We Hold the Power in Golarion... Let Us Make a Change

Sovereign Court

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Scarab Sages

A young nobly dressed man of Chelish extraction gestures for attention.

While you fine ladies and gentlemen are of course free to conduct your affairs as you see fit, there are a few theoretical points you may want to consider.

Lady Violetta is the first to mention enforcement of any rights you recognize or duties you impose. I would recommend that you heed her counsel. Law is, at bottom, a series of promises by a soverign about when and why they will use violence. A right to property for example, requires police to deter and punish those the law defines as thieves. That policing relies on violence. A duty to accept a noble's surrender requires punishment of those who don't accept surrender, and so on. Who is the Sovereign Court proposing to deputize to enforce its decisions?

The next issue a would be lawmaker must face is jurisdiction. Over whom do you propose to rule? Members of the Sovereign Court are presumably under your authority, but what of others? If a non-member violates a right of a member, does the Court assert authority to punish the non-member? The constitution as written speaks of nobles rather than members of the Court. To these rights extend to all nobles? If a member violates a right of a non-member, does the Court protect the non-member? Finally, to round out the logical space, if a non-member violates the rights of a non-member, does the Court assert authority to intervene?

Further on the topic of jurisdiction, how does the Court's authority interact with other jurisdictions? The Court holds no land, every noble will be inside a state with an existing legal system. Does the organization propose to be secret or does it anticipate treaties with other sovereigns? Where the laws of the Court and the laws of Taldor (for example) conflict, whom is a member with a Taldan title obligated to obey? If you act openly, any answer other than "Taldor" will be (justifiably) seen as treason and punished accordingly. If you hope to act secretly, you are one captured or indiscreet pathfinder away from disaster. To be discovered is surely worse than acting openly, word of a secret society trying to organize the lesser nobility into a new system of law and authority is sure to trigger paranoia & reprisals.

Finally, you shall need a judiciary to interpret your laws. Many of you proposals, I confess, leave me confused as to their scope. If all matters of trade are within the sole purview of the parties to the deal, does the Court deny the legitimacy of trade tariffs or taxes imposed by feudal superiors not a party to the deal? Can the Chelish Empress continue to forbid the import of unapproved histories for example? If yes, what is the substance of the right? If no, the Court must be prepared to go to war.

Declaring your rights to fine wine and horses is a fine entertainment for young lords, but if you are serious about establishing a new power around the Inner Sea, there are more fundamental issues that need to be addressed. Not the least of which is the degree of treason you are comfortable with.

Sovereign Court

The Lady replies to Dorian's speech with gentle laughter. "No one present has yet to propose serious alterations to existing laws of any sort. A club constitution is exactly what it is. We are not founding New Andoran."*

"It would be rather foolish to speak of establishing a shadow government with a secret police force and the express purpose of overthrowing the existing leadership while meeting in a public forum, would it not?" she asks rhetorically. "I imagine, as with Common Rule, we would require a significantly larger quantity of the Marquis du Ruum's offerings if we were to found an entire ruling body."

She leaves just enough time for her words to be considered before turning to Violetta. "Violetta," she greets with a warm smile. "I was wondering when you would reveal yourself to us. I am happy to see so many present. Soon enough, the only one missing will be Lady Morilla herself, the alleged ringleader of this cabal of revolutionaries," she continues in a playful tone.

*I'm assuming that Andoran's government is reliant on a written document. The canon doesn't really detail this.

The Exchange

With a respectful bow and a warm smile, Solail turns to regard Ozymandias.

"I must beg your forgiveness, young master. I did not intend for my hushed conversation with Lady d'Apcher to detract from the conversation regarding your proposal. I am quite certain that simply "Solail" will do.", he speaks earnestly.

At mention of his reputation, he regards you with a very sincere hope and respect, though he seems far more occupied with your own person than your praise of his deeds.

"You have traveled roads of the soul far my treacherous than myself, young master. I do not possess the knowledge of all that you have endured, but it is known to me that you discovered your own grace where none was to be offered. There is a strength of purpose within you that I deeply hope to see harnessed and directed for the people of Golarion with the same grace you wisely allowed yourself."

He seems slightly uncomfortable when compared to the divine, but maintains his composure well, and politely moves forward from the comment he believes was meant as compliment.

"The winds herald a time of change, and with their breeze so too has our Pathfinder Society been touched. Our factions reinvent their identity and discover new purpose, and with them so too must we reflect upon our own purpose. I seek only to enlighten myself of the purpose of our new factions, and stride in step where a shared path may best provide for our world and those who inhabit it."

Sovereign Court

Whew. I return from the weekened to quite a few interesting responses. :3 This is great!

Ozymandias looks to Lady Violetta and Dorain nodding every so often at their speeches. "You two do bring up an interesting point, in more ways than one. Perhaps, in my haste, I forgot the ruling bodies above us have not seen this document, will not see this document -for the time being- and cannot know about this organization until the time is right. We also lost focus quite a bit from the original purpose of why this organization was founded by Lady Morilla, and indeed, why I gathered you here. And for that.." Ozymandias promptly tears up the proposed "Bill of Rights". "I apologize to you all.

"However, I do believe there is merit in this Register of Duties of ours. What I have left unscathed could be considered a... legal contract, and to my knowledge, contracts are respected by law in all nations across the Inner Sea Region. This 'contract' should list the duties of those who agree to it, and yet also be sure that those duties stay within the laws of each land. We should not overstep our bounds by granting 'rights' to ourselves, some of which, I must agree were arbitrary in nature. Therefore I move to strike any speak of a sall called Bill of Rights, and focus on what is important... our goals. Let us continue with the Register of Duties that we all have set out. Lady Violetta, perhaps you have something to add to this perfectly legal, border permeable, proposed contract?"

Current Register of Duties:

Article I: The Register of Duties

In the undertaking of the burdens of leadership, the Sovereign Court recognizes that the members of the aristocracy have certain duties which must be performed in order to maintain legitimate leadership. Each member shall hereby swear that she shall attempt to perform these duties to the best of her ability.

1. We shall attempt to preserve peace for as long as it remains viably possible, especially in instances in which conflict is unnecessary or easily avoided. Violence breeds unrest, and unrest breeds instability and chaos, which is counterproductive to the ultimate goal of the Court.

2. We shall not tolerate lawlessness or crime within our purview. To do so would be to invite anarchy and rebellion into our domains of influence. That being said, we will remain fair and unbiased in all matters of the courts as to retain justice and order in our holds.

3. Just as our servants are bound to the laws and regulations we place upon them, we too are bound to the laws and regulations placed upon us by those of higher social standing. As members of the ruling class we must always remember the hierarchy that binds us to our positions.

4. We shall not seize or imprison, or strip of her rights or possessions, or outlaw or exile, or deprive of her standing in any other way, nor will we proceed with force against her, or send others to do so, any woman, except by the lawful judgment of her equals, betters, or by the law of the land. In that respect, to no one shall we deny or delay right or justice.

5. We shall not deny our servants the basic rights guaranteed to all living creatures, be they servile or free. To do so would be an encroachment of our power. This is to say; we will not deny them of life (without just cause or legal precedent) or religion (as long as this does not hinder their ability to work). We shall also provide the basic necessities for our servants as to ensure their survival: access to food, water, and shelter.

6. We shall attempt to always impress any influential member of society, whether their position of power comes from appointment, birth, election, or earned. By impressing those that we come across, our own influence shall grow.

7. When possible and when our goals align, we shall cooperate with those who the other factions which are scattered across Golarion. To do so is no shame; rather, it encompasses control and strategic planning on our part.

He then turns to Solail and casts message once again.

To Solail:
"Ma- I mean Solail. I am not a perfect person, nor do I think I ever will be... but I could try to do what is right and within my power. Everything I am attempting here is done because I believe it to be the best course of action for everyone. Sometimes, however, as you could see, I need to be reminded of that fact."

Sovereign Court

"I see that we have been joined by another very prestigious member of the society, welcome Master Solail. I would like to point out that Lady Gabrielle d'Apcher is also an extremely famous member of our Society as well, and it would be my honor, and the honor of the rest of us, to follow in the footsteps of these two famous individuals.

Lady Violetta and Dorian Dryden raise very poignant and valid points to this discussion and I too agree that we have taken things beyond what might be reasonable. I support Ozymandias's motion to remove the Bill of Rights. Contracts are extremely important to the proper function of society and I too believe that the Register of Duties still has merit. Even if we find some land that doesn't honor a contract, the Prince of Law himself values their upholding. I can think of nothing else to add to the Register of Duties at this time, but I am certainly happy to hear more suggestions from others."

It is quite nice to see all of the participation in this thread, I am enjoying it quite a great deal

Sovereign Court

A pretty blue skinned half elf nudges the ancient elven crone sitting in the back of the hall, upsetting an enormous black cat who glowers at the girl before stretching and settling himself back in the old woman's lap.

"Wake up mom."

"Elves don't sleep dear."

"Whatever mom, can I go now? I'm bored to tears."

"Bored? You should be up there with the rest, pronouncing your youthful ideals to the world."

"Ideals? I haven't heard any of them say nothing about Morilla's "innovators with justice, virtue, and industriousness." Just sounds like a bunch of nobles trying to hold on to their power. Ugh, Whatever, I just want to be out exploring the world, not sitting in some musty old hall with your nobles club."

The old woman sighs and shoes the girl away.

"Do me a favor Felicity, stay out of the sewer this time."

"Yes mom."

She flounces out, rolling her eyes. The crone settles back in her chair to watch the proceedings.

Pirate Queen Thebethia, The Hag of Abendego. Retired pathfinder

Sovereign Court

Deacon goes over the contract presented.

"All of that is definitely acceptable. Its mostly how I run my own way of living to begin with! Sounds good.

He notices Thebethia and her departing daughter and grabs an extra cup of of tea, and offers it to her.

"Tea? And maybe some input? We should always listen to our elders so we can learn from where you have already failed. That way we can make brand new mistakes of our own!"

And he mutters to her.

In Elven:
"I used to promise my parents I'd stay out of the sewers too. I lied.

Sovereign Court

The Marquis du Ruum smiles at his mention. "Ill bring a Barrel or three if the first toast is to Baron Jaquo Dalsine, the finest swordsman of his age." His eyes gleam as he senses many despise the deceased faction leader of Taldan Pathfinders.

"Brandy Lion do something useful for a change and have the barrels rolled over from the hall."

His heir, a heavily armored aasimar of Azata descent bearing symbols of Taldor & Iomede happily leaves to do something useful.

Sovereign Court

Just an update, the original version is a blast at the local gathering, I have half a dozen signatures from Sovereign Court members. I refuse to allow other factions to sign, but the Andorans have a distinct facial expression after reading it. I dare say it causes them to gain a new color...I call it Liberty's Red.

Yes yes my prose is not legal, non binding, scandalous, and ever so amusing for me. Which after all is the main intent of it.

Cheerfully yours
Francisco de la Scaramanga
The Lord of Fangwood

8th in line to the Barony of Scaramanga
(The 8 is crossed out with a note - 7th now my brother Thomas came over for tea, he and his group of killers had an unfortunate and rare case of cold iron poisoning. I'm taking it well thank you for your condolences.)

Sovereign Court

Ozymandias the Lion Blade wrote:

Lady Violetta, perhaps you have something to add to this perfectly legal, border permeable, proposed contract?"[/b]

I suppose what I was getting at in my opening comments is the idea that perhaps it's a bit premature to worry about contracts, "constitutional" or otherwise. The very word sounds suspiciously Chelaxian to me, anyway, a way to enforce compliance with an idea which, under the surface, isn't actually very good, or at least not mutually beneficial.

This is the very reason I've always refused to deal with devils, even in binding them - they always want to jump past "friendly understanding" to land in the contractual mire of formal obligation.

As I said, or perhaps implied: what we need to establish is not contractual agreement among members, but an understanding. We need to establish a culture of aristocratic outlook and behavior which transcends national identity. In other words, we want one of Lady Morilla's "like-minded" nobles to consider themselves less "Taldan countess" or "Chelaxian duke", and more "a countess" or "a duke". To use a fancy term, to create an aristocratic demographic state which is global in scope and outlook.

How do you create and, if necessary, enforce an aristocratic culture? That's the million-crown question, of course, but it seems to me you do it by subtly rewarding those who provide the example and punish those who don't. You are or are not invited to important conferences. You are or are not included in valuable marriages. You are or are not subject to the pointy end of a duel (Violetta casts a wink to Righty). And so on.

And, of course, the time cycle of aristocratic change is pretty long, so what we're really worried about right now is setting the tone. To borrow an idea from arcana theory, we're releasing the butterfly to establish its effect. We must not only act to provide examples, we need the right people to know about it.

We subvert the arts. We subvert fashion. We manufacture gossip. We put it in the tea a noble idly sips. We infect the very behavior which frames aristocracy, take hidden control, and shift. It may take years.

But a contract? If you create a global, contractually-bound organization of nobles acting as actual signatories, overnight you have the most dangerous, incendiary document in the Inner Sea: proof of sedition from a sizable portion of the world's elite. If - no, when discovered, enough heads would roll to impress even a Galtan executioner.

I love a good scandal, but there are limits.

Sovereign Court

Righty smiles back daydreaming of marriage and missed the part about dueling. His clothes change a more flowery motif with green ivy down the cuffs and the Taldan crown adorning his gold buttons.

Sovereign Court

Taking a few hundred years to perfect the nobility of the inner sea would be a fun project. I'm retired afterall and no longer subject to the venture monkeys.

Ahh here's Brandy Lion back with the Rum, just in time. The first barrels are samples after that forty gold a barrel, three for a hundred.

Righty waves his hand over his fluted glass, I prefer berry punch flavor. Ill gladly duplicate it or any other flavor you like, within reason and good sense.

Sovereign Court

If you're asking what the inner sea can do for you, your pocket book and your wardrobe rather than what you can do for the inner sea then the exchange is having a market day.

Sovereign Court

I believe that as long as we control the power, we must seize the day, and seize it with all haste. Perhaps some legislation to stonewall the Osiriani while we gain strength. As I should know (while on assignment in Osirion to recover several stolen statues, the Lady Glorianna Morilla instructed me to commit an act of arson surreptitiously to goad Qadira and Osirion into a fight), we must keep at bay those who would keep us from power.

Valrar Nirvalen Altimari II
Estranged Noble of House Altimari
Savior of Davion's Keep
Foremost Authority of the Society Regarding the Gloomspires

Sovereign Court

Ardisen allows the conversation to die down somewhat before speaking again, responding to Violettas comment.

"You use the word 'Chelaxian' with such negative intonations. While my homeland has much to answer for, it is still one of the major players in the Inner Sea. While I am more than casually aware that there are those that do not agree with the way my countrymen operate, the tight legal system has maintained order and allowed progress where anarchy may have flourished following the death of Aroden."

The enchanter relaxes back into his chair, smiling again.

"My point is simply that we are not here to say which way is 'right' or 'wrong', simply to discuss the options available to us and how we can move forward together."

Liberty's Edge

Oh, its ok if they're feeding people to the demons as long as there's a LINE for it...

I'd roll my eyes but they're fixed in my head

Sovereign Court

Why is there a bird indoors?

Let alone one of those Liberties Edge parrots?

Quick, get a manservant to chase it out or something.

Sovereign Court

Corvus Cailean wrote:

Oh, its ok if they're feeding people to the demons as long as there's a LINE for it...

I'd roll my eyes but they're fixed in my head

Jasmine’s eyes flash with anger as she turns to the tengu. ”Demons, how could you think that my country people would traffic with such an embodiment of chaos. Leave this discussion, bird.”

take 10 on intimidate 36

”Cheliax is ruled by law, we utilize the model of Hell, and bend devils to do our work, only traitors such as Algorn or Tancred Desmire traffic with Demons. Traffic with Demons will only lead to anarchy, through chaos can society crumble. It is my duty and those of all Hellknights to fight anarchy and chaos whenever possible. The only time I would ever work with someone associated with demons, would be through my duty to cooperate as a member of the Society, and I have had to do so in the past.

I believe that as people who have a potential for power and influence it is our duty in the Sovereign Court to work together regardless of nation of origin, I have purposefully held my tongue upon opinions of some nations such as Andoran, though I do believe their ideals of democracy may threaten our way of life, and of course at all costs we must try and avoid the fate of Galt in any of our dealings. As nobles we should be wary of those that would suggest nobility as a target to be abolished.

Lord Greymane raised perhaps the most valid point that this organization was not formed to determine ‘right’ or ‘wrong’ and we should continue to focus our attention to obtaining allies and solidifying our base of power.”

Sovereign Court

Righty smiles enjoying the rum and passing the time daydreaming. His garments return to the gold enameled white with the Taldan crown slowly inching across his sleeves.

Sovereign Court

Jasmine Henderthane wrote:
Corvus Cailean wrote:

Oh, its ok if they're feeding people to the demons as long as there's a LINE for it...

I'd roll my eyes but they're fixed in my head

Jasmine’s eyes flash with anger as she turns to the tengu. ”Demons, how could you think that my country people would traffic with such an embodiment of chaos. Leave this discussion, bird.”

take 10 on intimidate 36

”Cheliax is ruled by law, we utilize the model of Hell, and bend devils to do our work, only traitors such as Algorn or Tancred Desmire traffic with Demons. Traffic with Demons will only lead to anarchy, through chaos can society crumble. It is my duty and those of all Hellknights to fight anarchy and chaos whenever possible. The only time I would ever work with someone associated with demons, would be through my duty to cooperate as a member of the Society, and I have had to do so in the past.

I believe that as people who have a potential for power and influence it is our duty in the Sovereign Court to work together regardless of nation of origin, I have purposefully held my tongue upon opinions of some nations such as Andoran, though I do believe their ideals of democracy may threaten our way of life, and of course at all costs we must try and avoid the fate of Galt in any of our dealings. As nobles we should be wary of those that would suggest nobility as a target to be abolished.

Lord Greymane raised perhaps the most valid point that this organization was not formed to determine ‘right’ or ‘wrong’ and we should continue to focus our attention to obtaining allies and solidifying our base of power.”

Madam Henderthane -

I appreciate your love of structure, given that anarchy leads no where good, but I question your need to work with the denizens of Hell. I feel house Thrune has duped all of Cheliax if you believe that Azmodeus and his minions have been bent to your will, instead of the other way around.

Also, I must ask this in earnest. What is it that you find so appealing about the cruel rigidity of the Prince of Lies in favor of the firm but fair hand of the Inheritor?

Best Regards.

Sovereign Court

Regarding the Prince of lies - he's a far more fashionable god than the inheiritor. His clothing is always impeccable.

Grand Lodge

I believe, good sir, that she was objecting to the abysmal igorance that was confusing devils and demons. I see that once again The Inheritor is being trumped as the answer to all things. Let me tell you sir that I have seen enough of humanity to make me question even its best intentioned. If you think that I should ever bend my knee to the whim of a human who claims divinity cause she touched a rock, you are delusional.

Sovereign Court

"Lord Ozuman, The Prince of Darkness, does not lie. He may deceive if one does not examine a bargain or contract carefully, but he does not lie.

Varkiss, indeed one of my first points was in regards to the ignorance of the differences of Devils and Demons, and as a Child of the Temple I was quite appalled to think someone would think my countryfolk associate with such as Demons.

As for preferring the Prince of Darkness, over The Inheritor, I must say this is for a few reasons. First the mercy that The Inheritor suggests one have in their hearts for the weak, is somewhat antithetical to the teachings of Hellknights in that through mercy chaos can grow. I do admire her bravery and her willingness to combat the demonic hordes of the Worldwound, and I even wear a ring emblazoned with her symbol upon it. This ring was given to me by the Paracountess Zarta Dralneen as a personal gift and helps me keep myself presentable even in the most despicable places. I believe such a ring is known as a Knight Inheritor's Ring, and I certainly feel no shame in bearing The Inheritor's sword upon my hand, while I bear The Prince of Law's pentacle upon my chest.

I also respect Abadar and his followers. Ultimatly though only Asmodeous teaches the supremacy of law and order and hierarchy without regard for so called good and evil. I shall leave you with the creed of my Order: 'All men lift themselves up upon the backs of others.' It is only through order that society will be able to maintain power, someday order maybe so well established that people such as me may no longer be needed to enforce such upon the world."

Sovereign Court

"We are either forgetting or ignoring the fact that the first duty of the aristocracy is to protect the common people. The nobility is supposed to perform that duty by levying taxes and using said tax money to raise and train an army. Maintain the roads to move that army. Build forts to house the army and provide protection for the common people."
The Halfling Seeker pauses to sip her tea.
"Nobility and titles mean absolutely nothing, especially if those nobles with empty titles are going to do nothing for the people, line their pockets with gold, and expand their wardrobes."

Sovereign Court

I love the law as well, I tend to follow all the laws that I create. All you serious people are getting tiresome with the politics and religion talks, I pay my homage to Calistria...and she leaves me to sort through life as best I can. I daresay my visits to her temples are far more entertaining than those others.

Righty appears to have had a run on the rum, his servants pick him and his chair up and move to the exit. He raises a hand, "Charge!" And passes out into a gentle sleep.

Sovereign Court

The armored Azata bred aasimar sighs. "My father prefers the old ways." He hands his arms over to his valet (the blade is clearly marked by symbols of Iomede) and seems to relax.

I follow Iomede as well. Mercy can be a shield against the evil within. It is not a weakness, it is a single chance for redemption given to pull those wayward souls back from the abyss... and the pit.

What action do you propose Ivy? Speeches are not my method. Recently, I aided our Liberty minded friends in an investigation to thwart slavery. I played a part in our Mendevian crusade. I am a champion of weal, the Court seems a proper place to engage in honorable endeavors... moreso than the Crusade.

Sovereign Court

While philosophical discussion on religion may be interesting it is leading us off topic. I apologize for the points that I have made that helped to lead us away from our more pertinent discussion. I do completely agree with Ivy Underfoot, that it is the duty of the aristocracy to protect the common folk. As I quoted the creed of my order earlier, we are also taught that the chain binds in both directions and creates duties and responsibilities for those with power. If you had heard my earlier discussions with Ozymandias, the one who organized this discussion, you will see that I have supported such notions quite strongly. Perhaps an eighth point to be added to the register of duties, something along the lines of:

8. We shall endeavor to protect and provided suitable infrastructure for those common folk under our authority. It is our duty to provide for those who look up to us for leadership.

I also have no objections to working with others to unite this group of aristocracy, regardless of religion. I just urge that lawfulness is more useful than chaos for organizing society and maintaining power. Working together will help us achieve much more than what we can accomplish individually. Also we are all members of the Pathfinder Society and thus have a Duty to Cooperate with one another already.

Sovereign Court

I fear my own sire is more apt to chaos than law. Still I am his progeny though no fault of my own. My name yields me little more than a name, and requires of me more responsibility than a simple name should require.

Gloriana's Crusade to better Golarion, perhaps strategically sound, is rife with tactical flaws. Nobles who follow Stavian will not easily change their colors. Nobles who follow the Sovereign Court will invariably run afoul of their peers, easy to turn a noble cause into the scent of treason. And it is that scent which has led so many to Pharasma's care. I expect you may find similar but slightly different story within the halls of power in Cheliax. I doubt the Court will be welcome at all within the confines of Osirian, Andor, and Quadira.

Beyond the true powers, lies a viper's nest in Galt, Mwangi, Brevoy, etc. What nobility that may exist, is entirely localized... or in the case of Galt trapped within the black blades.

Righty in his way may have a point... the change we seek may take centuries rather than the few scores of years available to humans (and Brandy Lion smiles) and often less of Pathfinders.

Sovereign Court

If Stavian is not willing to change with the times, it may become necessary to remove him from power. I would prefer to have him exiled to executed.

If we were to remove Stavian, who would we elevate to fill his position? To whom would he bend our knee and address as "Highness"?

Sovereign Court

Indeed, the humiliation and anguish of exile just might inspire Stavian, or some of his followers...

When selecting a replacement, it is imperative to only consider those free of Chelish and Andoran taint... erm Ideals....

Sovereign Court

"It's not about who's seen ruling, sitting on the throne, wearing the crown, it's who holds most of the strings.
Be they by spell, threat, promise, trust, controlled information, saying the right word in the right ear at the right time.
That is how you change the world."

"We need to find or create all the strings that tie the Inner Sea together, so that it can start dancing to our tune. This may take some time, depending on what is already in play."

Sovereign Court

"I find it interesting to hear proposed solutions to the problem of inviting charges of treason that are, in every sense of the word, treasonous," the Lady says between sips of her hot tea.

"If my memory is correct, Lady Morilla instructed her followers to abandon the Taldan front, as she believes the Empire is a barren wasteland of opportunity," she continues. "I agree with her recommendation. The Pathfinders are not exactly honored guests in Oppara, after all the trouble the Society has caused, and I can assure you that any coup attempts will not improve the Society's standing."

Sovereign Court

"The Pathfinder Society has always been about gathering knowledge and trying to improve the world in general. I have performed tasks both useful and completely self serving and inane for both the Society and Taldor. During the course of most of these missions, I have found that laws tended to be conveniently ignored, providing that the 'ends justified the means'. Also, these various inconvenient laws did not seem to apply to everyone equally. Those of high station tended to flout and ignore the law until forcibly removed from this plane of existence."

"I have no wish to see the streets running red with blood. Taldor does not need to become an Andoran type republic. Taldor does need to make a few changes. Firstly, the law must apply to everyone equally, up to and including the Emperor. Secondly, we must streamline our bureaucracy. Thirdly, we must put some of our do nothing nobility to good use."

Sovereign Court

"Our Empire is in decline. The only cure for this decline would seem to be some type of expansion of the Empire. Perhaps, if Galt could be stabilized, Taldor could eventually expand northward, perhaps eventually to the River Kingdoms. If not, our excess nobility could be encouraged to colonize and explore westward. Surely there must be something off the border of the map."

"Finally, Taldor needs to put an end to the institution of slavery within our borders. A true great Empire should not be built on the backs of slave labor. Taldor is not Cheliax. I have purchased several of my relations from bondage. I would love to see the remainder set free. Taldor may appreciate me spending my wealth at home instead of on the Isle of Kortos."

Sovereign Court

Lady Henderthane returns from a long trip, her Order of the Chain Hellknight plate now bearing some imagery of a griffon bound in the chains. After reviewing notes about how the conversation continued in her absence she speaks.

”Lady d’Apcher is correct that Lady Morilla has instructed us to abandon the Taldan front. Her experiences there show that most of the Taldan nobility care only for their own self aggrandizement and many tried to take credit for her work fighting the hordes of the Worldwound. We need to think more globally. I know some agents that have had the opportunity to work with nobles from Alkenstar, and I hope to be making a trip to Tian Xia to see what opportunities may await us there in the near future.

While there may still be some Taldan nobles worth recruiting to our cause, our focus should not be upon those that have in general turned their backs upon the world. Great deeds are always in need of doing and this society of ours will be one to help influence these deeds throughout Golarion. When another crises like that at the Worldwound arises I hope that we will have enough allies to guide the outcome in the way that will best benefit us.

Considering such actions as overthrowing regimes should be dismissed outright from this group, we aren’t seeking to create new Galts or Andorans. We seek to be able to influence those that already wield power, perhaps even in places like Galt or Andoran. I have heard some encouraging news that there may be rising players of power in Andoran, I believe some have referred to them as career politicians, though I know Major Maldris is looking to try and keep them down with accusations of corruption, they may be of use to us.

So in all I say we should look outward moreso than inward at an outdated and increasingly irrelevant nation.”

Sovereign Court

"Nobility is a divine mandate for one to act with honor and civility. It is a Song in the blood to lead and lead well for the good of your people. Leading Well leads to power, respect and wealth, It is not an excuse to amass wealth, power , and privileges without ability or honor. Lady Morilla recognizes this and such is the reason we abandon for the most part that self serving, Ennui-ridden relic of faded glory that is Taldor. As for Cheliax, Nobility does not sell themselves nor their Liege-men into slavery to man or foul god." the melodious voice and educated Varisian accent and cadence bearing stark contrast to visage the ritually scared half-orc speaking presents, clad in bronze and mithril arms and armor."Our Mission should not be to raise or lay low any nation but rather to see nations rise or fall by sowing the seeds of Law, Wisdom, Honor in those that lead or will lead in the future. We must seek out ancient bloodlines and newly founded Lineages equally, as well as distance ourselves from outdated Ideology and dishonorable Gentry"

Sovereign Court

Lady Henderthane, I find myself responding to you yet again in disagreement. Please forgive me, madam, I apologize for any tension that I might cause between us. I only hope that the statements that I make here are enlightening, so that we may come to some higher level of understanding.

I believe your statements contradicting. On one hand, you decry the Taldan nobility of short sighted and self centered aggrandizement, but on the other hand you claim to see promise in the "career politicians" of Andoran. My contacts among Maldris' agents and in Andoran suggest that these politicians aspire to that sort of existence, the expansion of their own wealth and influence on the backs of those with little political power or resources; As an aside, it would seem that Democracy is either a failed experiment, or requires more vigilance than the people of Andoran have chosen to employ, but I digress.

As to this This court discussion generally, I can only proclaim my agreement with Sir Brightscar. Leadership and nobility is NOT divine right. It is divine MANDATE. A duty, a burden. Fair, firm, and benevolent leadership is difficult, and requires wisdom to properly execute. This court ought to be uninterested in those who see it as a vehicle for their own collection of power and influence. Government of any kind stands to serve its people, both noble and common of birth. Those governments that do not fulfill their duty should be destroyed and rebuilt.

Sovereign Court

Ardisen chuckles to himself as he listens to the ongoing conversation.

"You speak of nobility, authority and power bearing some sort of divine heritage. The position I hold did not come from some divine power, such as the Dark Prince or any other deity, it came from my own efforts and struggles. I am not beholden to some 'code' projected on me by some obligation to my divine patron or any other."

The young lord beckons for his manservant to refill his wine glass, before his continues.

"That being said, I do feel that those with positions such as ourselves do have a responsibility to those we represent, however I would not describe it as a burden.

Sovereign Court

Lord Ozuman, there is no need for forgiveness, we are having a civil discourse and it is normal to disagree at times.

I see that you have misunderstood some of my point, perhaps I was not clear enough in my previous statements. I decry the Taldan nobility as they have shown that they are unwilling to take action when necessary and have tried to take credit for actions that are not their own. For example I know that several Taldan nobles that refused to aid the 5th Mendevian Crusade, tried to take credit for Lady Morilla’s work there.

Expansion of one’s own power and wealth upon the backs of others is the natural order of life, thus my support for these new Andoran “nobles.” However the chains upon which one pulls them-selves up also bind them to those underneath. Requiring those in power to take care of and support those underneath them, something I think that most of the Taldans seem to have forgotten. It remains to be seen I believe whether this Andorans will lead with any responsibility, I certainly hope they do. And perhaps they may see the benefit of more strict law and order and rejoin the empire, but I suppose that is not necessarily a goal of this organization.

My order teaches that there is a strict social order where everyone has their place just as every link in a chain serves the whole. All must fulfill their duties for the sake of society or the whole will weaken and crumble such as a chain with a weak link. Nobles must lead their people, not just stand on their backs, but peasants, servants, and slaves also must support society with their labor. The chains that bind us bind in both directions.

I hope this clarifies my position and I do believe that we actually agree on a fair margin.

Lord Greymore I think it matters not whether our nobility is derived from some divine power or not, as long as we all recognize that we have responsibilities to our positions and those in our charge. I certainly do not require my allies or associates to worship the same deities that I worship, and I feel arguing about such things is likely quite counterproductive. If some nobles feel a divine mandate or a mundane one, as long as they recognize their duties that is of the most importance.

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