The Great Hunt - Chapter 34 [#100Days, Day 60]

The Court of the Nine Moons

    "I stand twelfth in line of succession to the Crystal Throne.  If I kept the Horn of Valere, all between myself and the throne would think I meant to be first hereafter, and while the Empress, of course, wishes that we contend with one another so that the strongest and most cunning will follow her, she currently favors her second daughter, and she would not look well on any threat to Tuon.  If I sounded it, even if I then laid this land at her feet, and every woman in the White Tower leashed, the Empress, may she live forever, would surely believe I meant to be more than merely her heir."

High Lord Turak, The Great Hunt, p. 420

    Much like Cairhien, the Seanchan royal court is thick with plots and maneuvering.  From the outsider's perspective, it begs questions about unity of effort and spans of control.  How can such a government be effective if it is constantly plotting against itself, across multiple veins?  It's similar for any organization; a fractured leadership corps yields no unity, no success.  For the Seanchan, fear is the only method available to keep people in control.  Every rule in effect is held in place through fear.

    "If the Empress must order such a death [of a noble], the unfortunate one is placed alive in a silken bag, and that bag hung over the side of the Tower of the Ravens and left there until it rots away."

High Lord Turak, The Great Hunt, p. 420

    If that's the treatment of her leadership cadre, imagine how the rest of her countrymen must feel.  And since the Empress uses such methods to keep her direct reports in check, those same direct reports have implicit permission to do the same to their own subordinates.  Toxic doesn't even begin to describe this organization.

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