Leafiara (prime)/Tales/Echoes of Mayors Past

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Original Story: Imaerasta 10, 5120

Captains Stormyrain and Shinann,

You might already know this, but last night Amos the Lion proposed an offer to temporarily fill the spot of Marshal, saying that it would quell the unrest in town and act as a gamble to bring Thadston back to his senses by placing his rival in a position he once held.

My most immediate response was that I'd bring it up with the two of you first, and I'm doing just that. Still, after the night went on and valid concerns were raised by the gathered crowd in addition to my own concerns, I believe my decision is already made against him. There's still something I might need from you, which I'll explain at the end, but for the sake of formality I'll review first.

The reasons against a temporary Marshal Amos are numerous, but just a few of the strongest include:

* There's a severe conflict of interest in simultaneously running business operations and the militia, whose inspections act as a check to keep business legal. I'm glad that Kethrain caught this one; I didn't think of it and I'm not sure I would have, but it's as compelling a reason as any.

* Only a month of Landing citizenship and no prior history with the town makes him likely to cause rifts in the militia, potentially even to the extent of reviving the Warcats.

* In my view, he speaks overly highly of authorities and not highly enough of the people. Last night he said that there should be a level of respect afforded to the mayor and town council, and four nights ago he said that the Landing is a wild town with unfortunate manners. It might be too early to make a judgment like this, but he's showing the tendencies of heavy-handed people who quickly jump to legal authority to assert power, which is something I fight against since I'd rather that respect come from the ground up.

* The boundaries and length of service for a temporary marshal are vaguely defined and there's no guarantee that Thadston nor Thrayzar will ever return. As such, a proposal to become temporary marshal is either in error if he's unprepared to potentially be the permanent one or is suspect if he is prepared to be the permanent one.

* Lastly, if the two of you would find it unwise to have him as marshal, then the idea falls apart immediately. I'm pretty confident that your testimony against Thadston and the way he worked with the two of you less often after returning from the Bleaklands was relevant to Judge Renpaw's decision, so I believe the bare minimum of a new marshal--temporary or otherwise--is someone with whom the two of you can work well.

So, putting aside that I like Amos more than not on a personal level--he's a great merchant, a fine hunter, good-humored, and appears to have no love of the Empire--the case against him is powerful.

As for the solid reasons in his favor... I can't see any. This isn't to say there aren't reasons, just that none of them seem solid. They're as follows:

* Amos claims to have decades of military experience with Imperial armies, other armies, and mercenaries. This is more like a requirement--maybe not decades, but at least years--of any marshal than a reason in his favor specifically.

* The proposed gamble to bring Thadston back to his senses is viable, I suppose, but it's A) surely something we can accomplish in other ways and B) just as likely, if not more, to backfire and push him further away from us than to bring him back to us. A shaky reason at best.

* Thrassus raised the point that being new in town means Amos isn't yet beholden to various interests or factions. While true, the integrity of a marshal again seems more like a basic requirement than an argument specifically in Amos' favor.

* The townspeople might be concerned for their safety if we go too long with the marshal's position empty. This is an argument to have a marshal, but once again not an argument for Amos specifically. All he has going for him is, quite simply, being the only one to offer.

The last point is probably the most important and does need an answer. In other words, if we're to continue leaving the marshal position empty--and that's a very real possibility if nobody else offers to fill the spot--then we still need a strong showing from trusted people to establish this isn't as dire an emergency as some might fear. I'll speak more about that with you in person, but I'm thinking that at very least a public statement would be warranted.

Thank you both as always for your service, both the life-risking kind and the thoughtful consideration kind.

Mayor Leafiara


She began to approach a courier, then thought better of it and redirected her path. No... I should wait until I can deliver this to the captains in person. Can't take too many precautions when some unknown group of thugs and a master of shadows with poisonous pylons are running around.

She withdrew to her house and flung herself onto her bed, pressing her forearm against her forehead and closing her eyes as she let out a somber half-laugh.

So unbelievable, though. Like Puptilian, I'm forever butting heads with Thadston. Like Lylia, I'm probably about to reject someone who's offering safety in a way that would put himself in a position for overlooked ship inspections. Like Crux, I--it's not like I ever doubted he was the mayor I'd be most similar to, but I didn't think the parallels would go as far as both of us writing long-winded letters with that pretentious, imperious tone that doesn't suit either of us...

She frowned.

Ah well. At least I can count on the captains to be honest and tell me if I've changed too drastically--

Wait. Crux constantly said things like that too about wanting the captains close to keep him in check.

"Maybe Thadston's not the only one losing his mind," she mumbled.