Friday, 27 July 2012

Interstellar Dispatches 18

Originally posted by Town Crier's Guild on October 30, 2008
Featured articles in this issue:

  • Disturbance in Ashburn Heights
  • Golden Antiquity
  • Attaché to Ramakrishna ambassador killed
  • Memories of Baron Sun Cho Li Halan
  • Agora Notices

Disturbance in Ashburn Heights
BYZANTIUM SECUNDUS – Galatea – House Hawkwood has confirmed that yesterday's disturbance was the work of terrorists. Baron Daniel Hawkwood's manor house was shelled by mortar fire while a second attack was staged against the Baron's recently acquired flitter factory. 

"The fools who attacked the flitter factory were caught in the open by a patrol and wiped out.  We're still investigating the mortar attacks,” said Sandra O'Connor, Baron Daniel's Reeve advisor. She added "We're offering a substantial reward of five hundred firebirds for information leading to an arrest of the culprits."

This marks the third noble estate struck by terrorists in two weeks in southern Galatea, and the second attack on a Hawkwood fief.  A source within the House who wished to remain unnamed indicated that the Hawkwoods would lodge a formal complaint with House Cameton and the Imperial authorities.  "If House Cameton thinks they can hire mercenaries to destroy our property and drive us from the Throne World they should think again."

Planetary Governor Marquessa Lekoya of House Cameton dismissed the anonymous Hawkwood's allegations.  "Anyone unsure enough to have to hide their identity is a coward as well as a fool. My seconds stand ready to discuss this matter with the anonymous Hawkwood's seconds at any time and in any place.  The truth of the matter is, House Cameton's investigation of these attacks is being hindered by off world interests and other meddlers" said the Governor. When pressed to elaborate on the involvement of off world meddlers the governor declined to comment.

Golden Antiquity
CRITICORUM – Archon – After more than a decade in dry-dock, Count Alderi Caspari al-Malik plans to re-launch his family's famous traveling Galleon, Golden Antiquity.  Previously owned and operated by the Eliji branch of the family for over 300 years, it carried luxury cargos across the Known Worlds and set the season’s fashions on every world it visited, eventually becoming a high priced auction house for items of technological, artistic, and historic importance. The Golden Antiquity became an icon for Guilders and Nobles alike during the Regency.  Attacked by raiders near Leminkianen 's Jumpgate in 4922 she has languished in space dock ever since.  Count Alderi's announcement came as a surprise to many in Duke Hakim’s court who believed the Count could never finance the restoration of this once magnificent ship.

Almost 2,000 feet long from bow to stern the Golden Antiquity is a monumental starship, beautifully restored to her former glory and outfitted with a few surprises to counter the next pirate that attempts to plunder her. With numerous reception rooms and lavish quarters she is truly a space going embassy, equipped to showcase everything the Phoenix Empire has to offer those worlds still lost to us.
Count Alderi gave us this statement, "The Antiquity's return will again provide the Known Worlds a chance to view and purchase the finest curiosities that humanity has to offer. With the Emperor’s blessing we will search out Lost Worlds and open new markets for our finest exports and return with wonders and curiosities traded from our lost brothers amongst the stars." 

A member of the Count’s staff was also quoted as saying, "New worlds are opening up, and with them new commodities of all kinds, now is just right time for this kind of venture to flourish." 
Scheduled to make her shake down cruise later this month, an undisclosed source has claimed that Count Enis Sharn Decados has already invited Count Alderi al-Malik and his vessel to visit Pandemonium. It is not yet known if Count Alderi will accept this invitation as an opportunity to put aside the differences between the two men.

Attaché to Ramakrishna Ambassador killed
SHAPRUT – Girivaja – Less than four months after establishing his embassy on Byzantium Secundus, Prince Sapan Ramakrishna has his first crisis at hand. Baronet Kutri Ramakrishna, attaché and great-nephew of the Vuldrok-born Prince, has been found trampled to death before the famed statue of Sakuntala and Tahir, apparently the victim of a Shantor-committed murder.

House Ramakrishna is based on the barbarian world Hargard (formally Vuldrok), but is closer in organization and culture to the noble Houses of the Phoenix Empire than to its warlike neighbors. Some minor Ramakrishna nobles—long thought to be the last of this line—have survived on Shaprut, keeping several small fiefs or acting as stewards for House al-Malik. After daring Questing Knights re-established contact with the lost House, the Phoenix Throne invited Queen Sura Ramakrishna to send an ambassador to the Imperial Court.

Now it seems that the death of Baronet Kutri has ignited the first diplomatic incident for the rediscovered House. While al-Malik authorities are treating the death as an unfortunate incident where a (yet to be caught) Shantor took his frustrations out on a random, if influential, human, Prince Sapan darkly hinted at Mutasih involvement and demanded an investigation by Imperial Authorities.
No further comment could be had from either side, as even seasoned Imperial courtiers are not willing to predict how the Emperor will act in this matter.

This issue’s featured memories come from the Baron Sun Cho Li Halan:

"Life is a permanent challenge. If you forget this simple fact, you will never live to see your goals fulfilled.
In my opinion our noble society rests on three essential pillars: loyalty, truthfulness and above all faith in the Pancreator and His Prophet’s teachings. If there is no belief, there is neither any purpose nor strength to face life itself.
I learned during the war that faith is truly the core of our human nature and the source of all other virtues. Without faith, what reason could a man have to continue fighting after losing his eldest son and his first and second wives? I thank the Pancreator every day that he gave me the strength to always be loyal and confident, despite all the cruel bloodshed during the Emperor Wars.
My liege lord once told me to be proud of all my deeds for House Li Halan, which some might even call heroic. I do admit that I won some victories in battle, but all tactical maneuvers are in vain if one does not carry the strength of faith and confidence in one’s heart. I mourn the victims of this terrible conflict, but it would be wrong to regret all sacrifices that were made. My eldest son and many of my noble friends were killed in the fray, but we should never forget that they fulfilled their duty. We all served in some way and duty always comes at a price. If I hear young men lamenting about the hardships of life, I remember that I once thought the same way – but this was a very long time ago.
Some people think of war as a terrible sin and I agree. But mankind has always been imperfect and fighting has always been a part of human history. I truly believe that this will never change. This is why we should keep in mind to repent our sins, and never abandon the hope for salvation. I learned that the Pancreator gave us all that is necessary to overcome any obstacle we might encounter in the universe.
Now the war is long over and I am glad that I was able to return to my home on Kish, where I will continue to serve my House and my prince as truly as I always have. Coming home reminded me of why we had to fight so fiercely and why so many good men and women had to die protecting our House and values. When I returned, nobles and soldiers hailed me as a war hero and a paragon of Li Halan values, but I was never interested in glory. Sometimes people ask me how I became a hero during the Emperor Wars. The answer is simple: I just had faith in the Pancreator."
-Baron Sun Cho Li Halan lives on Kish, outside the planet’s capital of Escoral. During the war he lead an infantry battalion and was awarded a medal for bravery in action and several decorations for his iron resolve to continue fighting even if outnumbered or severely wounded.

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