The Jedi Kalja Tal'Vera had stood to greet him even before the Chief of State had, and something about that gave Maxim a twisting feeling in his gut that he couldn't quite make sense of. "Jedi" Maxim acknowledged with a frigid edge, his steely gaze locked on her features for a moment. Her skin was light and golden, her hair platinum like curls of threaded silver, and her eyes made him think of what he imagined an ocean looked like. She was attractive, and he was sure his younger brother would fawn over her - but she was still a Jedi. His lessons on Operation Knightfall came to the forefront of his mind. The Imperium had begun teaching about how flimsy, democratic bureaucracy had allowed the Old Jedi to corrupt the people, puppeteer a war and feed chaos instead of vanquish it. Many individual voices among politically inclined Jedi had railed against it...but as far as Maxim and most Imperials, it had been for the greater good. He still wasn't convinced that modern Jedi were any better. Turning back to Kairi Leidias, Maxim bowed his head in appreciation at her condolences. Then, looking The Chief of State directly in the eye, the young Heir lied to her face, "I've had my time to grieve, it's time to look forward - towards a brighter galaxy..." was there even such a thing to be had anymore? His father had left him with little more than a shattered heart and a crumbling Empire. His father's passing was a deep, dark cloud that'd been cast into the storm sweeping The Imperium. Ronin should have prepared him more, should have done more. He should have karking lived to teach him more...but he hadn't and that was that. Maxim pushed the dreadful thoughts deep down and let his drive to succeed fuel the rest of his, much more truthful, response. "... But I assure you, lady Leidias, my resolve has never been stronger. " A warning and a truth. Leidias was known in the Imperium for her anti-Imperial sentiment. He'd long heard Moffs and his father speaking of her problematic stances...Maxim had no intention of being bullied by The New Republic. He thought he was prepared for her to mention the real reason she was here, but when she spoke of the truce, it sent a fire into his chest. "If you can't possibly wait until after my father's coffin is cold, then fine. We can discuss it." he didn't try to disguise the edge in his voice, despite the obvious contradiction he was creating in himself after claiming he had done his grieving. He knew he shouldn't be losing his temper. Such diplomatic dealings were to be expected...but just like with his sadness, the spite in his heart overcame his mind with a muddy haze, "you and your dignitaries can be escorted to the throne room. I'll meet you there once all the real mourners have paid their respects." Before the Chief of State could finish her response, Maxim turned towards Axius and waved the captain of the guard over. "Captain! Escort the Chief of State to the throne room, I need to see to the guests..." turning back, Maxim scowled, "and my family. I'll see you soon, Chief of State." Maxim turned and stormed away before he found himself saying more that he should not have. He moved like a storm cloud through the wake, his eyes catching sight of his family just as a small child with pink hair (Funami Teriyaki ) came tearing into the feast hall. The Heir spared her only a raised eyebrow as she ran towards the table, butting through line to get to the food. Apparently, someone else found it fit to disrespect the dead. Who lets their child run around a wake like this? Maxim made a mental note to see to the meaning of it later. If it was an Imperial Officer responsible, then there would be a price...whatever price that may have been. For now, however, Maxim pushed the note to the back of his mind and stormed up to his family...silent but brooding. He was never good at sharing.