The First Queen
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The First Queen by Melvin Heraldor
Introduction Not only was Liranda the first female monarch of Emposia, but she was also the youngest. She gained the the loyalty of her followers with her selfless bravery, the trust of the elves with her care and wisdom, and the love of the people with her words. She was the first queen of Emposia, and what a queen she was too.
Younger years Liranda I, daughter of King Hirald II and Queen Marianne, was born in 766. Crowned the first queen of Emposia at the age of just 10 years, Liranda could not have caused more of an uproar. Even her coronation was not without difficulty and argument; the law had to be rewritten as the next in line to the throne after Liranda was a Malieran prince. Many of her duties in her younger years were taken up by more experienced advisers whilst Liranda was educated; but Liranda soon began to insist that she take control of them herself. However it was many years before she was allowed control of certain duties, including control of the army, which would have been given to a male monarch without question. Despite such barriers in opinion, Liranda quickly developed into a firm but fair leader. Aged 23, Liranda married Richard Rybenik a powerful Kraan nobleman. Liranda first met Richard on a visit to Kraan. Richard was practising in the tower's courtyard with his weapon of choice, a mace. After Liranda made a joke about how blunt weapon fighting was "swordplay for trolls", she challenged Richard to a mock duel. Of course, Liranda was a remarkably good swordsmaster, and could best most of the male soldiers, to their great humiliation. Liranda never told me who won the mock duel, but she didn't need to, the glint in her eye which appeared whenever it was mentioned was answer enough!
A few years later Liranda gave birth to twins, named Aigelthin, who would come to take the throne after Liranda, and Marianne.
Later years When she had largely grown out of embarrassing chauvinist soldiers, which admittedly she never did completely, Liranda did a lot of work with improving relations with the elves and dwarves of Aerath, especially the Northwood elves. Liranda was almost single—handedly responsible for the alliance agreed between Emposia and the Northwood elves. It was at the signing of this alliance that the elves presented Liranda with the helmet she is now almost always depicted as wearing. It was a gift for her untiring attempts to bring humans and elves together in peace and for her considerable kindness and wisdom shown to them throughout her reign. It was wrought from the finest elven steel; though light and appearing delicate, it could withstand even the mightiest of blows. Her relations with other creatures of Aerath didn't stop at the elves and dwarves. Liranda would often tell stories of strange creatures she had befriended in the forests across Aerath. One creature she seemed particularly fascinated by was a shy satyr called Krutos. But when asked about any of the details of her stories of the satyr further, Liranda always managed to subtly change the subject. I often wonder if Krutos still walks the forests of Milthorn, north of the wall.
Sadly however, many of Liranda's efforts to bring understanding between the creatures of Aerath were destroyed by the Emposian—Malieran war. Malieran expansion led to Liranda being forced to declare war with the Malieran Empire. Liranda here showed another side of her character; she was a good strategist. However this war took from Liranda her husband and her daughter. As a result I think it's fair to say Liranda became much colder; she never lost her kindness however, nor did she lose her ability to rally people to a good cause. She tirelessly worked to keep moral in Emposia high, and they never lost heart. Perhaps only now we realise that Liranda didn't leave enough positivity for herself, and only very occasionally did she show it. In the last few years of her reign the continent was firmly gripped by war, and it was only through ingenious strategies thought up by Liranda that the Emposian Kingdom didn't falter under the Malieran Empire's strength.
Liranda's demise By 825, the Malieran armies had been driven back to Fern. The battles around this time were some of the fiercest and claimed the lives of many great warriors on both sides. It was in the ruined remains of Fern that Liranda I, at the age of 59, was slain in battle. Her death was mourned throughout the kingdom and beyond. In respect to the elves, Liranda's helmet was offered back to them. However the elves placed the helmet upon the statue in Fern and cast many spells to protect it. They said the helmet had been a gift to a gracious and noble human and so had no place with the elves, but with humans. It was said that only the human who can touch the helmet, is worthy of it. However the helmet is rarely visible upon the memorial statue, as some strange elven sorcery protects it.
Influence today Not only did Liranda strive for peace and understanding, but she also demanded equality. I have no doubt that the future will show more clearly the influence this remarkable queen had upon Aerath.