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The Great Jubilee


Sarah Tintagyl
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When Sarah had received word from the Vatican that His Holiness had finished his visit in Promised Land, he would be arriving in the Commonwealth by the next day and therefore she wasted no time in finishing the preparations for what had been phrased as the 'Great Jubilee', the return of the Holy Mother Church and for the Pope to be visiting the humble Commonwealth it was more than Sarah could ever have hoped for. Since she had been a little girl, she had been raised in a extremely stern Catholic tradition, which had lead to her absolute disdain of the Church's previous center in Washington, her view was shared by many of the Hanseatics and additionally the Marchar citizenry.

The Jubilee was to be an event of great celebration, the country was essentially shut down for the day, Vatican flags were to be flown at the same mast as Hanseatic ones and after the arrival of the Pope, both he and Sarah were to parade down the main thoroughfare of Brisbane to City Hall where the Lady Protector and the His Most Holy Vicar were to have a light dinner to talk about further Hanseatic-Papal relations in the world. After all, it was a meeting between the two great pacifists in the world. The founder of the White Cross and Pope of the Roman Catholic Church.

The morning of the Pope's arrival, the Hanseatic Honor Guard was gathered out in force at Brisbane international airport where an open aired limousine was prepared to take him into the city itself. In addition to the Honor Guard, the Lillian Guard and various other officials, including the board of directors of the Pacific Trading Company were assembled in the airport lobby to get some of the first glances of His Holiness. Deeping into the airport, stood those who would get the first greeting of the Pope. Sarah stood dressed in her best, with a great smile on her face as the plane soared onto the runway. Surrounded by her ministers and high ranking officials. She took the first steps forward as the gates of the runway line opened and went to her knees as Pope Paul appeared.

"Your Holiness, welcome, welcome to the Hanseatic Commonwealth."

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Pope Paul VII had arrived and was the first to exit the plane. He was informed of the great celebration taking place on this day and had no idea what to expect. Only that he would be welcomed warmly by Sarah, who in the Pope's mind was a great friend though they had spoken very little and only by letter. He had slept well on the plane and was more awake this day, he knew he would want to fully enjoy this visit with Sarah, and his last visit in Promised Land develpoed an interest and curiosity in all nations of the world. His world had only been Italy, first in its beauty then in its destruction, and last with Vatican City. And then he saw her, kneeling as he approached. He signaled her to rise with a warm smile. He was not yet well informed on proper greetings, someone in the foreign affairs office must never had gotten around to it, but he knew how to show someone he was happy to be in their presence. He did this with a hug.

"Thank you for having me Sarah. I am humbled to make your acquaintance in person."

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"The pleasure is my Your Holiness." She rose from kneeling down at his feet to embrace the old man. "To be honest, I never thought I would see the day that the Pope of the Roman Catholic Church would be in my country to bless me with his presence." She laughed. "But we live in a changing world, anything is possible these days. Please Your Holiness if you would follow me, we have quite the ceremony prepared for your arrival in the Hansa."

Leading the congregation, Sarah took the Pope down from the gates of airport, through the lobby in the sight of much of the Hanseatic government and other foreign officials who had arrived to watch the occasion. Leaving the lobby, the Honor Guard saluted both the Lady Protector and the Pope as they walked down the steps into a white open-aired convertable that would take them into the city of Brisbane proper. Opening the door, the Honor Guard saw the Pope in first, helping the old man in anyway possible then letting the Lady Protector climb in by herself. The vehicle began slowly driving down the main avenue towards the city, flanked on all sides by flashing lights of military vehicles making sure that the utmost safety was given to this kind of event. Sarah had said it herself the night before, that anything besides absolute bliss was not an option.

As the car entered the city of Brisbane itself the Pope was immediately welcomed to an over zealous crowd of Hanseatics, Marchar, and the many other ethnicities that made up the Commonwealth. Vatican flags flown besides Hanseatic flags as people threw white roses into the streets while holding wooden and felt crosses up into the the air, many chanting, "Long live the Pope! Long live the Holy Father! Long live the Mother Church!" They shouted from the sidewalks and from the windows of buildings, while Sarah sat beside his Holiness, both waving to the large crowd gathered along the streets.

The cultural district was by far the jewel of Brisbane and in Sarah's mind for cultural reasons and she hoped that the Pope would see that massive amount of work that the Hansa had put into their Australian holdings since the nuclear attacks in Finland that had sent to the south to begin with. She hoped that she and the Pope could work together in the future to create a stronger, peaceful society that humanity could respect and return a feeling of hope to the world.

Turning her head in to face the Holy Father, she smiled. "I am extremely happy you were able to make it here Your Holiness and I must ask, how have things been in Rome with the set up of your first Vatican I would like to know if there is anything I can do to help cement your foothold in the world? Also, what do you think of Brisbane." Sarah said tilting her head to the sky and basking in the sunlight from above.

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The Pope chuckled softly in amazement and joy. It was clear the Hansa had put alot into this jubilous greeting and he couldn't feel more humbled. "Ah, yes. Well, it has been said that Rome is a jewel of the Mediterranean and Vatican City is its sparkling gem. And I agree. I am so pleased with the final results of such hard work and long planning. The Vatican is wonderful and we have recieved much warmth and welcome from around the world, but within there has been difficulties. Perhaps when we are in a less crowded area we can discuss this in more depth. Eh, but as for help we only ask of your nation to continue more strongly than ever to carry on the works of our Lord through your actions by strenghtening and supporting the faith globally. We live in a post war world, huge swaths of lands have become open around our world, countless are strugling while other are forging their path to great success. New nations are being born and growing as old die out. Many of those who have long patiently awaited their chance for glory are now setting the stage to finally take the place as the new world leaders. Now is the time for us to set the groundwork for a time of peace, the horrors of the past conflict have enlightened the overall world that perhaps there can be a better way to live and grow, a better way to coexist. With this I will need your help."

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"And by all means Your Holiness you will have it." Sarah turned to him as the car came into the circle between City Hall and the cultural district. "I do not wish to build my own ego up anymore that it has already grown, but it has always been my goal to create a peaceful world, one that uses diplomacy before war and seeks to help their fellow man before hurting him." She turned to the ground as a stream of anguish could be seen in her eyes. "Your Holiness I have seen things that no young girl should ever have to have paid witness to, but I have tried to look upon these horrors with as much strength as possible. My people have given me that strength and I feel that with their support I could move mountains. The White Cross has been an absolute success in my opinion and people all over the world have reaped the benefits and helped with its successes. Besides that I have been trying to think of anyone ways that the Hansa can aid the world, though I will be honest, my mind has been pretty worn down."

The car stopped at the doors to City Hall as members of the Honor Guard came down to escort Sarah and the Pope out of the car. "I have had a lunch prepared for us Your Holiness if you would follow me." Sarah lead him through the courtyard to the open air conservatory in the garden. There a small string quartet awaited them next to the marble fountain, depicting God's angels lifting the Hanseatic dead from the nuclear explosion to heaven. While further down the courtyard was a statue of Sarah herself holding a flower of peace that had been commissioned after her ascension to the position of Lady Protector. Sitting down at the table, servants brought out bottles of wine and an array of sandwiches and other foods.

"So tell me Your Holiness, what can I do to help your mission in the world?"

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Again the Pope was amazed at this. He was made to feel so welcome here, he haden't imagined such a greeting and this pleasent surprise made him feel more comfortable. "I have only recently been given the chance to witness the events that take place outside of Italy. And what I see is that we are living in a time of great changes, and you, Sarah, have shown me that you are leading a new wave of positive change such as the White Cross which we are very proud to be a part of. It is I, who wish to help you, and others like you. Creating a peaceful world will need to involve everyone in it. The world must learn to let go of its lust of conquest and talent for making war. It is when we lose sight of the humanity on the other side, that world peace collapses, stability is endangered, and lives are lost. I have read apon much of the past, and many have risen with good intent, wishing to stabilize the world. They fail by trying to force peace apon the world, so that even if they win their war they lost sight of their peaceful goals, they simply lost sight of the humanity. Humans can be very stubborn and fearful of great change even if it is good. The path to a peaceful world can not be marched to by the might of an army, it must be climbed to, together, fulled by our will and our faith. Those that are weak are invited to reach up while those that are strong must reach down to receive them. Those that are strong are not neccesarily closer to that goal, though they may have the means to acheive peace for themselves, global peace means a global effort of global cooperation. God has left us the tools, it is up to us if and how to use them."

The Pope joins Sarah sitting at the table.

"This all looks very delicious."

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She smiled as the Pope took his seat at the table. "Well I hope it does, you're welcome to eat and drink as much as you'd like." Taking a glass of wine for herself and putting it up to her lips, she smiled as the old man filled his plate. "So tell me Your Holiness, I hear you've been to Promised Land before coming to the Hansa. How has your trip been thus far? I hope pleasurable and do you have any curiousities about the Commonwealth? Anything at all, I'd be happy to answer them for you." She sighed. "Reason being is normally I would take a guest like you on a tour of the country, but I am sure you are pressed for time, many other countries to visit. So please, anything, anything curiousities I would love to hear them?"

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The Pope filled his plate with various different foods and dishes in small portions, being careful to serve only what he can eat. "The trip thus far has been fascinating. I had never left Italy before and it was so refreshing to get a glimps of the rest of the world, it is trips like these that make me happy. Meetings like this should happen more frequently between world leaders. Rather than only during times of war, and such. And yes I am very curious about your nation. Hmm, where should I begin? Ah, perhaps you could fill me in on your nation's history? I am quite a fan of history." He fills his cup with wine, as he begins to eat.

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Sarah smiled as she put her glass down and folded her arms across the table. "To be honest, Your Holiness, I don't even know where I would begin. The Hanseatic Commonwealth that you see today has gone through two transformations in its short life-span as a country. We have survived two nuclear holocausts and multiple other problems to rise finally as one of the stronger nations in the Pacific.

The Hansa began as the 'Hanseatic League' in Southern Finland around the city of Helsinki, which now does not exist. It was a consolidation of corporations who came together for a common interest: a stronger economic base. The people in the region soon began to look at the corporations for political guidance as well as political and social strength. At the time we were ruled by the nation of Confederate Tion, however the Tionese government was not just about to hand over one of their sovereign areas to a bunch of businesses, so instead the corporations came together and created an economic and political league with which to govern themselves. My father, Alexander Tintagyl, was to be the executive of this new board of directors, but he died before they could declare independence, so instead they selected me. The council figured that I would be easily controlled and that through a figurehead they could wield absolute power." She smiled. "They were wrong. After they realized that I wasn't about to play their game as a puppet they attempted to have me assassinated, but with the support of a few close friends we were able to turn the tables on the council and held the 'Republican Revolution' that created the 'Hanseatic Republic'.

We held our first elections after that and lo and behold I was lucky enough to be voted into the office of Prime Minister, it was a monumental occasion and the Republic seemed to be heading to a high degree of prosperity. However, rogues in the north were able to get their hands on nuclear weapons and detonated them in Stockholm and Olso. The radiation also moved its way over to the Hansa and we were forced to do a nation-wide clean up. During this time, many of the councilors who I had deposed tried to retake control of the government. But with Molakian and Franzharian aid, perhaps you've heard of those countries before, we were able to reclaim the government and the Hansa blossomed once again.

For about two years, the country enjoyed stability, peace, prosperity, but soon after. The United Francoist Empire began to encroach into Europe through various organizations such as the Grand Army of Europe. For a long time there had been fighting between two philosophies. Francoism and Martenicism. Gebiv, was the last of the Martenist countries in Europe and through the use of subversive war, the Germans invaded Gebiv launching the dreaded nuclear war that is still plaguing the planet to this day. The Hansa in this conflict was allied with Gebiv and though we were outnumbered and outgunned we declared war on Germany and fought bravely at the Battle of Rostock. Unfortunately after the battle, the Germans launched nuclear weapons at Helsinki and without the proper defense our country was blown away in the blink of an eye. Many people wanted to stay and rebuild, but the amount of radiation was enormous and there was nothing else we could do with the country. In a sign of eternal friendship, the people of New Cymru set aside territory for our people to settle in Australia and we began the 'Great Exodus' to Australia and we are still seeing the effects of this today.

While we were still in Europe, the Hansa was lucky enough to adopt a great deal of Marchar peoples into our borders and we brought them with us to Australia as well. The Marchar were originally from this area, or at least they have been recently as they are a wandering people. However, in seeing the new prosperity of the Hansa, many Marchar communities desired to join up with our holdings in Australia. It was at the same time, my term as Prime Minister was coming to an end and I was getting prepared to step down as leader. However in a show of absolute support, the people drafted the 'Pons Referendum' which immediately granted me the power of Lady Protector and power until the end of my life. After that came to light, we began an economic policy of expansion to incorporate all our ethnic backgrounds under one state while expanding our trading power. The 'Hanseatic Commonwealth', that is where we are today."

Sarah reached down and wet her throat with a swig of wine after such a long speech then waited for the Pope to comment on her story.

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*Hansa*

In Brisbane, a local convention of Catholic and Protestant Churches had gathered together, putting forth a simple petition for the people to sign: Recognizing an official prayer for the people of the Commonwealth. Respecfully, this one was submitted, in the presence of the Pope as he met with the Lady Protector:

Lord, make me an instrument of your peace.

Where there is hatred, let me sow love;

where there is injury,pardon;

where there is doubt, faith;

where there is despair, hope;

where there is darkness, light;

and where there is sadness, joy.

O Divine Master, grant that I may not so much seek

to be consoled as to console;

to be understood as to understand;

to be loved as to love.

For it is in giving that we receive;

it is in pardoning that we are pardoned;

and it is in dying that we are born to eternal life. Amen

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"Fascinating. Your people took a great risk asking, or demanding you to remain in power, but they made their decision with good reason. It seems clear that you truley care about your people. But not just them, your efforts show that perhaps you care for all people. This is what the world needs, and I believe your destiny is tied with the fate of an eventually peaceful world. I think it will depend strongly on your actions, Sarah. And you will always have my support in success, and setback alike."

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"It is a shame that this must be done too Your Holiness. Organizations such as the White Cross and other organizations that I have my mind set on to create in the future, these organizations only need to exist because people cannot take the proper responsibility of caring for their citizenry. We are all leaders here and we all have a duty to our people first, but I believe that we are to be a role-model to the world as well and when some nations are not able to lead their people properly, it is our duty to dismiss them from power." She took another sip of wine. "I am a pacifist Your Holiness, but that does not mean that I am not willing to fight for what I believe in. I sincerely hope that my actions as a leader but more so as a human will be what I am remembered for. Not war, not bloodshed, not fighting. Your Holiness it has always been my goal to create a strong Hanseatic state absent of the need and drive of militarism. Culture and wealth I believe are more civilized, more human and more inspirational and I hope one day that Brisbane will one day be the center of the cultural world a thriving place for the arts and human endeavor." Sarah grinned. "If I accomplish that, I will die happy."

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"The world simply needs to evolve. Everyone believes they are at the height of evolution being more technicalogically advanced than any time in our past, but there are key fundimental evolutions that the world has yet to reach. I agree with you, militarism is a barbaric and ancient way of advancing ones views or goals. In this field world evolution is lagging." He continues working on his plate. " I have a lot of hope for you Sarah. And I will do all that I can to help you reach your goals, because I belive they are sincere and would truley be for the benefit of the world if they were accomplished. "

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She smiled finishing what was left on her plate and drinking the last drops of wine in her glass. "It was a pleasure speaking with you today, Your Holiness, truly your presence has revitalized much of my desires to continue going about my further plans for the Hansa and for the world and it moves me that I have your support." Stretching out for a moment to release the built up energy from sitting at the table, Sarah's eyes fluttered for a moment. "I don't want to continue to keep you though Your Holiness as I am sure there are many more places in the world that you are touring. If there is anything else you would like to discuss I would be more than happy to bring out more food, however if it is your wish to depart we have the limousine to take you back to the airport. Nevertheless, it was a true pleasure to have you here in the Commonwealth and I hope that your travels will eventually bring you back here."

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"I cannot thank you enough, Sarah. I am so pleased to have this oportunity to make your aquantence. Remember that you can always turn to us, should you ever need help, and support. Sadly, I must depart. I hope that soon we can speak again, I am always curious to see what you will do next. I will stay in contact." He blesses Sarah, gives her a farewell hug and departs for his next stop.

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