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Caldoria (IC / Closed)

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Legital
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Caldoria (IC / Closed)

Postby Legital » Thu Apr 17, 2014 5:56 pm

And with a tired sigh, the weary man collapsed upon his bed. The winter has been especially cruel, as his crops were dead, his cattle stolen, and his pocket empty. - Excerpt from "Old Tales of Caldoria."


The High King was dead. The news had spread exceptionally quickly throughout the various holds and houses of Caldoria, and very few souls did not know that the highest Lord in the land was dead at the hands of an unknown assassin. It was not uncommon for Lords and Kings and other ruling men to die at the hands of another, as it was almost every year that several did. But for a High King to die? Along with the majority of his own house? Well, that was something that had not occurred for many winters. The last assassination of a High King was nearly a century ago, and the near extermination of a house even longer. And how was it that a rather well liked king was found dead? Popularity was an ever changing shape, but generally a well liked Lord, let alone High King, did not perish at the hands of a mere assassin.

Alas, that is how it is. Lords watch their backs closer than usual and draw only the most trustworthy close. Some prepare to raise their armies to war, as when else can one take desired lands without fear of repercussions from the High King? When else can the lord of a house or city rise up and do as they wish without one they must answer to? For all it's worth, the law of the land was effectively gone until a new High King was in power, which could take weeks, and everyone knows that weeks can change the course of history.

But the battles of mere men are not the concerns of all, for mother nature herself brings greater suffering. It is the time of the year that the rainy seasons begin, and rain will fall off and on for months, turning dirt roads into canals of mud and fields into seas. Naturally, not all are affected as bad and some rainy seasons have been rather dry, ironically. But it is not the rain that the people fear, no, it is winter. Winter, when the snow piles up as tall as a man and the wind howls into the ears of the travelers. Winter, when rich men become poor and the healthy die. Some survive, some die. That is simply the way it is.

And so, another year continues. A king is dead and winter is just over the horizon.
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Cymrea
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Postby Cymrea » Thu Apr 17, 2014 8:13 pm

House Serra

Green Castle
Fourth day of Snow Moon, Year 1 of the New Era

It was just another day at the ledgers. Managing the finances of an entire duchy was tremendously complex and important work, vital to the prosperity of millions of Persicans.

But by all the gods, it was tedious.

Rhiannon, second of her name, by the Grace of the Old Gods Duchess of Persica, Steward of the Dragons, and Southern Shield of Caldoria, had heard perhaps one in three words her cousin was saying. She decided that she needed to pay closer heed.

“…another half million bushels of grain to Snowshore; it seems their harvest was partially blighted by greyleaf this year, and the Tyke clerics remain unable to prevent it just yet,” said Bryn Serra, who served as exchequer for Persica. “The carracks that House Cordell ordered for their merchant fleet are complete and ready to sail. We can load them with the grain and deliver them to Cordova after offloading in Northshire.”

Rhiannon nodded. “And in the other direction?” she prompted as she tucked a curl of dark hair behind her ear.

Bryn sorted through a few scrolls before finding the one he needed. “Yes, here it is. Quite a different matter to the east. It seems Northwyne wants more lamp oil and House Ystermont wants an envoy.”

“An envoy? Since when do the Owls care for anything beyond who is buying their silver?” Rhiannon shifted in her seat, easing some tension in her lower back.

Bryn looked thoughtful. “Perhaps Duke Kaeln has reached that age where wisdom and hard-won experience gain priority over glory and battle,” he speculated. “Whatever the reason, improved relations can only prove beneficial to Persica. It’s certainly been the case with Palatine and the Rose Treaty.”

Mention of the accord between Houses Serra and Aranet brought to Rhiannon’s mind thoughts of her young son living in Palatine as ward of Duke Clement. The boy’s letters enthusiastically detailed his visits to the docks to see the merchant fleet in harbour, complete with vivid descriptions of sailing in the estuary; and of his first hunt north of the city, chasing a river fox on horseback. Contrasted with these were his disinterest in alchemy and dislike of mathematics. It brought a small smile to her face. Her son was receiving a peerless education in Palatine. Someday he would appreciate it.

“Agreed,” she said to her cousin. Turning to a man standing near the door: “Send for Archdruid Tristifer.” The servant nodded and quietly left the room to do the duchess’ bidding.

“The Order of the Oak will organise the diplomatic party. See that they are well provisioned in case they find need to establish an embassy at Darriom.”

“Yes, of course, Your Grace. Now if I may, I think we should discuss discounting the tariffs we charge House Von Hess. Count Felix has ever been a model patron of our pearls....”


Rhiannon II Serra:
by the Grace of the Old Gods Duchess of Persica, Prima of House Serra, Steward of the Dragons, Southern Shield of Caldoria

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Last edited by Cymrea on Fri Apr 18, 2014 2:47 am, edited 7 times in total.
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Postby Cymrea » Thu Apr 17, 2014 8:14 pm

House Serra

Green Castle
Fifth day of Snow Moon, Year 1 of the New Era

A cold mist from the ocean smothered Vanovar. The Persican capital didn’t get much snow except in the worst winters, but a light dusting covered the rooftops and cobbled streets that morning. The mists were so thick that only the nearest buildings below the Green Castle were visible; beyond them stood tall shadows and faint light. It felt like some strange underworld, some timeless place between the worlds, where the damned wandered mournfully for a time before finding their way down to whatever hell their sins had earned them. Rhiannon Serra stood on the balcony that led from her rooms, wrapped in a cloak of blue-grey timberfox fur, gazing down on the city.

Thantis emerged from the heavily curtained archway and stood a few feet away, gripping the stone railing and staring hard at the inscrutable mist.

“Something vexes you, love,” she said.

“No,” Thantis replied.

“It was not a question.”

Thantis turned and moved closer, lowering his voice. “If you must know, I was thinking about trust.”

“A valuable commodity,” Rhiannon replied, “that can be both bought and misplaced.”

“It was misplaced in Brego Ven, certainly,” Thantis said. “Now all of Caldoria may go to war and thousands will die as a result. Tens of thousands.”

“It is most precious – and strongest – when it occurs naturally. Like between family,” Rhiannon said.

“Tell that to Portia,” Thantis muttered.

Rhiannon turned from the city below and narrowed her eyes at her husband.

“Fair point,” she conceded. “Trust can be hard to come by, even among the closest of kin.” Rhiannon let the unspoken reference to Thantis’ brother hang between them before moving on. “Brego Ven was a gifted agent. One in whom we placed great trust. He took the opportunity presented to us by the King’s Council and perverted it for his own gain. That is why the royal House had to be expunged and that is why the smallfolk of Caldoria will endure the destructive thrashings of the Great Houses. It is also why you left one of House Serra’s most talented operatives gutted like a common thief, in a back alley in Palatine, I presume.”

A servant in the royal blue livery of Serra approached from the archway.

“Your Grace, my Lord,” he interrupted, “there’s been a raven from Palatine.”

“Very good,” Rhiannon nodded. “I will receive the message in the study.” The servant bowed deeply and left.

“At least that’s the end of the matter, then,” Thantis said, returning to the conversation.

“Perhaps,” Rhiannon replied. “You believe the secrecy of the operation to be in jeopardy?”

“I’m still working to confirm that.”

“We must do better than that, love,” Rhiannon insisted.

Thantis frowned. “I interrogated Ven myself.”

“No leaks?” Rhiannon raised an eyebrow. “No sponsors? No collaborators?”

“No, sweetling,” Thantis maintained. “The trail is dead. There is nothing to lead back to us. I told you, I handled the matter myself.”

Rhiannon turned back to the vista before her. The mists parted, like the curtain opening at a mummer show to reveal some new tableau. The great oak tree in the sacred grove of the castle appeared, its bony limbs spread wide. Fallen leaves lay about the wide grey trunk in drifts of red and brown. The ravens were thickest there, muttering to one another in the murderer’s secret tongue.

“Let us hope so,” she said.
Last edited by Cymrea on Thu Apr 17, 2014 10:42 pm, edited 2 times in total.
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Damak Var
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Postby Damak Var » Thu Apr 17, 2014 8:43 pm

Palatine


The seasons did not affect the Palatinians so much save for the lack of trade. Stormy seas prevented ships from bringing in raw materials from the North. Many were anchored in the harbor waiting for when the seasons once again changed. Otherwise, the city continued on as normal. Crowds of people moved about the city while cutpurses circled them. It is a very loud city. Merchants, tradesmen and prostitutes tried advertised their wares vocally while potential buyers haggled. Heralds in certain squares made announcements. Palatine was a sort of a melting pot as the Aranets accepted immigrants from all corners of Derria. When walking through the city one could hear the distinguishable accents of all Caldoria.

Looming in the distance was the tallest structure in all of Palatine, the White Citadel. Seat of power for House Aranet. It was not just one building however. Many government buildings were included in the compound as well. All were made of white stone and marble just like the university. Ministers and clerks wearing velvet and silver necklaces moved about carrying scrolls. There was a long line outside the High Courts for those who had some dispute that needed settling.

The citadel itself was where the Aranets called home. Not that all of them lived there. Aurelian, the eldest, had decided to purchase his own manor in the city. Mistakenly, he had allowed August to live with him. The younger sibling threw too many parties. For Aurelian, moving out was an effort to get some distance from his overbearing father, Duke Clement, yet he spent all his time at court anyways helping to manage Palatine and its outlying territories.

It was just about time for the midday meal. Clement wanted the family to have it together on this particular day which was an unusual thing for them. Aurelian and August stood waiting in the antechamber chatting and waiting for the rest to arrive. Included would be Fergus who was coming from the university with an escort. Their renowned institution of higher learning also provided for the quality tutelage of young nobles. Palatinians believed that education was better in a group, where students could engage in discussion with each other even the young ones. Clement had put the young boy on a strict regimen for his personal development as he had his own sons. Studies at the university until lunch then martial training with the Citadel's master at arms or August who was quite the extraordinary warrior himself, for two hours in the Citadel's training yard afterwards then back to the university until supper. Fergus soon entered with the guards. Aurelian and August greeted warmly.

"Look at him brother. He must be bored out of his mind at the university. The Serras won't be pleased if they find out we have been subjecting the lad to such torments." August said. The younger Aranet did not care much for books and studies, only for skills involving a sword or any other kind of weapon. To August's credit he was still an intelligent man though hardly showed it, a tournament champion, many times at that and one of the best fighters in Caldoria. Not that it counted for much with the Aranets for they believed the mind to be the greatest weapon of all.

"They'll be less pleased if he returns to Vanovar a half witted imbecile." Aurelian replied in a scolding tone. He turned to Fergus. "You'll appreciate what they're teaching you there someday lad. I promise." He said to him and patted his head.

Finally, Clement entered with Messalina and Liviana. The usual greetings were exchanged save for with Clement, who was cold as always. They entered the dining room and took their seats. When the meal was finished, Clement cleared his throat to speak.

"The reason I have brought you here is to discuss something of great import." Clement stated. The entire table look at him thinking this was another state matter that could be decided on in a day. "King Valspar is dead. Assassinated." That left the table stunned for a moment. There were questions of "how?" and "why?" to which Clement ignored. "I must decide on how to proceed."

"I suppose there will be a number of Lords making a play for the Crown. I presume it is a very pretty and alluring accessory to wear on one's head." Aurelian commented.

"Exactly. And as you all know, we are the gateway to the capital. That puts us in a bit of a predicament." Clement replied.

"I'd like to see them get through our fleet." August chirped in pridefully.

"Committing our fleet to any engagement, should it come to that, would leave our backs open to the Persicans. We cannot fight them and another force...which is why one of you is going to marry a Serra. Fergus, this is good news for you. You would be allowed to go home, if you so choose." Messalina told them. It appears her and Clement had already discussed this beforehand.

"Which one?!" Liviana asked, alarmed. They all knew this day was coming eventually so the surprise was not that deep. Persica and Palatine had already come to terms that they were better off at peace, trading with each other. It was all a matter now of cementing that peace.

"That is yet to be decided. We must begin negotiations. August, you will go to Vanovar." Clement said to him as if he were ordering one of his ministers or commanders. He recognized that people seemed to like August where ever he went. Perhaps it was his son's humor and jovial demeanor. He would make a fine envoy.

"Vanovar! I'd be pleased to go. It'd be nice to see Lysander." August replied happily.
Last edited by Damak Var on Thu Apr 17, 2014 8:45 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Corenea
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Postby Corenea » Thu Apr 17, 2014 9:12 pm

House Cordell
The flaming golden torches waved on the blue banners of the stronghold of the House Cordell. today seems like an ordinary morning except the banner was halfway down, signifying the loss of the king. People stood in lines with their heads down as the bishop and Lord Winston walked through the aisle, carrying a torch and stopped at small tub of oil and light the tub on fire with the torch, emitting a large smoke through the sky. The bishop murmured some holy phrases while Lord Winston cleared his throat and made a speech.

"Fellow Caldorians, today is a very sad morning. The popular High King was killed by an assassin recently and Claldoria never exactly experienced that sort of assassination for a long time so it affects us all. The High King was popular, he didn't deserve this death and now that he's the last of his family, we must prepare for our next king. May Sall bless him," Winston said as the crowd nodded in agreement. Soon, people move to their daily lives while Lord Winston and his chief adviser, Gregory Sly, sat in Winston's office in preparation for things to come.

"Well Winston, the High King is dead and so is his family. The question is, which House will suceed him?" Sly asked.

"It's obvious that many Houses want their heir to be King so I believe we should call forth a meeting between houses to discuss a compromise to this division. Sly, I want you to send in some ravens to the major houese where we call for a meeting at the King's palace," Winston said as he stood up to leave the door. Sly stood up and followed him.

"My lord, what are you going to do?" He asked. Winston looked back at him and said,

"Why preparing to store foods, winter is coming," and left the room.
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Cymrea
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Postby Cymrea » Thu Apr 17, 2014 11:19 pm

House Serra

Green Castle
Fifth day of Snow Moon, Year 1 of the New Era

Duchess Rhiannon Serra unraveled the small scroll that had arrived from Palatine and read it, her face impassive at first. At her raised eyebrow, Thantis pressed her.

"Well, what does it say?"

"August Aranet is sailing to Vanovar to visit Lysander," she said plainly, "and to negotiate a marriage between our Houses."

Thantis was silent a moment as he digested the information. "Indeed?" he said at last. "And who is it the Roses intend to marry?"

"It doesn't say," Rhiannon replied absently, scanning the scroll again.

"I imagine that's part of the negotiation, then," Thantis said thoughfully. Then with a start: "This means our boy will be able to come home!"

Rhiannon nodded and smiled warmly. "It means Lysander can also return to his family. More importantly, though, it means that once our Houses are joined and we need not watch our respective backs, there will be no one in Caldoria to match our naval supremacy."

"And the High Throne is on an island," Thantis mused.

"Precisely," replied Rhiannon.

There came a knock at the door. "Enter," said the duchess.

Another servant in House livery opened the broad oaken door and stepped inside. "Another raven, Your Grace. From Wake, this one."

Rhiannon and Thantis exchanged a glance. "I'll take it now."

The servant handed the scroll to Thantis, bowed, and left. Thantis passed the message to his wife as the door closed. She read the scroll and even before finishing she laughed; a light and airy sound. "Winston Cordell is calling for a meeting of the Houses. In Caldor."

Thantis grinned. "I think we're already agreed on our response, yes?"

"Yes, we are."


Port Vanovar
Seventh day of Snow Moon, Year 1 of the New Era

Twenty hulls, carracks and dromons led by Admiral Ser Danjamin Zantine aboard the great galleass Duke Rowan, filed out of the harbour and sailed west. They would rendezvous with an equal number of vessels from Palatine somewhere between the arms of the Crescent Archipelago and together the combined fleet would turn south and give House Cordell - indeed, all the Houses of Caldoria - their reply.

The tide in Caldoria was shifting. The time for action was now.
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Postby Cymrea » Thu Apr 17, 2014 11:31 pm

For the IC and Secret IC relations between Persica and Palatine: The Dragon and the Rose.
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Damak Var
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Postby Damak Var » Thu Apr 17, 2014 11:56 pm

Sea Near Vanovar

A Persican naval ship flagged down August's carrack. It was routine, especially when a warship entered their waters. The Persican inspectors immediately boarded though kindly due to the green flags that the carrack displayed.

August handed the inspector a scroll that was sealed and stamped verifying his own identity. The Persican became considerably more polite after that and let them get on their way. It was only another few hours and the carrack was docking at port, given priority over the other ships waiting their turn. Diplomatic immunity waived any docking fees. Lysander and an escort from the Serra's awaited as August disembarked. August immediately embraced his more reserved and quiet brother. Both were dressed in the colors of their house for this momentous occasion. Neither had armor as Palatinians believed wearing armor outside of battle or tournament was a sign of insecurity but had swords buckled on their belts. Vanovar did not feel all too different from Palatine save for the architecture. The docks seemed just as busy.

"I trust thing have been going well. Look at you, all grown up. We'll test that sword arm of yours later." August exclaimed happily.

"Yes brother. The Serras gave me private tutors but I would have preferred the university." Lysander replied.

"You don't know what you speak of. Bugger the university. I take it you've had the opportunity to train with Lord Alaric and his Dragon knights? What a blessing!" August said.

"Indeed. A boon to my martial prowess." Lysander said blandly.

"Well you still can't beat me. Let's go see this Duchess. What is she like?" August asked.

"Clever, too clever for you brother. Tread carefully." Lysander replied.

"Ah! Well, I trust you'll be by my side to assist then? Then while I'm here, let's enjoy the city together. I want to see everything! Since I am a guest, expenses will be your burden as is customary..." August leaned in. "Father revoked my access to the family accounts because I've been spending too much on parties." August whispered and grinned. Lysander rolled his eyes in contempt. That made him remember that August was the only Aranet who was not shrewd with finances.

August turned around to the Serra seneschal. "An audience with the Duchess Rhiannon or to a good inn if she is preoccupied if you please."
Last edited by Damak Var on Thu Apr 17, 2014 11:59 pm, edited 2 times in total.

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Postby Cymrea » Fri Apr 18, 2014 2:30 am

Vanovar, Persica
Ninth day of Snow Moon, Year 1 of the New Era

A tall man, sturdily built and wearing a long blue coat embroidered with much thread-of-silver and the the white dragon of Serra, bowed to the scion of House Aranet. Standing next to him was a much shorter man with a solemn face and a shaved head, clad in a simple grey robe tied with a deep green belt.

"My Lord of Aranet, I bid you welcome to Persica and to the city of Vanovar. I am Jamish Bridon, praetor of House Serra."

At August's politely bemused smile, his younger brother leaned in and whispered, "Praetor means the same as seneschal." With understanding, the older Aranet's smile became more sincere.

"This," Bridon continued, "is Cambriel, a druid of the Order of the Oak. He will be your guide on this tour of the city that Duchess Rhiannon has arranged for you. Her Grace is aware that this is your first visit to Vanovar."

"And those men there?" asked August, indicating the men on horseback ahead of the open carriage.

Bridon glanced at the escort. "That is Lance-Captain Connemar Ramos, and a small detachment of Dragon Knights; an honour guard, as befitting a guest of your station."

Ramos sat astride his destrier, puffs of breath from both steaming in the morning air. Man and animal were mirror images of each other – stiff-necked and proud but eminently capable. A respected commander of the duchess’ knightly order, Ramos was also a trusted captain to Lord Alaric. The long white horsetail plume that hung down from the peak of his full-faced helm had been earned with loyal and gallant service. With Ramos were sworn Knights of the Dragon Order, clad in burnished plate and overlarge pauldrons etched with dragons. One man was handler to Heartseeker, the lance-captain’s timberfox. Standing almost a metre at the shoulder, the blue-grey female was sleek and muscular, capable of chasing down a courser and then taking its rider from the saddle in one powerful leap.

Cambriel stepped forward and gestured to the carriage's gate, now held open by a footman in blue. "Shall we, my lords?"
Last edited by Cymrea on Fri Apr 18, 2014 3:44 am, edited 2 times in total.
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Postby Woodstovia » Fri Apr 18, 2014 4:39 am

Haas, Uviosta

"All hail Kevin of the house Osteler first of his name, chosen of the old gods, defender and warden of the Icathians,the Slothians, the Novarians and the Jons, Marshal of the Yberian river, lord of Uviosta, bulwark of Caldoria, lord of the bull, destroyer of Mud and saviour of Haas." Yelled the herald as a messenger awkwardly entered the throne room.

The room was lavish and ostentatious. It's floors were made of marble and at the end of the room steps led up to a gilded throne upon which sat Kevin. The walls of the room were high and adorned with banners and tapestries depicting all sorts of things. Elizabeth, Sophia and David Osteler sat on chairs along the steps below the throne.

Although he sat upon a throne inside a throne room inside a palace Kevin was no king or emperor, his crown was locked away far below the earth along with a scepter. Placed inside a vault in the lowest room of the palace.

The messenger had arrived in the city bearing the royal seal and asking to see Kevin, he had been whisked to the palace quickly escorted by guards who let him stop nowhere and talk to nobody.

"Although I have many titles and my palace is rather large do not fear talking to me. Within these walls you may say whatever you like ." Said Kevin with an easy smile, although on the inside he was fuming. He had been woken early and marched into the throne room just to get a single message.

"My lord, the king has been murdered. His family too." Was all the messenger said and time seemed to stop. The king was dead. Kevin sat for what seemed like an eternity not sure what to do. Guards were standing at the walls staring at him and his family had all turned to look at him, seemingly for an answer. Kevin only nodded.

"Very well." He said in a low quiet voice. "Guards escort this man out of my city and tell my uncle I need to talk with him. Once the guards were gone Kevin slumped into his throne as if the life had been sucked out of him. John Osteler entered the throne room a few minutes later and walked up to his nephew

"What do you need me for?" Asked John

"The king is dead" Answered Kevin looking at his uncle who was standing below the steps. "What do we do now?" he asked.

John merely shrugged, "That's for you to decide, I'm not the lord."

Kevin grinned now, he had been thinking "What if- what if I declare that we're an empire again? There is no king and no direct claimant so... no one will oppose us."

"That's what the Mud's thought like and look at them now." John motioned to a tattered banner of the house Mud who had ruled over the lands of Uviosta before house Osteler had cast them down.

"You said it before though, you're not the lord I am. So tell your guards to pull down the flags of Caldoria and raise my flag, and send messengers to every house and city-state telling them what I'm doing. We'll organize a coronation soon." Kevin sat on his throne grinning. John looked at him obviously angered for a second before nodding his head and leaving the room.

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Postby Great Nepal » Fri Apr 18, 2014 7:40 am

Tower of Saurashtra
Sunita lunged forward to the bat'leth that was located centrally between the two while Sachindra increased his grip on the knife like smaller bat'leth; only weapon carried by both siblings however it was no doubt much inferior compared to its larger cousin. As she reached for the weapon, he jumped forward thrusting the knife at Sunita's arm as he picked up the bat'leth with a grin as the knife indented into the forearm letting out blood. Standing up holding bat'leth with born arm he said teasingly "you sure you dont just want to give up" keeping the smug look on his face. Frowning she jumped forward catching him unprepared as the knife cutting his cheek as she laughed stating "does that answer the question". Sachindra shook his head, moving his right palm up to feel the blood run down as he narrowed his eye, gripping bat'leth tighter than before as he prepared for charge, before you could blink an eye he already ran forward pushing his sister against the wall as he thrust up the bat'leth, its edges digging into the wall as the central curve made line against her neck. While it looked to be over, Sunita lunged forward on the sharp part of bat'leth. Normally an action that would have resulted in chopped off neck however Sachindra pulled his hands back preventing decapitation of his sister. Sachindra frowned as she kneed his abdomen, pushing down on the floor as he threw bat'leth across the room; he was in no position to use it at such close distance instead reaching for the knife. After giving up on attempt to reach for bat'leth, Sunita reached for her knife putting it against Sachindra's neck as she said "you really should give up" as her knee dug into his stomach. Taking advantage of slight movement of his legs, he pushed her off standing up as she started to do the same; before he could get to the other end of the room. Just pushing her down, his knees digging into the thigh while the elbow dig in her neck as he looked around for his knife before realising he had let it go. Instead of giving up the advantage he stayed and Sunita now let out cry perhaps involuntarily. Sachindra looked at her face standing up as he gave hand for help however she looked at him stating "I hadn't given up". Sachindra chuckled as he said "you were shouting, that is usually a sign to you know stop". Sunita shook her head as she stood up, grabbing his arm before she continued "no, you were just too scared to hurt me. You cant do that can you brother" teasingly as Sachindra shook his head laughing "I think that fall caused some concussion, you should see Siddharth".

He rested the bat'leth on the wall, before saying "come in" towards the door, there were Akanksha and Mahendra outside the door awaiting for Duke to be ready for them; which of course meant until ritual of meeting between siblings was finished. Message had just reached the city of Saurashtra and so far the message had been kept under wraps; until Sachindra could decide how to move forward hence the cause for gathering. As two entered the room, and took seat on the sofa where Sachindra and Sunita had sat down overlooking the city. As everyone took the seat, Sachindra put down his glass before stating mater of factly "High King Valspar is dead". It took a moment for the news to sink in before Akanksha finally asked a question answer to which that everyone knew "so who is the King then"? Sachindra looked towards her taking a breath before he declared in same tone as before "me".

Eyes turned towards him as the silence takes over for what seems like ever. Sunita finally breaks the silence "I didn't know we had a valid claim", to which Mahendra chips in in assertive voice "we dont" before Sachindra can reply. Sachindra nods looking towards his father before he says "that is not an issue, lets just say it is being worked on", what he referred to was a meeting couple of hours ago with Tris, that was primary reason neither spy master nor chancellor were present here; they had other tasks to be dealing with. The phrase put a smile in his sisters face as she said "got it, so when are we marching out" however same couldn't be said for Akanksha who said "you want to march into the capital without backing of the lords? That is recipe for war across Caldoria". Sachindra looked towards her with more serious expression as he questioned almost accusingly "why, are you afraid of war", immediately she backtracked "of course not, I just mean we would avoid lot of bloodshed by commanding loyalty of lords throughout the land". Backed by Mahendra who said "I agree, I have no doubt son that you could simply march in the city and claim the throne but power comes as much from oath of fealty from lords as much from the power of sword. Seek their oath and thousands could be saved". Sachindra sighed as he said "fine, instruct chancellor to send messages to appropriate courts to seek their support in our bid for throne. In the meantime, I still want the army to get ready, we march by the weeks end".


Back Garden of the tower
Post marshal had been entrusted with the letters to various lords of the land from the chancellor, of course he was unaware of what it entailed so much like most of the subjects of the duchies he was unaware of either death of High King, contents of the letter itself or what it represented; that Sachindra was making bid for the throne. He simply whistled three note tune and several Argentavises flew down to land on the garden making a perfect line as he tied letter indicating they will be present in the conference and letters to be sent to House Reytan, House Slythe, House Shavalla, House Ystermont and House Wintor:
Image
Subject: Kingdom of Caldoria| Confidentiality: For recipients eyes only



Greetings to most honourable <title and name> of Caldoria on behest of Duke Sachindra Kshetri and people of Samogitia and Adrianopolis,

As I am certain, all of us have heard the news of tragedy that has befallen our fair land at hand of thugs and assassins, this is a time of of great sorrow and mourning for the entire kingdom and all souls in land and heaven alike cry for untimely death of most fair High King Valspar and his family. This is a time not for politics nor for us to be divided but a time where we all are bound by a common emotion; sorrow and time where we must unite against the thugs who brought the untimely death of most fair High King Valsper against wishes of God. We must work together to find and bring the thugs who were responsible to justice. We must deliver this devil in man's body to God for justice.

The only way we are going to be able to do so is not if we are disorganised but if we are organised and if we are able to crown a legitimate and strong King to the throne of Caldoria. We would therefore like to suggest quite clearly most legitimate person for succession to be Duke Sachindra Kshetri and we would like to call upon you as most honourable lords of Caldoria to support our bid for the throne for benefit of the Caldorian people. Of course, we understand that this is a hard time given the recent tragedy so we patiently await your response and if you have any questions, any injustices that High King Valsper being after all a imperfect man that may have been committed previously that we might be able to lift to convince you of the legitimacy of the succession; we would be most happy to oblige.

Thank you for your time.
Last edited by Great Nepal on Sun Nov 29, 1995 7:02 am, edited 1 time in total.


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Palonitr and Howland
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Postby Palonitr and Howland » Fri Apr 18, 2014 8:37 am

Kaeln felt the rain pelt his steel armor as he knelt in the rough Fler bushes of Ysterland. He and 50 of his personal guard had went off from his castle in search of vengeance as bandits had stupidly raided a village nearby Castle Darriom. The bandit clan was from the smaller territories to the west of Ysterland where law was harder to maintain. They rode to the heart of Ysterland in hopes of finding one of the silver caravans that frequented the roads of Ysterland but instead they found a village which they burnt, pillaged, and destroyed. Unfortunately, the village was home to a dear cousin of Kaeln Ystermont, Duke of Yster and Demon of the NorthEast, as well as a number of the house guard's families. He smiled as they saw the bandit encampment, Kaeln saw the poor excuses of a warrior family. They had 30 men guarding the camp and over half of which were drunk and passed out. There were another 20 out and about, raiding somewhere nearby. Kaeln finally blew the horn and ordered the ambush to be commenced. Kaeln's men had surrounded the camp and shot crossbows at the camp. They riddled the little flimsy little tents with crossbow bolts leaving nothing living.

A while later....
Kaeln swung his warhammer into the bandit leader's face, making it cave in, killing the fat man. He didnt know how a disorganized mess could cause so much chaos and destruction. Then he heard the thunderous hooves of several horses. He smiled, the rest of the bandit clan was insight. Kaeln really loved this. He and his men created a wall of spears as the bandits charged at them in full speed. The horsed men slammed into the 50 spears and was slaughtered. The men were unhorsed and was made quick work of. All were dispatched quickly by beheading. The one last bandit tried to escape, only to be mowed down by a incoming horseman with a lance. It was Daerk Ystermont, Kaeln's brother. "BROTHER KAELN, I BEAR ILL NEWS FROM THE CAPITAL. THE HIGH KING HAS DIED AND WITH HIM BEING THE LAST OF HIS HOUSE... WE HAVE NO HIGH KING AND THE REALM IS IN CHAOS. THE OTHER HIGH LORDS ARE SURE TO RISE AND REVOLT OR TRY TO INSTALL A KING OF THEIR OWN." Daerk shouted to Kaeln, "We must hasten the negotiations of alliance between ours and the Serras of Persica. I want you to take the knight commander and a honour guard of 30 knights and 70 of my house guards. Fetch the envoy from Serra. They come towards here as we speak. Hurry, i did not expect the king to die so early. Things are gonna be more exciting. Meet the envoy and bring them here." He stood there in the rain, its cold wet drops washing of the blood of him, as his brother sped back to Feld and then to
Silverwatch. He would be damned if he would not secure a alliance because of some bandit ambush on the envoys. It all felt too soon....

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Corenea
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Postby Corenea » Fri Apr 18, 2014 9:17 am

House Cordell
Sly walked to the ravens nest room to a man operating the room, "Hello Chief Adviser, what do you need?" the man greeted sly.

"I need you to write a note to each major Houses and write that Lord Winston is calling for a meeting at the king's palace for the discussion of the new King," Sly told him.

"Will do, Advisor," the man said as he took out papers and begin to write on them. Sly turned around and left the room. A few minutes later, the messenger wrapped the small scrolls with ribbons and placed each of them to each raven's leg. "Alright ravens, you know what to do for this, go fly and deliver the message to your destinations," the man said as the birds flew to different directions for their missions.
Last edited by Corenea on Fri Apr 18, 2014 11:03 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Damak Var
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Postby Damak Var » Fri Apr 18, 2014 5:22 pm

Vanovar, Persica

August looked at the carriage a bit confused. While he did appreciate the gesture. The Aranets would have provided the same luxury he expected should a Serra come to Palatine. There certainly was a lot of pageantry to his arrival. That made August a bit uncomfortable but realized an absence of such would have been an insult.

"Ser Connemar is it? You look like you can fill some graves." He complemented him.

"And how am I suppose to admire the beauty of this city in that thing? You would deprive me of such?" August asked about the carriage. "Nay, I think I shall walk the distance. Need to get rid these sea legs anyways. Lead the way then Cambriel. Are we off to meet the Duchess?" He asked the guide.
Last edited by Damak Var on Fri Apr 18, 2014 5:23 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Cymrea
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Postby Cymrea » Fri Apr 18, 2014 11:02 pm

Vanovar, Persica

Ramos brought a fist to his chest in salute. "Thank you, my lord," he said, practically a soliloquy for the laconic lance-captain.

Cambriel winked indulgently at Lysander. "My Lord August, the open-topped carriage is the finest way to enjoy the city sights and it is quite a large city. And there will be more than enough walking once we reach the Green Castle. Please, my lord, think of my own poor feet, if you would."
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Damak Var
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Postby Damak Var » Fri Apr 18, 2014 11:34 pm

Vanovar, Persica
House Aranet


"I am well aware of how large a city can be. Ride in the carriage yourself if your feet are so delicate. Or we can stop and rest if you tire." With that August began to walk, Lysander following close behind after giving Cambriel a shrug. August enjoyed taking strolls through Palatine but that was getting boring these days after knowing all the buildings. Though he had to admit he did not know where he was going.

"Take me towards the Green Castle brother." August said.

"Very well." Lysander replied dutifully.

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Cymrea
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Postby Cymrea » Fri Apr 18, 2014 11:51 pm

Castle Green
Vanovar, Persica

The institution of using trained birds to carry messages across Caldoria had been established long ago. Ravens, doves, argentivises, and the like saved a great deal of time and logistics. The birds found their own food and required little in the way of pay beyond some kernals of corn in suet. But while they could not be accosted on the road by brigands or spies, they could be shot down by a determined archer of any reasonable skill. And so to ensure that a message of import reached its intended recipient, four or five birds carrying the same message were often released from cotes in staggered flights.

So it was, with the death of the High King and all of House Caldor, that the skies over the realm were thick with message-carrying birds of all species. An archer hardly needed any skill at all to bring one down and return the information contained therein to their employer, invariably a spymaster or broker of secrets.

Many ravens and doves and argentivises from the Great Houses made their way safely to Green Castle nonetheless. And Duchess Rhiannon received them all, comparing the wording of the messages and even studying the handwriting for subtextual clues out of long habit. Her father and predecessor Duke Rowan had made certain she took in the art of intrigue with her mother's milk.

From the west came word that House Osteler was declaring independence from the High Throne. Knowing the amibitions of Sachindra Kshetri, the Samogitian armies would likely have a response to such a declaration even as the troops from Adrianopolis looked to the east. Indeed, argentavises bound for Ystermont had been intercepted: House Kshatriya would make a play for the High Throne with martial prowess their foremost qualification. They would likely find that a more difficult prospect than initially considered. Taking the High Throne was easy enough; holding it and all the Great Houses together under one rule was much harder.

Ystermont would prove to be no threat, Rhiannon was certain. The envoy would be there in a matter of a week or so, cementing a stronger bond between the northern silvermen and House Serra. Persica was a primary purchaser of Darriom's precious metal and also a fellow naval power. For all he was a ferocious warrior, Duke Kaeln was a family man who yearned for his own hearth, for peace and prosperity for his people. That paternal instinct would keep him firmly in the north as a loyal aegis of the realm.

House Cordell called for a conference in the capital. Rhiannon admired Lord Winston's reasoned suggestion; it showed a maturity and concern for Caldoria as valourous in its selflessness as it was naive. The lords and ladies of the Great Houses were ambitious and did not maintain a steady rule without a stiff measure of self interest. Her heart sympathised with Cordell, nonetheless.

Of the other Houses and their intentions, Duchess Rhiannon had heard little. But the game was only beginning, there were many moves yet to be made. For the moment, matters were well in hand; she could save worry for another day and borrow none.

Rhiannon stood and stretched her muscles, easing the small aches of sitting for hours. Having committed their words to memory, she gathered the collection of messages and moved to the hearth. One by one she cast the missives into the fire, making certain that each was fully comsumed by the flames before adding the next.
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Postby Cymrea » Fri Apr 18, 2014 11:55 pm

Vanovar, Persica

Seeing the scion of Aranet was determined to walk, Cambriel conceded. "Is it directly to the castle you wish to go, my lord?"

Ramos and the escort of Dragon Knights fell in behind the small party now afoot. The morning mists were burning off and a watery yellow light bathed the city in a golden hue. With just a slight and cool breeze, Cambriel had to admit that it was a beautiful day for a consitutional stroll.
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Frostorn
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Postby Frostorn » Sat Apr 19, 2014 5:56 am

Summiton, Frostayne
Falyn Sine had always been a light sleeper and was instantly awake when Gregor, the Summiton Falconer, knocked lightly on her door. "My lady, a Falconite arrived with a scrolled message." He slipped the scrolled message underneath the door into her room. She trod lightly to the door and picked up the message. Falyn unscrolled the paper, read the words within, and nodded knowingly. She quickly dressed and called for her page. "Quick, run to the General Commander, and tell him to meet me urgently at the Councilroom." The boy nodded and ran off down the narrow spiral stairs to the right of her door.

When Falyn entered the room, she was unsurprised to find General Howyn seated at the table. He was not a man who wasted time. She sat down beside him and said, "The King is Dead." Howyn pondered for a moment before asking, "How? Assassinated?" "Yes," Falyn replied. Howyn revealed a slight smile, "Then Dilin was successful. House Wintor thrives on war and, I believe, there will be one soon."
Last edited by Frostorn on Mon Apr 21, 2014 3:04 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Palonitr and Howland
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Postby Palonitr and Howland » Sat Apr 19, 2014 7:15 am

Castle Darriom
House Ystermont
Kaeln stared at his map of Caldoria in Darriom. He looked for threats that was nearby and possible threats. There were two great houses next to Ysterland, one to the West and another south of the Silverwatch. As far as what Kaeln knew, the 2 houses did not have any stance currently. Though the islands to the southeast had revolted and were currently squablimg with each other. He would gather some troops and eradicate the several hundred minor lords whom reside in the area. They threaten passing trade ships and the flow of much needed goods from the south. He was still pretty isolated from any possible wide scale war between great houses. He had several letters set out before him, all were to be delivered to several great lords. The most important were those that were going to Howyn Wintor and the Aranets of Palatine. Both were asking for the renewal of age old alliances, hoping for a strong confederation of allied houses when the coming war. He set of his personal owls to deliver the messages under the night sky, allowing them to have a lesser risk of interception of his messages.

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Nova Thora
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Postby Nova Thora » Sat Apr 19, 2014 9:41 am

house Delnor
counsel chamber, Greystone castle, Vallis


Lord Celtigar Delnor, talking to his counsel:

My Lords and friends. As you al know, we received a letter from the capitol three days ago bringing us the news of our noble king's death.
Since then, many disturbing news ,reports an rumors have reached my ears. I have gathered you here to discuss these matters and tell you the position our region will take.

First of all, house Osteler has declared independence. I see this as good news, this way they won't support any other houses claiming the throne and will keep their neighbors occupied. They are no threat to us.
*counsel members al nod and murmur in agreement*

On a more concerning note: House Serra and the city of Palatine are in the process of forming an alliance. My spies do not know what their intensions are but I don't entirely trust these idol worshipping merchants.
Furthermore, this alliance creates the largest fleet in Caldoria. Even a fleet as powerful as ours would have a hard time fighting twice it's number. If turned against us, this could be a serious threat.
*nervous murmuring from counsel members*

Now for the worst of it. My spies have brought down a bird from house Kshatriya: Duke Sachindra means to take the throne and is summoning other lords to his cause.
*alarmed gasps from counsel members*
We can al agree that this barbarian must not be allowed to rule. Moreover, he has the power, if unchallenged, to crush our region.

Random counsel member #1: "Then we must join with other regions to oppose them!!!"

Yes, but with whom I do not know. To join the alliance between House Serra and House Arranet would be safest, though I do not want to see an idol-worshipper on the throne.
We could make an alliance of our own, yet this is risky...

One more thing: House Cordell has asked al the major Lords an Ladies to a council in the capital. To decide democratically who will succeed our dead king.
I believe this is a righteous cause, yet I will not go. If all the major houses were gathered in the capitol, it would be to easy for some power-hungry lord to extinguish us all in one fell blow.
House Cordell on the other hand, should be seen as a possible ally. They share the same faith in Sall and want a righteous king, like us.

random counsel member #2: Then what will you do my lord? Join the merchant alliance? declare war on Kshatriya? Forge our own alliance maybe?

I will do none of these.

random cousel member #1: What must we do then?

We will wait. Have your small folk bring in a last harvest, have your men ready to join the grey fleet.
We will see how the other great lords handle this situation before we make a move.

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Damak Var
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Postby Damak Var » Sat Apr 19, 2014 10:47 pm

Vanovar, Perisca

"If Rhiannon would see me now, yes, let us go to the castle." August replied to Cambriel while walking. The troop followed, along with a troop of August's own personal guardsmen in green surcoats emblazoned with the Aranet rose. Many how houses chose fearsome creatures as their sigil. But the Aranets valued elegance and finesse over strength. The rose symbolized that quite well. Though as part of August's own retinue, those guard's own sigils were modified.

Aurelian, as first son and heir chose to have a chevron placed on top of the rose for his men. August's sigil had two feathers on each side of the rose.

He took in the sights to the city and tried to think objectively whether it was better than Palatine. Of course it was easy to say their city was the greatest in Caldoria. It was certainly one of the largest.

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Cymrea
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Postby Cymrea » Sat Apr 19, 2014 10:50 pm

For the IC and Secret IC relations between Persica and Yster: The Dragon and the Owl
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Cymrea
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Postby Cymrea » Sat Apr 19, 2014 11:11 pm

Vanovar, Persica

The tour was relatively brief and - from a diplomatic standpoint - blessedly uneventful. The port disctrict seemed to hold a great deal of fascination for the scion of Aranet, but that was no surprise. He was also quite interested in the doxy houses though he managed to hide it rather well. Cambriel smiled. Young men are the same the world over.

From the main market district, the tour went directly to Castle Green. With the sun shining brightly and the small folk moving cheerfully about their tasks, the mood was light. It wasn't long before soldiers in both blue and green surcoats were chatting amiably. Lance-Captain Ramos even permitted one brave Palatinian to pet Heartseeker.

Once inside the ivy-draped curtain walls of Castle Green, the Dragon Knights dismounted. Half were dismissed to other duties; security was more certain in the keep. After paying homage to the Old Gods in the sacred grove, Lord August Aranet was ushered into an audience with Rhiannon. She received him in a large and airy salon; light silken drapes allowed the cool breeze inside while the low fire in the hearth balanced the ambient temperature perfectly. As the party entered the salon, she opened her arms and smiled brightly. She was dressed in deep blue slashed with cream, her flaming copper hair tied in intricate braids. Her shining presence filled the room for all she was barely five and a half feet tall.

"Welcome, cousin!"

The same bemused smile bloomed on August's face as with Cambriel's greeting. Again, young Lysander leaned in. "The Serras believe all the great houses are related through the will of the Old Gods. It's a rather charming notion, actually."
Last edited by Cymrea on Sat Apr 19, 2014 11:12 pm, edited 1 time in total.
Pronounced: [KIM]-ree-ah. Formerly the Empire of Thakandar, founded December 2002. IIWiki | Factbook | Royal Cymrean Forces
Proud patron of: Halcyon Arms and of their Cymrea-class drone carrier
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Frostorn
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Postby Frostorn » Sun Apr 20, 2014 12:37 am

Summiton, Frostayne
Councilroom

For once, all three council members were seated at the table in the councilroom. Grand Admiral Bethan Wintor had arrived just the day before, after docking her longship, the largest longship in the Fleet, Dawn Sun, at Rivernorth a few days ago.

Falyn started with the message she had received the night before. "Duke Kaeln wishes to form an alliance with us." General Howyn immediately replied, "He is too far from us to help much. However, send a falconite with a message of agreement to this alliance." Bethan chuckled and said, "We can call this the Silvergold Alliance. We should add House Serra to this alliance, they have long been customers of our gold. Falyn, send a bird to Vanovar, and tell the falconite to fly high, we don't want this message to be intercepted."
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