Mana P3y1s07

Mana: And so it was written: Pokiehlember 3rd, Year 1, Luna's Day. A quiet, early-morning summon to Erinee's office.
Vladislav makes his way through the Tower of Jinn with a scrunched up face. No doubt he has already heard talk within the tower of recent events. He slips his book into his satchel before giving a knock on the closed door.
Mana: "Unlocked. Come in." Erinee's poring over a book, the unbound sheaves of it drifting about her.
Vladislav slips into the room, closing the door behind him. "Lovely morning, I take it?"
Mana: She looks up as the door clicks shut. "The esteemed and heavenly Emperor has surprised us with his grace and compassion. I felt you needed to be apprised of the situation."
Vladislav makes his way into an empty chair, offering a slight grin in return. "Must be interesting if you didn't just send everything in a letter."
Mana: "Interesting indeed. He had - the others of your kin summoned up to the height of the tower, for a meeting in person."
Mana: "…He's inducting them as Imperial Emissaries. You are, naturally, to receive the same honor."
Mana: "…Though, some have proven difficult to find."
Vladislav scoffs slightly. "They investigate as they please. While I cannot disagree that keeping an eye on their actions more closely would benefit everyone I am not so sure they will always act with the Emperor's best interests at heart."
Vladislav: "For the sake of this story however, I suppose they are my kin. A strange term to use for someone you barely interact with."
Mana: She smiles. "You're an only child, then?"
Vladislav: "Had I not mentioned this? I suppose it wasn't terribly important."
Mana: "No. But, someone you're connected to, yet avoid interacting with whenever possible…" She flips through a few pages. "The word isn't too unsuited. Anyway, I'm digressing."
Vladislav: "I certainly didn't ask for this. Joch had quite the smug face when he explained what was about to be tossed on my plate."
Mana: "…I know that one well."
Mana: "But yes, it's an unusual decision for the Emperor, may he live forever, to make."
Vladislav: "Keep your friends close and your enemies closer. Up until now the guard didn't even know their faces. It is my belief that he wished to be acquainted with the others. It would be unfavourable should action need to be taken and you do not know whom you are chasing."
Mana: "Yes. Perhaps there's that."
Vladislav: "You have a different take?"
Mana: "No. Not yet. He also commanded both the exterior gates, the Salamander and the Lower Shade, to remain resolutely shut."
Vladislav: "Off to a great start. We already know they intend to open Salamander's gate."
Vladislav: "As for Shade, it would seem I should be grateful I did not venture down into the Luna."
Mana: "Possibly. The Dark Guard has been running into some difficulty closing it for the time being."
Mana: "Given the mana flow and so on, perhaps, for the time being, this is for the best."
Vladislav: "While I certainly cannot argue this fact, I'm inclined to inquire what sort of difficulties they are encountering."
Mana: "About two thirds of them suddenly called in with the chicken pox. Bizarre, I know."
Vladislav scrunches up his face in response. "Truly?" He chews at his lip for a moment before speaking up again. "What was done with Ibex's body?"
Mana: "I had a shadow handle what remained of him. Naturally, the funeral will be closed-casket."
Vladislav: "Any complications arise regarding the ironclad? I am not terribly fond of such a short term solution for the sickness."
Mana: "None. They say we'll have the presses working night and day."
Vladislav: "Has the Emperor mentioned how he intends to address these calamities? Given that he made contact with the others I would assume that he requires assistance in some fashion."
Mana: "Not to them. But he wants the Goblin King's head. There was another assault on the Heart this morning."
Vladislav: "Why are the goblins so interested in the heart?"
Mana: "They're monsters. Driven by the will of the world to rip all that stands to shreds."
Mana: "…Like beasts, but writ large."
Vladislav: "A rather simple take on life. Things would be a lot easier to understand if you just opened the bag on the secrets behind the City Heart."
Vladislav: "Something I don't believe you have any intention of doing."
Mana: "It's the heart of Titania, and home, and gilded cage, to our guardian spirit."
Mana: "Damage to it, this morning, ripped one of our streets asunder. Even if it was built as a mere power source, it's woven too deeply into our homeland to lose."
Vladislav: "That much I knew. The goblins have a reason as to why they are interested in her however. I believe you have context for such a reason."
Mana: "…They've come to grant a wish."
Mana: "The spirit in the heart wants to break away, and the goblins have welled up in response. That's the reason."
Mana: Erinee shrugs broadly. "Simple as that."
Vladislav: "How were they able to communicate?"
Vladislav: "Furthermore how can you make such an assertion when you claim to have no way of communicating with the spirits."
Mana: "How can you communicate with a shooting star? I think they just know."
Mana: "I suppose, just like you can pray to the Goddess, our esteemed guest has prayed to goblins."
Vladislav: "In a worst case scenario. If they do make it to the City Heart proper. Where would we stand?"
Mana: "En masse, as opposed to an expeditionary force?"
Vladislav: "If they broke her out."
Vladislav: "The end result is the same, regardless of their numbers."
Mana: "I have no idea."
Mana: "We - as in Titania - as in the Emperor, bless his name - are utterly unprepared for the eventuality."
Vladislav: "So fear of the unknown is only then magnified by Joch's words."
Mana: "Indeed. At the very least, the forges would fail, the presses would cease. The trams, the lights, the elevators…"
Mana: "…The upheaval in the streets might be echoed all over the city."
Mana: "Structural collapse, that is, would be possible and likely."
Vladislav: "Speaking of structural collapse, have we any more sightings of the Services?"
Mana: She shakes her head. "No. I wonder if that's worrying, or a good sign."
Vladislav: "Them packing up is never a good sign based on what the bear said. They were packing up when the angels make their move."
Mana: Erinee sighs. "Even rats, I suppose. Do let me know if you bump into them again."
Vladislav: "With Ibex out of the picture, how does the Emperor plan to handle Salamander?"
Vladislav: "The growing distribution of firearms is a pressing concern."
Mana: "Possibly with a legion of ironclad."
Mana: "Or by delegation to his new favorite emissaries."
Vladislav: "He hasn't called upon a favour yet, I take it?"
Mana: "No. Not yet."
Vladislav: "I may wish to ask of one myself at some point."
Mana: "We're working in confidence, it seems. Do let me know when you need a friend in the Court."
Vladislav: "My plan is much more complicated than a single friend, sadly. I need to set up a convincing ruse."
Mana: "Caught my interest. Going to tell me what it is, yet?"
Vladislav: "It likely wouldn't interest you. The forgotten district is not a concern of yours."
Mana: "No." She says. "I suppose it isn't."
Vladislav: "Let us just say that it involves removing the current rulers of Dryad District from their thrones. In this particular case, Prince Lion. A fool who does not understand the implications of vanity. I seek to remove him from his throne and fearful vassels with a summons from the Emperor. Something he has desired for years. He will be dealt with cleanly within the forbidden district away from his main forces."
Mana: "And that's that, I imagine. Thank you for your time."
[OOC] Mana: oh oops nix that last line.
Mana: Erinee smiles. "That… can be arranged."
Vladislav: "If all of the princes are removed, I am sure I do not need to explain how this could benefit the Emperor as well."
Mana: "Arranging the death of monsters is one of the duties of the Court Doctor, after all. And no, no you do not."
Mana: "I'll draw you up the letter immediately?"
Vladislav offers a nod in return. "Thank you."
Mana: She stands up to her desk, waves one of the drawers open. In a quick blur of penmanship, of letter-closing, of melting candle wax upon the Imperial Seal, she proffers a letter.
Mana: "Voila, one diplomatic summons, direct from the Emperor, to the esteemed Prince Lion."
Vladislav slips the letter into his satchel as he gets out of his chair. He offers Erinee a bow with a grin plastered on his face. "I am sure he will be most pleased. Initially at least. Apologies for not meeting the Emperor in person. Our dealings should be sufficient."
Mana: "You're deferring that meeting, are you?"
Vladislav: "Is that going to be a problem?"
Mana: "It strikes me as unusual."
Vladislav: "It is rather strange, isn't it?"
Vladislav: "Would you believe me if I said I didn't want him seeing my face?" Another grin in return. His expression isn't entirely serious.
Mana: "Yes. Yes I would."
Mana: "Have a good day, hm?"
Vladislav: "We'll leave it at that, then. To you as well." He offers a simple nod and makes his way to the door.
Mana: The hallway outside is signless, a stretch of closed doors.
Mana: The lady Via - the assassin, though I don't recall if you've met at length - gets up from a lean on the wall outside, smiling politely before heading away.
Mana: Yes, she was almost certainly eavesdropping.
Vladislav lets off an annoyed sigh offering her a furrowed brow in return.
Vladislav: "It would seem you are as proficient at being sneaky as you are at giving speeches at funerals."
Mana: She turns back, waving an upturned palm. "Didn't feel like being sneaky. What's your game, anyway?"
Vladislav: "You really want me to spoil the surprise? I think it's worth the wait."
Mana: "I'm surprised already: You've got Erinee defying an Imperial order."
Vladislav: "Chicken pox is rather ramptant nowadays, isn't it?"
Mana: "A-pparently."
Vladislav: "What do you care, anyways? I'm not so sure such matters really interest someone of your job description."
Vladislav: "Unless you have some sort of secret grudge against the doctor we're not sharing?"
Mana: "No, she's fine. Good head on her shoulders."
Mana: "Well, what do I care…" She looks up at the ceiling for a moment. "…Well, I live here."
Mana: "Want to keep doing that."
Vladislav: "The tower has been rather empty as of late. Seems you're one of few."
Mana: "And all of a sudden, you realize, even with this job description, you've got to start paying a lot more attention…"
Mana: "The bigger here. Titania."
Mana: She lifts her hands up to Vladislav, framing him. "So, you know. Wish you luck. Just letting you know I'm… paying attention."
Mana: …before heading off.
Mana: And so it was written. (Barring any parting shots from Vlad.)
Vladislav laughs lightly in response. "Then I'm sure you paid attention to what happened when you dealt with Alexander. I'm going to be around for a while."

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