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○ Edition #8 - Thaliak, 12th Sun ○

○ Editor-In-Chief: Deidra Rose ○

Ishgardian MPs Host Town Hall Session

New Public Safety Commission, Heated Debate

By Talman Chryses

In an unprecedented move, two members of the Ishgardian House of Lords hosted a Town-Hall-style question and answer session with members of the public in Camp Dragonhead this week. Lord Anthony de Vieri of the Coerthan League, and Lady Iris Blanchimont of the Reformist party fielded questions from a small crowd of around fifteen assorted nobles, commoners and members of the press. Representatives of the traditionalist wing of parliament were conspicuously absent from the gathering, though that did not prevent a heated debate with the audience and between the honorable members themselves, focusing on Lady Blanchimont's comments to the Chronicle about the attempted attack on Parliament last week and views on Ishgardian sovereignty. Lord Vieri also took the opportunity to announce a new policy initiative from the Coerthan League: a new Commission for Public Safety and Security. Our reporters have prepared a summary of the discussion.

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The candidates described their political alignments as follows:

Baron Anthony de Vieri: "I am the head of the Coerthan League. We are a centrist coalition of members in both the House of Lords and Commons who wish to see Ishgard enter trade agreements across Eorzea, gain a greater global presence abroad in coordination with the Alliance and further develop our secular education and economic initiatives. Ishgard is safest and most secure when both the fronts domestic and foreign are well tended to.”

Lady Iris Blanchimont: "I'm by no means a leader among the Reformists, that would be Ser Aymeric himself. But I am a member of the Party, and our concerns tend to be the social companion to Lord Vieri's economic concerns. We seek to attend to Brume restoration, maintaining the peace with Dragonkind, slowly growing the diversity of Ishgard and allowing more personal freedoms, while also seeking to address the wide economic disparity in Ishgard through growth for the lower classes."

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Read the town hall topic coverage on page 2

The Songbirds Take Ul’dah!

By Deidra Rose, Pictures By Jainus Darkblade, Additional Picture by R'tehz Tia

For Little Ladies’ Day, the idol group ‘Songbirds’ scheduled a series of appearances in Ul’dah. The preteen group consists of Ulala, Narumi, and Masha managed by the group’s Seneschal. The holiday holds a special significance for the Songbirds due to their debut during the festival last year, and the Seneschal booked them to perform for this year’s Ul’dahn festival to commemorate it.

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The Songbirds were late to their first performance, which caused some passionate fans to voice their complaints to the Seneschal, but once the concert started, Songbird-mania overtook the Steps of Nald within Ul’dah. Fans were crowding the streets to the point where it was difficult for normal traffic to pass through Ul’dah without being serenaded by adoring fans. Some groups of fans were dressed in their Songbird-themed attire performing some of the Songbirds’ famous songs on the steps leading to Emerald Avenue.

Fan performance groups were also spotted in Limsa Lominsa’s Hawker’s Alley and Gridania’s Mih Khetto’s Amphitheatre.

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It has been speculated that the fandom craze of the Songbirds may be responsible for the large amounts of people collapsing in dehydration or exhaustion. If so, the craze would have started before the Songbirds made their arrival while fans were waiting. Officials have refused to comment on the large amounts of people found lying in the street before and during the festival. The Crystal Chronicle urges fans to make sure they intake fluids regularly and make sure to get enough rest each day.

Little Ladies' Day Charity Ball and Banquet

By Utsunqu'ur Berry

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It was to my great pleasure that I came across fliers pertaining to the Little Ladies’ Charity Ball and Banquet jointly hosted by the lovely Thaliak’s Embrace and The Midnight Pearl; though I have only been a freelance columnist for The Crystal Chronicle thus far, I decided to try my hand at covering an event that was dear to my heart.

It can ever be said that I enjoy partaking in charitable ventures as Nymeia has blessed me to do so. If it led me astray the night of the Charity Ball and Banquet, I could dare not say. When I approached the building that houses Thaliak’s Embrace, my gaze was set upon the most enchanting of gardens. To my left, a decadent area for pictures was laid out and to my right stood a counter with a Xaelan woman behind it. Thus did I come into possession of the sponsorship of five orphaned Othardian children.

Not only were they accepting sponsorships for orphans, and the possibility of adoption, but they also had several fun games and events laid out for us that night! The Hug-A-Bear game saw you giving up a hundred-gil coin to try and hug the most slipperiest bear I have ever met; performances were enjoyed while many supped upon the fine food offered in the

upstair’s staging area. A raffle was held until late in the night, with such lovely prizes to be won, including a freshwater pearl brooch worth millions. I spoke to the two women who were selling the raffle tickets, U’sara Bryn and Aiobhelle Yvven; it is there that I learned that Thaliak’s Embrace is a restaurant and bar, once loved by many but struck with a lack of customers lately. The Midnight Pearl was far more mysterious but is said to be a group of people dedicated to making the realm a better place. Dedication, indeed!

Though it would have warmed my heart to have stayed longer, the next event was soon underway: the Date and Dessert auction, where many young men and women were put up to be bid upon and the winner would find themselves with both date and dessert! Each of the desserts looked tempting to my eye as Khenbish Monsaran, good Lady that she is and the most wonderful hostess, led each of them in front of the audience in the downstairs staging area. One by one, bids were taken and man and woman alike found themselves bought for a night! Only when all were bid upon and the desserts carried to their rightful owner did the Lady Khenbish move on to announcing the raffle winners.

Read about the rest of the evening on page 2

Culinarian Provides Free Food in Limsa Lominsa

By Talman Chryses, Pictures By Shio Maeda

Vindr Lunaris, a culinarian studying his craft with the chefs at the popular Bismarck restaurant in Limsa Lominsa, has recently taken to sharing his creations with the public at no cost. He can be found every day in the Lower Decks near Hawker's Ally, giving out Miq'abobs, cookies, drinks and other foodstuffs.

The Miqo'te man hails from Gridania and is providing the free service in the hopes of earning donations to help his newly founded Free Company, the Company of the Hall. Described as "a rag tag band of crafters, gatherers, and adventurers", the Company is working towards purchasing a house of its own.

Lunaris wanted to emphasize that donations are not required in order to sample the goods he has available. Our reporters were able to try the Miq'abobs, finding them to be quite tasty indeed.

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Wandering Thoughts: Mor Dhona

By Henriette Arouet

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Located the center of Eorzea, Mor Dhona is unclaimed by any of the city states. It is not deserted however, as adventurers, through strength of will, carved a city out of the Wilderness: Revenant's Toll. A place for adventurers to call their home. Incidentally, it is also the location of the Crystal Chronicle’s main office.

Revenant's Toll offset the presence of Castrum Centri. While the Castrum guards the way from Northern Thanalan, Revenant's Toll guards the way to Coerthas Central Highlands. Revenant’s Toll prevents the empire from having free reign in the region.

East of Revenant's Toll there a little settlement, more a camp site really, called Saint Coinach's Find. It’s camp of scholars studying some Allagan Ruins. They have plenty of guards, so it’s a nice place for a halt. North of there, the Singing Shards can be found, remnants of Dalamud. Rocks and crystal are crackling with energy.

A most amazing sight can be found a short way south west of Saint Coinach’s Find: The Silvertear Lake. The land and vegetation around it turned to crystal. At its center: The Keeper of the Lake. This is where the Battle the Silvertear Skies occurred some 20 years ago.

Ala Mhigo had fallen but the greed of the Garlean Empire's would not stop there. The location of Mor Dhona made it a strategic location to launch attacks on the city states. This was before the calamity changed the topography of the area, and the Black Shroud was accessible from the south shores of the lake.

Read the rest of Wandering Thoughts on page 2

Trials of Truth: The Burning Wall

By Keira Rioux, Additional Pictures By Shio Maeda

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Our modified manacutter flew in to the outskirts of the area known as the Burning Wall. Ricard, our pilot, sat in front of me. He was a gambler and the type of man you immediately distrust, but that would be doing him a disservice. Sitting beside me was Ramona Zale, a knight of Ishgard. Standing on the front of the ship and effortlessly hanging on was the man who organized this expedition: The Wanderer.

We touched down next to some amber crystals that were crackling with energy, wind blowing our robes and hair. I had studied voidsent in preparation for this journey but all I saw in front of me was a small golden creature. A variety of snurble. We kept our distance and they didn’t seem to mind us. Fortunate, as I read stories about them parasitically extracting aether through creature’s spines. I wasn’t sure if such reports were true, but I wasn’t willing to find out first-hand.

The Wanderer led us to where he sensed the aether presence. Our goal was to investigate it and find what we could. We were treasure hunters. The Burning Wall is rumored to have a remnant of Meteor that fell there, most likely the cause of the aether disturbances. We had high hopes for what we could find.

I had known the others for a couple of months, but this is the first time we were putting ourselves to the test. The Wanderer called himself a geologist but there was far more to him than that. He was in search of locations with high concentrations of aether, believing that we would find a “trial” there that would reward us.

Ramona was a knight, loyal and true. She came with us without hesitation, wanting to make sure we were safe. In the short time I've known her I've come to trust her. The Wanderer brought her on as a bodyguard, but she is certainly more than that.

When I first met Ricard I thought him a cad and a fool. I've been happily surprised to be proven wrong. His mechanical skill and aptitude as a pilot contributed something we sorely needed, while keeping an infectious upbeat attitude that threatened to make you happy whether you wanted to be or not. Also he makes up a bunch of stupid nicknames.

As for myself, I'm the Wanderer’s partner in treasure hunting. He leads us, but wouldn't get anywhere without my practicality. I drew up the maps and put in time and energy into researching and preparing for this expedition. I'm an archeologist with an innate sense of curiosity. I needed to know the Truth behind these trials.

Read more about the trials on page 2

Spring Musical Festival Draws Talented Artists and Large Crowds

By Deidra Rose, Pictures by Shio Maeda, Additional Reporting by Talman Chryses

The Cat’s Meow Bar and Grill, located in the Goblet’s Ward 12 plot 55, held a Spring Music Festival on the 5th moon of Thaliak to a large and fluctuating crowd throughout the day. The festival coincided with the venue’s normal operating hours of 3 – 10PM ((EST)) and the festivities started a little while after opening with X’myra Bhen’s performance hyping the crowd up for the next several hours of performances following. The Bar and Grill’s use of lighting and space helped to keep the feel of the place at a private, almost cozy, level, all while using a different level of lighting to draw focus and interest to the performance area. The level of excitement when X’myra performed elevated to an almost tangible level as the festival’s main events started up.

The Crystal Chronicle was able to get exclusive interviews with a large number of the performers along with some information on upcoming performances.

♪ Etani'a Sedi ♪

Etani’a Sedi is a new performer to the Cat’s Meow, finding the experience to be pleasant, and is a seasoned performer for the Wanderer’s Elysium for almost a year. Usually Etani’a performs alone, though he is working on some collaborating for the future.

Etani’a’s next performance happened on the 10th moon, and the Chronicle will be keeping an eye out for more performances in the future!

Etani’a’s number one fan and personal support system, Khana, attended the interview with Etani’a.

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To the readers: “… I hope [you’re] havin’ a good time… I’d like to speak to [you], if [you] ever see me at a show. … You’re welcome to come over and say hello, an’ that you read the interview so I can talk all about the talented artists, an’ good writers that the Chronicle has.”

♪ Uta ♪

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Uta is a bard who has performed at the Elysium, Mischief’s Cover, and appeared at the Battle of the Bards. Uta’s focus is to “perform to entertain,” and prides herself on being able to adapt to the audience she is performing for.

Accompanying Uta to meet with the Crystal Chronicle was the spider Jorogumo, who emerged from under Uta’s hat and we are assured comes and goes as she pleases.

To the readers: “I answered this because I was asked to, if you want to hear some sort of quote of inspiration, you may try and find me!”

Read more artist profiles on page 2

Nymeia's Aid

By Utsunqu'ur Berry

“To Ms. Berry of Nymeia’s Aid,
You wrote of your passion for learning, and how you currently are learning how to defend yourself to cover bases left untouched from a lucky life. I find myself with similar wishes, but perhaps the opposite issue; I wish to learn some form of magic, but for most of my life, have had to teach myself what skills I have, none of which are particularly intelligent. I find it difficult to read for long periods of time, and whenever the topic of aether manipulation comes up near me, have a hard time grasping them. I’ve considered asking the guilds to teach, but often become intimidated by the vast amounts of books and how much wiser in these matters the most basic of students are. It seems that if I were to find a tutor, every point would be a huge test of their patience.
In short, my question is thus; If my goal is so far ahead of what I know, that I barely grasp the basics to learn the basics of the basics, what is the best way to begin? Is there any other advice you have or a direct for me and others with this problem?

Thank you,
Hat Cat”

“Dear Miss Berry,
I need advice. As the adoptive daughter of a Maelstrom soldier, my mother encourages me everyday to grow stronger and take up arms with her when I’m of age. I’m not exactly strong by any means, and the idea of hurting someone makes me sick to my stomach.

I want to try different things, such as exploring musical instruments (I’m quite good on the piano) and maybe even healing magics when I’m older, but my mother sees them both as a waste of time. We love one another to death but I don’t want to be forced to follow in her footsteps.

What should I do?
A Young Xaela”

It warms my heart to have received two letters this past time, though the contents have that same heart aching from sympathy. Though my answers will be for both of these lovely individuals, it is my hope that my written word may also reach out and touch others who might have the same issues in their daily lives and have naught anyone else to turn to.

To the ‘Hat Cat’: Truly, I empathize greatly with your plight; it was not always so that I was blessed with talents and able to be self-sufficient with my skills. When first learning defensive maneuvers, as my father insisted I learn, it was with great difficulty.. Ah! By Nymeia’s grace, I was able to do so but it was a terrible strain on the body of a small Xaela child. However, I do recognize that it is not a physical plight that you are under but a mental one.

I will not tell you that it will be easy, though my heart yearns and wishes that it were so. If you truly wish this thing then it will be yours only through dedication, humility, and a hardened work ethic. Where you may see yourself as insufficient compared to others, it is only because you have not found a proper style of learning. You may benefit greatly from finding a skilled tutor that will be focused entirely on your learning rather than the learning of four people at once. If it is books that you have difficulty with, seek instead to learn from the spoken word. Should you need assistance with the basics of such things, you may seek me out and I will do my best to assist you on the matter of aether manipulation, though you will still need to seek another for specialized magics. Be strong, for you do have the capability to learn.

To the young Xaela: As I’ve told the ‘Hat Cat’, you must needs be strong. It is a difficult situation you are being put into and I do not envy you of that; however, I believe your mother does carry good intentions and there may be a speckle of truth to it. You need not hurt anyone to be an effective soldier-- though my allegiance to the Adders is different than what is asked for by the Maelstrom, much is the same. There are always positions for soldiers to do clerical work, to act as healers (as you wished), and to act as runners for messages. Seek to make peace with your mother by asking her to train with you, as I can attest that having defensive skills are invaluable.

Slowly, begin to discuss other positions as a soldier. Think your arguments carefully and if her heart is true, she will come to understand in time. Though I know not the situation, I can not see why any would debate the merit of other skills in the Maelstrom when it is so apparent that they are needed. Do your best to be understanding but firm and I believe wholeheartedly that you will succeed in what you wish to do.

May Nymeia guide you

Seeking guidance of your own? Write to Nymeia's Aid using our dedicated moogle courier!

Kalizej Dotharl Wins 180th Grindstone

By Talman Chryses

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The Grindstone's high popularity remained steady this week with seventy-two contestants and plenty of new faces. The final round pitted two dagger-wielding fighters against each other. The first, the Xaela Kalizej Dotharl, was not only new to the Grindstone, but had only arrived in Eorzea a week and a half ago. The latter, the mute Miqo'te N'zhovi Lyehga was also competing in the Grindstone for the first time and had entered along with his sister, Zujih Lyehga.

Throughout her matches, Dotharl showed an extremely aggressive fighting style that could easily have been deadly outside of the confines of the Grindstone. Her trademark move throughout the night was an eviscerating strike to the gut with her daggers, leading to a lot of bloodshed if it managed to connect. She also proved adept at avoiding attacks, exhibiting unexpected flexibility. She had managed to win her place in the finals by throwing a dagger right through the hand of the adept fighter Aeron Volkova, much to the dismay of his crowd of supporters from Aethertide Ventures.

As for Lyehga, he had won his place after defeating the martial artist Chiyo Hoshi, who passed out in his arms after being caught by the throat. Lyehga's sister Zujih was there to support him and had been competing as well until she lost to Kalizej Dotharl. Lyehga thus had won himself an opportunity to avenge the injury caused in that earlier match.

The final match was filled with dagger strikes and kicks, with Lyehga taking a few hits but managing to avoid too much damage thanks to his leather armor. After tiring of Dotharl's repeated stabbing attempts, Lyehga became enraged, grabbing the Au Ra by the tail and rending her shoulder with his teeth. This attack caused some serious injury, but left him open for a final successful stab in the back from Dotharl, piercing his armor and decisively ending the fight.

After the match, both contestants were bleeding and exhausted. However, Dotharl had a few words to say about her fighting style. "My mother was a warleader of the Dotharl, as was my husband. It is because of them and their guidance that I fight like I do. They both taught me everything I know."

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