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Assembly of Peers IX

King Alaric Grayson IV, Sovereign of Arx and Protector of Arvum, calls a meeting of the Assembly of Peers to address matters of governance and petitions affecting Arx as a whole. All, from highlord to commoner, are invited to attend and observe, but protocol will be maintained as the highlords, heads of noble houses, or their representatives address the issues.

Date

March 10, 2019, 4 p.m.

Hosted By

Alaric

Participants

Ilmia Lothar Lisebet Valdemar Lethe Lucita Sabella Zeriax Vanora Berenice Luca(RIP) Donella Helena Brianna Kaia Ian Cadern Ajax Jacali Amari Sina Ouida Alis Preston Caspian Alarissa Monique Peri Jyri Orrin Olivia Miranda Videl Victus Gwenna Jeffeth Joscelin Domonico Shard Liara Perronne Bliss Rysen Niklas Sparte Edain Oswyn Harper Mikani Margot Aerwyna Jaenelle

Organizations

Location

Arx - Ward of the Compact - Assembly of Peers

Largesse Level

Legendary

Comments and Log


Vanora has joined the Thrax Benches.

Ilmia arrives without an escort, not out of the ordinary for the tall Leary noblewoman who has recently arrived in the city. She has a smile on her lips and confidence in her stride as she heads for the Grayson benches. She gives a dip of her head to those already seated and scoots into an unoccupied space. "Good afternoon." she states in a quiet, but warm tone. After that she settles in to get quiet. Not wanting to disturb any discussions that might be going on.

Donella has joined the Redrain Benches.

Lothar takes his place among the Godsworn benches with a grunt, after offering his brother a small grin and a return clasp of the shoulder as they pass one another. He rubs his knees for a moment and then settles back, arms folding across his broad chest.

Duchess Cottontail, a gorgeous fluffy white angora kitten with odd eyes and a pretty pink ribbon, 2 Bisland pride guards, Luella Sedna, an influent and renowned pearl trader, Colin Laurent, a quiet and serene companion leave, following Kaia.

Balian, a Templar squire, Guy, a hunting kestrel, 1 Templar Knight guards arrive, following Preston.

Balian, a Templar squire have been dismissed.

Guy, a hunting kestrel have been dismissed.

1 Templar Knight guards have been dismissed.

Eina have been dismissed.

Amari has joined the Valardin Benches.

Lisebet is here, sitting at the Grayson benches, smiling and acknowledging whoever acknowledges her.

2 Rubino and Zaffria guards have been dismissed.

Luella Sedna, an influent and renowned pearl trader, Colin Laurent, a quiet and serene companion arrive, following Kaia.

Brenlin, Aide-de-Camp have been dismissed.

Kaia has joined the Grayson Benches.

6 House Velenosa Guards, Galiana, a meticulous and mysterious lady-in-waiting arrive, following Isobella.

When Valdemar enters with Vanora on his arm, the Grimhall Duke has a somber expression on his face, marching toward the Thrax bench as if on his way to battle, looking at no one. Sitting down, his posture is rigid, his attention focused straight ahead.

Lethe takes a quick glance around and goes to find a seat.

Lucita steps into the room quietly, makes her way toward the Lycene seating and gives a curtsy to any royals by whom she passes along the way.

Sabella smiles out at the room before the official start, not waving at anyone from the front table but nodding her head to quite a few people she makes eye contact with.

After arriving, Zeriax quickly made his way quietly to the commoners Benches. There were so many people gathered in one place. More than he'd seen elsewhere, causing him to be on high alert, eyes wide. Even once he found his seating, he continued to look around, seeing if there was anyone he recognized. Or, if there were any others that stood out in the crowd.

Chub Chub, A fat black rat with an eyepatch, Witness, The Ashen Jackal, Scandal, The White Jackal, Vandal, The Black Jackal arrive, following Jacali.

The Duchess Grimhall is dressed for court no doubt, and inclines her head in greeting to familiar faces before Valdemar leads the pair to the Thrax section. She settles in next to him there, her expression neither tight nor warm, but the practiced distance of a courtier.

Stygia has joined the Commoner Benches.

Marcus shouts from the Out <O>, "THIS INSULT WILL NOT GO UNANSWERED!"

The high cut of Berenice's gown in front might suggest some great change from her usual revealing styles -- except for the entirely open back. The cling of gold seasilk is made dramatically remarkable by the drape of gold chains like layered necklaces, culminating in the attached collar necklace that secures close to her throat. It's an entirely Lycene look, and one that holds a regal air appropriate for the occasion as she steps up to the table at the head of the Assembly without hesitation to take her seat amongst the Peers of the Realm, apparently standing in for the absent Archduchess for the moment.

Prince Luca appears near the seating for House Grayson from out of the crowd, looking freshly-napped and for all the world as if he could slip back into it once again at a moment's notice. Wordlessly, he slides into a seat while someone gets dramatic outside the main hall.

Donella has a seat sedately amongst the Redrain benches, commenting, "Ah, I see that people are getting into the mood of things already."

Helena's smile grows warmer when Elgana slides in, and she tips her head against the other Redrain princess to murmur something to her sister. The smile slides from her face when she hears Marcus yelling from outside, and she reaches to interlace her fingers with Elgana's, craning her head toward the doors, her blue eyes widening with apprehension.

At the shout, Lady Brianna Halfshav turns and looks at the exit, one hand wandering to her axe, just in case. Just in case.

Kaia steps into the room, ever so graceful, and makes her way over to the Grayson seating designated area. She offers smiles and classy waves of the fingers to those she knows, and the ones she doesn't alike, before taking a sit at last.

Ian slouching at his place at the Thrax benches, Ian takes a long pull from his flask and sighs. He has two bottles of Darkwater rum with him, one of which he has already started to pass around by handing it off to Carita. He sighs. "Here we go."

Floofus, the fluffiest Graypeak Mountain Puppy arrives, following Ajax.

Maxene, the steadfast ladies maid, Pellinor, Elegance, a Velenosian Greyhound arrive, following Alarissa.

Cadern ducks his way into the assembly hall heading for the redrain benches. He glances to Donella and grins clearly agreeing.

Alarissa has joined the Thrax Benches.

Renault, the fluffiest Velenosan cat arrives, following Selene.

6 House Velenosa Guards, Galiana, a meticulous and mysterious lady-in-waiting leave, following Isobella.

Selene has joined the Commoner Benches.

With a lowered head, Ajax trudges into the hall proper going for the commoner benches.

Looking absolutely like she doesn't belong, as ever, is a strangely dressed and top hatted Jacali, accompanied by her typical entourage. She finds herself a place to linger, out of the way, where she might watch, listen, and mutter pithy statements to her friends.

Ajax has joined the Commoner Benches.

Laric has left the Grayson Benches.

Inquisitor Jonathen have been dismissed.

Salvadore, a fire salamander have been dismissed.

6 Veteran Confessors have been dismissed.

Amari strolls in without her usual canine companions at heel. No wrinkly droopy faced bloodhound nor stinky bog dog follow, just a shout about an insult not going unanswered, which pauses her a moment. There's a glance back over her shoulder, an arched brow, then she's found her stride again and makes her way to the Valardin benches. Polite nods and smiles are offered everyone already sitting there, and subtle wiggle finger waves for familiar faces from other fealties.

Cadern has joined the Redrain Benches.

Sina glances toward the exit and the shout. She's left her Templars outside of course, in accordance with protocol. Her expression remains mild, however. She does glance in that direction occasionally, even as she goes back to watching the other people around her while waiting for things to begin, seated among the other Godsworn present.

Ilmia's head turns a bit when she hears the shout, "That...does not sound like a good thing." she frowns as she brushes a lock of long hair from her shoulder. There is a wave to Amari when she sees her, remembering the woman from earlier in the week. Then she's dropping her voice again to speak at her seat.

The shout from beyond draws Ouida's attention, her keen gaze on high alert. She does not, however, move from her place, at least not yet, nor does her hand go to a weapon, though there is a new tension in her tall form.

Alis glances back towards the exit when the shout is heard, lips twisting into something of a wry smile at the shouted warning. "This is my surprised face." Which naturally doesn't look surprised at all, despite the white-knuckled way her hands are laced together in her lap.

Lisebet too hears the shout from out the door, and turns to look tha way.

Preston lets out a small groan as he hears yellins from outside and he looks over to the crown's area - this is, after all, not his dog and pony show. Or king and uppity foreign heretic scum show. He isn't allowed to send Templars storming around Arx, after all. But he settles on the benches of the Godsworn anyway.

Joscelin has joined the Commoner Benches.

Brother Chester arrives, following Jeffeth.

Valdemar does not shift his attention in the slightest for the shouting, nor does his expression change.

Caspian gives a bright smile over to Lore, "Thanks, love. I will do my best. I'm nervous and exicted for sure."

Alarissa glances toward the commotion, already seated at the Thrax pews for some time and doesn't seem at all surprised and only smoothes non-existant wrinkles from the silk of her gown and looks back to the front.

Jeffeth has joined the Godsworn Benches.

2 Rivenshari Clansman arrives, following Eshra.

Eshra has joined the Valardin Benches.

Lady Monique rises from the Valardin Bench, quietly and unobtrusively making her way toward the exit with a determined look upon her lovely face.

Monique has left the Valardin Benches.

Preston has joined the Godsworn Benches.

Peri mutters, "Yes papa. I ... to imbibe but a ... amount, for strength."

Caspian has left the Commoner Benches.

Anya, the cool as an ice cube Champion apprentice have been dismissed.

Renn, the mousy, scholarly brunette have been dismissed.

Renault, the fluffiest Velenosan cat have been dismissed.

Brianna keeps glancing back at the door, and it's clear she is using all of her restraint not to march out there.

Jyri glances up as Monique rises to leave, looking thoughtful and a bit concerned watching her march out. "Is something going on outside?" he wonders quietly of those nearest.

Rysen has joined the Redrain Benches.

Alaric smiles regally as he stands and regards the hall from the center front of the room, raising a hand for quiet and then speaking in a clear and confident voice. "My subjects, it pleases me to see you all gathered here today. Since setting our goal of a year of rebuilding in the winter, I am continually told of our collective innovation and industry as we work to Arvum a better place for ourselves and our progeny. While every year brings with it new challenges, I encourage the Peerage to look not just to our the short term needs but to the next thousand years of our great Compact of Arvum as we invest in our collective futures. With that, I call this Assembly of Peers to order. Please rise for the convocation of the Faith of the Pantheon."

2 Pravus Honor Guard arrives, following Zacharie.

Zacharie has joined the Redrain Benches.

Zacharie has left the Redrain Benches.

Zacharie has joined the Lyceum Benches.

Amund has joined the Commoner Benches.

With the request from the king, Lisebet rises, hands folded in front of her, and listens.

Orrin rises for the convocation, quiet, head bowed.

Ouida rises as invited, though she is careful to keep her body between the door and those she has escorted in, her demeanor still calm.

Brianna rises, clasping her hands behind her back.

Olivia rises and bows her head

Peri stands solemnly.

Ilmia rises when the King calls for it, a hand smoothing over the skirt before clasping them in front of her and bows her head a little.

Miranda rises

Jacali remains leaning, but she is, in fact, standing.

Videl rises, a little, steadying herself on the bench in front of her.

Preston is a Templar, so stands only to shuffle to kneel, his peace bound sword in its scabbard as he places its point on the ground so he can pray in the Templar style.

Ajax raises upwards from his seat, his head lowered.

Ian slips his flask back into an inner pocket of his coat, and, bracing on his cane, pushes himself to his feet.

Alarissa rises, fan fluttering to try and keep her cool in the summer heat though it stops when the religious faithful offer prayer.

Sina rises from her seat among the Godsworn as the Convocation is called for, and bows her head to Alaric, and then glances around briefly as people rise before she speaks clearly, "As we gather for this Assembly of Peers of the Realm, we ask the Gods of the Pantheon to bless all present, and these proceedings. May Vellichor's wisdom guide the choices made here today. We pray to Limerance, that any oaths this evening be held true. We pray to the Sentinel, to judge those who speak falsely. In Gild's name, we extend guest rights to our visitors. May the Gods look on this Assembly with favor, and bless our choices this day." She bows her head once more, allowing a moment of silent prayer, and then she lifts her head again.

Kaia rises from the Grayson bench.

Victus raises with the rest of them. Instead of keeping his head low, he instead dips it back to raise his chin toward the ceiling.

Lucita rises as instructed for the convocation, respectfully quiet, retaking her seat at its conclusion with the others of her group.

After murmuring something to Brianna with a small smile, Helena stands and lowers her eyes, studying her slippers as Sina speaks. Her lips move silently as she adds a few of her own requests. The Redrain princess lifts her gaze again, looking back over her shoulder at the doors once more, as if expecting it to fly open at any moment.

Miranda takes a moment to close her eyes and be silent, praying perhaps. Then once more to her seat.

"Thank you, Archlector Sina. You may be seated," Alaric declares as he remains standing. "Before we begin tonight's agenda, I would like to commend the Houses of the Compact for their earnest efforts to diplomatically resolve their ongoing issues. I trust that the negotiations that have begun since our last Assembly will lead to a peaceful and equitable solution for all parties, and the Crown stands ready to assist these efforts in any way it is requested to." He smiles and takes his seat as well. "On to business, then. Do the Voices of the Realm have any business to bring before the Assembly today?" he inquires of his fellow big-table attendees.

Ian waits through the prayer with a vaguely respectful countenance (or his head is bowed, at the very least). Once the prayer is done, he sits back down and takes his flask out again.

Sina inclines her head and resumes her seat after the Convocation is completed, and folds her hands in her lap once more. Her silvery eyes gaze about, listening quietly now as the Assembly begins.

Amari stands with everyone else, sparing a glance back towards the entrance as she does. After that quick check, she simply listens to the convocation in silence until it concludes. When it's over, there's another look but her expression remains thoughtfully neutral long after she's sat down again.

Retaking her seat after the convocation, Gwenna gives a shake of her head. "House Redrain currently has no items to present, Your Majesty," is offered in a clear voice and then she glances to the others.

Laric has joined the Grayson Benches.

Victus respectfully cants his head toward Alaric, as good of a bow as he could do while he's sitting and stiff. "House Thrax has business it wishes to present before the peerage, your majesty. I ask permission to take the floor."

"House Velenosa likewise has no new business to bring before the Assembly," Berenice offers in a clear voice following Gwenna. She nods in deference to Victus as he requests permission for the floor.

A messenger arrives, delivering a message to Kaia before departing.

"House Grayson also has no new business to bring before the Assembly," Sabella states, giving a supportive nod to Victus when Thrax is the only House to want to speak.

Bayberry, an Oakhaven juvenile bloodhound, Steadfast, a dunskin stallion courser arrive, following Norwood.

Norwood has joined the Valardin Benches.

"Permission granted, your Grace," Alaric nods to Victus. "The Crown recognizes Prince Victus Thrax of Maelstrom, Highlord of the Mourning Isles to address the Assembly of Peers."

Despite the fact he'd just asked, Victus doesn't raise immediately. He sits for a moment in pure, awkward silence. Almost deafening. Then with a deep breath through gritted teeth, the Prince of Maelstrom raises from his place with fellow Voices of the Realm. When he speaks, his voice is booming. "Peers of the realm," He begins, authoritatively. "I ask that you lend me your attention."



Victus follows the circular chamber around in a slow gait, addressing the entire room as he passes them. "The Compact was offered the foreign dominion of two nations and we have rejected them. Together we have chosen walk forward with our independence intact. Thus, we have also chosen to enter the future on our own. Come what may, be it war or peace, we weather the storm on our terms. In these uncertain times, we are without a protector. We are beset by forces that would see our downfall near constantly. Two devastating wars for survival in less than a decade and a third attempt averted. If we are to make a statement of freedom worthy of its merit, then we must raise to the occasion as our own defenders. As of today, we are but a spark of hope. A spark that is waiting to be kindled to something far greater."



The High Lord raises a hand in a sweeping gesture across the many pews before he continues. "We are called on to adapt or die. To walk a path of difficulty and sacrifice. Blood and struggle. The path that House Thrax has walked since time immemorial, for we have always been a resilient and willful people. As the heroes we venerate chose sacrifice for the greater good of this continent... so shall we."



His hands lower, coming to clasp together behind his back. "I speak before you today to announce House Thrax's commitment to action in our new future. Our choice to begin a seven year quest to see thralldom ABOLISHED, and every chain within the Mourning Isles BROKEN. To eliminate the last remnants of slavery that exist within Arvum's civilized people. We choose to be a people who do not rely on the broken backs of others for our strength -- but at last celebrate the doctrine of Choice itself. We shall grow closer to our Gods, grow closer to our fellow Arvani. We WILL be stronger for it."



A gloved hand raises then, pointing one finger in the air. "Yet seven years is a long road to walk alone, my fellow peers. House Thrax chooses to believe that the Compact would see Arvum a world without slavery. So I must ask of each and every one of you, do we stand together?"

Sparte is overheard praising Victus: I stand with Victus

Stygia has left the Commoner Benches.

The large form of Jeffeth Bayweather stands at the Godsworn benches, giving a deep incline of his head to Victus.

Joscelin, the Crafters Guildmaster, stands wordless, eyes shining, hands clasped before her.

Lisebet rises at Victus' question. "To Hope and Freedom," she calls.

Domonico stands up at that, serious as ever, head held high before he nods. "Malvici Stands."

Shard practically shoots to her feet, but she looks utterly and completely gobsmacked.

Having listened to Victus, Liara gathers herself to her feet to stand at her spot over at the Grayson benches, in quiet support of the Thraxian's declaration, a bow of her head given over to the man.

Olivia stands again, "House Ashford stands behind House Thrax in this."

Other than leaning slightly toward his wife now and then, Duke Valdemar Grimhall remains stone still, his gaze fixed straight ahead.

Perronne bounces to her feet with a dangerous sort of enthusiasm, and applauds violently.

From the benches of the Commoners, Bliss Whisper stands as Victus makes that request, her arms clasping behind her back as she straightens her body and focuses her attention on Victus, giving him a nod.

Orrin takes Peri's hand and rises from his seat at the Grayson benches, having taken an extraordinarily large breath. He turns toward the commoner benches, and lifts a hand; a dozen people dressed in Seliki grays and gold stand as well.

From the Redrain benches, Rysen rises to his feet, with a fist clenched over his heart.

Mikani has joined the Thrax Benches.

Ian lifts his flask to Victus, silent acknowledgement that House Kennex -- or at the very least that he -- stands with Thrax's High Lord.

Ian is overheard praising Victus.

Jyri stands up, looking not a little surprised and quite awed by what Victus just pronounced. He nods respectfully at the High Lord.

Alarissa rises again up from the bench that holds Thraxians, chin lifted and a nod to Victus.

Alaric for his part does not seem to be too interested in maintaining speaking order at the moment, sort of indulgently regarding the Peerage as they decide to respond. After all, Victus did ask them a question! It's not a breach of propriety to reply or anything.

Ouida rises to her feet, as if silenly indicating Harthall too stands with Thrax.

Amari stands, though not before murmuring an aside to Norwood who's claimed a spot on the bench next to her.

Shard is overheard praising Victus: Holy /fucking shit/.

After a short time, Valdemar stands, but his expression does not change, though his gaze moves to the floor.

2 Pravus Honor Guard arrives, following Sebastian.

Alis stands from her seat at the Valardin bench; giving first a nod to her brother and then to Victus in support.

Niklas pushes himself to his fleet vigorous applause for Victus's announcement, calling out, "The winds of change are ever at our back!"

Lucita does not speak but does stand spportively long enough to express support then takes her seat once more.

Perronne is overheard praising Victus: Huzzah! Let it be done!

Sparte rises up to speak resolutely from the commoner benches, decorum forgotten. "I stand with you!"

Sebastian has joined the Lyceum Benches.

Peri rises to her feet, clasping her fathers hand in solidarity.

The Prince of Sanctum doesn't say anything, no words properly echo the gravity of this, and so he stands and bows his head the High Lord of the Mourning Isles. The support of the Oathlands silently given.

Oswyn rises from his seat, his expression solemn.

Fortunato is overheard praising Victus: A hard road, bravely taken.

Jacali pauses a moment to murmur something to those standing nearest to her, dark lensed spectacles keeping her true attentions from being revealed fully, lips pursing in the idle contemplation that follows. When Ouida stands, Jac's head turns toward her for a long and level assessment, before she lifts one shoulder in a lazy half-shrugging, dipping her head in a vague nod that could conceivably be considered support.

After murmuring something to those at the Redrain bench, Helena stands as well, giving the Thrax high lord a nod of respect and agreement.

Ilmia gives a look around to see if any of the other members of House Leary have made it, when she sees that they have not she makes a bit of a quiet decision. The tall red head gives a smile as she stands. Quietly supporting the Thraxian High Lord. Once that's done she retakers her seat as to not be impolite to others.

Once her husband rises to his feet Vanora does as well, and her gaze is not on the floor but in taking in all of the peerage.

Standing up in support of the High Lord and her friend, Harper gives Victus a salute. The look on her face is nothing short of proud of him.

Joscelin is overheard praising Victus: The Crafters Guild supports your goal. Well done.

Sina tilts her head, listening to something Preston says at the Godsworn benches. She gazes around the Assembly as people begin to rise to their feet in response to the words spoken by the Thrax High Lord. She waits and waits, watching as more and more people rise. Finally, she also rises to her feet again, moved by Victus' speech. Her own silvery eyes are shining, and her lips are curved into a soft smile.

At the Voices of the Realm, Berenice rises with a graceful sweep of gold-adorned seasilk. "House Velenosa stands with House Thrax," she says with a clear voice and an imperial lift of her chin.

Though already on her feet, once Niklas starts to applaud, so too does Liara - vigorously so. She doesn't seem to have a whole lot to say.

Mikani hears those around telling her what she missed just as she slipped in. Mikani stands and smiles at Victus. She doesn't say anything. Nothing really needs to be said that isn't being said elsewhere. Redreef stands with Thrax.

Oswyn is overheard praising Victus.

Margotallows herself a faint smile as she rises, her delicate hands clapping lightly together glancing about to see those standing in the assembly. Is that relieve in the Tyde Duchess' pale eyes? Possibly.

Jyri joins in on the applauds too, flashing a grin before he retakes his seat.

Dahlia, a confident red and white corgi puppy, Winter, a juvenile Oakhaven bloodhound arrive, following Skye.

Skye has joined the Thrax Benches.

"A courageous and moving statement, Prince Victus," Alaric begins as the clamor winds down. "The Faith of the Pantheon has always been foundational to the Compact of Arvum as one of the pillars of our unity. It strikes me even moreso these days, as recently many foreign visitors have been among us. These visitors and their societies are remarkably different, but one of their common similarities is an apparent ambivalence to, or even rejection of, the Pantheon that guards and sustains us and whose ideals we strive to embody. With the rediscovery of the god of freedom, we have been put to a test. Are we ultimately only Faithful as far as it suits us, like the other nations? Or are we called to something greater?" He looks out across the Peerage. "Our unity is built of many common traditions, but thralldom has never been among them. Indeed, even at this moment a thrall that makes its way onto the mainland is de facto freed of all debts and obligations, because no other fealty observes the legality of the practice. It has long been the one substantiative holdout in our unity, ever since the age of Queen Triscali long ago. It persists for good reason; it is no small thing Prince Victus proposes, even for a seven-year work. Millions of Arvian lives and livelihoods are in the balance. If it has any hope to succeed it will require a great deal of assistance from all around the Compact to help them while they make this transition." He turns to Victus and smiles. "But it is the duty of a liege to come to the aid of their vassal when they are in true need, and the Crown and House Grayson will be proud to do so. I am proud to see the Peerage rise to assist in this great work as well. And I am proudest of House Thrax for making this momentuous decision."

"Are the Great Houses resolved to stand behind House Thrax and lend their support to this work, then?" Alaric inquires of the rest of the big table.

Gwenna gives a single nod of her head, her eyes shut a moment before she looks from Victus to Alaric. "House Redrain commits and stands behind House Thrax as well, Your Majesty."

Sabella is overheard praising Victus: House Grayson stands with House Thrax and is immensely proud of Prince Victus for making this decision.

"House Velenosa is resolved, your majesty," Berenice says in clear, bold declaration. "We offer an immediate donation of one million silver to the pursuit of this cause, as well as our continued support over the next seven years."

Victus stands in the light of all those who stand. Cheer or clap. His expression remains unchanged, an uncanny and rigid stonewall. It's only when the silence begins to usher in that the foundation of that expression crack. As if a great weight had just been lifted. His shoulders heave and release the tension built up within, his posture visibly deflating. A hand moves over his heart and his head bobs in a nod. "Thank you." It is not so much a bold declaration as it is a simple, quiet statement to all gathered. Then again toward the gathered Great Houses, to whom he stiffly bows. "Thank you."

A messenger arrives, delivering a message to Selene before departing.

"House Valardin and the Oathlands will do all in our power help the Mourning Isles and the Compact make this a reality." Edain says simply before retaking his seat.

Rysen is overheard praising Victus: Wisdom from his tongue and courage in his heart; moving oratory for the best of causes.

Michael has joined the Grayson Benches.

"Prince Victus, I am pleased to convey to you the full support of the Voices of the Realm," Alaric declares regally. "May the gods light your path to lead the Isles through this time of great change." He regards the Assembly again. "It is rather an impossible task to follow -that- up, but nonetheless we do have the rest of our Assembly to get to. The Crown is pleased to announce that one of Arvum's greatest and most honored traditions, the Tournament of Roses now has a Tournament Director. Princess Berenice Velenosa will be officiating the AR 1010 tournament, congratulations to her. Please remember to submit official entries on time." He glances up to the benches. "I am informed that the Commoners' Council has no agenda items to submit tonight, so we will skip them. Are there items of business the Peerage wishes to bring before the Assembly?"

3 Armed Confessors, 2 House Velenosa Guards, Thomas the Faithful, the Silver Honey Badger arrive, following Alistair.

Sina resumes her seat once the Great Houses have given their support to House Thrax, smoothing pristine aeterna about her once again. She pulls her long black braid over her shoulder, and settles her hands once more into her lap. She lifts her chin, listening and observing quietly once again as matters move apace.

At the Grayson benches, Orrin lifts a hand just slightly from his lap, and there's a glance toward his seated contingent at the commoner benches, and Caspian there with him. He shakes his head slightly; no speeches today from him or those he sponsors.

Selene has left the Commoner Benches.

Berenice offers Alaric -- and then the gathered crowd -- a brilliant smile when he acknowledges the upcoming Tournament of Roses. She offers him a gracious nod before he opens the floor to the peerage at large.

Renault, the fluffiest Velenosan cat have been dismissed.

Preston isn't a peer - well, kind of but not really - but he does lift his hand from the Godsworn benches as not many seem eager.

Peri looks nervously at doors.

Alaric seems to decide that Preston is pretty much peerish. "The Crown recognizes Grandmaster Preston of the Templars of Gloria to address the Assembly of Peers," he declares.

Gwenna is overheard praising Victus.

Gwenna is overheard praising Alaric.

Ilmia looks to the doors, assuming that the shouter might still be outside, she then looks back to the King when he speaks and there's a look to Sir Preston as he is given leave to speak.

Skye is overheard praising Victus.

Skye is overheard praising Alaric.

Margot is overheard praising Victus.

Corban has left the Voices of the Realm.

Reedy, a King's Own aide have been dismissed.

Preston lets out a small sigh before he pushes himself to his feet "Your Majesty, the Faith are not a Great House, and I do not pretend to speak for all of it, indeed I speak for myself alone as Grandmaster of the Templars but I thank you for indulging me." Preston takes a breath before he continues "In our past, in times now lost to us, the Faith Militant occupied fortresses across Arvum. From these places we were able to muster and respond quickly. Those people of the Faith on the roads had places of safety whose claim of sanctuary was backed up with stone walls. And they stated our intent as a people - this is our land, our Gods rule here, and we will not shrink back. Yet. We had to, your majesty. We withdrew to Arx, the stories of great heroes holding in the last fortresses are known to some - holding the light just that moment more against the dark so others might withdraw. Under your rule, your Majesty, we have faced threats. Great threats. But each time our response slowed by lacking places to gather, each time our enemy passes between our civilised places because there are few anchors near our borders. Each time our roads are attacked, pilgrims die, money and trade is lost. The Solace pay a price, and we weep for them. It is time that as a people, together, we reclaimed some small part of what was lost and realise we must at some point prepare to attack those who threaten us, not only ever defend, where we must pay such high costs because any defeat means our end. Now seems like a good time to start."



"The Templars do not meddle in secular affairs, but as your Majesty suggests we also do not sit idle when we can be of help to those seeking a righteous path. If this is the path Thrax wish to take, then the Templars will commit to find funds, if House Thrax can find the land, to raise a fortress of the Faith Militant on the east of Maelstrom, a place from which we may all watch our newly revealed neighbours to the east and for threats from beyond, from where Solace can guide pilgrims and where we might work with the fledgling chivalric orders in the Isles and beyond. And of course find work and provide trade training for newly skilled thralls in its building, and if they wish it take their oaths brothers and sisters."



"What I would like to propose, is if the Great Houses are willing, we work with each in turn. Start small, one keep in the lands of each Great House, with Garrisons drawn from secular and Faith alike, so there can never be any fear of conflict. Places for the Templars, the Solace and the other orders to muster, and begin to bring light back to parts of Arvum that have known too much darkness." Preston finishes, a bow to Alaric before he settles.

Berenice is overheard praising Victus.

Kincade has joined the Valardin Benches.

Lethe has left the Thrax Benches.

Ian straightens up a little bit and looks towards Preston as he speaks.

Arwa, the seamstress' assistant, Pudds, the fluffy white kitten arrive, following Aerwyna.

Sparte looks alarmed and excited by what Preston is saying. He keeps looking over to the Thrax benches, then back to Preston. There is a bit of a shock to his expression, a brief stammer for those at the benches.

Aerwyna quickly and quietly steps inside, making her way over to one of the benches

As Preston metnions the Solace a few times, the Knight Commander of the Solace raises up to his feet next to Preston. Just to show solidarity or that he's paying attention. Jeffeth stands there throughout Preston's words before settling back down when he does.

Aerwyna has joined the Commoner Benches.

"Thank you, Grandmaster Preston. House Grayson would be pleased to work with the Faith to establish an outpost for the Templars and Knights of Solace, with the increasing need for their guardianship brought by the Great Road and other developments," Alaric declares confidently. "We will send a representative to the Faith to begin the planning for such."

Victus looks askance at Preston a moment. His eyes are unfocused. Either drained, or merely processing what he just said. Could be both. "If the Templars wish to establish an outpost on Maelstrom, we are willing to negotiate. Preferably at another time than right now."

Brianna has left the Redrain Benches.

Donella has left the Redrain Benches.

3 Last Watch Sentries, 3 Redrain Guards leave, following Donella.

Vanora rises to her feet, "If His Majesty would indulge, I have merely one small question."

"I am certain that the Archduchess will be most pleased to consider such a proposition," Berenice says with a warm smile to Preston.

Alaric has a much less ambiguous task to decide Vanora's status as a member of the Peerage. (spoiler: she is) "The Crown recognizes Duchess-Consort Vanora Grimhall representing the Duchy of Grihem's Point to address the Assembly of Peers," he declares.

Gwenna, as well, turns a warm smile toward Preston. "As will His Grace, Prince Darren, I'm certain, Grandmaster. Something I look forward to discussing as well."

Chub Chub, A fat black rat with an eyepatch have been dismissed.

Witness, The Ashen Jackal have been dismissed.

Scandal, The White Jackal have been dismissed.

Vandal, The Black Jackal have been dismissed.

Enid has joined the Commoner Benches.

Vanora faces the high table as she begins to speak. "Prince Victus has very nobelly commited the Isles to absolute abolition within seven years, in order to secure important aid for the Compact. This was wisely done, and we proudly stand behind him. What I wish to know is how this information...regarding the commitment to abolition, is to be shared with the people. The Islanders, specifically. As you might imagine, through our support and commitment House Grimhall is also wary...those traditionalists most likely to rebel over these changes are going to be those within our territories. Any and all financial assistance from the Crown and Great Houses is beyond appreciated, but we would also ask for some control if at all possible in sharing this news, that it might be done with the most skilled diplomats we can find. I think Grimhall would much prefer convincing our people this is the right path, that taking up arms with Thrax against them. Any support is deeply appreciated."

Mikani has left the Thrax Benches.

The chatter in the Assembly of Peers pauses as the door guard announces, "Highlord arriving!" Their fealty respectively rises while until they are seated.

12 House Velenosa Guards, Ibasia, the Velenosa Lady-in-Waiting arrive, following Jaenelle.

Cadern has left the Redrain Benches.

Ian's expression turns a little bit puzzled. He looks to Alarissa first, then to Carita and Skye, like he's hoping one of them is going to explain... something to him.

"Well, I should think they're going to find out rather soon after this meeting now that the Peerage has heard Victus' declaration," Alaric notes dryly. "The Crown is certainly willing to provide mediators via the Knights-Herald upon request to any House in the Isles that wishes to enlist them. But we are committed to support House Thrax's initiative, not direct it. I would think that your liege will have the majority of the specifics you'd like to know."

Jaenelle doesn't interrupt, giving Berenice a 'you stay right there' motion with her hand as she scoots to the benches.

Jyri has left the Grayson Benches.

Gene Erique, Guardsman, 3 Iron Guardsmen leave, following Jyri.

Jaenelle has joined the Lyceum Benches.

There is a deep curtsy for the King and one for the other high lords at the table, before Vanora responds with "Yes of course. I apologize if my question was a waste of the Assembly's time, and thank you for having indulged me." She seats herself again, and once more goes silent.

Berenice's attention is drawn from quieter conversation at the table at the front of the room by the word of the door guard. She is clearly /about/ to rise as soon as she sees that it is, in fact, Jaenelle -- but she forestalls at that gesture from her liege and remains in her seat.

Shard checked composure at difficulty 20, rolling 5 lower.

"Very well, then. I believe the immediate curiosities of the Peerage have been satisfied. We have set upon ourselves a great task, but with the grace of the Pantheon and our Compact's commitment to striving for our mutual success I am certain we will prove equal to it," Alaric declares regally as his expression relaxes into a beaming smile. "As no other issues remain to be brought to our attention tonight, I declare this Assembly of Peers of the Compact of Arvum adjourned. May our Compact prosper and thrive as free and righteous people."



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