GATO Notes

It was unavoidable that my first post in White Cell was ridiculously long.

Because the post had to deal with Guardia, and its reaction to the Eblanese Succession, and it had to cover a lot of ground in terms of where Guardia (and Gate) are post-Civil War, my job in this post resulted in there being a lot, a LOT of words.

A couple of specific notes on some of the elements we see:

-The original GATO was the reincarnation of Tyurin Cage’s Confederation, and like the Confederation it was a treaty organization designed to project Gatian power through forming a big alliance with the various nations within Gate’s colonial sphere of influence. Sort of like the IJF, only important and useful.

-In addition to Guardia and Medina (the heavies), Chorras, Porre and El Nido round out GATO membership. Chorras is easily a third-tier power on its own, and it has some fairly powerful tech leftover from the Civil War, including a fleet of Atreus-made starships (in the un-posted megapost arc “Unravelling,” Chorras is shown to be a hodge-podge of libertarian humans, über-religious reptites and vengeful break-away elements of old Atreus come together to give Guardia some come-uppance). Porre is sneaky, autocratic and just a little bit fascist, though Itica is shown to be a genuinely good guy. So, they’re like, benevolent fascists? Which is actually something we’ve seen before in Kupopolis, so there’s precedent. Their government is dominated by a secret society called the Black Wind Organization, whose membership is made up almost exclusively of ex-GDF officers with strong Porrean nationalist sympathies. They’re willing to do things that most Guardians would not be: they’ve experimented with cybernetic enhancements, body-altering combat drugs and genetic modification. They’re small – Porre is pretty much mostly just a city-state – but you probably don’t really want to fuck with them, both because of the rogue GDF elements they command and because they’re into some super shady shit.

-Michael Itica isn’t my character; he’s M3May’s, and a good deal of the Porre set-up I did based on some of M3’s notes, his Iron Writer post (featuring Itica), and what I read of his Neo story arc (which is STILL on my to-do list: finishing Neo). In writing Unravelling (and then mapping out post-Unravelling Gate), Itica was a natural choice to become Porre’s leader (especially since Itica’s descendent is prominent in M3’s Gate arc in Neo).

-Figuring out the path ahead for Medina was hard, if only because I’d rather if Nick had written it himself. Valphia and a couple other characters show up in Unravelling; and in designing the new GATO I decided to advance Valphia to the status of a world leader. Rather than have Medina go through yet ANOTHER revolution, I decided to keep what Nick wrought when he was in Medina last: as a testament to the strength of the republican democracy that Rhodes Palmerston helped forge, the Prime Ministry was transferred peacefully from Gorgon Welles to Valphia. Other Medinan institutions (MASS, the Verteidan, the Strato Wings, Rogue Squadron) are still there and remain uniquely Medinan fixtures, very likely to show up in future GATO posts in the White Cell arc.

-El Nido is pretty much just there because at one point I really wanted to include stuff from Chrono Cross. It featured pretty prominently in the Rajaat arc, and has gotten a lot of love from Jay (because writing about quasi-caribbean necromancers is just cool), but has enjoyed long periods of silence and inactivity outside of Defiler invasions and Malcovian maneuverings. The biggest thing that they bring to GATO is incredible mineral wealth: an unexplored plot arc from Proper had El Nido in the middle of a bidding war between Guardia and Kuat over rights to mine huge untapped reserves of Nidoan magilyte. Presumably, the Nidoans have tapped into these reserves themselves, and it’s this wealth that they bring to the table as a member of GATO.

-One thing that was really important for me to showcase here is that Derik really really still wants to be the leader of a Great Power, but the five member nations just don’t all agree on almost anything. They resent each other, little cliques are forming; Medina is constantly trying to buck Guardia’s control, and Porre is creepily being nice to everyone, Chorras is earnest but indepenent, El Nido is self-conscious about being smaller and weaker than everyone else, and Guardia just wants everyone to get along so they can all go and fight Scande.

-Oh. And also? Thames is a dick. He’s always been a dick. It’s one of the defining parts of his character. He’s also not wrong in his self-assessment: he is the very best at what he does, and when he puts himself on a pedestal, it’s because he deserves to be there. The rivalry between himself and Gage is going to be a big part of what comes out in other posts: Gage hates Thames because he feels Thames doesn’t give him the respect that a Great War veteran is automatically owed, and Thames hates Gage because he resents that Gage thinks he’s Thames’ equal.

-Also worth noting: I wrote Thames’ most dick-worthy speech on the assumption that TO Halberg is canonically dead (or, still believed to be dead). If that isn’t the case, Halberg definitely becomes part of this speech, and it goes more like “there are only four living military commanders…”. The sentiment Thames is conveying is loosely inspired by a speech that Cao Cao makes in Romance of the Three Kingdoms; his “there are only two true heroes in the realm, you and I” speech. Only when Thames says something like this, he ends up sounding like a self-absorbed dick. Which he is. But he has a maneuver named after him like all great military commanders, so his arrogance is probably well-justified.

-You may have noticed that Derik isn’t so "Firebrand"y anymore. That’s what happens when you lose the love of your life in Aryth, have your wife and father killed by a crazy magical robot monster, get addicted to Pyra, get killed and resurrected by a voodoo priestess, have to fight the crazy magical robot monster AGAIN after it turns out he’s part of the whole evil pyra conspiracy, and then have to find sufficient inner strength to do what’s right for everyone to end a war and bring peace to the entire kingdom. That’s enough to make anyone calm the fuck down.

-Wow, something I just realized… City of Moogles fucking called it when Dustin turned Derik into a stoner.

Halberg is, indeed, dead! I may consider revisiting that in Reborn, but I think – as far as White Cell is concerned (and maybe in general, I’m not sure yet) – he is good and truly dead. I think it fits with a Web falling apart, and an EU frozen.

Also, it was good to see these guys again – and meet the new people!

I also forgot about the alternate future Guardia. That’s crazy but awesome. How did that happen again? I remember it was… there but forget the details.

I kind of like the idea that non-Gate Dimension people find the time-traveling, alternate universe stuff really confusing, but Gate natives are kind of blah about it.

I’ll admit, my intent with Rabbey in charge of Malcovia was not that he’d turn his reign as king there into a reign of terror-- at least, not if you weren’t a peddler of the sorts of drugs that Malcovians don’t habitually use in their rituals-- but I appreciate that he might have started getting more harsh as time went on.

Someday, I need to get in on writing about this vodoo magic, mon.


I was unsure about that line myself, mostly because I don’t think you and I ever really talked about what your long range plans for Malcovia were, and I kind of just wanted to put a hint into my text that things there hadn’t been static for all this time. But even so I thought as I was writing it that it might potentially be de-railing. Do you have a suggestion for an edit/substitution?

I was unsure about that line myself, mostly because I don’t think you and I ever really talked about what your long range plans for Malcovia were, and I kind of just wanted to put a hint into my text that things there hadn’t been static for all this time. But even so I thought as I was writing it that it might potentially be de-railing. Do you have a suggestion for an edit/substitution?[/quote]
Nah, it’s nicely vague to give us some things to do.

I always figured that Rabbey would start making trouble within El Nido, trying to get more power/authority/clout for Malcovia (i.e., himself) and maybe that his pissing off the Loa by doing the Shadow-Walk would bring other troubles to Malcovia and/or El Nido.

[quote=Tex post_id=1039 time=1471489904 user_id=50]
I also forgot about the alternate future Guardia. That’s crazy but awesome. How did that happen again? I remember it was… there but forget the details.

So, responding to this WAY late, but it’s worth bringing up if only because… well, it’s Guardia, so it’s like 80-90% of what I bring to the table here. Bullet points follow!

•The actual post series in Kupopolis is called “Slipping the Binds” in the Gate thread. Basically, a group of university scientists specializing in dimensional theory develop a device that allows them to pass into parallel universes.

•The timeline of the depicted Alternate Universe revolves around one key moment in Doan Pendouris’ background that happens differently than it did in the Kupopolis timeline. At seven months pregnant, Doan’s wife is targetted for assassination by Doan’s rivals in the Trann Syndicate. She’s rushed to a medical facility, but the doctors tell Doan that they can save either his wife or his son, but not both. In the Kupopolis timeline, Doan chooses to save his child, who grows up to become Derik. In the AU, Doan chooses his wife, but the doctors are unsuccessful and both die.

•This event changes a lot of the choices that Doan makes from then on; he begins to question himself and his judgement, and becomes a lot less decisive. To stave off his guilt, he preserves the fetal tissue from his dead child and has it cloned. This clone (essentially a clone of Derik) becomes Doan’s daughter, Elektra, and in the AU eventually becomes Captain of the Knights of the Square table and wielder of the Masamune (so now there are two Masamunes).

•Elektra also brings over her husband, Raju Pandora. Mirroring the events of Kupopolis Proper, Elektra and Raju met after Doan and Skull threw the King of Pandora a surprise birthday party (“The Pandora Project”). There was no unexpected pregnancy or shotgun wedding here, but there was a courtship that developed and then a friendship between the two kingdoms. Raju married Elektra and went off to join the Guardian royals (which was fine, because the King’s eldest daughter, Nalini, was heir to the throne). Raju doesn’t exist in the main Kupopolis timeline (rather conveniently) because he was miscarried (but in the AU, he survived).

•Lots of other things didn’t happen the same in the AU timeline: in this timeline, everyone hates Guardia, and Guardia is under siege by the rest of the Web of Worlds. The four scientists make their maiden voyage, discover what’s going on, and decide (after kicking around the ethical dilemmas of transplanting people from one timeline into another) to rescue the Guardian royal family and bring them back into the Kupopolis timeline.

•Thus, we have in the Gate Dimension a royal family in Guardia that’s very much got this from-across-space/time feel to it: the King is the descendent of one of the great Heroes of Time, his father and “sister” are from a parallel universe, the King’s two surviving children were age-accelerated in the End of Time and trained in magic and combat by the main deity of the national religion, and his sister’s husband is also his late wife’s brother from a parallel universe.