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CaptainAlvious

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Great start to the finale so far, it's nice to see X-Divisions decades of work beginning to pay off and have an impact on the world, even with there's resistance from those who would stand to lose from the truth. This is gonna be a good finale indeed. I'm interested to see the affects this arc could have on futher gameplay updates as well.

I wonder if Otto still has the tape Elisabeth Alexandria got about the Sentinel conspiracy. That would be another damning piece of evidence Otto could use to help X-Division's offense against Sentinel, tho I'm not sure if he can edit out all the stuff about Aliens like Theresa Novak did with the Sentinel files.

Anyways, hope you like the Indochina update I'll post here, feel free to suggest changes and improvements to this interlude if you have any in mind. Funny how we're in the finale arc for X-Division, as I'm very close to the finale that is the Ming update after this one, I'm very excited to see how that turns out myself.:)
-
Völkerschalt-Divided Reich:
Dominion of Indochina

The Flag of the Dominion of Indochina, also the flag used by a powerful trade company that’s influenced the colonial government since initial Roman colonization centuries ago.

A long time ago, the Reich was a proud and mighty nation. At its height, Roman power and prestige stretched to all corners of the world, including to Indochina, the jewel of their colonial Empire in Maritime Southeast Asia. That doesn’t mean that Indochina wasn’t without instability, the competing colonial interests between the Sinosphere, India and the Reich leading up to the Weltkrieg did lead to Indochina being caught in the crossfire after all, with Bangkok being the site of Kaiser Karl’s infamous assassination. Aside from the anarchy of those times, Indochina has remained relatively peaceful since then, even it's still in the crossroads of geopolitical struggles between great powers like it's always been.

You may have figured by now that I’m not a native of Indochina or even a traditional settler, so you’re probably how I managed to hop onto a boat and escape the carnage, or even why I choose to settle in Indochina instead of Sudafrika or Mittagsland. I’m no hardened soldier eager to fight for the cause of some radical’s ideology and chant slogans like “Break the Chains”, “Every man a Kaiser”, “Deus Vult”, or “Down with the traitors”, rather I’m just a simple business man trying to make my way in the world. Naturally, the combatant regimes in Europe don’t take well to pacifists or neutral centrists, leading to the warring factions implementing mass conscription of the average populace and brutal purges of their political enemies. The Communists especially don’t take well to capitalists like myself, so there certainly was incentive for me to leave Spartacus held Socotra and flee to one of the Roman splinter states as soon as possible. Fortunately, I already had booked a ticket to a boat ride away from Socotra to Sumatra long before the Communists even had a strong presence on the island, with only a narrow encounter with Separatcist submarines as the only hiccup of my escape from the mainland. Thankfully reaching Indian waters just in time was the one thing that prevented me from meeting a watery grave, seeing how none of the warring Roman factions would dare start a war with major powers like India while being entwined in their own war, seems like that’s the only agreement they can come to.

Now, you’re probably wondering why I made my escape to independent Indochina when I could have made a trip to Sudafrika or Mittagsland instead, and the reason of that is that the populace of Indochina have fully embraced the idea of neutrality and isolationism, as opposed to the Sudafrikans who claim to be the true Roman government and thus aren’t willing to let go of the Reich, or the Mittagsland who are so eager to throw in with the Tianxia. You see, like how Mayapan society is one influenced by powerful merchant families with more wealth and power than hereditary nobility, Indochina is a land influenced by large and powerful corporations with sway over Indochinese politics, and the board of directors of Indochina’s corporations recognize that war is one of the worst things that could happen to a merchant’s businesses or a corporation's stocks, hence Indochina’s refusal to follow any particular faction into war. That’s not to say that Indochina doesn’t have any particular outside sympathizes; many powerful Indochinese corporations have numerous ties with Indians and the Tianxia alliances, especially in their anti communist efforts against the Nationalist Union of China, there’s even a powerful faction of warhawks in the Indochinese diet and military who advocate for Indochina going into the inevitable Asian conflict to protect corporate interest. Heck, the Indians and Tianxia nations like Vietnam and the Ming are themselves invested in the integrity and sovereignty of Indochina due to their trade deals with Indochinese corporations and the country’s valuable geographic position in the Maritime Southeast Asia region. This is why their policy towards Indochina is focused on peacefully pushing towards either of their two alliances rather than forcing it into their spheres of influence, tho this has caused a dispute between the Indians and Tianxia that has affected the corporations with ties and affiliations with them. That said, unlike the pro Tianxia Mittagsland or Indian aligned Sudafrika, the current government has no plan to entangle itself into a Greater Asian War, which is a smart move. After all, we've already had our taste of a land war in Asia back in the Weltkrieg, why should we come back for more?

Of course, Indochina isn’t without internal problems. The NUC, who'd like nothing more than to see their communist revolution reach Indochina, has supported many radical socialist movements throughout the country, notably among discontent native majorities like Malayans or Thai. In response to this subversion, the Greco-German corporate and bureaucratic elites have worked with a willing minority of Malyan and Thai nobility to implement and enforce strict anti communist measures against discontent nationalist groups and labor unions. Furthermore, there are tensions between the corporations and the former viceroy government of the Mukhtar-Srivijaya, especially due to their indirect connections to the Doukaist regime thanks to a member of the ruling arstoi family, Omar Mukhtar, being the director of Doukas’ Athanatoi agency. That’s not even mentioning the Corporations’ fear of the Mukhtar-Sivijaya meritocratic government developing into an autocratic regime trampling on their corporate rights and interests, the dynasties ties to the authoritarian inquisitor Mansur Shah Mukhtar certainly don’t elevate the corporations fears.

Indochina isn't perfect, but It’s certainly a step up from the hellscape Neurhomaina and the Reich's heartlands have become. It also helps that the lovely tropical sites of Sumatra and the bustling trade and activity of Singapore are more appealing than whatever Mittagsland and Sudafrika have to offer, especially to a merchant and businessman like myself. It’s because of Indochina’s commitment to true neutrality that Singapore is still the Pearl of the Orient and why the Indians and the allies of the Ming exiles are willing to work together against the Communists. Indochina isn’t about to trade that all away for the chaos Neurhomains and European Romans have to deal with or the anarchy about to engulf the rest of Asia and the Pacific in the future. When the inevitable war between the Communists and the two monarchist alliances in Asia comes, Indochina will be a lone beacon of peace and reason in a world of bloodshed and destruction, and it will be all the better for that.

We choose the prosperity and freedom of peace, not the ignorance and poverty of war.
 

zenphoenix

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zenphoenix

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Didn't see your post until just now so I'll respond here.

Great start to the finale so far, it's nice to see X-Divisions decades of work beginning to pay off and have an impact on the world, even with there's resistance from those who would stand to lose from the truth. This is gonna be a good finale indeed. I'm interested to see the affects this arc could have on futher gameplay updates as well.
This definitely will affect future gameplay updates, starting with the next chapter. Especially the next chapter.
I wonder if Otto still has the tape Elisabeth Alexandria got about the Sentinel conspiracy. That would be another damning piece of evidence Otto could use to help X-Division's offense against Sentinel, tho I'm not sure if he can edit out all the stuff about Aliens like Theresa Novak did with the Sentinel files.
I think I implied it was a plant from Sentinel to lull Otto into a false sense of security so they can kill Elisabeth Alexandra and Anne and send a message to him.
Anyways, hope you like the Indochina update I'll post here, feel free to suggest changes and improvements to this interlude if you have any in mind. Funny how we're in the finale arc for X-Division, as I'm very close to the finale that is the Ming update after this one, I'm very excited to see how that turns out myself.:)
That's pretty fitting.
the board of directors of Indochina’s corporations recognize that war is one of the worst things that could happen to a merchant’s businesses or a corporation's stocks,
Maybe there would be an option to go the other way and for the corporations to get into arms dealing, selling weapons and supplies to all sides so they profit in the inevitable war.

Otherwise I like it! Sounds a little derivative of one of the other updates but it's not a big deal.
 
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TheAnguishedOne

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Indochina 's message of peace is certainly nice, but a lot of this campaign has showed it is a flawed ideal here. Great write-up!
 
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zenphoenix

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Indochina 's message of peace is certainly nice, but a lot of this campaign has showed it is a flawed ideal here. Great write-up!
It feels in tune with the rest of the factions, whose ideals are flawed to some degree. None of the factions are exactly the same as the original Reich, and all have major flaws with their ideologies and beliefs.
 
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TWR97

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Love the Indochina update, their precarious position in being near the NUC would make for an interesting if not a very tense playthrough. My guess is if the NUC has a focus on attacking Indochina it'd be one of the many reasons for the exiled Ming to finally declare war, especially considering they have a lot of investments there.
 
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zenphoenix

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Love the Indochina update, their precarious position in being near the NUC would make for an interesting if not a very tense playthrough. My guess is if the NUC has a focus on attacking Indochina it'd be one of the many reasons for the exiled Ming to finally declare war, especially considering they have a lot of investments there.
Yeah, definitely. Indochina would be their main base of operations on the mainland, and they must hold it at all costs.
 
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CaptainAlvious

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Otherwise I like it! Sounds a little derivative of one of the other updates but it's not a big deal.
Yeah, I had some troubles coming up with unique ideas to differ Indochina from Mittagsland and Sudafrika, I understand you're criticism of Indochina being a lot like those two splinter states. Glad you enjoy it regardless tho.
Indochina 's message of peace is certainly nice, but a lot of this campaign has showed it is a flawed ideal here. Great write-up!
Especially if its a hollow peace as well, which is true of Indochina's peace, given how many people get left behind by Indochina's uber capitalist society. That's not even mentioning how the wealth disparity in Indochina is mostly ethnically based, with Greco-German elites being prevalent in the government and corporate class, Thai and Malayan nobles benefiting from the status quo, and everyone who is ignored and marginalized, something that revolutionary communist movements play on.
It feels in tune with the rest of the factions, whose ideals are flawed to some degree. None of the factions are exactly the same as the original Reich, and all have major flaws with their ideologies and beliefs.
I agree, it works pretty well with the themes and ideas I've explored in Volkerschalt so far. Just goes to show that no ideology or philosophy is truly worth killing another person over having different ideals and moral convictions, something that none of the major players in Volkerschalt’s world seem to realize, even neutrals in this timeline like Mittagsland have shady and sinister elements to them beneath the surface.

I think its interesting that none of the updates I've written so far tell the full story of the Volkerschalt timeline individually due to an unreliable narrator that has a biased and limited perspective towards the conflicts going on in Volkerschalt. That was something I really liked about the Kaiser Cat Cinema videos I've been adapting some elements from for these updates, how no faction holds a complete picture of the conflict and picking a side comes down to an individual interpretation of events comparing different claims by several factions against each other to decide what is true and what isn't.

I know I've had several factions blame communist agents for assassinating Otto and thus starting the war in previous updates, but considering I didn't have the Sparacists and NUC take credit for the assassination if I remember correctly, I'm considering retconing that detail into a fabricated claim used by anti Communist proganda to demonize the Sparacists and NUC, that might make sense. Of course, there might be a chance that it is true, but that would come down to Rng in pre war event chains, but even then the other factions would continue to use that claim against the Communists without evidence.
Love the Indochina update, their precarious position in being near the NUC would make for an interesting if not a very tense playthrough. My guess is if the NUC has a focus on attacking Indochina it'd be one of the many reasons for the exiled Ming to finally declare war, especially considering they have a lot of investments there.
Yeah, definitely. Indochina would be their main base of operations on the mainland, and they must hold it at all costs.
Indochina would definitely be an important region to the powers involved in Volkerschalt's version of the Second Weltkrieg, whether it would be an actual front in the war or a proxy to the Indians, Tianxia powers or the NUC.

I remember in the WW1 chapters in Vicky 2, the Timmurids and Onggirants reemerged through Chinese supported revolts against Yavadi, which I think also happend at some point in mid EU4 without Chinese support. Furthermore, I know Yavadi has three separate capitals from the NWO guide to Yavadi; Tsaritsyn, Yekaterinburg, and Kursk, with Perm being mentioned as a capital of Yavadi and Saray before WW1 and Soviet conquest I believe. This gives me an idea to balkanize Yavadi in Tianxia into various polical, ethno-cultural and religiosity distinctions in a manner similar to Tianxia's Reich and India, tho Yavadi and India's balkanization were more do to China's involvement than the Reich's social-political collapse after Central Powers defeat in WW1. The Timurids and Onggriants would exist due to China's total victory in WW1, with the Timurids’ majority population made up of Turks spilt between the Slavic and Zunist faiths and maybe Zoroastrianism as well, while the Ongrriants would be Tengri and Buddhist. Yavadi would be a buffer republic going through an internal political conflict between four different factions based in its four capitals: The Yekaterinburg faction is made up of Finno-Mongol nobles who want to restore the Tsar-Khanate and protect Suomenusko traditions and nomadic culture, the Tsaritsyn faction would want to make the republic independent of Chinese influence and increase privileges for Slavic mongols, an Equalist Kursk faction advocates for a socialist revolution and the Perm faction consists of Jewish nationalists who want to restore the Jewish empire of Saray. I think Volkerschalt Yavadi could have a similar power struggle between political factions, only without being a puppet to China or the existence of the Timurids and Onggirants like in Tianxia.

Perhaps this could have been the demographic makeup of Yavadi before the Soviets conquered the region, with either the expelling unruly demagraphics to other countries, like Steppe Jews and Zunists to the Reich or Afghanistan for example, or the resettling of ethnic minorities and political enemies across the CSSR and occupied territories to Siberia changing Yavadi’s demographics, that might be a cool idea.

Anyways, I appreciate the positive feedback you guys have been giving me. These Volkerschalt have been funny to write, so I’m glad people enjoy reading them as much as I enjoy wiring them. Stay tuned for the Volkerschalt finale in a few weeks time, hope you’re looking forward to it.:)

Also, in case you forget, you may want to link the latest update to the table of contents. Just a friendly remainder @zenphoenix .
 
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zenphoenix

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Yeah, I had some troubles coming up with unique ideas to differ Indochina from Mittagsland and Sudafrika, I understand you're criticism of Indochina being a lot like those two splinter states. Glad you enjoy it regardless tho.
I was talking more about the writing style, but as I said, it isn't a big deal.
Especially if its a hollow peace as well, which is true of Indochina's peace, given how many people get left behind by Indochina's uber capitalist society. That's not even mentioning how the wealth disparity in Indochina is mostly ethnically based, with Greco-German elites being prevalent in the government and corporate class, Thai and Malayan nobles benefiting from the status quo, and everyone who is ignored and marginalized, something that revolutionary communist movements play on.
Definitely. There are a lot of people who don't benefit from Indochina's economic policies.
I agree, it works pretty well with the themes and ideas I've explored in Volkerschalt so far. Just goes to show that no ideology or philosophy is truly worth killing another person over having different ideals and moral convictions, something that none of the major players in Volkerschalt’s world seem to realize, even neutrals in this timeline like Mittagsland have shady and sinister elements to them beneath the surface.
Even the "good guys" in this world also have their own flaws or dark sides.
I think its interesting that none of the updates I've written so far tell the full story of the Volkerschalt timeline individually due to an unreliable narrator that has a biased and limited perspective towards the conflicts going on in Volkerschalt. That was something I really liked about the Kaiser Cat Cinema videos I've been adapting some elements from for these updates, how no faction holds a complete picture of the conflict and picking a side comes down to an individual interpretation of events comparing different claims by several factions against each other to decide what is true and what isn't.
Yeah definitely. These unreliable narrators leave us guessing as to the real nature of the conflicts here.
I know I've had several factions blame communist agents for assassinating Otto and thus starting the war in previous updates, but considering I didn't have the Sparacists and NUC take credit for the assassination if I remember correctly, I'm considering retconing that detail into a fabricated claim used by anti Communist proganda to demonize the Sparacists and NUC, that might make sense. Of course, there might be a chance that it is true, but that would come down to Rng in pre war event chains, but even then the other factions would continue to use that claim against the Communists without evidence.
Maybe one of the factions would be revealed to have done it as a false flag, or another faction falsely accuses someone of doing it.
Indochina would definitely be an important region to the powers involved in Volkerschalt's version of the Second Weltkrieg, whether it would be an actual front in the war or a proxy to the Indians, Tianxia powers or the NUC.
I think it would start out as a proxy war but quickly turn into a full scale front when the major powers go to war.
I remember in the WW1 chapters in Vicky 2, the Timmurids and Onggirants reemerged through Chinese supported revolts against Yavadi, which I think also happend at some point in mid EU4 without Chinese support. Furthermore, I know Yavadi has three separate capitals from the NWO guide to Yavadi; Tsaritsyn, Yekaterinburg, and Kursk, with Perm being mentioned as a capital of Yavadi and Saray before WW1 and Soviet conquest I believe. This gives me an idea to balkanize Yavadi in Tianxia into various polical, ethno-cultural and religiosity distinctions in a manner similar to Tianxia's Reich and India, tho Yavadi and India's balkanization were more do to China's involvement than the Reich's social-political collapse after Central Powers defeat in WW1. The Timurids and Onggriants would exist due to China's total victory in WW1, with the Timurids’ majority population made up of Turks spilt between the Slavic and Zunist faiths and maybe Zoroastrianism as well, while the Ongrriants would be Tengri and Buddhist. Yavadi would be a buffer republic going through an internal political conflict between four different factions based in its four capitals: The Yekaterinburg faction is made up of Finno-Mongol nobles who want to restore the Tsar-Khanate and protect Suomenusko traditions and nomadic culture, the Tsaritsyn faction would want to make the republic independent of Chinese influence and increase privileges for Slavic mongols, an Equalist Kursk faction advocates for a socialist revolution and the Perm faction consists of Jewish nationalists who want to restore the Jewish empire of Saray. I think Volkerschalt Yavadi could have a similar power struggle between political factions, only without being a puppet to China or the existence of the Timurids and Onggirants like in Tianxia.
I remember they did reappear a couple times in EU4, although they never mounted to much. And yes, current Yavdi has three capitals

Good idea to have China balkanize Yavdi into the Timurids and Onggirats with a rump Yavdian state as a Chinese puppet. Religion would drive much of the internal conflicts in the former Yavdi due to the mix of Jews, Zoroastrians, Slavs, Zunists, Tengriists, and Buddhists. I like your ideas, but I think China should be more involved in the area.
Perhaps this could have been the demographic makeup of Yavadi before the Soviets conquered the region, with either the expelling unruly demagraphics to other countries, like Steppe Jews and Zunists to the Reich or Afghanistan for example, or the resettling of ethnic minorities and political enemies across the CSSR and occupied territories to Siberia changing Yavadi’s demographics, that might be a cool idea.
Definitely. The Soviets enforced assimilation and uniformity by expelling troublesome demographics to Siberia or elsewhere. They did expel a lot of Lithuanians to Yavdi, so it makes sense they would expel some Yavdians elsewhere, especially certain groups they consider capitalist or reactionary.
Anyways, I appreciate the positive feedback you guys have been giving me. These Volkerschalt have been funny to write, so I’m glad people enjoy reading them as much as I enjoy wiring them. Stay tuned for the Volkerschalt finale in a few weeks time, hope you’re looking forward to it.:)
Definitely looking forward to that.
Also, in case you forget, you may want to link the latest update to the table of contents. Just a friendly remainder @zenphoenix .
It's done now.
 
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The Truth is Out There, Part 2

“Perhaps this adversary sounds like the former Soviet Commune, but that enemy is gone: our foes are more subtle and implacable today. You may think I'm describing one of the last decrepit dictators of the world. But their day, too, is almost past, and they cannot match the strength and size of this adversary. The adversary's closer to home. It's the Pentagon bureaucracy. Not the people, but the processes. Not the civilians, but the systems. Not the men and women in uniform, but the uniformity of thought and action that we too often impose on them. In this building, despite this era of scarce resources taxed by mounting threats, money disappears into duplicative duties and bloated bureaucracy—not because of greed, but gridlock. Innovation is stifled—not by ill intent but by institutional inertia.”

-Rudolf Scharping


November 10, 2015 - 8:00 AM

“…pressure is building on the Diet to release…”

“…mass protests have spread to all major cities throughout the Middle East and Balkans…”

“…Wilhelm Karl denounces the alleged conspirators as traitors to the nation who should all be shot on the spot…”

Angela and Diana sat down at a table Kresge had set up under a tarp outside the building, surrounded by police cars. Olga paced around the table, handing them reports.

“Okay, here’s what we know,” she said, “Billy Marks and two super soldiers entered the building at around nine last night and started shooting, while the emergency hotline was hacked. I arrived five minutes later. I killed two of them, and Billy fled, taking their bodies with him.”

“Wait, how did he take the bodies?” Angela said.

“He had help,” Diana said, “They shot out the cameras.”

“I’ve told Kresge to put out a warrant for Billy,” Angela said, “We have to find him before he launches another attack.”

“How’s Theresa?” Diana said.

“She’s doing fine,” Olga said, “Vincent’s recovering at the hospital. The security detail hasn’t found anybody suspicious yet.”

She pulled up a chair and sat down. “Wow, what a day it has been.”

“I know,” Diana said, “I didn’t expect them to hit back this quickly.”

“We need to figure out our next move now,” Angela said.

“Anders is with Anna,” Olga said, “They’re going to meet with Irene later.”

“Anna?” Diana said. “I told her to go home.”

“Apparently, Irene asked her to join the meeting,” Olga said, “I don’t know why.”

“I have the press conference in an hour,” Diana said, “We should head out.”

They got up from the table.

“One good thing came out of this, at least,” Olga said, “The public believes us now. They were leaning towards disbelief yesterday, but after this attack, they’re getting suspicious.”

“We need to keep up the pressure,” Angela said, “Pavel’s feeling the heat now. He’ll be forced to make his next move soon.”


Kyparades Park - 2:00 PM

Anders and Anna sat at a bench, patiently waiting for their contact.

“Is this what you have been doing for the last twenty years?” Anna said. “It feels so…boring.”

“What’s your definition of exciting?” Anders said. “Going around the world, working in warzones and slums, living dangerously?”

“Hey, it paid off,” Anna said.

“Keep telling yourself that,” Anders said.

“As if you did any better,” Anna said.

“Hey, I’m the one with a family here,” Anders said, “I’m the one the news is talking about. Me and Di.”

“Then why are you quitting?” Anna said.

Anders looked at her. “What?”

“Don’t hide it from me,” Anna said, “I know you’re quitting. I found the letter.”

“Please don’t—” Anders began.

“Tell Di?” Anna said. “Tell Angie? Tell the others? You’ve kept it to yourself, huh?”

“I want out,” Anders said, “This has gone on for far too long. I just don’t have it in me to keep on going. It’s not 1992 anymore. It’s time I moved on. And with this leak…I can finally get around to doing that. This may be the last case X-Division works on together.”

Anna’s expression softened. “So what are you going to do?”

“I don’t know yet,” Anders said, “Still haven’t figured it out. Still focusing on this. On last case to finish and complete my life’s work.”

Anna sighed. She looked at the sidewalk.

“Alright, I’m sorry,” she said, “I didn’t mean to be so abrasive. Tell you what. I won’t say anything to the others, okay? You can tell them on your own terms.”

“Thanks, sis,” Anders said, “Means the world to me.”

He looked up and heard Irene’s footsteps behind him. Irene sat on the bench behind them. Anna started to turn, but Anders stopped her.

“Rule one of espionage, don’t make eye contact,” he whispered.

“That’s not rule one,” Irene said.

“What do you want?” Anders said. “Why are we here?”

“I’m here to talk about your sister,” Irene said, “Annie Humboldt.”

“What do you know about Annie?” Anders said.

“I know she left the country fourteen years ago,” Irene said, “Just before the RSB expanded its surveillance state due to 11/9. I don’t know much else.”

“Then what are we here to discuss?” Anna said.

“I don’t know where she is, but Annie is in danger,” Irene said, “I’ve been talking to some in Pavel’s inner circle, if you can call it that. They’re talking about finding her. They are aware of her unique…abilities.”

“They can’t find my sister,” Anders said, “She hid herself too well. And the person who helped resettle her is now dead. No thanks in part to them.”

“The late Crown Princess worked with another,” Irene said, “Annie Schmidt. My successor as United Nations ambassador. The one they installed when they made me a test subject. She’s not one of them, to be clear. More like a puppet. But the strings were cut when the Syndicate was slaughtered at KL Kodima. If anybody knows where your sister is, it's her. They are likely going after her now.”

“And what do you want us to do?” Anna said.

“Stop them,” Irene said, “Get to your sister before they do. Save her.”

“How the frak are we going to get to her first if they have an army of super soldiers?” Anna said.

“You kill them,” Irene said, “Or…just avoid them. Since your friend Agent Kirova is the only one who can handle them.”

“Right, because of the decapitation thing,” Anna said.

“What if we want to save them?” Anders said.

Anders heared Irene cursing and the rustling of her coat, as if she was almost turning around.

“Save…them?!” she whispered. “Are you mad? They’re super soldiers. They should be put out of their misery.”

“There are people I care about who were turned into super soldiers long ago,” Anders said, “They’re all still people too. They didn’t deserve this fate. If I can save at least one of them and bring them back to normal, I’ll do it. Remember, I was almost turned into one too.”

Irene thought for a moment.

“Alright,” she said, “You’d have to break into the Nicomedia facility to send the command to start the reversion process.”

“Can you get us into the facility?” Anders said.

“No,” Irene said, “Not in the time I have left.”

“What do you mean?” Anna said.

“I’m running on borrowed time,” Irene said, “I know you still don’t trust me, but I’ve tried to do as much as I could. I’ve already given you the files that exposed Sentinel. I just want to set the record right. Be on the right side of history for once. Maybe I’ll make up for the mistakes I’ve made my entire life.”

“Perhaps,” Anders said.

“This will be the last time we meet,” Irene said, “I don’t expect to get out of this alive.”

“Don’t say that,” Anders said, “We’ll take out Sentinel.”

“Most of my life is behind me,” Irene said, “I have no future ahead of me. Especially after I did all of this for you. Only a matter of time until Pavel figures it out. I’m going to take down as much of Sentinel as I can with me. Goodbye, Anders Humboldt. Good luck.”

She got up and left.

“Well, that was new,” Anna said, “Can we really trust that old lady? She seems like the kind of person to keep secrets.”

“Believe me, she does have her secrets,” Anders said, “But that’s in the past. Right now, we need to find our sister.”

He got up and walked back to the Impala. Anna ran after him.

“Wait, find Annie?” Anna said. “What does that have to do with defeating Sentinel?”

“We can’t just sit back and place our faith in institutions Sentinel’s already corrupted,” Anders said, “The leak’s done its work. We can’t let Sentinel get another victory. Not now. We don't leave our family behind. Not at a time like this. And especially not Annie.”
 
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I don't like the implication on Anders retiring once everything is done, given the whole 'Two days before retirement' trope you'd usually see in movies or shows. Hope he gets his answers in the end while being able to see his family again. So stopping Sentinel means having something to do with Annie eh? It would seem that everything always goes back to his sister, a fitting thing considering Anders' reasons as to why the X-Division was created in the first place.

Anyway, long time coming, but with this current pandemic forcing me out of procrastination I was finally able to finish this entry. Hope you guys like it


The Godzilla Anthology

The Millennium Era (2000-2004)


Following the end of Godzilla vs Destoroyah, Toho announced their intention to retire Godzilla from cinematic screens for ten years as it was during at this time negotiations had been worked over for the creation of a new Godzilla movie under the tutelage of the Roman Cinema and eventually a joint project for the series' 50th anniversary. However negotiations failed spectacularly due to the direction the movie was going to go as planned scripts have been scrapped several times and directors shuffled. The final nail in the coffin to a Roman Godzilla film never happening was when director Orlando ‘Roland’ Emmerich and producer Dean Devlin submitted a proposal to Toho stating that they sought permission to make a Godzilla movie in their own way and only use the original film’s premise as the base. Toho’s director however politely declined such a proposal, especially after the board was given copies of Devlin’s script. One wonders what would have happened if the script was greenlited and given Toho’s blessing. The plans for a Roman Godzilla film was put on hold as a result, with Emmerich going on to direct The Galatan Project instead.

Toho would then bring back Godzilla after a five year rest (The minor role it played in the third Rebirth of Mothra film was largely ignored), starting with Godzilla 2000. Called the Millennium series by fans, the films in this era are known for not being connected to each other, breaking tradition and instead ignore both each film (Except for the Kiryu duology) as well as all the previous eras except for the original 1954 film. With Toho's negotiations with Babelsburg resulting in failure, they were free in making a series of films in preparation for the 50th anniversary since the original film was released. The Millennium series to this date remains the shortest of all the Godzilla Anthology.

Aside from the films differing from each other, the Millennium series also has different designs for Godzilla, thus breaking away from tradition. The Millennium era is also noteworthy for incorporating elements of both the Xuantong and Mingzhong eras while still being a decent standalone. Due to being more well known by Western media at this point, the Millennium series is the first era to have both the Chinese and Roman versions be released at the same time instead of being a week or a month after the other. They also borrowed the Mingzhong element of Roman characters being present in some films as well.

Toho would then retire Godzilla after 2004, citing that a ten year break as was planned would happen at long last as negotiations are once more made between Toho and Babelsburg in regards to a Roman Godzilla movie, which would finally come to fruition by 2012, with Legendary Pictures announcing their rights to produce such a film….

  • Excerpt taken from Godzilla: A Cinematic Legacy of Destruction, by Professor Ioannes Mouzalon, film analyst major, University of Antioch

Below are the set of films released for the Millennium era:

Godzilla 2000 (2000) - A series of tests in the remote jungles of China end up awakening a slumbering colossal monster attributed to be the ancestor to the dragonflies. Dubbed Megaguirus, the insect queen terrorizes the Chinese Empire before a solution is presented. To summon a monster that had terrorized the country decades ago but was successfully driven away. When Godzilla arrives, it does battle with the insect queen, causing much destruction before it and the insect queen fall off a volcano, with both kaijus seemingly defeated. Godzilla however escapes, roaring in triumph before it proceeds to terrorize a nearby city, with a human character commenting that the kaiju itself is a literal force of nature.

Anguirus, Varan and Baragon: Guardian Monsters All Out Attack (2001) - Godzilla, defeated in 1954 is resurrected by the tortured souls of the Second Weltkrieg and is possessed by them in a vengeful quest to punish the Reich, India and the Chinese Empire for their crimes. While the militaries of the world scramble to stop this unkillable beast, mythological monsters are awakened from their slumber as a team of cryptozoologists unlock the mystery of ancient guardian monsters. Baragon is the first to awaken but is eventually defeated by Godzilla. The team then scramble to awaken the two other guardian monsters mentioned.

In a great battle in Delhi, Varan and Anguirus put a stop to Godzilla's rampage, however both are ultimately defeated due to their premature awakening and Godzilla being possessed by 'All the evils in the world'. However in this defeat, the energies of the three monsters combine and form the true guardian of humanity. The Thousand Year Dragon. King Ghidorah. With the aid of the militaries of the world, Godzilla is driven to the sea where Ghidorah imprisons it there, where a torpedo shot into its belly destroys the vengeful beast once and for all. Ghidorah leaves the planet in a brilliant ray of light, with humanity thanking the guardians as a new dawn breaks. However, beneath the ocean floor, Godzilla's heart remains intact, and starts beating as the film ends….

The Kiryu Duology (Often called the Kiryu Saga) (2002-2003) - Following a peculiar tradition, Toho releases a duology with Mechagodzilla taking center stage. The new Millennium design would incorporate elements from both the Xuantong and Mingzhong eras respectively, with its overall origins once more being a human creation with a rather horrifying twist. The duology is the first to incorporate several films from the Xuantong era. The two films would also tackle mysticism as well as ghosts in machines (With the original Godzilla’s soul implied to be possessing Mechagodzilla and aware)

Godzilla Against Mechagodzilla (2002) - The world is ravaged by monster attacks, with the 1954 attack in Nanjing being the catalyst. Mothra’s rampage and the Gargantuan crisis leads to the formation of the G-Division. An anti kaiju taskforce whose role is to contain the threats of giant monsters. When a new Godzilla resurfaces to terrorize China, it ends with the taskforce being defeated after it is revealed that Godzilla is immune to their maser weaponry. The UN security council then hold a meeting to address this issue, and it is here the Chinese representative (With approval from the Emperor directly) reveals that they had been housing the remains of the Godzilla that attacked China in 1954 (The skeletal remains had somehow not dissolved), a new project is then created. To construct a mechanical weapon to counter Godzilla with the skeletal remains serving as the template. Three years later the new weapon, dubbed Kiryu is revealed to the world, with the crowning entry being its main weapon, an absolute zero cannon designed specifically to kill Godzilla.

A subplot also follows through the eyes of one of the members of G-Division who is assigned to be one of the chosen pilots for Kiryu and is revealed to be the scapegoat for the G-Division's defeat by Godzilla three years ago. The pilot faces discrimination due to her role in the G-Division's defeat and must overcome this doubts her colleagues have on her, joining her are one of the designers of Kiryu who serves as her mentor and one of the engineers of Kiryu, a minor subplot also involves with said engineer and his peers experiencing paranormal events in Kiryu's hangar.

Godzilla finally reappears and the UN forces deploy Kiryu to engage the monster. The two entities battle for a while, and here it is clear that the mechanical kaiju proves more than a match for Godzilla, however in the middle of the battle Godzilla roars causing Kiryu's circuits to malfunction as it starts to remember its memories when it was terrorizing Nanjing. As Godzilla retreats, Kiryu remains there, immobilized. And then its eyes change from orange to red, lets out a mechanized version of Godzilla's roar and proceeds to terrorize the city as it did back in 1954. Its rampage finally ends as its batteries ran out. Following this event the leading pilot is sacked from her position and sent back to a desk job as the technicians, engineers and designers diagnose the machine. Here a team of engineers forward their theory of the vengeful spirit of the 1954 Godzilla taking over when the newer one roared, presenting evidence of faulty circuits while also showing various paranormal activities within the hangar. Their theory is denied and ignored until the staff acquire footage from Kiryu's point of view which briefly showed the attack in 1954. With this newfound discovery, various religious personnel use rituals to either calm or drive away the restless spirit residing within Kiryu, meanwhile the engineers make improvements to the mech's systems to make it less susceptible to the new Godzilla's influence. The pilot gets her spot back and becomes more confident after a heartfelt conversation between her mentor and the engineer.

Godzilla appears once more, and Kiryu is once again deployed to fight it. After a lengthy battle Kiryu, despite being heavily damaged, uses its absolute zero cannon, grievously wounding Godzilla and gives it a large scar on its chest. It retreats after this, leading to Kiryu and G-Division emerging victorious. The pilot thanks the mech as she smiles towards the sunset. In a post credit scene, the pilot and the engineer exchange in a round of flirting comments on each other inside Kiryu's cockpit before they are interrupted by a low mechanical rumble akin to laughter, the scene ends with the monitor giving a small message as the couple start wondering on how much sentience Kiryu had developed.

Godzilla, Mothra & Mechagodzilla: Nanjing S.O.S (Godzilla: Nanjing S.O.S) (2003)
- A year has passed following humanity's victory over Godzilla with various news agencies giving praise to Kiryu's existence and contribution. However in a certain old scientist's house, the twin priestesses of Mothra contact one Dr. Kyohei Chujo (The same character from the Xuantong era, also played by the same actor) and tells him that Mothra has issued a warning to all of humanity concerning Kiryu, and that they should dismantle the mech and let its spirit rest in peace if they hope to stop further attacks by Godzilla, for its connection to the bones of the original Godzilla was what made it more persistent, while Mothra will take over Kiryu's role as a deterrent to Godzilla and every other kaiju that comes after it. Failure to do so will have Mothra declare war on all of humanity for this act of playing God. As if to emphasize the message, Mothra herself lands near the doctor's house to appear in person (It is implied this Mothra is the larva from the 1961 movie).

The next day, Chujo and the Shobijin are at the HQ of the G-Division, trying but failing to convince the Director and the Imperial Government to pull the plug out of Kiryu immediately or Mothra will declare war. The Director however counters, saying that it was out of his power now as the UN itself has specifically ordered for Kiryu to remain activated until after Godzilla was truly defeated, as for its deactivation, it was left to the security council to decide. Chujo and the Shobijin are flabbergasted but the priestesses will tell Mothra but also urge the director and tge government to convince the council to deactivate Kiryu as soon as Godzilla is defeated, and in return convince the UN to have Mothra be part of the defenders of Earth alongside the G-Division. They then return home to Infant island. Chujo however does not give up but despite his attempts to have the mech deactivated, it is fallen in deaf ears, and the only reason he is not thrown out of headquarters is of the Division's respect for him as one of the founding members.

Meanwhile at Kiryu's hangar, the engineers, workers and technicians are aware of Kiryu's sentience but do everything they can to keep it a secret as most believed the so called restless spirit was gone before Kiryu emerged victorious against Godzilla, with only its main pilot, the head designer and the director being the only ones aware. Kiryu meanwhile is observed carefully while undergoing repairs and upgrade, and it's revealed that it had developed a personality akin to a grumpy old man, and it shows when it communicates to the engineers via its monitors. While it still bears hatred for humanity as a whole, including its killer as well as those who brought it back from the dead, Kiryu had grown fond of the workers and its main pilot. The engineer from the previous film, one Yoshito Chujo is then revealed to be Dr. Chujo's grandson when the doctor himself visits the hangar. In a private conversation on the way home, both of them get into an argument after the engineer reveals to Chujo of Kiryu's sentience, with the old man more determined in putting the mech's spirit to rest despite the engineer's objections that perhaps it can be taught to be tolerant towards humanity.

Meanwhile in the coasts of China, corpses of giant squids wash up on the shores, Godzilla's doing when they are analyzed. Hours later, Godzilla itself now makes its way through Nanjing, now sporting the wound it had been inflicted upon in the previous film, while the various citizens flee, Chujo himself remains and draws a large summoning circle like he did back during 1961, summoning Mothra in the process. The two battle across the city, and by this time Kiryu arrives and assists Mothra. Despite this however, Godzilla manages to knock both out and proceeds to terrorize the countryside. As the crew make emergency repairs, a great commotion occurs in Infant Island, twin larvae hatch from Mothra's eggs, and they immediately head to Nanjing to assist their mother. They lure Godzilla back to Nanjing, but before the kaiju can harm the twins, Mothra sacrifices herself by shielding the larvae from Godzilla's atomic breath. This sacrificial play is just enough for the Kiryu crew to reboot the mech, manually override the controls and back into fighting position. Between being bombarded by silk webs and harrassed by Kiryu, Godzilla eventually is pinned down. Kiryu and the G-Division emerge victorious, however the crew then recieve orders from the director to dispose of Godzilla once and for all as the UN Security council have made the decision to scrap the Kiryu project and dismantle Kiryu for future usage. Hearing this, Kiryu's eyes turn red again, it grabs the immobilized Godzilla and flies towards the ocean.The crew manage to evacuate especially after they are shown what Kiryu was planning to do, taking Godzilla and itself into the depths of the ocean, far away from humanity. The last to evacuate from the mech is the main pilot from the previous film and engineer Yoshito Chujo. The couple get to see Kiryu bidding them farewell via a monitor before they are transported to the ship G-Division was using to remotely control the mech. The crew and the G-Division witness Kiryu plunging into the ocean, taking Godzilla with it, they lose communications with the mech the deeper it dives. As the world celebrates the end of Godzilla's rampage, Dr. Chujo and his grandson have a conversation with each other regarding Kiryu's decision, with the older man remarking that maybe Kiryu had grown fond of humanity to the point it did not want them to use it to destroy each other or the world. Yoshito agrees as he and the pilot officially become a couple.

In a mid-credits scene, Kiryu is shown roaring as it and Godzilla descend further into the depths with the mech's lights fluttering before they shut down. In a post credit scene, a container labeled G-Cells is shown being tended to by scientists, with the camera slowly revealing various other similar containers filled with DNA samples, presumably of kaijus. The scene ends as the camera pans to a blueprint labeled 'Kiryu 2.0'...

Godzilla vs Gamera (2004) - Released during the 50th Anniversary of the Godzilla franchise, this epic blockbuster pits Godzilla against another well known Chinese cultural icon, the Guardian of the Universe and Defender of Children, Gamera. While fans of both franchises had been clamoring for decades for these two icons to fight each other, the possibility of such a thing did not happen as Ishiro Honda, one of the primary creators of Godzilla and a co-creator of Gamera had been adamant at the idea of the two fighting for fear that one will triumph over the other for he saw both Kaijus as equals, and as such did not greenlight the idea until a non-biased director and writer were found. Honda's reasons were odd at the time but given Roman media's growing fondness of the Godzilla franchise over the decades and China warming up to see Gamera as one of its modern cultural icons it was clear that Honda saw Godzilla and Gamera as yet another representation of the Sino-Roman relationship. It would be around the late 90s, some time after the Mingzhong eras of both Godzilla and Gamera’s series concluded would their inevitable showdown be greenlighted, the huge success of the rebooted Mingzhong Gamera series in both China and Roman markets would bolster Toho Studios’ motivation for such a film, especially after Gamera’s well received praise by Roman audiences and critics. At the initial film’s release, Godzilla was given a star in the Babelsberg Walk of Fame, a sign of the Industry paying tribute to the iconic monster’s fifty year run in the movie industry.


In the year 2004, humanity engages in a climactic showdown with Godzilla, a monster that has terrorized the planet since 1954. As technology advanced through the decades, so did Godzilla’s attacks get bolder before the combined might of all of humanity finally corners the monster in Antarctica. Godzilla however manages to defeat the great army of humanity save for an advanced battleship bearing the name Gotengo. Despite the efforts of the ship’s crew, Godzilla outmaneuvers them and traps the ship on the ice. But before the killing blow could be delivered however, an ally of humanity intervenes. Gamera, the Giant Turtle, who had emerged sometime in 1965 and has occasionally battled Godzilla on humanity’s side would once again come to humanity’s aid by shielding the Gotengo from Godzilla’s atomic breath.. Both monsters then engage in a battle of epic proportions but due to their near equal strength (Godzilla’s regenerative abilities to Gamera’s near impenetrable armored shell) all they could do is cause immense damage to the continent of Antarctica. A small opening is noticed by the Gotengo’s crew and they use the opportunity to fire their weapons on Godzilla’s feet, causing the monster to be buried beneath the ice and trapping it. While Gamera looks on at his foe’s defeat, humanity rejoices for finally achieving victory after Godzilla’s fifty year rampage. (A montage showcasing Godzilla and Gamera films are then shown, before it cuts back to Godzilla’s trapped form in the ice).

Twenty years after the events in Antarctica a unified Humanity is on the verge of containing hostile Kaijus that had appeared after Godzilla’s imprisonment. Despite Gamera returning to hibernation and Mothra’s disappearance humanity has managed to keep their control of the planet while always being wary of Godzilla’s return. Their worst fears are then realized when a supposed terrorist attack on the facility keeping watch on Godzilla is raided, and the monster’s icy prison destroyed. Godzilla would then be seen rampaging across Fusang, destroying cities and infrastructure alike, however at the last second, several extra terrestrial ships appear and seemingly drive Godzilla away. Humanity would then make contact with the race of aliens who call themselves the Xilliens, here they explain that they were supposedly survivors from a Gyaos invasion on their homeworld, and apparently having heard of Gamera’s legend fled to Earth, hoping to have the giant Turtle aid them in throwing the Gyaos whom are Gamera’s sworn enemies. And in return they will aid humanity in disposing Godzilla once and for all. While the UN and the Xilliens sign a peace pact, the crew of the Neo Gotengo are suspicious of the aliens’ motives, and so coordinate alongside those who share the same mindset in finding Gamera.

Gamera and Godzilla do find each other in the Chinese countryside and would battle once more, having seen their fight in Antarctica twenty years prior as unfinished business. As the world watches the two giants fight in equal grounds, the Xilliens then reveal themselves to be the main culprits behind the releasing of Godzilla, intending to use the creature’s hatred of humanity as a bargaining chip, it does not help that the aliens have already replaced most of the world’s leaders, hoping to force humanity’s unconditional surrender. Things take a turn for the worse however when it is also revealed that Godzilla was buffed by the Xilliens, and though Gamera is still able to wound Godzilla, the kaiju now had the ability to pierce through the giant turtle’s impenetrable armored shell, wounding Gamera in the process. It does not help that the Xilliens’ own pet monster, codenamed Monster X, which had assisted Gamera before, was now actively trying to kill the turtle. Despite this, both Godzilla and Gamera are able to continue their battle almost undeterred and later escape, with both creatures retreating from each other to lick their wounds. Meanwhile, the leader of the Xilliens is murdered on live television by his protege, the controller, also named X. He then goes on to say that humanity was going to be used as slave labour, but he figured there was no fun in that and merely advocated for their complete extinction as tribute to the ‘Death Song of a Thousand Storms’, a deity the Xilliens revere and worship. The remnants of UN forces then rally around the Gotengo and launch a desperate assault on the Xillien base of operations, Captain Douglas Gordon, a veteran of the Godzilla wars, and a member of the old Gotengo crew and who was the one personally responsible for sealing Godzilla then comes up with a plan to use Godzilla and Gamera as bait to draw the Xilliens out.

In the ruins of Nanjing, Godzilla and Gamera, having returned after healing from their wounds, would once again battle each other, just as the UN forces launched their assault on the Xillien base. While humanity fights for their future, an odd event occurs in the ruins of Nanjing, Gamera and Godzilla, having fought for so long slowly begin to realize the respect they had for each other, and so both kaijus retreat to a distance after a lengthy battle, both wounded from each other’s attack. While this was going on, UN special forces finally managed to corner X and his minions, whom they witness throwing a tantrum after it was clear that Godzilla and Gamera where no longer fighting each other, a fight then occurs and X is mortally wounded, but not before releasing Monster X from its chamber, finally evolving into its one true form. Cackling as he dies, X reveals to humanity and the kaijus the god of his race, colored in gold and scarlet red, X reveals to them the Death Song of a Thousand Storms, Kaizar Ghidorah.


What remains of the UN forces is easily defeated by the new monster who now sees both Godzilla and Gamera as a threat to its dominion over Earth. Godzilla and Gamera then join forces in battling Kaizar Ghidorah, despite both their efforts, they have difficulty defeating Kaizar Ghidorah as their previous battles left them both exhausted. Nevertheless it proves to be more than a match for Kaizar Ghidorah who promptly tears off Gamera’s weapons before cracking a bit of its shell. Gamera however would use its own body to retaliate, buying Godzilla just enough time to put an end to Ghidorah once and for all, launching it up into the sky and finishing the alien monster with an atomic beam powered up with Gamera’s help. Humanity then looks on as both Godzilla and Gamera stare at each other, and after a few tense minutes, Godzilla slowly nods at Gamera, who returns the gesture. Godzilla then slowly retreats into the ocean, wounded and exhausted but victorious. When several of the UN forces attempt to follow, their comrades stop them as Captain Gordon remarks on how the two kaijus’ behaviour was similar to enemies who have learned to respect each other. Gamera, having apparently heard the captain’s musings, roars in agreement.

(Godzilla slowly retreats into the sunset, but then turns around and roars, celebrating fifty years of legacy.)


And there you have it, it took me a while to get out as I had to make Godzilla vs Gamera live up to the hype it would have gotten, as well as borrowing a few story elements from OTL's Final Wars, also fixed a few stuff I found odd in terms of plotline in the Kiryu saga. Hope you lads find this showdown between Gamera and Godzilla decent :D
 
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CaptainAlvious

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I second TWR's concern about Ander's future retirement as well, especially since this is coupled with Diana's ominous visions of the future and the fact this in happening in the finale arc. That's quite the worrisome death flag indeed.:eek:

At least Anders' long search for his sister is finally getting resolved now. Let's hope his future reunion with Annie in the Hohenzollernverse doesn't end the way it did with Annie's many clones.

“…Wilhelm Karl denounces the alleged conspirators as traitors to the nation who should all be shot on the spot…”
Ironic that Wilhelm Karl is saying that when the only reason he's Crown Prince instead of his sister is because of Sentinel. Granted, he probably doesn't know that, but still ironic how eager he is on capitalizing on Sentinel's fall despite benefiting a lot from the conspiracy before.:p

I wonder what conspiracy theorists would think of these leaks, or how society at large would view them after this? That would definitely be interesting to see, imagine the field day conspiracy theorists would have with leaks like this and the RSB leaks before legitimatizing their work and giving them new stuff to pick apart.:D
I remember they did reappear a couple times in EU4, although they never mounted to much. And yes, current Yavdi has three capitals

Good idea to have China balkanize Yavdi into the Timurids and Onggirats with a rump Yavdian state as a Chinese puppet. Religion would drive much of the internal conflicts in the former Yavdi due to the mix of Jews, Zoroastrians, Slavs, Zunists, Tengriists, and Buddhists. I like your ideas, but I think China should be more involved in the area.
I might also balkanize Mali and Abyssinia in Tianxia as well, since they do border the Reich and thus would probably be affecting greatly by its collapse, I think that keep balance in already balkanized Africa and keep blobs from snowballing too quickly. Plus it would also explain things like Abyssinia allying with Egypt and Persia to take down a Byzantine lead alliance in the Middle East, or why Mali didn't just annex Mauritania and Portugal after the Reich's collapsed. I'll see what happens when I start my Tianxia summaries.
Definitely. The Soviets enforced assimilation and uniformity by expelling troublesome demographics to Siberia or elsewhere. They did expel a lot of Lithuanians to Yavdi, so it makes sense they would expel some Yavdians elsewhere, especially certain groups they consider capitalist or reactionary.
I wonder how the Mongol Cartels would interact with these groups, or what how this would influence their criminal hierarchy? Maybe the Mongol Cartels would be have more pluralistic attitudes towards non Mongol ethnic groups like Turks and Finns joining their ranks than the Russians and Lithuitains are towards minorities, mostly due to the Mongols not relying on racial violence and sectarianism as much as the Russian and Lithuanian cartels despite being more brutal than them in some ways.

Since the Pentagon is located in Kodima, a city that absorbed the former Turkish town of Karackocy, I wonder how often it is for Turks to work in government agencies and bureaucracy due to the Pentagon's proximity to a Turkish community?

Great work with the Millennium Era @TWR97 , the Godzila vs Gamera summary and the idea of the two kaijus' clashes and cooperation at the end being analogous for Sino-Roman realtions is an awesome one indeed. Definitely worth the wait, looking forward to your Monsterverse ideas.:)
 

zenphoenix

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I don't like the implication on Anders retiring once everything is done, given the whole 'Two days before retirement' trope you'd usually see in movies or shows. Hope he gets his answers in the end while being able to see his family again. So stopping Sentinel means having something to do with Annie eh? It would seem that everything always goes back to his sister, a fitting thing considering Anders' reasons as to why the X-Division was created in the first place.
Did you really think I was going to leave that plotline unresolved?:p
The final nail in the coffin to a Roman Godzilla film never happening was when director Orlando ‘Roland’ Emmerich and producer Dean Devlin submitted a proposal to Toho stating that they sought permission to make a Godzilla movie in their own way and only use the original film’s premise as the base. Toho’s director however politely declined such a proposal, especially after the board was given copies of Devlin’s script. One wonders what would have happened if the script was greenlited and given Toho’s blessing. The plans for a Roman Godzilla film was put on hold as a result, with Emmerich going on to direct The Galatan Project instead.
Perfect.
And there you have it, it took me a while to get out as I had to make Godzilla vs Gamera live up to the hype it would have gotten, as well as borrowing a few story elements from OTL's Final Wars, also fixed a few stuff I found odd in terms of plotline in the Kiryu saga. Hope you lads find this showdown between Gamera and Godzilla decent
That was an amazing summary for the Kiryu saga and Gamera vs Godzilla. Based on the beginning I almost thought Gamera was going to win but I'm glad that wasn't the end.
I second TWR's concern about Ander's future retirement as well, especially since this is coupled with Diana's ominous visions of the future and the fact this in happening in the finale arc. That's quite the worrisome death flag indeed.
Well, something's going to happen. That's all I'll say.
At least Anders' long search for his sister is finally getting resolved now. Let's hope his future reunion with Annie in the Hohenzollernverse doesn't end the way it did with Annie's many clones.
Anna deserves to at least meet her older sister at some point.
Ironic that Wilhelm Karl is saying that when the only reason he's Crown Prince instead of his sister is because of Sentinel. Granted, he probably doesn't know that, but still ironic how eager he is on capitalizing on Sentinel's fall despite benefiting a lot from the conspiracy before.
Yes, that is definitely the case. He didn't know about Sentinel but benefited from them unknowingly. And now that he knows about them, he sees them as a threat to his continued power and wants them gone.
I wonder what conspiracy theorists would think of these leaks, or how society at large would view them after this? That would definitely be interesting to see, imagine the field day conspiracy theorists would have with leaks like this and the RSB leaks before legitimatizing their work and giving them new stuff to pick apart.
I did put in a news footage line which implies some conspiracy theorists still see the Sentinel leaks as a false flag to cover up the real conspiracy, but I guess most of the "moderate" conspiracy theories would claim to be proven right in some way. But since X-Division uncovered the truth while officially a government-run agency, society would consider this a regular scandal, just of a much larger proportion. The conspiracy theory of Sentinel will fall into the very short list of conspiracy theories that turned out to be true, while others remain on the fringes.
I might also balkanize Mali and Abyssinia in Tianxia as well, since they do border the Reich and thus would probably be affecting greatly by its collapse, I think that keep balance in already balkanized Africa and keep blobs from snowballing too quickly. Plus it would also explain things like Abyssinia allying with Egypt and Persia to take down a Byzantine lead alliance in the Middle East, or why Mali didn't just annex Mauritania and Portugal after the Reich's collapsed. I'll see what happens when I start my Tianxia summaries.
That's a good idea.
I wonder how the Mongol Cartels would interact with these groups, or what how this would influence their criminal hierarchy? Maybe the Mongol Cartels would be have more pluralistic attitudes towards non Mongol ethnic groups like Turks and Finns joining their ranks than the Russians and Lithuitains are towards minorities, mostly due to the Mongols not relying on racial violence and sectarianism as much as the Russian and Lithuanian cartels despite being more brutal than them in some ways.
The Mongol cartels probably got their start working in the black market in Soviet times as well as smuggling people out of the country. They would likely be more tolerant of other non-Mongols joining their ranks due to having no other choice with the regime's continued assimilation and deportation efforts.
Since the Pentagon is located in Kodima, a city that absorbed the former Turkish town of Karackocy, I wonder how often it is for Turks to work in government agencies and bureaucracy due to the Pentagon's proximity to a Turkish community?
Most of the Turks were assimilated in the last few decades since Constantinople expanded to absorb that town and newcomers from the rest of the country moved in. Their descendants generally speak Greek and have Greek names now although there are a few older inhabitants who still speak Turkish and use Turkish names. That's why the town is now known as the district of Kodima.
Great work with the Millennium Era @TWR97 , the Godzila vs Gamera summary and the idea of the two kaijus' clashes and cooperation at the end being analogous for Sino-Roman realtions is an awesome one indeed. Definitely worth the wait, looking forward to your Monsterverse ideas.:)
Yeah, same here, looking forward to the Monsterverse.
 
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TheAnguishedOne

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With this being the end of an era, Anders' retirement makes perfect sense.

More good Godzilla anthology too.
 

zenphoenix

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With this being the end of an era, Anders' retirement makes perfect sense.

More good Godzilla anthology too.
One way or another, Anders might be right. This could be the last time the current X-Division team works together.
 

CaptainAlvious

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The Mongol cartels probably got their start working in the black market in Soviet times as well as smuggling people out of the country. They would likely be more tolerant of other non-Mongols joining their ranks due to having no other choice with the regime's continued assimilation and deportation efforts.
Since we're on this train of thought, I'm now curios about how the origins of the Russian and Lithuanian cartels in WW3 influenced them as well? Perhaps the Lithuanian cartels got their start as militant partisans who refused to stand down when former Commonwealth lands in Russsia weren't returned to Liovina. And of course there are the Russians cartels, but we’ve discussed their origins after the CSSR’s rapid collapse and how that created them, not sure where to expand on that.

If I remember correctly, the Fascist regime of Abyssinia back in HOI3 wanted to conquer Israel and incorporate Jews in the Middle East with their aspirations for a Pan African empire, which is funny since the real life Ethiopian monarchy claimed to have been descended from King Solomon ironically. I wonder if the Abyssinian royal family ever used a claim like that during their wars with the Reich, it would make sense for them to do it during their wars with the Reich, tho it probably wouldn't now.

Given the role the Maximist Wars had in helping reform and strengthen Roman meritocracy, I'm curios to know how the rapid spread of democracy during TTL's Spring of Nations in most countries and the overtaking most of them by Metternich style meritocracy in the 1870s influenced the growth of liberal democracy and meritocracy and the relationship between the two systems as well. Beginning with Reich's neighbors making reforms in the style of the original Augustan Code in 1444, it seems like the Reich's has always had an influence and sway over neighbors, which is probably why they adopted constitutionalism when the Maximists first took over the Reich in 1847. Of course, because these democracies were in the model of the Maximists and not the Ryukan-Chinese model that became prominent in the Sinosphere, there was of course a lot of corruption and deadlock in these governments, something that lead to Metternich meritocracy reasserting themselves in these countries later on. Like how moderate liberals defected to the Siegfredists during the Maximist Wars when the Maximists became more corrupt and oppressive, I imagine the restoration of meritocracy in these countries were done with the help of liberal movements and later influenced reforms there.

While Mozart and Beethoven living way longer than they did in OTL and working together to writie new symphonies and operas like Persepolis is certainly an interesting cultural divergences from OTL, I also remember Shakespare getting a similarly prolonged live span (tho that might be explained by him being a prophet like Bernadette) and writing the play Apocalypse, among other plays he could've written that don't exist in OTL. I imagine he would've been used by the Roman government to write a lot of propaganda plays glorifying the Inquisition and demonizing the heretics, so maybe he would'nt have gotten the chance to write any blockbuster plays during the war the without the Inqusition's overbearing oversight. Still, it'd be interesting to imagine the cultural impact plays like Apocalypse would have on Roman culture and later media.

You alluded to the possibility of Supernatural organizations other than the Roman Inquisition existing in other countries, which is a very interesting detail with the Inquisition now under the sway of the Worm and it's cult. I imagine these supernatural organizations would tackle cases related to religious mythology and folklore in their respective countries, with a Norse inquisition focusing on dealing with monsters from norse mythology and stuff like that. Heck, they might also use magic in a different way than the Inquisition even if it has the same rules, like the Chinese could focus more on the spiritualist and relgious elements that influnce magic rather than the scientific side the Inquisition focus on. What do you think of these ideas, there just something I’ve pondered about if we ever get a story arc with these foreign supernatural organizations, hope you like them.:)
One way or another, Anders might be right. This could be the last time the current X-Division team works together.
Yeah, I’ll definitely be missing the X-Division crew after this, I suppose every story has to come to an end at some point. Good thing that the cast of the Forum arc looks like they’ll be pretty interesting, helps that my character will be introduced there, definitely looking forward to that arc.:)

Edit: Just noticed the Millennium update wasn’t on the table of contents yet and I’m letting you know about that. Sorry for naging you with these reminders, hope they help at least.
 
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zenphoenix

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Since we're on this train of thought, I'm now curios about how the origins of the Russian and Lithuanian cartels in WW3 influenced them as well? Perhaps the Lithuanian cartels got their start as militant partisans who refused to stand down when former Commonwealth lands in Russsia weren't returned to Liovina. And of course there are the Russians cartels, but we’ve discussed their origins after the CSSR’s rapid collapse and how that created them, not sure where to expand on that.
Lithuanians in Russia have a very complicated relationship. The first groups originated in World War I when Lithuania lost the war and Lithuanians in Russia rioted, eventually forming their own resistance cells to oppose first the Tsarists and later the Soviets. During World War II they were helped by the Galdikas brothers' Forest Brothers movement in Lithuania proper, and in World War III they again took up arms. Afterward they took advantage of the postwar chaos to become black market dealers.
If I remember correctly, the Fascist regime of Abyssinia back in HOI3 wanted to conquer Israel and incorporate Jews in the Middle East with their aspirations for a Pan African empire, which is funny since the real life Ethiopian monarchy claimed to have been descended from King Solomon ironically. I wonder if the Abyssinian royal family ever used a claim like that during their wars with the Reich, it would make sense for them to do it during their wars with the Reich, tho it probably wouldn't now.
I'm sure the Ethiopian royal family, being Jewish here, still claims descent from Solomon, which the Reich doesn't have much of an issue with. In recent years they try not to emphasize this as much due to its connections with the fascist regime, although they haven't officially rejected it.
Given the role the Maximist Wars had in helping reform and strengthen Roman meritocracy, I'm curios to know how the rapid spread of democracy during TTL's Spring of Nations in most countries and the overtaking most of them by Metternich style meritocracy in the 1870s influenced the growth of liberal democracy and meritocracy and the relationship between the two systems as well. Beginning with Reich's neighbors making reforms in the style of the original Augustan Code in 1444, it seems like the Reich's has always had an influence and sway over neighbors, which is probably why they adopted constitutionalism when the Maximists first took over the Reich in 1847. Of course, because these democracies were in the model of the Maximists and not the Ryukan-Chinese model that became prominent in the Sinosphere, there was of course a lot of corruption and deadlock in these governments, something that lead to Metternich meritocracy reasserting themselves in these countries later on. Like how moderate liberals defected to the Siegfredists during the Maximist Wars when the Maximists became more corrupt and oppressive, I imagine the restoration of meritocracy in these countries were done with the help of liberal movements and later influenced reforms there.
The Reich's gigantic size (geographically, economically, and culturally) relative to its neighbors naturally lends to the other countries adopting similar reforms. But the Maximist movement and its successors were aberrations, having rejected the Ryukyuan/Chinese idea of democracy in favor of nationalism. So almost all of the Maximist-inspired democratic movements and the regimes they established, with the exception of the remarkably stable Abyssinian one, eventually fell into gridlock and corruption as the leaders turned on each other since they wrote the constitutions themselves. That made Metternich-style meritocracy very appealing after the Siegfriedists won the civil war, since the Reich returned to normal very quickly and the economy boomed in the years afterward after decades of crisis. In addition, many moderate supporters of these Maximist-inspired movements defected to the meritocratic side (or embraced Chinese-style democracy) once they had a chance, which doomed Maximist democracy and also paved the way for future reforms of Metternich-style systems as in the Reich. In Abyssinia the transition from democracy to meritocracy occurred gradually and peacefully since its Maximist-style democracy did not immediately descend into corruption as in other countries but somehow stabilized. Meritocratic and Chinese-style reforms were slowly added over the years until the country was eventually more in line with a regular Metternich-style meritocracy, only with significant democratic elements that continued into the fascist era.
While Mozart and Beethoven living way longer than they did in OTL and working together to writie new symphonies and operas like Persepolis is certainly an interesting cultural divergences from OTL, I also remember Shakespare getting a similarly prolonged live span (tho that might be explained by him being a prophet like Bernadette) and writing the play Apocalypse, among other plays he could've written that don't exist in OTL. I imagine he would've been used by the Roman government to write a lot of propaganda plays glorifying the Inquisition and demonizing the heretics, so maybe he would'nt have gotten the chance to write any blockbuster plays during the war the without the Inqusition's overbearing oversight. Still, it'd be interesting to imagine the cultural impact plays like Apocalypse would have on Roman culture and later media.
Yeah, it's cool how I gave Shakespeare, Mozart, and Beethoven more years to make new compositions and contribute to culture. I guess Shakespeare may have been in a similar situation as his counterpart in Ruled Britannia (Turtledove novel with the Spanish Armada conquering England), writing a play based on a historical event which rallies the people around a cause, only with the foreign occupation aspect replaced with the Inquisition directing what he can write.
You alluded to the possibility of Supernatural organizations other than the Roman Inquisition existing in other countries, which is a very interesting detail with the Inquisition now under the sway of the Worm and it's cult. I imagine these supernatural organizations would tackle cases related to religious mythology and folklore in their respective countries, with a Norse inquisition focusing on dealing with monsters from norse mythology and stuff like that. Heck, they might also use magic in a different way than the Inquisition even if it has the same rules, like the Chinese could focus more on the spiritualist and relgious elements that influnce magic rather than the scientific side the Inquisition focus on. What do you think of these ideas, there just something I’ve pondered about if we ever get a story arc with these foreign supernatural organizations, hope you like them.
In my internal notes I have the Chinese version of the Inquisition being more like the decentralized American hunters we see in Supernatural, and the Hashshashin is a Persian-based organization similar to the Assassins from Assassin's Creed which acts like Persia's version of the Inquisition. Each supernatural-focused organization would focus more on supernatural events happening in their own countries first (although the Hashshashin have a global presence like the Roman Inquisition) and draw on their local traditions to accomplish their goals. The Norse inquisition might focus heavily on technology but use traditional weapons like swords. The Chinese and Indian inquisitors would focus more on spirituality but still reconcile it with modern technology, and since the Chinese inquisitors are very decentralized they tend to improvise their own tech. The Hashshashin are more focused on stealth and intrigue than on regular magic, though they will use magic to help them accomplish their goals.

If I do follow through on my idea of a flashback arc with Dieter and Munster, I'll probably have them meeting the Hashshashin and seeing just how different they are. I would really like to see how the other supernatural agencies react to the Inquisition, the largest and most powerful of them all, falling under the control of the Worm cult.
Yeah, I’ll definitely be missing the X-Division crew after this, I suppose every story has to come to an end at some point. Good thing that the cast of the Forum arc looks like they’ll be pretty interesting, helps that my character will be introduced there, definitely looking forward to that arc.
Your character will actually be introduced in the next gameplay chapter. I will be tacking on the first Forum arc update at the end of it just like I added stingers for the first two X-Division arcs in previous chapters.
Edit: Just noticed the Millennium update wasn’t on the table of contents yet and I’m letting you know about that. Sorry for naging you with these reminders, hope they help at least.
It's done now.
 
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Yeah, it's cool how I gave Shakespeare, Mozart, and Beethoven more years to make new compositions and contribute to culture. I guess Shakespeare may have been in a similar situation as his counterpart in Ruled Britannia (Turtledove novel with the Spanish Armada conquering England), writing a play based on a historical event which rallies the people around a cause, only with the foreign occupation aspect replaced with the Inquisition directing what he can write.
I imagine the Apocalypse play also started the trend of the Inquisition later using mass media fiction centuries later as recruitment tools and smokescreens for their real efforts, including movies and shows like TTL Supernatural, Exorcist and the Conjuring among other franchises that may involve the Inquisition or is mentioned to involve them in previous updates. Of course, because of the modern Reich's secular attitude and disgust at the Inquisition's actions in the Fifty Years War and even beyond, I imagine not all Roman fantasy fiction would have a positive outlook on the Inquisition, with some media being either critical of it or at least neutral towards the institution.

Now I'm wondering what kind of cultural influence the other supernatural organizations would have in their own countries and beyond. I imagine the Hashassins and Beserkers would be cultural icons outside of their cultural origins, with viking and Persian media making them relevant in international pop culture. I imagine the Babelsburg perception of Hashains would be somewhere in between the Chinese Jiniwei and OTL's cultural perception of Ninjas (hence why media based on Ninjas like Nautro has been replaced with shows featuring either their Chinese equivalent or Hashassins), while the Beserkers would be popular for their combat prowess and sheer determination in battle no matter the odds. I know in a previous discussion we had TTL's Assassain's Creed centered around a confilct between the Templar and Teutonic holy orders, but I think it would be better if we kept it somewhat similar to OTL and have the Hashassin's use it as a smokescreen and recruiting tool like the Inquistion does with several Roman fantasy tv shows and movies, tho we probably shouldn't have them fight the Templars or any other Reich based organization.
In my internal notes I have the Chinese version of the Inquisition being more like the decentralized American hunters we see in Supernatural, and the Hashshashin is a Persian-based organization similar to the Assassins from Assassin's Creed which acts like Persia's version of the Inquisition. Each supernatural-focused organization would focus more on supernatural events happening in their own countries first (although the Hashshashin have a global presence like the Roman Inquisition) and draw on their local traditions to accomplish their goals. The Norse inquisition might focus heavily on technology but use traditional weapons like swords. The Chinese and Indian inquisitors would focus more on spirituality but still reconcile it with modern technology, and since the Chinese inquisitors are very decentralized they tend to improvise their own tech. The Hashshashin are more focused on stealth and intrigue than on regular magic, though they will use magic to help them accomplish their goals.

If I do follow through on my idea of a flashback arc with Dieter and Munster, I'll probably have them meeting the Hashshashin and seeing just how different they are. I would really like to see how the other supernatural agencies react to the Inquisition, the largest and most powerful of them all, falling under the control of the Worm cult.
I imagine the decentralized Chinese inquisitors would vary greatly on traditions and magical procedures depending on where they are, like Pengaliren inqusitors leaning on Aborginal, Japanese and Hindu influnces for their magic, or Chinese inquistors in Fusang drawing from Native Eimerican culture for their magical rituals. I can see the Norse Inqusition being very decentralized like the Chinese inqustion is due to the 80 year partition of Scandinavia and the exiled governments of Kanata, Tsarist Russia and Yavadi introducing their cultures to the Norse majority population and leaving Denmark as the only country with a native government. That's not even mentioning modern Scandinavia's acceptance of immigration and refugees, which would likely bring a whole lot of new spiritual and magical practices into the already diverse and decentralized Norse Inquisition.

I agree, seeing the other supernatural agencies react to the Cult's takeover of the Roman Inquisition would be really interesting in a Dieter and Munster based flashback arc. Perhaps the non Abrahmic Inquisitions would be terrified of the idea of the Abrhamic Roman Inquisition being under the Worm's sway and would help Dieter and Munster in removing the Cult from power, I think that would be cool.
Your character will actually be introduced in the next gameplay chapter. I will be tacking on the first Forum arc update at the end of it just like I added stingers for the first two X-Division arcs in previous chapters.
Very cool, I'm interested to see what you do with my character and the role he'll have in the next storyarc. I'm loving your ideas that you've described so far, so I'm excited to say the least. :)
 

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I imagine the Apocalypse play also started the trend of the Inquisition later using mass media fiction centuries later as recruitment tools and smokescreens for their real efforts, including movies and shows like TTL Supernatural, Exorcist and the Conjuring among other franchises that may involve the Inquisition or is mentioned to involve them in previous updates. Of course, because of the modern Reich's secular attitude and disgust at the Inquisition's actions in the Fifty Years War and even beyond, I imagine not all Roman fantasy fiction would have a positive outlook on the Inquisition, with some media being either critical of it or at least neutral towards the institution.
Yeah definitely. The Inquisition's mixed record in the Fifty Years' War would not be forgotten. Their conduct during that event is one of the main reasons they've been sidelined in subsequent centuries and gradually removed from secular affairs. Everybody knows what the Inquisition could do with enough secular power, and they don't want it to happen again.
Now I'm wondering what kind of cultural influence the other supernatural organizations would have in their own countries and beyond. I imagine the Hashassins and Beserkers would be cultural icons outside of their cultural origins, with viking and Persian media making them relevant in international pop culture. I imagine the Babelsburg perception of Hashains would be somewhere in between the Chinese Jiniwei and OTL's cultural perception of Ninjas (hence why media based on Ninjas like Nautro has been replaced with shows featuring either their Chinese equivalent or Hashassins), while the Beserkers would be popular for their combat prowess and sheer determination in battle no matter the odds. I know in a previous discussion we had TTL's Assassain's Creed centered around a confilct between the Templar and Teutonic holy orders, but I think it would be better if we kept it somewhat similar to OTL and have the Hashassin's use it as a smokescreen and recruiting tool like the Inquistion does with several Roman fantasy tv shows and movies, tho we probably shouldn't have them fight the Templars or any other Reich based organization.
Berserkers aren't actually a supernatural-based organization but rather the elite warriors at the center of the Scandinavian army. I don't think I have a name for the Norse organization at this point but it would be part of mainstream religious traditions to some extent. The Hashshashins would be seen as more assassins in popular culture as in real life, like the Jinyiwei and OTL ninjas.

In my internal notes I have the real Hashshashin actually control or at least have close ties with the Templars, and their leadership would be quite amused by the games (although some of the crazier parts come worryingly close to the truth). I do agree they would use the games and other media to mask their real operations, but they have their own secretive recruitment methods, generally inducting relatives or trusted friends of current members or appropriate members of the military or clergy. The games definitely wouldn't have the Templars as bad guys but probably some older or more obscure holy order.
I imagine the decentralized Chinese inquisitors would vary greatly on traditions and magical procedures depending on where they are, like Pengaliren inqusitors leaning on Aborginal, Japanese and Hindu influnces for their magic, or Chinese inquistors in Fusang drawing from Native Eimerican culture for their magical rituals. I can see the Norse Inqusition being very decentralized like the Chinese inqustion is due to the 80 year partition of Scandinavia and the exiled governments of Kanata, Tsarist Russia and Yavadi introducing their cultures to the Norse majority population and leaving Denmark as the only country with a native government. That's not even mentioning modern Scandinavia's acceptance of immigration and refugees, which would likely bring a whole lot of new spiritual and magical practices into the already diverse and decentralized Norse Inquisition.
Definitely. The empire's multicultural aspect influenced a lot of the decentralized approach by China's modern Inquisition. Even in China itself there's a lot of diversity and local traditions to draw upon.

I think the Norse Inquisition would do something similar, but after reunification the different organizations of the Tsarists, the Roman Inquisition's Danish branch, and the Kanatans merged, bringing with them the influences of their home countries. The original Norse organization relied a lot on pre-Christian and pre-reformatoin beliefs and traditions already and this would just add a new layer to it.
I agree, seeing the other supernatural agencies react to the Cult's takeover of the Roman Inquisition would be really interesting in a Dieter and Munster based flashback arc. Perhaps the non Abrahmic Inquisitions would be terrified of the idea of the Abrhamic Roman Inquisition being under the Worm's sway and would help Dieter and Munster in removing the Cult from power, I think that would be cool.
I think they'd all be terrified in general by the cult of an eldritch horror taking over the most powerful supernatural organization with a global presence, like the reaction to SHIELD being taken over by Hydra in the MCU. Thus they'd naturally try to band together with the few loyal Inquisitors to combat this new threat.
Very cool, I'm interested to see what you do with my character and the role he'll have in the next storyarc. I'm loving your ideas that you've described so far, so I'm excited to say the least. :)
Glad you are. I hope I represented him the way you imagined.
 
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The Truth is Out There, Part 3

“Just as we must transform the Reich’s military capability to meet changing threats, we must transform the way the Bureau works and what it works on. We must build a Bureau where each of the dedicated people here can apply their immense talents to defend the Reich, where they have the resources, information and freedom to perform. Our challenge is to transform not just the way we deter and defend, but the way we conduct our daily business. Let's make no mistake: The modernization of the Bureau of Defense is a matter of some urgency. In fact, it could be said that it's a matter of life and death, ultimately, every Roman’s. A new idea ignored may be the next threat overlooked. A person employed in a redundant task is one who could be countering terrorism or nuclear proliferation. Every mark squandered on waste is one denied to the warfighter. That's why we're here today challenging us all to wage an all-out campaign to shift Pentagon's resources from bureaucracy to the battlefield, from tail to the tooth. We know the adversary. We know the threat. And with the same firmness of purpose that any effort against a determined adversary demands, we must get at it and stay at it.”

-Rudolf Scharping


Nicomedia High Containment Facility - November 11, 2015, 6:00 AM

“…after Agent Frank’s press release…”

“…Imperial Throne still uncharacteristically silent…”

“…issued yet another categorical denial…”

“…the Reichstag majority leader, announces an investigation will be opened…”

“…surprising twist, the Bureau of Justice has issued indictments against dozens of high-ranking bureaucratic officials…”

“…Justice Minister has unexpectedly resigned…”

“…reports that Gerhard Schröder’s estate has been raided by the Athanatoi…”

“…former chancellor has surrendered himself to the authorities…”

“…this is a coup, plain and simple, by the Athanatoi and other rogue agencies. We should start treating it like one and respond…”

“…who is Pavel Novak? Are we even sure he is alive and…”

Pavel turned away from his rows of TV screens, each turned to a different news channel. He didn’t think Anders had it in him to actually follow through. Anders was the kind of guy to spend his whole life chasing a goal but let it always stay out of reach, just so he could continue the chase forever. He was the kind of guy who relished the adventure, not the reward. So it was a shock when he saw the leak on the front pages of Die Zeiten. He ordered his men to clean up the leak, but they were idiots. He should’ve known better than to trust Billy, but he was the oldest and most experienced super soldier he had. Then again, he was one of the older models, with issues not resolved in later ones. They only made the problem much worse. Now people were believing this washed-out 90s conspiracy theorist. He was actually going mainstream.

How did he get his hands on that leak anyways? That leak had almost every single document and file he had in his archives. Anders was smart to leave out the stuff regarding the philosopher’s stone (and the Inquisition’s weird fixation on it), Alfred Hoffman, the Inquisition, and the Jotun. Especially the Jotun. Otherwise he would’ve made Pavel’s job a lot easier. Oh, well. It was too late now. Time to carry out Plan B.

Pavel picked up his phone and called General Heidelberg.

“Hello?” Heidelberg said.

“How are you holding up?” Pavel said.

“Fine, sir,” Heidelberg said, “If you call being about to be indicted fine.”

“Don’t worry about indictments,” Pavel said, “I’m taking care of it. Is the system online?”

“Yes, sir,” Heidelberg said, “Targeting mechanism’s been updated.”

“Get everybody ready,” Pavel said, “We’re going to start Operation Ghost Odin.”

“Sir, with all due respect, not to criticize your judgment, but I really think Ghost Odin isn’t the best name for our operation,” Heidelberg said, “I think the reference is a little too on the nose—”

“We’ll discuss this later!” Pavel said. “I want to shoot something!”

He hung up and walked over to a red switch. He flipped the switch, and a satellite image of the North Atlantic appeared on a computer, marked with crosshairs. He adjusted his aim and zoomed in so that the crosshairs were now over a Roman carrier group, on its way from Lisbon to the UPM to help put down a Mexicanist insurgency.

“Well, they’re not going to make it,” he said, pushing a red button.

A beam of directed energy gathered by Strategic Defense Initiative’s orbital weapons satellites launched downward, punching through the atmosphere before squarely striking the aircraft carrier, blasting it into pieces immediately. He adjusted his aim to focus on the next ship, waited for the satellites to recharge, and fired again. He then did the same for each ship until all that was left of the fleet was smoldering wreckage. There was no rush to destroy the ships. There was no way they could shoot back or even get out of range. He smiled to himself. This was only a demonstration of a fraction of Sentinel’s true power. Soon, the capitals of the world would be ashes at his feet, and he would have Anders’ head. Nobody could stop him.


United Nations Headquarters, UN Island, Vienna - 1:00 PM

Someone knocked on the door. Annie Schmidt looked up from her computer and reached for the gun hidden under her desk. Her assistant, thirty-year-old Gottfried Loben, who sat at a desk behind the door, focused for a moment.

“They’re friendly,” he said.

“Come in,” Schmidt said.

The door opened, and Anders and Anna walked in.

“Afternoon, Ambassador,” Anders said, “Gottfried.”

Gotffried shook their hands.

“It’s nice to see you again,” he said.

“You’ve grown so much since we last met,” Anders said, “Enjoying your job?”

“It pays well,” Gottfried said, “Like what they’ve done with the place. I have to say, it looks better than the old building. Though we’re moving to the new offices in the suburbs soon.”

“Anders Humboldt,” Schmidt said, “Your face has been all over the news for the last two days.”

“Tell me about it,” Anna said.

“We are,” Gottfried said.

“This is my sister, Anna,” Anders said.

“Please, have a seat,” Schmidt said, leaning back, “So what can I do for you?”

“If you’ve been watching the news, you know why we’re here,” Anders said, “We’re looking for our other sister. The one you helped go off the grid fourteen years ago.”

“It’s okay,” Gottfried said, “You can trust them.”

“Gottfried, can you please stop reading my mind?” Anders said. “You know who I am.”

“Wait, what’s this about reading minds?” Anna said.

“It’s a long story,” Gottfried said, “Do you know about the late chess grandmaster Kang Yingwu? You don’t seem to. Let me tell you…because of that, I indirectly got Anders and Diana back together, and they know it—”

“Anyways, Annie Humboldt,” Schmidt said, “That’s a name I haven’t heard in a long time. It was just the two of us, Her Highness and I. She approached the Crown Princess, actually. Asked to help her hide from Sentinel. The Crown Princess had me call in favors.”

“Where did you hide her?” Anna said. “She may be in danger.”

Gottfried held up his hand. “Wait.”

“What?” Anders said.

“There’s someone outside,” Gottfried said, “He’s…duck!”

They hit the floor just as a bomb detonated, blasting the door off its hinges and tearing off chunks of the wall. A super soldier stepped in through the hole. Schmidt grabbed the shotgun from under her desk and fired at him. Even through every shot struck the super soldier, he kept advancing like nothing had happened. Anders got to his feet and smashed a lamp over his head. The super soldier casually turned and without breaking a sweat grabbed him by the neck, lifting him off the floor.

“Quick!” Schmidt said, tossing a knife to Anna.

Anna stabbed the knife into the super soldier’s back. The super soldier screamed in pain as Anna twisted the knife, forcing him to his knees. He released Anders, who fell to the ground and quickly got back on his feet. They ran out of the office, down the stairs, and out of the lobby, running past confused bureaucrats and tourists as they got into waiting car, driven by Angela. Angela sped off.

“I was hoping they’d be a little slower,” Angela muttered.

“What’s going on?” Schmidt said. “Why are they here?”

“They want to know where Annie is,” Anders said, “I need an address. Now!”

“It’s been so long,” Schmidt said, “I might need a few minutes to remember…”

But Gottfried had already written down an address on a slip of paper. He gave it to Anders.

“Here it is,” he said, “That’s where you’ll find Annie.”

Anders put the address in his pocket just as Diana swerved to avoid a car, only for another car to slam into them, forcing them to a stop in the middle of the bridge to the mainland. She and Olga got out and readied their weapons.

“Feels like only yesterday we were here, shooting at each other,” Diana said.

“Oh, yes,” Olga said, “Only we’re on the same side now.”

Super soldiers got out of the cars, armed with assault rifles.

“You ready?” Diana said.

“Like I always am,” Olga said.

They opened fire. The super soldiers staggered back, temporarily confused. Diana and Olga retreated across the bridge, while Angela restarted the car’s engine and shifted gears. She then hit the play button on her Walkman, and old 1980s music blared from the speakers.

“Let’s do this,” she said.

She floored the gas pedal and rammed her way through the lines of super soldiers, Diana and Olga providing cover for her to get out of there. With the super soldiers distracted, she made it to the end of the bridge and disappeared into downtown Vienna.

“You sure they’ll be okay?” Schmidt said.

“They’ll be fine,” Gottfried said, “They knew what they were doing. It was part of the plan.”

They arrived at a police station, where officers had already set up a barricade. An ambulance waited by the entrance, first responders ready to go. Angela stopped the car at the barricade and helped Schmidt and Gottfried out. Anders and Anna got out after them. Several police officers rushed over to escort them to the station, while others held back yet more news reporters.

“You’ll be fine,” Anders said, “I’ve told the police to plan accordingly. A protective detail will arrive soon.”

“Thank you,” Schmidt said, “Good luck.”

“Thank you,” Angela said.

Schmidt and Gottfried went into the station. Gottfried hung back for a second.

“Don’t be so hard on yourself, Agent Humboldt,” he said, “All good things come to an end.”

He followed Schmidt and the officers inside.

“Di and Olga will stay here to make sure Sentinel doesn’t try anything,” Angela said, “The rest of us will find Annie.”

“Okay, what’s the address, then?” Anna said.

Anders looked around, checking for bugs or cameras, while Angela turned up the volume of her Walkman to a deafening volume. When Anders was satisfied, he turned back to them and showed them the address.
 
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