329f3 No.86445[View All]
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Continuing the story, I make a new thread.
To summarize, this thread is a continuation of a CYOA game that has long been hosted on pregchan. King Edward of Ruhemania is the protagonist. Over the course of the story, which dates all the way back to December 2015, King Edward has arisen from unlanded nobility to a full-fledged King. He's faced many challenges along the way, and will face many more. He is a foreign King in a distant land, but he has many assets on his side. Most significant…
His ability to charm women, seduce them, and impregnate them.
If you're a new reader, previous threads will no doubt look daunting in their length, but I promise there is (what I hope) a worthwhile story to be found that both excites and intrigues, with plenty of sex. Everyone, old readers and new, are invited to vote in the latest poll for the choice they'd more like to see happen. I will then write the results until a new choice is available. You aren't merely voting in a game: you are writing the story with me. I hope it's enjoyable.
The only rule is that everyone has one vote. Please only vote once in each poll. Posting your reasons and persuasive arguments for why you made a choice and why it is the best choice is encouraged. It helps me understand more about reader expectations and what the audience wants to read. However, please do not post side-discussions or emotional reactions in the thread. For those, please use the latest chat thread, located here: https://pregchan.com/c/res/10693.html
This will help keep down on the posts that count toward the post limit (and when I will have to make a new thread,) as long as keep the atmosphere of the thread genial. I want every reader to be comfortable voting however they like.
For clarity, please write your vote: "Option 1/2/3" or "Write in:". Please make this the first line, and then write whatever commentary you would like. This is for my sake and makes it much easier to tabulate and calculate which option has won. Of course, I will still count every vote regardless, but it makes it a little easier for me.
For the record, write-ins are encouraged. If they are impossible because of a conflict of some character motivation or established facts about the world, I will note this and explain why it's impossible to the best of my ability and give the reader a chance to select a new option.
One last thing to note is no non-consensual sex scenes will be depicted in the story. This was decided as the tone the audience most wanted to read at the very beginning and it won't be violated now.
Previous threads can be read on the web archive:
Thread #1: https://web.archive.org/web/20170619163636/http://pregchan.com/d/res/12251.html
Thread #2: https://web.archive.org/web/20170619123902/http://pregchan.com/d/res/14131.html
Thread #3: https://web.archive.org/web/20170619104842/http://pregchan.com/d/res/15553.html
Thread #4: (warning, it was on bbw-chan and the link has a defunct connection to some pop-up ad. Just refresh and it should go away.) http://web.archive.org/web/20160412094726/http://bbw-chan.net/elite/res/536.html
Thread #5: https://web.archive.org/web/20170619134833/http://pregchan.com/d/res/16909.html
Thread #6: https://web.archive.org/web/20180307043453/https://pregchan.com/d/res/24119.html
Thread #7: https://web.archive.org/web/20180930122947/https://pregchan.com/d/res/33943.html
Thread #8: http://web.archive.org/web/20190601012420/https://pregchan.com/d/res/48104.html
Thread #9: https://web.archive.org/web/20201013192858/https://pregchan.com/d/res/57807.html
Thread #10: https://web.archive.org/web/20210303103506/https://pregchan.com/d/res/79111.html
(or just https://pregchan.com/d/res/79111.html
until it 404s)
Oh, option 2 sounds fun.
Hm… Option 3. Let's have Noi come off with some Andrè the Giant vibes to the public. Not someone to mess with, but not someone yo fear.
It'd probably be awkward for one or both of them. We shouldn't put them on the spot.
You always gotta 'yes and' in improv.
I like the idea of option 3, but our time with Noi makes me think she'd probably hurt Alena even if she was only sparring with her….. so I have to go with Option 1.
Although maybe we should also have Noi step a little back while the show is on? We have other guards with us as well, right?
As much as I'd like to agree with my fellow theater sort, I think we need to give control of the show back to "Alena". Option two.
>2 votes for option one, announce that Noi is your royal soldier, not an actor, and must be treated with respect.
>2 votes for option two, shout for silence and announce that Noi is your royal soldier… and Noi fighting with Princess Alena would therefore be an act of war. Something you, as King, will not allow.
>2 votes for option three, tap Noi and tell her to go up and see if she can make Alena look better by 'fighting' with her.
We have a three-way tie.
I will come back later and see if there is still a tie. If there is, I will use random.org to decide the winner.
Please feel no pressure to change your vote. Changing your vote will not make the update come sooner.
Well, best way to salvage it is to go with it, I think. Option 3.
I am going to be difficult and re-tie it since I do not think option 2 is the best way to go here…… Changing my vote to option 3.
I can't stop you from doing this and your vote will be counted, but I want to make a little bit of an announcement regarding it.
My request to everyone is please never use your vote and play 'kingmaker' to put one choice over the other when you truly would prefer a different choice, even if you can see it has no chance of winning.
This is because you are writing the story with me. If I see there is absolutely no interest in a 'type' of choice, I will gradually stop giving them as options or take emphasis off of them. Furthermore, if I see someone prefers something but is outvoted, I will try to include a small aside to satisfy them as well. (Especially if someone voices they like a certain sex act or sex position.) The votes are not just about the majority getting what it wants and the losing votes getting nothing. I try to really take into account what everyone wants to read. As far as I am able. And of course there are stark choices where certain outcomes have to be emphasized over the others.
That said, your vote change is noted.
The count so far is>1 vote for option one.>4 votes for option two.>4 votes for option three.
I will give it a little longer before I break the tie.
Please only change your vote if you honestly reconsider or are otherwise persuaded by an argument that one choice is better than the other.
I have flipped a coin to decide the result.
>Option 3, tap Noi and tell her to go up and see if she can make Alena look better by 'fighting' with her.
Send Noi up on stage to 'fight' Princess Alena.
Poll closed. Update soon.
The hecklers and other adults you're not so worried about. But the kids are clearly wondering why Alena won't fight the tall woman.
You subtly try to reach out and bump Noi. You whisper to her to try to see if she can handle making Alena look good. Go ahead, climb on stage.
It takes more than a whisper for her to hear you, both over the crowd and the height difference, but she gets the idea.
She hands her polearm to one of the other soldiers, then slowly steps toward the stage.
Alena clearly doesn't know what to do, but she's putting her best effort into it.
"Haha~? A new challenger for Alena the Great? I'm really strong, you know! No one, man or beast, has been able to best me!"
Noi for her part just… sort of plods along and climbs on stage. You can audibly hear it creak.
Noi can't speak, you realize. It'd ruin the illusion that she was a man.
Alena gets close. Very close. So close her chest practically touches Noi's, and she stares up with a fierce look on her face. Even going so far as rising on her tiptoes to get their faces closer together.
–You think she's talking to her. Trying to feed her directions. It'd make the most sense.
Alena then happily jumps back, a big smile on her face.
"All right! Never let it be said Princess Alena backs down!"
She pounds a fist to her open hand, flexing her hand with an audible crack, as if to loosen herself up.
Noi… stands there. Awkwardly. Her arms are hanging limply.
Alena's hands go up to her hat, gently remove it, and she bows toward Noi.
Noi… doesn't react.
"Oh! The opponent doesn't even bow!"
"He's a killer!"
This is starting to feel like a mistake, but you're sure Alena can get something out of it.
She rises up and puts the hat on her head in one fluid motion. She manages something that looks like a neat little kick in the air, and then hops over to Noi, hitting her with a flat-palm punch that you're sure stopped short of actually touching her body.
…Noi does not react. Not in the slightest. Not even a flinch.
"I thought Alena can knock out anyone!"
"It didn't even stagger him!"
Alena tries to act surprised, then pulls back and brings down slash with the bone of her forearm, clearly intended to glance away and do nothing while looking like a nice attack.
…Noi does not react.
"She's in trouble now!"
"She hasn't picked a fight with a man… that's a demon!"
"A demon!" "Demon!" "An evil demon from beyond!!"
"How can Alena beat a demon??"
Before you know it, the crowd is shouting different variations of 'demon'.
–Your mind flashes back immediately to what Noi told you intimately.
She was driven to run away from her life and take up banditry because everyone thought of her as a demon and told her as much.
You watch in real time as Noi's shoulders begin to slump.
…You've done a terrible thing. This was the worst idea of those that came to you.
You won't let it happen. You goddamned won't let this happen!
You spring forward from where you're standing. Your guards shout at you to stop, but you ignore them.
You run and push your way past the crowd and get up on the stage itself. Everyone's so surprised to see the King actually running that no one moves to stop you.
Once on top of it, you turn toward the crowd, put your hands up and out as far as you can, and yell at them in your biggest booming voice:
The crowd dies down, they're staring at you, not sure what's going on.
So, you speak:
People, this was not part of the act. It was not scheduled, rehearsed, or planned.
You simply came out to enjoy the performance, as they all have done.
The man they see before them is one of your royal soldiers.
You simply thought it'd be worthy to 'play along' and indulge their need for entertainment.
But it's gone too far.
His name is Noi. He's sworn a personal oath of loyalty to serve you, the Crown, and all of Ruhemania. To fight on behalf of you all, the people.
He's not a demon, a killer, or anything else. He's a flesh and blood human being.
He deserves their respect. Common decency one shows any other man.
You can't help but find and make eye-contact with the hecklers.
Those who started this situation and those who started chanting 'demon' should, frankly, be ashamed, you say.
Utterly ashamed, you add.
You look out over shocked faces. For the moment you're not sure what reaction you're going to get.
Then… people start responding. The mood grows somber as everyone begins to hang their collective heads.
"The King is right!" shouts one man. "He's right!" shouts another.
"We were awful."
"We've done wrong."
"We were cruel… utterly cruel."
"The soldier is no demon… he's a hero for protecting our noble King! Protecting Him with his life!"
"Thank you, Noi!"
"God forgive us!"
Even the hecklers are affected by the complete shift in tone and start to add words of their apologetic sentiments.
More than a few eyes are tearing, some women sobbing.
You turn to Noi and see her looking out tall over the wave of faces.
She finally reacts, giving them a salute.
It gets a respectful cheer and low-key applause from the people gathered. Not one of glory and celebration, but gratitude at an apology accepted.
She's still getting cries of 'we're sorry,' 'thank you,' 'protect the King,' and 'we trust you to guard Ruhemania' as you both descend the stage together.
You walk back to your guards, let her take back her polearm, and then…
Alena is still on stage, she has her hat off and is trying to address the crowd.
"Good people! We're sorry for this sequence of events…"
She's using a voice that isn't her 'Alena' voice. No one's paying attention to her. They're slowly starting to filter out and walk away.
The children especially look crestfallen.
You can't exactly rush the stage again and say it's not their fault and please give the troupe a second chance.
Instead, you walk with your guards away from the Faire.
You're suddenly not in the mood for festivities anymore.
You get back to the armory, you tell the senior guard you're done with the Faire for now, you'll come back if you need another escort.
But, you'd like a moment alone to talk with Noi.
Unfortunately, the only place that's feasible is inside the armory itself, so that's where you go.
Noi dips her head as she walks in.
You turn toward Noi, emotions tearing at your chest.
You tell her she can take the mask off now.
She hesitates, before doing so.
Her eyes are puffy, her face flushed. It's clear she's been doing all she can to keep from crying.
She gives a shallow little laugh.
"Hehe… sorry, King."
You go ahead and embrace her.
You should be apologizing, you say.
You should've seen that sending her up there would just empower the hecklers.
"It's… my fault too."
Alena tried to feed her direction. Just sort of flex and look gruff. Try to stagger back if 'punched'. If she felt confident enough, feel free to wave her arm and Alena would 'sell' it as a real hit.
Eventually they'd call it a draw and Alena would say something about needing to train even harder.
But in the end…
"I just couldn't do it."
She kept having the fear the stage was about to break under her feet if she shifted her weight. Or she'd outright topple over and right through it. Or she'd actually hit the poor actress if she so much as slapped the air.
Then people started chanting 'demon' and she started reliving the worst days of her life, on stage in front of so many people.
… You know, you say.
You're sorry. Of course you didn't forget how much that hurt her. You took the most dramatic action you could think of to shut it down.
If anything good comes out of it… it'll be that any doubts about Noi or prejudices are preemptively corrected.
She won't have to deal with frightened stares around the castle anymore.
She laughs, a little brighter.
"Haha… probably will still get a few of those."
She takes in a big breath, chest swelling.
"At the end, when everyone started saying 'sorry' and yelling how grateful they were…"
She shudders, unable to hold back her emotion.
"It suddenly turned into one of the happiest times in my entire life."
She grins wide, some tears squeezing from the sides of her eyes.
You're glad to have her. Both as a soldier and something more.
Though it started out terrible, it feels like this has really turned a brand new page in Noi's life.
"Ah… thanks also for paying that guy off. I felt bad that he just up and walked up to you, King."
It's all right. It's better she not have that on her conscience either.
He'll find a guide, easily.
"I'm real glad to serve you, King," she says.
You can't resist pulling her into one more embrace.
You kiss her chest, until she gets the idea and brings down her face.
You share a brief but romantic kiss together, just enough before you tell her you should both get back to your duties.
The tone of her voice tells you that she would really appreciate becoming more intimate, but you have to set that aside.
You step out of the armory and reflect.
You… definitely improved how Noi will be regarded around the castle. You did literally make a speech. Noi herself may finally be able to deal with her personal insecurities about her past and size.
This does also confirm that your popularity is increasing. Everyone in the crowd was hanging on your word and listening to you. Even the hecklers who set the scene in motion. You were their 'noble king'. That's a very good sign. Hopefully the day you surpass King Vlad in popularity will come.
Alena's show did not turn out well. She did not look good. Your heart goes out that in defending Noi you basically had to leave Alena to take the brunt of the crowd's discontent, but there's nothing you can do about it.
You hope she'll be able to patch up the ill-will with the audience.
–At least you found a… competent sounding… poetess.
It's about midday.
You'd be justified in going to take your meal in the sitting room.
Alternatively, you still have the order in your leggings.
The one that would make Robin General in certain circumstances.
Maybe you should find her and talk to her about it?
Though you could come back.
>Find Robin now and show it to her.
>It can wait. Go to the sitting room to eat with Tharja and Beatrice.
Can I ask for a quick clarification? Is this one of those "Decide what Edward does first, both will happen" votes, or one of the "Edward will do one of these now and the other may or may not come up later, pick one" votes?
Since the order had a specific vote to create it, and for a specific reason, it is fresh in Edward's mind and he will definitely show it to Robin… if not now, then eventually. That can be right now, if voted, or later if voted, but if it keeps being rejected as "not time yet, do something else," then Edward will do it on his own at some point without a vote. Or perhaps Robin will come looking for him, or anything else that can happen.
You can see a similar situation in a previous thread: Edward kept deciding to do other things for a while other than actually go out to the Faire. Eventually there was a scene where Edward said to himself "You know what, I'm going to my Faire." No choice, it was just what he did. It's a similar situation here. If the "do something else" keeps being voted, eventually Edward will think "I really have put this off for too long. I need to show it to Robin."
Events happen while Edward does things. The timing may be important. Or it might not be. Or it may be important to show Robin that you did it immediately so she doesn't get antsy… or it might affect another character… or any other possible combinations.
At any rate, this is a situation where Edward will have opportunities to choose to come back to it. He knows this is an obligation and not just something he feels like doing. And he happens to be at the armory at that moment. It might be a good situation to take advantage of the timing, or it could become a reason he goes back at some point.
Option 1. Procrastination is a thief. And damn, that could've turned out better. We'll have to set up a sturdier stage for Noi sometime.
Much as I'd like to go spend some time with the ladies, we need to put Robin's mind at ease. She trusts us because we listen to her and respect her. Showing that with the order so soon after we discussed it is the best way to protect that trust.
>5 votes for option one, find Robin and show her your drafted order.
Poll closed. Update soon.
You decide to find Robin. This is a great opportunity to nail two birds with one stone.
The quick turnaround from your promise to having the result will show you're taking things seriously.
You go looking for her.
She's in the barracks, waiting for 'chow' as it is.
She's dead last in line. That's… not good. You're sure Noi entered after her.
You don't think Noi would cut in front of her. Someone must have deliberately told her she'll eat last.
Despite this, you walk up to her anyway.
You invite her to step away for a moment. She nods.
You don't really have any place else to take her. So your choice is the armory, again.
You have something to show her, you say.
You take out your order and hand it over.
She unrolls it, and scans it. Her eyes are quick in reading.
She looks up at you.
"This is unacceptable."
…Pardon, but that's not the tone she should be taking.
You ask her to rephrase. She's addressing the King.
She closes her eyes, as if willing herself to find better words.
"There's many loopholes and ways this can be undone, Your Majesty."
She points out that if you're incapacitated or absent, the paper can be ignored. 'Misplaced'. 'Missed'. 'Accidentally burned in a fire when someone threw it in the fireplace.'
You reply that your word is absolute.
A 'season' can be relative. It could be delayed if the winter is mild, or spring is cold, or anything else to 'extend' the season.
You point out that your original consideration, that her belly 'swells', would also be open to interpretation.
The biggest loophole:
Even if she's technically appointed as General 'indefinitely,' this says your regent can just undo it.
"Isn't that right?" she asks.
She sighs, exaggeratedly.
…You wonder if she's getting the same treatment at her morning meals. This would explain why her mood is not better, if she's suffering from hunger.
It's not good for any developing child in her belly, either.
You try to salvage it.
You'll just write that the regent can't replace her, then.
Her expression droops.
"I can even think of a way around that."
Your order, if followed, may make her general, but what if this regent were to create a new position in the army?
A 'super general' who has more authority, or who she otherwise must be subordinate to.
"That ties into my next suggestion of reform, 'Majesty: this army has no real chain of command. It's run entirely by my generous older comrade who has the Old Guard as his henchmen. It needs a real structured leadership, not just 'haves' and 'have-nots' based on seniority."
…You think 'henchmen' is a little much. You don't especially get along with them either, but they are your soldiers.
"Are they?" she asks.
You don't like what Robin's implying.
Is she developing a grudge, you ask, or does she have real proof they mean some sort of subversion of your authority?
"…I don't have solid proof. And I'll admit, I'm growing to hate them."
She's tired, she can't sleep next to so many bodies and is being given a hammock in between a lot of men.
She's hungry, she keeps being served the dregs of food that is low quality to start with.
She's exhausted, her muscles aren't being given a chance to heal.
You make her stop.
You said you'd make her a crossbowman. That should help her train somewhat less strenuously.
"It did… until it ran out of bolts and I was told to put it back and pick up a sword again."
That does follow, yes.
She goes back to pressing her point:
"I'm not being hazed, 'Majesty, they're actively trying to make things as miserable for me as possible so I quit."
… You hope that's not the case.
Of course the food is going to be bad. It's not what nobles are used to.
Of course her muscles are sore. She's weak and never trained them.
Of course she's tired. She's likely used to better sleeping arrangements and having her own bed.
…Yet, can you really keep telling her to 'toughen up'?
What does she want you to do, you ask?
"You've made it clear you won't do it. I'm out of ideas."
You cross your arms.
Kicking her out of the army at this point would be a complete betrayal of everything you promised her. Moreover, it'd send her back to Chrisania. You can't have that. And… she has done a lot for you. Foiling the entire Chrisania plot is a tremendous victory for you.
You did handle the Old Guard once before, drive them off of your Loyalists through a little precision… 'bullying,' for lack of a better word.
But you don't think you can do that now. The senior guard was on your side before.
Okay. If you don't make Robin general, then how should you handle the Old Guard, you ask?
You watch Robin grit her teeth, in outright anger.
"Two words: wholescale purge."
Go to the Old Guard and offer them land and a bit of gold to retire with full honors. If they accept, wonderful. Deliver it to them.
If they refuse, deliver to them a wolf ticket.
…What's a wolf ticket, you ask? Is that a Ruhemanian thing, or a military thing?
"It means: 'time served: get out.'"
In other words, recognition that the soldiers 'served' in the army. Not necessarily with honors, or dishonorably. No compensation or reward. Then… release.
…You rub your head.
That's a rather radical solution for the middle of your Faire.
"I know, but 'Majesty, please listen to me… the longer I'm here, the more I'm convinced this 'Old Guard' has no good intentions for you. Their loyalty is to the man you've replaced, not you."
It's been a few days, you reiterate.
Robin hurriedly replies:
"That's how obvious it is!"
This conversation is going nowhere.
Robin's reforms are being subverted with you abandoning your Great Compromise. She's gone from complaining about her daily routine and idle insults she receives to claiming she's the direct target of harassment.
You really don't like that, but what can you do?
She sort of has a point about the order. Even Ricardo said so.
"…Please make me general."
Her voice is soft and she looks down, hanging her head.
"You won't regret it. I promise… I'll run everything I do by you first. I'm seeing enough about how the soldiers live."
You let out a long sigh.
You look back at the order. You really can't deny those loopholes.
If you remember correctly, there is precedent for the harassment as well. No one taught Sully good combat skills before you did, in hopes she'd quietly quit. That's a little more passive than what Robin seems to be receiving.
But, what the hell can you do?
>You'll… 'redeploy' Robin. Her new order is as permanent guard of Tharja's library. That will remove her from the barracks and let her recover a bit.
>Ask Robin to give you a few more days, until the Faire ends. Things simply can't be that bad, and you're not sure she's exaggerating. Trust in the document that signifies your good faith.
>Knight her. That'll give her just enough authority to escape persecution.
>All right. She's general, but absolutely no purge, for now. You'll keep her decisions under review before enacting them.
Sigh. Option 2. I'll admitvI din't trust that paper slip any more than she does, but I need time to investigate this insubordination, my chief spy is busy, and doing something like this in the middle of the reverie is a poor decision.
Best to wait until the faire's almost over, at the very least.
As much as I hate to say it, we have to focus on the faire first. If it goes badly, it looks bad on us. Tell that to Robin, then tell her that the guard will be the first thing we handle afterwards. Option 2.
I have a feeling that telling Robin to wait after the faire will just further infuriate her and cause her to hate the men she will be eventually commanding. And at this point I don't think that the other guards will ever respect her in her current position as a rank and file guard, especially when she starts growing from our child. Might as well cut to the chase now and give her what she wants. Best case scenario, she makes smart enough decisions that will garner the respect of the other guards and they will fall in line. Worst case scenario, the guards reject her and she learns that commanding soldiers isn't as cut and dry as she makes it out to be and hopefully humble her.
Changing my vote to option four
Not a great situation, and I see potential issues with all four options. I'm not super comfortable just giving in to her request to be made general. Maybe the pushback on her attempted reforms will help, but she's been a guard for all of a few days. Making her general now is implicitly saying "we were wrong, we should have made you general to begin with". I think our best option is actually knighting her- she's given a position with more authority without putting her directly over the army yet, it gives us time to deal with our guard issues (potentially the bloodless purge she suggested) after the Faire, and if anyone dares question it, we simply explain that the winner of the joust had to be our first knight, so we were holding off on knighting Robin. This also allows us to put her in a 'tactician' role for now and then put her as general later.
Option 3: Knight her.
I'm going to back off on all my previous logic here. Under normal circumstances, it would be ideal for Robin to start from the bottom and work her way up to earn the respect of the men, understand the hierarchy, and how the dynamic of our military works. And in a way, she has. The answer is just that it's fundamentally broken.
At this point, I don't think waiting will accomplish much of anything. Robin is miserable and at the point of breaking. The reason we had her trust in the first place is because we listened and we gave her options. If we don't act now, we're going to lose her permanently and the good intentions that we had in her rising through the organization will be moot.
I don't see another way forward that doesn't immediately blow up in our face, and I'd rather eat crow and admit we were wrong than deal with a potential military coup without the sharpest mind in the kingdom on our side.
*sigh* I was afraid of this, and I see no good way out of it. We're in danger of losing her trust, our good intentions have bit us in the butt, and we're going to offend someone no matter what we pick. Making her a knight seems to be a decent middle ground, but we're still not making good on our promise to her, and it will likely upset the men. Considering how slowly the old guard have been warming up to us, I think there's some truth in what she's saying.
…….Option 4. We made our promises, it seems like it's now or never to keep them.
>2 votes for option two, wait until the Faire ends to do anything and encourage her to trust you.
>1 vote for option three, Knight her.
>5 votes for option four, make her general.
Make Robin your general.
You're sick of this.
You thought you were simply putting Robin through 'her paces' but the 'paces' have been completely abused. This isn't going to get you, or her, what you want.
You tell Robin you've heard enough.
She starts to get a crestfallen look, until you go on:
She's your general.
At that, she immediately snaps to attention, eyes wide in shock.
…Listen, she knows now, right? It's not a position that you're giving to her cheap. She didn't manipulate you into doing it, nor did you do it because she was facing a little bit of resistance and the prospect of hard work. You can see how desperate Robin is getting and you're willing to make this the 'red line'.
Moreover… you can see she has good ideas and will put them to work.
She's right that the army lacks a power structure. There's a clear 'culture' of discrimination and 'spoils system' here. You want her promotion to determine just how much of it is normal hazing, and how much is cruelty and power-mongering. You'll both choose how to best settle it, later.
You won't have a 'wholescale purge,' at least not now. You do agree the Old Guard have always been a problem, but not something you could handle in your Faire.
But she's free to audit and inspect things. Just keep you informed.
You see hope returning to Robin's face.
"Yes, Your Majesty."
She hits you with a salute, which you return.
… Now then.
This needs to be told to the men.
You personally enter the barracks.
You decide to let Robin go first. You know what's going to happen if you walk up by yourself.
The chow line is empty, the pots present must contain dregs, if that.
Robin goes up to one, and you can see one of the Old Guard standing there.
He chuckles and says something that sounds like "Sorry, newbie, no chow for tardiness. Let hunger teach you better."
That's when you clear your throat.
It gets people's attention, and a chorus of "Your Majesty!" and "King!" resounds throughout the hall.
Your appearance is a rare event. Of course it's going to produce a cacophony of greetings.
You march to where Robin is.
You couldn't find a sash, or a medal, or anything else in the armory. Maybe the maids would know where something the general would wear is. But you don't have time for that.
You take your sword from your belt, sheathe and all.
You definitely have the men's attention.
Robin, you say, kneel.
She gets the idea and does so.
…You're not knighting her, so you tell her to outstretch her arms. She does so.
You tell her by your wisdom, you, King Edward, of Ruhemania, holder of all titles therein, are hereby awarding her the title of general of the entire armed forces that you command, to her.
That she may guide them, train them, plan for them, and maintain in a way she determines is best.
This sword is a symbolic token of the trust you are placing in her.
It is not to be unsheathed, because attacking with it would be to attack with all of Ruhemania. You must make that final decision.
However, you trust her to use its symbolic power in a wise and necessary manner.
You then look around the room, not settling on any particular face.
And that goes for absolutely everyone in this room.
Robin is now their general.
This is final, until you use your royal prerogative to make a change.
You hand the sword to Robin, tell her to take care of it, and command it to rise.
She treats it with all the care one may show a newborn babe.
"You won't regret this, Your Majesty. I understand the trust you're placing in me."
The look on her face is one of complete seriousness. You nod.
…It's then some comment is heard.
–Who the hell said that?
You look out over the crowd, walking in the direction of the noise.
Who said that, you repeat?
…The men all seem to be looking away and not wanting to get involved.
Finally you realize who it must've been. An older man with scars and bandages on his body, sitting in his cot.
"…I said, 'she seems the type who would leave it in the latrine,' Sire," says the senior guard.
That's what you thought he said.
Is he questioning your judgment, you ask?
"No. I'm questioning her judgment."
What you've said here is not a joke.
Robin is general by your authority. The symbol you gave her is not to be molested, laughed at, mocked, or otherwise. If it is, there will be consequences.
It is to be followed. Robin's words carry as much as yours.
Internally, you know what this means.
You've lost the senior guard's trust and respect.
That's fine. He was always just one part of the balancing act. The future of your army lies with Robin.
At any rate, you look out over the rest of the men.
The Loyalists seem to genuinely be awed that you've given up your royal sword to her. They're taking what you said to heart.
The Old Guard… they're keeping very tight-lipped faces. You know they must be rotating between skepticism, disgust, and scorn.
There may not be a 'wholescale purge' today, but they must know this means their days are numbered. Especially with how they've been treating her.
You walk back to where Robin is, watching her stand in front of the empty chow line.
… Indeed there's barely dregs, if that. All cold as well.
You watch and wonder what she'll do. If she'll excuse herself to go to the kitchen and get some actual food intended for aristocrats, or at least commoners.
"…dry rations. I will have dry rations," she says.
You leave Robin to her meal of dried wheat and crackers.
This is for the best, you tell yourself. Not just that you made her general, but when you made her general.
When she was humbled, but falling past the line into being targeted. That was unacceptable.
You're not sure what you'll expect from her in the next few days.
At any rate, you've left your sword with her for safekeeping. You need her to have something to wave as a symbol of your authority. That should be recognized. You're giving up your main method of self-defense, but you can make up for that.
In the meantime…
You are hungry.
You head off for your midday meal. Hopefully there will be more than dregs awaiting you.
There's a plate waiting for you, as well as Beatrice and Tharja, and your maids, but the food has indeed become cold.
The good news is part of it is meant to be served cold anyway.
Elizabeth tells you the cooks have been talked to.
Your meals will be smaller in portion size, and the biggest variety served in the morning when you break your fast.
You nod, picking up a bite of salted fish. That's good.
It's past midday.
You can probably get one or two more activities done tonight before sunset kicks in.
Perhaps you should 'update' your order, so that Robin will be your general indefinitely even if you were to need a regent. She may appreciate the gesture.
You rule out visiting Robin herself. You'd done what she wants. You'll give her a little bit of freedom before breathing down her neck.
You don't feel like returning to the actual Faire, but… perhaps you could visit Mania? Her part of the Faire would be less likely to swarm you. Especially when you get anywhere close to her cart.
Other than that…
Beatrice and Tharja will still be practicing. You can't spend time with either of them.
Maybe you could make use of Tharja's library instead.
…You might also search out one of the Chrisania siblings.
>You want to see Mania, and Mania's belly. Go visit your pregnant 'witch'.
>Relax in Tharja's library.
>Search out one of the Chrisania siblings.
Sorry, this should include an
>Option 4, go to Ricardo to update the order.
I posted the reply a bit too quickly.
Option 3, specifically Cordelia. Now is as good a time as any to see if we can smooth things over between her and Malon, and we've got the excuse of going to check on Eclipse post-joust.
we haven’t had a chance to talk to either of them in a while
Come on, folks. This is a pregnancy fetish story. Can we actually interact with the pregnancy content?
>4 votes for option one, go find Mania, enjoy her pregnant belly, and tell her that witches will not be so persecuted.
>4 votes for option three, search out one of the Chrisania siblings.
We have a tie.
I will come back soon. If there is still a tie, I will flip a coin to decide the results.
Please feel no pressure to change your vote. Changing your vote will not make the update come faster.
We will likely move on to a new thread soon. Not sure if it'll be after this vote closes or the next one. 500 is the limit, I believe, and we're at 481 or so.
I vote for Option three.
Option 3, I suppose. Wasn't really a choice I cared about overall.
>4 votes for option one, go find Mania, enjoy her pregnant belly, and tell her that witches will not be so persecuted.
>6 votes for option three, search out one of the Chrisania siblings.
>1 vote for option four, go to Ricardo to update the order regarding Robin.
Search out one of the Chrisania siblings.
Poll closed. Update soon.
I will create a new thread.
[View All] (417 posts and 24 image replies omitted)
This is the location of the new thread. Thread #12.
I hope it sparks interest.