Author Topic: On The Regaining of Thurazor  (Read 1199 times)

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Offline The Dark Lily/ML

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On The Regaining of Thurazor
« on: August 07, 2013, 02:20:46 am »
On The Regaining of Thurazor
Being A True And Accurate History Of The Recent Events In The Ruideside Region
Of The Kingdom Of Thurazor.

Recounted By
Matilda Lilja
Minstrel and teller of tales in the household of Otmar Messer,
Lord Commander and Governor-General of the Realm Regained in Thurazor.

    Gentle reader, before we begin this tale, I do swear and aver to you that the following account of the conquest of the Ruideside written by one who was witness with her own eyes to many of the events herein described, is to the best of my knowledge and my ability to confirm, an accurate portrayal of the events as they truly happened.

     To begin my tale, I will relate somewhat of what transpired prior to the commencement of the Great and Holy Endeavour.

    While the realm of Thurazor under King Graecher was undoubtedly the most civilised and reasonable of the goblin realms in Cerilia, it was still a plague upon its neighbours. Upon King Graecherís death at the hands of the Mabd, one Kral Two-Toes, a priest of the cult of the demon Kartathok common among goblinkind, seized control of the Kingdom and began to and drive out the humans who had long traded peacefully under the old King and to hunt out and eliminate the few followers of the True Gods that there were in that benighted land. The Great and Mighty Haelyn, Lord of the Righteous and King of Kings, heard the prayers of His faithful and in His great mercy, He reached into the heart of His most loyal and true son, His Imminence James Ardent, Master of the Holy Church of the Bastion of Truth and called upon him to rescue them and to punish the demon-worshippers for their crimes. So inspired, Master Ardent called upon Lord Doneim Boer, that great and famous hero and defender of the True Church, to gather an army to liberate Thurazor from the darkness and bring it into the light.
   
     Lord Boer then called upon the most skilled and famesome sellswords in the Taelshore to join him in Haelynís Great Endeavour.  And in answer to his call they came from all corners of the land. The Red Queen Sarissa Taren, Commandant of the well renowned Red Brigade sailed out of the west on the crimson sailed ships of the Red Fleet. Otmar Messer, Captain-General of the far-feared Brethren of the Black Flag marched down from the eastern mountains. Brave Moergan Donalls, Grand Master of the Knights of Justice rode up from the far south. And the fearless Sigurd Skarlsmann, Lion of the Hogunmark and First of the Sworn Brothers strode down from the wintery lands he calls home. And others as well, Dana Rood with her wild and bloodthirsty Roodsmen, and bold Sir Aaron Lamier  with his famed Great Endier Route Company known as the Ironborn, and too came fair Bjorn Ulrichson at the head of his Black and Tans, the great and heroic Free Helskaarmen from distant Hjolvar. And others too came. And together they gathered with Master Ardent before the High Altar in the Temple of Haelynís Bastion of Truth in Nolien and swore fearsome and mighty oaths and put their seals on the Great Charter that created the alliance known as the Federated Free Companies, and they chose brave Lord Boer as their Lord Commander to lead them in their sacred mission.

    Then did the great Captains gather in a council of war and after much deliberation it was decided to attack the foe in both the north and the south at the same time; by sea into Stormís Release, and across the Ruide River into Mergarotte, with the intention that each army would advance towards the other and thus clear the Ruideside of the enemy.
Matilda Lilja, minstrel and teller of tales in the household of Otmar Messer, Lord Commander and Governor-General of the Realm Regained in Thurazor.

Offline The Dark Lily/ML

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Re: On The Regaining of Thurazor
« Reply #1 on: August 07, 2013, 02:24:33 am »
     In the north, a shortage of shipping prevented the landing of all the troops at once, so the army was divided further. Commandant Taren landed her Red Brigade on Cape Kargyar to draw the Thuraz garrison away to the east, and the following week Marshal Sigismund landed with the Army of Truth in the west, near the Talinie border.  Both armies then moved resolutely inland and turned inward to meet and thusly cutting off the citadel of Stormhaven from the rest of the kingdom, trapping the local defenders in the fortress where they were closely besieged.

     The southern attack, under the Lord Commander himself, began auspiciously with the bulk of the army advancing together while Grand Master Donalls marched a day to the west with the cavalry to provide a screen. Soon the advance slowed down as the enemy fell back into a series of fortified positions, culminating in the formidable field works along the crest of the precipitous ridge known as the Hazgayar.

     Rather than attempt an assault on this strong position, Lord Commander Boer determined that it would be preferable to bypass it. Accordingly, he split his army in two, leaving the bulk of his army in Mergarotte under Captain-General Messer to hold the enemy troops, while he, with the fortuitous aid of a brave and loyal fisherman known as Viggo Hoerele, now Commodore of the River Flotilla, took a smaller force down river to Bloodbay; coming ashore at the site of the new capital, aptly named Boerís Landing. At that time to the south, Captain-General Messer took a position in front of the Hazgayar with his infantry to keep the enemy in place, while Grand Master Donalls moved to the west with the horse, and First Brother Skarlsmann to the east with the light foot to work their way around the goblin flanks. The stratagem almost succeeded, but the Ever-fickle Sera was with the goblins that day and the cunning manoeuvre was discovered in time and the enemy managed to withdraw before their line of retreat was cut. The presence of the Lord Commander in their rear prevented the Thuraz from making a stand in Bloodbay, and they were forced to scurry all the way into Falling Timber like the cowardly dogs that they are.

     Lord Commander Boer then dispatched a raiding force under Captain-General Messer into Crushing Hills to draw off the goblin reserves while he and Commandant Taren invaded Falling Timber from the south and north respectively, leaving the siege of Stormhaven to Marshal Sigismund.

     As a side note of interest, I should mention that it was at this point that the Castel Smashers, or Kale Parksalayikiari as they are named in their tongue, under the command of Baergkral Thapel and Hirek Jarbud, joined Marshal Sigismundís army before Stormhaven, where their expertise in the art of sieges was employed to great advantage.

     The double invasion was begun well, but the goblin commander, a vile creature named Grich Bonewalker, proved a more skilful General than they had expected and managed to catch Commandant Tarenís army before it could join with the Lord Commander, and defeated her at the Battle of the Deeping Well. Commandant Taren was driven back into Stormís Release where she rejoined Marshal Sigismund in the siege of Stormhaven, and played no further role in the remainder of the campaign. Bonewalker then turned south to deal with Lord Commander Boer.
Matilda Lilja, minstrel and teller of tales in the household of Otmar Messer, Lord Commander and Governor-General of the Realm Regained in Thurazor.

Offline The Dark Lily/ML

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Re: On The Regaining of Thurazor
« Reply #2 on: August 07, 2013, 02:28:24 am »
     Meanwhile, in Crushing Hills, Captain-General Messer, who was much outnumbered, managed, through skilful manoeuvring, to avoid direct battle with the superior Thuraz forces thereby preventing them from interfering with the efforts of the Lord Commander in Falling Timber while avoiding serious losses to his own Companies.

     Upon hearing of Commandant Tarenís setback, he abandoned his mission in Crushing Hills and managed to extricate his army and move it into Falling Timber to threaten the goblin army from behind.

     Lord Commander Boer was brought to battle on unfavourable terrain before he could combine his army with the Captain-Generalís. On the banks of the Talahar he was ambushed and was being badly mauled, such that it appeared as though he would suffer the same fate as Commandant Taren had, when Captain-General Messer, after several days of hard forced marching arrived on the goblin rear just in time, thanks be to the fortitude of his soldiers and the Capricious Whim of the Lady of Fortune. When the Captain-Generalís brave Companies struck the goblin army from behind they started to break up. Lord Commander Boer called out to his men as they fell back, saying to them.

     Hold boys, stay your flight. Look ye beyond the foe, are not those banners black as soot? Hold boys for it is Messer. Sweet Haelynís Mercy it is Messer and his crows. Unlooked for and unforeseen, yet still it is Messer come to us though he was so far afield. Think boys, think ye, how they must have marched long and hard to be here on this day, think ye how fatigued they must be. Yet look, look and see! Do you not see how they strike with a will? See ye not what slaughter they deal? Brave lads they are, and the day is won my boys, the day is won and we shall not die this day, we shall live on. We shall live on in shame and ignominy. Aye in shame. Think ye boys, in every hall and tavern the minstrels will sing how it was the men of Brechtur that won the day while those of Boer fled the field. I cannot but praise their might, nor begrudge them their rightful glory, for they have earned it this day. Yet still it galls me, it galls me greatly that it must be so. But hold my hearties. Must it be so? What say ye? I say no! No! No and never!  Never while I live shall it be said that Ďtwas Brechtishmen who saved the sonís of Anuire! What say ye boys? Who is with me this day? Turn! Turn and turn about I say! Turn and return to the fray! Come on my brave lads, let us go and welcome bold Messer and his Brechtish boys shall we? With me boys! Letís show Messerís crows that we too know how to kill these misbegotten little bastards, shall we? For Boer, for Haelyn, and for Anuire! Charge!

     And with these words the Lord Commander, bold Lord Doneim Boer rallied his men and led a general assault on the enemy lines. The wild attack was pressing the goblins heavily when the Lord Commander was overwhelmed in the thick of battle and was slain. His death caused the attack to falter and it appeared to all as though the Thuraz might be able to break free. However, a desperate charge by Grand Master Donalls and his Knights of Justice, thereafter known as the Valiant Knights of Justice in recognition of their courage in doing so, proved decisive, and the trapped goblin army was broken and annihilated. This glorious victory is known as the Battle of the Talahar, though popularly it is also spoken of as Boerís Last Stand.
Matilda Lilja, minstrel and teller of tales in the household of Otmar Messer, Lord Commander and Governor-General of the Realm Regained in Thurazor.

Offline The Dark Lily/ML

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Re: On The Regaining of Thurazor
« Reply #3 on: August 07, 2013, 02:32:37 am »
     In the aftermath of the Talahar the army of the Federated Free Companies was in disarray, having suffered grievous losses and the death of its beloved Lord Commander. While the victors were reorganizing and refitting their armies, an army of goblins mounted on swift and savage wolves rode out of Doomís Peak to invade Bloodbay while another larger army was massing in Crushing Hills. The Thuraz move was detected by that great and most puissant magister, Lord Anviras of The Stone Circle, and at a hurried council of war it was decided that Grand Master Donalls should take the cavalry and move south to counter the goblins while Captain-General Messer remained in Falling Timber with the infantry.

     The goblin move into Bloodbay proved to be a feint and the defenders were led deep into Mergarotte before the goblins withdrew again into Doomís Peak. Thus it was that the Captain-General was left to face the inhuman horde that marched out of Crushing Hills without any cavalry.

     Once again Captain-General Messer, who was proving to be the most able of the Generals engaged in The Great Endeavour, avoided the larger goblin army and played for time, withdrawing slowly to the west hoping to avoid battle long enough for either Grand Master Donalls or Commandant Taren to reinforce him and thus complete the destruction of the goblin forces. During this prolonged series of marches and counter marches, Captain-General Messer made contact with certain elements in the Thuraz army who were opposed to the actions and policies of Kral Two-toes, and hatched a plot with them to trap and betray the enemy.

    Through yet more skilful manoeuvring and a daring ruse, wherein he sent his pack train and the camp followers disguised as troops in one direction with a minimal guard while he slipped away with the bulk of his troops, he managed to catch the enemy army on the march with their back to a marsh. As he struck the enemy left, First Brother Skarlsmann moved on the goblin centre. However instead of moving to flank the Sworn Brothers and crushing them, Ksog Dreadhand, the Thuraz commander of the goblin right wing raised a black flag and joined with the First Brotherís troops in the attack on the Thuraz centre, as had been secretly agreed with the Captain-General. Between them they defeated the goblin army and drove it from the field. This great victory is known as the Battle of the Merovade Cut, and is reckoned to be the point at which the Thuraz were defeated and thus the province of Falling Timber has been renamed Victory to commemorate the great success.

     Captain-General Messer pursued the fleeing enemy, and using First Brother Skarlsmannís swifter Sworn Brothers to prevent them from fleeing south west into unconquered lands, and thus herded them into the lances of Grand Master Donallsí horsemen coming up from Mergarotte, and together these three worthy Generals caught and destroyed the remaining goblin troops in a lopsided battle known as the Groenfeld Slaughter.

     With the immediate crisis averted, the commanders of the Federated Free Companies in Bloodbay convened to settle the question of command before the Thuraz could mount another counter-attack. Captain-General Messer now commanded the largest number of Free Companies, and with the early support of both First Brother Skarlsmann and his Sworn Brothers and Dana Rood and her wild Roodsmen he emerged from this Blood Council as the undisputed leader and was proclaimed the new Lord Commander of the Federated Free Companies.

     Meanwhile in the north, Marshal Sigismund and Commandant Taren, with the aid of the mighty magics of the wizard Anviras of The Stone Circle, finally breached the walls of Stormhaven and in a bloody assault overwhelmed the defenders. Commandant Taren claimed the city and renamed it Tarenshaven in her own honour.
« Last Edit: August 11, 2013, 03:39:18 am by The Black Lily/ML »
Matilda Lilja, minstrel and teller of tales in the household of Otmar Messer, Lord Commander and Governor-General of the Realm Regained in Thurazor.

Offline The Dark Lily/ML

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Re: On The Regaining of Thurazor
« Reply #4 on: August 07, 2013, 02:38:10 am »
     At this juncture, if I may beg your indulgence, I wish to divert slightly from my narrative to relate a tale I have heard from no less credible a source than Gwenae Flamiel, the Chronicler of the Red Brigade herself. She related to me that when Zagt Longfang, the commander defending the citadel, surrendered he was brought before the victorious Commandant, and she declared that unless he and his remaining troops converted then and there to the True and Most Holy Faith of Haelynís Bastion of Truth and withdrew to a monastery to spend the rest of their days contemplating and atoning for their wickedness, they would all be put to the sword as an example to all recalcitrant Thuraz. When asked if he would do so, the overly proud Longfang made the following reply.

     No Excellency, I will not. It's true that we Thuraz don't know very much about you Anuireans and your ways. And we never did, but we know enough to know that they donít suit us. But now I realize you know even less about us. You can kill us. All of us, or part of us. But if you think that's going to put the fear of the gods into the hearts of the Thuraz and our cousins in the Peaks beyond, and stop them from sending others to fight you, you are wrong. Dead wrong. They'll come by night, they'll come by day. Thousands of them. They'll ravage your fields and burn your homes to the ground and make you get down on your knees and beg for mercy. This is your war. You wanted it. You asked for it. You started it. And now you're going to get it. And it won't be finished until this dirty little mannish realm you have stolen from us is wiped off the face of the earth.

    Let us pray to Bright and Merciful Haelyn that these words were but empty braggadocio and that there is no such limitless horde waiting in the depths of those tangled mountains to bring such misfortune down upon us.

     Now I shall return to my account.
Matilda Lilja, minstrel and teller of tales in the household of Otmar Messer, Lord Commander and Governor-General of the Realm Regained in Thurazor.

Offline The Dark Lily/ML

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Re: On The Regaining of Thurazor
« Reply #5 on: August 07, 2013, 02:39:52 am »
     When word reached Commandant Taren that Captain-General Messer had been chosen Lord Commander in her absence, she flew into a rage and gathered her army and marched south to contest the new Lord Commanderís leadership.

     Once again Lord Commander Messer relied on guile to outmanoeuvre his opponent. Leaving Grand Master Donalls and First Brother Skarlsmann to withdraw slowly and temptingly in front of Commandant Tarenís force to keep her attention fixed on them, he, through yet another forced march, moved his own army behind her to cut off her communications with her base in Stormís Release, now renamed Hopeís Bastion. Using their greater mobility, they proceeded to harry the Commandantís army until they had the Red Brigade surrounded. Seeing the impossibility of her position, Commandant Taren asked for a parley, to which Lord Commander Messer agreed.

     The meeting took place in the open field between the two armies arrayed for battle. While none but the two principles knows exactly what was said at that parley, known as the Black on White Parley - so named for Lord Commander Messerís much feared Black Flag and Commandant Tarenís white flag of truce under which they rode out, I have it from the Lord Commander himself that he offered to recognize Commandant Taren as Lord-Lieutenant of the Realm and cede to her both the land of Hopeís Bastion and the citadel at Stormhaven in exchange for her vassalage. Commandant Taren, bowing to the inevitable agreed and there before the assembled Free Companies for all to see, she bent the knee and said the words.
Matilda Lilja, minstrel and teller of tales in the household of Otmar Messer, Lord Commander and Governor-General of the Realm Regained in Thurazor.

Offline The Dark Lily/ML

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Re: On The Regaining of Thurazor
« Reply #6 on: August 07, 2013, 02:47:37 am »
     A year has passed since the events related herein, and that year has passed peacefully for the most part, and many a brave soul has left his hearth and home to find their fortune in this new frontier, where opportunity is open to all. In the intervening months, the Lords and Generals have ordered their new realm. From his new founded capital of Beorís Landing, Lord Commander Messer rules as Governor-General over the three provinces of the Ruideside. These provinces have been renamed as follows. Mergarotte is newly christened Beor Valley and Bloodbay is now named Boerstand. Thus is the great and much missed Lord Doneim Boer honoured by his loyal comrades. As has been told previously, the land of Falling Timber is now called Victory, to commemorate the Lord Commanderís defeat of the Thuraz armies.
And to the North the Red Queen rules over the land of Stormís Release now Hopeís Bastion, as Lord-Lieutenant. The Great fortress of Stormhaven is, as has been told previously, is now to be Tarenshaven and the walls of the Red Fort that protects it are being rebuilt, stronger than they ever were ere its fall.


     At the time of this writing, the victorious Captains are consolidating their hold on the liberated lands and rebuilding their armies. The remaining goblin lands have fallen into chaos and pose no immediate threat to the victorious adventurers, but the fate of the fell Kral Two-toes is at present unknown and he is assumed to have escaped his just reward, and the increasing number and strength of raids from not only the remaining lands of the old Kingdom of Thurazor but also from the Vulkan Isles indicate that this situation is not likely to last very long.

     Written by my own hand on this, the fourteenth day of Talienir in the one thousand five hundred and twenty third year since the divine ascension of the Great Lord Haelyn, may He look kindly upon us.



Matilda
« Last Edit: August 11, 2013, 03:40:11 am by The Black Lily/ML »
Matilda Lilja, minstrel and teller of tales in the household of Otmar Messer, Lord Commander and Governor-General of the Realm Regained in Thurazor.