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Tuesday, January 3, 2012

The Brothers' War - Chapter 22



Politics and power.


Chapter 22 - Urza's Miter

Both Urza and Tawnos are quite uncomfortable in their formal wear, but it is a necessary act they have to put up with. Today's a big day. The king of Argive has lost all political power and is being forced to abdicate his throne to his son who is soon to be married to the granddaughter of the lord of Korlis while at the same time have forced the king abdicate his throne. Tawnos is to be the first ever Master Scholar of their combined nations, and Urza is to be Lord High Artificer. Tawnos is a bit curious as to why Urza would agree to such a position and title and doesn't believe his stated reason of wanting more freedom to command where, how, and why his inventions and resources get used, unlike in Yotia when he was Chief Artificer.

Harbin comes running into the room, chasing after a mechanical toy bird designed by Tawnos himself, created so the fluctuations of air currents of his own hands would cause the machine to dodge him. Kayla comes in after him and both apologize for disturbing him, but Urza says it makes no matter. There will be no real work until all the ceremonies are over.

Tawnos opens up a bottle and Urza raises his chalice for a toast.

"We have passed through fire over the past few years, and that has tempered us. Now the fires grow hotter still, but we are stronger, and we are proof against the flame. To Argive and Korlis!"

"To the memory of Yotia!" said Kayla.

"To the new Lord High Artificer and Lord Protector of the Realms!" said Tawnos.

"To the new Chief Scholar!" replied Urza, and metal clanked between them.


...At the ceremony...

Tawnos hates the all the ritual celebration and hates talking to all the nobles. He felt out of place being in the Yotian capital after growing up in the coastal provinces, but here he isn't even among many Yotians. They all treat him as if he has trouble with their language and speak both slowly and loudly. Even when Urza himself tries to tell them about Tawnos' latest inventions such as the triskelion , they seem to gloss it over as politely as possible.

Besides Argivian nobles, there are representatives of Korlis and Yotia, and dwarves and the black-robed Gixians who had offered their services to Urza. Now that it's been reported that Mishra has camped a large army outside of Sarinth and has opened up a second front to his war, many nobles press Urza to press the advantage and attack. To his credit Urza talks to each and every one of them, something he wouldn't have done in his younger years in Yotia.

After the speeches and ceremony are over, Tawnos asks why Urza is smiling. Urza takes off the ceremonial miter that was placed on his head and tells Tawnos to take a closer look.

Powerstones.

The miter is filled with pure, unblemished powerstones. More than even in the chest that Urza had shown him so long ago.

This whole experience was to gain more power and resources. Urza hadn't changed at all and Tawnos wasn't sure if that made him feel better or worse.

* * *


Card Guest Spots

We get thrown card after card after card, woven into the story in a way that makes sense. The Magic player in my loves it! Although the reader in my would have some issue with this chapter seeming to be simply an excuse to squeeze in the miter and chalice into the story, if it wasn't for the fact that the chapter was also used as an opportunity to both show how Urza has grown and how he still remains the same at his core. He is an extremely flawed individual, which only further proves how right the alliance in Terisia is to be unsure of backing Urza for the win.


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