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Originally published at Sythyry. Please leave any comments there.

Yylhauntra in the Pool of Boiling Acid [11 Lage 4261]

I have been accused of transcribing conversations into this
journal. This is a false accusation! I would if I could,
sometimes, but I can’t remember them so precisely and cannot
really stop and take notes of my most intimate moments. I
reconstruct them afterwards, from memory and from my best
impressions of various people’s styles.

Except today. Yylhauntra was in class as a visitor, and I
was perfectly capable of taking notes. Except that I was
too flustered to do it. So this is my usual slapdash
reconstruction of things.

  1. Q: What was your role in the Battle of Pelcour?

    A: I was the chief military engineer and architect.
  2. Q: So you didn’t have much to do with the actual
    battle?


    A: Well, it wasn’t my decision, really, but I was at the
    meeting where we decided to attack Pelcour. I thought it
    was a good idea.
  3. Q: Do you still think so?

    A: I should have invested more effort in military
    engineering about it, to kill fewer people we didn’t mean
    to.
  4. Q, by Prof. Phrass: You were a Hrreptite?

    A: Yes — I still am.

    (Aside: We had learned that the Hrreptites were — and are, I suppose — a
    philosophically-motivated rebellion against the Calanchian
    Empire (that part being very much finished, (and, I guess,
    victoriously, in the sense that there seems to be one
    Hrreptite still around and no permanant inhabitants
    Calanchian Empire unless someone in New Calanchia has an
    exceedingly bad case of diarrhea)) and against the
    traditions of hereditary ruling nobles in general (that part
    being, at best, work in progress). (I must introduce
    Yylhauntra to Strenata.))

  5. Q: How could you not know about the viceroy of
    Pelcour?

    A: We didn’t have very good informants
    among the nobility of Pelcour! They didn’t generally
    support us. Even if they had, it wouldn’t have helped much
    in this instance. The viceroy naturally kept his
    discussions with the emperor very quiet; he had various
    political enemies who might well have wanted to know for
    their own purposes. The nobility of Pelcour, in particular,
    would have been very upset to learn that the imperial
    viceroy was considering taking the opposing side. But we
    weren’t particularly aiming at the viceroy.
  6. Q: Prof. Phrass said you were trying to destroy the whole
    city, though.


    A: It was during the Holocaust Wars, and that
    was the spirit of the times … but, no,
    we were trying to destroy the Hausdorff Militia hall, and as
    many of the militia as we could. I claim no virtue though.
    We would have tried to destroy the city if we could have
    done … if we had known how devastating the tubers were.
  7. Q: Who were they? The Hausdorff Militia I mean.

    A: A Cani and Rassimel gang who had been burning our
    cities and impaling quite a lot of us. The Holocaust Wars
    weren’t a very nice time, really.
  8. Q by Prof. Phrass again: Cities? The Hrreptites had
    cities? I thought you were a philosophically-motivated
    rebellious movement.


    A: Cities, yes. Perfy and Hrauminy, in particular –
    that’s the “hr” and “p” in Hrrept, you know. Client cities,
    not city-states in their own right. The movement started as
    a bid to make Perfy and Hrauminy into their own city-states
    in the ordinary way. The philosophical side started when we
    were thinking about who the dukes of those cities would be.
    It was never that important a part of it to us — we
    were mostly trying to take advantage of a lot of confusion
    and discord elsewhere to get our own independent city
    states. Not even really that even — we’d still have been
    part of the Calanchian Empire, just like Pelcour.



    A: Prof. Phrass: But the philosophical side distinguished
    you from the various other local rebellions.



    A: It certainly brought us to the attention of more
    historians!
  9. Q: So, um, what happened, that so much of Pelcour was
    destroyed?

    A: Killed, not destroyed. Our best
    guess was that a dying Hausdorff sorcerer — probably a bit
    mind-burned — exploded the guildhall. We’d expected them
    to burn it, which we thought would have been safe. The
    tubers came packed with firespells to burn them if they were
    accidentally opened. Exploding it sent bits of very
    dangerous tuber all over the city, we gather.
  10. Q: What were those tubers, anyways?

    A: Something that Vimirance — one of our scout types –
    stole from the Imperial Arsenal of Dentheia. We never knew
    exactly what they were, but they weren’t guarded as heavily
    as the things that could out-and-out destroy a city.



    A: by Prof. Phrass: Katarhezoi Varidementia, from
    one of Birkozon’s sub-realms, imported by Thremantia the
    Polythiator, and first used in…
    He rambled on for
    three whole minutes about them. Probably trying to prove
    that he actually knew something.
  11. Q: So was it really as stupid a massacre of innocent
    people as
    Prof. Phrass made it out to be?
    Idrissa does not like
    Prof. Phrass and wanted to embarrass him.

    A: Yes, it was. But that was the spirit of the time,
    really.
  12. Q (to Idrissa): Is there such a thing as a
    sensible massacre of innocent people?


    A (by Yylhauntra): Sure, a massacre of anyone but us.
    Zie used a somewhat obscure pronoun that pretty much had to
    mean “primes.” I’d be glad to help massacre cyarr
    again. Or nendrai if I could manage it.
  13. Q: Massacring nendrai?

    A: Next question please. Zie gave me a
    meaningful glance from which I elicited absolutely no meaning.
  14. Q: How did the Hrreptites decide to attack Pelcour in
    the first place? What were your command and information
    structures like?
    Q by a Cani, of course.

    A: … Zie said quite a bit about it, and about
    further questions about what they should have done to avoid
    mistakes like that in the first place. (Point 1: Don’t let
    the Calanchians take over everything.) I got bored
    and didn’t take many notes.

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