2014 STGOD Story Thread I

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Re: 2014 STGOD Story Thread I

Postby Eternal_Freedom » 2014-09-25 12:57pm

After much delay due to work commitments on both sides, the long-awaited Orion-Rheinland Treaty Post! Written with Thanas, who is far better at writing such things than me.

Kingdom of Orion
Port Rigel
15 February 2014


Fischer breathed the heavy sea air as the pinasse sped across the harbour surface towards the shore. As the draft of the Delphin prevented her from fully entering the harbour, the Rheinland fleet anchored within spitting distance of the harbour, easily visible from the shore. Fischer noted that many of the civilian crowd were intently watching the behemoths of old and new, no doubt discussing the ships among themselves. From the people clustering near the visitor quays a lot of them were no doubt waiting to take advantage of the two-day period the Delphin and Elisabeth were open for visitors. These people sure love ships.

The previously agreed on itinerary for the official program for the heads of states had been much stricter:

Day 1
11:30 Arrival at Port Rigel
12:30 Lunch at local restaurant
14:00 Guided tour to the Orion Superbattleship John P. Wallace, media availability
20:00 State Dinner at the Royal Palace

Day 2
09:00 Reichkanzler Fischer welcoming the Royal Family on visit to IRNS Delphin and RNS Derfflinger
12:00 Lunch - old Rhenish seamen food onboard the Delphin
14:00 Treaty signing underneath A-turret of Delphin
15:00 Media availability in Port Rigel
16:00 Travel through Orion historic sites
20:00 Farewell celebrations in Port Rigel
22:00 Departure from Orion

Oddly enough, the first to disembark from the Rhenish delegation was the huge Leopard, who took one large leap to finally have her paws on firm ground again. Next to disembark was the Chancellor himself, followed by Rear-Admiral Sané of the IRNS Delphin, commander of the Rhenish battlegroup, and Assistant undersecretary of State Lenoir, who would be responsible for drafting the proposed treaty. The final 9 persons in the group were eight members of the Black Guard led by Keiko Watanabe herself, who quickly attached a silver leash to Shadow and then handed that one to the chancellor. The leash of course was more to reassure the watching public instead of providing any real protection in case Shadow went mad. And I have no doubt Orion has a large number of snipers trained on us for that scenario already.

After the formation had been established, the Rhenish delegation walked forward to meet the Royal delegation.

King Alexander waited with his family (well, Samuel and Queen Jessica, Isabella was studying for exams whilst Prince David had a training rotation with the cadets and little Emily was too young for such an event), Admiral McKenna, Foreign Secretary Natalie Abrams, Interior Secretary Ralph Emerson, Defence Secretary Ian Fletcher, Treasury Secretary John Wiliams and OSA Director James Greer. These six were the principal advisers to the King, the inner circle of Orion politics.

As the boat approached the assembled band from the Royal Marines struck up the Rhenish national anthem.

Once the boat moored up there was a moment of shock as a huge leopard leaped down first. It was a beautiful creature and only clearly glad to be back on solid ground. Ah the King though this must be Shadow. A strange custom to keep leopards around, but it seems harmless enough. Despite that thought, he turned his head a fraction to Secretary Fletcher and muttered quietly.

"Ian, tell me we have someone keeping that thing in their sights, just in case."

The man replied, just as quietly: "Of course Sire. Standard protocol when large animals are around."

Reassured, the King stepped forward to greet the Chancellor. In the background, the assembled band finished the last bars and fell silent, as did the watching crowds.

"Herr Chancellor, I bid you welcome to the Kingdom of Orion. It is an honour to host both you and your magnificent ships. Together we can forge a closer bond for our two nations and step into the future."

Fischer quickly handed over the leash to Keiko as protocol dictated in such a situation. After all, nobody wanted to bring Shadow close enough to foreigners until she had determined them not to be a threat.

"Your majesty, I am honored by your invitation and your hospitality. The Imperial and Federal Union of Rheinland and lesser territories shares your desire for a closer bond that will ensure freedom and prosperity for all."

Fischer extended his hand, which the king shook. The media took this as a cue to shower them with flashes, from which the black guard thankfully had shielded the Leopard's eyes by maneuvering her far to the side of the two.

After posing for pictures, the two delegations headed for lunch at a local restaurant, the Shining Star, known throughout Port Rigel as offering the very best food in town. Nothing on the menu could be realistically called gourmet, but the collections of steaks (of nearly any kind imaginable), pastas and currys were cooked to perfection (despite the somewhat eclectic mix of dishes available). The restaurant featured a huge garden, which had been cordoned off for the leopard to eat its own food - a freshly shot buck from the King's forest - and to relieve herself. Something which seemed to amuse the hosts. The King's son, Prince Samuel, seemed to be particularly fascinated by the ease in which the jaws of Shadow ripped apart the buck to feast on the marrow and innards. "If I might, Herr Kanzler, I know that leopards are the symbol of executive power in Rheinland. But why not a Dolphin, which after all is the symbol of your state?"

Fischer swallowed quickly. "Well, I'd imagine Dolphins are a bit hard to keep around." After a minute, he continued. "But truthfully, they are a relict of our past. When we first made contact with the people on Tellus South, one of our Royal princes decided he would attempt to bring back those exotic cats as guardians. Since then that bloodline has served as last line of defence to many an Emperor - and eventually to the Chancellors when we wrested the highest powers from the monarchy. Currently there are about 70 of them in their den at the Royal Palace, with one chosen for each chancellor. Shadow's been with me for all my years in office - though it has taken some time to get used to the smell."

"I don't doubt it. I am very glad that we discarded some of our odder customs during the Secession. Some of my forebears, for instance, insisted on having thrones draped in wolf pelts and at least one experimented with keeping Timber Wolves from Underwood as palace pets. That last one was abandoned after one of the younger and less well trained specimens caused a diplomatic fracas by partially eating a visiting dignitary who offended the King. Since then we mostly stuck to dogs."

"Ah yes, I had heard of that incident. I understand your family has a fondness for Rheinland Shepherds?" The Chancellor was finding it very easy to talk with Alexander, but he could not help but remember that underneath the pleasant exterior was a man who had executed five people on live television.

"We do indeed. Labradors and Retrievers and terriers and so on are all fine animals, but in my experience you don't find a more loving or loyal creature than a hearty Shepherd. Except Shadow of course." The Leopard looked over briefly at the mention of her name before returning to her meal. The Chancellor smiled.

"May I ask how you manage to promote such a fanaticism for knowledge and learning in your citizens?"

"That's quite simple really. Knowledge is power, after all, and a commodity far more valuable than tanks or guns. We learned the hard way when the Outlanders first arrived, we only drove them off because there were a handful of them and tens of thousands of us. King Mintaka swore that we would not be caught unprepared the next time Outlanders arrived. It's been engrained in us for five hundred years now."

The small talk continued whilst the meals were consumed and Shadow finished stretching her legs; she was clearly happier back on dry land. None in attendance who had experienced heavy seas - meaning nearly all of them - could blame her.

The rest of the afternoon was spent on a tour to the Orion Superbattleship John P. Wallace. The good order of the crew and ship impressed the visitors, as well as allowed them to exchange professional opinions, the latter of which was freely taken up by Rear-Admiral Sané, who found the king to be quite easy to talk to.

"Your majesty, I see that your ships seem to have followed the four turret, 12 guns layout, as we did. Have you ever considered going up to 18" caliber?"

"We considered it, certainly, but we found that there really weren't any targets that warranted the bigger caliber. We also decided that trading twelve 16" for eight 18" was too great a loss in effective firepower. With twelve guns firing twin salvos we can get off six rounds of gunfire before each gun reloads, letting us keep up a higher rate of fire, which nicely speeds up correcting the range."

Admiral Sané considered that for a moment. "Yes, the latter got very problematic with the 20" guns installed on the Elizabeth. You speak from experience, your majesty?"

That elicited a grin from the King. "Indeed Admiral. My last posting in my Navy days was Gunnery Commander on this very ship. It was painful to leave her, even to take up the throne.

Visiting the battleship also allowed the delegation to ask some questions where nobody from the media could listen in. Fischer took the opportunity while pretending to admire the loading mechanism in A-turret for the massive 16"guns. "Your majesty, if I may, what made you execute people on live TV?"

The King's amiable smile vanished, leaving the steely face of a man who had asked himself that question many times. "We had to show them that they couldn't win, that they couldn't make us afraid. Beyond that, they killed so many of my people, as a diversion so they could threaten millions more. As their ruler, and as the one who passed sentence upon them, I felt obliged to look them in the eyes and end them myself. It isn't something I am proud of and it has cost me a lot of sleep since then. But if I have to, it is something I will do again."

Fischer nodded. "I do hope that you will never have to do it again, Your majesty." He hoped the subtext was understood without taking offence. For the King's action had resulted in not so few newspaper questioning the wisdom of aligning oneself with somebody who seemed at best challenged in mood control and unhinged at worst.

"So do I Herr Chancellor, so do I."

After some more shop talk the parties returned to the shore. To ease the mood of the leopard, the Rheinland delegation would sleep on shore, in a spacious villa with plenty of fenced-in garden space.


Kingdom of Orion
Port Rigel
The following day


On the following day King Alexander and his family (this time including Princess Isabella who, having spent much of the previous night's state dinner chatting (her father would say flirting) with Rhennish officers and had begged to be allowed on the visit) were welcomed by the Reichskanzler onboard the IRNS Elisabeth, with the ~4200 members of her crew standing at muster in honour of the royal visitors. The visitors were shown the massive 510cm/52 guns and ammunition, with a photo opportunity being used while standing in front of a massive 20.1" shell.

After about one hour of visiting the visitors were transferred to the RNS Derfflinger. This tour took considerably longer as this time more and more professional questions were asked and the entourage of the King which accompanied him to the IRNS Delphin was considerably smaller as a large number of officers remained behind to observe operations aboard the Derfflinger. As was expected, the schedule run over, especially with the tour of the Delphin following, including an arranged lecture about the many historic places on the ship - including where the great Rhenan admirals had sat while commanding the battles of the eighty-years wars.

Following this, lunch was served in the officer's mess, consisting of the traditional meal of the Imperial Rhenan Navy - soused herring, rolled herring, salt herring and boiled potatoes served with sliced onions and a variety of cream, yoghurt and sour cream sauces. Though traditional and nutritious, not a few of the eaters shot envious glances at the Leopard, who was chewing away on a leg of mutton. This was especially true of Princess Isabella, who had never had much taste for fish. Despite the unsaitisfying lunch she retained her manners as a good Princess should Though the various sorts of beer and wine served before, during and after the meal did do a lot to quelch any complaints; the young Princess being permitted a single glass under the stern gaze of her mother.

Conversation, unsurprisingly, was heavily centered on the Derfflinger. Also unsurprisingly, it was the King who spearheaded it.

"Admiral Sané, the Derfflinger is a fine ship and I look forward to seeing her sisters flying Orion colours, but I understand that the ships are not particularly favoured in Rheinland?"

The Admiral took a sip of wine before answering. "It is not so much that they are unfavoured Your Majesty, it is that there are some in the Navy who see no point to the vessels. We have seen for decades now that the aircraft carrier is the queen of the seas, so building a large, crew-intensive vessel purely for surface combat seemed pointless. Any anti-aircraft or anti-missile duty could be handled by destroyers just as easily and on a cheaper hull."

Lunch and conversation was cut short when the ship's bell chimed to note that it was 14:00 clock, time to sign the treaty. Once again, the crew had been assembled to muster in their 1940 dress whites&blues with the cuffbands showing IRNS DELPHIN in golden letters (something that according to tradition would be a part of any other uniform they would wear, no matter the position) providing a great visual for the mob of photographers and TV reporters who had shown up.

The actual signing was kept short and to the point. After two very short speeches, in which both the King and Fischer reiterated the common ground of their nations, each signed the treaty text.


Treaty regarding the formation of the Defense Pact

PREAMBLE

His Excellency Dr. phil. Dr. h.c. (mult) Erwin Julius Fischer, Reichskanzler of the Federal and Imperial Union of RHEINLAND and Lesser Territories etc.,
and
His Royal Majesty Alexander Cromwell DSC, MSc, King of ORION etc.,

have,

RESOLVED to mark a new stage in international cooperation,
RECALLING the horrors of the Eighty-Years war and other conflicts
CONFIRMING their attachment to the principles of the rule of law,
DESIRING to deepen the solidarity between their peoples while respecting their history, their culture and their traditions,
DETERMINED to promote economic and social progress for their peoples,
RESOLVED to implement a common defence and security policy
REAFFIRMING their objective to facilitate the free movement of persons and knowledge, while ensuring the safety and security of their peoples,
RESOLVED to secure the freedom of the seas and defend global trade,
DETERMINED to resolve the claims on each other's territories
HAVE DECIDED to establish this TREATY OF ALLIANCE



SECTION I: PARTIES

ARTICLE I: PARTIES
(I) Parties to this treaty are the Federal and Imperial Union of RHEINLAND and Lesser Territories (RHEINLAND) and the Kingdom of ORION.
(II) Subsequent Parties might be admitted to this treaty if current members support such amendment unanimously.
(III) This treaty shall bind all current and future iterations of the respective members as well as successor states.

SECTION II: THE STATUS OF THE CITIZEN

ARTICLE I: PERSONAL FREEDOMS
All members recognize the rights of their citizens to individual freedoms as laid out by the constitutions of the member states. All members will take efforts to ensure their citizens can freely exercise these freedoms.

ARTICLE II: ADDITIONAL RIGHTS
(I) In addition to the above-mentioned rights, every citizen of a member state shall have the right to move freely between member nations, to own and to sell property, to marry and to take part in commerce.
(II) Every citizen of a member state shall have the opportunity to gain citizenship of another membership after a period of residency no longer than five years in said member state.
(III) Every citizen of a member state shall have the right to study in all institutes of lower and higher education in another member state provided they meet the entry requirements.

ARTICLE III: DISPUTES
(I) In cases of legal disputes arising between citizens of different member states, the law of the state in which the dispute arose shall be the deciding one. Can this not be ascertained, the Rhenish Bürgerliches Gesetzbuch shall be assumed to be the final authority on the subject.
(II) In case of disputes between member states an independent commission shall deliver the final verdict. (see Article IV)

ARTICLE IV: COMMISSION
(I) An independent commission will be set up. The seat of the commission shall be the Free City of Großbremen.
(II) In case of dispute the Commission shall decide.
(III) The commission shall not overrule the decisions of the highest courts of the member states if it pertains to individuals.


SECTION III: ECONOMIC POLICIES

ARTICLE I: TRADE BARRIERS
All trade barriers between member states shall be abolished.

ARTICLE II: EXPORT AND IMPORT
(I) If possible and economically feasible, member states shall primarily purchase goods and resources from each other. Member states shall have the first right of refusal to any export.
(II) This does not apply to the private sector.

SECTION IV: WAR AND PEACE

ARTICLE I: PEACE
The member states shall endeavor to promote the common peace.

ARTICLE II: WAR
(I) An Attack upon any member state is an attack upon all.
(II) This does not apply to non-state actors.

ARTICLE III: INTELLIGENCE SHARING
All member states shall share intelligence with each other so far as it pertains to the national security of each member state.

SECTION V: TERRITORIAL AND OTHER CLAIMS

ARTICLE I
(I) The member states renounce all claims to each other's territory as null and void.
(II) This particularly includes, but is not limited to, the claims of ORION to the territory of Westrheinland (former Britonia).

ARTICLE II
All other claims, should they exist, shall be arbitrated by the commission.


SECTION VI: COMMON DEFENCE

ARTICLE I: PURPOSE
All members shall coordinate their common defence.

ARTICLE II: PRIMARY RESPONSIBILITY
(I) Certain members shall be given primary responsibility for the defence of certain areas
(II) Primary responsibility denotes that the nation in question shall be given the responsibility of assessing the threat and developing a strategy for the region. The nation in question shall have the duty of primarily financing the defence of the region in question, but may call for assistance from the other member state(s)

ARTICLE II: AREAS OF PRIMARY RESPONSIBILITY
Areas of primary responsibility are:
a) North of the Equator: RHEINLAND
b) Sourth of the Equator: ORION

ARTICLE III: FORMER COLONIES
The member states shall not be required to lend any assistance beyond logistical and intelligence assistance to the defence of former colonies of a member nation.

ARTICLE IV: JOINT DEVELOPMENT PROJECTS
All member states declare their commitments to participate in joint development projects.

ARTICLE V: JOINT MANEUVERS
All member states are encouraged to perform joint maneuvers.

ARTICLE VI: BASING RIGHTS
All member states shall have permanent basing rights in each other's territories in exchange for a reasonable fee.

ARTICLE VII: JOINT PATROL
The development of joint patrols shall be encouraged.

ARTICLE VIII: COMMANDERS
(I) Nations of primary responsibility have command in their respective areas in wartime. They are subject to a central Alliance High Command being established.
(II) commanding officers of multi-national detachements shall be chosen to an agreed-upon roster. In case of one nation contributing more than 60% to the task force, that nation shall have the rights to name the task force commander.

ARTICLE IX: COMMAND SHIPS
The flag of command ships of multinational detachments shall be a Golden Dolphin and a Golden Lion on blue.


SECTION VII: MISCELLANEOUS

ARTICLE I: EXCHANGE
(I) A cultural exchange program shall be set up.
(II) A student exchange program, both for schools and universities, shall be set up.

ARTICLE II: VALIDITY OF THE TREATY
(I) The present treaty shall become valid immediately upon signature.
(II) Any nation may cease to be a member one year after notice has been given of the intention of withdrawal. In such a case, the member has to reimburse the other nation(s) for their loss of investments.


Signed,
Alexander Cromwell DSC, MSc, King of ORION etc.
Dr. phil. Dr. h.c. (mult) Erwin Julius Fischer, Reichskanzler of the Federal and Imperial Union of RHEINLAND and Lesser Territories etc.


The two signatories shook hands while each was handed a framed copy of the treaty. Media availability was next.

"Your Majesty, how will this treaty benefit the common Orion citizen?" The inevitable inane question opened the round.

"It will benefit them enormously. Unrestricted travel to and throughout Rheinland, unrestricted access to universities and schools within our new ally, the cultural exchange from Rhennish students coming to study and learn with us, the elimination of all trade barriers leaving to a close and prosperous economic relationship, a powerful ally on the world stage, these are all things that will benefit each and every one of you."

"Herr Chancellor, is it relieving for you to see Orion finally withdraw it's territorial claims?"

"Relieved is perhaps too strong a word. We have always recognised that the claims in question were more for history's sake than any serious attempt to annexe our territory. Still, it was an impressive act of good faith to unilaterally abandon these claims, regardless of whether the treaty was signed or not."

"Your Majesty, do you plan to visit Rheinland in the near future?"

"Certainly it is too early to say for certain, but I would be honoured to visit our new ally. I know my family are very interested in seeing the ruins of ancient southern Rheinland, I understand they are most impressive."

"Herr Chancellor, will there be any effect on military deployments?"

"We will soon begin more detailed talks between our two Naval Staffs, but certainly joint exercises will take place. However Rheinland has no intention in increasing the presence in this part of the world, for we are very confident in the strength of our friends. The Treaty agrees basing arrangements for ships though, so I am sure that Orion sailors will be a common sight in Rhennish ports, and vice-versa."

The press asked a few more questions; they were keen enough to attend such a momentous occasion, but the questions could mostly be answered by simply reading the treaty, something they all planned to do upon return to their offices.

The party moved to a waiting helicopter for their quick-fire tour of famous sights in and around Port Rigel. First there was the monument marking the first landings of Outlanders on Orion soil, nearly four hundred years ago, and not far from the that the marker for where those Outlanders were driven back into the sea.

The helicopter turned inland, and all aboard could see the huge mountain that dominated the interior near Rigel. The King gave an explanation of the mountain and it's purpose, all aboard the aircraft noted the pride in his voice:

"Mount Erebus, the long-extinct volcano that formed Orion. 3400 hundred metres of nearly solid basalt. Now, nestled within the empty magma chamber is the Mount Erebus Complex, the nerve centre for our military and, in times of war, our ultimate redoubt. Buried a kilometer deep inside the mountain are the command centres for our military, although only the Space Forces are permanently headquartered there. With the radars at the summit and their own nuclear reactor for power, the Complex can track everything in the sky over nearly a third of the world and even things in orbit. The Complex provides an unbreachable fortress for our generals and admirals to oversee any crisis. Indeed, our engineers once calculated you would need twenty million tonnes of explosive to breach the complex."

The number was startling; there were very, very few facilities on Tellus as well-protected as this. As shocking as the idea of twenty million tonnes of explosive was, just looking at the mountain made those aboard the helicopter believe it.

The helicopter turned again, heading over Hephaestus, the former capital that still bore the ugly scars of the terrorist attacks. To the north lay the beautifully preserved Palace of the Hunter Tribe, where Orion as a nation had been borne in the form of the Tribal Council.

Onwards again to Paradise City; the helicopter landed for a brief tour of the Senate. The grand marble building made an impressive sight, even to the Rhennish who were used to such mighty and ancient edifices. Finally the group flew over the Royal Palace. Even seeing it in all it's grandeur during the state dinner the previous night, the view from the air was spectacular. What touched the visitors most though was the display in the gardens; at the suggestion of six-year-old Princess Emily, the gardners (helped by the Princess) had planted thousands of bright yellow flowers in the shape of a dolphin.

After the extensive - and exhausting - tour, the groups, which by now had mingled into one large party, gathered at the Port to say farewell. Once again, speeches were held, handshakes (and in some cases, hugs) were exchanged. The leopard was not present anymore, having been sedated again by the Black Guard.

For what was to follow was not something for the delicate ears of the beast, so she was now already on her way in an Orion helicopter to the carrier taskforce cruising of the Orion coast. As they had on arrival, the Orion dreadnoughts fired the first salvo, ending after another 21 gun salute.

This time, the Rhenish ships answered. To any observer having doubt on the value the Rhenish placed on this treaty, there could be no more doubt left after that performance. For as the two Rhenish superbattleships left the harbour, their guns turned and responded with a salute of their own. But this was not just any salute. It was the customary salute usually only performed on accession of an Emperor or the annual marriage of the sea ceremony.

One by one, each single gun and gun turret fired a rippling broadside from bow to stern, with each gun firing with timed precision. This rolling salute started with the three guns of the A turret of the Delphin crashing out in unison and ended with the D turret of the Elisabeth. This was repeated 21 times, giving the impression of a constant, gigantic flame rolling over the two ships.

And then, the specially configured VLS cells of the Derfflinger, the last ship in formation, opened and bathed the port in over 600 oversized firework missiles, illuminating the with the national colours of the two nations.

Watching from the shore, the King smiled at the display. His son looked on with awe, before finally turning to his father as the last of the colours faded.

"So Dad, the future is here?"

"It certainly is Sam. Orion will never quite be the same."


Results Summary:

-Orion and Rheinland are officially united in the Defence Pact (working title AFAIK)
-Orion officially withdraws all outstanding territorial claims against Rheinland, freely and forever
-All trade barriers are withdrawn and free movement of citizens is permitted
-Cultural exchange programs will be established
-Joint military exercises and development projects are in the works
Last edited by Thanas on 2014-09-25 01:40pm, edited 1 time in total.
Reason: changed out a word due to me being stupid.
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Corrax Entry 7:17: So you walk eternally through the shadow realms, standing against evil where all others falter. May your thirst for retribution never quench, may the blood on your sword never dry, and may we never need you again.

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Re: 2014 STGOD Story Thread I

Postby Beowulf » 2014-09-26 04:57pm

Jiangnan Naval Shipyard

Construction had completed on pre-commisioning unit Chibi. It would carry the pennant number 526, once it completed fitting out, and was commissioned. But right now, it hadn't even been launched. It was decked out in festive red bunting, with a giant red puff ball sitting under the bow. As traditional, a the warship was showered with Baijiu, before the rope holding the ship in place was severed with an axe. Once upon a time, this would have caused the ship to start moving backwards into the sea. However, such methods were now rare in Tianguo. Chibi would be floated out. He slowly sank into the water as the floating drydock it sat on took on ballast, floating free for the first time. It would be several more months before he became a commissioned warship.

---

Portland, Cascadia

The Tianguo defense attaché had an appointment. It was at a coffee house. The logo out front had a mermaid as the focus of the design. Miu Mingzhu wasn't wearing a uniform at the meeting. It wasn't a popular uniform in this part of the world, and the acquaintance she was meeting wouldn't be wearing his.

"Miu. Nice to see you. You wanted to speak to me?"

"Yes. My superiors don't want to do anything officially yet, but are interested if your higher ups are of the same mind regarding the recent news."

"Possibly. What are they thinking?"

"Joint exercise later this year."

"I'll let them know."

"There anything good here? Everything looks like it has a thousand calories."
"preemptive killing of cops might not be such a bad idea from a personal saftey[sic] standpoint..." --Keevan Colton
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Promotion

Postby Simon_Jester » 2014-09-27 12:28am

Central Office of the Guerilla Accountability Vanguard
Eastport, Umeria
February 17, 2014


"We're talking about a promotion of consequence... Review for me the summary passage in her dossier, Inspector "

"Some introductory description, then... here, sir, is the key passage. It says:"

All defects in character which GAV agents have observed in Field Officer Alarieléte are, in fact, freely admitted by the subject, who claims that she seeks to restrain them for the good of the People and State. There are periodic lapses."

The Grand Inspector frowned. "Lapses?"

"There, for instance, most seriously and most recently, the matter of the ruinous mutilation she threatened upon a dockyard worker for leaving a ladder in the ballast tanks."

"And?"

"...with a runcible spoon. That she was holding at the time."

"What are the consequences for a submersible of a ladder trapped in the ballast tanks?"

"Clanging. A lot of it. Whenever the submarine moves. If you thought the Mark Three was loud..."

"I see. And these ballast tanks, they are inaccessible and therefore the error would be irreparable for the length of Stiletto's cruise, correct?"

"...Yes."

"Such noise, then, would be a life-threatening emergency for the submersible if war were to break out, surely? Failure and death, even?"

"Even so, sir."

"And Stiletto, this very same ship, was by our reports accosted by an Orion submarine in January. In which affair, we are told, Alarieléte's influence exerted positive restraint on her captain to avoid escalation in response to the Orion vessel's uncouth and provocative conduct. It is written, in the wisdom of the Great Uncle, "Don't wake the neighbors."

"True. So, sir, you conclude that the incident does not impact the overall record?"

"For such a failure, threatening a potentially fatal-" he almost spat out the word- "accident, sending someone to explain to the Emperor would clearly be unjust, at least in time of peace. But threatening to... this I deem to be tolerable, so long as she has no actual history of violence against personnel."

"As you say," the inspector nodded, taking a note to supplement the tape recording. "Now, her Internet activity has been partially monitored and vetted. Thought counterproductive to success at state enterprises or responsible use of power... in light of the lack of correlation between the plots here, I'm going to have to say it is not apparent."

"Very well. Then we shall let the competence index be our guide. At least for this cruise. Approved."

North-Seapeople Navy Base
Northern Coast of the Great Bay
19° S, 88° E
March 18, 2014


"Field Officer Alarieléte, at ease. Have a seat." The admiral nodded at Rose Alarieléte as she stepped into his office, happy to be ashore and to not have to worry about banging her head on doorframes.

"You wanted to see me, sir?"

"Yes. It's time we moved you out of Stiletto and into a command."

"...Command?" She felt an acute burst of self-consciousness, I must sound like an idiot-parrot, then strangled it with two decades' practice looking serene in front of Umerian men.

"Broadsword. Her captain has been diagnosed with a serious condition. He's out, his executive officer is too junior in grade to promote... and you're next on the list of eligibles."

Wait, what? Rose blinked to herself; Broadsword was a nuclear attack submarine. Not one of the newest, but still a prize command. "...I had no idea."

Which was true. She'd been assigned for a few tours on one of the old Morningstars as navigator after her second daughter was born. Probably, she thought ruefully, because she'd already had normal children and nobody was quite sure the Morningstars' reactors were safe. She'd taken the courses for nuclear command at the Naval War College, along with the ones for conventional submarines. But she truly had not expected to just be handed one like that. Not ever, given her origins.

"Your efficiency ratings are good, you handle a boat well in simulation, you vetted with a pass-" the admiral twirled a finger in the traditional remember the bugs... gesture used to remind a woman of the GAV. "I think you'll do well enough. Get ready for a fast transfer; there's a military flight going out to Hook Point in two days and you're wanted on it."

Rose nodded. "And Captain Bear?" He was an almost likeable man, for a wonder.

"Don't worry, we won't give him an idiot." The admiral chuckled. "Dismissed."

The Valewoman saluted, turned, and strode out of the office, running over her plans in her head and thanking her blessed stars she kept her shoreside personal effects light.

Hook Point Navy Base
Northern Coast of the Great Bay
27° S, 99° E
March 23, 2014


Senior Field Officer Rose Alarieléte looked over her things, making sure the dress uniform paraphernalia were laid out.

She'd gotten a call from a bemused-sounding staffer telling her to expect a personal visit from a senior Air Force officer. And no more. She was going to need to have words with the base personnel about that tomorrow.

A room in the women's officers' quarters was good enough for her, even if most people of her rank wanted something better furnished off the base.

No matter how long she stayed here, or any port of call on any sea in the world... it wouldn't be home. Not without the harsh, jagged mountains that the sun broke over to start every day, lighting the Vales and the mists that gave her home valley its name. Not without the happy cacophony of a flock of ducks in the pen. Not without orchards hundreds of years old, without gray wrinkled aunts minding the finances and nannying the girls. Not without starting-to-gray sisters and cousins grumbling about the futility of coaxing ancient rusting automobiles back to half-life. Not without the old family smithy still clanging and clattering out back of the greathouse. Especially not without gawky nieces underfoot... and always, marvelously now, her daughters, who'd hit proper Alarieléte height like skyrockets these past few years. She'd been saving up leave for months to get time to visit home properly. For them more than any of the others, naturally, even her own sisters- even for her own mother before the heart attack had carried her away. And hopefully after this next cruise she'd have the chance to make it back.

So in any port of call, invariably thousands of kilometers from the landlocked, mountain-embraced Vales... As long as the bed was long enough and there was a place to set down her computer and stow her uniforms, she didn't much care where she rested her head...

To be Continued, with Surprise Visit...
This space dedicated to Vasily Arkhipov

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Re: 2014 STGOD Story Thread I

Postby Steve » 2014-09-27 01:50am

Portland Federal District
Cascadia
16 February 2014


SecState MacKenzie and SecDef Perez remained quiet as the President finished reading the terms that had come from Port Rigel. "A full alliance," Penton breathed.

A momentary sense of betrayal filled him. Fischer had been talking about international cooperation, and in the same spirit he had put himself in political trouble in dealing with Ambassador Atsu at the Sheppard Gala. And now... now this. Rheinland allied to Orion, the would-be hegemon of South America.

"It does appear to be a purely defensive alliance in tone," MacKenzie said.

"You and I both know there are ways to use a defensive alliance offensively," Perez pointed out. "Orion can now afford to maneuver neighboring countries into corners."

"Assuming Fischer lets them."

"He won't be Chancellor forever," Penton pointed out. He pulled back into his seat. "Responses so far?"

"Ambassador Parkhurst had been calling my office non-stop," MacKenzie answered. "The government in Charleston is starting to go into panic mode."

"That's the last thing we need," Perez said.

"Rheinland allying with the people who ethnically cleansed Britonian setlers from the south of South America," Penton remarked. "That's almost custom-made to trigger all of the sensitive buttons of Cape sensibilities."

"And it is. And we all know their economy can't take any more defense spending hikes. We'll be footing the bill."

"The alternative is to make them feel abandoned," Perez pointed out. "And who knows what they might do. It would also cost us what influence we have left in Pampas, at that point we might as well hand our position to South America on a silver platter."

"We'll give the Cape Republic assurances."

"They'll want a military alliance, and if Rheinland starts posting forces in the south they may even insist on a military presence."

Penton frowned. "That would mean withdrawing from the treaty with Orion."

"Exactly. But if the Cape believes they're about to be overrun, they may not care."

"The Orion Kingdom has followed the treaty for over forty years."

"Not counting all of the little violations of Cape airspace every couple of years," Perez noted. "And the 'accidental' border crossings from Marden. And undermining their economic links to Pampas."

"Secretary Perez, what are you saying?", Penton asked succinctly.

"As much as it pains me to admit it, Mister President, your reconciliation policy may be blowing up in your face," Perez said. "You gave them a major concession last night with the apology for the bombings in Nippon back in the War, and just hours after the alliance was signed."

"If we'd been informed sooner I would have done something different," Penton insisted.

"The mattr still stands. Sir, I think our best solution for now is to answer Tianguo's feelers for joint exercises. Begibn he process of outright alliance or at least partnership. We nee a counter-balance to what Rheinland has done. Even a small one to reassure people."

Penton steepled his fingers. "Well, jointt exercises with a neighbor can't be too aggressive. Set things up."


Summary:
New alliance raises concerns in several quarteras as to whether Orion will use the treaty to act against the interest of other states, including Cascadia. Feelers sent to otther Pacific countries that may have concerns;. Tianguo to be approached about arranging joint exercises.
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Re: 2014 STGOD Story Thread I

Postby Thanas » 2014-09-27 02:13am

The previous night
Cascadia
Waltman-Rogers Hotel
15th February 2014
General Sheppard Birthday Gala


The old man felt his knees strain under the exertion of getting up and walking to the podium, but made care to walk with a straight body posture. After all, it would not do to fall or appear frail when talking in front of the military. And especially not this group.

Shigeta Atsu had, with great amusement, seen various mid level people argue with the military protocol people, no doubt trying to find out who exactly did have the idea of inviting him of all people. And it had taken a great amount of skill and maneuver to avoid talking to President Garrett up to this point. To this point, everybody seemed to be in the dark. After taking a good amount of time to make sure everybody was listening to him, he cleaned his spectacles and focused on the words in front of him. Disregarding the teleprompter, he had taken the odd step to write out his speech to prevent having to submit it to the cascadian military in advance.

"Ladies and Gentlemen. I am honored to speak to you today, especially in front of your president. I especially want to thank the Cascadian Air Force for the invitation to speak today. I can only interpret this as a sign that the Cascadian Air Force is interested not only in me as ambassador of Rheinland, but also as a victim of the strategic bombing campaign. And while it has taken Cascadia a long time to hear the victims, I am confident that this is the first step in what will be a general reevaluation of the strategic bombing campaign.

Speaking as ambassador of the Empire of Rheinland I want to make one thing clear. The Empire is grateful for the contribution Cascadia made to the eventual defeat of Nippon and Britonia. The Empire is confident that certain factions will not be allowed to disturb the good will built up during the long period of peace. President Garrett has played a huge part in this and I would like to thank him in the name of Reichskanzler Fischer for his efforts as well as extend my personal thanks to him."

He waited for the applause to die down before continuing. "Serving as ambassador to Cascadia is the high point of my career, even moreso considering that I was born in former Nippon. I would like to thank Chancellor Fischer for this opportunity. Living in your great nation over the last few years has given me great appreciation for the Cascadian people.

I view many Cascadians as my friends. It is therefore with the utmost regret that I tendered my resignation to Chancellor Fischer yesterday."

People were starting to clap, but stopped at the last bit. Atsu could see the unease sweeping the room.

"For what I am about to say cannot be said as Ambassador of Rheinland. As ambassador of Rheinland I am bound by my oath not to do anything that would reflect bad on my nation. What I am about to say cannot be said by anybody else than the young boy who at the age of five was living with his family in Tokyo on September the third, 1952."

"There are revanchists among my people who want to paint Cascadia as brutal monsters to justify the atrocities committed by Nippon. I would like to make a few things clear. What I am about to say is not going to relativize the atrocities and war crimes. What has been done in the name of Nippon cannot be excused or justified by anything. Ostrheinland acknowledges the war guilt. Nothing we did can ever be excused. It cannot be forgotten, only forgiven and then only by the victims of our crimes.

I am uninterested in talking about the justifications for war crimes of either side in the war. I am not going to talk about military necessity, something that is always used by every war criminal in history to justify his actions. I am also not talking about the overall value of the bombing campaign, if it contributed anything to the war or whether it was the only reliable way to hurt the enemy. War, as a famous Cascadian once said, is hell. We accept that there are terrible things happening in war. Yet some deeds, some actions, are so far outside the norm that even by the norms of warfare they are considered to be too outragous. At the trial of the Britonian Bomber commander, a statement of him was read out.

"The aim of the Combined Bomber Offensive should be unambiguously stated to be the destruction of Rheinland cities, the killing of Rheinland workers, and the disruption of civilised life throughout Rheinland. The destruction of houses, public utilities, transport and lives, the creation of a refugee problem on an unprecedented scale, and the breakdown of morale both at home and at the battle fronts by fear of extended and intensified bombing, are accepted and intended aims of our bombing policy. They are not by-products of attempts to hit factories."

The same sentiment was expressed by General Sheppard. And yet, General Sheppard is hailed as a great hero, while the other was forced to walk the river and had his name struck from history.

Horrors committed on innocents can never be justified. There is no justification for killing children or defenceless women. The end does not justify the means. One can only acknowledge that the horrors happened and apologize to the victims. If one does that, one can be considered a decent human being who made a terrible mistake. Yet all too often in
too many nations there is barely an acknowledgement besides the usual, tired clicheé of bad things happen in wars, all too often combined with a petty proclamation that the other side was doing far worse things anyway.

But does it matter if a child is burned to death for noble or ignoble reasons?

Can such a thing ever be justified?

And is there any justification possible when the ones doing the killing are unapologetically gloating about them, glorifying the war criminals even decades after the fact?

These are all questions to which I do not know the answer for. What I do know though is what it feals to be on the receiving end of such a terrifying feat of arms. On September 3rd 1952, I was a small boy walking through the ruins of what was once the city of Tokyo. Tokyo was a beautiful city built of wood and paper, with barely any shelter for civilians. Anti-air installations were old and depleted of guns and personnel. In short, it was, as General Sheppard later wrote in his memoirs, to be a great target ripe for the plucking.

The Cascadian attack was three fold. The first wave was mainly light bombers aimed at dropping target illuminators and suppressing the very few AA installations. This task was easily accomplished. The second attack mainly used explosive bombs to block streets and to create chaos. At least a quarter of these bombs carried timers, to explode in later hours after the attack to deliberately target rescue operations and fire fighters. The third wave, consisting of about 400 heavy bombers, dropped over 2000 bombs, mostly incendiaries filled with Napalm. The bombing was deliberately planned to produce a firestorm in which nobody could survive. It is estimated that up to 1.8 million people lived in the burned out
area. The death toll to this day has never been accurately computed, though Rheinland authorities estimate it to be at least a million civilian died in the fire, based on the effects of similar bombing runs by Britonia in Rheinland."

[spoiler=dead bomb victims]Image
The firesstorm
Image
dead civilians on the streets of Tokyo
Image
a mother and her child
Image
The centre of Tokyo after the bombing[/spoiler]

These are the cold, hard facts of just one of many Cascadian bombings. But they do not do the experience justice. They do not do the experience of a five-year old boy justice, who has to walk the streets filled with dead people. They do not convey the horror of finding your mother burned to a crisp, unsuccessfully trying to shield your sister with her own body from the fire. They do not do the experience justice of only being able to identify your father by the family medaillon fused to the ash that was once his skin. They do not convey the horror of those slowly suffocating to death as the air was sucked out of the bunker by the firestorm, their bodies contorted into twisted heaps as they tried to gasp for air that was not there anymore. They do not show the vacant look of survivors, too scared to move and eventually starving to death on the same spot. They do not show the dead bodies being collected and thrown into a mass grave by a tractor because that is the only way to prevent an epidemic. They do not show the horror of being the one responsible to throw your own relatives on that pile.

People often ask me if I do blame the pilots or the Cascadian people. I do not. Strange as it may sound, I do not even blame General Sheppard. He is for his god to judge now. Let us hope for the sake of his soul that his god is indeed a merciful one.

But what I do blame are the people who would try to excuse what happened or who glorify those actions. It is very easy to fall into the trap of justification. It is easy to justify atrocity with atrocity and we all know there are plenty of Nipponese atrocities to choose from. But how do you even count such a scale? Is one dead Cascadian worth three Nippones babies? Four? And what does such behaviour say about the man who tries to go down that route?

People often ask me why Ostrheinland and Rheinland proper have gotten along so well. I expect that both people having suffered under a terror bombing campaign made them unusually sensitive to the needs of the other. Ostrheinland and Rheinland have had a shared past of suffering, which generated a lot of public sympathy for each other and shared experiences in recovering. I suppose that to no small part, this union has to thank Cascadia for providing that catalyst.

Ladies and Gentleman, I am only an old man. I have no desire to start a round of bloody recriminations. Nor do I lay claim to being owed anything. We people of Ostrheinland, having brought pain and suffering to others on an unprecedented scale, cannot lay claim to moral superiority. Yet two wrongs do not make a right, as another cascadian saying goes.

During the years of 1948-52, Cascadia dropped bombs on civilian areas in full knowledge of the consequences of these actions. And now, they are throwing a party honoring the memory of the one who designed that campaign.

Cascadia still views strategic bombing as a legitimate method of warfare.

No matter if Osthreinland will chose independence or will continue to be the most populous province of the Empire of Rheinland - if we wish to have a future together, these issues need to be addressed so that we might avoid another senseless spiral of death. If not, I fear that in a few decades there will be another old man standing in front of an audience like this.

Ladies and Gentlemen, I have no doubt that Cascadian society is up to the task. My time here has shown me that Cascadians have a great sense of basic decency, which I fully expect to win the day over the baser natures of mankind."

Exhausted, the old man walked away from the podium and retook his seat amid a growing unease among the audience and waited for the storm to follow.


Atsu's words hung over the ballroom. Some visibly fumed. Some were moved. A few were in tears.

Alex prepared to stand up when he was beaten to it. He looked over to see his wife rise up. "My father was born in San Diego on the 20th of May, 1941," Rachel said. "That was the day that the Klavostani launched their largest air raid of the war. Twelve hundred Klavostani bombers leveled entire sections of the city. My grandparents survived in a bomb shelter. They both lost family that night." She licked at her lip. "I was named after the aunt my father never met. When I was a little girl I once found my grandfather sleeping in his chair, crying about the bombers coming back for him. I'd never seen him so terrified. I, well, I suppose our country was fortunate that the Klavostani never had time to make their bomber forces better. Otherwise I wouldn't be here."

Alex reached over and took her hand to squeeze it softly.

Atsu wanted to respond, but was stopped by another speaker.

"Sir, if I may?" The figure who rose was undoubtly one of the men responsible for the gala. Wearing the fine blue uniform of the Air Force, General Rodrigo Camaran's uniform was covered in service ribbons and with several medals. He was the commander of Strategic Air Command, in other words, the very man who was in charge of the methods of warfare Ambassador Atsu had just condemned. "I don't think we've been introduced. I'm General Rodrigo Camaran, head of Strategic Air Command."

"General". Atsu nodded, curtly.

"I understand why your nation feels the way it does about the idea of strategic bombing. The way it was used in the War was horrible. Even when we tried precision bombing over Klavostan, we still hit civilians. The technology wasn't there to do any better." Camaran nodded. "And I'm sure it looks like we still think this is a good method for fighting since we organized this function for General Sheppard."

"I can't speak for the old General. He was gone before I even went to Colorado Springs. I can speak for the Air Force when I say that our intention to honor Sheppard was to honor his role in developing the concept of air power, and finding a way to shorten wars or end them decisively that didn't involve sending hundreds of thousands of young men -and now women - to die in combat. The method General Sheppard chose was horrific, I don't deny that. We're not here to celebrate those methods. We're here to commemorate a man who served his country in the world's most horrific war and nearly died to defend it from foreign aggression."

"As for today, we would never use his methods. Not only is it morally wrong, it's completely unnecessary. With today's weapons a bomber can hit a weapons factory without harming anything around it. We can deprive an attacking enemy of his logistical and industrial ability to wage war on us without having to wipe out his cities. That is the method of warfare that Strategic Air Command seeks to practice today, God forbid we ever have to employ it. With our current technology, there will never be another Tokyo or Al-Andas."

Atsu nodded once more, struggling to hide the disappointment he felt. His words had fallen on deaf ears. Suddenly, he felt anger welling up in him and for a second his mask almost slipped. But in the end, decades of training and experience prevailed and he remained still, giving no voice to disappointment except the friendly "I do hope you are right, General. I honestly do."

I'm not sure if the invitation was an accident or prank, but I'm going to use this. Alex stood. "Mister Ambassador, thank you for your candid remarks. If our nations are ever going to move on from the War, we have to be honest about what happened." He walked around the table and up to Atsu. "It's become my goal to see our world move on from the War. It's been over seventy years since it started, sixty since it ended, and it's still with us. I don't want my children to have to grow up in its shadow too. I understand if you wish to go home, sir, but if you were simply concerned about what you were saying tonight, I ask you to reconsider that resignation." He offered his hand to Atsu.

Atsu took the offered hand and shook it. "Mr President, I thank you for your kind words. Unfortunately, I am too old to fight that battle anymore and I fear that I have failed today." Too old to attempt another argument. Too old and too weak to make them understand. Nevertheless, he attempted one final attempt.

"Mr. President, I have to ask you this question. General Camaran said that the methods were horrific and immoral, but you chose to honor him nevertheless because he acted bravely and in defence of his country. Can you celebrate only parts of a man's life and ignore the rest, can you divide a man's bravery from the methods he so bravely uses? Would you hold a similar gala for a war criminal as long as that war criminal believed to be acting in defence of his country? At what point do the horrors outweigh the honour?"

t was a good point. And Penton couldn't make the obvious reply of "I'm here because I've already made enough enemies with my policies, slighting the Air Force and its supporters would make it even worse".

"It's never an easy question. So many men who have monuments and memorials to their honor committed horrific acts. Sometimes it was from the times they lived in. Sometimes their responsibility was covered up or not apparent. And sometimes... we just don't want to let go of those we consider our national heroes."

He looked around at all of the faces. Some were blank. Some were visibly scowling. Others, many of them in Air Force uniforms, looked nervous, undoubtedly wondering who's head would roll over Atsu's invitation. Penton himself was wondering about it. Was it actually a political dirty trick? Some Stalwart or Conservative in the Air Force quietly arranging it to embarrass him and cause trouble?

No, now was not the time for politics. Now he had to focus on keeping this situation from becoming a full scale diplomatic fiasco.

Even if it meant enduring a political firestorm. Oh well. This is what I'm staking my Presidency on.

"Ambassador Atsu, I would like to apologize to you for what our country put you and your family through. I would like to apologize for the way our air campaign against Nippon was enacted in the final years of the war. All I ask is that your people and mine not allow the horrible things our fathers and grandfathers have done to each other in war to stand in the way of a happier and prosperous peace for our children. I ask for reconciliation between all of the people in the Pacific so we can move on from the war. I don't want to forget those who did fall in those years. I only ask that we not allow that memory to get in the way of a better."

For the first time, the Ambassador smiled a true smile. "Thank you Mr. President, you prove to be very wise indeed. I sincerely thank you for your kind words."


Results:
- a lot of crying and open discussion which will in all likelihood decrease tensions.
- Cascadia apologizes for the bombing raids
- The Rhenish ambassador to Cascadia resigns
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A decision must be made in the life of every nation at the very moment when the grasp of the enemy is at its throat. Then, it seems that the only way to survive is to use the means of the enemy, to rest survival upon what is expedient, to look the other way. Well, the answer to that is 'survival as what'? A country isn't a rock. It's not an extension of one's self. It's what it stands for. It's what it stands for when standing for something is the most difficult! - Chief Judge Haywood
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Re: 2014 STGOD Story Thread I

Postby Thanas » 2014-09-27 03:09am

Tokyo Anzeiger
18th February 2014


President Penton to be congratulated for his words
The Stadtrat of Tokyo today passed a resolution honouring President Penton for his honest and unscripted statement towards Cascadian bombing. While introducing the proposal, Bürgermeister Ichiro Sizuki stated that it had obviously taken a long time for the wounds of the terrible war to heal, but that he was confident this would eradicate any remaining ill-will. He stated that Ostrheinland - as the Chancellor had stated - regarded Cascadia as the most important partner in the pacific.

Referendum preparations go ahead
The preparations for the 2015 independence referendum have officially begun. In a statement, the Ostrheinländische Partei stated that they are honoured to work with the Chancellor on building a better future for Ostrheinland within the empire.



Tokyo Anzeiger
22nd February 2014


Atsu to campaign for the Ostrheinländische Partei
Dr. Shigeta Atsu,who received a hero's welcome on his return from Cascadia, has announced that he would campaign for Ostrheinland to remain within in the empire. This move came as a surprise to some due to age of Dr. Atsu, however several others stated that since his sister is the head of the Ostrheinländische Partei, this was only to be expected. Polls currently show a preference for remaining within the empire.

Fischer responds to Cascadian statements
In his first public statement after returning from the Kingdom of Orion Orion, Reichskanzler Fischer has stated that he fully supported Dr. Atsu speaking frankly in front of the Cascadian Air Force. "Dr. Atsu is a treasured and valuable advisor. His words not only served the cause of peace and reconciliation, but also expressed my personal opinion and that of my Government. The Government of Rheinland strives to ensure security and prosperity for all its citizens, no matter their location. I am confident that as long as moral and just leaders get the opportunity to voice their beliefs, we shall enter into a golden age together."


Tokyo Anzeiger
1st March 2014


Nippon Party blasts Fischer and leadership of the Ostrheinländische Partei
The Nippon Party has released the following statement:

It is our belief that Nippon will only be served well by restoring her former glory and independence. We do not trust that the so-called "Aufbau Ost" will be anything but a PR maneuver. it will not lead to little tangible results. The traitorous Osrtheinländische Partei, who even refuses to use the honourable name of our country, will do what bombs could not - force us into eternal submission. A gaijin from the west will never be able to represent us or understand our needs. The foreign invader Fischer claims to understand our needs but he has no ties to Ostrheinland. The blood-traitor Atsu brings shame and dishonour upon his family. The crocodile tears of the descendant of mass murderers, the gaijin called Penton, do not matter.

It is quite clear that he, Fischer and Atsu coordinated this whole episode on the anniversary of the bombings in order to fool the Nipponese people. This massive PR ploy is nothing but an attempt to forever chain Nippon to the foreign invaders. This plot, which could only have been hatched by Cascadia and Rheinland agents together, will fail. We are confident that the truth will soon come to light and that glorious Nippon will be victorious in this fight.


The Nipponese party, the smaller of the two parties representing Ostrheinland, failed to be elected to Parliament in the last elections, though they are well-represented in local parliaments.


Tokyo Anzeiger
3rd April 2014


Newest poll numbers
In the latest poll, 42% of respondents answered that they would prefer to remain within the empire. Another 30% were unsure and said that it would depend on the arguments made for or against independence. 28% stated they would vote in favor of independence, citing mainly economical reasons and greater local control. Of those, 14% stated they would vote for independence no matter what. The numbers in favor of independence decreased following the January speech and the February announcements.

Around 64% of respondents regarded the work of Chancellor Fischer as either favorable or competent, a steady increase of almost twenty points since January. The largest boost came after his recent statements on the matter of Cascadia.

Funding for Nipponese party sharply increases
The Nipponese party reported that it had received a record number of donations, mostly from undisclosed recipients. The party stated that they would use the increased funding to campaign more vigorously for independence.


________
Results: bringing the dealings in Ostrheinland up to speed.
Whoever says "education does not matter" can try ignorance
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A decision must be made in the life of every nation at the very moment when the grasp of the enemy is at its throat. Then, it seems that the only way to survive is to use the means of the enemy, to rest survival upon what is expedient, to look the other way. Well, the answer to that is 'survival as what'? A country isn't a rock. It's not an extension of one's self. It's what it stands for. It's what it stands for when standing for something is the most difficult! - Chief Judge Haywood
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Re: 2014 STGOD Story Thread I

Postby Steve » 2014-09-27 05:06am

Portland Gazette
18 Feb. 2014

President's apology for Nippon bombing campaign sparks controversy

PORTLAND FEDERAL DISTRICT -
John Langley, Chairman of the Association of Air Force Veterans, joined Stalwart Party leadership in criticizing President Penton's apology to Rheinland Ambassador Atsu over the Cascadian strategic bomber operations over Nippon in the final years of the Great War.

"The President has slandered good men who fought and died to protect their country," Langley told reporters. "This apology is clear in its implication that the men who crewed the bombers were doing something wrong. The only thing wrong in the Great War was that Nippon attacked its neighbors to conquer them and did horrible things to the people it took captive."

"This President's policy has been anemic and weak," charged Stalwart Party Senator Miguel de Soto of Sonora. "Our country must demand stronger leadership than a man who undermines our defense policies and treats the enemies of our country better than he does its heroes."

Democratic Party Chairman Jorge Salvo of Rio del Norte has defended the President's actions. "The President is looking to move our country on from the blood in the past. This isn't about insulting dead men who served their country, far from it. This is about the President's drive for reconciliation being twisted into fabrications by men who favor the military-industrial complex over their own nation."

An opinion pool conducted Sunday by online pollster organization Vox Populi found that 52% of respondents favored the apology. 38% were opposed and the remaining 10% were "undecided".

Rhenish-Orion Alliance causes celebration, debate

PORT RIGEL, ORION -
The new alliance between Rheinland and Orion has sent ripples across the world, with the two states announcing their attention to drop trade barriers, open borders to each other, and grant military access to their territories. The treaty will "benefit them enormously", King Alexander said when asked about the treaty's value to common citizens of Orion, citing university exchange programs and other terms.

"We hope this alliance will contribute to world stability," Ambassador Kyle Loughlin of Cascadia said after the ceremony. "Security from the alliance with Rheinland may convince the Orion people that they do not need stronger control over the continent of South America to protect their nation."

While some are willing to accept the new arrangement at face value, others have proven more fearful. The stock market in Charleston, the capital of the Cape Republic, suffered its fourth largest plunge in its history on Monday as the state reeled from the news. "We are enormously concerned," Defense Minister Paul Tottingham told reporters. "The alliance of Orion to Rheinland has changed this continent's balance of power forever."

"We will be monitoring the new alliance with interest," agreed Pampas Defense Minister Pedro Ascino, who was in Charleston discussing defense issues with his Cape counterpart.

Cascadian Secretary of State Rachel MacKenzie called the alliance a "milestone moment", citing that Orion had never fully allied with any other power off the South American continent before. "The people of Orion are opening themselves to the world. We believe that it can only help relations."

President Penton released a press statement calling the alliance a "bold move" that will "change the world".

Across the North Pacific, the reaction in Windsor has brought strong words famed firebrand Alvin harris of the New Britonian Crown-Loyalists. "This is further proof of Rhenish ambition," he declared to a party election gathering. "An alliance of Rheinland with Orion threatens our brothers in the Cape Republic and it threatens us. The Cascadian States must wake up to the danger before it is too late, before the Rhenish complete their encirclement! Rhenish imperialism must be checked!"

Gallup polls in Cascadia show that 38% of Cascadians view the new alliance "favorably", 36% consider their feelings "mixed", and 23% feel "threatened". 3% are "undecided".
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Re: 2014 STGOD Story Thread I

Postby Steve » 2014-09-27 06:26am

Presidential House
15 February 2014


It was just fifteen minutes before midnight when Alex and Rachel Penton got back to the Presidential House. "That was close," Rachel remarked.

"Yes it was," Alex sighed.

"But you handled it well, I think," Rachel continued, smiling. "You gave Atsu what he needed."

"And I pissed off only half of Bomber Command, God bless their precision school." Alex's smile was more sardonic. "The Stalwarts and Conservatives will be roasting me in the morning."

"Oh dear, let's be honest." She smirked. "They started roasting you when you supported that GLBT rights bill just three months after you started this God-forsaken job. You only made it worse when you authorized the budget cuts and deactivated that armored division."

"While the Liberals prefer just a light barbecue, and do it whenever we stop the tax cut legislation," Alex said. "I think it's because Josh keeps them from going too far."

"He's probably going to run against you in '16," Rachel noted.

Alex sighed at that. "Yeah. Politics. Hard to be friends when politics gets mixed in, but it's worth it." He put a hand on her shoulder. "Sharing that... thank you, Rachel."

"It was the right thing to do," she said. "Ambassador Atsu felt lonely up there. He expected the worst. I wanted him to know we've gone through the same."

"Yeah. It is terrible, but war has always been hell." Alex shook his head. "Probably a good thing or we'd be having them more often."

"As long as Sophia and Tom never have to go through it." Rachel said.

They both shuddered at the thought.

They entered the Presidential Suites and the living room. Sophia was still on the couch, her book open against the floor beside her, sound asleep. Thomas was laying on top of her, also sound asleep.

Together the proud parents enjoyed the sight of their little ones sleeping so soundly. The moment passed and they gently roused them and took them to bed before retiring themselves. It had been an emotionally charged, exhausting night, but it was over. Any problems from it could wait until the next day.
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"No folly is more costly than the folly of intolerant idealism." - Sir Winston L. S. Churchill, Princips Britannia

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Re: 2014 STGOD Story Thread I

Postby Beowulf » 2014-09-27 08:19am

Wenchang Space Launch Center
South Island
Tianguo


The plan was routine. Well, as routine as space launches got. The center was almost precisely on the equator, which maximized the potential free dV from Tellus' rotation. It wouldn't be making use of all of it, because the target orbit was inclined. Onboard, the septet of men waited for the countdown to reach zero. Like the astronauts of old, they had nothing to do during the ascent except stare at displays. The displays had gotten notably more streamlined. Now they were flat panel touch screens, while 50 years ago, they had steam gauges and incandescent lights.

The count reached minus three, and in each of the five engines, turbo pumps were spun up, pulling liquid propane and liquid oxygen from tanks holding hundreds of thousands of kilograms of each. Thousands of kilograms of propellant were pushed into the combustion chambers. Ignited by a small charge of a mixture of triethylaluminum and triethylborane, it rushed out the throat of the engine, into the engine bell. There, in four of the engines, additional thousands of kilograms of propellant were injected, burning, and adding additional thrust to the rocket. At zero, the launch clamps released, allowing the rocket to ascent to the heavens. Twenty seconds after liftoff, the rocket engines gimballed slightly, pitching the rocket towards the north east.

Fifty seconds later, the rocket exceeded the speed of sound. It continued to accelerate. A minute later, five of the turbopump sets shutdown, reducing thrust, but increasing efficiency. With that, the additional propellant being injected into the engine bells of four of the engines stopped, as did the other engine that did not have the injectors. The cutoffs weren't just for efficiency. It also reduced the g forces being applied to the taikonauts. Another minute later, the remaining four engines cutoff. Stage separation clamps let go, and pneumatics powered by gas generators pushed the first stage away from the second.

The first stage's mission complete, it rotated in the thin upper atmosphere of Tellus. 260,000 feet above Tellus, it's four engines re-ignited, briefly, cutting it's forward momentum, and sending it back on a high, arcing path towards Wenchang. Tens of thousands of feet above the center, control fins deployed, to keep the rocket under control as it plunged into the thicker atmosphere. Several thousand feet above the ground, the center engine of the stage ignited. It was nearly identical to the other four, with the exception of a shortened nozzle, and the lack of the additional injectors. The longer, high expansion ratio bell on the other four engines would have exhaust separation in the lower atmosphere without the extra mass provided by the injectors. That exhaust separation could destroy the engine. With the rocket nearly empty of fuel, the stage rapidly decelerated. Pressure from the turbopump was used to extend the landing legs against the atmosphere's drag. The throttle was carefully controlled by the onboard computer, with feedback from the onboard radar. It's velocity dropped below 1 m/s precisely as the legs touched the ground. When a majority of the leg's sensor detected contact, the engine cutoff for the last time.

Meanwhile, high in the atmosphere, the second stage of the rocket continued the mission. A nozzle extension was jacked outward into position. The main engine ignited for the first of several burns. This one lasted seven minutes, bringing the second stage and it's payload to orbital velocity. This orbit was below the target orbit, as the station was ahead of the rocket in orbit. Near the end of the burn, a pair of solar panels automatically unfolded from the service module, to provide power for the remainder of the flight. When the capsule and the station were in the right relative locations, the second stage fired a second time, bringing it into a close approach with the station. Half an orbit later, the stage fired for a third time, bringing the capsule into an identical orbit with the station, only a couple hundred meters away.

It's job complete, the stage separated. It used small RCS engines to move it away from the capsule and re-orient itself, and waited for the appropriate time. When it came, the stage fired for a fourth time, bringing it out of orbit. The stage flipped again, to present the heatshield towards it's direction of motion. The nozzle extension retracted, it's efficiency boost no longer necessary. It left a plasma trail through the atmosphere as it plowed through it. Nearing the ground, the engine fired again, for the fifth and last time. It was, however, far too powerful to bring the rocket all the way to the ground. The margin between touching down at a fairly slow speed and never touching the ground because it stopped short was too great, and the engine couldn't be throttle down enough to just hover in place. Instead, a quartet of RCS engines fired during the final descent, with the second stage engine cutoff. These were much less powerful, and allowed more precise timing of the descent's final ten seconds to the ground. As it neared the ground, it too lowered landing legs, barely kissing the ground before the landing engines cutoff.

Up in orbit, the capsule's automated docking system aligned the capsule's nose with one of the station's docking ports. On the nose of the capsule, a door moved out of the way, exposing the docking port. The capsule slowly came closer to the station, until the docking ports touched. Buffers absorbed the impact, while latches secured the two together. Hydraulics brought them closer together, until seals touched. Additional latches secured the two together in that state, giving an air-tight, secure docking port. The capsule let air into the space, checking for leaks, before filling it to normal pressure. On both sides, crew opened up doors, letting the newcomers onto the station.
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Re: 2014 STGOD Story Thread I

Postby TimothyC » 2014-09-27 03:07pm

Press Release:
Office of the Admiralty, Naval Base Pearl Harbour, O’ahu, Kingdom of Hawai’i
2014 April, 31

The selections for round 2 of the Kapi’olani replacement project are as follows:
Rielly Naval Engineering [Hawai’i]: CVG
Reilly-Collette Shipyards [Cascadia]: CBGN
Jiangnan Shipyards [Tiangao]]:CGVN
People’s Umerian Naval Yard [Umeria]: 2 Perpetual-Spring class DDG

Each contracting firm will be provided with study funds of up to 15 million Hawaiian Dollars to produce a full & final proposal over the next 3 months.



Result: Four options will be evaluated following the submissions of the final proposal. I’m taking as long to do this as I am because, well, I want to make the Hawai’ian procurement follow something like the real world



HHMS Battleship Kapi’olani*, Ford Island, Naval Base Pearl Harbour, O’ahu, Kingdom of Hawai’i
May 1, 2014
There was a decided tension on the stern deck of the once mighty ship. It had only been at the last moment that it was realized that the Rhenish and New Britonain detachments for the opening ceremony had been placed directly adjacent to each other. A quick thinking young CPO had noticed the error prior to the ceremony, and was able to quietly, and without informing anyone, switch the seats of the New Britonian and Umerian delegations. The only one not amused when these facts came to light later was the Umerian Admiral Resilient Crane who is noted to have said that he could have fried a duck with the heated anger he felt from both sides.

Admiral Percy ‘Fitz’ Fitzwallace, having been slightly confused when the Umerians were not where they were supposed to be when he welcomed them in his speech (he was only able to spot where the were sitting as opposed to where they were supposed to by finding the rather tall submarine commander that was a part of the Umerian delegation) concluded “And so, in conclusion, I would like to welcome you all, to this start of the 2014 Rim of the Pacific Naval exercises.”

The start of the RIMPAC was always an important event for O’ahu. Ever a Navy town/island, the arrival of four carrier groups as well as assorted other naval detachments from many other navies from the local oceans tended to stress the shore recreation establishments to their breaking point. There had already been two minor riots between various groups of sailor having gone off-base for those things sailors seek while in port. In that way, the MPs from the various factions had already, before the exercise had officially begun gotten some practice in.

Various exercises scheduled over the next two weeks (the longest that a RIMPAC could ever go due to the needs of the Hawai’ian military forces in hurricane preparedness and disaster response) included a pair of carrier-on-carrier engagements, sub hunts, search and rescue cross training (likely the second most important part of the event), A planned Umerian ‘Carrier raid’ of the Hawai’ian islands, and most importantly everyone getting to know each other, opening the back channels of communications between those who serve at sea.


*Battleship Kapi’olani is the official name for the old Angincourt Analog, that once operated as the flagship of the Hawai’ian fleet. When the current Kapi’olani (Alaska analog) is replaced, she will take her place next to her older aunt, and take the name Cruiser Kapi’olani, while her replacement will get the name Kapi’olani.




Results: RIMPAC 2014 is now starting. Two weeks of fun in the sun. While the Hawai’ians don’t have to dodge hurricanes.
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Re: 2014 STGOD Story Thread I

Postby Siege » 2014-09-29 10:30am

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Club Perdition | The Sanhedrin
Lesser Kadesh, Downtown San Dorado


“An alliance!” Ocean Duke fell onto the lush red chaise lounge, drooped one arm leisurely over the recliner and with the other picked up her bright orange cocktail. The Sybiline-Hargreave CEO wore a sleeveless regency-purple dress with a high collar in the Tianguonese style and a side split that rode up to her thigh. “Can you believe it? I had to look at a calendar, to check I wasn’t in the 19th century!”

The man opposite her shrugged, a small gesture that nonetheless looked imposing coming from someone as large as him. Malik Lau wore his uniform as he always did. But the top button of his khaki Stormbrink dress was undone, the closest the dark-skinned man would allow anyone to seeing him at any stage of relaxation. “Unexpected things can and will happen when the Iron Dice roll. Sometimes it’s good to know you have someone you can depend on.”

Duke acknowledged him with a wave. “Of course. And speaking of which, thanks for your help in the Cali situation. Your people were quite instrumental in definitively settling the issue of that rampaging band of killers. Quick and efficient work, from all accounts. My people send their compliments.”

A small satisfied smile split Lau’s lips. “It was good exercise. The world is too quiet these days. Out of interest... Did any of them talk?”

Ocean Duke casually brushed a lock of raven hair from her copper skin. They sat in the triclinium, a small and private dining area in Club Perdition. On the mahogany paneled walls chromed metal art deco ballet dancers performed Les Créatures de Prométhée. Wrought iron ceiling decorations and murals of the San Dorado night sky gave the impression of sitting outside. “Nothing but disinformation so far. Their DNA says they’re from the southern regions of South America and their training rules out most non-state actors that aren't us. But that still leaves us with a handful of options."

“You should have left them to us,” Lau rumbled. “They would have talked by now.”

Duke’s lips pursed with something akin to distaste. “Thank you for the offer, colonel, but you know we prefer less... corporeal methods, to get the job done.”

“Just not as quickly,” Lau added with a slight shrug. “I wasn’t referring to physical interrogation per se. Our people in Sankara recently have had good success using enhanced narcoanalysis to coerce more truthful answers out of... uncooperative suspects.”

Duke shook her head. “I don’t believe in truth serums.”

“But they believe in you, Ocean dear,” came a husky third voice. The two turned their heads to see a dispiritingly pretty and sensuous redheaded woman in a provocative little black dress leaning against the carved sandalwood doorpost. “Are you sure I can’t convince you to try some Hephatizon with me?”

“Speak of the devil and she will appear.” There was an undercurrent of distaste in Duke’s voice as she stiffened a little. “Hello Sinclair. What are you doing here? Got bored with killing babies?”

Sheva Sinclair curled her lips in a delighted smile. “Nice to see you too, darling. And hello, colonel. I hope Ocean’s attempts to cloak her personal emotional hangups in dull morality aren’t boring you to death?”

Lau’s right eyebrow lifted a few millimeters. The soldier took a sip of his tonic as he composed his thoughts. “We were discussing the implications of the alliance between Rheinland and the Kingdom of Orion,” he said and swirled his drink a little. His voice was studiously neutral. “I would be interested in hearing what your take is.”

Sinclair shrugged nonchalantly, a motion that accentuated the volume of her chest. "I'm not at all surprised they get along. If you put two kids with Down's syndrome in a room there's gonna be a lot of hugging."

Lau let out a short bark of laughter even as Ocean’s disapproving frown deepened. “Charming as always,” the soldier grinned into his glass. “I say, with your sense of humor you would have fitted right into the corps, Sinclair.”

"Oh no, that would never do," Duke said, her tone derisive. "She'd get blood on her dress."

“That sounds like the sort of thing I'd enjoy." Sinclair’s smile turned vaguely shark-like. “As for the alliance, the military aspect might as well be irrelevant. Steel wins battles. Gold wins wars.” The smile vanished. “That’s why the export and import section is of concern.”

Despite her obvious dislike for Sinclair, Ocean Duke nodded in agreement. “Mortimer was on the verge of an apoplectic fit. He was in here yesterday screaming bloody murder, yelling AVALANCHE had the right idea after all. Danzig calmed him down, but he... It was clear he was seething too.” Her voice got more quiet. “You know how he gets scary silent when he doesn’t get his way? I think they’re planning long-term reprisals already.” That was newsworthy. Between them Acheron Amalgamated and Helix Industries controlled a very significant chunk of the world’s industrial and resource extraction output. If they went to war, it would be felt all over the planet. Duke continued, more contemplative this time. “They also think Aki knew it was coming. In January her company announced they were building that harbour in Port Rigel, and you know how her family is buddied up with Rheinland...”

“Optimal positioning. Impressive, if it’s true,” Malik Lau growled approvingly. “Another conclusion we can draw is that perhaps the King of Orion is not as stupid as he seems.”

Sinclair let out a sexy rasping laugh. “My dear, no one could be as stupid as he seems." She wiggled a finger at the bar to summon a waiter, then sat down next to Lau. She crossed her legs, sensually leaned on his shoulder and faux-whispered in his ear: “Now, colonel, since we’re talking, let me tell you about certain events my sources say are about to unfold in Kagaria...”
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Re: 2014 STGOD Story Thread I

Postby Force Lord » 2014-09-29 12:19pm

La Granadina

El Periódico de la Nación Granadiense

Negotiations with Rheinland "all but complete", says Foreign Minister

The Foreign Ministry of Granadia has announced that there have been negotiations with Rheinland regarding a solution to our current economic crisis. Although details have not been announced, the Foreign Minister has assured our correspondents that "discussions with Rheinland are all but complete" and that "news of the agreement with the Rheinlanders will be shown publicly soon."



EDIT: This news report was released in early May 2014.
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Re: 2014 STGOD Story Thread I

Postby Eternal_Freedom » 2014-09-29 07:09pm

Orion Broadcasting Corporation Special Report,
May 1st, 2014


In a major joint announcement today, the Ministries of TEchnology and Commerce declared plans to expand Orion's small fleet of nuclear-powered commercial freighters.

Commerce Secretary Fitzwalter said "The initial experiment has, we feel, proved to be a success. The Thor-class nuclear freighters have demonstrated an enviable record of performance and speed over the last five years. We feel that it is time to expand the trials. Over the next two years Royal Orion Shipping Lines, in conjunction with the Orion government, will build between fifteen and twenty large nuclear-powered vessels of varied design and purpose, so we can better establish which market niche nuclear commercial vessels can fill."

Technology Secretary Gibson was equally enthusiastic: "Orion has long been a world-leader for applications of nuclear power, and I am proud to see this continue into the future. A healthy and diverse nuclear industry is essential to both our economy and our way of life."

The announcement comes on the heels of the announcement from the Ministry of Defence that the Royal Orion Navy would be expanding and accelerating the construction of the new Lucifer-class supercarriers, with the third of the class, Reaper, to begin construction in June using the drydock facilites no longer required for building the new battleships. A fourth vessel will begin building in 2015, her name has yet to be announced.

This expansion of shipbuilding naturally means more jobs in the shipyards and related support industries, something bound to be highly popular at home.

Results:
-Orion announces plans to expand our civilian nuclear fleet.
-Orion also acclerates supercarrier production, with a planned four ships rather than three intially planned.
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Re: 2014 STGOD Story Thread I

Postby Fingolfin_Noldor » 2014-09-30 11:45am

Speech by Marshal Erakles Konstantinovich Komnin, Minister of Defence

Written with Siege, because the last speech was so vicious it had to be rewritten

"Citizens of the United Orthodox Catholic Socialist Republics. Brothers and Sisters in Christ. Yesterday was a day of infamy. Over two thousand of our people died in a series of ballistic missile attacks on our Great Nation. Thousands more were wounded. Neighborhoods were devastated, families ripped apart. We stand today at the brink of war.

I am shocked by the barbarity of the attacks, as I am sure you all are. I am filled with an anger beyond words, and a desire to strike back at those who dared harm us in our own homes.

In His darkest hour, when He hung on the the cross, Christ called upon His heavenly Father and asked, my God, why have you forsaken me? As Christians we all ask ourselves this same question today.

But as a soldier, I know that I must also look inside myself for answers. And I must conclude that in the chain of events that have brought us to this point, we have not been blameless. I have not been blameless. Like Simon Peter we unleashed our fury and our anger, we drew our sword and struck at our enemies.

But the Lord commands us to put away our swords. To turn the other cheek. As difficult as this is, it is what I now ask of you. Not because I fear the Kagarians, but because I love our people. And if we strike back now, if we do not pull from the brink, then we will surely all be consumed in a war so terrible the world has not seen its like in decades.

We must drink from the bitter cup. Not for their benediction, but for our own.

To the Kagarians I say this: our troops stand ready. But I extend you this offer: withdraw. I pray you retire unharmed to your homes. Retire from the field. Evacuate the Darkhad Valley within twenty-four hours. If you do this then I swear no harm will come to you. But if you do not, then you will witness the terrible day of my fury and fierce anger.

Withdraw, or we will all die here.”
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Re: 2014 STGOD Story Thread I

Postby Force Lord » 2014-09-30 02:20pm

La Granadina

El Periódico de la Nación Granadiense

Granadia-Rheinland agreement revealed, Foreign Ministry reveals San Dorado role in resolving crisis

Granadian and Rheinlandian officials in Rhenania have signed a treaty which would encourage migration of unemployed Granadians into Rheinland, which is suffering from a labor shortage. Each migrant would receive a fee in Rheinmarks that would enable them a new start of life in Rheinland, and will be able to remit the money earned in Rheinland back to their relatives in Granadia, thus stimulating our economy. The fee system is to be organized on the following tiers from lowest to highers:

Unskilled worker - 4k
High-school graduate - 10k
Tradesman or skilled worker - 12k
University graduate or master tradesman - 15k
Higher university graduate / people of higher worth (such as doctors) - 20k

Migrants who wish to study in Rheinland schools and universities will be granted scholarships.

Also, after a period of residency (no longer than five years), the Granadian migrants would be eligible for Rheinland citizenship. Rheinland has pledged to carry out regular inspections so that the rights of our kin are not impaired.

The Foreign Minister has also disclosed to La Granadina that "important San Dorado entities" have been interested in providing financial aid to the ailing coffers of the Granadian State Bank and offering private security forces to maintain order in potential "terrorist nests". However, like all things with San Dorado, this comes at a price. The Vice-Foreign Minister has stated that "shares from certain unprofitable public enterprises and industrial assets would have to be released, if these companies aren't sold off completely, and the presence of 'Financial Efficiency Experts' that would advise on the restructuring of our financial system."

The Foreign Minister has also said that these same San Dorado entities "have watched the discussions between us and Rheinland very closely."

"They were upset by rumors that we were going to give Rheinland first priority in our debt repayment and control of our ailing assets, and demanded ironclad assurances that this would not happen, otherwise they would take retaliatory action. I stated categorically that such allegations are completely false and that Granadia has absolutely no desire to rock the boat with San Dorado nor jeopardize their considerable investments within our country."

Negotiations between Granadia and Rheinland to provide some sort of alleviation to our nation's great crisis had been ongoing for weeks. The recent disclosure regarding San Dorado has shown that more may be going on behind the scenes. Certainly the recent news about the previous shuffling in the Granadian negotiation team in Rheinland (where one diplomat was dismissed and packed home because he had supposedly "conceded too much") and the revelations about the talks with San Dorado's mighty multinationals may be related.
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Re: 2014 STGOD Story Thread I

Postby Siege » 2014-09-30 05:29pm

Pyxis Worldwide Satellite News
Billionaire hermit pledges 'education for Granadia'
In his first press conference in over a decade reclusive billionaire Diego Martínez De Las Mercedes Acosta de los Rios de Guadalupe Consuela III pledged help to the ailing Granadian nation.

51 year old Martínez immigrated to San Dorado with his parents as a teen. He started and ran one of the city-state's premier hedgefunds focusing on high-tech, and sold his company to AxumFinans in 1992 for $31 billion. Since then he has spent his days in the gated community of San Dorado's richest rich on La Palma island.

In an emotional press conference the bachelor billionaire professed his love for his home country and his frustrations at its economic woes. "It brings tears to my eyes to see Rheinland open its arms to my brothers and sisters," an emotional Martínez said. "I have been making money so long I perhaps forgot how to be human. But now the Rhenish have shown me the way."

Martínez then pledged to create a $500 million scholarship fund that would allow Granadian citizens to study in San Dorado. At least $75 million of this will go to creating a 100 places a year at the prestigious Ashcroft University, where Martínez was once himself a student...


Dust settles as firing ceases on Kagaria-UOCSR border
A tense silence settled today over the Kagarian-UOCSR border in the wake of a powerful call for reason and peace by Marshal Erakles Konstantinovich Komnin. Appealing to the UOCSR's Christian tradition Komnin pleaded with the Kagarians to step back from the brink. "I pray you retire unharmed to your homes," said the Marshal, simultaneously warning that if they did not they would know his "fury and fierce anger".

Border fighting threatened to spiral out of control into full scale war after Kagarian forces launched a devastating missile attack on Smyert Tatarsky and Zelenogradsk that left thousands dead and entire districts in blazing ruins. According to Pyxis News correspondents the smoke plumes from both cities can be seen from miles away.

Kagarian authorities have responded to Komnin's demand for a withdrawal of their missile forces from the Darkhad Valley with their own demand that Kagarian soldiers captured by communist forces be released...


SANDEX breaks ground on Orion World Gateway harbour
A festive atmosphere in Port Rigel today as King Alexander I of Orion and SANDEX CEO Aki Cortlandt ceremoniously broke ground on Orion World Gateway. The King and Director used a dragline excavator to dump the first few tons of sand into the sea where the port will be built.

SANDEX will invest $3 billion over four years to construct a new port and supporting infrastructure on reclaimed land adjoining Port Rigel. The project will create 6.000 jobs in the Kingdom and have a capacity of 17 million intermodal containers, making it one of the largest port facilities in the South American region.

Stock in the world's largest transport company surged over 100 points on the SDSE last week after Rheinland and the Kingdom announced an economic and military alliance that SANDEX now appears optimally placed to profit from.

In a press conference after the ceremony a SANDEX spokeswoman dodged questions about whether the corporation was aware the alliance was in the works before its official announcement. In an off-the-cuff remark caught by an open microphone Prince Samuel quipped that the Kingdom "had yet to work out whether [its new nuclear freighters] would be allowed entry" into the new harbor, a reference to San Dorado's reticence to allow nuclear ships near many of its own ports...


Job woes linger as Omnia recovers unevenly
The Omnian economy is recovering from the 2009 succession crisis and the subsequent unrest with employment now exceeding the prerecession peak for the first time. But not all regions are recovering equally.

“This is not like any other recovery,” said Ceana Almaraz, President of Payne & Fears Securities. “There is a tremendous disparity, not a uniform recovery at all, with the performance of the economy much more skewed on a regional basis.”

Long-delayed energy and infrastructure investment by the Temple Cliff government has created 1.5 million jobs over the last two years. But concerns now mount that the nation will not be able to keep up financing at the current speed, and that government investment favors regions historically loyal to the Peacock Throne, stirring resentment and unrest in disaffected southern and northernmost regions...
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SDN World 2: The North Frequesuan Trust
SDN World 3: The Sultanate of Egypt
SDN World 4: The United Solarian Sovereignty
SDN World 5: San Dorado
There'll be a bodycount, we're gonna watch it rise
The folks at CNN, they won't believe their eyes

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Re: 2014 STGOD Story Thread I

Postby Eternal_Freedom » 2014-09-30 06:02pm

Foreign Ministry, Paradise City, Kingdom of Orion,
May 2nd 2014 (or whichever is the date for the temporary cease-fire)


Foreign Minister Natalie Abrams stood in the press briefing room, making her announcement to Orion (and most of the continental mainland) whilst Orion's embassies were simultaneously delivering messages to the concerned government.

"It is with great relief that the Kingdom notes the apparent success of the UOCSR's call for a cease-fire and withdrawal in their border conflict with Khagaria. Whilst Orion is no stranger to conflict and warfare, we have no desire to see such conflicts occur again, especially not when they result in such civilian devastation.

We call upon Khagaria to agree to this withdrawal and to once again embrace peace as so many of Tellus' great nations do. However, we recognize that it is not enough merely to offer such words. Therefore, at the direct behest of the King, our Ambassadors to Khagaria and the UOCSR have delievered notes tot hose governments, offering Orion's services as a neutral and impartial mediator so that a longer-lasting, fair and acceptable peace can begin.

Though the proposed International Forum has not yet begun, we can at least honour the ideal behind it, and help other nations pave the way to a peaceful, prosperous and united Tellus. Thank you."

Results:
-Orion offers to mediate the dispute between the UOCSR and Khagaria as an impartial third party
"I could be bounded in a nutshell and count myself a king of infinite space, were it not that I have bad dreams" - Hamlet

“I’ve always thought the Yankees had something to do with it.” - Confederate General George Pickett, on being asked why his charge at Ghettysburg failed

Corrax Entry 7:17: So you walk eternally through the shadow realms, standing against evil where all others falter. May your thirst for retribution never quench, may the blood on your sword never dry, and may we never need you again.

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Re: 2014 STGOD Story Thread I

Postby Eternal_Freedom » 2014-10-01 05:45pm

Royal Orion Shipyards, Port Rigel,
May 4th, 2014


In what was a surprisingly pleasent day given the approaching winter, Port Rigel's large shipyard was decked out for a festive occasion.

These yards had seen many ships launched. Sadly, they had seen some of those ships return in a dreadful state, only to be patched up and sent back into the fray. Some of the ships had never returned, their names and crews inscribed on a monument just inside the yard gates.

Today, the shipyards comissioned another ship to add to their heritage. RONS Dragon, eleventh and newest of the Dauntless class destroyers, was bsuitably decorated for the occasion; from her main radar mast flew a huge Kingdom of Orion flag, the broad white stripe bordered at the top and bottom by narrower red, the brilliant blue eight-pointed star proudly in the centre. At her stern flew the Navy Jack, the glorious golden lion rampant on a field of purest blue. All along her railings, her first crew stood evenly spaced with perfect precision, wearing their finest dress uniforms.

On the jetties either side thousands of spectators watched and cheered. Most of these were shipyard workers given the day off to celebrate their work. Gathered near the bow were the Navy's High Command and the Royal Family, foremost amongst them the young Princess Isabella, the ship's sponsor, fulfilling one of her steadily-increasing number of royal duties. Not that she was unhappy, the day was, to her, utterly magnificent, and the idea that she would get to officially comission this mighty vessel was at turns exciting and scary.

She was etermiend to do well though. Not only because it was her duty, but because she thought if she did really well her dad might let her launch the new aircraft carrier next year.

Behind her, Alexander looked on proudly at his daughter as she began her first-ever public speech. The endless practice the night before had paid off, she didn't make a single mistake. Alexander was wearing his old dress uniform for the occasion, since he was still (techncially) a comissioned officer and it wouldn't have been appropriate to wear anything else.

This caused a headache for the protocol officers, since the King insisted on keeping the rank of Commander that he had earned while a Prince, meaning that the assembeld Admirals and Commodores should have taken preference. The solution was to treat him as the Queen's consort for the occasion, something that made both Alexaner and Queen Jessica burst out laughing when they learned it years before.

Now, Princess Isabella came to the end, the most important part of her speech. She placed her hand on the button ready for the occasion.

"I name this ship Dragon. May Fortune smile upon her and all who sail in her, from now until the end of time." The button was pushed and the bottle of champagne swung out on it's arc, striking the bow dead-on and shattering perfectly.

At the moment the bottle struck, the assembled band struck up the Orion Anthem while the crowd doffed their hats and solemnly yet proudly sang. For the Princess's part, she stood next to her parents, singing along with the rest but mostly feeling very pleased with herself.

When the anthem finished the Dragon sounded her siren for the first time; three long blasts that echoed around the shipyard. Once the last traces of the third note faded, the crowd erupted in cheers and applause.

The ship herself began to slowly reverse out of the dock. The crew assembled on the bow saluted the podium. The Admirals and the King returned the salutes, and RONS Dragon began her career.
"I could be bounded in a nutshell and count myself a king of infinite space, were it not that I have bad dreams" - Hamlet

“I’ve always thought the Yankees had something to do with it.” - Confederate General George Pickett, on being asked why his charge at Ghettysburg failed

Corrax Entry 7:17: So you walk eternally through the shadow realms, standing against evil where all others falter. May your thirst for retribution never quench, may the blood on your sword never dry, and may we never need you again.

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Re: 2014 STGOD Story Thread I

Postby Fingolfin_Noldor » 2014-10-01 11:12pm

Catholic People's Daily of Ferramentagrad

Central Apparat passes defence spending bill amendment

The Central Apparat today passed a new defence spending bill amendment, authorizing the addition of 5 billion roubles to bolster the nation's air defences and missile surveillance systems. Sources say that the money will be funneled into speeding up the launching of a new generation of surveillance satellites aimed at enhancing the nation's early warning capabilities. "We must never again be caught off-guard by Khagarian missile attacks," says the Politoburo spokeswoman.

Snap Exercises ordered

In a show of force, some 200,000 military personnel were ordered into snap exercises involving elements from the air force, navy and army. One of the largest exercises ever launched, the Ministry of Defence spokesman said that the objective of the exercises was to test the readiness of the UOCSR's military. These exercises are expected to continue for the next few weeks. In addition, some tens of thousands of reservists were also ordered to join the exercise in their reservist units. "Reservist training will be enhanced and over the course of the next few months, we plan to call up many reservists for additional training to refresh their skills," says the spokesman. The spokesman refused to indicate how many will be called up, but potentially as many as several million reservists could be summoned for active duty if the state so chooses to.
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STGOD: Byzantine Empire
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Re: 2014 STGOD Story Thread I

Postby Siege » 2014-10-02 10:51am

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Kohinoor Apartments | 1142 KN Gaikwad Marg
City of Dholka, Lothal


"Clear three-sixty," Sergeant Grear reported as he snuck back through the hole that had once been a doorway. It meant the floor was clear, and given how challenging it had been to climb up this high it would probably remain so as long as Reaper Team Nine didn't give itself away.

The residential tower had seen better days: typhoons had smashed out the windows long ago and the southern facade of the tower had collapsed entirely, exposing its insides to the elements. Clumps of moss and lichens now crept through crumbling hallways and over the rain-slicked walls. Decaying drapes listlessly framed glassless windows. Rotted furniture was scattered across the apartment, left behind when the original occupants fled the unceasing storms that had battered Lothal for years.

Reaper Team Nine were an eight man fighting patrol, a hard-bitten unit from one of the most feared mercenary outfits on the planet: Paradigm Security. They had penetrated the outer perimeter of the pirate stronghold of Dholka unseen and set up shop on one of the topmost floors of Kohinoor Apartments. The entire building was structurally unsound, but it also provided a great vantage point from which to observe everything in the surrounding area.

The pirates had gone to impressive lengths to hide some of their prizes from view, anchoring them under partially collapsed buildings, inside the submerged parts of what had once been a convention center of some sort, or covering them under camouflage netting. Unfortunately that only really protected from prying eyes overhead, and not from people looking right at the captured ships.

For the last half hour Lieutenant Trista Falcone had been crouched by the window, NVGs rendering her head grotesquely insect-like. She'd stare down into the flooded city, adjusting the electronic zoom with a gloved finger, then jot down notes on a pad or quickly reference ships against the silhouette list HQ had provided. "It's like a fuckin' canal parade down there," she whispered.

Major Taddeus Teague crammed down an energy bar and looked at his scout. "Yeah?"

"Yeah. Three tramp freighters, an LNG carrier, two yachts, what looks like a racing ship and an honest-to-god schooner," Falcone responded. "And that's only the stuff I can see from this angle. Last time I saw this kind of variety I was at the Northcap Naval Review."

"Hmm. You got the names of everything that's down there?"

Falcone pushed the goggles onto her forehead and wiped her eyes with the back of her hand. She looked at the notebook. "I got most of it."

"Good work." Teague massaged his neck. "Hallow, get fishing for a satellite signal. Let's see if there's anyone out there willing to pay for that information."


Result: Paradigm Security informs the owners of these vessels [OOC: claim a ship if you want in] that it has located them. Options offered vary from simply photographic proof plus coordinates, to overwatch / target designation for any would-be liberators, to a comprehensive private asset recovery service. Basically Par-Sec can tell you where the ship is, can help you reclaim it, or can reclaim it for you (very violently).
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SDN World 2: The North Frequesuan Trust
SDN World 3: The Sultanate of Egypt
SDN World 4: The United Solarian Sovereignty
SDN World 5: San Dorado
There'll be a bodycount, we're gonna watch it rise
The folks at CNN, they won't believe their eyes

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Re: 2014 STGOD Story Thread I

Postby Eternal_Freedom » 2014-10-02 06:28pm

Orion Broadcasting Corporation Daily News
May 4th, 2014


In the capital city, preparations are well underway for the forthcoming Global Anti-Terrorism Conference. Representatives from most of the world's great nations will come to Orion to discuss King Alexander's proposals for a united front against global terrorism.

Our sources within the government have so far confirmed that Umeria, Cascadia, Arcadia, Rheinland, Shinra, Underwood and Hawai'i are sending representatives, and other nations are rumoured as well. Obviously security is tight and details are being closely guarded.

It is known that the Conference will be officially opened by the King on the 10th of May and wil be held in the Royal Palace. We have no idea of the likely results of the Conference, but given the historical close ties with Arcadia and the new alliance with Rheinland, some form of international effort is considered likely.

The OBC will of course bring you full coverage of the Conference and updates as we get them.
"I could be bounded in a nutshell and count myself a king of infinite space, were it not that I have bad dreams" - Hamlet

“I’ve always thought the Yankees had something to do with it.” - Confederate General George Pickett, on being asked why his charge at Ghettysburg failed

Corrax Entry 7:17: So you walk eternally through the shadow realms, standing against evil where all others falter. May your thirst for retribution never quench, may the blood on your sword never dry, and may we never need you again.

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Re: 2014 STGOD Story Thread I

Postby Steve » 2014-10-03 01:26am

Outside the Orion Royal Palace
4 May 2014



The motorcade with the Cascadian Stars and Stripes arrived as scheduled. Men and women in dark outfits stepped out of the vehicles, some carrying briefcases, all representatives from the Cascadian NSIA (National Security and Intelligence Agency) and NBI (National Bureau of Investigation).

A trio of individuals stepped out of the last vehicle. Charges d'Affairs John Whitefield of Utah was the first out of the vehicle. He waited silently while the main delegates of Cascadia stepped out of the vehicle as well.

The first figure out was a woman who looked to be in her thirties. Short red hair and green eyes were the striking figures on her face, with an athletic and trim figure. Behind her the head of the anti-terrorism delegation stepped out. His dark complexion was Sankaran, with his head shaved bald and, most striking, a missing left eye covered by an eyepatch.

"Director Jackson, I trust I don't need to repeat Ambassador Loughlin's instructions?", Whitefield asked.

That got him a cold look of disdain from the head of Cascadia's counter-terrorism interagency task force. "The Ambassador made his instructions clear, Whitefield. You might be playing chaperone, but I don't need you to be my memory too."

"Given your history, sir..."

Jackson stopped and glowered at him. "If you're referring to the fact that the Malips who took my eye were backed by Orion, that was a long damn time ago, Whitefield. I've got no grudges to bear. This is strictly business."

"If you say so, sir," Whitefield answered.

Jackson looked to his red-headed subordinate with a familiar look of irritation at stuffy shirts. "Let's go see what the Oris have in mind and if this has been a waste of my fucking time."


Summary:
Cascadian delegation has arrived. Consisting primarily of NBI domestic counter-terrorism investigators and NSIA personnel, it's led by the head of Cascadia's inter-agency counter-terrorism task force. You only get one guess what the name of that task force is. :wink:
”A Radical is a man with both feet planted firmly in the air.” – Franklin Delano Roosevelt

"No folly is more costly than the folly of intolerant idealism." - Sir Winston L. S. Churchill, Princips Britannia

American Conservatism is about the exercise of personal responsibility without state interference in the lives of the citizenry..... unless, of course, it involves using the bludgeon of state power to suppress things Conservatives do not like.

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Re: 2014 STGOD Story Thread I

Postby Force Lord » 2014-10-03 11:25am

La Granadina

El Periódico de la Nación Granadiense

Granadia to send representatives to Orion Global Anti-Terrorism Conference

The Granadian Government has announced that it will participate in the Global Anti-Terrorism Conference about to take place in Orion. Representatives from the Guardia Civil, BEI (Buró Estatal de Investigación) and CNI (Centro Nacional de Inteligencia) will be present. The Government has stated that it hopes "the world can see that the threat of terrorism is very real and most dangerous".
Last edited by Force Lord on 2014-10-28 10:31am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: 2014 STGOD Story Thread I

Postby RogueIce » 2014-10-03 11:26am

Outside the Orion Royal Palace
4 May 2014


Among several armored SUVs and limousines in a neatly ordered convoy, the Shinra Republic delegation arrived.

As the various people in dark suits and military uniforms exited their vehicles and made their way inside, two officers in the distinctive blue uniforms of the Shinra Republic Army paused.

"Sir, I'm not sure what I'm doing here," said the younger officer to his senior.

"To observe, assist, and have a nice little diplomatic visit noted in your record, Captain Rogers," replied Senior Colonel Leo Cristophe. "And it doesn't hurt to have another veteran of the Eulica raid in our delegation, given the AVALANCHE attack that occurred here." Cristophe gestured toward the Royal Palace. "That status alone might open up a few doors for the two of us that not be available to any others."

Captain Steve Rogers frowned. "They didn't teach me the intricacies of politicking at the Academy, Colonel. I'm a soldier, not a diplomat."

Colonel Cristophe suppressed a smile. "The Academy doesn't teach you everything there is to being a soldier, Captain. Whether that means combat, or the non-combat roles we take on. You should know that by now."

Taking the rebuke, Steve Rogers nodded. "Yes sir. Sorry, sir."

"Think nothing of it, Captain. This will be a learning experience. For all of us, I'm sure."

Results
Shinra Republic delegation arrives, among them the leader and a veteran of the Eulica raid against AVALANCHE.
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"How can I wait unknowing?
This is the price of war,
We rise with noble intentions,
And we risk all that is pure..." - Angela & Jeff van Dyck, Forever (Rome: Total War)

"On and on, through the years,
The war continues on..." - Angela & Jeff van Dyck, We Are All One (Medieval 2: Total War)
"Courage is not the absence of fear, but rather the judgment that something else is more important than fear." - Ambrose Redmoon
"You either die a hero, or you live long enough to see yourself become the villain." - Harvey Dent, The Dark Knight

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Re: 2014 STGOD Story Thread I

Postby Skywalker_T-65 » 2014-10-03 12:50pm

Outside the Orion Royal Palace
May 4th, 2014

"I see the others are arriving," Princess Irene mused, as she smoothed the skirt on her dress uniform.

"Looks that way," Ambassador Amundsen agreed, "I see the Cascadians and Shinrans have already arrived."

Indeed, the two Pacific nations had already begun moving their delegations around. At least Irene felt marginally more comfortable when it became apparent how many military people were involved in said groups. She may have been royalty, but the Princess of Glacia had always felt more at ease amongst other soldiers. Which was probably why the Arcadian delegation was primarily military itself...Amundsen and his staff were the only civilians.

Tucking a lock of dark hair back under her cap, Irene started walking towards the Palace.

"Well, time to get going. I wonder how many nations will send representatives..."

Amundsen shrugged, "I don't know Your Majesty. I do know that the more international this conference is, the better."

Better for getting the Task Force going maybe, but I am certainly not cut out for this...

-0-0-0-0-0-0-0-0-0-0-0-0-0-0-

1. Arcadian Delegation arrives.
SDNW5: Republic of Arcadia...Sweden in SPAAACE


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