Tamil Nadu’s Game of Thrones

Politics

Tamil Nadu’s Game of Thrones

Illustration: Juergen D

I

f you travel far enough into the wilderness, a magical land called Tamil Nadu will open its gates for you. It is a mystical land filled with energy misspent over Rajinikanth and diluting Old Monk to Old Cask. In the main kingdom of this land, called Chennaisteros, begins our story.

In the December of 2016, shortly after the death of the High Seat of House AIADMK, Queen Ammanister, rose Panneerneverwin Paanister to fight the Battle of Vardhawater. Channelling his inner Khal Drogo, Paanister stood in front of the cyclone, looked it in the eyes, and screamed like a dutiful son, “The Light of Amma shelters us all!” He repeated this until the night was no longer dark and full of terrors. The cyclone cowered as Paanister’s commandment illuminated every last dark spot in the deep reaches of the realm. Panneerneverwin Paanister stood in the wreckage, smiling as he had finally realised his own power, laying waste to his lifelong Oedipal complex along the way.

A hurried desperation over succession took place. Enter Cersiekala.

Before she became a public figure in “The Great Game”, Cersiekala was known far and wide to have played a long con. She slowly poisoned Queen Ammanister in a blind lust for power. Four years later, with Queen Amma out of the way and Paanister wallowing in the quagmire of her death, Cersiekala finally took the throne for herself. Now a broken man without a single fuck left to give, Paanister wobbled around old Chennaisteros, woefully humming The Rains of Madrasmere and doing shots of cheap wine.

Fortunately, he was saved by the greatest tactician in all of the land: Lord Amit Sharys. “Where normal folk see a drunkard, I see an opportunity,” Lord Sharys said to Paanister, thus beginning his education in the art of war.

Thus began an arms race between Paanister and Cersiekala.

“What happens when it doesn’t matter that you’re smarter than everyone anymore? You become an agent of chaos,” Sharys said, as Paanister took notes. Sharys then pulled strings with the highest offices to provide his ally Paanister with a sliver of hope, who on cue, went to look for reinforcements: Mystical beings.

See, in Chennaisteros, there exists a power greater than that of dragons, known as the power of Ammanister. And lo, Panneerneverwin Paanister went to the shrine of his hero and tormentor alike in Meereen Beach, sat there alone, and prayed. Paanister prayed to the old gods and the new, as a stream of tears ran down his cheeks. Suddenly, his prayers were answered, as local as well as foreign hype men came to bear witness. There was Lord News Minute, the corpse of Lord Arnab, and the handsome Lord Srinivasan.

“Ammanister told me not to resign,” Paanister told the assembled gathering.

“Nothing more is needed, he must be made king,” they said.

Thus began an arms race between Paanister and Cersiekala, but with Lord Sharys on his side, losing wasn’t even on the table. Before the dawn of Twitter, we learnt that Cersiekala was involved in some funky business and kept getting away with it. But now with all power brokers on one side, a great escape eluded her.

On the Festival of St Valentine, the Loving, Cersiekala was vanquished as Paanister rejoiced. After years of being played, Paanister thought he had become a real player in “The Great Game”, and that the throne of Chennaisteros was his. Little did he know, Cerseikala had a final ace up her sleeve…

Epilogue

Following her condemnation by the coalition that had gathered to oppose her, Cerseikala prepared to feign defeat. On the eve of her surrender, she made a visit to Queen Amma’s final resting place in clear view of all the townspeople, thus demonstrating that the Light of Amma shined on her as well. As Cerseikala readied to enter the dungeons, her Commander-at-Arms, Ser Palaniswami, turned toward Chennaisteros and loosened his sword in its scabbard.

“Cerseikala will never be defeated by one such as you, Paanister. The war has just begun.”

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