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Hardric62

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About Hardric62

  • Birthday 12/21/1993

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    Genealogy of the Holy War

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  1. Welcome back to that LP, Parrhesia. And for your sake, I hope this particular campaign becomes able to mix undead opponents and nice maps. It's going to be a bit bad if the campaign can't scramble a good map for the main opponents.
  2. 1) Probably what Rhea was aiming at when she established herself as archbishop, and with 'traditions' like the fact the archbishop act as a witness when a new Adrestian emperor is crowned. Thing is, given the current state of Fodlan, she pretty clearly failed, and as pointed out, is unwilling to accept any change, bar a certain exception. And when a system starts to do more harm than good, I fail to see why it shouldn't be removed. 2) *Looks at the sterling example presented by Fodlan's older generation of nobility, and how they strangled any possibility of reform until it is too late, like, let's say, the nobility in France befor ethe French Revolution* And it is a problem how? Especially since they are not replaced by nothing but, you know a new elite, one which seems to be a future result of an attempt for universal education and exam (Imperial China's bureaucracy and its exams)? with things like merchant classes still existing, and likely some form of nobility ot a lesser degree, since they aren't likely disappearing overnight, especially when some members of it prove worth it and keep some place(aka students from the cast?). Fair point, but... How is Edelgard supposed to know that? Or any of the other lord for that matter. Not even Claude manages it, and he's poking at the holes in the wall quite hard. And again, there is the fact that 'SSJ Byleth' is quite a bit of a perfect storm, caused in no small part by Edelgard's very preparations for war. Without the chain of events of the game, just how long would it take to reach the point of Chapter 11 exactly? And given Fodlan's general state pre-timeskip, I doubt there was so much time left to get to that point. It is tragic indeed that the one pacific opportunity exists and is created because of her actions, but ultimately, there was no way for her to guess at that series of events. Because the cards for that revelation are in Rhea's hands, and welp, look at how hard it is to make her fess up in Golden Deer after being freed. Also fair point. Guess it would boils down to the kid's education, and the efforts Edelgard spend in stressing the idea of 'succession to apt indivdual only, bloodline isn't a factor, period'.
  3. More than good point. Still, it does prove that appointing a successor chosen for another reason than 'biological heir' can work, even if reinforcing family links as a supplemental mean of legitimacy happened (when luck is on your side. August kept changing successors, starting from his main lieutenant Aggripa, because they kept dying on him. Tiber got the job in the end by virtue of being the last one standing). Thing is, that war started because the rot had been there for so long that odds of pacifical reforms were down to... pretty much nada. Ionius and Lambert tried with their generation, and these little pesky things called the Tragedy of Duscur and the Insurrection of the Seven happened, aka corrupt nobles being used by the Agarthans to rock the boat. What were the odds they would stay put this time exactly? I mean, I'm sure lambert and Ionius had to have their own allies, and well, look at where they are when the game start. (Besides, before the Academy, there is no denying that some fatalism about their lot in society existed amongst the students (see Ingird about things like arranged marriage, or Sylvain's womanizing). The Academy did give them a chance to evolve beyond that, no arguing on that one, but to me it implies that reformation sin't exactly easy peasy just because they don't like the system. You'd be surprised how many people uphold a rotting system because welp, it is their 'norm', no matter how ugly it is.) And on another angle, the sheer scope of reformations there would have been the sort taking that big axe to the Church, because welp, Rhea influenced things to have that set-up for the sake of the order and peace for Fodlan as she envisioned it, and her mindset of 'only Mother knows best than me' is kinda sorta the sort which kills any sort of changes, bar the perfect storm than Byleth was, and well, by the time the events sequence leading to the fusion with Sothis which put him in the position of chapter 11 happens, how much time would pass? And without that, Rhea isn't accepting any of the major overhaul changes to her system with a smile to her face, and I expect her to be much less chill than she was when it is only a minor lord evolving from brooding in his castle about her to open rebellion. You could say that Dimitri's vision of thing and its implementation in Azure Moon is 'How Rhea's system is supposed to work', but there is the nasty fact that pre-war, it isn't, it's all rampant banditry (Sylvain, Felix and Alois/Shamir Paralogues), while impotent/corrupt nobles waste their troops for petty things and personal power (Raphael/Ignatz and Lorenz Paralogues), with some unscrupulous people wanting to climb up the social ladder ready to almost anything to get these Crests thing the Church keep presenting as a sign of divine favor (Ingrid/Dorothea Paralogue)... The problem isn't 'support of the current nobility' (not even Lorenz does that), it is that the rot is system-wide, pushed forward by the Agarthans, while the main person supposed to regulate that mess, Rhea, has become so obsessed with Mommy's resurrection, ironically because she wants a 'successor' and is unable to imagine someone else than Sothis taking her place, that she has let things derelict to that point. At this point, collapse of the system was pretty much unavoidable.
  4. Well, that's funny you should say that, because Crimson Flower also tells that Edelgard has begun reforms in order to remove the bindings Imperial nobility had on trade. Further, supports in CF includes discussion about things like 'universal education' to make the society as she imagines it more likely to work (and use of examination as a social vector was a thing in Ancient China, for instance). As for nobility staying in place, I do imagine this is more of a transitional thing, there is no real choice but chosing amongst former elites until the new ones are ready to take over, and well, as long as the members of these old elites are able of doing the job (For instance, I am not exactly expecting Acheron to keep the job for that long after the end of CF, he may earn himself the right to prove he can keeps his title, but beyond that)... Euh, you ever heard about a thing called the Antonine Dynasty? Generally the best succession of emperors Rome ever had, and the whole way succession worked here was the emperor adopting himself a successor, aka doing what Edelgard is doing. And before you mention that the whole thing crashed down, I'll point out it crashed with Commodus, aka Marc Aurele's son, the only person of that dynasty chosen only for heredity.
  5. Euh, is it sure that knowledge comes from the Agarthans? I mean, Edelgard's big problem is trust issues, everyone agrees with that... So why exactly everyone thinks that these issues disappear just long enough for her to trust the Agarthans about intel they could be telling, when they are the ones who butchered her siblings and were responsible for her second Crest? I mean, she is very much in a 'enemy of my enemy, kill the stronger one first, then shank the weaker one', when is such mindset conductive to believe these guys' stories? Ultimately though, I think Edelgard is right. Rhea meant well, but went pretty wrong about her goals (shame such vote option isn't available), and wasn't listening to anybody telling her so even when the whole system was crumbling around her (Dimitri and Kingodm nobles keep saying the pre-timeskip Faerghus is a rotten husk, the Alliance doesn't look much better from the Paralogues happening here, and the Empire... Well, Insurrection of the Seven). She would only step down for Mama Sothis, and the events around Byleth were too much of a perfect storm to be considered as a viable alternative to wait for for some people. And for the people saying 'but, next generation'... Remember Dimitri and Edelgard's fathers were trying to reform their countries... And then Tragedy of Duscur plus Insurrection of the Seven. There are enough corrupt nobles around for the Agarthans to keep rocking the boat until war happens.
  6. *Look at the supports, the general background...* Let's call this point debatable at best. Besides, it's also a question of culture and society. I expect the average citizen of Fodlan would be far more familiar with death and the idea of killing people for their crimes, since that would be pretty much their norm.
  7. Thing, is, like you said, and as I think, it is a medieval society, with much more death permeating the society, and medieval-like laws were often a bit more trigger-happy with death penalties than today (heck, for all the black legend it has today, the Inquisition was actually something criminals prefered to face because it was actually less trigger-happy on that subject and reintroducing in western judicial system concepts like 'The accusation has to prove its allegations' and 'Witnesses who have a direct gain to see a culprit condamned, according to the culprit himself, are to be dismissed while collecting proofs'), the very fact these executions were often turned into a form of 'spectacle', and the decision of executing the survivors still leave them shocked. And remember, these are not random prisoners, but people that the students fought with intention to kill, and people who tried to kill them while profanating a sacred site. And the execution of these survivors still unerve them. That doesn't exactly paint the picture of these executions as they happened as something 'normal' for Fodlan.
  8. See the other answer to that problem in the post just before yours. The students are Fodlan's people, both from its elite and in some cases its lower classes. Strangely enough, approbation to Rhea's behavior is... scarce, when indeed, you'd expect more acceptance of it in a medieval scenario. It does seem to hint that the way Rhea is going with this problem isn't that 'standard' if the students are disturbed by it.
  9. Beyond what I can only call as 'Humanity Fuck No', something just as toxic as the HFY you keep whining about... Personal interpretation, but one my beefs with Rhea's method of ruling and why it failed (she is the one telling she passed the last thousand years enforcing peace and order on Fodlan, that's called ruling, whatever it is done from a position of power or not) is that... 'divinely ordained caste' is one of the very reason things went to shit. She pretty much crowns the emperor ('witness the coronation', but if you think if the pope equivalent can't 'veto' emperors she doesn't like in medieval times...), which gives him a 'divine right to rule', since his crowning is approved by the Goddess' voice on Fodlan. Rest of the nobility most certainly wants in on the 'divine right to rule' bandwagon, (having religion back you to secure your rule is as old as the pharaohs, I'm sure Fodlan's nobility can think of that one), but Rhea probably isn't doing that for all of them, that would cheapen the empror she's partner with for the ruling. So they leverage the Crests they have, pushing forward the 'Goddess' Gifts' parts of the scriptures forward, and their ancestry amongst the sacred heroes of legend to forge themselves their own version of the 'divine mandate'. And Rhea let it slip for whatever reason, which translated into tacit approval for these people, which could bring out the fact the Church was also all about stomping out bad Crest Bearers like Nemesis. Cue centuries of a caste being told it has a divine right to rule, with all the entitlement issues it brings up, thanks to the tangible sign of divine favor they have, in a context where this 'divine favor' they now need after centuries of using that excuse is fading. You get Fodlan's current sterling nobility.
  10. I guess it is an as good as any moment for that post which has been percolating for a while and answer all of the above at the same time: So. War of Heroes ending, Nemesis dead. The Elites properly surrendered. Given how forgiving Rhea is while being in Seiros Mode, unless someone tells me she how her behavior in that opening and Crimson Flower is the one of someone totally eager to accept surrenders, I am fairly sure it was a Cichol, Indech thing (was Wilhelm even still alive by that point), probably on the grounds of keeping something of their fallen brethren's legacy alive (what else are you gonna say to Seiros mode Rhea to make her spare her Mommy's killer's lieutenants?), with Machuil leaving out of disgust (it has to have happened, and sparing Nemesis' cronies is the likeliest moment for that). Here it is, war won, Fodlan approaching peace. A peace and an order that Rhea/Seiros wants to see enforced in the future, pretty much durably. Since Adrestia is the one doing the political control, and that she cannot exactly wrest political control at that point. So the soft power approach (mainly) it will be. Archibishop of Foldan's faith. Look at popes in medieval times to see the means of influence available. However, it goes a bit further, and some tools were developped to enforce that rule of peace and order: -First obvious one, the Church. Cannot influence soul without a continent-wide moral authority known and accepted by the overwhelming majority of the people. And one she is binding to her will in some mystical manner with that blood and Crest Stone sharing. Yes, I'm going there. Silver Snow's finale shows that some sort of bond exists between Rhea and those who undertook that ritual. The fact she isn't using it in Crimson Flower hints that it si likely ont a conscious thing since she is not using it here, but given what happened during SIlver Snow and what sort of things Crest Stones can do, something has to happen here. -And for when that power fails, you want a military force to purge dissenting elements. Preferably your own one rather than one owed from other actors who may have a stake in what you are purging. Enter the Knights of Seiros. Bonus point, you can have them put at disposal of others while not on a mission you asked them for, so they can go everywhere without question, and are known for that, while building up some nice political capital by being known to do such things. -Garreg March. It was built a century after? Welp, look at cathedrals in medieval times, they take decades at best, often more than a century, and the size of the whole complex. And frankly, the whole idea behind the monastery is just too important to have been ignored. You want to influence the ruling class and the best and brightest elements of a continent? Be the one giving them their education, so you are the one instillating the values you want to see enforced ('foolishly raise their blades against the Church', people?), and at the same time, by seeing how they behave, you can get a nice measure of Fodlan's current mindest so you can shape it better. And of course, it also means a center of knowledge, a holy siege doubling as an academy for a whole continent. Imagine the sheer concentration of knowledge, and the appeal to erudits, savants... Real good tool for my next points too. Also, it is easier to do politics when your central siege is independant from other powers. Thing is, that model is all nice and dandy, but there is little problems still: the Elites. Half the continent's nobility was Nemesis' cronies, and they were the majority of the ones with Crests. With time, it would lead to... Well, just see what happened to Maurice's family until Marianne, as was said. So it means rewriting history and the creed to make them heroes too, and the Crests they are tied too aren't dragged in the mud. Okay, needs of the civil peace and all that jazz. But it is the first step on a rather thorny path, one that Rhea now needs to go through to enforce her objectives: Thought control, and its 'needs'. 'But, Cyril! Jeralt! Shamir!' Everyone says at that point. So, elaboration time it is then, from them, to the entire situation: 1) They are individuals. More than that they are individuals directly serving Rhea. No point in squashing them. And even if they were not... Rhea is an ageless Dragon, and I want to give her some credit, please. Destroying everyone not sucking up to the Church would be as impossible as bloody, and ultimately weaken her rule. Fight the battles you can win. 2) However, she also has to get rid of this sort of people the moment they form into groups competiting with the Church one way or another. Look at the catholic's faith history, and how it handled sects with diverging beliefs, and the result when these parallels beliefs became strong enough to be their own faiths (Reformation, and all the wars that followed, ring a bell?). Ideally, you wanted, and want here in the game, conversion or a similar result, but when words failed, it became violence time (Cathars, wars of religions, etc...). And, welp, a faith cannot be the supreme moral authority shaping a continent if it leaves competition rise up, and form into entities contesting their vision of things. Hell, Seteth's solo ending is all about him recreating a more tolerant Church. For this to happen, the former incarnation of the Church has to have been intolerant. 3) And that intolerance leads me to the next point: thought control, not just about deviant faiths, but about history and technology. Because it is the thing with this sort of line of thought. First step is always the hardest, and once committed, retracting is hard. If the Church is caught lying on that one, its core mythos, and there goes its credibility, and Fodlan collapses hard. And the more the scalpel is used to keep that lie going, the easier it becomes to think about using it for other pesky things threatening Fodlan's order and peace, like deviant faiths and how they were crushed, little mistakes at a time or another that were ultimately repaired, the future last point of that list that Agarthans are... People, meet the Fodlan!Index, that list of forbidden books by the Catholic Church. And well, the scholars producing all that forbidden lore have to be dealt with too. Subornation, bribery, blackmail, discredit... eventually elimination if everything else fail. Because censoring history for a thousand years has its cost somewhere down the line, and if you think such process over the centuries is a bloodless affair, PM me, for you have the winner mindest required for succeeding in the business of Bridges Commerce. I've got a nice one in Narnia to get you started. (I guess it also makes me suspiscious of these six centuries of 'peace', or blank in Fodlan's timeline. Normally, RPG like that in medieval times get a pass, but welp, here the game shows some history rewriting is enforced. So big stretches of time with nothing noteworthy become suspicious because foul play already happened. I mean, it's a continent, can you imagine a continent with 'nothing to report' over the course of six centuries of history with medieval societies?) And of course, it involves technology too. Church have historically opposed research hurting their creed (Gallileo, people), and welp, Agarthans' wonderful example just comes to mind, so the objective here is nipping in the bud developments which could lead to that sort of tech, but also securing samples it for personal use in case of dire need (like Agarthans, but it is not an exclusivity), like the Golems the Church possess and is told in unit descriptions to be able to build and modify. Thing is, nobody else but the Agarthans can do that, so that techno-magical knowledge has to be controled and supressed, and once again there is that 'first step is the hardest' thing, and the fact there is only so many ways of stopping scholars of doing the things you don't want them too, although controlling the biggest center of learning of the continent helps to attract them so you have less need for the bloodier options. After all, someone needs to build these Golems, as I said. (Again, Medieval Stasis wouldn't be something I raise eyebrows at usually, but here, it is enforced. And enforcing this sort of thought control in medieval times... Again, it cannot be done without blood.) And that comment about Seteth in the library in GD also shows that such thing is still being enforced. So nah, regarding to above posts, I have serious doubts that pre-war Hanneman, as in 'when the Church is enforcing the thing I mentioned here', would have been able to go for much longer. And post-war, these politics are done, for a reason or another. 4) And there is another reason, the big one, for all of that: Agarthans. Rhea knows these duckers still exist, becuase welp, they survived Mama's wrath to help Nemesis. She knows that GD, and would have to be brain-dead to not to: how would have that two-bit thug succeeded with the whole Crests and Relics shit like that otherwise? And I can bet he had some Agarthans soldiers inside his armies, and the corpse-like weirdos are hard to miss, and failing all of that, there were the Elites to question after their reddition, and again, I'm giving Rhea some credit here. And in the name of that credit, I will go out on a limb and assume she knew better than assume the Agarthans were all dead and done after that. Hell, her own Mommy Issues would forbid that too, both because she needs them dead to finish her vengeance, and because she is firmly in a mindset of 'only Mother knows better', so she won't dare assume she succeeded in killing them off when Mama clearly 'failed' until Shambhalla is found and reduced to a smoking crater. And again, it doesn't take a genius to assume they will try again to burn Fodlan to the ground and kill her and her remaining fellow Children of the Goddess. Henceforth, she needs to fight them and root them out, and that means shadow war. It means be on the lookout for Agarthan infiltration, for signs of their tech, for 'poisonous knowledge' they could spread to further their goals, which pretty much sends back to the points I mentioned above, except this time the goal is fighting off Agarthan influence. With the Knights to purge the enemies. And since the other facet of that mindest I mentioned above is the underlying opinion that she knows better than everyone but Mama for the whole continent's sake, it is why she is doing that shadow ruling people, it means keep the direct knowledge about these guys to herself, both to avoid them damaging the picture and society she created, and to avoid people wanting to contact them for a reason or another to get their pretty much poisoned 'help'. So, these are the basic staples of Rhea's rules, and the reasons for doing shadier things, because if nothing on these fronts is done, her whole power eventually crumbles like wet paper and she loses any mean of enforcing that peace and order she wants to. Thing is, her rule when the game begins is already failing. The Crest/nobility problem? I see it as nobles seeing the emperor getting that 'divine sanction' from Rhea with each new crowning, and deciding they wanted a 'divine right to rule' too. And well, they had Crests, tangible sign of the Goddess' favor, and the illustrious pedigree of descendants of the sacred 10 Elites, it has to count for something, right? What's that about abusing Crests? but, their ancestors fought Nemesis, clear sign of being Goddess-approved, and the Church isn't condemning them, as it would if that was something improper. Lesser nobles probably used the excuse of 'I work for the guy with Crests' as their own close equivalent to that maneuver. And Rhea did nothing when that idea cropped up. The reasons can be multiple, liking to see Crests, these last memories of her people, being given proper reverence, indifference to that shit, inability to see how it would eventually develop, deciding the conflict to ban that line of thought wasn't worth it... But it was still nothing, and it planted that 'divine right to rule thourgh Crests' idea. And it keeps going down to shit from there. Because Crests really become a sign of divine favors for these future generations, so they need to manifest, at all cost. Minor were surely scorned at first, as a sign of weakining divine favor, but as they faded, Fodlan's nobility discovered it was literally losing what they had framed as their right to rule, and without it... Welp, they would look like fine and dandy once deprived of it, so it led to more and more... discutable measures to keep this going. And Rhea did nothing as the situation slowly rotted, when she had that termometer that was Garreg March, despite the fact the ruling elite's slow programmed death was very much her problem, because once they collapse, no more peace and order, and the Church who helped them so far, if only by inaction, will have to give answers. And yes, she is accountable for that. She claimed responsibility for ruling all of Fodlan, so what happens here falls on her head. You rule, the problems cropping up, and how they are dealt with, become your problems. And of course, tell a social class that they have a divine right to rule for a few centuries, and it breeds some serious entitlement into them, leading to the corrupt ducktards causing so many problems in-game. And again, no correction attempted before it is clearly far too late for the problem to be removed cleanly. And Rhea is an ageless dragon, she should have seen this slow evolution with her own eyes, recognize the trouble, and settle that. She didn't, and voila, here are the results. And there is also the slightly total failure about that shadow war with the Agarthans, when you see they can infiltrate Garreg March, stir up shit like the Rebellion of the Seven and the Tragedy of Duscur to keep rocking the boat until continental war happens while making sure attempts to remedy to the ambient shit are destroyed. Hell, it reached the point where she is losing control of her own tool of ruling, the Church. See the duck which has been going for years with the Western Church. Assassination attempts, then open war when what purges she attempted failed. Yes I said there were such things. It has been years of conflict by the time the game happens, complete inaction of her part would have been a demonstration of incompetence so blatant she couldn't have lasted a thousand years. And the last assassin caught in Chap.4 bitches and moans about how so many of their brethrens have already beeen killed so far. Likely more than the strike team, and these dudes don't strike me like the sort which would think much of pawns like Lonato and his son, so it has to be them. Likeliest reason was enquiries andpurges about Agarhtans infiltration when this whole doctrinal divergence cropped up, festering until war. Hell again, the Empire's fracturing is part of that misrule in some way, if only because the wars which happened here are parts of the sort of things she wanted to save Fodlan from. It means some serious misformation of the Empire's nobility while they were at Garreg March to lead to a situation where independance was a desired outcome for the local pouplations, and a failure to find a decent war-less solution. The negotiations she did here were a good thing without doubts (and helped get some political capital for later), but at the end of the day, it is damage control. Fodlan is canging to much for her model to keep going, and the strain is now showing. Worst part? Rhea is intellectually aware of that to some degree. That's part of her reasons to resurrect Mama. Mama knows better, she'll know how to fix it all. Except as failures after failures pass, she devotes more time to this rather than searching for actual successors, and the situation keeps rotting. And since only Mama knows better, it also means crushing dissenters, without questions. And so the pressure build up unitl something like Edelgard happens, once the system rotted so much it collapses. Given the fact this is medieval times, with only one dominant faith, I find it telling that Adrestia isn't rocked by pro-Church uprisings during that war. Look at conflicts between popes and emperors, people. By all right, Edelgard's rule should be contested widely, with several revolts, guerillas and the likes inside. Agarthans can help with the nobility (to a point), but not with the populace's anger, whenthey are not stroking it (see Ferdinand/Lysithea's paralogue). And what happens? One mention in the first chapter of post-timeskip Crimson Flower only, no Resistance known, no mention of bloody repressions... looks like the opposition (she attacked, and maybe, captured the pope! No way it is 100% approved by the people, including the believeing people who will be a part of the army too. That's called desertion) isn't really strong. The one uprising is that paralogue, and it is all because Tharundel is rocking the boat for the after war. And I'm fairly sure it doesn't even happen in Crimson Flower, when the Paralogue doesn't happen, for several reasons: 1) More moral Edelgard means less given to the Agarthans. Which would mean not giving the place to Tharundel. 2) Since Aegir was spotted there? You bet your skinny ass Edelgard is going for the one figure which could lead an Imperial opposition, especially if it allows her to enact some vengeance without turning him into a martyr for the opposition. 3) Uprising means lost resources, insecurity, lost troops... Why would she let it fester exactly? And I want to bring to attention Revolution in France. When the axe was really taken to the social order, the pope condemned. He only had a shadow of the power of medieval times, but the conflict was enough to spring many uprisings, including a guerilla which lasted for years, despite some truly heinous methods used to crush it. The only way Edelgard escaped even that is if the Church's power is truly in tatters, and its crediblity iredeemably damaged. And that hints to a pretty epic failure in rulership. And as a PS, I'll point out to the Verdant Wind route, after Rhea is freed: First answer when confronted and asked for answers? Bullshiting, aka only Mother knows better. Claude has to use a bloody pair of pincers to pull the bloody answers out of her mouth, and she only truly fess up after the ultimate humble pie Shambhalla is. That unwillingness to share knowledge even once the failure is patent, to cling to her way of doing things against nearly everything... That sort of little things just stress how uncompromising Rhea actually is. This is the sort of everyday behavior hinting at bigger things that tells me that barring that whole war, nothing more would have changed than compared to the last thousand years of zero changes. It would be also why the Azure Moon ending is the one I am the most dubious about regarding Fodlan's future. By itself, a system reboot fixing that corruption with new additions, and likely nothing of Rhea's measures for the good reason she isn't in power anymore are good things. But just like Dimitri told Edelgard was mistaking disease and symptoms, the disease is still there for next time: Agarthans, still existing as a group to try again someday, and a Rhea which hasn't fully processed the humble pie. So once Byleth goes away, I expect her 'Only Mama knows better than me' line of thought to push her to make a move for her old tool the Chruch (or any new more adpated one) to try and keep Mama's peace going the best she can... And she arleady failed dramatically on that front once.
  11. And all of them happen after the war. And after Rhea's own poliies about things like 'Keeping the people of Fodlan from reaching a level similar to the Agarthans', and Hanneman's studies would be a big first step forward in that direction. He wouldn't have been allowed to go that far. How is the only question left. And Church route and alive Rhea got served the humble pie about her failings while ruling Fodlan and the methods used, hard. And my problem is that she never did anything to correct that perversion while she was the archbishop with that nice school, and an army. Or was failing so hard it is the same. And the lance... Well, just watch her reaction if you say 'no' at that moment. And while 'tolerant', she was still pressing the issue enough that Sylvain deems it was a narrow thing that they didn't lose the damn thing. Someone who keeps coming back after 'no' isn't that tolerant. And yet, once again, despite the moral authority and the fact they are the one teaching Fodlan's elite in Garreg March, she never uses that to correct the nobility's views on Crests. She is the archbishop, all she had to do was to condamn these abuses before they became system-wide and doing so stopped being a real possibility without alienating the entire ruling class she is cooperating with to rule Fodlan.
  12. Hanneman... It has been 1000 years. Let's say I find really doubtful he is the first person seeking and able to revolution things on the Crests front (eh, it doesn't have to end badly for him. Some people had to construct these Golems for Rhea, right?). Thing is, the Church is also radically altered compared to the pre-war one, and Rhea isn't in charge anymore after that. Let's say it's the problem of indulgences being a perversion of the principle behind confession in catholicism, which was one of the factors leading to protestantism. If the Church begins to step back on some points of doctrin, it hurts its own credibility, leading people to question more parts of it, further weakening its power. Of course, it can also not budge, which led to resentment then violence...
  13. Inside of Adrestia, yes, I guess, though there would be the need to fight the nobility and the Agarthans too for that (for instance, we don't know what she had to promise to get the Bergliez and hevrings back to her side over Aegir). That being said, was Rhea supposed to look at that emperor crowning herself without her taking an axe to core points of her creed and the social order she was supporting and do nothing? Because she is definitely not the sort to do nothing in front of that, and frankly, if her system get contested and destroyed on such a large scale, the position she has been using to ruling Fodlan (even if it's distant rule) is as good as done. And the only authority Rhea acknowledges as 'knowing better' than her is Mama Sothis...
  14. I never said that it was unjustified, just that it definitely looks like to me she is in a similar place mentally when you compare these two moments, cinematic and Crimson Flower. And given the sort of thing she does when we can see her in Crimson Flower, I can imagine the sort of stuff she is doing one thousand years and change ago in a similar situation. Even with the city burning as an extreme, she is clearly (and righfully) hungry for vengeance and blood, which is why I'm dubious about the sparing being all on her head. Well, that and the fact Macuil was the one doing the tactical advising to her by that point too, and the dude is just as bitter about humans that Rhea shows in Seiros mode. And when spoken to in his paralogue, he is very much hateful of the Elites, dismissive of Seiros and humans after helping her in that war... My guess is that he lost the debate about the Elites with Cichol and Indech and left in disgust. Oh, also, Given her reaction while killing him and her general behavior in Seiros mode? Hell yes, that was totally about vengeance for her, with some eventual mellowing out as Wilhelm showed himself as a better human being than Nemesis (not the highest bar ever). Because as I said above, Machuil was there helping her, and welp, given how 'chill' the dude is, he was only participating for vengeance, period. And given his general behavior, I'd say he would have ditched her the second something else than vengeance was in the picture. Not that we know of, and she likes writing history books with scalpels, and the known overt use of soft power (the whole idea about soft power is that you generally don't need to actively leverage it, that's part of the reason why it is called that way) speaks of something else to me: of someone who wanted to enforce peace and order on Fodlan, and is failing.
  15. ... She cared enough about her people and mother to enact a war of vengeance on their behalf, and those Crests and Relics are all is left of them. Seiros craddling the bloody Sword of the Creator before entombing it, would it ring a bell? She is the supreme moral figure of Fodlan as this system establishes itself around her and goes on its way around her, and she has political tools, both hard and soft power, to enforce her will, and kill the abuses in the crib, both for threatening the order and peace she wants to establish and enforce and the 'disrespect' it implies for her people's remaining heritage, no matter how ghastly it is. Inaction is an action too, you know. Ooookay, and how would she do that cloning exactly, especially given how well her attempts to resurrect Mommy are going so well? Also, her reaction to the thief of Crest Stones tell me that she very much sees things as the Relics and the likes as Nabateans' last memory. She clearly is... sensitive on that subject. And for what other reason would she spare Nemesis' cronies exactly? The problem isn't her being righfully pissed off, it's her being in Seiros mode. We also see Seiros mode in Crimson Flower, and she is clearly in no mood for accepting redditions in that mode. And she also has zero problems with 'dick moves' as you said, such as burning Fhirdiad down with the people still inside for a tactical advantage. Tell me again, why would she spare people while being in that mindest?
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