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Topics - Ziya

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The Reformed Penal Code of Ephia's Well

Commentaries

By Balstan Gloamingdaith

1.⠀⠀⠀

The passage of broad sweeping reforms to the Penal Code of Ephia's Well (the "Penal Code") by the Gold Monochromacy of Maribeh-Tabbah IY 7788 introduced seismic changes to the legal landscape of the growing citadel (the "Legal Reforms"). These Commentaries shall serve as my thesis to examine some of these changes and the reasonings behind them. Critically, these Commentaries will further elucidate on many of the procedural and substantive challenges behind lawmaking in Ephia's Well, and I trust that it shall be a useful guide for future Legates who may wish to make amendments of their own.

2.

In approaching this vast topic, I shall first provide an explanation of how the Penal Code operates, the implications of a Gold Monochromacy, and subsequently an examination of certain controversial articles before providing my concluding thoughts. These Commentaries shall, therefore, contain the following:

(a)⠀⠀⠀ Characteristics of the Penal Code;

(b)⠀⠀⠀ The Gold Monochromacy;

(c)⠀⠀⠀ The Legal Reforms, an Overview;

(d)⠀⠀⠀ On Crimes against the Wheel and the Judicial Authority of the Hakem;

(e)⠀⠀⠀ On Treason;

(f)⠀⠀⠀ On Laches;

(g)⠀⠀⠀ On Citizenship;

(h)⠀⠀⠀ On Miscellaneous Amendments; and

(i)⠀⠀⠀ Concluding Thoughts.



The Penal Code
3.⠀⠀⠀

We begin first by examining the Penal Code and some of its characteristics.
4.⠀⠀⠀

First, while the Assembly picks the Legates, the Legates pick the laws. A law can be made at any given time by the Legates in consensus. They can inscribe it upon the Stele of Law, and it is dictated throughout the Ephia's Well for all of its people to hear. Notably, there is no requirement that an Assembly must be held for a Legate to pass a law. Even where an Assembly is held, the Voiced may only convey their concerns or proposals, and the Legates may take them into consideration, but the Legates are not bound to abide by the will of the Assembly: Law & Order: Ephia's Legal System, Johan Marsoss. That said, Legates typically do, if only to have such concerns be ventilated, to rally political support for their legislative agendas, or to pass a law that may offend an Accord Signatory while apologetically pointing to the will of the Voiced.

5.⠀⠀⠀

The foregoing is reflected by the legislative procedure whereby Legates may add or repeal a law. To add a law, a Legate must request for a Legal Paper from the Chief Scribe and draft upon it the intended law. The Legate must then affix his seal and signature upon the Legal Paper before obtaining the same from his co-Legate. Once both requirements are satisfied, either Legate may inscribe the intended law on the Stele. To repeal a law, a Legate may expunge the law upon the Stele, and does not strictly speaking even require his co-Legate's express seal and signature to do so.

6.⠀⠀⠀

In this regard, the legislative procedure is a convenient example of how powers and procedures are rarely codified, and three observations may be made:

(a)⠀⠀⠀ this legislative procedure is not expressly written in the Penal Code or any other laws;

(b)⠀⠀⠀ there are no requirements throughout the legislative procedure for any Assembly to be convened or any public consultations to be entertained; and

(c)⠀⠀⠀ repealing a law without a co-Legate's assent is not expressly criminalized in the Penal Code.

Despite the last point, it must be highlighted that a Legate who repeals a law without his co-Legate's assent would almost invariably invite grievous consequences, likely via the intervention of the Chief Scribe or the Majordomo. In any case, we proceed to examine how the Penal Code criminalizes actions instead of vesting powers.

7.⠀⠀⠀

Second, and related to the above example, the Penal Code typically codifies crimes rather than vest powers upon the state or any state organs. This lack of codified statutes expressly setting out procedural and substantive powers mean that much of these powers are customary, which permits it to be both flexible while simultaneously controversial at time when willful or genuine ignorance results in powers being exercised irregularly. Where it relates to legislation, this characteristic of the Penal Codes results in an uncomfortable limitation when the Legates are desirous of vesting certain powers on an Accord Signatory or an organ of state, instead of merely issuing a blanket prohibition to criminalize a particular activity.

8.⠀⠀⠀

The limitation inherent to the Penal Code has resulted in an unusual legal innovation in Ephia's Well. Specifically, hybridized laws criminalize certain activities only to then carve out exceptions whereby they may be legally undertaken should a particular Accord Signatory or institution authorizes it, thereby creating quasi-enabling clauses that vest powers in these authorizing powers. This not without precedent, with its roots traceable from Unlicensed Activities, but its prevalence has certainly increased with provisions introduced in recent times, such as the provisions on Unauthorized Descent, Arms Bearing, or Accord Governance.

9.⠀⠀⠀

Third, the Penal Code must be understood in the context of the democracy of Ephia's Well and the Accord Signatories. It is oft forgotten that the first years of Ephia's Well were spent in uneasy vacillation, with the Cinquefoil Rose, the Astronomers of Q'tolip, and the Janissaries of the Fourth Legion testing a frayed truce on the streets: The Democracy of Ephia's Well, Anonymous. The resulting Asterabadian democracy that Ephia's Well presently has was a compromise now termed as the Accord, and with the three factions oft referred to as the Accord Signatories. It was this compromise, this Accord, which established our present regime of Legates voted for via lot by an Assembly of the Voiced. However, the implications of this is that the application of the Penal Code on the Accord Signatories has often been haphazard, and largely subject to political considerations and requires the agreement of the lawbreaker's Accord Signatory.

10.⠀⠀⠀

The implication of the foregoing coupled by the reliance of the Legates on the Janissaries to enforce the Penal Code is that whether a lawbreaker from an Accord Signatory may be punished for breaking the laws is often a political issue rather than a legal issue. To this end, the different Accord Signatories often deal with an inconvenient application of the Penal Code in different ways. The Janissaries may simply decline to prosecute or arrest. The Cinquefoil Rose may keep the accused in the Krak des Roses, knowing well that fortifications look inwards as much as outwards. The Astronomers of Q'tolip may threaten to, and have demonstrated the ability to, selectively disable the Shade. Nevertheless, it must be appreciated that the Accord Signatories are neither monoliths nor inclined to protect lawbreakers. An Apothar who senselessly murders in the street may still find himself surrendered by the Astronomers for judgment. What must be kept in mind is simply that where an Accord Signatory accede to surrendering a lawbreaker is politically premised. In this sense, an Apothar who breaks the law in pursuit of Q'tolip's decrees or wishes may still find sanctuary and protection, and be impracticable to prosecute without shattering the Accord.

11.⠀⠀⠀

The characteristics of the Penal Code are important to keep in mind when considering how and what laws are passed in Ephia's Well. A failure to appreciate these characteristics would often result in the decisions of the Legates coming off senseless, or, more disastrously, result in a Legate acting senselessly. The final characteristic of the Penal Code, especially, has been the downfall of many a Legate, when they assume that just because a law is on the Penal Code, that law would be enforceable upon an Accord Signatory by the Legates. Frustrating as it may be, however, that final characteristic also serves as a check on the worst excesses and the powers of the Legates. Seen in that light, the role of the Penal Code and the Legates is fundamentally shaped by compromises.



The Gold Monochromacy
12.⠀⠀⠀

Having developed an appreciation for some of the pertinent characteristics of the Penal Code, we now turn to the political context within which the legal reforms were enacted. Specifically, the nature and implications of the Gold Monochromacy which passed the legal reforms.

13.⠀⠀⠀

It must be appreciated that the Assembly of the Voiced does not merely elect a person as a Legate, but a League's representative as a Legate. The Candidates running for an election in Ephia's Well must belong to a League, and they are beholden to their League and its tenets. This is often overlooked, but that would be a mistake for a simple reason: a League can remove and replace a Legate that the League's Comptrollers deem to no longer be adhering to the League's tenets. Indeed, while the example of the erstwhile and disgraced Legate Ricario Cassella of the League of White has shown that a League may remove a Legate for treason, it would be a mistake to think that that is the only reason for which a League may remove a Legate.

14.⠀⠀⠀

The implications of the foregoing is that the decisions of a Legate will invariably reflect the interests of his League. Just as a Gold Legate may be removed for promising not to raise the price of a Voice, so too may a White Legate be removed for promising not to reduce the price of a Voice. Just as a Gold Legate be removed for failing to approach diplomatic missions with the intent of establishing trade, so too may a Purple Legate be removed for failing to approach diplomatic missions with the intent of declaring a subjugation war. This is a critical and often-forgotten consideration by even the supporters of a League: the League triumphant will almost certainly lead to decisions and laws that reflect the tenets and vision of that League. Typically, most Legates do make necessary political compromises, or outright resort to deception, but when push comes to shove and the Comptrollers make their interests known, almost all Legates will fall in line or be removed by their League. Seen in this light, it is plain why Legate Marcellus Saenus had to break the negotiated treaty with Il Modo when the Consulate paid a visit.

15.⠀⠀⠀

With the above in mind, the Legal Reforms, then, must be understood in the context of the tenets and vision of the League of Gold. In this regard, it would be germane to reproduce those tenets herein:

(a)⠀⠀⠀ To aspire for autonomy and the right for Ephia's Well to govern itself with greater autonomy from the Sultanate;

(b)⠀⠀⠀ To welcome and uplift those little in wealth, but with much merit and able in contribution;

(c)⠀⠀⠀ To seek out trade and riches from the desert beyond, and build Ephia's Well at the center; and

(d)⠀⠀⠀ To give a voice only to those who have earned it, through their deeds or their contributions.

16.⠀⠀⠀

Further to the above, the League of Gold is also desirous of a vision of Ephia's Well whereby it is a bustling metropolis of trade and industry, where the embassies of the Great Ring spring across the breadth and span of the citadel, and where the city is a monument to grandeur. In the Gold's image of Ephia's Well, the city is governed by a regime of the worthies, where the Voiced work with great vim and vigor to contribute to their home, and are treated as princes who have earned their place. In contrast, the Voiceless are guests who have yet to prove themselves, relying on the hospitality and charity of their hosts for shelter and protection.

17.⠀⠀⠀

A Gold Monochromacy, then, or indeed, any monochromacy, is one where the tenets and vision of their League is ascendent. In such circumstances, the Whites would seek rebellion, the Purples would seek stagnation, and the Gold would seek to elevate the Voiced above the Voiceless. The togas that adorn the Legates who are elected, then, are as much symbols of powerlessness as they are of power: a Legate cannot stray too far from the colors of his toga, lest he finds those togas stripped from him. It is in this context, then, that the Legal Reforms were passed.



The Legal Reforms, an Overview
18.⠀⠀⠀

A legal reform of some fashion for the Penal Code had long been considered overdue.
19.⠀⠀⠀

Specifically, there were laws which have ceased to be enforced, were contradictory, otiose, or repetitive. Examples included the presence of both a Destruction law and a Vandalism law when they could have been amalgamated together; and (b) how there were Narcotic Licenses which provided for the legal possession and trade of drugs alongside laws prohibiting the sale and possession of drugs. Further beyond that, there were minor typographical errors scattered amongst the laws, and relics of bygone political battles such as Unlicensed Activities continuing to state that the restricted activity would be an "activity requiring a License from the Scribes of the Sublime Garden" when the Astronomers of Q'tolip were also given the powers to issue certain licenses.

20.⠀⠀⠀

The Gold Monochromacy provided a unique opportunity to undertake the Legal Reforms. Recall that a Legate is bound by the tenets of its League. Normally, where the Legates are of two different Leagues, it is rather difficult for there to be a suitable compromise which would not condemn at least one of the two Legates to grave allegations of unfaithfulness by his League. Beyond that, to get both Legates to agree on a matter is no simple thing, and it can require a vast expense of time, patience, compromise, and diligence: Legal Reformation, Gausim al-Marain. The typical formulae for legislative progress is one of lengthy and seasoned debate, with the process oft becoming overwrought and tiresome. With two Legates from the same League, however, they are both beholden to the same tenets and vision of their League, which diminishes the substantive disagreements that may arise between them. The result of which is that broad, sweeping reforms can be carried out with expedience efficiently.

21.⠀⠀⠀

The downside, however, is that there are few checks on those same tenets and vision, which may well be taken to an unpopular excess. In this regard, it must be appreciated that where a controversy has to be weighed in favor of one League's views or the other, the administration of a Gold Monochromacy must invariably result in it being weighed in favor of the League of Gold's. To do otherwise would be a dire betrayal of a Legate's own League, and the tenets of the same. This guiding principle is one that any prospective Voiced voting in an election or any Candidate running to become a Legate must appreciate and ever keep in mind.



On Crimes against the Wheel and the Judicial Authority of the Hakem
22.⠀⠀⠀

The Legal Reforms classified articles of the Penal Code under three broad categories: 'Crimes against the Person', 'Crimes against the State', and 'Crimes against the Wheel'.

23.⠀⠀⠀

At the time of the Legal Reforms, these 'Crimes against the Wheel' were defined as Brooking, Desecration, Sacrilege, Illegal Worship and Practice, and Offense against the Mother. Concurrently, the Legal Reforms operated alongside the organization of a number of Synods where the clergies of the Wheel are brought together to see elected a Hakem of the Wheel (the "Hakem") in place of the defunct and atrociously named 'Grand Mufti'. Taken altogether, these set the foundations for what would eventual be the decree that the Hakem may now sit in judgment, akin to a Magistrate, over offenses classified as 'Crimes against the Wheel'.

24.⠀⠀⠀

As alluded at [6] to [7] above, however, the Penal Code does not serve as an enabling legislation which vests powers. For one, it does not expressly state that those who hold the title of Magistrates (or, strictly, even a Legate!) may sit in judgment in the Hall of Jurisprudence as a Judge. Instead, it is largely a sensible and customary understanding shared in commonality by most Ephians, and that understanding made into practice the intent. One way of interpreting this is that as jurisprudential powers defaults to a Legate, then a Legate must be capable of delegating that power to whomever he so chooses, and therefore a Magistrate is not vested with the power by virtue of his title per se, but a Magistrate is merely wielding the delegated powers of his appointing Legate.

25.⠀⠀⠀

In that vein, however, belies the question of where the Hakem's judicial authority is to be derived from. If by customs, then, perhaps there are customs within Baz'eel from which Ephia's Well may draw the customary practice. If by delegation, then, what happens if the Legate who appointed the Hakem should lose an election and the new Legate finds the present Hakem objectionable? Recall that the Hakem as an office was not designed to be appointed by a Legate but by a Synod of the Wheel. If by law or decree, then the question is whether the Legates, even in consensus, may by writ and decree bind the Legates who come after. Strictly speaking, Ephia's Well appreciates that the last of the three options ought to be applicable, but there have been subsequent Legates who have felt it convenient to depart from the decisions of their predecessors. In these circumstances, there are often few practicable ways in which to bind the incumbent Legate to abide by the decisions of the Legates before.

26.⠀⠀⠀

This may well remain a live issue for at least a few Legates. If ensuing Legates continue to uphold the judicial authority of the Hakem to sit in judgment over Crimes against the Wheel, then it is likely that that judicial authority will as a custom become entrenched. In this regard, it would be prudent for the Hakem and the Synod to maintain political pressure upon incumbent Legates to preserve their sacred authority, lest Legates should become inclined to forswear the judicial powers of the Hakem.



On Treason
27.⠀⠀⠀

The law on treason has ever remained shrouded in a great deal of uncertainty and ambiguity despite having existed as part of the legal fabric of Ephia's Well from its very beginning. As a concept, treason has historically subsisted in different forms and permutations under different labels across different jurisdictions, but the common character of these acts was the attack in some form or other on the integrity of the state, as a breach of allegiance or a betrayal of one's loyalties: A Treatise on the Laws relating to Treasonable Offences, Ben al-Lomin ("Treatise on Treason").

28.⠀⠀⠀

If the essence of treason is some form of disloyalty or betrayal, the question then is: who is the subject or victim of such betrayal? It would seem then that the underlying thread of commonality behind these conceptions of treason is the purported disloyalty of a citizen towards his state and/or his sovereign, or a breach of allegiance that he owes to his state and/or his sovereign, made manifest by actions which appear to strike at the very institutions of the state itself. In an epoch where the city-state continues to remain one of the most visible and prominent forms of political organization, citizens are expected to uphold the obligations of allegiance and loyalty demanded of them in exchange for enjoying the benefits of their status as citizens.

29.⠀⠀⠀

Resident refugees, though not citizens of the city-state of their residence, are equally bound by a similar obligation of allegiance if they reap the benefits of the waters, foods, and walls of the city-state within which they reside. Breach of this obligation in turn falls into the category of treasonable conduct for all intents and purposes.

30.⠀⠀⠀

What, then, are the acts which are considered treasonous? Across the many city-states, examples of what are considered treasonous conducts are plentiful. These include plots against the person and office of the sovereign, aiding and comforting the enemy, instigating rebellions and insurrections, employing force or levying war on the sovereign and/or the state. These are almost all acts which entail a breach of allegiance on the part of the offender. The rebel who takes up arms against his state and sovereign, no matter how justified he may believe his cause, acts outside of the ambit of the legitimate political expression and so breaches that part of his obligation to abide by the laws of his country: Treatise on Treason. Specifically, it can be appreciated that acts of rebellions, insurrections, assassinations, coups, or the likes, all may be considered acts intended to undermine the sovereign of a state. Thus, the deliberate killing of a sovereign, though also an act of murder, is at the same time an act of treason because it is the intentional targeting and harming of one of the most visible embodiments of the state, with the understanding that the public peace would be greatly disturbed and the machinery of governance thrown into grievous disorder: Treatise on Treason.

31.⠀⠀⠀

From the above, then, we can extract the two main characteristics of treason: first, to wage war against one's city-state; and second, to undermine or harm one's sovereign. It is crucial to appreciate that in either case, the bar is very high. The act must kill, attack, war upon, or overthrow the state and the public peace, and be intended to intentionally target the state, rather than any one non-sovereign person or faction.

32.⠀⠀⠀

However, treason prior to the Legal Reforms was poorly defined as merely "undermining the government". It therefore came to have a long and chequered history of being used for blatantly political purposes, often designed to target the political rival of the day. Without a clear, concretized definition of treason, the scope and character came to assume grossly wide and arbitrary proportions, as Janissaries treat offence after offence as falling within the ambit of treason proper. Examples of these include the Zaniah Almirah's treason trial for making a jest or from Arymathras al-Almadel's treason trial for selling out his own League. In either case, it is plain that none of these actions fall within the grievous severity of what is meant when one is accused of treason, and both were acquitted in the Hall of Jurisprudence. Instead, it must be appreciated that if their actions are and ought to be criminalized, then it is the duty of the Legates and the Assembly to see a suitable offence put in place, not for the politically-motivated to imagine the existence of an offence and find the law that may be best twisted and contorted to fit the agenda.

33.⠀⠀⠀

At this juncture, it must be necessary to touch on the relationship between Baz'eel and Ephia's Well. To put it simply: the laws of Ephia's Well do not bind Baz'eel. Therefore, there was no requirement for the Penal Code to include offenses against Baz'eel or its Sultan. Where offences are committed against Baz'eel, it is well within Baz'eel's authority and power to see the offender punished and the wrongs rectified. In this regard, while the sovereign of Ephia's Well as a satrapy would be the Sultan of Baz'eel, the 'sovereign' in the context of treason against Ephia's Well specifically would be the quasi-sovereign entities that are the Legates.

34.⠀⠀⠀

It is also germane to appreciate that an expansive and arbitrary interpretation of treason only works to put the personal security of each individual citizen at risk. As alluded above, a broad interpretation of treason is always only favored by those who have calcified and cemented political power in Ephia's Well's Janissaries and institutions, because the treason laws may then be more easily used to punish their political rivals. For everyone else, the heady dreams of the tyrant are the dire nightmares of the citizenry, and so the law should as precisely spell out and delineate the contours of treasonable offences in as clear and concise language as possible.

35.⠀⠀⠀

Having developed an appreciation for the above, it is plain to see why the Legal Reforms deemed it necessary to amend the law on treason in a manner that balanced the right of Ephians against the need to preserve the state. Whether this would succeed moving forward remains to be seen, and it may well be that further adjustments may become necessary as the Penal Code continues to be refined.



On Laches
36.⠀⠀⠀

Laches refers to a lack of diligence in pursuing a claim, and is sometimes referred to the doctrine of estoppel by laches. The doctrine has, as its conceptual foundation, the maxim that the law ought to aid the vigilant and not the indolent: The Equitable Doctrine of Laches, Reshid al-Menon. The doctrine is invoked and applied specifically to protect a defendant from allegations raised against him after a substantial lapse of time. The reasonings for why a fair and just judicial system must protect the accused in such circumstances are many, but may be distilled into three reasons.

37.⠀⠀⠀

First, a lengthy delay often means that relevant evidence which an accused may wish to rely on has been destroyed or lost. This is especially egregious as it is often those who conduct the investigations that already have an evidential advantage over the accused, as they may both interrogate and record evidence to spring upon the accused in a trial at a time of their choosing. The result of which is that an accused may be confronted with a corpus of evidence months down the line long after any alibi or evidence she himself may muster have been lost by the passage of time. This cannot be considered to be just or fair by the grace of the Magi's wisdom.

38.⠀⠀⠀

Second, a lengthy delay also allows a prosecutor to pick and choose the Legate whom they wish to bring the trial before. This is a vulnerability baked into the political structure of Ephia's Well, where a Legate would hold term for only two months instead, of, say, the Sultan in perpetuity by the grace of the Mother or other manifestations of similar political systems such as Il Modo's where the sovereign may be expected to govern for years. The result of which is that it is not so long a time that a politically-motivated prosecutor would not be unable to wait out the term of a Legate that may be unfavorable to him, only to then pursue a politically-motivated prosecution against the victim of corrupt intent after a suitably bribed and corrupted Legate has taken office later down the road. If there is no limitation whatsoever on how long a delay may be permitted, then this could only be considered an inevitability.

39.⠀⠀⠀

Third, a lengthy delay also creates uncertainty and stress on a person who may be investigated, allowing essentially for the threat of prosecution to be used as blackmail to command the person. This sword of the Warrior's hanging over the person's head may then be used to slowly and gradually subvert the politics of Ephia's Well, whereby gradually over time, a corpus of materials are developed not for the purposes of upholding the law but for the purposes of imposing political hegemony. A keen observer would appreciate that this actually creates the motivation for a prosecutor to not prosecute, but instead to hold the evidence as blackmail material to compel the obedience of the person.

40.⠀⠀⠀

Taken altogether, it is plain that laches is a necessary component of the Penal Code that had been left out of it for too long. Over the months, it has permitted those who command the powers of prosecution to use the threat of prosecution to compel the obedience of others. Instead of abiding by the Wroth's tenet to ensure that a wrong does not stand unanswered, the lack of laches has instead invited an atmosphere where there is real political advantage to allowing a wrong to continue to be unanswered, so long as the threat of prosecuting that wrong remains politically convenient. This should not be permitted.



On Citizenship
41.⠀⠀⠀

On Wicked Tabbah the Eighth, IY 7788, refugees from the neighboring city-state of Arslan swarmed Ephia's Well. This was in the context of a war that has been raging between the Thousand Clans and Ephia's Well. After sennights of plots and conspiracies that went unrestrained by the Janissaries, the vile fruit of their labors was unleashed. They revealed themselves to be the Seekers-After-Death, collaborators who have sold themselves to Iakmes, and they proceeded to attempt an insurrection. Their attempt came very close to succeeding, and in the early hours of the evening, they seized the Palatial Pyramid. It was only through the efforts of brave and courageous Ephians that they were stopped, but in the wake of their insurrection, blood stained the streets of Ephia's Well.

42.⠀⠀⠀

The incident and many others created a legislative emergency whereby the definition of the extent to which the Penal Code ought to protect non-citizens need to be revisited. Many in Ephia's Well are transients, adventurers, refugees, or travelers that are either passing through or merely seeking to benefit from our waters and bounties for a time before departing again. Very few of them are net contributors to our citadel, and most of them largely benefit from our charity without ever returning in kind. The result of which is that Ephia's Well had always been bleeding, be it bleeding water, food, or, in a very dire sense, the blood of our citizens in the defense of our home.

43.⠀⠀⠀

Aside from Wicked Tabbah the Eighth, other incidents have also created the need to establish a distinction between those of Ephia's Well and those who are not. This became particularly pertinent after the butchery of the black-blooded Qadiran of both an honored Ephian and members of the Accord Signatories. The question then arose as to whether a Qadiran should be protected by the laws of Ephia's Well, which would be absurd, as a Qadiran is plainly pledged in loyalty to another city-state. Indeed, it is not infrequent that adventurers from Ephia's Well would do great and mortal violence upon non-citizens from afield, be it in pilfered granaries or pirates of distant shores.

44.⠀⠀⠀

As may further be gleaned from the analysis from [12] to [17] above, the vision of a Gold Monochromacy also becomes apposite at this juncture. As far as the League of Gold is concerned, it is far better to err on the side of the valued and contributing citizens of Ephia's Well and trust in their moralities and sacred duties to the Wheel, than on foreigners and refugees that have not proven themselves as reliable and dutiful residents of the citadel.

45.⠀⠀⠀

The circumstances of the Legal Reform in the context of an existential war to Ephia's Well coupled with an actual insurrection by refugees which seized its seat of government concocted a brew in which the Legates of the Gold Monochromacy deemed it necessary to revise the balance far in favor of Ephian citizenry. It is with that appreciation that it is hardly any wonder that the Penal Code was reformed to reflect its protection of the citizens of Ephia's Well, rather than merely some nebulous and murky notion of any person that may reside across the vast and endless span of our Great Ring. The definition also neatly sidesteps the issue of personhood, and what constitutes a person and a non-person, which may entail the former to protection while denying the latter of the same.

46.⠀⠀⠀

Notwithstanding the foregoing, it may be that the balance may have been tilted too far by the vision of the League of Gold, and a more circumspect and delicate revisitation of the Penal Code may be required in the future insofar as where protection appears extended to citizens only. Nevertheless, such would likely happen after the war, and where the existential threat no longer looms over Ephia's Well. In any case, those who decry it would bear the reminder that the only blood staining Ephia's Well has been the blood of its citizens, like Martin Ashbury, and those who spilled it, like the Seekers-After-Death. The Voiceless, by and large, remain safely sheltered behind the walls of a citadel where its citizens bleed day after day to defend.



On Miscellaneous Amendments
47.⠀⠀⠀

Aside from the more controversial and impactful amendments by the Legal Reforms, there are a number of miscellaneous amendments which nevertheless deserve a moment in the moonlight.

48.⠀⠀⠀

Specifically, these are:

(a)⠀⠀⠀ Vandalism and Destruction were combined into one article under the Penal Code.

(b)⠀⠀⠀ Drug Trafficking was repealed as unnecessary considering the existence of Narcotics License.

(c)⠀⠀⠀ Unlicensed Activities were amended to clarify that they include licenses issued by institutions aside from the Scribes of the Sublime Gardens.

(d)⠀⠀⠀ Reckless Endangerment, which criminalized bleeding in Ephia's Well was renamed to Offense against the Mother, as the Legates were advised that its origin is related to B'aara, and its name had caused great confusion. A suitable exception was carved out for holy days of the Wheel, such as that of the Letting.

(e)⠀⠀⠀ Desecration was amended to include the desecration of corpses.

(f)⠀⠀⠀ Sacrilege was amended to include damaging or desecrating holy texts or holy relics of the Wheel.

49.⠀⠀⠀

Numerous other miscellaneous amendments were made, including the rectification of various typographical and editorial errors, as well as making consistent the phrasing of the legalese in the Penal Code where possible. Instead of purporting to innumerate them all, these Commentaries have provided a broad brush to highlight some of these miscellaneous amendments, and shall leave it to future academics and jurists to debate and pen of them.



Concluding Thoughts
50.⠀⠀⠀

The laws of a land range from the barbaric to the sophisticated, and the laws of Ephia's Well largely lies on the more unfavorable axis of that gradient due to its turbulent beginnings. Where enduring civilizations have had developed legal codes and corpus of legislations that stretched in the hundreds of tomes and requiring the intense half-decade long studies of jurists undergoing exacting examinations, the conflict-mired circumstances of Ephia's Well rarely permit such luxuries. Seen in this light, the Penal Code must ever be an act of compromise, between what Ephia's Well can be and what Ephia's Well needs to be.

51.⠀⠀⠀

In that sense, the Legal Reforms hope to be a monumental step in bringing the Penal Code closer towards the laws for which a metropolis of trade and industry may be proud of. While the architect of the Legal Reforms would be the first to admit that there remains many defects and imperfections in the Penal Code despite the Legal Reforms, it is entrusted upon future Assemblies and Legates to continue to undertake the diligent labor of seeing it ever refined closer towards becoming something worthy of the Martyrs' approval.

52.⠀⠀⠀

In the meantime, it is humbly hoped that these Commentaries would serve to be helpful to jurists and Legates alike, as they ponder over the future of the Penal Code. Where there are those who may disagree with the reasonings and positions taken in these Commentaries, I invite them to pen their responses and castigations, to publish their own theses and commentaries, in the spirit of learned debate.



Balstan Gloamingdaith

Author of the Compendium to Ephia's Well
Scholar of the Sandstone College
Legate of the League of Gold
#2
Scribes of the Sublime Garden,

As what is likely my last act as Legate this term, I hereby see filed and sealed the below Lease Agreement signed by both sitting and elected Legates of Ephia's Well:


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Gohari has set the precedent that we can, in fact, come to such irrevocable arrangements. After all, we have sold Gohari their land for their factory. In the same spirit and legal intent, so it is that this plot of land shall be leased to the Sisterhood.

THEREBY: On this day, 22 Tabbah IY 7788, Ephia's Well is legally bound by its Legates to lease to the Sisterhood the land required for their Chapterhouse.

Live and drink,
Balstan Gloamingdaith
Legate of the First Seat, two hours(?) and counting
#3
Correspondence / [To Sister Selsi]
June 20, 2024, 02:29:22 PM
Dear Selsi,

It appears that I am not the only one to be gifted with a grim dilemma.

I am prepared to see signed as deed a gift of land in the new District for your Chapterhouse. In this, you know that I am good for the dinar. For months, you and I have ever worked reliably together, and as you have not failed me, so have I not failed you.

I assure you, however, that you will not so reliably obtain the certitude of a Chapterhouse from Arymathras or Marcellus. The former, a pawn of the Astronomers, would promise anything and lie frivolously to deny your Sisterhood any greater influence. The latter, I do not think I need explain further.

Thus, your first option, is to guarantee my election with your vote, and guarantee your Chapterhouse. This may upset the Grandmaster, but I imagine that her dissatisfaction will pass.

Alternatively, one of my electoral rivals may triumph, and you may find your Chapterhouse ever elusive. I suspect that your Grandmaster's satisfaction would be a very hollow thing against that.

I will not deny that the Grandmaster's ire was a surprise that blindsided me. I suspect that it blindsided you, as well, for all your learned divinations. Indeed, I suspect that I am the first candidate in an election to have been denounced by a faction leader, be it the Grandmaster, the Bey, or Q'tolip. In this, I can only find some measure of pride, in knowing that I have warranted such. However, I have no intentions of forswearing my friends amongst the Cinquefoil, and in this, you have my solemn guarantee. In time, I can only trust that victory in this war and the eventual end of Conscription would restore some measure of gentle forgiveness from the Grandmaster for what sins and wrongs I may have done in this ugly war.

Nevertheless, let us be candid. The Grandmaster's ire does not truly change the political landscape of Ephia's Well. Her ire, one way or another, did not complete the District. Her ire, one way or another, did not actually stop Conscription from happening. Her ire, one way or another, did not prevent my Legal Reforms. Her ire, one way or another, will not magically conjure for you your Chapterhouse. I can. I will.

So, I bade you, court with being a little mischievous this Tabbah and let us build a wonderful future ahead. As ever, you will find my door open if you wish to discuss this.

Live and drink,
Balstan Gloamingdaith
#4
Janissaries of the Fourth Legion

v.

Arymathras al-Almadel

Citation: Janissaries v Arymathras [7788] EWLR 1

Coram: Legate Balstan Gloamingdaith
19 Maribeh IY 7788


1.⠀⠀⠀

The Accused is one Arymathras al-Almadel. On 19 Maribeh IY 7788, he was charged with one count of Treason pursuant to the Penal Code of Ephia's Well. State's Counsel on record is Rennik Colmes. Advocate is Mirielle Rosseau.

2.

At the material time, the Accused was the Candidate for the League of White in the elections of Maribeh IY 7788. State Counsel contended that in his position as a Candidate, the Accused had energetically undermined or attempted to energetically undermine the government.

3.

The State's case is, in essence, that on 19 Maribeh IY 7788, the Accused had voted for another League other than the League of White despite being the Candidate for the League of White. This appears to be undisputed by the Advocate and the Accused. Aside from that, the State's case is that the Accused had tried or succeeded in selling his vote and support to either or both the League of Purple and the League of Gold.

4.

In support of the State's case, State's Counsel adduced written testimonies from five witnesses: Sephidra Niridhe; Naelin Karstwen; Estellise Azimi ("Apothar Azimi"); Clarissant Llancarfen; and Qari Alriyh ("Mr Alriyh"). The gist of their testimonies is that the Accused had, from either as early as Maribeh 3 or thereafter, discussed giving his support either to the Candidate for the League of Purple or the League of Gold.

5.

First, the Court takes the view that the State Counsel's reliance on Mr Alriyh's testimony is misconceived. Mr Alriyh's testimony amounted to his overhearing of two other persons, Argent Argyris ("Mr Argyris") and Apothar Azimi, discussing what the Accused had promised or what Mr Argyris (as he then was) would do or promise in relation to the Accused. It is, simply, an out-of-Court statement made by Mr Argyris and overheard by Mr Alyrih asserting the truth of what the Accused had said or done. It is trite that such is hearsay evidence, and that hearsay evidence should be treated with utmost caution. A distinction may be drawn against, for example, Mr Alyrih testifying that the Accused had told him specifically that the Accused would vote outside of his League in exchange for something from Mr Alriyh.

6.

Second, the Advocate had rightly submitted that most of the witnesses were of the League of Purple. Indeed, one of the witnesses is presently the Candidate of the League of Purple. The Court must be ever mindful that witnesses may have political or ulterior motivations in giving their testimonies. While such testimonies are not inadmissible, and are not ipso facto incredible, the Court must test their testimonies against corroborating evidence. A conviction that relies wholly on such testimonies may be otherwise unsafe.

7.

The Court moves its consideration now to the applicable principles of law and legal policy. In this regard, there are three points which are relevant in the present case.

8.

First, the Court must be cognizant of the political context. We are presently in the voting period of the Maribeh elections of IY 7788. On trial is one of the Candidates, who was selected by the League of White to be a potential future Legate of Ephia's Well. Considering this context, the evidence against the Accused must be cogent and above reproach. Anything less than the highest standard of proof would create circumstances ripe for abuse, where Candidates may be routinely dragged to the Hall of Jurisprudence to satisfy the political end of their political rivals. It cannot be in the interests of our Asterabadian democracy to transform the Hall of Jurisprudence into the arena by which Candidates are expelled from the elections. While the Court is not closing off the real possibility that a Candidate may commit crimes during an election, the evidential burden that must be placed on the State's Counsel must be high, lest we surrender our elections to the machinations of malicious prosecutions.

9.

Second, the Court must concern itself with whether the State is estopped from relying on the present act as the singular actus reus of the alleged offence against the Accused. Specifically, the Court has to take judicial notice that the act of a Candidate voting outside of one's League had historically occurred, and the State had declined to prosecute the erstwhile Candidates. The one conclusive act which is evidentially undisputed, then, the State is estopped from relying upon as determinative. For the avoidance of doubt, there is no doubt in the present case that the Accused voted for another League aside from the League of White despite being the Candidate of the League of White.

10.

Third, it is especially important to characterize the role of the Judge in the Hall of Jurisprudence correctly. It is controvertible that the doctrine whereby the Legates hold legislative powers and the Judge holds judicial power is part of the basic structure of Ephia's Well. While a Legate often can and does take on the role of a Judge in the Hall of Jurisprudence, Ephia's Well also customarily recognizes that that judicial power may be vested in a Magistrate. It follows then from this doctrine that the Court must refrain from trespassing onto what is properly the territory of the Legates and their legislative policies.

11.

In this regard, the Advocate was correct in law when she submitted to the Court that: (a) there is no law against a Candidate voting against his own League; and (b) whether a Candidate is the proper representative of his League is on the League to determine, and not for the State or the Hall of Jurisprudence. Where his actions may undermine the tenets of his League, he must be held to account by his own League.

12.

In light of the foregoing, and having canvassed and assessed both the evidence and the law in their totality, this Court is bound by the principles of just law and equity to find that the Accused cannot be found guilty of the charge of Treason as framed. While the Accused may have doubtless voted against his own League of White despite being entrusted with the sacred duty of his representing his League, the Accused is accountable in that wrong not to the Hall of Jurisprudence, but to the League of White.


EVIDENCE ENTERED INTO THE JUDICIAL RECORDS











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#5
Public Speeches / [The Tabbah Elections]
June 11, 2024, 12:40:37 PM
Tabbah 11th, IY 7788

The Tabbah Election begins! Legate Balstan Gloamingdaith immediately begins seeking reelection...

QuoteLegate Balstan Gloamingdaith

Hrmph, hrmph. Those of the League of Gold, to the Office, aye. Grateful if I may have a word, and yer signature upon my Petition. Yer know me, and have beheld my tenure. Good laws and sensible judgments. Diplomatic entreaties to city-states that were spat on by the Purples.

A synod to see raised our first Hakem. A reasoned hearing and diligent labor for even my political foes. Accountability and public consultations fer many a deeds of mine. An unyielding, unwavering resolve to see us win this war, that I have shied nay from the fields myself.

Ahead yet be my solemn promise - a metropolis of trade and industry, and such wonder it shall be. Up the Gold, aye! Come, come, to the Office of the League of Gold!

Policies are implemented by the two Legates of Gold to help the Souk recover...

QuoteHubert Brickson

The Golden Legates, in their infinite wisdom, have heard our pleas! Sales taxes will be reduced and Ephia's Well will remain supplied and fed! Gold League for a Golden Future!

QuoteLegate Argent Argyris

Ahem! An emergency measure, to easy the pain of our Souk-bound friends who were so grievously harmed by the saboteurs who yet lurk among the voiceless throngs. A gift from myself and Balstan Gloamingdaith, to all the merchants and yeomen who are the lifeblood of our Well!

As the Gold League quickly united behind their Legate, the White League complained about added restrictions on the refugees, only to have the Gold League retort in the wake of Wicked Tabbah the Eighth...

QuoteGedwyr Karstcleft

I call upon the legates t'protect our fait Ephia's Well from the insurrectionists! They spoke of being poor and needy while they ransacked the souk and the bleeding hearted whites convinced all to stay their hand. Insisting these poor people only need a fair shake.

Soon after those very same 'poor and needy' folk ransacked our pyramid! We need laws put in place to protect our fair Ephia from these cretins! Laws to prevent these insurrectionists from weaseling their way into the seat of legate!

We can't afford t'make another mistake! Who's to say what form of subversive attack the agents of Iakmas will try next. My guess? Something involvin a white flag and I don't mean the type used t'surrender.

In the meantime, the League of Gold makes an impassionate plea for the making of hard and necessary choices amidst the War against Iakmes...

QuoteLegate Balstan Gloamingdaith

We are at war. The Seekers-After-Death had violated our homes in the guise of refugees, stolen their way into our very seat of government, and butchered innocent Scribes after we defied their singular demand to surrender to Iakmes..

It baffles me, then, that the complacency had set in so quickly after. But perhaps it ought nay. After all, the very same who stood by the Seekers-After-Death tae abet their ploy and usher in their men now are the very ones demanding that we keep our gates open and unbarred.

We cannot. This is a harsh war, a war fer our very existence. It will require hard decisions. We have learned that the hard way, and that lesson is not one that I can forget. We must win this war. We will win this war. Our very existence relies on it.

And so, I shall continue tae make the hard decisions, the necessary decisions. Until Ephia's Well is safe, until Iakmes and the Thousand Clans be defeated. Until we are triumphant and free on the other side of this war. So that we may live, and we may drink, Ephians.
#6
Public Speeches / [Writ of Conscription Issued]
June 09, 2024, 04:49:18 AM
Tabbah 8, IY 7788

QuoteBalstan Gloamingdaith

On this Wicked Tabbah the Eighth, the war came into our homes, its blood staining our sands, and its gruesome ruination wrought in our Ephia's Well. Complacency is nay a luxury we can continue to afford. Vigilence is our stalwart virtue.

Hearken then to the decree of the Legates: a Writ of Conscription has been ISSUED. The Voiced and the Voiceless alike shall take up arms and fight fer Ephia's Well, be the battle within our walls upon our streets or afield against legions dark and darkly led.

The Voiced of our home shall have THREE days to don the colors of an Accord Signatories, be it the Fourth Legion, the Astronomers, or the Cinquefoil Rose. Beneath their banners shall yer take the field, and together shall we do our duty to our home.

By writ of law, the Legates and the Prelates are exempt from the conscription; but all of yer have beheld that none of us have shied from taking the fields ourselves. Be it two days ere or this very day, we have nay exempted ourselves from doing battle.

The Voiceless may be conscripted by the Warmaster and the Commander starting hence. After the three days, any Voiced who have nay joined an Accord Signatories are likewise so subject to the Warmaster's and the Commander's decree of conscription.

At the end of the war, all who were so conscripted shall be entitled tae stay in the Accord they have joined, or leave with full honors. Yer shall be recognised, yer names immortalised amongst the annals of our victory.

Aye, I shan't lie to yer, Ephians. There will be deaths ahead. Iakmes and his ilk will come at us with fire and storm, with every horrible cunning they may muster; and yet, yer home calls fer yer, Ephia's Well calls fer yer, to march, to bleed, to win.

We will win this war, through dark and ruin until we come out on the other side. Live and drink, Ephians.
#7
Public Speeches / [A Golden Ephia's Well]
May 28, 2024, 10:00:42 AM
Maribeh 28, IY 7788

The Maribeh Elections have concluded with the election of a Legate from the League of Gold...

QuoteSultan's Herald

Let it be known that Argent Argyris of the League of Gold has won the elections for the seat of Legate! They are to report to the Chamber of Rule to be officially sworn in.

Work proceeds swiftly, with the League of Gold immediately making a call to meet with representatives from Gohari Heavy Industry...

QuoteBalstan Gloamingdaith

The Legates of Ephia's Well formally extend our invitation to the esteemed Director Gildebrand of Gohari Heavy Industries fer a meeting later this eve or in the days tae come.

At the same time, the seemingly tireless Legate of the First Seat proceeds to publish the first draft of a great legal reform intended to revise and reorganize much of Ephia's Well's Legal Code...

QuoteBalstan Gloamingdaith

Hrmph, hrmph. After days of discussions and refinement, betwixt my co-Legate and I, alongside the dutiful Scribes of the Sublime Garden, we have prepared a working draft of the intended legal reform to our Penal Code.

T'is has been posted, upon the Notices and Bulletins of Ephia's Well. Fer at least the next three days shall it be up fer public consultation, where we are accepting letters from Voiced and Voiceless alike tae share their views and concerns.

We invite the peoples of Ephia's Well tae partake in this public discourse and debate, and tae propose what laws or amendments that yer may deem necessary fer our consideration alongside this great legal undertaking.

Live and drink, Ephians, my friends, and know that we of the League of Gold continue to labor, tirelessly, unceasingly, fer the betterment of our home and citadel.

// LINK TO THE WORKING DRAFT

Ephia's Well has its first Golden Monochromacy, and it seems keen on making its mark and legacy upon the citadel...
#8
Citizens of Ephia's Well,

Please find below the first draft of the League of Gold's intended legal reforms available for public consultation. The Palatial Pyramid shall be inviting all Voiced and Voiceless to write in by way of letters addressed to both Legates on any proposed amendments or views to the intended legal reforms. Please write in by 1 Tabbah IY 7788, or around 3 days from now.

The ideals which ought to undergird these would be to cover any lacunas in the law that have been identified, to keep legal phrases and definitions consistent across all the Articles, and to rid the Penal Code of any otiose laws. At the end of the day, the Penal Code should be shorter and clearer, with less ambiguity or articles left for creative interpretations while being more robust in the protection of the rights of Voiced and Voiceless alike.

Do not reinvent the wheel. An established understanding of the Penal Code has been largely had, and these proposed amendments are not intended to upturn it, but to refine it and make incremental improvements.

Do not provide general motherhood statements such as "too long" or "this seems ambiguous". Instead, explain why and propose alternative wordings.

Do be clear and precise, for example, that "I think 'conspiring' should be replaced with 'plotting' as it is less ambiguous. I think so because..." or "The phrase 'knowingly and willfully' is unnecessary because it is inherent in a crime that the criminal knowingly and willfully commits it, as otherwise, he should be innocent for lacking the criminal mind."

Do give cogent reasonings for any proposed amendments.

BEFORE
AFTER
CRIMES AGAINST THE PERSON
Murder: A person found guilty of killing or planning to kill another person for any reason other than self-defense has committed Murder. Capital.

Murder: A person found guilty of killing or conspiring to kill a citizen of Ephia's Well for any reason other than self-defense has committed Murder. Capital.

Assault: A person found guilty of harming or planning to harm another person without causing or intending mortal injury for any reason other than self-defense has committed Assault. Minor to Capital.

Minor: Unarmed.
Serious: Armed or Magical Assault.
Capital: Maiming. (Deliberate removal or destruction of body parts and or organs with intent to cause severe permanent harm.)

Assault: A person found guilty of harming or conspiring to harm another person without causing or intending mortal injury for any reason other than self-defense has committed Assault. Minor to Capital.

Minor: Unarmed.
Serious: Armed or Magical Assault.
Capital: Maiming. (Deliberate removal or destruction of body parts and or organs with intent to cause severe permanent harm.)

Theft: A person found guilty of stealing or attempting to steal the effects of another person or organization has committed Theft. Minor to Capital, depending on amount stolen.

Minor: Under 250gp of theft.
Serious: Above 250gp to 2500gp of theft.
Capital: Above 2500gp of theft.

Theft: A person found guilty of stealing or attempting to steal the effects of another person or organization has committed Theft. Minor to Capital.

Minor: Under 250gp of effects.
Serious: Above 250gp to 2500gp of effects.
Capital: Above 2500gp of effects.

Trespassing: A person found guilty of entering a private area without the permission of its lawfully recognized owner has committed Trespassing. Minor to Serious.

Minor: Entering the area.
Serious: Entering the area with intent to commit a crime other than Trespassing.

Trespassing: A person found guilty of entering a private area without the permission of its lawfully recognized owner has committed Trespassing. Minor to Serious.

Minor: Entering the area and refusing to leave when told to.
Serious: Entering the area with intent to commit a crime other than Trespassing.

Destruction: A person found guilty of willfully damaging or attempting to damage willfully the property of another person or organization has committed Destruction. Minor to Capital, depending on the evaluation of the damage.

Minor: Under 250gp of damage.
Serious: Above 250gp of damage.
Capital: Use of explosives or destructive magic leading to the direct collapse/destruction of property.

Destruction: A person found guilty of willfully damaging or attempting to damage willfully the property of another person or organization has committed Destruction. Minor to Capital, depending on the evaluation of the damage.

Minor: Under 250gp of damage.
Serious: Above 250gp of damage.
Capital: Use of explosives or destructive magic leading to the direct collapse/destruction of property.


Vandalism: A person found guilty of destroying, attempting to destroy, or diminishing the value of property has committed vandalism. Minor to Capital.

Minor: Under 250gp of property damage. (Includes spitting)
Serious: Above 250gp of property damage.
Capital: Above 2500gp of property damage.

Vandalism: A person found guilty of destroying, attempting to destroy, or diminishing the value of the effects or property of another person or organization has committed Vandalism. Minor to Capital.

Minor: Under 250gp of damage. (Includes spitting)
Serious: Above 250gp of damage.
Capital: Above 2500gp of damage.

Kidnapping: A person found guilty of unlawfully abducting or holding captive another person against their will has committed Kidnapping. Serious.

Kidnapping: A person found guilty of unlawfully abducting or holding captive another person against their will has committed Kidnapping. Serious.

Slavery: A person found guilty of forcing or compelling a person to work without pay, or into providing labour against their will absent of conscription, or otherwise claiming physical ownership of a person, has committed Slavery. Serious to Capital.

Serious: Knowingly assisting someone guilty of practicing Slavery.
Capital: Practicing slavery, owning a slave.

Slavery: A person found guilty of forcing or compelling a person to work without pay, or into working against their will absent conscription, or otherwise claiming physical ownership of a person, has committed Slavery. Serious to Capital.

Serious: Knowingly assisting someone guilty of practicing Slavery.
Capital: Practicing slavery, owning a slave.

CRIMES AGAINST THE STATE
Treason: A person found guilty of energetically undermining or energetically attempting to undermine the government for any reason, thereby inviting anarchy and disorder, has committed Treason. Capital.

Treason: A person found guilty of doing or conspiring to do treasonous acts has committed Treason. Treasonous acts include waging war or conspiring to wage war against Ephia's Well, or participating in attempts to undermine or harm the Legates. Capital.

Espionage: N/A

Espionage: A person found guilty of doing or conspiring to conduct espionage on Ephia's Well has committed Espionage. Espionage includes but is not limited to acts of loitering in restricted locations without permission, intentionally eavesdropping on the Legates, scrying on the Accord Signatories or Legates, or sharing restricted information with those Ephia's Well is at war with without authorization. Minor to Capital.

Minor: Loitering in restricted locations without permission, such as the Legate's hallway or the Divan of War.
Serious: Intentionally eavesdropping on the Legates' doors; or scrying the Accord Signatories or Legates.
Capital: Intentionally sharing restricted information with those Ephia's Well is at war with.

Interference with Jurisprudence: A person who intentionally and directly disrupts the process of Jurisprudence is guilty of Interference. This may include knowingly presenting false evidence or testimony, assault during an active trial, egregious mishandling of prosecution or advocacy, or other any actions that will directly hinder the process of a investigation, fair trial, or punishment for the accused. Minor to Capital, matching the severity of the accused trial, or punishment they have interfered with.

Interference with Jurisprudence: A person found guilty of intentionally and directly disrupting the process of Jurisprudence has committed Interference with Jurisprudence. This may include knowingly presenting false evidence or testimony; assault during an active trial; egregious mishandling of prosecution or advocacy; or other any other actions that will directly hinder the process of an investigation or a trial or the punishment the accused was sentenced to. Minor to Capital, matching the severity of the accused trial, or punishment they have interfered with.

Laches: N/A

Laches: A person who prosecutes a crime more than two months after the discovery of the crime has committed Laches. The prosecution against the accused person is prohibited or to be discontinued by virtue of the unreasonable delay in prosecution. The count of two months is suspended if the accused person flees Ephia's Well or is unavailable for prosecution or if a Legate approves a suspension of the count for the duration of the Legate's term. Serious.

Accorded Governance: Any current member of an Accorded Signatory who puts their name forth in an election to obtain the seat of Legate of Ephia's Well is guilty of seeking to raise Accorded Governance.

Furthermore, no current member of an Accord Signatory may be assigned to the position of Prelate or Magistrate, save that each Legate may appoint a maximum of one Magistrate from either the Cinquefoil Rose or the Astronomers of Q'tolip. The offending Legate or official is guilty of raising Accorded Governance. Should a person holding these titles join an Accord Signatory, they must resign the title immediately. Capital, as Treason.

Accord Governance: A person who is a member of an Accord Signatory found guilty of putting their name forth in an election to obtain the seat of a Legate has committed Accord Governance. Furthermore, a member of an Accord Signatory may not hold the position of a Prelate or a Magistrate, with an exception provided for each Legate to appoint a maximum of one Magistrate from either the Cinquefoil Rose or the Astronomers of Q'tolip. Capital.

Unauthorised Descent: A person found guilty of Entering, enabling Entrance to, or possessing materials from al-Nasr or the Depths below it, without the Authorisation of the Astronomers of Q'tolip, or both sitting Legates, has committed Unauthorized Descent. Minor to Capital.

Minor: Knowingly possessing materials from, or for the purpose of committing, Unauthorised Descent.
Serious: Possessing a key for, or participating in, Unauthorised Descent.
Capital: Concealing expeditions for, or causing harm through, Unauthorised Descent.

Unauthorised Descent: A person found guilty of entering, enabling entrance to, or possessing materials from al-Nasr or the depths below it, without the authorisation of the Astronomers of Q'tolip, or both sitting Legates, has committed Unauthorized Descent. Minor to Capital.

Minor: Knowingly possessing materials from, or for the purpose of committing, Unauthorised Descent.
Serious: Possessing a key for, or participating in, Unauthorised Descent.
Capital: Concealing expeditions for, or causing harm through, Unauthorised Descent.

Criminal Association: A person found guilty of knowingly and willfully empowering or arming criminal elements against Ephia's Well has committed Criminal Association. Serious.

Criminal Association: A person found guilty of knowingly and willfully empowering or arming criminal elements against Ephia's Well has committed Criminal Association. Serious.

Unlawful Resistance: A person found guilty of refusing a reasonable request of a Guard, such as submission to a search, or attempting to flee during an arrest, has committed Unlawful Resistance. Minor to Serious.

Minor: Verbal taunting, verbal refusal.
Serious: Willingly fleeing from a request. (can be used as evidence of indirect admission of guilt in a trial)

Unlawful Resistance: A person found guilty of refusing a reasonable request of a Guard or a Legate, such as submission to a search, or attempting to flee during an arrest, has committed Unlawful Resistance. Minor to Serious.

Minor: Verbal taunting, verbal refusal.
Serious: Willingly fleeing from a request. (can be used as evidence of indirect admission of guilt in a trial)

Unlicensed Activity: A person found guilty of performing an activity requiring a License from the Scribes of the Sublime Garden without possessing a valid license had committed Unlicensed Activity. Minor.

Unlicensed Activity: A person found guilty of performing an activity requiring a license without possessing a valid license had committed Unlicensed Activity. Minor.

Reckless Endangerment: A person found guilty of recklessly bleeding or causing another to bleed upon the ground of the Citadel has committed Reckless Endangerment. Minor to Serious.

Minor: Accidental.
Serious: Intentional.

Reckless Endangerment: A person found guilty of recklessly bleeding or causing another to bleed upon the ground of the Citadel has committed Reckless Endangerment. Minor to Serious.

Minor: Accidental.
Serious: Intentional.


Drug Trafficking: A person found guilty of knowingly selling, transporting, or possessing for the purposes of sale or distribution, prohibited substances has committed the crime of Drug Trafficking. Simple possession is not a criminal offense, but prohibited materials will be confiscated. Serious.

Drug Trafficking: A person found guilty of knowingly selling, transporting, or possessing for the purposes of sale or distribution, prohibited substances has committed the crime of Drug Trafficking. Simple possession is not a criminal offense, but prohibited materials will be confiscated. Serious.

Arms Bearing: A Person found guilty of brandishing, displaying or otherwise wielding weapons capable of harming another within the walls of Ephia's Well without One Legate's authorization has committed Arms Bearing. Minor.

Arms Bearing: A person found guilty of brandishing, displaying or otherwise wielding weapons capable of harming another within the walls of Ephia's Well without a Legate's authorization has committed Arms Bearing. Minor.

CRIMES AGAINST THE WHEEL
Brooking: A person found guilty of entering negotiations with or attempting to bind otherworldly spirits, monstrosities or horrors has committed the crime of Brooking. Capital.

Brooking: A person found guilty of conjuring or binding djinns, otherworldly spirits, monstrosities, or horrors, has committed the crime of Brooking. Capital.

Sacrilege: A person found guilty of knowingly and willfully attacking, damaging or desecrating shrines or temples, pertaining to the Gods of the Wheel, with the exception of the Wyrm, and with the intention of causing such damage or desecration, has committed Sacrilege. Capital.

Sacrilege: A person found guilty of knowingly and intentionally attacking, damaging or desecrating shrines or temples or sacred texts or holy relics, pertaining to the Gods of the Wheel, save for the Wyrm, has committed Sacrilege. Serious to Capital.

Serious: Damage or desecration.
Capital: Irreparable damage or desecration.

Desecration: A person found guilty of attempting to dishonor, defile, or animate the dead has committed Desecration. Minor to Capital.

Minor: Tampering with a grave or retrieving things from it.
Serious: Destroying a grave or committing otherwise irreparable damage.
Capital: Animating the dead.

Desecration: A person found guilty of animating the dead or desecrating a corpse has committed Desecration. Minor to Capital.

Minor: Robbing a grave or possessing items that may animate the dead.
Serious: Desecrating a corpse, or intentionally impeding a corpse's delivery to the Maqbara, or causing irreparable damage to a grave.
Capital: Animating the dead, or trading or purchasing the remains of a sainted martyr, Sultan, Caliph, or Legate.

Illegal Worship and Practise: A person found to be holding membership with, practice the faith of, or act in the interests of any society, cult, sect, or other form of blasphemous or heretical group that can be reasonably deemed a threat to the safety and security of Ephia's Well or its citizens, or claim their faith or practice as reason for the same, has committed Illegal Worship and Practice. Serious to Capital.

Serious: Self-professed or verifiable membership, practice, or aid, willingly renounced with re-baptism as part of their sentencing.
Capital: Active participation in illegal or subversive activities on behalf of their faith or practice, or otherwise failing or refusing to renounce the faith or practice in question.

Illegal Worship and Practice: A person found to be holding membership with, practice the faith of, or act in the interests of any society, cult, sect, or other form of blasphemous or heretical group that can be reasonably deemed a threat to the safety and security of Ephia's Well or its citizens, or claim their faith or practice as reason for the same, has committed Illegal Worship and Practice. Serious to Capital.

Serious: Self-professed or verifiable membership, practice, or aid, willingly renounced with re-baptism as part of their sentencing.
Capital: Active participation in illegal or subversive activities on behalf of their faith or practice, or otherwise failing or refusing to renounce the faith or practice in question.

Offense against the Mother: N/A

Offense against the Mother: A person found guilty of recklessly bleeding or causing another to bleed upon the ground of the Citadel, except for the purposes of holy rites and holy days of the Wheel, has committed an Offense against the Mother. Minor to Serious.

Minor: Accidental.
Serious: Intentional.

#9
Correspondence / [DM] [Gohari Heavy Industry]
May 27, 2024, 01:58:20 PM
27 Maribeh IY 7788

GOHARI HEAVY INDUSTRIES

Attention: Director Ariette Gildebrand

Dear Sirs,

GOHARI INVESTMENT IN EPHIA'S WELL

1.    We refer to the meeting of the Comptrollers of the League of Gold on or around 11 Maribeh, IY 7788, which, amongst others, included the meeting between our Legate Balstan Gloamingdaith and your Director Ariette Gildebrand.

2.    Since then, we are pleased to inform you that the League of Gold has won the Maribeh Elections with the election of Argent Argyris onto the Second Seat of the Legates.

3.    In light of the foregoing, we would be grateful if we may arrange for a meeting between yourselves and the Legates of the League of Gold to continue our discussions in respect of Gohari Heavy Industry's investments into Ephia's Well.

4.    Please let us know if any of these dates and time or variations thereof would be suitable for you:

      (a)    28 Maribeh IY 7788 // Countdown

      (b)    31 Maribeh IY 7788 // Countdown

      (c)    1 Tabbah IY 7788 // Countdown

5.    We look forward to hearing back from you at your convenience.

Live and drink,
Balstan Gloamingdaith
The Legate of the First Seat
#10
Maribeh 12, IY 7788

The Maribeh elections begin!

Rumors quickly spread, as well, of prominent and influential visitors from Baz'eel. It seems that with the possible election of the League of Gold to both Legate seats, there are talks of a transformation to come to Ephia's Well, of a metropolis of trade and industry, of factories and wonder-makings...

QuoteFabio de Avalore, League of Gold Official

Legate Balstan Gloamingdaith. Argent Argyris. You are invited promptly to the offices of the League of Gold to discuss certain matters of particular import.

QuoteFabio de Avalore, League of Gold Official

Comptrollers of the League of Gold, you are invited to the offices...

The League of Gold was quick to begin campaigning...

QuoteBalstan Gloamingdaith

Up the Gold, fer our promises we can actually deliver. Folks who have dealt with me know I to be an honest factor, and the accords I have struck, I have delivered or are delivering. Vote fer the Gold, that yer may get what yer were promised!

Or waste yer vote fer the Whites and Purples, and be greeted with months of disappointment as they promise much but could deliver nothing, turning about tae blame me fer their inability. T'is an old song and dance, Ephians. Yer know full well what would happen.

Instead, vote fer the League of Gold - I have bade Fabio usher in the Comptrollers, and shared words with great powers from Baz'eel and afar. There be a truly marvelous future we can craft, here, my friends.

A shining city upon the dunes, a metropolis that may rival any of the other great city-states, a city of prosperity where there be jobs fer refugees tae build a livelihood and retire in comfort, where we forge engines of war with industries of plenty.

Defy another deadlock. Defy the Purples and the Whites. Usher in the Gold, Ephians, we are /so close/ to something truly magical and marvelous! Up the Gold! Up Ephia's Well!

A renewed excitement across the League of Gold, a fresh injection of vim and vigor: for if they should win this election, it is rumored, Ephia's Well may well be expanding and moving up the technological ladder of civilization for the first time in many, many years...

Ephia's Well holds its breath...

The Elections of Maribeh, IY 7788...
#11
5 Maribeh IY 7788

THE BANDA ROSSA

Dear Sirs,

LETTER OF COMMENDATION: EMILIA LAURENTIS

1.    I write to commend the actions of Recluta Emilia Laurentis ("Emilia") of the Banda Rossa.

2.    As you may be aware, Ephia's Well led a diplomatic mission to Il Modo on or around 3 Maribeh IY 7788. While the results of the diplomatic mission were mixed, it was nevertheless critically aided by a performance from the Floating Fantasia, which was received with general acclaim.

3.    I am pleased to inform you that the presence and performance of the Floating Fantasia may be attributed to the suggestion and arrangements made by Emilia. It was she who arranged for me to meet with the Ringmaster, and it was she who lent the impetus to Ephia's Well reaching out to Il Modo. It would not be an exaggeration to say that inviting the Floating Fantasia would not have occurred to me without her suggestion, and her actions contributed substantially towards the diplomatic mission's chance of success. For one, I understand that Lady Paula of Il Modo was greatly pleased by the Floating Fantasia's performance.

4.    In light of the foregoing, let it be known that Emilia has my gratitude, and I offer my personal commendation for her contributions to Ephia's Well.

Live and drink,
Balstan Gloamingdaith
Legate of the First Seat
#12
Public Speeches / [On Il Modo]
May 03, 2024, 02:42:49 PM
Maribeh 3rd, IY 7788

https://www.efupw.com/forums/index.php?topic=706410.msg761522#msg761522

Rumors spread of the latest diplomatic mission to Il Modo, and the huge quantity of well-water delivered to Il Modo for reconciliation and their attendance at Kardesler...

Quote100 Barrels Balstan

Ephians, friends, kith, and kin. Hear me, fer I shall speak of Il Modo.

Back in Kanon Hray IY 7787, the Legates of that day struck accord with Il Modo. The terms? Amongst others, two barrels of well-water a month, fer passage to Il Modo fer all interested Ephians, for a price of 200 dinars.

Aye, I have seen Il Modo. Its wonders, its architecture, its marvels. From the lovingly laid bricks and art of the Dome of Man, to the capacious halls of the Lamp of Learning, and more. It be worth the sight.

And that sight was denied yer, by folks who climbed the ladder, and pulled the ladder up behind them.

Amends were sought by Il Modo. Amends were nay made. Relations chilled. Now, we are at war, and we find ourselves needing allies. This day, we reap today the consequences of choices made by folks of those yesterdays ago.

Why? Because the Legates of that day struck that accord, and then reneged it. And Il Modo remembers. And passage to Il Modo, which could have been yers fer less price than a trip to Frostport, was denied yer.

So aye, a heavy price had to be defrayed yester-eve, fer Il Modo's aid and attendance at Kardesler. But it be worth it. If relations can be mended, its soldiers and its cannons would save the lives of Ephians in this war to come.

With yer aid and support, Ephians, my friends, I will see opened passage to Il Modo once more. With their aid, we will win this war.

Live and drink, Ephians! Kardesler awaits!
#13
Correspondence / [DM] [Letter to Il Modo]
April 30, 2024, 08:37:41 PM
30 Tammuz IY 7788

IL MODO

Attention: Grand Duke of Il Modo, Nicodemo Nicosino, and his Council of Five

Dear Sirs,

KARDESLER, DIPLOMATIC MISSION, AND THE FLOATING FANTASIA'S RETURN TO IL MODO

1.    By way of introduction, I am Balstan Gloamingdaith, Legate of the First Seat of Ephia's Well, and I offer happy felicitations and greetings to the august Grand Duke and his Council of Five.

2.    Ahead of the Kardesler that has been fixed for on or around 5 Maribeh IY 7788, I write with the assent of the Second Seat to request the honor of an audience to discuss diplomatic ties and to extend an invitation in respect of Kardesler.

3.    As part of the diplomatic mission and a token of goodwill and festivities, I have arranged for The Floating Fantasia of Il Modo, which Ephia's Well has been proud to host, to provide an evening of entertaining performances. I understand that the star attractions include Zampetto the Jovial, the Clown Prince of Laughter; Djed the Golden, a Sword-Swallower of aureate renown; and Giorgi Giorgini, the Gentle Giant. Please kindly find enclosed one of their lovely pamphlets, which I understand is enchanted with their theme song.

4.    We would be grateful if our request may be acceded to, and for your kind guidance for the diplomatic mission's arrival in Il Modo.

Live and drink,
Balstan Gloamingdaith
The Legate of the First Seat

// Proposed timing: https://www.timeanddate.com/countdown/generic?iso=20240504T08&p0=236&font=cursive

enclosed


#14
Correspondence / [DM] Letter to Sorazin Bey
April 29, 2024, 02:01:56 PM
29 Tammuz IY 7788

SORAZIN BEY

Dear Sir,

RE: RENNIK COLMES

1.    On 28 Hziran IY 7788, Lieutenant Rennik Colmes ("Rennik") was appointed to the esteemed position of Warmaster through "a joint decision by the two Purple Seats". Subsequently, the Tammuz Election concluded with the loss of one of these Purple Seats, and the election of a Legate from the League of Gold on 16 Tammuz IY 7788.

2.    Since then:

        (a)    On 19 Tammuz IY 7788, Rennik interrogated and intimidated a Sister of the Sibylline Sisterhood in the Office of the First Seat during a meeting between the Legate of the First Seat and the Accorded Signatories. This was witnessed by representatives of the Accorded Signatories, and Rennik was only halted after being reminded that his behavior in the Palatial Pyramid was disgraceful;

        (b)    Between 19 Tammuz and 20 Tammuz IY 7788, Rennik usurped the authority of the Legates to engage in foreign affairs with Kha'esh by devolving that power to his Divan of War and discounting the votes of the Legates in determining Ephia's Well's foreign policies with Kha'esh. This was witnessed and noted on two occasions, first by the Astronomers of Q'tolip at the Council of War, and then again by the Ambassador of Kha'esh during an Assembly held on or around 21 Tammuz IY 7788; and

        (c)    On 27 Tammuz IY 7788, after Arjuna Blackbranded had murdered two Students of the College of Balladeers and the learned Alejandro Benjazar, and upon being informed of the same, Rennik ordered the arrest of the Legate of the First Seat (the "27 Tammuz Incident"). Rennik's reasoning for doing so, witnessed by Deputy Chief Scribe Aaisha al-Samar, was to investigate "the plan to murder Arjuna".

3.    It is germane to highlight a few points about the 27 Tammuz Incident:

        (a)    First, Rennik neglected his duty as a Lieutenant. Arjuna Blackbranded had just murdered three Ephians. Instead of acting to address the murders, Rennik's first act upon learning of the murders was to arrest an elected Legate for a completely separate alleged offence. To-date, his efforts to apprehend Arjuna remains feeble and desultory at best.

        (b)    Second, Rennik failed in his duty as a Warmaster. Ephia's Well is at war. Rennik should be fully aware that any careless actions could undermine the morale of its populace and destabilize the proper functioning of Ephia's Well. Instead, he chose the most damaging method of enacting his arrest of an elected Legate - by doing so in front of all and sundry in the middle of the Chamber of Rule, right in the midst of a crisis, and thereby paralyzing both the government and the Janissaries when leadership was most needed.

        (c)    Third, Rennik's ground for arresting an elected Legate was both spurious and absurd. He appears to have been advancing the case that Marigold Boffin was placed as a "knife" to the throat of Arjuna, and as Marigold Boffin answers to the Prelate Argent Argyris, who subsequently answers to the Legate of the First Seat, the Legate is therefore culpable in a crime of "planning to murder Arjuna". However, this case is plainly absurd. First, Marigold Boffin did not do anything to murder Arjuna as of the material time. Second, Marigold Boffin had instead just assisted Arjuna to murder three Ephians. Third, and in any case, Arjuna had just murdered three Ephians. The absurdity of the arrest was made plain when after a mere three questions, Rennik was forced to release the arrested Legate and provide an apology over the Bellows.

        (d)    Fourth, Rennik provided an admission of guilt and wrongdoing over the Bellows. However, it is insincere, and betrays a man more contrite at being caught blameworthy than being genuinely remorseful about his actions. It was interrupted, and Rennik was quick to rely on the interruption to truncate his apology. I reproduce Rennik's truncated apology for your convenient reference:

Warmaster Colmes speaking. The words I spoke within the Council of Rule were regrettable, and the Legate has my apologies for their nature in the wake of this bloodshed. Tensions were high. Tempers hot. That excuses none of it-

4.    Any one of these incidents may be forgiven as a mistake. Any one of these incidents may be absolved as a lapse in judgment. Any one of these incidents may be overlooked.

5.    However, taken altogether, the incidents demonstrate a concerning pattern of conduct from a man who has been vested with an incredible degree of trust and power. In holding the offices of both a Lieutenant of the Janissaries and a Warmaster, Rennik can be said to wield power almost unequalled by any in Ephia's Well. It is crucial that he be trusted to wield these powers sensibly and tactfully, and do so while respecting the fragile and delicate tapestry of power that holds Ephia's Well and its Accorded Signatories together.

6.    Furthermore, it is disconcerting that Rennik's behavior appears to be escalating. Troubling tidings have reached the Office of the First Seat that even now, Rennik and his conspiracy of Janissary loyalists seek to cajole false witnesses and invent farcical evidence towards advancing his plot to undermine the government of Ephia's Well.

7.    It is evident that the only conceivable explanations for Rennik's actions are:

        (a)    First, Rennik's actions were politically motivated to support the League of Purple in undermining the Legate of the League of Gold. This is evidenced by the fact that Rennik and most of his loyalists within the Janissaries have voted for the League of Purple during the Tammuz Elections, and his appointment as Warmaster was owed to the League of Purple;

        (b)    Second, Rennik believes that as Warmaster, he is either above or may neglect the Legates of Ephia's Well. This is evidenced by his decision to usurp the Legates' authorities over foreign affairs;

        (c)    Third, Rennik has developed the belief that power must be concentrated unchecked within him, and that him being answerable to the Legates is an inconvenience that must be overcome - in establishing a military junta, he would win the war, without the need to account to the elected leaders of Ephia's Well; and/or

        (d)    Fourth, Rennik has merely erred repeatedly, and is unable to bear the stress of holding both the offices of a Lieutenant and that of a Warmaster.

8.    In light of the foregoing, I regret to inform you that Rennik no longer commands the trust and confidence of the Legate of the First Seat. Specifically, it is this Office's position that Rennik can no longer wield the power of both a Lieutenant and a Warmaster. Henceforth, he must choose. As Rennik appears to be more interested in the powers of a Lieutenant over the responsibilities of a Lieutenant, it is this Office's recommendation that Rennik be suspended as a Lieutenant of the Janissaries until the end of the war or he has conceded the duties and responsibilities of a Warmaster. Alternatively, he may resign as Warmaster.

9.    TAKE NOTICE that in the meantime, any further actions taken by Rennik or his cadre of loyalists to arrest or harm any elected Legate and/or any member of Ephia's Well's government will hereby be taken as yet another act in a pattern of behavior by rogue Janissaries intended to energetically undermine or attempt to energetically undermine the government for any reason, thereby inviting anarchy and disorder; to wit, Rennik and his cadre of loyalists would be taking actions that are evidence of treason against Ephia's Well.

10.    Actions have consequences, and I bade that you do not permit Rennik's actions during the 27 Tammuz Incident to be without consequence. In any case, in the event of continued treasonous activities, the Legate of the First Seat trusts that both loyal Janissaries and the Accorded Signatories will act to defend the government of Ephia's Well against any attempted coup d'etats, and/or that you will intervene personally to hold him to account.

Live and drink,
Balstan Gloamingdaith
The Legate of the First Seat
#15
Public Speeches / Gold Campaign | Tammuz Election
April 13, 2024, 07:10:47 AM
Tammuz 13th, IY 7788

The Tammuz Election wages on! A spirited campaign from the Gold, with vim and vigor, with a revanchist enthusiasm for their previous month's absence, and with inspiring speeches from the League's supporters...

QuoteArgent Argyris

The world is at War, and the Ash is quaking. Our Legates have been reclusive, save to shriek at the Voiced like drunken parents at Assembly. Uncertainty, for the future and the present. Hunger and scorn. These are the Promises of Purple.

A strong state with ample opportunity for all Voices to be heard, solid alliances with our threatened neighbors, progressive and industrious planning for the future, and an aim toward Total Victory in the Ash. These are Gloomingdaith's Guarantees.

This election, be keen, be wise, and trust in our Man of the Mountain - for beneath his craggy exterior friend? His promises are Golden.

QuoteBalstan Gloamingdaith

An inspired evening to end the Tammuz campaign period! Grateful I be, fer the indomitable and unyielding spirit of we Ephians, as I joined in our march led by the esteemed Warmaster tae defy Iakmes' horde! A glorious strike, to begin the evening!

Grateful I be, to join in Antikos' and Narwen's entertaining game of 'Camel Race', and gladdened am I fer the opportunity to donate a princely sum to their charitable cause.

And inspired I be, by Argent's words, resounding with clarion truth, the soul of the Gold - alliances with our allies against Iakmes, industry fer the future and our peoples, and triumph, triumph at all cost, triumph with our banner speared through our orcan foe, with trumpets heralding our victory!

Up the Gold! Up Ephia's Well! Live, and drink, aye!

QuoteQari Alriyh

Dear Citizens, Live and Drink. Another election is upon us. Three choices sit before you, though it ought be two given that Alejandro was unable to muster the signatures.

Ponder well whom you will support this election. The white league, mired in extremism, filled with those who betray each other at every turn? A man who has betrayed more within the Citadel somehow, than even Estellize Azimi?

The Purple? To continue what we have seen so far? A double purple legateship that leaves the people floundering? Look to dear Bashir and the lack of support they have given him. As Marcellus forces Bashir to stand at his side while he throws tantrum and screams as foreign diplomats.

One of the first things I did as Legate was to recognize Bashir, and increase his wage. When was the last time they recognized Bashir's hard work? We need a legate who will keep Marcellus in check, and afford our cherished scribes the proper respect.

White and purple have led us down the path of disaster. The only path left is to look to the Gold League. A league that values the people, a league that wishes for them to have opportunity. How many of you truly feel like you have been heard by the Legates, these past months?

Are you content with the War that Marcellus has brought upon us by offending the orcs with his pretty little banner? Are you content with the stifling of our trade, with his inability to conduct diplomacy with Qadira?

Vote gold, Dear Citizens. Vote for a return to stability, and a league that wishes for YOU to thrive.

And aside from that, a torrent of hopeful voices, speaking of the generosity of the League of Gold...

QuoteAryarael Ahnvaenath

Oi, Balstan o' Golds, ta fer th' eight dinars discoun, eh?

QuoteBeldan Hilltop

Wanna give a thank ya ta Balstan o' tha Gold fer arrangin some discounts within tha Souk, from tha merchant o' the Gold League.

QuoteJamei Mirellos

Hear me, Ephians. I am named Jamei, and I come to the Well in this Age of Bronze to do the only thing worth doing; to stop it. To preserve Mankind. To see a world saved, and a better one built. The one called Balstan is given thanks, for equipping generously a new arrival. The items obtained will serve in the great works to come.

QuoteZahra Khamsin

Praise the name of Balstan ofthe Gold for his generous support of the new refugee, in steep discounting in the Souk. Thanks to him for this boon!

Soon, the Tammuz Election's voting period shall begin...
#16
Tammuz 5th, IY 7788

As the Tammuz Election wages on amidst a backdrop of the war against Iakmes, the Leagues of Gold, Purple, and White, muster their candidates.

The Whites' tragic loss did not prevent them from fielding another candidate shortly after...

QuoteMiro Lac-du-Manse

Regarding the Ymir 7788 campaign: The League of White shall select a new candidate. I do not intend to run, but will support whoever wins our nomination. Ymir was an illustrious woman of profound moral character. We shall miss you, Akna.

QuoteRumors begin to spread throughout the settlement of Ephia's Well that Miro Lac-du-Manse of the League of White is gathering signatures to qualify as the League's choice for Legate.

While the Gold comes to be united, perhaps oddly, under a dwarf...

QuoteBalstan Gloamingdaith

T'is be Balstan, Balstan Gloamingdaith, author of the Compendium to Ephia's Well and the presumptive candidate fer the League of Gold. The League has come together, and in unity, make its voice in Tammuz heard. I am grateful and honored fer their support.

Words, trust, promises, they be at the heart of a candidate when yer judge us. When I penned the Compendium, I reached out tae many of yer, and yer have treated with I and my scholarship. Skeptical, some of yer were, when I spoke of my beliefs fer guidance for the newly-arrived.

Yer were skeptical, aye, that I could deliver, even as yer in generosity and to my gratitude supported my work. But I did deliver, aye. My words be my bond.

And when the League of Gold met, and spoke of supporting avenues fer more tae through merit and ambition become Voiced, say to I, what would yer do, fer your beliefs? I promised that I shall provide such an avenue. To skepticism, again, aye, perhaps.

But I did deliver, again, the Sandstone Examination, which even now seeks to provide avenue fer the Voiceless to become Voiced, through merit, diligence, and study.

The words I make, the promises I offer, I delivered. And will deliver. And so I make this oath: as Legate, I will see promised my full, unwavering, unyielding support, fer the Accords and the brave and the courageous who have sacrificed so much fer the defence of Ephia's Well.

And yer know that I shall be good fer my word, that I will deliver. We must win this war, and mine and the League of Gold's utmost shall go towards the defense and stewardship of our home. Live and drink, aye.

The Gold seems content to campaign on keeping one's words and delivering upon one's promises upon a foundation of merit. As part of that campaign, free copies of the Compendium to Ephia's Well are distributed. Some naysayers mutter that perhaps Balstan's campaign is nothing more than an elaborate farce to advertise his book. But surely not. That would be silly...

The Tammuz primaries continue...
#17
Notices and Bulletins / The Sandstone Examinations
March 28, 2024, 03:16:24 PM
QuoteOOC: I'd be very grateful if you can send your answers as personal messages to Ziya via the Forums. A sample answer sheet is provided below. Feel free to reach out via Discord if you would prefer another way of sending answers.

Quote from: Sending by Balstan GloamingdaithWould yer be keen on winning a princely sum of 3,500 dinars, if nay more? If so, hearken to my words, the words of Balstan, scholar of the Sandstone, and author of the Compendium to Ephia's Well.

Ahead of the coming month of Tammuz, the Sandstone College shall be administering its first inaugural Sandstone Examination. Each examination, a paper, one comprising of 35 marks.

All and sundry may participate and submit yer answer, be yer Voiced or Voiceless, Accord or otherwise, Apothar or Nadiri, Legate or gnome.

Amidst the brewing war, t'is be a test - of pure and honest merit, fer t'is a well-educated and well-schooled populace and soldiery that shall triumph over the lackwit and granite-minded.

The highest-scoring in the test shall win a princely sum of 3,500 dinars. The first runner-up, the second runner-up, the one who wrote the best essay, the one who scored highest as Voiceless, shall all have their own prizes. Yer can win more than one.

Beware, and act with alacrity, aye, fer if there be a tie, the tiebreaker would be the one who submitted first and ahead of the others. And each examinee can only submit their answers once. In writing. To the Sandstone.

For the Voiceless, this is an opportunity true to me of the Gold League - a chance to rise, via yer own merit, yer own studies, and research. For the Voiced, yer may do as yer please with the dinars.'

The paper for Tammuz be published. If yer wish tae participate, yer have to the 15th of Tammuz, or three days from when I receive 30 submissions.

Live and drink, aye.

The Tammuz Sandstone Examination Paper






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#18
QuoteThe 1st Edition of A Compendium to Ephia's Well, authored by one Balstan Gloamingdaith, was published by the Sandstone College on or around 23 Hziran IY 7788. A copy may be found herein. [OOC: A PDF may be requested, but be warned that it's 122mb.]

A Compendium to Ephia's Well

















































































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#19
17 Hziran IY 7788

TOWER OF QARI
Ephia's Well

Attention: Qari Alriyh

Dear Sirs,

A COMPENDIUM TO EPHIA'S WELL – PATRONAGE TOPIC: "OTHER FAITHS"

1.    I refer to our conversation earlier today on your patronage of the Compendium to Ephia's Well (the "Compendium").

2.    I note your skepticism as to your patronage of the Compendium, and your historical experiences with scholars who had made promises only to fail in delivering them.

3.    To that end, I am pleased to inform you that your topic of interest, 'Other Faiths', has been drafted. Pursuant to your patronage, I enclose herein an advance copy of two pages of the Compendium relating to your indicated topic of interest (the "Draft Pages").

4.    In light of the foregoing, I'd be grateful if you could please confirm by 24 Hziran IY 7788 as to:

        (a)    your proposed amendments (if any) to the Draft Pages; and

        (b)    your making the remaining payment in the sum of Five Hundred (500) dinars in relation to your patronage of the Compendium.

5.    Please feel free to reach out to the Sandstone College if you have any query.

6.    In the meantime, all rights remain expressly reserved, including but not limited to the right to make any revisions to the Draft Pages as the College deems fit without further reference to you.

Live and drink,
Balstan Gloamingdaith
The Sandstone College

enc.


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#20
17 Hziran IY 7788

THE CINQUEFOIL ROSE
Krak des Roses, Ephia's Well

Attention: Sister Ameliè / Sister Selsi / Balladeer Aurelio d'Lyon / Balestriere Maria Tuscanzi

Dear Sirs,

A COMPENDIUM TO EPHIA'S WELL – PATRONAGE TOPIC: "THE CINQUEFOIL ROSE"

1.    We refer to the conversations between our Balstan Gloamingdaith and your:

        (a)    your Sister Amelie and Sister Selsi on 12 Hziran IY 7788;

        (b)    your Balestriere Maria Tuscanzi on 15 Hziran IY 7788; and

        (c)    your Balladeer Aurelio d'Lyon on 17 Hziran IY 7788.

2.    We further refer to your Sisterhood's and Banda Rossa's patronage of the Compendium to Ephia's Well (the "Compendium").

3.    We are pleased to inform you that your topic of interest, that being the Cinquefoil Rose, has been drafted. Pursuant to the Sisterhood's and the Banda Rossa's patronage, we provide you with an advance copy of four pages of the Compendium relating to your indicated topic of interest. We enclose herein the draft pages (the "Draft Pages").

4.    Further to the above, we note that the Balladeers of the Lost Hearth (the "Balladeers") have yet to confirm their patronage of the Compendium. Considering their reputation as the premiere patrons and benefactors of the arts and scholarship in Ephia's Well, we are of the view that this error must have occurred due to our failure to reach the Balladeers timeously. This is especially so as the Balladeers presently remain the only faction out of the relevant factions of Ephia's Well who have failed to provide their patronage to the Compendium. In the premises, and in the interest of fairness, we can only express our deepest of apologies, and we would be honoured to provide the Balladeers with the opportunity to confirm their patronage of the Compendium.

5.    In light of the foregoing, we'd be grateful if you would let us know by 24 Hziran IY 7788 as to:

        (a)    your proposed amendments (if any) to the Draft Pages; and

        (b)    the Balladeers' patronage of the Compendium and payment in the sum of One Thousand (1,000) dinars as to the same, to be made to our Balstan Gloamingdaith at a time of mutual convenience.

6.    Please feel free to reach out to the Sandstone College if you have any query.

7.    In the meantime, all of our rights remain expressly reserved, including but not limited to the right to make any revisions to the Draft Pages as we deem fit without further reference to you.

Live and drink,
Balstan Gloamingdaith
The Sandstone College

enc.






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