- Katherine DeLong
- Shayna Cohen
We open on a picturesque Roman road with a church on every corner. After centuries of Catholic worship defining Rome and its place in the world, the news hangs heavy in the air: Pope Pius IX has fled to Gaeta following the sketchy assasinaton of (San) Pellegrino Rossi, the Minister of Justice for the Papal States. Over the past year, the outbreaks of revolt across Austria and the northern invasion into Piemont have sparked and exacerbated a fervor for insurgency and suffrage in the hearts of Italian city-states.
Our main characters gather by a curb, with murmurs growing around them: sic semper tyrannis.
They discuss how, even from outside Rome, the Pope has been trying to exert control over Roman politics in a mix of warring interests and uncertainty. After all, what does it mean to be the Papal States if the Pope himself has fled the capital? To those in Rome, the Pope’s flight means one thing: alea iacta est. The die has been cast.
Current events have brought a shadow of shame to many in the Papal States. The Romans have always stood head and shoulders above the rest, whether by “most victories over the Greeks” or “most times breaking up into city-states under a tyrant”. Heck, one of our emperors even appointed his horse to the Senate! But nothing beats the mess of assumptive proclamations by Pope Pius IX undermining the people’s right to representation, and thus, through the constituent “Assembly of the Damned”, the Roman Republic was re-born.
It’s up to you, the people of Rome, to instill order, maintain liberty, build upon the values of our slightly-less-democratic forebears, and gain support from other Papal States to usher Italy into its glorious future. Above all else, remember: “Dovunque saremo, colá sará Roma; wherever we are, there will be Rome.”