Hallifaxian Archives: Treason Case of 661 CE

Note to reader: The following is a compilation of entries from the legal notes of High Supreme Justice Lilliana Sunfar on the investigation and ultimate treason conviction over the course of 659 – 661 CE. Due to the historic and largely unprecedented nature of this crime in modern history, the Ministry of Justice, acting in coordination with the Ministry of Bureaucracy, has declassified these notes sooner than the typical blackout period, so as to remind the citizenry of their duties, and of the consequences of defying the ordered way of the Collective.

ENTRY 1: From Kiani 659 CE

Reports came in of a contingent of guards – typical in composition – arriving at the Matrix for duty. Yet, Keeper Sunfar and Senior Deputy Commissar Vardan reported no awareness of this dispatch, which was deemed highly unusual given their stations at the Matrix. Citizens were available to aid in a preliminary investigation. Comrade Jekkoc of the Ministry of Peace was summoned; he reported that he received Form [REDACTED] per normal means and enacted the process of dispatching this unit of guards accordingly. Paperwork possessed by the guards was deemed a forgery, thus creating an automatic escalation to the Ministry of Justice.

While paperwork errors do occur within the bureaucracy, a more thorough inquiry is deemed necessary given the presence of a forgery. For this matter, per Protocol [REDACTED], I have appointed [REDACTED], a new senior investigator working under the Preeminent Court of Truth.  Should they be needed, Keeper Sunfar reported that witnesses at the Matrix during this mishap included: Chair Tikki, Vice-Chairs Ayisdra Ysav’rai and Fillirriqili Skydrifter, Comrades Vivet Pavok, Sabik Al’tair, Rylek Al’tair, and Ame.

ENTRY 2: From Juliary 659 CE

A claim of misplaced paperwork occurred at the Library of Universal Knowledge, reported by Senior Administrator Clarramore. The claim originated from Comrade Exoiye of the Ministry of the Library, who was attempting to fulfil a request for information about [REDACTED] from Comrade Goldfeather of the Crystal Wheel. Comrade Goldfeather had the correct paperwork for this request in his possession. But, the Library’s records regarding which citizens had permission to which levels of information were not to be found. Upon the Senior Administrator’s arrival at the scene, the issue was resolved via temporary loaning of library materials to Comrade Goldfeather via Form [REDACTED] and the assignment by the Senior Administrator of the corps of administrators to recreate the missing Library records using alternate, archived paperwork.

Investigator [REDACTED] was on the scene as well, and theorized the connection of this incident to that of the Ministry of Peace paperwork months earlier. Also on the scene were: Chair Tikki, Vice-Chair Ayisdra Ysav’rai, Comrades Sabik Al’tair, Rylek Al’tair, Trym Mistcaller, and later Ellynne Mistcaller and Arae Villarreal. None of these individuals are under suspicion in the ongoing investigation given plausible alibis.

ENTRY 3: From Kiani 660

Slykok of Acknor, which at the time was pledged to the Grand Dominion of Hallifax, arrived at the Ministry of Plenty to deliver his village’s routine commodity tithe. However, the person on duty, Comrade Roshik of the Ministry of Plenty, was unable to receive the delivery given the missing paperwork pertaining to import customs, i.e. Form [REDACTED]. This was deemed highly surprising by Superior Judge Lars, who arrived on the scene to mediate the dispute, especially given the rising temper of the representative from Acknor. Investigator [REDACTED] also arrived at the scene, having received word of yet another paperwork incident and intuitively assuming a link with the earlier paperwork mishaps.

Conflict could not be averted. The representative from Acknor, in a fit of pique, seized paperwork from the hands of Comrade Roshik, mixed it with his own paperwork regarding the delivery of the commodities, and scattered the forms to the winds, causing them to flitter about the entire city. Available to help were Vice-Chair Ayisdra Ysav’rai, Comrades Vivet Pavok, Ellynne Mistcaller, Trym Mistcaller, Sabik Al’tair and Finnegan. Much haste ensued in rescuing the dispersed paperwork. By the time all forms were retrieved, Superior Judge Lars and Comrade Roshik had completed the necessary emergency paperwork for the import of the commodities, thus fulfilling the archival needs, although the representative from Acknor had left long ago.

ENTRY 4: From Juliary 660

An alarm began sounding throughout the city and the citizenry felt clear evidence of the city beginning to lose altitude in fits and bursts. The Generators and Matrix worked in concert following emergency programming that allowed them to draw on the power of the Matrix to roughly maintain the city’s altitude or, in the worst case, land “softly”. Comptroller General Eepex reported to the [REDACTED] Research Project Lab A upon word of an unusual gathering of Senior Researchers and Master Artists. The Ministry of Peace enacted a blockade to prevent any of the lower castes from unauthorized access to the meeting. Investigator [REDACTED] was already at the scene, having gotten word of yet more errant paperwork.

There, Senior Researchers Eepex, Skysoarer, and Lars were gathered with Master Artists Silverplume, Goldfeather, and Cloudwalker (cf. Reference [REDACTED] for the roster of scientists and artists on duty at this time). They were assessing a piece of paperwork, Form [REDACTED], that had been received by Master Silverplume making a routine-sounding request for her artistic creation in pursuit of [REDACTED]. However, upon closer inspection, it was clear the form contained a number of oddities that made the request itself far from routine, and likely led to ruinous consequences for the Generators of the Collective. Comrade Aiclii of the Ministry of Power was summoned for any inside knowledge of how this came to be, but she was not aware of any helpful information. Fortunately, the artists and scientists caught the error and did not fulfil the request. Unfortunately, it was quickly determined by all that during this time period of erroneous paperwork, neither the artists nor scientists were fulfilling their duties to empower the Generators.

Upon realization that the lack of maintenance was what was causing the alarm, the scientists and artists hastened to enact Emergency Protocol [REDACTED] to bring new bursts of power to the Generators. Doing so required [REDACTED], which could only be created by a separate procedure by Keeper Sunfar to overcharge the Matrix, thus resulting in [REDACTED]. Vice-Chairs Ayisdra Ysav’rai and Fillirriqili Skydrifter, Comrades Arae Villarreal, Finnegan, Zinnia, Trym Mistcaller, Ellynne Mistcaller and Abrondae were all present, but it was Comrade Rylek Al’tair who did most of the manual labour to retrieve the [REDACTED]s needed. First, the [REDACTED] Generator received the proper treatment, then the [REDACTED] Generator, and finally the [REDACTED] Generator before the set of Generators could rebalance themselves in service to keeping the city afloat. Thus, a greater crisis was averted, but yet another incident was registered in the streak of paperwork errors.

ENTRY 5: From Kiani 661

Investigator [REDACTED] filed the proper motions to convene a hearing in the Preeminent Court of Truth, with myself presiding. The Investigator also filed the paperwork to issue summons for Comrades Jekkoc, Exoiye, Roshik, and Aiclii to appear before the court; they were duly summoned with the help of the citizenry.

The Investigator began the proceeding. In attendance were Chair Tikki, Vice-Chair Ayisdra Ysav’rai, Comrades Hinic, Rylek Al’tair, Sabik Al’tair and Arturo Villarreal, later joined by Comrades Vivet Pavok and Arae Villarreal. Investigator [REDACTED] officially filed his report with the court; it was duly received into the record. An opportunity was given at the proceeding for anyone in the citizenry to provide testimony; the offer was wholly declined. The Investigator then offered a summation of his inquiry, sharing various pieces of evidence that suggested the guilt of the four bureaucrats summoned before the court.

Before any defence or cross-examination could be had, Comrade Aiclii, possessed with emotion, exclaimed her guilt. She claimed that the four of them had been enacting a plot to show the Collective how vital the bureaucratic caste is to the functioning of the city, and complained of the perceived poor and demeaning treatment that caste receives. With descriptions like “oppression” and a desire for “freedom”, the four gave an impassioned plea for their cause, yet ultimately pleaded guilty. Thus did the proceeding quickly arrive at the verdict of guilt, the crime being high treason against the Collective.

As the proceeding moved into the sentencing phase, Investigator [REDACTED] offered further thoughts. With reminders about the need for Unity and warnings about the potential for Collapse when chaos is allowed to reign, he revealed himself to be Lord Zvoltz, the Architect, returned to mortal perception.

The Lord Architect shared that He had intervened to stop the plot of the bureaucrats because He sensed Order fraying in the Collective, but offered no more detail about His intents. Yet, He took over the proceedings for the sentencing portion. The Lord Architect ordered that the citizenry should vote for the punishment of the four bureaucrats out of the three choices of execution, exile and permanent relegation to slavery. The anonymous vote had to be unanimous, and rounds of voting would occur until such a unanimous vote was registered.

The citizenry was given the freedom to deliberate amongst themselves. [REDACTED] murmured sounds of discomfort at the harshness of the presented options, while [REDACTED] made an impassioned plea for a fourth option – one of reconciliation and cooperation with the traitors to learn more about their complaints. [REDACTED] drew upon his own history and path to the Collective, while [REDACTED] cast the first vote, with great surety, even before much of the deliberation unfolded. Towards the end, when around half the votes were cast but clearly others were hesitating, [REDACTED] gave a final reasoned argument for exile, noting that it is one of the two prescribed punishments for treason per the Collective’s Peace Articles. Thus were all the votes cast, and thus was the vote unanimous on the first round. The sentence was exile.

Sentinel of State Pavok took the traitors away to enact the punishment, and the proceeding was adjourned. With the traitors’ fate determined, the Lord Architect took His leave with a word of warning about the cost needed to maintain Order. Gods willing, the Collective will not need to pay such a dear cost again to remember this lesson.