By Madeline, Reporter for The Arendelle Guardian
ARENDELLE – The queen’s new personal vessel was commissioned early this morning by the docks. A grand celebration was enjoyed by all gathered, with cake, candy, pop soda, and much more of Her Majesty’s slightly childish favourites in abundance.
Christened Pride of Elsa, Her Majesty’s new flagship is intended to replace the capsized Autumn Cloud, which sank after being sabotaged by Amira the Northuldra hunter during Prime Minister-Countess Vi’s party at sea.
Building a new ship from scratch initially seemed fiscally unrealistic. The government had planned to simply retrofit and repurpose one of the Arendellian navy’s existing ships. This was due to the eye watering cost of Anna’s first vessel and the economic volatility caused by the competition between Kristoff’s Bjorgman House and Skau-Krogh. Her Majesty had refused the idea outright, unconvinced that she’d sail overseas anytime soon.
But a gift of “birthday pocket money for Anna,” as our prime minister Countess Vi sarcastically put it, paid for Pride of Elsa in full – a mouth-dropping 400,000 Arendellian kroner.
Despite the Countess’s sarcasm, her endowment, a late gift for Anna’s birthday on 21 June, was a dramatic departure from her time as Anna’s political rival, when her open objective had been to destroy the Snow Queen. “To think I’d be sponsoring a ship for her,” she told her reporter employees at the Snow Herald, rolling her eyes.
Crowds gathered by the harbour as Pride of Elsa was unveiled. In an ad hoc statement to gathered journalists, Anna looked slightly awestruck herself, as if she didn’t expect a ship of such elegance and power. Her voice audibly trembled as she shared her thoughts with reporters.
“I’m just overwhelmed. Where Vi gets her gold from, I still don’t know,” she told the press. “I’m stunned by the skill of our amazing naval engineers, and by this incredible statement of the kingdom’s faith in my leadership. I didn’t deserve this. Thank you so much.”
Pride of Elsa is a grand yet nimble clipper, incorporating aesthetic elements of the late Agnarr and Iduna’s ill-fated royal barquentine. It’s stronger and sturdier than Autumn Cloud, and has been fitted with twenty-two powerful guns. Indeed, Pride of Elsa has been designed with recent geopolitical events in mind, especially now that certain members of the powerful Exalted cabal have designs on our kingdom.
Pride of Elsa will serve as the queen and her general Mattias’ marine headquarters vessel, and includes spacious dining rooms, offices for the captain, luxurious suites for passengers of state, royalty, or nobility, and a drawing room for reading and leisure activities like chess and cards.
“Pride of Elsa” beat out many proposed names for Autumn Cloud’s successor, including “Fierce Fire,” “Fall Equinox,” and “Arenfjord Cloud.” Arendelle’s Big Three newspapers had surveyed their readers for suggestions, with the press barons reporting to Anna the most popular choice. Her Majesty fully supported the final result.
“I think it’s perfect – I couldn’t have thought of a better name,” she confessed to reporters. “I’ve always wanted to dedicate something big, something definitive, to Elsa. In fact, it’s not only my flagship, but my very reign, that I owe to her.”
Since taking the throne, Anna has made a concerted effort to distinguish her style of rule and statesmanship from past kings and queens. “You call me your monarch, but I see myself as a servant of my citizens, a student of my allies, and a steward for the Snow Queen. All I’ve wanted to do is make her proud. To honour her. And with this ship, I can continue doing exactly that.”
It’s unclear when Pride of Elsa’s maiden voyage will take place, but Anna has promised that it will be a special trip: either to an ally’s kingdom or a foray to a region previously unexplored by Arendellian ships.