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All under the Heavens...


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Despite the aspirations of the single Chinese factions, the Great Chinese nation had been divided. The North was held by the Empire, the South by a Republic, the East was home to another Empire, the West had split away and Taiwan was still an open question. Huang Lingyin was not an innocent in this regard, her own actions had brought about this split as well. Rather than sit back and accept her priviledges, she had decided to work towards the Republic. Confident in her ability, her appeal to the masses and her stubborness, she knew, at the end, she would succeed. And she did. Nothing less was to be expected of Huang Lingyin, Supreme Chairman and self-proclaimed genius. Still however, it did not solve the Chinese question. And while her Republic held the South, much of the country was outside the Republic's grasp - her grasp.

 

When she had embarked on her quest to create the Republic, Huang had made sacrifices. Leaving behind her former life, her family and much of her status, travelling through the South to raise a new Kuomintang and a new Republic. Her family had called her insane, a trouble-maker and a problem child, but to her, this was the only way. The sole option Huang had, that would allow her to create something new upon the ruins of old, to abandon her position in the back, rising to the top on her own merit.

 

To this end, the Empire in the North confronted Huang Lingyin not just with an obstacle towards a united China. It also meant dealing with a country based on values she had left behind, a confrontation with Huang's past.

 

To Jiang Lihua,

 

I see, the Empire has succeeded in the North where the Republic prevailed in the South. Three governments have arisen in what should be one country, our two among them. I think, it is time to take responsibility. I hereby request a meeting, so as to establish an intra-Chinese dialogue, to prevent a nation destroying itself.

 

With regards,

Huang Lingyin

 

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Jiang smiled slightly as she read Huang's message. T'was time for a visit into the past, yet still with the opportunity of unity and strength ripe. And in this world of heightened aggression, this world of barbarism, this would of filth and heresy, so would the light of Tang shine.
 

Dearest Huang Lingyin,

It would be but an honour to host such a meeting, and I as such invite you to the Forbidden City at your earliest convenience. I'm sure there are many who would be pleased to see you once again walk our halls, and pleased even more so with this new spirit of cooperation.

Yours faithfully,
Jiang Lihua


Jiang smirked slightly as she sent the message. "And so the mewlings will learn to fear."
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Huang Lingyin would travel to Beijing within the week. Utilising a government-owned jet, the Chairwoman would make haste to meet the Empress. Not that she personally looked forward to it. From all she remembered, Lihua was not someone she was comfortable with. But as a stateswoman, Huang had to address the matter. Thus, the Forbidden city would become her next destination. Technically, the visit was one within the same country, thus, the Republic did not ask for much fanfare. It was one China, ancient and great.

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Upon her arrival to the Forbidden City, Royal Guards would escort Huang through to the Palace of Heavenly Purity. The bustle of the city was small, and Government Officials were walking between buildings, in an almost hurried fashion. Most would ignore the group, but a few would give Huang odd glances and a few stares. The look of the City as a whole retained the feel of dated antiquity from when it was first built, though obvious effort had been put in to keep it at its best - the gardens rolled with luscious grass adorned with flowers, arranged and planted with painstaking care.

Huang would be left in peace, the guards leaving once she had entered the Palace of Heavenly Purity. And there the Daughter of Heaven Sat, on the seat of Rulers and the Divine. Clothed in flowing red fabric that adorned and clung to the light silver armour she wore, atop a dominating platform filled with centuries of rich history that swam through the walls.

"Cousin!", she said, a slight smile coming from her face. "I am glad you did not forget your family as you set about conquering the hearts of the South. And my, it seems like t'was a battle won, and you wear your battle trophies with utmost pride."

Edited by Horo the Wise Wolf
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"Tsk." Huang Lingyin was all but enjoying this meeting. But still, she forced a smile. and reminding herself that she indeed had won, she carried on. "Well, how could I ever forget the family? I mean, even if it would not own half the country, it is hard to forget all those years. But as I stated, I would only return victorious, and here I am. Carrying the regalia I earned through merit and merit alone." She had caught herself again. Looking up to the Empress on her throne, she no longer had to bow.

 

"But I see, you are doing just fine yourself. One hears so much from the Empress these days in the news. Most of the times it is blatant chauvinism, but I guess that is you. At least... you are honest."

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Jiang frowned. "But why is it that you look upon us as such?", she asked. "You could have returned here with naught but the clothes on your back, and you may have walked with your head held high!"

"Alas, I see that you do not even enjoy my rule, here in the North. But, of course, your merit has been recognised and your regalia is fine! So is that why you are here? To offer it unto me and be cradled into my bosom, where I will protect you from the barbaric hordes that would seek to rip you asunder?", she said, with a slight tilt of her head and a mocking smile pervading through.

Edited by Horo the Wise Wolf
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"Funny as always.", Huang remarked in the most dry and sarcastic manner. "The Republic needs no protection. We are perfectly able to sort out the few issues we got, from pirates to the little devils. No, I'm here to ask for something else. The country is divided. This could be quite dangerous."

 

She looked at Jiang sternly. For a moment she gathered her thoughts, before speaking to her (in Huang's opinion) "slightly off" cousin. "Both our regimes can put forward a claim to the entire nation, potentially causing a war between the Chinese fractions. As it is, we seemingly have avoided the scourge that is civil war, but who knows for how long. China emerges from a breakdown, it was weak and has thus fractured. If it was to enter once again such great a crisis, I'm sure, not just would the country fracture even more, outsiders could utilise the opportunity to bring China entirely down."

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Jiang narrowed her eyes and returned with a stern gaze of her own: "Dear cousin, I would remind you that as illustrious as I'm sure your merits are, I am not without my own. I do not ask my advisors to remind me of the obvious, and I need not to have you spoon-feed me little nuggets of wisdom."

"Now child, be abrupt and without song; what is it that you seek from me, so that I might find it?"

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Huang looked at Jiang with a hint of doubt, before continuing. "The Republic of China seeks cooperation with the Empire. While we both have our respective parts of the Great Chinese Nation, I propose that both of our governments adhere to a One-China Policy and work towards a coordinated policy towards outside parties and defense of Chinese soil and people. Additionally, I would propose the cooperation in the economic realm to create a common Chinese market and not to let two seperate Chinas develop."

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"Ah!", exclaimed Jiang with a smile and clap of her hands. "You propose a marriage between our nations! My, what an wonderful idea."

"As great as a Fiscal Union sounds, however, that is but one side of the Chinese coin - what would you do with Shanghai and Japan? Their aggression and oppression of both Chinese and once-independent Asian soil has been so far left unchecked, and it will be down to us to remove the weeds from the garden. They have made zero attempt to legitimise their actions, and I doubt they would submit peacefully." Edited by Horo the Wise Wolf
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At the notion of marriage, Huang grinded her teeth for a moment, given she already went to lengths to not get associated with Jiang. "Shanghai is maybe a third party, but it is a Chinese country. I would not want to unnecessarily spill Chinese blood. For now, we have decided to wait and see how things develop, as Shanghai is still a bit of a mystery to us. I'm sure, sooner or later they will contact either or both of us, one just needs to give them their time."

 

While Huang was rather sympathetic towards Shanghai, the Japanese were a different matter. "I said it before, did I not? The Republic sees itself perfectly capable of dealing with the Japanese. I am not sure what Tokyo's intentions are, but it would be best to integrate them into a greater East asian system of sovereign nations. If such can be achieved, the peace and stability in our region could revolve around a Sino-Japanese axis. Though, that would require them to respect our values. And our sovereignity. I think we both know that the Japanese can be a sneaky folks, but it is better to cooperate, unless they turn on us...then it might be time that the dragon shows them their place."

 

"As a general notion though, I would offer you the following. If you let me handle the relations with shanghai, the Republic shall accept that Taiwan come under Imperial rule, once we restore order to it."

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"You would do work for us and let me reap the benefits?!", said Jiang, with a mocking expression of shock adorned across her face. "We would be absolutely delighted to manage Taiwan, so this is an agreement I can follow. You may deal with Shanghai, but let them not forget their place."

"If the Japanese want Asian peace and prosperity, then they had best hurry up about it and stop annexing peaceful locales. Thus far, I have seen absolutely no reason to give them even the slightest bit of trust or respect, and would happily tar my hands with the blood of their leaders. Let them come to us, cap in hand, with their good intentions bright alongside them, so that we might progress somewhere."
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"Of course you would...", Huang remarked, as she wondered how many her cousin really had loose. "I am not doing work alone. I expect the Empire to do its part, should it be necessary to expulse an outside power from China. Neither of us can be interested in a weak China, for it has to be strong and bring stability and prosperity to Asia."

 

"Also, if you would not mind, in the spirit of defence cooperation, once Taiwan returns to China, we would be requesting that our naval forces be allowed to operate a base on the island. I doubt that is too much to ask for."

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Jiang really raised her eyebrows at this one. "Dear cousin, I have the internal matters of the Empire wrapped around my little finger; do not worry your little head about it. As for a Taiwanese naval base - married couples usually share their belongings, do they not? I can let you have your base."

"But! I assume that is everything you have come for settled. Unless there is more you wish to speak of or you desire more time here, it is probably time we begin preparations for our moves. T'would be an honour to escort you from the City."

Edited by Horo the Wise Wolf
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Huang wasn't too happy to extent her time, but one last matter had to be settled. "I heard the Empire has proclaimed protection for its Asian neighbours. I would guess, you expect our Republic to aassist in this? Because as it stands, the Republic feels that recent events indeed might require such a move, to ensure that sovereign nations can arise, instead of them being held down by Imperialist powers."

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A protocol from the meeting at Xi'an would be discreetly sent to Jiang, in order to give some kind of idea what was said. This would come together with a note to be nice to the people from Shanghai, given that the Republic was not going to be happy, should Chinese infighting occur.

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