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Restoring the Basilica is a serious undertaking, but prosperous individuals across the Empire are prepared to put their hands in their pockets to mitigate the loss.  The structure is still [[consecration|consecrated]] - some of the priests joke tiredly that it will take more than a little fire to quench the spirit of the Little Mother - so it will not require a dose of [[Liao#True Liao|true liao]]. Still, the more mundane costs are not to be sneezed at; the structural damage is very bad indeed. Repairs would require at least 40 wains of white granite, 80 crowns in labour costs, and take three months to complete. Reconstruction would require a Senate Motion or a Bearer of an Imperial Wayleave to use a commission to set the work going. Once they were complete, the basilica would be restored and the Prelate of the Little Mother would again enjoy the full 15 doses of liao and 30 votes in the Synod each season.
 
Restoring the Basilica is a serious undertaking, but prosperous individuals across the Empire are prepared to put their hands in their pockets to mitigate the loss.  The structure is still [[consecration|consecrated]] - some of the priests joke tiredly that it will take more than a little fire to quench the spirit of the Little Mother - so it will not require a dose of [[Liao#True Liao|true liao]]. Still, the more mundane costs are not to be sneezed at; the structural damage is very bad indeed. Repairs would require at least 40 wains of white granite, 80 crowns in labour costs, and take three months to complete. Reconstruction would require a Senate Motion or a Bearer of an Imperial Wayleave to use a commission to set the work going. Once they were complete, the basilica would be restored and the Prelate of the Little Mother would again enjoy the full 15 doses of liao and 30 votes in the Synod each season.
  
Gathering resources might take time, but there is only a limited amount available. The ruined basilica represents a danger both to the people and the city itself. It is currently being held together with scaffolding, which requires constant maintenance. At any moment parts of the main structure or the smaller buildings built alongside it could collapse catastrophically. If the remains have not been commissioned by the end of the Spring Equinox 383YE, the risks will have grown too great and the structure will need to be torn down. If that happens, the prelate would lose their liao and votes until such time as a new basilica was commissioned.
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Gathering resources might take time, but there is only a limited amount available. The ruined basilica represents a danger both to the people and the city itself. It is currently being held together with scaffolding, which requires constant maintenance. At any moment parts of the main structure or the smaller buildings built alongside it could collapse catastrophically. If the remains have not been commissioned by the end of the Spring Equinox 384YE, the risks will have grown too great and the structure will need to be torn down. If that happens, the prelate would lose their liao and votes until such time as a new basilica was commissioned.
  
 
===OOC Note: Regarding Orphans===
 
===OOC Note: Regarding Orphans===

Revision as of 18:19, 11 April 2022

"Magistrate" he said nodding his head slightly as a show of greeting and respect.

"Citizen" the old woman dutifully returned the formal greeting, with just the faintest sign of a grin on her face. Then before he could walk away she dragged her old friend into a hug. "Marius! I haven't seen you in so long... not since you stepped down..."

He returned the warm greeting, and they quickly fell into idle small talk. Counting back the years to the last time they were both together at Anvil. Laughing about the time Britta had threatened to have him arrested for refusing to follow her orders in Holberg. Good times he thought "Why did we give all that up?" he asked her.

"Speak for yourself! Some of us are still hard working Prosperous citizens of the Empire. I have a case I'm working on right now..."

He didn't contradict her. She knew what he meant and he didn't want to spoil their reunion by pointing out the obvious - that she'd once been tipped to be the Imperial Chief Magistrate and now she was responsible for a large precinct in Sarvos. She was still working... but...

"Look there's Bella!"

He looked across the room to where the tiny former grandmaster was stood talking quietly with colleagues, them towering over her as people always did with Bella. From there his gaze swept round the room. It was like a who's who of the wealthy and powerful of the Empire. A former senator, and not one but two former adjutants. And there was old Berric whose syndicate had lost everything trying to get full control of the Empire's mithril resources.

He signed, time to admit to himself it was a who's who of the former great and the good of the Empire. All here for one person. The best of them all. Bishop Marianne di Sarvos... Prelate of the Little Mother... Mum.

He put his hand to his face trying to blink back the tears. Somewhere the bells rang to call the flock of orphans to the final service.

Overview

One of the foundations of the Way is that the virtues are often interpreted through the lives and legends of mortals. The paragons and exemplars recognised by the Imperial Synod provide important lessons to modern pilgrims, and places or relics associated with them or their legacy play a key role in the pilgrimages of the faithful. In addition to recognising new exemplars and paragons, the Synod also takes an active hand in preserving those legacies.

Last season, three statements of principle drew particular attention to three particular inspirations: the ancient magician Zoria, Paragon of Wisdom; the Ambitious exemplar Adelmar the Lion; and the fiery corsair Zemress, Exemplar of Prosperity. Achieving the support of individual assemblies, these statements have given rise to opportunities to the General Assembly to celebrate the lives of the three inspirations.

Unfortunately, before we can talk about those opportunities for celebration, we must touch on something sorrowful and full of tragedy...

Tragedy of the Little Mother

  • Fire has gutted the Basilica of the Little Mother in Bastion

During the months following the Autumn Equinox, a tragedy struck the Basilica of the Little Mother in Bastion; the structure was ravaged by fire. Built in 15YE by the Custodes Clavium, with extensive investment from League citizens and priests, this beautiful structure of white granite has served as a place of pilgrimage for nearly four centuries. Like other churches of the Little Mother, it operated as an orphanage - the largest outside of Sarvos. Now the structure has been gutted, reduced to little more than a smoking shell. The magistrates are investigating, but at the moment it does not appear to have been the result of foul play - merely a terrible, tragic accident. One person who has attracted extensive criticism as a result of their comments about the incident is the leader of the Sarvosi Falenjame Cartel, merchant-prince Francesco Falenjame di Sarvos, who claims that "this is what happens when cities rely on just hoping that their buildings don't burn down rather than proper fire protection." He has been lambasted for his comments in many broadsheets and papers, especially after the full extent of the tragedy becomes clear.

The basilica has always been overseen by the Prelate of the Little Mother - a title often held by a League bishop, but one that has been held by priests of every nation save the Imperial Orcs. The current prelate is - was - Bishop Marianne di Sarvos, a former Cardinal of Prosperity. For nearly four decades she served as an advocate for the sects of the Little Mother across the Empire, rarely having time for the politics of the Imperial Synod. Born in the reign of Empress Deanne, there was a rumour that she had intended to stand down on her 70th birthday but that with the death of her favoured successor - Bishop Ynez di Caricomare - she resolved to continue until she could no longer discharge her duties.

Unfortunately, that day has now come. Whilst helping to evacuate some children trapped by the spreading fire, she was struck down by a burning crossbeam. Her body has been recovered from the damaged basilica, and interred at the chapel of the Little Mother in Sarvos, alongside the prelates who preceded her and (allegedly) the body of the paragon herself. There has been a great deal of grieving across the Empire - many people owe their good start in life to Prelate Marianne, and many more to the aid of the Church of the Little Mother as a whole.

Repairing the Basilica

  • Donations to rebuild the Basilica of the Little Mother have flooded in
  • Repairing the structure would require a Senate Motion or Wayleave, a commission, at least 40 wains of white granite, 80 crowns labour costs, and three months time to complete.
  • The Prelate of the Little Mother could be appointed before or after the Basilica was repaired.

While it is a little tactless to mention it, with Bishop Marianne di Sarvos barely in her grave, her tragic death means that the Prelacy of the Little Mother is available for appointment by the Prosperity Virtue Assembly. The basilica is badly damaged, but the shell at least still stands. It is still possible to hold services in the ruins, and pilgrims will still come to the basilica, their numbers swelled by those who come to gawk at the damage. The prelacy current provides 5 doses of liao and 10 votes in the Synod, and comes with a responsibility to uphold the principles of the Little Mother, especially as they relate to helping people find prosperity and virtue.

Restoring the Basilica is a serious undertaking, but prosperous individuals across the Empire are prepared to put their hands in their pockets to mitigate the loss. The structure is still consecrated - some of the priests joke tiredly that it will take more than a little fire to quench the spirit of the Little Mother - so it will not require a dose of true liao. Still, the more mundane costs are not to be sneezed at; the structural damage is very bad indeed. Repairs would require at least 40 wains of white granite, 80 crowns in labour costs, and take three months to complete. Reconstruction would require a Senate Motion or a Bearer of an Imperial Wayleave to use a commission to set the work going. Once they were complete, the basilica would be restored and the Prelate of the Little Mother would again enjoy the full 15 doses of liao and 30 votes in the Synod each season.

Gathering resources might take time, but there is only a limited amount available. The ruined basilica represents a danger both to the people and the city itself. It is currently being held together with scaffolding, which requires constant maintenance. At any moment parts of the main structure or the smaller buildings built alongside it could collapse catastrophically. If the remains have not been commissioned by the end of the Spring Equinox 384YE, the risks will have grown too great and the structure will need to be torn down. If that happens, the prelate would lose their liao and votes until such time as a new basilica was commissioned.

OOC Note: Regarding Orphans

We've added a section to the Little Mother page entitled regarding orphans, which talks about orphanages, orphans, and other ways to play a character committed to the teachings of the Little Mother.

The scholars of the Brass Coast should visit the newly built seminary of Zemress, and work to translate, transcribe, and organise the texts provided by the Sumaah republic.

Soratio Seseet i del Torro i Riqueza, Brass Coast National, Autumn Equinox 383YE, Upheld (Greater Majority 156-0)


Blade of the Isles

  • The seminary of Zemress has become a bustling place of pilgrimage
  • A Freeborn scholar has compiled the stories of Zemress in Sumaah and plans to share them with the faithful

The seminary of Zemress at Calvos Sound was completed shortly before the Autumn Equinox 383YE. Since then it has become a bustling place of pilgrimage, not only for Imperial citizens and pilgrims from the Sumaah Republic, but also an unexpected number from the Sarcophan Delves. Rare visitors from the Asavean Archipelago and Principalities of Jarm have been seen visiting the Kraken's Bane, drawn by the enduring consecration placed there by Gilah of the Chantry just over a year ago. There are even reports that a few Grendel orc merchants visiting Madruga have stopped by to "pay their respects" to the woman they sometimes call The Demon of the Bay.

This influx of visitors has been very good for Calvos; demand for wine grown in the hills around the port-town has exploded. Any vintage that suggests a connection with Zemress, or the Kraken's Bane is snapped up almost immediately by keen pilgrims and avid merchants alike. The docks are abuzz with talk of shipyards, and the old plans for the school of shipbuilding proposed by that League architect are dragged out and debated again. There's also been an increase in the number of i Zemress visiting the town, eager to look on the ship that bore their ancestors to the island where they lived for so long. Few of them actually remain in Calvos, of course, heading back to their new homes in Segura after a few days. For many of the former Zemress islanders, the proximity of the sea is not a reassuring thing.

Open to All

When the seminary was first proposed, it received the unexpected support of the House of Prosperity in Sumaah. Their assistance was conditional on the Imperial Synod making a solemn promise that the seminary, and the Kraken's Bane, would be a place of pilgrimage for any follower of the Way who wished to come and study, not just Imperial pilgrims, no matter the state of relations between the Empire and their country of origin. The Synod responded with three statements of principle in the General, Prosperity, and Freeborn assemblies. Gilah and Lilith of the chantry, and Mazo i Zabala i Erigo of the Brass Coast all echoed the same promise: Pilgrims visiting the shrine of the exemplar Zemress at Calvos Sound in the Brass Coast who are dedicated to the Way should be allowed to conduct their pilgrimage in safety regardless of their country of origin. That was enough for the Sumaah, and they duly contributed a third of the materials needed to build the seminary that stands so proudly on the docks of Calvos.

Now, a year later, there is an opportunity to build on that promise. Scholars at the seminary, with the cautious and very unofficial advice of some of the Sumaah pilgrims, have proposed a mandate that builds on the promises made; on the words of Gilah when she consecrated the Kraken's Bane, and even perhaps on the unsuccessful attempt by Tabitha of the Chantry to begin a new tradition of celebrating Zemress' life among the faithful.

All that is worthwhile is shared with those who deserve it. We send {named priest} with 100 doses of liao to assure everyone that pilgrims visiting the shrine of the exemplar Zemress at Calvos who are dedicated to the Way will be allowed to conduct their pilgrimage in safety regardless of where they come from. Let this shrine inspire all those who sail in her wake and despise the thieving pirate, the lazy wastrel, the grasping miser, and those who take without giving.

Synod Mandate, General Assembly

If this mandate is enacted then every single fleet in the Empire and Sumaah will gain one additional rank of production when taking trading actions with a foreign nation for the next six months.

If this mandate is passed with a greater majority then it will communicate to the followers of the Way across the Known World that the shrine at Calvos is open to them, encouraging pilgrims to visit and consider the lessons Zemress has taught. It will mean that going forward the supporters of the seminary will ensure it remains available to pilgrims of the Way, even if the Empire is at war with their country of origin.

This would cement Calvos, the seminary, and the consecrated hull as the primary point of pilgrimage for followers of Zemress, swelling the number of visitors from beyond the Empire. It is impossible for the civil service to be sure what would happen in that case because effective prognostication is often exceptionally difficult when dealing with spiritual matters, but it would definitely bring some unlooked for opportunities to further increase trade and Prosperity

Broken Wheels

A little over a year ago, the Freeborn extended an invitation to the Sumaah and Zemress Islanders to join them in a celebration of Zemress that would unfortunately have coincided with the Festival of the Broken Wheel. Both declined the invitation citing religious grounds. The Sumaah made clear that they consider the Festival to be blasphemous and deeply unvirtuous. They are well aware of the General Assembly's recent judgement on the matter; the view of the Sumaah is that that judgement says considerably more about the Imperial Synod's profound lack of Wisdom and Virtue, than it does about the festival itself. Given the entire festival exists to parody and demean virtue, they find it absurd to suggest that it is anything but blasphemous.

When asked about the matter, the Sumaah are frank about the fact that they think the Brass Coast Assembly should pass a Statement of Principle condemning the Festival of the Broken Wheel and urging all virtuous Freeborn to seek a more virtuous way to celebrate the Autumn gathering. The Freeborn Assembly has always defended their right to celebrate the Festival of the Broken Wheel. If they enacted this mandate it would throw the festival's existence into question. The Sumash understand such an outcome is unlikely, they can see the Festival is popular, but Ambition is a virtue, and in that spirit they propose a mandate to the Imperial civil service.

The General Assembly of the Imperial Synod are wrong. The Festival of the Broken Wheel is blasphemous by its nature and unbecoming of one of the greatest nations of the known world and the birthplace of Zemress, an inspirational figure who brought Prosperity to the world. We send {named priest} with 50 liao to urge all Freeborn citizens to disavow these childish antics in favour of a celebration inspired by their Prosperity and Virtue

Synod Mandate, Freeborn National Assembly


If this mandate were passed it would undermine support for the Festival of the Broken Wheel. It wouldn't stop anyone celebrating it, but it could drift out of favour over time. It would also create an opportunity for the Freeborn to come together to seek a replacement that would be widely adopted across the nation if it received the popular support of the people at Anvil.

Taking this step would also significantly improve the standing of the Brass Coast in the eyes of the entire Sumash Synod. The Seminary constructed to celebrate Zemress stands as a powerful testimony of what nations can do when they are joined in a common faith - the Sumash are not shy at dropping hints about what more might Sumaah and the Brass Coast achieve together if the Freeborn gave this powerful demonstration of their commitment to the virtues?

Regrettably the mandate explicitly contradicts a Synod judgement passed by the General Assembly that told all Freeborn citizens that there is no need for concern about the feast. The civil service have already noted that any future statement of principle upheld by the General Assembly that could be seen to reverse this or other statements given in response to the Grey Pilgrims would have a dramatic impact. This mandate would be enacted by the Freeborn Assembly so it would not have the same effect - but it would undoubtedly lead to more problems for the General Assembly which would risk them seeing their moral authority in the Brass Coast further diminished.

Some of the Zemress Islanders express similar distaste but for different reasons. They are devout and pious followers of Prosperity, but they are less concerned with doctrine and less dogmatic than the Sumash priests. Their unhappiness is more that they think the festival represents a failure of Pride. Their view is that a festival should be uplifting, it should celebrate all the virtuous achievements that have been accomplished during the year in some way. If the Freeborn had some other great festival, then the Islanders could tolerate the Broken Wheel more easily, but the only national celebration that brings all the Freeborn together is a frivolous bacchanal that mocks everything the virtuous hold dear. The Islanders are a much more pragmatic and less ideological than the Sumash. Many of them would like to see the Broken Wheel replaced, but they don't see any realistic chance of convincing the Assembly to disavow it. What they say would make it more tolerable was if there were a national festival that celebrated Zemress' legacy and the Virtues of the people of the Brass Coast.

They have proposed a mandate for the Brass Coast Assembly to pass calling on all Freeborn to come together to celebrate a festival inspired by the achievements of Zemress, something that celebrates Prosperity - or perhaps a celebration of the ideal of honesty. They are loathe to be too prescriptive, they think that any festival would work best if it were something all the tribes of the Brass Coast felt a part of creating.

The Festival of the Broken Wheel is an accepted part of the tradition of the three tribes but it should not be the only nation-wide celebration in the Freeborn Calendar. The Coast is the birthplace of Zemress, an inspirational figure who brought Prosperity to the world. We send {named priest} with 50 liao to urge all Freeborn citizens to come together to to forge a celebration inspired by our exemplar that uplifts our Prosperity and Virtue

Synod Mandate, Freeborn National Assembly


If this mandate were passed it would create an opportunity for the Freeborn to come together to seek a replacement that would be widely adopted across the nation if it received the popular support of the people at Anvil. The Zemress Islanders are clear that if such a thing were achieved, it the Freeborn created a festival of their own, something as important to the nation as the tourneys and flower festivals are to Dawn for example, then it would drive much greater engagement from the Zemress Islanders and that would be bound to lead to new opportunities for further cooperation.

Daring Tales

During the Autumn Equinox the Freeborn National Assembly passed a judgement raised by Soratio Seseet i del Torro i Riqueza calling on people to come to the Seminary of Zemress to translate the texts provided by the Sumaah Republic. Lola i Conzmarra i Erigo, a scholar whose parents grew up in Zemeh, journeyed to Madruga and offered what help they could. They were further assisted by a trio of Sumaah pilgrims, visiting the seminary and interested in seeing the rest of the Empire, who were able to explain some of the more obscure references and help put them into a context that would make sense to the Empire. With their aid, Lola i Conzmarra i Erigo completed their work in record time, and paid for a summary of the key details of the translation to be sent to Anvil with one of the egregores of the Brass Coast.

An Unofficial Note

One very minor bone of contention between the Sumaah Republic and the Empire in recent years has been that while the Imperial Synod considers Zemress to be an exemplar of Prosperity, the Sumaah Republic considers her a paragon of that virtue. There has been a little unofficial discussion with the pilgrims of the House of Prosperity visiting Calvos, a few of whom have pretty much moved in permanently to help at the shrine. Their informed opinion - in at least one case very informed - is that while the Sumaah have made it clear that any recognition of new paragons and exemplars would increase the division between the two Synods, recognising Zemress as a paragon would not be contentious back home. Indeed, it might even be seen as a positive move; the Imperial Synod acknowledging the wisdom of the Sumaah House of Prosperity would undermine those who claim that the Empire is arrogant and complacent in it's presumed position as the sole voice of authority regarding the Way.

Do you see the star? / It's the light of Ambition / And it shines for all. The bracelet - Arete's Promise - was crafted by Nicassia of Urizen for Adelmar the Lion as a mark of his Ambition and so it stands. And as Ambition seeks to raise all about it, so shall its regalia. In order to facilitate this, we support the passing of Arete's Promise from one chosen holder to another to better share Ambition's flame. Each holder should then take the opportunity to use this honour to exalt and inspire other citizens, as Adelmar did with the creation of the Academy of Arms.

Ranae de Rondell, Ambition Assembly, Autumn Equinox 383YE, Upheld (Greater Majority 124-0)

We intend to sanctify with true liao the first Academy of Arms in order to remind all citizens that regardless of their situation they are capable of great things and should work realise their ambition as Adelmar did.

Lady Eve Orzel, AmbitionAssembly, Autumn Equinox 383YE, Upheld (Greater Majority 86-0)


Lion of Arnet

  • A shrine dedicated to Adelmar the Lion could be consecrated to serve in place of an inspirational tomb
  • Three obvious locations present themselves for such a shrine

Another inspirational figure from the Empire's past with a connection to the Sumaah Republic is Adelmar the Lion. While it has never been resolved conclusively, the Exemplar of Courage the Sumaah call Amma the Wanderer bears a striking resemblance to the Dawnish champion, and allegedly arrives in Sumaah a few years after Adelmar disappears from the Empire. Within the Empire Adelmar is an Exemplar of Ambition, best known for founding the Academy of Arms in Redoubt, and encouraging Imperial citizens to pursue mastery of whatever endeavour they were drawn to.

During the Autumn Equinox 383YE, Lady Eve Orzel declared their intention to consecrate the first Academy of Arms with true liao. Adelmar has no inspirational tomb - his disappearance in 77YE left little opportunity to build one. Consecrating the Academy makes a certain kind of sense. The buildings are still maintained in Redoubt, part-way along the road between Elos and Cargo, on the lower slopes of Mount Siluri. The original Academy has been eclipsed in recent decades; there are Academies inspired by Adelmar's legacy in most nations of the Empire after all.

There are, however, several other locations that could serve just as well as a place of pilgrimage for those inspired by the Lion's deeds. The hall commemorating his part in the final battles to conquer Semmerholm in Arnet is already a site of pilgrimage. Likewise, his birthplace in Astolat, in the town of Weaving, is often visited by pilgrims of Ambition; spending a little time practicing the martial arts on the greensward before the shrine there is a popular tradition among the knights-errant who look to follow in his footsteps.

The Imperial Synod could allow Lady Eve Orzel - or indeed anyone with access to true liao - to focus the attention of Imperial pilgrims on one of these three spiritually resonant locations. Three mandates present themselves naturally for consideration. Any one of them could be upheld by the General Assembly, indicating the Synod's intent to create a place of pilgrimage commemorating the inspirational life and achievements of Adelmar the Lion.

Adelmar the Lion began as a farmer and trod the path of glory to become the greatest master of arms the Empire has ever seen. His birthplace in Astolat reminds us that no matter where someone begins, there is no limit to what they can achieve. We send {named priest} with a dose of true liao and 4 crowns to consecrate Adelmar's shrine in the town of Weaving, in the name of Ambition.

Synod Mandate, General Assembly

Adelmar the Lion did not liberate Semmerholm alone, but his decisive victory over the feared orc warlord Tu'Chak inspired those around him to triumph over the orcs. This deed reminds us of the importance of acting decisively and with absolute commitment. We send {named priest} with a dose of true liao and 4 crowns to consecrate the pilgrim's shrine in the shadow of Arnet, in the name of Ambition.

Synod Mandate, General Assembly

Adelmar the Lion built the first Academy of Arms in Urizen. He knew ambition transcended considerations of nation, and recognised only commitment and the zeal to be better. This Academy, and all those others built across the Empire, shows the importance of leaving a lasting legacy to inspire others. We send {named priest} with a dose of true liao and 4 crowns to consecrate the shrine of the armsmaster on the slopes of Mount Siluri, in the name of Ambition.

Synod Mandate, General Assembly

These three mandates are in competition with one another. They are not time-sensitive - the shrines at Weaving, Arnet, and Mount Siluri are not going anywhere any time soon. However, news of the recovery of Arete's Promise has sparked a resurgence of interest in Adelmar and his stories. The longer it takes to secure the consecration, the more that resurgence will have faded.

The civil service cannot predict precisely what effects consecrating a shrine in the name of Adelmar the Lion will have. At the very least it is likely to attract the attention of pilgrims of the Way across the Empire, and likely further afield as well. They note however that each of the shrines suggested has a different "resonance" in the minds of pilgrims of the Way. The shrine at Weaving is associated with the idea that anyone can rise to greatness, no matter how humble their beginnings. The shrine at Arnet is associated with the idea of taking action decisively, and achieving difficult tasks. The shrine at the Academy in Mount Siluri is associated with the idea of building a legacy for future generations. Any opportunities that follow the consecration may reflect these attitudes.

All virtuous citizens of the Empire are encouraged to make pilgrimage to the shrine of Zoria at Zoria's Maze in Miekarova. There to share stories of Zoria so that all can benefit from Zoria's wisdom.

Illya Nikovitch Volkov, Wisdom Assembly, Autumn Equinox 383YE, Upheld (Greater Majority 200-18)


Mistress of Birds and Beasts

  • The Maze of Zoria could be consecrated with a dose of true liao
  • Illya Nikovitch Volkov is the current Guardian of the Maze of Zoria

The Maze of Zoria has stood in Mieriada near the vale of Griejezdo for untold generations. Stories say it was formed by the paragon herself with her magic, and that those who walk it's twisting paths gain a deeper appreciation of Wisdom. The shrine has been completed, and a Guardian - Illya Nikovitch Volkov - appointed.

During the Autumn Equinox, Illya Nikovitch Volkov raised a statement of principle in the Wisdom assembly that was upheld with a Greater Majority, urging those who sought wisdom to come to the Maze and share their understanding of the paragon. As is usually the case, the statement was circulated among the dedicates of Wisdom, but it has received something of a mixed reaction. There are many places named for Zoria's wisdom in the Empire, and while the Maze is impressive, does it take precedence over other such monuments? There was talk when the shrine was first suggested that the place could be consecrated as an inspirational tomb dedicated to Zoria - but so far that does not seem to have happened.

The Paragon Zoria represents the unending drive to understand both the self and the world around us. Anyone who has walked the twisting paths of the Maze of Zoria knows that it embodies the search for Wisdom. Every follower of the Way should consider a pilgrimage to Mieriada to seek the questions that elude them. We send {named priest} with 1 dose of true liao and 4 crowns to consecrate the heart of the maze in the name of Wisdom.

Synod Mandate, General Assembly

If this mandate were passed, and the requisite dose of true liao provided, the Maze of Zoria would be consecrated to Wisdom. The dedicates of Wisdom would require no further urging to make pilgrimage to the site, and would share their stories of the paragon with each other and with the priests of Wisdom. The Heirs of Lepidus stand ready to record those stories, to compile and then publish them, so that everyone across the Empire could know and remember Zoria better.

Beyond that the Civil Service can only speculate about what the effects of creating a place sanctified to Wisdom and the memory of Zoria (essentially an inspirational tomb) might be. There are many stories about Zoria, but they have rarely been gathered together in one place, so it's impossible to predict what they might reveal about the Paragon and her lasting legacies. It is likely that they will cast light on some of the other locations associated with Zoria (such as the Cave that also bears her name), and there are several enchanted relics and tools associated with her that might still exist in the world. It is also well known that she was a powerful Sorceress - a term with a very different meaning in pre-Imperial Varushka, without any of the negative connotations it has today. She wove enduring magic especially through her understanding of the natural world, and that might prove especially inspirational to the magicians of the Empire.

Unlike a traditional mandate, this one is not time sensitive. As long as nothing major changes, it remains available as long as the Maze of Zoria is intact and in Imperial hands.