revolution or the separatist wishing for imperial disintegration: these can be the citizens that sit at your dinner table, that are the mother of your children or the local monarch you revere. But just because they are deserving of your affection or respect, does not mean that their ideas deserve tolerance. And herein lies our greatest challenge of today: truly enforcing the loyalty that GOD demands from us, without tearing the social fabric apart that has led to our prosperity. The Imperial government understands this fragile balance, but should not stand alone in maintaining it. It is the calling of the Canonist flock to do so as well. For GOD spoke to us in the Canticle of Patience: “And as I have created for you the struggles of the world, so too do I create the struggles of the spirit. And as I have created the struggles of the world and the spirit, so too do I bring their remedies. [...] I bid my faithful this: You shall not raise a hand in wrath, nor in envy, nor in any kind of sin. [..] My trials are the holy trials, and My Cure is the virtuous cure, and all the reliefs of Virtue are open to the righteous forebear.” If we do not remedy the struggles of the spirit through adherence to Canonism and loyalty to the state: we shall find more and more people becoming astray. They shall hate the institutions that granted them a liveable life, as they speak ill of those that affectionately take care of him. They shall become the wayward sons of GOD, leaving behind a path of destruction and social decay wherever they manifest. While no nation can conquer the Oren of today: its citizens certainly can poison it. This is why the Canonist must carry the mantle of GOD’s mandated authority: His Majesty and His Holiness, with the Imperial government. A true Canonist goes beyond not heeding the words of sedition and hate, but decimates them with sheer faith and a rebuttal. It is not long ago that I was spat upon by a man who spoke of a Godless Helena, in Helena’s very cathedral. Barely a day has passed since the head of a crow was placed on our altar, with the proclamation that Haense will rule again. They reject the notion that GOD has established a rightful authority over mankind through his institutions. Much like the apostates and heretics of the AIS, they speak to GOD: “Your Word is of no relevance to me, and I shall act against your Word”. Even though the Holy Scrolls state that His Word shall not be blasphemed. The sons of Horen and Malin heeded the call to defend GOD’s institutions, and thus, they won. But they are the soldiers that fight under our banner during war. The head of the beard, as much as the spit on my robe, did not occur during wartime. They happened during a period in which the people of Oren enjoyed peace and prosperity: the status quo of modern life. It needs no context to be present, no justification: it merely disrupts the social order, and acts as the iconoclast to humanity's prosperity. This is a sickness that only we, collectively, can defeat. By looking at the Canonist next to you, and asking to what extent he respects the doctrine of GOD. If one claims to be a Canonist but rejects the mandate of the Emperor or the sanctity of the Holy Canonist Church, he is nothing but a pretender and deceiver. If one identifies as a faithful, but rejects his fellow faithful, he simply is not a faithful. The Imperial apparatus, as much as the Holy Church of the Canon, cannot and should not have his eyes and ears everywhere. But you, the citizen of Oren, can be the witness of a soul gone astray. You are the only one with the access and understanding of the state of piety around you, or within yourself. Do not heed their words, reject their disruptions and isolate them from the benevolent life of mankind. This is your duty. Thus, it must fall upon you to protect your Canonist flock from these sinners. For if we don’t: the tides of hate and sedition might capsize our ship. And once it does, nothing is stopping us all from drowning.
  10. Portraits of Konstanz and Reinhard Barclay had collected dust in the hallways of the Reinmar keep since their passing: their painted cynical expressions watching a new generation mill about their day. Their former presence nearly forgotten in the bustling albeit troubled house, their legacy replaced by new blood boasting about new accomplishments. A Barclay would walk through the hallway as he notices something: for the first time in decades, the portraits of these men were dusted off. “Finally” he smiles, continuing to the throne room.
  11. A mosaic of vineyards and wheat-fields stretched over the Kaedreni landscape, with the towering mountains being the home of the St. Catharine’s cathedral. As dawn arose: a young Bishop would still be awake, kneeling over various parchments spread across the cathedral floor. These were scrolls borrowed from the Varoche palace library: explaining the intricate Kaedreni history. Infatuated, perhaps obsessed: while the folk partied in the palace, he studied the scrolls. Krisztián was intrigued by a particular man: having heard only a few vague tales growing up as a Carnatian peasant in the Commonwealth. But from his Bishopric, with access to all the scrolls he could desire, he now finally learned the tale of Ser Foltest of Aeldin. Noon almost broke when he was finished with the last scroll. He stretched his shoulders, took a deep breath, and walked to his small desk. Once there: he penned a letter to His Holiness. PETITION TO CANONIZE SER FOLTEST OF AELDIN TO HIS HOLINESS THE HIGH PONTIFF JAMES II, I send this letter not just as a man of the cloth, but also as a man with a profound respect for perhaps the most pious realm within our great Empire. While studying its magnificent history, I have come across the particular tale of Ser Foltest Helvets of Aeldin, a man currently considered blessed by the Holy Church of the Canon. Understanding that Ser Foltest had not only defended the Brelusian cathedral as mentioned in His Holiness Daniel VI’s “Lives of the Saints”, but also had pursued faithful service in the Imperial Tertius, the Order of the Flaming Rose, administered a true Canonist realm as the last electoral count of Kaedrin while having saved the lives of many from our Canonist flock: I wholeheartedly wish to petition to canonize such a pious man. For it is in my belief that our congregations in Kaedrin and abroad can draw a profound inspiration from this faithful man posthumously, and learn from his life that pious administration and defense of the Canonist flock are rewarded by GOD. It is furthermore my belief that celebrating his reverence will truly enrich our moral message to our congregations, and act as a proper homage to the continued piety and civility of the Kaedreni people towards the Holy Church of the Canon. I shall provide further explanation in the upcoming ecclesiastical council if deemed necessary by His Holiness. DEO JUVANTE, HIS GRACE THE BISHOP OF VES SECRETARIAT TO HIS HOLINESS Krisztián Mátyás Károly, Msgr.
  12. A Carnatian composition, 1578 THE CARNATIAN PEOPLE KARNASZ EMBEREK A PUBLICATION AUTHORED BY; His Eminence Cardinal Krisztián M. Károly of Ves, Msgr. Author The Reverend Excellency, Senator Lajos S. Károly of Kaedrin Co-author His Excellency Sir Frederick S. Armas of Kaedrin Consulted historical expert INTRODUCTION The Carnatian people (Old Carnatian: Karnaszy) are the original inhabitants of Carnatia, before what we now understand to be the Duchy of Carnatia. The intensified settling of Haeseni folk during Otto I’s reign, combined with the ongoing chaos due to the Schism War, caused for them to be steadily disenfranchised from their homeland. During this war, they stood at the side of the Canonist league, who employed them as light cavalry. This equestrian service continued under the Savoyard dynasty, with several Carnatian-only battalions existing within the Royal Army. This steady employment made a certain degree of cultural unity possible: with the families of the soldiers living in the same neighborhood of West Felsen. This existence remained sustainable until the end of the Savoyard dynasty in 1526: when the second Carnatian diaspora happened. Not only did their main source of income evaporate with their loss of their equestrian mandate, but the increased gentrification of Felsen made living for the peasantry unaffordable. Most abandoned the mantle of their identity and remigrated back to Carnatia as reformed Raevirs, while a few stayed on the road as travellers. It would be these travellers that would find refuge in the Commonwealth of Kaedrin in the early decades of Arcas. With most reduced towards mere peasantry, with nearly to none literacy among them and haunted by a malaise of cultural homelessness: they sought to restore themselves in this new land of foreign ways. ETYMOLOGY The exonym ‘Carnatian’ derives from the flower most prevalent in their homeland, which was used in a variety of their festivals and rites. The name ‘Carnatian’ that foreigners used to identify them is similar to the native identification of ‘Karnaszy’: also meaning Carnatian. Carnatians in their quarters in West-Petrus, 1521 CULTURAL BRANCHES Within the Carnatian heartland once existed a cultural confederation that was ethnically similar, despite having minor cultural distinctions. Although these distinctions are last chronicled centuries ago: it is likely that some have lasted until today. Carnatians to the east, which were called the Serhaszy, were the least opposing to the Haeseni newcomers under Otto I. They had a significant share of the agricultural homesteads within the region, which profited heavily off new consumers at home and a new buyer abroad. They became increasingly non-Carnatian, being the last to leave Carnatia with most staying under the Haeseni occupation: finding their lives sustainable with maintained employment and greater tolerance to their Raevir-like identity. The Serhaszy are the most distinct in that they speak a language with components between Carnatian and Ruskan, and are culturally prone to be sympathetic to Ruskan Orthodoxy or ancient houses such as Kovachev or Barbanov. Northern Carnatians were identified as the Magiaszy, who had the greatest decree of cultural self determination and were the first to oppose Haeseni settling. The Magiaszy represent the majority of Carnatians currently in Arcas, adhering to the classical Canonist dogmas and remaining restorationist about their homeland. They are believed to speak the most original form of Carnatian, and adhere to its rites and festivals. Carnatians to the west are the Bohaszians. They are believed to be the oldest Carnatian ethnic group, who found their origin as a mixture between Waldenians and the original Arenic steppe folk moving into Orenia proper. They are often lumped in with the Magiasy, even though they speak in a distinct dialect and have variations between in ethnic appearance. This is primarily due to their mutual linguistic nationalism and political leanings, something that the Serhaszy lacked. MASARIST SOCIAL CONTRACT Since the formation of the tribal confederation that became the Carnatian people, the inhabitants had adhered to an established set of liberties and duties by the unifying warlord Mátyás Masaryk: the disputed founding father of the Carnatian identity. It is said that during his reign, each settlement had similar writings carved into wood, and placed in the town square: A Carnatian is to grow in its life; With the land he shall own Through the wife he shall have By the children he shall make And the swords of his brethren that protect him. A Carnatian shall grant others a honorable life; By the sharing of his wealth Through the loyalty to his kin By helping others grow And to be the sword that protects another. This is deemed as the social contract still dominant within Carnatian society: the fabric that makes social cohesion woven into the culture of this particular people. The application of these statutes can vary: but the expections remain universal. One is to contribute to the collective, and loyalty to his brethren. Deviation from this contract most certainly will result into social isolation, if not banishment. The Basilica of Fifty Virgins in Old Reza CANONISM AMONG CARNATIANS One of the reasons that the Carnatians existed for centuries without a homeland or consistent unity, was their enshrinement within the Holy Church of the Canon. Generations of monks, priests & nuns had served the church before they arose to prominence under Bishop Krisztián. The legacy of the church and the gratitude towards its special unifying function made the Carnatians not just staunch Canonists, but extremist advocates of Canonist doctrine. In the collective Carnatian consciousness: anti-Church sentiments were one of the primary reasons for the Schism War, and thus the loss of their homeland. Combining this with the fact that the Church recorded their culture sufficiently for it to survive until today, makes the existence of the Church strongly associated with their own cultural unity and existence. From this grew the disdain towards developments that seemingly diluted Canonist authority within the realm, which are often of liberal or separatist nature. The decrease of racial homogeneity had cost them their homeland, but would also weaken the institution that preserved them: this renders them prone to oppose multi-racialism or liberal interpretations on the rights of other races. Church careers are very common among them and are extremely revered. Many Carnatian clerics lobby for allowing for the clergy to marry, so that this popular career doesn’t harm the sustainability of their own people. Outside of this reform, they support the orthodoxy established by His Holiness the High Pontiff. Carnatians traveling to Helena to light the candlestick of St. Daniel, 1760 NEXT YEAR IN CARNATIA: A PEOPLE DIVIDED Even though the Serhaszy had evolved into an integral part of what is now Hanseti-Ruska, the Magiaszy and Bohaszians had walked a different path as most of them now settled in Kaedrin. That leaves a sensitive and complicated matter unresolved: with one group integrated into Haense, and the other longing a motherland of their own. If one was to ask the question: “Are Carnatians disenfranchised?”, the answer would depend on what Carnatian you ask. For those that had not opted to stay in their homeland centuries ago, say the Carnatians in Hanseti-Ruska are distinctly different from what they are. The existence of a Duchy of Carnatia is therefore complicated, as it delves into the question of: when does one stop being a Carnatian, and becomes a Raevir? Is House Kovachev still Carnatian? But if they are, what are the others? With a modern renaissance of this particular culture ongoing: it struggles to find its place in the modern geopolitics of Arcas. Will they accept their new existence as Kaedreni, or opt to restore the cultural confederation of old? With no marital, social or political ties to what is assumed to be a third of their population: the future has yet to answer if both shall identify as Carnatian still a century from now. Until that point, awkward conversations and steady rehabilitation will have to suffice. The Candlestick of St. Daniel after the Ceremony of Provenance, 1737. THE CANDLESTICK OF ST. DANIEL: ICON OF CULTURAL UNITY When St. Daniel the Great was the High Pontiff of mankind, Ruthernites robbed his Cyriaum estate: stealing the ceremonial candlestick used by His Holiness. It was used in his sermons and prayers, rendering it a significant religious component to the sanctity of this Pontiff. Centuries later, a couple of Carnatian Acolytes under Bishop Krisztián of Ves recovered it in the donated inheritance of a deceased Ruthern. It was considered a miracle: a holy item returned to pious men. The Bishop offered it back to His Holiness James II, who opted to make this a gift to the Carnatians instead as a reward for their clerical service. From that day, candlesticks have become a significant cultural icon for the Carnatians: with the Candlestick of St. Daniel the Great being the embodiment of their unity under the church. On the birthday of this Pontiff, all Carnatians light a candle on copies of the original. The original Candlestick of St. Daniel the Great gets lit during the rites before the annual sermon: called the Ceremony of Provenance, where Carnatian clergymen speak of their people’s history and their devotion to God. The first rite was performed by His Holiness James II himself.
  13. THE CONFESSION It is not inherent to my profession to publish what a faithful confesses to me, nor am I a person that carries a profound desire to express myself. For I have spent most of my years in clerical service as a temperate man: refusing to indulge myself with the intricate intrigue of both the Imperial and papal courts. Yet right after the conclusion of the Crown v. Károly, I found not only my head spared: but I found myself privy to the most enlightening discussion I had, perhaps in my whole life. I suspect the reader might find it odd that the alleged icon of sedition suddenly publishes this piece. Though I can do nothing but assure you that many times before the trial, I stood over my table with a quill dipped in ink: but with no words written on the parchment. For I frankly struggle to articulate something beyond the safety of pontifical guidelines and theology. Therefore, please be gentle with my first attempt at chronicling an experience of a political nature. The sun was particularly radiant in the morning after my trial: with a flock of white & red robes entering the Helena cathedral to prepare for a day of service. This would be my last day in Helena before I would go to tend to my affairs in Ves, as I waited for my companion Father Lajos to indulge his socialite tendencies. The beginning of a day in Helena was always a mesmerizing sight to behold. The stark differences between the classes, the artisans, the bureaucrats and the salesmen all preparing for another day of honest labor: a beautiful mosaic as a testimony to human success. But even as the flock had a fine field to graze upon, not all could find the grass. In a small chamber, left from the entrance, stood the confession booths. Forgotten, albeit still demanding of certain respect. These booths have heard secrets that could end marriages, collapse Houses and change the course of many chapters of history. Yet today, it merely served as the wooden husk that surrounded the fatigued Bishop of Ves. On the other side: a lady that had walked in right after the opening of the Cathedral. Her eyes shared a similar fatigue to that of the Bishop’s, but her attire expressed a larger degree of energy. “Forgive me father, for I have sinned” the young and tender voice spoke, as the Bishop leaned towards the wooden frame of the divider, checkered by holes: “For I had almost doubted GOD’s presence yesterday”. The Bishop perched a brow: “Why is that, m’lady? What led you to doubt something so fundamental, like GOD?” “Well.” her fingers were softly tapping the small table in front of her seating “Your trial of course, father. I was scared to lose the man that baptized my kin: the idea of losing you, made me lose faith in GOD.” The Bishop chuckled a bit, rotating his gaze towards her: “Yet here I am m’lady, lending an ear to your sin. I would find it out of place that my presence today is your sole reason for your renewed faith.” “Perhaps father. But I just feel so angry at GOD for toying with people like this: making them face the threat of death by the hands of their contemporaries and friends.” she continued “How can I believe GOD protects its flock, when it so clearly doesn’t”. He perked a brow “Does he not, m’lady? For my presence today is not the only example of His Benevolence and protection”. The woman chuckled “With all due respect father: but a city like Helena, has gone astray from GOD. GOD has abandoned Helena. Just look at the streets, they-” the Bishop placed his hand on the divider, now fully facing the woman “What have you forgotten, in your commentary?” “What I..” the lady had perked her eyebrows, now facing the Bishop too “What I have forgotten?” the conversation would shortly be interrupted by the bells announcing the start of noon “Yes m’lady. You claim that GOD has abandoned Helena: yet, you were only a couple of steps away from talking to GOD today.” She scoffed: “I know the clergy in the capital can be extravagant, but you did not just say that you were GOD, did you?” The Bishop shook his head, smirking in an almost teasing fashion “No. But GOD does not only have a presence in your prayers, or in the Scrolls m’lady. Come outside with me.” the lady looked around in a slight flight of panic, not expecting the Bishop to suddenly beckon her at the end of his sentence. She sheepishly followed him to the entrance of the Cathedral: the noon sun slowly rising from the contours of Helena’s commercial buildings. “To prove why you should never doubt your faith: look at me.” She turned her skeptical eyes towards him “Only don’t look at me: look up.” the Bishop pointed her finger upwards, the lady’s gaze following suit “Do you see the sky? Do you see GOD?” the woman shook her head “No? You don’t see him? No matter. Now look at those Helenians milling about: observe their smiles with a profound joy of your own, and remember this: if you want to see GOD, you have the means to do it. GOD is the happiness you see in these people, GOD is the blue sky that decorates what is above. GOD is the justice given to me yesterday, as much as your last moment of happiness.” the lady nodded “But why does GOD not help Helena, father?” The Bishop placed his soft hand on her shoulder “Because m’lady, Helena needs no helping.” he pointed at the imperial bureaucrats trekking towards Varoche hall in the distance “We have people that spend day and night, working on giving you a voice.” he then beckoned to the baker stall across them “We have people keeping you away from hunger.” he then rotated her towards a Carrington merchant offering wares to a pedestrian: “And those that gift you luxury.” The woman held onto the Bishop, seemingly contemplating what was lectured to her. The Bishop raised his finger politely: “The reason why souls like you doubt GOD and forget his eternal presence: is because the imperial citizen today enjoys the freedom from want. Any ambition is possible, any disagreement listened to. In an era of such political benevolence towards its citizens, actual stakes and risks feel scary. You did not doubt GOD because of my trial specifically m’lady, you doubted GOD because it was the first time in months that you felt you could lose something. What you have forgotten is all the days that you were happy, that your stomach was filled, that you had offspring and best of all: that you had fellow humans fighting for your rights and interests in the courts and Senate.” the woman crossed her arms, albeit her face exposed a sense of disarmament: “But what do I do then, father?” “You rejoice m’lady: you celebrate everything GOD has given you already. Because today, you already have everything”. The woman nodded once, dipping her head to the Bishop: “Thank you father, I understand now”.
  14. Princess Ekaterina Valentina would smile reading over the studies, and would compliment her gregarious tea drinking partner Celestine excessively!
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