Dolthe 10, 5682---Prince Nomolo stepped onto the shore at the southernmost point of Murnithon. After almost six months at sea, they were four days from reaching Eranithon, and twenty-three from their destination in Ijelon Sound. First, however, the Sisterhood of Jadela’Mar requested he preside over an unspecified issue. He thought it might have something to do with the unexpected return of Tora’Sor, but felt it was probably something else since the women seemed to accept her return without issue. The Prince was miffed about their interference with his plans with their unscheduled stops, and hoped this one would not last an entire three days like the first. What could possibly be so important that it took them three days to discuss?
He marched inland a short distance flanked by four guards, and followed by three advisors. At the place prepared for the meeting by the Sisterhood of Jadela’Mar was little more than a circle of benches, with several positioned to show prominence. Many of the benches already had people sitting on them. Also included was a chair on a raised platform in an attempt to improvise with the lack of an actual throne. Prince Nomolo knew this chair was for him, and sat in it. Soon the Sisterhood’s High Council entered the area, with the Supreme Mistress following behind them, a nasty scowl on her face. “What is going on,” Prince Nomolo whispered to one of the advisors.
“I don’t know, my Prince,” the man replied.
Once everyone settled in their seats, one of the High Mistresses stood up. “This meeting in accordance with the laws of the Sisterhood of Jadela’Mar seeks to consider the role of the Supreme Mistress within the organization, and also in accordance with the laws of the Sisterhood of Jadela’Mar, acknowledges that any decision concerning this topic must be approved by the Great King or his agent.” She turned to face Prince Nomolo. “My Prince, do you as son of Great King Derkias and heir to the throne of Atalan agree to act as the lawful agent of the Great King in his absence during this time?”
Prince Nomolo stood up. “By the authority of the Great King, I act in his stead with the full authority of his throne bestowed upon me within his absence.” He sat down with a frustrated sigh. If the Sisterhood of Jadela’Mar was going through such formalities, it only meant the Sisterhood was undergoing something tumultuous in their ranks.
The High Mistress turned back toward everyone else, and continued. “The request in question called for the removal and replacement of Iifelaroi’Hun as Supreme Mistress of the Sisterhood of Jadela’Mar, and the alternative request to remove Rarla’Nun from the Sisterhood of Jadela’Mar. The particulars leading to this dispute are moot, as we settled those previously. Through much discussion since then, the High Council reached a decision on both requests. The High Council finds no worthy cause for the removal of Rarla’Nun from the Sisterhood of Jadela’Mar, nor does it find worthy cause for the removal and replacement of Iifelaroi’Hun as the Supreme Mistress of the Sisterhood of Jadela’Mar, with caveat that we reexamine and clarify the role and position before any final decision can be made.” She turned back toward Prince Nomolo. “Does the Prince accept our request?”
Prince Nomolo sat up. It seemed as if the Sisterhood of Jadela’Mar was undergoing a mutiny of sorts, something with the potential to cause changes throughout the world. “I accept your request,” he answered, “on the condition that it does not further delay or otherwise endanger this expedition. I’ve lost enough time already thanks to your problems.” He saw Rarla’Nun smile at his comment. He could tell she agreed with his analysis of the situation.
The High Mistress was about to continue, but Prince Nomolo interrupted. “Wait. If you have no intent to remove and replace the Supreme Mistress from her position, what do you intend to solve with further discussion about her role?”
“I am sorry, my Prince,” the High Mistress said with a slight bow. “We intend to discover if the Sisterhood of Jadela’Mar needs a Supreme Mistress.”
A quiet gasp spread through those attending the meeting, letting Prince Nomolo know that few among the Sisterhood expected such a discussion. They were trying to remain quiet, but the surprise was evident.
The High Mistress continued. “We will either affirm the necessity of a Supreme Mistress as the head of the Sisterhood of Jadela’Mar, or devise a means to remove the position from our ranks.”
Prince Nomolo leaned toward his advisor. “Can they do that?” he asked.
“Technically they can,” the advisor answered, “although it would unravel centuries of tradition.”
“This is an outrage!” the Supreme Mistress decided. “Removing my position would leave the Sisterhood of Jadela’Mar leaderless and impotent.”
“You can’t claim innocence,” Rarla’Nun said loudly from her place the gathered women. “It was an outrage what you did to Tora’Sor. It was an outrage when you...”
A motion from the High Mistress silenced Rarla’Nun. “The High Council will recognize no arguments from either of you two,” she said.
“Hold,” Prince Nomolo quickly said, interrupting the proceeding. The High Mistress looked at him. “The support of the Great King is conditional upon hearing all sides to an issue. Each party involved must be given a chance to speak.”
The High Mistress bowed with a slight frown. “Yes, my Prince. We will allow a time for rebuttals. First, however, I will establish the High Council’s findings on the matter.”
She once again faced everyone, and began to explain the High Council’s opinion about the usefulness of the Supreme Mistress. Prince Nomolo found the subject matter dry, but eventually decided the High Council made an adequate case for a reduction in the role of the Supreme Mistress, and interestingly for the High Council as well. The cause seemed to stem from the ability of certain positions to use their rank and influence to restrict or hinder the ability of others to adapt or improvise to changes in their situations, or to punish those who did so without approval. As examples, Tora’Sor was just one of several listed. In conclusion, the High Mistress recommended that the Supreme Mistress and High Council be restricted to training new members and the direct involvement with the affairs of Atalan.
When the required time for rebuttal came, Prince Nomolo found it interesting that Supreme Mistress Iifelaroi’Hun decided not to make a statement. However, Tora’Sor spoke, and asked how the High Council expected members of the organization to maintain order and efficiency without the higher levels of leadership. She was against the change unless the High Council could alleviate those issues. Several others also commented on the proposed changes, although Prince Nomolo found their arguments unsubstantial.
It was evident that the proposal had the support of most of the people there, and a quick vote proved it. The Sisterhood of Jadela’Mar wished to cut off its leadership to protect its lesser members. Prince Nomolo didn’t think it wise, but far be it from him to impose his views on them. When asked for his approval of the proposal, he stood up.
“I, Prince Nomolo, acting as the lawful agent of Great King Derkias, with authority granted by the Lunari and more so from our Creator, approve the Sisterhood of Jadela’Mar’s decision to reduce the roles of its Supreme Mistress and High Council as established this day, and to alter and amend as needed by this same method.”
The meeting soon began to break up, as members of the Sisterhood left to return to their ships or tend to other business with each other. Prince Nomolo stepped from the platform with his advisors.
Iifelaroi’Hun walked up to Prince Nomolo, an unpleasant expression on her face. “You just approved the degeneration of the Sisterhood of Jadela’Mar into anarchy, and the world will suffer,” she accused. She continued toward the ships before he could reply.
Prince Nomolo was curious about Tora’Sor’s lack of support for the issue, and motioned for her to come to him. “Why didn’t you support your High Council’s proposal?” he asked her. “From what I understand, much of it has to do with the treatment of you, so I find your disagreement quite strange.”
“I see this as unnecessary,” she answered. “They might think they’re cutting the head off a snake, but they did nothing to remove its coils. If anything, I expect this will cause more problems than it solved.”
“What of the problems caused if it remained as it was?” Prince Nomolo asked her.
Tora’Sor shrugged. “Only time will tell, my Prince.” She turned and walked back toward the ships.
Prince Nomolo glanced at his advisors. “Is it just me, or is everyone unhappy that I approved what they decided?”
“No, my Prince,” one of the advisors answered. “It’s only the few who stop to speak with you. Most of the others are pleased.”
“I guess Tora’Sor is right,” Prince Nomolo decided. “Only time will tell what happens as a result of today. In the meantime, I think I’ll worry more about what my father things when he learns I’ve singlehandedly removed the leadership from the Sisterhood of Jadela’Mar.”
He wondered how his father would react upon learning the news. He might decide it was politically expedient, and would leave the Sisterhood of Jadela’Mar easier for Atalan to control. However, Prince Nomolo worried the Great King would renounce his decision, and claim it was ill conceived. Until Prince Nomolo saw the effect of the decision, he knew he would worry about the ramifications, and the voyage to Eranithon now seemed a little longer than before.