The primary purpose of this episode is to finally bring together the nations who will make up the Northern Alliance. After crowning herself Queen of Roklavia, Valentina Arloven petitioned to host a tournament in Smertangelsk, and sent out invitations to all the nations in question. The three founders of the Northern Alliance: Roklavia, Danheim, and Kleriel preside over the event as senior members. The new nations to be inducted are: Lasenor, Lexindon, Maruba, and Trojiem.
As an example of what the invitations were like, here are two:
To the renowned and all glorious Valdemar Kovac, Jarl of Maruba,
I cordially invite you to participate in a tourney, a contest of strength and agility, in our great capitol of Roklavia, Smertangelsk. Afterward we shall formally initiate you into the Northern Alliance with full intention to support you in trade and protect you in times of war. We have not forgotten your past ties to Roklavia, but we are willing to forget those matters and make our diplomatic relationship official in the world’s eyes. We expect you in two weeks time. Bring your finest champions and your honorable personage and we shall have a tournament, the finest Allura has ever seen.
Queen Valentina Arloven, first of her name, redeemer of Roklavia, and ruler of South Western Nordrenya.
To the renowned and all glorious Wesley Deniro, King in the North and favorite of Odin,
I cordially invite you to participate in a tourney, a contest of strength and agility, in our great capitol of Roklavia, Smertangelsk. Afterward we shall formally announce to the world our intention to support eachother in trade and times of war. We respect you as an equal and wish to make our diplomatic relationship official. We expect you in two weeks time. Bring your finest champions and your honorable personage and we shall have a tournament, the finest Midjord has ever seen.
Queen Valentina Arloven, first of her name, the Buccaneer Queen, and ruler of South Western Nordrenya.
The Great Tournament
The morning sun glinted of the gold rooftops of Smertangelsk, the whole city was bustling with preparations and heavy foot traffic in the crowded streets below. Today was the big day, the harbor was busier than ever before docking and accommodating ships from all over northern Allura. Just as anticipated, word of the tournament had spread far and wide, so not only did kings and champions arrive with their lofty fleets, but also sailors, merchants, visitors, adventurers, relatives visiting family…etc.
Since the death of Tishinitsa and the fall of the crime syndicate, Lady Valentina Arloven officially declared herself Queen, not that it mattered much since she was respected as a queen already. She began making major changes in the city, renovating the run down parts, and funding countless new buildings and homes. The Arena, only newly built, was her pride and joy as it sported a moat and large seating area, complete with a pit and roofs for shade. It was of course, built specifically for the tournament, but she had other plans for it later.
While in the past Valentina had little control over management of the city, now she called the shots. The army was undergoing some changes as well, and she had to appoint officers and commanders (mainly veterans of the revolution) to retrain their scrappy militia. Vadim had requested to have a small hit team of his own soldiers and was training them for covert operations.
Valentina sat in her office, high up above in the clocktower, munching on a last minute snack of roast partridge and bleu cheese. The blinds were all shut and the room was quite dark despite it being mid day. Only a few stubby candles lit the table as she ate. Vadim was gone for the day, overseeing the preparations. The guards she had were enough to protect her, not that she was worried. After picking the last bone clean, she took out her kerchief, wiped her mouth and walked over to a shelf on the wall where a gold ceremonial saber was hanging. She drew it from its sheathe, glancing at her reflection on the diamond edged steel. Her eyes flashed red. Ever since her “healing” the green had disappeared and turned blood red.
She then buckled the sword at her side and exited the office. The dim light in the hallway reminded her to cover up. Since the first episode with strong sunlight, Valentina always had to wear something to cover all her skin to avoid being burned by the sun’s rays. She donned her cap, gloves and buttoned up her jacket. Finally she took a leather mask tucked in her sash and put it on as she walked into a brighter part of the building. Her loosely braided hair waved behind her as she strode on. The light from the windows caused it to glow faintly. Before it had been bleach blonde, but now it had turned a ghostly white. As she approached the door to leave, the 4 guards standing at their posts saluted her.
Valentina dismissed them,“At ease.” She then walked to the double doors as two of the guards opened them for her.
“Belko, Melnik, with me! Time to greet our guests.”