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Skybox
Royal Skybox
Magical Principality of Monaco

Welcome to the underground city of the Magical Principality of Monaco! Currently you are at the Royal Skybox, a penthouse entertainment suite typically situated at the top of Hôtel Ottavia, the tallest building in the city. The Royal Skybox comes equipped with an en-suite, fully staffed kitchen and bar to suit guests' every need, as well as a 360° balcony with plenty of lounge areas and hot tubs on the east and west sides. The interior layout will vary depending on the event being hosted.

For the 2023 Grand Prix, the Skybox has been lowered to the action level of the race, and the interior features numerous large feeds following the race real-time. As Hôtel Ottavia is situated at the start/finish line of the race, invites to the Royal Skybox are historically quite sought after. This year, only international royalty, heads of state, and their plus-ones have received invitations.
• • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • •
The underground city of Monaco was officially opened in 1713 by Sovereign Princess Ottavia, though it existed for decades before as small, fractured settlements. Princess Ottavia sought to give her people a safe place to live, work, and play, away from the danger of muggles, and made the city's unification and expansion the primary goal of her reign. With the aid of her trusted advisers, she gathered the best magical engineers she could find, and with their expertise, her encouragement, and the tireless labor of the citizens of Monaco, the underground city as we know it today was born.

Small parts of the city and much of the Princess's Palace are hidden above ground, but the vast majority of homes, businesses, parks, and other attractions reside in the underground city. Le Corps des Lanceurs de Sorts Royaux, or the Corps of Royal Spellcasters, is in charge of maintaining not only the protective enchantments around the city and its entrances, but also the artificial sky and weather! The natural stone ceiling is on display in the cave park, but the rest of the city depends on the artificial night and day for health and scheduling. As the underground city does have some cliffside properties that have views of the natural sky, the artificial sky usually matches the natural sky, but there are exceptions to this rule. These exceptions are almost exclusively limited to weather and temperature rather than the length of night-vs-day. For instance, every year on Christmas day, there is a modest snowfall.

The magical city is not difficult to get into for wixkind, as the entrances require only a simple spell to open them, but muggles cannot enter, and squibs and nonhumans typically have to be accompanied by a wix to get in or out of the city. Despite the hassle entrance can be for some members of the magical community, the underground city is large and beautiful, and the cliffside properties offer an exquisite view at any time of day.

Since the grand opening of the underground city in 1713, daring racers of all modes of transport have been drawn to its narrow, twisting streets, tunnels, and archways, but many of these races were illegal and caused problems for the residents of the city.

In 1777, newly-coronated Princess Clémence, an avid racer herself in her youth, established a schedule for broom races throughout the year, with the best racers joining in early June for the grand prize race - hence, Grand Prix. This race began to draw international attention - and crowds - quickly, and by 1800, the yearly racing schedule had been done away with, replaced with international trial races culminating in the Grand Prix in early June.

The race circuit changes every lap, preventing racers from getting too comfortable with the course, and their course is guided only by giant circles of flames suspended in the air. Each racer must pass through all the checkpoints in order or they will be disqualified. Each lap is only about 5km, and there are a total of 50 laps. In the early days, the race could take as much as three hours total, but with the advancements in modern broomsticks, there may be a first-place finish in under an hour this year!

The race is well-known for being dangerous and it is not uncommon for racers to walk away with injuries - or to not walk away at all. Flying at speed through the narrow streets, arches, and tunnels, while also trying to avoid being impeded by onlookers, other racers, and the sharp turns throughout the course is notoriously difficult and a huge part of the draw to the race. Until 1960, when Princess Charlotte pushed to disallow bystander participation, it was not uncommon for hexes, jinxes, and other obstacles to be thrown at racers not only by other participants but also from spectators. Minor hexes and jinxes are still allowed - and encouraged - from contestants, but they are not permitted to use anything other than a wand. Even given the dangers of the race, most years, there are no casualties! As of 1990, the average deaths-per-race was less than one. (The 27 deaths during the 1974 race are an outlier and were not counted.)

Despite the low mortality rate, the race was discontinued in 1993 by Princess Mattea, who claimed she pushed for its end for the safety of the riders and the city. After thirty long years, the race is back on thanks to support from Princess Giovanna, but with new considerations for the safety of everyone involved. There are healers and mediwix in excess, ready to take care of the injured on a moment's notice, protective wards have been placed around spectator areas to ensure stray spells from the racers do not hit bystanders, and the racers are all checked before starting to ensure they are not carrying contraband. Signs have been places around the city to remind spectators they are not allowed to interfere in the race, but it's yet to be determined if those notices will be more effective now than they were thirty years ago.

The Grand Prix has historically been a huge event for the city, both in terms of celebration and economic impact. Hotels are often fully booked months in advance for the week before and the week after race day, and many restaurants hire event staff just for those two weeks to ensure they can operate at full capacity. Many businesses are looking forward to the increase in patronage this year for the race and the High Council expects the economy will take a turn for the better now the Grand Prix has been reinstated.

The Magical Principality of Monaco was founded in 1645 with the coronation of Sovereign Princess Ottavia Grimaldi, and the Grimaldi family has ruled the country since. Since the reign of Princess Thérèse, true governing power has rested with le Conseil Supérieur des Affaires Magiques Monégasques, or the High Council of Magical Monegasque Affairs, which has twelve seats, each with equal power.

The magical portion of Monaco lies primarily below ground and under the harbour, but there are some homes and businesses above ground that are hidden from muggle eyes. A significant portion of the Princess's Palace is hidden in this way, even though the muggle head of state is aware of the existence of the magical country right under their nose. The magical city is not difficult to get into for wixkind, as the entrances require only a simple spell to open them, but muggles cannot enter, and squibs and nonhumans typically have to be accompanied by a wix to get in or out of the city. Despite the hassle entrance can be for some members of the magical community, the underground city is large and beautiful, and the cliffside properties offer an exquisite view at any time of day.

Maintenance of the protective and concealment charms around the palace and the city is one of if not the most revered profession in the country. Appointments to le Corps des Lanceurs de Sorts Royaux, or the Corps of Royal Spellcasters, require strength and consistency of both spellcasting and moral character, and corpsmen are audited once a year to ensure they are still deserving of the position.

As the Magical Principality of Monaco was founded in great part due to fear of witch trials, witch hunters, and general danger from their non-magical neighbors, those same ideas persist even today for much of the population, resulting in simple fear of muggles for some citizens, and full on hatred of them from others.

Though Francesco Grimaldi first captured the Rock of Monaco in January of 1297, it was his cousin, Rainier I, who became Monaco's first ruler - but not for long. They were able to hold the fortress for only four years before conflict over the land resumed for just over another century. Jean I, Ambroise, and Antonie Grimaldi, the sons of Rainier II, purchased Monaco from Genoa on the fifth of June, 1419, thus restoring the Grimaldi family's official rule of Monaco.

The Grimaldi family has always had members with some level of magical ability - a small handful in every generation who lived and practiced magic around their muggle relatives without issue, for the most part. Most notably, Jean II was killed by his brother Lucien, a wizard, under questionable circumstances. Some royal historians maintain it was a tragic case of spell-gone-wrong, but others firmly believe it was murder, as Lucien was next in line for Lord of Monaco at the time. There are records of other, less deadly incidents - for instance, it is an ill-kept secret that the marriage of Lady Claudine to her cousin Lamberto in 1465 was under the influence of a love potion, and Bartholomew Doria, nephew to Lucien, had a hoof for a left foot from an improperly cast transfiguration spell.

Honoré I, the son of Lucien, is suspected to have been a squib, or at least had no skill with magic at all, due to his marriage to Isabella Grimaldi, the daughter of Giovanni Grimaldi, a known witch-hater. Honoré and Isabella had four sons, all of whom were wizards. Isabella was no fan of magic, but she was willing to make an exception for her own children - in fact, she went so far as to try and hide their abilities from her father, knowing he would react harshly if he knew. Any time her father or his known emissaries were in the palace, she tried to keep them away from her boys, and if she could not keep them away, she ensured her sons were in the company of other children to which any magical incidents could be attributed. Horace, a metamorphagus, was the first to die: he was found at the base of the palace walls come morning. He was just barely a year old.

After Horace's death, Isabella became desperate to protect her other sons, and she finally caved to her husband's suggestion of magical tutors for them so they could learn to control their magic. She also doubled her efforts to keep the boys out of range of her father's eyes and ears in the castle, with great success up until her death in 1583. Francois was next, lasting only three years after his mother died. His wine was poisoned, and an antidote could not be found in time to save his life. Charles II, the eldest son, was found dead in his bed three years after Francois' passing. He was a healthy man of only 34 years.

This left Hercule only, the youngest of Honoré's sons, who took after his father in the magic department. Hercule made it to the ripe old age of 42, when he was rather publicly murdered in front of his young children. Giovanni's grandson - the son of Isabella's younger brother - still had witch hunters watching the ruling family. He was a sick man; in his mind, emptying his coffers in exchange for some entertainment at the expense of his cousin's life was a great deal.

Honoré II, the only son of Hercule, became Lord of Monaco at the age of six, much to the chagrin of his older sister, Giovanna Maria Grimaldi, who aspired to rule Monaco even as a child.

Giovanna was the only witch out of Hercule's three children, and she understood she should hide that part of her from the world the moment it showed up when she was ten. Her father's murderer had loudly declared him a sorcerer before killing him, and she'd heard stories from her tutors about her deceased uncles as well, so it was not difficult for her to connect the dots.

She learned magic in secret, teaching herself from old spellbooks in the palace library, at the same time drawing up plans for a place for the magical population of Monaco to live openly and without fear. In 1615, she married Gian Giacomo Teodoro Trivulzio, a devout Catholic wizard who had embedded himself into the church for his own safety. Armed with her own history of caution and her new religious husband, Giovanna began reaching out to the magical community in Monaco, trying to learn how many of them there were and what methods they were using to hide currently.

Giovanna had three daughters with Gian before she contracted dragon pox in 1620. Her case was not so bad she died from it, but it was bad enough that any muggle would not have survived it, so her husband faked her death and secreted her into the care of a healer who nursed her back to health. Her scarring was extensive enough that she was almost unrecognizable without close study, and once she was completely recovered, she took on the role of nanny to her daughters so she could continue to raise them.

While she was certainly perturbed by her younger brother getting lordship over her, the eldest, she didn't dwell too much on it until said brother was recognized as the Sovereign Prince of Monaco in 1633. Driven by spite, she renewed her efforts to bring the magical community together, going so far as to stoke the fear of the witch trials of the era in order to gain support for her cause.

She gathered the most skilled magical architects and tasked them with creating an underground city, then she found the most skilled enchanters to cast protective charms on the city to ensure the safety of magical folk. She also found twelve of the most wise and trusted wizards and witches and formed a council to start drafting laws for their new magical society. As much as Giovanna wanted to simply declare herself Princess, she wasn't about to have her hard work fall apart.

Giovanna caught dragon pox again in 1643 and died before the council finished drafting the laws. As her plan had been to ascend the throne after the laws had been finalized, she never did get to be Princess like she wanted. Her oldest daughter, Ottavia, had the privilege of being the first Sovereign Princess of the Magical Principality of Monaco in 1645, marking the official separation of Magical and Muggle Monaco. Since Ottavia's rule, the magical Grimaldi line has been kept pure and no muggle blood has entered the direct line.

When muggle Monaco was annexed by France in 1793, Sovereign Princess Clémence reacted out of fear and ordered the nation's small military force to aid in retaking the country, resulting in the deaths of almost the entire military. The High Council, with the blessing of Clémence's heir, Thérèse, passed laws to restrict the monarch's power, rendering them primarily a figurehead with no power to order military action or singlehandedly pass or deny laws.

Princess Thérèse, near the end of her reign, decided to make the existence of Magical Monaco known to the muggle ruler, a tradition that still continues. Only the sovereign, the immediate heir, and the president of the council are aware, and they are all sworn to secrecy.

Mattea Grimaldi took the throne in 1990 after the death of her mother, Princess Charlotte. Mattea was 36 at the time and already married to Aloysius. They had no children yet, but they did plan to have them in the future - at least as many as it took to produce a female heir so she could ensure the throne would not pass to her younger sister if she died.

Princess Mattea was an expert on every law the High Council had written and she had a list of grievances to present them with at the first council session after her coronation. At the top of the list: limitations on the power of the sovereign, and right after it the limitations on length of rule that were instituted by Princess Thérèse after her mother Clémence became a vampire.

In 1995, Mattea and Aloysius decided it was time to have children. Around the same time, Mattea began an affair with a man named David. Later that same year, when she discovered she was pregnant, she was sincerely concerned who the father was. The last thing she needed so early in her rule was an illegitimate child - or two illegitimate children, as she would be having twins.

The twins were born on the 21st of August, 1996, Ambroise first and Giovanna shortly after. As they grew, it was clear to Mattea that Ambroise was David's child, but Giovanna was certainly Aloysius' - however, since they were twins, their paternity wasn't called into question. They were a rare case of heteropaternal superfecundation, when two eggs are fertilized by separate fathers in the same reproductive cycle.

Mattea did her level best to pit her children against eachother, both in her attempts to give Ambroise false hope that he may one day take the throne, and in her attempts to convince Giovanna she was competing against her brother for the throne once their mother was gone. In reality, Mattea's goal was to become immortal and remain in power forever, but even the best laid plans can fall through.

On 8 December 2018, Ambroise fell into a deep ditch that lead steeply to the often-treacherous ocean caves, and his body was never found. Stories from bystanders vary, some saying it was a simple slip, others saying Giovanna, who was with him at the time, pushed him off, but the reality is that she bumped into him by accident, and then he slipped and was gone. As no body was recovered and the investigator on the case firmly believes there is no way Ambroise could have survived, the prince was pronounced dead, and a royal funeral was held for him before the end of the year.

Tragedy struck the royal family again not even a year later: on 6 August 2019, Mattea and Aloysius were crushed by ceiling beams brought down by a stray spell at the dueling tournament they were attending. Princess Giovanna II was coronated 11 December 2019 and is the current sovereign.

Princespalace

The Princess's Palace, situated within the Prince's Palace of Muggle Monaco. The entrances to the magical palace are hidden from muggle eyes, and the lower levels of the palace stretch into the heart of the underground city. The underground portion of the palace is surrounded by beautifully kept gardens.

Ambroisememorial

The Prince Ambroise II memorial, commissioned by Princess Giovanna after her brother's tragic death in 2018. The memorial is situated in the royal gardens and features Prince Ambroise's favorite quote and a small golden statue of the prince himself, which is enchanted to walk along the prince's favorite path through the gardens. When the statue is not on the path, it sits on the center pedestal.

Hotelottavia

Hôtel Ottavia, named for the first sovereign princess, is the tallest building the underground city. Construction on this luxury hotel was completed in 1769 and the building boasts 150 rooms, 50 suites, and some of the best views in Monaco!
Grimaldimausoleum
The Royal Mausoleum, the final resting place for every member of the House of Grimaldi since Giovanna I. The mausoleum is guarded day and night by members of the royal guard, and is open for guided tours during the daytime.

Oceancave

The ocean exit to the cave complex by the underground city. The caves are great for your morning run, or a nice picnic in one of the large caverns. The pathways are enchanted to direct visitors to the nearest exist upon request.

Monacoembassy

The Embassy to the United Kingdom, purchased in 1976, lies in the heart of London, and is home to the Ambassador to the UK, as well as members of the royal family when they are visiting.

Roleplay[]

Ambroise and Gio[]

Prince Ambroise,
victimised by giovanna grimaldi
It was incredibly risky going to this event but he liked the event. However, he figured most of them were drunk enough and distracted enough to not give him a second glance. He had a hat pulled low and a beard was in full growth. He was always clean shaven as a prince and it proved enough of a camouflage until someone properly looked at him. Which–no one did! He was at the skybox watching the events, a large drink in his hand that he was quickly going through. Had he put a lot of money on this race? Maybe but who cares about that? If he lost–who cared! It was a party!
PRONOUNS
he/him/his
|
SPECIES
Wizard
|
AGE
26
|
RELATIONSHIP
Single
|
USER
Time
PAMicon
11:34, 13 July 2021 (UTC)
the best ride you'll ever go on.
Giovanna Grimaldi,
Sovereign Princess of Monaco
Glad as Giovanna was to hear that the reopening of the race was an economic success, she wasn't in the mood to listen to the finance counsellor give her the details. She was here to enjoy herself and the freely-flowing alcohol, but thanks to the counsellor she's still nursing the dregs of her first glass of wine. When he pauses to take a breath, she quickly makes her excuses and steps away. And it's not a lie, really, there are surely people here she should be mingling with, but they'll have to wait for at least one more glass of wine. Or three, she amends, spotting a suspiciously familiar figure watching the race - surely Ambroise wouldn't have the gall to come here. She sighs to herself and makes her way back to the bar for another glass of wine before she investigates.
PRONOUNS
She/her
|
SPECIES
Witch
|
AGE
26
|
RELATIONSHIP
Single
|
USER
Jay
Giovannawbv506
03:22, 24 July 2021 (UTC)
“It is all about numbers. It is all about sequence. It's the mathematical logic of being alive.”
Aimee Bender
Prince Ambroise,
victimised by giovanna grimaldi
Luckily for Giovanna, Ambroise had gone over for a glass of wine himself (he was definitely being cheap here) which meant he...soon came face to face with his twin. "You didn't see me," he said before he ordered a glass of wine for himself. "Not here, not now, not ever. I'm a ghost. Poof poof." He gave his sister jazz hands to emphasise his point. "Why are you here, though? Doesn't really seem to be your type of vibe."
PRONOUNS
he/him/his
|
SPECIES
Wizard
|
AGE
26
|
RELATIONSHIP
Single
|
USER
Time
PAMicon
13:23, 3 September 2021 (UTC)
the best ride you'll ever go on.
Giovanna Grimaldi,
Sovereign Princess of Monaco
"How I wish that were true," Giovanna says, rolling her eyes. She wonders how much wine he's had - jazz hands? Really? Quietly, she asks the bartender to drop a shot or two of something strong into her wine so she can catch up...or get ahead. Either would work. "Who do you think pushed to bring the race back? I can't very well refuse to show up at what may as well be my own party. I think the better question is why are you here? Are you trying to get roped back into the public eye?"
PRONOUNS
She/her
|
SPECIES
Witch
|
AGE
26
|
RELATIONSHIP
Single
|
USER
Jay
Giovannawbv506
08:18, 5 October 2021 (UTC)
“It is all about numbers. It is all about sequence. It's the mathematical logic of being alive.”
Aimee Bender
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