Saint Mark

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  1. The West Pacifican vol 5 Editor-in-Chief The Holy Principality of Saint Mark The Delegate’s Discourse … a regular feature of The West Pacifican By Badger I am proud to announce that The West Pacific and the Kingdom of Great Britain have created the Treaty of Mercia page=dispatch/id=158320. Our new allies have a unique and complex culture that the more I learn about the more I enjoy. However, it is the people of the Kingdom of Great Britain that have drawn me in. I believe that our two regions will share a rich and exciting future. The process began with conversations between myself and the KGB Foreign Secretary, Arthur Vasentius. He and I discussed our regions and the future and believed it would be positive for both to be allied. Our Minister of Foreign Affairs, Davelands, and I attended meetings held at the KGB forum. After these discussions, HBH Constantine and I got into the meat of the treaty. He drafted an initial treaty proposal. The Guardians and I discussed and offered some alterations and Constantine took the suggestions back to the King. They were further negotiated and we came up with the treaty! The West Pacific is proud to develop new friendships with well-established regions in the NSverse with which we share commonalities. We will embassy with small regions that are well established but not new regions. Here in TWP, we believe in the old axiom, "you are who you associate with." We, either work with them militarily, have common friends, or share a mutually beneficial relationship. We take the relationship of embassy as a serious friendship between regions and only establish those relations with regions that we feel will be able to share in our successes, support us in our time of need and allow us to be there for them. If you are interested in joining TWP’s Foreign Affairs team as an ambassador, please contact our Minister of Foreign Affairs The Diplomatic Republic of Davelands. The Social Scene By Neenee The event of the season was, without question, The Black and White Ball held in The West Pacific’s Embassy in The North Pacific, and hosted by our very own Halo. The hall and ballroom were elegantly decorated, and the embassies collection of Renoir’s really caught the eye! Drall, one of our Ambassadors, was the first to arrive, in a splendid carriage, looking quite dashing in a suit with a white tie. After him, wearing a fashionable tuxedo and pricey Rolex, came Guardian Davelands, the Minister of Foreign Affairs. After those two calm entrances, things were a little shaken up by none other than our own Delegate Badger. I actually watched his Cadillac screech to a halt in front of the building, it was quite impressive, in the same way all near-miss accidents are impressive. Delegate Badger was dressed formally from the waist up, and casually from the waist down. That’s the Delegate we’ve all come to know and love. Paris arrived in a stunning black dress, and very pink hair, the two things going remarkably well together. Just after she entered, I learned something I had never known before. Giraffes wear suits. Yes. Giraffes wear suits. This became clear when Syrixia, Cultural Minister of The North Pacific, made an entrance. He did look amazing in his suit though. I bet he has an amazing tailor. Prole, our own Vice Minister of Interior was the next to arrive, though he didn’t quite seem to be in the party mood. Everyone had been mingling and drinking for a while, when TWPAF Commander Yuno arrived, looking lovely in a black and white dress that I swear made noise, but I was probably imagining that. Just after she arrived, Minister of Foreign Affairs, Bootsie from The North Pacific, rushed into the room, very much like the White Rabbit, afraid of being late. The crowd continued to mingle in the hall a while longer, drinks flowing so smoothly it was as though the glasses simply refilled themselves. Once Halo got everyone into the dining room, he gave a wonderful toast, after which Delegate Badger said a few words, followed by Minister Bootsie. The theme was clear, one of continued friendship and cooperation, a celebration of the past, present, and future. Dinner was served … a menu that makes me wish I could bribe the chef away. A string quartet played chamber music while everyone ate, and the dinner conversation was pleasant. During dinner, though, Tomb, Vice Delegate of The North Pacific, arrived fashionably late. Introductions were made, and the easy flow of conversation continued. After dinner, and until the evening ended, there was dancing. The ballroom was filled with the sounds of The Big Bad Badger Band, and the dancing and drinking lasted well into the evening. Old friends caught up, new friends were made, and the entire night was wonderful. TWPAF In The Spotlight ... An Interview With Captain Liliarchy By Halo How did you come to be in TWPAF? My involvement in TWPAF pretty much begun with the founding of my first nation. I was looking for an online community of sorts and I stumbled upon NS. Politics aren‘t a strong interest of mine so once I’d figured out daily issues and world assembly resolutions, I knew that it wasn‘t enough to keep my attention. That‘s why I decided to respond to one of the countless recruitment telegrams I‘d received. Not sure if by choice or just by accident, I chose The West Pacific’s TG. I remember getting thrown onto a piling mission pretty much immediately, having absolutely no idea what was going on. I did know one thing though, I was having fun and that hasn‘t stopped since. What is your role there? I currently occupy the rank of Captain, which I was promoted to not too long ago. Real life is keeping me sort of busy these days, but I still keep an eye out on our Discord server, where I help out new recruits whenever I can. I can also set up missions in a pinch but I don‘t actively seek that out right now. Since day one, I‘ve been determined to be an active troop and now, almost a year in, I can proudly say that I‘ve attended every TWPAF operation I physically could and I‘m looking forward to continue doing so. Is it a good place for a noob to join? Absolutely, unconditionally yes! I‘ve seen many people go through TWPAF, from noobs to experienced players. We accommodate all different kinds of people, from ones that are just looking for a bit of fun, such as myself, to those looking to become serious players in NS gameplay. Complete noob to NS? We‘ve got you covered! Want to try your hand at leadership? We‘ve got you covered as well! If you‘ve got doubts then hear it from me, I wouldn‘t stick around for so long if it weren‘t a good place! Can you tell us about one of your favorite battles? Uhhhh...so many. While there were many great battles last year, the ones that had the biggest impact on me personally must have been my first missions. It was an operation called “Democracy No More“, coordinated via TGs immediately after I’d sent my TWPAF application. As a total noob to NS, I struggled with finding all the different buttons, having to send out multiple clarification messages. We managed the mission in the end, somhow! The funny thing was I hadn’t even posted a single message on TWP’s RMB up to that point! It was only after I was done with the mission that I got around to doing that. Good times! This one and subsequent training runs are what made me decide that this is in fact something I want to continue doing in the future. What are your future plans? My future plans…. Well, these are more like personal goals that I want to achieve. I’m definitely going to continue actively participating in TWPAF operations. Once real life allows, I’m also going to look into getting more involved in our organization in general. Leading my own training tags and missions is a thing I’ll definitely do in the future. Can’t let our commander do it all by herself after all! New To NS? Get Involved! By Drall In December of 2016, I found NationStates, or, rather, my friend introduced it to me. At first, I was primarily interested in the issues, which at that time seemed to me to be the primary component of the game. However, as I played more, and became more and more addicted, I soon came to realize that the true heart of the game was interacting with the other players. I was born in the West Pacific and was happy to find this to be an intelligent, clever, and snarky community which fit me well. Naturally, I moved my focus in the game toward the Regional Message Board, and the gathering of endorsements. Thus enraptured with the Regional Message Board and the game of gathering endorsements, I proceeded along such a path for a time. Eventually, as was inevitable in this course of action, I garnered the attention of our illustrious delegate, Badger. As one might expect, he warned me of the endorsement cap and my proximity towards it, but also offered me a position in the government, either in Foreign Affairs or in the Military. I choose to join the Foreign Affairs department, and was instantly catapulted into a new and intriguing world. My new position as an Ambassador changed my entire relationship with NationStates. It gave me two other regions to interact with, and introduced me to Halo. Moreover, through my further involvement in NationStates, I expanded my view, made new friends, both in this region and in others, and attended a wonderful ball. Overall, my enjoyment of the game grew vastly as I invested myself in it, as have my relations with the wonderful members of our region. TWP Advisory Committee Needed To promote more community participation in TWP affairs, I would like to make some changes to our government, and am seeking your input as to the form this should take. If you are interested in serving on a committee to help with this, please respond here: http://www.westpacific.org/forums/index.php?/topic/2137-roll-call/ Prayers Needed? The West Pacific has formed a Prayer Circle. If you need some divine intervention, you are invited to post prayer requests on TWP's Forum in the topic devoted to these in the Clubhouse here: http://www.westpacific.org/forums/index.php?/topic/2126-prayer-requests/
  2. The West Pacifican vol 4 Editor-in-Chief The Holy Principality of Saint Mark The Delegate’s Discourse … a regular feature of The West Pacifican By Badger The West Pacific has proudly joined the Coalition Against the Ideologies of Nazism (CAIN). The Coalition began as a conference hosted by Brunhilde from Europeia. Mediobogdum, Yuno and myself represented our region in the conference. Hundreds of people from dozens of regions came together to form the treaty, which can be found here: viewtopic.php?f=12&t=393645 Through Brunhilde’s vision and work the conference quickly came to a consensus that Nazism in NS needs to be stopped. After weeks of public and private discussion, Brunhilde put together many different drafts of the treaty with participants looking over the document to get the treaty right. As the treaty was being finalized the coalition acted militarily on a Nazi holding, The NSIA. With 84 updaters we took the region. Eventually our Delegate had 172 endorsements. Since then the region has been passworded and locked up! Several other military actions have been successful as well, including a recent liberation of a Nazi holding. Proudly, TWP was one of the first signatories of the CAIN treaty! As of this moment there are 20 regional signatories with many others working on adopting the treaty via their governmental systems. Furthermore, TWPAF has participated in several CAIN military missions. We are the region the military leaders come to when they need troops! This treaty is something that will have lasting effects on the NSverse. A large coalition of regions came together to make a statement and I am proud of our efforts. The Doesn't Suffer Fools Lightly of Big Bad Badger The West Pacific Armed Forces By Halo Psssst …. The path to total fulfillment in Nation States is no longer a secret! It is no longer necessary to seek out gurus in mountain retreats, pour over ancient tomes of forbidden knowledge or even to call your mother! The answer is here. The answer is to join TWPAF, The West Pacific Armed Forces!!! Tired of answering issues, debating the finer points of trade regulations or redesigning your flag for the umpteenth time? TWPAF is for you! Raid, earn badges and promotions, endear yourself to your peers, leave funny messages about marsupials and chocolate on other regions’ RMBs, and annoy fascists, racists, Nazis and other trolls, while learning to lead and having a blast. The time commitment is flexible and our beloved Commander and her generals will teach you everything you need to know. To enjoy this Nirvana of NS life, Simply go to TWPAF and complete the simple registration. Fulfillment can be yours! Foreign Affairs … an introduction to TWP’s new Minister of FA By Davelands In January of 2016, I found NationStates and was born in The West Pacific. While answering issues, I began to read everything I could about the game and was fascinated with the larger community and all the other areas where people could interact. I started out slowly by commenting on some threads in the World forums, then I introduced myself to The West Pacific’s RMB. There I found a great group of people who were very much like me; funny, snarky, intelligent, and nice to be around. Although I had looked at other regions, I had found my home in The West Pacific. To become more involved in my region, I began to look for areas to contribute. One of them was to join The West Pacific Armed Forces. While working in The West Pacific Armed Forces, I had gotten to know our current Delegate Badger, who was my commander. As we talked, it became apparent that we shared a similar view on the future of the region. Both of us realize that while The West Pacific has a great core group of people and a fantastic culture, we want TWP to become a leader in NationStates both militarily and diplomatically. Around that time, I was asked to help plan a couple of high profile events for the region; The E-E-TWP Festival, celebrating our regions close ties and what became the Celebrate TWP Festival. It was there that I got a chance to closely interact with people from other regions. It is something I truly enjoy. In the middle of the planning, Badger was chosen to become the new Delegate and one of the first things he did was to ask me to take over the Foreign Affairs department as Minister. It was a challenge I could not pass up. Foreign Affairs in The West Pacific had languished for years … not through lack of effort, but it just wasn’t a priority. I am setting about to change that. The goals are simple: 1. I want to use the Foreign Affairs department to promote The West Pacific’s activities throughout the NationStates world. 2. I want to see our people go out and get to know the people of other regions, participate in other regions’ activities, and bring them to ours. 3. I want to be able to engage the leaders of other regions to discuss common interests and come together over mutually beneficial issues. The first thing I did was to contact the leaders of all 38 of the regions that we have embassies with, tell them about my new position, make sure that we have embassy areas in their outside forums, and post the latest version of The West Pacifican to start to get the word out. The second part is more challenging. Finding the right people to be able to go out to those regions and start the process. Our first search brought in 10 excellent people who I am sure will be a big asset to The West Pacific. I have already assigned a number of them as Ambassadors and given them regions. But there is more work to do and I need more people. If you have an outgoing personality and want to see the wider NationStates world, the Foreign Affairs department is the place to be! You will get to see different cultures in action, meet a lot of interesting people, and help shape the direction of one of the largest regions in the game. Telegram me Davelands if you want to make a difference. Internal Affairs … fun in TWP … an update from our assistant Interior Minister By Prole The Tactician Behind The Office Who exactly are you? I am Prole confederation, Doppio Giudici, Vadia, and recently Pentaga Giudici, but I go as Tevo77777 or Warhead77777 off the site. You can call me Timothy though, since that's easier for a lot of people. I'm just a five year long user, who reads an ungodly amount, has a lot of experience with RPing, and knows social studies or economics like the Notorious BIG knows rap. Disclaimer, Timothy doesn't have 1% of the talent BIG had. What exactly does your office do? My job is to support Paris (The minister of the Interior) in our collective duties of keeping the region active, entertained, and supportive. My methods of achieving this are mostly based upon four actions I commit to on a regular basis… answering questions people have, introducing people to each other, telling jokes that barely make any sense, starting ridiculous RPs, and being the spine of our beautiful D&D community. How does the D&D go? So far we have three dungeon masters and four teams split among them, one shared canon, and between 12-15 players. The dungeon masters work together as a team to work on the canon and make sure the game runs smoothly, while each DM has control over his/her own parties and shapes the world in his/her own way. I hope that when we start up again in January, the players can really start to shape the world and news of their heroism can spread in world to other teams. Why "The West Pacific"? The West Pacific is the most friendly region I have ever been in and has supported my actions as much as I have supported them via my actions. The people I work with and work at the command of are people I respect. Our residents are old and young, and we are a diverse community of respect and memes. I can see myself staying in my current position or replacing my boss for a long time, depending on timing and how busy we get; of course. Cultural Corner … a showcase for the talents of our citizens The Storm Before the Tempest This is a short story written by one of our active and very talented citizens. By Fujai Enter Sycorax. Born of Bomardas, and born of magic. The town Bomardas was up in the foothills, not far removed from Algiers. It was late in the afternoon, as Sycorax was cleaning her shop with her young son, Caliban, when Kharim dashed in the door. She had to wait a few moments for the boy to catch his breath before he could speak. “Please,” he gasped, “You need to come with me!” Sycorax stopped and put down her broom, gesturing Caliban to bring some water for the boy. “Can you explain some more, Kharim?” She asked calmly. This was not the first time someone had barged into her shop with an emergency, but panicking would never help. “Quickly!” Kharim tried again, “He’s hurt! Blood and, and p-please!” “Who is hurt?” She asked, placing a gentle hand on the boy’s shoulder and taking the cup from Caliban, she gave it to him, “What happened, Kharim?” The boy gulped the water gratefully. “I-It’s Rashaad,” he stammered, “He-he was going along the ravine north of town and he slipped down… There were so many rocks… So much blood…” His eyes were wide and his words spilled from his mouth in between gasps of breath. “Thank you, Kharim.” Sycorax spoke softly, directing the boy out of her shop, to the porch outside. “If you would, please, find your father and send him down there after me. I could use some help moving Rashaad, more than likely.” “Yes, yes ma’am.” He answered, and taking one last drink of the water, he ran off to find them. As Kharim left, Sycorax gathered up her supplies into her bag quickly but calmly. She was about to leave when she turned back to Caliban, “You must prepare the back room, there will be visitors. You know what to do.” “Yes, mother,” he answered, “I can do it.” “That’s my boy,” she said softly. Rushing out of her home, she took the small totem of Setebos that she kept next to the door. She then dashed off to the north, toward the ravine Kharim spoke of. When she arrived there were already several men from the orchards making their way down the gully wall. She could see Rashaad at the bottom, his limbs bent and broken, his body battered and bloody. She had to act quickly if she were to save him. She called out to the men in the ravine, “Watch out down there!” and nimbly leapt into the chasm, springing from rock to rock much faster than the men picking their way down carefully. She arrived at the bottom well before the others. She made her way quickly to Rashaad, who was lying face down, motionless a short distance up the ravine. She could now see the extent of his injuries. He was considerably worse than she had thought at first. More of his bones were broken than she had seen someone survive from, and his body was bruised and cut as much as a deer caught in briar patch. Rocks were piled around him at the base of the ravine where he had fallen. She bent down and felt for the beat of his heart. After a few seconds, she found it, very weak, but still there. There may yet be time, she thought. The men had finally reached her, and as they stared at Rasheed, dumbfounded, she snapped at them, “Help me move these rocks, hurry! We need to get him to my house.” she then muttered to herself, “There isn’t much time…” Just as she was saying this, Kharim returned with his father, a middle aged man, starting to grow a little grey, but with a voice as clear as dawn. “What has happened here?” the village headsman asked. “Ansar, Rashaad has been hurt and I need to get him back quickly now,” she responded shortly, tossing him a blanket from her bag, “Find some branches, make a stretcher, quick!” And with that she bent down and, with the help of the others, began lifting the rocks off of Rashaad’s body. With their numbers, they had the area cleared quickly. Ansar had since returned with two sizeable branches and wrapped the blanket around them, creating a makeshift stretcher. “Alright,” Sycorax said, “Let’s get him on there, gently now.” She moved around to Rashaad’s head, and the men gathered around his body, “And lift.” They gingerly lifted the body of Rashaad onto the waiting stretcher. Sycorax grabbed one side and said to Ansar, “Come, take the other side, we must get him to my house quickly. The rest of you, I’ll have him fixed up, don’t worry.” “But how, Sycorax?” one man asked. “It will take some time, but I believe it can be done,” she replied, “Today is not his day to die.” The men watched solemnly as Ansar complied, taking up the other side of the stretcher, and they moved off quickly among the rocks with Kharim following behind. The two carried Rashaad as swiftly as they dared, for she feared he may not last a rough journey, however short. When they reached her cottage, Ansar and Sycorax brought Rashaad to her back room, where few people beside herself and her son had entered. Caliban had done just as she asked. The curtains over the cabinets had been drawn, a large carpet had been moved to the center of the floor, and the cover to her desk had been shut. Everything was hidden. As they put Rashaad down on the floor, Sycorax said to Ansar, “I shall no longer require your help, Caliban shall assist me in my practices. You must go for now, and tell Rashaad’s family that he shall live if I have anything to say of it.” “Why do you send me off? I am more than capable of aiding you,” he replied. “No, I will need my concentration,” she answered quickly, “We have lost too much time, you must leave, go now.” “Very well,” he said finally, standing up with a look of stubbornness on his weathered face, “Do what you must to save him.” As he exited the house with Kharim, Sycorax said to Caliban, “Shut the door, quickly, we need to start right away.” Caliban hastened to obey, and Sycorax began inspecting Rashaad’s wounds more closely. In the ravine she had thought he would need more major attention than her usual patients, and she could see now that she was correct. He was losing blood quickly, and she could not save him on her own, not even with Caliban’s help. Once Caliban had returned she told him, “Get some bandages and stop his bleeding. We’ll be needing more help to save him than you and I.” While Caliban ran out of the room to find bandages, Sycorax rushed over to the cabinet and threw open the curtains, revealing shelves full of bottles and vials of varying contents. She took down three bottles, with green, blue, and clear liquids inside them. Going to her desk, she opened the cover, put down the bottles, and brought the small cauldron sitting there to the center. She uncovered the small, everburning fire under the cauldron and poured in small amounts of liquid from each bottle. As the contents mixed at the bottom, she went to another cabinet and picked up a small wax figurine. “This had better work,” she muttered to herself. She took the figurine and dropped it into the now boiling cauldron. It melted into the other liquids, and Sycorax waited. And waited... And waited… And then… When she was about to give up, a small wisp of smoke trailed up from the cauldron, growing thicker and thicker by the moment. The smoke had coalesced on the ground, and was now forming a humanoid shape. The smoke grew thicker until Sycorax felt as if she could touch it, when abruptly, the smoke fell to the floor, and in its place stood a person. It was a spirit, Sycorax knew, of middling height, and extremely pale features. “Hello,” the spirit said, “my name is Ariel, why have you summoned me?” “Quickly, quickly,” Sycorax responded, “A man is dying and I need your help.” Saying this, she strode to the carpet in the center of the room, and moved it off to the side, exposing three concentric circles carved into the floor, with a four-pointed star at the center, its points extending past the outer circle. “Ariel,” she ordered, “I need you to make a draught of healing while I begin.” “Yes, mistress, of course.” Ariel acquiesced, moving among the shelves, and desk, brewing the requested elixir. As Ariel moved about, Sycorax brought Rashaad’s body to the center of the circles. She touched his neck, feeling for a heartbeat. She felt...nothing. There was nothing there, no life. She had been too slow… Slumping down, she began to weep and let out a cry of anguish. Caliban had been standing to the side, and asked, “Is-Is he going to be okay, mother?” She could only look at the worried face of her son. There was no response that would work. She looked down. This could not be the end, she thought, there must be a way. She could only think of one course of action… And she doubted that could work. Nonetheless, she must try, for her own sake as much as for Rashaad’s. “Yes, my son,” Sycorax finally responded, “he will be just fine, but you must wait upstairs and let mother work.” Caliban looked at his shoes, muttered, “Yes mother, I will…” and walked out of the room. Breathing a sigh of relief, Sycorax turned to the ritual ahead of her. Ariel was still busy with the healing draught, so she stood up and went to the corner of the room, where a small chest sat against the wall. She took a key out of her robes and unlocked the chest, then opened it and took out five large candles with runes carved on their sides; one red, one blue, one green, one yellow, and one white. She placed the white candle next to Rashaad’s head, and the four other candles on the points of the star on the floor. She went back to the chest and brought out a small stick of incense, lit it, and placed it near Rashaad. “I have finished, mistress.” announced Ariel, as he handed Sycorax the healing potion. “Thank you Ariel,” Sycorax said quietly. “We shall have more to do than I expected. I was too late, and now we must retrieve him.” “I believe I can help with that,” Ariel offered. “You can? That is wonderful news,” Sycorax replied, standing up to take a large tome from her desk. Ariel looked past her, out the door. “I can help, but I will have to leave to collect some things. You can perform the ritual while I am out. Fear not, I shall return,” Ariel finished. Sycorax, book already open and absorbed in her work, dismissed Ariel, “Yes, yes, do what you must, I will work.” With that, Ariel went out the door, and Sycorax found the page she required. To save Rashaad’s life, she would have to coax his soul back into his body, a difficult task for even the most skilled of magic users. As the incense burned, she lit the candles one by one, finishing with the white candle. In her time, Sycorax had only ever once attempted this ritual, and had not succeeded that once. She began her ritual slowly, chanting the lines from the tome, pleading with the spirit of Rashaad to come back to his mortal body. She did this for what seemed like hours, and slowly, she began to see a form taking shape over Rashaad’s body. It was impossible to make out features, but she knew this to be Rashaad’s spirit. There was only one final offering to make to conclude the ceremony. Sycorax reached into her pocket, still chanting, and placed onto Rashaad’s chest an exquisitely cut diamond. Rashaad’s spirit came closer to his body and formed into his likeness. The spirit looked at Sycorax, looked at his body, and floated down into the diamond, which then slowly disappeared. Sycorax heard an immense gasp of air and Rashaad coughed and sputtered, barely able to lift up his head. She sighed with relief, and looked up, directly into the eyes of Ansar, standing in the doorway with Ariel next to him... Ansar looked at Sycorax in disbelief. “What is going on here?” he demanded softly. “I-I can explain, this isn’t what it looks like,” Sycorax insisted. “I think this is exactly what it looks like. This is witchcraft, Sycorax.” Ansar accused. “I saved his life,” she pleaded, “What matters how it was done?” “This is… This… I never would have suspected you of this foul devilry,” Ansar snapped. “I have been practicing my whole life without a single instance of misfortune, and now that I save your friend’s life you threaten me?” she argued. “Can you not let this be and forget what you saw? This is for the better.” “No Sycorax. You are a witch,” he stated, “You cannot be trusted. You or your boy.” “Don’t you touch him, Ansar!” she exclaimed., “You do what you wish with me, but you do not touch him.” “This is out of my hands, Sycorax,” Ansar said simply. “The village will be notified.” Throughout this exchange, Rashaad had been staring at both Sycorax and Ansar, but now Ansar strode to him and picked him up. And with that he walked out of the house with Rashaad weak in his arms. “What have you done, Ariel?” Sycorax cursed. “Why have you done this? Do you know what will happen now?” “I believed one of his loved ones would help the ritual,” Ariel offered. “I didn’t know I was doing something wrong.” “Of course you did something wrong!” she yelled. “We have to run before the villagers arrive!” Just as she finished, Caliban peeked his head around the doorframe. “Is everything alright, mother?” He asked softly. “No, Caliban,” she replied quickly. “Gather your things as fast as you can, we must leave here, forever.” “But why, mother?” he questioned. “Because they have discovered me and what I do,” she responded, “but you don’t need to worry about that right now. Just get all of your things.” “Yes, mother, I’ll get your things too,” he replied, running off to gather their belongings. “Thank you, my boy,” she said to herself, hanging her head for a moment. Shaking off her stupor, she faced Ariel, “Don’t just stand there, gather everything up. We have to leave, hurry!” “Me, Mistress?” Ariel questioned. “You aren’t going to banish me?” “Of course I’m not going to banish you. I’m going to need your help now,” she responded gently. “Oh thank you, mistress!” Ariel exclaimed, “Thank you! Thank you!” “Yes of course,” she said exhaustively. “Now get everything together, quickly now.” “Yes mistress!” he cried, beginning to gather Sycorax’s materials and place them into bags. Already Sycorax could hear noise coming from the village. It seemed even though she had known them for so long, they would still stoop to such a low as this. She could not fathom their reasoning. But that did not matter. All that mattered was escaping this place and starting a new life somewhere else. She picked up the unused bottle with the healing drought inside and put a stopper on it. It might be useful in the future, she thought. As the three were finishing packing everything they could into a few bags, they heard the mob from the village march ever closer. By this time it was almost dark, and the villagers’ torches were visible through the window. The three scrambled to collect the last of their possessions as the mob approached the house, and they could hear Ansar’s voice ring out over the shouting. “Halt everyone! Hold up!” he bellowed. “We’ve given them plenty of time to get out, now throw your torches onto the house! Destroy the witch’s sanctuary!” Sycorax heard this, her eyes wide with fear, and rushed out of the house just as they were throwing their torches. “NO! Don’t! No!” she screamed. “We’re still inside!” Even as she said this, one of the men that she had seen that day, held aloft a spear and aimed, throwing the weapon at her quickly. Taken off guard, it was all she could do to leap out of the way of the spear, hearing it thud against the wall of the house, not two feet from her. She looked with horror and despair at the man, who seemed…almost taken aback with what he had done. Seeing that, she fled into the now burning house as the roof on the upper level started caving in. There was a horrible scream. Gripped with sheer terror, Sycorax shrieked, “CALIBAN!” and she ran up the stairs, without heed of the danger to herself as the screams kept coming. She arrived at the top of the stairs to a world covered in flames, and saw, under a large, burning beam, her son, trapped, screaming, burning. She yelled for Ariel, rushed to Caliban, and began pulling on the unburnt parts of the beam. Ariel came quickly and gestured for Sycorax to step aside. As she did, a look of terror still in her eyes as she tried to comfort the screaming Caliban, Ariel deftly clutched the beam and lifted it swiftly. Sycorax picked up Caliban as quickly as she could and brought him to the less destroyed main level. “Ariel! Grab the things and take them outside!” she shouted as she fished in her pocket for the healing draught Ariel had prepared earlier. She took off the cork and, holding Caliban close to her and trying to calm him, poured it down his throat. Almost immediately he stopped screaming, and the worst of the burns began to close, leaving one arm broken and horrible scars along much of his body, but the pain had subsided. For that she was thankful. She rushed outside to the waiting Ariel and saw the townspeople, torches and weapons in hand. But they didn’t look like an angry mob any more. They looked horrified. Horrified of what they had just heard. Horrified that this had happened. Horrified at what they had done. Sycorax stared each of them in the eye and proclaimed, “You did this. You and you alone,” and she ran, holding Caliban, Ariel trailing behind. She ran until she arrived at the ocean. There were a few small boats on the shore used by the fishermen. She looked for the largest one, and found a decent sailboat that would do. She told Ariel to put the boat to sea while she cradled her son in her arms. Ariel made quick work of getting the boat seaworthy, and as they boarded and left Bomardas behind, Sycorax saw a splotch of red and orange in the distance. The remains of her cottage, of her life. She looked away, not wanting to see more. After several days at sea, living off what food and water Ariel could summon with his magic, they finally saw a speck of land in the distance. Coming closer, Sycorax realized it was a small island, seemingly uninhabited. They arrived on the beach of a small cove and surveyed their new home. There was a large hill in the center of the island, with trees around its base. From the beach that was all they could see. In the trees nearest to the group, something piqued Sycorax’s attention. It was a pine tree, an incredibly large pine tree. “There,” she stated, “There is where we shall build our new home, next to that pine tree, where no one can harm us again.”
  3. Tuna, I would love to have you help out with the paper! Please either TG me or PM me on Discord (Halo) and let me know what you would like to do. Thanks!
  4. I would be honored to be included in the advisory committee.
  5. Darkesia sat on information vital to a takeover of the music industry. Yy4U was listening to his mom, who was calling Neenee asking for Benjamin Mark who had the secret. "As simple as pie!" BM said. "Who wrote the new sign wrong?" BM questioned knowingly. When all of a sudden, Badger kicked in the side of the wall. and BM declared, "There's your Chocolate tribute for Darkesia! But why didn't Badger use his telekinetic powers? Because he couldn't believe that he knew the truth about the mind-boggling disaster that happened when he discovered the chocolate stash. The information had been written in some strange computer language that he had no understanding of. So, he went to the clubhouse at the top of the hill where he had seen Yuno loitering. Peeking around the corner of the white, wooden structure, he glimpsed a giant red frog. This is what he had been hallucinating in his drug-induced coma. The frog turned to me and, in a squeaky voice said "I know what you are looking for." Taking my leave, a white rabbit then appeared in blue suede shoes who sang. "I want candy," with a voice somewhat reminiscent of several eunuchs in unison, begging for fresh bagels and caviar. Meanwhile, Neenee glittered an Oompa Loompa and King Kong. Little did she know that there was a small yet strangely attractive panda waiting for her in the sitting room. When Darkesia sat on information vital to a takeover of the music industry. Yy4U was listening to his mom, who was calling Neenee asking for Benjamin Mark who had the secret. "As simple as pie!" BM said. "Who wrote the new sign wrong?" BM questioned knowingly. When all of a sudden, Badger kicked in the side of the wall. and BM declared, "There's your Chocolate tribute for Darkesia! But why didn't Badger use his telekinetic powers? Because he couldn't believe that he knew the truth about the mind-boggling disaster that happened when he discovered the chocolate stash. The information had been written in some strange computer language that he had no understanding of. So, he went to the clubhouse at the top of the hill where he had seen Yuno loitering. Peeking around the corner of the white, wooden structure, he glimpsed a giant red frog. This is what he had been hallucinating in his drug-induced coma. The frog turned to me and, in a squeaky voice said "I know what you are looking for." Taking my leave, a white rabbit then appeared in blue suede shoes who sang. "I want candy," with a voice somewhat reminiscent of several eunuchs in unison, begging for fresh bagels and caviar. Meanwhile, Neenee glittered an Oompa Loompa and King Kong. Little did she know that there was a small yet strangely attractive panda waiting for her in the sitting room. When it blinked, its teeth glistened and drool cascaded down from needle-like canines. Still ... it bamboozled her to give all of her cookies to
  6. Darkesia sat on information vital to a takeover of the music industry. Yy4U was listening to his mom, who was calling Neenee asking for Benjamin Mark who had the secret. "As simple as pie!" BM said. "Who wrote the new sign wrong?" BM questioned knowingly. When all of a sudden, Badger kicked in the side of the wall. and BM declared, "There's your Chocolate tribute for Darkesia! But why didn't Badger use his telekinetic powers? Because he couldn't believe that he knew the truth about the mind-boggling disaster that happened when he discovered the chocolate stash. The information had been written in some strange computer language that he had no understanding of. So, he went to the clubhouse at the top of the hill where he had seen Yuno loitering. Peeking around the corner of the white, wooden structure, he glimpsed a giant red frog. This is what he had been hallucinating in his drug-induced coma. The frog turned to me and, in a squeaky voice said "I know what you are looking for." Taking my leave, a white rabbit then appeared in blue suede shoes who sang. "I want candy," with a voice somewhat reminiscent of several eunuchs in unison, begging for fresh bagels and caviar. Meanwhile, Neenee glittered an Oompa Loompa and King Kong. Little did she know that there was a small yet strangely attractive panda waiting for her in the sitting room. When Darkesia sat on information vital to a takeover of the music industry. Yy4U was listening to his mom, who was calling Neenee asking for Benjamin Mark who had the secret. "As simple as pie!" BM said. "Who wrote the new sign wrong?" BM questioned knowingly. When all of a sudden, Badger kicked in the side of the wall. and BM declared, "There's your Chocolate tribute for Darkesia! But why didn't Badger use his telekinetic powers? Because he couldn't believe that he knew the truth about the mind-boggling disaster that happened when he discovered the chocolate stash. The information had been written in some strange computer language that he had no understanding of. So, he went to the clubhouse at the top of the hill where he had seen Yuno loitering. Peeking around the corner of the white, wooden structure, he glimpsed a giant red frog. This is what he had been hallucinating in his drug-induced coma. The frog turned to me and, in a squeaky voice said "I know what you are looking for." Taking my leave, a white rabbit then appeared in blue suede shoes who sang. "I want candy," with a voice somewhat reminiscent of several eunuchs in unison, begging for fresh bagels and caviar. Meanwhile, Neenee glittered an Oompa Loompa and King Kong. Little did she know that there was a small yet strangely attractive panda waiting for her in the sitting room. When it blinked, its teeth glistened and drool cascaded down from needle-like canines. Still ... it
  7. Darkesia sat on information vital to a takeover of the music industry. Yy4U was listening to his mom, who was calling Neenee asking for Benjamin Mark who had the secret. "As simple as pie!" BM said. "Who wrote the new sign wrong?" BM questioned knowingly. When all of a sudden, Badger kicked in the side of the wall. and BM declared, "There's your Chocolate tribute for Darkesia! But why didn't Badger use his telekinetic powers? Because he couldn't believe that he knew the truth about the mind-boggling disaster that happened when he discovered the chocolate stash. The information had been written in some strange computer language that he had no understanding of. So, he went to the clubhouse at the top of the hill where he had seen Yuno loitering. Peeking around the corner of the white, wooden structure, he glimpsed a giant red frog. This is what he had been hallucinating in his drug-induced coma. The frog turned to me and, in a squeaky voice said "I know what you are looking for." Taking my leave, a white rabbit then appeared in blue suede shoes who sang. "I want candy," with a voice somewhat reminiscent of several eunuchs in unison, begging for fresh bagels and caviar. Meanwhile, Neenee glittered an Oompa Loompa and King Kong. Little did she know that there was a small yet strangely attractive panda waiting for her in the sitting room. When
  8. Darkesia sat on information vital to a takeover of the music industry. Yy4U was listening to his mom, who was calling Neenee asking for Benjamin Mark who had the secret. "As simple as pie!" BM said. "Who wrote the new sign wrong?" BM questioned knowingly. When all of a sudden, Badger kicked in the side of the wall. and BM declared, "There's your Chocolate tribute for Darkesia! But why didn't Badger use his telekinetic powers? Because he couldn't believe that he knew the truth about the mind-boggling disaster that happened when he discovered the chocolate stash. The information had been written in some strange computer language that he had no understanding of. So, he went to the clubhouse at the top of the hill where he had seen Yuno loitering. Peeking around the corner of the white, wooden structure, he glimpsed a giant red frog. This is what he had been hallucinating in his drug-induced coma. The frog turned to me and, in a squeaky voice said "I know what you are looking for." Taking my leave, a white rabbit then appeared in blue suede shoes who sang. "I want candy," with a voice somewhat reminiscent of several eunuchs in unison, begging for fresh bagels and caviar. Meanwhile, Neenee glittered an Oompa Loompa and King Kong. Little did she
  9. Darkesia sat on information vital to a takeover of the music industry. Yy4U was listening to his mom, who was calling Neenee asking for Benjamin Mark who had the secret. "As simple as pie!" BM said. "Who wrote the new sign wrong?" BM questioned knowingly. When all of a sudden, Badger kicked in the side of the wall. and BM declared, "There's your Chocolate tribute for Darkesia! But why didn't Badger use his telekinetic powers? Because he couldn't believe that he knew the truth about the mind-boggling disaster that happened when he discovered the chocolate stash. The information had been written in some strange computer language that he had no understanding of. So, he went to the clubhouse at the top of the hill where he had seen Yuno loitering. Peeking around the corner of the white, wooden structure, he glimpsed a giant red frog. This is what he had been hallucinating in his drug-induced coma. The frog turned to me and, in a squeaky voice said "I know what you are looking for." Taking my leave, a white rabbit then appeared in blue suede shoes who sang. "I want candy," with a voice somewhat
  10. Darkesia sat on information vital to a takeover of the music industry. Yy4U was listening to his mom, who was calling Neenee asking for Benjamin Mark who had the secret. "As simple as pie!" BM said. "Who wrote the new sign wrong?" BM questioned knowingly. When all of a sudden, Badger kicked in the side of the wall. and BM declared, "There's your Chocolate tribute for Darkesia! But why didn't Badger use his telekinetic powers? Because he couldn't believe that he knew the truth about the mind-boggling disaster that happened when he discovered the chocolate stash. The information had been written in some strange computer language that he had no understanding of. So, he went to the clubhouse at the top of the hill where he had seen Yuno loitering. Peeking around the corner of the white, wooden structure, he glimpsed a giant red frog. This is what he had been hallucinating in his drug-induced coma. The frog turned to me and, in a squeaky voice said "I know what you
  11. Darkesia sat on information vital to a takeover of the music industry. Yy4U was listening to his mom, who was calling Neenee asking for Benjamin Mark who had the secret. "As simple as pie!" BM said. "Who wrote the new sign wrong?" BM questioned knowingly. When all of a sudden, Badger kicked in the side of the wall. and BM declared, "There's your Chocolate tribute for Darkesia! But why didn't Badger use his telekinetic powers? Because he couldn't believe that he knew the truth about the mind-boggling disaster that happened when he discovered the chocolate stash. The information had been written in some strange computer language that he had no understanding of. So, he went to the clubhouse at the top of the hill where he had seen Yuno loitering. Peeking around the corner of the white, wooden structure, he glimpsed a giant red frog. This is what he had been hallucinating in his drug-induced coma. The frog turned to me and, in a squeaky
  12. I love polls! Thanks!
  13. Darkesia sat on information vital to a takeover of the music industry. Yy4U was listening to his mom, who was calling Neenee asking for Benjamin Mark who had the secret. "As simple as pie!" BM said. "Who wrote the new sign wrong?" BM questioned knowingly. When all of a sudden, Badger kicked in the side of the wall. and BM declared, "There's your Chocolate tribute for Darkesia! But why didn't Badger use his telekinetic powers? Because he couldn't believe that he knew the truth about the mind-boggling disaster that happened when he discovered the chocolate stash. The information had been written in some strange computer language that he had no understanding of. So, he went to the clubhouse at the top of the hill where he had seen Yuno loitering. Peeking around the corner of the white, wooden structure, he glimpsed a giant red frog. This is what he had been hallucinating in his drug-induced coma
  14. Darkesia sat on information vital to a takeover of the music industry. Yy4U was listening to his mom, who was calling Neenee asking for Benjamin Mark who had the secret. "As simple as pie!" BM said. "Who wrote the new sign wrong?" BM questioned knowingly. When all of a sudden, Badger kicked in the side of the wall. and BM declared, "There's your Chocolate tribute for Darkesia! But why didn't Badger use his telekinetic powers? Because he couldn't believe that he knew the truth about the mind-boggling disaster that happened when he discovered the chocolate stash. The information had been written in some strange computer language that he had no understanding of. So, he went to the clubhouse at the top of the hill where he had seen Yuno loitering. Peeking around the corner of the white, wooden structure, he glimpsed a giant red frog. This is what
  15. Darkesia sat on information vital to a takeover of the music industry. Yy4U was listening to his mom, who was calling Neenee asking for Benjamin Mark who had the secret. "As simple as pie!" BM said. "Who wrote the new sign wrong?" BM questioned knowingly. When all of a sudden, Badger kicked in the side of the wall. and BM declared, "There's your Chocolate tribute for Darkesia! But why didn't Badger use his telekinetic powers? Because he couldn't believe that he knew the truth about the mind-boggling disaster that happened when he discovered the chocolate stash. The information had been written in some strange computer language that he had no understanding of. So, he went to the clubhouse at the top of the hill where he had seen Yuno loitering. Peeking around the corner of the white, wooden structure,