Wednesday, June 27, 2018

Page 1848

((Triple Wednesday -- Page 1 of 3))
“...I was hoping for advice about how to conduct myself properly,” said Hector.

“I don’t think Master Roman is the right person to consult about conducting yourself properly,” said Gina.

“That is both hurtful and profoundly untrue,” said Roman. “I am a wonderful party guest. Ask anyone. Except maybe the President of Steccat. Though, I doubt he’d remember me, so that might be fine, too, now that think about it.”

“Well, then, uh... could you maybe tell me a little about the other nobles? Like, is there anyone I should be, er... wary of? Or something?”

Oh-ho!’ said Voreese. ‘Good question!

Roman bobbed his head to the side. “Yeah,” he said slowly. “I do know a fair bit about the major players in Atreya. Your Madame Carthrace might know more, though, of course.”

With the way that Roman let his gaze linger on Hector for a moment, Hector had to wonder if he had met her. By now, he must’ve. He wanted to ask what Roman thought of her, but now probably wasn’t the best time.

“But, ah, yeah,” Roman went on. “You’ve got your straight-up royals, of course. The Belgrants and the Lumenbels. The Lumenbels took a significant hit recently, as I’m sure you well know, so they’re not quite as... shall we say, “politically potent” at the moment, as they once were. The Belgrants, as far as families go, probably have more influence now than any single family has ever had before in this country.”

None of that was really news to Hector, but it was at least nice to have his current understanding of Atreyan politics reaffirmed as being correct.

“After those two, though, all of the other families can pretty much be described as either ‘royalist’ or ‘nationalist’ in nature. With maybe a couple wild cards thrown in there, for good measure.”

Which one are you?’ said Garovel.

“Me?” The question seemed to take Roman by surprise. “Mm. That’s a tough one. A year ago, I would’ve said nationalist without the slightest bit of hesitation, but now that I’m BFFs with the Queen, it’s kinda hard not to consider myself more of a royalist.” He smacked his lips. “I hate to be one of those fence-sitters, but right now, I guess that’s what I am.”

You’re kinda making it sound like Hector and I are royalists,’ said Garovel.

Roman just returned a flat look. “Sayin’ you aren’t?”

Heh. Maybe.

Roman glanced at Hector, who had no idea what to say. “Whatever,” said Roman. “The royalists and the nationalists aren’t terribly different from one another, anyway. They definitely agree with each other more than they disagree. The main point of controversy between them, as you might expect, is their support of the royal family.”

Specifically, it’s about whether or not they believe the royal family is appointed by divine will,’ said Voreese.

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