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A Tryst with Destiny

Discussion in 'Civ4 - Stories & Tales' started by adhiraj.bose, Jun 12, 2014.

  1. adhiraj.bose

    adhiraj.bose Deity

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    Emperor Ajatshatru had only one ambition in life, to be the greatest emperor that the world had seen. The emperor of emperors, 'Chakravartin'. He would pursue this ambition ruthlessly. "My name shall be forever written on the face of Bharata in the monuments I build!" the emperor exclaimed. He rushed several building projects in his time working hundreds upon hundreds of toiling laborers to death.

    Pataliputra built a temple complex,

    Spoiler :


    Varanasi built a large ashram,

    Spoiler :


    Each brick in every temple and every monastery, was writ with the blood of the toilers. Never before had the sons of Bharata seen such misery. The peasants were taxed till their backs broke, the workers were worked till their hands bled. All for the mad ambition of a cruel king. But few suffered the cruelty of Ajatshatru, as much as the royal family.

    The deposed Emperor Bimbisara, beloved of the lower castes, and a devout follower of the Buddha, was confined in secrecy in a cell below the palace of Pataliputra. There he was isolated from his own family. "None must be able to meet with my father, not even the queen. He is to lay there in that dank cell and starve to death!" this was the order of Ajatshatru. The grieving queen would curse herself for creating such a monster, that would do this to his own father. Under the advice of Devdutta, the king could not be killed by any arms by the son, however, if he be killed without any force of arms, that may not be considered a sin. So Emperor Bimbisara would be starved to death. The queen defied this diktat.

    Every night the Queen Kosala devi would conceal herself and smuggle food to Bimbisara. Despite emperor Ajatshatru's purges (where the loyalists to King Bimbisara would be given a choice of death by elephant, or forced labor in his pet construction projects) there were still a few who dared to remain loyal to the old Emperor Bimbisara. These were the men who helped keep the King alive. Yet, the king did not fear death. He kept to the path of the Buddha and sought nirvana even in the harshest of conditions.

    "It is desire that causes suffering. To have want. I have no wants, which is why I do not suffer. Even in this dank cell, I am at peace" ~ Bimbisara.



    The impatient King Ajatshatru, wanted to settle accounts with his father immediately. Once he had learned of his own mother's betrayal of the imperial order, he ordered that she be kept under house arrest in her bedchamber. That night, he called upon the royal barber and made him commit a sinful act. The barber was ordered on the threat of death, to pierce the kings legs with iron barbs and pour salt and hot water on the wounds. The helpless barber complied with this barbaric order, once this was done, the noble emperor Bimbisara died in agony. But his soul would find nirvana.

    Ajatshatru had thus removed the foremost obstacle to his path of absolute rule. The continuing project of the temple of the holy trinity in Indraprasth, would be his next priority. But even before that, he sought to upgrade the army of Bharata. His dream of becoming Chakravartin would require the largest army in the world, something which was far from reach.

    under the king's request a survey was prepared based on reports from travellers from the five great nations of the world.

    Spoiler :


    While Bharata outshone all nations in wealth and was only second to the great nation of China, it seemed weak on the military, where it was only first among inequals. The discovery of iron deposits and the science of metal working and iron working would now make it possible to train legions of axemen and swordsmen. When told of this emperor Ajatshatru made an evil grin, his eyes showing a dark determination. The King of Kashi oversaw the training of these new advanced legions. As with his building projects, Emperor Ajatshatru's impatience and megalomania the training of this new legion too would witness cruelty.

    When the minister came with the news that it would be another fifteen years before the new battalion would be ready for fighting, the King found a novel solution. Several veteran mercenaries were called upon to teach the novices in fighting axes. The King gave a specific order, that only the fit may survive this training. What ensued was utter carnage. The untrained recruits could not withstand before the battle hardened mercenaries. Those that did, were deemed by the emperor to be worthy of joining the new 'death battalion' as he called it. The minister stood witness to this carnage, his blood boiled with anger, as he watched the Ajatshatru the cruel play out his final act of cruelty. He grasped onto the hilt of his dagger struggling to restrain himself from defying his own dharma by killing this king.

    Thus came the gory birth of Bharata's first attacking infantry division armed with iron weapons.

    Spoiler :


    Farther away, beyond the great wall of the, refugees who fled from Ajatshatru's tyranny had settled along the foothills. There they created an industrious community of shepherds. Emperor Ajatshatru sent them a token note of thanks as they built pastures with roads linking their villages. Pleas to connect back with Magadh were ignored.

    Spoiler :


    The King would send the workforce away to work the hills near the Chinese pass to help further Indraprasth's construction project of the Great temple of the Trinity.

    Spoiler :


    King Ajatshatru grew ever restless. The Great temple would have been his greatest achievement yet, but he may not live to see it. He pushed for more workers to join the construction of this grand marble temple but he may not yet live to see it ! The thought haunted him day and night. He would not be able to sleep. The emperor had a son, Udayabhadra, who some said was the very image of his father. There was the same coldness in his eyes, the same sense of ambition and determination. One night the emperor finally found sleep.

    That night he dreamt he stood before the Great Saint lord Mahavira.
    The Proud King asked "Bhante! Where do Chakravartin's (World Monarchs) go after their deaths?"
    Mahavira replied, ""A Chakravartin, if dying while in office goes to seventh hell called Mahā-Tamahprabhā, and if dying as a monk attains Nirvana."
    Then Ajatshatru asked, "So will I attain Nirvana or go to the seventh hell?"
    So Mahavira replied "Neither, you will go to the sixth hell".
    Ajatshatru, astounded and befuddled by Mahavira's reply, asked in a trembling voice, "Bhante.. Am I not a Chakravartin?"
    Mahavira smiled, and said "No you are not".

    Spoiler :


    The gates of hell opened beneath Ajatshatru's feet and he found himself falling into the fires of the sixth hell. Taunted by the souls of tyrants of the past who dwell as demons in the sixth hell, "You are no Chakravartin!" The nightmare did not end, for the emperor awoke to fire. All around him fire consumed his bedchambers and then his flesh. His cries for help went unheeded as the Crown Prince Udayabhadra stood before the sealed gates of the King's bedchamber with folded arms and a cold smile.
     
  2. Moai_Spammer

    Moai_Spammer Nihilandros

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    ooooo it's gettin juicy
     
  3. adhiraj.bose

    adhiraj.bose Deity

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    Note : This was supposed to be one update, but an electrical glitch at my place forced me to divide that update into two. I guess the rhye's and fall of Ajatshatru was too much for one update :p
     
  4. TheNoob

    TheNoob Dank Memes

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    Well that definitely was an interesting update.
     
  5. adhiraj.bose

    adhiraj.bose Deity

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    Next update will be coming later tonight. Also Udayabhadra would be calling the King's Council but he wasn't particularly bright. The King's Council is wary of its declining influence with the rise of Buddhism. So guys I'll leave you to think up innovative ways to kill the boy king and place Shishunaga on the throne ;). Oh yes and the Buddha's death will also be part of the next update.
     
  6. DKVM

    DKVM Joker

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    :agree:
     
  7. Moai_Spammer

    Moai_Spammer Nihilandros

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    can i attempt to become an adviser to our new overlords?
     
  8. adhiraj.bose

    adhiraj.bose Deity

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    @Moai "The King's Council is wary of its declining influence with the rise of Buddhism. So guys I'll leave you to think up innovative ways to kill the boy king and place Shishunaga on the throne ." - That means if you act in helping the overthrow of the present king you'll become rewarded with a position in the future rule :).
     
  9. Moai_Spammer

    Moai_Spammer Nihilandros

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    what if join the new king and try to prevent his death?

    that seems fairly promising
     
  10. adhiraj.bose

    adhiraj.bose Deity

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    That would be challenging. In fact that gives me an idea. I'll make a poll right now before I host the next Council meeting.
     
  11. adhiraj.bose

    adhiraj.bose Deity

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    Emperor Ajatshatru had left many legacies of his realm. A trail of blood and suffering was contrasted with fabulous wealth and wonders. Among the legacies of King Ajatshatru, was the weakening of the King's Council. Though in fairness, this was a process that had begun since before Ajatshatru had taken power. After all, Emperor Bimbisara who was a devout follower of the Buddha had gone as far as offering to give his kingdom to the Buddha.

    The emperor listened more to the Buddha and his disciples than to the sage advise of the King's Council. For once, it would seem the council would overcome the divisions of caste and unite to regain its political primacy.

    The Acharyas, sensing an opportunity to regain the power of the council under the rule of the weak hedonistic king UdayaBhadra called upon a meeting of the councillors. Those who would answer his call would work to overthrow the dynasty of the Haryanka and replace it with the more capable and supportive Amatya Shishunaga.


    Chose your option ;

    a) We overthrow this dynasty and place Amatya Shishunaga on the throne. Yes or No

    b) This is treason ! I shall not forsake my honor for this nefarious scheme!. Yes or No

    Only those may vote who are members of the King's Council.

    i) Acharya Mukteshwar II, (Moai Spammer)
    ii)Acharya Nagabhatta II, (CaterpillarKing)
    iii)Acharya Dhrittiman, (DVKM)
    iv)Acharya AtulyaSen, (MrRandomPlayer)
    v)Acharya Nanaji (TheNoob)


     
  12. TheNoob

    TheNoob Dank Memes

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    I, Acharya Nanaji, vote for overthrowing this dynasty and place Amatya Shishunaga on the throne!
     
  13. Moai_Spammer

    Moai_Spammer Nihilandros

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    This is treason ! I shall not forsake my honor for this nefarious scheme!
     
  14. DKVM

    DKVM Joker

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    This is treason ! I shall not forsake my honor for this nefarious scheme!

    The emperor is our liege even if we do not like him.
     
  15. adhiraj.bose

    adhiraj.bose Deity

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    This is an interesting turn of events. The next vote will be a decisive vote and will decide whether the intrigue will succeed or not.
     
  16. adhiraj.bose

    adhiraj.bose Deity

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    Oh I just forgot about Mrrandomplayer not being available for a month! To be fair to him, I'll count a no vote as an abstention. So the next person to vote would either end the voting in a tie or draw a majority for the second motion.
     
  17. CaterpillarKing

    CaterpillarKing Conqueror of Cacoons

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    My father of the same name saw a wonderful and beautiful nation develop. His expulsion from the council was a fright to many that we shall be ruled by a despotic unjust ruler. This did not happen but we live in an age where these newcomers pose a threat. The only way to keep the success of India as it is now is by overthrowing this dynasty and place Amatya Shishunaga on the throne!




    Sent from my iPod touch using Tapatalk
     
  18. adhiraj.bose

    adhiraj.bose Deity

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    WIth this the King's Council came to its decision. The Council was now officially split on the question of dynastic succession, between loyalists of the Haryanka dynasty and those that supported Amatya Shishunag.

    In the meanwhile, the King ordered a gaudy banquet to celebrate his succession. Oligarchs and kings came from all across the realm, and even some from beyond. All to attend to the grand coronation of the emperor. All celebrated save for the miserable citizens of Pataliputra. The grand coronation required money which could only come from taxes. The citizens of Pataliputra who had breathed a sigh of relief after the news of the death of Ajatshatru had come, were reminded that his kin still ruled. To pay for the coronation ceremony, the Emperor's first order was to bleed the citizenry dry for every penny of wealth that can be accumulated. The dark night would see no end.. or so people thought...
     
  19. baseballpie

    baseballpie Deity

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    Oh snap! That was great! Plot Twist!
     
  20. adhiraj.bose

    adhiraj.bose Deity

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    The time when the Buddha strolled through the streets and by-lanes of the cities of Bharata, was a fantastic time in our history. The Buddha brought the message of peace and enlightenment to the realm. The path to be free of miseries. This was a time of two great kings, Bimbisara and Ajatshatru.

    One ruled for peace, the other for war. The people of Magadh hated Ajatshatru as much as they loved Bimbisara. Ajatshatru, it is said had a heart of Iron, nothing came before his ruthless ambition to become a Chakravartin. His path to glory was paved by the blood of his own father, and over two hundred thousand laborers who died in his projects. The burden of his sins would come back to haunt him in what can only be called karmic justice as his son, shaped in his own image, would relive the father's legacy and kill to ascend the throne. But history would absolve him, for the legacy he left would guide Bharata to greater glories in days to come. Future generations would look back in wonder on the artistic, scientific and cultural contributions of Ajatshatru.

    In the dark days of Ajatshatru's tyranny, it was the Buddha and his sangh that brought respite. When the time came for Buddha's departure, the whole realm weeped for the one who had come as their saviour. Even the brahmins of Varanasi who had much loathing for him, came to pay their respects, when the Buddha attained parinirvana.



    At a modest site at Kushinara, the Buddha breathed his last, and transcended away from this world, into heaven.

    History would note this period as one of spiritual progress coupled with economic and scientific progress. Bharata now had a new knowledge which would allow them to harness iron for making new deadly weapons of war. Her cities were growing larger and richer, and the borders of the empire was expanding.

    Spoiler :


    Now Magadh has a new king and Bharat has a new overlord. But the winds of change are blowing again. Another great change is coming.
     

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