Blurry Common Vision

Darid 8, 1014

So this was her team. Mother Julian wished she could be more enthusiastic about it.

Because the trouble with playing hardball was that it was hard. It took skill and finesse, understanding how people worked, what made them tick, and how to get them to tock if necessary. And people got hurt. You had to have a mind like a steel trap to come up with something that would work, and an iron stomach if you wanted to live with yourself after.

She didn’t know if her nuns had that. If Mother Julian was being honest … she wasn’t sure she herself had all that.

But somebody had to do something, and she and her nuns were all that Albion had.

Albion was on, in Mother Julian’s view, a collision course with the Church. It wasn’t just Brother Tuck, although he was certainly part of it. It wasn’t just Brother Galahad’s unorthodox ideas (about teaching, doctrine, and especially about how much of that doctrine to teach). It was also Father Hugh. And it was most certainly King Arthur.

It was just over a year ago that he had sent out the order forbidding any Church money from flowing through Albion to get to Camford. For the sake of the refugees languishing in the border camps. Mother Julian could sympathize with that — truly it was horrible to watch innocent people suffer. Anybody would be excused wanting to do something. But to tangle with the Church so openly … she wondered, was the King mad? Or was he reckless? Both?

And then there was the whole matter with Brother Tuck …

Mother Julian sighed. This mental lollygagging would get her nowhere. She marched around the long dining table — unlike the monks, Mother Julian had no room other than the refectory big enough to fit all her nuns comfortably around a table — and pulled out the chair next to Sister Vyn. “Sisters,” said Mother Julian without preamble, “we have much to discuss.”

“Oh?” asked Sister Angelique. One raven-black brow arched delicately. Mother Julian did her best not to sigh. The minute that Sister Angelique had come home, Mother Julian had rid of her of that ridiculous not-a-habit and outfitted her with a more plain and sensible model. But that hadn’t even come close to taming Sister Angelique’s personal appearance. Without dressing immodestly, or wearing cosmetics (in a way that Mother Julian could prove), or doing anything that Mother Julian could object to, she still managed to exude sensuality and scandal.

“Aye. I’ll admit I should have had this discussion earlier, when you first arrived,” she nodded to Sister Angelique, “but I needed to … confirm some things.” That had involved a bit more subterfuge than she liked, all masquerading under the pretense of a friendly tea and a friendly chat with Sandra Tower. “And now that those things are confirmed …”

“Yes?” asked Sister Angelique, sounding bored already.

“I’m sure we all remember the scandal with Brother Tuck last Jaban,” Mother Julian began. “And I am sure we are all quite glad that Brother Tuck has … stopped his foolish schemes.” Mother Julian stared at the wall so she wouldn’t have to see the patently relieved looks on her nuns’ faces. On the one hand, she understood — on the other, they were supposed to be looking out for needs of children whose parents could not care for them. “But I do not think we would all be as glad if we knew the lengths to which the King and his council were prepared to go in order to stop Brother Tuck.”

“And those lengths would be …?” asked Sister Angelique.

Mother Julian hesitated, but it was only for a fraction of a second. Even if Sandra had not been sure of the details, she knew this much. And the fact that this much was true was a cause for grave alarm. “There was talk of prosecuting Brother Tuck for kidnapping …”

Sister Angelique blinked. Margery gasped. Sister Vyn looked somewhat impressed.

And then Mother Julian delivered the kicker. “In an Albionese court.”

Margery yelped; Sister Vyn gasped, “What?”; and even Sister Angelique’s eyes widened.

“Yes, sisters. Even though the King was wise enough — or perhaps the … woman in question merciful enough — not to walk down that route, the fact that it was presented as an option is and ought to be a cause for grave alarm. For that reason –”

“Is it?” challenged Sister Angelique.

Well, so much for hoping that she would be able to get through the first five minutes of this without an argument from Sister Angelique. Was the girl being contrary on purpose, or was it just her nature? No, Mother Julian ought not lie to herself: the girl was unhappy. Anyone could see that. And as Mother Julian bore part of the blame for that, putting up with Sister Angelique’s unhappiness could only be considered her penance.

“Sister Angelique,” Mother Julian sighed, “Albion has no court ecclesiastic. Do you not think that trying Brother Tuck in a secular court would be damaging to us all?”

“The crime he committed–”

Allegedly committed.”

“Committed!” fired back Sister Angelique. “Let’s not be coy here, Mother; none of us agreed with what Brother Tuck was doing. In fact, as I recall, the last time he pulled this sort of stunt, almost every woman in this room worked behind his back to undo it — and the only reason why Sister Vyn wasn’t in on it was because she wasn’t a nun yet.” Sister Angelique nodded to Sister Vyn. “Brother Tuck committed a secular crime. Why shouldn’t he be tried in secular court?”

“Because there are rules, you silly girl,” replied Sister Vyn. Mother Julian winced, but more of that than she cared to admit was for Margery’s benefit. “Churchmen — and women — aren’t tried in secular court. We’re in the world, but not of it. Remember? Or did not they not bother to mention that in Camford?”

“Sister Vyn,” Mother Julian reproved softly. The last thing she needed was for Sister Angelique and Sister Vyn to get into it. Mother Julian might have hoped that misery would love company, but no: these two had to fight like a pair of stray dogs over every last scrap of bone to come their way.

But it was too late for her little intervention; Sister Angelique had already bared her teeth. “Aye, they did teach me that. But by looking and listening around me, I learned that many Churchmen — and women — don’t bother to follow that rule. And if they’re not going to follow that rule, why shouldn’t we treat them like any other Sims who are in the world and bl–jolly well of it, too?”

“Because it’s not always as easy to tell the difference as it is with Brother Tuck,” replied Margery. “Some — some Church members are corrupt and venial, aye. And some are motivated by thoughts so holy, lay Sims can’t possibly understand them. And both types might make trouble for governments — so it’s best to leave Church matters to Church courts, which can best sort out the sacred from the profane offenders, and treat both accordingly.” She smiled at Mother Julian. “Isn’t that right, Mother?”

“Indeed it is,” replied Mother Julian, ignoring Sister Angelique’s scoff and the rolling of her eyes. Let the girl be cynical if she liked; she would soon find that the world was not as black-and-white (mostly black) as she made it out to be. “And that is why, though I agree with you, Sister Angelique, that we all abhorred Brother Tuck’s actions, we must stand with him when it comes to these matters. If he was to be tried — and note, I will not say that I was or am against the idea of trying him in a court ecclesiastic — in a secular court, that would threaten us all.

“And more than that,” Mother Julian continued, “the fact that our King would even consider such a thing — even though he was savvy enough, I think, to convince the … woman in question not to press charges — threatens us all, and in a very different way.”

“How do you mean, Mother?” asked Margery.

“How long do you think that the Robertians, the Agnesites, all the powerful orders, would have let the King — and Albion — be if our King took that step?”

The only reason that the rest of the orders were allowing the King his way on the refugee situation was that they themselves stood to gain from it: since they could not send the proper tithe through Albion to Camford, they reasoned (and since sending it through Glasonland was a laughably foolish idea), it did nobody any harm if they held onto it. The Robertians would have a devil of a time getting all of the other orders to once again pay their fair share into the Church treasury, and everybody knew it, and everybody also knew that the longer the ban on passing Church gold through Albion lasted, the harder the Robertians’ job would be. Plenty of orders resented the tribute sent to the Robertians’ treasury, calling the spending wasteful and the fees too high. The Robertians would spend years cleaning up the mess that, arguably, they themselves had caused — through either poor stewardship of the Church treasury or over-worldliness in regards to the refugees.

However, if the King had prosecuted Brother Tuck … their work might not have been as hard, for the Church would have had a common enemy all could fight against.

“Long enough. Trying to get all the Church to work together is like herding cats,” replied Sister Angelique. “By the time the Robertians managed to get them all to agree on doing something about the King, everyone would have forgotten this scandal in exchange for the newest scandal.”

“Which, if things keep going the way they’re going,” Mother Julian replied — she did not snarl, no matter how much she wanted to — “will probably also come from Albion. We started with the furor caused by King Arthur’s repeal of any laws against users of magic –”

“Does anyone in this room disagree with that?” Sister Angelique gasped.

“Aye,” replied Sister Vyn. “Oh, it’s fine for the noble folks to do what they like — heaven knows they will anyway, and they’re probably damned no matter what –”

“Sister Vyn! Hold your tongue!” Mother Julian snapped. “For once, I agree with Sister Angelique — there’s nothing good that can come of prosecuting people for something they’re born with, and much good can be done if you allow people to develop the talents the Lord gave them. However, Sister Angelique will not disagree with me — since she was not even born when it happened, and so cannot speak to it with any intelligence — that it caused a great scandal and much negative talk when it happened.”

Sister Angelique did not argue. But by the look on her face, she would have very much liked to.

“And then there was the case of Lady Morgause — which, had it gone any way other than it had, could have resulted in Reme and Glasonland for once putting aside their differences in order to wage holy war on us. Then the refugees. And now — Brother Tuck. Or very nearly Brother Tuck. Tell me, Sister Angelique, since you are so sure that Albion has some kind of charm to allow it to skate so close to mortal sin, time and time again, without any fear of repercussions — what on earth gives you cause to think that the next scandal won’t be coming from Albion?”

Sister Angelique grinned, more than a little wickedly for Mother Julian’s case. “Gaul. Let’s not forget that they’ve created a treaty with the Smoors. Why, they won’t even let crusaders through their lands anymore, and they promise to treat any enemies of the Smoors as their enemies. And since the Smoors are infidels, and we’re all supposed to be the enemies of infidels …” Sister Angelique smirked. “Tell me, Mother Julian, what’s Albion done lately that’s on a par with that?”

Mother Julian silently fumed — but luckily that was all she had to do, for Margery jumped into the fray. “Sister Angelique! This isn’t some kind of — race to perdition! I think Mother–Mother Julian has a point. Even if we privately agree with some or all of the King’s actions, we have to admit that they have the potential to make the Robertians, the Agnesites, and many of the other orders very upset. And you should be the most worried about this!” Margery wagged her finger. “Your own nephew and niece are a Prince and Princess! They might be harmed the worst if the King goes too far!”

Without waiting for Sister Angelique to reply, Margery turned to Mother Julian. “So, Mother — we are all agreed that there have been some … worrying trends. Even though I believe the King is doing the best he can with us, he can upset some people. So … why are we talking about this?”

The question was not as much of a non sequitur as it might seem. What Margery meant was: We are not the King, we do not create policy — what can we do about this worrying trend? At least, that was what Mother Julian thought she meant.

Mother Julian nodded. “I am glad you asked that. We clearly cannot trust the secular powers of this country, well-intentioned as they might be, to keep us pure in the eyes of the Church. The monks, thanks to Brother Tuck’s stupidity, have managed to discredit themselves in the eyes of the King and the lords and perhaps even the people. That, Sisters, leaves us.”

“To do what?” asked Sister Angelique.

“Keep Albion on the path of orthodoxy,” replied Mother Julian.

If this was a book, or a story, it would have been a momentous occasion. There would have been silence in the room. The women’s faces would have grown confused, then nervous, then determined as they realized the enormity and the necessity of the task before them. And then one of them — probably Margery — would have agreed for all of them, and the work could begin.

What most certainly would not have happened would have been that Sister Angelique would snort and scoff, “And just how are we supposed to do that?”

“Oh, you foolish girl!” snapped Sister Vyn. “Why, we lead by example, to start! And then … well, we … we must …”

“Aye, it’s the ‘and then’ that’s the trouble, isn’t it?” Sister Angelique crossed her arms over her chest and leaned back, shaking her head. “We have no political power — none, Mother Julian. The King and his council listen only to the monks, and that’s when they bother to listen to the Church at all. And we can tell the people what they ought to think until we grow blue in the face, but the King has pretty much said that he doesn’t care what people think as long as their actions follow the law — hasn’t he?” she finished, raising one eyebrow at Mother Julian.

“That is quite a reasonable position for a secular power to take, given that they have no way of policing men’s thoughts — and once thoughts become actions, why, then they are no longer following the law,” replied Mother Julian. “But you are quite wrong in that we have no political power. We do, after all, have you, Sister Angelique.”

What?” squawked Sister Vyn.

“Your eldest sister is the Crown Princess. Your next sister is the wife of the heir of quite possibly the wealthiest man in the kingdom, barring the King. Your birth family itself, without the marriages, is of no mean influence. And you yourself, Sister Angelique, grew up with the next generation of Albion’s leaders. You know them all. You are friends with them all. And you say we have no political power, Sister?”

“It’s not real,” replied Sister Angelique stubbornly.

“Oh, it’s plenty real. You have a Camford education, Sister — surely you of all Sims have learned the early history of the Church? Tell me, how many wives, or mothers, or sisters were absolutely instrumental in turning their husbands or sons or brothers to the True Faith?”

“I don’t think anyone in Albion has ever left it,” countered Sister Angelique.

“They are in danger — if not of leaving it, then of being accused of having left it, which is a much more dangerous thing temporally, I find, then actually leaving it, so long as nobody else knows you’ve gone. Are you truly telling me, Sister Angelique, that you would begrudge a few heart-to-heart chats with your sisters and friends, and encouraging them to talk to their husbands, even if doing so means you are putting this whole kingdom in danger?”

Sister Angelique slouched in her chair like a sulking adolescent. In some ways, she still was a sulking adolescent. “Well, Mother Julian, I did vow obedience … so I suppose, if you told me to do it, I wouldn’t have much choice, would I?”

“Oh, cheer up, Sister.” Margery patted Sister Angelique’s hand. “It’s not much to be asked. And it’ll be nice to have some tea with your friends, won’t it?”

“I hope it will be,” answered Mother Julian for Sister Angelique, “for I shall be asking you, Sister Margery, to do the same thing.”

Margery’s eyes widened. “Me?”

“Indeed. You, after all, have the children of … let me see …” Mother Julian counted on her fingers. “The Orkneys — and we may as well count the Gwynedds — the de Ganises, the Wesleyans, and the Towers in your classes. And before the year is out, you’ll have the le Fays and Princess Elise, as well. You shall have plenty of opportunities of your own to exercise some soft power.”

Margery blinked. “I … I suppose I could talk to Dindrane …”

Mother Julian wished she wouldn’t — Dindrane had always been a puzzle to Mother Julian, a locked box full of secrets, and furthermore, she had never understood Margery’s fascination with her. But Dindrane would doubtless have some influence over her brother, and Sir Lamorak would have some influence in the council. It would have to do.

“And what am I to do?” sneered Sister Vyn. “Wipe babies’ bottoms and runny noses, as usual?”

It was wrong, but Mother Julian couldn’t help herself. She patted Sister Vyn’s hand and grinned at her. “And you do it so well, dear. And as for me, I shall be using my soft power with the older generation of ladies — Lady Eilwen, Lady Claire, Lady Guinevere, perhaps even the Queen — and we shall see how far that gets us. And then …”

Mother Julian smiled. “We shall see how far soft power can take us — before we are forced to move to hard.”

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20 thoughts on “Blurry Common Vision

  1. That woman gives me the creeps. Seriously. I knew a nun like her in elementary school. And she still creeps me the hell out. I think that Mother Julian missed the biggest piece of what came out of the Brother Tuck scandal. Nobody really likes to be manipulated. Arthur less so than most. And here she’s setting herself up in the place that’ll get her neck stepped on next.

    Not that I think that Arthur would enjoy doing it, but if she’s not going to be square with him, why the hell should Arthur be square with her? And that line about people doing things so holy that the laity can’t understand? Um, no. No, and no and no.

    Sure we can make the argument that there are some things that people who aren’t trained to do them shouldn’t do under normal circumstances. But there is nothing in the purview of a “holy man” that’s against secular law that said holy man should be doing.

    At least not in a country like Albion which isn’t exactly loaded up on stupid laws about wearing false facial hair in church and eating peaches while wearing short pants on Sundays. And in those two absolutely stunning cases of brilliant law making… uh, I don’t think that doing them would have anything to do with being holy or not holy.

    That woman. She’s not stupid. But I sometimes I think she might have gotten one too many hits from the snake. (As in Aladdin, in this case euphemistically for the church not euphemistically for cock.) Next we know she’ll be asking stunning questions like “How [do] I mine for fish?”…

    • Well, Mother Julian has fallen completely down the rabbit hole of what the Church is and was doing. And I think she has a very, very fearful view of what the Church can do if they can get everybody working together … against somebody else, that is. Somebody like Albion.

      As for holy motivations to commit secular crimes … well, in Reme, helping a slave to escape is a secular crime. The political officers of the Church put up with slavery because they don’t want to get into it with Reme, but anybody who takes the Church’s high ideals at all seriously can’t think that slavery is compatible with its teachings. And they might feel that they have to somehow act. If they do, and if they happen to be a monk or nun, Mother Julian would much rather they be tried in an ecclesiastic court than a secular.

      I know I have an extremely cynical view of religion, but even I’ll admit that secular governments don’t get it right all the time. (And believe me, I am completely aware that in the real world, the mainstream religious establishment is often backing up what the secular powers say. But there are always exceptions, people who take the ideals of their religion seriously and are willing to stand up for what they think is right.)

      However … yeah, you have an excellent point that the chances of a holy person being arrested/prosecuted in Albion for doing something too “holy” is somewhere between “slim” and “none.”

      But yeah. Mother Julian’s worldview does make her kind of blind in some ways.

      Thanks, Andavri!

  2. Hmm. Not sure what to make of this post. I’ll admit to reading about most religious organizations, fictional or non, “the times” or not, with my jade-colored glasses on. I suppose that in terms of short-term practicality and from a purely logical standpoint, I can see where Mother Julian is coming from–and if anyone is going to go schmoozing to the nobles, better any of the nuns (even Vyn!) than Brother Tuck.

    That said… I’m with Angelique. Brother Tuck committed a secular crime, and if charges had been pressed, he should have been tried in secular court. He is not above secular law. Also, the Sisters of Saint Coral really don’t seem to have any political power at all, beyond the ability to tell Bors where to shove it (which, don’t get me wrong–excellent ability, useful ability, but not really a major driving force of global politics; that would merit granting Bors much undue importance), and I think that ultimately, they could stand to gain more from siding with Arthur and sticking with their guts and declaring that hell yeah Arthur was poised to do the right thing and being a good Wrightian isn’t just following the (man-made!!) dogma word for word. This might draw opposition from other segments of the Church, but if you have opposition, you have at least the perception of power (and hence, on at least a psychological level and beyond if you so choose, actual power over your opposition, whether they realize it or not).

    Hell, like Angelique noted–they’re not about to get the whole Church to agree on anything, so why not bring up some discord that actually matters? The Wrightian Church as a whole has been begging to be called out on its bullshit for a long time coming, and where better could that call come from than within the Church itself? Especially from an order that actually does deal with the secular world and is comprised mostly of people who know full well how it works and therefore would best know how to balance the demands of the secular world with the pursuit of Wrightliness?

    I hope that was at least semi-coherent. I have not been good for that lately.

    • That was quite coherent, Van. Now I need to figure myself out a coherent reply.

      Yeah, as I mentioned to Andavri: I am so cynical when it comes to religion, so you’re not the only one with the jade-colored glasses. But I think Mother Julian has a reason to be afraid. I also don’t think she’d have the courage to stand beside Arthur and say that she believes in what he’s doing and thinks he ought to be doing more of it. Mother Julian is all about practicality and damage control. I have a hard time seeing her being a martyr to an idea or ideas.

      I also think the idea that anyone from the Church ought to be subject to secular law is something the Church would have a big problem with — they get a lot of protection from that idea that they’re not accountable. Which is stupid. But they’re going to do everything they can to hold onto that unfair privilege, if only because they’re “human.”

      Thanks, Van! πŸ™‚

  3. Mother Julian’s unease about Brother Tuck’s close brush with secular law is very interesting. I think it’s understandable, though I’m not buying the “too holy to be understood” line either. The Church seems to function much in Albion as it did in history, as its own realm that co-existed with national and political realms, and nobody wants to be judged by outsiders. (The heckler in me wonders if Mother Julian has been watching too much Locked Up Abroad.) The problem with this example of hers is that Tuck threw himself headfirst into the secular mud with his actions, and even if you want to argue the theology, he used secular force to gain his means. He crossed the line.

    The more disturbing part of this is the “soft power” thing she’s come up with. It’s so unlikely to work on adults, mostly because religion is so much like rehab, in that you have to want it for it to take hold. What I can see it doing is putting the nuns on the radar screen, which will probably cut them off at the knees before they can even think about moving to ‘hard’ power. And though that might be a good thing if Mother Julian goes too far down this road, I’d hate to see the nuns be grouped in with Tuck in terms of the trust of the laypeople of the realm.

    • LOL! I’ve never seen Locked Up Abroad, though I have seen commercials … the commercials I’ve seen do not make me think it would be a good show for me. I’d be yelling things at the TV like, “And that’s why you don’t deal drugs in a foreign country, you moron!”

      That’s a good point about using secular force — Will could have gone after him good on that one, a lot more than just saying, “Yeah, NEVER do that again.” But he would be battling against precedent if he did, and lawyers hate that. πŸ˜‰

      And you also have a really good point that using “soft power,” going through the women rather than directly telling Arthur what’s bothering them, could blow up in the nuns’ faces. Arthur much prefers if people deal with him straight. He would certainly listen if Mother Julian came to him with concerns — whether or not he’d do anything would be another story, but he’d listen. For sure.

      Thanks, Winter! πŸ™‚

  4. Huh, very interesting! Am I the only one that thinks Vyn could actually be pretty useful here? Pair her up with Margary, and they can play Good Cop and Bad Cop. Or pair her up with Angelique, and they can play Mean Cop and…uh, Sexy Cop. (I loved that crack at her not-a-habit, btw.) I think the latter would probably work on the younger guys especially. Not that most of them are stupid enough to be entirely swayed by it, exactly, but most of them probably WOULD be distracted enough to at least hear them out the whole way, instead of getting indignant straight away and asking them to leave.

    In terms of more tangible forms of power, they already do have a huge part of the schools. I think it would be worth their while to get Arthur to create a minister of education or something. Or, if he won’t do that, to at least change the curriculum so that it suits their needs better, instead of just reciting what the monks want them to.

    As andavri pointed out, this is all incredibly manipulative, but man, watching these factions come together and clash would be really fun. I am very much looking forward to the fireworks! (And very much looking forward to the Galahad + brothel update — and everyone’s reactions to it.)

    • Angelique the Sexy Nun-Cop on the case? Hmm … well, yeah, the guys probably would hear her out. Those who weren’t seriously unnerved by the fact that this is their sister-in-law doing this, and their wife might walk in at any minute … But I don’t know if Angelique as Sexy Nun-Cop would win any hearts or minds to the nuns’ cause. Angelique herself would have to believe in the cause before that happened, and she clearly does not.

      The monks actually don’t have much power over the cathedral school, since the nuns run it. Other than Galahad’s teaching, the most they might get is to be asked to do a guest lecture on medicine or the four humors or something (i.e., Father Hugh or Brother Andy). Perhaps Mother Julian could angle for more power in the secular schools, but I don’t know if she’s got the time.

      Fireworks are always good. πŸ™‚

      Thanks, alveus!

      • But it would be perfect! Angelique could garner just the right balance of arousal and discomfort to keep them on edge. πŸ˜€ I would love to see her in action pulling this off — not necessarily for this cause, which, as you’ve pointed out, she doesn’t actually believe in — but really to get her way in something she thinks is important. Angelique does need a cause. Maybe SHE could be the one angling for Minister of Education.

  5. Oh dear. This won’t go over well.
    I can see Mother Julian’s concern about the Church as a whole not being pleased about having one of their members tried in a secular court. From the view of the Church that would set a very bad precedent and impinge on their status as non-touchable by secular law. But I think Mother Julian has lost sight of what is right (as well as Wrightian) in what she sees as a building threat to Albion and thus her and her charges’ lives. Yes, it might be dangerous if the different Orders all closed ranks against Albion, but as Angelique pointed out getting them to do anything together would be like herding cats (even against a common “enemy” I venture to say, since I could see them all squabbling about who gets to be the leader and ultimately achieving nothing) plus they have other concerns, if not Gaul then something else will come up. A holy war is much less likely than Mother Julian fears, I think. Especially since the Church may well arouse some of the other secular leaders to stand with Albion and her King if they do move against the latter. That would indirectly threaten the other governments as well. They could be next on the list after Albion.
    What Mother Julian fails to see though is that her own fear of the power of the Church indicates that the Church is no longer apart from the world but very much of it. Thus they themselves have left the path of orthodoxy, as Brother Tuck did when he used secular force to further his goals. And I don’t buy that line about holy motivations that lay sims can’t possibly understand either. I call bullshit! A crime is a crime no matter the motivation and be it ever so holy (or holey, really).
    If the rules of the Church allow one of their members to commit such crimes in the world then they should bloody well be tried for it in the world.
    And none of this is even thouching on my disgust about Mother Julian’s plan to go though the children to get to their parents! I admit I have a particularly hot button when it comes to indoctrinating children before they have a chance to grow up and say no, but what she said here really makes me mad. At least when she talks about manipulating the adults (repulsive as that is to me as well) there’s a good chance they will catch onto it and act accordingly. The children will have no such chance. I really didn’t think Mother Julian was capable of this and it makes me sad. 😦

    • I would agree that a holy war is a lot less likely than Mother Julian thinks, and I swear I’m not just saying that because I have no idea how I would shoot one. :mrgreen:

      You’ve got a really good point, though, about Mother Julian’s blinders. The fact that she’s worrying indicates that the Church is already way too much a part of the world. If she has a need to worry about the temporal power of the Church vis-a-vis Albion, that’s a good way to show that the Church has too much of it. But I’m afraid that Mother Julian has the kind of mind that would reply to be being reminded of the foregoing that, yes, it’s all very well that the Church has lost sight of their ideals, but that doesn’t help keep them off their backs.

      Indoctrination of children sucks majorly. But … Mother Julian sees that as part and parcel of her job in running the school. Although if you asked her, she would say that it was part of making sure they had a proper religious education, not indoctrination. … So would a lot of people in our world, alas.

      (Though, for what it’s worth, when Mother Julian was talking to Margery, she meant for Margery to go to the parents and have chats with them. Even if the kids are ripe for religious indoctrination, the policy details that Mother Julian is worrying about are simply too complicated for them. So they wouldn’t make good messengers.)

      Thanks, Ann! πŸ™‚

  6. The trouble is, I think that the Church in the world of Albion is cruising for a thesis nailed to the door. Not just the church in Albion itself, the whole thing. Unfortunately for Albion, unlike some other England-analogues, it isn’t handily situated on an island, providing excellent natural borders and an awkward angle for invasions.

    • Funny you should mention theses nailed to doors … though I don’t know if I would take that literal route. It has been a bit done. But, you never know! (Especially if I could find the CC for it. πŸ˜‰ )

      Germany managed to get away with being the one to finally throw the first real punch … though I’ll admit my knowledge of the geography of Europe is fuzzy enough that they might have had some natural barriers, I just don’t know about them. (There was Switzerland and all the mountains, I guess?)

      But don’t forget, Albion has for-real MAGIC! That ought to be worth at least a little something — especially if somebody else figures out Mordred’s work on physical illnesses and takes it to the next level.

      Thanks, Hat! πŸ™‚

        • *gigglesnort* That was funny! That was really funny! (Even if Henry VIII only had six wives and he only killed 2 of them … well … if you don’t count Jane Seymour [he got her knocked up, then she died of childbed fever].) Also, his description of the Anglican church? Spot on with Clatterford.

          And if it matches what’s on TV, why, of course it must be right.

  7. I think Angelique’s “and then” comment still applies. And just what is she supposed to schmooze to her connections? Wee little whispers about “let’s avoid a holy war”? No wonder Angelique is in a huff. That is awkward and she doesn’t agree.

    If Mother Julian asked for audience with King Author she would probably get it. If she spoke in a plain non-manipulative way, he’d likely absorb her information. Sure he might still risk a holy war against Albion, but at least she could be assured he wasn’t walking into it blind.

    The idea of being told what to think pisses me off. It doesn’t work either.

    Despite all this, it is a great chapter. Of course Mother Superior would want to save the souls of the kingdom. Of course she would want them to be in harmony with the church. This is so fitting with Mother Julian’s character. The sister’s all responded in character as well.

    By the way, my daughter today found online a medieval dress that was so good for a moment I thought I must be looking at a sim’s dress. I swear the label ought to be Sherabim. I asked her if it cost over a thousand dollars. She couldn’t bare to look.

    • Good question about what comes after schmoozing to the friends about avoiding a holy war. All her friends would very much like to avoid that. But how? That is the question.

      And being told what to think … well, unfortunately, I can’t help but feel that that’s a lot of what organized religion does. Jade-colored glasses, as Van pointed out.

      Mother Julian is interested in saving souls … but I think, in this case, she’s more worried about saving bodies. Most of her disagreement with Arthur isn’t philosophical. It’s tactical. Think what you want, Arthur — but don’t piss off the people in power.

      And there’s a reason why I don’t look at RL medieval clothing, except as Sim inspiration: it’s all so pretty. And so, so expensive.

      Thanks, Chicklet! πŸ™‚

  8. Hoo Boy.. I quite like Mother Julian. Enough to worry a good bit about where this is going. I sympathize with the fact that she feels caught between a rock and a hard place between the global church and Arthur’s reforms. However, the last thing Albion needs is a Thomas Becket. Mother Julian could be a powerful one, though I think she would have the sense not to tread that path. Let’s just hope Tuck doesn’t get any ideas…

    • Mother Julian as Thomas Becket? Interesting … even if I have problems seeing Arthur yelling, “Would someone rid me of this troublesome … nun?” Tommy, maybe, but then he’d completely flip a shit (pardon my French) if someone took an obviously joking/sarcastic remark and used it to kill a nun. In church. Completely ruining everything he was going for.

      Tuck, on the other hand … yeah, let’s hope he doesn’t get any bright ideas!

      Thanks, BonnieLaurel! πŸ™‚

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