By Jeanne Petit, Nor Eastern Editor in Chief
5/7/282- As most of our readership are aware, the integrity of our publication came under a grievous attack this past month when the Crowndon government took control of our mother branch in the Crowndon capital. The Gazette’s owner, Maurice Merchant, and several of its prominent staff, including Hunter O’Leary and Ada Herschel, were taken into government custody and the Minister of Information Distribution was placed in charge of the offices.
The Crown claims they are being ‘questioned’ concerning supposed seditious remarks made by Miss Herschel in her articles that may be construed as being critical of the Crowndon military’s plan to deploy automatons equipped with cameras to monitor the citizenry of Crowndon. What this likely means is that Miss Herschel is likely already in a dark cell, having already been convicted, and waiting for her sentence.
It has become increasingly clear in recent months that Crowndon sees itself in a perpetual state of war after the Summit Attacks last year. The appointment of Alejandro Julianos as the Fleet Admiral of the Triumvirate Authority likely didn’t help matters, and in a desperate bid to maintain its waning military dominance, has begun tightening its grip. Reports state that production of military interest has increased two hundred percent in the last six months, while other economic sectors have begun to fail. Tax increases in several regions of the Crowndonian Empire have left citizens and businesses alike reeling, and now there are rumors of a surge of military influence amongst the Crowndon oligarchy, as figures like Lord Palatine McCredmond Hauks have had their loyalty and credibility diminished. The deaths of several prominent business men at the hands of a supposed Scarlet Circle assassin have also left a considerable vacuum for the military to increase its influence.
Now the main branch of the Blackwood Gazette has come under government control, effectively turning it into a mouth piece for the Ministry of Information Distribution. So, what does that mean for us, and our sister office in Monteddor?
It means nothing. Well, not entirely. Maurice Merchant prepared for this eventuality, and gave both myself and Bene Torillio, the EIC of the Monteddorian branch, very specific instructions concerning how to continue day to day operations in the event that Crowndon should fall under total martial control. Our staffs will continue to work tirelessly to bring the citizens of Nor Easter and Monteddor the facts of events facing our Triumvirate, unfiltered by governments or persons of power. And we’re going to try as hard as we can to bring the real Blackwood Gazette to the people of Crowndon (despite already facing stiff opposition; our deliveries have been barred for the past month, even before the takeover). We are also working tirelessly to persuade the Empress to petition for the release of Mister Merchant and his staff.
So, rest easy. The New Dystopian Ideal of Crowndon has yet to put its foot in our door. The Blackwood Gazette is a name you can still trust in Nor Easter.