The Silver Plan

As of 1e:

The goal of the two or three dozen elder Lunars who set the overall agenda of the Silver Pact, to the degree that such a thing exists, is this:

"The Dragon-Blooded and Sidereals wrecked our civilization, killed our spouses, killed as many of us as they could, and chased the rest of us away to eke out survival in the Wyld, which actually melted our Exaltations until we developed a fix for that. And then they bungled relations with Heaven, squandered the wealth they'd stolen, wrecked those portions of our civilization they'd managed to salvage, and kept such a bad handle on public health that a magic plague erupted and killed almost everything, which let the Fair Folk (who we'd been trying to keep out) back in. Then, by complete luck, one of the managed to grab the gun pointed at the head of the universe and, the moment she'd actually put it to responsible use, turned it around and used it to maintain an even worse form of the crumbling ruins of the civilization they'd managed to salvage. Fuck them all. Fuck them long and fuck them hard.

"So. First? Right of vendetta, motherfuckers. Chejop Kejak killed my wife and our three kids; before I die his head is going up on a pike on my lawn. Second? Even if we didn't invoke right of vendetta, neither the DBs nor Sidereals are up to the task of ruling the world. We need to replace them. Then we can put the world back on track by building up something that is simultaneously much closer to the heights of magnificence they managed to smash than anything they've maintained since then, and with fewer of the systemic weaknesses that we can now see in hindsight contributed to this whole mess in the first place."

They are, however, the underdogs. There are not a lot of Lunars and they are hard to organize; there are even fewer elder Lunars. There are many Dragon-Blooded and they are well-organized. Keep in mind the elder Lunars will feel much more kinship with each other than with their younger cohorts, who are born into the world the Dragon-Blooded made and don't know what they're missing or what's been lost.

Let's say you're Raksi. What can you do to contribute to the goal of "Kill all surviving elder Sidereals because fucking blood debt, destroy Dragon-Blooded grip on Creation, and start again?" Your resources are: the ruins of Sperimin and anything else you can grab.

What happens if you rebuild Sperimin? Well, there are not a lot of elder Lunars and they're badly-organized. You have backup, but his name is Ma-Ha-Suchi and he has his own problems; the next Lunar is twice as far away and also has her own. There are a lot of Dragon-Blooded and they're well-organized. If you make Sperimin a livable place and build roads leading to it, the Dragon-Blooded are going to come and steal it from you.

So you squat in it and keep it unlivable, as a natural resource to be called upon at such a time as DBs aren't organized enough in Creation to just steal it from you anymore. It's the First Age lore equivalent of a national park.

You need allies. The obvious choices are a) your own kids, and b) other, younger Lunars. The other, younger Lunars, of whom there are far more than there are surviving elders, are not exactly going to be lining up to join your cause as it actually exists, because it sounds crazy to anyone who doesn't know intimately how much you've suffered. So you build a mystique around yourself, you make a cult of personality and keep them loyal to you that way. You feed them propaganda. Sure, it's sorta lies, but you know you're right and they'll be much better off if you win than if you lose and let the world stay under the control of the Realm.

Your medium-term goal is to smash Dragon-Blooded civilization down to the point where their organization collapses, which requires constant guerilla war against the infrastructure that allows the maintenance of that organization. Eventually Dragon-Blooded civilization is going to splinter and you can snare up a bunch of it in your cult of personality and they will be joining the side of good (i.e. your side), and later those DBs can help rebuild the world, but in the meantime it all needs to come down.

Once you've reduced the whole world to stone age levels of infrastructure, destroyed all the magitech the DBs hold while keeping yours in reserve until you need it to rebuild Creation, and permanently fucked up the Realm's lines of supply and communication to the point where fielding organized legions is impossible, your trained barbarians and Essence 8 Charisma Charms will have a distinct advantage over the DBs, who can expect to get to like Essence 6 before they need anagathics to live long enough to cultivate their Essence any more (you will be destroying the infrastructure that lets them harvest anagathics), and who have armies entirely trained to need supply and communication lines to function. Until then, yes, their legions kick the shit out of your disorganized hordes, but the thing about hordes is you can always organize another in two or three generations. Meanwhile you keep raising your kids to believe barbarian fighting methodology is strongest even though it isn't because once you've hit the endgame of this stage of your plan, it totally will be.

You will notice this plan is meticulously thought out, entirely workable given a long enough timeline, is going to make Creation into Holiday in Cambodia, and is not optimized for making elder Lunars sympathetic at all. To which I say: Have you read the descriptions of Cathak Cainan and the Slug? Pay atention to the part where Cathak Cainan makes a habit of squeezing his satrapies as hard as he can and puts down rebellions with a maximum of brutality to make a point, and where the Slug is party to a gigantic prostitution ring in a setting that's not terribly interested in downplaying the ethical problems of sexual slavery. They are both reprehensible people.

And yet Cathak Cainan and the Slug are immensely popular because they're written with charisma and panache, and Cainan keeps getting sexy illos.

The failure of the 1e book was execution, not conception. It failed to sell the Silver Pact's plan while also failing to communicate it.

2e Lunars was written by people who wanted to salvage Lunars but who did not understand either what 1e Lunars was trying to do, nor precisely how it failed to achieve it.

3e Lunars will, at the very least, be written by people who know exactly where 1e Lunars went wrong.

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