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Radilo

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Jan 5, 2010
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976
Location
Cleveland
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Nuovo Porto
Nick
Nutty's better half
Nuovo Porto, Città di Radila, Sestiere San Marco, courtyard of the Pałaso Graci
9:00 PM

Xi Maria sat awkwardly next to Senator Regina Pernolt, the billionaire heiress who was hosting this party. Normally, this sort of event was attended by the Doge, but he was in @Tianlong , so was the Captain General, and the Foreign Minister. As a result, the highest ranking government official presently in la Serenissima was the Green Party leader and Chancellor of the Exchequer... Maria.

Xi Maria was a Black Tianèla, the daughter of a Tianlong-Radilan father and a Nethian/Himyari mother. She was all the rage on twatter and tic-tac, and was all the cool kids' favorite politician. But, as the second junior partner in the centre-left coalition, she had to stay behind to guard the republic. Which meant she had to attend dumb shit like this party.

Sure, her Tiffany white gold nose ring (with a tiny, elegant sapphire) was viewed as charming, her working class background made her feel and seem awkward to the senatorial crowd assembled at the gala.

The assortment of aristocrats parading before her only intensified her awkwardness. "I see why Izzy hates these," she thought.

The Senators, themselves, wore an ermine and red silk drapeaux over one of their shoulders. She smiled at all of them. Shipping magnates, bankers, captains of industry, all paraded about--saying nothing meaningful.

Doing nothing meaningful. Maria necked her wine.
 
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Radilo

Tinpot Dictator
Joined
Jan 5, 2010
Messages
976
Location
Cleveland
Capital
Nuovo Porto
Nick
Nutty's better half
MOSE worksite, Lido Inlet, Radilan Lagoon
9:30 AM

"It's comming along magnificently," said Marco Hedal, the lead Radilan engineer on the project to his counterpart from @Tianlong , "with the influx of capital, we should finally be on schedule soon."

"It does look impressive, espically since the work accelerated three months ago."

The MOSE (Modulo Seprimentale Elettromeccanico or Experimental Electromechanical Module) was a massive system of seawalls meant to protect Radila from flooding, which was a problem that was increasing in severity each year. The high tides of the Acqua alta were exacerbated each year by global warming.

A plan to build a seawall around the Lagoon was proposed all the way back in 2003, but construction only began in 2012, often with only halting progress. Most of this squabbling was over funding. Many Senatorial families saw this as an ideal vanity project, but were uncomfortable forking over the funds when the time came. A lot of Radila's well documented infrastructure problems also stem from this.

It wasn't until the Banca della Città procured a 6 billion euromark loan from the Tianlong Investment Bank, that progress began to excellerate rapidly.

"Your country is very odd," the man from Tianlong said, "it has many quirks: all of that vast wealth, and almost a third of your population doesn't own a refrigerator. Not to mention this," he gestured to the construction site.

"We also have the highest life expectancy and the most content citizens, "Marco retorted.

"Oh, that twelve year old who waited on me for breakfast seemed content."

"I'm sure they were. They get to live in a safe society with generous benefits, unlike where they likely came from. That's what we like to spend our money on."

"As long as you pay us back," he said, as both men observed three Maseratis pull up to the construction site. Out stepped a group of men who's occupation was obvious: fadoras, designer suits, and a lot of jewelry gave them away. "I thought you said the camorra wasn't going to be involved," he said, glaring at Marco.

"No, you were told they wouldn't have anything to do with your money. And they won't. Look at them," Marco said gesturing towards the group who seemed sociable with the workers. "They're with the union, just checking in to make sure their guys are getting taken care of. Sure they skim off the top, but it's not your money--at least not at that point. It's union dues and they sometimes gamble with the pension funds--but everyone knows about it and it's considered a cost of doing business... and pensions are fully insured. And besides, it's not like the engineering is any worse off."

The other engineer sighed, "odd little country indeed."
 

Radilo

Tinpot Dictator
Joined
Jan 5, 2010
Messages
976
Location
Cleveland
Capital
Nuovo Porto
Nick
Nutty's better half
Nuovo Porto, Città di Radila, Sestiere San Marco, courtyard of the Pałaso Graci
9:00 PM

Maria sat awkwardly at the head table. It was in a magnificent courtyard, resplendent with renaissance statues, small fountains, and carefully tended shrubs and flowers. Illuminated on all sides was white marble pałaso, having been in the possession of the Pernolt family since the 15th century.

That was when they purchased it for cheap from a rival cloth merchant clan who'd been driven to bankruptcy. They're family had the good fortune to keep its position of power and to this day owns several fashion houses. Their family matriarch or patriarch had held the a seat in the hereditary upper house of the Senate for 600 years.

The senator herself was a tall, very slender, and pale woman; she was in her mid 60s with dyed platinum hair. She wore a designer dress and a necklace valued by an Engellish auction house at more than 6 million Euromarks. Over her left shoulder was slung the ermine and red silk drapeux that signified her status as a hereditary senator.

Maria's parents were a school teacher and a waitress. She grew up in a small apartment in a working class section of Nouvo Porto.

She was a petite late 30-something, with cappuccino skin and eyes she was happy to accent. She wore a trendy, but reasonably affordable sundress. The only jewelry she wore was her aforementioned nose ring, and a small white gold Madonna medal her mother got her in Tibur; she even got it blessed by Pope Gregory VI. Who was far from Maria's favorite pope, but she took some satisfaction knowing that the old conservative had to pray for her now.

One of these two women one held an office in an advisory legislature, the other was in charge of the Most Serene Republic's budget. Power is funny like that.

The two women's husbands were sitting quietly by their sides. Maria's parents were watching their twin girls. The Xi-D'Istrja family's lives had seen great material improvement after her election. Her mom was able to quit working. That same grandma who had just tucked the girls in after having given them waaay too many sweets.

She looked over at her poor husband, Ishmael D'Istrja, who was being bombarded by commentary from some wealthy man. Ishmael looked as Jewish as he was, black curly hair, sharp features, and a strong Philistaean essence, if you will. The wealthy man was also Jewish, not only did he share the same stereotypical traits as her husband, he wasn't wearing a drapeux. Only baptized Catholics could serve in the upper chamber of the Senate.

"You see, young man, I am more worried than many others about the situation in Philistaea. The reforms there are much needed, but I fear that the Jews there will face reprisals from Orthodox extremists, for their support for the new regime. It's like the story of..."

Maria cast her husband a sympathetic glance.

"Chancellor Xi, it is a lovely evening isn't it?"

"It is, Senator Pernolt," she responded, feigning a smile.

"You have many orientals in your family, what do they think of the MOSE project? I find it dreadful that we are participating in this silly World Belt project. Having to borrow money from some silken backwater..."

"With all do respect, Senator, @Tianlong is Radilo's oldest and closest ally, the MOSE is a mutually beneficial..."

Her secure phone started chirping. "Sorry Senator, I have to take this, it's the Foreign Minister." She'd never been happier to answer a text message.

"This is the treaty Tianlong is proposing, we need universal consent on this one. It has to move fast."

Maria started texting and calling the rest of the higher-ups in the Green Party.

A thankful reprieve...


@Pelasgia
 
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