Hidden 13 days ago 5 days ago Post by Meiyuuhi
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Meiyuuhi Soviet Mad Scientist

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A long time ago, a golden age prevailed in the world of V’landriel. Adventurers traveled across the realms, and from them arose great heroes. Mighty and ancient races clashed on the battlefield, elves and dwarves, humans and orcs, halflings and ogres alike. Brotherhoods were forged, and many quests for the destiny of kings and peoples were undertaken. All who lived in this time knew it was an age of glory. Honour was found in arms and service as knights, in wizardry and mastery of powerful magicks, in communion with nature and spirits. Many names reside still in the books of lore of the great and mighty.

When a golden age such as that passes, when its luster begins to fade, how does the world move on? What, indeed, is the bravery of heroes worth in an age where it is set against the swift, cold, and merciless delivery of mechanized death?



Yllendyr gatling guns and artillery decimate oncoming Kitagawa cavalry during the War of Human Subjugation, 1835

Greetings and welcome to the world of V’landriel, your stereotypical generic high fantasy setting… taken seven hundred years in the future, taken to new limits and extremes, and taken to a grim, dark mockery of what it once resembled. Most of the known world is ruled by the Imperial Yllendyr Sovereignty, a jingoist, nationalist dark elf empire which has enslaved millions of individuals belonging to other, “inferior” races, with the remaining parts embattled in futile resistance. Can your race rekindle the dying light of a world descending inevitably into dystopia, or shape a new world which beckons from beyond the waves?

In this NRP, you will take the role of either a subject nation of the Yllendyr or a colonial nation in this world’s equivalent of the Americas. A major crisis within the Sovereignty will result within the first few posts of the RP, which will lead to the independence of most subject peoples, and you will supervise their transition to becoming a fully fledged nation on the world stage. The Old World is in a technological state equivalent to around 1900, and the New at a maximum of around 1750, though you’re free to play a stone age tribe if you wish. As the RP grows, I’ll likely add the option to play groups or individuals for those that are interested in that sort of storytelling.

Now featuring our own tongue-in-cheek anime-styled trailer, thanks to @Predawnia!



Nation Sign-Up Sheet:

Nation Name:
Flag: (Optional)
Type of Government:
Head(s) of Government:
Economy: (Main imports, exports, industries, technology level, etc.)
Primary Species:
Population:
Culture:
Religious and Other Beliefs:
Location/Territories:
Climate:
Military:
Magic Prevalence/Usage and Elemental Alignment:
History/Background Info:

Current Claims:



Note for Magic: This RP uses a unique magic system whereby instead of the four classical elements, each mage is specialized in a state of matter or being. There are five of these:

Solid
Liquid
Gas
Plasma
Mind

Mages of each type can only manipulate the physical world in that state, by interfacing with a metaphysical plane on which only that matter exists. For our purposes although it isn’t technically accurate, fire counts as plasma and plasma mages are able to manipulate it. Finally, mind mages are able to perform feats such as telepathy and vision through and control of animals and low-intelligence sentient beings such as goblins, etc. Each species will have an alignment towards one of the five elements, and you are allowed to choose this on your nation sheet. A more detailed explanation will be forthcoming as the RP approaches time for the initial posts to go out, and of course I can answer any questions you might have.



Rules Info:
1. Obvious stuff. No godmodding, no powerplaying (beyond a healthy interest in your nation's welfare), generally follow the spirit of the RP and be courteous to your fellow RPers.
2. Time. So time in this RP will pass at a fixed rate of one month per two pages. This means the first two pages are February, the third and fourth pages are March, and so on. During the two-page intervals, however, you should be free to explore the events of that month on whatever pace you deem fit. You could talk about what happens on the 2nd and what happens on the 31st all in the same post. You are free to do as many flashbacks as you like as well to previous months. As long as it's consistent with your neighbors and people you're interacting with. The time is set that way to allow you freedom of creativity while still having a fixed passage.
3. Posting rate. Please follow the general rule of allowing two or three people to post before you before you post again for a second time. If you want to do dialogue back-and-forth, try to consult with the player and post the whole conversation as a co-op post. I find piratepads helpful for this. Otherwise, we would just put the whole time scale out of whack.



If you've read this far, I greatly appreciate it and hope you'll sign up for this RP and help to build a very unique fantasy world!

Major credit to Voltus_Ventus and Willy Vereb for ideas that went into the making of this RP.
Hidden 11 days ago 10 days ago Post by Predawnia
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Predawnia Prolific caster of "Pot of Retcon"

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士子曰:強之時、是攻之時。弱之時、是變者為、變者其燼鳳凰重生

“A master-scholar once said: A time of strength is the time to strike. A time of weakness is a warning to change, for he who changes shall rise again, a phoenix reborn from the ashes.”

Tenth of Last Seed, 146th year of the Myosong Era

The sun was just beginning to rise as the roar of cannonfire split through the early-dawn skies, sounding in substitute for the cries of the roosters. Ahead of them were green plains stretching as far as the eye could see, bare save for the occasional tree, and well-erected clusters of tents and campfires. The shrieks of cannonballs fired en-masse reverberated in the air as they flew towards their target. The field bursted into a cloud of smoke and debris shortly thereafter. Bones broke, men were ripped asunder, torn into shreds by the sheer firepower of the barrage.

The soldiers of Ye-hyun Province, those were not killed instantly by the thunderous bombardment at least, rose from their tents in a panic. They scurried about their destroyed encampment like ants, shouting and screaming of an attack as volley after volley of roaring cannon-fire descended upon the plains.

Kaein Mu-Go’jun surveyed the devastation with his li-tomi, an effective if rather crude form of spyglass. The destruction wrought by the engines of war left him in awe. Indeed, he did not expect the initial barrage to have been either so potent, or so accurate.

Go’jun was a mere provincial aristocrat, his family descended from Scholar-Bureaucrats who manned the extensive and utterly byzantine civil service that formed the backbone of the Imperial Administration. His father had mastered the ancient classics of the Erudite Scholars and Solar Disciples, deriving from them the arte of good governance, filial piety and the stratagems of war. In turn, he was assigned the governorship of Jin’zen Province, to protect its peoples and enact the will of the esteemed Myosong Empress. Status brought with it opportunity for the advancement of one’s kin, and it was through the influence of his father that Go’jun was allowed to rise through the ranks of the Imperial Banner Army as quickly as he did. A Kaein at the age of 24! Twenty four! It took the average officer a decade to rise to the same rank he did in four, promoted on the basis of fine tactical knowledge instead of actual experience.

Of course, his first assignment as a newly appointed Kaein was to lead a regiment of Imperial Forces to quell a provincial revolt in Ye-hyun. The province had long been a source of discontent against the reforms of the Myosong Empress, its scholar-bureaucrats most opposed to the ideas that built upon and expanded what they perceived as the "inherent perfection of the Imperial system". The truth was quite plain to see however, they were simply annoyed, annoyed at the chafing restrictions placed upon them in recent years to avoid nepotism, corruption and patronage. And then, through some honeyed words or miracle of luck, had convinced the province's governor and Kaeins to rise in revolt for independence from the Empire.

And now, he stood on the hills overlooking the plains and the panicked men below. His artillery officers stood to attention, awaiting the signal to let loose another volley. Go’jun raised his hand, ordering for the cannons to cease their fire. Below him, the rebel forces were beginning to recover from the devastating barrage, forming into haphazard line formations and slowly marching towards the hill. Their formations were not packed close enough to each other to warrant additional bombardment. Prior to the battle his scouts had already reported the size of the rebel force, around 6000 men all native to the province armed with muskets and halberds as well as a force of atleast 400 cavalrymen. They were supported by carts of H'wa-myeon, a cart capable of firing hundreds of explosive arrows propelled by a gunpowder charge towards the enemy.

The devastation capable of being wrought by such weapons on his own forces, both physically and psychologically was something he factored in when deciding upon his plan of attack. That was why he struck at night, hoping to destroy their H'wa-myeon in a surprise attack, saving himself and his men the terror of dealing with their sheer firepower.

"Kaein! Shall we move to meet them on the field?" The question raised by his subordinate brought his mind to the battle that was about to commence. He surveyed the advancing enemy forces one last time before turning to face the group of In-chi. He observed his own force. 8000 Bannermen, 800 horsemen, eighteen cannons. It would have to do.

"Begin the advance. The bannermen shall take the centre in line formation. Have the horsemen skirt their flanks and wait for openings. The cannons will fire smoke to conceal our advance in the style of Bi-heng Fei'wu. These are your orders. Now go! To your posts at once!" He commanded in a harsh tone.

The officers before him scurried away one after the other with another wave of his hand. The infantrymen began descending the hill as the galloping horses kicked up clouds of dust on their way down. Artillerymen reloaded their cannons with new shot as quickly as they could to support the advancing infantry.

The waiting was the worst part for Go'jun. The heat of battle left no time for fear or hesitation, merely an adrenaline-driven dance of death, kill or be killed. When waiting, all he could feel was the palpitations in his chest and the sweat on his palms whilst his tail weaved to and fro behind him. Did his plan work? Will the arrows he so feared never materialize? Were his troops competent enough to win the battle? These doubts continued to gnaw at him until he could see his infantry advance through wall upon wall of smoke towards the rebel forces. In no time at all, the battle was afoot. The musketmen moved close enough to fire at point blank, sending shots flying a scant 30 meters towards the rebel lines. The traitors began to panic as the infantry closed in for melee, and the thundering of hooves could be heard from their flanks as the cavalry converged on their isolated formations. Go'jun looked through his spyglass yet again to observe the battle more closely when he heard the screams of something as it arced through the air.

The spyglass fell to the floor, his eyes widened as he saw what was flying towards his troops; a cloud of death, streaking black across the morning sky.

He realized...they were aimed too high to impact his men engaged in a frenzied melee.

He realized...

that they were flying towards him.



Hidden 10 days ago 5 days ago Post by Meiyuuhi
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Meiyuuhi Soviet Mad Scientist

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February 2nd, 4901 YDC (Yllendyr Dynastic Calendar)
Ylleria, Capital of the Imperial Yllendyr Sovereignty



Temdra awoke from her slumber at the sound of banging on the door. "What on earth is it," she mumbled to herself. She opened one eye to the clock on the wall. Four AM. Of course. She had quite enough of these stuffy nobles and their sense of entitlement. They couldn't be bothered to find any of the maids on duty, so naturally they would rap on her door. She begrudgingly rose, throwing on her uniform as fast as possible before answering the door. What she expected was some drunken nobleman, but what she saw instead was one of her fellow maids, Idedri.

"Temdra, I'm sorry to bother you so early, but they called for all of our attendance." Temdra's eyebrows shot up in surprise even before the next words came out of her mouth. "The Emperor is dying." The elderly king had been sick for a long time, so this shouldn’t have surprised her, but still, it was a shock.

---

Temdra stood alongside Idedri and the other maids at the edge of the room. It was the royal bedchamber, a place Temdra had only before dreamed of seeing, as personal maid to the Fifth (and last) Prince, Nidrak, a young boy of sixteen years old. The old stone castle walls were adorned with the personal sigil of the 75th Emperor, a basilisk on a yellow shield. There in the center of the room, the wizened old king lay in the ornate silver-framed bed, speaking softly with his wife the Empress. The two twin brothers, the Second Princes, Olarth and Ecruir, sat on opposite sides of the bed next to him, and for good reason. The two had been rivals ever since they were born, since some maid had mixed the two up sixty years ago and it wasn’t sure which one had been born first. They were convinced they both couldn’t be second, which meant one of them had to be third. The two’s bitterness was born in those early years of their childhood, but it only grew more intense over the years as they competed for their father’s favouritism. Only their father’s imminent demise calmed the two enough to not fight while in the same room. They couldn’t resist occasionally directing a stray glare at the other, though. The Fourth Prince, Filadi, sat at the end of the bed, crying.

Missing was the Crown Prince, Vomlur. He was a handsome, strong, confident man, the man no one doubted would rule powerfully in his father’s absence. He mourned his father’s sickness when it began, but a gleam had begun to shine in his eyes for the last few days. It was clear he relished the thought of his reign beginning after so long standing in the background at official events.

The absence of the Crown Prince had begun to disturb the Empress. Empress Madessi called Temdra over, and she hurried swiftly to her side.

“Do fetch my son for me, I have no idea what he is doing but it surely can’t be more important than this.”

“Yes, my Empress. At once.”

Temdra quickly scurried out of the room, as a mouse might when commanded by a lion. She had never before even been spoken to by the Empress, and to have been issued a task like this was a great honour. She retraced her steps back down the royal hall, towards the Princes’ rooms.

Arriving at Vomlur’s door, she reached out, and then trembling, hesitated to knock. That brief seconds-long hesitation was just long enough for another sound to ring out.

A cry of terrible pain. A cry of death.

Temdra jumped in surprise, and slammed the door open. “My prince, what happene…”

Before her, lying in a pool of blood, was the Crown Prince himself.

It took some time for Temdra to collect herself, and then she sprinted. Sprinted to the royal bedroom, because she had to tell the Emperor before –

The Empress was crying. The Emperor lay lifeless, eyes closed.

And at this moment, Temdra became the first person to realize that the Imperium itself was about to die with him.

Empress Madessi turned to her. “Where is he? Where is my son?”

“Assassins… someone killed him.”

At that exact moment, you could have heard the tiniest pin drop. The Empress’s face fell, and the tears flew down her cheeks. And the two men in whom the future of the Imperium rested looked up at each other. A look of challenge, and a look of hatred.

Olarth spoke first. “It’s necessary that someone step forward to lead this nation in this difficult time. Clearly we need someone with maturity to handle that task, so my brother obviously doesn’t fit the role.”

Ecruir rose from the bed and stepped around it. “Maturity, you say. What kind of maturity do you show, sleeping with human harlots desperate for a chance with dark elf royalty, exactly?”

Olarth visibly bristled. “My personal choices do not impact my ability to lead this nation. I have consulted with many of Father’s advisors about the business of state. Whereas you have done what, exactly? Played with your toy soldiers and swords in the business of war which has been obsolete for sixty years?”

“Perhaps it impacts the nation, indeed.” A fire blossomed in Ecruir’s eyes as he approached his brother. “How many filthy halfbreeds have you brought into the world, polluting our nation’s blood with that of pale-skinned savages? The last thing we need as a monarch in this country is a disgusting human-lover.” Ecruir spat on Olarth’s shoe.

Olarth looked utterly in shock. “Fine then, if it’s a battle you want to play at, it’s a battle you’ll get.” He pulled his sword from his waistband. He gestured for his guard to move up alongside him.

“Gladly.” Ecruir did the same. They appeared about to leap at each other, when their brother, the Fourth Prince, shoved his way in between them.

“Stop! This is madness! You’re literally fighting over our father’s dead body! Do neither of you have any shame?”

Ecruir growled. “Step out of my way, right now, or face the consequences.” Filadi crossed his arms and shook his head.

“So be it.” Ecruir skewered his younger brother, to the shock of everyone in the room. He pushed his body to the side, and waved his rapier disdainfully. “Less competition.”

“You’ll pay for that!” Olarth leaped at his brother, and the first shots rang out. Temdra, fearing for her life, hid under the nearest table. “Idedra, get under here!” she shouted at her fellow maid, standing stock-still and frozen, right before crossfire ripped through her chest and she fell to her knees.

Guards were shooting at one another, the two princes were dueling, and all the while the now Empress Mother wailed at the carnage that had taken two of her sons and her husband alike.

Temdra, during a brief respite in the fighting, leapt out from under the table and bolted out the door. Her first thought was to warn the Fifth Prince. She didn’t want to get him caught up in all this. But when she opened the door, she was surprised to see the boy already packing.

“What are you doing?” Temdra asked, dumbfounded.

“What does it look like?” Nidrak shook his head at his maidservant. “You never were particularly good at this sort of deductive reasoning, were you?” He smiled. “Do you think I’m just going to wait around for one of my brothers to kill me because I might be a threat? I need to get out of here as fast as possible.”

He grabbed his bags and just before departing the doorframe, added: “Ecruir probably killed the Crown Prince to have a shot at the throne, and I certainly expect he won’t have second thoughts about killing me.”

“But where will you go?” Temdra replied.

“Anywhere. It has to be better than here.” The sound of gunshots reverberated down the hall, and pricking his ears, Nidrak nodded. “Thank you for everything.” The boy ran the opposite direction, towards the entrance to the Vermillion Citadel and the city outside. Temdra ran to her room to gather her things and do the same. On the way, she ran past Olarth, wounded and being dragged by the Empress Mother, with her bodyguard providing cover fire from the troops after them.

The fate of a world had been set in chaos by a single knife. Not a soul outside of the Vermillion Citadel knew it yet, but the world was about to change… forever.

February 3rd, 4901 YDC (Yllendyr Dynastic Calendar)
Outskirts of Treaty Port of Nilrandell, Imperial Dominion of Kitagawa

It was fairly cold, cloudless night in the camp, just outside of the city walls of Nilrandell, the full moon shining brightly in the otherwise empty sky. The city had been built as part of the surrender terms of the Kitagawa Shogunate, as a provincial capital from which the Yllendyr could do business and oversee the country, and was home to many different species, much like the inhabitants of the camp itself.

This was the 27th Auxiliary Legion of the Imperial Army of Yllendyr, a dignified name for a group of recently cobbled together recruits from the various provinces. The army was mostly human and orc, with a few others mixed in and of course the Dark Elf officers.

One such of these officers, likely one of the lowest ranked in the entire camp, sat idly on her bunk, polishing her revolver and swinging her leg back and forth. She was waiting for dinner. It was her last month in the Army, having served nearly all of her five-year term, and she could feel her sense of impatience surrounding all things growing. Her name was Lunastri; she had no last name as an orphan of the state.

A bell rang in the distance, a bell every soldier knew by instinct: it was time for grub. She heard the sound of boots plopping into the sand all around her, and after a moment’s hesitation, she followed along.

It wasn’t long before she arrived in the queue at the mess hall. The centaur in front of her was complaining loudly about the quality of the food being unfit for him, so she quickly tuned that out. Hoping for a good conversation, she glanced behind herself only to be met with the glare of a Yamato man. Okay, not a particularly wise idea. She sighed, resigned herself to dinner alone, and grabbed her food as it came.

Sitting down at a random table, she slowly and reluctantly consumed the corned beef in front of her. The seats around her rapidly filled up, and strangely, there was a lot more silence than usual, other than the usual murmuring of the radio. She tapped the shoulder of the human next to her. “Hey, do you know why everyone’s so quiet today?”

The human looked at her dumbfounded, like she was some kind of weird bug. An ordinary Yllendyr would slap him across his face for his insubordination, but she just let it go. “So? What is it?”

“You haven’t heard?” He gestured at the orc radio operator across from him. The orc pulled it out of his satchel and placed it on the table in front of him, turning it on. “It’s some nasty shit goin’ down.” The orc shook his head.

“-for our listeners just tuning in, the Imperium is formally in a state of civil war, a war that observers are terming the ‘War of the Twin Emperors.’ The 75th Emperor Naerzo is dead of natural causes at the age of 162, and the Crown Prince has allegedly been assassinated by hostile foreign spies.”

Lunastri gasped in shock.

“The twin Second Princes, both claiming legitimacy to the Sovereignty’s throne, have both been crowned as the 76th Emperor. Ecruir has been crowned in the Vermillion Palace, and Olarth in the major southern city of Altairis. The War of the Twin Emperors has sharply divied the nation, as various territories of the crownlands have declared for either side, and several provinces have as well. The followers of Ecruir claim he is the legitimate heir, having been officially sanctioned and receiving coronation in the Vermillion Palace, and the followers of Olarth allege that Ecruir is responsible for the death of Filadi, the Fourth Prince, and that his rule is illegitimate. Initial skirmishes between the two opposing pretenders have already broken out in the crownlands.”

“As follows, these Dominion governments have declared for Emperor Ecruir: Dominion of Endaria, Dominion of Ot-Skodat, Dominion of Tokushima. The following provincial governments have declared for Emperor Olarth: Dominion of Lierin, Dominion of Vaspen, Dominion of Avalia. The remainder of dominions have chosen to remain neutral, including the Dominion of Kitagawa. As well, the Order of Imperial Sentinels has declared neutrality in this conflict. When a representative was contacted for comment, he replied, ‘The Order’s role is to serve the one true Emperor or Empress. If there are two Emperors, there is no true Emperor. We will not intervene until one is found.”

“News of this succession war has given way to massive protests and riots in cities across the Imperium. The Imperial Auxiliary Legions are being deployed to quell unrest from counterimperial, barbarian forces. The Securitariat is advising all citizens to remain in their homes to avoid this dangerous..."

"Well, there goes my bet on getting out of the army without ever having to fight a war." Lunastri grimaced, and stabbed the beef in front of her in a futile expression of rage.

---

When she had finished her meal, Lunastri wandered outside to look at the moon, as she often did.

"Elune, you know I'm not a praying woman, but... if you exist, please help me. Please save my world. Do something."

She looked up for several minutes, but the moon did not much more than glow in response, much as she expected. She sighed. She went to clean her rifle, since she was almost certainly going to need it.
Hidden 10 days ago 10 days ago Post by Ever Faithful
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Ever Faithful History Buff and TF2 Fan

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To understand the political and social situation of the Kitagawa Shogunate, we first must understand the history of the Yamato during 1837 War of Human Subjugation. Historically, the land was divided between warring states of Samurai and Daimyo as each faction aim for total control of the Home Island, Ookijima or "Big Island". When a Daimyo did succeed in unifying the homeland, a shogunate would be proclaimed and would rule until his dynasty was overthrown and sent to live as peasants. This was the status quo that occurred for many centuries until the Yllendyr Empire showed up. This was a complete overhaul of the status quo as gunpowder and iron-clad ships were introduced into the conflict. As you can imagine, swords and bows against cannons and rifles make for a very one-sided war. A very humiliating war for the Yamato. And when the Shogun Emperor surrendered, the Yamato expect him to be exiled but instead the entire island was shocked to hear that he was executed. A punishment only reserved for the most dishonorable or despicable ruler, which the Shogun EMperor was neither of those.

So this should come to no surprise that when it was known that the Conqueror of the Yamato died from illness in February 2nd 1901 (Takagi 12), the entire Shogunate erupted with two emotions. As one Yamato historian would put it: "Half of the nation was celebrating his death through the joy of Sake. The other half took this as an opportunity to organize the independence of the Shogun Emperor."

Indeed, so ferocious was the celebration nearly 40% of all villages, towns, and cities of the Shogunate literally ran out of sake and other alcoholic drinks. Meanwhile, the more diligent citizens of the Shogunate began to immediately organize a near-future "restoration" of the Shogun Emperor's throne and began drawing plans for expelling all the Yllendyr armed forces from the country. The levels of discretion range from highly covert to the painfully obvious as militias began to reorganize into more professional army divisions.

Even the Shogun Emperor Eikou was risking his life and the integrity of his people by secretly issuing Order 17, a secret plan to weed out the spy network of the highly feared Securitariat. Only the most trusted Samurai were given this order though it will not be carried out to its fullest extent until the entire Imperial Military stationed in the Shogunate was captured and/or expelled.

To the world, this inevitable nation-wide revolt will be known as the Boshin Plot or the Samurai Powderkeg. 60 years of unjust rule has finally reached a boiling point as rebellion was as thick as fog and independence as clear as diamonds. By nightfall, there are planned attacks on Imperial camps and forts by overzealous militiamen armed with modern artillery and rifles, but first, the Yamato need their countrymen to get sober and stop being drunk. February 3rd will witness 24 hours of constant fighting as very known Imperial camp will be attacked at some point during the day and night.

---

Outskirts of Treaty Port of Nilrandell, Imperial Province of Kitagawa

Suda Totoya was quietly drinking Chrysanthemum tea as he sat cross legged in front of his dorm as if he was meditating. Like many of his Yamato brethren, he spent the entirety of yesterday screaming his lungs out in celebration and crying tears of joy when the news of Emperor Naerzo finally succumbing to his illness.

Patience Suda thought as he relaxed his breathing, Soon, we will be free of Imperial yoke. He already knew that three of his Yamato comrades have deserted the camp the night before after hearing of the news. No doubt they will be returning with pretty much two divisions worth of men to take this port city by force if necessary.

The day went by like a blur and Suda went on with his usually routine of personal training and inventory management. The moon was bright when he finally got bored and he secretly wondered what's taking so long for this port city to be captured. By all rights, he should've deserted as soon as he heard of the news but Suda is a Totoya and Totoyas don't backstab. Instead, he planned to surrender when the Shogunate forces arrive.
Hidden 10 days ago 8 days ago Post by Zealossus
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February 3rd, 477 AFK (After the First King)
The doors to the throne room open, a gust of wind passes through. A man wearing the royal armor of the Cassell family enters.

“My king, I bring news.”

“What is it, old friend? You know you can say my name, don’t you?”

“Yes, but it sets a poor example among the royal staff, Zeal.”

“Ah, but who cares about formalities like that when we have holes in our walls.” Zealossus points to a hole in the wall caused by a bombard. “Indeed, castles are no longer the impenetrable fortresses of the ancient times, are they?”

“As you say, Zeal, but we can speak of random oddities later. I bear a missive from our Yllendyr Emissarial Office. It says that civil war has broken out on the Yllendyr mainland.”

Zealossus looks to his friend with a questioning eye. Then he looks to the wall, and back to his friend. “Is that so, Aideric?”

“It is. The Emperor passed away, the Crown Prince and the fourth prince are dead. We have been asked by both Prince Ecruir and Prince Olarth to join them in their war to reclaim the crown. They both also claim that they are the true Emperor…”

Zealossus looks to the floor, his eyes frown, thinking. He stands up, maintaining that frown. “We will support Ecruir.”

Puzzled, Aideric asks, “How did you come to a conclusion so fast?”

Zealossus approaches his old time friend and looks him in the eyes, a fire stirring within them. “It is not my place to decide who is Emperor of those damnable Dark Elves. I simply did a coin toss in my head. Both princes are equally likely to reward us with more technology, both are equally likely to favor us over others should they appear victorious, and both should be equally vulnerable to stab in the back in the future.” He grins the wild grin of a man who has landed on the opportunity of a lifetime. “This is a crux in history, Aideric,” he continues, walking past him. “We are no strangers to war, nor are we strangers to what happens when there is a vacuum of power. Not only will nations rise up in this time of conflict to curry favor or to gain independence, but they will try their best to go above and beyond, to reach the world stage…”

He pauses a moment and turns to see the expression on his friends face, one of excitement and delight. “Heh, summon the faction leaders, Aideric, it is time we discuss the future of Endaria.”

“As you wish sir!” He salutes, putting his arm horizontal to his chest with his hand shaped in a fist. He then rushes to perform his royal task.

Alone in his ruined castle hall, Zealossus returns to his stone cold throne to sit. “I fear that the world has forgotten what it means to be at war” he murmurs to himself. “Let us see how our opponents fare when the battle hardened people of Endaria take the stage."
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Hidden 10 days ago 10 days ago Post by Ben1730
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March 10th 1840:
Volkhard was a humble man, volunteering to join the National Army when he was 18. Coming from a commoner background neither he or his peers expected him to make the rank of General. But surprisingly he discovered an affinity for leading and inspiring men, now 10 years later he found himself standing on the border with the Yllendyr Imperium near the Delwe River. Word had been passed to the general staff that the Yllandyr have been massing on the other side of the border. Probably due to King Aschwin’s declining health, and the three princes attempting to vie for control in the palace.
This of course led to Volkhard being sent to guard this wide open plain this was the perfect avenue for a Yllendyr invasion. Unlike the mountains on the northern portion of the national border this southern corridor was a wide open plain with small rolling hills stretching down to the sea. Occasional forests dot the landscape primarily used as fertile farmland by the locals. Not to mention that if unopposed gave one a direct route to the capital of Venris which is 2 weeks away on foot.
Looking up from his thoughts Volkhard looked out once more across the plain and started to consider his plan.

March 24th 1840:
“The Empire enters grieving for the Late Emperor Aschwin, who passed away in his sleep at the age of 87 years. A group of officials led by the prime minister is being organized to plan the funeral, and determine the successor to the throne. The palace is going to be very turbulent these next few weeks.” ~Excerpt from Venris Tribune.

March 27th 1840:
Volkhard exits his tent after listening to a scout report. Walks up to a soldier and rips the telescope he is holding from his hands and presses it up to his face. Through the telescope he sees a seemingly unending wave of Yllendyr soldiers with their purple caps, and grey uniforms marching into the Empire. His worst fears confirmed he orders the men to the defences, and sends a report to headquarters. Which read as follows: “The Imperium Troops approach, Endless in number, We defend to the end, See you in Valhalla.” ~General der Infanterie, Volkhard VonKilier

August 12th 1840:
“After months of stiff resistance Imperium troops have entered Venris, the capital of our old enemy the Vaspen Empire today. This is a historic day!” ~Yllendyr Newspaper
Venris:
As the Imperium troops marched into the now former capital of the Vaspen Empire, Venris. The civilians of the city walked out of their homes into the streets to see the invading army. The many footsteps reverberating down the streets were unsettling. As the troops approached a wave of gasps and screams in terror enveloped the crowd of onlookers. The majority of the army was composed of Lierin Spider-ants that were led by a small percentage of Yllendyr soldiers. These Spider-Ants were sent away by their home nation due to their rapid breeding. In recent years their destination was always shrouded in mystery, but now it would seem that the Yllendyr have been using them as mercenaries to bulk up their forces to dominate the continent!
As the Yllendyr Commander Andec entered the city to see and hear the screams of terror from the inhabitants he let a smile creep onto his face. ‘Those Vaspenians for too many years they have been safe and sound here at home. The glory of Yllendyr finally has a chance to shine now that we have defeated you!’ he then gave an order to his commanders to proceed to the palace and inspect the food stores of the city. The food stores had all been requisitioned by the defending troops and transported to warehouses near the center of the city. Upon reaching the stores they found that almost all of it had been destroyed. Barely enough to feed his Imperium army detachment of 100,000 for a week remained. Cursing under his breath Andec proceeds to the palace where the royalty, important documents and gold reserves have been evacuated. Almost as though they were expected to be able to take the city down quickly and had been evacuated months beforehand. Andec then calls his men together and assigns them the task of defending the city until reinforcements and supplies arrive from the border region. Returning to the emperor’s bedroom he sits down in the chair and opens up a bottle of wine from the cellar, a 1810 vintage wine, takes a few sips and goes to write up his report to the Imperial emperor.
That evening outside the city Vaspen troops are massing. Under the sight that is burning buildings, and the sounds of screaming from within the city they surround Venris on three sides, the fourth being the lake shore. All of the remaining reserves have been thrown into this battle which will decide the fate of the country. Over 200,000 young vaspen warriors are taking part in this operation with another 1,500,000 defending at the front lines 50 Meile away from Venris. The troops set up camp and prepare to defend.

August 13th 1840:
The Yllendyr troops quickly notice that they are surrounded, with no method of escape or resupply. The commander immediately orders all Yllendyr troops to search the city for food and to setup some defences at the perimeter of the city, hoping that reinforcements breakthrough soon. However the Vaspen troops know that this is their only chance to turn the tides and defend for all it’s worth.

August 20th 1840:
“A week has passed since the encirclement, food and ammunition are running low. The surrounding forces have counterattacked everyday with unrelenting ferocity to retake this city. Their constant assaults leave the soldiers tired, and hungry. We have had to stop issuing rations to some of the Spider-Ant regiments due to the lack of food. Those regiments have been ordered to find what they can in the city, but i fear that while they come back full, the numbers of civilians in the city seems to be decreasing. My fellow officers and soldiers have started to take out their frustrations on the populace as well, many look down in shame and self disgust when i ask about where they go at night. So i followed a few last night and i saw two of my men brutally rape and then murder two women. I was disgusted with my men and this morning i punished them both with lashings to set an example, however i doubt it had much impact on the others.” ~Andec’s personal log

September 1st 1840:
“Upon entering Venris after almost 3 weeks of assaulting it we finally broke the enemy, and discovered the atrocities they have committed within our city. There are corpses scattered on the ground everywhere both civilian and Yllendyr. The civilian corpses are brutally disfigured and naked. Skeletons litter the alleyways bones picked clean of meat. In the parks mass graves have been half filled. The remaining Yllendyr soldiers that have surrendered, and the civilians that are alive tell horrible tales of the Spider ants roaming the streets in search of people to eat. The unfortunate not being found till the next day by the soldiers, and then carted off to the graves to prevent disease. The women tell us of their female friends and family being taken by the soldiers only to turn up dead the next day. It is truly a horrifying and gruesome sight to behold.”~Vaspen commander official report to headquarters on the remains of Venris

February 1901:
Venris:
“The Province of Vaspen declares their neutrality in the current succession war. Due to internal turmoil we will remain neutral until the cessation of our conflict.”~Evrard Sendler, Viceroy of Vaspen
When the general populace of Vaspen heard the news of the current succession war in Yllendyr, protests immediately broke out in all of the major cities to declare independence from the Yllendyr. The police forces had some trouble dealing with the protests as they turned violent. Beating the Yllendyr officers, while any Wolfen officers turned on their commanders turning the protests into mass riots. With police officers resulting to using force on the now armed civilians they opened fire into the crowds with their hand guns and old gatling guns handed down by the army. Many civilians were killed but eventually they suppressed the police forces and captured their weapons.The few auxiliary legions that hadn’t dissolved upon hearing the news of the kings death were mobilized to suppress these rebellions. In fact of the 10 auxiliary legions 4 of them dissolved, with most returning to their respective countries and the remainder retreating into the countryside to raid villages and such. The remaining three legions successfully quelled the rebellions in Helmstedt, Emden, and Julich. However they didn’t have the numbers to be everywhere so where the rebels had free reign they looted all military and government establishments. Taking weapons and organizing themselves to fight for their freedom.

Northern Mountain Range:
In a dark cave like room the walls hewn from stone with very little in the way of decoration, a old man sits on a straw cot. His fur is pure white with many spots missing from what looks like old injuries,his body is thin and frail. Clothed in an old military uniform his face hidden by the shadow from his uniform cap he stands with the help of a cane, and exits the bedroom. Slowly making his way down a similarly furnished hallway he approaches a large room with a long rectangular table with some forty or fifty people seated at it. In this room it has been decorated a little bit more than the previous, the table has a red cloth with gold stitching running the length, the chairs are beautifully carved with red cushioned seats on the table there are wine glasses that are partially full. The people seated at the table stand at the sight of the old man and immediately salute him. The old man hobbles to the head of the table and takes a seat, glances around the table, and takes a swig of wine from the glass in front of him. One of the women remains standing while the others sit, she picks ups some paper and reads the report to them:
“One of our loyalists within the Viceroy’s cabinet has informed us of the collapse of Yllendyr royal family, the Emperor, the Crown prince, and the 4th prince have been killed. The 2nd prince, Ecruir, has the support of the northern portion of the country, while the 2nd 2nd prince, Olarth, has support from the southern half. The current whereabouts of the 5th prince, Nidrak, is currently unknown, but he is believed to be in hiding. That concludes my report.”
Another man stands up:
“There have been mass riots in all of the major cities in the nation, while some of them have been quelled, others have remained strong and taken back the land. I suggest that we take action and let our nation rise again.”
Setting the glass down the old general thinks for a moment and then speaks with a soft but powerful voice slowly rising in volume:
“Begin operation Ikarus. The people must know who has been working in the shadows for them all this time. We shall act! Send out our troops and activate the commanders take charge! We lead our people to victory!”

Vaspen Countryside:
A herald dressed in official clothing walks into a small village and proceeds to the center of town:
“Hear ye, Hear ye, all ye gather round… The Yllendyr Emperor is Dead! *Cheers from the crowd* he passed away neigh 4 nights ago, and now the princes fight amongst themselves! There are rebels in the major cities! We drive out Yllendyr oppressors as we speak.”
The villagers Cheer, whisper amongst themselves while one woman walks away from the group towards the village healer’s house. Upon entering she goes up to the village healer and says:

“Mother a herald has come from the city and speaks of how the people have risen up against the Yllendyr. Is it time?”

“I have heard. My contacts have also informed me of this, it is time, we depart in the morning.”
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Ylleria, Capital of the Yllendyr Imperium


Standing at the heart of Ylleria well within sight of the Vermilion Citadel, the very seat of Elven Imperial power, and nestled up against its counterparts was the embassy of the Old Forest. It had stood in that place for nearly eighty years, though few would recognize it now had they only seen it upon its establishment all those years ago. It wasn't that the building had been rebuilt, or even renovated; no, the reality was that it had grown. Great living vines and branches formed the uneven walls of the three story building, the immense product of a single seed that now stood as both an embassy and a reminder: that the past was not yet, that myth and legend lived on.

Within a creature from the nightmares of children the world over crept through the halls. Its dull black carapace, mottled with shiny brown hairs, seemed to disguise it in the dull light of the embassy. Every step the creature took, its many legs propelling it at a surprising if still leisurely pace, was silent enough that none but the most attentive listeners could have identified its approach.

Nevertheless, before it had even moved to push aside the leaf that served as a door to the room it had stopped outside a soft feminine voice sounded from within, “Curh? A pleasant surprise, please, enter.”

The dark spider, Curh, obliged and entered the room slowly, reverently. The Dryad within sat cross legged on a mat of moss growing out of the wooden floor, a small platform of raised and interwoven branches before her imitating a desk. The room itself was spartan by the standards of Elves, Humans, or even the Weaver that had just entered it, though doubtless some personal items were in the small Yllendyr made chest tucked into a far corner. Curh had on occasion wondered if all Dryads were so fastidious as the ambassador, she was the only one he’d ever known after all.

The woman with wooden skin and fine green vines for hair stared into Curh’s many eyes expectantly and he delivered the news he’d heard only moments ago, “It seems the Elf is dead, Amaena.”

The Dryad actually cocked a brow, her statuesque wooden face moving as fluidly as any being of flesh and bloods would, “So soon? I hadn’t expected... Ah, no matter. I presume I am to offer the Forest’s condolences to the family and congratulate the boy, what was his name? Vomur? Congratulate Vomur on his ascension?”

If spiders could cringe. Curh waggled a pointed leg to indicate there was more, his echoing and unearthly voice filling the room, “Vomlur, and it appears that will be unnecessary Amaena. By all accounts the Crown Prince was struck dead by assassins moments after his father passed, the surviving princes have turned on each other and word is one of the four has perished already.”

Amaena stood slowly, what parts of her body weren’t obscured by a rich yellow dress bending and stretching as if they weren’t made of wood. Her face twisted into an expression of concern as she adjusted the clothing, Curh was thankful Yllendyr modesty didn’t apply to his species. The Dryad eventually shook her head and focused on Curh once more, “Have you informed the other ambassadors?”

The spider scratched the floor to indicate he hadn’t and she continued, “Ah, very well, leave that me. Inform your fellows and have them contact the Forest at once. This changes much.”

“I will do so Amaena.” With that said Cruh bowed and fled the room, a proper farewell was unnecessary, wasted time in the face of urgency. His people were humble compared to such beings as Dryads and Shadows, but they were not fools, least of all Cruh. He understood the gravity of the knowledge he carried as he made his way to the embassy’s radio room, and as he told the operators he could see the other Weavers did as well.

This was a disaster, and an opportunity. At last.

Heartwood, Capital of the Old Forest


“We have not prepared for this, it is too soon.”

There was a susurration in the room at the words, they all knew it was true. The old Dryad, Shaetarae, was only giving voice to a collective sentiment, as unsettling a sentiment as it was. For all the forest had grown in new and unexpected ways in recent times, they hadn’t considered that the Elves, those who’d demonstrated previously unheard of power eighty years ago and gone on to subjugate the world, would allow their empire to crumble. Or at least, not quite so soon.

It was Ooash who spoke next, and the indistinct silhouette’s speech was incongruously smooth for all it seemed to resonate in the room, “The Dragons and their thralls will come again, then.”

Several assembled in the great hall cursed and glanced at the vast skull mounted at the end of the room, held up by vines that grew through its empty eyes and over its surface, a Dragon’s. It’s presence did nothing to reassure them. Shaetarae looked at Ooash, her gaze far more precise than those who struggled to distinguish the Shadow from its glamour, “Of course they will, belligerent children they are. We will not be surprised by them, at least.”

The Weavers and Ursine pounded the uneven floor of roots in agreement. Before they had stopped Gerum, a great Weaver far and away larger than even the other females in the room, spoke above the commotion in the hissing and echoing manner of the Weavers, “We have managed to recreate many of the Elves weapons in the shadow of the Old Mountain, this is true. However, as it stands we lack the stockpile needed to arm even the Harpy warriors that have volunteered to learn the rifles, let alone my fellows who have trained on the machine guns and artillery. We have nowhere near enough to equip an... Army, as the Elves call it.”

The Dryads in the room, all of them, grimaced. It was they who had insisted on caution, their twisted perception of time no doubt influencing their decision making. Well, the situation was not unrecoverable. Gerum went on, “That said, we Weavers have many many workshops throughout the Forest. If the Great Beings in attendance sanction it, we shall begin to produce as many arms as quickly as we are able. The Grand Ursine’s mines in the caves will have to be expanded, though. As will their smelting facilities.”

The argument that erupted was a long one. The Dryads were wary of damaging the forest, but the Ursine mollified their concerns by insisting the rock they cut into was dead, far below the Forests roots. The Shadows objected to waiting, asserting that to do so was foolish and parties should be led into the lands of the Dragon Thralls to thin their numbers. That motion was defeated by the Harpies, they knew well there was no way to eliminate enough of the spineless pests fast enough to make a difference when they marched on the forest.

By the time the debate was done all had agreed to expand the production of weaponry and to train as many were willing as quickly as possible. The Dryads were still afraid of the consequences of expanding the industry on and below the Old Mountain, but they feared and loathed the Dragons and their Thralls all the more. The very thought that the enemy could be slaughtered to the point the forest could retake the land they had stolen from it was enough to turn the normally placid women to bloodshed.

Beyond that the Harpies and Ursine had agreed to fortify the borders of the Forest, a measure supported by all. Earthen walls, as Dryads in the Elven army had reported, would be erected and trenches to fight from dug behind them. The Forest would never again be victim to the wretched creatures that lived outside its loving embrace. It’s children would never again allow it to be harmed.
Hidden 10 days ago 10 days ago Post by Ever Faithful
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March.

And so the month of February has ended with the official proclamation of the independence of the Kitagawa Shogunate. February 26th will forever be known as the day Emperor Eikou officially denounced the Yllendyr rule over the Shogunate and declared that all previous treaties with the Yllendyr null and void, including the Treaty Port of Nilrandell.

Of course, the Shogun Emperor was already a week behind schedule as February 19th already saw army divisions, battalions, and regiments forming from militiamen and defecting Yamato conscripts. The "The Shogunate Army" existed in all but in name. The Shogunate Navy, however, had already took the liberty of blockading Nilrandell in February 5th to starve them of overseas supplies.

Not all cities were easily taken by the eve of March and this newly formed army had tasked the nearby regiments and divisions to recapture the coastal cities of Yakumo, Bihoro, Erimo, Nanporo, Mori and Ono (Nilrandell). Thankfully, by March 1st, out of the ten Imperial Auxiliary forces stationed in the Shogunate, two defected to the Emperor Eikou, one dissolved and surrendered to the Yamato army while the fourth killed their officers and became bandits. Nearly a dozen cavalry brigades led by Samurai officers were dispatched to hunt down them down.

Urban warfare were fought ferociously between the two forces as Yamato officers and infantry fought to gain every inch using katanas, revolvers, pistols and bayonets. Every house had to be retaken, every sewer had to be searched and every Imperial soldier had to be killed or captured when possible. Even then, the fact that the Shogunate Army was simply brand new meant that these attacks led to little or no ground gained at all.

As for the Nilrandell, it was placed under siege with moderate bombardment from the heavy cruisers of the Shogunate Fleet. February 6th finally saw the city being surrounded by both land and sea when 4,000 Yamato soldiers, with varying quality in training and equipment, arrived in preparation to take the city. March 3rd saw an additional 10,000 reinforcements, including six captured artillery pieces, to the besieging forces.

As ordered by the Samurai colonel directing the siege, numerous leaflets were delivered to the city demanded that the Imperial Forces to surrender and be taken as POWs. Given the already hostile perception the Yamato had against the Yllendyr, it was unclear to the colonel if the Imperial officers would ever consider his demands.

Everywhere else, cities and towns that haven't been disturbed by the fighting were transitioning their industries into wartime productions producing material ranging from bullets to heavy siege artillery. Dockyards also started drawing up plans to build up the Shogunate's first battleships with four being ordered by the Shogun Emperor himself to beef up the current Navy.

Casualties were already began to climb well into the thousands as the Yamato were absolutely determined to kick the Yllendyr out of the Country with whatever means necessary. Though many Samurai generals did enforce a strict code of respect on when treating non-Yllendyr soldiers when they surrender.

Just one more month and all of the Shogunate shall be free of Imperial rule.
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Feburary 4th, 1901, 02:00AM, “The King’s Garden”

The man sat on the wide stairs leading to an empty throne, watching the trickle of blood run down it. He gave a weary sigh and groaned as he rose, betraying his age. Streaks of grey ran through his neatly trimmed black hair and specks of blood covered his ornate blue uniform. It had been a long night for him, and, as he suspected, he had a long day ahead of him. To his left a servant’s door opened, revealing a bald man with dark skin. He wore a similar uniform of the older gentleman, yet with only two red service stripes and far less decorated.

“Well Gotham, are we in the clear?” the older man spoke, with a notable tone of exhaustion rather than fear. Gotham nodded, yet grimaced.

“Yes, we were able to catch them mostly unawaress... One woke up and had retaliated. . . we loss two before we could silence the sorcerer. I’m sorry Field Marshal….”

Field Marshal Adron shook his head. Nine years. Nine years of careful planning to destroy the monarchy overnight. Nine years suddenly rushed into action when that damn fool of a prince up and died, dragging this whole damn Imperium into chaos. Now those damn twins are feuding, forcing him to rush is final plans ahead of schedule. Now here he was, feeling guilting for the two that had died on account of said rush. “Alright. Well give the order. Round em up. Before the sun rises we will have those bastards in chains. “

Gotham nodded, “And what of the king?” .

“I’ll deal with him.” The Field Marshal said, storming off clutching his sabre. The halls of the King’s Garden were as much of a labyrinth as one could expect of such an old and excessively lavish building. A labyrinth that Adron had used to his advantage when he had sprung his coup. He found himself standing before two great doors that lead to the palace church with two soldiers fiddling with the lock. One took notice of the Field Marshal and nodded to him, knowing Adron would rather him continue his work than interrupt it for a more formal greeting.

“Almost there sir, these locks aren’t so much as challenging as they are tedious with the size of their tumblers being so huge.” he said just as the door made a loud click. “There we go, after you, sir.” the soldier said, as he and his companion heaved the doors open.

Inside was the king and his queen, kneeling near the altar. A priest whispered in his ear when he suddenly looked up and saw the Field Marshal strutting towards them. The king whirled around, his face covered in smudged make-up, his hair tangled. “You bastard!” cried the king as he began to march up towards Adron. The priest called after him to stop, but the king followed no such order, awkwardly clutching something behind his back.

“Holfgar, I have come arrest you for treason.” Adron yelled, eyeing the hidden hand as the king stormed up to him.

“Treason?! TREASON?! Die traitor!” The king screamed, raising a ancient looking pistol. The hammer clicked when the trigger was pulled. For a moment, there was silence.

*click*

Still, nothing. Adron sighed, suddnely rushing forward, yanking the pistol from the king’s hand and smacking Holfgar’s face with the butt of the weapon. The king collapsed to the ground with a cry, blood running down the side of his head. Through all of this, his queen merely stayed at the altar, quietly praying. “You… y-you can’t do this! I’m the king! We trusted you! My father trusted you!” The king sheepishly said, staring up at Adron from the floor. Adron studied the pistol for a moment, then looked at the king. A pang of pity went through him. The man looked no more than a young boy than a king, despite being nearly twenty four. In fact, it seemed like only yesterday he was bouncing the young prince on his knee.

His face curled into anger.

It also felt as though only yesterday he had received his wife’s head in a wooden box, that only yesterday had King Holfgar the VIII merely ignored this disgusting abuse of power. All the pity disappeared as he stared and said. “The age of kings is dead, Holfgar, and I have killed it.” With that, he motioned to his soldiers to take them into custody.

Feburary 4th, 1901, 09:00AM

Adron sat in the former king’s grand office, eyes drooping a little. He stared at the large wooden doors leading to the office, waiting for his co-conspirators to arrive. By now, the major majority of the nobility had been rounded up by the Army, being placed in the Royal Prison and his messengers had already spread the word of the upcoming executions. The long night weighed on him more as the minutes crept by. Much of the Royal Guard had been simultaneously killed while the Royal Cabal had been gutted in their sleep. Well… not all of them had been. He had lost two already, and he knew he’d need every single soldier if he wanted to secure his nation’s bid for independence and prosperity.

At that moment, the doors flung open and walked the now most powerful men and women of the nation, those who had been the biggest players in all of this. First and foremost was the head of the Royal Research Division, Alicia Karlsson. She had felt the sting of the nobility long before she had begun her work under the king. With the new king had brought a far smaller budget, and a burning anger in her heart. Following her in was a portly man who wore a clean suit with a red tear drop pin on his chest. Gunner Hampus was the leader of the largest labor union in the nation, and knew all too well what the nobility had planned for him and his Tears of the Sky labor union. Behind him came a older man with sharp features and piercing blue eyes. He wore a black suit with a red undershirt. Albin Hescher was an industrialist, particularly in arms manufactory and steel works. He had a sharp wit about him that could almost intimidate anyone who dare challenge it. Finally came a man seemed unassuming with his round spectacles and ordinary dress, but Niklos Eskil was the leader of the growing Republican faction who sought to craft Avalia into a new state.

Adron stood, gesturing to his co-conspirators. Before he could speak, Gunner spoke up.

“So it is done then? The Royal Cabal is gone? The Nobility, in chains??” he asked, the nervous tone betraying his feelings. Adron sighed, and returned to his seat behind the grand oak desk.

“Yes, the 10th Brigade has done its job. All the major players of the nobility, their families, their staff, and even children are currently sitting in prison. So far, no Royalists have rallied yet, but my men have their posts.” Adron could feel the air of relief spread through the room. “Their heads will be in baskets by the days end.” At this, a few hardened their gaze.

Alicia’s eyebrows raised, her eyes widening. “You intend to simply execute them all? Today? I knew we aimed to stop them… but this is going to far! We might find all of our heads in baskets just because of your personal vendetta!” she exclaimed.

“It’s not personal,” Adron snapped. But he knew he wasn’t fooling anyone. They all knew about his wife. All the Imperium knew. That didn’t stop him from denying it. “They would have destroyed Avalia as we know it. We would have been slaves in all but name. The people are starving, the nation suffers under Holfgar and would continue suffering more. That is why we send Holfgar and the nobility to the guillotine.”

“Are you going to say anything? To the growing crowd outside?” Niklos Eskil said, speaking up from his seat. Adron thought on this for a moment before shaking his head.

“I’ll say nothing today. Besides, I’m not stepping in to lead this country, you four are. I’m here to protect the country and keep peace while you create a government with the interests of all in mind.” Adron said.

“It would be wise to say something” Niklos replied, “To keep the peace.”

Adron took them all in with his gaze, glaring. "The people want blood right now, not words. They've wanted it for years. I've felt it. You've felt it. That's why we came together to pull Holfgar from his throne. I'm going to give them blood. A lot of it. So much it will sicken them, chock them. Then my soldiers will funnel them toward the Oslov District, where they can loot the nobility's houses and rape their daughters and kill their younger sons. I intend to let them choke on their madness. In two days' time I will put down the rioters with one hand and give food and clothing to the poor with the other, and I will restore order"

The four council members stared back silently before looking away. Gunner huffed and gave a grim smile. “You’re a dangerous man, Adron, you speak as if you can control a mob.” he said.

"Mobs can't be controlled." Adron said. "But they can be unleashed. I'm willing to accept the consequences. If you must object, then do so now, but I tell you: These people need blood."

After a few more moments of silence, Adron waved his hand. “You have matters to discuss, get on with it.”

An hour passed with the council members discussing matters of the state. Governors needed appointment while officials needed to be named. Adron nearly fell asleep at his desk before a soldier interrupted the meeting. “It’s time, sir, the guillotines has been assembled and the crowd is waiting. Adron nodded and motioned to the council to follow him to the balcony. When he stepped onto the balcony, he was nearly knocked back by what he saw. The King’s Garden took up nearly four square city blocks with a massive plaza in front of the palace, yet it seemed every single soul in the capital had come to see the execution, filling the plaza and spilling out into the distance. Adron began to sweat briefly, doubting what he said earlier, but soon got ahold of himself. The time had come, and he was committed without a doubt. He looked over to the soldier posted on the soldier next to him and nodded. The soldier raised a red flag. An iron gate creaked loudly open across the plaza. A path had been cleared by soldiers posted along the cobblestone ground, barely keeping the crowd at bay. A line, stretching all the way to to the Royal Prison began to move. Nobles in various attire, chained together by ankle and wrist, were urged slowly along, and at its head walked the king and the queen.

Seeing the long line, the surging anger of the crowd, and five guillotines below him, Adron sighed, but for the first time, not out of weariness, but out of a sense of content. “Finally…” Adron thought, “I’ve done it.”

-BREAKING NEWS-

HOLFGAR DEAD!!! THE REPUBLIC STANDS TALL!!!

Today Field Marshal Adron overthrew the monarchy of Avalia, charging the King and the nobility with treason, neglect of the nation, and abandonment of its people, sentencing them to death by beheading! Despite an attempted attack on the procession, the gathered crowd destroyed the King’s Guard before they could even get close! Word is spreading of mobs wreaking havoc across several districts. The Field Marshal vows that order shall be restored in the capital. Across the nation, the people celebrate this new hero of Avalia as the army ejects what little overseeing agencies of the Imperium have in their once loyal vassal. Now the Republic braces for new enemies and a new government!
Hidden 9 days ago Post by Ogelostrakur
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Gerudo Desert
The Gerudo Chiefdom was mostly isolated from the affairs and drama of the old world. The New World was free, and the desert was ruled by the Gerudo people. The race of tall, muscular females was under a technical absolute monarch who went by the title of ‘chief’, with the capital being Gerad’a. Most cities were cradled around the few water bodies they had, and travel between them often happened on camel or sand seal (literal seals that swim in the sand).

In recent times, oil and mineral industries had started booming, with massive amounts of silver, copper, and crude oil discovered in the desert.

In the blazing desert heat, a group of merchants on camelback were traveling from the city Sarq'a to Gerad'a

“Sav’aaq, we should get to Gerad'a before nighttime. Silver is valuable, I am carrying quite a lot of it.” One of the women said.

“We will make it, once we do get there, we should probably start selling immediately, sandstorms hitting tomorrow, so we’ll have to stay here for the next day.” another merchant said, wiping her brow.

Eventually, they saw the walls of Gerad'a, received to see the city. The gate of the city was guarded by two other vai, who were part of the Chief’s armed forces. The merchants, along with their camels strode through the city’s walls into the bazaar in the middle, where they planned to set up shop.

“Have you ever been down south? Silver is quite in demand there” one of the merchants asked.

“I’m planning to go there, the recent silver boom has helped the chiefdom’s industry quite a bit. I even know many who have started mining with their magic.” She replied, while looking at a young girl practicing her magic manipulating a sandstone brick.

While unknowing to them, the old world falling into chaos, here in the New World, business was good. Mining was fairly easy, as most Gerudo were skilled magic user, and could excavate ground with relative ease, and eventually, large mines started to take shape.

On the other end of Gerad’a was the Chief’s Mansion. Chief Riju was a new, young chief, who had become one after her mother’s death. She was 18 years old, and with Gerudo reaching adulthood at age 20, she was still a minor. Due to this, she often took advice from her guard Buliara, who had served under her Mother. Riju also commanded the Gerudo army, and authorized most of the mineral mining. As such, she was extremely popular with the public.

A woman walked into Riju’s mansion, where Riju sat on her throne, with Buliara by her side.
“Sav’saaba, Alfava'i” she greeted the chief, bowing in respect. She was a member of the Chief’s Guard, the armed forces of the Chiefdom. “Our trade is booming, but not without bandits. There have been reports of bandits attempting to attack traders in strecthes of sand between cities. They have been robbing and harassing traders”

Riju nodded, “Yes, definitely a problem, we need to take action to prevent them. Mobilize the Civil Guard at once, and find the bands that are causing the most trouble” Riju ordered.

“It shall be done, Alfava’i” the soldier said.



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Fibor Dynasty
Grand Palace of the King - Courtyard
The early morning sun would rise behind the Grand Palace casting a shadow over the city below. Long ago had the largest hill in area had its top flattened which the palace had been constructed on to dominate the surrounding countryside and now made it tower above the city that surrounded it. Besides the guards around palace one could see workers busy cleaning the marble of soot and grime from smoke produced by the city. Was the sound of gunfire in the courtyard indicating that King Inroc was practicing with his rifle. It was a newer model of rifle still yet to get widespread production presented to the king as a gift during his crowning as king. Besides Inroc was a servant who was operating a machine that would launch a clay disc to act as a target. A peaceful silence except for sound of the machine and firing of the gun.

Inroc had a lot on his mind of late having only been crowned king three years ago. It was tradition among the ogres to make the youngest adult male heir king. This decision was founded on idea of stability with a young king having time to father many heirs in case one were to die. His age though was still young compared to most new kings historically as Inroc was still in early prime of his life at age of thirty two. The old kings bad health had caused him to perish unexpectedly as Inroc had a younger brother who was meant to be groomed as the heir apparent but was still a child. Never had Inroc even dreamed of being king and that life as a soldier was all but a fond memory he often would think back on. Just as vivid in his memory as day it happened Inroc could picture the day he heard the news of his fathers passing. Was a rainy day at officer academy where noble sons and promising soldiers would be sent to become officers. The graduating class Inroc was part of were having a wrestling tournament in the mud of academy courtyard to decide who was really top of the class. A sigh would escape the king as he fired and hit a clay disk. Those days not having to think about politics were truly great. In the middle of his fight with his academy rival was when royal guard came to escort him by train back to capital city. He never got to finish that fight with his Hog family rival in academy. Another disk would shatter shot by his rifle. Inroc would sit on a bench to reload his rifle while servant reloaded clay disk launching machine. It was at this moment when one of his military advisors came up to him.

Military Advisor Bar "King Inroc! You are needed urgently in the radio room. If you would please come to the radio room with me."
King Inroc "Can you not see that I am busy at this moment? A king must keep his skills sharp. When I am done with the next set of targets I will go."
Military Advisor Bar "I am sorry my King but it is urgent you hear this. There is very important radio chatter going on that I insist you most hear for yourself. Please your majesty if you would follow me."
King Inroc "Very well, I can finish the next set later. Servant! I need you to clean my rifle while I am gone. Keep the machine loaded so I can continue the set once I return."

King Inroc would toss his gun to the servant who rushed over. Then with a sigh followed his military advisor inside. With the king gone now the servant would go to a table with small box on it. Opening the box would reveal that it contained a variety of tools for cleaning a gun. It was rare for king to let a servant do this task but the king was clearly annoyed by his advisor interrupting his relaxation time. The servant would work slowly unloading the rifle not wanting to even risk scratching a bullet.

Grand Palace of the King - Interior
While the exterior of palace was marble the interior was walls covered in plaster. The plaster had intricate designs and patterns painted on it while floor of particularly hallway was tiled. Various works of art would decorate the halls along with the latest in lighting. The previous king had ensured updating of palace to have lighting in form of light bulbs. A servant was even in process of changing a light bulb in a wall light when the king would pass following advisor.

King Inroc "Hopefully this isn't like time storms knocked out the radio in northern island province. Was talk of the Oni relocated to the north rebelling. If radio contact hadn't been restored we would of made fools of ourselves."
Military Advisor Bar "I assure you my king that it is not something like that. It can be discussed once in privacy of the radio room."

Up the stairs of one of palace spires was the radio room. Inside normally wasn't too crowded with four workers at most inside however at current time it was packed. All advisors except for one sent to retrieve the king were in the room and another figure. The figure who wasn't a advisor was the eldest brother of the king who was named Tiyel Fibor. He was a imposing man with a badly scarred face from a accident. In his youth he had been inspecting a new constructed factory when one of machines suffer catastrophic failure maiming him. The damage was absolutely catastrophic losing his leg, arm, and eye on left side of his body. Never would Tiyel be fit for a martial education so had poured his life into scholarly work. It was a rare occasion to see the first son of previous king go to palace as he spent most of his days in his own private estate. The door would swing open with Inroc walking in first.

Tiyel "If it isn't my little Brother! You have to hear this, this news is spreading like wildfire over radios."
King Inroc "Please don't call me little brother. Is this news actually worth my time or was my time wasted coming her. I had finally managed to get some time to practice with my rifle."
Tiyel "Haha! You on the radio tell the king about whats been reported by our informants."
Radio Worker "Y-Yes! Uh... my king I have to inform you that word of instability in Yllendyr has been reported. Our spies have been doing best to try and catch anything that might just be- Oh! I have something coming in. Let me reroute it into the main speaker."

The room would grow quiet once the broadcast came in through main speaker. Times were changing, after such a long status quo. It was no secret that the oldest officers in Fibor military were eager to rectify the embarrassing defeat of nation even if it was caused primarily by a hurricane that wiped out the navy all those years ago. The first one to break silence of Tiyel who burst out laughing so hard he dropped his cane.

King Inroc "What are you laughing about? This is serious! We are a vassal state."
Tiyel "That is what is funny! You see little brother... I mean king. You should see the bigger picture."
King Inroc "...I will retire to my quarters for now. Advisors prepare the great hall for a gathering and make sure to get everyone. Even those that are away spending time with family. These discussions will require all of the various greater noble family heads. Tiyel you can return to your estate."
Tiyel "Oh no, I can't miss this, to see you use that education of yours. I can also offer my assistance."
King Inroc "...very ...well. I will be going now."
Hidden 9 days ago 9 days ago Post by Meiyuuhi
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February 5th, 4901 YDC (Yllendyr Dynastic Calendar)
Vermillion Citadel, Ylleria, Capital of the Imperial Yllendyr Sovereignty


Portrait of 76th Emperor Ecruir Vyalviur of the Yllendyr, First of His Name, Bane of the Barbarians, Sovereign and Protector of the Fifteen Dominions of V'landriel, clad in the traditional vermillion garb of the Vyalviur Dynasty

Ecruir paced back and forth alongside an intricate, table-carved map of the Fifteen Dominions: Vershellen, Kitagawa, Fibor, Endaria, Tokushima, Vaspen, Lierin, Aurelia, Kyrennos, Ot-Skodat, Zeeborg-Fallia, Old Forest, Vaurgemyr, Illlamel, and Avalia. He traced his fingers along its curves, recalling his coronation a few days ago. The Keeper of Ylleria speaking all these words.

Just a few days, and already that number had in reality fallen to twelve, if that, not even counting those that had defected to his brother. The Vaspen, Kitagawans and Avalians were in open rebellion. Disorganized Yllendyr auxilia, genuine shames to the glory of the Imperium, defecting or worse, turning to petty banditry like the filthy unwashed barbarians that most of them were, despite the discipline the Yllendyr had tried to beat into them. Such disgrace only reinforced Ecruir's dismissive attitude of his father's policies towards integration. Sixty years of that had gotten him nowhere.

His thoughts were interrupted by the arrival of the Imperial Conclave. These were the group of advisors that managed each of the critical sectors of the Imperium's government. They were all selected by his father, but he had taken the liberty of replacing a few of them upon his ascension.

Leading the procession into the room was the Minister of War, by almost any measure the man of the moment. His name was Ludrami Diesriniel, and he was first and foremost among the batch of new recruits. A man whose reputation well preceded him, the famed general of the campaign to suppress a dangerous revolt in the Kitagawa Shogunate. His legendary military tactics annihilated troops that many in the Imperium government felt were impossible to defeat from their suicidal courage. Now was the time in which his military experience was more relevant than ever. He had replaced the ineffectual woman who had been in charge for the last forty years, whose achievements seemed to amount to no more than putting ever more ornate designs and ceremonial dresses on Imperium troops. Ludrami was a real warrior in an age which had begun to forget war, who took seriously the grave threat the Imperium faced in this fatal hour and knew best how to crush it in its infancy.

Moving up to the right hand side of the table, he briefly bowed. "Your Imperial Majesty." The others followed him in this, assembling on both sides of the table, ten in all. War, Agriculture, Commerce, Securitate, Treasury, Judiciary, Health, Transportation, Education, and Colonial Affairs.

The Minister of the Securitate was also new, as the one for the last twenty years, who had somehow proven so grossly incompetent as to not only prevent a state of general unrest and rebellion, but also miss a coup movement, a massive mountain resistance base, and an army posing as police forces, was quickly tried and executed for treason against the Imperium.

Ecruir couldn’t be bothered to actually follow the formal order of reporting in to the Emperor, so when the Minister of Agriculture opened his mouth to speak he just dismissively cut in.

“Ludrami, I presented all the relevant information on the rebellions in the three provinces and unrest elsewhere to you yesterday. I have some ideas, but I would first like to hear your impressions on the state of the Imperium, and how best we can address these… problems.” The slight hesitation and tone of the last word packed an almost tangible amount of menace and disgust.

Ludrami took it in stride. The old man thought for a moment, then began, “Unfortunately, you must go to war with the army you have, not the army you want. There is simply no better way to put this situation than to describe it as a disaster. Three dominions have declared independence, and six more seem to be sitting on the fence, ready to pounce like vultures on our corpse if we show weakness.”

Ecruir nodded. “We must move swiftly to crush the rebellions in these provinces to knock such foolish notions out of their heads.”

“With all due respect, Your Imperial Majesty,” the Minister of War reluctantly began raising his head, “that is a suicidal idea. If you try to keep every dominion, you will lose every dominion, save the stupid and especially loyal.”

Ecruir looked slightly browbeaten at this, but he was still listening. “So, then, what do you suggest?”

“We keep what we have. Start at the center. We should pull as many forces from the loyal dominions we can afford without endangering our hold over them to crush the pretender Olarth in the south. This will render you the sole Emperor, and so the Imperial Sentinels will pledge loyalty to you. This is the army you want. Once we have reunited the Crownlands, we then turn to the remaining loyal dominions. We reinforce them and ensure that they will not fall to native unrest. When that is done, finally we can turn to the rebellious dominions, place our full force upon them, and complete their resubjugation. There is no reason we should push to retake these places immediately with our current position so untenable.”

“While I am sure this is sound military advice, politically, this makes no sense. Leaving the rebellious provinces alone, with no penalties for their insolence, is something I cannot stand, and will encourage the others to revolt just as swiftly. We cannot wait for the Sentinels to decide they finally want to help crush the rebellions, the traitors.” Ecruir spat on the ground.

There was an evil twinkle in Ludrami’s eye, despite the vitriolic words Ecruir had just spouted at him. “I never suggested we leave the rebellious provinces alone entirely. Rather, we should teach them a powerful lesson. One they will never forget.”

---

Recommended music for the next section: youtube.com/watch?v=W1QL-zXqmhU

February 13th, 4901 YDC (Yllendyr Dynastic Calendar)
Offshore, Treaty Port of Nilrandell, Imperial Dominion of Kitagawa

While elsewhere in the country the fate of the Imperial auxilia was not a pleasant one, often surrounded from all sides in hostile territory, forced to fight to the last man, the situation of the remainders of the two legions stationed in Nilrandell was relatively pleasant, save the occasional naval shell bringing random, arbitrary death from the sky. The Kitagawan revolutionaries had laid siege to the city, but hadn’t yet stormed the walls for fear of casualties, it seems, hoping they would surrender. The city’s lack of resistance certainly seemed to indicate that. The city suffered intermittent shelling, yet hadn’t bothered to use its artillery to fight back against the encroaching savage rebels, a considerable mystery.

Or so it was until the night of the 13th.

That night, the periodically flickering guns of the Kitagawan heavy cruisers served as perfect targeting markers for the silently approaching Northern Fleet, fresh from Moon Harbour on the island of Aiqua. The defecting cities of the south had no claws in the Imperial Navy, and so this fleet arrived upon the orders of the 76th Emperor, Ecruir, for one primary purpose: revenge.



The thunder of a hundred sets of guns rung out all at once. The 27th and 58th Imperial Auxiliary Legions’ Artillery Corps finally drew upon their supplies of ammunition, setting out to compete against this barrage of sound, laying down fire from the opposite side upon the hapless Kitagawan ships, caught in what could only be described as a perfect pincer attack. The city cheered as arcs of fire raced across the heavens and showered upon its enemies.

On two specially commissioned ships, there stood great circles of a hundred mages each. The liquid alignment of the Yllendyr, while not the most overtly menacing, only truly came into its element in naval warfare… or what was close enough to it.

Their chants rose into the air, as they held hands and stretched their arms together towards the heavens. “Uiscí na farraige mór, ardú chun do dhaoine a chosaint! Uiscí na farraige mór, ardú chun do dhaoine a chosaint! Uiscí na farraige mór, ardú chun do dhaoine a chosaint!” With every cry, the waves grew stronger and stronger still, until finally upon the thirteenth cry, the great waves of the Northern Sea crashed upon the shore on both sides of the city. An artificial tsunami raced alongside the walls into the assembled sieging troops of the Kitagawa. The wails of the damned, of those who saw the raging waves crashing ever farther inland towards them, rose up and joined the beating drums of war in the symphony of death that was played this night, lit only by the stars and the crescent smile of the moon.

All those who saw it, all those who told tales of that day, spoke of the might of the world’s greatest empire unleashed upon those who might defy it. Though it might be but a small battle in an impossible war, though the tide might yet be turned again the next day, there was no doubt that this was the wrath of the Imperium of the Yllendyr given form. In fire, in water, and in the weight of solid steel. Its guns reverberating into the cold winter air, its soldiers cheering for their rescue, and its mages chanting into the aether in invocation of their magicks alike spoke with one clear voice to the world: that the Yllendyr would fight on, and that their light would not simply fade quietly into the night.

Across the sea, on the main continent, those set against the legions in Avalia would meet the same fate at the hands of the Southern Fleet. Both fleets’ secondary objective was also clear: to ensure the safe escape of all Imperial forces and Yllendyr citizens in the two countries. The Kitagawan forces would be delivered back to Moon Harbour, and the Avalian forces would be delivered to an Avalian city just north of the continent’s central mountain range, where a couple of others had managed to regroup. These rescue attempts, however successful they might be, could only draw some attention away from the brutal truth: the overwhelming loss of Yllendyr forces in both countries to the revolutionaries, however many of the opposing side they had managed to take with them.

---

Letter from the True 76th Emperor of the Imperial Yllendyr Sovereignty, His Imperial Majesty Olarth Vyalviur, Sovereign and Protector of the Fifteen Dominions of V’landriel, to the Noble Nations of this World

I write to you today with grave news, though you may have already heard it. Upon the death of my father, the Emperor Naerzo, and my brother Vomlur, the Crown Prince, this Imperium was thrown into chaos. My twin brother, Ecruir, has killed the Fourth Prince, has locked down his grip over the capital and the northern cities, and plans even now to kill me and resubjugate the nations of this world under his iron, dictatorial grip.

I write to ask you to lend me your aid. For too long, Yllendyr has been a force for more evil than good upon the world. The time is right for us to rediscover our mission, our purpose in this world. We are the protectors of the realm, not the conquerors and slavedrivers of the realm. I ask for your aid in deposing this evil traitor who would see you all cast once again in chains and whipped yet harder. I ask those who are sworn to Yllendyr, and I ask those who would not see its tyranny reinforced over them again.

As Emperor, I will end the practice of tribute but for what is required simply to pay the maintenance of the Auxilia, and I will grant all vassal nations the right to autonomous self-government in the framework of a federation. Furthermore, I will grant total independence to the five Dominions of the Isles, the Vershellen, the Kitagawa, the Fibor, Tokushima and Endaria. I ask all nations to help in spite of our differences to build a brighter future for all our peoples.

Sincerely,
Emperor Olarth
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8th of Sun’s Dawn, 5th year of the Gwangyeong Era (February 8th, 4901 YDC)

Go’jun’s eyes snapped open as the ground around him trembled and shook. He felt no pain, and so turned to look around, eyes scanning his surroundings. To his relief, all he could feel were the soft cushions he rested upon, not the thunder and fury of the battlefield. Go’jun raised his hand, wiping off the droplets of sweat that had accumulated on his forehead. His breath calmed as he focused on the present, not the nightmares of his first battle near thirty years ago. No, the Hwa’myeon never hit him that day. His men swept the rebels from the field and he marched into Kin’ryeon, the capital of Ye-hyun Province victorious and as the restorer of Imperial rule.

He had come far since those distant days as a greenhorn Kaein leading his first regiment against the enemies of the Celestial Empire. Though not without his own share of failures, he leapt from victory to victory. Each defeat was but a stepping stone to lift his shining star even higher, for his wings to take him further up to the sky. That was how he rose to be the best of the best and considered to be the greatest tactical mind of his time. Indeed, if his father was sitting beside him now, he would smile as his cub soared higher than he ever had.

The Kaein was 54 now, and was a mere Kaein no more. Go’jun was nothing less than Dai’in, the Supreme Commander of the Banner Armies. And it was because of his role that he was in a carriage headed for the Sun Gate, the entrance to the Imperial Palace; For he was summoned by the esteemed Gwangyeong Empress herself.



__________________________________

An hour later…

The surging crowds gathered around the Sun Gate reached their height as the sun approached its apex in the sky. Li’yen was among those masses watching, waiting to hear the Empress’ public proclamation on the 5th year of her reign. She was not a noble, or any sort of scholar-bureaucrat. Far from it, she and countless others like her made their wealth in Cantha, selling the bounties of Amrea to the foreign traders braving treacherous waters and storms to trade with the Hong.

The shrieks of fireworks launching towards the skies marked the arrival of the Empress on the walls above the gate. They flew gracefully as if to pierce the Sun itself before exploding, painting the midday sky with the patterns of the Imperial Phoenix. The crowd gasped in awe, witnessing the rare spectacle before them as court officials and servants assembled on top of the gate, bowing as the Gwangyeong Empress strode towards the gate’s terrace, clad in the finest silks, her face partially obscured by the pearls hanging from her intricate, emerald-studded crown.

Beside her was a court official, dressed in the garments of a Duke of the Third Rank. It was the highest title available for those outside the Imperial family, and as such, was usually reserved for the Ministers of the Imperial government. Li’yen could see him hold a parchment in his hand, most likely a list of declarations from the Empress.

Her thoughts were interrupted as the crowds kowtowed without a single word when the presence of Her Divine Eminence was made known. She hurriedly joined in the ritual, prostrating herself before the monarch on the terrace above. As the throngs of commoners rose once again, the royal proclamations began.

The speech of the Empress was archaic, a form of Amrean meant for solely for use in writing, not for everyday speech. Li’yen would’ve barely understood what the Empress was saying were it not for the official beside her translating it into a form more relatable to the common people.

“To my good and loyal subjects,” she began, with the voice of the Minister trailing behind, repeating each and every line.

“It has been 5 years since I have ascended to the throne, 5 years since the passing of my mother, the Myosong Empress. I have spent these years pondering, learning, reflecting on the state of our celestial empire, granted to me by the grace of the Sun. I have wondered, what is the purpose of my reign? What shall I achieve with the power placed in my hands? It was not until now that I knew the answer.”

“Perhaps not. I knew the answer when I chose the name of the new era my ascension would bring. The path before us is clear. It is the same path the Emperors of old once attempted to follow. Bankuo, Hwang’son, T’ao-gwang, they all knew the path that we as a people must take, yet they were thwarted both within and without. Our empire is both ancient and vast, we are amongst this earth's oldest people. It is not only our right, but our sacred duty, granted to us by the Sun to be the leaders of the civilized world. We must nurture, guide, and discipline the barbarians, the savages that still have yet to see the bright hope, and the salvation we offer.”

“How else shall we save the myriad millions who live under the gaze of the Sun? To strive for their common prosperity and happiness is our burden. To deliver unto them the Path to Brilliance is our greatest mission. The Celestial Empire shall not look inwards any longer. Thus my proclamation is such!”

“Our vast domain will march once more! From land’s end to land’s end, across the waves in search for those willing to share in our generous beneficence. We will show all that lies under the Sun that the Path to Brilliance is before them!”

“Heed this proclamation and go with the grace that each and everyone of you is working for a far greater goal!”

As the Empress’ speech was brought to a halt, the assembled courtiers cried out as one, speaking in unison. The ground seemed to vibrate around Li’yen as both her and the myriad masses joined the baritone chorus of the palace officials, the cry of an Empire looking out beyond its own borders for the first time since the fall of the Weeping Emperor. The chant reverberated through the air, from the walls of the Sun Gate, to the entirety of the Imperial City of C’hung-jin and the lands beyond.

“Cheonghwa-pyewon, won’sui! Cheonghwa-pyewon, won’sui! Cheonghwa-pyewon, won’sui!”

For the Phoenix has risen again.

___

Letter from the esteemed Gwangyeong Empress, Avatar of the Sun God and Defender of All Civilization in the West, addressed to the Emperor of the Imperial Yllendyr Sovereignty, Protector and Enlightener of his Vast and Proud Domain.

Greetings, most gracious Emperor of the Yllendyr. My envoy has arrived at your court from my own, beyond the great seas separating our great Empires, bearing this letter to be presented to your worthy eyes and your's alone. I write this to you, speaking as one enlightened leader to another, to inform you of the state of decay the world has fallen into.

The barbarians and savages grow without end, blind to the path to brilliance that is our sacred duty to show to them. To civilize them, to bring them out of their folly and instill upon them piety and the benefits of our respective civilizations is our natural course of action. As such I offer you my aid, in return for your own. Together we must act in unison to prevent the decline of the world into an era of unwashed ignorance. We, Amreans, and you, Yllendyr are the Noble Races of this earth. If we neglect our commitments to the cause of civilization, I shudder to think what fate we doom the world to.

If there are uncertainties, refer to my envoy. He will be able to assuage your doubts.

Yours respectfully,
The Gwangyeong Empress

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The Old Mountain, Deep in the Old Forest


Deep within the labyrinthine tunnels that lay under the Old Mountain, in a place without any light save for that which emanated from the odd luminescent mushroom, a group of Weavers met. The chamber they gathered in was an ancient one, a nest used by their people in ages long past. Gerum, the defacto leader of her people, and perhaps the largest and most formidable Weaver born in centuries, gazed out into the darkness of the old room and shuddered to think of the number and scale of the creatures which had once lived there. It was why she had gathered them here for this, for them to guess at the significance of this place and come to a conclusion; this vast space was a hint of what they had been, what they could be.

As was custom it was not Gerum that spoke first, but a young male less than half her size, “Gerum, the preparations are complete. Vulwyn Traro has agreed to meet me to negotiate.”

The eerily resonant voice of the smaller spider was magnified by the expanse of the room, no, the great hall. Gerum tapped the rock below her in acknowledgement. That was good, for all they were less than their distant ancestors they had acquired tools the likes of which had always eluded their species in ancient days: manners, connections, friends. Gerum spoke softly, she had no need to grandstand, “This is good. You will have the resources of our people to bargain with, but no more. You understand child?”

Reading a Weaver was hard, even among their own kind, but Gerum was old now. She could feel the boys trepidation as he replied, “I do Gerum, but... May I ask why we have not asked the others Gerum? The Harpies are not without resources, nor are the Ursine. Even the Dryads keep treasures of the past.”

It would be the height of impertinence for a mere merchant to question the leader of their people, at least if that people were not Weavers. Weavers didn’t bother with pointless displays of deference, Gerum could devour every Weaver in this chamber even if they all turned on her, what did she have to prove? The question was valid, if naive, anyhow. The others in attendance would have asked it of her sooner or later.

Gerum laughed in the hissing manner of her people, “Boy... Agur. As you are not a Great Being I cannot expect you to know this, but the consensus of the Great Beings is not an apolitical affair. The Harpies folly all those years ago has had their voice in the consensus all but stripped while our connections, the connections you and your peers have made, has made ours larger than it has ever been. When we speak now, even the Dryads listen. Tell me, what would happen if we asked the Harpies for aid?”

Agur looked vaguely shocked. He was accustom to the politics of outsiders, but to see that here? Had it always been so? He answered as he would have if he were speaking of Elven affairs, “They would regain their voice if the deal worked, and we would be held responsible if they led us to disaster again.”

Gerum tapped the floor and a number of the other weavers did the same. She spoke to the group as a whole, “You understand. As for the Ursine, they have no interest in such things. Why share the credit if the ally we might make is content to never speak out? The Dryads... They need no more power, nor do the Shadows. For untold eons they have dominated the consensus, but old and wise as they may be, their perspectives are the ones of those who need not worry about their next meal, their next year. The Dryads and Shadows have seen the forest reduced to a fraction of itself, have seen its inhabitants shrink with it, and they worry not. Why should they? To them this new civilization is interesting, frightening even, but it will pass as all others have. They can wait.”

Gerum paused, the other Weavers were looked at her with awe, she supposed it had been a long time since another had spoken the truth. She concluded, “No. I will not give them more say in how we will defend the Forest, how we will safeguard ourselves. Agur, you will go and bargain with what we have and you will return with what we need. The others have failed one way or another, we will not. Go knowing that Agur.”

Dismissed, Agur wasted no time in skittering out of the great hall and into a dark tunnel. Gerum watched him leave and reflected on her words, did she really think they could do it better than the Dryads? The Shadows? Well, she supposed they had to try.

Heartwood, Capital of the Old Forest


Mara sat quietly across from the Dryad that had requested her presence, the wooden woman regarding her inquiringly before finally asked, “They sent... You?”

It should have been an insult, but all Mara felt was relief. She was right, then. The nervous weight lifted off her shoulders, or at least some of it, for the first time since she’d stepped into the Dryads little office off the main street of the city. Well, office was a generous term. The room the young Harpy found herself in was circular and filled to the brim with all manner of foreign and exotic plants and flowers. Such was the density of the flora that the little moss platform and the Dryad resting on it had escaped her notice for nearly a minute after she’d entered. Any polite person would have spoken up, but not a Dryad. The wooden women loved their little jokes.

Mara answered the perplexed Dryad honestly, “They did. I think they’re just glad to be rid of me, or maybe they thought I was the only one who wouldn’t take a swipe at the Prin- err Emperor?”

The Dryad actually sighed, Mara wondered where the air was coming from, before the wooden woman stood from her relaxed posture splayed out on the moss mat and shook her head, “This is why I told Shaetarae sending a Harpy was a bad idea, not that there’s anything wrong with you of course, but I don’t doubt my elder sister was expecting one of your Greater Beings.”

Mara felt vaguely embarrassed, but the Dryad wasn’t wrong. Before the woman's rant could resume Mara spoke up, “I know I’m not what you expected, but I don’t think they’ll send another. If you could just... Tell me what I’m supposed to do? Beyond fly to the court of the new Emperor?”

The Dryad stopped and rubbed her wooden forehead, “Fine. If anything goes wrong I suppose there’s always another Emperor. Oh, that’s right there are two now if you hadn’t heard, you’ll be going to one in the south. I imagine that’s why Shaetarae asked for a Harpy, there are a number of your people on the other side of the Elves wall yes?”

Mara nodded, she’d been told about them before. Well, usually in insults. Apparently the Harpies on the other side of the wall didn’t care for the old ways either. Mara brightened at the idea of actually meeting them, what would they be like after having lived under the Elves for so much longer than her own people?

The Dryad went on, “Well then, maybe speak to them before flying to Altairis to meet the Emperor. Amaena is up north so we have nobody to lecture you on how you’re supposed to act when you’re there, a local might have the inclination to help. Or not. I can tell you you’ll need fancier clothing, they were rather strict about clothing when I was in the Elves army.”

Mara smiled at the idea, she always thought the Yllendyr merchants that traveled to her city looked pretty, “You’ll give me money for them? The clothes?”

The Dryad looked a bit surprised, “Oh, yes they don’t give civilians clothes do they? I’ll give you a fair sum, same as anyone else going out of the forest on a task from the consensus, to be used for clothing and necessities only! As for what you’ll be doing beyond flying to his court I’m told you’ll be mirroring what Amaena did for the last Emperor, that is, being the formal point of contact between the Forest and the Elves, negotiating with them when instructed to and staying in contact with the consensus and Greater Beings. You’ll be the forests representative and our voice.”

Just then the Dryad paused, considered what she’d said, and appraised Mara again, “Are you sure you want to do this? If the Harpies won’t produce a more... Experienced candidate I’m sure Shaetarae will agree to send a Dryad.”

Mara had visibly paled when the Dryad had explained what an ambassador did in detail. She hadn’t been told- How could they have sent her to do that! Still, it was a chance to show the Elves not all Harpies were irascible sets of wings and teeth. It was also a chance to get out of the forest. Out of the forest. That was what she really wanted wasn’t it?

She hesitated, and the Dryad noticed, but Mara spoke with as much confidence as she could muster, “I can do it. If my people won’t send one of the Greater Beings among us I’ll have to do.”

The Dryad almost looked ready to protest, now that the air headed wooden woman took the time to think about it, but eventually just nodded and reached behind a plant. Her hand reappeared with a small bag of money which she handed Mara, “Good luck, then. I know Amaena grew into her position, maybe you will too. You’re to arrive, introduce yourself, and await the arrival of the Weavers who’ve been assigned to aid you. They’re bringing a radio and a clay tree seed to set up the building you’ll work and live in. If all goes well you’ll be able to report on how things went with this Emperor Olarth sooner rather than later, Ambassador... Sorry, what was your name again?”

Mara grinned meekly, “Its Mara.”
Hidden 7 days ago 6 days ago Post by Ever Faithful
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Ever Faithful History Buff and TF2 Fan

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Nilrandell

To say that the Shogunate Navy, much less the military as a whole, overestimated its capabilities was an understatement. Being bombarded in the middle night by both sides definitely gave a huge shock to the Yamato sailors and naval officers as their ships were being pounded like a fish in a barrel. After getting over their initial shock, the Admiral of the Yamato fleet quickly resumed focus and ordered a retreat, leaving a light cruiser and two destroyers sunk and all heavy cruisers badly needed of repair.

Meanwhile, the artificial tsunami pretty much forced the Yamato soldiers to give up their siege of the city to avoid heavy losses and instead adopted a land containment of the peninsula. They had to stay away from the coastline in case of another tsunami but the colonel deployed small bands of sharpshooters and snipers at the edges to pick off any Imperial squad that was brave enough to skirt around the coastline. The siege was over until further reinforcements arrived and that meant the two Legion Auxiliaries manage to disembark from the port city and be relocated elsewhere.


Yamato forces retreating to to higher after the tsunami flooded the area

However, the biggest insult the to injuries was that this entire ordeal could've been avoided. Due to the Mind alignment that was present in the vast majority of the mages and exorcists, the Shogunate Navy could've foresee the Imperial Navy hours before hand by deploying seagulls and other sea birds to scout for incoming ships.

Minamikyo

When news of this attack reached the capital, a wave of embarrassment hit the newly formed General Staff. This was their first failure in organizing the expulsion of Yllendyr. Thankfully, Emperor Eikou was in a forgiving mood and ordered the General Staff to begin organizing mages to serve as military recon to prevent further blunders of attacking blindly. Given the Mind Alignment to see through the eyes of animals, it will be crucial to gain sight everywhere to track down the whereabouts of the Imperial Navy and the movement of the Imperial land forces.

The first ever mage-only recon squad was hastily assembled by nightfall and quickly sent to aid the cavalry brigades tasked with hunting down the bandits.

Elsewhere, starting from February 19th, the Yamato soldiers that weren't already engaged in subduing the remaining Imperial forces were transitioning from militia regiments into a proper infantry divisions. Armed with modern rifles, machine guns, and artillery, 6 infantry divisions were assembled out of the remnants of the Yamato conscripts of the defected Auxiliary legions in February 22nd. A further 18 more were upon near-completion by the end of February as those divisions were waiting for artillery shipments from the factories.


Shogunate's 1st (Jade) Division after reorganization is complete


Meanwhile, during the days of brutal close-quarter fighting in the cities and surrounding area, the attack Yamato soldiers were ordered to hold position in February 27th as Emperor Eikou wanted the remaining Imperial Auxiliaries to surrender. Leaflets made their way into Imperial positions offered amnesty to the Imperial Soldiers as well as free transport back to their respective countries. However, the leaflets said nothing about the Dark Elf Officers though it has been heavily implied that they would be taken as prisoners of war. The four Auxiliaries were given until tomorrow morning to give their response at 8:30 am before the Yamato resume their attacks.

Outside of the world, it was commonplace where Yamato conscripts that were stationed in foreign countries took matters into their own hands after reaching to the conclusion that they would probably never see home again and began murdering their Dark Elf commanding Officers ever since news of the Kitagawa's War of Independence was known. Few soloed their attempts by cutting the throats of the officers in their sleep during the dead of night, others strapped grenades to their bodies and burst into the rooms where the Imperial Officers were meeting before detonating themselves, and many Yamato conscripts banded together to simply ambush the Dark Elf Officers with their pistols and rifles as they shot them from the bushes, trees, and even from behind.

Just as these attempts would fail, others would also succeed before being executed for treason. But before they carried out these kamikaze missions, the Yamato conscripts told their comrades, the ones that were trusted enough to not rat them out, to desert and make their way back to their own nations for freedom. The Yamato conscripts that didn't rebel would soon feel the heat of the Imperial retribution.

Of course, the Yamato conscripts were also equally killed in foreign nations despite trying to surrender to the rebelling nations.

The Olarth Question

The reason for the small ceasefire was that when the Shogunate government and Emperor Eikou heard of Emperor Olarth's message of granting independence on the same day it was announced. As to be expected, the government was was very skeptical of his offer. No one could completely know or trust Olarth enough that he would fulfill his promise. To be fair, the Kitagawa Shogunate would be fighting the Imperial regardless if they sided with Olarth or not.

Finally, on February 28th, Emperor Eikou took the gamble after much discussion with the government and sent a encrypted telegram to Olarth stating that the Kitagawa Shogunate would back Olarth's claim to the throne. An hour later, encrypted telegrams were sent to the Fibor Dynasty and to the Tokushima Daimyo requesting them to back Olarth's claim to the throne. The messages went on to great lengths talking about the grievances all three countries shared under the rule of the previous Emperor and that Ecurir will simply exacerbate the unfair treatment of the previous status quo.

20 minutes to sunset, Emperor Eikou officially announced to the Shogunate that they would support Olarth in his war for the throne in return for self-determination and he called that "all nations to thrown off the chains of Tyranny" and "Support Olarth in return for autonomy and self-governance". This announcement was purposefully broadcasted to the Fibor Dynasty and Tokushima as well as the other neutral nations still on the fence in hopes of swaying them against the Emperor Ecurir. Even the loyalist nations had access to this broadcast. All except Ecurir's side of the Imperium. Emperor Eikou went on and further declared that if the nations wanted "the respect and goodwill it deserves..." and that "Ecurir is the leech that would further deteriorate the already low integrity the Imperium has for its subject nations."

Going further, Shogun Emperor concluded his world address by speaking to the nations loyal to Ecurir: "I say this to you, the nations who declared for Ecurir, what has he done that deserves your loyalty? What did he offer that is superior to greater autonomy and self-rule? Do you even trust that his rulership will be just, fair, and not corrupt with arbitrary judgement and wanton reparations? Even you if you support Ecurir in the beginning, what would he do to the defeated nations? Simply, he will carve them up and cast their flesh for his minions to eat. Ecurir is using you for his own gains. Olarth promised change, change that will grant greater freedom to all nations even the ones that wish to remain to the Imperium. I'm not asking the nations loyal to the Imperium to secede, no, I'm asking you take this chance to achieve better representation in the Imperium. Please, I request that your nation's leaders to reconsider the backing of Ecurir's throne and join forces together to secure Olarth's rule for the chance for all nations to live proudly as lions rather than to survive like vultures."
Hidden 7 days ago 6 days ago Post by Spindle
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The Vyalviur Suite
The Chamber
Ot-Skodat


Nine-Eyes All-Sees flicked his mandibles in consternation as Imperial Liaison Tiani paced like a caged wyvern at the head of the table. From above, a heroic rendition of Naerzo Vyalviur the Conqueror glared down at the room, sword outstretched as if to break free from the lime and impale itself deep within the oak. Ringing the table were a handful of Ot-Skodat and an equal number of Yllendyr, segregated at roughly the halfway point. One seat remained empty, and all eyes darted from it to Tiani and back again.

"When will it be here?" Tiani asked eventually, glaring pointedly at Nine-Eyes. Nine-Eyes splayed his fingers and flicked his mandibles in apology.

"Blue-Shell Ever-Bright's Truerank is enjoying a not-quite-of-certainty judgement, and her enjoyment of this assemblage is of-very-much-certainty to be delayed." Nine-Eyes forced out in the Yllendyr tongue, "Perhaps a greater suitability could be found of commencement in haste, and a re-telling of this meeting at a time yet further-to-come?"

Tiani's eyes narrowed for a moment.

"You do remember I asked to be informed when you did any of...this, yes?"

Nine-Eyes rubbed his antennae together with surprise.

"We did, Imperial-Liaison-Truerank." He managed, "We were of diligence to thought-push-send into you many notifications of Trueranks enjoying the not-quite-of-certainty judgements. Were you not enjoying of a correct Outerself-meld-innertalk?"

Something glittered in the Liaison's eyes as she stalked around the table towards Nine-Eyes, hand reaching around for the sabre at her waist.

"Proxy-Governor Nine-Eyes, you are aware that I am not, in fact, a part of your moon-cursed Outerself, yes?"

Nine-Eyes' antennae stiffened for a moment.

"Much apology, Imperial-Liaison-Truerank, we forget that your kind is enjoying the silent-oneself-notalk. It shall be made such that you are receiving paper-ink messages on this subject."

Tiani's scowl deepened, but she spun around and made her way back up to the head of the table nevertheless. Sinking down into the plush chair, she glanced over at the gold-framed portrait hanging at the far end of the room - an older elf with the heavy presence which only regal blood could bring, visible even when locked in time. For a moment she sagged, sighed to himself.

"Cousin dear, how did you ever deal with these people?"

"Imperial-Liaison-Truerank Vistani was enjoying great knowing of our Outerself and the inside-self-thoughts, birthed of six dozen-years of seeings and musing-thoughts. You are enjoying of but five-dozens of days of seeings, and this is of-very-much-certainty causing a miscommunications of thought and taken-procedure. You will be enjoying far more dozen-years of seeings and musing-thoughts, and you too will enjoy a great knowings of our Outerself and inside-self thoughts, I am of-very-much-certainty."

"Thank you for that succinct summary." Tiani snapped, "Now if you could start trying to understand us, that would be wonderful."

"Perhaps a returning to the tunnel we were called into?" Half-Arm Far-Wanders suggested, flexing his fingers slowly, "I am not-quite-of-certainty having a belief that this is for the split-of-hive your kind are enjoying, yes?"

"Our civil war, yes." Tiani replied, "Now, we have already declared for Ecruir - no, I'm not going to be retracting that, shut up - but you're all here because I need to know what assets we have at our disposal. Start talking, and perhaps I won't get a headache today."

"We are having the paper-ink message of Olarth." Nine-Eyes volunteered, "He is of your kind, perhaps you could be enjoying a truesense of his inside-self-thoughts from this!"

Tiani's eyes narrowed once again.

"What message is this?"

"It is being greatly displayed to those who are having the understanding of your script." Nine-Eyes explained, "I am believing that there is one reproduced in the nearby. Perhaps it would be of prudence to acquire it for this presentation?"

The elf's jaw seemed about ready to split.

"Yes. That would be prudence indeed. And next time, inform me of events like this."

"Much agreement!" Nine-Eyes nodded with a tremor of his antennae, apparently oblivious to the anger seething within the elf, "I am of-very-much-certainty that this shall be delivering with the paper-ink messages too, yes?"

"Yes."

"Of excellence!"

"And now our actual assets, if you wouldn't mind?"

"If I may be." Half-Arm began, "Of the Ot-Skodat, your asset-collective is of limiting usefulness. For the purposing of a pest-control-war, our Selfswords are being a usefulness, but they lack an Outerself of the strengths which would permit an outwards-facing thrust of any greatness, of-very-much-certainty. Of most realism, the Auxilia are of the sword you wish to grasp."

"Even then," another elf - this one in full military dress - added, "We have Ot-Skodat distributed fairly evenly throughout the Auxilia here. If we were going to mount some form of an offensive we would need to completely reorganise to account for that, even before we consider the implications for the stability of the region or any potential counter-offensives Olarth's allies make. Consolidating our grip on this province might be an idea worth considering."

Tiani let a hiss of frustration pass through her teeth as she glanced over at the Yllendyr.

"Thank you, Eluir." She managed after a moment, before Nine-Eyes piped up:

"Ot-Skodat would also be having many gratefulnesses for a not-outward-facing war. The Hive-Collective would have many thank to not be enjoying a state of defencelessness."

"If Ecruir deems us to be an important theatre, then he'll dispatch forces to us." Eluir pointed out,"As long as we can justify that expenditure to him, we can cut it both ways."

"Which would be a perfectly acceptable risk to take if we knew which side the Imperium to our north was declaring."

Eluir gestured to the Ot-Skodat side of the table.

"Send one messenger directly north, stopping over, and give another a...Kol Kurak, yes?"

"For journeyings over such distance, Kol Kurak in a pairing would be enjoying a not-inconsiderable advantage." Half-Arm noted.

"Done." Tiani nodded, "Now, assuming that won't come for at least three months, we need to defend the Province with four Auxillia Legions. What are our threats?"

"Avalia we know." Eluir listed off, "The northern portion of the Imperium is a possibility and the same goes for Aurelia."

"Wonderful..." Tiani sighed, reaching up to rub at her temples, "So, we can't be certain we've made the wrong choice until it bites us in the ass?"

"There is not-quite-of-certainty that this is being the case." Nine-Eyes noted, "The conquering of Ot-Skodat was done with haste, by Imperial-Liaison-Truerank Vistani. Even still, he was not of understanding his victory for many dozen-years afterwards, and it is not-quite-of-uncertainty that he was passing of his insight into a new generation."

"Your point?"

"There is not-quite-of-uncertainty that the north-Imperium and Aurelia-Republic are possessing the much of knowledge of Ot-Skodat. It is not-quite-of-uncertainty that a force of toke could be causing much deliberation by their first-and-foremosts. Were we to be forced into engage, it might be of-very-much-certainty to be sticking with the smallers and preparing a held-in-reserve of largers."

Tiani's face creased into a wince.

"A mobile defense is...workable." Eluir noted, "But we'd most likely forfeit the hive they attack."

Half-Arm flicked his antenna in amusement.

"The purchasing of time is being a transaction Ot-Skodat are within consummation."

"'Are consummate in', please." Tiani corrected, "But how many Auxilia Legion would we need?"

"One, if we're being realistic." Eluir replied after a moment, "Station them in Nok-Torrak and they can cover the most optimal pushes from both sides, and push out if we manage to get that far. And the cit-hive, sorry, still far outproduces its needs in terms of food, so it has enough stockpiles in case of a siege."

"And if the enemy manages to circumvent it?"

Eluir shrugged.

"We've probably already lost."

The room was silent, save the gentle rustle of antennae rubbing together nervously.
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Fibor Dynasty
Grand Palace of the King - Kings Quarters
The door would swing open to the kings quarters of palace and Inroc would step inside. He rubbed his temples in frustration. This wasn't the life he wanted, he wasn't fit to be a king or head of his family. He would walk to cabinet he kept his liquor. However as he was about to grab a bottle a feminine voice would speak up. The voice of his wife, Queen Consort Vilae. By ogre standards she was beautiful with long black hair and dressed in most expensive of dresses. She had been in corner of room reading a letter.

Queen Vilae "Put that down, you are to get ready for the meeting."
King Inroc "Thank you... I would of made a fool of myself."
Queen Vilae "You do not need to thank me. I am doing my duty as your wife. Now lets get you in proper attire for the meeting. The servants haven't been very quiet moving about frantically to prepare."
King Inroc "I couldn't do this without you. Any word from any of our children?"
Queen Vilae "Just a letter from our son but you do not have time to read now."

Inroc would nod walking over to a closet inset into the wall. He would open up the closet revealing a suit of plate armor. The armor was made of steel polished to a shine without much ornamentation. A handcrafted suit of armor expertly crafted to fit the wearer. A suit of armor meant for a king to wear upon fields of battle but in this age of peace and guns it was regulated to collecting dust except for ceremonial use. Vilae would help putting the armor on Inroc as it was a task impossible for a single person to do alone.

King Inroc "How do I look?"
Queen Vilae "Good though missing one last part."

Vilae would step behind Inroc who was looking at himself in the mirror. In her hands was a cape bearing the Fibor family symbol. A important part of armor so that the wearer could be identified easily even with helmet on. Inroc would give Vilae a nod then exited the room. Heavy footsteps echoing in the hall as he made way to the great hall.

Grand Palace of the King - Great Hall
The great hall of the Grand Palace of the King was by far the largest room. A circular room with walls decorated in flags bearing the colors of various noble families. Though the domed ceiling was most extravagant part of hall with paintings depicting battles of the ancient ogres against titans. Servants were completing the preparing of a massive round table with thirty one seats. Was ten seats for the advisors of nation. Then was the seats for highest ranking general, admiral, and head magic user. With thirteen seats taken and one for the king were the seventeen seats for greater noble families.

It would around eight hours to contact the greater noble families and for them to send family head by train to the capital. Luckily the greater noble families were located either on the main island Tiagrav or nearby islands. While Inroc waited for the nobles to arrive he would spend the time discussing things with his advisors and his brother. Was mostly catching King Inroc up on the happenings in the country and what resources they had. Deciding on a course of action would come with arrival of the nobles family heads. As the noble heads would arrive over course of the evening talks would mostly be of nobles catching up as was rare for some family heads to meet. Once everyone had arrived the King would announce that tomorrow would be beginning of talks. Rooms were prepared in palace for noble heads to stay in for duration of talks.

In just the first week the arguments and discussions would dominate the great hall late into the night each day. It was a real mess of discussion, far too much for those in room trying to record what was being spoken. Attempts to write down discussion as it happened for record keeping was abandoned on the the first day. However were two sides emerging from the arguments. One side wanted to declare independence like other nations who had been so bold to do so. The pro-independence group had many of the older men in room who remembered the embarrassing defeat that resulted in Fibor Dynasty being vassalized. While the other side was more cautious on declaring independence right away. The more cautious side did not want to underestimate the Yllendyr. King Inroc would sit listening mostly to various arguments but it was difficult for him. He was not a man fit for political machinations but his older brother Tiyel was invaluable as a neutral voice of advice. A problem was emerging though as talks were grounding to a stand still during second week until reports started coming in about what happened during third week of month on the thirteenth. Word of devastation caused by Yllendyr magic users quickly ended discussion of flat out declaring independence and fighting it out. Fibor Dynasty relied on its ports greatly and prospect of getting a port destroyed would be disastrous to the economy. The course of action was agreed upon that independence is the desired outcome but it must be achieved with no conflict if possible. Now discussions would be on what side to pick in the civil war... and that will take far more discussion. For now orders would be given to merchants to remain neutral. There had been letter received from Olarth but was must suspicion about it. It could not be taken at face value until it could be identified with absolute certainty that it was real. Though even if proven real discussion on if the words are true as was possibility of lies.
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Hidden 6 days ago 5 days ago Post by Zealossus
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February 10th, 477 AFK (After the First King)

It took about a week, but the faction leaders assembled at the great port city of Azuria, current capital of Endaria.

Lord Asgrave de Ashintol, dictator of the Ashinoth Militant Sect, is the first to enter the courtroom. His face was scarred from the stray shrapnel of a grenade. Indeed, a foolish but effective leader on the field of battle. Though he is thick headed and is looking for wars to fight, his faction holds over 60% of Endaria’s current military industry. This makes him a key and unwieldy asset for the coming time when Endaria rises up. It is likely that his loyalty can be brought with the prospect of war.

The next leader to enter is Grimmock of Clan Cadrin, a warmongering dwarf who seeks a glorious death in combat. This has been a dynastic tradition of Clan Cadrin ever since the time of the First King. The only good thing about him is that over 80% of his people are crazy enough to still follow their dynastic rules, meaning that they join the military and train for their entire lives until they meet a glorious death fighting whatever war is in their people’s best interest. The manpower will be nice, but they are the only faction that refuses to move forward in technology. After him, everyone else piled through the door.

Lydia Valcrutio, High Mage of Quental (Ken-Tal), is very arrogant, but very intelligent and powerful in the ways of magic. Her arrogance is especially apparent when she feels that she is surrounded by idiots. The Quentalian Mage Sect is a human faction consisting of a magical aristocracy. The more magically adept and intellectually recognized you are, the more influential and rich you are. Little else matters to these mages except the ability to expand their knowledge and to maintain their magical bloodlines within their conclaves.

Wulfrik Warriorbane, General of the Lodnorian Army. Lodnor was once a human city state on this continent before being conquered by the Fourth King. After a great deal of wars throughout the course of 200 years, they managed to steal a slice of land from both the Elven Provinces and the Ashinoth Militant Sect. Lodnor is known for producing strong human warriors that surpass most Endarians in skill, build and combat instinct. In recent times however, the way of the sword and knighthood falls on deaf ears as the sound of explosions ring in the air and bullets rend their weak flesh. Instead of finding new ways to continue the tradition of warriorship, Wulfrik studied ways to undermine warriors and decided to make the weakness of his people into the the weakness of their enemies. His embrace of modern doctrine led him to enjoy the subjugation of the Yllendyr Imperium, for it allowed him access to many books portending the subject of modern warfare. Though he has never tried it, nor did he have the proper technology to implement it, he thought he would give it a try in the future should Endaria come to war like it is now.

Gwyndolin de Azuria, princess and current head of the Azurian State, the smallest human faction. With her father bedridden and suffering from dementia, Gwyndolin had a difficult transition into power. The day her father dies is when she officially becomes queen of this large city state. Until then, she is constantly encouraged by her advisors, specifically elderly male advisors, that she should find a man to marry and allow him to govern. Angered by their incessant needs, she took the reigns and drove Azuria to a state of prosperity despite being under the thumb of the Yllendyr Imperium. Eventually, she met Zealossus and fell hopelessly in love with him. His grand dreams for the future of the world kept her at a distance however. She has yet to tell him her feelings, fearing he may tell her that he has no time for her. The passion he exudes in pursuit of these ambitions made her love him even more, however, and so she has always sided with Zealossus on any decision, even if it goes against what she believes in. It is likely that this spark of love is what allowed Zealossus to become the Seventh King.

Olerphas, the Guild Master of Clan Bhufdar. Under the great mountain hold of Mount Bhufdar lies a grand city the likes of which most dwarves fail to create in their city designs. Not only is Clan Bhufdar the only commercial capitalist faction among the Endarian people, it is also the primary source of Endaria’s mineral resources, particularly iron and the minerals required to create gunpowder. They are an opportunist faction that will always seek to better themselves above all else. If they are helping you, it likely means that they are helping themselves as well.

Drakonicus, Chief Dragon Sentinel of Clan Draka. It is no secret to the world that one of the few remaining Ice Dragons lies in slumber atop the great Mount Draka. Clan Draka is a dwarven faction that has pledged their dynastic allegiance to the dragon. They will fight to protect her until she has recovered from her wounds suffered while fighting an Arch Dragon Demon many many years ago. They generally seek the welfare of Endaria so as to better defend their precious dragon against outside forces. They are especially keen on the subject of preparing for the coming of demons.

Tileran Shadowsong, Prime Defender of the Wood, is the representative of the Wood Elf people of the Elven Provinces. Seriah Highborn, Head Chancellor of the High Elf Council, represents the High Elves.They are both one voice when conversing with the “outside world.” Though they have their own interests with their respective races, they generally have the same reaction to outsiders. Both the Wood Elves and the High Elves are in a agreement that they should stay away from conflict as much as possible so as to not bring any enemies upon them. This is because they are defending the secrets of their ancestral people within their civilization. Should they share their information, the world would eye them with envy and seek to conquer them, resulting in the destruction of their ancestral homes. Though they somewhat dislike the Dark Elves, they shared their secrets to the Yllendyr Imperium knowing that they would not betray their ancestral brethren. Were they any other nation that tried to pry for their land and resources, the Elven people of these lands would have fought to the last to defend their homes.

With everyone gathered in a single place, it was time to begin discussing their future.

“Welcome, to my humble abode…” Zealossus said, as if to try to invite humor, though none was taken except a feminine chuckle from the fair Gwyndolin. “Too cliche? Well, whatever. I have called you here to discuss the future of Endaria. I assume Aideric explained to each of you the details of our current situation?” They each nod, understanding that they are currently in cooperation with Ecruir in the War of the Twin Emperors. “Good, then I suppose you also know of my intention to break free from their rule, after taking full advantage of their technological advances.”

He is swiftly interrupted by Lydia, normally the quietest leader among them aside from the Elves. She steps forward, “With all due respect, King Zealossus. I doubt our helping them in this civil war will make them accept us, let alone give us further advances in technology.”

“I second that,” said Wulfrik.

“Thirded,” said Olerphas.

Zealossus grins, this is the purpose of discussion. “If you believe that we will not be rewarded with technology, then how would we go about getting it?”

Lydia spoke once again, “Zealossus, if we are going to have an intelligent discussion, might I suggest that you first identify the problem we are discussing, for I thought we were talking about the civil war, not technological advancement.”

Brief anger flowed into the king at this spite, but he lets it subside. Lydia may be arrogant and sny, but it is usually because she is attempting to make something better, such is her way with words to get what she wants. The subsided anger diverted into thoughts of intimidation and dealing with another of his issues.

“Let me cut straight to the point then.” Zealossus says with dignified poise. “There are three problems. First and foremost, your loyalty. I fear that each and every one of you hold contempt for me in some way, shape or form. I cannot bring stability to Endaria if there is a threat of rebellion or contempt for me or the throne.” Zealossus walks forth and towers over Lydia, looking down on her. She stands indignant, as if trying to stand against a tidal wave. The king then looks to the others and asks, “What is it that you seek?” he begins to pace in front of them. “What can I do to satisfy you with my rule? What must I do to ensure that we can all prosper under a single banner? That is the first problem I wish to address and resolve.” The words fall upon pale faces, contorted by his direct accusation of their possible disloyalty. Such is the commanding presence the king.

“Problem number two.” he continues, wishing to maintain his momentum. “Endaria is behind in technology. Having been at war with one another on and off for over four hundred years, we have fallen behind, so much so that the warrior people of Lodnor have become obsolete. The best thing they can do now is make good construction workers and some hefty artillery crew. “ Though he made an example of Lodnor, Zeal knows the progress of their people thanks to Wulfrik, striking a chord for argument while hurting the least amount of feelings. “If we wish to stand as equals to other nations, then we must advance ourselves into the modern era and go further beyond.”

He has the full attention of the courtroom, their eyes watching closely as the king paces back and forth, waving his arms as he speaks to emphasize his point. “The final problem, and one that will likely create the most controversy, is the subject of independence and becoming a world power. Though my ambitions are great, I must take reality in stride as I continue to build up this kingdom to that point. If I cannot solve problems one and two, I cannot solve the third. These are the problems that I seek to tackle and resolve. I hope this satisfies your request, Valcrutio.” Though he didn’t have to tack that last comment at the end, he thought he would get a little bit of revenge from her initial spite. She squirms a bit and squeaks “Indeed it does.” “Good.” the king replies. “Now let’s go through all of our problems. I demand your honesty. I will not hang you should you truly hold contempt for me. Asgrave, I’m sure you can start us off since I know you hate me the most out of anyone.”

This conversation continued for a long time.

Lord Asgrave said that though he feels he is the rightful heir to the throne of Endaria, he is willing to allow Zealossus to continue ruling until he shows some weakness or aversion to conflict.

Olerphas was next with the dislike of being a part of a warring nation. Though war makes for good business, the fact that they become a potential target is not in their best interest.

After recovering her composure, Lydia stated that she would like her people to be safe from conscription into the military. In return, they will provide everything they can in terms of magical implements and agricultural sustenance from their peasant populace.

Grimmock said he held no qualms toward the king or to the other inhabitants of Endaria, but he and most of his people find no point in living if they can’t die a glorious death. Though this was obvious, it will be difficult to keep going if the nation is at peace for too long.

Gwyndolin said that her state has suffered greatly from the heavy taxes supporting Zealossus’s war effort to reunite the nation. She would at the very least like for her faction to be exempt from taxation for a year to quickly bring the people back, and then slowly increase taxes up to a normal rate of 12.5% over the course of 5 years. This proved to be the most difficult request because Azuria’s taxation provides 30% of Endaria’s total income yearly. He agreed to the plan, but said that the tariffs will be increased by a small amount to help reduce the deficit of income.

Drakonicus simply wanted an updated fortification around Mount Draka, so as to better defend the Ice Dragon from invaders. Though an impractical and expensive request, Zealossus agreed to it, knowing that the safety of the Ice Dragon will secure their faction’s loyalty.

Wulfrik said that his people are currently content, he agrees with Zealossus’s rule, and his loyalty is reaffirmed after his speech. Lodnor stands with Zealossus and Endaria wholeheartedly.

Tileran wished to have the old Elven lands taken from them returned, or at the very least the portion where their ruins lie. Zealossus agrees to this, but in exchange they have to support the Lodnorians movement out of that land and to provide them with a fair amount of gold as a show for compensation since they have successfully held onto it until now.

Seriah said that she dislikes the idea of becoming independent. More specifically she hates the idea of her own kin being slaughtered on the field of battle. Thus, she seeks to remain excluded from conflict. Disappointed, Zealossus agrees, but in return they must up their tribute to the state to compensate for the loss of military power. Also, they WILL support the defense of the Endaria should it come under attack, even if it isn’t a part of their provinces.

After a long day of work, writing out documents and meeting the demands of the factions, Zealossus feels that his resources are split enough as it is, and asks that everyone return to their lands to tend to their people. However, he asked that Wulfrik, Lord Asgrave and Grimmock stay behind.

“I have a special request to ask of you three.” They listen intently, curious as to why their king asked to only see them. “Vaspen, they are currently fighting like hell to gain independence from the Imperium. I wish to support their effort in secret, so that when we rise up we will have a friend on the world stage. This also satisfies your wish for conflict, Grimmock and Asgrave.” They both nod and grin, eager for their first taste of modern warfare. “Wulfrik, make sure these two suicidal idiots don’t get themselves pointlessly killed. I am leaving them and their forces under your command.” The grins of the first two turned to surprise, and then anger. “If you wish to be angry, be angry with me.” the king continued. “However, I will not have you turn your backs against Wulfrik when he is the most capable out of all of you in the ways of modern warfare. Thus, you will entrust your lives to him. I know it will be difficult, but know that you will be in good hands, right Wulfrik?” Wulfrik nods and salutes to the other lords, “Thank you for allowing me the honor of commanding your forces.” Lord Asgrave is slightly disgusted by Wulfrik’s display, but eventually murmurs, “Sure thing…” Grimmock laughs and walks up to Wulfrik saying, “I’ll bring the finest Axemen I have to bear, so use them well. I know there’s this whole hubbub about guns and all, but I would appreciate it if you could at least allow my soldiers to have some fun before they die.” Wulfrik nods and grins. He spent his whole life undermining the soldiers he is about to receive. Perhaps the Warriorbane with become the Warrior Enabler.
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