King Temeru made a kingdom already struggling to keep up to its past glory into an even more horrible place to live. However, his personal fortune grew at the expenses of everything else, so the king considered his reign a complete success. King Temeru the Illustrious (as he liked to be called) raised taxes as much as he could, extinguished every religion other than the one presided by his half-brother Hikaru (one of the first things he did when he ascended to power was to make him head of the church, so King Temeru the Illustrious would have a direct influence on religion too), and did nothing to prevent the spread of a virulent plague in the countryside (at least until it killed so many peasants that the food supply to the castle became compromised, at which point he forcibly recruited people from unaffected parts of the kingdom to work the land instead). King Temeru the Illustrious’s only real achievement was that he made the army stronger than ever. Ikkoku's military strength grew as the king paid special attention to the army and gave soldiers many privileges that he would deny anybody else. His main ambition was to take back the island of Moku no Lin, which had declared independence during his father’s reign. King Temeru the Illustrious other half-brother, Sousuke, was pulled from army training to serve as a spy to the kingdom. Even as King Temeru the Illustrious's power grew, he also became more careful about whom he could really trust. He could not rely on any normal person for something as important as espionage. It would have to be someone from his own family. Sousuke at first did a good job. King Temeru the Illustrious was happy with his work and treated him well. The same was true for Hikaru as the head of the church: he let Temeru effectively order the church around, but was treated with something resembling love in return. As Ikkoku's social indicators plummeted, though, this situation couldn't last. King Temeru the Illustrious knew about Flute Players, magic, and its musical manifestation, but he paid little attention to it. He thought well-trained armies would be much more effective than any pretty tricks (he had, of course, never seen the true power of a Flute Player, or Sorcerer, or Wizard, or Warlock). He forbade cities from having bards or any popular form of magic music making, and instead hired a wizard for the court as a way to generate some "prestige". Wizard Igor (not a sorcerer, nor a warlock, nor a flute player), however, was not really required to do much other than a few party tricks and thus deeply resented his job. He wasn't even paid well enough. But King Temeru the Illustrious threatened him with horrible punishments if he even considered leaving, so Igor decided to stay, despite the boredom and meagre pay. One day, King Ikkoku the Illustrious decided to give his wizard something else to do, however. He wanted to test the power of this "magic" and asked Wizard Igor (not a sorcerer, nor a warlock, nor a flute player) to create something from nothing, reanimate a corpse, or create a living human out of dead body parts. Wizard Igor (not a sorcerer, nor a warlock, nor a flute player) tried to tell him that it was impossible, that no magic was this strong, but King Temeru the Illustrious didn't hear him. He said if Wizard Igor (not a sorcerer, nor a warlock, nor a flute player) failed, he would be the dead body his replacement wizard would work on. Of course, King Temeru the Illustrious did not really expect his wizard to succeed. He was getting bored of the man and his useless party tricks, and wanted to be the one who proved that magic was indeed not as great as everybody claimed. However, to his (and everyone else’s) surprise, Wizard Igor (not a sorcerer, nor a warlock, nor a flute player) did achieve the impossible. He revived his dead older brother. King Temeru the Illustrious was truly impressed, and decided he felt generous enough to grant Wizard Igor (not a sorcerer, nor a warlock, nor a flute player) one special wish. Wizard Igor (not a sorcerer, nor a warlock, nor a flute player) requested he be able to marry one Sir Sasha, a higher-ranking official in the army who was pregnant with his child. King Temeru the Illustrious allowed it, only to change his mind on the day of the wedding, claiming he wanted to make Sir Sasha his head of the whole army, which meant she could not get married, least it get on the way of her duties to the nation (and to the king). King Temeru the Illustrious is thus credited as the one who discovered how to revive people. Even though he was not the one who actually did it, he considered all of those working for him as extension of himself, and thus their achievements were really his achievements. Little did he know that angering a wizard who could revive people would have dire consequences for him in the future. King Temeru the Illustrious still did not like Wizard Igor (not a sorcerer, nor a warlock, nor a flute player), but he could not get rid of him after all that the wizard accomplished. Plus, if he wanted Sir Sasha under his control, he had to be nice to her. Still, King Temeru the Illustrious had little patience for that particular family. When their child (the one Sir Sasha was pregnant with when she was forbidden to marry) was five years old (and roaming freely around the castle due to his mother’s privileged position in the army), King Temeru the Illustrious had enough of the child’s happiness, energy, and general sunshine disposition. He killed the boy in cold blood and phrased his death as an unfortunate accident (unfortunate in that the child had bothered him at a particularly critical moment). The death of a well-liked child was the incentive the court needed to draft Head Spy Sousuke into joining the plot of killing the king. It was also the incentive Head Spy Sousuke needed to clear his doubts about whether killing his half-brother would be the best thing for the kingdom. King Temeru the Illustrious was killed by Sousuke, his half-brother and most important spy.
A shade of blue much cleaner than his morals
As black as the void of his soul
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