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About this City Journal

A full member of the United Sovereign Nations of the World, with Grand & Belluterra in tropical Neridea, and Malo located in the deserts of Althena

Entries in this City Journal

emperordaniel

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Final Imperial Federal Kingdom nuclear weapons to be decommissioned next month

by Gerald Forghat

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Grandian EM-7 nuclear missile, nicknamed "Valkyrie"

FRANCISTOWN, GRAND - After forty-seven years, the Imperial Federal Kingdom's military nuclear program is coming to a close as the official decommissioning ceremony for the last two nuclear weapons is scheduled for October 7th.

The first Grandian nuclear weapons test, codenamed Operation Golden Cloud, was detonated on April 1, 1971, after a seven-year program to develop weapons of mass destruction for the Grandian government. It took place in the then-independent Kingdom of Malo, which was a close ally of the Kingdom of Grand. Upon learning of the test, the communist-governed Socialist Republic of Belluterra embarked on its own project to develop equal weapons, but was never able to fully develop nuclear weapons of its own. The last of its biological and chemical stockpiles were destroyed in 2005.

"We hope that being the first nation on Adonia to decommission nuclear weapons that we developed ourselves will help to usher in a new era of peace to the globe, and to end the current political unrest worldwide," the IFK Minister of Defense, Roy Redblade, said when asked for comment - referring to the current upheavals taking place in Euphemia, Carreon, and Althena.

(see more...)


Hedjaz invades Sharan

by Ronald Emryich

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Hedjaz, bordering the Malonese breakaway provinces of Zebtesia and Forgia, is the largest nation in the region

APELKOS, MALO - The North-Central Althenan republic of Hedjaz has invaded the Principality of Sharan, a major Acadian trade partner. Hedjaz's prime minister, Yateem Hassan, claims that Sharan is a province of Hedjaz, while certain political analyzers believe that Hasaan invaded Sharan because of its inability to pay ε40 million that had been borrowed to finance a recent war with the Republic of Iras. Few nations have yet made an official statement, but due to Sharan being a major trade partner of Acadia, a forceful intervention by that nation seems to be likely, especially after the passing of the internationally controversial Sovereignty Act, which is viewed by many Grandians to have imperialist tendencies.

The Imperial Federal Kingdom, currently involved in its own war in the region, has yet to make a statement on the matter.

(see more...)


In other news...

- Folland declares war on Ivouixkaw Federation

- Paradise discusses leasing port in New Chandler to strengthen travel between the Paradise Islands and and the Paradisean mainland region of Ikiana

- Acadia passes imperialist Sovereignty Act amid international controversy; continues to occupy Fraesia

- Three dead and twenty injured during a bank robbery and shootout in downtown Kurtilifa, Kuyrut

- Prince Imperial Luke reveals ownership of three pet Dantanaean Hissing Roaches

emperordaniel

Hello there again! First, a little announcement for those who haven't heard yet: it's kind of a long story, but it boils down to me losing my computer's hard drive and everything on it, including all of my SC4 files. Since I'm highly unlikely to get another computer with SC4 capability before my birthday in late October, don't expect any SimCity updates from me until then. ;)

That said, on with the update!




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Two members of Al-Pieda arrested in presidential plot

by Constantine Williams

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Flag of Al-Pieda

VERSON, STATE OF CALIGULA, SHAYDEN - On Monday, two members - one man and one woman - of the self-described "fringe pielitical group" Al-Pieda were arrested in their North Hampton, Verson apartment after police detectives uncovered a plan to target Ronald Smith, the incumbent President of Shayden, at an upcoming event in the north-eastern state of Caligula.

Co-founded in 1996 by former Trentannian MP William Williams and Shaydian comedian Albert Davies (whose initials are the group's namesake), Al-Pieda is an international association of people whose stated goals are to "give power back to the people [with the pie] because so many feel powerless nowadays in the face of big politicians and industrialists". Members usually take care to look as ridiculous as possible as they throw their tarts, smiling broadly, spouting anti-pretentious poetry and repeating "gloop, gloop, gloop". Their methods have varied over the years; originally, the group only sanctioned the use of custard pies to splatter its targets. However, soon after Mr. Williams died of cancer in 2005, they diversified and they now reportedly sport "a wide variety of pies to throw, from apple to plum to banana-cream". Nevertheless, the most popular flavor by far is still the ever-lovable custard pie, which features on the association's flag.

They have claimed responsibility for many pieings and food-related incidents over the years; their first high-profile target was multibillionaire Will Doors, co-founder of software giant Mycrosoft, back in 1998. More recent incidents include the successful pieing of the King of Mervey in 2006, a missed attempt at hitting the outgoing Shaydian president in 2008, and claimed involvement in the infamous food fight in the debate chamber of the International Assembly of the United Sovereign Nations in late 2011. They are believed to have inspired numerous copycat groups and induviduals, some of them relatively famous themselves - such as the Shayden-based Bakers Without Borders and the mysterious Biotic Baking Brigade, as well as the Les Entartistes, which is of Posilliponian origin and is arguably as "successful" - if not more so - than Al-Pieda itself.

The current Pieman-General of Al-Pieda, Maria Kenson, was not available for comment when we attempted to reach her; however, we did manage to get into contact with her press secretary, who released a statement saying that...

(see more...)


Two alien planets found orbiting binary system

by Ruth Sampson

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An artist's illustration of the alien solar system Kako-47, a twin star system that is home to two planets. The larger planet, shown in the foreground and believed to be an ice giant, is located deep within the system's habitable zone.

SHINGLETON, STATE OF EDISON, SHAYDEN - Astronomers have for the first time discovered two alien planets whirling around a pair of stars: a complete solar system with twin suns unlike anything previously found outside of the realm of fiction.

Most stars like our sun are not singletons, but rather come in pairs that orbit each other. Scientists had already found planets in these binary systems, so-called circumbinary planets with two suns, as early as the late 1990s. To find more circumbinary planets, astronomers analyzed data from NSEP's prolific Kako space telescope, which has detected more than 2,300 potential alien worlds since its March 2009 launch. Kako had to date detected four systems with circumbinary planets — Kako-16, 34, 35 and 38.

The scientists have now announced the detection of Kako-47, the first system seen with multiple worlds encircling a pair of stars. The star and its planets, called Kako-47b and Kako-47c, dwell about 5,000 light-years away, in the constellation Cygnus, the Swan.

"Kako-47 shows us that binary stars can have close-in planetary systems, just like the ones we see in single stars," study lead author Jerome Orosz at Shingleton State University told the Francistown Times. "Most of the stars in the galaxy are in binary or higher-order multiple systems, so the fact that planetary systems can exist in these types of systems is important. If we were restricted to looking for planets around single stars, we would be missing most of the stars in the galaxy."

(see more...)


In other news...

- Imperial Federal Kingdom of Grand, Belluterra, and Malo vs. Acadian Supreme Court grinds on as the jury struggles to come to a decision

- Queen-Empress Johanna I officially adopts "Mr. Scruffy", a stray cat reputed to have wandered the Western Palace grounds since 1994

- Daylight fireball seen over southern Trentannia

- Acadia designs higher-quality version of its coat of arms, denies using it for propaganda in Fraesia

- 170th anniversary of the end of the First Opium War commemorated

emperordaniel

UPDATE VI: VINOGRADSK AND THE SURROUNDING AREA, PART ONE

Over the next few updates (starting today), we will explore the southwestern part of the Principality of Tarskya, a Malonese dependency on the southern coast of the Alcadean Sea, near to Posillipo, Utrova, and Anoka. The specific area we are visiting today is nearly 20 kilometers from the Tarskyan-Anokan border, and is just over 80 km from the Utrovan coastline.

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Until about sixty years ago, most of Itey Gorge resembled Twins' Falls, shown here. Back then, Twins' Falls also had a substantially larger volume of water pouring over it, which carved the rock face into the distinctive shape found here. When the water level was lowered, it no longer completely filled this portion of the channel, reducing the rate at which the edge was eroded (which is a good thing or a bad thing, depending on how you look at it). The waterfall got its name not from the fact that it is split into two parts, as many tourists to the area seem to think; rather, it got its name from the source of much local legend, the twin princes Anel and Alen, who supposedly founded Tarskya at this location in the 10th century AD after winning the First Battle of Kamen Ford against invading Mervegian Vikings a few hundred meters downstream.

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Itey Dam, built only 25 meters upstream from Twins' Falls, is the main cause for the modern appearance of Itey Gorge, and has been a large source of controversy nationwide since it was built in 1953. Today, the dam is one of the largest sources of electric power for southern Tarskya, producing around 5,000 megawatts on average. The rail line that passes over the dam is vital to the local economy, being on the direct route between Tarskya City and Kingsport, the nearest large city on the Anokan side of the border.

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Following the tracks through the springtime woods...

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...we get to Vinogradsk Station, the second-last major stop before the border. The station was built in 1936 to serve the Vinogradsk Town-District, which contains the villages of Vinogradsk, Anelia, and Leana, all situated within half a kilometer of each other. Together, the three settlements have a population of nearly a thousand; over half of the locals are of Mervegian descent; which is ironic considering the area's history.

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As we enter the largest village, Vinogradsk, we pass by a crypt which reputedly contains the remains of Princes Anel and Alen, who were both killed in 999 AD while besieged by the Mervegians. Due to the high potential for local backlash, no one has yet opened the tomb to confirm or deny these rumors, despite the possibility of being able to investigate local royal burial customs from that time should it actually be the tomb of the legendary princes.

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Over here at this end of the village is the local Lutheran church, which has recently been renovated; this accounts for the "new" appearance. Situated between the centuries-old cemetery (oldest recorded burial is from 1679) and the modern fire station (built in 2008), Saint Anne's Church is only able to accomodate around 150 worshippers despite the renovations; plans for a second chapel nearby are thus on the drawing board at the moment as a result.

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As dusk falls across the landscape, we will return to the train station, where we will stay the night at the small tourist-orientated hotel next door. Tomorrow, we have more exploring to do...

Stay tuned for the next update, coming soon!

emperordaniel

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President of Imperial Oil suspected of corruption

by Jim Nollem

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William Timberson, current President of Imperial Oil

APELKOS, MALO- The President of the state-owned oil-producing company Imperial Oil, the third largest oil-drilling corporation on Adonia, is currently being investigated by the MaDIA (Malonese Domestic Intelligence Agency) on charges of corruption, embezzlement, and accepting bribes.

Mr. Timberson first joined Imperial Oil back in 1983, when he got a job as secretary to the then-president of Imperial Oil, Ibrahim Shishani. After over a decade of serving in this capacity, he was promoted to President in 1997 after Shishani retired. Upon entering office, the new President embarked on a rapid modernization scheme for the company - until then, the methods it used were not much different from those it used back in the late 1950s, when the corporation was founded. His most recent years have been plagued by scandal and controversy, which first arose in 2007 when several former colleagues claimed that he was embezzling funds from the company. However, due to the extremely volatile political situation at the time, no investigation had been ordered back then. This was because of the far-reaching implications for the Malonese government, which was undergoing the biggest transitions in over a century.


Killer Parrots II: Revenge of the Humans confirmed for release in December

by Nicholas Kawak

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The infamous "Cute Feathery Murder" scene from the first film

MERIDA, RUTERIA- Yesterday the cast and crew working on the new film Killer Parrots II: Revenge of the Humans, often simply referred to as KP2, arrived here in Ruteria to begin on-location shooting, in a similar fashion to how much of the original film was made. However, the filming is not without controversy, as director Kyle Grant has announced that he will be using footage from last winter's devastating earthquake, which killed over a hundred thousand people around the Ruterian capital city alone. Some have accused him of being insensitive to the victims of the disaster, which he countered by pledging that 10% of the film's profits will be given to Ruterian charity.

Returning members of the cast from Attack of the Killer Parrots include two-time Best Actor winner Andrew Norman, who will reprise his role as New Friscian detective-turned-refugee Tommy la Fon, and Ethel Berstead, who portrays the character of Ethel Henwing, a fictionalized version of herself. For this sequel, they will be joined by such stars as the Posilliponian actress Désirée Jocelyn, best known for playing Princess Ariana Dankov in What Really Matters, and New Chandlerite Leah Thompson, who recently starred in the R-rated movie Don Fierro, which details the early history of New Chandler.


In other news...

- Queen-Empress Johanna I visits her home country of Gamat

- BunnyCity V announced for release in December 2013, continuing the beloved Shaydenite game franchise

- National Feline Servants' Association rally to take place in Mousford on the 31st

- Tensions rise as Kyrtizastani government refuses negotiations with Shayden

emperordaniel

WEDDING DAY - SATURDAY, FEBRUARY 25, 2012 - 11:00 AM

Welcome, everyone, to the first Adonian Royal Wedding of the year! Today is the much-anticipated wedding between His Imperial and Royal Majesty Charles the First, King of Grand, Emperor of Belluterra, King of Malo, Prince of Tarskya, Grand Duke of Royale, Duke of Long Island, Count of Long Creek, Count of Skarr, and Count of Lake Tranquil, and Miss Jóhanna Anna Guðrúnsdóttir of the Republic of Gamat.

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93 state guests are coming to the wedding, hailing from 23 different nations, 15 of which are members of the Union. In addition to these esteemed guests, who are staying at the Great Western Palace, situated on a narrow peninsula at Grand Island's northwest corner, thousands of others are also expected to attend, though for security's sake, they will be in a different part of the cathedral than the official guests. Besides the thousands who will see the event in person, millions, if not billions, are going to be watching this live on TV, the Internet, or what have you.

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Here is one of many gardens in the world-famous palace, which is one of the largest built in the modern era, construction beginning several years before the Great Adonian War (1947-1952). This particular area is a memorial to the devastation caused by the GAW and associated conflicts, such as the Trentanno-Belluterran invasion and occupation of Grand, which lasted from 1941 to 1951, when the nation was liberated by the Posilliponian Armed Forces. Emnity between Grand and Trentannia has already died down, though; an example of the very good relations between the two nations now is the fact that the Trentannian King, Richard IV, and his wife Queen Julia, have been invited to the wedding. As you can see, a few dozen people have already begun to gather for the wedding, which will begin quite soon.

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Here, en route to the Cathedral of Saint Francis (patron saint of the nation), we pass an area of the gardens dominated by tall, shady trees and beautiful decorative fountains in all shapes and sizes. This is one small part of the Fountain District of the palace, which covers nearly two square kilometers - larger than the Vateo, home of the Pope.

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Deeper into the Fountain District, the fountains designs become more varied, and the pathways start to take unusual twists and turns, frequently crisscrossing each other. This is one of the most popular parts of the palace for tours, and is also one of the newest sections; the last fountain was switched on for the first time in 1989.

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Getting back to the main path, we pass an outdoor hot tub, a miniature rose garden, and a statuary dedicated to famous figures from thorought history. As the time draws nearer, the crowd seems to be getting bigger...

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Finally, we arrive at the cathedral, which almost everybody has already entered. Discounting civillian residences that used to be located here, this was one of the first buildings begun on the site, before the palace was ever concieved of. It was heavily damaged during the occupation era, as it was the focal point of a stronghold for Royalist troops. From a combination of Trentannian bombing and Belluterran shelling, very little was left of the structure by the time the town, and the palace, was liberated by the Posilliponian Navy in March 1951; what was left was torn down soon after for salvageable building materials. Starting in 1957, reconstruction began on the cathedral, and by 1975, it had been rebuilt and rededicated.

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Everyone is now inside, and all that is missing is the bride and her father, who are due to arrive very soon.

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His Imperial and Royal Majesty, King-Emperor Charles I

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Miss Jóhanna Anna Guðrúnsdóttir

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The bride has arrived! All eyes are on her as she, accompanied by her father Guðrún Arnarssón, moves forward to take her place by the altar next to Charles. She is wearing a beautiful, yet simple in design, wedding dress made from Ruterian silk, and having designs taken from nature sewn into various parts of the dress in gold thread. She is also wearing a Gamic wedding crown made of branches, leaves and minerals of her сhoice, with traditional Gamic charms hanging from it, designed to make a musical tinkling sound as she walks down the aisle, to protect her from malicious spirits which, according to Gamic tradition, love to wreak havoc upon newlyweds.

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Jóhanna's Wedding Dress

At the altar, the groom's brother, the Prince Imperial and the Louwahkutapaht (head of the Church of Grand) are stationed to officiate over the wedding. Charles is wearing his ceremonial uniform as Commmander-in-Chief of the united armed forces of Grand, Belluterra, and Malo; complete with the sword "Wansisart", a relatively ancient heirloom of the Kingdom of Grand, passed down from King to King since the 16th century, when it was in possession of King Francis Roberts I, who founded the Royal Kingdom of Grand in the mid-1500s. The only time it has ever been out of the country since it was made was during the GAW, when King Francis V took the sword with him when he was forced to evacuate in the face of the advancing Belluterran Army and Trentannian Navy.

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Wansisart

They have now reached the altar, and the wedding ceremony has officially begun. The two of them are now bowing together before the Prince Imperial and the Louwahkutapaht, the Emperor handing his brother the ceremonial sword, and the famous Gamic singer handing the Louwahkutapaht her artistically-designed bouquet of Khwint roses, as is tradition at Grandian royal weddings. Now the sword and roses have been placed on the altar, the King-Emperor and soon-to-be Queen-Empress, who are still kneeling, holding each other's hand, while reaching out with their other hand to touch the bouquet and sword, respectively. They are now about to take their vows of fealty to the nation, and to each other.

Hereby do we pledge fealty and service to Grand' date=' to Belluterra, and to Malo, and to our peoples, and to each other. We thus promise to faithfully serve our three nations, and each other, in need or plenty, in war or peace, in sickness or health, in living or dying. *to each other, simultaneously* I will love, cherish, and honor you all the days of my life.[/quote']

Now that they have taken their vows, they are both standing up again. The Prince Imperial has just taken the sword from the altar and handed it to the bride, while the Louwahkutapaht has removed the bouquet of roses and given it to the King. The two are exchanging the sword and the bouquet now, before they also exchange their wedding rings - two simple, unadorned 24k gold rings. Now, for the first time as a married couple, the newlyweds kiss. The crowd is now standing in applause.

Long Live Charles and Jóhanna' date=' King and Queen of Grand, Emperor and Empress of Belluterra, and King and Queen of Malo![/quote']

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Now the Emperor and his new Empress are going to the royal carriage, designed for such events; it will take them to the celebratory banquet prepared for them, which, in a break from the usual custom, will take place in this glass pavillion instead of in the usual hall of the palace built for such things. In keeping with the international theme of Charles' coronation last year, as well as with the Grandian tradition that no two wedding banquets should have identical fare, dishes have been brought from all over the world, from Shayden to the Greater Morsco, to take their place here. We shall now list the different kinds of food and drink served:

Drinks:

Brennivín, from Gamat

Coffee, from Grand and Belluterra

Mantos soda, from Grand and Belluterra

Water, from Grand and Belluterra

Wedding-grade opeimen, from Grand and Belluterra

Agua de Horchata, from Insulo

Antarivo Wine, from Malo

Champagne, from Posillipo

Agua de Jamaica, from Ruteria

Monte Xanic Wine "Merlot", from Ruteria

Tequila, from Ruteria

Appetizers:

Tabule, from Allajia

Harðfiskur, from Gamat

Minke whale kebabs, from Gamat

Rúgbrauð, from Gamat

Thunderbread, from Gamat

Kuphmuphekell, from Grand and Belluterra

Chipirones en su tinta, from Insulo

Jamon, from Insulo

Pineapple-chipotle salsa, from Oxacmela

Margherita pizza, from Palobia

Cheese fondue, from Posillipo

Empanadas de camarao, from Samasil

Spicy pretzels, from Shayden

Wienerschnitzel, from Sureicha

Crab rolls, from Troix

Maki rolls, from Troix

Nigirizushi, from Troix

Sashimi, from Troix

Tuna rolls, from Troix

Nalicnici, from Utrova

Soups:

Skúffukaka, from Gamat

Pune stew, from Grand and Belluterra

Onion soup, from Posillipo

Sopa de tortilla, from Ruteria

Miso soup, from Troix

Main Dishes:

Hangikjöt, from Gamat

Phusaak malsai, from Grand and Belluterra

Brassica suilla, from the Greater Morsco

Orissagammarus, from the Greater Morsco

Torquetii tomsecteturii, from the Greater Morsco

Chiles en Nogada, from Ruteria

Sashimi, from Troix

Shrimp tempura, from Troix

Arroz con pollo, from Vanadla

Side Dishes:

Lifrarpylsa, from Gamat

Sviðasulta, from Gamat

Shasse awalow, from Grand and Belluterra

Shasse stapaw, from Grand and Belluterra

Stapaw, from Grand and Belluterra

Chile relleno, from Ruteria

Desserts:

Aktis, from Grand and Belluterra

Kuntishaleet, from Grand and Belluterra

Pwakeoik, from Grand and Belluterra)

Sectioned pieces of ketafruit, from Grand and Belluterra

Hua'ulu Bread, from Paradise

Simply Tranquil Triple Chocolate Fudge Cake, from Paradise

Arroz con leche, from Ruteria

Blueberries, from Utrova

Rasperries, from Utrova

Strawberries, from Utrova

Natilla, from Vanadla

Tres Leches Cake, from Vanadla

And with that, we must leave them... for now. Khot hap ee ko, and thanks for visiting!

emperordaniel

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Ruteria is transforming!

by Rupert Apatax

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Flag of the new Republic of Ruteria (above), which will replace the older, Monarchist flag (below)

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MERIDA, RUTERIA- After weeks of protests in the Ruterian capital over the ongoing civil war, the monarchy, the problems with drug cartels, the government's handling of the devastating earthquake which took place a few weeks ago, and other such things, Her Majesty from Ruteria, Queen Monica I, has agreed to step down as Queen of Ruteria, ending her tenure as the youngest head of state in Ruterian history, and the last monarch of the Kingdom of Ruteria, which has lasted for centuries. However, due to a treaty signed earlier, she will continue to govern the Ruterian dependency of Linestecia on the other side of the Dacian Ocean, which will be granted sovereignty as the Independent Kingdom of Linestecia. The fate of the other Ruterian dependencies is as follows:

- The Territory of Zac Nicte, mostly situated along the coastline of the polar continent, Arktici, in the far north of Adonia, will be jointly administrated by the Independent Kingdom of Linestecia and the Republic of Ruteria.

- The royal palace-island of Scotlia, lying in the Alcadean Sea not far off the Posilliponian coastline, will be handed over to the Kingdom of Posillipo, although Queen Monica will continue to administrate it as an autonomous province.

- Any remaining Ruterian control over New Panutra will be relinquished, putting it under the complete control of Posillipo.

The fate of the State of Catlunia, which borders the Insulonian province of Andalusia to the north and the Kingdom of Mallano (which is not a USNW member state) to the west, is currently unclear, with reports variously stating that it will be handed over to Insulo, Mallano, or, according to some rumors circulating, it will have its independence restored. For the benefit of those who don't know, the two territories at the very westernmost tip of the Southwest Althena subcontinent, Catlunia and Andalusia, were created earlier this year, when the Republic of Insulo, with backing from a few other USNW members, staged an invasion of the Principality of Andalusia, titled Operation Firestorm, to prevent further official discrimination against ethnic Insulonians, which had the result of removing Andalusia as an independent nation from the map, and dividing it between Insulo and Ruteria, who were the primary victors in the war.

The interim Ruterian government has requested that, for the time being, 1) All embassies in Ruteria be closed by January 14; 2) All foreign relations be frozen by January 16; 3) All borders will be closed from the 19th to the 25th of January; 4) The Ruterian Delegation to the International Assembly must withdraw before January 19th; 5) All Ruterian ambassadors to other nations must leave by the same date; 6) All foreign troops and naval vessels must be out of the country by January 16.

The last requirement is going to cause plenty of trouble for Ruteria's two Brother-Countries the Imperial Federal Kingdom of Grand, Belluterra, and Malo, and the Utrovan Empire, as the two countries have well over 100,000 personnel stationed in Ruteria (mostly because of the Civil War), but have only a week to withdraw every single member of their militaries in the country. More on this story as it develops.


Scuffle breaks out in International Assembly

by Samuel Hendrickson

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The International Assembly Building in New Chandler

NEW CHANDLER CITY, NEW CHANDLER- Earlier today, during voting on the subject of the proposed United Forces Bill 2012, a brief fight broke out when, after claiming that a "literal brawl/fist fight" was about to break out in the International Assembly, one of the delegates from Troix suddenly took off one of his shoes and threw it at the outgoing First Minister of the USNW, Charles "Chip" Brown, of Posillipo. Mr. Brown quickly ducked to avoid the shoe, which was then caught by Mr. John Marshall, the Grandian Representative to the International Assembly. He then threw the shoe at a security guard with a baseball bat, who then hit the shoe out of a window, breaking it, while Mr. Brown pulled out a knife (reportedly a simple butterknife) and hurled it at the Sanese delegate who threw the shoe, saying "Take that pooca".

The knife slightly injured the delegate, who then loudly proclaimed "food fight!" and took a banana from his briefcase. He then chucked it into the air, aiming at no one in particular, while most of the Grandians in the hall started pulling raspberries out of their pockets and throwing them at anyone and everyone, including each other. It was around this time that a raspberry was thrown at the outgoing Chancellor of the Union, Jon Clarke, of the Republic of Insulo. Fortunately however, the raspberry failed to strike him. Then, all of a sudden, a high-ranking corporate official, who was possibly working for the airline SaverJet, ran into the room with a toy airplane, and then broke off one of the engines, throwing it at Mr. Marshall. Marshall quickly ducked to avoid the incoming engine, which then hit the Sanese Representative, who was about to throw the aforementioned knife back at Mr. Brown. Most likely, it was because of being hit by the engine, toy though it was, that he completely missed the First Minister, the knife instead glancing off one of the walls of the Hall and falling to the ground harmlessly.

Around this time, Kurt Smith, the Shaydenite Representative and the current Executive Secretary-elect, entered the room, but was quickly stabbed by another banana that someone threw, and fell to the floor unconscious, due to his allergy to bananas. Mr. Marshall then decided to sit down in the middle of all the confusion and eat some hamburgers, but he didn't get very far, as another Representative, apparently from Rheinland, one of the Union's newest members, ran up and clubbed him in the head with a few very large sausages, just as the corporate official, who remarkably hadn't been arrested yet, broke off another engine from the toy and again threw it at the Grandian Representative. However, once again, the engine missed him, and then struck the Sanese Representative yet again, just as he was proclaiming the beginning of a "real fist fight".

After the Sanese delegate hit the ground again, some of Mr. Smith's aides sent out a "super" computer virus which was intended to infect all the computers in the city, but as it turned out, not a single computer was affected by the "attack". Moments after this, Mr. Smith woke up, and then immediately left the Hall, obviously not in the mood for being struck by another banana. Almost as soon as he had left, Mr. Matthew, the New Friscian Representative, walked into the room, and as soon as he had done so, everyone stopped fighting, although the First Minister tossed a firecracker out of the broken window a few minutes later, which then landed harmlessly in the gardens below.

All together, the fight lasted only 6 minutes, or 12 minutes if the explosion of the firecracker is counted as the true end to the fight. Weapons & "weapons" involved were: 1 shoe, 1 baseball bat, 1 knife, >2 bananas, an unknown quantity of raspberries (estimated to be in the lower hundreds), several fists, 2 jet engines, 2 hamburgers, 3 large sausages, 1 "super" computer virus, & 1 firecracker. Official responses to the brawl have varied, from Troix (followed by Grand) dismissing their Representatives, Genryoku Akao (Troix) and John Marshall (Grand) and replacing them with Shinchiro Sekai (Sanese MP for Sekigahara Prefecture) and Daniel Emperor (current First Minister-elect), respectively, to the Ruterian Delegation lamenting their disappointment in finding that the other delegates were not "high-class formal people", to the statement of the corporate official (who shall remain anonymous), who, when asked if he knew why the brawl started, simply stated "Because awesome."


In other news...

- Fortilla Diplomatic Summit in Fortilla, Troix enters its fourth day

- The Adonian Winter X Games have begun! Click here to see the opening ceremony!

- Residents of Frikseltown report that the Giant Mutant Monster Frogs have started barking and howling like never before

- "Mysterious rabbit people" revealed to be a teenager's prank

emperordaniel

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Colossal earthquake in Ruteria

by Amy Higgins

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A shot of one area of Merida taken from a Royal Grandian Navy helicopter

JUST OUTSIDE MERIDA, RUTERIA- Disaster! A 9.3 earthquake hit Ruteria earlier today, knocking out nearly all communications. According to the latest reports from the Grandian and Malonese militaries, who were the first foreigners to arrive to help (being already stationed in Ruteria), among many other areas the historic 400-year old Zocalo district has been flattened. Also, the Tomb of the Blessed King Juan IV of Ruteria, who died in Grand earlier this year, was reported to have collapsed, as was first reported by members of the Ruterian Royal Guard, and confirmed soon afterwards by Grandian jet planes surveying the area, which were based from the GNS Victory, anchored off the Ruterian coast. The rest of the Royal Palace appears to have survived the earthquake relatively unscathed, fortunately.The Victory, like most of the Grandian naval fleet, was anchored on the east side of Ruteria, and in deep water, and so survived. However, two Grandian patrol boats, who had passed through the Bahatla Canal to patrol the part of the Ruterian coastline still held by rebels, have gone missing since the tsunami hit their area minutes after they were issued a warning to leave; search efforts are underway. The earthquake, one of the largest in Adonian history, has left at least 20,000 people missing, including well over 6,000 Grandians, with the number expected to rise over the coming days.. Preliminary estimates show that the earthquake was so powerful that it may have shortened the length of the day by 1.26 microseconds and shifted Adonia's axis by 8 cm or 2.7 milliarcseconds. Precise GPS measurement taken by Grandian troops indicates that the telluric movement moved the entire city of Mérida 10.002 meters to the west. It is estimated that Ruteria's territory could have expanded by up to 1.3 km² as a result. Other nations have pledged assistance, but the nations of Troix and Greater Morsco, which would have provided a great deal of help, have been tied down because of a devastating earthquake which has caused an estimated 90,000 deaths in Greater Morsco alone, and pummeled the coastlines of both nations with a massive tsunami. Fortunately, the tsunami from the Ruterian earthquake will not cause much, if any, damage to Troix, as it will be only 15 centimeters high when it reaches that nation.

Rupert Apatax, our chief Ruterian correspondent, who was in the Communications Tower when it fell, and who would have otherwise reported on this earthquake, is currently missing. Some people have drawn a connection between this event, the earthquake that devasted Troix and Greater Morsco, and the ancient Mutir prophecy that supposedly predicted the end of the world; however, the available authorities dismissed any such connection as a coincidence. As of the time this article was written, a large detachment of Malonese troops was dispatched to the district of Txalapa, one of the most affected areas. More on this story as it develops.


Election Season is here!

by Samuel Hendrickson

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Logo of the Elections

FRANCISTOWN, GRAND- Yup, it's that time of year; time to prepare to elect the new USNW government! The election season was officially opened a couple of days ago by the incumbent Executive Secretary, K. Smith of the Provincial Republic of New Chandler, who also announced his intentions to run for Chancellor. Charles Brown, the incumbent First Minister, from the Kingdom of Posillipo, also announced his intentions to run for the same office. Soon afterwards, Daniel Emperor, the incumbent Minister of Defense, from the Imperial Federal Kingdom of Grand, Belluterra, and Malo, decided to run for the office that Charles Brown is vacating. Kurt Smith, who is NOT relatedto, nor is he the same person as K. Smith of New Chandler, and is from Posillipo's commonwealth, the Commonwealth of Shayden, is running for the office of Executive Secretary. Off the topic of the Executive Offices, Emperor Daniel is also reportedly planning to run for a second term as Minister of Defense.


In other news...

- Despite extra security measures... King Charles' dachsund raids kitchen again, steals 3 steaks and 15 hot dogs

- Grand reportedly prepares for another round of nuke testing

- Residents of Frikseltown report that the Singing Potatoes have all been boiled and eaten by the Giant Mutant Monster Frogs

- Mysterious rabbit people seen flying around Area 52 in the deserts of Malo

emperordaniel

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FRANCISTOWN FILM FESTIVAL, DAY FIVE

Mary: Hello once again, ladies and gentlemen! Today, we are presenting the 18 Francis Awards which will be given to the assorted films and actors who will have won awards. To repeat the list I set out a few days ago, the rewards are:

- Best Actor;

- Best Supporting Actor;

- Best Actress;

- Best Supporting Actress;

- Best Animated Film;

- Best Cinematography;

- Best Costume Design;

- Best Director;

- Best Film Editing;

- Best Makeup;

- Best Original Score;

- Best Original Song;

- Best Picture;

- Best Sound Editing;

- Best Sound Mixing;

- Best Visual Effects;

- Best Original Screenplay;

- Best Stunt Coordination.

Jonathan: In addition to Charles and Johanna, several of the directors, actors, and other such people from the films that made it into this festival are also in attendance.

Brian: Hi!

Jonathan: This is Brian Skarr, who is going to be our special announcer, who will announce the nominees for the categories, after the judges have decided on who will be nominated. While he is announcing the nominees, the judges will decide on which to pick as winner for each category, and then pass on their decisions to us, and then Brian will announce the winners. So, Mary, are you ready to hand over your 10 Enieo? Because I'm pretty sure that each film will be nominated for something!

Mary: You should be ready to fork out that much! I'm positive I will win!

Charles: Wait, you were serious about that bet?

Mary: Of course we're serious! I'd never make a bet in jest!

Johanna: Good thing it's only 10 Enieo then...

Brian: Well, looks like the judges have decided on the five nominees for Best Actor, and they are...

Sam Benkings - for his role as Captain William Smith in Pirates of the Alcadean: The Curse of the White Chest

John Greene - for his role as Wallace Seen in Pirates of the Alcadean: The Curse of the White Chest

Andrew Norman - for his role as Kent Antas in Agents of Tegno

Jamie Bell - for his role as Billy in Where in the World is Anokan?

Jeramiah Stewart - for his role as Don Mikel Fierro in Don Fierro

Mary: Wow, those are some interesting nominations! Personally, I think the nominations of Seen, Norman, and Bell was a given, as they all had great performances.

Jonathan: I agree with you, Mary.

Brian: Here come the nominations for Best Supporting Actor!

Nicolas Princeps - for his role as Antonius in Fall of the Imperium

Dilov Raov - for his role as Yusef in Inception

Mark Case - for his role as General Ta'nei Boneli in Don Fierro

Carter Jonesfield - for his role as King Cappore in King Cappore Saseille

Huston - for his role as Huston Jinn in AIN Wars

Jonathan: My favorite of those just listed was Nicolas Princeps; he really knows how to make the most of his screen time.

Mary: I prefer Carter Jonesfield, but you're right, Nicolas Princeps was pretty good in that film as well.

Johanna I really liked Huston's performance in AIN Wars, and I hope that he will show us more of his skills in the future.

Brian: And the nominees for Best Actress are...

Emma Salathon - for her role as Bella in Fall of the Imperium

Naomi Stevens - for her role as Hana Fierro in Don Fierro

Isabella Thompson - for her role as Jenny King in Agents of Tegno

Carmen Salby - for her role as Sarah in Lakehurst

Mary: Miss Stevens' role as Hana was completely awesome! I'm so glad she's nominated!

Jonathan: Totally! Anyways, Brian, have the judges decided on who will be nominated for the next award yet?

Brian: Well, here it comes now!

Jonathan So, who's been nominated for Best Supporting Actress?

Brian: The actresses nominated for Best Supporting Actress are...

Oksana Ivanovich - for her role as Adriana in Inception

Vera Farmiha - for her role as Captain Gosda in Source Code

Leah Thompson - for her role as Miriam D'astine in Don Fierro

Ursula Churton - for her role as Martha in Lakehurst

Marthah Fauté - for her role as Queen Aria in King Cappore Saseille

Jonathan: Fauté's role as the Queen in King Cappore Saseille was quite well done! I would have been somewhat disappointed if she didn't get that award, so it's a good thing she did get it!

Mary: I preferred Ivanovich as Adriana, but I'd have to say, Fauté's also a pretty good actress.

Charles: I think both of them played their parts really well in their respective films.

Brain: And the nominees for Best Animated Film are...

The Looney Looney Looney Bugs Bunny Movie

Where in the World is Anokan?

Mary: It's unfortunate that only two animated films made it into the festival, as, in my opinion, Anokan will definitely win that award, with very little competition.

Jonathan: As much as I like Bugs Bunny, I'd have to agree with you there, Mary.

Brian: The nominees for Best Cinematography are...

Fall of the Imperium

Pirates of the Alcadean: The Curse of the White Chest

2011

Don Fierro

King Cappore Saseille

Charles: Of those five nominations, I personally like Fall of the Imperium the best, although I really like the others as well.

Jonathan: Yeah, the cinematographers who worked on that film really knew what they were doing!

Mary: I agree with you both.

Brian: The nominees for Best Costume Design are...

Fall of the Imperium

Pirates of the Alcadean: The Curse of the White Chest

Don Fierro

King Cappore Saseille

AIN Wars

Mary: The costumes for King Cappore Saseille and AIN Wars were awesome!

Jonathan: That's if you discount the generally bland costumes in the second half of the latter movie.

Mary: Well, yeah. But that doesn't make the costumes in the first half any less awesome!

Brian: The nominees for Best Director are...

Martin Alathocaron, Fall of the Imperium

Stanislaw Walzak, Source Code

Ronald Arnolds, 2011

Simon Coto, Don Fierro

Alto Corry, Lakehurst

Jonathan: I'm glad Corry's nominated! He's my favorite director of those that made it in!

Mary: I would have preferred it if Jim Bailings had also been nominated... but I'm content with the current list of nominees.

Charles: I admire Simon Coto's work a lot, so it's nice that he's nominated.

Brian: Nominations for Best Film Editing go to...

Fall of the Imperium

Inception

Agents of Tegno

2011

AIN Wars

Johanna: I'm no movie expert, but I do believe that the editing of Inception is quite superior to most of the other nominees... of course, that's just my opinion.

Charles: Inception's editing was done pretty well, alright.

Brian: The nominations for Best Makeup are for...

Fall of the Imperium

Pirates of the Alcadean: The Curse of the White Chest

Don Fierro

King Cappore Saseille

AIN Wars

Mary: AIN Wars' use of makeup for the portrayal of many of those different alien species, in my opinion, was excellent!

Jonathan: Indeed.

Brian: The nominees for Best Original Score are...

Fall of the Imperium

Agents of Tegno

Where in the World is Anokan?

Don Fierro

King Cappore Saseille

Johanna: The score of Don Fierro was so great! I'm really happy to see it nominated!

Mary: Me too!

Brian: Nominations for Best Original Song are...

"Fallen, but not Forgotten" - Fall of the Imperium

"Green Valley" - Agents of Tegno

"The Cassidites" - Don Fierro

"Return" - Lakehurst

"Death to Cappore!" - King Cappore Saseille

Mary: "Fallen, but not Forgotten" is one of the best songs with lyrics that I've ever seen in a film!

Jonathan: I agree, and I would be quite surprised if it doesn't get a Francis Award.

Charles: Indeed, it's quite the song!

Brian: Nominations for Best Picture are...

Fall of the Imperium

Agents of Tegno

Don Fierro

Lakehurst

AIN Wars

Jonathan: What did I tell you? I KNEW that Fall of the Imperium would be nominated! I just knew it!

Mary: Well, Fall of the Imperium was a given, but what surprised me was that Lakehurst was nominated; although I think it's a great film, I didn't think it was of Best Picture caliber. But then again, that's only my opinion.

Johanna: I kind of felt the same way.

Brian: The Best Sound Editing nominees are...

Pirates of the Alcadean: The Curse of the White Chest

Inception

Agents of Tegno

2011

Don Fierro

Charles: The sound editing on all those listed films was quite good, in my opinion.

Mary: I agree with you, Your Majesty.

Brian: The nominees for Best Sound Mixing are...

Fall of the Imperium

Pirates of the Alcadean: The Curse of the White Chest

Agents of Tegno

Don Fierro

AIN Wars

Mary: Those are all great films, but in particular case, I think AIN Wars should win this Francis Award.

Brian: The nominations for Best Visual Effects go to...

Pirates of the Alcadean: The Curse of the White Chest

Agents of Tegno

2011

Lakehurst

AIN Wars

Jonathan: I wonder which one will win that award... all of their special effects were great!

Mary: I also wonder...

Johanna: I'm rooting for Lakehurst.

Brian: The nominees for Best Original Screenplay are...

Pirates of the Alcadean: The Curse of the White Chest

Source Code

Agents of Tegno

Where in the World is Anokan?

Lakehurst

Johanna: Hmmm, interesting.

Charles: Indeed.

Brian: And the final nominations, for Best Stunt Coordination, go to...

Fall of the Imperium

Source Code

Agents of Tegno

Don Fierro

AIN Wars

Jonathan: During this brief break, let's count the nominated films, so we can see who won the bet!

Mary: Sure!

Jonathan: Look! I've won the bet!

Mary: You know, if there had been more animated films, then I would have won.

Jonathan: Well, I still won, so hand over the money now!

Mary: Here you go then; ten Enieo.

Brian: Ladies and gentlemen, we will now announce the winners of the First Annual Francistown Film Festival! They are:

Best Animated Film

WHERE IN THE WORLD IS ANOKAN?

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Best Cinematography

FALL OF THE IMPERIUM

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Best Costume Design

DON FIERRO

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Best Film Editing

INCEPTION

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Best Makeup

AIN WARS

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Best Original Score

FALL OF THE IMPERIUM

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Best Original Song

"FALLEN, BUT NOT FORGOTTEN" - FALL OF THE IMPERIUM

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Best Sound Editing

PIRATES OF THE ALCADEAN: THE CURSE OF THE WHITE CHEST

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Best Sound Mixing

AIN WARS

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Best Visual Effects

LAKEHURST

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Best Original Screenplay

AGENTS OF TEGNO

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Best Stunt Coordination

FALL OF THE IMPERIUM

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Best Actor

ANDREW NORMAN - AGENTS OF TEGNO

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Best Supporting Actor

NICOLAS PRINCEPS - FALL OF THE IMPERIUM

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Best Actress

NAOMI STEVENS - DON FIERRO

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Best Supporting Actress

MARTHAH FAUTÉ - KING CAPPORE SASEILLE

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Best Director

MARTIN ALATHOCARON - FALL OF THE IMPERIUM

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Best Picture

FALL OF THE IMPERIUM

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Brian: The final tally of awards and nominations is:

- Fall of the Imperium: 7 awards, 12 nominations.

- Pirates of the Alcadean: The Curse of the White Chest: 1 award, 9 nominations.

- Inception: 1 award, 4 nominations.

- Source Code: 0 awards, 4 nominations.

- The Looney Looney Looney Bugs Bunny Movie: 0 awards, 1 nomination.

- Agents of Tegno: 2 awards, 11 nominations.

- Don Fierro: 2 awards, 14 nominations.

- Where in the World is Anokan?: 1 award, 4 nominations.

- 2011: 0 awards, 5 nominations.

- AIN Wars: 2 awards, 8 nominations.

- Lakehurst: 1 award, 7 nominations.

- King Cappore Saseille: 1 award, 7 nominations.

Jonathan: With the awards now counted and presented, the First Annual Francistown Film Festival has come to a close. We wish the best of luck to you all; Khot hap ee ko, and come back next year for the Second Annual Francistown Film Festival!

Mary: Thank you ever so much, Your Majesty, for attending this Film Festival.

Charles: It was our pleasure.

Johanna: Well, I'll have to return to Gamat soon, so we'd best return to Skarr House. Goodbye, Mrs. Phillips!

Mary: Goodbye everyone! For the last time, this is Mary Phillips reporting from the FFF, signing off.

emperordaniel

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FRANCISTOWN FILM FESTIVAL, DAY FOUR

Mary: Well, well, well! Looks like we've finally made it, Jonathan!

Jonathan: Indeed we have, Mary. Today, we will present the last film to be reviewed! Tomorrow, we move on to the awards ceremony!

Charles: And what film may that be?

Jonathan: It's not exactly a film; called AIN Wars, it was originally a TV miniseries, but was put together into one superlong "film" for the festival. Made in Shayden, directed by Forthwall Mastof, it stars Thomas as Thomas Simpson, Daniel as Daniel, Smart By Law as Smart by Law/Darth By Law, Hiigar as Hiigar By Law, Blakeway as Blake Way, Jo as Princess Jo Organa, Zack as Queen Zack, Geoff as Count Geoffu, Evillions as Senator Evillions/Darth Evillious/Emperor Evillious, Peter as Mace Peter, Dryan as Darth Dryan, and Huston as Huston Jinn. Want a complete description of the plot?

Johanna: Sure!

Mary: Ok, but don't say we didn't warn you...

Jonathan: The first episode of the film follows the early life of Smart By Law. He is discovered by the Admin Knight Huston, who believes him to be the "Chosen One" foretold by Admin prophecy to bring balance to the Force. The Admin Council, led by the ancient Admin Grandmaster Daniel, sense that Smart By Law's future is clouded by fear, but reluctantly allow Huston's apprentice Thomas to train Smart By Law after Huston is killed by the Sith Lord Darth Dryan. At the same time, the planet Cattala is under attack, and its ruler, Queen Zack, seeks the assistance of the Admins to repel the attack. The Sith Lord Darth Evilious secretly planned the attack to give his alter ego, Senator Evillions, a pretense to overthrow the Supreme Chancellor of the Shushtrepistaz and take his place. The second and third episodes of the miniseries chronicle Smart By Law's gradual fall to the dark side of the Force as he fights in the Clone Wars, which Evillions secretly engineers in order to destroy the Shushtrepistaz and lure Smart By Law into his service. Smart By Law, now an Admin-in-training, and Queen Zack fall in love and secretly wed, and eventually Zack becomes pregnant. Smart By Law has a prophetic vision of Zack dying in childbirth, and Evillions convinces him that the dark side holds the power to save her life; desperate, Smart By Law submits to the dark side and takes the Sith name Darth By Law. While Evillions, now revealed in his true form as Darth Evillious, re-organizes the Shushtrepistaz into the tyrannical Shushtrepistaz Empire—appointing himself Emperor for life—Darth By Law participates in the extermination of the Admin Order, culminating in a desperate lightsaber battle between himself and Thomas. Thomas ultimately defeats his former apprentice and friend, severing his limbs and leaving him for dead beside a lava flow. However, Evillious arrives shortly afterward and saves Darth By Law, putting him into a black, mechanical suit of armor that keeps him alive. At the same time, Zack dies, heartbroken, while giving birth to her twins, named Hiigar and Jo. The twins are hidden from Darth By Law and are not told who their real parents are.

The fourth episode begins 19 years later as Darth By Law nears completion of the Tirnrich, a massive space station with the ability to destroy a planet, which will allow the Empire to crush the Shushtrepistaz Rebel Alliance, which has formed to combat Evillious' tyranny. Darth By Law captures Princess Jo Organa, who has stolen the plans to the Tirnrich and hidden them in the astromech droid Spy. Spy, along with his counterpart C-3Dabu, escape to the planet Syldavia. There, the droids are purchased by Hiigar and his step-uncle and aunt, who he is staying with. While Hiigar is cleaning Spy, he accidentally triggers a message put into the droid by Jo, who asks for assistance from Thomas. Hiigar later assists the droids in finding the aged Admin Knight, who is now passing as an old hermit under the alias Thomas Simpson. When Hiigar asks about his father, Thomas tells him that Smart By Law was a great Admin who was betrayed and murdered by Darth By Law. Thomas and Hiigar hire the smuggler Blakeway and his alien co-pilot Forthbacca (in a cameo, played by the director) to take them to Arcacia, Jo's homeworld, which they eventually find has been destroyed by the Tirnrich. Once onboard the space station, Thomas allows himself to be killed during a lightsaber rematch with Darth By Law; his sacrifice allows the group to escape with Princess Jo and the plans that help the rebels destroy the Tirnrich.

The fifth segment takes place three years later, when Hiigar travels to find Daniel and start his Admin training, but is interrupted when Darth By Law lures him into a trap by capturing Blakeway and the others. Darth By Law reveals that he is Hiigar's father and attempts to turn him to the dark side. Hiigar escapes, and, after rescuing Blakeway from the clutches of the evil gangster Daniel the Rus a year later, returns to his training with Daniel, who by this time is on his deathbed. Before he passes away, Daniel confirms that Darth By Law is Hiigar's father, Smart By Law; moments later, Thomas's spirit tells Hiigar that he must face his father before he can become an Admin, and that Jo is his twin sister. As the Rebels attack the partially-competed Atlantic Federation, a massive space station far more powerful than even the Tirnrich, Hiigar confronts Darth By Law in its Throne Room as Evillious watches; both Sith Lords intend to turn Hiigar to the dark side and take him as their apprentice. During the ensuing lightsaber duel, Hiigar succumbs to his anger and brutally overpowers Darth By Law, but controls himself at the last minute; realizing that he is about to suffer his father's fate, he spares Darth By Law's life and proudly declares his allegiance to the Admins. An enraged Evillious then attempts to kill Hiigar with Force lightning, a sight that moves Darth By Law to turn on and kill his master, suffering mortal wounds in the process. Redeemed, Smart By Law dies in his son's arms. Hiigar becomes a full-fledged Admin, and escapes from the space station as the Rebels destroy the Atlantic Federation and, with it, the Shushtrepistaz Empire, restoring the Shushtrepistaz at last.

Charles: I have a bad feeling about this... how long is it?

Mary: Rounded off, about 14 hours.

Johanna: Whoa, that's long!

Jonathan: Feel up to the challenge of watching the whole thing?

Charles: I guess...

Mary: Here we go!

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*13 hours, 35 minutes later*

Charles: FINALLY it's over! Not to say that I didn't enjoy it or anything like that, but I'm just so relieved that it's done.

Mary: I wouldn't be surprised if everyone here felt the same way.

Jonathan: What was that you just said?

Mary: You fell asleep?

Jonathan: Did I?

Mary: You fell asleep!

Jonathan: Dang. That's the first time I fell asleep at work, and it had to be on live national, no, INTERNATIONAL TV? Why didn't you wake me up?

Mary: Well, I assumed that you weren't asleep.

Jonathan: Well, you could have checked!

Charles: Uh... guys?

Mary: Sorry, Your Majesty.

Jonathan: My apologies as well.

Charles: It's ok.

Jonathan: Well anyways, that brings us to the closing of the film reviews. Please join us tomorrow for the handing out of the awards, at the conclusion to the First Annual Francistown Film Festival! Khot hap ee ko, and thanks once again for joining us, everyone!

Mary: Goodnight, Your Majesty! And goodnight to you too, Johanna!

Johanna: Goodnight, Mrs. Phillips!

Charles: Have a pleasant evening!

emperordaniel

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FRANCISTOWN FILM FESTIVAL, DAY THREE

Jonathan: Well, welcome once again to Day Three of the Francistown Film Festival! Charles and Johanna will continue to accompany us today as we review the films that were submitted.

Charles: Hello everyone!

Johanna: Hi!

Mary: Welcome, both of you!

Johanna: So, what's the first film for today?

Mary: That would be the film Don Fierro, from New Chandler. The story, which is based on a major event in New Chandlerite history, begins 4,500 years ago, when T'Chasa controlled what is now the West Coast of the Cassidy Peninsula in Eastern New Chandler. Don Mikel Fierro and his sister Hana plan an attack with thousands of Cassidites up to Huesal (modern-day Darlington City), their old capital, where the Viceroy has his own plans. From the sea, general Ta'nei Boneli leads a separate attack on the city, led by the Ashtonites. They both claim the city, and eventually unite under the name of Chandler. The nation that they founded stayed around for the next 4,200 years. The film was directed by Simon Coto, and features Jeremiah Stewart as Don Mikel Fierro, Leah Thompson as Miriam D'astine, Fabio Gonzale as Viceroy Dominic Gaubes, Mark Case as Ta'nei Boneli, and Naomi Stevens as Hana Fierro. It won or was nominated for several awards from the New Chandler Film Academy, and is the only film in the festival to be rated R.

Charles: A historically-themed film. This should be quite interesting.

Johanna: What are you waiting for?

Jonathan: It's on now!

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*2 hours, 16 minutes later*

Charles: As I said; quite interesting indeed.

Mary: A little too violent for my taste, but the film's pretty good overall!

Jonathan: I think it was a great film!

Johanna: Agreed.

Charles: So, what's next?

Jonathan: Next is the recent Llithustanian film Lakehurst. Directed by Alto Corry, and starring Rheno Apaluntios, Carmen Salby, Ursula Churton, Han-Leifo Erturon, and Jason De'Vancé, the film begins with a hurricane forming in the North Atlantic Ocean; Antarida, being located directly in the path of the oncoming storm, prepares accordingly. However, when the hurricane reaches that region, they find their data to be vastly incorrect, and the entire nation is ravaged by high winds, heavy rain, and massive tsunami-like rogue waves. Five friends find themselves trapped in one area of the city of Lakehurst by the raging storm and its associated deep floodwaters and treacherous weather, and try their best to survive it, and if possible, escape from the devastated city.

Mary: I haven't seen it.

Charles: I don't think any of us have, so this will be very interesting for all of us!

Mary: I'm turning it on now!

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*1 hour, 12 minutes later*

Charles: Wow...

Jonathan: The special effects were astounding! I'm pretty sure we have a major contender for Best Visual Effects here, don't you think?

Mary: I agree with you Jonathan, this could very well win that award!

Johanna: I agree with you all, this was a pretty good film!

Charles: Yeah, it most assuredly was! Anyways, what's next on the film menu?

Jonathan: King Cappore Saseille, also a Llithustanian film, directed by Lyon Georgi, and starring Carter Jonesfield as King Cappore, Marthah Fauté as Queen Aria, Artor Fernstab as Damion, and Bothan Ilisit as Réon. Like Don Fierro, this is also a historical film, although the setting is much more recent. The film opens during the reign of the Supreme Litusian Monarch, King Cappore Saseille, who ruled Llithustania & Central Llithustania with an iron fist, torturing his country and laying brutal laws and punishments. Eventually two peasants from Irolaen refused to be under his reign and tyranny and decided to create a resistance, and became an inspiration to millions of people in the Kingdoms of Llithustania. Although they had next to no military experience, they organized and led an army of millions in which battled countless Capporian armies which were too small to succeed against their angry peasant hordes. They charged into Maine, burned "the city of the rich" and forced King Cappore to resign. This event inspires those in the other Llithustanian Kingdoms to revolt against their other rulers and slaughter countless superiors. The film ends with the hanging of Cappore for his brutality against his own nation.

Charles: Another history-themed film? Bring it on!

Mary: Here goes!

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*1 hour, 37 minutes later*

Charles: Great film!

Johanna: It certainly was!

Mary: Too bad Cappore was hung though...

Charles: Well, he was a brutal tyrant, so I can understand why the peasants did that. What really surprised me, though, was that the rebels didn't kill Cappore on the spot, especially considering how angry they were.

Jonathan: Yeah, that surpised me as well.

Johanna: So anyways, I presume that's it for tonight?

Jonathan: Well, yes. Tomorrow will be the last reviews, and then, on the day after that, the award ceremonies will take place.

Charles: Cool! I can't wait for the awards!

Mary: Same here!

Jonathan: Well, goodbye for now! Khot hap ee ko, and please come back for the final reviews tomorrow!

Mary: And thank you again, both of you, for continuing to grace our festival with your presence.

Johanna: You're quite welcome!

Mary: Goodnight everyone, and may the rest of your evening be pleasant!

emperordaniel

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FRANCISTOWN FILM FESTIVAL, DAY TWO

Jonathan: Well, welcome back, ladies and gentlemen, to Day Two of the First Annual Francisto...

Mary: Jonathan, I'm pretty sure that everyone here, not to mention those watching this event, know that it's Day Two of the first annual FFF.

Jonathan: Well, yeah, but it's kind of our duty to say that.

Mary: You're right. Well, sorry for interrupting you. Please continue, Jonathan.

Jonathan: Okay. Well anyways, as I was saying, welcome back everyone! Today, we will continue to review the films which qualified for the finals this year, accompanied by our special guests for today. The fi...

Mary: Wait, did you say "Special guests"? I thought there was going to be only one?

Jonathan: Well Mary, since the volcanic ash from Askivötn cleared up a few days ago, Johanna was able to fly here at last. She arrived last night, in fact. However, because of the delay caused by all flights in Fovazh and West Althena being grounded for a long time, her stay here will unfortunately be substantially shorter than originally planned. However, she will be able to attend the festival for the next few days.

Mary: Oh look, here she comes now!

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Johanna: Hello guys!

Mary: Welcome, Johanna! It's great to meet you!

Johanna: Same here.

Mary: So, are you enjoying your stay here in Grand so far?

Johanna: Definitely!

Charles: So, what's the first film on today's list?

Jonathan: That would be the Utrovan film Source Code, Your Majesty.

Johanna: I've never seen it. What's it about?

Mary: The plot centers around a certain man who, after narrowly surviving a train derailment in Chidessa, decides to hunt down the person responsible for the bombing which caused the accident. After doing so, he finds that the bomber has already set his plans in motion for a larger "accident", this time hitting the Utrovan capital, and he decides to try to prevent that from occuring. The film stars Jake Gyllanov as Stanislaw Colldorov, Vika Monohan as Hristina Varon, Vera Farmiha as Captain Gosda, Jeffrey Wright as Dr. Rutleh, and Mikhail Ardon as Drechk Snih. Like the Utrovan film we saw yesterday, this one is also directed by Stanislaw Walzak.

Johanna: Hmmm, interesting. What do you think, Charles?

Charles: I agree with you. Let's begin the film!

Jonathan: Right away, sire!

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*1 hour, 33 minutes later*

Charles Better then I expected!

Mary: That film did have a few suprises in store... I didn't expect the end to be like that.

Jonathan: I think that every really good movie should have some suprises in store... it gets boring when all the films are so predictable.

Johanna: I agree with you on that. Anyways, what's next?

Mary: Another Utrovan film, and one of only two animated films to make it in. It's called "The Looney Looney Looney Bugs Bunny Movie". It's quite short actually; the shortest film that made it into the finals, if I'm not mistaken.

Jonathan: Heh, I used to watch those Utrovan cartoons about him a lot when I was little... so, what are we waiting for?

Mary: Here we go!

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*29 minutes later*

Mary: Well, that was short.

Jonathan: Indeed. I wouldn't have minded it if it had gone on longer however.

Mary: Really? For my part, I was kind of relieved when it was over. Too much rabbit-ness.

Jonathan: The "too much rabbit-ness" is what I enjoyed best!

Charles: Uh... guys?

Jonathan: Sorry, Your Majesty.

Charles: It's ok. I rather liked the short film as well, but let's not get into that. What's the next film?

Jonathan: I believe it's the Grandian film Agents of Tegno, which was the only film from our country to enter.

Johanna: What's it about? It only came out a few days ago, so I didn't see it yet.

Mary: Directed by the world-famous Grandian director Jim Bailings, who also was the producer of the box-office hit Loggers, which won two Defers Awards and made 173 million Enieo worldwide, and starring Andrew Norman as Kent Antas, Isabella Thompson as Jenny King, Harold Bama as Henry King, and Fred Benner as Jim Andrews, Agents of Tegno is set during a fictional war between the Republic of Nosagua and the Principality of Conortosia. As the Nosaguans rapidly lose ground during the war, they dispatch a small team of secret agents into the heart of Conortosia to kidnap high-ranking Conortosian officials and hold them for ransom. However, the agents have no idea of how hard their mission would be, in more ways than one.

Johanna: This is gonna be great, I can tell.

Jonathan: Switch it on!

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*2 hours, 15 minutes later*

Johanna: What did I tell you? It was great, wasn't it?

Mary: It was! And I can't imagine how Jenny felt... it must have been hard for her, with her boyfriend being one of those Conortosian officials.

Charles: Yeah, considering the circumstances, I was not that surprised that she did what she did in the end.

Jonathan: Andy Norman sure was a great actor... he obviously didn't win that Golden Fabhcun for Best Actor for his role in Attack of the Killer Parrots back in July for nothing.

Johanna: I second that.

Mary: What's the next film, Jonathan?

Jonathan: That would be the other animated film that entered, Where in the World is Anokan?, directed by Bob Peterson, and starring the voices of Jamie Bell as Billy, and Jorden Nagai as his best friend, Russel. The story begins when Billy and Russel are rummaging through some of Billy's late grandfather's things, and they find a misplaced letter from 1979. They then decide to attempt to reach the distant (fictional) nation of Anokan on the other side to the world to deliver the letter to earn the last Guide badge they need.

Mary: Sounds pretty decent.

Jonathan: Here we go then!

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*1 hour, 36 minutes later*

Mary: That was wonderful! A lot better than that Bugsy movie!

Jonathan: I'll have to hand it to you, it really was a lot better than I expected!

Johanna: Is that the end of Day Two?

Charles: I believe there's one more for tonight.

Mary: Indeed there is. It's the Ruterian disaster film 2011, directed by Ronald Arnolds. It's a fictionalized version of what some people claim could happen on December 23rd 2011, when the Mutir Long Count Calendar ends its cycle.

Charles: I saw this one before, and although a few scenes were a little unrealistic in my opinion, it was a pretty good movie overall.

Jonathan: I haven't seen it.

Mary: Here goes!

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*2 hours, 38 minutes later*

Jonathan: Whew! That was exhilarating!

Mary: Even though I've seen it before, it was good to see it again!

Johanna: I enjoyed watching it again as well.

Charles: So did I.

Jonathan: Well, I suppose that's it for tonight. Good night everyone! Khot hap ee ko, and and please come back tomorrow for Day Three of the Festival!

Mary: Goodbye! It certainly was a pleasure to meet you, Johanna! I hope we will have an opportunity to meet again sometime soon.

Johanna: It would be great to have you over anytime, if that's alright with Charles. I'm still just a guest here myself for now.

Charles: Of course it would be fine!

Mary: Thank you both so much! Well, this is Mary Phillips, signing off now, and I wish you all a pleasant evening.

emperordaniel

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FRANCISTOWN FILM FESTIVAL, DAY ONE

Jonathan: Hello everyone! I'm Jonathan Wright, and this is my co-presenter, Mary Phillips.

Mary: Hi!

Jonathan: Today, we are celebrating the commencement of the First Annual Francistown Film Festival! Let's take a brief look at the films that made it into the finals, shall we?

Mary: Sure!

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Mary: Wow, Jonathan, those previews look great!

Jonathan: They sure do! Now, we shall see a Francis Award trophy, and then list the categories in which the films we have may win one or more Francis Awards.

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Mary: The Francis Award trophies are plated in 24-karat gold, and are set on a base of Grandian hardwood with a golden plaque, on which is etched the name of the recipient of the trophy, and what he or she recieved it for. The categories which a Francis Award may be bestowed for are: Best Actor; Best Supporting Actor; Best Actress; Best Supporting Actress; Best Animated Film; Best Cinematography; Best Costume Design; Best Director; Best Film Editing; Best Makeup; Best Original Score; Best Original Song; Best Picture; Best Sound Editing; Best Sound Mixing; Best Visual Effects; Best Original Screenplay; and Best Stunt Coordination.

Jonathan: Those sure are a lot of categories! I'll wager that every film here will be nominated for at least one, there are so many categories!

Mary: I'll bet you 10 Enieo that that won't happen!

Jonathan: It's a deal then! Anyways, before we begin the first film, let's all welcome our special guest for today! I think you've all heard of him! Please rise now, and welcome His Imperial & Royal Majesty, Charles the First, King of Grand, Emperor of Belluterra, King of Malo, Prince of Tarskya, Grand Duke of Royale, Duke of Long Island, Count of Skarr, Count of Creek, and Count of Lake Tranquil!

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Mary: Wow, that title's a mouthful!

Charles: Yeah, that sure is. Anyways, I can't wait to see which of these films will win awards! Some of these films I've seen before, and others I haven't, so I'm really excited to see the new films, while I wouldn't mind seeing the ones I've already seen, as they're quite good.

Jonathan: Well, now let's sit back and enjoy the first film, Fall of the Imperium, directed by Martin Alathocaron, and starring John Strattford as General Julius, Nicolas Princeps as Antonius, and Emma Salathon as Bella. It chronicles the final years of the Anatheonian Empire, which was the largest empire to rule Eastern Althena. As you might guess, it was made in Greater Morsco.

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*3 hours, 45 minutes later*

Mary: That film was amazing! I really enjoyed it!

Jonathan: The plot didn't interest me so much as the soundtrack, which you'd have to admit was pretty well done.

Mary: Indeed. Anyways, what's next on the list?

Jonathan: Well, the next film would be the Ruterian film Pirates of the Alcadean: The Curse of the White Chest, starring Sam Benkings as Captain William Smith, John Greene as Wallace Seen, Nuria Jolla as Victoria Geart, James Clark as Governor Josh Geart, and Jose Mero as Captain Rojassa.

Charles: This film I didn't see before; it looks like it will be interesting.

Mary: This film follows Captain William Smith, a pirate, and his acquaintance Wallace Seen, a blacksmith, as they search for Victoria Geart, the love of Wallace's life, who has been kidnapped by the feared pirate Captain Rojassa, who, along with his crew, is under a curse, doomed for eternity to neither live, nor die, unless a blood sacrifice is made.

Jonathan: Wait, Rojassa kidnapped Victoria because...

Mary: Hush! The movie has already begun!

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*2 hours, 25 minutes later*

Mary: This genre of film is not usually the type I watch, but this particular film was quite good! What do you think about the film, Your Highness?

Charles: I agree with you!

Jonathan: Well, on to our final film for today, which comes from Utrova: Inception, directed by Stanislaw Walzak, and starring Stanislav Feoderov as Leonid Cobb, Oksana Ivanovich as Adriana, Joseph Levit as Artur, Tomas Hardov as Eames, and Dilov Raov as Yusef. The plot involves a group of people in Orkovgrad, the Utrovan capital, who, at certain times, travel through people's dreams to find important secrets.

Mary: Oooo, mysterious! Sounds cool!

Jonathan: Well, here we go then!

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*2 hours, 48 minutes later*

Charles Now THAT was an interesting movie!

Mary: It surely was!

Jonathan: What was so interesting about it?

Charles: Heh, well, I guess everyone has his or her own likes and dislikes.

Jonathan: Hey, I was just kidding about it being boring! My true opinion is that, while probably not the most interesting movie I've ever seen, it's definitely worth watching.

Mary: That's essentially what I thought as well.

Jonathan: Really?

Mary: Uh-huh.

Jonathan: I see. Well, I believe that's it for tonight, everyone! Khot hap ee ko, and please come back tomorrow for Day Two of the Festival!

Mary: Goodbye everyone! And once again, thank you, Your Highness, for coming to the Festival today.

Charles: And once again, you're most welcome, Mrs. Phillips. Goodbye, and have a pleasant evening!

emperordaniel

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King-Emperor Charles I announces his engagement

by Maria Bargson

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Jóhanna Guðrúndóttir attending the Usong song competition earlier this year

FRANCISTOWN, GRAND- Today, in a press conference held in a wing of the Imperial Senate building, King Charles announced his engagement to Jóhanna Guðrúndóttir, the famous 18-year-old singer from Gamat. He first met Jóhanna in mid-August, while visiting the Gamatian capital of Kjiadvick as part of his world tour, which he began a few days after his coronation on the 28th of July. Not too long afterwards, she was invited to perform at the party to celebrate the birthday of Charles' younger sister, Princess Amanthis. It is speculated that it was around this time that Charles and Jóhanna first started dating. It was about a week ago that Charles proposed to her, although their engagement was kept a secret until now. She was originally scheduled to come to Grand a few days ago, but, since the eruption of the Askivötn volcano in the southern portion of Gamat, which has resulted in thousands of flights being cancelled across the entire western half of Althena, she was unable to fly here. The possibility of taking a ship, most likely the Royal Yacht, was dismissed because of the high risk of an iceberg collision at this time of year, when the waters around Gamat are choked full of ice in all shapes and sizes.


Askivötn refuses to shut up

by Sam Arken

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Map of ash cloud (black: original size; dark grey: current size; light grey: predicted size by tomorrow)

FRANCISTOWN, GRAND- Airports across Western Althena, from Athanos to Stretton, are in a state of confusion, as all flights crossing, landing, or taking off from Western Althenan airports have been cancelled as the ash cloud from Askivötn continues to spead. Aftershocks of the mass cancellations have left large numbers of passengers stranded as far as Fortilla, the capital of Troix, which is nearly on the other side of the world from the ash cloud. Apelkos International Airport and Zebtase International Airport, Malo's two international airports, were closed the day after the eruptions, but AIA has since reopened for some flights, as the ash cloud is not predicted to reach Malo for another 40 hours at least. Although the ash cloud was originally not predicted to reach Grand, at the current rate of expansion, the ash may very well reach the capital within the next 60 hours.


In other news...

- Deadlock encountered - tensions betweeen Ruterian Republicans and Monarchists rising again

- New Chandler and Ordanus working on a deal to purchase horse hooves for glue in exchange for meat

- Residents of Frikseltown claim that Giant Mutant Monster Frogs, Singing Potatoes, and Dancing Cucumbers are currently engaged in a three-way war

- Francistown Film Festival to begin in a few days

emperordaniel

Ok, so this will be a short break from the Grandian History! comics, to show you some foods that are found in different Adonian countries ;) After this, it's back to the history comics :)

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The new characters are New Friscia (the guy with the cake and glasses), Paradise (the girl holding the bottle of some kind of drink), and Gamat (the sparkly dude)

emperordaniel

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Scientist claims the end of the world is near

by Jim Haskins

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Mutir numerals

MERIDA, RUTERIA- Recently, a few Ruterian scholars have claimed that the world will end on December 23, 2011, based on information deduced from the Mutir Long Count Calendar.

The Mutir Long Count calendar is a non-repeating, vigesimal (base-20) and base-18 calendar used by Mutir cultures. For this reason, it is sometimes known as the Mutir Long Count calendar. Using a modified vigesimal tally, the Long Count calendar identifies a day by counting the number of days passed since a mythical creation date that corresponds to August 11, 3114 BCE in the Gregorian calendar. The Long Count calendar was widely used on monuments. In 1966, George Maninson wrote in The Mutir that "there is a suggestion ... that Armageddon would overtake the degenerate peoples of the world and all creation on the final day of the 13th [b'ak'tun]. Thus ... our present universe [would] be annihilated [in December 2011] when the Great Cycle of the Long Count reaches completion."

The 2010 disaster film 2011 was inspired by the phenomenon, and advance promotion prior to its release included a stealth marketing campaign in which TV spots and websites from the fictional "Institute for Human Continuity" called on people to prepare for the end of the world. As these promotions did not mention the film itself, many viewers believed them to be real and contacted astronomers in panic. Although the campaign was heavily criticized, the film became one of the most successful of its year, grossing nearly 385 million enieos worldwide.

Despite the publicity generated by the 2011 date, Sandra Nuno, curator of Ancient Itzamnan Art and Archaeology at the Samasilian Museum of Natural History, stated that "We have no record or knowledge that [the Mutir] would think the world would come to an end" in 2011. "For the ancient Mutir, it was a huge celebration to make it to the end of a whole cycle," says Samuel Antra, executive director of the Foundation for the Advancement of Mutir Studies in Rio Cristal, Hiso. To render December 23, 2011, as a doomsday event or moment of cosmic shifting, she says, is "a complete fabrication and a chance for a lot of people to cash in." "There will be another cycle," says Julia Parker, director of the Mousford University; Middle Isthmusan Research Institute (MIRI). "We know the Mutir thought there was one before this, and that implies they were comfortable with the idea of another one after this."

On a related note, a small team of Ruterian and Grandian researchers and archeologists, which is currently excavating some newly-discovered Ruterian ruins not too far from Uxmal, in order to study the Mutir and their connections with the year 2011, has been granted complete access to all archeological sites and installations in Ruteria, as well as a large funding grant from the Ruterian Ministry of History and Culture, to enable them to further study the Mutir.


Troix now an Imperial Federal Kingdom!

by Phil Benson

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Final results of the referendum

FORTILLA, TROIX- Troix is a Federal Republic no longer! After decades of being a republic, a referendum was held yesterday to decide on whether or not the former Emperor Jutsu, who was Troix' leader during the Great Adonian War, should be restored as the Head of State, and also on the related question of whether or not the nation's official name should be changed from "Federal Republic of Troix" to "Imperial Federal Kingdom of Troix". The final results of the referendum showed that 83.45% of the population supports restoring the Emperor onto his throne and changing the nation's official name, while 16.55% of the population opposes doing such a thing and wishes to remain a republic. Thus, with the referendum having passed, the Second Coronation of Jutsu, Emperor of Troix, is set for sometime in December.


In other news...

- Ruterian Civil War nearing a close as bilateral secession treaty between Republicans and Monarchists is drafted

- Ruteria admitted to the Posilliponian Commonwealth - now jointly ruled by Queen Sofia IV of Posillipo and Queen Monica I of Ruteria

- Posillipo shortens official name to just "Kingdom of Posillipo" - also abolishes title of Vasílissa of Posillipo, replaced with Queen of Posillipo

- Ordanus signs free trade agreement with Posillipo

emperordaniel

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Victory in Moztlaiztichitl Valley

by Amy Higgins

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A Ruterian soldier in the aftermath of the battle

MERIDA, RUTERIA- I've just returned from a frontline of the ongoing civil war here, where three days ago, a detachment of troops, composed of Grandian, Utrovan, Malonese, and Ruterian troops, encountered a relatively large body of Republican troops located in Valle Moztlaiztichitl, a narrow, heavily-forested valley about 15 kilometers away from the capital. The Republicans, numbering about 600, were ordered to lay down their weapons and surrender, but instead, they told our Coalition soldiers to leave the area. We replied by assaulting the fortress that the enemy had constructed for their defense. The battle raged on for several hours, but by the end of the day, although about 70 Republican troops had been killed, and several large holes had been knocked in the side of the fortress, they still held it, as their numbers were larger than initially estimated.

The day before yesterday, our troops were able to advance early in the morning, and the Ruterian troops in the vanguard broke through their first line of defense, capturing dozens of Republican troops, including the second-in-command of the garrison. However, the Coalition took a heavy toll in doing so, as 110 troops, or 30% of the forces attacking the garrison, were either killed or wounded in the attack, and so we were not able to advance as far as they had hoped. Later that day, the enemy launched a surprise attack on our positions, aided by a Mellechian jet aircraft. The Coalition troops were forced to fall back several hundred meters, but not without dealing the Republicans heavy blows at each turn. The Mellechian airplane destroyed three armored Coalition vehicles and dozens of our troops, but it was shot down by an Utrovan anti-aircraft crew, and crashed into a mountainside moments after. The anti-aircraft emplacement was blown up moments afterwards by a shell from a Republican tank, which was subsequently destroyed. I was able to exchange a few words with the captain of the AA-gun emplacement hours before the sudden attack, and he expressed the belief, which was not shared by most of the other soldiers in the camp, that "(T)he countries aiding the Republicans are bound to show up very soon; we've encountered them before, in this general area." Thanks to his suspicions, our casualties and losses in the attack were a lot lower than they would have been otherwise.

In hindsight, the surprise attack was a Pyhrric victory for the Republican garrison, as they lost all but three of their armored vehicles in the attack, and 70% of their remaining troops were captured or killed. The Coalition also suffered heavy losses, but three Grandian and Utrovan companies arrived soon afterwards to reinforce our positions. With the new additions, we launched a late-night offensive which destroyed their second line of defense, as well as their remaining armored vehicles, and left only 50 of their troops standing, at minimal cost to the Coalition, as only three Utrovans and five Grandians were killed, and one Monarchist Ruterian was wounded.

Yesterday morning, we launched a final attack on their remaining positions, and when we penetrated the final defenses, the remaining Republican Ruterians surrendered, ending the Battle of Moztlaiztichitl Valley.

Total casualties from the battle:

Coalition: 262 killed, 85 wounded, 37 missing; 7 vehicles destroyed

Republicans: 254 killed, 297 wounded, 49 missing; 25 vehicles destroyed (excluding the Mellechian jet aircraft)


Troix admitted to the Union

by Phil Benson

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Flag of the Federal Republic of Troix

FORTILLA, TROIX- Spontaneous celebrations are erupting across the city, as it has just been announced that the Federal Republic of Troix, a volcanic archipelago south of the Greater Morsco and the Posilliponian Overseas Territory of Astey, has been admitted as an Ambassadorial Member State of the United Sovereign Nations. Members of the International Assembly, ambassadors, heads of state, and other high-placed USNW officials were quick to extend their congratulations to the people of Troix for attaining this historic milestone in their history.


In other news...

- First comic from the much-awaited Grand and the World cartoon strip released; more on the way

- King-Emperor Charles I set to make a final decision about the succession and governance of the Duchy of Mantaines by Friday

- Singing potatoes and dancing cucumbers reported to navigate the waters of Lake Friksel

- Statue of Posilliponian Admiral Jacques Thomas to be built in Francistown

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Today, we'll be visiting the area around Two River Heights, the capital of the Duchy of Mantaines, which, largely thanks to the fact that the Grandian Duchies were almost completely autonomous back then, was the most wealthy and powerful of the Nine Duchies until the Second Island War, which lasted from 1869 to 1873. After that war, most of the duchy was ceded to the victorious Belluterrans, including what is now Two River Heights, which was founded by Belluterra in 1889.

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It's very early morning, and the sun hasn't risen yet, although it should be rising at anytime. This flower-covered hillside is located on the brink of the cliffs which overlook the place where the two rivers, the Branduin and the Ollitane, combine to form the Brantane River, which flows for a few more kilometers before finally emptying itself into the Sushilli Sea.

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The sun has now begun to rise, and the deer have begun to stir. These deer were kept for Horace IX, Duke of Mantaines, who loved to hunt. After his assassination in late April, it is unclear who will inherit the governance of the Duchy of Mantaines, which still covers a great deal of the island, as well as the large estate that belonged to him. The two leading candidates are his son, the newborn Prince Devin Gregory, and his third cousin, Lord Alexander Charles. In the former case, Prince Devin would have a regent, most likely his mother Princess May, until he reaches the age of 16.

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As we continue on our hike through the mountainous country, we come across a pool, which is fed by a spring, and which in turn feeds a shallow but fast-flowing and very wide stream. This stream is a major source of water for the deer, as it is much easier to access; the Two Rivers, although often nearer to them, require a near-vertical descent in most places if you want to access them anywhere in this area.

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Following the stream leads us to Carrock Castle, which is the official residence of the Duke. Currently it is uninhabited, save for the workers who serve to mantain it. However, there is a major possibility that the Princess Royal will once again reside in the castle soon, alongside her son, as the King-Emperor is apparently favoring his nephew over Lord Charles for the position of Duke.

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Here is a view of the backside of the castle, which faces the sea. The castle, because of it's strategic location, which commands an excellent view of the surrounding terrain, even as far as the sea some six kilometers to the west, as well as the ability to control traffic on the Branduin, Ollitane, and Brantane rivers, ensured that it and its predecessors were the focus of several major battles from the Second Fom War between Grand and Posillipo in the 18th century, to as recent a war as the invasion of Grand by Trentannia in the early 1940s, which was one of the events leading up to the Great Adonian War in the late 1940s to the early 1950s.

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To close this short update, we give you a night view of the waterfall, the tallest in Grand, which empties the Unnamed Stream into the Branduin River. In the background you can see the small wooden bridge leading into the castle's basements, where there may still be unknown secrets waiting to be found...

Khot hap ee ko! Remember, please comment, rate, and +1 if you liked it!

emperordaniel

Ok, this will be the last newspaper for a little bit, as I'm doing an actual SC4 update now :P

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Princess May's son is born!

by Frederick Thanson

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Princess May's newborn son

WESTERN PALACE, GRAND- Yesterday, at 09:52 PM, Princess May's son was born in the Imperial Hospital in the Great Western Palace. He is the first grandchild of Amanthis II and the late Daniel IV & I, and the first great-grandchild of Queen Christine, the oldest living member of the Imperial Family. The Princess Royal is considering several names for him, one of which will be announced in a few days.


An interview with the residents of Frikseltown

by Richard Narrows

FRIKSELTOWN, BELLUTERRA- Over the past two days, we were able to interview a few residents of Frikseltown, a small datewine-producing village on the shores of Lake Friksel, where there have been reports recently of Giant Mutant Monster Frogs swimming or roaming along the lakeshore, and even wandering into people's homes. We will first interview Phil Andrews, a local bartender, who was the first to report seeing a GMMF.

Francistown Times: When did you first see a Giant Mutant Monster Frog?

Phil Andrews: Well, it was about nine days ago, and I was returning home for the evening after my shift at the bar, and I saw a kitty cat!

Francistown Times: Wait, I thought you were talking about a GMMF, not a cat?

Phil Andrews: Yeah, but as I stared at the cat, suddenly a giant frog jumped out of nowhere and scared the cat away! Then, when I tried to approach the frog, it growled at me and hopped away

Francistown Times: .....

(Editors' Note: Following his last statement, Mr. Andrews started ranting about the horrors of the fierce Monster Frog until he was finally quieted)

We now turn to the Mayor of Frikseltown, Mr. Johnson, who reported seeing a whole bunch of GMMFs ten days ago.

Francistown Times: Mayor, could you describe the circumstances of your first sighting of a Monster Frog?

Mayor Johnson: Certainly, it was not long after I returned home from Andy's Bar, where we were celebrating the bar owner's birthday; as I was sitting on my couch, I heard a clanging sound, and, being quite tired, I went to the front door and saw these furry four-legged creatures hopping around and disturbing my garbage cans. I tried screaming at them, but I croaked at them instead, and they barked at me and hopped off and jumped into the lake.

Francistown Times: .....interesting. Ever seen them since then?

Mayor Johnson: Only once more, just outside Andy's storeroom, where I arrested one who was rifling through the racks of winebottles, but the cunning creature somehow escaped and replaced himself with Andy, the bar owner.

Francistown Times: I see. Well anyways, thank you for your time, Mr. Mayor.

For our last interview of the day, we will go to Cray Z. Mann, a guy who lives by himself on the lakeshore some distance away from the village, and only infrequently goes into town for a drink at Andy's Bar.

Francistown Times: Mr. Mann, coul...

Cray Z. Mann: IT'S THE END OF THE WORLD!!! PANIC, EVERYONE, PANIC!!! OUR DOOM IS COM...

Francistown Times: uhhh...

Cray Z. Mann: THE KILLER FROGS ARE COMING!!! BRACE YOURSELVES!!!

(Editors' Note: At this point, our reporter fled the area to avoid further injury to his ears from Cray Z.'s screaming.)


Exclusive interview with HMR Monica I

by Samantha Oaraf

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Queen Monica I

SCOTLIA ROYAL PALACE, SCOTLIA- Today, Samantha Oaraf, one of our reporters for Western Althena, got an exclusive interview with Her Majesty from Ruteria Monica the First, Queen of Ruteria and Queen of the Ruterian Dependencies, covering her views on the ongoing Ruterian Civil War. The interview took place in the Ruterian dependency of Scotlia Island in the Alcadean Sea, approximately three-quarters of which are covered by the Scotlia Royal Palace and its grounds, which are the largest palace grounds still serving as such, covering an area of about 450 square kilometers.

Oaraf: Well, thank you very much for granting this interview. Shall I begin?

Queen Monica: Certainly.

Oaraf: What are your current plans concerning Ruterian international relations?

Queen Monica: The most honest answer I can give you is that I honestly dont know; maybe we will have to resign from the USNW, but as I said, I simply dont know.

Oaraf: Do you plan to return to Merida anytime soon?

Queen Monica: No, I am staying in my current locations for the next 3 months at least.

Oaraf: Do you fear that perhaps you may be forced to take refuge in another country?

Queen Monica: I am currently considering that, and I know my nation doesn't seem safe to me, but it is not as bad as the world deems, although I had to escape for my own security, after several shootings in the Royal Palace, and after the loss of my mother in my own residence, it is not safe to me. I am currently considering moving to Grand, Utrova or staying in my current location.

Oaraf: How long do you suppose it would be until it would be safe for you to return to Ruteria?

Queen Monica: Probably a year at least, but a minimum of six months.

Oaraf: Are the remaining members of the Royal Family in Ruteria going to be joining you soon?

Queen Monica: One of my sisters, Princess Lucia, as she is the smallest of the Family, is currently in Linestecia, and my other sisters are going to Utrova or Grand, and the body of my Dad, and one of my brothers are going to stay in Merida, but my older brother is currently with me.

Oaraf: What do you think should be done about the rebels amassing in the north of Ruteria?

Queen Monica: What I think we could do, is try to look for them, stop them, and send them to jail, but we will kill them if they shoot at us.

Oaraf: Well, our time is drawing to a close, so do you have any last words before we go?

Queen Monica: I would like to thank all people in the world and all nations helping my beloved Ruteria.

Oaraf: Well, thank you again for granting this interview. Khot hap ee ko!

Queen Monica: Ant-Khot hap ee ko tu.


In other news...

- Skieli Airline Alliance formed, open to any applicant airlines

- Grand on the verge of beating its record for most medals won by Grand in the Simlympics - only two more to go

- 10-kilometer perimeter around Merida being cleared by Coalition forces

- Click here to bet on what name you think will be chosen for the newborn Prince

emperordaniel

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Fall of the Imperium opens in theaters tomorrow!

by Constantine Atenokos

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A sneak peek at one scene from the film

MAGNA AURIDIA, GREATER MORSCO- For more than ten years, this film has been in the planning stages. A film like no other, produced by the famous Greater Morscan film studio Ascenstudios, and directed by the world-famous Martin Alathocaron, this film is the most expensive film in history, costing 260 million enieo, or 520 million dollars, to make. It is also one of the longest non-experimental films made, with a duration of approximately 3 hours 45 minutes. Chronicling the waning days and the final fall of the Anatheonian Empire, and starring a world-famous cast, including John Strattford, Nicolas Princeps, and Emma Salathon, it will premiere at the Theater Imperial on Via Auria at 11:11 AM. After that, it will debut in the other East Althenan countries, plus the ones on Carreon, then Neridea and West Althena on the 18th, then finally Itzamna and Euphemia on the 19th.


Grandian preparations for the Ruterian Civil War underway

by Amy Higgins

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Uniformed Grandian forces on parade in Marsburgh

MARSBURGH, GRAND- Preparations for the Ruterian Civil War are already underway here in Marsburgh, with the Grandian troop-carrying aircraft being temporarily recalled from Andalusia, where Operation Firestorm is drawing to a close, for refurbishment in preparation for their back-and-forth flights, carrying the first monthly shipment of 60,000 troops, across the Dacian Ocean to their designated landing point near the Ruterian capital, Merida.

Although the battle for Merida was initially sucessful in driving out the rebel forces, the Ruterian military has been pushed back, and the outskirts of the city are now in the hands of the Republicans as of the last report from the area. So far, the only foreign forces to arrive in Ruteria is a team of about 50 highly-trained RISTAT guards from the Provincial Republic of New Chandler, and they narrowly missed being shot down as their plane entered Meridan airspace.

Soon after the initial battle, a presumed Republican sniper was captured, but not before he had shot dead 64-year old Marta Alonso, the mother of the Queen and widow of the late King Juan IV, as well as 12 Ruterian Royal Guards who were trying to protect her. He is currently claiming to have killed over 35 people, besides the Queen Mother and the fallen members of her security detail, which would increase that number to 48.


In other news...

- "He ate my shoe!" Exclusive interview concerning the giant mutant monster frogs of Lake Friksel in next issue!

- Dawn of a new era for the people of Andalusia as Operation Firestorm winds down

- See the miss that bumped us down to 16th place in the Simlympics!

- Plans drawn up for the sharing of New Panutra between Ruteria and Posillipo