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  • 📅 May and June 2024 are YE 46.4 in the RP.

RP International Relations Conference of YE 38 - Day 1

There was the quick shuffling of papers, a muttered statement, and then a Grand Admiral quickly pressing a bird back into a marine's arms before dashing out the door with one hand clamping his peaked cap down over his head. Lazarus bolted out the front of the conference hall with his eyes bulging and threw a hand into the air, calling out, "Taxi!"

"Admiral, why are you hailing a cab?" Asked a marine, waving from a nearby campaign wagon, "We brought down a car after you guys had to walk so far."

"Genius!" Cried Clarke, jumping up to clasp the man on both shoulders with a broad grin. "Corporal, you're a sergeant now and-- wait, I already did that..."

There was a musing expression, then the Admiral again clasped the marine's shoulders. "Son, you just earned yourself the Distinguished Service Ribbon! Drive me down to the docks with as little regard for traffic laws as safely possible!"

The car soon sped off into the distance while in the back seat Lazarus flipped open his communicator. On the other side was a very genial-sounding Senator Barton. Buildings, street signs, alleyways, and the occasional open park zipped by outside the window as the vehicle zipped along the wide streets darting between rush hour traffic with a white-green-blue bumper banner that implied, if not outright declared diplomatic immunity.

"Why hello, Admiral," Said the Senator with his signature grin, "I don't sup--"

"Where the hell have you been, Angelo!?" Cried Clarke, putting on his best stern face and telling a whopper of a lie. "We sent a message for you to join us twenty minutes ago and we need you in the conference hall. Pronto!"

On the other end, Barton's features scrunched up in confusion as he said, "Well, I'm sorry Admiral but I didn--"

"I forgive you, Barton, you're not a military man and you don't value punctuality like we do but now is the time to act, man!" Clarke belted back, "I'll be at the dock in five minutes, you just be outside waiting and prepare to give a talk about the senate!"

Then, he hung up. In the car, Clarke tossed the communicator onto the seat next to him and reclined. He needed a cigarette. He needed to pet Lucy. He probably actually needed to call his mom. There were so many things he needed to do. Looking out the window at the environment blazing past him, Clarke sighed and pulled out one of the meat strips he'd stowed in his pocket for the bird. It tasted salty on his tongue. Washing away the flavor of the cheap wine and the bitterness of his regret was this thick, gamy flavor. Tasting it was relaxing in an odd way, and after a few hardy chews, the admiral began to relax and lean in to his lie a little.

"The man is just worthless, isn't he?" Clarke mused around the processed meat, thinking of the Senator and his stupid grin. "If only Princess Yui were right and we actually did have a military government, maybe things would get done a little more efficiently."
Yuumi didn't take the wine. She scribbled and looked like the best overpaid secretary she could.

She had one ace. She needed Yui to leave to effectively play it.

Then maybe, with some help from others, she could stuff her older sister back in her cloistered military base and keep galactic peace rolling smoothly.

But if Yui decided to just stick around and keep playing diplomat, she'd get no opening.

It was a risk she had to take.
There was a raised brow from the peaked-cap wearing Lorath, as the Nepleslian Admiral ran with such vigor from the conference room. Huh... That's new. Himsa thought silently, as he found the spectacle to be suitable enough to actually burn at least two minutes of Yamataian time. Feeling the silence in the air, Himsa decided to speak up in that moment, as he looked about the conference room.

"You know, individual treaties are well and good, until we weave a tangled web." Spoke the Fyunnen chaplain, as he spoke while seated, not even granting the consideration to stand as he spoke those words since Yamatai had made it blatantly clear that they had no interest in displaying good character. However, he stood as he began to enter the next segment of his rebuttal to the situation as it stood. "When we start making individual treaties, that raises the question of where priority sets in. Who receives the greater priority of consideration when one nation wrongs the other, yet treaties are in place between the belligerents? This has every possibility of becoming a tsch'da..." There was a momentary pause, as the translator embedded in Himsa's tooth stumbled on a uniquely Lorath word, which he broke down into a meaning; "A chain reaction of offenses." he clarified, after taking some time to find the right phrase, which was still inaccurate.

"Yamatai wants freedom to wage war, to do as it pleases, where does that place those who are in a treaty with the Empire?" Himsa continued, and he let the question hang heavy in the air for a moment, as he frowned heavily at the prospect. "We had that arrangement before, what it did for my people was back us into a corner and forced us to take part in a war that was brought on by Yamatai's own desire to play creator, which released their kin upon the Kikyo Sector, only to have them go rabid and start literally raping and pillaging. Our obligation to the Yamatai Empire, put us in a situation where we were honor-bound to decline a potential offer of peace from the Mishhuvurthyar. We committed, and we paid the price in blood." There it was, Himsa dragged up old business, truths that the newcomers to the conference were likely unaware of. "Even so, even with that blood that was spilled, the Matriarchy found the will to forgive what took place, we found the capacity to leave those sins behind us as we endeavored to start anew. An endeavor which we still wish to pursue."

"Over the decade that my people have been involved in interstellar political relations, we have found that the Yamatai Empire has provided little assurance as to the value of a treaty in the past. This has been made quite apparent since my people were held hostage while we were forced into our first treaty. Now, a decade later, we make a gesture in good faith, only to have it rebuffed." Himsa frowned, shaking his head in the process. "What is worse, is that we are accused of being uninvolved in the treaty we thought we had, when Yamatai has made it quite clear they have had no interest in what we have to offer. We offer technology, manpower, logistics, policing, and it is left fallow. Participation takes investment on the part of the parties involved. Yamatai received as much as it put in, and as much as it wanted, do not claim something did not work when you did not try it." There was no anger in the words Himsa spoke however, instead, there was a sound of genuine disappointment.

A long breath was drawn by the Fyunnen, as he looked to those gathered. "Clan Mistress Yui, if you're measuring the treaty which we had offered by what is offered to your miltiary, what opportunities are lost and are gained for your ability to wage war, then let us speak as military personnel, since this does seem to be the central focus of your interests, and would have no real place in a debate of diplomatic policy. This is something you chose not to do when we first made our proposal, and it may prove to be a mistake to act so hastily, without weighing your options, and that does not sound like a choice which a seasoned warrior such as yourself would make. I ask this of those gathered; fifteen minutes for myself, Sky Marshall Coast, and Taisho Yui to speak on what we offer each-other, before we continue headfirst into potentially irrevocably damaging our potential prospects. More so, Clan Mistress Yui, I would like for us to share in a talk as soldiers, with the respect that is afforded to people of our mutual profession."

Internally, there was one Nepleslian word in mind throughout Himsa's words; stall.
"Speaking of." Himsa rolled onward, as a message appeared before him before he could even sit down. "Seems, how do your people say it; 'we're doing this live'." With those words, the Fyunnen held up a data pad, waving it briefly, before pressing a button which brought up a volumetric display of a document file which had been created less than a day after the last conference, a document which carried the approval signature of the sole decision making body of the Lorath Matriarchy, the Lorath High Priest, Velor. "Yuumi, I think you needed this? It was signed quite some time ago... and with that, for the time being I'll leave words to those more qualified and less occupied with the saber." he spoke, before sitting down, letting the political maneuver run its full course, with a Nepleslian undoubtedly running to 'home plate', as they would say, to deliver the winning score.
Private Viewing Booth

Kotori, multi-tasking as she sat watching the conference, along with using tele-presence to particpate in the senate session also going on, pulled her lips. Not in annoyance of the going ons, but rather at Yuumi's alert to the other dignitaries that the senate was in session. Our dirty laundry did not need be aired! The black-haired neko fumed, feeling Yuumi was making an error just as bad as Yui had as far as loss of face went.

While irregular, she was a minor member of the government and Yuumi's onsite assistant to the Yamataian delegation. She telephatically communicated to Yui. "Yui-sama, it is Kotori speaking. I would suggest taking measures to move to other topics under the excuse of each government having until tomorrow to frame an answer to our government choosing to end the DATASS treaty. We cannot let the foreigners just sit mutely and witness this devolve into back-and-forth drama."
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"What I want from the Lorath Matriarchy is security and stability," Yui told Himsa, ignoring his retarded ideas about the origin of the Mishhuvurthyar. "Put simply, I don't want to have to worry about you or feel like I have to look over my shoulder at what your nation or its military are doing. Honestly, that's all the Yamataian military wants out of this. We want to be safe. Having to go to the treaty council made us less responsive to threats and less safe. That's why I don't support this treaty."

Yui made a subtle nod in Kotori's direction. "Speaking of unaddressed threats..." Yui said. "Did you know that the Star Army has already found and fought the Rixxikor in 4 different star systems?"
There was a heavy sigh from Himsa, as he looked to the Nekovalkyrja maiden; "I could drag out the history between our peoples, but, I will cut to the simple fact; you had the security of two allies supporting your Empire's interests. You had the security of the combined military might of our three nations, which could not possibly be opposed by any force any of our peoples have encountered. You had the guaranteed stability provided by each of us looking after the other. None of us could be an aggressor against the other. Our neighbors would see this, and know that they would have no fears of being bullied or conquered, and it would ease relations, so we hoped. Our aspiration was not to damage your Empire, our aspiration in this treaty is to protect it. Our friends the Nepleslians, and ourselves, were stood willing to bleed for your Empire, and we simply ask that you be willing to do the same for us."

"You claim that there was no commitment from the Nepleslians, but you are wrong, this time which we have had under an understanding that a treaty has been in place is the finest proof of Nepleslian commitment, as they allow your kin to walk on their lands, legally, for the first time. Your kin, each of which are walking weapons, deemed people, each of which left with the same ability that any and all people have for free will and whims, which could possibly inflict massive loss of property and life if so willing." Himsa spoke with honesty, as he did end up releasing a chortle of a laugh; "We even have allowed your living weapon-people to work alongside us in the Self Defense Force, trusting them with our lives and security."

"Clan Mistress Yui, you make claims, you stand boisterous of your desire to act freely. What you are accomplishing is to outright ignore the good will which has been established, instead, opting to act as, what our Nepleslian friends would call; a 'loose cannon'. That desire, to do what you wish, is entirely contrary to the principles of security and stability which you desire from your neighbors." Himsa looked to the other delegates gathered, then back to Yui, gauging the situation; "We're not a bunch of Santo Hei under your command. We do not buy into 'Do as I say, not as I do'. My people, and I am sure others here as well, choose to lead by example."

There was an unspoken matter that troubled Himsa in that moment as well, something that nagged at him; Why is she worried about being unable to gain Nepleslian and Lorath approval? Who is she wanting to strike at, that we may object to? Only reason for her to want freedom to strike as she pleases, would be to attack one of us, or one of our friends.
The campaign wagon nearly toppled over a traffic barrier as it whirled back into Raiken Park to deposit the Senator and the Admiral. Like an unlikely cartoon couple they dashed through the walkways with Lazarus dragging Angelo by the hand. Each step was more hurried than the last until they reached the entrance of the conference hall and burst through the doors only to suddenly assume and incredibly casual-looking pace with the politician yanking his hand from the Admiral's grip. Both men grunted to illustrate their heterosexuality as they smoothed down their outfits and strode towards the conference room itself with blank expressions.

The sound of boots and wing-tipped oxfords clapping on the tile floors rose to a steady forte, and the double doors of the conference room swung open to reveal Lazarus Clarke with a hand on each door. He bowed to the delegation and then stepped aside to present the Senator. Angelo Barton smiled a weasel smile and slinked into the room like he was walking into his living room. The senator lifted his hands to throw a pair of finger-guns towards the Lorath delegation (none of which he'd ever met) and click his tongue against his teeth before Admiral Clarke intervened and firmly pressed the senator's hands back to his sides from behind.

"Well, howdy, ya'll." Greeted the senator, elbowing the admiral behind him. "I'm Angelo Barton, the elected Senator in representation of Nepleslia Core. Do forgive my tardiness-- but are we not all very busy people? Now I heard, on the way that there was some confusion..."

Cheerful eyes scanned the expanse of the room, looking for any familiar faces in the crowd. At some point, they met a pair of very intent eyes in the Nepleslian section of the delegation. Barton tensed up immediately, locking eyes with his rival and sending the tip of his tongue against his lips as he stared down the most intimidating force in his long, troubled career in Nepleslian politics. Just over the shoulder of Charlie Coast and his schooled look of disinterest was a very uncomfortable marine. On the arm of this marine was Clarke's palm-nut vulture, Lucy. A low growl formed in her throat as she caught sight of the senator and the two of them stared at one another with narrowed eyes for a moment before Angelo got his act together and snapped his focus back to the delegation.

"See, I hear tell that nobody thinks Nepleslia has got any sort of democratic representation. And I just wanted to set that notion aside today." Explained the senator. He spread his arms to encompass the entire room in a loving air-hug and expressed his dismay at their assumptions, "The Senate has been operating again for over a year now, though we've been working from the relative obscurity of the Sky Marshall's office on Nepleslia Prime until the construction of the new senate hall on the homeworld is finished. As for this here Alliance Treaty, I wouldn't say we ratified it so much as we didn't overturn it. Y'see, when Sky Marshall Coast accepted it a couple years back, we weren't operating at the time-- so his word was law. Now, as soon as we met again, there were a few things we overturned and a few things we amended, aaaand a few things we just kinda came up with on our own. But as for everythin' else? We don't need to re-ratify existing laws when we can just overturn anythin' we don't like at a moment's notice. So let's just say it's a law on our books, and we intend to uphold it."

"Now, I also hear that the Imperial Senate hasn't ratified this little agreement either and if I could just--" Barton was interrupted by the sound of Clarke loudly clearing his throat behind him. He made a sour look at the Admiral and then went on, "If I could just say--"

There was another, even louder clearing of the throat from the Admiral, followed by an extremely accidental-on-purpose-looking nudge and the Senator whirled around to face his opponent with angry eyes. Harsh whispers passed between them before the Senator cleared his own throat and turned back around to finish with what he'd totally meant to say the entire time, for sure, "If I could just say good luck to the Yamataian delegates and wish them success in their fine democratic process."

Then, the two men seated themselves next to their Sky Marshall, the Senator gleefully pouring a glass of wine with a broad grin while Lazarus gave Coast a very dead-looking stare.
From the back of the Lorath booth, Aai'aldi had watched the initial proceedings with a quiet interest, seated a little behind her fellow representatives of the Matriarchy. While she had been asked to attend the event it had been intended as a secondary role with the Middlewoman and Himsa representing the main bodies of legislation and military interests. Between the Gartagen representative's overly confident and flamboyant stance, the reluctant, cowed arrival of the Yamataian Premier (something Aai'aldi likened to a child who had been commanded to attend a function), and the nervousness of the smaller nations attending the conference there had been little doubt that things were to go poorly.

Wine offered had been received poorly by the Nepleslian delegation, something she did not understand, though her inability to drink at the moment did not seem to be quite the tragedy that otherwise might have been expected. The withdraw from the Treaty, was however the true tragedy of the gathering as now the peace of three nations that had been able to grow to be friends was at risk. To this end the hurried departure of one of the Nepleslian delegates, and the cool exchange between the Yamataian Taisho, and the Matriarchy's own Chaplain was not one that she had wanted to sit through.

Now that a new silence fell across the Conference Aai'aldi took the time to stand and spoke in a voice that might have been pleasantly soothing if not for the undertone sounding much like grinding stone, "If I might be so bold... Might I ask why it is that the Yamatai Star Empire did not wish to renegotiate the terms of our..." There was a pained pause, "Former Treaty. Surely we could have addressed the difficulties present in the current version of the treaty and worked toward a better alternative, rather than to create this needless tension? With all due respect despite your offer to put forth new treaties to maintain the peace we have all enjoyed I am certain that there are many among us who wonder why the withdrawal from the Treaty was handled in such a manner."

Returning to her silent observation the Stone-Burner returned to her seat after a brief pause curious as to what sort of rationale had lead to such an uncomfortable situation.
Nibbi had temporarily blanked out. She was aghast with the turn of events and furore which had spread across the table. She was glad to have two more collected heads to speak for the Lorath by her side, but she herself wasn't filled with confidence as emails, questions, and queries begun pouring in from her peers who weren't with her. Am'ikka could see that she was starting to stew a bit - drumming fingers, gaze unfocussing, forgetting to breathe, unable to form coherent speech for the moment.

Unfortunately, a key weakness had been revealed in the Middlewoman. She only appeared to operate well because things sailed fairly smoothly two years back. This year, with such a large wrench thrown into what she'd planned to do, all she'd become now was a bit of a bobble-head for her two peers, who had started navigating the bureaucratic quagmire Yui had plunged everybody into.

Still, Nibbi felt so betrayed. She couldn't bear to look at Yuumi, or any of the Ketsuruis for that matter. Too many factions in Yamatai were pulling in different directions - with the senate pulling one way and the sabre rattlers going another, almost literally pulling Yamatai limb from limb. She just wanted today to end, and when all of this was over, she was going to gather a lot of illicit (To Yamatai anyway) substances and find a hole to bury herself in.
The Sky Marshall sat there, allowing the words of the Senator to spill out across the conference room, which were somehow muffled to him despite being in such close proximity. Coast had a very good feeling that the actions of the Yamataians would include their wishes to leave the treaty which bound the nations together in hopes that it would forge lasting peace and stability between them. Perhaps it was the manner in which they did it - anathema to the brash and straightforward nature of his own people.

It was unfortunate that his muted feeling of distrust was validated.

With anger in his stomach, the Sky Marshall stood up from his seat and exhaled through his nose - again letting the fire escape from within before he spoke.

"This is an extremely unfortunate development. However I cannot purport to be for one nation's sovereignty while at the same time make demands from the Yamataian Star Empire that they adhere to this treaty. I will instead say that the treaty shall be ratified by our senate members in the hopes that the original signatories will do the same - either if they haven't done so already, or if they wish to make a re-declaration of their commitment to peace." Coast allowed himself to look across the table at the Lorath delegation, before setting his attention squarely on Yuumi.

"Those parties that wish to abstain ought to be free to do so, just as we who value peace ought to carry on without them. In such case however, our standing order within our territories to grant access to our society by citizens of certain nations shall not be terminated, though it may be modified within reason. We of the Imperium shall at least demonstrate the value we place in our commitments and keep our honor clean."

Coast visibly relaxed, "Now then, these are discussions that should come later between interested parties. In order to not let this unexpected development dominate our conference, I would like to invite the other delegations to bring up their own matters of concern."

Coast sat back down into his seat and grabbed his newly filled glass of wine, returning Lazarus' dead-looking stare.
"Don't," Yui replied. "If Nepleslia ratifies the treaty, Lor and Nepleslia will be unable to make new treaties with Yamatai because they'll be stuck in DATASS, and the universe will become divided between Nepleslia and Lor, and Yamatai and our allies. Convince your senate drop the treaty so it doesn't exist. Then we can start fresh and rebuild alliances that keep us on the same side. That would be more conducive to peace," the Taisho explained.
The Sky Marshall looked up from his glass of wine and shot Yui a rather puzzled look.

"With all due respect, Ma'am. I don't understand how such a situation would come to pass. I am very confident that treaty members would make positive overtures to the other nations that occupy this small portion of space, despite them being non-signatories."

Coast sipped from the glass. "I'm truly sorry if you believe our joint membership in DATASS precludes us from forming - at the very least - positive associations with our other neighbors in space. We have heard their concerns, and I believe Nepleslia and Lor as signatories can work together in forging relationships with non-signatories and preserve the sovereignty of everyone involved."

"In any case, we should move on to the concerns of other states."

Coast leaned over to Lazarus, "Tell the senator he should expect to send the treaty to members of the senate for review and ratification once we get the details hammered out with the Lorath delegation."
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"Hear hear, we've had quite enough of dwelling on this subject." Himsa spoke from the Lorath portion of the conference, in response to Coast's suggestion that the conference cease dwelling upon the matter of treaties and deceptions. "It is not as if any one of us is the center of existence. It is only fair that we grant the floor to other parties, and pay mind to other topics. After all, this discussion was not exactly part of the agenda, at least not on our end. We can address DATASS non-signatory treaty concerns at a later time, and also, extend our hands to those genuinely interested in mutual cooperation, without being non-committal."

"Besides." Himsa spoke, his gaze moving to Yui, "We already offered an ear to such concerns, it was declined already."
"So be it," Yui replied, looking unimpressed. "If there are no more military-related matters to discuss, I will turn the floor over to my sister, who handles other international relations for Yamatai. I will be conducting military tours like the last conference, if anyone is interested."
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Kotori gave a sigh. "And here Yuumi-sama goes, giving herself room to do some backstage talking after Yui-sama's bomb."

The Princess stood up, "If you will excuse me, I have a job to do. In the meantime you can stay, enjoy the refreshments, debate politics and conspiracy theories. I will be back once the conference is back in session."

She made her way to the booth's exit, her destination the doors leading into the conference room. Fingers flexed along with the urge to pounce on a certain someone, but she tempered with the knowledge that she was hardly the only one whom presently wanted to do that. Now, the trick she'd have to pull off was trying to save her from all the others.
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