|Location:||The Papal States, Tamaulipas|
|Current status:||working for the glory of god|
One of the many baronies in The Papal States, Santa Juana is a moderate-sized farming town.
Santa Juana started life as a small farmhouse in mid-Tamaulipas, built by Spanish settlers in the 1600s. It would remain this way until it was left empty by the Great War, the radiation killing the family that occupied it. It was reoccupied in 2127 by an extended family of farmers, who were fleeing fighting in Distrito Capital. Finding the land arable, they settled down and began farming, spending their free time repairing the house and barn.
They were joined by another family, this time leaving The Saltlands in 2132, whom they invited to stay and work the land with them. They grew enough maize to trade the surplus to caravans, which caused the farm to become a popular stop with caravans. The traffic also brought new settlers, causing a small town to form on the edge of the fields by 2148. The town boasted a small cantina, several shops selling farm supplies and animals, a blacksmith and a church. The prosperity of the town would draw the attention of Comancheros however, and in 2150 a band of twenty led by Hector Esquaro attacked the town, destroying the meager resistance the town put up, and claiming it as theirs.
Esquaro and his men most likely would have abandoned the town after a few months, either from lack of revenue or from attacks from other towns, had he not heard about the new Pope. Despite his occupation, Esquaro was a devout Catholic, attending every mass held in the church and praying everyday, and decided to see this pope.
Arriving on a Sunday, Ramon headed to the cathedral to see the Pope hold mass. He was overwhelmed by the majesty of the ceremony, and knew that this man was the rightful heir of Peter. He waited until the service had ended and most of the parishioners had left before he went to talk to the Pope. He was blocked however by two members of the Papal Guard, who told him that one needed an appointment with the holy father first. Scheduling one for the next day, Esquaro stayed the night at a hostel before returning to the cathedral early the next morning.
He was so busy praying that he failed to noticed an old man sit next to him. He looked over and almost jumped out of the pew as the pope was praying within arm's reach of him. The Pope finished praying and then looked over to Esquaro who was staring at him the entire time, and asked what it was that he wanted to see him about. Esquaro told him that he had heard about a new pope and had come to see if it was true.
The Pope blessed him and rose to walk off, but Esquaro grabbed the sleeve of his robe, causing him to be surrounded by Papal Guard. He told the Pope he wanted aid him restore the church across Mexico. The Pope told him that he could help, if he pledged his fealty to the church. Esquaro agreed, and was granted the title of Baron of Santa Juana.
Next he was told that each barony needed a cardinal for the spiritual needs of the people. Esquaro hurried back to Santa Juana, with an escort of Papal Guard and returned to the Pope with his priest, Emilio Ramirez. The Pope approved of the humble father and deemed him fit to be a cardinal.
Since then, each baron has honored his oath with the church, providing troops and funds whenever it has been requested of them
Santa Juana is ruled by Baron Ramon Esquaro, the fourth man to hold this title. The Baron handles any trade disputes that may arise in the town, with most law-breaking being taken care of by the sheriffs, who are assigned by the Baron for life, or until gross incompetence.
The baron sends a tenth of Santa Juana's annual taxes to the Pope's treasury in Soto La Marina, and offers a levy of his knights and paisanos when the need for troops arises, as in keeping with the Papal Charter and the Oath of Fealty every Baron takes.
The majority of the people in Santa Jauna are either farmers or farmhands, and most business in town has to do with farming, whether it is a shop that sells seeds and tools, to the "mule market" where farm animals may be purchased. The town is also home to a cantina, a small inn for travelers, and a blacksmith. In addition, the Baron has recently invested into the construction of a brewery, to convert surplus maize in whiskey.
While the Baron does not charge people to operate a business or work in Santa Juana, a tenth of all daily profits or wages must be paid as tax for the protection of the Baron. Those found not paying must pay double what they owe, be exiled, or be imprisoned for a year.
The culture in Santa Juana is like many other places in the papal states, the day are full of working and praying, and the nights are full of song, dancing, and drinking. On their days off and feast-days however, the town seems to change as the people put on bright colors, decorate the streets, and celebrate life. Even the Baron joins in from time to time, going from party to party dancing and drinking with his people.