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    Real Strategy Requires Cunning

Cascadia

First Lieutenant
Apr 23, 2007
284
0

FOR THE EMPEROR?!
The Tale of the Greater Estonian Empire

It all began on an unusually hot August morning in the Shibuya district of Tokyo. Now, this is a story about a baltic nation, you didn't read that title incorrectly. However, the man who would rise to lead Estonia to glory was in Shibuya at the time. In fact, he was Japanese, not Estonian. And perhaps rise is too strong of a word. More accurately, he stumbled upon the job opening rather unexpectedly.

Yoneda Takero wasn't in the best of moods that morning in 1935. For starters, he was 23 years old and still lived at home in a small apartment with his mother. She was always nagging him about something, whether it was forgetting to do some trivial cleaning task or to get a better job. That was another thing that had Takero on edge. His job, for lack of a better term, sucked.

Even in high school, he'd daringly grown what little facial hair he could, and his classmates commented that he looked remarkably like Emperor Meiji. So it was that Takero had gotten a job as a Meiji impersonater/lookalike. The agency he worked out of sent him to all the worst places: old military veterans' gatherings, department store openings, elementary school pageants, and by far the worst event of them all - children's birthday parties. He'd just had one of those the day before, and his leg still smarted. What was the world coming to when some uppity 5-year old thought he could kick Emperor Meiji in the shin? All just because the little snot hadn't gotten the exact toy airplane he'd wanted.

Something had to change. Takero knew that he was supposed to report to work for another thankless, sweaty day of pretending to be a dead man. Heavy uniforms weren't something he liked wearing in Tokyo summers. That in mind, he had his head stuck in a newspaper, reading over the classifieds and searching for a new job. If he didn't find one soon, he might well get drafted into the Imperial Army, and that was about the last thing he wanted. Kids kicking your shin was one thing; Chinese trying to kill you with guns was entirely different. He liked to think he was allergic to death, particularly his own.

"Takero!" came the inevitable shout of his formidable mother.

Takero chose to ignore her, continuing to pour over a page titled 'Fergusson's Finds - Jobs for the Ambitious, Mad and Desperate'. That last one sounded about right. He'd just begun scanning Fergusson's Finds when a broom came down on his head.

"Gah!" Takero yelped, then growled, "Mom, you can't just go around hitting people with a broom!"

"I can if they're my deadbeat son who doesn't know how to properly arrange our chopsticks!" the woman rumbled.

"I'm kinda busy, mom," Takero sighed, knowing his protests wouldn't do much good.

Sure enough, she continued, "Anybody with half a brain could figure out chopstick organization, but by the Kami, not my son!"

Takero tuned out his mother's rant as he went back to scanning Fergusson's Finds. There had to be something he could do there. Unfortunately, a lot of the jobs seemed to require some previous experience. None of that could be provided by his public appearances as an Emperor. Why in the world would you need warehouse experience to be 'Assistant Rubber Stamping Secretary for Lesser Volta'?

".. but no, when I looked in the drawer, there were the black ones right next to the blue and red ones! It's no wonder you can't get a respectable job!" the maternal tirade went on.

He was about to give in to despair and walk down to the Imperial Army recruitment center when an ad caught his eye:

WANTED: Man with no ties at home to travel to Baltic Europe and become Estonian head of state. No previous experience neccessary. Must be willing to live in cold climate, inside a modestly sized palace and accept payment for existing. Apply at your local Estonian embassy or consulate.
It had to be too good to be true! Payment for simply existing? No previous experience needed? Living in a bigger space than their tiny apartment? That was it! He'd get out of this contemptable summer weather, get away from his mother, and get to travel and therefore avoid military conscription. Yes, this had to be a sign.

"Hey mom, I'm gonna go out," he announced, "I found a new job, and I'm going out. Don't wait up for me."

As he headed towards the door, dressed in his Meiji regalia, his mother scoffed, "What new job? Who'd hire a dissapointment like you?"

"I'm going to be Emperor of Estonia!" he declared, then slammed the door and never looked back.

**********

From the Baltic Observer:
TALINN - The Estonian government's search for a new head of state appears to finally be over. With the unexpected announcment of President Konstantin Päts' retirement due to 'unexplained Stalin-related personal issues', the northernmost of the three Baltic republics had begun a worldwide search for a new leader. Their only applicant, apparently, is the man they chose: Takero Yoneda, 23, of Tokyo, Japan will be Estonia's new leader. It appears that the days of an Estonian republic have ended with the hiring, as Mr. Yoneda claims now to be the nation's emperor..
**********

Takero was a bit surprised by the country he'd been hired to rule. In fact, until he'd visited the Estonian embassy in Tokyo, he hadn't even been aware of the nation's existance. On the long series of flights over to Tallinn, he'd studied up on the small Baltic state. You couldn't well be emperor of a country you knew nothing about, could you? It was all provided for him in a handy packet from the embassy titled, 'So You're the Leader of Estonia: Fun Facts About Eesti'.

First, a map. He discovered that Estonia was just above Latvia, and right next to the Soviet Union. Well, at least that was nothing new! Japan was very close to the USSR, so maybe this wouldn't be so different after all. And with access to the sea, there was always a chance of expansion, wasn't there?


Estonia: Convenientally located on the Baltic sea to make flight from Stalin's hordes more expedient.

That was okay. But then came further details. According to the booklet, 'Estonia is a proud, modern European nation with a robust industrial base that is now around one twentieth that of Germany!'. Furthermore, he read: 'The Estonian military is a powerful force to be reckoned with, defending your new state from inevitable invasion by the forces of Bolshevism...'; but the Estonian army apparently consisted of three infantry divisions with old equipment. And a cow. They made very sure to mention that there was a cow in there somewhere, mentioning it several times.


Men of the Imperial Estonian Army, minus the cow.

As for the air forces, the answer was simple enough. They did not exist. And the Estonian Baltic Fleet did exist, which relieved Takero until he discovered its contents. There was only one ship. An old rustbucket of a fishing boat, which seemed to serve only as a signpost in Tallinn harbor, saying 'Estonia - A wonderful place to invade, if you're Russian'.


The Sitting Duck, the Imperial Estonian Navy's only ship in 1935.

Oh well, you couldn't have everything, could you? It had to be better being Emperor of Estonia than sitting around a kitchen table being struck on the head with a broom. Kadriog Palace, soon to be Takero's Imperial Palace, looked spiffy enough and reportedly had a staff of four. One elderly Welsh butler who didn't speak Estonian. A grumpy Finnish lumberjack who served as the place's maitenance man. A plump maid who bore a disturbing resemblance to England's Queen Victoria. And finally, a gate guardsman who was drunk half the time and didn't have any bullets for his rifle. Wonderful. A new staff would be in order, Takero decided. One that would better suit his imperial majesticness.


Kadriog Palace in Tallinn, Estonia. The one place in the capital where Estonian was not spoken.

Other things had to be changed too. Takero had decided that in order to legitimize his rule, he would take a page out of the Japanese emperor's book. True, it was harder to explain himself as a European nation's emperor, but he had a plan. It was one thing to be the descendant of the sun goddess, which was cool. However, gods tended to philander quite a bit, so couldn't a couple of them get together and make a love child? Therefore, he was now descended (on his father's side) from two dieties.

His official explanation of this to embassy staff had been, "As imperial sovereign of Estonia, I am given my right to rule by my divine ancestry. My line is descended not only from Amaterasu, the sun goddess,


Amaterasu, obviously.

but also.... um.... Thor. Yeah, Thor."


Sun goddess + Thunder god = Yeah, I'm totally a divine god-emperor!

This decided, Takero had also announced that the national flag would be altered. Three horizontal stripes, as Estonia had now, was emulated by far too many countries to make the nation stand out. So what if Latvia, Lithuania, Holland, Yugoslavia, Austria, Spain, Bulgaria, and a bunch of Latin American countries used it? As an empire with a divine monarch, didn't Estonia rate a more unique banner?


Estonia's old flag, using the tired old tri-color horizontal line pattern.

That in mind, Takero had ordered a combination of his homeland's banner and the Estonian national colors. It seemed a good way to combine his heritage and his position. The result was something he felt was good looking and striking enough to serve as an imperial banner.


The new imperial Estonian banner: it just screams 'Eesti is the Bestie!'

With all his imperial prerogatives in place, Takero began thinking out other plans. The military would have to be expanded, starting with the Imperial Estonian Navy. A fishing boat would not be sufficient to create a true empire. Also, he wasn't exactly sold on hiring only locals to work in Kadriog Palace. No, he'd have to get some people from back home... girls, he decided. Lots of them. Yes, that would do the trick nicely.


His Imperial Majesty Takero I, Emperor of Estonia
 
Last edited:

unmerged(128102)

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Woot!
 

El Pip

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You know I think Takero will be exceptionally disappointed when he lands, I'm not convinced Estonia will be delighted at his plans. ;)
 

4th Dimension

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Watch out Stalin! Prepare to face the Emperor's divine thunder!
Oh yeah? How many divisions does he got :D

As for the thunder, Stalin has thunder too, in guise of thousands of artillery pieces.

I'll be watching this.

And IEN:Sitting duck :rofl:
 

KiMaSa

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Oh yeah? How many divisions does he got :D

As for the thunder, Stalin has thunder too, in guise of thousands of artillery pieces.

I'll be watching this.

And IEN:Sitting duck :rofl:
Well naturally Estonia will have to start small... First Latvia, Lithuania, Poland and Germany... THEN the Soviet Union DIES!!!!!:D
 

Teep

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KiMaSa said:
Well naturally Estonia will have to start small... First Latvia, Lithuania, Poland and Germany... THEN the Soviet Union DIES!!!!!
Don't forget Sweden. You can test out your navy on them and give them patback.
 

Cascadia

First Lieutenant
Apr 23, 2007
284
0

All the reading in the world didn't prepare you for the subject matter in person. Takero sure hadn't expected to be as disappointed as he was when the rickety old aircraft finally landed in Tallinn. Looking back, he was surprised the old bird had even flown at all. Getting all the way from Japan to Estonia in it, and landing safely, were miracles he felt only the kami were capable of. He'd have to remember to set up a shinto shrine inside Kadriog palace, or else he might risk their wrath.

Having the gods against him was definitely the last thing he needed after getting his first look at Estonia. For some reason he'd expected there to be a large gathering to welcome the new Emperor to the capital. Instead, there were a grand total of three people on the ground. Two of them appeared to be a couple waiting for a flight, and arguing back and forth, their gestures very animated. The third was a tall, bald man wearing a grimly dark military uniform. Without a flight crew beyond the pilots, Takero had to carry his own luggage out of the plane.

The bald man approached, and began speaking rapidly in a language Takero didn't understand at all. Trying to assume the part of the true Emperor, he put on a serious face and listened intently. So what if he couldn't understand what was being said? So long as he pretended to, it would look as if he knew what he was doing. A few times, he muttered noises of assent, and nodded for extra emphasis. Yes, this was the way to handle a local, he thought.

Finally, the bald man spoke in English, "You didn't understand a word I said, did you?"

"Of course I did... well.. none at all," Takero admitted, speaking English himself since he'd become proficient with it in school.

"Dear God, an 'Emperor' who doesn't speak Estonian," the man shook his head, "If we weren't so desperate for a leader, I'd have you seen off back to Japan. But we need a leader, and so an emperor will have to do. Mr. Yoneda, my name is Oskar Tuuling. I'm your Prime Minister. Now, if you'll just-"

"Prime Minister? So, you're my second in command, eh? Well, I guess it is good to have an intimidating man in charge of the 'government' to shore up my imperial authority," Takero remarked, and got a cold stare from Tuuling, "I mean.. uh.. we're all in this together... for Estonia."

"Good," Tuuling nodded, then proceeded to lead Takero to a waiting automobile.

It was pretty slick, and all things considered surprised him that the Estonian government owned anything so nice. Everything else, from the navy's fishing boat to the government airliner, had been fourth-rate at best. How the government managed to function at all with its apparent shortfalls was beyond Takero. He was about to remark on the subject when he saw the view of Kadriog palace before them. As with the rest of Estonia at the moment - it was December, since the interviewing process had taken a long time and the flight had been delayed days at every stop due to mechanical difficulties - the place was blanketed in snow. A dark sky made the place look forboding rather than grand. Another dissapointment.


Kadriog palace during fine Estonian sporting weather.

"Great... just great," he sighed in Japanese.

The guard at the gate was asleep, leaning up against the wall with his rifle having fallen halfway off his shoulder. His service cap was leaned forward over his eyes, and an empty bottle of liqour sat on the ground next to his feet. Takero grinned as he got an idea of how to shake things up.

As the car drove past the guard (the gate was left open because he'd never bothered to close it), Takero leaned out of his window and shouted, "BANZAI!"

While the Emperor pulled himself back in the car, the guard awoke with a start. Gripping his rifle, he looked around, and saw only the car driving past. With a shrug the man leaned his rifle up against the wall, then leaned himself and tried to return to sleep. He was probably just hearing things - the man hallucinated when he was drunk for some reason, and once had claimed that Stalin's eyebrows were talking to him from a picture in a newspaper. The guard had been confused why Stalin's eyebrows had told him to buy a new pair of genuine moose hide boots at a 'low, low sale price, this weekend only at the Tallinn Sportman's Store!', but hadn't questioned the instructions either.

Once inside, the car got about ten feet before it was stuck in the snow. The driver tried to gun it, but that just got the vehicle stuck worse. Prime Minister Tuuling reacted with only the slightest hint of annoyance, showing that this must happen on a regular basis. Tuuling got out of the car and marched through the fairly deep snow up the steps to Kadriog. Groaning, Takero grabbed his suitcase and exited the car to follow him. After falling down a couple of times, he managed to get to the entrance where he stomped his boots to get the excess snow off.

"Not used to this fine Estonian sporting weather, Mr. Yoneda?" Tuuling asked, the question itself surely a joke, but spoken without the intonation of one.

"Fine sporting weather? Is it like this all the time?" Takero asked in shock.

"No. Only most of the late autumn, all winter, and sometimes early spring," Tuuling answered.

"Well we didn't have snow like this back in Tokyo," Takero shrugged.

Tuuling said nothing, and merely led Takero indoors towards the meeting room where his cabinet awaited. The Emperor left snow and water in his wake, and recieved the ire of the maid. She yelled something in another language Takero didn't understand, then in English shouted 'we are not amused!'. Takero tuned her out as he had with his mother. Inside the meeting room, he took stock of his cabinet. They were mostly polticians and military officers whom Tuuling had gathered together.



Estonia's diplomatic standing under the new imperial government.

Takero singled out the army's commander and raised an eyebrow, "General, I remember reading that you prescribe a static defensive doctrine for the military to follow?"

"That is correct," the man responded in the new government lingua franca of English.

"Then you have no place in my government. Estonia should look to expand, not to sit and wait to be attacked! As divine Emperor, I command that our armies be trained for offensive warfare," Takero announced in his best booming, authoritative voice, "You will be replaced."

"Replaced? By who?" the general snorted, obviously not believing he could be removed so easily.

"Myself. As Estonia's imperial monarch, I am also supreme commander of her armed forces. That means however I see fit to organize the military, it shall be done. Since you preach sitting and waiting, which is not to me the best path for Estonia, I will replace you," Takero responded, then pointed to the door, "Now be gone, and let us continue on with plans for a greater Estonia."

Once the dumbfounded general left, Takero looked to his other cabinet members. Prime Minister Tuuling scared him, what with his height, baldness, cold stare and stoic mode of speech. The others would fall in line, he thought, especially Admiral Vendt of the navy and General Tomberg of the army air force. Both had more modern ideas on warfare, according to his pamphlet, and therefore weren't a problem. Armaments minister Karl Selter was a genius of administration, which would help bolster Estonia's tiny industrial sector.


Estonia's imperial cabinet, with Emperor Takero as the military and army chief of staff.

"So, now that that's been settled," Tulling intoned emotionlessly, "We shall attend to the planning for modernization."

"Right," Takero nodded, then remained silent. Everyone looked at him funny, though, and he wondered why. Did he still have some snow in his mustache? That'd be pretty embarrassing, and would make him look like a fool before his own cabinet. He got the idea he was supposed to do something. What was it? Tuuling gave him no hint, just staring at him, eyes boring deep into the Emperor, possibly toward his soul. Selter coughed politely. Finally, Takero realized he was supposed to be issuing his orders for the planning.

"Riiight," he repeated, laughed nervously, then went back to authoritative mode, "First of all, it is my firm belief - decided within the past twenty minutes in fact - that Estonia's current land holdings are far too small for a nation of destiny. Our region is influenced too much by bolshevism from the east, Nazis to the southwest, and old guard powers to the west. To gain more land that rightfully should be Estonian, and to protect the peoples of the region from these influences, I propose we create a new sphere of influence. We can call it the.... um.... Greater East... Baltic.... no, European.... Northern European.... Co-Prosperity Sphere. Yes, the Greater North European Co-Prosperity Sphere! Some lands should be brought directly into union with Tallinn, while others should be granted a nominal autonomy."

When this drew scattered claps from foreign minister Ants Piip, Takero smiled. Yes, they would come over to his side eventually. Piip had actually been reading a dirty magazine inside his innocent looking government folder, and hadn't been paying attention. He'd only started clapping when the Emperor finished so he wouldn't seem as if his attention was elsewhere. Takero, however, took it as support and went on to detail more plans.

"In order to achieve the establishment of the Greater North European Co-Prosperity Sphere, we need to expand the Imperial military. This begins with the navy. Any expansion will require naval transports, which I am hereby ordering to commence production on," Takero declared, looking to Admiral Vendt for the next bit, "We should also look into acquiring a warship or two before we expand. This will be handled by foreign minister Piip's office, and the Imperial Intelligence Institute under minister Kaerma's direction. In the mean time, what can we do to protect our transports once they're completed?"


Expanding the IEN beyond a rusty fishing boat.

"I knew you'd ask that, so I came up with a complete redesign on the current flagship. Gentlemen, your Imperial Majesty, I give you.... the IEN Sitting Duck, reborn!" Vendt proclaimed, then produced a crude artists' rendition of the old fishing boat that was the fleet's only ship. This time, it had turrets on the bow and stern that looked too heavy for it, and the imperial flag flying from its mast.


The newly envisioned IEN Sitting Duck, complete with a new sign that reads 'Don't Mess With Estonia!

Takero shuddered when he saw that, but sighed and nodded, "Very well, we will take your suggestion into consideration, Admiral Vendt. Until then, we must focus on training the Imperial Estonian Army for offensive combat and the coming invasion of an old enemy. And no, that's not Russia."

He let that sink in before he snuck in, "In addition, I will also begin hiring a new staff for Kadriog palace, in order to reflect my true Imperial majesty. These new staff shall be young and female, to provide ample opportunity for me to acquire an heir, as well as to be easy on the eyes of visitors. Also, they will come from Asia, to reflect our new dual national identity... something like that anyway."

"Won't that cost a lot of money to pay for their transport?" Kaarel Eenpalu, security minister, asked.

"Who's Emperor?" was Takero's response.

"You are... I think," Eenpalu shrugged.

"That's right," Takero nodded, then concluded, "With these plans in place, Estonia will become a truly great power! Long live Estonia! Long live the Greater North European Co-Prosperity Sphere!"

Then there was silence. Tuuling stared. Selter coughed politely. Maybe he had a cold. Tomberg seemed to be staring out the window at the snow like a child who was stuck in class, daydreaming. Piips had gone back to 'reading' his magazine. It was Admiral Vendt, grinning like a loon, who first stood up to respond. The cabinet had learned only one Japanese phrase, and Vendt decided to use it.

"Tenno heika... banzai!" he shouted, throwing his arms in the air.

The others stared at the man as if he was mad, but then shrugged and stood as well. Soon, all but Piips were emulating Vendt, shouting, "Banzai! Banzai! Banzai!"

Maybe this wouldn't be so bad after all, Takero thought. Especially when the first of his new palace staff arrived from Japanese Formosa. Yes, it was a vast improvement over the old staff.


Part of Takero's plan to reviltalize Kadriog's palace staff. No ulterior motive here at all...
 
Last edited:

safferli

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I love the Sitting Duck! :D
 
Jun 28, 2008
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Amaterasu's and Thor's child....................Do I even NEED to say how awesome that is?
 

Mico94

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looks like this is gonna be an awesome aar...
 

unmerged(50292)

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The Rising Sun in Europe, it is a sure bet to be awesome!!!
 

Cascadia

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Well naturally Estonia will have to start small... First Latvia, Lithuania, Poland and Germany... THEN the Soviet Union DIES!!!!!:D
And the Imperial Estonian army will march into Leningrad and Moscow with a catchy Japanese-style march like this: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lzpjBdxz5io&feature=related

Complete with the apparently accordion parts! Which led me to create this inspirational poster for the Emperor's troops:

 

Teep

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  • Victoria 2
  • Shadowrun: Hong Kong
  • Shadowrun: Dragonfall
  • Shadowrun Returns
  • Crusader Kings III
  • War of the Roses
  • 500k Club
  • Tyranny: Archon Edition
  • Crusader Kings II: Conclave
  • Europa Universalis IV: El Dorado
  • Tyranny: Archon Edition
  • Mount & Blade: Warband
  • Mount & Blade: With Fire and Sword
  • Crusader Kings II: Way of Life
  • Europa Universalis IV: Dharma
  • Europa Universalis IV: Common Sense
  • Crusader Kings II: Horse Lords
  • Hearts of Iron IV: Cadet
  • Crusader Kings II: Monks and Mystics
  • Age of Wonders III
  • Stellaris: Distant Stars
  • BATTLETECH: Flashpoint
  • Cities: Skylines - Mass Transit
  • Stellaris: Digital Anniversary Edition
  • BATTLETECH
  • Hearts of Iron IV: Death or Dishonor
  • Stellaris: Leviathans Story Pack
  • Crusader Kings II: Jade Dragon
  • Stellaris
  • Crusader Kings II: Holy Fury
  • Hearts of Iron IV: Expansion Pass
  • Stellaris: Apocalypse
  • Cities: Skylines - Parklife
  • Cities: Skylines - Parklife Pre-Order
  • Crusader Kings II: Reapers Due
Is it just me, or does that ship not have a sign?