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With This Ring (Young Justice SI) (Thread Fourteen)

Discussion in 'Creative Writing' started by Mr Zoat, Jan 27, 2019.

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  1. LiamOfOrmonde

    LiamOfOrmonde Getting sticky.

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    Schnauzers. Gotta love those bearded hounds. I had a mini-schnauzer as a kid and he could catch some serious rats. Turns out all of the beard hair is to prevent rats from biting their muzzle. The more you know.
     
  2. jasonh23761

    jasonh23761 Getting sticky.

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    I will maintain that Basset based Mutts are the best pets if well trained.
     
  3. Maxx Crowley

    Maxx Crowley I trust you know where the happy button is?

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    [​IMG]

    Move over Blue Lantern Hope Corgi. The rise of Les Potats is at hand.
     
    Last edited: May 9, 2021
  4. Coda

    Coda I trust you know where the happy button is?

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    Another one? I suppose old habits are hard to break.

    I was going to make a correction here, but it turns out that's correct in British English.
     
  5. Threadmarks: Negetiations (part 10)
    Mr Zoat

    Mr Zoat Dedicated ragequitter

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    12th August 2012
    17:45 GMT


    It's nice to know that the people of Yuna are socially similar enough to humans that they'll cluster around a source of entertaining novelty. As a canvasser however it creates a problem of self-selection as the most opinionated seek you out and volunteer themselves. Finally found a couple of militarists, but the furthest they went was expressing a desire to police convoy routes.

    This planet is actually a pretty good neighbour. I checked their history while I was hiding from the crowd, and they've basically never waged an aggressive war. When they were attacked, they kept the door open for negotiations almost constantly. On the two occasions they were forced to fight a war to its conclusion, they were reasonably generous with the defeated party and have good relations with both worlds now.

    So with the Reach properly intimidated, this is going to be pretty easy. I mean, I doubt that Yuna will intervene on our side unless I use mind control, but-.

    My ring blinks.

    "Lantern Drusa to Illustres."

    I smile at her construct image.

    "What news?"

    "I think that it worked."

    "Good show. Did they say anything interesting?"

    "They put some sort of nanite in the fruit juice they gave me to drink. I scanned it and destroyed it."

    "Naughty of them. Anything else?"

    "I could have given the mercantilist speech their negotiator gave me myself."

    "I suppose that after all this time, it would be a bit much to expect them to change radically for our benefit."

    "I took off the illusion charm somewhere where they might notice that I wasn't you."

    Hm. That's… It would be a little awkward if I somehow managed to fail to achieve Dox's mission by tricking the Reach too hard. But it should produce amusing results at some point, and even if it doesn't I can clear that up before I leave.

    "Good initiative. Did you find the experience satisfying?"

    She nods.

    "I did."

    "Do you want to sit in for me in this next meeting as well?"

    "No. There are too many potential variables for me to predict how you would respond."

    "But do you want to?"

    "Yes. If I thought that I could do it successfully."

    "Well, we'll-"

    Incoming transmission.

    "-see. One moment, I have another call". I generate a phone construct. "Illustres here."

    "My lord, representatives of the Yuna government are seeking a meeting with you. Somewhat urgently."

    I smile. "Thank you, captain. Please tell them I'll be with them momentarily."

    "My-? Ah, yes, my lord."

    I cut the connection. "Lantern Drusa, please come to the location I'll be in a few minutes from now at your earliest convenience. No massive rush."

    "And if the Reach are following me?"

    "Do whatever amuses you."

    I wave my left hand, cutting the connection. And then I unfocus as I look at the entirety of this planet's civilisation. Who urgently wants a meeting with me? There and there, but that's just the people who want the meeting to happen, and therefore are senior to the people who are supposed to be taking the meeting. Who are probably less panicked because they don't get full intelligence briefings quite as fast…

    I step out


    and reappear in the room with them.

    "…shortly. Ah, there he is now."

    The captain nods through the monitor and one of the more on the ball civil servants turns around, a mild greening of her skin marking the point where she sees me.

    "Ladies and gentlemen. Thank you, captain."

    The screen shuts down as the rest of the government team adjust themselves, straightening eye protectors and tracksuits.

    "Did you just.. teleport..?"

    "As a diplomatic official, I was able to apply for an expedited licence." I spot the tracksuit decoration indicating the Department of Diplomatic Affairs, and make eye contact with the wearer. "Thank you, your people were most helpful."

    A group of five. Four of them are gyuanite, with the fifth being torcite. Narrowly humanoid silicoids, this one is four feet tall, four feet wide and made of what looks like rock. It's actually a lot more sophisticated than that, being able to move on certain planes without cracking or bending.

    Let's see: Diplomatic Affairs, Defence Force, Trade, Public Order and High Council's Office. About what I'd expect. HCO has seniority by default-.

    She smiles and gestures to the table. "Shall we sit?"

    "Thank you."

    The table is round, with a holopit in the central space. The chair's proportions are a little off for me, but they're designed to be able to cope with a variety of morphologies and it's certainly not uncomfortable. They sit down as well; the gyuanites' chairs shifting slightly so that their heads are at the same height as mine despite them being taller, while the torcite's chair does the opposite. HCO pulls a couple of datapads over to her and glances at them for a moment before returning her attention to me.

    "You're not bringing a staff with you?"

    "Lantern Drusa may be popping along later, but it isn't as if this is particularly complicated. Particularly at the level of introductory talks."

    "Ah. Well, alright then. You.. told our representative that your.. objective was… To be 'friends'?"

    "We'd like to maintain our existing trading relationship with Yuna, and all secondary trading partners thereafter. And by 'we' I mean all present and future members of the N.E.M.O. military alliance. While I'm sure that our side would be happy if you began acting against the Reach…" I shrug. "That's not really a big deal for us. I've familiarised myself with enough of your history to know that you're happiest not taking sides in that sort of conflict and I'm happy for that to be true in this case as well."

    The DF's torcite representative straightens slightly.

    "You do not intend to ask us to join N.E.M.O.?"

    I shrug again. "If you want to, you can, but anyone with a passing familiarity with your history should realise how unlikely that is. Though, ah…" I chuckle. "If you were expecting me to try that as an opening position…" I shake my head. "That 'plots for the sake of plotting' nonsense confuses and frustrates me. I'd rather just give it to you straight. So is there..? Something you want to ask me?"
     
    Last edited: May 10, 2021
  6. Darko

    Darko Well worn.

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    This shouldn't be orange.

    Also add a " at the end.

    'in a few'

    'planets'

    Hmm, it may be something to make guests feel more comfortable and not feel like the people in the room are trying to intimidate someone.
     
    Last edited: May 10, 2021
  7. Ardy

    Ardy Not too sore, are you?

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    “Why did you flirt with several members of the Reach Diplomatic staff?”

    “Apparently because I need to keep closer eye on my new apprentice.”
     
  8. Darko

    Darko Well worn.

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    You knew what you were getting into Paul.
     
  9. Handlewithcare

    Handlewithcare I trust you know where the happy button is?

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    "The circle closes, old man. Now, I am the troll"

    Paul must be very frustrating for the Reach. "He will trick you and try to get you to join NEMO!"

    "Yes. He told us so"

    "He...he did?"

    "Yes, then there were questions. And then cake. We like cake"
     
  10. Mr Zoat

    Mr Zoat Dedicated ragequitter

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    Thank you, corrected.
    No, that's correct.
     
  11. DrThoth

    DrThoth Not too sore, are you?

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    Definitions, please? I presume 'torcite' refers to the rock-alien, though I forget if there are multiple native species on Yuna or not.

    Hope we get to see more of these negotiations, though I'm half-expecting an assassin Scarab to interrupt at some plot-convenient point.
     
  12. Chojin Patriarch

    Chojin Patriarch Veteran Lurker

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    How very... Restrained. Though from what we've seen, they're trying to be the Venice of the sector: a nominally neutral trading facilitator. Which is one viable survival strategy, I suppose. And it seems to have been working quite well for them thus far...

    Well... That's a pretty good track record. It's impressive that they're so restrained in wartime. Then again, he's going off their records, and, after all, history is written by the victors...

    Ah, how went the trolling, student?

    Huzzah! I do hope you dropped some suitably OL-worthy burns, though. He has a reputation to uphold.

    And discreetly called them out on it, I do hope? Wonder if they intended it as a control method or an assassination play? Not that it would have worked, and they should have known that... :rolleyes: Bad-guys gonna bad-guy...

    That unimaginative, eh? A pity you couldn't look deeper via Empathic Vision, but they probably had shielding against that anyway...

    Oh, boy. That'll set the Reach to confused counter-plotting.

    The chance to mess with people without incriminating her own face? Who wouldn't?

    I suspect once is enough.

    Oh, dear. Trying to convert her to the trolling side?

    Betting that'll be the diplomats he was trying to get the attention of.

    Yep, there we are. Amazing how effective a little poking the bad guys can be sometimes.

    Heh. The Captain doesn't know about greediporting, does he? This will be entertaining.

    "Excellent. I have quite a few ideas, courtesy of copying you."

    Yeah, no need to poke the higher-ups.. yet. Don't know how their health is, after all. No need to go giving them heart attacks.

    Yeah, green is definitely their 'shock/concern' tell. Good to have that confirmed.

    ...Okay, I'm guessing their eyes have a wider field of vision than a Human's, and presumably the blinkers include things like display screens, as if they were an awkwardly designed Google Glass.

    ...Why am I picturing the LEGO Rock Raiders' stone creatures now? :p I don't care what you say they look like, I'll stick with that image.

    Good to see they're good at recovering from shocks. Down to business, then.

    Clever design, to promote a feeling of equality, no doubt. Now, how best to get what you want from them...

    Besides, a Power Ring is all the staff he needs. Personal assistant, research team and security staff all in one...

    Definitely getting a Venice vibe from them. Avoiding ticking off the bigger groups around them, while making lots of money from trading.

    Well, if you want to, you're welcome to... Although that would draw the Reach's ire...

    Ah, the joy of a reasonable diplomat. "Oh, minimal chance of convincing them to join us? That's alright. I'll just spook them into not joining our enemy either."

    Well, that's one way to short-circuit a diplomatic meeting. Cutting straight through any bullshit to get to the point. I wonder if Dox expected him to settle things this quickly. Then again, the locals still have their turn to speak... Let's see what they have to ask.


    ...glances at them for a moment before returning her attention to me.
     
  13. Darko

    Darko Well worn.

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    He could have also reviewed the records on his ring or the history records of the neighboring worlds.
     
  14. Rafin

    Rafin Know what you're doing yet?

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    What about pre-unification planetary history? How did isolationist pacifist liberal capitalists become a unified nation?
     
  15. Mr Zoat

    Mr Zoat Dedicated ragequitter

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    You haven't forgotten as it hasn't been stated. The gyuanites are the majority population, while the torcite's great grandparents were immigrants.
    Thank you, corrected.
    Surprisingly calmly. There are wars in their pre-space flight history, but nothing like what we had.
     
  16. w34v3r

    w34v3r Versed in the lewd.

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    It's a lot easier to get people to give you money again next year if you don't stab them first.
     
  17. Coda

    Coda I trust you know where the happy button is?

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    I guess I made the previous comment on this too much of a joke and didn't make it clear that it was a correction. My bad. "self-deprecating".
     
  18. Mr Zoat

    Mr Zoat Dedicated ragequitter

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    I think I'll leave it. The words mean the same thing and if I haven't spotted that it's wrong then the SI almost certainly hasn't.
     
  19. Deadring

    Deadring Screee!

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    While Renaissance era Venice was known to go to war, throughout the majority of that city-state's history, they prioritized trade and economic expansion over direct conflict. Of course, they still possessed (and used) military force, but it was often composed of mercenaries and used to secure trading routes or alliances.

    Trying to be the Venice of the sector, indeed.
     
  20. Threadmarks: Negetiations (part 11)
    Mr Zoat

    Mr Zoat Dedicated ragequitter

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    12th August 2012
    17:50 GMT


    HCO nods.

    "What are your alliance's long term plans?"

    "I imagine that an honest answer would depend on which member-government you asked. At the core, N.E.M.O. is an alliance of civilisations who were actively under attack by Reach infiltrators or felt that they would be next when their current targets fell. Plus one or two civilisations who just like fighting." I shrug. "There are always going to be some like that."

    Trade presses a button to call up a hologram, showing… Commodity transfers and prices.

    "We've noticed that we're doing appreciably less trade with several member worlds than we were prior to them becoming members."

    I nod. "Yes. We've arranged things so that vital materials can be traded more easily amongst member worlds, and most of them have reduced tariff barriers in response. We can secure our internal space far more easily than we can our external space. Outside that, we'd risk having our supply lines attacked by our enemies. And to be fair, attacking a ship carrying military supplies during a war isn't exactly unreasonable."

    "Have you experienced any such attacks?"

    "It's difficult to say. The Reach are experts in the use of third party agents and concealed attacks. Ships have gone missing, but it's… Not easy to tell the exact reasons. They go missing a lot less in areas we control, and we suspect that this is due to the greater concentration of armed patrols and the constant monitoring."

    DA makes a frown-equivalent gesture. "Has N.E.M.O. imposed additional tariffs on external trade?"

    "One moment." Ring? "N.E.M.O. as a whole has no external tariff policy. Member civilisations are free to determine their external tariff policy themselves. Out of… Several hundred members, three have changed their external tariff policy after becoming N.E.M.O. members and only one of them regularly sent ships here. If you're fishing for an invitation to our next internal trade talks, I can pass that on to the relevant people but those are.. generally members only affairs."

    "But you don't intend to extend your protection outside of your own-. Your current borders."

    "We don't intend to send warships into neutral space during a war, no. I mean, if there was an actual mayday transmission and someone was in range we'd probably send them, but we have a.. war to fight. Generally speaking, if somewhere wants to trade without having pirates and privateers take a cut one way or the other, they use their own security fleets. Or at least hire private security companies to do it for them. The Brotherhood of Zvort have quite a good reputation, if you're thinking of moving in that direction."

    "No. We are concerned that the Brotherhood's Code of Conduct violates our neutrality."

    "That's… Rather the drawback of neutrality. It doesn't guarantee protection from your enemies and it doesn't make you any friends. Have you considered offering shipping insurance?"

    Public Order makes a gesture of mild frustration with his right hand. "A number of companies based here already offer insurance policies to shipping firms."

    "But there's no enforcement. So a shipping company is going to look at a high risk journey here and compare it to a low risk journey within N.E.M.O., which… Might not offer them quite the same level of gross profit, but will have a lot less in deductions. And less chance of them dying. I mean, a big shipping company would probably be happy taking the money, but a lot of these are small traders. If they get pirated then it's their next of kin who get the payout, and they're not going to replace the ship that got destroyed."

    PO nods. "You want us to… Offer bounties?"

    "I don't-. I can't clap my hands and reverse a trade deficit. I'm pointing out why -even without direct action by N.E.M.O.- the amount of traffic you're receiving is going down. And pointing out that you could remedy this." I shrug. "Or you can wait it out. The war won't last forever."

    Defence Force switches the hologram to an approximate rendition of N.E.M.O. and Reach territory. "And how long do you see the war lasting?"

    "Based on currently available technologies, and barring any revolutionary breakthroughs, something in the region of sixty years. Though.. after ten things will probably start normalising, because we'll be pushing into Reach space proper and their assets should be too hemmed in to carry out external attacks."

    "Ten years to normalise?"

    "I hope so. My girlfriend and I have pencilled in our wedding for then. If we're not at that stage by then, I might have to do something really crazy."

    "Like.. pursue a more aggressive policy?"

    "Like eat their planets whole." I shrug. "Our secondary aim is to create a community that outlasts this war. There's not much point in destroying the Reach if everyone on our side immediately turns on each other. And I.. really don't like killing that many people personally. I've been involved in a couple of extermination campaigns and I-. Well, I'd rather not be in that position again."

    "You're planning on exterminating the people of the Reach?"

    I shake my head.

    "Both of the previous instances were clone-races with little individuality. The cost of occupying their worlds and altering their civilisations was simply prohibitive. With regards to the Reach, we intend to permanently remove their ability to make war. Whether that involves them surrendering and disarming or being bombarded back to the stone age is up to them. Though… If it helps, we don't plan on restricting their civilian trade."

    "Ah. And if you lose?"

    "Then I'll be dead or mind controlled, so if the Reach continue to act as they have with their previous conquests I.. imagine that the resources of formerly N.E.M.O. worlds will be extracted purely at the pleasure of our new Reach owners, who may choose to trade with external parties when profitable."

    "We…" HCO deactivates the hologram so that she can look me directly in the eyes. "We would be willing to act as dispute mediators. We have already made an offer to the Reach ambassador, and-"

    "Negotiator."

    "-they-. I beg your pardon?"

    "Negotiator. That's their title. The Reach doesn't have ambassadors."

    "Negotiator, then, and they have accepted. We were-."

    "Hah!"

    "We.. were hopeful that we could bring things to a close, and restore peace and free trade to this part of the galaxy."

    My eyes glow orange as I take a closer look. She's-. No, she's serious. She's been involved in mediation efforts in belligerent stellar nations before and she…

    Huh.

    "Okay."

    "O-kay?"

    "Yes, I'm willing to attend mediation. I don't really think it will get anywhere, but I'm willing to sit in a room with a Negotiator and explain why in detail. When do you want to do-"

    My ring blinks.

    "-this? Sorry, excuse me."

    I lift my left hand to my ear.

    "Yes?"

    "Lantern Drusa here. We have a problem."
     
    Last edited: Jun 4, 2021
  21. Citizen

    Citizen Experienced.

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    ...is it that their Negotiator has a really snazzy suit?

    Also

    "I'm pointing out why", I think
     
  22. hance1986

    hance1986 Not too sore, are you?

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    Is this the thread that when pulled shows the Reach is fucking around because of course they are? Will Paul meeting with a Negotiator throw him/her off their game having a Orange Lantern in striking distance and pushing back in a discussion?
     
  23. Darko

    Darko Well worn.

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    Add a . at the end.

    'if someone'

    'has quite'

    This was what Raul named the group those bounty hunters belonged to?

    Holy crap.

    Paul’s crazy is mostly unintentional, so if he actually tries something crazy...

    ...

    I can't even think about it.

    I remember this Indigo SI fic in which the author was planning for his SI to merge with the Proselyte and go all Sun Eater on the Reach sun.

    'not much'

    Ahh, so basically something like the UN post WWII.

    'continues'

    Maybe add 'worlds'

    Wouldn't be a mission if it didn't.
     
  24. RichardWhereat

    RichardWhereat Aia airëa Fëanáro.

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    I can point out why? or I'm pointing out why?
     
  25. Handlewithcare

    Handlewithcare I trust you know where the happy button is?

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    "Of course I will meet the Negotiator. I always look forward to flinging poo around"

    "What?"

    "Oh a common saying. My species evolved from monkeys, you know"

    "...perhaps a...tele-conference?"
     
  26. RichardWhereat

    RichardWhereat Aia airëa Fëanáro.

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    I think this should be in orange.
     
  27. Chojin Patriarch

    Chojin Patriarch Veteran Lurker

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    The hardest part of them being part of the alliance is getting them to fight in the right place, or hold off fighting until the right time? Though to be fair, any war-like race is going to learn to appreciate strategy pretty damn quick...

    Because those are the metrics that concern them more...

    I expect that piracy and privateers are a big concern for them. Not surprising.

    And any missing ship is going to be investigated fairly in-depth, because of the war. Bad time to be a pirate right now, I bet.

    Evidently not. That would likely be taken as an act of war by some belligerents...

    Bet mercenaries... Sorry, 'Private Security Contractors'... Are making quite the killing on the peripheries of both groups territory...

    Heh. Sure, you may want to be neutral... But that kind of depends on others recognising that neutrality.

    Quite the incentive. It always comes down to the bottom line, doesn't it?

    Not if OL has any say in the matter.

    Optimistic. After all, as he says, that's assuming the Reach (and by extension, N.E.M.O.) don't go pulling out their crazy stuff. And if they're feeling pressed, that will almost certainly happen.

    Boy, taking the long view, eh, OL? Not surprising, really, given life-extension technology available.

    Hopefully not by pulling out a Sun Eater or two. That might not go down well with the allied systems...

    Only if they insist on it, i suspect...

    Starting to worry what'll happen if N.E.M.O. decide someone's not being neutral enough, eh?

    No, no, this is not going to be the sort of argument you can just negotiate your way out of...

    That implies they see their future client races as equals, after all. And it's only a matter of offering terms they'll agree to. One way.. or another.

    Certainly confident. A pity they'll be disappointed.

    I wonder if she even grasps the scale involved here? Or the nature of the Reach's outlook on everything outside their space.

    Give the Reach more rope to hang themselves, eh? Hoping they do or say something foolish? At worst, OL gets to snark at the Reach Negotiator for a while until they get upset and storm out. At best? Said Negotiator does something stupid...

    "Honestly, I set my status to 'busy'. This is clearly important."

    And things are about to go ploin-shaped, aren't they?

    The lady really seems to believe she can broker peace between N.E.M.O. and the Reach, doesn't she? Unfortunately for her, this is already, much like World War I, rolling along much too quickly. But that'll have to wait until Drusa's situation gets resolved, won't it? Maybe the Reach have already grabbed the Conflict Ball and are dribbling along for a slam-dunk...


    "Both of the previous instances...
     
    Last edited: May 11, 2021
  28. Xmaster3000

    Xmaster3000 Making the rounds.

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    Maybe "I'm pointing out why"?
     
    Whiteeyes and moralrelativity like this.
  29. Sockmonkey

    Sockmonkey Not too sore, are you?

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    Greedporting is unblockable yes? That being the case, if OL really wanted to be a bastard he could pop deep into Reach space where their people feel totally secure and slap bombs on supplies of luxury goods. If wealthy citizens start getting their space-caviar blown up, it's really gonna take the wind outta their sails.
     
  30. Darko

    Darko Well worn.

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    Assuming they already don't.

    Just because they are warlike doesn't mean that they don't embrace strategy.

    Like Davos said in a history and lore video.

    "Wars aren't as good for smugglers as you might think"

    He does has a ring.

    If the guys on their side hate the other side enough then they may find it acceptable.
     
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