Of the human states of Ilvamicum, Venoa was modestly open to Drow merchants and commerce. It was not a slave port who's economy was dependent on the Nine States or a Tributary forced to pay homage or an open trade partner like Nycon or Oestia. The Docking Fees and Tariffs on Drow Goods was twice that of most other commerce and outside of a few exceptional underground cases nobody was selling slaves. For all of that it was still better than The Allergonian Empire where trade was simply banned and the political situation was one of either truce or shooting war and the state was wealthy enough to provide a respectable market. As such the Drow States maintained an embassy to help things go along smoothy. Elistaren ti'Norvas was Valnothron's ambassador, a position which had caused her increasing frustration recently. It was an important posting that she was proud to have achieved even if it was hardly glorious and she usually found it stimulating but not overwhelming. At least it had been until it looked like the Serene Republic began to threaten war. She'd seen the Steam Galleys that they had been flowing out of The Arsenal and had read the increasing reports of confrontation between Venoa's fleet and the navies of the Four States still engaged with the Coldlanders. All while The Eternal Foe had launched a new wave of attacks and the Allegonian Empire was preparing for war. She'd been calling in favors and arranging moves to sway key Patricians to obstruct things and had several meetings with the Doge and his associates to hopefully defuse matters. She'd hoped and prayed for them to relent and recall their fleet before disaster happened which might cost her her life and would inevitably cost her career and family. What she got instead was a message from Home, but it would have to do.
On a warm summer morning she made her way via carriage to another embassy. It was fairly typical of the higher end architecture of it's district, but nobody could mistake the metallic tower sprouting from it's roof, the hexagonal banners fluttering in the wind from its side nor the Riflers standing at attention guarding the place. She disembarked and made her way to the door before pulling out a set of papers truthstone.
"I am the Ambassador of Valnothron. I carry no arms and have no hostile intent. I speak for my city and am here to deliver a message on behalf of my lords to your Committee through this embassy." The words were in Venoan, formal and perfect.
This caused some commotion but eventually the guards let her pass, under escort of course. She waited in a lobby for about twelve minutes getting a few stares before being ushered upstairs to the ambassador's office. Outside of a few posters and a few devices under crystal domes and an odd metallic clicking sound it was fairly normal, even if the runestones were more extensive than usual. She was soon let in and saw the man in his universe using something that seemed to be a writing engine of some sorts.
"What do you want?" He asked.
"Learned Bureaucrat." She let the words pass her teeth with just a hint of aristocratic annoyance. "The State of Valnothron now feels that this war has run its course and desires it's conclusion." She extracted a small message tube. "I have been instructed to deliver this list of peace terms, the general summation of which is that our campaigns against Infrastructure shall cease and we recognize the validity of your colonial assets on the southwestern continent in return for ceasing actions against our assets and those of our close trade partners. Further details are open to negotiation with a dedicated diplomatic team."
She set the tube before him. He sat silently and impassive for two seconds after the conclusion. "Very well, the Committee shall be informed. Is there anything else?"
"Delay in finalizing peace terms costs you the lives of your countrymen. I suggest you work quickly."
"Then I bid you farewell."
"Indeed." She said as she made her way out with a flourish. With that the end of the Escort War had begun.
From the Beginning: Part One
HA! Kick the Cotton-Tops blue backsides and they'll sue for peace. Of course, all they really want is peace, a piece of their neighbor's land, a piece of trade profits, a peaceful slave population...