Shacur Meihomei: The act of rising above all others
"As is tradition, today, I will be your Sun'ga, and call you to dine with your new Meihomei." Telbun spoke clipped, matter of fact tones she had rehearsed for two days. To the side of the city gates, the soon-to-be ruler's children looked lost in the crowd of thousands cheering. Amarat's cousin Lusitania was with them, and a family friend.
The children had been crying, it'd only been a week since 'Nana' was dead, and 'Auntie Meihomei', too. Even Robyn, the family cat, had passed with Amalthea.
The usual suspects were there:of each of the provinces of the empire,, all but Megamisama, Innu and Garay, who were currently vacant. Xandra, Roomian, Lilleath, Didina, Jannet, Khlooie, Lavali had filed themselves with their entourages at the front of the procession.
They were in Innu City, a far cry from their usual haunt of Megamisama, two hundred thousand to twelve million, but the Innu managed to make an impressive cheer, still, as they tried to keep warm, showing their good spirit.
Linnaeus Van Pelt, , , , Ryder Kannagael, resplendant in , , , The Wungli of the Red Rat, a wunglil in sixteen different coloured layered panels at the chest, surrounded by the black and emerald of Kagomine royalty on the shoulders and sleeves. respectively, stood just outside the gates. He reached for a lever on the floor besides him, the gate opened and the panthers were unleashed, all four of them. Err, housepanthers, for they were his four youngest housecats, really. Robyn's four great-granddaughters mewed in confusion, seeing all the people, but bolted for spots on Linnaeus' outfit as he had despaired of training them to do, earlier. Pockets had been sewn in the garment for the four young ones to hide in. This part of the ceremony done, Linnaeus melted into the crowd for now, well, as much as a man wearing cats and a colourful robe that had been new, 775 years ago, could.
Entering the city first was Mariwolfe, as Telbun-Sheriff, re-enacting the battle that ended with the foundation of Kagomei, as a Kingdom in 0AK(hence the name). To her sides were her two Miptuns, resplendant in formal uniform, the New Etruscan blue of Marcie's drawing subdued comments, while the Olive Drab of Leviathan Crusher's was comparatively unnoticed.
Following her, the Domeis and entourage, no more than four persons for each Domei, which had been a problem for Didina and his sixteen herevallin.
Following them were the other aristocracts, in line of title's seniority, then ordered by seniority within their ranks, fromdown to . All two-thousand, four hundred and sixty artistocratic knots of people in order, except for those with other, more specific roles in the ceremony.
As titles go,is pretty heavy on ceremony, thought to herself, as her friend Mariwolfe led the procession towards her, as she waited by the huge tomb-statue of Kagomé's founders. This particular ceremony hadn't been performed by the last three holders of the title, its pageantry excessive, in her opinion. Of course, the rarity of the ceremony probably helped justify putting a little more effort when you actually bothered to do it.
"Bainuh-Frew Ciksew." Mariwolfe's ancient Kagomine was nonexistent, but the words were unchanged in modern usage: "Honour to Valour's holder." i.e. Honour to you, Valour-keeper.
"Daukeh-Frew Ciksew." Honour to integrity's keeper/holder, in this context, the same words the original Valour-Keeper,, founder and original Aumhavar of Kagomei as well, had said to the original Telbun-Sheriff of Megamisama, after he'd freed the city from invading privateers from Escor.
"I would speak with those within. There is need for direction, in chasing these bandits, but also, for stability and peace." They had switched to a modern dialect, but the conversation was still a re-enactment of one that happened on this spot, 816 years ago.
"You come not to conquer then?"
"Not if I can help it, I am an administrator, not a leader, seems those within might have one of those, since you held true, despite the siege and your... guests."
The crowd bent heads in unison, at this point, remembering Innu Yesugai at this statue depicting his dead body in the arms of his wives.
Filing themselves past the statue next, the nearly nine thousand guests found foldable chairs on the nearby grass, facing the doors of the largest palace in Kagomei, built on the ruins of the Abbey. Mariwolfe and entourage stepped on the dais. About midway through the procession, Linnaeus, who had joined up with Shibué, his wife, joined her. After the procession ended, Amarat and his entourage climbed the dais themselves.
"Welcome, and thank you for joining us on this very special ceremony. As you undoubtably all know, Amalthéa-who-was-Meihomei has passed, and her successor was named." There was a pregnant pause. "I call to testify the leader of her bodyguards."
"I, Shibué Dandelion, so attest that her will was untainted, and that she did intend for her nephew and closest living relative, Amarat Kagomé."
"I call forward the regency council." All of the eight Domeis, plus the netamei of Kagomei walked forward.
"We speak no word of denial, let Amarat Veneer be highest-of-highs." The dignified Domei of Lavali moved with the grace of a dancer, which she was, leading the rest of the council back to their seats.
"I call forward the cat lord, may he speak the whispers from whiskers."
Linnaeus knew that was his cue, but some of the cats were threatening to jump off! "Now now Shy, easy, easy, come with me."
"We see you, cat lord." At that Mariwolfe pantomimed licking her paw and rubbing it over her ear, cheered by the more easily amused in the audience, and mortified from embarassment herself.
"The cats see things we don't, I see you Valour-keeper." The cold, dismissive greeting dated back to a very adversarial relationship between keeper and kitten-ra in ages past.
At that, Linnaeus approached. The four kits hidden in pockets in his uniform mewed for air in unison, and seeing Amarat, batted the air at him playfully, on cue.
Amarat called out the cat's names:
And they responded to their own names with a mew, fulfilling the ceremony's requirements, and so, Linnaeus did not have to down-vote his new emperor.
Laying the crown on Amarat's head, and the ring on his finger, then handing him the scepter, they withdrew.
"I call on you, my people, my Kagomine, for my first edict. Let you all eat, and be merry in my honour, but do not forget those that we are bereft of. In honour of the future, I name my daughter Coronation's Vigil of Honour.my heir. May the elements bless us!" At this urging, the notables all filed out to tables laden with food, merging with the people, then culminating into the
"Didn't you have any other announcements to make?" Sothlee De Byzance, tallest woman in the crowd, was almost never unnoticed, but when she looked at you as intently as she did to Amarat right now, well, it was a new seasation for him.
"What else was I expected to announce?"
"That I kept my job? Just a thought."
"I did read the regulations... It's customary to announce you're keeping the job, but it's far from required."
"So you wanted to keep me guessing?"
"I wanted to keep my adversaries guessing, I always intended to tell you, like this, step-mother."
"Well, that's new, you used to avoid that title like the plague before..."
"I read the regulations, since I'm Aumhavar of my own self now, I can't call you Aumhivina."
"You're the first person to read that court case, I think, but you didn't read it all the way through, if you think it started when you became Meihomei..."
"I explicitly wrote in the decision that Bameimeito and Nameihomei were Aumhavars of their own selves, unless otherwise specified. Both you and your mother were Aumhivarin, so I guess you missed it."
"So, that's why you always looked a lil exasperated when I called you Aumhavarin? And it took you three years to come clean about it?"
"Hmm, you have a point there. Sorry, Amarat."
"Oh, I even get called by my name, like a person, gee, what a promotion."
"Amarat. Sorry, I guess I never told you why I always called you step-son,. and it wasn't because you were always calling me step-mother."
"It's a ritual of forbidden, meant to make you more aware, and both more and less resistant to temptation."
"More and less?"
"Less resistant to temptations when you're not consciously aware of them, and more resistant when you are. You become a more deliberate person, at least, that's the stated goal."
"Oh." He finished his dish, noticing that dessert had been requested by the Sun'ga. "Just in time." He pointed out.
"Yes, well, we do have some very fine Sun'gas here today."
"They're not calling the shots."
"Or I should say, that depends on who you consider a Sun'ga..."
"I'm holding out for people with either local or international certification..."
"That's a lot of people. I mean, I've counted six certified Sun'gas just at this table and the next."
"You actually passed?"
"I passed grandmaster certification, as both a chef and a manager, last year."
"What? I didn't know there was manager certification."
"There is, for inns and restaurants..."
"Just how many people have it?"
"Err, I'm the first... There's two now, with at least two more working on it."
"Do I know any of the six?"
"You heard of one, and you've met the two others, I'm sure."
"Oh, anyone at the other table?"
"Got it in one... Both the ones you know are at the other table."
"How come it's such a small field?"
"Because they're both associated with Platinum Redoubt, who's sponsored the program."
"More graft, nepotism and general chicanery from Eurani? Tsk tsk."
"Why do you assume we're better."
"I don't assume we are, I castigate them for having rules, and not applying them to themselves."
"I guess that's something they don't have on us, if we didn't apply the graft rules, someone could get the rule vacated, as per."
"What do you mean?"
"The way the rules are written, and deliberately so, at this point, is that the rules protect elected officials, up to a point, from inherited titles letting people make them carry the bag. You vacate the rule, you vacate the protections. Me, and my staff, and indeed, most people in the departments and secretariats, would be quite miffed if the rule was removed, just so aristos could spend more time on the beach."
"You say this is deliberate?"
"As close to deliberate as can be, if you read between the lines of the enforcement clauses. After all, that's what gets vacated, not the principle, which could get resurrected in another rule, but the enforcement, the how and the why. You don't get permission to commit murder, what gets vacated is that you may or may not spend your life in prison for it. And of course, without predicated enforcement, people know they shouldn't do a thing,, but you lose the dissuasion factor of knowing the sentence."
"You got me there."
"Oh, that's our new teammate,." The newcomer cut an impressive figure in her own deep purple Wungli-shaped dress, in the flag colour, with the dragons' stylized form hinted at through frills in the fabric.
Components and tools
On every succession to the crown of the empire of Great Kagome.