Astragonese Imperial Coronation(Open)

North Timistania

Roleplay Moderator
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To All Relevant Parties


With the death of the vile tyrant Murza and the successful defeat of his traitorous coup the nation of Astragon now deems the time appropriate to raise our noble Exalt, Sabhrain Nkosha Na Kevsha to her rightful office of Empress.

To that end we extend this invitation to all worthy parties, The Exalt Empire would be honoured by your presence at this most auspicious occasion. The misery of the last decade is finished, A new day dawns for Astragon and Eras!


Prince Sarakhaid Ebesha
Vizier of Estates

 
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Loz

TNPer
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To the Vizier of Estates,

The Emperor, the Primacy, and the People of Alnaria are overjoyed to hear of Astragon’s return to peace and prosperity. In the spirit of unity and at the prospect of a bright future, His Imperial Majesty accepts invitation to the coronation and will be accompanied by the immediate Imperial Household.

May the Sun rise upon Astragon,

Arlan Mindaril
Vice Primarch of State
 
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Syrixia

The one, the true, the great.
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Honorable Vizier of Estates,

His Majesty and HM Government are happy to hear that Astragon has returned to a state of order and lawful, just governance. We are proud to have supported Empress Sabhrain's struggle to liberate the Astragonese people and look forward to continued friendly relations with a people with whom we share many values, ideals, and beliefs.

HM the Emperor will be in attendance, along with his immediate family.

Warmest regards,

Rajat Mirpuri
Deputy Secretary of State
 
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Scottie

TNPer
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To Empress Sabhrain Nkosha Na Kevsha and Prince Sarakhaid Ebesha,

The Hesskin Empire bids you congratulates. On behalf of myself, my people and my government I wish to congratulate Astragon on their new state of order and governance as well as Congratulate Empress Sabhrain Nkosha Na Kevsha on her title and reign. I hope our Empires may prosper together.

The Creator Protects,

Emperor Stephan II Durnstein
 

Midir

TNPer

From the Office of the President in Midir
The nation of Midir would like to congratulate your great nation in their removal of the tyrant, Murza, from power. I thank you for this invitation to your Empress's coronation. I will do my best to come to the event, it can hopefully start a long and prosperous relationship between our great nations. Thank you for your time, Mr. Ebesha.
Bernard Roman
President of the D.D.M
 

Illderia

The HUNGARIAN worldbuilder
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OFFICIAL STATEMENT FROM THE SECRETARY OF THE ROYAL HOUSEHOLD
Honorable Vizier of Estates,

His Illderian Majesty, the King is thrilled to hear that the nation of Astragon has returend to a state of order, peace and prosperity. His Majesty wishes to congratulate Empress Sabhrain Nkosha Na Kevsha on her title and reign.

His Majesty will be attending the coronation along with members of the royal family.


Sincerely,
The Honorable
Albert Sckett
The Secretary of the Royal Household​
 

Lawston

That's a black star in the top left corner.
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Her Majesty
Sabhrain Nkosha Na Kevsha
Empress of Astragon
Bayyah Na Tyrooz


Dear Your Majesty:

I gratefully accept your invitation to witness your coronation as the rightful successor to His Late Majesty Emperor Kaskaran III. As a neighboring country directly in the face of your struggle for peace, we have always hoped and prayed for the safety and prosperity of the Astragonese people.

It will be my honor and privilege to personally extend the jubilant greetings and best wishes of the Lawstonian people to Your Majesty in your accession to the throne. For now, may it please Your Majesty to know I send my own congratulations and best wishes to you on this joyous occasion.

Mabuhay!

Sincerely,

Rajesh L. Galang
President of the Republic of Lawston




 
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North Timistania

Roleplay Moderator
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Meanwhile....

Palace of the Exalt, Bayyah Na Tyrooz


The Jekshar* skull leers at me despite lacking eyes, the long-dead raider seems to grin through teeth that have been clenched for over millennia. This unfortunate soul came to occupy permanent display after Daurah Sedhain decided to relieve his head from his body. I suppose at least his life after death has not been a lonely one.

Skulls are funny things, they always seem to be amused as though the dead are privy to some joke that escapes the living. Murza's skull currently rots upon a pike in the old city, the flesh roasting beneath an uncaring sun and being brutalised by the stones thrown by passersby eager to showcase their patriotism.

I wonder if Murza's skull will bear the same mocking grimace when the flesh has finally been stripped away, will his head come to rest in a glass cabinet too? displayed for all eternity to warn would-be traitors? It is a morbid line of thought to be sure but so much of the last month has been overshadowed by death. Soldiers, Civilians, Regimes...the capital has been a silent witness to a bloodbath...and now we seal over cracks, replaced shattered facades and proclaim with utter arrogance that all is well once more.

'My lady I do not mean to interrupt, but you have been studying that pirate skull for several minutes' a familiar voice interjects

Prince Sarakhaid stands before me holding a tablet in one hand and a stylus in the other, I sigh and nod, the logistics of a coronation must be attended to. We walk down long white marble corridors, splashes of emerald and topaz catch the light as the sun outside streams in through cracks in the blinds. The Razadi palace lacks the homely simplicity of the Valdishah wing....but its majestic beauty is far more appropriate for the occasion ahead.

Built at the height of the golden age this great keep is the most extravagant ever to be erected, Razad I* mined entire islands bare in order to gather the marble, obsidian and precious stones that cover every surface. In the weeks since my seizure of the throne, I have made this gilded fortress my home. The door to my office swings open and two Red kaiderin stand to attention as I pass through.

I am not an extravagant person, but I would be lying if I said I did not have an appreciation for beauty, my office is a statement as much as a place of work, a message to the world that Astragon will no longer be a fading old slattern. I sit down at my desk, my hands resting on the smooth obsidian, sunlight from the balcony casts shadows on the red marble walls as it catches the forms of ivory and bronze statues. On the wall behind me, a banner with the sigil of house Kevsha shifts gently in the cool afternoon breeze, I can hear peacock calls echo from the gardens below.

'So what news on invitations?' i ask as Sarakhaid seats himself at the other end of the desk

'Alnaria, Syrixia, Lawston, Hesskin, Midir and Illideria have all responded thus far' he replied thumbing through the list of invitations with a focused look

'Good, ensure that the dignitaries receive the gifts we discussed at the state meeting, this is a great opportunity to build bridges'

'Indeed your majesty, your imperial cousin...' he pauses aware he has made an error

Cousin, the word still feels wrong, Kaskaran III was indeed my blood cousin, but truly he was always just uncle kaska. I was a newborn when he first met me, cousin does no justice to my relationship with the late emperor. I sigh, I'm going to have to get used to being less reactionary to semantics.

'Continue Vizier' i say picking up on his nervousness

'I merely meant to say that the late Emperor cultivated many international friendships, but others were allowed to atrophy or stagnate due to his more 'traditional' foreign policy, if this coronation is handled with proper respect we stand to earn many new friendships' he said optimistically

Perhaps, but the flow of invitations is not yet done, Iraelia will almost certainly attend but what of Skanda? my uncle's old enemy, the wars of the 20th century left much enmity, will they put that behind them and attend I wonder? well, time will tell.

'Very well, make the arrangements and keep me posted on further replies...oh and regarding the Midranean President' I ask by the by

'A box of ornate pens has been ordered from the boutique jeweller in the old city' Sarakhaid replies affirmatively

'I trust Mainah* Na Shaban was suitably compensated for the short notice?' i ask in a concerned voice

My subjects may be subservient to my will but only so I may guide and protect them, a box of gold engraved and jewel-encrusted fountain pens would be a tall order on such short notice if I gave Na Shaban a month to work her craft, but mere weeks of labour? I will not see such effort unrewarded.

'Indeed your majesty, the palace staff will ensure they are strategically placed around the coronation venue' Sarakhaid says with a nod

Such a bizarre thing for a leader to enjoy, still President Roman has always been a level headed world leader and favourable relations with Kishan* mean open markets for our goods. So, yes, I am leaving a trail of Ornate pens for the Midranean leader to collect.

'Ensure the intelligence dossier's for all the delegates are similarly thorough, I want our guests to feel as though they are amongst close family'

Sarakhaid stands and salutes 'It will be so your Exalt!' he says before turning to leave

'Oh and Sarakhaid?' i call out just before he reaches the door

'Yes, my lady?' he replies calmly

'Any news on my aunt and cousin?' i ask with some degree of trepidation

'Lady Vimbai and Prince Tatenda will be arriving from Mondabaland* in two days, the wine staff have been briefed and suitably warned' he says ominously

The Mambokadzi* of Mondabaland, my aunt is like a whirlwind, she makes for a great spectacle....and sows devastation in her wake... I sincerely hope Murza did not drain my uncle's cellars...

'Kaidain help us if they falter' i say with a shudder

Sarakhaid bows low and leaves to make arrangements, things are falling into place, whether we succeed or fail will be decided on the day itself, but it seems Eras is coming to Astragon.


* Mainah translates to'mother' in mercanti and is a common term of respect for older women in Astragon

*Kishan is the Hailesha word of Kian

*Mondabaland is one of the 12 provinces of Astragon and a constituent kingdom of the wider empire

*the Mambokadzi is the name for the female traditional ruler of Mondabaland and translates in Mercanti to 'Queen' the male equivalent is the Mambo

*The Jekshar were a tribe of violent pirates that terrorized the Meterran sea in their two sailed Ketches, and especially Astragon, during the waning years of the Suthud Dynasty. Daurah Sedhain, then admiral of Astragon, defeated them decisively at the sea battle of 'Faisha Na Edshar' and had over 1000 beheaded in order to deter future acts of piracy.

*Razad I eponymously 'the Great' reigned over an empire that was wealthier and more influential then at any time before or since. Great Trade Cartels brought the wealth of nations back to Astragon from across Eras.
 
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Yalkan

Minister of You
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С.Р.Ф.




Prime Marshal and Vizier of Estates,

The people of Fuss are pleased and thankful for the decisive and rapid restoration of Astragon's rightful governing body and leader. The committee would love nothing more than for myself to attend and observe this poignant point of history.

Secretary of Foreign Relations,
Michael Palinsky
 

Prydania

Það er alltaf sólríkt í Beaconsviði
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correspondence said:

Astragon and Iraelia stand in eternal friendship, and once more we bled as one in common cause. The re-affirmation of the Exalt's authority is celebrated in Iraelia and it is with much joy that we await the ascension of the Sabhrain Nkosha Na Kevsha to the Imperial throne of Astragon. Prime Minister Taneli Gadi and myself, on behalf of the Emperor-Shalat of Iraelia, extend our hand of friendship, faith, and family once more as we attend the ceremony to witness this historic occasion.
Avrohom Kadish
Governor-General of the State of Iraelia
 
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Highton

Not a Malorian vassal
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The Crowned Republic of Highton congratulates Astragon on its newfound freedom. Prince Diego II has gratefully accepted his invitation to the new coronation and will be accompanied by his consort, Princess Emelie, the President, Alexander Calabrese, and the Governor of St Eliana, Rees Schultz. Highton hopes this will be a step towards securing that the centuries-old partnership between Highton and Astragon can continue into the 21st Century.

Sincerely,
Rolf Nola III
(Acting Royal Secretary)
 
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North Timistania

Roleplay Moderator
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Kayyvan International Airport, Bayyah Na Tyrooz
48 hours before coronation

The low roar of jet engines rises to deafening proportions as the commercial liner races down the tarmac and shrugs off its earthbound state. Weeks earlier this airport was host to a different sort of traffic, Zhenese paratroopers blackening the sky as they descended to cut off the coups access to the heavens.

I observe the runways through my binoculars and note the lingering scars of battle, a burnt-out tank lies mangled in a ditch on the side of one exit zone and the ground is pockmarked with blackened ordinance burns and bullet holes.

'This will not do Fazzah, the airport must be in presentable state and soon, I will not have our nation look the fool in front of Wider Eras' i say irritably

'It will be so your majesty, colonel Dembesha informs me that the majority of the wreckage has been shifted from the site, he estimates we will be ready by tomorrow morning' he assures me

I wish I shared his optimism, the weeks since the end of the civil war have been as a blur. The endless lists of Executions, repair directives, new appointments and edicts have become impossible to keep track of.

'Have the security arrangements been made?' i ask

'Yes Ma'am, 40,000 military personnel have been deployed in the greater Tyrooz area to assist local prefect units in security, your agents are also in position and will enact the emergency plan in the unlikely event of any trouble' he replies calmy

'Good, meticulous as always Fazzah' i say complimenting my aide for his hard work

'Too kind Majesty, I have also received word from the Hightonian embassy'

'oh?' i reply in surprise, I honestly did not expect many beyond Iteria to attend

'Prince Diego has accepted your gracious invitation and will be attending the coronation alongside President Calabrese' Fazzah says in a pleased tone

'Good, the whole family will be coming it seems, we are distantly related you know' i reply with a chuckle



'I believe his highness is perhaps many more times removed from you then would be polite to count' He says with amusement

It is, of course, an almost farcical link between my house and Diego's, I am about as Hightonian in blood as I am Prydanian, which is to say distinctly distant from both peoples. An ancestor married into Hightonian royalty generations ago, we could scarcely be considered cousins at this point. But niceties do not require genealogical accuracy to be good diplomatic policy.

'Perhaps but ensure the traditional Hailakaid rite is extended to him, he might have a tenth of Kayyvans blood in his veins but that's more than enough to warrant an imperial welcome' i say in an emphatic voice

'How shall the Ambadzi* address the prince?' he asks curiously

'Proclaim him, Diego II Kaidah Na Hailan*, the blood of Kayyvan and Imperial cousin of House Kevsha' i reply

'Very Generous my Exalt' he says mildly surprised

Damn right it is, to grant coveted Hailakaid titles to non Iterian rulers is a rare thing at the best of times. However, the war was won largely because wider eras recognized my cause, I intend to show them I have noted their confidence.

'We have an opportunity to reinforce old friendships and create new ones if we do this properly, now is the time to be generous' i reply sincerely

'Was there anything else Majesty?' Fazzah asks likely eager to leave and finish the preparations

'Indeed, I want Adasha Sedhain to lead the military parade down the processional, have her ride at the head of the cavalry and position the nuclear launchers behind' i say in a firm voice

My soldiers have earned the right to take centre stage at the coronation, their sacrifices carried me to the throne and I intend to recognise them.

'Your majesty wishes for a display of assertiveness?' Fazzah asks quizzically

'We shall welcome our guests like family, but they must also know that our kindness is also backed by strength' i explain

'Is it wise to grant such a high honour to a commander who has such....troubling ambitions?' he asks nervously

'Sedhain is an untamed lioness, I must distract her hunger with morsels so that I might attach a firm leash around her neck' I reply in a concerned voice

'I pray it will be of iron than my Exalt' Fazzah says grimly before saluting and leaving to make his final preparations

I think even that might not be enough, Adasha helped me seize my throne but now I fear she might have her own designs upon it. She clearly has never sat in the damned thing, obsidian and marble are seldom comfortable places for one's backside to rest.

I push the gloomy thoughts from my mind and turn my gaze back to the planes as they arrive and depart with equal frequency. Air traffic is still anaemic in the wake of the civil war but in two days the great republics and empires of Eras shall descend from the heavens, I pray they have moved the tank by then.

*An Ambadzi is a traditional announcer for nobles and royalty in the Ubgandian tradition, a holdover from the pre-exodus Metteran customs. Traditionally an Ambadzi would grant a special announcement for members of the Imperial family.

*Kaida Na Hailan 'Prince of Highton' in Mercanti


 
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North Timistania

Roleplay Moderator
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Tyrooz International Airport
24 Hours Until Coronation


Runway lights glitter in the evening darkness, Red Kaiderin stand to attention with their weapons raised as the door to the jet opens. A line of women in traditional dresses and Gele* descend the steps singing the traditional songs of Mondabaland*


'Mambokadzi auya
A Queen has come

Mambokadzi ari pakati pako
A Queen is amongst you

Ipa ruremekedzo uye chenjera
Give Reverence and take heed

Mwanasikana weMondabaland anofamba pakati pako
A daughter of Mondabaland walks amongst you'

Behind the women come men bearing spears and tribal shields, they bang their spears against their shields and chant in loud voices the ancient challenges.


'Mambokadzi auya
A Queen has come' a warrior in traditional garb roars, the line is repeated by the line of men behind him

'Ndiani achamukuvadza?
Who shall harm her?' The leader cries out in a challenge

'Hapana achamukuvadza!
NONE SHALL HARM HER!' the warriors roar back

'Ndiani uchamuramba
Who shall deny her?' The Leader asks in challenge

'Hapana angashinga!
None shall deny her!' The warriors roar back

The chanting ceases and the warriors line up in two rows either side of the stairway, behind them the women begin to sing softly, the men began to roar and stamp their feet (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=m2pJ4iH1v_c). It is a fierce display, the gentle voices of the women joining with the wild stamping of the men, it is a ritual older then Astragon itself, a vestige of old Meterra.

My aunt, Mambokadzi Vimbai of Mondabaland, descends the steps slowly she wears the red flat-topped crown of a Mondabaland noble, jewels of ruby and topaz have been stitched into the fabric and they glow as the light catches them. her gown is heavy linen dyed bright scarlet, a servant holds the hem of the dress as she descends the steps. Behind her comes my cousin, Prince Tatenda of Mondabaland, he struggles down the stairs hand on the railings and the other gripping his ivory cane tightly.

Tatenda wears his military uniform, the blue and gold of a Kaiderin Aircorps pilot, he wears it well despite the obvious discomfort such attire must cause him. He was once a fighter pilot, a good one too, I can remember watching his squadron dance rings around the Na Themba during the insurrection*. That's the problem with pilots though, eventually, their luck runs out, he took a hit from a rocket and the crashlanding crushed his leg in five places, he has hobbled in a steel brace ever since.

He is perhaps four years older than me now, a handsome man even in his crippled state he wears the leopard skin circlet of a prince with all dignity expected of a prince, the white feather flows gently in the evening breeze. An Ambhadzi* stands next to me, he wears the linen trousers and dashiki* of a traditional announcer, he is old and his beard has long since turned white, he carries himself with surprising grace for his age.

The Ambhadzi steps forward and addresses the crowd with a traditional wicker fan* raised above his head. He calls points to the approaching Mambokadzi's delegation and breathes in deep before he begins.

'PEOPLE OF ASTRAGON! HEED MY WORDS AND SHOW PROPER RESPECT! I PRESENT HER MAJESTY ESTEEMED MAMBOKHADZI VIMBAI OF MONDABALAND, DAUGHTER OF HOUSE MUNYARADZI! AUNT TO THE EXALT HERSELF! I PRESENT PRINCE TATENDA MUNYARADZI! COUSIN TO THE EXALT! MAY THE DIVINE GRANT THEM LONG LIFE AND GLORY!!!' his voice echoes across the tarmac in perfect clarity

My guards raise their swords in perfect synchronised drill and form an arch of blades for my aunt and cousin to walk under. They grow closer and I can finally begin to see how the passing years have changed them. My cousin has not allowed his physique to wither despite the obvious agony that his leg causes him. He is clean-shaven both of beard and head, with a strong-boned face. His features are a little too hard to be considered handsome, two green eyes meet my gaze momentarily, I look away far too slowly and he grins slightly aware of my spying.

Vimbai is as I remember her, a plump woman with a mischievous face and green almost feline-like eyes. Her hair has been braided recently in bands of gold and emerald earrings sway gently as she walks. They come to a stop directly in front of me, suddenly all eyes turn to me, all look to the Exalt.

'HER EXALTED MAJESTY! SABHRAIN NKOSHA NA KEVSHA! FIRST OF HER LINE, EMPRESS OF ASTRAGON, PROTECTOR OF SHADDAISM IN THE LANDS OF THE HAILAKAID, CHIEF MARTIAL OF THE KAIDAINIST FAITH AND MOTHER OF THE HAILAKAID NATION!' the Ambhadzi announces, this time he practically roars as he rails off my titles

Weighty introductions out of the way I step forward and am immediately gripped tightly by a bear hug from my aunt were anyone else to attempt such an act they would be cut down. But my aunt is not anyone else, she is now one the most important royals in the nation.

This is no ordinary meeting, no mere formality, the old tribal customs are alive and well in Astragon. As I rise so too do my relatives, my ascension to exalt has elevated the Munyaradzi from merely royal to imperial status. I sincerely hope she does not ask me about marriage.

'Sabhra! my darling! look at you! Empress of Astragon! your mother and father would be so proud!' she says delightedly

'I am technically only the Exalt currently Mainah*' i reply gently as I try to brush off her praise

'Nonsense! This coronation is a mere formality, you are Empress now! would that your mother and father had lived to see this day!' she says her tone joyous but also tinged with sadness

My grandfather, Abashad Kevsha was the Prime Martial of Astragon during the fascist wars, when his duty was done and victory in Iteria was declared he returned home and sired two children, my father and my aunt. One grew up to become the dutiful heir of house Kevsha, a quiet analytical man like my grandfather. The other ran off and married the future king of Mondabaland and spent the proceeding decades in lavish palaces and vineyards as she threw infamous parties that shocked the conservatives, and had everyone else scrambling to get invited.

I'll let you guess which one was aunt Vimbai. Her husband king Suthuli died years ago, that event seemed to affect her, the great parties ceased not long after and she retreated into private life while my cousin began to take on the official duties. Rumours abounded of rivers of wine drained and long retreats to distant lodges, it will be a long week if they are true.

'Have you found a husband yet?' she asks brazenly...barely two minutes...a new record for a Hailakaid auntie!

'Mainah...I've been fighting a civil war!' i protest

'That never stopped your ancestors! you need to marry soon, grandchildren are the future of the nation!' she extols in a loud voice

Yes, dear reader, even the Exalt of Astragon has aunties that prod and pester her about that most vital issue of domestic life. I sigh and turn to regard Tatenda who is struggling not to laugh.

'Don't you smile child! you are older and haven't brought a single woman home!' She says scolding Tatenda, he is nearly in tears

'Ah mother, never change!' he says after composing himself

The prince gives me a military salute, fist against his chest, he remembers the old ways even if he has been forever denied the wings he once so adored.

'It is good to finally see the butcher bird in person again' i say using his old insurrection nickname

They called him the butcher bird because of his penchant for shrieking out of the clouds and destroying enemy positions caught by surprise. A screech of jet engines, a missile launch, and then death and fire. He was a godsend for those of us fighting on the ground and a nightmare to our enemies. All that is ancient history now, but the history remains.

'It honours me that you remember my nickname majesty, but I have not flown in many years' he replies modestly

'Astragon remembers your service cousin, you are too modest' i say in a praising voice

'Enough flirting! its cold out here and my feet are sore! Sabhrain show me your palace, I want to see the room with he diamonds!' my aunt interjects as only she would ever be allowed to

I wonder silently how many of my guards are fighting a losing battle to suppress their laughter. How many will burst into fits as soon as they no longer have to stand at attention?

'It is good to see you both, Come the capital awaits!' Kaidain help me, this is going to be a long coronation

*Mondabaland is the largest province in Astragon per land size. A Savannah with arid vegetation and long summers, Mondabaland is the heartland of central Astragon. Vineyards provide immense income in the provinces north, helped by the volcanic soils of Mt Adasha, in the majority of settlements factories and industrial parks are the norm. It would not be unjustified to suggest that the central region is the workshop of Astragon.

*a gele is a traditional headwrap of fabrics ranging from silks to linen or flax.
*An attempted Na Themba revolt in the late '90s that was put down by forces loyal to emperor Kaskaran III. Both Tatenda and Sabhrain served in this action, Air Corps and Land Army respectively.
*An Ambhadzi is a traditional herald
*A Dashiki is a traditional tribal shirt
*Mainah is Hailesha for mother
 
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North Timistania

Roleplay Moderator
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The morning of the Coronation

The Palace of the Exalt, Bayyah Na Tyrooz

The ornate wooden doors to Sabhrains personal apartments might as well have been the battlements of an impenetrable fortress. Her inner circle lingered outside in fearful whispers unsure of how to proceed and fearful of breaching the Exalts most intimate of sanctums.

'I knew the Mambokhadzi would cause trouble!' newly-appointed prime marshal, Malek Korshad hissed angrily

The queen of Mondabaland had revelled in her new role as an aunt and closest living relative of the future empress. The evening dinner had been a veritable debauch, she had brought all of her not inconsiderable influence to bear as she had coaxed her imperial niece into one drink after another. Hailakaid tradition demanded that the young follow the lead of their elders after all, though the ancestors probably did not intend it to be interpreted this way.

'She drank a sea of wine and probably drowned the exalt in the same red depths!' Colonel Dembesha whispered in a tone that was half fear and half astonishment

'We cannot have our ruler appear bleary-eyed and ill-tempered before the assembled rulers of Eras! We will be laughing stocks!!!' Prince Sarakhaid bemoaned

Adasha Sedhain, Marshal of the Capital region rolled her eyes irritably and pushed the door open slightly, the rest of the inner circle looked on in horror.

'You took a city of twenty million and now you fear one soul!' She growled in an admonishing voice


'She will probably gut the first person who enters the room without coffee and a cigarette' Fazzah said with a slight grin, he was enjoying this

The Empresses ever-faithful Aide-de-camp seemed surprisingly relaxed as he stood in uncharacteristically civilian garb. The interim minister of energy seemed all too comfortable in his black business suit and red tie, he adjusted his glasses slightly and nodded to Adasha, he knew Sabhrain better than any.

'Shall we minister?' Adasha said motioning to the now open apartments

The two would promptly enter the unlit darkness ready to risk their lives to retrieve the hungover Empress.

**************************************************

There are certain time-honoured rules that should always be followed in this life. One, never fight a land war in Iteria, Two, Never start the day without strong coffee and perhaps most importantly, never drink with my aunt!

I lie in stygian darkness, my bed like a primordial soup of sweat and regrets. The fractured remnants of my annihilated brain pound as though pierced by Kaidain's spear, it was red wine, it's always the red that hits the hardest.

I have to squint my eyes to see the approaching shadows, I instinctively reach for the service pistol under my pillow. Fazzah's reassuring image shifts into view, I loosen my grip, Adasha follows, I tighten it. The Marshal of all my forces in the capital region reaches for the curtain.

'If you so much as think about moving that curtain I will blow your head off Sedhain!' i snarl as she grips the velvet drapes

She chuckles slightly at that 'a risk I shall have to take' she says dryly and then pulls back the curtain

I groan in pain as the hateful white glow of daylight enters the room and stings my eyes, I retreat under the covers like a wounded mole. For a few moments, I stew there in the dark, mostly pondering how I am going to go about having the Marshal shot. Then a tapping of the shoulder causes me to rise painfully back into the light.

Fazzah appears carrying a steaming cup of black coffee, I take it and mouth a grateful thank you. Sedhain stands in the daylight looking like the cat that swallowed the canary, she suits the new black and red of an Imperial martial, even if she does look insufferably smug. I take a long sip of my coffee, the wonderous black liquid slowly chipping away at my headache.

'better? your majesty' Sedhain asks the majesty part coming off as far from reverent

'I am currently mulling whether to have you shot or beheaded' i mutter grumpily

She smirks 'i suspect i will receive an imperial pardon by the time you light your first cigarette you exalt' she says in an insubordinate tone

Why do I keep such a disrespectful soul in my inner circle you ask? truth be told because she is a grounding influence, that and its nice to have someone who doesn't worship the ground I walk upon.

'The coronation' i say lighting a cigarette

'Several hours away your majesty' Fazzah says reassuringly

It seems i picked the right advisors after all, though post hangover damage control was not what I had in mind. My aunt is probably up and in absolutely rude health, I wonder does she even drink water?

'Leave me to shower and dress, make sure the waiting coffee pot is blacker than the void of space, and Sedhain?'

'Ma'am' she says with a slight grin

'If you ever wake me in such a manner again I am going to have you strangled with that curtain' I say irritably as I down the last of the coffee and rise from the swamplike bedding

She does a mock bow, I begin to regret not cocking the pistol 'noted Majesty' she says before saluting and exiting the room

when I am certain I am alone I grab the opened packet of red crowns* and head for the shower, I pray I do not clog the pipes with the sediment from last nights abomination.

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I sit on the throne of the Exalt, the new cushions I had installed doing little to make the damn thing more comfortable. The vast audience hall is empty save for my inner circle, several Red Kaiderin bodyguards and the tailor of the imperial house. Madame Thadie Na Sihlesh stands on the white carpet that snakes down from the throne, around her a circle of ostentatious outfits and crowns on plinths sit awaiting my approval.

'This dress is finest Toruba metalwork, gold has been sewn into the green silk and the back bears the tail feathers of a peacock to give the impression of the bird as you walk' She says in a proud voice, she likes her job

I sigh and wave my hand 'No, too dainty, I am soldier, not a porcelain doll!' i say dismissing the dress

Thadie does not seem fazed, she motions to another outfit, this one a military outfit. The jacket is darkest crimson with gold inlay, the trousers are black and bear a similarly blood coloured stripe down their sides. This is an archaic design, the uniform of a marshal during the reign of grandfather Sakard.

'This uniform was created to honour the one worn by the lion of Kosh Koshad during his announcement of victory in Iteria' she says running a hand down the arm to reveal the detailed patterns sown into the red fabric

'It's perfect!' i say in an awe-inspired tone

'Majesty, while I do not wish to be misunderstood as disagreeing with your choice, is a military uniform, one modelled after Sakard I's no less send the right message to our guests and the world?' Sarakhaid asks in a deferential voice, a slight hint of concern in his tone

'We have demurred, stagnated and hidden from the world stage too long lord vizier, the time has come to show the world the peacock still has the courage to be assertive!' i say firmly as I nod my approval to Thadie

No more displays of weakness, no more kowtowing to foreign nations that look down upon us. Today I shall show them I am their equal in every way, an Iterian monarch ruling an independent Iterian nation. I shall channel the iron determination of my Grandfather by wearing the crimson of his greatest victories.

'Excellent choice your Exalt!' Thadie exults with a clap of her hands

Servants clear away the other outfits leaving only the uniform and a row of crowns, I gaze down at them noting the age and dynastic markers on each. It is like looking at a cross-section of Astragonese history. Thadie reaches with gentle hands and holds aloft a red gold coronet with a humungous blue emerald inlaid in its centre.

'The crown of the Sedhain dynasty, long a symbol of our nations maritime achievements' Thadie announces in a formal tone

No, I am not a sailor and while my fleet is a formidable one, our navy is merely one among many. Skanda has long since outpaced us on that front, such a crown belongs to a bygone age, not upon my brow. I wave it away.

Thadie lowers the crown back onto its stand and moves to the next plinth, I recognize the crown resting upon it immediately. The Valdishah hawk rests upon a frame of purest gold, it is the crown of my uncle. It is the crown of Kaskaran III.

'No...' i say in a low almost pained voice

That crown belonged to one of the people most dear to me in all this world, it represents the past and all the pain that occurred therein. I will not dredge up the tragedies of my uncle's reign at my own coronation, I adored him but I must send a new message.

Another crown rises to greet me, a circlet of whitest gold-bearing inlaid precious stones of different colours across its length. To an outsider without lore, it would appear to be nothing more than an ostentatious piece of headwear, but the message is clear to those who have knowledge.

This is the crown of my ancestor Shaddan II, a conquerers crown, each gemstone represents a different campaign. Black obsidian for vengeance against Hanectores and his Ephyrian Descendents, Ruby for the crushing of the Na Themba, Dark emerald for the subjugation of Fuss, the litany of broken nations would take several minutes to recite in full.

'No Thadie, I have no desire to offend every head of state in Iteria' i say waving the crown off

Assertiveness is one thing, dredging up the violence of the past is entirely another, I am trying to befriend many of my guests after all. Thadie does not seem surprised that I turn down the belligerent crown of my conquering ancestor, she moves to another plinth.

Even from the throne, I can see it glitter, white gold so pure it is like metal snow, emeralds and sacred gold writing covering every inch of the thing. The great crown of the Razadi dynasty, the crown of the golden age. A ruby sits in the centre of the crown, it has been carved into the shape of a charging leopard, the sigil of the Razadi's.

I rise from my throne and descend the carpeted steps, taking the crown gently from Thadie I hold it up to the light. this crown has not rested upon the brow of an Exalt for over three hundred years, not since it was prized from Narkhad's* mad brow all those centuries past.

'This shall be my crown!' i say lowering the ancient metal onto my head

'Wearing the Razadi crown...a bold statement my lady....combined with the uniform of Sakard...commentators will...' Sakard says cautiously, I cut him off before he can finish the thought

'They will say I am proclaiming a new golden age my lord Vizier and they will be right to do so, The sun shall shine upon Astragon once more!' i say letting my voice echo across the hall

The time has come to banish at long last the shame of the last century, I am ready to be crowned and ready to lead us into new dawn!




*Red crown extra strength, flavoured cigarettes, contain menthol, clove, nutmeg, resin and enough tobacco to send a weak set of lungs into organ failure. Sabhrain smokes several a day.

*Narkhad the 'Deranged' the last emperor of the Razadi dynasty, he reigned for several years inflicting misery upon his subjects and committing acts of depravity that shocked the ruling class. He was overthrown and strangled to death by Towedrah Valdishah, formerly Exalt Captain of the Palace Guard.









 
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ACR of Deerfenland

Oclusia
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Vizier of Estates,

We, the Oclusi National Congress, are gratified to hear of Astragon’s return to peace. On behalf of the Oclusi People, we extend to Sabhrain Nkosha Na Kevsha a warm welcome into the world. On a second note, we would be honoured to attend the coronation of Sabhrain Nkosha Na Kevsha. If we are allowed to attend, we would be sending one delegate. However, if we are not, we extend our congratulations.

Kind Regards,
Ken Lymbod, Oclusi Belt Congressman
 

North Timistania

Roleplay Moderator
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Coronation Day: The Procession

The skies of Tyrooz blacken with the passing of thousands of aircraft for a second time, weeks ago they brought death, today the trail of red and white smoke that follows them serves as a spectacle for those millions watching below.

'The Whole Airforce must be up there!' Tatenda exclaims with open enthusiasm

He hobbles forward, his brace dragging slightly, I pity him. For a fighter ace to be confined to the ground after having ruled the skies for so long is a cruel fate and yet Tatenda still smiles, still transfixed with childlike wonder as he stares at the endless cloak of passing fighters.

'Your Imperial Majesty' Exalt Captain Na Mazzah says before giving a reverent salute

'Are we prepared captain?' i ask

'The Palace guard is ready to lead you to the temple, General Sedhain's parade will begin when we arrive at the processional' He says in a proud voice, he has the rare honour of witnessing two imperial coronations

I nod and turn to regard my aunt and cousin, they are now perhaps the most esteemed nobility in the empire, the new imperial family. Tatenda stands strong despite his crippling injury, the breast of his blue and black air corps uniform glitters with a sea of medals, I can tell you he earned each and every one.

My aunt gives me a mischievous smile, she revels in the pomp and ceremony, her robes of indigo and golden coronet almost threaten to outshine my own regalia. The woman knows how to make an appearance, that I will grant her.

'It is time then' i say in a determined voice

The captain salutes and leaves to mount his tank, a full armoured escort looms with regal menace in the vast courtyard in front of the palace. A sea of thousands of red Kaiderin stands in perfect columns behind the tanks, their golden breastplates glimmer in the morning sun.

I descend the steps towards the waiting staff car, servants hold aloft the hem of my vast leopard fur cloak as I stride slowly but determinedly forwards. A waiting chauffeur holds the door aloft as I enter the open-topped vehicle. My cousin refuses aid and slowly, painfully climbs into the car. My aunt all but leaps in, her excitement banishing any attempt at dignified decorum.

The door closes and the driver takes his seat, the sound of thousands of men coming to attention fills the morning air like a thunderclap. Captain Na Mazzahs voice booms across the vast procession way.

'KAIDERIN!!! PELESHA!!!' the ancient command is called and roars across the parade

Drums pound, great horns are blown and thousands of banners are raised aloft. The Tanks roll forward and behind them, ten thousand souls advance in perfect drill order. The vast gates of the palace heave open with a screech of ancient bronze, the kaiderin advance out of it like a tide of arterial blood flowing through an open wound.

Our procession glitters in the morning sun as ten thousand burnished blades catch the dawn light. In the skies above helicopters and fighter jets shriek past in a neverending line. We descend ever further down the snaking mountain paths, down towards Tyrooz.

Finally, we emerge onto the processional of Shaddan, the vast triumphal pathway that stretches from the terminus of the great palace to the Meterran sea below. We march past endless stands of cheering citizens who shower us with chrysanthemum petals as we pass, they rain down like a thousand droplets of scarlet. I hear the crowds chant, it grows louder as my staff car comes into view.

'mainah kaidshah! Mainah Kaidshah! MAINAH KAIDSHAH!!!' the chanting becomes a deafening roar as we pass

Mother of the nation they roar in Hailesha as drums beat and women sing in exultant voices. untold thousands line the processional in bright traditional fabrics, the reds and greens of the Ubgandian traditions, the pure linen whites of Shahkaid turbans.

Devout Shaddaists in ceremonial regalia greet my passing with jubilant blasts of their Shofar, Kaiderin adherents raise their ceremonial blades and spears in a traditional salute, Messarah devotees fall to their knees and praise Yeshana. The mood is jubilance and mania.

Finally, we link up with the untold thousands of soldiers, airmen and sailors waiting in their discipline rows. The Red Kaiderin halt in place behind Marshal Sedhains procession and stand at attention. Moments pass, above the great monuments of past ancestors, gaze down like stern titans, judging us with their silent black marble carved expressions.

The command for the advance is given for a second time, the voice is that of Marshal Sedhain. it is a strong call given by one who has spent her life commanding others, imperious and stern the command flows down the line.

'KAIDERIN! PELESHA!!' she roars

We begin to march, a sea of brightly coloured uniforms, the forest green of the Kaidern line regiments, the sky blue of the air corps, even the white of the much-fallen navy. They form a rainbow of armed men as our vast columns move past cheering crowds and into the old city.


 
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