NationStates Jolt Archive

Annointed in Tears

24-09-2004, 05:43
Aleksandr claps his hands twice before walking through the arched doorway into a dimly lit chamber beyond. He steps to one side, so as not to be silhoutted against the light from without as his eyes adjust.

The room deep within the high-roofed Palace of the Ancients is kept dim out of respect for the Domitor. He lies upon his death bed, swathed in fine, sweat-soaked linens suitable to his station. The Councilors line both walls of the intimate chamber, heads bowed in prayer and cloaked in their heavy robes which rob them of any sign of sex or individuality. Each is precisely the same height, weight, and build; nothing further can be seen through the shadows cast by their large hoods. It doesn't matter who the Councilors are, only what they have become.

Alexi takes a moment to kneel at the foot of the bed, to whisper a prayer for the good health and good will of the Domitor.

The aged man lying upon the bed lifts his over-large head upon its withered neck, narrowing eyes that peak out from around a fat nose that dominates the middle of his face. He licks his lips, and whispers his desire for water. This late in the stages of the disease, nothing can be done but make him comfortable.

None of the Councilors so much as move at the weak cry of thirst, leaving Aleksandr the responsibility to obey his Domitor's command. He backs away from the bed slowly, until he can send a servant of the Palace to fetch a pitcher of water. Once done, Aleksandr returns to the foot of the bed, waiting there for permission to speak.

His knees begin to ache from the hard stone floor before the servant returns with the water, doling it out from the pitcher into a glass to be placed in the hand of the frail monarch. The Domitor little more than wets his lips before raising his voice to a somewhat louder whisper.

"Alex, you have come. I feared you would not arrive before my death, and I would have to choose another," the old man manages, before the effort of speaking robs the breath from his lungs.

"I would not refuse a summons from My Lord. I arrived as quickly as could be arranged. Is it time, My Lord? Shall I make the arrangements for the Saining?"

Aleksandr dared risk a glance at the old man for the first time in his life, the man who had sired him and his siblings, the man no one could see without permission. The doctors who had tended the Domitor had been hailed as saints and prophets in the streets, to be allowed to look upon, to touch, even!, the person that a faith had spent a thousand years turning into a god.

The old, feeble man can only nod.


"The Office of the Communion issued an official invitation in the early hours of the morning, today. Preparations have begun for a Saining, a coronation ceremony which has not been performed in Tirest in more than half a century. The government has issued standing invitations to foreign dignitaries; a time-honored tradition which once ensured the legitimacy of the succession in the eyes of the international community.

Tirest's streets are being made ready for cars, also a novelty to the locals, which will be permitted to visiting dignitaries who may not be accustomed to Tirest's pedestrian lifestyle. For Channel Four, this is Dan Ridell."
The Most Glorious Hack
24-09-2004, 06:47
The Most Glorious Hack is interested in attending this event. We plan to send one of our top dignataries, Albert. He has already been briefed and is very much looking forward to the Saining, and possibly the opening of formal relations between our two countries.

- Elisa Day, Director of Foreign Affairs
The Semi-Autonomous Technocratic Oligarchy of the Most Glorious Hack
24-09-2004, 07:01
Aleksandr taps his lip thoughtfully as he considers his reply to the Most Glorious Hack. He glances down at the vikka recorder nestled amidst the clutter of his desk, placidly waiting to capture every word. Alexi leans forward to bring his mouth into range of the device.

"Tirest would be pleased to welcome Mister Albert to the ceremony. We will dispatch a diplomatic jet with an ambassador aboard, to further brief Mister Albert, and act as guide when necessary. I look forward to meeting him at the Saining. May Seth watch over you."

Once done, he calls for a Subservient One to take the vikka, to be entrusted to the diplomat who will accompany it to its destination.
26-09-2004, 06:32
The Most Glorious Hack
26-09-2004, 12:42
The plane from Tirest received easy clearance for landing at the smaller airport in the Tindalos Megalopolis. It was still quite a large affair, but smaller than Chiba City International, and thus more fit for the arrival of a smaller, diplomatic jet. When the door to the jet opened to allow the Tiresti diplomats to step out, they were greeted by a tall man dressed in a finely tailored suit. There was a simple suitcase to one side of him and a briefcase on the other. He looked perfectly normal aside for his earlobes, which were slightly elongated.

"I must say, it is a rare treat to be picked up for a diplomatic mission. My name is Albert, and I believe we are to travel to your country for this... Saining?"
27-09-2004, 07:19
The diplomat carrying the vikka recorder bows deeply, holding the compact machine against his belly and seeming to fold himself across it. His soft grey suit and conservative haircut only seem to emphasize how utterly nondescript he is; his carefully bland features tend to suggest a creature undeserving of special attention, to be used and cast aside.

"I am pleased to meet you, Mister Albert. I have been instructed to deliver this device to you, as a symbol of the goodwill of the Domitor. It is a vikka recorder. Its messages are carried upon specially treated sheets, which are destroyed if any attempt to compromise the message is made," he explains, holding forth the noted object.

"If you will join me aboard the vehicle, we may begin our journey to the Palace of the Ancients. I accompany you to answer whatever questions you may have, and to protect you should the need arise."
27-09-2004, 07:41
The Grand Domain of Imitora would like to attend this event, at the permision of the Tirestian (OOC: Is that right?) governing body. Master Ambasador and Representative Robert Fortier would like to represnt our nation. We hope to hear from you regarding our request soon. With great respect,

Andrew Benetti, Miniter of Foreign Affairs
Anna Frateli, First Speaker of Imitora
27-09-2004, 07:55
Aleksandr tsks softly at the report in his hands. Another foreign body desiring to witness the passing of a crown. He lifts his pen from an elegant crystal inkwell and draws the quaint nib across the textured paper reserved for official missives. The pen makes a soft scraping sound as it passes over the paper, a rythm broken only by the occasional lift from the paper to the inkwell.

I would be honored to have your emissary amongst the guests attending the Saining. Please forgive our diplomatic corps; it has only one private jet, and so one cannot be dispatched to retrieve your servant. Accomodations will be arranged and will be awaiting his arrival.

Yours in Grace
Aleksandr Chiath
27-09-2004, 17:34
Fortier smilled in amazment. It had always been that he would go somewhere. He of course, had no mind about not being picked up. A message had been sent to the Tirestian government that he would be arriving by private plane, and he had packed and boarded one of the governments many Gulfstream Vs. He sat back in comfort in the large leather seat.

He looked out the window, noticing a coastline approaching. This was probably Tirest. He popped a few Alieve, his chest still hurt from all the surgery that he had recently undergone. Apearently the sniper had been a seperatist that had gotten out of Croton, and made it to Northampton. He had gotten his though, when an ISS sniper put a .338 Lapua BTHP into him. Fortier rubbed his chest, it was sore. The Gulfstream began its descent to Tirest.
Five Civilized Nations
27-09-2004, 18:48
The Five Civilized Nations will be honored to send a member of the Foreign Ministry to participate in this sacred Saining ceremony. The representative sent will be most likely be the Prince Hamilton Crusade, second in line to the throne of the August Emperor. He will extend any assistance that the Five Civilized Nations can provide in building a bridge over our once nonexistent relations.

Ma Han
-Vice Foreign Minister
--Minister of New Relations
The Most Glorious Hack
28-09-2004, 07:04
Albert accepted the vikka recorder, looking it over curiously, "Fascinating, thank you, Mister... ah? I do not believe you mentioned your name." He followed his escort onto the plane, sitting down before looking over the recorder a little more, "Well, if you are to answer my questions, perhaps a little more information on your country. I confess that I am quite curious, and the dossier prepared for me was... lacking in detail."
30-09-2004, 04:52
The nameless diplomat smiles as he escorts Albert into the plane. He conveniently forgets the question of his name in the face of the inquiry concerning Tirest.

"There's so much to tell," he says with a smile. "I suppose it'd be best to stick to what's relevant to the matter at hand, the Saining:

"Around a thousand years ago, my people fled our native desert in the face of increasingly hostile neighbours. The refugees who would found Tirest settled near where the nation's capitol currently stands.

"A charismatic man became the leader of those ancient refugees, and founded the religion-government that rules Tirest to this day. Seth was the first Domitor. Each Domitor is selected by the previous one, based on qualities such as... well, you will see," he offers Albert a reassuring smile.

"Would you like any coffee?"

Aleksandr dispatches a courrier to notify The Five Civilized Nations that their emissary would be most welcome, and to apologize profusely for the lack of suitable transport; he fails to mention that the only plane of the diplomatic corps is the one currently bearing Albert.
The Most Glorious Hack
30-09-2004, 09:43
Albert makes a mental note of the diplomat's avoidance of giving his name. He found it odd, but then again, he was the one walking around with no last name, so he probably didn't have room to pass judgement. Pulling out a small notepad and a pen, he listened carefully, making the occational note as Diplomat talked.

"Interesting... It is always fascinating to visit nations that have unbroken histories that are exceptionally long, nations such as Tirest. I am sure that there is quite a bit of history, art, archetecture and such from your thousand years of existance." He paused tapping the pen against his chin a moment, "'Religion-government'? A theocracy of sorts? Are there any particular norms or taboos I should be aware of? I would hate to offend someone." He smiled, adding an afterthought, "I would love some coffee, thank you."
01-10-2004, 10:02
The nameless dignitary fills a pair of mugs from a coffee pot tucked away in one corner of the jet's passenger compartment. "Cream, sugar?"

He pauses long enough to measure out the required additives and stir them in, before continuing his exposition.

"I wouldn't call it a theocracy, per se. That seems to imply a church in control of a government. There really is no difference between the religion of Tirest and its government. The Domitor is god, and His will shapes the course of events," he says, crossing the cabin to offer Albert one of the mugs.

"There are not many very important tenents of the religion. I have told you the most important. Another is the de-emphasis on individuality. Many would consider our ways tyrannic, but they do not understand. We know that a man is mortal, and passes from life, as is right and just. His actions endure, however, and become part of the shape of a nation. Thus, you will not often hear a Tiresti person refer to themselves with pronouns. Instead, the soft or passive voice is used to express what happens.

"For instance, instead of saying that I have served you coffee, one might say that coffee was served," he smiles at Albert over his mug. "Only the Domitor and his heirs refer to themselves in the first person; they are important enough to warrant immediate recognition. The diplomatic corps also trains its agents to speak thus, to better put outsiders at ease.

"It's really quite a subtle piece of statesmanship. It discourages political infighting by removing the focus from personal gain. Along with a near-total ban on automobiles, it remains among the Domitor's most powerful, and most transparent, tools of control."
The Most Glorious Hack
01-10-2004, 10:21
Albert waved his hand idly, "Black, please."

Making copious notes as Diplomat talked, he finally spoke again, "I see. Very interesting, and explains a little bit already. I find it curious, however, that you are so open about methods of populace control. One assumes that members of the nation would either be unaware of such manipulations, or would not speak of such things." He grinned, "Of course, I will simply assume that your status of diplomat changes the equation a little."

He smiled, taking a sip of his coffee, "Certainly is quite different from the Hack, but it does remind me of how things were for my ancestors, especially the linguistic concerns. Needless to say, I look forward to this visit." He reviewed his notes for a moment and continued, "So this Seth, the first Domitor, set up the religion as well? He would be the first god of Tirest, then?"
01-10-2004, 10:42
Diplomat settles into a chair across from Albert and slightly to one side, to be close enough to peer out one of the little double-paned windows than line both sides of the cabin. He only looks out briefly, turning to maintain eye contact with Albert as he speaks, "People are often willing to endure being manipulated, so long as they do not think they are being repressed. The Domitor makes no efforts to conceal his methods to maintain control, but in His wisdom, He appeals to needs and desires which transcend petty outrage."

"As to Seth... He was the Domitor. The Domitor is our god. Seth is our god. We are not like the ancient Egyptians, we do not regard our leader as some fragment of a distant deity. The Domitor is real, and present. Seth was, and Seth is, and Seth ever will be, just as all the other Domitors," he stops, frowning, considering his words. "It is difficult to explain. I suppose one might say they all have the same soul, though that is not quite right. Each Domitor's memories and accumulated wisdom is passed from predecessor to succesor. That is the need for the Saining, and the strict requirements upon the Heirs. The Heirs need not, actually, physically be descended from the Domitor, though many are."
04-10-2004, 07:41
((Bump for boredom! ))
The Most Glorious Hack
04-10-2004, 09:33
Albert sat silently, contimplating what Diplomat had said. He also contimplated the fact that by refering to the diplomat as 'Diplomat', he had, essentially, named the diplomat, thus inadvertantly undermining the selfless society that the Domitor had worked to create. He made a note to only use the proper noun mentally, and to avoid directly calling him in such a manner. Looking down at the notes he had written when Diplomat had described Seth, he tapped his pen against his chin. "So... it is a combination of passing the mantle while simultaniously having a sprinkling of reincarnation? Like, say, the Dali Llama?"
06-10-2004, 08:15
He cradles his coffee mug in his hands, looking into his vague reflection in the caramel-colored drink. He is quiet for a moment, considering how to explain one of the most important articles of the Tirest faith to Albert. He had been trained for such matters, but training does not mean that such things are easy.

"No, not reincarnation. It is the same being. When the Domitor grows old, his memories, his soul, becomes one with the accumulated memory-power of the Domitors who passed before him. Each of them is still there, still thinking, still guiding our nation. It is simply that the god must be manifested in a body; a body which fades and eventually must be replaced. With each iteration, the Domitor grows wiser and more potent."
The Most Glorious Hack
08-10-2004, 09:14
Albert pondered this for awhile, trying to fit it into his general world-view, and then find a way to help him vocalize it. There were certain similarities between the Tirestian Domitor and certain beings in his own belief-set. They were disturbing similarities, too. All he could think of was the Crawling Chaos and how it would shift forms as it needed, but it wasn't a perfect analogy. The Crawling Chaos simply changed forms, not actual bodies, but it was still an unpleasant association.

He tapped his mug, "So the physical death of the Domitor causes the spirit to take up residence in a new vessel? What happens to the spirit of the body being used? Is it added to the Domitor-spirit, forming a gestalt, or is it an empty vessel until the Saining?"
Five Civilized Nations
08-10-2004, 20:01
Aleksandr dispatches a courrier to notify The Five Civilized Nations that their emissary would be most welcome, and to apologize profusely for the lack of suitable transport; he fails to mention that the only plane of the diplomatic corps is the one currently bearing Albert.
Slowly and serenely, the RXJ-93 luxury passenger jetliner traveled through the sky, its powerful trio of brand new turbine engines driving the aircraft forth at 975 kilometers an hour, as the jet headed towards the nation of Tirest. Aboard the aircraft, Special Ambassador Josef Heinrich sat patiently, his eyes closed, as he waited for the aircraft to arrive at Tirest. The ambassador had been sent as a replacement for the Prince, due to an unexpected illness that the Prince had come down with.

Josef's thoughts were not on the upcoming discussions that would be held, but on his daughter, who had just reached the age of nineteen, a beautiful, precocious girl, who Josef adored greatly. With a light smile, Josef began to dream, as the RXJ-93 jetliner continued to fly...
09-10-2004, 08:56
"The Domitor joins with the others when he dies, and his knowledge is passed on to his heir. They're all there, all the men who have been part of the Domitor, all the way back to Seth. Still living, still thinking. The Domitor was, the Domitor is, and the Domitor shall be. Oh, we are approaching the airfield. Do you have any preparations to make before we land?"

He stands and tosses the last of his cold coffee into a sink in the back of the cabin, leaving the mug in the basin as well.


On the ground, a number of sleek black limos wait, scattered about the tarmac, for their various diplomatic passengers to arrive at the Diplomatic Corp's tiny airport.
The Most Glorious Hack
09-10-2004, 09:14
Albert was, needless to say, mildly horrified at the description of the Domitor. It made him think of dark, ancient beings. Beings who were best left to sleep. The Domitor sounded like the psychic equivelent of The Most Unclean One who spawned unspeakable children before reabsorbing them again. He found himself wondering if he really wanted to be on this plane. He had read the tomes of his ancestors and saw chilling similarities between the Domitor and those unspeakable entities. On the other hand, he doubted that the Domitor was one of them; he felt it was more likely that this Seth had made a pact with some entity. He wondered what would happen to the nation when the being in question claimed the Domitor's soul(s).

His face, however, showed none of his internal distress: he was as stoic as ever. "No, I do not believe that I have any preparations to make."
Five Civilized Nations
10-10-2004, 01:17
The RXL-93 descended from the sky, its flaps extended, as its powerful turbine engines slowed the elegant and graceful aircraft down. With a light, soft thud, the jetliner landed upon the runway, its brakes and turbine engines quickly decelerating the aircraft. Josef Heinrich, jostled awake from his light sleep, stood up as the jetliner stopped. Stretching, Josef nodded to his security detachment as he walked towards the hatch of the jetliner, waiting for the aircraft door to open...

With speed, the door of the RXL-93 opened and a gangway was extended from the ground. With a soft smile, Josef descended from the aircraft, with five security officers before and behind him, and glanced at the gathered limousines. With a slight shake of his head, Josef walked forward...
13-10-2004, 03:33
He sits down and buckles himself in as the jet makes the approach to the little airport. The diplomatic corps' jet settles in to a holding pattern to wait for Josef's RXL-93 to land and get out of the way; it wouldn't be a problem with a larger airport to work with, but Tirest's only nonmilitary airport is too small for more than one plane to land at a time. The city is somewhat distant from the airport, which lies nestled in a small vale between two hulking, treetopped hills.

The foothills swell up in the distance, in the opposite direction from the nearby city, into a range of imposing mountains. Miles of subtropical forests blanket the ground all the way from the airport to the balding peaks themselves.

The plane touches down with several short, abrupt bumps accompanied by muffled shrieks of rubber on asphalt. The taxi off the runway is a short one, and ends not at a terminal, but on an open pad where a wheeled staircase awaits.

He unbuckles himself before the jet has even finished moving, and walks forward to begin preparing for debarkment.


A similarly bland diplomat awaits Josef in one of the cars. Actually, there's already a guide in each of the cars, waiting for foreign dignitaries. The altitude robs the air of much of the heat common at this latitude, leaving the groundside temperature mild and comfortable. The scent of pine hangs in the air, battling with jet exhaust for supremacy over the local airspace.

The diplomat pops the door of the limousine open for Josef, and smiles at the foreigner. "Welcome to Tirest."
The Most Glorious Hack
15-10-2004, 07:20
Albert calmly collected his things, unperturbed by the landing, much as one would expect from a seasoned diplomat. He placed the vikka recorder into his bag which he slung over his shoulder. "I am ready whenever you are."
24-10-2004, 22:16
((Sorry. I lost access to the Internet unexpectedly, and haven't been able to log in. I'll reply ASAP; be this upcoming Friday.))
29-10-2004, 19:59
He smiles at Albert and pushes open the jet's hatch. The early morning sunlight streams in, brightening the interior of the passenger compartment significantly. The subtle scent of pine drifts in with the sunlight.

A mobile staircase attaches itself to the side of the aircraft, so Albert and his guide can descend to the already warm tarmac. Outside, the pool of limos is slightly dimnished; Josef has already been shuttled off towards the distant city. This being the primary point of entry for foreign emissaries, not to mention the nation's only working airport, the road to the city is a lazy and winding pass through and idyllic hilly forest.

Just visible on the distant horizon, the city itself is a low-built affair strikingly lacking in any highrises. The tallest building, only barely distinguishable at this distance, is a sprawling complex of towers and marble domes that glitter faintly.

He sees Albert into one of the limos, and on their way out of the airport.
Five Civilized Nations
29-10-2004, 20:32
A similarly bland diplomat awaits Josef in one of the cars. Actually, there's already a guide in each of the cars, waiting for foreign dignitaries. The altitude robs the air of much of the heat common at this latitude, leaving the groundside temperature mild and comfortable. The scent of pine hangs in the air, battling with jet exhaust for supremacy over the local airspace.

The diplomat pops the door of the limousine open for Josef, and smiles at the foreigner. "Welcome to Tirest."
Nodding his head, Josef climbed into the limousine followed by two of his security personnel.
The Most Glorious Hack
30-10-2004, 07:20
Albert gazes around the tarmac, smiling slightly as he took in his surroundings, "Nice..." He followed Diplomat into the limo and relaxed in the seat, "Your hospitality is exceptional. Thank you."
31-10-2004, 06:24
Josef's guide smiles warmly, apparently oblivious to the presence of foreign security. "Is there anything I can do to make you more comfortable? Refreshments, or entertainment? Do you have any questions?"


The conversation with Albert's guide is remarkably similar. But then, what's to be expected of a diplomatic corps who turns out such vaguely unremarkable envoys?

"Is there anything else you'd like to know? You were disturbed by the way I described our lead. The Most Unclean One, I think it was." He smiles knowingly.
Five Civilized Nations
01-11-2004, 02:54
Shaking his head quietly, Josef smiled. In a soft endearing voice, Josef said, “No thank you. I do not like to eat refreshments nor do I like social diversions. It would be best if I completed my assigned task… I was pulled from leave to participate on this mission. Please excuse my haste.”
The Most Glorious Hack
02-11-2004, 08:24
Albert smiled innocently, "I do not believe I ever called him that. There may be certain parallels, but The Most Unclean One is simply a being of old. A legend or myth, if you will. On further reflection, it would be a hasty analogy anyway."

He leaned back in his seat, glancing around before smiling again, "Still, I would not want to prejudice myself in any manner, so perhaps I should simply wait until the Saining before asking many more probing questions. The question that is weighing most heavily on my mind right now is: 'Will I have an opportunity to meet the Domitor?'"
10-11-2004, 16:35
He nods to Albert.

"Once the Saining itself has ended, a reception will be held to welcome visitors. You will have a chance to meet the Domitor then. I'm afraid it cannot be arranged any sooner - the Domitor is extremely busy in these final hours."
The Most Glorious Hack
12-11-2004, 11:25
Albert nods, "Of course, of course. I imagine that such a... procedure... would certainly require one's utmost concentration. Far be it from me to attempt any distraction at this juncture."
08-12-2004, 01:07
Aleksandr gently caresses his ivory-handled dagger. Its ivory is darkened by great age and set with a number of small white stones: peals and opals, mostly. A blade of masterfully folded steel is set in the ancient tusk and is intricately etched. The designs seem random, but to Alexei's trained eye, they yield up the secrets of the ritual to come.

He stands slowly and gives himself a final appraising look in his floor-to-ceiling polished silver mirror. Cream and chocolate brown dominate his conservatively cut suit. His right hand bears a white cotton glove; his left is encased in black silk. He lifts his gaze to the delicate and bejeweled platinum crown resting on his temples. Everything is ready.

His steps carry him out of his spacious office deep in the heart of the Palace that is the center of Tirest's government-religion. The aged Domitor sits, his ancient back bent and tired neck bowed, in a huge marble throne in the entrance hall of the Palace. Aleksandr arrives shortly before the guests are allowed into the massive chamber and the foreign dignitaries arrive.

Overhead, the setting sun stains the sky the color of blood as it descends between the upthrust towers of the Palace.


The limos had been the only modern vehicles on the street. Indeed, pedestrians had paused in their business to stare at the cars and try to peer in to see who could be important enough to warrant such extravagance.

Few vehicles of any description are to be found here. Most had been hand-pulled carts, with the occasional horse-drawn buggy or carriage. Most of the populace seemed to be content to walk wherever they were going.

The city bears other signs that it is not like other modern metropolises. Few of its buildings stand more than a handful of stories tall, and each of them is girded by a healthy lawn or strip of trees. No sign of pollution or litter mars the broad cobbled lanes.

The two limos arrive at the imposing iron gates of the Palace at nearly the same time; within moments of Aleksandr reaching the hall. The entire affair had been meticulously planned, down to the second.

"We're here," Albert's guide observes.
The Most Glorious Hack
10-12-2004, 08:39
Albert surveys the entrance, smiling a little. The palace certainly stood out, compared to the rest of the nation. A physical manifestation of the Domitor's identity and the rest of the nation's non-identity. This nation was like an anthropologist's dream, or Albert's, as he loved seeing how different cultures interacted. Here, it was quite clear that the Domitor was not only in charge of the nation, but that he was its mind and soul.

"Very impressive indeed. I cannot wait to see the interior."