Xorus (prime)/Letters/Public Statement to the Town on the Elven Village - 08-04-5118

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Subject: Re: Not Your Mayor? on 08/04/2018 09:31 PM EDT
Category: Cities, Towns, and Outposts
Topic: Wehnimer's Landing
Post: 13293

Storyline: Landing vs. Vaalor on the Elven Village

Parchment affixed visibly at Moot Hall

To the people of Wehnimer's Landing:

The public expressions of support and empathy for the Elven villagers are touching. Be sure to remind them of it when you are getting them killed by Vaalorian soldiers, who would otherwise have been protecting their children from the wicked things of the Red Forest. In the final analysis there are only two men, truly only one, in a position to halt the Vaalor from pressing their claim: Earl Eddric Jovery the Northern Sentinel and Emperor Aurmont Chandrennin Anodheles of the Turamzzyrian Empire. They will either issue the Vaalor an ultimatum or they will not. The Empire will look very darkly upon any who attempt to force them into a Fourth Elven War through wild card actions.

Who gives us the right to give them the Elven settlement? The Vaalor. What makes such a claim legal? The Vaalor will make it legal. It is not as though these Elves were asked for permission by the sovereign monarchs two decades ago to have a major trade route put through their hidden settlement. This is not even their ancestral land. They are refugees of the Red Forest. Sergha has only rested there for a century. If they do not wish to live under the Vaalor, they may move their tents a few paces to the west.

Consider the logic of this situation. The Vaalor are demanding that we "return" an Elven village on the edge of the Red Forest being illegitimately held from them. They do not recognize its autonomy. They only recognize our right to relinquish it to the extent that we actually comply. If we tell them it is not ours to give, they take the village by default. If we tell them it is ours but tell them "no" or offer them something else, they both deny it is ours and our right to have any say over our surroundings. This is what is called an "offer we cannot refuse", it is a cold and pure calculus. The irony that the "Dark Elves" are the ones speaking most strongly in favor of the Vaalor should speak volumes.

Sovereignty is a matter of credibility in the projection of power and the recognition of other sovereign powers. There is no higher authority for it. The Vaalor are implicitly granting this to serve as a proxy for not recognizing our imperial protectorate status under the Turamzzyrian Empire. While it is a perverse argument exploiting a magical catastrophe, the Red Forest is the sovereign land of House Vaalor. The ancestral village of these Elves exists within Vaalorian borders. They are demanding this as the condition for good relations, being compensation for causing them deaths several years ago. There is only one sensible course of action. Focus on framing the conditions of this agreement so they are defining the limits of their territorial claims, what they recognize as ours, and securing our freedom of access to the various trade routes.

By my hand,

Lord Xorus Kul'shin
Advisor to Mayor Lylia Rashere
Wehnimer's Landing

(OOC Note: There was consternation at the time, people wanting to fight to protect the freedom of the Elven villagers. Xorus is trying to tell people here that those villagers will either *remain* subjects of the Empire or become subjects of House Vaalor. The Empire will give the village to the eastern elves, or it will reject the demand, claiming the region as its own territory. Xorus is arguing that we have the opportunity to "give" the village to House Vaalor, which would implicitly be them recognizing our ownership of the surrounding lands rather than Tamzyrr's. This also sparked arguments OOC about the relative strength of Wehnimer's Landing and Ta'Vaalor as objective world setting fact. But IC, Xorus is trying to tell them the "fight" will never take place, it will happen at a higher level politically in declarations between the Great Powers. That the Landing as an imperial protectorate has no right to make this decision, it can only do so as a nation with recognized sovereignty. The Empire does not recognize this sovereignty, and committing violence for the villagers will bring both powers down on the Landing. There was also some ire by players of Vaalorian elves, with players of western characters characterizing Vaalor as racist butchers who will slaughter or oppress the villagers. House Vaalor was never threatening violence or subjugation on the villagers. Nor was Retassal in a position to start a war.)