Kaelo Sranten II (KAY'low sr'AHN'ten)
King Kaelo Sranten
The current king of the Yzel Kingdom and third monarch from the Sranten dynasty.
The Sranten family came to power when Kaelo's grandfather, Luon Stranten, overthrew the last of the Zhouhang dynasty in 1031. This was three years before Kaelo was born. He was brought up in the palace, watching both his father, Kaelo I, and grandfather fight against the administrative corruption left behind by the Zhouhang. This instilled in him a particular sense of right and wrong regarding inefficiency and he came to regard efficient administration as inherently just. After his grandfather's death when he was seven, his father took the throne and Kaelo's education was left mostly in the hands of tutors. The Fourth Great War was raging during the succession and Kaelo I had to split his time between the battlefield and administration at home, leaving much of the care of his son in the hands of his wife who, despite the lowered status of women in the Yzel Kingdom, proved an extremely efficient administrator. Kaelo learned a great deal from her, but has never attempted to change the prevailing attitudes regarding women in the kingdom. The ending of the Fourth Great War, amidst diplomatic discussions with Empress Inna I, was Kaelo's first experience with people from Eoion outside of stories and his first interaction with an Ilyannoi in the form of Inna's qilin, whom she brought to the negotiations. Peace was established by his father and Kaelo took a position as a vice ambassador to Eoion in 1051 at age 17 where he worked closely with Empress Olha and Royal Consort Yakiv. After the ascension of Emperor Andriy in Eoion (1057), his father called him back and his studies regarding running a kingdom began in earnest, particularly in negotiation and constitutional law. The peace talks with Inna had given Kaelo a deep respect for non-violent solutions and he now regards this as the ultimate path to peace. Alongside his political studies, he learned rudimentary magic. While he did not have the innate ability for grand control in essence magic, he became a moderately powerful hort-esh and alchemist. After his father's death in 1062, Kaelo II ascended the throne at 28. Since that time, he has dedicated himself to making the judicial system of Yzel more equitable and efficient. Despite the new dynasty's views on women, he believes that all should be equal in a courtroom, an extension of his high regard for negotiation and peaceful solutions. He has also spent the twelve years since his ascension trying to bring the Daji back into the fold of Yzel's military, with little success. The rising tensions with Eoion are of great concern and as much as he does not like Emperor Taras Shiroko and finds him to be little more than a hedonistic madman, he understands the grander goal of avoiding war and is determined to do so.
He is the latest of the Sranten dynasty.
The royal family is connected to Tekel only superficially. They have represented themselves are bringers of justice and thus invoke the gods when necessary, particularly Raesay and Braet, although there is no formal connection between them. Kaelo worships the gods of Tekel as that is the religion he was born into.
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