Weissersteiner state visit to Pelinai [IC]

October 3, 2022. Royal Palace, Pelograd, Kingdom of Pelinai.

Leaf.

Leaf.

Leaf.

Aetherdyne is reporting difficulties scaling SAM production just as a major war breaks out in the South Pacific. What’s more, the General Staff grows more convinced of the League of Cordilia’s malicious intentions by the day; not that the League has done much more than pour gasoline onto the fire. Various terrorist groups and intelligence agencies have bombed just about the entire South Pacific over the past two weeks, and Minister Akirov is reporting that even the World Forum has now announced its entry into the diplomatic tensions surrounding the Rycco-Cordilian War.

At least nobody bothered to bomb PelinCon.

All of this crisis management is becoming tiring to Izumi. Chancellor Müller is expected to arrive for a state visit soon; perhaps that will help alleviate some of the recent difficulties with Cordilia. After finishing the report, she checks her wristwatch: 12:00PM, GCT+3 time. Müller will be here any minute. It would be best to ensure that the Chancellor’s visit to Pelinai is an enjoyable one, which to Izumi means having this dreadful report banished to a filing cabinet somewhere as quickly as possible. She quickly hands the report to an aide and instructs him to archive it as usual. Everything should be ready for Müller now; all that remains is to await the delegation in the foyer.

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Chancellor Müller fixes his suit and tie.

He has an important mission behind his shoulder. Pelinai, one of Weisserstein’s closest allies, is now at odds with the League of Cordilia.

It really does help that Müller knows many in Pelinai’s current government personally, so he hopes that things wouldn’t be too formal and serious. Nevertheless, he is nervous. Weisserstein culture reveres the monarchy as much as Pelinai, its one of the many places the two countries finds common grounds.

The Chancellor fixes himself one last time before eventually entering the foyer of the Royal Palace.

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The doors and lock mechanisms of the Royal Palace were well designed and maintained to the point where the opening or closing of a door would be nearly silent. It is for this reason that Queen Izumi only noticed the arrival of Chancellor Müller when the frigid air of the Pelinese October spread into the foyer. She turned around quickly after handing off a folder to an aide.
“Chancellor Müller; let me be the first to welcome you to my lovely palace. I pray that the air travel has been kind to you?” she says warmly, in stark contrast to the cold sparkle of the rock crystal chandelier above her and the sheen of the polished quartzite tiles under her. She quickly summons a butler holding a tray of candied roses and offers one to Müller before speaking: “Minister Akirov mentioned that we may have to postpone my visit to Kaiserslicht now that those fools in the Ryccian Junta have managed to start a continental war. But we can discuss that dreadful business once we retire to the tea parlor.” Queen Izumi claps her white-gloved hands, which causes two ceremonially uniformed guards to open a rowan wood door leading to the right of the foyer.

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“After you, your highness.” The Chancellor replies.

The Chancellor is taken aback by the beauty of the Royal Palace. And being contrasted by the Queen’s warmest welcome.

mmm, tea

Quite the drink back home, the Chancellor said to himself. Sweet tea reminds him of much simpler times, times before war, times before bloodshed. He hasn’t been able to enjoy the sweetness of the tea, as all he could taste now is the bitterness of war.

He keeps his head up, however. He knows that the war should end soon, at least he hoped, the war would end before Unification Day. A day of celebration, a day of commemorating the struggles of-

He stops himself. Thinking of the war just pains him even more. He lets the Queen guide the two to the tea parlor.

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Izumi leads the chancellor to a small tea parlor situated on the west end of the Royal Palace, thus ensuring that they would enjoy sunlight during their conversation. The cold tiles of the foyer and hallway give way to soft cerulean carpet at the threshold of the room, which is painted white and features two armchairs placed in front of a polished basalt fireplace. The room’s western wall is almost completely made out of large fused quartz windows, with some sections being comprised of stained “glass” made of synthetic amethyst, citrine, and other color varieties of quartz crystal. These windows had become a popular and affordable decorative element in Pelinese households, and one of the reasons that Izumi prefers to entertain guests in this room.

After seating the chancellor and calling for some tea and sprat tea sandwiches, Izumi turns to speak to the chancellor. “These kinds of crystal windows used to be reserved exclusively for the monarchy” she said. “But now that synthetic quartzes in all of their colors have become so affordable, they’re a common sight all over Pelinai. It’s wonderful that our nation’s industrialization has made so many things possible, isn’t it?” Izumi puts down her cup of tea; black tea with sugar and lemon juice. “But I doubt that you flew all the way from Weisserstein to Pelinai to hear me talk about windows. Returning to business, I presume that my visiting of Kaiserslicht will have to wait until Ryccia finally has some sense knocked into it?”

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The Chancellor takes a quick sip from his tea. Astonished by the palace’s glass.

would be nice to make these sorts of glass available back home, he thinks to himself.

As the Queen asks him the question, he calmly gives his answer

"Unfortunately, your Majesty. Even though Kaiserslicht is well outside the Junta’s reach, as their fighters are caught up in Doge Land, we wouldn’t want anything unfortunate to happen to you.

However, Unification Day is coming up, and I’m sure, at least I’m hoping, that the war would’ve ended by that point. I’m hoping you could attend? And of course, your highness, once we’ve got the situation under the rug, we could organize your personal visit, perhaps around November?"

The Chancellor takes another sip before chocking on his tea

“Apologies if my words are in any way rude, your Highness”

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12:15PM, October 3, 2022, Royal Palace, Pelograd, Kingdom of Pelinai

“None taken, Chancellor;” Izumi replied. “I would be happy to visit Kaiserslicht in November. I understand that it would be prudent to make such a trip when Cordilia is no longer engaged in an active war.” Queen Izumi turns to face Chancellor Müller, now looking more serious and taking a white folder off of the nearby side table.
“While we’re discussing the topic, I meant to ask you about how the war with Ryccia is proceeding. Minister Akirov recently informed me that Minister Radovoy is so concerned about the potential use of chemical agents by the Junta that he’s having immense quantities of antidotes added to our humanitarian aid plans.” Izumi leafs to a specific page in the folder. “Five million doses of combination atropine/pralidoxime, to be precise.” Izumi closes the folder in her hand and returns it to the side table. “While Pelinai is in no position domestically or internationally to intervene directly or send lethal aid to the League of Cordilia, I hope that you understand that we are willing to transfer as much medicine and food as Doge Land and the rest of the frontlines need.”

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“For all we know, the Junta would do anything at its disposal to ensure its victory, without regard for the loss of civilian lives.” the Chancellor responds.

“I, and perhaps everyone in the League, would be more than absolutely grateful for any form of aid. And especially aid to help lessen the brutality of war towards the civilian population, be they Doge Landian, Ikaranaran, and Ryccian.” He further adds.

“I think both our nations know the true horrors of war, conflict, and bloodshed.” the Chancellor stated, “so any form of aid would be helpful.”

“So thank you, your highness. Your aid will save lives, lives needn’t to be lost.” he adds.

After which he takes another sip from his cup.

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“Of course, Chancellor.” Izumi sips some of her tea. “Pelinai has too much experience with the usage of chemical munitions, and stockpiles great volumes of treatments and protective equipment as a result. I can personally assure you that we will render all necessary training and materials to ensure that Ryccia, if it ever deploys such monstrous tactics, will find them far less effective than they expect.” Izumi opens the folder again. “I also have here a proposal for the provision of advisors from the Letograd Fire Department’s civil defense commission, along with firefighting materials, to instruct the appropriate Cordilian personnel on the restraint of magnesium fires and other incendiary weapons. The Ministry of Defense gave it to me earlier, believing that the Ryccians would likely engage in strategic bombing of civilian areas if given the opportunity. I was wondering where a good place to send the assistance party would be, and thought it wise to ask you.”

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“The best place to send those sorts of assistance might be to Doge Land and Ikaranara. Both border, and are directly engaging, the Junta, and are therefore on the very frontlines of this wretched conflict.” the Chancellor replies,

“Despite the League’s aerial superiority, the chances of the Junta bombing civilian targets are still out there, and it’s a chance we shouldn’t risk. If you do go ahead with sending aid, and especially advisors, I would make sure my best men would keep them safe from the Junta.” he further added, “I can’t risk Pelinean lives being lost in the frontlines. I would feel personally responsible if that, God forbid, ever happens.”

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“It’s the least that we can do to repay the good people of Weisserstein for their assistance to the PPG, Chancellor,” Izumi says as she sets the folder aside once again, “and I have no doubt that your troops will ensure their safety. Just as the Pelinai Volunteer Legion came to aid us in our moment of need, so it is our responsibility to do the same for you. As much as Pelinai disagrees with the League of Cordilia, we shall not abandon you or your allies to the madness of the Ryccian Junta.” Izumi sighed upon recalling the recent diplomatic incident between Pelinai and the League. While Izumi thought that the Pelinese government’s hostility towards the alliance was not entirely warranted, even she had to admit that the most recent cause for alarm was entirely preventable on the League’s end.

Did the Peony forget to have her statement proofread by a diplomat?

“Though as much as I would love to think that you visited Pelinai so that you could look at our crystal windows, enjoy our candied roses, and listen to me describe our humanitarian aid efforts to you, it seems much more likely to me that you’re here to smooth over tensions between Pelinai and the League of Cordilia after our little quarrel.”

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“You read straight through my face, your Majesty.” the Chancellor responds, "the recent back and forth between Pelinai and the League is unfortunate, and definitely avoidable. I’m simply here to apologize, on the league’s behalf, of any unfavorable comments made by the League, especially any unfavorable comments towards Pelinai.

Pelinai is an important ally of Weisserstein, and so is the League of Cordilia. This means Weisserstein is trapped right in the center of this back-and-forth, and I want to see it resolved, the sooner the better." he further adds

What matters now is that Weisserstein bridges the gap between Pelinai and the League of Cordilia. And the Chancellor is determined to bridge it as soon as possible.

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Izumi turns to face Müller head-on. “Your apology is of course accepted Chancellor. I also apologize on behalf of the Pelinese nation for its chilly stance towards the League of Cordilia. I doubt that Minister Akirov and the General Staff had Weisserstein in mind when they made their statements about the League, and I will be sure to remind them that it counts one of our closest allies as a member.” Izumi frowns before continuing.
“But, for the sake of both our nations, please ensure that the League is a tad more careful with its words. If more of its public statements are as… unfortunately worded as that cursed declaration, not even you and I will be able to convince Prime Minister Makarov and Minister Akirov to stand down.” After saying this, Izumi seems to cheer up a bit. “But I’m sure that things won’t come to that. I can convince the Pelinese government will give the League of Cordilia a second chance on account of our friendship, and I remain hopeful that the League will refrain from making such a careless error again.”

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The Chancellor seems delighted with the Queen’s response.

"May God bless us with guidance and strength, your Majesty. Hopefully all this bad blood between our nations can hopefully be buried deep, deeper than the Christies Trench.

I will try my best to convince any future declaration by member states be a tad bit more diplomatic and more carefully worded, and we would hopefully needn’t to worry ourselves anymore with another, as you put it, cursed declaration."

The Chancellor takes another sip from his cup of tea

it’s empty already? Time does fly here, huh?

“I’m sure all this kerfuffle is, at least I’m hoping, due to the new nature of the League itself. Give it and it’s members, Weisserstein included, time to mature, so to speak.”

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“Certainly. A new alliance always causes an upset in the geopolitical field, especially when it’s formed with as much speed and with as much GDP and military force behind it as the League of Cordilia. I’m also sure that things will stabilize after a time, though what that stability will look like remains to be seen.” Izumi places her teacup onto its dish on the side table after depleting its contents. “But I feelt that we’ve discussed the sordid business of international politics long enough, especially since Prime Minister Makarov and Minister Akirov will want to speak with you about even more of it. Why not enjoy some refined, cultured discussion before you have to depart?”

Izumi stands up from her armchair before walking over to a bookcase on the eastern end of the room. After picking up a book from the upper shelf and leafing to a specific page in it, she turns towards the general direction of Chancellor Müller. “I’m aware that you’ve travelled to Pelinai before. Have you ever been to the Lyesneby cloud forest in eastern Korolyeviya? It’s a lovely place for hiking, though sometimes very dangerous. Certainly less frigid than the inland mountains of Korolyeviya proper.”

“I have when I was younger.” Müller replied, “My family visited sometime when I was 7 or so. However, it wasn’t much for hiking. I remember vividly when I was younger touring around Pelograd. Certainly an experience.” he recalled. “Although, Lyesneby sounds like something I would add to my bucket list of places I should definitely visit.” he further adds.

Chancellor Müller looks at the bookcase, the beauty of the room resonating around him.

“My great grandfather fought here. As part of the Legion. Before that he fought to defend the Monarchy from pretenders, communists, and fascists. He was a great man.” Müller tells the Queen. “And I am here to make sure the legacy of the Weissersteiner and Pelinese fighters who fought and died for both our nations shall live on forever.”

He turns to the Queen with a warm smile, “what other places do you recommend me visit, your Majesty?”

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“The Cathedral of Saint Pelinai completed its repairs just recently, and is situated here in Pelograd. If you liked my stained quartz windows here, the Cathedral has more of them than you can imagine. And while you’ll be hard pressed to find a building more than forty years old in Letograd, the Pelinese Museum of Gemology has some lovely exhibits of gemstones and jewelry. Lastly, in Korolyeviya, you will find the Statue of the Volunteer. It is a monument built by the Pelinese Provisional Government after the war to honor foreign volunteers like your great-grandfather.” Izumi closes the book and returns it to the shelf. “While we’re on the subject of travel, I was wondering if you had any recommendations for places that I should visit during my trip to Kaiserslicht?”

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Müller adds the places the Queen mentioned into a list on his phone

recommended places to visit, huh?

"Well, besides the Imperial Palace and other government buildings. A place you’d maybe like to visit is the Kaiserslicht Imperial Beach, it’s a scenic beauty back home. If you prefer something more classical, the Old City could be a nice place to visit. The buildings there are of Weissersteiner architecture sometime in the 18th and 19th century.

Another beautiful, and especially scenic place to visit would be the Kaiserin Wilhelmina National Park. And, if your Highness feels spiritual, there are several different churches, cathedrals, and mosques that are located all around the city, like the Cathedral of Our Lady Mary, or the Grand Imperial Mosque of al-Syarief, which is the largest mosque in our country if I remember correctly.

There is also the Sheikh Abu Umar al-Farouq Memorial Garden, the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier, and the Tomb of the Victorious Heroes. All tombs and memorials of those who fought for the country. There is also a place called Little Lileanen in the city’s West, with food and architecture mimicking that of Lileanen in our Western islands."

The Chancellor then snapped his finger, he just remember something

"Oh, there is also a small kiosk in, I believe it was near Little Lileanen, that sells Pelinai cuisine. I can’t stress this enough, the moment I entered, it felt like I was here in Pelinai. The grilled Kamaboko was undeniably tasty. If I remember the kiosk is owned and run by a Pelinese national. So, if your Highness ever needs a tad bit of that Pelinai cuisine during your visit, this place is a recommendation.

And there is just a lot of other places that you could visit, the Imperial Public Library, the Imperial State University of Kaiserslicht, the Royal and Imperial Museum, the Museum of Abrahamic Arts and Literature, the Daarul Fataa International University, the Kaiserslicht Imperial Garden, the Royal Garden of the House of Welff-"

As the Chancellor lists all those places, he sees Queen Izumi faithfully listening to his rambling, he snapped out of his ramble

“Apologies, your Majesty. I got slightly carried away there.”

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Izumi finishes writing the list of recommendations in a small notepad with her fountain pen. “No need to apologize, Chancellor. I’ll be sure to keep your thoughts in mind when I plan the itinerary for my visit.” Shortly after finishing her sentence, a uniformed attendant enters the room and approaches Chancellor Müller. “Pardon my intrusion, sir, but Prime Minister Makarov and Minister Akirov are expecting you in the meeting room in five minutes.” After hearing this, Izumi checks her wristwatch again: 12:30PM.

That list must have been longer than I noticed.

Izumi then approaches Chancellor Müller. “it seems the time has come for your meeting with the Ministers, Chancellor, and also time for me to bid farewell to you. I truly hope that you enjoyed your stay with me, and I look forward to visiting Weisserstein come November.”

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The Queen and the Chancellor left the room together. As they arrived outside the meeting room, Chancellor Müller decides to say his goodbyes,

"Alas, it appears the time has come for us to part ways, your Highness. Well, even if it was just for a short while, if you can call half an hour short, I really enjoyed our little talk.

Well, perhaps we could continue our discussions some other time, your Highness?"

“Of course” the Queen responds.

As the Queen and the Chancellor parted ways, the attendant opened the door to the meeting room. There waits Prime Minister Makarov and Foreign Minister Akirov, sitting in a room with a large oak table in the middle.

The floor of the meeting room is polished with marble, walls painted burgundy, and a small landscape painting on the right wall from the door.

Pelinai never really disappoints, huh?

As the Chancellor enters the room, he greets both Prime Minister Makarov and Foreign Minister Akirov,

“Good afternoon, gentlemen, apologies for the long wait.”

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