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CzokletMuss

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Fantastic! I saw the Lord of the Near and Nigh epithet, and I was quite happy. Well done on mentioning truly one of the most important of all the Nahuatl gods.
Thank you very much, I knew as soon as I mention the horrible xenoi blasphemies you will show up ;) The real life Mesomamerica has fascinating mythology, I enjoyed every minute of my research.
There was too much Nahua for me in this update :p
That's the Roman spirit!
This is an amazing AAR.
As someone who just found this, gotta say: really digging the world.
Welcome to the thread mayorqw, I'm really glad you enjoy the story :) You may have already noticed that the first page where all the links are is still broken - I'm working on it, so soon you should be able to read all the previous uptades without going through >130 pages.
It would be good to ease back into things with the dev diary, then the 'special update' and then the chapter as such
Or I may just release the dev diary right now ;)
pfft, silly xenoi, their gods need blood, our god runs on reliable, efficient and clean-burning propa- err, prayer.
So... fire for the Fire God? :p
Fascinating update. Alas, the Xenoi will still have to burn to sustain the world.
Thanks! And yes, the soulless savages must be destroyed if the Christianity is going to survive.
This is a realy nice dark and spooky update. Well written!
Gave me shivers as I read it, great teaser for what's the come!
Thank you :) It was an interesting experiment for me to write chapter dedicated to xenoi and focused on one person for a change, I'm really glad it worked out :) Also the trailer for "El Dorado" DLC was pretty good, don't you think?

BTW I apologize for the mess on the first page of the thread - new forum runs on code which doesn't allow making tables plus transfer to the new server have broken all the links. I'm slowly fixing this but I want to release the next chapter first. Also the way how post editing works is pretty horrible, so forgive me typos and stuff, it will get some time before I get used to it.
 
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CzokletMuss

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DEV DIARY 7
EL DORADO

Here we are at last - the new dev diary! Many changes and tweaks were made in order to make "Imperium Sine Fine" fully compatible with current version of the EU4 (patch 1.11.4). Some modifications however weren't so limited in scope and in fact were far more ambitious. Before we start I would like to point out something:

1) Since a new expansion is coming to EU4 which will fundamentally change many aspects of the game (parliaments, new siege mechanics, basetax and manpower changes, new provinces etc.), probably in a month or two I will have to once again work on making "Imperium Sine Fine" compatible with the latest patch. Expect huge changes in this upcoming dev diary.
2) All of the changes included in this dev diary take effect on 1 January 1520, that is AFTER chapter 4 and thus will affect chapter 5 and all subsequent updates.
3) You won't read about all the changes I made in this dev diary because spoilers - after all, I can't really talk about Far East of Far West without spoiling some surprises hidden beyond the chartered waters. Keep this in mind while reading this.

It's been way too long since the last update (a little more than 2 months I think), so let's dive straight into this dev diary, shall we?

MAJOR CHANGES

Compatibility with 1.11.4

The most important change of all - "Imperium Sine Fine" runs now on v.1.11.4 of Europa Universalis IV. This means all changes made to the game since February now apply, which means not only that I'll be playing with all new events and decisions etc. but also that the latest version of EU4-to-V2 converter should work on "Imperium Sine Fine".

End date moved from year 1820 to 1836

This simple change in defines.lua enables a smooth transition to Victoria 2 - assuming we will reach year 1836, because after 6 months of this AAR we're still stuck in 16th century ;)

Religions


"El Dorado" introduced fancy new mechanics for New World religions, which are a really nice addition to the game. Unfortunately they are hardcoded, which makes it impossible for me to use them in creative ways. However, the xenoi did manage to reform their religion - in late 13th century. That's why I decided to give the religions of the Far West their reformed status anyways using triggered modifiers as a workaround:


This particular modifier is triggered for every country with Nahuatl as a state religion and yes, this includes Xenoi Xolal.

Other changes considering religions are as follows:
  • Every religion may now declare war while in regency
  • Every religion with the exception of standard pagans (Shamanism, Animism etc.) has now access to Defender of Faith mechanic
  • Religions of the Far West give now -2% of missionary strength in provinces of such faith, making it harder to convert them
  • For historical reasons (see "This Is Madness" in CK2) the Sunni no longer give -2% of missionary strength in provinces of such faith, making it easier to convert them - after all, this branch of Islam basically collapsed entirely in 14th century

There are naturally more - for instance, I wrote a very long event chain of far-reaching consequences - but right now I can't talk about this in detail :)

AI handicap & Great Power bonuses


Like some of you suggested, I decided to give substantial bonuses to AI in order to make it more eager to wage war. To balance this, I increased AE gain - this should make wars more frequent, more decisive and more brutal but on the other hand coalitions should form much easier. As you can see, there is also a triggered modifier for the Horde. That's because I decided to give some bonuses to some of the Great Powers (top 10 countries) as well, in order to make the game a little more dynamic. Here are some of these bonuses:

Code:
#GREAT POWERS - THE HORDE: +2 colonist, -50% colonial range, +10 colonist growth
great_power_7 = {
    potential = {
        normal_or_historical_nations = yes
        Z22 = { exists = yes }
        tag = Z22
    }
    trigger = {
        tag = Z22
    }
    range = -0.5
    colonists = 2
    global_colonial_growth = 10
}

#GREAT POWERS - THE TIMURIDS: +1 legitimacy, +50% heir chance, +1 prestige
great_power_8 = {
    potential = {
        normal_or_historical_nations = yes
        TIM = { exists = yes }
        tag = TIM
    }
    trigger = {
        dynasty = "Timurid"
    }
    legitimacy = 1
    heir_chance = 0.5
    prestige = 1
}

#GREAT POWERS - REPUBLIC OF PISA: +25% trade efficiency, -50% mercenary maintenance, +10% trade income
great_power_9 = {
    potential = {
        normal_or_historical_nations = yes
        PIS = { exists = yes }
        tag = PIS
    }
    trigger = {
        tag = PIS
    }
    trade_efficiency = 0.25
    merc_maintenance_modifier = -0.50
    global_trade_income_modifier = 0.1
}

#GREAT POWERS - SULTANATE OF MALI: +1% missionary strength vs heretic, +1 hostile attrition, +1 missionary strength
great_power_10 = {
    potential = {
        normal_or_historical_nations = yes
        MAL = { exists = yes }
        tag = MAL
    }
    trigger = {
        tag = MAL
    }
    global_heretic_missionary_strength = 0.01
    hostile_attrition = 1
    global_missionary_strength = 0.01
}
Each modifier comes with full localization:


I've been also cleaning the mess my exported save became and transferring files into what I hope will one day become a full-fledged mod. There is still a lot of work to do but perhaps sometime in the future everyone will have a possibility to download "Imperium Sine Fine" and play in this strange world :)

Technology


Technology files have been updated (which allows for instance Forced March for everyone on MIL lvl 9). This doesn't mean that I didn't made some changes of my own though - Administrative Efficiency now kicks in on lvl 12, 16 and 19 instead of 22, 26 and 29.


Additionally, a new triggered modifier slows down technological progress in Europe. In this world the Renaissance never occurred and great artists, philosophers and scientists like Gutenberg, Michelangelo, Raphael, Donatello, Machiavelli, More, Copernicus, Galileo and Kepler were never born, forever swept away from the history by the horrors unleashed by Sunset Invasion. This effectively makes Eastern tech only slightly better than Muslim (115% Eastern + 15% Dark Renaissance = 130% tech cost while for Muslims its 140%) but slower than Ottoman.

Code:
# DARK RENAISSANCE: +15% technology cost, +15% idea cost
hypatia_6 = {
    potential = {
        capital_scope = { continent = europe }
        religion_group = christian
        NOT = { tag = PIS }
    }
    trigger = {
        capital_scope = { continent = europe }
        religion_group = christian
    }
        technology_cost = 0.15
        idea_cost = 0.15
}
New colonial regions, trade companies removed


I was looking for quite some time for a good mod introducing new colonial regions but to no avail - so I decided to make my own. Now part of the "Imperium Sine Fine", the modified files remove all trade companies regions from the game and in their place (Africa + Far East) new colonial regions were introduced.

I would like to show you the map of the whole world with these new regions but this is somewhat spolier-ish, so I guess you will have to wait until the proper parts of the map are explored by brave Roman sailors ;)

MINOR CHANGES

Governments

Updated to current version of EU4. Empire government (used by Xenoi Xolal) gives now the following bonuses:

Code:
imperial_government = {
    monarchy = yes
   
    valid_for_new_country = no
    allow_convert = no
    valid_for_nation_designer = yes
    nation_designer_cost = 30
   
    #bonus
    land_morale = 0.05
    global_autonomy = -0.1
}
There is no longer a minimal 10% level of autonomy mind you, which means that xenoi may now use resources of every province with 100% efficiency.

Changes to Italian Ideas


Somehow I missed the fact that one of the National Traditions for Italian Ideas - namely +2 papal influence - is completely useless for the only Italian state still alive. To make up for it, I decided to give Pisa a possibility to recruit conquistadors and explorers. This not only is completely reasonable story-wise (the Republic was a protectorate of the xenoi after all) but also opens new possibilities for greedy merchants, who despite my numerous attempts to destroy them in CK2 and completely on their own managed to survive so long.

Localization changes


I made some minor localization changes but the most important of them all was something I should've took care of months ago - the "greek" culture is now localized as "Romaioi". I also fixed problem with "noculture" which somehow made its way to 1 province in Africa after CK2 conversion.

Cores and claims

As it was suggested by some of you dear readers, events were created which will periodically fire giving claims on some regions to several countries.

***

And that's about it, at least for now. As soon as the new expansion comes out, I will start working on compatibility - I hope the changes to the provinces and basetax won't force me to manually change every single province in the world, because in that case it will take a while before >2000 provinces are fixed. On the other hand, in 2nd April dev diary Johan talked about new parliament mechanics, which I hope to adapt for the Imperial Senate:


In any case, as I told you before as soon as the new part of the map is explored you can expect a dev diary dedicated to the changes made in that part of the world. So for example if you are interested what lies in mythical Hindustan be patient, sooner or later you will learn its secrets :)

The new chapter is coming next (sooner than you expect) and as soon as it is released we will begin preparations for the IV Senate Session - new Senators have to be accepted, Faction Leaders have to be elected, new Faction bonuses have to be chosen and above all else the Imperial Senate will have to advise the Emperor on a very important matter...

The Angeloi protect!
 
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Serpent

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Praise St Marcos!
I really admire your dedication to this aar. You are creating something beautiful here and I'm humbled that you listened to my suggestions about strengthening the AI. I hope everything turns out well because I can't wait to get back into the game again.
 

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I love the changes introduced with El Durado. The idea of wars happening more often is both exciting and worrying. You've shown you're a skilled player though, so I still believe this story will survive to see V2. The further weakening of our technology further shows that the Imperium will need to Westernize (I'm starting to sound like a broken record...).

I'm looking forward to seeing this history's version of Hindustan and the upcoming chapter.

When would be a good time to ask some worldbuilding questions? I'm not wanting to derail the topic, but I have a lingering question about the Dark Rennaissance.
 

CzokletMuss

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Praise St Marcos!
I really admire your dedication to this aar. You are creating something beautiful here and I'm humbled that you listened to my suggestions about strengthening the AI. I hope everything turns out well because I can't wait to get back into the game again.
Thank you very much, I really appreciate it! I'm gonna be honest, it's a good feeling to be back :) As for the Senate, as soon as the new chapter is released you may start sending your characters and the Faction Meetings will be called to discuss things properly before the IV Session - which I hope will start in c. a week or so :)

I love the changes introduced with El Durado. The idea of wars happening more often is both exciting and worrying. You've shown you're a skilled player though, so I still believe this story will survive to see V2. The further weakening of our technology further shows that the Imperium will need to Westernize (I'm starting to sound like a broken record...).

I'm looking forward to seeing this history's version of Hindustan and the upcoming chapter.

When would be a good time to ask some worldbuilding questions? I'm not wanting to derail the topic, but I have a lingering question about the Dark Rennaissance.
In my simulations the AI indeed was more aggressive, we shall see how this works out. As for the technology, the modifier takes effect on 1 January 1520 so there was already a long period 1444-1520 without such maluses. I'm not sure about Westernization but I'll leave it to the Senate.

Now is good I guess, so AMA :)
 

Attalus

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Great changes :)

So now is time to prepare our characters and send them or after the update ?
 

CzokletMuss

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Great changes :)

So now is time to prepare our characters and send them or after the update ?
You will be notified via Diarium Senatorum when you can send new characters; the next Senate Session will take place in 1520 and the last chapter ended in 1500, leaving 20-year long gap to be filled by chapter 4. You can't really make a new character if you don't know what happened, especially when writing biography. :)

BTW there will be some minor changes to the way submissions are accepted. More details in Diarium Senatorum.
 

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Well we'll wait then. (I can always prepare a name though :p )
I hope you changed the faction rules 'cause they are IMO a bit too binding and not really character friendly like the last Faction Reunions showed (but the biggest problem was lack of participation also).
 

CzokletMuss

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I'm going to change them completely with the release of the new expansion which introduces parliaments to the game. For now I'll just correct the rules instead of writing new ones from a scratch.
 
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TheAnguishedOne

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I agree that because of the massive changes to history, many of the great minds we are familiar with won't appear and influence the direction of science and the arts. While EU4 and V2 aren't really affected by a change in the arts, science does play an important role. Clearly the Imperium isn't focused on scientific breakthroughs at the moment, reflected in our Eastern tech. As time passes though, brilliant people will still be born, both inside and outside the Imperium's borders. No one disagrees that the world is a much darker place than our own, meaning the morals are alien to us (slavery is a necessary part of the Imperium's economy, children are castrated and made into servants, ect.).

Would all this not mean that some brilliant people who never rose to prominence in our history because their methods were extreme would be accepted in this mad world? Methods that are too extreme for our world would be commonplace in this story. I don't think such effects would be noticed for some time, but can we expect some events or localization text to reflect this dark world's effect on technology by the V2 era?
 

Attalus

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I agree that because of the massive changes to history, many of the great minds we are familiar with won't appear and influence the direction of science and the arts. While EU4 and V2 aren't really affected by a change in the arts, science does play an important role. Clearly the Imperium isn't focused on scientific breakthroughs at the moment, reflected in our Eastern tech. As time passes though, brilliant people will still be born, both inside and outside the Imperium's borders. No one disagrees that the world is a much darker place than our own, meaning the morals are alien to us (slavery is a necessary part of the Imperium's economy, children are castrated and made into servants, ect.).

Would all this not mean that some brilliant people who never rose to prominence in our history because their methods were extreme would be accepted in this mad world? Methods that are too extreme for our world would be commonplace in this story. I don't think such effects would be noticed for some time, but can we expect some events or localization text to reflect this dark world's effect on technology by the V2 era?
It would be so terrible and fitting at the same time :p
 

McGrey

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I've been also cleaning the mess my exported save became and transferring files into what I hope will one day become a full-fledged mod. There is still a lot of work to do but perhaps sometime in the future everyone will have a possibility to download "Imperium Sine Fine" and play in this strange world :)
Praise St. Marcos!
 

ThetrueColt

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You just keep on delivering Czoklet, your effort and determination appear to be without limits so far. Outstanding!

So Pisa is considered a "great power" by the game? *Heresy intensifies*

I like the changes, the only thing I'm unsure of is the new colonial regions. Does it really suit the Imperium to create vassal states instead of adding more provinces to its own glory? Is it even plausible to have "advanced" separate colonial administration with liberty desire and so on?


Praise St Marcos!
Praise St. Marcos!
I am not a member of the Whites, but guys, this is HERESY. Praise the right man, it's Saint Markos, there is no "c". :p
 

varetta

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I must say that, in my opinion, renaissance should happen in this world too. In fact, I think that it should be even stronger than it was in real life the wish for change. Cultural exchange is even more common in this world than what it was in real life and the need for new technology or skills is even more important in this world; they can be the difference between life and death. For example, powder was important in OTL for western powers after Constantinople fall that is when all major power wanted it. In this world, with Aztecs ad portas it would be even more important to unveil its secrets.

By other way but related, I agree that many of our current historical characters, who were born or lived in lands occupied in this timeline by the Xenoi won´t exist, but those born in Imperial lands (italians mainly) could exists and there could be other people ocupying its place (the famous Leonardo da Andrianopolis, for example). I consider that cultural and technological advances happens because of circumstances, not because specific people (in fact, I think than in vanilla game Martin Lutero can be born in any other country and with a different name, but anyway reform will happen because of circumstances)

PS: Great development diary. I love this world and its own logic and development
 

BanishTheSpleen

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I must say that, in my opinion, renaissance should happen in this world too. In fact, I think that it should be even stronger than it was in real life the wish for change. Cultural exchange is even more common in this world than what it was in real life and the need for new technology or skills is even more important in this world; they can be the difference between life and death. For example, powder was important in OTL for western powers after Constantinople fall that is when all major power wanted it. In this world, with Aztecs ad portas it would be even more important to unveil its secrets.

By other way but related, I agree that many of our current historical characters, who were born or lived in lands occupied in this timeline by the Xenoi won´t exist, but those born in Imperial lands (italians mainly) could exists and there could be other people ocupying its place (the famous Leonardo da Andrianopolis, for example). I consider that cultural and technological advances happens because of circumstances, not because specific people (in fact, I think than in vanilla game Martin Lutero can be born in any other country and with a different name, but anyway reform will happen because of circumstances)

PS: Great development diary. I love this world and its own logic and development
The Renaissance also required a large amount of feuding petty states (in our world's case the Italian city-states and the princes of Germany). This is a world of blobs.
 

varetta

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The Renaissance also required a large amount of feuding petty states (in our world's case the Italian city-states and the princes of Germany). This is a world of blobs.
Why? You just need a reason for rich / noble people to want to invest in artist or scientific (in our case, primatoi or senators or noble families could act as them, as a way of internal fighting to show who is the most important family of the empire) and motivation for change (new cultural influences in both worlds). But there is no reason, I think, why renaissance needs of small states to success.

The age of enlightenment, which could be in some ways a second renaissance, happened mainly in England and France, two of the biggest nations of those times.
 

BanishTheSpleen

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Why? You just need a reason for rich / noble people to want to invest in artist or scientific (in our case, primatoi or senators or noble families could act as them, as a way of internal fighting to show who is the most important family of the empire) and motivation for change (new cultural influences in both worlds). But there is no reason, I think, why renaissance needs of small states to success.

The age of enlightenment, which could be in some ways a second renaissance, happened mainly in England and France, two of the biggest nations of those times.
That is a good point, but the Enlightenment built off of the ideas of humanism birthed in Renaissance Italy. You don't get a Renaissance/Enlightenment like the one our world experienced without small petty states with an ever-shifting pattern of alliances and cultural dynamics. The imperium has been the same for the past two hundred years.

Also, it adds to the grimdark atmosphere.
 

varetta

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That is a good point, but the Enlightenment built off of the ideas of humanism birthed in Renaissance Italy. You don't get a Renaissance/Enlightenment like the one our world experienced without small petty states with an ever-shifting pattern of alliances and cultural dynamics. The imperium has been the same for the past two hundred years.

Also, it adds to the grimdark atmosphere.
Grimdark atmosphere, is truth, does not seem to suggest more advance, and I can accept or even share your opinion on arts and philosophy (ideas, in game terms) but I cannot understand why, with internal political fighting in the empire and especially a clear technological gap between the empire and the xenoi, there won´t be and even stronger wish for new technological advances, especially on weapons and fleets, and a bigger need of money to pay for auxiliary troops.

And yes, I agree that enlightenment drinks from renaissance, but I still do not see the need of small states for having a renaissance. Why could not it happen in bigger states, even if small states was OTL case? For me it sounds similar to say that Reformation HAD to start in Germany and it could not have happened in Sweden, Poland or Spain.?
 

Attalus

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You forget the general mindset of the Imperium. Sure some Blue aristocrats are erudite but most of the people's opinions are clearly White with a desire to burn what is dangerous at all costs. :p

In fact I think the technology course is just to not fall be behind the Xenoi, never to be ahead of them like in 1984 where the permanent war does not mean increased progress (quite the contrary in fact)
 
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CzokletMuss

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(...)but I cannot understand why, with internal political fighting in the empire and especially a clear technological gap between the empire and the xenoi, there won´t be and even stronger wish for new technological advances, especially on weapons and fleets, and a bigger need of money to pay for auxiliary troops.
There will be - why shouldn't there be? I decided to set the story in grimdark convention, yes, but grimdark =/= grimderp, by which I mean grimdark based on assumption that all parties involved never learn anything nor try anything new. The Imperium is changing, albeit slowly - just like the historical Eastern Roman Empire it is based on, it has to adapt in order to survive. In fact, blessed Autokrator Markos III Angelos himself enacted a series of reforms in middle 15th century as it was described in chapter 2:

The Great Reform

During centuries the Imperium have faced innumerable invasions and although in the end it was always victorious, the cycle of expansion, stagnation, decay and rebirth caused the imperial administration to resemble truly bureaucratic nightmare. Always having lower priority than the imperial military or diplomacy, after the introduction of themata system over 700 years ago the administration was only adapted ad hoc to the ever-changing threats the Imperium was facing at the moment. Initially this allowed for a great flexibility in dealing with constant stream of new enemies but in time the imperial administration completely degenerated. In its nadir during the First Doukid Anarchy, following the disastrous battle of Manzikert in 1071, the themata system all but collapsed entirely. In the following years it was slowly being rebuilt until the Second Doukid Anarchy (1172-1177) when it was destroyed completely. In chaos of Anarchy only small forces of mercenaries paid by the Throne and soldiers of Markos the Just – doux of Samos, Thracesia, Cibyrrhaeot and Anatolia – were trying to restore order. When the Second Anarchy finally ended however no reforms were introduced by basilissa Euphrasia Doukas. Her long rule lasting over 50 years marked the complete decay of the administration and it was during these years when doukes became de facto rulers of imperial themata given them to govern, transforming them into fiefdoms and further eroding the power of the Throne.

It took Saint Markos himself to finally reform the rotting body of the imperial administration and it's obvious that if it wasn't for changes introduced by him, the Imperium would have fall, be it during the Years Without Summer, the Great Plague or the Sunset Invasion. It shouldn't be surprising though that when the not only Imperium but the Christendom itself was facing complete annihilation from the hands of invaders from the Far West and Mongol hordes of the East the reforms were never completed. Nor Saint Markos nor his descendants were given enough time to finish this great work and every invasion threatening the Imperium immediately caused all resources and attention to be diverted to the Imperial Army.

Sacred Emperor Markos III Angelos decided to change this once and for all.
Anyways, as always I'll answer to all your comments but right now I'm in the middle of writing the next chapter (and it's going really well!) so please forgive me if I do this tomorrow/on Saturday. :)