** American Gods, and Other Things
The phrase “better late than never” springs to mind for this report, and with good reason. (And not just because Ian McShane blew me away in his portrayal of Mr. Wednesday. Be still my undead heart!). Like Mr. Wednesday, sometimes it takes a while to gather all the right pieces and players to orchestrate something truly amazing. Allow me to plead my case, dear Court of Public Opinion, before the dismissive yawning begins.
I admit to being quite neglectful in my city-wide duties as of late, what with my sudden disappearance at the July 8th gathering, and then subsequent reappearance more than halfway through the month. But I promise you all, darling readers, it was with the best of intentions…
… and results. The ends sure as fuck justified the means.
WIthout further adieu, I shall get on with book-themed report.
PART 1: The Shining…err… the Visiting
During the July 8th gathering, we had the honor of a visit by several esteemed guests. To name a few, His Majesty, the most *Gallant* Prince Alfonso Charger of Savannah, GA, and Anthony Kraig, the *Honorable* Elder Primogen of Atlanta, GA. From what I gather, both are charming gentlemen with the most stunning personalities. They traveled here to visit with our *Sovereign* Majesty, Prince Vitale, regarding all the upheaval in the region. By all accounts, the conversation went well, with all involved walking away with a deep feeling of accomplishment. It’s not often Praxis holders meet so amicably, especially when there are tasty prizes such as more land up for grabs and overblown, egotistical madmen to topple. Who doesn’t want to sup on the main course of White Tower Expansion, and dessert on the laurels of leading that particular charge?
Well, I suppose if you were Anarch or Black Tower, you’d find that meal sour on the tongue. (Written with much love to our dear neighbors to the West. (No, not that West. The west in between the wicked wild Black Tower west and our delightful Ivory Tower. Shout out to the Anarchs for keeping that barrier solid! You make my heart proud.))
Aside from that celebrated meeting, I found myself involved in a meeting of my own. Namely, I shared the august company of Harpy Gemma Quill of Mobile, AL, and Harpy B-Rick of Charleston, SC. I promise you, this has merit. The lovely Lady Quill and Sir B-Rick were present at my request. You see, I’ve spent a great deal of time studying this city and the rulings of Harpies that have come before me. Much of that study happened due to that nasty business involving Elder Diego Cortez and Miss Zophiel. The hours of my unlife I’ll never get back… ::SIGHS!::
Sidenote: I heard through the grapevine that Elder Diego Cortez had “his day in court” at the hands of His Majesty. Here are the highlights:
1. The crime: Same as Elder Goetzschlagg of the Tremere (i.e. involvement in the death of Elder Klaus of the Malkavians, but not physical involvement).
2. The verdict: Guilty
3. The Sentence: Banishment
Do say hello to Elder Goetzchlagg if you happen to see him. Bon Voyage!
Anywho, in researching obscure harpy rulings, I came across a little known mechanic of our social society. If thirteen harpies happen to gather in one place, they have the power to affect entire domains. Now, you all know my inability to sit still when I have a super shiny in my possession, physical or otherwise. I just had to talk to other harpies and see if they knew of any reason thirteen of us shouldn’t gather at an undisclosed location outside of the realm of any prince, anarch holding, or sabbat domain. I mean, why shouldn’t we host a party to make Eostre’s (Easter for those not up on their Godly History) celebration in American Gods look like kids playing in a sandbox?
Lady Quill and Sir B-Rick wholeheartedly agreed. So yes, dear citizens of our beloved City Beautiful, I did, in fact, spend all night of the 8th planning a party. The person of honor at said party? Why, all of you!
Yes. All of you. All of you beholden to that lying honorless creature pretending to be our Imperator were the guests to which we planned our soiree. In the midst of sipping punch and braiding each other’s hair, and the pillow fights, and listening to the super swell records of the Beatles, we gossiped on and on about the appetites, attitudes, and policies of the Imperator.
We found him guilty of breaking social protocol. On a multitude of fronts.
It took two weeks of debauchery, but we finally sobered up enough to remember why we were there, and calling A Motion of Bad Standing upon the Domain of Atlanta. The crimes against him? Cavorting with the infernal, being in league with the Red Listed formerly known as Guil, and gross misuse of boons to falsely control domains he otherwise would not be able to control.
The vote went as thus:
Harpy of Charleston, B-Rick of the Toreador: Vote of Guilty
Harpy of Moblie, Gemma Quill of the Assamites: Vote of Guilty
Harpy of Savannah, Roderick the Dashing of the Malkavians: Vote of Guilty
Harpy of New Orleans, Olivia du Maurier of the Nosferatu: Vote of Guilty
Harpy of Nashville, Poptop of the Brujah: Vote of Guilty
Harpy of Ashville, Malcolm della Roche of the Toreador: Vote of Guilty
Harpy of Raleigh, Constance Merryweather of the Toreador: Vote of Guilty
Harpy of Birmingham, Bold Ivan of the Brujah: Vote of Guilty
Harpy of Jackson, Clayton Thomas Warren, III of the Ventrue: Vote of Guilty
Harpy of Biloxi, Avery Jackson of the Ventrue: Vote of Guilty
Harpy of Macon, Raina of the Gangrel: Vote of Guilty
Harpy of Greensboro, Blind Mary of the Nosferatu: Vote of Guilty
And the Harpy of Orlando, Yours Truly, Image of the Tremere: Vote of Guilty.
The status of Bad Standing is hereby attached to the Domain of Atlanta only, and they have three months to rectify the situation. Otherwise, a more permanent solution may be in the works. And by permanent, I’m certain their Graces, the Justicariate, might have something to say if Atlanta doesn’t get it’s act together. It’s almost enough to have me pity them. Almost.
What this means to you: All boons owed to and from Atlanta and its citizens are now null and void. You are free, at least from that monster’s strings on your souls.
See? Even when I’m not here, I’m always looking out for the City’s best interests.
PART 2: Mr. Nedlen. Mr. Ballance, and Mr. Kennedy’s Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Night
Now, while I’m in the mood to toss around explosive social devices, let’s take a moment to review some rules of etiquette here in Orlando. And when I say rules, I mean the fucking assumption that just because you can’t see me, doesn’t mean I can’t fucking see you. Especially when attending a social gathering. I know all about the little squabble within the ranks of Clan Nosferatu and Clan Toreador. Namely Mr. Nedlen vs. Mr. Ballance vs. Ms. Elaine of the Toreador (Yes, she’s Toreador now by word of Mr. Kennedy! Happy dance?) and a problem with a piece of wood somehow ruining Mr. Ballance’s chest, and thusly a chunk of His Majesty’s evening. I must admit I was a little shocked regarding the way that was handled. On almost all sides, quite frankly.
To recap this in a pointed manner: The Nosferatu Clan should take a page from the rest of the upstanding clans in this domain and settle their personal shit behind closed doors, away from gatherings. Contracting outside your clan to have one of your own taken down? And through a Toreador, no less? Aren’t you two like gasoline and, uh, whatever other liquid combusts instantly when mixed with gasoline?
Though a small Klondike Bar is granted to Clan Nosferatu for being wise enough to admit when they need assistance with something, especially when that ‘something’ is a matter of the Masquerade. I even applaud Mr. Nedlen’s efforts to go through proper channels with the Late Great Seneschal Santana Trafficante–time and again–before escalating the matter into contract work. If I believed a member of my clan wasn’t who he or she said they were? Jumping Jesus on a Pogostick, I’d be the first to start calling for help. Do you all not remember who resides to the far West of us? The Sabbat. The South of us? The werewolves. To the East of us? Hunters. The North of us? Imperator Fucking Stein. Color me McCarthy, but I’m suspicious as shit of anyone and everyone right now.
That’s the only thing that keeps all involved from the greater social scourging.
However, there is one point I simply cannot overlook: In the right or in the wrong of a given topic, you do NOT backtalk someone of higher standing than yourself. Your mountain of evidence does not circumvent the standing of those of greater esteem than yourselves in our society. And to backtalk a Prince in his own city and at gathering he, himself, was hosting? Even in your anger, you must admit that this was a tad on the foolish side, no? Our entire society is founded on the premise of respecting standing and the honoring of boons. You let your anger get the better of you, my friend. Tisk tisk.
To say His Majesty was displeased with the entire situation is an understatement. I’ve it on good authority that The Vitale Glare (™ and patent pending) was aimed at a certain Mr. Nedlen over this entire matter. Is there an apology forthcoming? I would hope so. Status demands nothing less.
I wonder if the oft silent Mr. York is going to handle his clan’s internal-now-public squabbling, given he stands as Primogen of the Nosferatu. Two of your own members literally stabbing each other (via secondary means, but still!), and one of them sassing a Prince? Did you even attempt to reign in the backtalk? Because someone told me that the newly named Ventrue Primogen attempted to put a cork in that as no one else was trying. How embarrassing!
Now, gather round, my lovelies. Auntie Image is about to teach something: I know what the rest of you are thinking. Is there a new protocol in place in Orlando where you can’t use boons for services outside your clan? Are you now commanded to bring every squabble before His Majesty for arbitration? Absolutely not! Boons are boons, and services are services. They require not the Prince’s seal of approval to make valid. The real problem in this situation doesn’t reside with Mr. Nedlen’s use of a boon, or Mr. Kennedy’s willingness to accept it.
The problem with this situation is the publicity of it all, and whose lap it landed in.
Yes, you heard me correctly. From the standpoint of boons and our society, Mr. Nedlen and Mr. Kennedy DID NOTHING WRONG. They did not break a tradition. They did not violate the laws of prestestation. They. Did. Nothing. Wrong.
… except for having this land in His Majesty’s lap. Except for allowing this to go public.
Someone wasn’t very good at keeping your private matters private. Someone involved his Majesty in this situation. Where I you, Mr. Kennedy of the Toreador, and Mr. Nedlen of the Nosferatu, I’d redirect my ire and my efforts into finding out which set of loose lips sunk your boon ship. Because, as I have said before, A PRINCE’S DOMAIN IS HIS OWN CONCERN. If His Majesty took it upon himself to become involved in this matter, that is His Majesty’s decision. If His Majesty decided to take exception to the staking of Mr. Ballance, that is His Majesty’s decision.
The moral of this story, my readers, is this: Don’t make a mess of His Majesty’s lap. Errr, wait. That came out wrong. It’s keep your deals off His Majesty’s radar. It’s better that way for everyone involved, especially when said deals often go horribly sideways. Oh, and don’t backtalk ANYONE of higher standing than yourself, especially a Prince. Seriously.
PART 3: Miscellaneous Strange Candy (or Cheers and Jeers!)
Jeers: To whom it may concern: Please do stop attempting to pit myself against Primogen Krazy of the Malkavians. It didn’t take the two of us long to figure out what was going on. We had a delightful conversation over strange candy the other night, and are now quite honored and perturbed at the same time that someone went to all this trouble to play games with us. Do stop. Or we might have to reply with something more than a kindly worded message written while enjoying fireball cherries. Maybe we’ll invite you to play in our games sometime. I’ll even let Mr. Krazy choose the flavor…
Cheers: As I’m in the mood to give out Klondike bars, to all involved with the final removal of the Chloe Threat, you have the gratitude of an entire domain. Would the Czar tasked with that particular problem drop me a note? I want to sing out praises in that endeavor. I hear tell that she was destroyed utterly, and that the graveyards are (somewhat) free for us to cavort in all the night long. You are my heroes.
Jeers: Dear Primogen Council, I call upon you to utilize patience when some of you are newly raised to your position. You cannot blame others for ignoring your presence that very same gathering if they were not present to hear the announcement. We are eternal, not infallible. Please, honored council, exercise patience. I’m not going to call scandal on someone simply because you were raised to Primogen that night, and the person ignoring your previously lesser standing, or even your person, was out defending the city (seriously, so many missions. It’s like Seal Team Six up in here lately!) and wasn’t around for the announcement. An apology to the ignored is only proper, once the ignorant is properly enlightened. But no scandal. Sorry.
Cheers: Thanks to the combined efforts of His Majesty and Primogen Kennedy of the Toreador, I have it on good authority that Parabolic Industries will soon close up its doors and GFTO of our fine city. Good riddance. Those people had no class, tact, or ability to run a proper firewall. Purely shameful, really.
Jeers: Can we please stop trying to redecorate the Orlando skyline by taking down skyscrapers? Someone(s) tried to burn down the Suntrust Building on the 8th of July. Do you even know what kind of attention that sort of thing gathers? ::cough:: hunters! ::cough:: I don’t know who did it (yet), and I don’t even know if it was one of us (yet), but I’m still looking into the matter. Can we repeat after me? “No taking down of skyscrapers. Broken bits of building plays havoc with traffic. We have enough trouble with Tourists who don’t know how to merge properly.” When in doubt, don’t arson. Let that be a new city logo, and replace the NIOT trash.
Cheers: To Mr. Cerberus of the Gangrel. He broke a window in my club, all in the name of defending the gathering from an angry mob. He returned promptly thereafter and offered to replace it. He offered to me a boon for the trouble, too. THAT’s how it’s done, ladies, gentlemen, and apache attack helicopters. That’s proper etiquette.
Jeers: To this super long rambling harpy report
Loves and cuddles,
Harpy of Orlando
PS – Correction from the last report: Mr. Ganbataar Khan won the prize from Clan Tremere for bringing the most interesting gift to gathering. He is offered a minor boon from Primogen Cross of the Tremere.
PPS – Correction from the last report: Mr. Magick won the debate on Magical Theory, as hosted by Clan Tremere. He is seen as *loyal* by the Primogen Cross of the Tremere.