January 12th - Abaka
In the sunrise, the Khatun's hair shone golden but it was her smile as she looked up after signing the receipt of Abaka that caused the crowd to be taken with her beauty. She was as happy as she had ever been since she set foot in Aren. The motions the Warlord had set forth when he had been Khan had now come to fruition. They had always wanted Abaka, if not to expand but also to revel in some long forgotten memory that Brisa did not know.
Putting down the quill, she handed the document to her assistant Marie, who stood by staring at the Constable of Minas Thalion. Brisa thought the woman was thinking her own thoughts, How does Constable Cathal feel about this?..... Looking at the important man for the first time, her partner in this Federation, she spoke strong and true as she looked him in the eye, " You are a man of great honour, Constable. Aren thanks you and welcomes Abaka with warm hearts and strong hands." Brisa walked up to the Constable and dipped slightly forward, holding her hands at her heart in thanks. "It is a great pleasure to meet you at last"
Cathal watched smiles spread through the Aren delegation - doubtless at the realisation of their long-held desire for this land and the promise of friendship accompanying it.
To the Lord Elector's left stood a tall, dark-haired woman in a yellow silk gown, seemingly a close confidante though no formal introductions had been made, whilst behind him his Templar guards retained their professional demeanour. A last vestige of the ancient Trinity warrior priesthood stood at attention in three ranks, dressed in the black tabards and shining mail of their holy orders. The Khanate now quartered in Alowca may be a strange interloper in these ancient lands but if the Templars felt any resentment they didn't show it.
"Strange are the ways of Mighty Khagistar," Cathal mused under his breath as he signed the Deed of Sovereignty and passed the quill to Khatun Brisa. Thousands unnumbered had lost their lives during generations of fighting for this sacred soil, wars in which Cathal had first won his spurs and later the grudging respect of his enemies. Now with a simple flourish it became another's possession.
"If we understood his ways Cathal, where would be the need for faith?" his companion whispered as the Khatun's signature dried and the affairs of Abaka were settled.
"You are a man of great honour, Constable. Aren thanks you and welcomes Abaka with warm hearts and strong hands." Khatun Brisa approached courteously, her blond hair aglow in the morning sun, and dipped slightly forward, holding her hands at her heart in thanks. "It is a great pleasure to meet you at last."
"And my pleasure to greet you in person," the Lord Elector bowed in the formal court style of his Atamaran childhood, the dignity of the gesture strangely at odds with the simple captain's garb he wore, "Please don't let me interfere with the other formalities of this blessed day."
As the Khatun proceeded to invest her predecessor with the very title which Cathal once held, he resumed his private conversation, "Had I not faith I wouldn't be here today My Lady."
"And had you not faith Cathal, neither would Aren. Our Lord has not brought you both to this place as a reward for past services, rather he prepares the way for the service you must yet render. Ponder that," and with that the mysterious woman excused herself leaving Cathal to wonder once more about the ministry for which he was called. Was it time to once more set aside the warrior's mantle and fight the spiritual fight? Or was he once more to take the field in earnest?
Brisa then turned to find the Warlord. She regained her composure and held back her smile of delight as she spoke seriously and with meaning.
"Warlord Jabari, I now appoint you as the Count of Abaka. May you rule the people well and take care of this delicate region. You have a hard task ahead of you to win their loyalty, but I have faith in you like no other. May you find Abaka a home in your heart where the breeze blows gently and the sun lights the way."