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Old September 3, 2017, 06:23 PM   #1 (permalink)
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[Countryside] She's an absolute terror for absolute territory [Dante]

Autumn, Era XXIV Post Fractum

It'd been a while since Sliucha had properly done the rounds when it came to the Third District - the farmland south of Ziel Aerca that she had been instrumental in setting up in the first place. Having convinced Shei'yein that it was likely the best use of the land there, refugees of the Xetan war and all manner of disenfranchised folk from across the Empire had been drawn in with promise of being able to make a life for themselves with heavy aid from the Moonstone government. And that had happened, with fledgling hamlets and towns springing up as Sliucha invested heavily into their welfare, getting them on their feet as they had worked towards that first harvest those scant few years ago. Nowadays such direct involvement was no longer quite as necessary, as the harvests since then had helped provide for the people of the land, becoming more self-sufficient over time. At least, as self-sufficient as any other peasant in the Empire could be.

It was always good to make sure that things remained in such a good state, though. While the situation seemed to have stabilized, that didn't mean Sliucha couldn't keep on working to make sure that the lives of the citizenry were as good as possible. Usually she made the rounds personally to do what she could, listen to the stories and woes of the farmers. As of late she'd delegated the task to others, but with the coming of autumn? On a whim, she decided it was about time she got back out there into the countryside.

And so here she was! Mounted, accompanied by a group of her dorin bodyguards, surveying the land and making her way from hamlet to hamlet to see what the state of the area was. Sliucha just wanted to hear from the people. Even if they had no issues, she wanted to talk with them, learn their stories. The people were the lifeblood of the province, after all.
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Old September 9, 2017, 10:31 PM   #2 (permalink)
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So off she went. Sliucha the noble ruler of the province, graces the populace with her presence and hearing their concerns. In actuality that would endear her to her people, assuming they didn't have any issues with dorins, or strange cat/fox she elves.

The first hamlet that Sliucha reached was relatively empty. She'd arrived during the harvest season, it was autumn, and most of the people were out in the fields. Following the road she could see them quite clearly, from her mounted position. Scythes harvesting grains that would grow in the area were being swung by sturdy looking peasants, mostly elven as they were the most relocated during the Xet invasion, but humans too, at least in this hamlet.

Did she head to the fields, or look in the town for people to talk to? Maybe both? Would the women of the house have the same issues to discuss as the men? Presumably the ladies that were capable were out in the fields as well. This was Aelyria! Equal opportunity! Of course someone had to watch the little ones too young for schola, or work. It was probably the elderly that couldn't keep up with the rest in the fields. Sliucha would find out.

oocDo Sliucha's marks work all the time? Or does she have to 'activate' them?
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Old September 17, 2017, 11:33 AM   #3 (permalink)
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oocThe first is activated, the others are always on as far as I'm aware

First things first! Did the hamlet have a town elder, or any other similar position? If so, they were the first person that Sliucha would want to talk to. If not, or if they were busy in the fields, then she would start off talking with those people who were still in town. She didn't want to bother the people working in the fields.
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Old September 27, 2017, 11:21 AM   #4 (permalink)
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As Sliucha made her way toward the hamlet, she could see children of kinder age playing in the street. As the sound of her mounts hoof falls became audible to the group of youngsters she heard an elderly woman call from the doorway of one of the nearby hovels and the children went running into the house, almost like a line of baby quail, at least that's what it brought to mind.

The elderly woman stepped back into the house and shut the lower half of the door. She wasn't a crone, by any standard, but obviously past her prime, hair grey with a thin face like she'd not eaten enough lately, but hey times hard been hard, especially for this province.

"Serale stranger. What can I do fer ya?" the woman was obviously human. Out of the corner of Sliucha's eye she caught the shape of a child around ten ordinations head into the fields toward where the people were working earlier.
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Old September 27, 2017, 03:07 PM   #5 (permalink)
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"Hi!" A friendly wave and a friendly smile were offered. "I'm the governor. Just wondering how things are going along around here recently? Everything doing all right? Anything that I can help with?"
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Old October 8, 2017, 05:27 PM   #6 (permalink)
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The older lady looked between Sliucha and her escort for a moment. She either recognized Sliucha, or at least her description. I mean how many cat eared fox tailed elves could their be on Telath? Or she didn't feel it prudent to argue with someone on horseback that had an entourage of Dorin warriors with them. "A pleasure my lady," she replied finally; giving Sliucha a slight bob of a curtsy.

She looked confused for a moment. "Help? I'm sure you don't mean assist with the laundry and such. Just what did you have in mind? We're just simple hard working folks here. Aside from lighter taxes to give the farm hold some time to recover I can't think of anything. Could you even do something like that?"
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Old October 9, 2017, 05:23 PM   #7 (permalink)
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Sliucha could lower the taxes without a problem, although she probably wouldn't. Most of the taxes the farmers in southern Moonstone paid was in the form of the foodstuffs they provided, helping support the province and prevent it from having to import everything from the other provinces. It was rather heavy, admittedly, but never to a point where they wouldn't have anything to eat. It was all part of the refugee resettlement process - give them backing to set themselves up, at which point they could be productive members of society and help provide for the province as a whole.

"I mean, I could help with the laundry if you need some," Sliucha offered. "But I suppose I was more interested in a status report, so that I could potentially help address any issues that have popped up. Any issue with bandits? Does recent harvest yields been as expected? Any illnesses that I should know about, health problems? That sort of thing."
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Old October 13, 2017, 01:15 PM   #8 (permalink)
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The lady smiled at what she thought was Sliucha's jest about the laundry, but the statement made her visibly relax. If Sliucha was willing to do the laundry, or even just joke about it then she couldn't be some terrible person right? The woman gave Sliucha a full curtsy, "I'm sorry my lady, but I don't think you should be wasting your time with my linens. However on the other points I think we are doing well."

About that time those from the fields showed up, led by a middle aged gentleman with a strong physique, not super tone, but she could tell there was strength there. He was human with greying sideburns and he was holding his harvesting sickle casually at his side, once he saw the smile on the woman's face. "Henric," the woman started "This is the Governess! Show some respect!"

Immediately all the men folk pulled off their caps and bowed and the ladies all curtsied. Sliucha could tell that some of the younger folk were in that situation of having their first crush on someone, thanks to her mark, which of course meant the young boys were eyeing Sliucha like she was the prettiest thing they'd ever seen. "She's just checking in on things, like banditry and stuff."

"Oh?" he looked from the woman to Sliucha, nodding his head again respectfully. "Well my lady, thankfully we've not had any trouble with things like that. I recon it's because of our proximity to the City."

About that time a young boy, about eight or nine ordinations old, yelled for his father, "PA! Rats in the root celler!" No one really reacted although, the men looked a little embarrassed. When the boy finally emerged one of the men at the back was waving him to be quiet. The rest just waited for Sliucha to say something.
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Old October 13, 2017, 04:10 PM   #9 (permalink)
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oocThe female title for a governor is still governor. A governess is somebody who watches over children :p

"That's really not necessary," Sliucha reassured as everybody took a moment to bow and show respect and whatnot, a little amused as she grinned at them. She didn't want to be elevated to such a position where people felt like they couldn't just talk to her about things in a straightforward fashion. She felt like a lot of other politicians in general were rather aloof when it came to the commoners - but those were the people who were the lifeblood of the province. Without their hard work, nothing could get done. So while obviously it wasn't okay for them to be rude with her (without provocation, anyway), she didn't want them bowing and scraping or anything.

Anyways. It seemed like the people this close to Ziel Aerca were doing rather fine for themselves. For the most part, anyway.

"Have vermin been something of a problem as of late?" Sliucha asked, curious. If so, that could easily become a much larger problem if left unchecked.
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Old October 15, 2017, 12:59 AM   #10 (permalink)
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OOCDon't judge the poor ignorant farmers. It's not like they'd know any better ;)

The entire group seemed to relax and smiles started appearing on the people in general. "As you say my lady," the man stated. The child hurried and hid around the corner watching all the goings on from around the corner, while other children appeared in windows and doorways.

"Vermin happen My Lady. We'll get them cleared out in short order. I'm sure it's nothing to worry about," he said with a smile. "You needn't concern yourself. We can handle our... vermin."

"Is there anything else you'd like to know or perhaps you'd like something to drink?" The man smiled and pointed to the people around and several dashed off bringing mugs of water for the Dorians and a glass of wine for Sliucha.
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Old October 15, 2017, 06:27 PM   #11 (permalink)
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"Very well, but keep me updated on the problem," Sliucha told the man. "If it seems like the situation is changing somehow, or the problem is worsening, don't be afraid to send word to the capital. We'll see if we can do anything, if need be."

Anything else she needed to know? Let's see, watch out for vermin, no trouble with banditry, mmm...

"Crops have been doing well, I hope? What about health, have there been any illnesses as of late? Anything in particular that you might want me to know about?" As for the drinks, well, she'd not refuse them. She'd happily sit at the wine, tails slowly swaying behind her, offering warm smiles towards those she caught looking at her - and maybe a few coy winks at some of the young men.
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Old October 18, 2017, 09:46 PM   #12 (permalink)
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The people looked surprised, "Yes... of course my lady. That's very kind of you." The people smiled back and forth at each other and at Sliucha. Which ever young men she made eyes at found their pulses racing with stupid grins upon their faces.

"The crops are doing well my lady, yes;" he nodded happily. "I think the city will be pleased."

He scratched his head and looked at the older woman. She nodded, "We haven't had any serious malady's my lady. The occasional cold, but nothing else serious."

"We're just happy to serve my lady. I think we're doing well," He said with a smile. "You could always check farther down the road my lady. Things tend to be worse for people the farther away you get from the cities."
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Old October 19, 2017, 02:53 PM   #13 (permalink)
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It was good to know that the people here seemed to be doing well. Sliucha didn't have any more concerns, but she'd spend a bit more time at the village, just to help familiarize herself with them, and them with her in turn. A bit of small talk, a bit of fraternization. Before long, though, if it didn't seem like there were any pressing matters here? It was time to move on, to take the tour elsewhere, and see how things were further away from the capital.
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Old October 25, 2017, 02:11 AM   #14 (permalink)
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Sliucha's company seemed welcome. The people were even friendly with her Dorin guard and supplied them with a meal. While the towns people were entertaining Sliucha the boy and several men returned to the root cellar in question to solve the rat problem.

Of course Sliucha was offered a meal as well and more beverage of her choosing. Several of the people asked her questions about the political situation at the capitol and news from afar. Some of the younger children were even so forward to ask about her 'additions'.

At the end of the meal the men politely excused themselves and headed back toward the fields. The ladies too, and started with their daily chores, washing, cooking the evening meal, cleaning, etc.

The next farm hold wasn't too far down the road and after the meal and water the Dorins were good to go. They reached the town in short order. The doors were open and several of the families were eating their mid morning meals.
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Old October 25, 2017, 12:50 PM   #15 (permalink)
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Why not? Sliucha decided to stay around for the meal and the drinks, making sure that her bodyguards had a chance to relax as well. She'd answer the questions as best as possible so long as they didn't reveal any particularly sensitive information. As for her 'additions,' she'd simply tell the children that they were a result of her adventuring days, where all sorts of weird things could happen!

With everybody excusing themselves to go back to work and the conversations dying down, it seemed that it was time to move on. She thanked everybody who she could for talking with her, and then it was time to head on down the road in search for the next town, reaching it without any problem.

"Pardon me," Sliucha noted to the people eating their meals, "but who is in charge of your community, and where might I find them?"
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