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Today had been a long time coming. Since the birth of the new peace contract 3 years ago, there had never really been much consideration for what would happen if a new faction wanted to join the roster but a few months ago she had been approached by both the leader of the Celestials and the leader of the Niveis to express their interest in signing the peace contract. It had been a lot of work for the human ambassador since then, as the leader of the organization and the figurehead of the ambassador council, it was ultimately her responsibility to negotiate terms with the new factions who wished to join the peace agreement. It was also her job to mediate the communications with the other ambassadors and ensure everyone was in agreement with the forward movements being made.
And now, after months of deliberation, going through contracts and reviewing every little detail on there, the day for both factions to sign was here. She had brought Giselle in on the negotiations a little while into them, while she knew the other woman had a lot on her plate having just been elected mayor, she was the one the whole of Evermore chose as their leader and therefore she was one of the most important people to seek council from. She was proud of the both of them for getting through all the long meetings, going back and forth on little details, ensuring the Celestials and Ailward factions, in particular, were able to find common ground and ensuring that every species got their own equal share of protection from any harm they might experience in the city.
She entered the room in the city hall, flashing her ID badge to the security guards and then heading inside the room, on the table were two copies of the amended treaty contracts and two pens, one for each woman to sign with. The original contract was underneath them, in the glass case where it had been placed after all the original ambassadors had signed it, herself included. It detailed how no faction would cause harm to one another and that each faction would assume responsibility for the actions of their designated group. All those who broke the peace and sought to harm another faction would face the laws of the city and would be at the mercy to the other factions in the city, who would seek that justice is done. It was big talk and it had to be after all the misery this city had seen, she had been here to see the war, how blame was thrown, she had seen the Ailward mourn the loss of their entire home and she had seen the phoenixes ousted from the city for refusing to comply with the rules set out for them. It was another new dawn for Evermore, a positive one, which would bring two more factions into their ranks.
Today was the big day, this would be the biggest project the human mayor had been apart off since taking over the office from her old boss. She felt nervous as she stopped at the coffee cart just outside of where the meeting was to be held. She went back and forth on what kind of coffee to get, settling on two iced and two hot cause she knew she could drink either. Taking the drink holder in her hands she moved through the door and looked to the guard who stopped her. Handing him the drinks she felt around for her badge in her bag managing to pull it out and show him. You think being the mayor would be enough not to be stopped at the front door. Yet she also knew they were doing their jobs, never know if someone could be impersonating her.
As she climbed into the elevator alone she whispered to herself, “First step to equality and a peaceful city.” she had practice answering fake questions all week. Though she didn’t know if there was going to be such a need for all of that. She knew she wanted to express that they were a welcomed addition to the treaty and hoped that everything would go smoother than it had been in the past due to infighting and celestial being held captive. In Giselle mind she knew that the treaty was good not only for the humans to have alleys among the supernatural species but for the other species to see that they can all live here in peace and equality. They were not less than just because they were different.
Walking into the conference room she gave a smile to Sariah as she placed the coffees in the center of the table for everyone to grab what they liked. “Oh I should have grabbed donuts.” Giselle kicked herself for not thinking more a head. Her eyes moved to the first contract that was there behind the glass case. “Why am I so nervous?” she asked softly as she pulled a chair out and slide into the seat. Though the two had little time to talk as the door opened to the two leaders of their prospective factions. To Giselle each of the woman carried an air of leadership and beauty as if it was as easy as breathing to them. “Welcome,” Giselle stood back up from the seat. “We have coffee if you would like, and I can have my assistant bring us food of your pleasing.” She said as she smiled brightly.
Well if there was an award for the most nervous person about to enter the building in the town center, it was her. Ophelia had definitely caused Sariah and Giselle a whole load of headaches throughout this whole process, she knew that much. She didn’t want to be difficult or make anyone work harder than they needed to but she also knew the seriousness of signing this contract, especially because of who else had signed it. Phe had made her peace with Aureus, or rather they had agreed that living their lives and keeping the celestial faction alive and well was a common interest. He had told her she should get the contract signed and so that was what she had been trying to do.
It wasn’t as simple as just signing on a line though, a contract had to be written up, Ophelia had read over the same text at least 10 times over, to the point where she now dreamed about liability clauses. But now here they were a few weeks down the line, they had gone over every line in fine detail, altered where needed and sent to all the ambassadors to ensure it met their terms and now she would find out if her people could finally be placed on the contract and earn the protection of Evermore city. They had lived here for two full years in peace now and this was the last thing she needed to secure in order to provide them a home, a permanent home. And that meant everything.
She took a deep breath as she walked into the building following the guards around to the correct area, she took out the ID badge she had been given the first time she came for a meeting with Sariah and showed it to them before taking a long deep breath and heading into the room. Ophelia looked far more confident than she actually was, which was one of her specialties, she had always been good at keeping up appearances and holding herself together. She let out a sigh of relief the moment she saw two contracts lined up over the tables but her attention was quickly taken by the mayor “Oh I love coffee” she spoke and immediately felt more at ease as she nodded slightly to greet the human ambassador and made her way to the table to take one of the coffee cups “Thank you, this is exactly what I needed” she admitted as she looked around the room “Are we awaiting anyone else?” two contracts did seem odd now she thought about it.
All Anivia wanted from the moment they had settled on top of the mountain was to make sure her people where safe. It was a complicated matter due to the fact that their Phoenix counterparts had burned so many bridges literally and figuratively. It was enough to almost have the Niveis ran out of town with pitchforks. So to Anivia this day was a long time coming. A lot of meetings with each Ambassador explaining what she hoped from gaining from settling in the city and signing the treaty. She told everyone of them her story, and why she brought her people here.
Yet as the Niveis had finally reached the end of her journey of review the contract that had been written up, consulting the whole tribe in on it. Agreeing this was the next logical step before the tribe seemed to be accepting of what was to happen. She felt confident in what she was going to face walking into City hall. She had to explain who she was to the desk a few times before Giselle assistant showed up to show her to the meeting room. Since none of the tribe had things like ID’s the badge she was given was the first of its kind for Anivia. She just kept looking at it until she walked into the room where three women were already.
The Niveis gave a smile too the two woman she had met with several times at this point, before looking to the darker haired woman. She walked to her and extended her hand to her “Anivia Frostbourne, Chief of the Niveis clan.” She gave a gentle smile before looking to Sariah and Giselle again. “Pleasure seeing your both again. Thank you for the coffee it is very kind of you.” The Niveis took hold of the Ice one taking a sip from it before pulling out the chair and taking her seat. “So how do we get the ball rolling?” She asked trying to keep her cool demeanor.
It seemed there were nerves all around today, she could sense it in the way that Giselle was talking too quickly and flitting around the place, her question made Sariah laugh, rolling her shoulders back before going to answer “Because this isn’t your average day in Evermore” she spoke candidly and shrugged her shoulders “Not every day that we see additions to the peace treaty, in fact, I think this might actually be the first which is impressive” honestly, she was pretty shocked they had made it to this point, especially with some of the hurdles placed in the way, Anivia’s people naturally got a bad rep because of their phoenixes counterparts and Ophelia’s for everything that had happened with the Ailwards and the Isle of Skye.
She greeted each of the dark-haired ambassadors as they entered the room, they had different auras about them but she could tell from the way they spoke and acted that this was very important to each of them. As the leader of the ambassador council, as well as the organization and the privy council, Sariah was beginning to get used to the pressures of being a leader in Evermore and so she was probably the sanest minded “Well first things first, everyone make yourself comfortable, thankfully all of the long meetings and hours of deliberations are safely behind us now” she laughed and picked up one of the coffees from the table and sipped it.
After the ambassadors had shared their introductions she pointed out each of the tables and nodded “We’ll begin with a final read of the terms of the contract, then each of you will sign it, Giselle and I will act as your two witnesses, we will then getting it added to the full contract” she nodded “I imagine Evermore Daily will want to take a few photos to commemorate the whole occasion but from the moment you sign, you agree that your factions will uphold the terms set out in the contract” she had signed it on behalf of the organization, though hers was slightly altered because there was no way Sariah could control every human, especially those who were oblivious. Anivia and Ophelia, however, both had a supernatural sense for their kind and therefore would be responsible for all of them “Any questions?”
Giselle was nervous, she knew that was clear to Sariah as she laughed and just seemed to have an air of confidence about her that made Giselle admire the woman. “What day is average in Evermore?” Giselle chuckled as she questioned back as she straightened her back. “And we manage two speices at once. What an impressive strive.” Giselle noted as she folded her hands together. It was something that was being worked towards long before Giselle became mayor with the Celestials. The Niveis joined the city around the time she came in and she felt that they had to go the extra mile to join the city, due to the Phoenixes of old. She knew Ophelia and Aureus where working on things after everything that happened with the Fall of Skye.
Giselle followed Sariah lead to pull out the chair again, taking the seat as she took the last coffee left and took a tiny sip as a way to calm herself for a moment. She placed her coffee back down on the table and folded her hands together giving a nod as Sariah began to explain what the process was going to be. She shifted in her seat slightly at the mention of Evermore Daily, She knew dealing with them where a big part of her job but she didn’t have to like it. Yet she found herself wearing a fake smile at the thought of taking photos.
Giselle looked between the two darker haired females as Sariah asked if they had any questions. After long meetings with each of the species leaders there shouldn’t be anything that stopped them from signing the treaty yet Giselle eyes flicked to the door waiting for something dramatic to happen.
Ophelia didn’t have long to wait until her question was answered as another dark-haired female entered the room, they hadn’t formally met but every ambassador knew one another’s face thanks to the fact that Evermore Daily liked to plaster pictures of them everywhere. Seeing the extended hand she reached out her own, bowing her head a little “Ophelia Dreyvalian, Wayfinder of the Celestial colony” she responded before the released it and juggled the coffee cup in her hand so she could take a long sip.
She moved over to the tables and took her own seat at it, it made sense that they were merging the two new members of the contract at the same time because it meant only one lot of negotiations and one edit, thus saving time and effort. She stifled the urge to groan when Sariah mentioned the long hours they had spent going back and forth. It definitely felt less dramatic than she imagined it being but then she supposed it was a big thing about something very little, at the end of the day, all it really was is a piece of paper.
She really didn’t like the whole press side that came with this particular role, especially because she hadn’t been elected into it or made the explicit decision to give up her privacy but she did understand why it was necessary. She looked down at the contract in front of her flipping through the pages as her eyes scanned for any little detail that might have changed, call her paranoid but this was the copy she would sign and therefore she wanted to ensure it was full, complete and accurate. “Will the rest of the ambassadors need to re-sign the contract or does the new additions automatically apply to them?” it was clear from the wary look in her eyes she was most worried about a certain one but she did her best not to look too uncomfortable.
Anivia took hold of the darker haired female’s hand and bowed her head in return. “It is a pleasure to meet you Opheila.” She said softly as she pulled her hand back to rest on her hip as she looked to the other two woman whom she had gotten to know pretty well over the long meetings. Taking the seat beside the Celestial she swirled her straw around in the drink before taking a long sip from it herself. She enjoyed the bitter bite coffee had it reminded her of ice strange enough.
Anivia gaze caught the badge she was given again and gave it a slight smile. It was strange how a small piece of plastic could make you feel like part of the city. Anivia gave a slight sideways glance to other woman in the group when the fact that reporters would be taking their photo. She had come to learn how different the city life was compared to isle they left behind. She knew there was a reason for it, to help others accept them in the city. Still wasn’t something she was ever ready for. She focused on the papers in front of her letting her eyes grazed over the words for a moment.
The Leader of the Niveis raised her head and looked to the Celestial as she spoke about the new additions and if it would apply to the other species. “It is a valid question.” The Niveis could see the wary look in her eyes. She didn’t know much about what happened between the Celestial and the Ailwards but she knew enough to know they were the main reason the celestials had not signed the treaty. "what about the Initia? I do not wish a war to break out between us because we are a counterpart of the firebirds of old." She leaned back in her seat waiting for the answer.
“Hmm now that you mention it, I quite literally have no idea” she responded with the mayor with an amused expression, there was always something new to handle, from ambassador meetings, getting new technology approved for the organization or investigating the strange and seemingly supernatural happenings in the city. “Can’t come at a better time all things considered” she commented alluding to the fact that the idea of complete peace and tranquility was definitely in jeopardy now, but the contract allowed them to corner anyone responsible should it be needed.
As Sariah seated herself at the table she looked between the two ambassadors, she had met both of them before of course, but it didn’t even occur to her that the two of them hadn’t actually met in person before. Still, there didn’t seem to be any concern from each of them about the company. She picked up her pen as she moved through her own copy of the contract so she could read out the relevant parts. “I have done the legwork of speaking with each ambassador and getting their terms” she responded with a nod as she pushed her glasses up her nose.
“Both the Ailward faction and the Initia faction have agreed to the terms on the grounds that both of you are prepared to take full responsibility for the full extent of your kind in the city” she nodded slightly “It doesn’t matter where in the city they live, because of your supernatural sense for your kind, you’ll be expected to ensure all of them uphold the terms” she lifted her gaze searching both of theirs for any hesitations “Rest assured that no wars are breaking out in Evermore on my watch” she assured and she meant it, she had the means to lock up an entire faction if she needed to now.
Giselle chuckled with Sariah as they both seem to know what a normal day was in Evermore. “One thing you can’t say is that this city doesn’t keep you on your toes.” It was the truth in many ways. She nodded in agreement that the fact that the two species remaining in Evermore to sign was a big deal. It meant a long awaiting peace would hopefully come. She knew that it was just a piece of paper at the end of the day, just how the Phoenix burned theirs and themselves out of the city. She just hoped that it would be different with the Celestials and Niveis.
Giselle looked for Sariah towards the ambassadors with a heavy gaze for a moment. She could see their hesitating looks. Of course they would have fears signing the treaty, both of their species had drawn shorter straws, setting them on a rockier path than others. “I believe I am not speaking out of turn when I say that the due diligence has been put in to make sure both of your species have been welcomed. I believe everyone just wants to move on from the past issues.”
Giselle offered a friendly smile and folded her hands together on the table. “You are equals in the eyes of Evermore, which is why we are wanting you to join the treaty. As an olive branch to make both of your respective species feel safer, along with every other citizen in Evermore.” She looked to Sariah and then back to the Ambassadors. “I for one believe that you both are wonderful leaders who care for your people and will keep them safe at any cost. I am just hoping you trust in us enough to help. This treaty, is more than a piece of paper to me. And I will personally make sure everything is upheld.”
The raven-haired Wayfinder drifted her gaze over to Anivia when she chimed in on her question, of course, a species so heavily associated with the phoenixes had concerns about the Initia, she hadn’t even thought of that before. It seemed both of them had their reasons to be a little concerned but it was very quickly put to bed by Sariah and Giselle. She was glad to know all the ambassadors had their say in all of this as that set her mind at ease about there being more repercussions after this. Honestly, she just wanted this to be the end of it all.
She looked between Sariah and Giselle as the terms were explained and Giselle shed a positive light on this whole thing, the way she spoke made Ophelia feel like this was truly a good day, a day that would go down in her people’s history. It seemed strange because it was just four people and a piece of paper but the mayor was right, this was so much more than a piece of paper, it was her people’s future and security. Admittedly the responsibility was a little daunting but she knew this wasn’t without sacrifice.
“My people are naturally drawn to me and tend to stay close, it will mean I need to travel a little whenever a new star falls but” she nodded her head slowly “It’s a small price to pay for securing a home” she might need to ask Niram to help her bring in newly fallen stars to make sure they didn’t get in any trouble around the world but most of her people just wanted assurance of a normal life and this was the first step she needed to take to get them there. She glanced over at Giselle for a moment and smiled “Thank you, it’s nice to hear someone so passionate for this city” she spoke softly, the mayor definitely shone in her eyes.
Anivia took hold of the Pen between both her hands, as she focused her gaze upon the Leaders among the human faction in different ways. It was nice to hear that Sariah had such assurances that there would be no war to breakout in Evermore. Anivia hoped that was to truly be the case. She had promised her people once they left the island that she would keep them all safe. It was a large promise but one she intended to keep. Now she was putting her trust into another faction, one that he had more faith in then others if she was being fully honest.
Anivia hoped with new leadership of the Initia coming around that she could help put to rest the uneasiest between their species. “Of course, Since I can feel everyone of my Species. I tend to send out scouts to contract new members to see if they would fit within the tribe and help them through their confusion. It is rare I leave the tribe myself.” Anivia reassured the leader. “I also have Rhydian and Mik that would step in to keep order among our numbers. Though its rare they have too.” This contract was the first step towards that. Anivia gaze moved over to Giselle as she spoke with such passion.
Anivia let her gaze fall back to the paper, she felt that voice in her head nag telling her that her father would never sign something like this. It made her feel more right in her decision to bring her tribe her, to give them their best shot at life. She pulled the cap off of the Pen and signed her name on the line and looked up to the humans in front of her. “Evermore is our home now.” She said as she placed the cap back on the Pen. “To a new era.” She said as she took a sip from her iced coffee. There was no time for fear when it came to doing what was best for her tribe.
Hearing Giselle speak so eloquently reminded Sariah why she was the head of the organization and why Giselle was the mayor, she had a way with words and a way of rallying people which was completely unrivaled and she was glad to have her here for this. The blonde looked between them all as they talked, Ophelia and Anivia seemed pretty willing to take over the responsibility they were being asked to which was a relief as she dreaded the idea of having to redo any of it at this point, getting agreement from 11 different parties wasn’t exactly easy, especially when certain ones had certain extra terms.
Sariah got to her feet, hovering behind Anivia as she witnessed the signature for her before leaning down and signing in the witness section next to her name “By signing as a witness, we are legally binding the signature you make, that means if any term is broken, we’re personally responsible for making sure you are brought in” which wasn’t her threatening at all because she had countersigned every other member’s signature too. Her own was backed up by the Ailward faction but hers was more specific to the organization as the majority of humans in Evermore were clueless to the supernatural world around them.
She continued over to the next table and counter-signed Ophelia’s signature too before collecting both the papers and then placing them in the case next to the original declaration of peace. After a moment, one of the town hall assistants popped their head in the door waiting for the prompt and she nodded her head to assure them they were ready. Moments later and a few reporters from the local media came buzzing in “Rest assured you can talk freely to these reporters, their job entails protecting Evermore’s secrets” she stood in front of the signed treaty and waited for the others to join her for the photos that would need to be taken.