Portions of this material are Copyright ©1977-2000 Far Future Enterprises.
The Federation of Arden Embassy to the Vilis subsector capital today held a public press conference at which an official read a prepared statement:
-- TNS: Aren't you afraid that the Imperium will
take this statement as a threat?
"No. We threaten no-one. We merely remind our neighbors to stay out of our affairs."
-- TNS: No disrespect intended, but surely a Federation of seven systems is not militarily the equal of the entire Imperium?
"The Imperium military is a paper tiger. It has neither the strength of will nor the technology to stand up to the Federation of Arden."
-- TNS: What is behind the timing of this statement? Is the Federation planning an action that might offend the Imperium?
"This is merely a friendly reminder that intereference in our affairs will not be tolerated. We are peaceful. We are planning no action against the Imperium."
-- TNS: What about the Zhodani Consulate?
"The Zhodani Consulate is a paper tiger. A war would bring their internal troubles into the open and their oppressive rule would collapse."
-- TNS: No, I meant were you planning anything which could offend the Zhodani?
"No, we are not. But the Federation of Arden has no obligation to take into account the sensibilities of our neighbors."
-- TNS: Is it true that Imperial author Akim Gavrolovitch was assasinated to prevent publication of Arden military and political secrets in his next book?
"We are aware that the book was to reference the Federation. Gavrolovitch was an untalented writer of uneducated fiction. He never did background research, and his books have always been pure fiction. Even your own Archduke Dulinor has denounced him as a fraud and sensationalist. If he really had access to our secrets -- which he did not -- why would he publish them in a work of fiction? I'm sure your Imperial running dogs would have paid him well to stay quiet and continue his speculation for them. We have no reason to care whether his book is published or not, and do not care whether he is dead or alive. This is a pointless discussion. You are an idiot. This interview is over."