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Canon: © Anne Bishop
Board's Plot: Blood Rites
Points Scheme: Mother Night
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Established February 2010
by Jamie, Gina & Bowie.

* Plot Information for Glacia

For years, the Dark Religion has persecuted the Light Jeweled with its doctrine of stigmatization. Under the messianic Queen Elisif Brenden, it has flourished, ensuring Glacia’s success in other fronts. But upon her death, a line has been drawn and forces beyond Glacia’s borders are gathering to stop its theocracy once and for all.
Culture of Glacia
The Dark Religion
Smuggling in Glacia
Priestess & Law
Black Widows

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Author Topic: Current Territory Petition  (Read 9692 times)

Description: For Reference Purposes (by halyonix)

Offline Storyteller

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Current Territory Petition
« on: Aug 30, 18, 07:56:31 AM »
Ruling Character's Name: Signe Drachlan
Ruling Character's Caste: Queen
Ruling Character's Jewels: Tiger Eye to Summer Sky

Territory Plot:
Glacia’s Silent Civil War has found its voice.

For years, Glacia has been embroiled a religious fanaticism that places the Light Jeweled and Landen as cherished, but lesser children of Mother Night. In the case of the Light Jeweled, their Jewels are a near-stigma, an outward sign that they have failed to reach their potential within Mother Night. To keep these errant children from further staining their souls, the Dark Religion, originating in the Gray Priestess-Queen Isyviel and perpetuated by her messianic Gray Jeweled protege, Elisif Brenden, rose to power, declaring that it was the responsibility of those blessed with Dark Jewels to nurture their less fortunate brethren. As with many religions, the zealots amongst it twisted its doctrines to fit their political agenda, creating the brainwashed cult known as the Progenitor’s Trust and propagating the dehumanizing Craft-locked collars that signified the Light Jeweled as under the protection of a Dark Jewel. As Elisif Brenden and her Triangle of Ebon Grays grew greater in power, this same zealotry enabled Glacia to forcibly annex a weakened Nharkava, spilling the Dark Religion’s agenda into her neighbor Territory. 

While many believed that the Dark Religion had very good ideas about the blessing of Mother Night upon her children, the issue of the collars, their initial design imported from Raej, became the dividing line for many. Brother split from brother. Children abandoned their parents. Entire houses and family lines became bitterly entrenched against each other over this issue because it created a second-class citizenry (or outright slavery in some views) amongst the population. Even Elisif’s Triangle had its own machinations to thwart stifling aspects of the Dark Religion: unbeknownst to their Queen, the three Ebon-Grays began studying a second Caste in an attempt to trump the stigma that a male with a female Caste was an abomination. Their plan was to find a way to introduce this new ideology into mainstream belief while retaining their power, since it was their Ebon-Grays that solidified Elisif’s rule on the Territory. Still, despite these political lines being drawn, it was hard to escape the fact that Glacia was indeed prospering under this Dark Religion, just at an unexpected cost.

The hostility reached a boiling point. The faction known as the Underground, which had been operating for years, was reinvigorated with an influx of fresh meat running reckless, righteous new cells. They sought to guide those wishing to leave the oppressive theocracy that Glacia had become. These smugglers led thousands of refugees across the mountains and borders to find new lives elsewhere, often at great price for everyone. The Territory Court responded by hunting these refugees and their liberators down, intent on ruling with an iron fist. The neighboring Territories receiving these refugees were horrified to learn of what was happening in Glacia -- children torn from parents who protested, teenagers collared fresh out of their Offering, rumors of a powerful magic that could wipe a person’s mind clean. Combined with the annexation of Nharkava, fear spread through the Realm that Glacia, blessed by the Ebon Grays and tri-Casted Queen, would spread its ideology too far and thus become unstoppable. Yet, none of the Territories made a move against the Star of Kaeleer.

In Rihland, Signe Drachlan, an exiled Glacian Queen who had set up a haven for others like her in the District of Avorla, watched the events unfolding in Glacia with deep contemplation. Would no one halt the spread of this corruption, she wondered. How long would it take before Glacia crossed the mountains of Rihland and attempted the same assimilation there? Or in Little Terreille? It seemed as though the right moment was not yet upon them but if they waited too long, the chance to prevent this twisted ideology from spreading would pass them by.

That moment? It came with the death of Elisif Brenden in childbirth. 

Succession Plan:
With the death of Elisif Brenden, doubt grew towards the Winterton-influenced Court. The Ebon Gray trio that had surrounded Elisif Brenden selected Matias Saari’s Bonded Queen, Kenna Anderson, as the new Territory Queen, arranging themselves as her Triangle. The Underground, using this time of uncertainty during a transition of power, began smuggling more refugees out. Light Jeweled activists organized large protests, which initially drew great crowds but, because of violence, tapered off to less public means of seeking freedom.

In Rihland, the number of Glacians seeking escape increased, drawing great concern from Signe with the stories and scars they brought. Through her Court Seer, she learned of a way to remove the collars some of these refugees. Being a woman known for action and turning turmoil into triumph, this gave Signe the idea that perhaps she could find a way to halt the advance of the Dark Religion. Her difficult past -- with her abduction from Glacia and having been forced to serve the Eyrien regime -- combined with her honest speech and authenticity served to show others that she understood their plight. Her work with renewing Avorla, even though it was a single District, proved her track record of hard work and accomplishments. While the Black Prince of Rihland, Kalvar Elbremov, was unwilling to assist her, he did put her in contact with other Glacians in other Territories that might be sympathetic to her cause. Traveling herself to Little Terreille, Signe enlisted the help of the Steward, Jonothan Harmaa, and his infamous “Lord Black” Hayden Sheane, who then contacted the Glacian Queen of Nharkava, Maarika Sydan-Harmaa. Signe offered them opportunity to right the wrongs of their homeland and to free the families of their people as well. And so, the growing army of exiled Glacians, Little Terreillians, Nharkavans and Rihlanders marched across the southern mountains of Glacia, towards Vaasa, and began liberating those enslaved by the Dark Religion.

After capturing and coercing the man who was responsible for the collars, Signe’s army now became a larger force, as droves of Light Jeweled came to the south for freedom. After upsetting the balance of power in the Virratt and Salo Provinces, the army moved northwards, intent upon delivering its cause to Dark Jeweled Court residing there. The trio of Ebon Grays surrounding Queen Kenna Anderson refused to acknowledge the demands of the army approaching, declaring Signe and her allies enemies of the Territory.

Though backed by a Black Jewel, it became painfully apparent early on that brute strength would not win this battle, due to the pitched concentration of Dark Jewels within the higher level Courts. After a disastrous decision with the Progenitor’s Trust, Signe and her allies decided to try other measures to dismantle the political grip of the Dark Religion in Vaasa, retreating across the natural boundary that the Tulva River provided and securing the southern Provinces. But to show that they were undaunted, a second Territory Court was established, dubbed the Dawn Court, with Signe as its Queen. Defectors, Dark and Light, were welcomed and proponents of the Dark Religion were jailed until a decision could be reached regarding them. The Court embedded in Vaasa, mostly Dark Jeweled, became known as the Midnight Court. Glacia effectively became split in half. Preparing for a prolonged conflict, many of the factions of Glacia were restructured or disbanded, depending on the political climate and needs of the area.

The Underground, once operating defensively from the shadows, now went on the offensive. Forming under a new name -- Cipher -- Signe appointed trusted people gathered to her cause to organize the Underground into a more solid organization but left its decisions and actions to its own. She condoned strategy, not violence. The boldest and Darkest of agents, free to infiltrate with less risk of discovery, inserted themselves into Midnight Court circles, sowing doubt or gathering valuable intel from behind enemy lines. Other agents remained on safer ground, seeking ways to remove the remaining collars from the citizens of Glacia or finding ways to discredit the Midnight Court through propaganda. They crafted small crystals that could be tapped to listen in on conversations or forged documents that made it to Midnight Court hands to raise confusion. Still, others harassed supply lines heading north towards Vaasa or dusted incoming cargo with dermatitis-causing powders. Their efforts, while not always successful, ensured that economics sanctions and tariffs began piling upon the Midnight Court’s shoulders, as merchants were no longer safe to travel within Glacia’s borders.

The Midnight Keepers, what remained of their numbers after the initial fighting, found greater purpose for those trained as Rooks and Summit. New recruits flocked to these two parts of the Keepers, the former intent upon ferreting out the spies in their midst and the latter keen upon destroying the newly energized Cipher. Every agent captured by the Midnight Keepers was a great victory and used often as a hostage to ensure that the Dawn Court would not directly strike.

The Prism of Black Widows became largely dismantled in areas that the Dawn Court controlled but the need for it became fiercer in the Midnight Court, as operatives began infiltrating the ranks of the Dark Jewels in an attempt to breach its stronghold from the inside.

Overall, the attitude to the Dark Religion changed, but significantly less so in areas controlled by the Midnight Court. The Priestesses in the Midnight Court preached a bit more about the cherished and protected nature of the Light Jeweled in an effort to displace the propaganda and bitterness spread by the Dawn Court. And Queens were extra careful not to allow any instances of abuse to become public knowledge. Caution and careful wording became key, lest there be any incidents that would further the Dawn Court’s agenda.

In the Dawn Court, the Dark Religion was mostly banished, though it left spiritual and philosophical scars. While most of the population thoroughly supported the ban on collars and removing the stigma of a Jewel ranking, they were left with a sense of loss, purpose, and placement in the new hierarchy. Priestesses and Queens in this region struggled to unite the people as instances of discrimination still naturally took place.

Roles of Castes specific to Territory:
Queens: Judicial power has been returned to the Queens, returning with the ringing phrase of “Queen’s Justice.” Queens are doubly protected now since both factions are not opposed to attempting the heinous crime of murdering a Queen.

Priestesses: The Dark Religion continues unabated within the Midnight Court but for those on the Dawn Court side, there is a great philosophical void left in the wake of its departure. Priestesses there struggle with what rituals and words to use. There is a great influx of theological ideas but still a sense of loss of identity.

Black Widows: Those in the Midnight Court have not changed much in their ranking or responsibility. They are still delving into the minds of others to make certain no traitors to the Dark Religion exist, though now they also seek Dawn Court spies. But those in the Dawn Court are strictly forbidden from such an invasion, even if warranted. They instead focus on creating undetectable illusion spells for agents in Cipher to use.

Jeweless Blood and Landen: in the Dawn Court, there is a swelling in the social hierarchy with people in these Castes, as acceptance of all humans as equal in Mother Night’s eyes is either embraced or forced. There are new freedoms to be enjoyed and, with that, the abrupt shift of ideas and mentalities that come with new philosophies. While it may feel like a brave new world for many, there are some that fear the future still.

Impact on the levels of District/Province/Territory/Realm:
The Provinces of Salo and Virratt will abdicate to Signe and her forces, leaving them the southern part of Glacia to hold. These Districts and towns will see an influx of defectors and become staging areas for political machinations. Cities like Oulu and Tamsa will find themselves in mixed political waters, as propaganda from the Dawn Court, the promise of freedom from the collars, and the presence of the fierce Midnight Keepers will leave inhabitants feeling like a war could break out at any moment along that side of the river.

The Provinces of Ivalo and Tornio will find their political climate mostly unchanged, although the ripples of what is happening with the Dawn Court will find their way here eventually. Mostly, these Provinces will stand with the Dark Religion and its populace will remain adherents.

Realm-wise, trade into northern Glacia will find its cargo delayed or seized and merchants will be rethinking their contracts with the Territory Courts. This will place additional pressure on the Midnight Court to act decisively but to not slaughter the Light-Jeweled families in the Dawn Court en masse, lest they draw more ire from their supporters.
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