There were certain rules about foreigners, in the mind of Tahvo Korhonen. The best sort of foreigner was one that had Arctic ancestry. Then, came the Domish, Edwinish, Gawainians and Mazans, in that order. The Yamahans were an enemy to be subjugated, however, and Arctic conquests of Northern Yamaha corresponded to this common view. Kahunians were mistrusted, and if you were an Avian from the Territory of the Ravens, you had less status than a feral animal. In fact, Avian was consumed as a delicacy in some parts of the Islands. The leopard seal thought these things not only due to upbringing, or religion, but also because he worked for a group called the NKO, or New Keepers of Order. The worst thing with which Tahvo had to deal, was foreigners trying to interfere in Arctic politics and government. The right of the Tsar to rule was a contentious topic abroad, as it had come about by a coup. However, domestically, it had met very little opposition, mainly because nobody had the ability to oppose it, but also because the Tsar happened to rule the country better than his predecessor.
Tahvo was a native of Andalsnes, a walled coastal city in Talini Syd. He had travelled to Klin, however, on the pretext of expanding his carpentry trade, as well as seeing the sled dog race. The great race from Naklin, in the far West, to Klin in the East was a very popular event, and Tahvo intended to be at the finish line for when the sleds came through. However, the main reason Tahvo had come to Klin, travelling in convoy with traders and whalers from Andalsnes across the island's frozen landscape, was on the lookout for trouble from immigrants, particularly from Kahun. Kahunians were particularly targeted by the Keepers due to their habit of importing, or smuggling items of black magic into the nation, where they could do all sorts of harm. Blasphemy was also actively promoted by many Kahunians, whom were quite open about their misguided faith. The Tsar did not have the resources nor the interest, however, to launch a Crusade against them; he had heard of many Edwinish and Domish Crusades failing with superior forces than he could muster. So, the NKO had to limit the influence of the heretics domestically as best as possible.
Tahvo stood out as a wealthier man in the crowd than most of the locals, many of whom were not nearly as well-fed. He had feral Polar Bear furs keeping him warm, nicely fashioned dark blue and black clothing, with royal blue and silver patterning, and short black boots. The colours matched his own short fur, blue-black, with a bluish grey colour on his neck and lower part of his face, flecked with large blue-black spots. His electric blue eyes surveyed the new arrivals from the port, many of whom were wandering up the main street. He was waiting for two things. First, he was expecting a member of the NKO to make contact with him, whom had recently arrived on a ship from Kahun. Second he was doing some scouting work, picking out any reptiles in the crowd. Tahvo had a habit of following suspected people around until he was sure they did not participate in criminal activity.
Tahvo was not alone, he had a few of the guardsmen waiting for his signal. Often, the best thing to do with a suspected troublemaker at the docks was for the leopard seal simply to give some waiting guards a discreet sign. As they knew his status as a Keeper, they could move in and intervene without the Keeper having to reveal himself. It was quite basic work to Tahvo, but it kept him amused until his real work began. He was currently staring at an older looking dragon, whom was trailing behind a wolf with a hooded fur coat and fingerless gloves. The dragon looked a little uneasy, mainly due to his scant clothing, in comparison with the well-clad Islanders. Tahvo sneered in mild disgust. The orange-scaled reptile had a pendant around his neck, with a symbol of the Tridekatheon upon it. Blatant religious incitement. Tahvo knew the dragon had reached the final straw when he noted the reptile was using magic to warm himself, sending glowing yellow rivulets of magical energy across his scales. Even though dragons were cold-blooded, and needed magical warmth to survive the Arctic, what was seen as black magic was expressly forbidden.
Sensing his first catch of his stay in Klin, Tahvo casually bought a cooked fish from a nearby market stall. Fish, flame cooked and sold on a stick, was fairly popular around coastal towns, and one of the leopard seal's favourite foods. His mouth now full of hot fish, he rubbed his cheek, his left index and middle finger pointing towards the oncoming dragon, whom was looking at the market stalls with Naïve curiosity. Tahvo twirled his left paw in the air, and the signal was complete. Without warning, guards in furs with a black two-headed stoat emblazoned upon them encircled the reptile. He gave a cry of surprise, shouting out, "What is the meaning of this? I have done no wrong!" Before being roughly manhandled to his knees. His scimitar was taken, his religious necklace torn from his neck, and the head of the guards put his knee sharply into the foreigner's stomach, making him bend over in pain, snarling. The guards grabbed him by each arm, and half-walked half-dragged him away, presumably to be informed of his crimes, and locked up overnight as punishment.
Tahvo chuckled to himself, finishing his fish. It may have seemed an unpleasant thing to do, but Tahvo had been required to do much worse than arrest and imprison minor acts of heresy. Serving the Tsar sometimes meant executions, and these were the moments that Tahvo was least happy with himself. In his view, merely imprisoning a Kahunian was much better than killing one. Pleased at having another prisoner to his name, the leopard seal began to pick at his sharp white teeth with the stick, idly moving from stall to stall, with the kind of nonchalant air only a Kulak could carry off. He had enough wealth to buy a lot of what was on sale, yet the experience in mercantile to know what was worth buying.
"You can't just remain a root forever. Eventually you grow and change into other things, like stems and leaves and such. Are a tree's leaves an insult to its roots?" - Sade
"It is easy for a statesman, whether he be in the Cabinet or the Chamber, to blow a blast with the wind of popularity on the trumpet of war, warming himself the while at his own fireside; or to thunder orations from this tribune and then to leave it to the musketeer who is bleeding to death in the snow whether his system win fame and victory or no. There is nothing easier than that; but woe to the statesman who in these days does not look around him for a reason for war which will hold water when the war is over." - Otto von Bismarck