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Thread: Passing Days: The Empire of Brazil

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    Roi-Chevalier Drake Rlugia's Avatar
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    Passing Days: The Empire of Brazil

    Passing Days: The Empire of Brazil




    The year is 1914. Two-score and nine years ago, the roaring cannons over the fields of Sharpsburg and Antietam fell quiet. The election of McClellan brought an end to the 'War of Secession' and the independence of the Confederate States of America was guaranteed. Since then, leaps and bounds have been made. The United States have found solace in Germany, adopting Prussian training, rationing, and conscription, whilst the Confederates looked to Britain for guidance, all while maintaining their 'peculiar institution' even into the 20th century. Ties were fostered with Brazil, the sole remaining slave nation in the world.

    Now that 1914 has come, the world is divided into two armed camps. On one side stands the Central Powers of Germany, Austria-Hungary, and the United States. The Entente Powers consist of Britain, France, The Confederate States, and Russia. Brazil is neutral in this armed world, but looks to Germany for industrial and military guidance, all while this world heads slowly towards war.

    Brazil is led by the dashing Empress Cecília, grand-daughter of Empress Isabella, and Empress of the nation since 1899. 1910 spelled an end to her regency, and she assumed the command of Brazil, the nation where thirty percent of the souls dependent upon her benevolence still remain in chains. The world is changing, and Brazil plays a vital part, as the great armed camps attempt to garner her support, all as the world prepares to be tossed into the hell that is war..

    Will you join this young Empress, so naive yet so wise, in the chaotic times to come ahead? There are not only court cabals and gossips, but talk of rebellion, of revolution, from the fanatic Republicans, to those who wish to better the lot of those still enchained on the vast Haciendas in the interior. Cecília has come of age in a violent time, attempting to maintain the a-political outlook of a monarch, yet holding a nation together, to avoid it being torn asunder.


    NOTE: This is loosely based off a Victoria game I played, but mostly it is an independent story, taking the reader through the idyllic Brazilian empire, still entrenched in the 19th century with it's slavery and social institutions, all while the world around it marshals modern armies and factories to fight the 'War to end all Wars.' Updating will be sporadic; one of my main problems is updating too quickly and losing interest. I may update 1-2 a week, maybe even thrice. I hope you enjoy this twist on the Great War.
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    Colonel Dr. Gonzo's Avatar

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    Ooh, sounds VERY interesting I must say, I played a similar game as the Brazilian Empire during WWI and did plan to do a possible AAR but it went south by 1916 and I started my Colombia one

    Anyway good luck, I'll most definately be following

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    Compulsive CommentatAAR stnylan's Avatar
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    Indeed. An intriguing set-up. Brazil sounds quite backward really - the story of how it deals with the gate-crashing of reality all around it has lots and lots of potential.
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    I. In the Morning



    The Empress, circa 1910.


    From over the horizon, the morning sun found it's way over the Palace complex of Rio de Janeiro, and into the room of a slumbering young woman. She was not just any young woman, of course. She was the Empress of a large nation, a nation which inspired envy from it's neighbors, and only cool notice from Europe. She was the Empress of Brazil, given her power by God, and having it confirmed by the very populace whom she ruled over. For all intents, the young woman who slumbered was held back by a constitution. But her charisma and innate charm, not to mention her innocent streak granted her vast influence over the Brazilian parliament. As a learned woman, she could afford to meddle in politics. To the Esucros[1] she was a goddess who protected them to the abuse. To everyone else, she was the pretty, charming young thing given to them by God, to lead Brazil to glory.

    While the people worshiped her at home, abroad saw indifference. To the Crowned Heads of Europe, from aging Franz Josef to the regal Jean III of France. She was viewed as such not because of her ways or her upbringing, but simply to the nation which she led, to which claimed to be a part of. Brazil was still a 'Dark Nation' where inferiority meant a lifetime in chains. Nepotism bred, and while industry flourished abroad, Brazil was content to remain tied to coffee. At home, Brazilians saw their nation as glorious, an empire to last one thousand years. To Europe, it was a shoddily built, and many were quite certain one blow would send it tumbling, like a pile of bricks. These thoughts is what fueled Brazil's révanche, a desire for a place in the Sun. They believed themselves innately superior to Europe. While Europe heralded liberty and equality, the Brazilians, being haughty beings, preferred to remain in the darkness. The Escuros were inferior and needed kept in their place. This is why the instituição peculiar[2] flourished, and why it remained in Brazil.

    The rays of the morning soon entered through the vast windows of room, causing the young Empress to stir from her sleep. All around her, the Escuro slaves laid out fresh clothes and pulled back curtains, all while she turned into order to sleep, even for just a little bit longer. However, it was not possible The Empress was quite aware of the work ahead, and the sooner the dressing ceremony was through, the sooner she could get to work. With a leisurely sigh, she sat comfortably while the sheets were pulled back from the bed, allowing her to stand freely once more. All around, Escuro slaves and white servants, along with nobles of the high court watched their Empress with great interest.

    "Good morning, Empress Cecília!" Came from one of her courtiers, with a low bow. The Empress returned the very bow. From the earliest hours of the morning, a court etiquette was followed, even from the time one rose up. It was tiring of course, but Cecília was obliged to follow it. It was what she lived for, what she had been born to do.

    "Good morning," The Empress returned sweetly.

    While chatter was carried out with the nobles, all around her clothing was prepared and Cecília underwent the humiliating process of changing before nearly everyone high-ranking female aristocrat, servant, and slave. She kept a cool face as her chemise was exchanged, preferring to chat and laugh about local politics and other things to alleviate possible embarrassment. There was talk of a variety of things. From recent bills in parliament, to even more boring things such as railroads. Usually, the chatter lapsed into court gossip; who was doing what, with whom, where, and why. Cecília was only mildly amused by the immorality of her close friends.

    Her eyes lingered on the slaves who helped out. They were the back-bone of Brazil, from the estates, to the very palace which she lived in. From all sides, she was pressured by France and Britain to grant emancipation. It was not a worrying thought to the Empress. Liberty and Equality were poor notions, notions which did not keep one clothed or safe. Free Escuros would mean an end to Brazil. An end to the empire which she ruled and oversaw.

    ''Liberty, equality..they are just emotions. The slaves are Brazil need care and comfort, which they receive. You are still rich or poor, dead or alive, even without liberty and equality. Such notions deserve no place in Brazil! It has worked just fine since 1823, and it will continue as such..'

    Cecília shut her eyes as her face was scrubbed slightly by one of the various slaves. It didn't matter what France, Britain, or anyone said. Brazil was great; Brazil was glorious. It was great and glorious because of slavery, and abolishment would spell the end. Brazil did not need to be infected by modern ideas that the Industrial Revolution had spurned! Socialism, Republicanism, Destruction, Hate...that is all the new age bred, and Cecília knew it was true.

    At least, that is what she wished to believe.

    [1]Literally meaning Dark, Escuro has become a derogatory term used for Africans and dark-skinned people in the empire.

    [2]Portugese for Peciular Institution; Slavery.
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  5. #5
    Khan of the Crimea Hajji Giray I's Avatar
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    Wow, this sounds like a really cool scenario! Interesting start and I am intrigued at both how the world got this way and how Brazil will react to it.
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  6. #6
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    Most interesting. I love the description of Cecilia, we have both the good impression of a young beauty in love with her country, while at the same time we see her as a regressive force, a champion of slavery in a modern world.

    Great!
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    Thanks for the comments so far, guys.

    Dr. Gonzo: Yes, it's very interesting. I have to say I enjoy writing about this scenario. There is something about it which just makes me excited.

    stnylan: Brazil is indeed quite backwards. She clings to old institutions, while the nations around her industrialize. Quite a shock will be coming to her soon. She will learn that things can't continue as they currently are.

    Hajji Giray I: Thank you! As the story progresses, the shroud which surrounds this world loosen. The story deals with Brazil and the surrounding lands, but our Empress will meet other characters who will loosen the mystique.

    Estonianzulu: Cecilia is quite the enigma, isn't she? On one side, you wish to think that she is an innately good person. However, her views regarding slavery and other thinks cause you to rethink that. As the story progresses, we will learn more about Cecilia, and why she is what we see before us.
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    Compulsive CommentatAAR stnylan's Avatar
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    Cecilia strikes me as being a peculiar sort of innocent - powerful in one sense yet precisely because of her position protected from that most defiling of things - knowledge. In that, I suppose, she is representative of the nation that she rules.
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  9. #9
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    Excellent - subscribed.

    I tried playing Brazil once but all its parties are SO terrible...what with Free Trade/Laissez-Faire in a pre-industrial nation. Ugh.
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    Very interesting alternate history this is shaping up to be. And a well written story so far.

  11. #11
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    Nice start, like has laready been said her mixture of charm and the constitution of a Tsar is very intriguing. I predict (or maybe its just mispalced hope) that the Empress will wise up eventually and realise slavery isn't so paternal after all... or maybe she'll go the way of the Romanovs?

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    stnylan: Yes, I think she is very protected. She has grown up in a palace surrounded by wealth. She's never really seen the country-side where the true horrors take place. She's not aware of many of the problems the nation has. She is more or less in tune with the Jingoists in Brazil; that she is great and has no reason to change.

    RGB: Yeah, the parties aren't too good at first, but later in the game Brazil gets some protectionist parties. The Free/Trade laissez-faire represent the domination of Brazil's economic life by the Slavocrats--that her future is in agriculture and she doesn't need industry. They honestly thought that as well!

    LeonTrotsky: Thank you! It'll get better as the story progresses. Stuffy court-life isn't everyone's favorite thing, I'm sure. But there will be a little bit of something for everyone.

    Dr. Gonzo: Only time can tell what will happen to our dear empress.
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    II. Simple Politics



    The brooding Prime Minister of Brazil, João Alves, Marquês de Rio Váde.


    After the morning dressing ceremony and other small things, the Empress spent the remainder of the morning, and usually portions of the afternoon in the gardens. She contented herself to treats such as Iced Cream and Lemonade, gossiping with friends. That part of the day was also the calling period: the only time Cecília accepted ambassadors, government ministers, or anyone else of suitable rank which might wish to speak to her. To the governments of Americas, and to those of Europe, this came as a surprise. Before she became Empress, vast meetings were held in private, away from the courtiers. Under Cecília, this was done away with. Preferring to mix business with pleasure, she molded political meetings into the aristocratic social hour. While she drank her tea, she signed laws, debated policies, and chattered with friends. Any foreigner visiting the Paço Imperial would've found this strange. However, it was tolerated. The Brazilians loved her, and were willing to indulge her childish whims. If she wished to speak in front of silly women who had as much idea of the land as she, little harm could be done.

    Cecília sighed quietly as she watched the sun roll over the hills of the palace complex. All around her, various women sat. All were dressed in their lavish taffeta dresses, with wide waists and elaborate designs. Even in fashion, Brazil clung to the 19th century. Whilst the women of America and Europe liberated themselves from corsets and immobile dresses, the Brazilian women clung to what was tradition. Anything else was unlady like. There was another sigh. The Empress was bored. Ages ago, she remembered when she enjoyed stupid chats about the immoral things her friends did behind closed doors. Lately, she felt changed, more refined. Such things were not needed during the social hour.

    "Yes, her. I hear she's sleeping with him..."

    Who cared? Cecília didn't want to listen to stories about sexual encounters.

    "Really? I went with him for a few weeks, but when it came time to crown the relationship, he was unable to rise to the occassion, if you know what I mean..."

    So? There was more too relationships than passionate evenings. However, the topic was vaguely interesting.

    "So she must be lying? She says they go at it all night, four or five times! She says he's relentless, a carnal beast..."

    Cecília honestly didn't care. Her eyes had left the flower patch, and now were actively eying the two friends speaking.

    "She must be. I mean, she's not exactly a looker. If I can't rise him into action, she certainly can't."

    Her concentration was broke!

    "It's not true." Cecília blurted out, words spewing from her mouth, the very words she had wanted to avoid. "I saw him last week with Stephanie."

    "Ahem, your majesty."

    Her lazy eyes left her bewildered friends. Before her was a man. Quite older than her, he was well-dressed and carried a very regal air before him. The Prime Minister, João Alves. If there was one person in the world who intimidated her, it was him. He had held his sacred office since 1900, and it was he who had any sort of paternal influence over her. It was he who judged her, who made her feel weak. She was constantly tsked and corrected by him, along with various things. She both resented and envied him. He was the only man in her life who had managed to tame her. She was spoiled by court, but he had kept it from being excessive.

    "Your excellency." Cecília rose from her chair, walking quietly over to her Prime Minister. Head low, the Empress bowed low towards the ground to him. He obliged her, repeating the same feat. The formality was ended when he planted a soft kiss upon her cheek (those close the Empress were permitted to kiss her cheek; lesser officials kissed her hand).

    "It is nearly noon." João Alves bluntly replied. "You had a meeting with the Austro-Hungarian ambassador at nine, if I am correct. I come here to speak with you, and I see the ambassador in the hall, bewildered! I spoke to him, and he said he had been waiting out there since eight! You did not meet with him."

    Cecília blushed furiously, and her chattering friends ceased giggling. They adverted their eyes, and a tense silence filled the garden. The Empress was young, but hardly meek. Even if her Prime Minister was nearly a father, she did not enjoy being spoken too in a harsh tone. She was his Empress! Without her, he was nothing!

    "The procedures of the palace are given to all ambassadors when they first take up residence here. He was fully aware that I attend to government matters during the social hour. He also knows that he must merely make himself known. I do not leave the gardens until two. He was quite aware of my schedule."

    João Alves glared. "You must be welcoming. You must take notice that foreigners are...not adapted to this style in which you host your government. You must be kind and aid them until they fit in. Your majesty, I see you are rather flustered. I will rearrange a meeting with him tomorrow, and I shall return another day to speak with you regarding the policies of state. Good day."

    He swept back in a low bow, and soon after was gone. Cecília glared. Taking back her seat, she did not speak. Her friends were quiet, but the regime was returned to normal. Sighing, the girlish Cecília returned to gazing around the gardens. This idyllic peace was only for a short while, for the large ornate bell in the Palace chapel rung, signaling an end of the hour, but also a time for refreshments. Escuros filled the gardens with vast trays. The women grinned, watching as treats were laid down and coffee dispensed. It was to Cecília's displeasure that she had a rather shoddy servant. The Escuro gapped at what she had done, but it was too late: coffee and cake was spilt acrossed the dress of the Empress. The eerie silence returned.

    "Idiot!" Cecília roared, still inflamed over her meeting with João. Raising her fan, she smacked the inferior Escuro beast with her fan.

    It was a blind rage for the Empress. Perhaps it was anger over her Prime Minister, or maybe the idiocy of the Escuro. Perhaps both, but with great vigor, Cecília smacked the howling woman several times. Blows landed in several places: on her back, her sides, her face, and still more. The Empress said nothing coherent, merely muttering 'Idiot, inferior beast!' It seemed like an endless tirade; but being a petite woman, Cecília ceased after nearly a minute of whipping. The slave backed away slowly, and soon exited the gardens. It was only minutes later that the thought arised to the Empress that she had harmed something.
    Last edited by Drake Rlugia; 10-04-2007 at 12:35.
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    Colonel Dr. Gonzo's Avatar

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    My my this is cerainly perculiar government

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    And this is 1914? Interesting. Does not bode well.
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    Strategos ton Exkoubitores Fulcrumvale's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by RGB
    And this is 1914? Interesting. Does not bode well.
    Why do I have a feeling that this will end in a communist revolution/ democratic revolution/coup/assassination/ other assorted unpleasantness for the court aristocracy?
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    Compulsive CommentatAAR stnylan's Avatar
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    Nothing is more dangerous, surely, than to have a petulant child as the leader of, well, anything.
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  18. #18
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    Dr. Gonzo: Yes, it really is. It doesn't work very well, but the Brazilians have yet to realize that.

    RGB: Yep, 1914. Scary, isn't it?

    Fulcrumvale: We shall have to see! There will be unpleasantness, but I'm not going to say anymore regarding the matter...

    stnylan: A mere child with such power is more dangerous than any idiot who has some semblance of what they are doing. She knows nothing regarding the matter, and needless to say, allows her emotions to guide her policies, rather than reason.
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  19. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by Drake Rlugia
    stnylan: A mere child with such power is more dangerous than any idiot who has some semblance of what they are doing. She knows nothing regarding the matter, and needless to say, allows her emotions to guide her policies, rather than reason.
    Can we still hope the prime minister and governing beurocracy (I never did learn how to spell that…) are competent enough to rule and powerful enough to check their master?

    Until the communist slave revolt hits, anyway…
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    "And the dream would grow ever grander and more wonderful, and the higher it reached towards the impossible, the more beguiling it became."--Emile Zola

  20. #20
    Khan of the Crimea Hajji Giray I's Avatar
    EU3 Complete

    Join Date
    Oct 2002
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    December 17, 1902
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    Wow, that was alarming!
    I'm a little surprised at the acceptable levels of gossip in 1914 Brazil ... wow, these people really have passions! Some shameless orders in the court. A carnal beast...
    Friends, I am no longer a regular visitor to the Paradox forums. However, you can attract my attention at any time by sending me a PM. I am notified by e-mail and will happily get in touch. ~ Hajji

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    Debts Unpaid: The First Guy Marlborough Mystery
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