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Messages - Mamoru Salazar

Pages: 1
1
Dhemlan / Re: I carried this for years
« on: Nov 02, 19, 05:03:55 PM »
Modina, considered Mamoru, was a good friend. Though her bloodline spoke against her--the fully Dhemlanese were so arrogant sometimes--they shared too much for Mamoru to dispense with her words as mere political assurance. She meant what she said, or she wouldn't be saying it to him. "I believe I would like to speak to her myself," he said. "Ideally before debates begin, so I may decide where to place my efforts." Whose lives to make difficult, should they come to Sarque. "Not because I don't trust you, Modina. You know that I do, and for good reason. I'd like to take the measure of her myself, beyond your assurances. I trust you, but I don't know her beyond the short conversations we've had in the Executive Council. I won't trust Sarque to an unknown."

He looked out at the low valley of Montserrat. Even from here, the site of the old village was visible, a blood-black scar against the harvest-gold land. Corrina had died out there. So many Healers had died out there. He'd sat by and done nothing, and for that, his family had fallen apart. He didn't think that Joana Palomo would be the source of another massacre, no, for that she'd have to be truly insane, and if she were, Modina wouldn't support her. But he worried that this place would become part of ancient Anagon once more, and the sacrifices of Corrina and her family line would be forgotten or worse. Prince Fermin could not be relegated to the history books as a villain; he wouldn't allow it.

"Do you believe this election is the best way forward for Dhemlan," he asked, breaking the silence. "Will it secure us a leader who can bring us from poverty to prosperity? Or will it divide us more?"

2
Dhemlan / Re: I carried this for years
« on: Aug 01, 19, 03:27:27 AM »
Mamoru shrugged. He'd gotten his information from a trusted source, and that source had gotten her information from another trusted source that had been directly involved. Whatever the actual provenance of the information, he had little reason to doubt it. What reason did Nova have to lie? "I would imagine that no one would want to admit to it," he said. The loss of control of one slave, so soon after the Coliseum's destruction and collapse beneath those slaves? It probably wouldn't look terribly well for the Dena Neheleans who traded with the Hayllians on a regular basis... though he didn't pretend to understand that. "I don't know what led up to it, but I don't believe that Mother Night would strike out with violence against the innocent. No matter how obdurate the rest of the Territory was, indiscriminate destruction wouldn't be Her answer."

That came perilously close to dogma, which wasn't something Mamoru was necessarily opposed to. He was opposed to looking like a fanatic in front of a possible political ally. Not only that, but it also came close to the edges of the scars they both wore in the aftermath of the Purge. He had no desire to drive Modina off when their conversation was turning to a topic of intense interest to him. "Her service in Emerald Company is going to look well for her," he agreed, in the way that service in Emerald Company always looked well for Healers. They'd withstood vicious attacks, all of them. Mamoru had a soft spot for the veterans of the Healer's company. His sister had been among them before the massacre at Montserrat.

"Then I can at least promise that I won't oppose her," said Mamoru, "but I want more than simply leaving us be from any ruler who wants to claim my fealty, and more than plans to feed the people." With Nova a known quantity and willing to make the trip to help, Sarque was nowhere near as direly off as it had been when Savion took the throne. He paused there to gather his thoughts, then continued: "Though I suppose you aren't the one to make promises on your Lady's behalf."

3
Dhemlan / Re: I carried this for years
« on: Jun 18, 19, 05:42:09 AM »
"Sarque is blessed with a lack of aristo bullshit," said Mamoru, which wasn't to say he didn't understand something of what Modina's cousin had to put up with. It wasn't like he was without people to appease as the Priest Prince of Sarque; he had ever lacked any iota of respect for the Warlord Princes of the Territory, a position only reinforced by how useless they had been in the aftermath of the massacre at Montserrat. Mamoru still saw the witchblood whenever he walked past the old town. The black-throated flowers choked the streets where he'd grown up, and though a new town with the same name now stood nearby, it seemed almost a joke. Or a reproach. Whichever it was, it was proof that the 'warrior caste' didn't value the right things.

Modina mentioned Dena Nehele twice in short order, which wasn't strange, considering Mamoru had been talking about it in the context of Lady Robles in the first place. But he looked over at her with narrowed eyes anyway at the mention of the last summer in the northern Territory. "I highly doubt an unstable slave was the chosen tool of the Mother's will," he said. His somewhat heretical beliefs about Witch were well known among the Priestesses of Dhemlan. If someone had judged Dena Nehele, it would be the little Healer wearing the Black and no one else. Mother Night would not have brooked such wholesale destruction, such undiscerning murder. Yes, the Mother would someday send Her avatar to strike down those who were unworthy of living beneath Her gaze... but when that avatar wrecked the Mother's wrath upon those who defied her, they would not take the innocent with the guilty as Yua no Ariake had done. "I suppose your candidate for the Offering didn't survive the Decimation?"

They moved back onto the safer topic of the election. "I remember her suggestion," said Mamoru. He'd already been on the Executive Council as ruler of Sarque then, though he was by far one of the newer rulers on the council. "I wish you luck." And if he liked what Joana had to say about Sarque, he'd even offer his support. His support that would be rather more efficacious than even Modina expected, since he had la Familia at his back. "Ozymandias Galante's daughter is running as well. The Healer, Ascencion." He didn't think they'd met. "She served in Emerald Company during the War." He rested his chin on his knuckles, watching his old friend. "She says she'll leave Sarque to Sarque, and dismantle the aristo tithing exemption."

4
Dhemlan / Re: I carried this for years
« on: May 02, 19, 01:52:26 AM »
Mamoru didn't say he'd do the same for any member of the Priestess's Conclave or the Archive, because he wouldn't, and he made it a policy to minimize his lies. To do less would be disrespectful to Modina and the relationship they shared through the Onyx Company and the Priestesshood. "I doubt it," he said. Every time they saw each other in the meetings of the Executive Council, she reacted... well, it wasn't pleasant. If she didn't long to complete her mentor's work and take the throne of Anagon, he would eat every hat he possessed. Guadalupe Fabrizia was entirely too young to be ruling a Province... but what good would it do to point that out when there were no Queens to take her place? One only had to look at Dena Nehele, rocked repeatedly by scandals and attacks, to see the problems inherent in the rulership of the very young over massive swaths of land.

"Sarque's long had a bandit problem. I believe we're getting it under control, but if Atholi's problems spill over into my Territory, I'll bring it up to the Executive Council." He shrugged. "Plenty of Warlord Princes about that might as well make themselves useful, otherwise." Of course, part of Atholi's banditry problem had been sourced from Mamoru's people. Had been being the key word, since there were enough rogues on the border now that making those runs into Atholi was too risky to be profitable. He needed to protect the half-blooded who followed the Sect, after all, since they'd be the someday-core of a new, reborn Sarque.

He shook his head. "We haven't had much luck with the Territory Seat lately," he acknowledged. "My great-aunt wasn't blessed with the strongest of the steel spines, and Savion..." He'd been trying to keep Isadora off the throne. It'd worked, and thankfully the men who served Isadora had exposed her perfidy before Savion could be dethroned. "Kidnapping a Queen from another Territory could've ended much worse than it did." That was fairly clear and honest. "We're lucky Dena Nehele isn't on our doorstep demanding a Price we can't afford to pay."

The Priest Prince didn't rise from his seat, though he was perched on the edge of his seat as if he'd like nothing more than to pace. "Heavy talk for a reunion," he said. "But there's not much going on but for politics for me. I presided over a young witch's Birthright Summer Sky. That was... hopeful." He arched a brow at Modina. "Anything interesting in your neck of the woods?"

5
Dhemlan / Re: the martyr's homecoming
« on: May 02, 19, 01:22:32 AM »
There was something paternalist about Ozymandias's assertion that the Long-Lived owed something to the short-lived. Mamoru happened to agree, but he was sure that they disagreed on the shape of what they owed to those with shorter lifespans than their own... which, for Ozymandias, included Mamoru himself. Did he see the same problems Mamoru did, how the half-long-lived were condemned to either live among the short-lived, always an outsider, or among the long-lived as eternal children? Neither one nor the other, always caught between both. Some of his fellows didn't feel the same way, but every year Mamoru saw the changes in his own face and none in the faces of those around him was a blunt reminder of their differences.

Mamoru's eyebrows shot up at Ozymandias's revelation. He wasn't sure he supported the 'Ghost Queen' of the Resistance; he didn't remember much about her at all, besides what he'd heard from Modina. She seemed to be doing well in Ilbeda, but Mamoru's attention and care for anything outside the borders of his mountainous motherland ended with how it affected Sarque. Still, something seemed strange about Ozymandias's terrifying daughter taking up the Territory Throne. What would her platform even be? (Was she capable of forming a coherent platform?) "I see," he said.

Her theft of the altar candles wasn't any sort of hardship, considering that Mamoru didn't lack for marks, particularly; the Archive handled all of the supplies, and Mamoru was very finicky about his budgeting so there had never been a problem. At this point, he pre-accounted for Ascencion making off with one or two sanguine candles per season, though what she did with them he was sure he didn't know. "So that we're clear where my support lies... it's where it ever has. I am the Priest Prince of Sarque, and my grandfather's inheritor. If she intends to reunite Anagon and place the bitch's heiress on that throne, Sarque will not support her." Would work to dethrone her, he thought, but he didn't say it.

Ascencion was as much of Sarque as Ozymandias was. He hoped it wouldn't be a problem. "If she intends to leave us to ourselves, then we can talk."

6
Dhemlan / Re: I carried this for years
« on: May 01, 19, 12:34:37 AM »
Mamoru rose to greet Modina. Though he felt no small amount of trepidation at this serendipitous timing, a knot loosened in his chest. Unlike many Castes, he felt strongly that Priestesses weren't meant to work alone; a Healer could get in her own way, Black Widows were strange, solitary creatures, Queens and Warlord Princes were apex predators. Priestesses were meant to work in concert with others, or with other people. Though there were other Priestesses at the Archive in Montserrat, many of them were young. That was an artifact of the Eyrien slaughter here when Mamoru was in his forties. His first life, he thought of it sometimes. Mamoru, too, was young compared to Modina, but he wasn't so young he didn't remember the fucking war.

"As they ever are," he said. More affluent than they looked, for the first thing. He hadn't reported the presence of Nova in his territory the few times she'd come through lately, and, well. He'd scaled down the banditry since he'd taken over control of things, but all in all, Sarque wasn't doing as badly as it appeared to be to an outsider. "You're looking well, Modina." Once the formalities were out of the way, he made the easy switch to personal names and gestured for her to sit. If Modina liked refreshments, he would send for some, but for the moment there were none. The midday meal had just passed, and Sarque wasn't that well off yet.

Not like it will be, he thought. "It's been some time, hasn't it?" There wasn't any judgement in his voice for it, since he hadn't gone seeking her out, either. The work wouldn't wait, but when one lived for thousands of years--even if his natural lifespan was half Modina's--there was time to drift apart for nearly two hundred years.

The patio upon which he sat looked over a gentle slope to a greenish valley. After the winter, the tall grasses were well-watered for the moment. It wouldn't last. The brown was already creeping in. But it was better, wasn't it, and it would continue to trend upwards if he had the chance. "Atholi's still a bitch to deal with. I almost miss serving in Parliament over the Executive Council, but..." Modina knew Mamoru's position on Sarque. Aside from the Darkness, it was the one thing he loved more than life. "The bastard ruling before me was a shit," he concluded. "The last thing we need is Isadora Diamente 2.0 ruling all of old Anagon."

7
Dhemlan / Re: the martyr's homecoming
« on: Apr 30, 19, 02:18:24 AM »
Spiridoulian the Heart-eater. The title was rather evocative, if nothing else, and Mamoru could easily imagine that being the main diet of the Eyrien bitch who had overthrown the natural process of Dhemlan. Wasn't that what had been done to their people? Their powerful Queens--he didn't count his Sapphire-Jeweled great-aunt among them--had been destroyed beneath the Eyrien Courts that'd attacked them. Mamoru did not remember a time where there'd been no war, rather like Ozymandias's own daughter, but he'd grown up on stories of the Sarque that was. How the mountains were the heart of the Resistance once, how they'd held off the original attacks, and how they would do so again.

"I suppose it's only sensible," said Mamoru. "When one measures a single lifetime in thousands of years, the time likely runs different to the way the short-lived experience it." There was a bitter twist to his voice, like biting into a lemon rind. Despite his dual Castes, despite his long service, there were many who insisted that Mamoru's blood made him inherently inferior. How could it, when it was his blood that permitted his survival? That brought him his powerful Caste, his strength among the people? Were his mother a different person, his life, too, would have been very different. "Their changes, and our own, are likely measured in geological ages. Not in the eyelash-flutter of a short-lived life."

There was something especially bitter in knowing that Ozymandias, and all of the Long-lived around him, would always have superiority of experience over the half-blooded like Mamoru. But that was the purpose of the Sect, and of the Family, wasn't it? To ensure that the half-blooded had a chance to build a culture and a power base all their own. "Have you put much thought into this election Lady Palomo proposed," he asked, suddenly, and all too aware of his position. The Prince of Sarque had a stake in the election, no matter which way it went. "I've only heard of Lady Palomo as an entrant. It isn't much of an election if she wins by fiat."

8
Dhemlan / I carried this for years
« on: Apr 30, 19, 01:51:20 AM »
Modina Palomo was a friend from the bad old days. It took a lot for Mamoru to describe a period of time as the 'bad old days' when most of his life had been lived beneath an Eyrien yoke, but in this case the days had a special significance. He hadn't moved much in the wider circles of the Onyx Company specifically until after the massacre at Montserrat that had claimed his sister Corrina's life. Modina was one of those Priestesses that lent her particular talents to the protection of holy sites and cultural touchstones. She had a set of skills that weren't common, even among Priestesses, and it had made them... perhaps not immediate friends, but at least easy ones.

Now that everything was over, he supposed they'd drifted apart for a reason. She had her cousin in some faraway Province, one that Mamoru didn't particularly care for or about. He had Sarque, and the Sect, though he was sure Modina hadn't connected those dots yet. Between the two of them, between Modina's travel and whatever had drawn her to Dena Nehele for as long as it had, there just hadn't been time to catch up.

Today, that changed. Mamoru had no doubt that the cause of the change was the election. As the only living descendant of the Priest Prince Fermin, Mamoru held quite a lot of sway with the people of Sarque. As the Patriarch, he held a great deal of sway with the half-long-lived Blood among the Dhemlanese. He didn't pretend that his support wouldn't be valuable to whatever candidate claimed it, and to that end if that was Modina's purpose he had several points to bring up to her for her candidate's consideration. Not the least among them was the issue of Gravardi, Sarque, and Atholi: Mamoru had no intention of allowing the reunification of Anagon, even if it was to the betterment of all three Provinces in the short term. In the long term, it was unsustainable.

As was usual for his appointments as Mamoru Salazar--separate from those as the Prince of Sarque or the Priest of his particular chapter of the Archive--he took the meeting after serving lunch to his petitioners. Modina arrived shortly after Mamoru finished serving the midday meal, after he'd eaten his own stew of lentils and sharp spices and cleared everything away. He rose to greet her after a novice showed her to the patio where he had been reviewing accounts. "Lady Palomo," he said, as warm as he had ever been, which wasn't much. "You're looking well."

9
Dhemlan / Re: the martyr's homecoming
« on: Feb 12, 19, 03:23:56 PM »
If Ozymandias hoped to see Mamoru turn queasy, his hopes had been misplaced. Mamoru's expression was best described as sounds like Eyriens to me. The Eyriens of Mamoru's war--the same war as Ozymandias's--were rapists, murderers, and thieves. It didn't come as a surprise to him that they'd been the same in some far-flung distant past, too long ago even for a man of Ozymandias's advanced years to recall the precise dates or even if the story was true. Ripping the hearts out of virginal young Queens wasn't even that far off from what the Treaty of Queens had done to the people of Dhemlan, whether Savion had wanted to acknowledge it or not.

Even so, Ozymandias did have a way with storytelling. Though he tended towards digressions that would've made Mamoru scoff in a less particular voice, it still held his attention despite the low murmur of background conversations. Even if Ozymandias had a less sonorous voice, he would've paid attention. This party was only partially a political function, but Mamoru was ever conscious of his position as the Priest Prince who ruled Sarque.

"That it might be romantic to throw your beloved Queen to the winds, but it's an even better idea to go with her?" Mamoru didn't think there was a good way to secure one's Queen and buy her time; he didn't have one and hoped he never developed that bond. His heart belonged to Sarque, Mother Night, and Dhemlan--in that exact order--and he had no room for a fourth calling. Ozymandias was giving him a look of grave, fatherly disappointment, so Mamoru sighed and said, "Protect what's yours, even at great cost. If you take Candelaria to represent Dhemlan, and Agustin to represent her Queens and Warlord Princes, it becomes an allegory or allusion to the delicacy of the State, and how we should gladly die for the Motherland."

He gave Ozymandias a look that involved raised eyebrows and an overwrought frown. "Better, Professor?"

10
Dhemlan / Re: Taking the wheel
« on: Feb 12, 19, 12:25:38 PM »
"Certainly not," echoed Mamoru, who understood each word individually but the whole thing didn't seem to track, mentally speaking. There had been the recent eruption in Shalador, too, which had put a damper on the already-poor harvests in what ought to be Dhemlan Terreille's breadbasket Provinces, but he doubted Lore would make anywhere as much progress there. The eruptions in Tacea were closer to home for her, as she'd said, and she did bear a famous name. Tacea's four Great Clans were something like his own last name to the islanders. No doubt if he had that access, he'd do something similar with it.

He shrugged, casual as he made himself comfortable behind his desk, his meal finished and the lid returned to the top of his bowl of stew. The photography book sounded more than a little morbid to him. The possessions she'd be taking photos of--and photography was already an expensive tool--weren't relics from old tombs, with owners too long dead to name. They would've been the possessions of people only recently deceased. Presenting them as something for mainlanders to gawk at, well. If it were Sarque she was talking about, he would've been upset. Who wouldn't be, confronted with the commodification of their recent personal tragedies?

Mamoru considered his cousin, gold eyes half-lidded. "I don't know, Lore. I wouldn't want my grandfather's things taken out of his tomb and photographed for public consumption, and he's been dead some five hundred years. The book would sell, but do you want that kind of reputation in Tacea?" Both in Tacea and in Tacea, where--according to his mother--reputation closed more doors than it opened, and grudges could carry on for generation after generation.

Idly, he wondered if Seung Corro was still around. Perhaps he'd killed himself, the sad bastard. He'd never known a Warlord Prince to take war that much to heart; it was in the name, wasn't it, warlord prince. Perhaps he would reach out.

If not, well, Lore was sure to find at least a few half-Dhemlanese running around the Ariake provinces. Seung had always been fond of fish.

Shrugging off those thoughts, he ruffled his own hair. "Tea? I've got mint brewing, probably. Then we can discuss that monograph of yours. Raejian tombs or something?"

11
Dhemlan / Re: the martyr's homecoming
« on: Nov 01, 18, 01:06:09 PM »
Mamoru liked these old bastions. They had a certain je ne sais quoi that the newer construction lacked. Maybe that was his Tacean blood speaking. His mother had always had a fondness for ancient things, a fondness that she had passed down to her children. He supposed Sebastien had never much taken to it, except where it involved fighting, but Mamoru and his sister Corinna had been much taken with what old Dhemlanese culture they could get. It had led him to the Sisters of Ink, and then to Onyx Company, where his natural Priest Caste had served him well as he helped conceal what works of art and culture he could.

In that way, Ozymandias Galante was a peer. More than one piece of artwork or antique tome had found its wartime home in the Galante estate, and Ozymandias was more than accommodating about returning each piece to its proper home as those homes were brought up to snuff. Mamoru was looking forward to speaking to him; they were almost ready to return another painting to one of the cloisters in Visanda, and the landen were trying to place a statue whose forest Altar was just deemed irreparable. If nothing else, he knew Ozymandias would take the old artwork, but he was hoping Ozymandias would know of somewhere else it could go and still fulfill its cultural purpose.

"I wish your daughter would stop stealing candles from my altar," he said casually, related to nothing. He wasn't mad; Ozymandias more than paid for them. "But yes, I'm pleased to see this work done. I'm starting on the Barrow next." With the assistance of a foreign Queen, he'd managed to stave off the worst hounds of famine from Sarque's borders, and could turn his attention to the rebuilding of the culture his mother had loved. "We've had some setbacks on the matter of the forest Altars that I'd like to talk to you about when I can." And some pettier, political concerns, he remembered, apropos of nothing.

Mamoru shook his head. "My family wasn't much for history outside of Sarque," he said. He was sorry he didn't know the story, but not sorry that he didn't know history outside of Sarque; he was a descendant of the great Fermin, who had led Sarque to freedom from Gravardi and Atholi. "And my mother was Tacean. Perhaps you could enlighten me, and we'll table business for later in the evening?"

12
Dhemlan / Re: Taking the wheel
« on: Sep 03, 18, 08:32:20 PM »
Mamoru shook his head. No doubt if he returned today, an exotic foreigner, they'd tolerate his dual caste. Perhaps they'd even pay lip service to his desire to know more about his mother's clan, if he had one. Yet his own contributions to the Tacean war effort had probably long been forgotten. Though he still had connections among many of the women who held his second Caste, the war was not necessarily a part of who he was anymore; Onyx Company, the assistance of the Taceans by sea, all of that was... not ancient history, but he doubted any of the people in power really remembered. Too caught up in Savion's little drama and Isadora's power plays. For all the Dhemlanese leaned on their pride, they didn't seem to long remember their debts. Perhaps they considered five hundred years of aid too little to remember? At least the short-lived had an excuse.

"And I can respect your reasons for going back," he said, "but I don't particularly care, one way or the other, about going to Tacea. My mother chose to remain here after I was born for a reason." Hanako no Ariake would, someday, be little more than a blip in Mamoru's memory. Even now, he'd lived something like four or five times her lifespan. By the time he died, the name wouldn't mean anything to anyone but him. But he thought it significant that, in her eighty-odd years of life--fifty of which he'd known her for--she'd never once evinced a desire to return to her homeland. She'd expressed a longing for the food, a wish to see a cousin or two (one of whom might have been Lore's mother, he wasn't sure) but she'd never wanted to return to the Territory of her birth. There was something significant about that.

"I don't think she fit in among them in the first place," he admitted. "Otherwise why would she have had three children with a man whose bloodline was significant because of its connection to a dual caste male? She had to know that it was a possibility that any children she had with him would come out like me."

The bloodline, of course, had no provable impact on Caste. But Mamoru had seen how dual castes tended to cluster, and he doubted that there was no connection at all between one or the other. After all, aristo bloodlines tended to have Dark Jeweled or high-caste children. (Mamoru wouldn't know; he wasn't aristo.)

He set those thoughts aside. "Certainly. And I'll be interested to read this monograph. You're going to study how the Territory reacts to the world after rejoining it, yes? Or was it the volcanoes?" He doubted she could've gotten a grant for those already. News had only just reached them of the late winter eruptions that had sunk an island and killed thousands. But maybe the university was more adaptable than he thought?

13
Dhemlan / Re: Taking the wheel
« on: Sep 01, 18, 11:47:03 PM »
Mamoru was not an academic. Well, he was an academic. He taught at the archive, he knew more than anyone (except perhaps the elder Priestesses at the larger Archives) about the contents of the Montserrat archive, he'd been a critical link between two Territories in rebellion, and an important piece of the protections for several important cultural sites in Sarque. But he'd never gone to university, never been educated formally the way Lore had, and frankly didn't have much curiosity for the goings-on of the short-lived. It was hard for him to relate to them, almost as hard as it was for him to related to the long-lived.

He served the last student, and settled the metal lid atop the pot of stew. It was nearly scraped dry, but meals for the staff came from a different pot when there was enough food for it. He wasn't worried about being able to feed Lore, himself, and the other Priestesses in the enclave. With one last check to make sure everyone was fed that had come up for the meal, he shifted things around on the long table. Another Priestess set up to make sure no one took more than an extra slice of bread, and then Mamoru led the way up the stairs to his office.

Once they were served, he said, "Not particularly curious, no. My mother said I wouldn't be very welcome there." The dual caste. She considered him a treasure, a blessing from Mother Night, but Tacea had evidently looked dimly upon men bearing two castes.

For a long minute, Mamoru considered sharing his actual reasons: he didn't want to leave the Sect or la Familia. He knew Lore knew of the Patriarch; most of the half-blooded in Sarque did. She knew of the Family, of the Sect of Our Lady, but she didn't know that he was the man who ran them both. He was the power behind a sizable throne, the shadow within the cloak, and if he left it would quickly become clear to an unsettling number of people just who held the claim to that title. Mamoru Salazar was too visible to disappear.

"You left because you weren't welcome, didn't you," he asked, stirring his stew. "Half-long lived and nothing wrong with you, Caste-wise. Why do you want to go back?"

14
Dhemlan / Taking the wheel
« on: Sep 01, 18, 02:33:01 PM »
This thread occurs in Spring 192, shortly after the disappearance of Gabriella Robles

"No, Lore, I don't want to go to Tacea," said Mamoru patiently.

They were standing in the small atrium of the Montserrat archive. It was just past noon; there'd be an hour yet before things truly quieted down for the afternoon siesta. Mamoru was helping the acolytes and apprentices with serving food to the students who came to the Archive to learn. Lore had come for unrelated reasons, but he'd still conscripted her into the service. The lentil stew was filling, but not particularly tasty, but the bread was made with flour entirely without a single portion of sawdust, which put it far above most of the meals these children and adolescents (and some adults) would see anywhere else. As he ladled out a portion of stew and Lore dropped a hearty slice of bread on the rim of the bowl, he said, "I'm too busy to leave right now."

Right now, the Warlord Prince ruling Sarque was probably granting Savion another stay of execution. With Savion's main claim to the throne gone, vanished in the night, it seemed inevitable that the Territory would look somewhere else for rulership. Only the best option otherwise was Isadora Diamente, who would almost certainly try to force the reunification of Anagon, with Atholi ascendant. Mamoru's grandfather and thousands of Sarque warriors hadn't fought through a civil war and the occupation to see themselves reunited with the enemy. They were Sarque. It would hurt if they went to war, but who would hurt most?

That distinction, Sarque from Dhemlan, meant a lot to him. His whole life, all three hundred and fifty years of it, had been in service to the concept that his grandfather had gone to war for. Mamoru was no warrior, no Warlord Prince, but he'd do the same if he had to. In service of that ideal, he'd spread the word and set the wheels in motion. La Familia served the Patriarch, and the Patriarch served Sarque. In a week, maybe two, the Warlord Prince of Sarque would see that he needed to step down. Mamoru would step up into his place.

"I'm happy to hear your grant was approved," he said. "Now you just need to plan the, the..." He slowed, spotting the end of the lunch line. "I'm sorry, I don't really understand how it works. Once you have the grant, you charter a ship, and then...?"

15
Dhemlan / Mamoru Salazar
« on: Aug 30, 18, 12:10:31 AM »
    The Basics

    Character Name: Mamoru Fermin Salazar
    Nicknames:
    • Salazar - At the start of the Eyrien aggression against Dhemlan, the direct descendants of the line of Prince Fermin changed their surname to Salazar--the dwellers in the old hall--in order to prevent the line being wiped out. Many people in Sarque refer to Mamoru by his surname in order to honor his grandfather, who is still a figure of veneration despite living more than four thousand years ago.
    • The Patriarch - Not to honor his ancestor, but to honor his place as the leader of the Sect of Our Lady of Guidance and Peace. Many people throughout the Territory are aware of the existence of the Patriarch, but do not know the Patriarch's identity.
    Age: 356 (162 BP)
    Race: Half long lived / Half Tacean, half Dhemlan
    Caste: Priest Prince
    Birth Territory: Dhemlan, T
    Home Territory: Dhemlan, T

    Birthright Jewel: Yellow
    Offering Jewel: Tiger Eye
    Appearance


    Play By: Godfrey Gao
    Distinguishing Features:
    Mamoru is a smallish man, standing at 5'8" and being not particularly built. What muscle he has comes from working the land, so it's not particularly defined or interesting to look at, but it's enough that he's a lot heavier than he looks. He has his father's golden eyes, but with his mother's almond shape; his hair is dark, but with a brown tint rather than blue. He is capable of growing stubble, and is often irritated by this fact. He shaves every morning, whether he needs to or not.

    He doesn't dress particularly well, which could be unfortunate for such a popular person, but it's an affectation which wins him a lot of loyalty from those who follow him. Mamoru wears outdated clothes because he thinks spending marks on clothing while there are people starving in his Province is wasteful and, furthermore, cruel. He will patch things until they are literally no longer useful in order to keep money back to buy what grain he doesn't have his bandits steal. His only indulgences, as far as his wardrobe, are sturdy boots made to last a hundred years and a similarly sturdy rain slicker--although rain is becoming ever more rare as the land fades.

    Personality



    Personality:
    Mamoru is a consummate Prince: loyal, orderly, sensitive. Quiet around people he doesn't know, maybe, but that doesn't make him a poor partner, socially. He has a great memory for names, faces, birthdays--little minutiae that generally makes people think that he considers them a close friend (which he usually does, being a friendly sort)--so people he doesn't know don't often stay people he doesn't know for long. He is rarely accidentally offensive, although he can be quite acidic around close friends--with friends, he pokes genteelly at weak spots. With enemies, he delights in backhanded compliments and sly digs. With strangers, he learns weak points and then gets the fuck away from them.

    He feels that it's his responsibility as a Priest, blessed by the Darkness to be one of the few males worthy of bearing that caste, to spread knowledge; his Prince caste lends a strong bent towards imparting the nuance and context of that knowledge. He can get quite pedantic in the lessons that he, as the Priest in charge of the altar and Archive of Montserrat, is required to give. It bothers him to have to elide or ignore details, because it is details which motivate him. He'd rather not speak on a topic at all than have to give only the broad strokes of the situation. In Parliament, his dedication to giving a full picture of things has gotten him a reputation of integrity, even when it shoots his own goals in the foot.

    This isn't exactly so. For a person who puts so much effort into being seen as honest and responsible, Mamoru is actually very conniving. When he doesn't see a legal path to what he wants, he will turn first to loopholes, then to illegal methodology. His Prince caste gives him an edge at finding and exploiting the weaknesses of others, and his extensive self-directed education in the law of Dhemlan piles on top of that to make him a formidable opponent in the political and religious arenas. Educated by Warlord Princes in combat, he has a solid--not stunning, but solid--grasp of strategy and tactics, for all his strengths lay in different arenas. He often delegates the details of the Family's attacks on Atholi grain to the Warlord Princes running the bandit cells, but the broad strokes are his.

    He is not always proud of his actions, and knows there will someday be a price called in; that's basic mathematics, as well as a lesson taught to him as a very young Priest. He fully expects that someday, someone will find out who he is, and they will extract the price he owes. Every day that he wakes up and a Black Widow Judge is not standing over him is a small victory and more proof that Mother Night is on his side. It'd be easy to lose himself in fear for his life or his future, but Mamoru has a formidable will and the single-minded focus of a determinator. Until the Courts or the Black Widows catch up with him, he intends to continue to do Mother Night's work.

    It is important to note that, in all actions carried out by the Family, the only thing Mamoru is, strictly, guilty of is ordering the actions. He orders the attacks on Atholi grain, he schedules the visits of those who protect and advance dual-bloodline business, he orders Black Widow compulsions and murder--but he never does it himself. It is also important to note that, to Mamoru, this does not matter. He does not consider those who act on his orders responsible for what they do. He believes the final responsibility for any acts committed by members of the Family to be his. It hurts him when his flock suffers for what he has told them to do, but his determination--and his obligation to the many--keeps him on the same track.

    He is extremely attached to his genealogy, and proud of his descent from Prince Fermin. It is no secret in Sarque that his grandfather was also a light-Jeweled Priest Prince, although Prince Fermin wore the Descent Summer-sky and not the Tiger-Eye; Mamoru has, since early childhood, ever been held up his great-grandsire's standard. This has given him a sense of purpose. He loves Sarque and what it represents and how his family is so integrally intertwined with the cultural identity of his people. He doesn't see Sarque as part of Dhemlan so much as he sees it as its own Territory, unfortunately bound to another. However, his line of descent has also given him some of his most insidious doubts. He compares himself to his great-grandsire incessantly. He feels that he is not living up to Prince Fermin's success at winning Sarque its independence, because he was not capable of protecting Sarque from Eyrien ravages. He tends to forget that Prince Fermin was over two thousand five hundred years old when the long, bloody independence war ended.

    Mamoru's dedication to Sarque and to his Sect are his defining traits; much about him spins from his ancestry and his conviction that Senja Ankelos was no more Witch than he is. He has had two hundred years to dedicate himself to these things wholesale and wholeheartedly; they are his coping mechanism for dealing with his experiences during the Eyrien occupation. Though he was never on the front line of any battle, he lost his entire family through one mechanism or another in the years leading up to the Purge. His sister was killed before his eyes, and a bed of witchblood that sings her name mars the street outside the Archive where he lives and works.

    This dedication makes it possible for him to bear the weight that he places on himself as the Patriarch; he doesn't like employing violence, but he feels he must in order to effectively counteract the forces he perceives arrayed against him. While he would never dream of compromising the Sect, the Family, or Sarque, he is certainly willing to compromise his own morals in the pursuit of his goals. He genuinely believes that he is spreading the truth of the work of Mother Night in his work with the Sect, that he is helping dual-bloodline Blood towards equality in his work as the Patriarch, and that he is preserving a valuable cultural history by opposing Isadora and promoting Sarque separatism. It also makes it possible for him to cope with his perceived inability to stop the Eyriens from doing what they did to Sarque.

    Charismatic, determined, and politically savvy, Mamoru is a powerful figure in his home Province--and he's poised to take a role of importance to the Territory, one that could even change the face of Terreille.

    Likes:
    • Philosophical discussion as to the nature of the Blood and the Abyss is, obviously, a huge interest with Mamoru. His day job as Priest of the Montserrat Archive even serves to make philosophical discussions part of his job. He enjoys the give-and-take of such discussions way more than he enjoys the takeaway, although that obviously matters to him, too. His closest friends are usually those who can keep up with him in this arena, and for this reason there's often an element of rivalry in his close personal relationships. He also enjoys fostering philosophical discussion and dissension--he considers it his duty as the Patriarch to ask questions which make those who follow him seek more information.
    • Mamoru has gotten a lot of joy out of cooking since the Purge. Not only is his food edible--it even passes for 'decent' sometimes!--he can make a little bit go a very, very long way, and it makes the Montserrat Archive a popular place to send your growing Jeweled kids for more reasons than just the lessons he gives. Like, it may not be exactly ~haute cuisine~ or very high in nutritional value, but it gives the calories and carbohydrates needed to power Jewels. Considering the rate at which even the mid-range Jewels can succumb to starvation, that can be the difference between life and death.
    • Mamoru has a great appreciation for much of his duties as a Priest of Dhemlan, but after his responsibility to educate comes his responsibility to keep accurate records. He deeply enjoys keeping genealogical records of the people who come to Montserrat Archive, finds calm in balancing accounts, and--on a more microcosmic level--keeps detailed journals to ensure he doesn't forget anything important.
    Dislikes:
    The legacy of Isadora Diamente. She desired the reunification of the defunct province of Anagon. Even if Mamoru weren't the grandson and only living descendant of the man who secured Sarque's independence, he would think this was stupid. Though he dearly wishes for a Queen to rule in Sarque, or for a Queen to come to Sarque at all, he does not want to sacrifice his people's independence for it--which is exactly what Isadora was asking for--and what he believes her inheritrix will demand as well.
    • Mamoru dislikes having to have a life outside of his political and ideological aspirations. He doesn't like that he gets lonely on long nights spent at his desk reviewing paperwork, and he doesn't like that he keeps finding books that catch his eye outside of the few specific genres that he considers germane to his goals. He doesn't like that having to run from the Archive to the place where his cult is based means he misses getting a fresh-baked pastry from his favorite baker, and he doesn't like that walking down the main street in Montserrat reminds him that people died and he did nothing. It would make him completely happy to be able to completely forget his 'personal' life in favor of his political one. He would view such an existence as a perfect expression of his ideological purity. Unfortunately, real life keeps finding ways to intrude.
    • Attending Parliament is a boring chore that Mamoru has to do because he keeps getting asked to represent his district. Every single year. He feels that he wastes more time than he can spare on this, but he isn't willing to step down and possibly be replaced by someone less sympathetic to his causes than he.
    Fears:
    • As a person with a shorter lifespan than most in his district, let alone his Province and Territory, and a person who feels he has a purpose to achieve, Mamoru has a real and present fear of losing control of his legacy. How he is perceived as Mamoru Salazar and how he is perceived as the Patriarch are two very different views of his place in history, but both are equally important to Mamoru for different reasons--and he doesn't want to wake up one day to find that either part of him has been slandered--or to leave the world with any possibility of him being remembered in a way he feels is slanderous. His legacy, and the legacy of his illustrious ancestor, are in his hands, and he doesn't want to be the one to bring dishonor to his family name.
    • Mamoru has always felt keenly for the people of Sarque, a habit passed down to him from his father's family due to their direct line of descent from Prince Fermin. Therefore, it should be no surprise that he fears failing to secure Sarque's independence for the next generation. He sees Isadora Diamente's legacy and her Court to one side, the ruler of Gravardi to the other, and above him a childish little bastard who thinks the conquistadors are more important than the things which make Sarque Sarque. He has a very real worry that ancient Anagon may be reforming long before it ought to.
    • The election of an inexperienced leader. The election is open to anyone who wishes to run, provided they meet the requirements--and that is what makes it dangerous. Mamoru only supports the election because he's still consolidating his rule in Sarque; but Dhemlan has just barely begun to recover from the Purge, and he knows that an idealistic or overzealous ruler is a real and present danger to the stability Dhemlan needs for recovery.
    Craft Strengths:
    • Reinforcement Craft is something Mamo is quite good at. He learned it when he was young as part of his work with the Sisters of Ink and the Onyx Company, two resistance movements which shaped his understanding of the world. Part of his job was to move historically valuable books and cultural items from one part of Sarque to another. Inevitably, these things would get damaged in transit, but Mamoru could (assisted by some good old-fashioned wintergreen and book glue) repair and reinforce the precious old books and paintings.
    • Another skill Mamoru perfected in Onyx Company was something he obliquely refers to as an aura of darkness. He is able to call forth a taste of the Darkness and imbue a place or artifact with it, making that item feel sacred to any psychic examination. Often, being around such objects would unnerve others, causing them to avoid the area--citing feelings such as being watched. This Craft, usually performed in ritual with other Priestesses, was vital in ensuring the protection of cultural touchstones like Dolmen Barrow. Perhaps most importantly, it's Craft work of his own design, and he's very proud of it. He uses it now to ensure the safety of Sect meeting places.
    Craft Weaknesses:
    • Shamefully for a Dhemlan male and especially embarrassing for a Sarque male raised by two Warlord Princes, Mamoru is barely competent with combat craft. It seems simple enough to him, and he feels that he should find all Craft easy to learn, but it's not. He can manage a rudimentary power bolt if he really has to, but his entire life he has traded on his intellect rather than his strength (a tendency encouraged by his natural caste as a Priest and the secretive nature of his work with the resistance). This has cost him in the combat arena.
    • Mamoru has been working with spells to create false positives for so long that he can no longer use psychic cleansing spells to erase old memories and old auras. This is part of the reason places like Dolmen Barrow still radiate the hint of the Abyss that they do--Mamoru doesn't remember how to cleanse them, and most members of Onyx Company have no interest in taking the spells down.
    Life Story

    Family:
    Mother: Hanako no Ariake, Rose to Purple Dusk Priestess, deceased (132 BP)
    Father: Leon Fermin Salazar, Summersky to Blood Opal Warlord Prince, deceased (15 BP)
    Aunt: Carisa Vargas, Summersky to Green Priestess, deceased (Purge)
    Siblings: Sebastien Fermin Salazar, Blood Opal to Sapphire Warlord Prince, deceased (28AP)
    Corrina no Ariake, Opal to Red Healer, deceased (128 BP)
    Cousin: Ferran Euskara, Purple Dusk to Sapphire Prince, deceased

    History:
    Leon Fermin was a great start to the creation of an Aristo bloodline for the Fermin family, one that already had the great social prestige of relation to Prince Fermin--the man who led Sarque from the tyranny of Anagon into its rebirth as a Province of its own. Except then he went and screwed it right up by falling in love with a Tacean Priestess, who had come to Dhemlan to serve as a courier of resources and information between Seung Corro and the Resistance in Sarque. Though they did not marry, they did handfast, and over a period of ten years had three children. Their firstborn, Sebastien, bore a Dhemlan name because he was a Warlord Prince and Hanako said she did not really care; then came Corrina, a Healer who bore her mother's surname as a nod to Tacean tradition; and finally Mamoru, the child that Hanako insisted bear a Tacean name. Not because she felt particularly attached to the Territory of her birth, but because he bore dual castes: Prince and Priest.

    Growing up, Mamoru was constantly in the company of his Tacean mother or the Priestesses of the enclave she lived with. His earliest memories are learning to read the entries in the long books of Montserrat's genealogies, watching sheep and watching for Eyrien-shaped shadows on the ground, and his siblings both gaining Birthrights which promised Dark Jewels upon Descent. He learned the basics of Priestess Craft at the knee of his mother--philosophy and Tacean tradition foremost among them. When he was eight, Sebastien had just completed his training as a guardsman and was taking service with the Priestess enclave to guard the knowledge held there--and Mamoru gained a Yellow Jewel at his Birthright, marking him as far-and-away the weakest of his parents' children. Though it couldn't be argued his father was disappointed, this changed nothing of the way his mother interacted with Mamoru. His training as a Priest proceeded apace, and though halfhearted attempts were made to train him as a guard, his father and siblings' personal prejudices against his Light Birthright ensured Mamoru dreaded these sessions like he would dread getting a tooth pulled without anesthetic.

    At twenty (141BP), Mamoru made a Descent to Tiger-Eye. At this point, his mother was getting on in years, and someone fluent in Tacean and able to function as a Priestess was required to take her place in the network of support from Tacea and Shalador. Hanako chose to teach her son to read Old Tacean, shucking tradition to do so--men in her home Territory were not traditionally literate, and the fact that she made that decision still influences Mamoru's view of what is morally obligatory and what is morally supererogatory. Along with this education in Tacean language and culture, Mamoru was inducted into the secrets of Montserrat's Archive: mainly that they were all huge rebels, responsible for secreting away Dhemlan artifacts in places which were then so thickly surrounded by myth, spells, and urban legend that the Eyriens were almost certainly not going to approach them. Because he had family in the capital, he was often assigned with the responsibility of bringing artifacts through the Provinces to Sarque, where they would be tucked away safely. This unique meeting of the Onyx Company and the art-smuggling organization (which went by many names but was often referred to as the Sisters of Ink) created a situation where young Mamoru was exposed to a great deal of history and culture--an education that most of his peers in Sarque did not receive. Of particular interest to him were accounts of ancient mythology, stories of Witch and Dreams Made Flesh; he would often spend the long return trips from visiting his family and picking up a covert drop of artifacts leafing through these books.

    In 134, he discovered--to his immense concern--that Corrina was participating in the resistance as well. It didn't bother him that Sebastien and Leon were part of the effort to repel Askavi, because they were Warlord Princes, such was their duty, and he'd practically grown up knowing that. Leon's place in the near-mythical Gold Company surprised exactly no one; Sebastien's decision to work with Azure Company was similarly unsurprising, considering his affinity for psychic Craft. But Corrina, a Healer, had been actively participating in the work of Emerald Company--the most dangerous of the Resistance--since she made her Offering and came away with the Red. Mamoru's work with Onyx Company made him acutely aware of the statistics surrounding the Healer-centric rebels. He was well aware that more than ninety percent of the Healers historically involved with the rebels died, and horribly.

    This discovery fractured the household. Hanako, now in the twilight of her life, felt that if Corrina decided the work was worth her life, then it was her right as a female to make that decision. Leon and Sebastien were enraged, and their rage only drove Corrina deeper into the arms of Emerald Company. She became less willing to deal with her higher-caste family; when it was necessary for her to talk to them, she often used Mamoru as a go-between. For his part, Mamoru simply feared that his brave, irresponsible sister was going to dig herself a hole that she and her Escort could not climb out of. In the face of Corrina's dismissals of his concerns--which at the time, he considered legitimate--he felt he had no recourse but to let her do as she would and pray to the Darkness for intercession, that she would be safe and protected. Corrina was still alive and well when Hanako passed into the Darkness in 132 BP. She remained that way, laughing and proud of her work in all the subtle ways that characterized Emerald Company, until the nearest Eyrien outpost to Montserrat was collapsed upon the heads of the occupiers in 128 BP.

    The Eyrien reprisal was swift and merciless. One moment, Corrina and Mamoru were walking along the main street after lunch together. The next, there were Eyrien warriors everywhere, and Corrina was bleeding, and Mamoru had never, ever been good at combat craft the way his fucking Healer sister had been. He didn't know anything but basic Healing craft meant to care for papercuts and accidental scratches. It could have taken moments or hours, but it was over before Mamoru could react, the Eyriens gone--and every Healer in Montserrat, newborn infant to old crone, was dead.

    In the aftermath of the slaughter, witchblood bloomed in Montserrat, living memories of the women that had been lost to the Eyriens. To say that the people were not cowed was an understatement. If anything, the people of Sarque became more committed after the murder of an entire town's worth of Healers--and they stepped up their game for the final hundred and twenty years of the Purge.

    To say it was a hard time for Mamoru would be putting it lightly. The loss of his sister caused him to have a crisis of faith, one only amplified by the disappointment his brother and father had in him--he'd been there, he should have been able to help her, to do something. He plunged into theosophy and the work of preserving Dhemlan artifacts and history, befriended his sister's escort Nicodemo Faust, led the work of enchanting Dolmen Barrow and multiple other sites throughout Sarque (and other areas of Dhemlan) to ring unsettlingly of the Abyss. Sebastien died eight years before the Purge in an attempt to deflect an Eyrien attack from one of the few mountain villages with a Queen of their own. Leon's work in Gold Company was not what took him out of the fight, but a congenital heart defect made prolonged battle impossible for him to maintain; he retired to the borders of Atholi, where he devoted all of his time to managing the Queens who assisted the Rebellion. Mamoru could not say he was fond of his family, but he was proud of them, and he did mourn.

    By the last years of the occupation, he had become a figure of no little renown in Onyx Company and the Sisters, a useful smuggler and propagandist with connections throughout Dhemlan society. Among them were Marienrode Virolai, the daughter of a landen politician, who had been purchasing works of art off the Eyriens for fifty years by the time the Sisters of Ink made contact with her, and arranging for the thefts of what Eyriens couldn't sell. He was familiar with Amaya Fuentes, the High Priestess, and was often the go-between between her and Marienrode. They were actually making progress, acting to preserve the millennia of history that defined Dhemlan, when the Purge struck.

    Mamoru rode the wave of Dark power instinctively, his hundred and sixty-one years of experience and Tacean philosophy having always inclined him more towards the semblance of giving in rather than resisting. He came away unbroken--only to find his aunt and cousin dead, his uncle broken, and his people devastated. At least Amaya had lived, unharmed. The landens were fine, so he had no need to fear for Marienrode. Now the entire burden of Prince Fermin's legacy lay on his shoulders, and for a few months, that was enough. He worked hard to organize his area of Sarque, to ensure that even with minimal Queenly interaction they'd be able to support and manage themselves. It wasn't hard; the mountain people had always been independent, and they managed to cobble together something until Dhemlan pulled itself back together.

    It was on the back of Mamoru's first election to Parliament--a nomination he'd received unasked for and accepted because who else should represent Montserrat--that his uncle proposed to Marienrode. Marienrode's acceptance posed a confusing puzzle for Mamoru. He didn't exactly have romantic feelings for Marienrode, but he did have deep and often confusing feelings of friendship. They had shared the roughest time of his life. While he didn't see anything inherently long with landen/Blood relationships, this one in particular was abhorrent to him; Marienrode had just lost her lover of more than a hundred years, she wasn't even into the first quarter of her first century, and Savion would outlive her. A Warlord Prince's territoriality would not allow for divorce, even if Marienrode asked for it--and Mamoru knew that no matter how upsetting Marienrode found a marriage, she would not act to step away from the Blood.

    He told his uncle this, but his uncle refused to entertain Mamoru's concerns. While Mamoru attended the wedding as a favor to his friend, he promptly excused himself to Sarque after, returning to Ardath only to fulfill his Parliamentary duties.

    In Sarque, he found good, hard work to do. His father had disappeared to Atholi, perhaps considering his work done, perhaps having finally found his Queen--Mamoru couldn't find himself even a bit of curiosity. There was too much to do to help the Province piece itself back together. In those first five years after the Purge, he heard the theories of the Purge being the work of Witch, and something in that just refused to click with his understanding of how the Darkness, how Dreams Made Flesh worked. It became ever more obvious to him that the Black-Jeweled power they had felt was not Witch, but simply a Black-Jeweled Queen.

    He intended to keep his views to himself, but it spilled out, bit by bit, until he had the Priestesses of the Archive asking him to expound on it. The Sect of Our Lady of Guidance and Peace grew piecemeal, but by the end of the first decade after the Purge, it had become a devotion of its own. In those days, it was more equitable in its spread of people; the makeup of Mamoru's flock, which had become centered in the Montserrat Archives where he had been a staple for a hundred years, roughly reflected the rest of Dhemlan's people. The more people came to Montserrat to hear Mamoru's theory, the more people Mamoru met, the clearer it became that while the Purge affected everyone equally, it was others like himself, those of dual heritage, who were suffering the most. Half-Eyriens suffered prejudice and harm, the half-short-lived and half-Blood had always caught the shorter end of the stick, and Mamoru knew he had to do something. Not just for Sarque, but for people of mixed heritage everywhere.

    So he began to use his influence to help those who needed it, the people whose suffering he could almost comprehend but not quite. So he lied. He said that he had seen in the Darkness the truth of the matter was that the half-blooded among them were purer of intent; having no country of their own, their devotion to the Darkness was not distracted by petty Territorial politics. He encouraged the people who followed him to support the half-blooded among them--to buy from half-blood businesses where possible, to lend the half-blooded a hand, to in effect favor those who weren't pureblooded long-lived over those who were. That ameoreliated the problem slightly, but it wasn't enough. His flock was too small to effect change that way, even though he did in some cases have influential followers. So he pushed it a little further, and a little further.

    Eventually, he was--with regret, with reluctance, but he was--ordering those half-bloods who had the ability (whether by Jewels or by training) to 'convince' reluctant purebloods to their way of thinking. Whether by hook or by crook or Widow's compulsions, he turned people towards businesses owned by people bearing dual bloodlines. Through his agents, largely formed of the people who believed in his religion, he began the long, slow process of change: He had records relating to crimes committed by people of dual bloodline destroyed. He sent Black Widows to convince Queens to try those who attacked half-Eyriens, he sent males to twist Black Widows towards favoring the often-sidelined halfbreeds, he had thugs threaten the owners of small businesses.

    It all seemed so harmless when he started--but it wasn't even that he lost control. Mamoru was ever-aware of the boundaries he crossed, of the lines of Protocol that he was bending or erasing entirely. None of it mattered, because he had a goal. He had something he could fix. He tried to convince himself that this really was what Mother Night would want, a level playing field between all her children, but the level of violence that was sometimes employed made self-deception impossible. That didn't mean he stopped. It was a worthwhile price to pay. The eventual punishment, the lives that would be (and were) lost among his followers, those were a worthwhile price too, because the end goal was worth it. In the end, he was finally able to fix something.

    It took him a hundred years to achieve any kind of noteworthy traction, but by 117AP, the Patriarch had become a household name. Everyone knew that there was someone who could be counted on to back up a halfbreed--if only he knew of their problems. He built an edifice of people like him, who could be counted on to support those he defined. By the time word of his alter identity had reached Parliament, the darker side of the Sect was self-policing and present in most metropolitan centers.

    By necessity, knowing much of what he did to advance his fellows was illegal, he had separated himself from the person he was as the leader of the Sect; those who might have remembered were swiftly induced to forget his identity, by the Black Widows who looked to Mamoru for leadership. Many of those Widows willingly erased their own memory of what they had to fix--and those who wouldn't quietly disappeared. Mamoru never asked how the Black Widows had self-policed; he only knew that he had not yet been pulled before the Territory Court for the crimes he had ordered.

    Since then, he has done everything he could to ensure that the Sect and the Family it represents continues to bloom and grow. It leaves him little time to keep up with the only other remnant of the Fermin bloodlines, his father, who disappeared in the early 120s AP; at any rate, the man never seemed to care for him, and Mamoru sees no reason to pretend concern. They couldn't be said to be close as a family--and he has much more important things to do.

    NEW STUFF BELOW HERE
    Mamoru continued to serve as the Parliamentary representative for Montserrat until 192. When the Warlord Prince who ruled Sarque continued to support Savion despite the fact that Savion lost his short-lived Queen, Mamoru had had enough of waiting. Utilizing his popularity with the people of Sarque and his connections to the brigands plaguing shipments of food out of Sarque and into the western Dhemlan provinces, he forced the Warlord Prince of Sarque to step down from the seat so that Mamoru could take his place.

    Mamoru does not want power, necessarily, but he sees no other option who truly cares for Sarque above anything else the way he does. For the good of the Province that his grandfather created, he has stepped up to the line as a Province ruler. Hopefully, it stops there... but he's not unprepared to incite a war of secession if he has to.

    Show Us What You've Got


    Character in Play:
    The Purge came on in the early night, after devotions but before the four Priestesses and the lone Priest went to bed. In the hour before the Black-Jeweled wave of power swept through, they sat at a table and drank shitty moonshine over a map of Sarque, marked with chess pieces to denote Eyrien forces. No one was paying particular attention to the map that evening, though there was certainly misinformation to sow regarding the movements of a small group of Azure company Princes; no, they were celebrating a birthday and a victory, all at once.

    "I really didn't think landens could handle it," said Rovinha, running an admiring finger along the rim of a cylindrical case next to her chair. That particular case held a portrait--the original of a portrait--of Prince Fermin, a man dead four thousand years. The man who had liberated Sarque from the tyranny of Anagon, who had only let Sarque remain in Dhemlan because he wanted to settle and have a family. "I suppose there were other indications that they could. But this, oh, this."

    Mamoru downed his shot, put it rim-down on the map because of course it would all have to be burned anyway, in case the Craft woven into the paper should attract Eyrien attention during an inspection; it had never yet happened, but they had more treasures than just information as to movement in other portions of the Rebellion, and no one wanted to attract the sort of attention that would reveal Mamoru's bloodline. Nor the sort that would make the Eyriens look a little too hard at an Opal-Jeweled Black Widow Priestess. They already attracted enough attention--both of them bearing dual bloodlines, both of them dual casted--without suspiciously Craft-imbued paper.

    He took Liberdade's shot, balanced it on top of the pair of glasses he'd already drained. "Marienrode found it in the kindling pile of the Central Archive," said Mamoru. "They were going to burn it."

    "They burn a lot of our history," said Rovinha.

    It was true, in more ways than one, because it was no secret that Sarque was the heart of the Dhemlan resistance. It couldn't be called rebellion, no, because rebellion implied some great goal, some pitched fight and a figure to rally behind. When they had had Corrina, and Mamoru's father, that had seemed a possibility. Now it was just Mamoru, and while he was good at what he did, he wasn't enough to lead a rebellion. The resistance, though, it distracted attention from every other part of Dhemlan, eased the burden on them at the price of lives. Worthwhile, the members of Onyx Company thought. Eyriens would just kill Healers. Priestesses, though… It was they who would bear the brunt of Eyrien tortures if captured.

    That was why they had to be so very careful.

    Mamoru himself was subject to especial scrutiny, for his bloodline, his dual caste, his popularity with the people of Montserrat and the rest of the district that fell under Montserrat's rule. Though he had no assigned Eyrien minder--all the better for him--he had to check in every so often, trick the erstwhile troop leader into thinking that his sister and brother's rebellion hadn't poisoned him too. It was the worst sort of game--the kind that had a fifty-fifty chance of ending in death.

    He took Liberdade's shot, and said, "Well, time for me to wimp out on you, Ladies."

    "Going to turn into a pumpkin?" Rovinha asked, failing to completely hide her disappointment.

    "Nah," Mamoru said, "but at sun-up tomorrow, everybody's favorite fairy godfather Andanar Petrikova will want to waggle his finger at me some more, so I should have my head screwed on straight enough to pretend I care." Rovinha laughed, and it was then that the black wave of the Purge swept over them.

    Mamoru never did see Andanar Petrikova again.

    Petitions (if any): 
    Caste Requesting : Priest Prince
    Reasons For Requesting these Castes:
    Mamoru's history supports why he needed those castes then, but in the future, his castes will be even more important.

    On the Provincial level, his Caste as Priest Prince gives him considerable social cachet in a Province that was literally formed by a Priest Prince. It is that cachet that he will be drawing on as he goes forward. He will use that cachet to attempt to leverage himself into the Province Seat of Sarque, on the basis that he already rules Sarque's spiritual capital and already leads the rest of the Sarque voting block in Parliament. He will use the social power being a Priest Prince gives him to attempt to remove Sarque from Dhemlan's purview entirely, causing ripples across the entirety of the Realm through the possible creation of a new Territory of people from the Sema Mountains. As a Priest, his motivations are viewed as more pure than they might be otherwise. As a Prince, he understands the legalities that will make his attempt at secession viable, without war.

    On the level of the Sect and the Family, members of his Sect (like Ercilia Augustin) are ensconced in some of the highest Courts in the land. The Sect was founded on the basis of Mamoru's perceived purity of connection to the Darkness, so it is this connection to the Darkness which will most influence his actions here: He will use this influence and authority to attempt to twist the rulers of other Provinces away from the possibility of supporting a bid by Atholi to rule Anagon. He needs his dual castes to continue to present his vision for the Sect (and for Sarque) as a directive from Mother Night.

    He will leverage the aforementioned power represented by the Family into securing the Queen school Savion will found in Sarque, when it might have otherwise gone to Atholi, a considerable political coup which may also leverage him into the Province seat over Acileano. As a Priest, he will be a de facto teacher among the Queens hosted there, granting him influence and possibly even a Queen who he will decide is capable of ruling the new Territory he wants to create.

    And, of course, he will continue to use his connection to the Darkness to grant the Sect and the Family the security of an off-puttingly Abyss-scented meeting place, securing them from random wanderers.

    Plans for this Character:
    Mamoru's plots are as follows:

    Mamoru is going to be attempting to supplant the current ruler of Sarque. This will lead to threads with Savion (one such will be Savion trading support and Queen school for Mamoru's support and the complete cessation of banditry, another might be discussion of what Mamoru's goals as the ruler of Sarque might be, another might be political doubletalk where nobody says secession but it's the obvious threat, and there would also be threads where Mamoru pretty much drastically undercuts the deal he made in the best interests of Sarque) and with the ruler he's trying to replace ("Why?" "Because you SUCK."). His end goal is, of course, secession.

    Mamoru secured Tahlemar Sanzo's place at the Academy, and is naturally very interested in Tahl's Queen. In the future, he may call in this favor for some reason--possibly to secure his father's death, possibly to secure Ysabel as a Queen in independent Sarque--which is its own kettle of fish.

    Mamoru is, for pretty much the reason that she wants Anagon to be reformed, going to be trying to fuck with Isadora. The revelation that his father, Leon, the only other surviving descendant of Prince Fermin, is serving in Isadora's Court will cause a lot of tension. Mamoru is not fond of his father, but his father supporting Isadora can and probably will lead to Mamoru using the Family he controls to attempt to murder the man, directly drawing Isadora's ire--and attempts to return the favor in kind, which will be a whole 'nother bag of fish, especially if he manages to strike a deal with Lucia. He's determined like that.

    A naturally dual-casted male could pose an interesting puzzle for Lucia--but while Mamoru indubitably does respect her for her work in the clinics, her association with Isadora would make him very resistant to any attempt on her part to figure out just how he'd been born with a traditionally feminine caste. However, a deal could be struck that would end favorably for both parties...

    He will also be attempting to draw non-Dhemlan parts of the mountains into Sarque, such as those in Raej or Pruul, in order to create a greater Sarque with hte people he feels the most commonality with. This will draw him into conflict with the Queen who rules the Sema in Raej, as well as Saiph herself, as the Sema mountains in Pruul include the capital of Pruul. Which is obviously problematic.

    A plot I'm personally really excited about will be Mamoru's hunt for Witch. He will come to believe that all of the signs in the natural world are pointing to Witch having already arrived, or in the worst case, being soon to be born. This will link into the Queen school in Sarque--he will start his search there, especially since he's super old school and of the "Witch doesn't have to wear the Black" school of thought. It will link into a conflict of interest with the High Priestess of Dhemlan, who has the not-unreasonable viewpoint of helping the living and not quibbling over semantics.

    And it will be especially interesting when Mamo has a kid of his own.

    Other Petitions you’ve made here: Iskander Khaldun dual caste, Saiph al-Kaid triple caste

    Why did this character became inactive? I quit the site. (It's funny because if you look at Mamo's approval date and his inactivation date the difference is 15 days)

    What will you do to prevent this character from becoming inactive again? I am going to write him! He has a lot of stuff to do.

    What are your plans for this character? I'm going to treat this as his updated petition section because I want to preserve his petition in situ, so here goes:

    Mamoru will ruling Sarque and running his religious cult/gang combo. This is his Territory-changing plot role in that he is neither Dark Jeweled nor high-caste, and therefore could not hold the Province of Sarque without the popularity that being the inheritor of the Priest Prince Fermin's legacy as a dual-caste male. His dual caste was also necessary, as outlined in his history, for the development of the Sect of Our Lady of Guidance and Peace. He is devout, he is a believer, and people believe in him. His dual caste provides him with the Craft abilities to minister to his followers, and also is the main vector for one of his Craft strengths.

    As the Priest Prince of Sarque, he has a minor antagonist's role in the Territory-wide plot: Mamoru is beyond zealous in his devotion to Sarque, to the point where he will not agree to hand the rule of the Province over to a Queen whose experience does not impress him. This creates conflict, because there is a Queen reaching her majority in Sarque that some people may support. Nor will he quietly follow the edicts of whoever wins Dhemlan's election if he doesn't like what they have to say.

    Number of previous Reactivations: 0 for Mamo

    Changes Made to Application for Reactivation Process (if any) : Updated age, added history to update him to 193, changed his dislike of Isadora Diamente to a dislike of her legacy and his fear of Savion Euskara to a fear of the election of an inexperienced ruler.

    Player Name: Reid

    16
    Dhemlan / La Familia
    « on: Feb 20, 14, 05:11:36 PM »
    the sect of our lady

    The Sect of Our Lady of Guidance and Peace is colloquially known as La Familia -- the Family. On the surface, it’s a fringe element of Blood society that feels that the Purge was not instigated by Witch, but simply a Black-Jeweled Queen of the Black Tower. They believe that the true Dreams Made Flesh is coming to right the wrongs done to them by that false Lady, and what they must do to be worthy of Her is spread the word of Her coming. Upheld as the prophet of Her arrival is the man known as the Patriarch, a shadowy figure who is rumored to be a descendant of Prince Fermin, the Priest who led the rebellion against ancient Anagon and won Sarque’s freedom. Attempts to discern the truth of the Patriarch’s identity are rebuffed by his followers--through misdirection, threats, and often violence.

    The beliefs of the Sect are fairly simple. It is founded upon three simple facts: firstly, that the Darkness is a loving protector of life, not a destructive force. Secondly, that Senja Ankelo, the Black-Jeweled Queen of Ebon Askavi, was not Witch. Finally, they believe that the true Witch is coming.

    The three tenets of the Sect of Our Lady of Guidance and Peace are Correspondence, Concordance, and Conference. Correspondence is heavily influenced by Tacean philosophy; it is the belief that the Darkness is in everything, and because of this fact, nature cannot help but be full of signs which will speak to the arrival of Witch. Concordance is the study of other systems of belief, from Dena Nehele to Chaillot. Sectists believe that at the heart of every religion is the same set of traditions, the ones handed down from the Dragons at the conception of the Blood, and through study of all religions, one moves closer to the Darkness. Conference is the requirement to come together at a pre-ordained time in order to share what you know and receive guidance from those higher in the Sect. Conference also requires the sharing of wealth between the members of the Sect, as well as willing assistance within each individual’s ability.

    Most of the members of the Sect are not pureblooded Dhemlan. In fact, most pureblooded Dhemlanese shun the Sect as delusional. They are disproportionately of mixed heritage, what many would refer to as ‘half-breeds’, with as many as four mixed-heritage Dhemlanese to any one pureblood Dhemlan. In the Sect, one sees a variety of coloration and bone structure not seen in any other part of Dhemlan’s society; many of those under its aegis may not even be Dhemlanese at all, but a mix of other races found throughout the Realm.

    dual-heritage movement

    While the Sect is a legitimate religious movement, it is also a front for something much more sinister. The Sect, in addition to its lofty philosophical goals, is a protection scheme devoted to the promotion of mixed-heritage fortunes within Terreille in general and Dhemlan in specific. It acknowledges that the life of a half Long-Lived person is a unique kind of torture; with a lifetime too long to fit among the short-lived, but one far too short to fit among the long-lived, they have few places to go where they may be accepted. So the sect within the Sect--the Family--seeks to level the playing field. Businesses which pay the Family a reasonable fee are protected from competition, theft, and--to a certain extent--the law. The Darker-Jeweled or high-Caste of the Sect are often pulled to produce reprisals, from violent to subtle, for those who attempt to compete with shops or companies under the Family’s aegis of protection. The money earned from this scheme is often fed back into mixed-heritage shops and businesses.

    Recently, the Family has taken matters into its own hands regarding the perceived inequality of grain distribution within Dhemlan. It actively raids shipments from Atholi to Gravardi and beyond; in part, this is reprisal for the Queen of Atholi’s continued attempts to force a reunification of ancient Anagon, but it is mostly inspired by those in Sarque who are starving. The natives of Sarque consider themselves indomitable, but starvation has no face for them to punch, and they are extremely poor in Queens. It is difficult for hunters, whether conquistador or hidalgo, to follow the natives among the mountain paths, so they often are successful in their raids.

    Most of Sarque considers itself more a part of the mountains than the rest of Dhemlan, despite the racial differences between themselves and the other mountain people, i.e. the people of Raej. Interbreeding between the Dhemlanese and short-lived races is more common in Sarque than in any other Province. In Sarque, Warlord Princes are significantly more common than Queens, especially in the wake of the Great War. But even before, there were few natural-born Sarque Queens, and male rulers are more common in Sarque than anywhere else. Sarque’s last Queen was Amparo Vargas, who wore Purple Dusk but died of shortly before the Great War of complications from congenital illness.

    The lack of Queens is why, in part, the Family has begun to openly strive towards drawing ‘half-breed’ families to the mountains of Sarque. They have been drawing mixed-blood families to Sarque for a good fifty years now, which already had a critical mass of dual-bloodlines, and have no real intention of stopping as long as they can feed them all.

    17
    Inactive / Mamoru Salazar
    « on: Jan 29, 14, 07:00:46 PM »
    The Basics

    Character Name: Mamoru Fermin Salazar
    Nicknames:
    • Salazar - At the start of the Eyrien aggression against Dhemlan, the direct descendants of the line of Prince Fermin changed their surname to Salazar--the dwellers in the old hall--in order to prevent the line being wiped out. Many people in Sarque refer to Mamoru by his surname in order to honor his ancestor, who is still a figure of veneration despite living more than four thousand years ago.
    • The Patriarch - Not to honor his ancestor, but to honor his place as the leader of the Sect of Our Lady of Guidance and Peace. Many people throughout the Territory are aware of the existence of the Patriarch, but do not know the Patriarch's identity.
    Age: 350 (162 BP)
    Race: Half long lived / Half Tacean, half Dhemlan
    Caste: Priest Prince
    Birth Territory: Dhemlan, T
    Home Territory: Dhemlan, T

    Birthright Jewel: Yellow
    Offering Jewel: Tiger Eye
    Appearance


    Play By: Godfrey Gao
    Distinguishing Features:
    Mamoru is a smallish man, standing at 5'8" and being not particularly built. What muscle he has comes from working the land, so it's not particularly defined or interesting to look at, but it's enough that he's a lot heavier than he looks. He has his father's golden eyes, but with his mother's almond shape; his hair is dark, but with a brown tint rather than blue. He is capable of growing stubble, and is often irritated by this fact. He shaves every morning, whether he needs to or not.

    He doesn't dress particularly well, which could be unfortunate for such a popular person, but it's an affectation which wins him a lot of loyalty from those who follow him. Mamoru wears outdated clothes because he thinks spending marks on clothing while there are people starving in his Province is wasteful and, furthermore, cruel. He will patch things until they are literally no longer useful in order to keep money back to buy what grain he doesn't have his bandits steal. His only indulgences, as far as his wardrobe, are sturdy boots made to last a hundred years and a similarly sturdy rain slicker--although rain is becoming ever more rare as the land fades.

    Personality



    Personality:
    Mamoru is a consummate Prince: loyal, orderly, sensitive. Quiet around people he doesn't know, maybe, but that doesn't make him a poor partner, socially. He has a great memory for names, faces, birthdays--little minutiae that generally makes people think that he considers them a close friend (which he usually does, being a friendly sort)--so people he doesn't know don't often stay people he doesn't know for long. He is rarely accidentally offensive, although he can be quite acidic around close friends--with friends, he pokes genteelly at weak spots. With enemies, he delights in backhanded compliments and sly digs. With strangers, he learns weak points and then gets the fuck away from them.

    He feels that it's his responsibility as a Priest, blessed by the Darkness to be one of the few males worthy of bearing that caste, to spread knowledge; his Prince caste lends a strong bent towards imparting the nuance and context of that knowledge. He can get quite pedantic in the lessons that he, as the Priest in charge of the altar and Archive of Montserrat, is required to give. It bothers him to have to elide or ignore details, because it is details which motivate him. He'd rather not speak on a topic at all than have to give only the broad strokes of the situation. In Parliament, his dedication to giving a full picture of things has gotten him a reputation of integrity, even when it shoots his own goals in the foot.

    This isn't exactly so. For a person who puts so much effort into being seen as honest and responsible, Mamoru is actually very conniving. When he doesn't see a legal path to what he wants, he will turn first to loopholes, then to illegal methodology. His Prince caste gives him an edge at finding and exploiting the weaknesses of others, and his extensive self-directed education in the law of Dhemlan piles on top of that to make him a formidable opponent in the political and religious arenas. Educated by Warlord Princes in combat, he has a solid--not stunning, but solid--grasp of strategy and tactics, for all his strengths lay in different arenas. He often delegates the details of the Family's attacks on Atholi grain to the Warlord Princes running the bandit cells, but the broad strokes are his.

    He is not always proud of his actions, and knows there will someday be a price called in; that's basic mathematics, as well as a lesson taught to him as a very young Priest. He fully expects that someday, someone will find out who he is, and they will extract the price he owes. Every day that he wakes up and a Black Widow Judge is not standing over him is a small victory and more proof that Mother Night is on his side. It'd be easy to lose himself in fear for his life or his future, but Mamoru has a formidable will and the single-minded focus of a determinator. Until the Courts or the Black Widows catch up with him, he intends to continue to do Mother Night's work.

    It is important to note that, in all actions carried out by the Family, the only thing Mamoru is, strictly, guilty of is ordering the actions. He orders the attacks on Atholi grain, he schedules the visits of those who protect and advance dual-bloodline business, he orders Black Widow compulsions and murder--but he never does it himself. It is also important to note that, to Mamoru, this does not matter. He does not consider those who act on his orders responsible for what they do. He believes the final responsibility for any acts committed by members of the Family to be his. It hurts him when his flock suffers for what he has told them to do, but his determination--and his obligation to the many--keeps him on the same track.

    He is extremely attached to his genealogy, and proud of his descent from Prince Fermin. It is no secret in Sarque that his ancestor was also a light-Jeweled Priest Prince, although Prince Fermin wore the Descent Summer-sky and not the Tiger-Eye; Mamoru has, since early childhood, ever been held up his great-grandsire's standard. This has given him a sense of purpose. He loves Sarque and what it represents and how his family is so integrally intertwined with the cultural identity of his people. He doesn't see Sarque as part of Dhemlan so much as he sees it as its own Territory, unfortunately bound to another. However, his line of descent has also given him some of his most insidious doubts. He compares himself to his great-grandsire incessantly. He feels that he is not living up to Prince Fermin's success at winning Sarque its independence, because he was not capable of protecting Sarque from Eyrien ravages. He tends to forget that Prince Fermin was over two thousand five hundred years old when the long, bloody independence war ended.

    Mamoru's dedication to Sarque and to his Sect are his defining traits; much about him spins from his ancestry and his conviction that Senja Ankelos was no more Witch than he is. He has had two hundred years to dedicate himself to these things wholesale and wholeheartedly; they are his coping mechanism for dealing with his experiences during the Eyrien occupation. Though he was never on the front line of any battle, he lost his entire family through one mechanism or another in the years leading up to the Purge. His sister was killed before his eyes, and a bed of witchblood that sings her name mars the street outside the Archive where he lives and works.

    This dedication makes it possible for him to bear the weight that he places on himself as the Patriarch; he doesn't like employing violence, but he feels he must in order to effectively counteract the forces he perceives arrayed against him. While he would never dream of compromising the Sect, the Family, or Sarque, he is certainly willing to compromise his own morals in the pursuit of his goals. He genuinely believes that he is spreading the truth of the work of Mother Night in his work with the Sect, that he is helping dual-bloodline Blood towards equality in his work as the Patriarch, and that he is preserving a valuable cultural history by opposing Isadora and promoting Sarque separatism. It also makes it possible for him to cope with his perceived inability to stop the Eyriens from doing what they did to Sarque.

    Charismatic, determined, and politically savvy, Mamoru is a powerful figure in his home Province--and he's poised to take a role of importance to the Territory, one that could even change the face of Terreille.

    Likes:
    • Philosophical discussion as to the nature of the Blood and the Abyss is, obviously, a huge interest with Mamoru. His day job as Priest of the Montserrat Archive even serves to make philosophical discussions part of his job. He enjoys the give-and-take of such discussions way more than he enjoys the takeaway, although that obviously matters to him, too. His closest friends are usually those who can keep up with him in this arena, and for this reason there's often an element of rivalry in his close personal relationships. He also enjoys fostering philosophical discussion and dissension--he considers it his duty as the Patriarch to ask questions which make those who follow him seek more information.
    • Mamoru has gotten a lot of joy out of cooking since the Purge. Not only is his food edible--it even passes for 'decent' sometimes!--he can make a little bit go a very, very long way, and it makes the Montserrat Archive a popular place to send your growing Jeweled kids for more reasons than just the lessons he gives. Like, it may not be exactly ~haute cuisine~ or very high in nutritional value, but it gives the calories and carbohydrates needed to power Jewels. Considering the rate at which even the mid-range Jewels can succumb to starvation, that can be the difference between life and death.
    • Mamoru has a great appreciation for much of his duties as a Priest of Dhemlan, but after his responsibility to educate comes his responsibility to keep accurate records. He deeply enjoys keeping genealogical records of the people who come to Montserrat Archive, finds calm in balancing accounts, and--on a more microcosmic level--keeps detailed journals to ensure he doesn't forget anything important.

      Dislikes:
    • Isadora Diamente desires the, frankly unnecessary, reunification of the defunct province of Anagon. Even if Mamoru weren't the great-great-grandson and only living descendant of the man who secured Sarque's independence, he would think this was stupid. Though he dearly wishes for a Queen to rule in Sarque, or for a Queen to come to Sarque at all, he does not want to sacrifice his people's independence for it--which is exactly what Isadora is asking for. The day that the people of Sarque want to rejoin the other Provinces is the only day he'll ever get over his instinctive hate for this Queen. While he would welcome a Queen who wanted to rule Sarque, a Queen who wants to rule Anagon is completely unwelcome.
    • Mamoru dislikes having to have a life outside of his political and ideological aspirations. He doesn't like that he gets lonely on long nights spent at his desk reviewing paperwork, and he doesn't like that he keeps finding books that catch his eye outside of the few specific genres that he considers germane to his goals. He doesn't like that having to run from the Archive to the place where his cult is based means he misses getting a fresh-baked pastry from his favorite baker, and he doesn't like that walking down the main street in Montserrat reminds him that people died and he did nothing. It would make him completely happy to be able to completely forget his 'personal' life in favor of his political one. He would view such an existence as a perfect expression of his ideological purity. Unfortunately, real life keeps finding ways to intrude.
    • Attending Parliament is a boring chore that Mamoru has to do because he keeps getting asked to represent his district. Every single year. He feels that he wastes more time than he can spare on this, but he isn't willing to step down and possibly be replaced by someone less sympathetic to his causes than he.

      Fears:
    • As a person with a shorter lifespan than most in his district, let alone his Province and Territory, and a person who feels he has a purpose to achieve, Mamoru has a real and present fear of losing control of his legacy. How he is perceived as Mamoru Salazar and how he is perceived as the Patriarch are two very different views of his place in history, but both are equally important to Mamoru for different reasons--and he doesn't want to wake up one day to find that either part of him has been slandered--or to leave the world with any possibility of him being remembered in a way he feels is slanderous. His legacy, and the legacy of his illustrious ancestor, are in his hands, and he doesn't want to be the one to bring dishonor to his family name.
    • Mamoru has always felt keenly for the people of Sarque, a habit passed down to him from his father's family due to their direct line of descent from Prince Fermin. Therefore, it should be no surprise that he fears failing to secure Sarque's independence for the next generation. He sees Isadora Diamente and her Dark-Jeweled Court to one side, the ruler of Gravardi to the other, and above him a childish little bastard who thinks the conquistadors are more important than the things which make Sarque Sarque, and he has a very real worry that ancient Anagon may be reforming long before it ought to.
    • Before the Purge, he had a great deal of admiration for Savion Euskara--his uncle by marriage saved millions of Dhemlan lives by drafting the Treaty of Queens. His uncle's decisions since the Purge, however, paint a different person than the one Mamoru knew from his visits to his Aunt Carisa; he feels that the Savion he knew would never have married a landen (a union Mamoru objects to for reasons that are not immediately obvious) nor stolen a slot at the Academy from a Dhemlanese student for a foreign Queen. While he would have, previous to the Purge, said with confidence that Savion supporting many of Mamoru's pet causes, he is no longer sure he can trust his uncle to do what is so clearly right. He fears what else he doesn't know about his uncle, in the way one might fear a friendly dog that suddenly savages one. He must, by necessity, treat with his uncle--but he does so reluctantly, and usually through intermediaries.

      Craft Strengths:
    • Reinforcement Craft is something Mamo is quite good at. He learned it when he was young as part of his work with the Sisters of Ink and the Onyx Company--two resistance movements which shaped his understanding of the world. Part of his job was to move historically valuable books and cultural items from one part of Sarque to another. Inevitably, these things would get damaged in transit, but Mamoru could (assisted by some good old-fashioned wintergreen and book glue) repair and reinforce the precious old books and paintings.
    • Another skill Mamoru perfected in Onyx Company was something he obliquely refers to as an aura of darkness. He is able to call forth a taste of the Darkness and imbue a place or artifact with it, making that item feel sacred to any psychic examination. Often, being around such objects would unnerve others, causing them to avoid the area--citing feelings such as being watched. This Craft, usually performed in ritual with other Priestesses, was vital in ensuring the protection of cultural touchstones like Dolmen Barrow. Perhaps most importantly, it's Craft work of his own design, and he's very proud of it. He uses it now to ensure the safety of Sect meeting places.

      Craft Weaknesses:
    • Shamefully for a Dhemlan male and especially embarrassing for a Sarque male raised by two Warlord Princes, Mamoru is barely competent with combat craft. It seems simple enough to him, and he feels that he should find all Craft easy to learn, but it's not. He can manage a rudimentary power bolt if he really has to, but his entire life he has traded on his intellect rather than his strength (a tendency encouraged by his natural caste as a Priest and the secretive nature of his work with the resistance). This has cost him in the combat arena.
    • Mamoru has been working with spells to create false positives for so long that he can no longer use psychic cleansing spells to erase old memories and old auras. This is part of the reason places like Dolmen Barrow still radiate the hint of the Abyss that they do--Mamoru doesn't remember how to cleanse them, and most members of Onyx Company have no interest in taking the spells down.


      Life Story

      Family:
      Mother: Hanako no Ariake, Rose to Purple Dusk Priestess, deceased (132 BP)
      Father: Leon Fermin Salazar, Summersky to Blood Opal Warlord Prince, deceased (15 BP)
      Aunt: Carisa Vargas, Summersky to Green Priestess, deceased (Purge)
      Siblings: Sebastien Fermin Salazar, Blood Opal to Sapphire Warlord Prince, 361 (172BP)
      Corrina no Ariake, Opal to Red Healer, deceased (128 BP)
      Cousin: Ferran Euskara, Purple Dusk to Sapphire Prince, deceased

      History:
      Leon Fermin was a great start to the creation of an Aristo bloodline for the Fermin family, one that already had the great social prestige of relation to Prince Fermin--the man who led Sarque from the tyranny of Anagon into its rebirth as a Province of its own. Except then he went and screwed it right up by falling in love with a Tacean Priestess, who had come to Dhemlan to serve as a courier of resources and information between Seung Corro and the Resistance in Sarque. Though they did not marry, they did handfast, and over a period of ten years had three children. Their firstborn, Sebastien, bore a Dhemlan name because he was a Warlord Prince and Hanako said she did not really care; then came Corrina, a Healer who bore her mother's surname as a nod to Tacean tradition; and finally Mamoru, the child that Hanako insisted bear a Tacean name. Not because she felt particularly attached to the Territory of her birth, but because he bore dual castes: Prince and Priest.

      Growing up, Mamoru was constantly in the company of his Tacean mother or the Priestesses of the enclave she lived with. His earliest memories are learning to read the entries in the long books of Montserrat's genealogies, watching sheep and watching for Eyrien-shaped shadows on the ground, and his siblings both gaining Birthrights which promised Dark Jewels upon Descent. He learned the basics of Priestess Craft at the knee of his mother--philosophy and Tacean tradition foremost among them. When he was eight, Sebastien had just completed his training as a guardsman and was taking service with the Priestess enclave to guard the knowledge held there--and Mamoru gained a Yellow Jewel at his Birthright, marking him as far-and-away the weakest of his parents' children. Though it couldn't be argued his father was disappointed, this changed nothing of the way his mother interacted with Mamoru. His training as a Priest proceeded apace, and though halfhearted attempts were made to train him as a guard, his father and siblings' personal prejudices against his Light Birthright ensured Mamoru dreaded these sessions like he would dread getting a tooth pulled without anesthetic.

      At twenty (141BP), Mamoru made a Descent to Tiger-Eye. At this point, his mother was getting on in years, and someone fluent in Tacean and able to function as a Priestess was required to take her place in the network of support from Tacea and Shalador. Hanako chose to teach her son to read Old Tacean, shucking tradition to do so--men in her home Territory were not traditionally literate, and the fact that she made that decision still influences Mamoru's view of what is morally obligatory and what is morally supererogatory. Along with this education in Tacean language and culture, Mamoru was inducted into the secrets of Montserrat's Archive: mainly that they were all huge rebels, responsible for secreting away Dhemlan artifacts in places which were then so thickly surrounded by myth, spells, and urban legend that the Eyriens were almost certainly not going to approach them. Because he had family in the capital, he was often assigned with the responsibility of bringing artifacts through the Provinces to Sarque, where they would be tucked away safely. This unique meeting of the Onyx Company and the art-smuggling organization (which went by many names but was often referred to as the Sisters of Ink) created a situation where young Mamoru was exposed to a great deal of history and culture--an education that most of his peers in Sarque did not receive. Of particular interest to him were accounts of ancient mythology, stories of Witch and Dreams Made Flesh; he would often spend the long return trips from visiting his family and picking up a covert drop of artifacts leafing through these books.

      In 134, he discovered--to his immense concern--that Corrina was participating in the resistance as well. It didn't bother him that Sebastien and Leon were part of the effort to repel Askavi, because they were Warlord Princes, such was their duty, and he'd practically grown up knowing that. Leon's place in the near-mythical Gold Company surprised exactly no one; Sebastien's decision to work with Azure Company was similarly unsurprising, considering his affinity for psychic Craft. But Corrina, a Healer, had been actively participating in the work of Emerald Company--the most dangerous of the Resistance--since she made her Offering and came away with the Red. Mamoru's work with Onyx Company made him acutely aware of the statistics surrounding the Healer-centric rebels. He was well aware that more than ninety percent of the Healers historically involved with the rebels died, and horribly.

      This discovery fractured the household. Hanako, now in the twilight of her life, felt that if Corrina decided the work was worth her life, then it was her right as a female to make that decision. Leon and Sebastien were enraged, and their rage only drove Corrina deeper into the arms of Emerald Company. She became less willing to deal with her higher-caste family; when it was necessary for her to talk to them, she often used Mamoru as a go-between. For his part, Mamoru simply feared that his brave, irresponsible sister was going to dig herself a hole that she and her Escort could not climb out of. In the face of Corrina's dismissals of his concerns--which at the time, he considered legitimate--he felt he had no recourse but to let her do as she would and pray to the Darkness for intercession, that she would be safe and protected. Corrina was still alive and well when Hanako passed into the Darkness in 132 BP. She remained that way, laughing and proud of her work in all the subtle ways that characterized Emerald Company, until the nearest Eyrien outpost to Montserrat was collapsed upon the heads of the occupiers in 128 BP.

      The Eyrien reprisal was swift and merciless. One moment, Corrina and Mamoru were walking along the main street after lunch together. The next, there were Eyrien warriors everywhere, and Corrina was bleeding, and Mamoru had never, ever been good at combat craft the way his fucking Healer sister had been. He didn't know anything but basic Healing craft meant to care for papercuts and accidental scratches. It could have taken moments or hours, but it was over before Mamoru could react, the Eyriens gone--and every Healer in Montserrat, newborn infant to old crone, was dead.

      In the aftermath of the slaughter, witchblood bloomed in Montserrat, living memories of the women that had been lost to the Eyriens. To say that the people were not cowed was an understatement. If anything, the people of Sarque became more committed after the murder of an entire town's worth of Healers--and they stepped up their game for the final hundred and twenty years of the Purge.

      To say it was a hard time for Mamoru would be putting it lightly. The loss of his sister caused him to have a crisis of faith, one only amplified by the disappointment his brother and father had in him--he'd been there, he should have been able to help her, to do something. He plunged into theosophy and the work of preserving Dhemlan artifacts and history, befriended his sister's escort Nicodemo Faust, led the work of enchanting Dolmen Barrow and multiple other sites throughout Sarque (and other areas of Dhemlan) to ring unsettlingly of the Abyss. Sebastien died eight years before the Purge in an attempt to deflect an Eyrien attack from one of the few mountain villages with a Queen of their own. Leon's work in Gold Company was not what took him out of the fight, but a congenital heart defect made prolonged battle impossible for him to maintain; he retired to the borders of Atholi, where he devoted all of his time to managing the Queens who assisted the Rebellion. Mamoru could not say he was fond of his family, but he was proud of them, and he did mourn.

      By the last years of the occupation, he had become a figure of no little renown in Onyx Company and the Sisters, a useful smuggler and propagandist with connections throughout Dhemlan society. Among them were Marienrode Virolai, the daughter of a landen politician, who had been purchasing works of art off the Eyriens for fifty years by the time the Sisters of Ink made contact with her, and arranging for the thefts of what Eyriens couldn't sell. He was familiar with Amaya Fuentes, the High Priestess, and was often the go-between between her and Marienrode. They were actually making progress, acting to preserve the millennia of history that defined Dhemlan, when the Purge struck.

      Mamoru rode the wave of Dark power instinctively, his hundred and sixty-one years of experience and Tacean philosophy having always inclined him more towards the semblance of giving in rather than resisting. He came away unbroken--only to find his aunt and cousin dead, his uncle broken, and his people devastated. At least Amaya had lived, unharmed. The landens were fine, so he had no need to fear for Marienrode. Now the entire burden of Prince Fermin's legacy lay on his shoulders, and for a few months, that was enough. He worked hard to organize his area of Sarque, to ensure that even with minimal Queenly interaction they'd be able to support and manage themselves. It wasn't hard; the mountain people had always been independent, and they managed to cobble together something until Dhemlan pulled itself back together.

      It was on the back of Mamoru's first election to Parliament--a nomination he'd received unasked for and accepted because who else should represent Montserrat--that his uncle proposed to Marienrode. Marienrode's acceptance posed a confusing puzzle for Mamoru. He didn't exactly have romantic feelings for Marienrode, but he did have deep and often confusing feelings of friendship. They had shared the roughest time of his life. While he didn't see anything inherently long with landen/Blood relationships, this one in particular was abhorrent to him; Marienrode had just lost her lover of more than a hundred years, she wasn't even into the first quarter of her first century, and Savion would outlive her. A Warlord Prince's territoriality would not allow for divorce, even if Marienrode asked for it--and Mamoru knew that no matter how upsetting Marienrode found a marriage, she would not act to step away from the Blood.

      He told his uncle this, but his uncle refused to entertain Mamoru's concerns. While Mamoru attended the wedding as a favor to his friend, he promptly excused himself to Sarque after, returning to Ardath only to fulfill his Parliamentary duties.

      In Sarque, he found good, hard work to do. His father had disappeared to Atholi, perhaps considering his work done, perhaps having finally found his Queen--Mamoru couldn't find himself even a bit of curiosity. There was too much to do to help the Province piece itself back together. In those first five years after the Purge, he heard the theories of the Purge being the work of Witch, and something in that just refused to click with his understanding of how the Darkness, how Dreams Made Flesh worked. It became ever more obvious to him that the Black-Jeweled power they had felt was not Witch, but simply a Black-Jeweled Queen.

      He intended to keep his views to himself, but it spilled out, bit by bit, until he had the Priestesses of the Archive asking him to expound on it. The Sect of Our Lady of Guidance and Peace grew piecemeal, but by the end of the first decade after the Purge, it had become a devotion of its own. In those days, it was more equitable in its spread of people; the makeup of Mamoru's flock, which had become centered in the Montserrat Archives where he had been a staple for a hundred years, roughly reflected the rest of Dhemlan's people. The more people came to Montserrat to hear Mamoru's theory, the more people Mamoru met, the clearer it became that while the Purge affected everyone equally, it was others like himself, those of dual heritage, who were suffering the most. Half-Eyriens suffered prejudice and harm, the half-short-lived and half-Blood had always caught the shorter end of the stick, and Mamoru knew he had to do something. Not just for Sarque, but for people of mixed heritage everywhere.

      So he began to use his influence to help those who needed it, the people whose suffering he could almost comprehend but not quite. So he lied. He said that he had seen in the Darkness the truth of the matter was that the half-blooded among them were purer of intent; having no country of their own, their devotion to the Darkness was not distracted by petty Territorial politics. He encouraged the people who followed him to support the half-blooded among them--to buy from half-blood businesses where possible, to lend the half-blooded a hand, to in effect favor those who weren't pureblooded long-lived over those who were. That ameoreliated the problem slightly, but it wasn't enough. His flock was too small to effect change that way, even though he did in some cases have influential followers. So he pushed it a little further, and a little further.

      Eventually, he was--with regret, with reluctance, but he was--ordering those half-bloods who had the ability (whether by Jewels or by training) to 'convince' reluctant purebloods to their way of thinking. Whether by hook or by crook or Widow's compulsions, he turned people towards businesses owned by people bearing dual bloodlines. Through his agents, largely formed of the people who believed in his religion, he began the long, slow process of change: He had records relating to crimes committed by people of dual bloodline destroyed. He sent Black Widows to convince Queens to try those who attacked half-Eyriens, he sent males to twist Black Widows towards favoring the often-sidelined halfbreeds, he had thugs threaten the owners of small businesses.

      It all seemed so harmless when he started--but it wasn't even that he lost control. Mamoru was ever-aware of the boundaries he crossed, of the lines of Protocol that he was bending or erasing entirely. None of it mattered, because he had a goal. He had something he could fix. He tried to convince himself that this really was what Mother Night would want, a level playing field between all her children, but the level of violence that was sometimes employed made self-deception impossible. That didn't mean he stopped. It was a worthwhile price to pay. The eventual punishment, the lives that would be (and were) lost among his followers, those were a worthwhile price too, because the end goal was worth it. In the end, he was finally able to fix something.

      It took him a hundred years to achieve any kind of noteworthy traction, but by 117AP, the Patriarch had become a household name. Everyone knew that there was someone who could be counted on to back up a halfbreed--if only he knew of their problems. He built an edifice of people like him, who could be counted on to support those he defined. By the time word of his alter identity had reached Parliament, the darker side of the Sect was self-policing and present in most metropolitan centers.

      By necessity, knowing much of what he did to advance his fellows was illegal, he had separated himself from the person he was as the leader of the Sect; those who might have remembered were swiftly induced to forget his identity, by the Black Widows who looked to Mamoru for leadership. Many of those Widows willingly erased their own memory of what they had to fix--and those who wouldn't quietly disappeared. Mamoru never asked how the Black Widows had self-policed; he only knew that he had not yet been pulled before the Territory Court for the crimes he had ordered.

      Since then, he has done everything he could to ensure that the Sect and the Family it represents continues to bloom and grow. It leaves him little time to keep up with the only other remnant of the Fermin bloodlines, his father, who disappeared in the early 120s AP; at any rate, the man never seemed to care for him, and Mamoru sees no reason to pretend concern. They couldn't be said to be close as a family--and he has much more important things to do.

      Show Us What You've Got


      Character in Play:
      The Purge came on in the early night, after devotions but before the four Priestesses and the lone Priest went to bed. In the hour before the Black-Jeweled wave of power swept through, they sat at a table and drank shitty moonshine over a map of Sarque, marked with chess pieces to denote Eyrien forces. No one was paying particular attention to the map that evening, though there was certainly misinformation to sow regarding the movements of a small group of Azure company Princes; no, they were celebrating a birthday and a victory, all at once.

      "I really didn't think landens could handle it," said Rovinha, running an admiring finger along the rim of a cylindrical case next to her chair. That particular case held a portrait--the original of a portrait--of Prince Fermin, a man dead four thousand years. The man who had liberated Sarque from the tyranny of Anagon, who had only let Sarque remain in Dhemlan because he wanted to settle and have a family. "I suppose there were other indications that they could. But this, oh, this."

      Mamoru downed his shot, put it rim-down on the map because of course it would all have to be burned anyway, in case the Craft woven into the paper should attract Eyrien attention during an inspection; it had never yet happened, but they had more treasures than just information as to movement in other portions of the Rebellion, and no one wanted to attract the sort of attention that would reveal Mamoru's bloodline. Nor the sort that would make the Eyriens look a little too hard at an Opal-Jeweled Black Widow Priestess. They already attracted enough attention--both of them bearing dual bloodlines, both of them dual casted--without suspiciously Craft-imbued paper.

      He took Liberdade's shot, balanced it on top of the pair of glasses he'd already drained. "Marienrode found it in the kindling pile of the Central Archive," said Mamoru. "They were going to burn it."

      "They burn a lot of our history," said Rovinha.

      It was true, in more ways than one, because it was no secret that Sarque was the heart of the Dhemlan resistance. It couldn't be called rebellion, no, because rebellion implied some great goal, some pitched fight and a figure to rally behind. When they had had Corrina, and Mamoru's father, that had seemed a possibility. Now it was just Mamoru, and while he was good at what he did, he wasn't enough to lead a rebellion. The resistance, though, it distracted attention from every other part of Dhemlan, eased the burden on them at the price of lives. Worthwhile, the members of Onyx Company thought. Eyriens would just kill Healers. Priestesses, though… It was they who would bear the brunt of Eyrien tortures if captured.

      That was why they had to be so very careful.

      Mamoru himself was subject to especial scrutiny, for his bloodline, his dual caste, his popularity with the people of Montserrat and the rest of the district that fell under Montserrat's rule. Though he had no assigned Eyrien minder--all the better for him--he had to check in every so often, trick the erstwhile troop leader into thinking that his sister and brother's rebellion hadn't poisoned him too. It was the worst sort of game--the kind that had a fifty-fifty chance of ending in death.

      He took Liberdade's shot, and said, "Well, time for me to wimp out on you, Ladies."

      "Going to turn into a pumpkin?" Rovinha asked, failing to completely hide her disappointment.

      "Nah," Mamoru said, "but at sun-up tomorrow, everybody's favorite fairy godfather Andanar Petrikova will want to waggle his finger at me some more, so I should have my head screwed on straight enough to pretend I care." Rovinha laughed, and it was then that the black wave of the Purge swept over them.

      Mamoru never did see Andanar Petrikova again.

      Petitions (if any): 
      Caste Requesting : Priest Prince
      Reasons For Requesting these Castes:
      Mamoru's history supports why he needed those castes then, but in the future, his castes will be even more important.

      On the Provincial level, his Caste as Priest Prince gives him considerable social cachet in a Province that was literally formed by a Priest Prince. It is that cachet that he will be drawing on as he goes forward. He will use that cachet to attempt to leverage himself into the Province Seat of Sarque, on the basis that he already rules Sarque's spiritual capital and already leads the rest of the Sarque voting block in Parliament. He will use the social power being a Priest Prince gives him to attempt to remove Sarque from Dhemlan's purview entirely, causing ripples across the entirety of the Realm through the possible creation of a new Territory of people from the Sema Mountains. As a Priest, his motivations are viewed as more pure than they might be otherwise. As a Prince, he understands the legalities that will make his attempt at secession viable, without war.

      On the level of the Sect and the Family, members of his Sect (like Ercilia Augustin) are ensconced in some of the highest Courts in the land. The Sect was founded on the basis of Mamoru's perceived purity of connection to the Darkness, so it is this connection to the Darkness which will most influence his actions here: He will use this influence and authority to attempt to twist the rulers of other Provinces away from the possibility of supporting a bid by Atholi to rule Anagon. He needs his dual castes to continue to present his vision for the Sect (and for Sarque) as a directive from Mother Night.

      He will leverage the aforementioned power represented by the Family into securing the Queen school Savion will found in Sarque, when it might have otherwise gone to Atholi, a considerable political coup which may also leverage him into the Province seat over Acileano. As a Priest, he will be a de facto teacher among the Queens hosted there, granting him influence and possibly even a Queen who he will decide is capable of ruling the new Territory he wants to create.

      And, of course, he will continue to use his connection to the Darkness to grant the Sect and the Family the security of an off-puttingly Abyss-scented meeting place, securing them from random wanderers.

      Plans for this Character:
      Mamoru's plots are as follows:

      Mamoru is going to be attempting to supplant the current ruler of Sarque. This will lead to threads with Savion (one such will be Savion trading support and Queen school for Mamoru's support and the complete cessation of banditry, another might be discussion of what Mamoru's goals as the ruler of Sarque might be, another might be political doubletalk where nobody says secession but it's the obvious threat, and there would also be threads where Mamoru pretty much drastically undercuts the deal he made in the best interests of Sarque) and with the ruler he's trying to replace ("Why?" "Because you SUCK."). His end goal is, of course, secession.

      Mamoru secured Tahlemar Sanzo's place at the Academy, and is naturally very interested in Tahl's Queen. In the future, he may call in this favor for some reason--possibly to secure his father's death, possibly to secure Ysabel as a Queen in independent Sarque--which is its own kettle of fish.

      Mamoru is, for pretty much the reason that she wants Anagon to be reformed, going to be trying to fuck with Isadora. The revelation that his father, Leon, the only other surviving descendant of Prince Fermin, is serving in Isadora's Court will cause a lot of tension. Mamoru is not fond of his father, but his father supporting Isadora can and probably will lead to Mamoru using the Family he controls to attempt to murder the man, directly drawing Isadora's ire--and attempts to return the favor in kind, which will be a whole 'nother bag of fish, especially if he manages to strike a deal with Lucia. He's determined like that.

      A naturally dual-casted male could pose an interesting puzzle for Lucia--but while Mamoru indubitably does respect her for her work in the clinics, her association with Isadora would make him very resistant to any attempt on her part to figure out just how he'd been born with a traditionally feminine caste. However, a deal could be struck that would end favorably for both parties...

      He will also be attempting to draw non-Dhemlan parts of the mountains into Sarque, such as those in Raej or Pruul, in order to create a greater Sarque with hte people he feels the most commonality with. This will draw him into conflict with the Queen who rules the Sema in Raej, as well as Saiph herself, as the Sema mountains in Pruul include the capital of Pruul. Which is obviously problematic.

      A plot I'm personally really excited about will be Mamoru's hunt for Witch. He will come to believe that all of the signs in the natural world are pointing to Witch having already arrived, or in the worst case, being soon to be born. This will link into the Queen school in Sarque--he will start his search there, especially since he's super old school and of the "Witch doesn't have to wear the Black" school of thought. It will link into a conflict of interest with the High Priestess of Dhemlan, who has the not-unreasonable viewpoint of helping the living and not quibbling over semantics.

      And it will be especially interesting when Mamo has a kid of his own.

      Other Petitions you’ve made here: Iskander Khaldun dual caste, Saiph al-Kaid triple caste

      Player Name: Reid

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