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About Catostrophy

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  1. Catostrophy

    From Ruination [FRP]

    Commonwealth of Ruhn Two scholars from the School of Natural Philosophy return gleefully, laden with translations and three large chests of gold. They speak the praises of the generous Queen of Xian, and the wonders of that strange, heathen land--of a tiered city, oppressed castes of subjects, and buildings older than anything standing in Ruhn. Their words encourage both curiosity and scorn, and both are suspended from the School until they can empty themselves of borderline heathenous gushing. Examining the translations are far more pressing to the scholars, but despite their learned natures they are perplexed by both the translated tablets. The two slabs are known by the names ‘The Tablet of Emekhun,’ and ‘The Tablet of Zakhet.’ The writings of ‘Emekhun’ list strange and unusual mathematics that the scholars could barely comprehend. It was a treatise on physics and engineering practically revolutionary to any Ruhnnite architect, and the scholars begin furiously analyzing its contents for publishing. The writings of ‘Zakhet’ were somewhat disappointing, however. They seemed to vaguely denote the operation of a vast series of levers and lifts used to transport ships up a steep waterfall, known in the text as the ‘Levers of the Divine.’ The pious scholars did not see the levers themselves as ‘divine’ in any meaningful way, but they were certainly an engineering marvel. They would have to research further, once the site of the Levers were themselves secured. Within both translations are meandering verses of how the Loba Empire came to be. Arriving on the shores of Aros approximately 3000 years before the current day after having left a location barely referenced as ‘the south.’ Though they claimed to have settled in a ‘lush jungle,’ all the Ruhnnites saw of the Loba’s former land were endless, searing sands and decayed stonework. Some scholars stomp away muttering angrily after reading about the heathenish sun-god ‘Life-Giver,’ and the other scholars choose to skip such sections in the future. A good thing the Loba were dead, for sure, as Ruhn could never have been independent had that empire survived. Other unusual theories bustle their way between scholars in the School, and hypotheses ricochet off others--could it be that the Ruhnnites themselves were decedents of the Loba Empire? The Commonwealth was in their ancient borders (albeit as a borderland) and there was no written history of Ruhn a few decades prior to the Vulture Wars... A grand mystery, for sure! One that the scholars were excited to pursue! While the scholars were busy fiddling with rocks and parchment and other silly endeavors , parliament got down to the real substantive work. Banditry was endemic to the Smuggler’s Peaks prior to the Vulture Wars, but years of crackdowns, heavy patrolling, and tribal genocides had cleared the hills. However, with colonization comes new roads, new patrol routes, and new barbarians. Rather than outright butcher them, parliament chose to put them to work instead. After a year of stringent praying, educating, training, and torturing, many former troublesome heathens are remodeled into a force of vicious lightly-armed soldiers both highly disciplined and fanatically pious. They practice and hone skills in camouflage, trap-making, ambush, and ruthless tenacity. ‘Honour’ is not a concept beaten into their heads, as its absence is precisely what made these men useful to the Commonwealth. Armoured lightly and carrying shortswords and small shields, many ne’er-do-wells from city dungeons are offered similar ‘opportunities’ of a clean criminal record after service in the divisions. Named after a colloquial term for a mountain bandit, the ‘Crag-runners’ are to be allotted to border regions in the coming days as scouts and miscellaneous ‘problem solvers.’ Accounts: National Idea: Colonial Bureaucracy: New towns require only 400,000 population. The Tablet of Emekhun: All construction is 5% cheaper. The Tablet of Zakhet: Gives a few insights into a certain advanced set of levers. Base Gold: 9,000 gold, Towns/Cities: 9000 gold, Merchants guilds: 6,000 gold, Population: 10,500 gold, Trade: 3000 gold, Manufacturers: 4000 gold, Gift from Xian: 3000 gold, Upkeep: -5,500 gold, Total: 39,000 Gold (41,500 gold incl. vault), 2500 gold in vault. -More pioneers, more farms, more growth, you know the drill, Eric. I have no idea what kind of fluff to write here anymore. Why don’t you write me a three-sentence story about a farmer, or something? That’d make my modpost section a little more interesting. (-9500 gold towards two farm stacks) -Along with Riverruhn’s rapid expansion its walls are completed and its security assured. Merchants slowly trickle in and are afforded space within the central squares to construct their shops, stalls, and all manner of business sundries. (-8,550 gold towards a Merchant Guild in Riverruhn) -The Commonwealth seeks to control all routes and land bordering the Hungry Sea. A group of enterprising settlers are sent out to both claim the fertile strips of land to the south, and the fascinating ‘Levers of the Divine’ themselves. The new hamlet positioned at the mouth of the Levers themselves and is named ‘Hebelstadt’ in a foreign, barbarous tongue. (-4750 gold towards a settlement) -Due to clever reforms in colonial operations, the town of Shatterbridge receives a slew of specialists and is immediately slated for expansion! It’s almost as if a fundamental change to the values of the universe were performed by mysterious beings beyond their realm... (-14,250 gold to upgrade Shatterbridge from a town to a city) -4200 gold left in the vault. Population: 3,710,396 Cities & Investments: Ruhn (Merchant’s Guild, Temple, Military Academy, school) Bruger (Merchant’s Guild) Riveruhn (Merchants Guild next turn) Shatterbridge (town) (city next turn) Hebelstadt (Settlement) (Next turn) Defensive Structures: Fortress Bergen Other Investments: 14 Farm stacks (16 next turn). 4 Manufacturies Military: 5,000 medium infantry, -500 veteran medium infantry 3500 medium archers, -250 veteran medium archers 500 veteran light cavalry
  2. Catostrophy

    From Ruination [FRP]

    The Commonwealth of Ruhn Papers rustle, quills fly, and bureaucrats rush this way and that, shifting piles of parchment into cabinets and others on to desks of sleepy-eyed civil servants. The generally gray structure was polka-dotted with muddy footprints from would-be pioneers looking for relocation documents and official approval for their land claims. One short, balding employee of the Bruger Office of Pioneering and Relocation, Klaus, angrily sat down at his desk and pulled out his ink bottles with a grumble--of course they were dry. Why wouldn’t they be? It was not enough that his wife burned his morning eggs, or that he spilled his tea on his white breeches while he complained about the eggs. Or that a passing cart splattered mud and horse-droppings on his fleshly-polished boots! That just was not enough! The cursed ink had to be dry as well! He flagged down a passing paper-pusher to fetch him a fresh portion, but he swore that two purposely ignored him before the third begrudgingly brought another bottle. This could not, and would not, stand. The universe, his ancestors, and perhaps even He-That-Waits Himself had practically conspired against him to have the worst morning possible. Balance had to be restored, thus someone’s day was about to be ruined. At the head of the long, winding lines that twisted out the front doors, a young man with a dirty face and a floppy, leather hat ran a hand through his greasy hair. His mouth moved as he read and re-read through a thick wad of parchment. All official documents were produced by the ugly, metal printing-presses back in Ruhn, which gave the authoritarian sticklers at the Home Office of Pioneering and Relocation license to bloat the entire process. Everything important about the candidates had to be known, and any documents filled out incorrectly would send an aspiring colonist back to the beginning of the whole tedious act. Tyrannical, stupid, and frustrating, Klaus assumed it would be fixed eventually. But for now, he could revel in controlling the fate of country yokels—much like the Lord of the Hereafter Himself. It was one of the few things that brought him joy during his job. This one looked weak, and frightened. A trickle of perspiration slowly dribbled down his forehead as he rang his bell. He lived for this feeling of power—his heart was pounding in his chest and he suppressed a sneer. “Next.” He called. The farmer looked up from his papers and around himself in confusion, but Klaus looked back down at his desk and pretended to scribble on his parchment. If he didn’t make eye-contact, the farmer would question whether he heard anything, and stand there in an embarrassing social limbo neither knowing to step forward or stay in line. He would not call again until the citizens waiting behind got annoyed. Sure enough, other occupants of the line starting looking up and glaring at the farmer, who shrank at their scrutiny and stepped forward with a amusingly stupid look on his face. Klaus let the moment drag on a little longer, before looking up from his desk, and summoned deep within himself the most mildly irritated voice he could muster. “Next!” He snapped slightly. The farmer, both embarrassed but slightly reassured quickly walked over to Klaus’ desk and sat down. Klaus proceeded to silently scribble on his parchment, and refused to acknowledge him. His favorite part was about to start. After a few awkward moments of sitting and expectantly staring, the farmer finally summoned up the courage to speak. “Er...” He stammered. “Please place your documentation on the desk for inspection, sirrah,” Klaus quickly interrupted. “Please be sure that your documents are placed in their correct order for efficient appraisal.” Klaus watched from the corner of his eye as the farmer nervously shuffled his papers, looking desperately for a number or indicator of placement. While technically there was an order they were supposed to be presented in, clerks rarely enforced it. That is, except for Klaus when he was in an unpleasant mood. The method of organizing the order was needlessly arcane--just how he liked it. Sadly it was being phased out, but Klaus would enforce it as long as it was in place. “Um, I’m sorry, Milord, but I don’t read too fast, an’ I can’t find no numbers on these here papers.” Oh, perfect. This was going to be good. “It’s very straight-forward, sirrah.” Klaus began. “Your relocation documents should be the last in your stack as they are always appraised last. That is unless they are yellow region-specific relocation form in which you will require a supplementary document with it signed by the Lord or governor that administers said region. If you are a part of the land-lottery program then you use the standard white form.” Klaus slowly inhaled, and leveled his voice so it became a monotonous drone. “On the top of your pile should be your government issued Birth-and-Identification certificate that you received from the records office either after your birth or issued to you when the program was begun. Beneath that document should be our administrative copy that you have filled out and prepared for our filing system. Beneath the copy, but not on top of the yellow or standard relocation form, will be your Proof of Experience in your Field slip, colour-coded depending on your occupation. It should be filled out with the names of six witnesses of your skills and with stamped approval by your local magistrate.” The farmer looked a little worried, but still had a smidgen of confidence left in his eyes. “Lastly, you must have your Appropriation form. That will come after your Birth-and-Identification certificate and copy, as well as your Proof of Experience in your Field slip. Unless you’re presenting a green farming slip, then it comes before said slip. If it’s a red manufacturing slip then it must come after your relocation form.” “Er, but didn’t you say the ree-low-kay-shun paper always go last, milord?” The farmer stammered. “Unless you have the signed region-specific supplementary document.” Klaus answered, purposely without saying ‘yes’ or ‘no.’ The farmer nodded and furrowed his brow as he shuffled his papers. Klaus stared at him and held out his hand, prompting the farmer to move faster and make mistakes to avoid the awkward silence and wait. He shamefully handed the documents to Klaus, who melodramatically shook his head and shuffled the documents around. Honestly, they still weren’t in the right order, but he liked to see them squirm when they thought they had sorted them properly. Clearing his throat Klaus dipped his quill in his ink and took out a fresh piece of parchment. “I must now double-check your identity, sirrah. Just a trifle to ensure you are who you say. Your name?” “Yerevan Breckt, milord.” “Occupation?” “Barley farmer, milord.” “Reason for relocation?” “Me Pa’s giving the farm to me sister’s husband. I won’t got no land after he passes, milord.” Klaus quickly read through the documents, double-checking every detail. Everything seemed to be in order so far, but he just needed a single slip up... “Region you wish to be sent to?” The farmer, Yerevan, went silent for a moment, and stuttered. “I’m not going to no specific region, milord, I’m in that lot-tree.” “The lottery. Yes. Very good.” Damn. Sometimes they would mention only where they’d hypothetically like to go and he could send them away due to not having the correct relocation document, but this farmer actually managed to read everything properly. He thumbed past his identification and its copy, and read through the Appropriation form. “You’re applying for two-hundred acres of farmland from the state, including materials and workmen to construct fences, and a small class-two dwelling, correct?” “Aye, milord. I’m looking for a spinster or widow I can marry once I get down there. ‘Til then, I’m on me own, so I don’t need much space.” “And a barn, too?” “Nay, milord. I’ll build that one meself. I didn’t like the ones they’s offerin’.” Double-damn. He could send him away to re-apply for that. Denying the farmer on the basis of incompetence might be possible (due to him refusing a free barn in lieu of making it himself) but it would be difficult to argue. “As you wish.” Klaus reached over for his stamps, somewhat morosely, and proceeded to smack them down on the various papers and signing his name in the required spaces. Bleakly, he read the final paper, and his heart leapt. “Sirrah,” Klaus began with an almost patronizing tone. “Is this an ‘x’ you have used as your signature?” “Er, aye, milord. I can’t write good.” “Well,” Klaus said, barely containing his cruel joy, “These are no longer accepted as official markings by the Office of Pioneering and Relocation. I’m afraid,” Klaus paused, inhaling deeply with a deep satisfaction, “I’m going to have to deny you today.” “B-b-but there’s still space on paper, milord. I could jus-“ “The document may only be signed by a single individual, otherwise it is invalid.” “But I’m the same man, milord! I could just scribble round something as me mark-“ “No, I’m afraid that will not do. You must retrieve another document and do it again.” “But I-“ “Have a good day. Next.” “Ho-“ “Next, please!” The farmer grasped his documents, stood up, and trudged miserably past the next poor soul walking towards Klaus’ desk. The clerk however could practically feel the universe balancing out and many of the day’s tribulations melting away from his thoughts. Just one or two more like that, and he’d be in a cheery mood until lunch. Accounts: Base Gold: 9,000 gold, Town: 3000 gold, Merchants guilds: 6,000 gold, Population: 9000 gold, Trade: 3000 gold, Manufacturers: 4000 gold, 1000 gold in vault. Upkeep: -5,500 gold, Total: 28,500 Gold. (29,500 including vault) -Yet more pioneers bow and scrape their way past bad-tempered and sadistic clerks and receive the proper authorization to settle along the new claims in the forests to the west and across the Seljin Straits. (-10,000 gold towards two farm stacks) -The town of Riverruhn, now overpopulated due to the constant stream of pioneers and colonists, is slated for an infrastructure upgrade. (-15,000 gold towards upgrading town to city) -At the advice of the Free Cities, a small group of learned men travel to the nearest of said free cities (that actually doesn’t mind Ruhnnites) and book passage to the far off and mysterious Xian Kingdom. They Take with them etchings and rubbings of the black tablets. (-1000 gold) -The spooky mountains to the east seem to beg for a foolhardy adventurer to explore them! (-1000 gold towards exploring the looming irregular mountains!) -1500 gold is tossed into the vault. (total of 2500 gold) Stats: Population: 3,467,659. Cities & Investments: Ruhn (Merchant’s Guild, Temple, Military Academy, school) Bruger (Merchant’s Guild) Riveruhn (city) (Next turn) Shatterbridge (settlement) Defensive Structures: Fortress Bergen Other Investments: 12 Farm stacks (14 next turn). 4 Manufacturies Military: 5,000 medium infantry, -500 veteran medium infantry 3500 medium archers, -250 veteran medium archers 500 veteran light cavalry
  3. Catostrophy

    From Ruination [FRP]

    The Commonwealth of Ruhn Whoops no RP haha weeeee Gold Accumulation: Base: 9000, Merchant’s Guilds: 6000, Town: 3000, Taxes: 9000, Trade: 3000, Manufacturing: 4000 gold, Vault: 500, Military Upkeep: -5500. Total: 28,500 gold (29,000 gold inc. Vault) Spending: -More farms, more bureaucracy, more intrepid farmers travelling hither and tither. (-20,000 gold towards four farm stacks) -A new settlement is constructed on the western shore of the Seljin Straits right next to the ancient bridge--Shatterbridge. (-5000 gold towards settlement) -The black, Loba tablets are carefully examined by the scholars, and resources are allocated towards the translation (-3000 gold towards translation) -Pioneers stake their claims on lands bordering the Commonwealth. -500 gold remains in the vault. Stats: Population: 3,302,532 citizens. Cities & Investments: Ruhn (Merchant’s Guild, Temple, Military Academy, school) Bruger (Merchant’s Guild) Riveruhn (town) Shatterbridge (settlement) Defensive Structures: Fortress Bergen Other Investments: 8 Farm stacks (12 next turn). 4 Manufacturies Military: 5,000 medium infantry, -500 veteran medium infantry 3500 medium archers, -250 veteran medium archers 500 veteran light cavalry
  4. Catostrophy

    From Ruination [FRP]

    The Commonwealth of Ruhn The temple at the heart of Ruhn’s largest grave garden was eerily silent, despite the populous congregation that had gathered there. Men, women and children had come to witness the grace and charity of He-That-Waits in the presence of their ancestors. The eyeless skulls of the walls and roof stared down at the large, circular alter that, despite the mortal material it was constructed from, held a trio of chanting acolytes as they swung incense burners and circled a, gaunt, armoured man that drew the undivided attention of the spectators. “To our ancestors we beseech, that they deliver our plea.” The monotonous drones from the Acolytes were repeated by the crowd. A small family, a woman and her two children, stared the most intently of all. Fresh tears on the faces of the little ones brought sympathetic cooing from the older members of the gathered, but they had little smiles on their faces regardless. They would not be sad for long. “His patience is eternal, and Their watchful gaze see all. We humbly entreat His benevolence, and give succor to the meek and humble.” The Temple became bitterly cold, and the lanterns that illuminated the space struggled to stay alight. Such was the stillness of the room that the only indication the people still lived were the little puffs of their breathing that hung in the air. The acolytes rested their incense-burners next to the body, and placed their hands on their ward. One rested his palms lightly on the right side of the soldier’s chest. “Let breath return, to sing Your glory.” The second, placed his hands on the left. “Let every heartbeat drum in Your service.” The final priest placed a hand on their ward’s throat, and the other over his eyes. “Let every word be said in Your name. Let Them see through his eyes.” There was a shimmer around the alter, and the bitter cold coalesced in around the acolytes. They raised their hands up, and the whole temple spoke in unison. “Through oath and bone, let soul return.” The corpse on the alter began to shudder. Colour returned to his face, and his midsection heaved upwards. The children and their mother huddled close to one another, watching in part fear, fascination, and excitement. “Let him return to us.” A gasping, ragged breath sucked through the lips of the rosy-cheeked soldier, and he writhed on the altar with wild frightened eyes. His family began to cry, but did not yet dare approach. As the priests calmed him, and placed holy marks upon his head, he looked to his wife, and smiled weakly. The congregation was disappointed with the soldier’s outburst of emotion, but he had just been brought back so the local overlooked it. Gold Accumulation: Base: 9000, Merchant’s Guilds: 6000, Town: 3000, Taxes: 9000, Trade: 3000, Manufacturing: 2000 gold, Loot, this turn only: 3000 gold, Vault: 3500, Military Upkeep: -5500. Total: 29,500 gold (33,000 gold inc. Vault) Spending: -Further industrialization is deemed necessary for the future of the Commonwealth’s expansionist policies. The citizenry requires gainful employment, and the state needs a veritable pile of wealth! (-15,000 gold towards manufacturies) -With the recovery of the black tablets from the Loba desert, the Commonwealth puts out a call for men of higher learning to aid in the translation. A large building is put aside for them to both meet and store their research. Some are referring to the building as the ‘School of Natural Philosophy,’ while others are just calling it ‘the building filled with smart folks.’ (-10,000 gold towards a school) -Another set of intrepid settlers march out to Ruhnnite march out to Riverruhn, settling near the northernmost parts of the river. (-5000 gold for a farm stack) -With the success of the expedition, the Commonwealth Parliament examines a set of ancient maps of the Loba Empire. They choose to send out three parties of explorers: (-3000 gold) i. The first would head north to the woodlands close to the mountainous capital. There, they would survey the trees and mark out places for future logging camps and farmsteads. ii. The second would cross the ancient bridge connecting the Seljin Straits to survey the land to the east for future settlement and exploitation. iii. Using the ancient maps as a guide, the final expedition would march back through the deserts once travelled by the first Ruhnnite army. Following the river, they would explore and survey a third city that the Kassadenians did not show them. They did not seem concerned with ‘liberating’ it before, so perhaps they wouldn’t mind if the Commonwealth had a little poke around in the dust...? Stats: Population: 3,145,268 citizens. Cities & Investments: Ruhn (Merchant’s Guild, Temple, Military Academy, school [next turn]) Bruger (Merchant’s Guild) Riveruhn (town) Defensive Structures: Fortress Bergen Other Investments: 7 Farm stacks. 2 Manufacturies Military: 5,000 medium infantry, -500 veteran medium infantry 3500 medium archers, -250 veteran medium archers 500 veteran light cavalry
  5. Catostrophy

    From Ruination [FRP]

    The Commonwealth of Ruhn A light drizzle of rain pattered down on the dutiful citizens of Ruhn. The cloudy sky cast a particularly gloomy light on the mountain city, while the sea of wide-brimmed hats splashed through the shallow puddles of the cobblestone streets. Suddenly, the low, monotonous chanting of the Temple’s Acolytes started echoing throughout the city, which surprised most of the citizenry, who were used to hearing such things during evening prayer. Shouts from the city guard confirmed what some had suspected—the soldiers had returned. A procession entered the city gates made up of five regiments of soldiers, all of whom wore white cloth affixed to their left arms. These apparent ‘veterans’ marched in parade-ground time, on both horseback and foot, and their black and brown tabards stained a deep red. Behind each regiment was a horse-drawn cart, each one filled with pelts, primitive weapons and armour. The cart that drew the most attention contained onyx-black tablets, covered in strange, exotic symbols. This one seemed to have the most soldiers around it, and they glared at any citizen who drew too close. The colours and items were so dreadfully foreign, some of the citizens walked away, muttering and shaking their heads from the sheer heathenism. The rest of the people watched on curiously, and smiled at the procession with a ‘well done!’ being spoken by the occasional eccentric. A veritable cacophony of emotion by Ruhnnite standards. The soldiers marched down the main street while merchants quickly moved their stalls and produce out of the troopers’ way. The soldiers were greatly respected for their deeds, and no-one wanted to be seen halting their parade. As they marched into the main square outside of the Grey Manor, the Parliament greeted them stoically on the steps. The only one who had the merest hint of a smile was Lord Protector Charles Ortmeir, who was glad to see his brother back in triumph. Otto Ortmeir, the expedition’s marshal, rode up to the steps and bowed respectfully towards the Lord Ministers, who did little more than nod in his direction. At the command of the Lord Protector himself, beer and salted beef were arranged for the veterans, who happily marched to the local barracks to enjoy their returning feast. Parliament filed back into the Grey Manor with the Marshal in tow for a detailed debriefing. The stone tablets accompanied them. There would be much to speak about, for sure. Gold Accumulation: Base: 9000, Merchant’s Guilds: 6000, Taxes: 7500, Trade: 3000, Vault: 3500, Military Upkeep: -5500. Total: 20,000 gold (23,500 inc. Vault) Spending: -The parliament comes to the conclusion that the upkeep of future Ruhnnite expansion requires industrialization. Subsidies are awarded to crafting and smithing guilds in order to achieve such. (-15,000 gold towards two industry stacks) -Further pioneers settle along the riverlands, drawing more farmers and craftsmen to the now thriving village of Riverruhn. (-5000 gold towards one farm stack) -3500 gold remains in the vault. Stats: Population: 2,995,493 citizens. Cities & Investments: Ruhn (Merchant’s Guild, Temple, Military Academy) Bruger (Merchant’s Guild) Riveruhn (settlement) Defensive Structures: Fortress Bergen Other Investments: 6 Farm stacks. Military: 5,000 medium infantry, -500 veteran medium infantry 3500 medium archers, -250 veteran medium archers 500 veteran light cavalry
  6. Catostrophy

    From Ruination [FRP]

    The Commonwealth of Ruhn (Props to Zanderaw for the map. Cheers m8) Lots of Discord stuff. No RP for this year. Gold Accumulation: Base: 9000, Merchant’s Guilds: 6000, Taxes: 7500, Trade: 2000, Vault: 7000, Military Upkeep: -8000. Total: 16,500 gold (23,500 inc. Vault) Spending: -Due to the expanding complexity of the Commonwealth’s armed forces, a sweeping reform program is put into effect to train and maintain professional officers and specialist combat units. Also, to keep down skyrocketing wages. (-15,000 gold towards a military academy) -More pioneers trudge their way out of the mountains to the verdant coastland along the Hungry Sea. Most of the colonists are uncomfortable being near it, but land is land. (-5000 gold towards farms) -The Commonwealth approaches the Passans across the Hungry Sea with a request for trade rights. -3500 gold is placed in the vault. Stats: Population: 2,852,850 citizens. Cities & Investments: Ruhn (Merchant’s Guild, Temple) Bruger (Merchant’s Guild) Riveruhn (settlement) Defensive Structures: Fortress Bergen Other Investments: 5 Farm stacks. Military: 5,000 medium infantry, -500 veteran medium infantry 3500 medium archers, -250 veteran medium archers 500 veteran light cavalry
  7. Catostrophy

    From Ruination [FRP]

    The Commonwealth of Ruhn The Commonwealth’s parliament was surprised at the sudden missive from the Lemmings, as they had thought the Free City of Lem had little interest in business with the Commonwealth. Now they came and offered wealth for their citizens to depart the newly-claimed riverlands--a trade! How out-of-character from their previous interaction. The Ruhnnite ministers looked at their expansion plans, debated among themselves for a time, and the Lord Chancellor handed the envoy back a letter for the Lemming council, or whatever their rulers referred to themselves as. The letter informs the Free City of Lem that Parliament can appreciate the apprehension of having a large neighbor expand nearby, especially if it includes a vital waterway. However, it would be unethical to uproot their citizen-pioneers after they had already settled and irrigated their millet fields. If the generous people of Lem were to part with, say, 10,000 gold and allow Ruhnnite traders to conduct business within their walls, the Commonwealth Parliament might reconsider their position. Such boons, after all, would soften the blow of resettlement. If they did not have such wealth to share, the Parliament assured the envoy that the humble and pious farmers of Ruhn would pose no threat to the Lemming’s business or their river--they much preferred prayer, and tending to their fields. They wished the envoy well, and pray for his health as he scampers back to the coastline. At the completion of the new temple, one of the most pious of acolytes has a dream--a vision from his ancestors and He-That-Waits Himself! They bade him to preach and spread His name throughout heathen lands, and show the people how to properly honour their ancestors. His newly acquired powers (gifts from the divine!) were another such sign that the acolyte was to be the herald of something grand. Handing over his bone talismans, his robes, his money, and all other personal possessions, he draped himself in humble peasant’s attire and headed towards the only land close by--Lem. He would not enter the city initially, oh no! He would not seek the approval of the merchants. He sought the downtrodden peasant, the paupers, the orphans, the sick, and the troubled. He would give aid as he could, comfort them in their agony, and give blessings and sanctify the bodies of those passing and passed. He wanted to find families, distraught with sudden, unexpected loss, and return their missing lambs to the world of the living. He-That-Waits was eternally patient, and those who came to him before their time were kindly released from His gentle embrace. What could be more deserving of piety and respect than a God who could resurrect the dead? Preparations begin in Fortress Bergen for a great expedition. Men are drilled, equipment is tweaked, supplies are requisitioned, and horses mustered. Wheelwrights pound iron, cartwrights hammer nails into wood, and seamstresses from surrounding villages deliver simple cloaks, headscarves, and tabards to help against the hot sun of the southern deserts. Barrels are requisitioned for water, hard-tack, and grain. This journey could take months, and supplies would be difficult to obtain once begun. A few troops from wealthier families are given horses and trained as light cavalry. There would be a year of brutal drills and cutting out the infirm troops from the gifted. A solid core of professional soldiers was needed to aid in the coming battles--all for the glory of Ruhn, and its patron Lord! Gold Accumulation: Base: 9000, Merchant’s Guilds: 6000, Taxes: 7500, Trade: 2000, Vault: 5500, Military Upkeep: -3000. Total: 24,500 gold. (29,500 inc. vault) Spending: -A counteroffer is sent to the Free City of Lem. (See RP) -A single adept of He-That-Waits gives away his possessions to go on a great spiritual journey to Lem, ironically. (See RP) -Citizen-pioneers are sent to the Eastern possessions of Ruhn, to build farms out near the great bridge. It’s an awe-inspiring sight for a mere yokel, and most are somewhat intimidated by its size and grandeur. (-5000 gold on one farm stack) -The soldiers from Ruhn are resupplied, their armour tweaked for desert conditions, and supplies are collected for the expedition. They would lack nothing for this journey, and the state valued their lives. (-5000 gold towards the expedition) -A regiment of light cavalry is recruited for both scouting and routing enemy combatants. They are drilled hard all through the year to be at peak performance. (-10,000 gold towards two T2 light cavalry veteran units) -Finally, the last of the year’s treasury is spent on drilling two units of medium infantry and one unit of medium archers to veteran status. (-3000 gold) -1500 gold is placed in the vault. Stats: Population: 2,717,000 citizens. Cities & Investments: Ruhn (Merchant’s Guild, Temple) Bruger (Merchant’s Guild) Riveruhn (settlement) Defensive Structures: Fortress Bergen Other Investments: Military: 6,000 medium infantry, (-1000 medium infantry, +500 veteran medium infantry [next turn]) 4,000 medium archers, (-500 medium archers, +250 veteran medium archers [next turn]) 500 veteran light cavalry [next turn]
  8. Catostrophy

    From Ruination [FRP]

    The Commonwealth of Ruhn "To Him we give our praise, to Them, we thank for our blessings. To Him, we beg for their protection, to Them, we honour their memory. Vessels discarded--holy and sanctified. Laid as link--witness through bone. Watch and wait--patience of eternity. Their duty is finished--their Duty has now begun. His power, their Hand." -The Rite of Interment The chanting of the Temple acolytes was observed by a silent throng of commoners and nobles alike in the Grave Garden. The rattling of the priest's bone-covered vestments were the only noise breaking the otherwise venerable silence as the body of Hanz Bruger was lowered into his resting place. It would be improper to cry at such a time, as he was not truly lost. He had gone to join the ancestors in the serenity of the afterlife to watch over his descendants and the people of Ruhn. There, he would be with He-That-Waits, and whisper the prayers of his family to Him. As the Acolytes carefully covered the grave with soft earth, the crowd quietly evaporated. The man’s son had donated a finger-bone to the Temple, and the acolytes were very eager to place it with the others. Grave gardens were not as morbid as the name might imply. If a visitor had not been told that the dead were buried beneath the dark green grass, they might think the land was a public park. Beneath the shady willows and wildflowers, the dead were interred into the earth as per tradition. Graves themselves were unmarked, so one could always expect to dig up another’s ancestor or two. Aside from the slight awkwardness of it, the act wasn’t profane—the acolytes would re-sanctify the bones and be reburied. If burying them again wasn’t an option, the remains would be built into holy necklaces, staves, and apparel for the priests, or crafted into idols for smaller shrines around the Commonwealth. Even in death, the citizens would perform their duties. It was important for the dead to be honored, and in this place they could all be honored the best. Lord Chancellor Johann Bruger gave one last silent prayer toward the place his father had been buried. Some day another would be interred in the same spot, and he wished to say his final farewell while his body was still mostly whole. By the graces of his other ancestors, he wished his father well in his new Duty. He only managed five steps before the first of the day’s problems trudged up towards him. “Humble blessings, my Lord,” a short, wiry man with a thick beard wheezed as his quickly removed his hat. “I pray your father had an easy passing?” Johann nodded slowly. Lord Treasurer Fitzroy Velburg was an opportunist at core, and the most aggressive bean-counter in parliament. Though he was respectful in holy places, he straddled the line of decency as closely as possible. “It was dignified and silent, much like the man himself. It took a whole night, however.” Johann looked to the acolytes walking back to the chapel. “Though I know Him to be infinitely patient, I imagine even He was tired of waiting.” Fitzroy nodded quickly, showing a surprising amount of sympathy. “May he judge you fairly.” “Walk with me, Lord Treasurer,” Johann commanded as he departed the garden. A sycophant he may have been, but Velburg could always be relied upon for timely reports. The pair ambled down the merchant’s road toward the Grey Manor. A sea of black, white, and brown coats and hats shunted around the busy street. Silent, mail-clad guards watched them carefully and ran down cut-purses and pickpockets among the crowd. They stood to attention as the lords passed, and even the local merchants and market-goers bowed reverentially. The less scrupulous offered discounts on their wares to the pair, but were politely ignored. “The Hakanites and Karel welcome our merchants happily, my Lord. No doubt we’ll be seeing their stalls among our own soon enough.” “A fine way to report that the Free Cities have declined our offer.” “Ah, well, yes. They have indeed refused. But what does it matter, my Lord? They are but profligate heathens! If I recall, however, we do have some soldiers still in the area...” Johann sighed. “What are a few heathen farmsteads compared to the prosperity of the Commonwealth, Lord Bruger? A few burghers and caravans cleaved could certainly make the Free Cities reconsider-“ Johann stopped in his tracks and stared down the Treasurer with a cold glare. “Your advice is noted, but I will confer with the appropriate authorities on the use of our axes. Now, if you will excuse me...” The Lord Chancellor marched away from the frustrated treasurer as quickly as possible towards his private quarters in the Grey Manor. It was true what was said about funerals—they were more likely to make one irritable than sad. Gold Accumulation: Base: 9000, Merchant’s Guilds: 6000, Taxes: 7500, Trade: 2000, Vault: 2000, Military Upkeep: -3000. Total: 21,000 gold. Spending: -At the request of First Rector Melchior Hoffman, a larger, centralized temple is to be constructed in out of respect for the ancestors and He-That-Waits. Many of the older citizens are giddy at the opportunity to be the first interred within the grand structure. (-10,000 gold towards a Temple) -Colonists from the mountains begin settling along the newly claimed western riverlands. The first farms begin to spring up, no doubt with more coming in later years. (-5000 gold towards farmlands) -To act as both an administration centre and drop-off point for millet and barley, a small settlement is established right at the river’s fork. (-5000 gold towards settlement, represented by the arrow) -The remaining 1000 gold is placed in the vault for future use. (Total of 3000 gold in the vault) -Missives are sent to the Realm of Hakkan to inform local merchants that the Commonwealth is seeking to hire two ships with generously proportioned cargo holds for an expedition to the south. Prices are negotiable. Stats: Population: 2,612,500 citizens. Cities & Investments: Ruhn (Merchant’s Guild, Temple [next turn]) Bruger (Merchant’s Guild) Riveruhn (settlement) [Next turn] Defensive Structures: Fortress Bergen Other Investments: Military: 6,000 medium infantry, 4,000 medium archers.
  9. Catostrophy

    The Kajun Ker - Dark Elven Cookery

    ”What did that guar ever do to you, outlander? You n’wah!”
  10. Catostrophy

    From Ruination [FRP]

    Commonwealth of Ruhn In the windy southern mountains, the droning warble of a bugle echoed between the crags and cliffs of the rocky climes. A formation of clanking, jingling soldiers marched in unison down a wide, cobblestone road that weaved between the high peaks. The small unit was on a standard - albeit pointless - patrol along the stretch of the Vulture Highway; the long, winding road between Ruhn and Bruger. It was pointless in that there hadn't been a single bandit on the road since the Vulture Wars. The Commonwealth had butchered every degenerate mob of rabble from East to West. At the head of the procession marched a captain, only discernible from the other troops by the red cloak he wore. His eyes were fixated on the dancing black shapes further down the road. They were unmistakably the vultures that the highway was named for. There were far fewer of them since the fighting had ended, but their presence always foreshadowed a corpse on the road. Sure enough, the unit stumbled upon a cart with squawking vultures scattering away from the carrion. As per their training, the soldiers unlimbered their axes and raised their shields. Most "civilised" countries used swords for their infantry, but swords required finesse. Any peasant could swing an axe, and in these mountains breaking shields was more important than a timely riposte or stab. With the crossbowmen behind the shield-bearing soldiers, they formed a circle around the cart while the captain surveyed the scene. He could tell it was a standard tribal attack even with the vultures having their way with the corpses. The removal of the heads and mutilation of the genitals pointed clearly at that conclusion. The victims were a father and son, yet surprisingly no mother was present. She would probably have been taken for their "amusement," if she existed. Most likely she was dead by now anyway, so they needn't hurry in their investigation at least. One of the soldiers called him over to a trail of footprints and blood. Standard orders were to track malcontents and deliver lawful Commonwealth justice. The captain left ten men behind to deal with the remains of the man and the boy--it would be disrespectful to their souls and ancestors to leave them for the birds if they could help it. The dour party, ninety men strong, moved off-road and followed the trail of the tribesmen. The savages were poor at covering their tracks, and one of their party was bleeding badly. At around midday they found the mother. The tribesmen had treated her poorly. Had her throat not been sliced to the bone, her other varied injuries would have seen her depart regardless. Perhaps she would have preferred death by then, judging by her other injuries? The captain made note of this as he tallied up their crimes; robbery, murder, dishonoring the righteous dead, and now this. Two men were left behind to deal with the woman's remains, and perform the ancestral rite. She would be honoured appropriately, buried, and then the two would join the others back on the road. The remaining host continued following the trail. After hours of marching up and down steep slopes, they spotted smoke in the waning sunlight. A camp of forty, dressed in furs and tattered cloth. The majority of their men appeared to be old, or adolescent. The fathers of the boys must have been killed during the Fighting. The younger ones must have just touched manhood, thus the elders thought it best to teach them tribal ways. Perhaps the elders took the young widows as wives? The captain ordered his men to stay put, and out of sight. As darkness fell and the savages returned to their tents, the soldiers surrounded the camp. The sentries were quickly dispatched with a few, well-placed crossbow bolts. One elder had attempted to scream with two bolts in his lungs. It amused the troops, at the very least. The axe-wielding soldiers marched into the camp itself, and the slaughtering began in earnest. What few fuzz-chinned warriors awoke offered little resistance to trained killers. The tents were drenched in blood as axes landed on soft, unprotected bodies. Shrill screams echoed around the mountains as each man was dragged from his tent and methodically dismembered. The captain himself was not exempt from this work--he himself delivered the appropriate punishment to multiple tribesmen in the camp. Spotting a unspoiled tent, the captain tore down the fur that covered the entrance, and spotted two profligates cowering at the back. A mother and her young daughter. The woman looked up at captain with a face of fear, anger, and hatred. She babbled out in broken Ruhnnic begging for mercy, as she hugged her confused and sleepy daughter tightly. It was good that she drew the girl so close to her. One less swing to make. With a vile, violent crunch, the captain delivered Ruhn's law to the two dangerous criminals, and departed for the next tent. Ruhnnic Parliamentary Citizen’s Missive All citizens are informed that the Lord Chancellor and his cabinet, with approval of the gathered Lord Ministers, have ratified the Ruhn Expansion and Reclamation Act of 1500. It is the opinion of the Parliament that in order to safeguard the future prosperity and safety of the Commonwealth the borders of the nation must extend to both deter aggressive acts on her core territories and obtain important resources. The Commonwealth is currently seeking citizens with a penchant for forestry, farming, and adventure to be sponsored as pioneer colonists. One ought seek the Commonwealth State magistrate’s office for further information and documentation. Those unable to read or write may request a reading from the magistrate, but this may incur monetary compensation depending on the hour. All documentation must be signed with the individual name or special mark unique to that individual. X’s are no longer considered legal declarations of consent due to influxes fraudulently signed paperwork. With patience, and in duty, The Commonwealth Parliament. Treasury Expenditure: 45,000 gold for this turn. -18,000 gold for two merchant’s guilds. -10,000 gold for 10 unit’s worth of iron armour, -15,000 gold towards farmlands expansions. -2000 gold placed in the great vault. (Total of 2000) Misc. Actions: Offers of trade are sent outward into the surrounding nations of: -The Free Cities of Triad, -The Kingdom of Five, -The Realm of Hakan, -Kingdom of Karel. Even if some of them contain unusual looking humans, the Commonwealth citizens do not judge for the most part. All people who enter Ruhn are advised not to disrespect the shrines and priests present there, lest they themselves wish to be added to the shrines themselves. A great honour for any Ruhnnite. 4,000 Ruhnnic Soldiers march out of the mountains on the first phase of Ruhn’s expansion plans. 2,000 march west, securing and claiming the lands before the river, but avoiding the lands already claimed by the Free Cities--not wishing to cause problems with a possible trade partner. 2,000 march east to the ocean, both to secure the remaining land and investigate reports of a construct seen in the distance. Statistics: Population: 2,500,000 Cities & Investments: Ruhn, Bruger, Defensive Structures: Foretress Bergen, Other Investments: Military: 6,000 Medium Infantry, 4,000 medium archers.
  11. Catostrophy

    From Ruination [FRP] [OOC]

    Nation Name: Commonwealth of Ruhn History: The mountain ranges squashed between the Hungry Sea, Trader’s Bay, and the Scorching Loba Desert had always been a haven for exiles, miscreants, smugglers, bandits, and all manner of uncivilized sorts. During the time of the great collapses, towns of refugees started popping up in the steep crags. Of course, with civilization comes organisation, and with organisation comes war. Raiding was rampant, confederacies came and went, new towns were founded and wiped out overnight, and blood poured down the mountains in thick, pungent rivers. This was the case until the City of Ruhn consolidated itself. Its natural defensive position high on a mountain made taking the city via conventional means almost impossible. Thus, people flocked to it in a bid to escape the chaos outside. This not only bolstered the city’s numbers, but filled it to the brim with all manner of displaced specialists and warriors--all of whom were desperate for protection, and willing to swear allegiance to whomever could provide it. To keep order, leaders from tribes, tributary towns, and local warlords were invited into the Ruhn governing authority, evolving into a (somewhat) meritocratic commonwealth over time. As the centuries dragged on, Ruhn slowly consolidated its hold over the mountains. Its greatest strength was its willingness to take in anyone and everyone, regardless of crime, ability, or faith. One of the most repellent faiths managed to find a home among the dour and hard-minded Ruhnnites--that of the God of Death. Its worship shaped the people of Ruhn just as the faith was shaped by them. Piety was prized among the people, who saw the God of Death not as a destroyer or plague-bringer, but as a gentle guide and protector of their ancestors. Great crypts and grave-gardens housed generations of families who visited and honoured their memories with offerings and prayers. The edifices of human bones that adorned the temples were symbols of serenity and unity, and almost every family had bones on the great alters. At the dawn of the new era, Ruhn found itself in a long war with a neighboring city of similar circumstances. A decade of conflict passed with armies butchering one-another along the Vulture Highway between the cities, until the rival metropolis was captured and purged. Thousands of bones now adorned wayshrines along the roads, as a testament to the dominance of Ruhn, and in honor of the fallen and He-That-Waits—the nameless lord of the hereafter. Now that their dominance over the mountains is secure, they have begun looking beyond the peaks. The people of Ruhn are survivors at their core, and they do not fear death. Culture: “Grim” would be the best word to describe Ruhnnites. This is partly due to hardship, and the bloody mountain wars still fresh in many people’s memories. Though there are times of merriment and levity in Ruhn, most people consider excessive celebration to be improper. Clothing rarely carries much colour due to few pigments being available in the mountains. The worship of ancestors and He-That-Waits are the primary pillars of faith. Their dogma exemplifies acts of duty and gratitude from the living towards the departed, for they judge and aid their descendants. Similarly the departed punish them for blasphemy or lapses in their duties. Though the services and prayers to the dead can differ drastically between towns and regions, it matters little as long as they are honored appropriately. Bones are gladly donated to the shrines and temples, as the priests will reverently add them to great idols believed to ward off cruel spirits from the sanctified places. The resting places of the dead are tended to by both priests and the families. These can range from beautifully decorated crypts carved into the mountainside, to gardens of graves where commoners may communally visit their ancestors and priests may tend many at once. The ancestors are said to pass the prayers on to He-That-Waits, and worshipers hope to gain his protection, and thank him for watching over their honored dead. If there was one word to describe Ruhnnites overall, it would be ‘dutiful.’ Race: Human Nation Government System: An aristocratic parliamentary commonwealth with a Lord Chancellor overseeing executive decisions, while laws and general governance are debated and voted on within the parliament. Though the Lord Chancellor is a hereditary post, his chief advisers and top positions in his “cabinet” are selected from the parliament based on their skill. This all takes place in the Grey Manor -- the former palace of Hanz Bruger -- which acts as the primary seat of government within the Commonwealth. Economy: 6 Trade flourishes on the mountainsides, despite the poor conditions. A sordid history of crime, smuggling, and fierce ‘competition’ have made merchants a noble class of their own, though they have the good fortune to be able to ignore the politics. Education: 3 Educated people are not altogether unknown, but it’s mostly found among those who can afford it. Size: 4 Ruhn is a relatively small place, but out sized by its ambitions. Military: 4 The soldiers are still recovering after the Vulture Wars, but are no pushover. (6,000 medium infantry, 4,000 medium archers) Mysticism: 4 Respect your ancestors, and know them well. For they hear your prayers, and whisper them to He-That-Waits... Key figure 1: Lord Chancellor Johann Bruger Key Figure 2: Lord Protector Charles Ortmeir Key Figure 3: Lord Treasurer Fitzroy Velburg Unique Unit: Hillmen In the dangerous early years, tribes adapted to ambushing opponents in the mountains. Ruhn has continued this underhanded tradition by arming similar ambushers with crossbows. Clad in leather armour and sticking to tree-lines and long grass, Hillmen stalk, silently approach, and launch an armour-piercing bolt into the necks and joints of unwary soldiers. They are determined sharpshooters, but not determined enough to fight in hand-to-hand unless absolutely pressed. Spooky fruit: lichi
  12. “Do not be offended, good Mali’ame. Though most non-Mali’aheral are equally lesser than ourselves, our Elven cousins are above the other descendants by a grand margin. I think that to be a nice thought, wouldn’t you agree?”
  13. Catostrophy

    Onwards [Sci-Fi Nation FRP - RP]

    Synth-Wine Currently 50% Off at All Participating Stores! The barren, rocky landscape of Hades rapidly passed below the luxury transport. One of the finest, automated flyers to come out of Rudolf-Kessler Automotive that year, it was the current rage in subsidiary admin and executive circles. Alaya Penrith wasn’t entirely comfortable with the prospect of having no pilot, but lately she had found privacy very attractive. Being able to drink while in the transport also appealed, where other private vehicles would require her to be entirely sober. Certainly no fun to be had there. She sighed, and leaned back in her hand-made leather seat. “Olga,” she spoke to the autopilot after another sip of wine, “how much longer until we reach our destination?” The transport’s computer only accepted human languages, which bothered her. English and German were barbarous, unpleasant languages to vocalize. They lacked the subtle and smooth nuances of the Terraskolarian and Sayrn language trees. The calm, female voice of the autopilot answered. “Approximately two hours, twenty-three minutes, Frau Penrith, not accounting for local smog-fields and traffic.” Alaya smiled and swirled the wine in her glass. The anticipation was nearly unbearable. At first she was in tears when Ryan Seacrest brought her the evidence of John’s infidelity, but now she only felt righteous anger, and vengeful glee at the brutality of her next move. She would reap the field of the past fifteen years and make his life a living hell. She could still remember the day John Penrith had walked into the Grand Alliance’s psionic academy. So confident and funny, he was. And how playful he was with his words when they first met. She was barely sixteen at the time--so young. So utterly naive and stupid. Fifteen years she put up with lonely nights, and lonelier days. He grew increasingly distant as the years dragged on until they only saw one-another every few weeks. She had foolishly thought he was busy being a CEO, now it seemed so much more obvious. If only her anchor hadn’t arrived, she would be happily divorced a decade ago. One must always do right by one’s children, even if they were irritating. But in the here and now, there was very little wine left; very little wine and so many, many hours to go. She had noted that one of the transport’s features was a built-in local holo-communications system. There was a fire burning in the depths of her stomach, and she was ready to spew it out vitriol and all. “Olga, please connect me to John Penrith.” She tilted her glass up high, and emptied it in one gulp. She wanted to see his face sink when she told him, and she couldn’t wait any longer. “Ja, Mrs Penrith. Sending contact request codes. Your call will connect soon. Thank you for utilising Quant-Tel Local Holo-Call.” Alaya rolled her eyes with a sigh. Even the smaller Hephaestus eccentricities were beginning to grate on her. After a tense moment of electrical beeps and buzzes, the stern face of John Penrith flickered on the holo-display. Cigar in one hand, and pouring a glass of whiskey in the other, the man seemed almost resigned. Perhaps he suspected she knew? “Hello, Alaya.” He said monotonously. “I thought you had another week on Aphrodite? I hoped you’d at least finish that very expensive holiday-“ “Don’t you lecture me on money, you cheating, pre-spaceflight monkey.” She spat, digging her fingernails into the leather armrest. “I came back early because I have some choice words for you and those whores you’ve been entertaining.” John clenched his jaw, and slowly extinguished his cigar in a crystal ashtray. “Name your price.” Ayala paused. This was not the reaction she had anticipated. John was usually far more animated when they habitually argued. “My price?” She stammered. “Yeah, sweetheart. How much money do you want so you won’t tell anyone?” John wasn’t even looking her in the eye, but instead staring at the bottom of his whiskey glass. This seemed to deeply annoy her for some reason. “Well let’s see, John. How much is my entire youth worth in HEcreds? Adding in a little extra for a decade of humiliation, childbirth, and wasted affection, I’m rather sure you don’t have enough money to give me.” John closed his eyes and nodded. He looked very uncomfortable, and this was at least a teensy bit satisfying. “I’ll tell you what I do want, though,” she continued. “I’d like a little bit of Hephaestus stock. Specifically, your stock, John. About half of it would be ample compensation, along with the divorce papers, yes?” John rubbed his temple and shook his head slowly. “You know I can’t do that.” “Ah but you see, John,” Alaya grinned. This would be the first time she’d ever invoked this little power. Her voice was almost shaking with excitement. “If you don’t give me this stock, I will inform my brother, Emperor Datrax, that you have been cheating on his sister all this time. I have a feeling the Lithruans will be far less disposed towards Hephaestus. All those trade contracts, all that good-will, ‘poof.’ Finished.” Her grin widened as John looked her in the eye for the first time. She wasn’t really sure what emotion he was experiencing at this moment. Fear? Anger? Entrapment? It was almost like a combination of all three, and she loved it. “I guess I don’t have a choice, then.” He murmured. “For what it’s worth, I’m sorry.” “Save your apologies for when I arrive, John.” She snapped with a poisonous sneer. “You can blubber them as you sign the papers.” “Yeah, nah.” John shook his head, as he pulled out a second cigar. “Don’t think so, mate. You should have negotiated seriously.” And with that, the transmission cut. Much to the surprise of Alaya—the nerve of that bastard! Was he planning to weather the media storm? “Frau Penrith,” The transport’s computer chimed. “Are you sure you want to activate manual controls? It is not recommended for pilots without credentials.” Alaya stared at the autopilot’s speaker in her tipsy stupor. “What?” “Affirmative, activating manual controls.” The transport’s nose suddenly dipped towards the earth. The screaming engines only barely eclipsed Alaya’s own shrieks of terror as the craft barreled downwards. Though her instincts drove her to grasp the controls, they weren’t responsive. Manual control was activated, but it was not connected to her transport. “Current projections indicate that you may experience an accident on this route.” The autopilot calmly stated. “Do you wish to change your destination?” Alaya proceeded to scream her approval for the idea. “Error,” the autopilot continued, “The term ‘destination’ is not recognized. Please choose your new destination.” Alaya had stopped screaming. The ground was close. Her mind was blank. She inhaled sharply. The craft smashed into an ancient impact crater, the engine igniting the oxygen in the cockpit and creating a brief, sputtering explosion in the vacuum of Hades’ airless barrens. The smoldering wreck quickly cooled, but within the twisted metal a tiny power unit remained online. “Warning,” an electronic voice addressed to no-one in particular. “Restoring black-box to factory default will delete all previous flight data. Are you sure you wish to continue?” After a short moment of silence, the voice rang out for the last time. “Affirmative, factory settings restored. Thank you for purchasing Rudolf-Kessler Automotives’ Falcon omni-environmental executive transport. Please refer to the operation manual to activate your black-box flight recorder.” But there was no answer. John Penrith closed his holo-comm. He was silent for a moment, before lighting up his cigar and taking a long drag. “Bloody shame, that.” He mumbled. “Still, it was necessary to keep the Corporation’s integrity, yeah?” “Oh yeah, b-boss. Definitely!” Wilfred Cooper squeaked from his chair while wiping a hefty trickle of sweat from his balding head. “Threatening Hephaestus with her brother? T-that’s downright f-f-fiendish! No other choice, for sure!” “I agree,” Roxanne Marawai purred as she waltzed up to John’s chair wearing an expression of convincing sympathy. “Though the hag definitely had it coming, there was simply no negotiating with her. I think you should give her an auspicious funeral and you can wash your hands of this.” With a dancer’s grace, she leaned over to his ear, and whispered something breathy and indecent. Though no-one could hear it, it definitely made the CEO smile. “Well, I guess aside from the cleanup, that’s all dealt with.” John turned to the two silent figures still sitting in the room. “How’s that going, by the way?” The oldest of the pair appeared somber as he shut down and carefully disassembled a mobile command console. The youngest was trying and failing to mask his beaming pride. “The flyer’s box has been wiped.” Jim Bean stated plainly. “I’ll make sure the investigation comes to the right conclusion, and dispose of my local recording.” He didn’t look at John once as he spoke—something the CEO took note of. “And you,” John turned to the younger man. “This Ryan Seacrest bloke been dealt with yet?” Liam Fulamius smiled mischievously and nodded. “Better than dealt with, Mr Penrith. Once I’m done, this guy won’t ever have existed!” “Good.” John nodded at Liam with a smile. “You were smart to bring this to me directly. Really saved the Corporation one hell of a headache. You’re probably owed a decent promotion for all this. What do you reckon, Jim?” The old negotiator nodded as he finished packing up the terminal. “You’re the boss, Mr Penrith.” “Yes. Yes I am.” He swung around in his large, leather armchair and stared out into the industrial jungle that littered the skyline. Regarding it quietly for a moment, he glanced back at his employees. “You lot bugger off, yeah? I’d like some time alone.” As they filed out, Roxanne gazed at him with a small smile which John happily returned. “After dinner, Rox.” She winked at him, and glided towards the elevator with the others. In the silence of his office, John gazed down at the billowing smokestacks of Hades, and slowly exhaled. It was like an enormous weight had been lifted off his shoulders--or more accurately, a frustrating obligation had been removed from his life. He felt slightly giddy, and turned to his desk. “Command: Access: Music files: play ‘Straight Lines,’ by Silverchair.” As the music began, he loosened his tie, and stood up from his chair. He began to dance. An investigation into the disappearance of Alaya Penrith began after she failed to arrive at the Hab 01 docking airlock. Witnesses and recordings from the spaceport confirmed she had arrived on Hades and departed the port the same evening. After searching probable flight paths, rescue teams discovered the wreckage of a transport that matched the model of Alaya’s and a singular deceased occupant. Though identification was difficult due to the damage to her body, DNA confirmed her identity. Examining her cadaver, Corporate morticians reported that her blood had a high alcohol content. HERMES examinations of the flyer indicated that the manual controls had been activated midway through her journey. Though they hoped for a flight recording, it appeared that Alaya hadn’t activated her black-box. The investigation concluded that Mrs Alaya Penrith had, under the influence of alcohol, switched to her manual controls and due to her lack of piloting accreditation or experience crashed her transport. When questioned, witnesses stated that she had entered her flyer with alcohol in hand and appeared to be in a hurry. CEO John Penrith was unavailable for comment outside of standard investigation procedure, but requested that all Corporate news subsidiaries show respect for his family during this time of mourning or be fired. Having so recently lost his father, Hephaestus Employees felt nothing but sympathy for their beleaguered employer. Some wondered if he would ever recover from the cavalcade of tragedies. His daughter also had not been seen for some time, and it was assumed the drastically reduced family were spending time together. AP TO COME LATER.
  14. Catostrophy

    hated gm tries to see what server thinks of him

    In your own words, what is really wrong with the DragonSlayerElf community?
  15. Catostrophy

    [RP] Dawn of Divinity

    “If you seek your lover’s heart, you need a long, sharp knife!” -Ixthalizzum, God of Indecision, Confusion, Derangement, and Irony. Ixthalizzum was, for the first time in aeons, given a sense of purpose! After an argument in the great Void with his fellow gods, something had become clear(ish) to him. Love was real, love between gods was totally righteous, but most importantly... … Ixthalizzum, due to his ever-changing form, was infinitely attractive. This final revelation was an immense confidence-boost for the otherwise (maybe) shy and (possibly) reserved God that he was. As he probably loved all his brother and sister Gods equally, he decided he would court them all at once! How could they reject someone as mathematically alluring as herself? However, there was one pressing problem-- --Ixthalizzum had no game. He had no idea how to court, as such a thing was not part of his nature. Being unable to decide on a course of action, he cast his gaze to his beloved Thallites to observe how mortals performed their own courtship rituals. He spied two Thallites sitting near one-another in a cave, awkwardly touching their gnarled grasping-limbs together. One, after a few minutes of trepidation, suddenly pulled from his pouch three objects; a polished stone, a generously-proportioned mushroom, and a desiccated cave-beetle. Fine gifts to be sure, but could such things inspire love between mortals? The receiving Thallite hissed and gurgled in pleasure. So happy she was that she suffered a brief manic episode and began to strangle her suitor. This was only temporary though, and the both of them embraced one-another’s face-tentacles in an expression of tender romance. The whole sight brought tears to a thousand of Ixthalizzum’s eyes. He gifted them both visions of his screaming thanks for showing him the beauty of love. As he left them to recover from their duel aneurysms, he analysed what he saw so that he might scale the act up to the level of godhood. What he knew mostly for certain was that she needed to take things slowly. He/she/it would start with a thoughtful gift. Each God had their own interests and desires, and gifts had to be suited to each accordingly. She didn’t think he had the power to court all of them this era, but he’d do what he could. He could not cut corners in the pursuit of love. He first looked to Exitius. They had differences in the past. He could remember almost perfectly the time he had insulted the madgod in her crag. The words were hurtful, but there was such... passion in his proclamations that Ixthalizzum could not help but be intrigued. What did the Lord of Destruction like? Mountains, certainly, and destruction. He also liked fighting, conquering, and large, female, bipedal lizards. With a spark of inspiration, he set to work on his grand gesture of equal forgiveness and romance. To the south of his dragon-things burgeoning empire, he pulled a great mantle of iron from the depths of the world. With the precision of the world’s greatest craftsmen, he shaped it and formed it until it uncannily resembled the great mountain on Exitium that the Lord of Destruction once fought the madgod over. Though it was definitely smaller than the original, its size was nothing to sniff at--being as it could be seen from hundreds of miles away rising from the ground in a crescendo of super-heated rock and flowing magma. At the very top of the new mountain was an enormous monument to commemorate the love they might possibly share. It was a statue depicting an idealised version of Exitius, standing tall and stern. And sensually wrapped around his body was an image of the formless mass of Ixthalizzum, but this rendition of the madgod wore a mask that resembled the Venandi ‘Rhea’ Exitius liked so much. Ixthalizzum screamed in joy at his own thoughtfulness, before moving on to his next paramour... Wol-Kot. What did Wol-Kot like? He liked darkness, secrets, pyramids, darkness, dreams, souls, darkness, nightmares, and darkness. It was almost as if inspiration struck him like a brick. After a short moment of deciphering the confusing language of his “Soggy-Korgath,” he threw his essence towards the desert continent. He dove into the sandy dunes within viewing distance of the newish manse of Sylvaniel, and pushed down until he found what he sought--obsidian; the darkest substance he could imagine within the marble world. He pulled as much of it together as he could, and flung it up to the surface in its super-heated and smoking form causing much of the surrounding desert sand to be rendered glass by the act. Finally, he threw the obsidian, more sand, and his love into a great mixture, and moulded it together until it took the form of a pyramid. An upside-down pyramid, yes, but it was close enough. The deciphered writing of Wol-Kot were inscribed all across its surface with the barest of literacy. Much like Wol-Kot’s own temple, it was a history of the world but from the madgod’s perspective, interspersed with repulsive, sappy overtures of love toward the Dreaming God. Or the “dreamy” God as Ixthalizzum preferred to write. He bade that Wol-Kot should give permission for the madgod to enter his dreams this time, and together they would make “more than just the worms, if you catch my drift.” He didn’t really have access to souls, but he abducted a few Myrdians and splattered them on the pyramid’s base. That was probably what he would like. Squibbling with pride at his artistry and scripture, he smiled gleefully at the prospect of his third not-yet-willing suitor... Yngbald. Intelligent. Wise. Liked trees. Put all that magic in the world. He liked big trees and magic. This one would be a cinch! Throwing himself into the northern forests, he took a solid ten minutes studying the Adamentine Tree before getting intensely bored. He gave a nearby forest Nyrnen a phobia of grass out of frustration, but he had a fair idea of how the runic script worked. If not, well, nothing a bit of chaos couldn’t fix! He tossed himself from Adamentine Tree, and gathered together a square mile’s worth of foliage. He would need a very big tree if he were to impress the nerdy Yngbald, and this would be the biggest tree of all! The horrifying flora twisted, warped, and cracked until it was 100 feet high. An oak of disturbing proportions and a weight no natural tree could hold, Ixthalizzum carved his partially understood runic script into its trunk, and infused it with the magics of the Orb of Chaos to make up any deficits in his scribbling. Suddenly, a maw appeared on the tree, and a shrill scream erupted from it. It screeched out the names of runes that tapped into the Orb of Chaos. Were any mortal to utilise them, they would instantly explode, leaving a pile of gory viscera in the shape of a cartoony heart. How could one not find such a thing impressive? Surely the Lord of Magic would appreciate such a complicated and nuanced gesture. The madgod stepped away from his creations, exhausted yet satisfied. This was merely the beginning, but eventually he would have his love returned from between one to three gods this era. After all, how could they resist his infinite charm? [4AP Iron Abs Peak, a courtship gift for Exitius] [4AP The Pyramid of True Feelings, a courtship gift for Wol-Kot] [4AP The Screaming Oak, a courtship gift for Yngbald] [1AP left over]