I have made a few changes to the proposal from the original version, mainly just removing some unnecessary bits. I hope you enjoy.
A few months ago I hired a survey team to scout out the plains, with key instructions to look for several beneficial features in the land. They returned with several locations, though they all spoke highly one particular location: A Natural Harbor on the plains side of the Levusto Ocean, with soil suitable for farming, and easy access to the infamous Salt Steppes of the Charali Plains, but far enough away to not poison the soil. The harbor is also protected on two sides by steep natural cliffs, meaning the only ways in are through the valley and the ocean, both of which can be seen ideally from the the spot I intend to have the Colony built. On top of this, the climate in which this location is situated is no where near as harsh as the northern plains. The winters are, as my survey team put it, nearly non-existent. This takes away one of the biggest issues colonies have, and that is the first several winters, where most of the population dies off. That won’t be an issue given the climate.
Now this location of course does present an issue, and that is the Levusto strait, however despite popular belief, the Levusto strait it not impossible to cross, it just requires a skilled crew and proper ships, both of which I can provide. The other issue is how close it is to the Daravi Protectorates, however I see no issue arising from that due to one simple fact: That harbor has existed for sometime, the Daravi have done nothing to claim it. They’ve made no effort to invade the plains, nor have they attacked the settlements in the southern part of Vavard, which are also on the Levusto Ocean. The odds of them doing anything is unlikely. There would have to be some provocation on our end to elicit any type of response from the Daravi.
But above all else, this location provides a stepping stone for future expansion beyond what Lithmore currently knows, beyond what any of our maps reveal. For so long the land beyond the Levusto ocean has remained a mystery, but given this key location the Kingdom can entertain the prospect of exploration via ship, instead of via land. Not to mention the untapped resources the Levusto has to offer. Unlike the Kirulean the Levusto is nearly untouched by trade, meaning whatever resources are present within the water’s depths are there for the taking. I don’t believe I need to elaborate on what this means for future trade in the kingdom.
While there are risks to having a Colony this far south, the rewards outweigh the risk. The possibilities are there, we must only take the initiative to claim them.
I shall now move onto trade, and how it shall work with the Colony. A large part of this will be relying on prior agreements my company has with various other trade corporations and merchants with Vandago and Vavard. I intend on taking advantage of these agreements to create proper trade routes between my colony and the two. As mentioned earlier, the colony will be situated near the Salt Steppes, and as we all know the salt from the Charali Plains is one of the most valued resources the plains have to offer, but for so long we haven’t had a reliable source of it. As part of integrating the Charali, I intend to trade with them, offering various textile goods, such as wool blankets, netting, etc, and tools particularly iron. Of course these will be rejected tools, essentially ones that are usable, but could not be sold in stores because of appearance. These can be bought cheaply enough in bulk, and the charali will not care as long as the items work, which they will. In return for these initial goods it is my hope to have the charali teach my colonists the land, what natural resources it may have that are not immediately noticeable.
Of course this only the first step of the trading, as once my colonists have settled, I intend on opening further manners of trade with the charali, however I will explain those in more detail further in the proposal. Though I will say that the end plan is to secure access to the salt steppes, removing the middle-man which is the Charali. And no, I do not mean killing them or anything of that sort, but I would much rather hire them to collect the salt, instead of having to trade with them to get the salt. Though this is easier said than done as the Charali’s culture has no use for Silver or Gold… Yet. Once the colony is more established and self-sufficient, and begin producing goods beyond what they need to survive, and once the Charali are better integrated into the colony, I intend on creating a kind of exchange program to hire the charali. Those Charali who work for the Colony will receive a token of sorts, be it wooden beads or small brass circles. At the end of every week, they are given a token, per charali. These tokens can then be traded with the colonists in return for goods. It introduces the Charali to our more common payment system, and it also teaches them how save for something larger or greater. And we also come out ahead as we don’t actually have to pay them for the salt they collect, at least not until silver and gold have a meaning and use in their culture. I imagine one day it will, and on that day the token system will be removed, replaced with proper currency.
Goods from the colony will be transported to the rest of the kingdom via ship, at least until proper land-routes can be established and secured that lead from the colony into vavard. Again the Levusto Strait is a concern, but as I mentioned earlier it is not impossible sail with the proper ships and people. With the Levusto Strait leading straight into the Kirulean, the salt, mahogany wood and other goods from the colony can be dispersed and sold to Vandago, Vavard and the coastal domains of Lithmore.
So in summary the main trade will be salt, and Mahogany wood, which only grows in the Charali Plains, though in the future I am hopeful to expand it further to include more of the Plains Natural Resources, along with resources exclusive to the Levusto Ocean. However those are long term goals and it is more important currently to ensure the survival of the colony.
Next we shall move onto the life blood of the colony, that being the colonists themselves. As I am sure you are all aware, I did several bouts of campaigning, with the first being highly disappointing, resulting in fifteen volunteers, though the second attempt was more successful resulting in one-hundred fifteen additional volunteers, with a myriad of much needed skills. Combined with the mariners I have hired from my company and a Vandagan architect, the total population will come out to 139 people. Of the volunteers 86 are men, and 43 women, with three separate families being a part of the colony, two of which are newly married and have hopes to start their family in the colony and the third having two sons, aged 7 and 12.
It is also worth noting I’ve received a letter from the Dean of the University, Feamanuslaewyn ab Renwap, stating that he is interested in being a part of the colony, and assisting in the conversion of the Charali. Given his mastering of the known tongues, including Charali, I feel that he will be an integral part in properly integrating the Charali into our culture, and given his advanced age he can likely do better in convincing the older charali to convert than the younger colonists can.
The amount of skills the volunteers bring is abundant, Including, but not limited to: Farming, Animal Husbandry, A single Blacksmith, Prior medical knowledge and experience, Cooking, Sewing, basic hunting and survival, and carpentry. There are more though they are not as important to the main survival of the colony. My mariners are also skilled in sailing, fishing, including onshore and offshore, and diving.
Now as for the transportation of the colonists to the Colony, I intend to have the colonists arrive at the colony via two separate routes, one overland through vavard via wagon with a paid escort, and the second via the levusto strait, led by my veteran mariners and consisting of the architect, carpenters and men strong enough for what happens next. Both groups shall be supplied with food suitable for travel, such as preserved and dried meats. The sea route shall arrive before the land route, and shall be carrying supplies essential to the building of proper defensive walls and the future construction of top priority buildings, along with basic livestock. Any further buildings will require harvesting the natural resources around the colony, or have more supplies shipped in. By the time the overland colonists arrive, the basic defenses should be constructed, along with a temporary shelter until proper homes can be built.
As for the Integration of the Charali into the colony, this shall be done in steps. The first step is to convince the charali to give up their nomadic nature, as that is one of the main problems preventing proper integration. This shall be done by teaching the Charali people how to farm and how to properly breed animals, both of which require them to stay stationary. It also eliminates their main reason for being nomadic which is to hunt down their food. I believe they will pick up quickly on the animal husbandry given their prior experiences with the wild horses of the plains. The next step to integration shall be the trading between the Colony and Charali, as detailed earlier in the proposal. This will also include the first attempts at converting the charali to Davism, though I will detail that in more detail further down in the proposal.
It is my hope to have a set up similar to what Lithmore City has with their Charali immigrants, where they are allowed to live in a settlement outside of the city, but are also welcomed to live inside the city and be a welcomed part of it should they so choose.
Now for the most important part of this initiative, and that is the Conversion of the native Charali. My surveyors informed me of a medium sized clan of Charali who travel near the natural harbor and salt steppes. These shall be my target group as it is impossible to convert all the charali at once. The surveyors noted that the Charali seemed peaceful, as they were able to meet with them during their travels, of which the clan indicated that it had been sometime since they saw foreigners. This shows that this clan has had prior contact, as at least one of their older members was able to speak severely broken lithmorran, but lithmorran none the less. This is a great advantage for my colonists, as it opens up at least some form of basic communication between the two, instead of relying on alternative methods which can be misinterpreted.
The conversion of the charali shall be done in two ways. The colonists will try to teach the faith primarily to the younger charali, who are not so set in the culture yet and still have open minds. The children are the key to the future as one day they will lead the charali, if we influence them and bring them into the faith early, they can then teach the future generations without a constant need for supervision by an order official. The older charali will be the most difficult ones to convert, though I have a plan for that, which by some standards may be harsh.
While many cultures have different views, fear and self-preservation is usually one common trait that can unite otherwise different people. Due to prior experience with missionaries, the Charali have adopted certain aspects of Davism into their faith, such as demons and saints. Those in charge of the conversion from the colony will be utilizing the events of the Farin quarter, and the daravi involved, along with the demons encountered during it to provide a very real example why those who do not have their tainted souls cleansed by the holy pyre are at risk to turn into demons.
I know it is a harsh tactic, but I can not see anyway to convince the older charali to turn to davism as it’s not like they will be eager to turn away from their current beliefs without good reasons, and a very real threat is a vital reason. Of course those handling the conversions will be asked to do so in a delicate manner, as it is not the intended purpose to cause panic, but to reinforce that souls left to wander are a very real threat.
On top of the prior tactics, the charali shall be openly welcomed to join the colonists during masses, along with having confessions taken should they wish. The worst we can do is force the religion upon them, instead we must slowly coerce them into joining it themselves, believing that they joined of their own free will when really we’ve been there guiding them to the choice.
It is also worth noting that should I get approval and people from the Lady Justiciar, I would like to teach the charali the basic concepts of law, and that not every crime must be met with death or banishment. While not a top priority it is a side goal which I believe will do wonders for the future of integrating the charali into our culture.
Let us be the future we want to see for the plains.