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PostPosted: October 22nd, 2017, 10:30 pm 
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Duke

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The following is the historical account of the Casadian involvement in the Perthian civil war of 583 A.I. as recorded by the Casadian chronicler Eraen. The details of the events were written soon after they occurred to ensure accuracy.

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In early spring of 583 A.I., word spread throughout the empire of chaos in Perth. The usurper, Ainmire, had raised an army of Pyrencian and Östron mercenaries and foul creatures called the Fallen to challenged the rule of Scrios IV. After the defeat of the Perthian army and the death of the king in a battle along the Ilminite Coast, the Casadian banners were called in order to bring an end to the usurper’s assault on the Perthian crown.

After two weeks of organization, the Casadian contingent was fully marshalled in the port of Secara. The Casadian host numbered some six thousand in total, consisting of nearly two thousand mounted lancers, two thousand heavy infantry, five hundred pikemen, one thousand longbowmen, and five hundred crossbowmen. Of that number, twenty five hundred were of the Istrateri, fifteen hundred of the First Guard, and the remainder of the Second Guard. Command was given to Akrus, Guardian of Ilothera.

Three days past the equinox, the army set sail westward towards the Vulcite Sea. Though Östron pirates allied with the usurper patrolled the eastern shores of Perth, the flotilla proceeded unmolested along the southern edge of the sea. A healthy sum of gold was paid to the lords of Freewater to guarantee a smooth passage.

After four days of sailing, the flotilla had arrived at the end of the strait between Kaine and Laghima and disembarked. It took a full day to assemble the force into marching order. At dawn, the army headed northward. Knowing that he was marching into hostile territory, Akrus composed the vanguard of his most experienced lancers and heavy infantry. The middle of the column held the greenest of the troops, flanked on both sides by thin lines of lancers. The baggage train was guarded by the remaining seasoned troops and an additional contingent from the First Guard.

The first day on the march past uneventfully, as the the chaos of the north had yet to spread into Kaine. The army passed a few small groups of refugees fleeing southward and garnered some limited intelligence of what lay ahead. The refugees warned of hostile bands of Östron mercenaries laying waste to loyalist villages. The army made camp near a small village on the border of Kaine and Perth. A dense forest stretched as far as the eye could see to the north and Akrus feared the enemy was watching from the cover of the foliage.

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While the army broke camp, Akrus sent a contingent of scouts into the forest to flush out mercenaries that might be hiding within. The scouts found no trace of the enemy, though that was little comfort to Akrus. Wary of ambush, Akrus doubled his number of outriders and pressed into the forest. Much to Akrus’ surprise, the column marched unmolested through the forest. At this point, Akrus began to question whether the enemy knew they were coming.

By nightfall, the column had made it to the northern edge of the forest and made camp beside a small lake. Still wary of Östron scouts and raiders, the Casadians deployed two rings of sentries to keep watch throughout the night. Another uneventful night passed, allowing the Casadian army to rest easy after a long march.

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At daybreak, the Casadian army marched north, following an old road that ran along the edge of the foothills to the west. In order to reach Tremaine, the Casadians knew that they would have to push into the foothills eventually. Though the Casadian army was more than capable of marching over rough terrain, their large baggage train was not up to the task. They would need to keep to the roads in order to protect their vital supplies.

In the early afternoon, Casadian scouts discovered a contingent of some five hundred Östrons mercenaries camped astride one of the roads into the foothills. The Östrons had taken up a position on a hilltop overlooking the road. A river ran along the southern edge of the hill, leaving only a narrow passage between the road and the Östron position. To make matters worse, the Östrons had assembled a makeshift line of fortifications that ran from the top of the hill down to the road. The Östrons had clearly anticipated the Casadians’ reluctance to abandon their baggage train and planned on making the Casadians pay dearly to enter the foothills. Not wanting to incur heavy casualties so early in the campaign, Akrus decided to push further north to find another passage despite his great numerical advantage.

The Casadians made camp in an abandoned village five kilometers northeast of the Östron camp. Again, the Casadians deployed multiple rings of sentries, this time rightfully wary of a raid by the enemy. The Östrons would launch numerous probing attacks throughout the night, but they were quickly repulsed by the sentries.

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The next day began with a hard march north. Akrus had not wanted to camp so close to the enemy the night before, as it gave the enemy the opportunity to gather information about his assembled forces. The quick pace of his army allowed him to leave the Östrons behind, who showed little interest in abandoning their position and harassing the Casadians as they pressed forward. The Casadians could only assume the enemy had strict orders not to relinquish their defensive position.

The day passed uneventfully with no sign of friend or foe. Each village and hamlet the army passed had been looted or abandoned. Some showed signs of a bloody struggle, but there were no bodies to be found. The army made camp beside a small forest at nightfall to rest after the long march.

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The army awoke in the early hours of the morning to the sound of horns and shouts coming from the forest. The sentries had come under attack and were being pushed back to the camp. The army hastily formed up into battle lines as a horde of Fallen poured through the trees. Many of the soldiers were missing their armor, having little time to don it on their way to the line. With no time to mount their steeds, the lancers grabbed their lances and joined the pikemen at the front of the line. Akrus split his contingent of Orcish berserkers and sent them to the flanks to stave off a total envelopment of the line.

The first wave of the Fallen crashed into the line of pikes with many squirming violently as they were impaled. Some managed to claw their way past the array only to be cut down. As more and more Fallen pressed against the line, however, the center of the formation began to be pushed back. Akrus called for the pikes to fall back and let the waiting infantry engage the horde. Swords proved far more effective and soon the center was stabilized. Akrus relayed orders for the line to hold its position and not push into the forest, fearing the possibility of envelopment.

The horde pressed against the Casadian line for nearly half an hour before their numbers began to dwindle. The berserkers on the flanks were sent into the forest to hunt down the stragglers while the rest of the army tried to get its bearings. Twenty-seven Casadians lay slain, with many others suffering minor wounds. The bodies of the Fallen numbered nearly five hundred and it took much of the rest of the day to gather the corpses into pyres. With many of his men exhausted, Akrus chose to keep the army in place to allow them to recover. Not wanting to be caught by surprise again, a ring of sentries was arrayed far from the camp in order to provide ample warning should another attack occur.

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The next day began with a heavy rainstorm. The army tried to get on the move, but the muddy conditions proved too much for the baggage train. The army reluctantly returned to their previous campsite and waited for the weather to clear.

The rain fell unabated for the next two days. Not knowing how long the army would be staying in place, Akrus had his soldiers construct a ring of rudimentary fortifications around the camp. Sentries reported a few sightings of Östron scouts in the hills to the west, but the scouts fled quickly when pursued. When the storm finally broke, the army quickly set off, eager to abandon their soggy camp.

The roads were still of dubious quality, which served to greatly slow progress. The army traveled only a short distance, but Akrus sent out mounted scouts to reconnoiter the path ahead. They returned with good news: a day’s march to the north lay a wide, shallow-sloped valley into the foothills. It was also largely undefended, save for a makeshift fort constructed by the enemy a few kilometers into the valley. It was clear that this would be the Casadian’s best chance to push into the foothills. As the army made camp, Akrus began to draw up a battle plan. Though the enemy force was small, Akrus did not wish to lose undue soldiers to such a minor bump in the road. He called his counselors and spent the night plotting the best course of action.

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The army marched swiftly towards the valley, their stamina bolstered by the prospect of finally engaging with the enemy. Akrus sent his cavalry ahead to clear out any Östron scouts in their path. By midday, the valley loomed in front of the advancing host. The Casadians made camp at the mouth of the valley as night fell. Akrus had sentries posted on the slopes in case of a surprise attack, but none came. Instead, scouts reported that the enemy had fled from their fortification. The valley began to narrow further to the west, leading Akrus to suspect that the enemy would be waiting for them there. It was an anxious night in the camp as the soldiers readied themselves for battle.

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The Casadian army woke before dawn and marched westward in a wide column. The infantry followed the road in the middle of the valley while most of the cavalry proceeded along the slopes. Scouts reported that a large enemy force of two thousand Östrons and Pyrencians had indeed set up a line of defense in the narrowest part of the valley. A contingent of five hundred lancers was sent in southern arc to try and come at the enemy position from behind while the main force engaged from the east.

As the Casadians drew closer, the extent of the defenses became clear. The Usurper’s soldiers had set up three rows of wooden fortifications anchored by towers along the slopes. The slopes themselves were covered in large stones and loose gravel, preventing any kind of coordinated flanking maneuver. Pits had been dug in front of each row and filled with wooden spikes. Behind every inch of the defenses was an archer with their bow at the ready. Casadia may have had the numbers, but the enemy was determined to make them bleed for every bit of progress.

Akrus ordered his longbowmen up to the top of the slopes along with a few infantry to keep them protected. The cavalry was sent north and south to try and bypass the fortifications and harass the enemy’s rear. The bowmen found a few positions shielded from the towers and began to launch volleys of arrows down at the enemy line at the bottom of the valley. The main body of the Casadian army waited just beyond arrow range as the longbowmen softened up the enemy position. Despite the constant rain of arrows, the defenders did not waiver. Akrus had no choice but to wait patiently for his cavalry to complete their encirclement.

As the day wore on, Akrus began to grow anxious. There was no sign of his cavalry and the enemy seemed unfazed by the volleys from his longbowmen. Anxiety turned to dread as the low rumble of hooves began to grow to the east. The Usurper’s men had executed a daring flank of their own and now hundreds of horsemen were charging down the valley towards the Casadian rear. Their first target was the Casadian baggage train which was guarded by fewer than a hundred men. The torches held aloft by the horsemen made their intentions clear: they meant to burn the baggage train and leave the Casadians supplyless. Akrus ordered his rear line to run to meet the enemy, but his lack of cavalry meant that they would not make it in time.

All seemed lost until the glint of lances was seen on the southern slope. Some of the Casadian cavalry sent to flank the enemy had returned and was charging to defend the rear. The momentum of both forces led them to collide just shy of the baggage train. A late turn to face the oncoming lancers by the horsemen was to no avail; the lancers tore into the enemy with devastating effectiveness. The Östrons and Pyrencians that survived the initial impact turned to flee, pursued by the Casadian lancers.

Nearly two hundred of the Usurper’s men lay dead or dying, with only a few Casadians to join them. No doubt sensing that it was their turn to be struck from the rear, the Usurper’s men began to abandon their defenses and flee northward, leaving only a scant force behind to slow down the Casadian advance. The Casadians pushed towards the fortifications in tight formation, shields and pikes raised to guard against arrows. Sensing the futility of their defense, the remaining mercenaries soon fled.

With the enemy position seized, the Casadian army spent the remainder of the day regrouping. Most of the Usurper’s men managed to escape northward towards to Tremaine, though a few were captured by the encircling cavalry. The Casadian dead numbered fifty two while the dead or captured enemy numbered nearly four hundred. The prisoners were thoroughly questioned before they were marched to Kaine under the guard of a few dozen soldiers. Those that chose to talk revealed that the defensive line had been a trap to lure the Casadians into the valley and leave their baggage train vulnerable. Had Arcel, the commander of the lancers, not spotted the horsemen on their southern maneuver, the day might have the Casadians’ last in the war.

With the enemy in full retreat, the Casadian army was poised to march northwards towards Tremaine. Akrus had no doubt that the enemy would hide behind the formidable walls of the city and challenge the Casadians to an extended siege. A barren countryside meant that there were few options for the Casadians to resupply. Akrus sent some of his wagons back with the prisoner escort in order to retrieve additional supplies from Kaine. The siege would be a long one and Akrus meant to be ready for it.

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With the enemy in retreat, Akrus decided to secure his supply line and flush out the remaining garrisons in the south. He sent a thousand men south to seize the town of Foliantos and another five hundred back eastward to construct a series of forts and camps to serve as refuges for future baggage trains. He marched north towards Tremaine with the remainder of his force, using his lancers and scouts to screen for ambushes and chokepoints. The enemy would harass and harangue the Casadians as they pushed forward, but the capable cavalry commanders of Casadia were often able to surround and capture the enemy as they pulled back. It seemed the Usurper’s generals quickly realized that the ambushes were a losing proposition and pulled the majority of their force back to Tremaine.

Arriving at Foliantos, the Casadian contingent found some two hundred Pyrencians holed up in wooden fortifications on a pair of peaks. The enemy was well supplied and their position was not an easy one to approach. The Casadians offered their foe a chance to surrender, but they refused. Realizing that any attempt to storm either fortification would result in heavy casualties, the Casadian commander decided to use a different tactic. Over the course of several nights, a small number of Casadians snuck up the steep slope an emptied skins of oil at the base of the smaller fortification. The ascent to the top was an arduous and dangerous one, forcing the climbers to haul the oil up in small amounts. Several men suffered injuries from falls caused by the lack of visibility, but the Casadians managed to remain undetected.

When at last a sufficient amount of oil had been dispersed around the perimeter, the Casadians set fire to it. With nowhere to run, the entirety of the first garrison burned alive. Their screams seemed a strong enough motivator to the remaining defenders, who promptly surrendered rather than face the same fate. With Foliantos taken, the Casadian’s southern flank was secured. Word soon arrived that the new king of Perth had rallied his men and forced the enemy to retreat eastward towards Tremaine. Now being pressed from the west and the south, the enemy had no choice but to make their final stand at their last remaining position of strength. The war would be decided beneath the walls of Tremaine.

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PostPosted: October 23rd, 2017, 3:48 pm 
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King

Joined: May 30th, 2015, 10:17 am
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One of the most challenging campaigns in recent history. The Casadians resolve is reknowned and proven once again.

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Talja-Sameria II - Tip of the Spear
Queen of Dawnstar, Empress of Mercuria
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Gold Roads. Fractal Mining. Lore Compliance Ducks.


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PostPosted: October 23rd, 2017, 6:03 pm 
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Duke

Joined: May 30th, 2015, 5:52 pm
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Such resistance is truly useless, the God Sera has gifted me with their divine might and all shall feel the cut of my blade. Your continued allegiance to the false King is admirable but ultimately doomed. If nothing else I promise you this; so long as you continue to support the wicked King your people shall know the true meaning of mortality.

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Ainmire Sera-Blodh of House Flenadrison, second of his name, King in the South, Ruler of Carrickshire, and slayer of false Kings.
"The Crippled King"
"Flanders"


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PostPosted: November 6th, 2017, 4:15 am 
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Continuation below added to original post:

With the enemy in retreat, Akrus decided to secure his supply line and flush out the remaining garrisons in the south. He sent a thousand men south to seize the town of Foliantos and another five hundred back eastward to construct a series of forts and camps to serve as refuges for future baggage trains. He marched north towards Tremaine with the remainder of his force, using his lancers and scouts to screen for ambushes and chokepoints. The enemy would harass and harangue the Casadians as they pushed forward, but the capable cavalry commanders of Casadia were often able to surround and capture the enemy as they pulled back. It seemed the Usurper’s generals quickly realized that the ambushes were a losing proposition and pulled the majority of their force back to Tremaine.

Arriving at Foliantos, the Casadian contingent found some two hundred Pyrencians holed up in wooden fortifications on a pair of peaks. The enemy was well supplied and their position was not an easy one to approach. The Casadians offered their foe a chance to surrender, but they refused. Realizing that any attempt to storm either fortification would result in heavy casualties, the Casadian commander decided to use a different tactic. Over the course of several nights, a small number of Casadians snuck up the steep slope an emptied skins of oil at the base of the smaller fortification. The ascent to the top was an arduous and dangerous one, forcing the climbers to haul the oil up in small amounts. Several men suffered injuries from falls caused by the lack of visibility, but the Casadians managed to remain undetected.

When at last a sufficient amount of oil had been dispersed around the perimeter, the Casadians set fire to it. With nowhere to run, the entirety of the first garrison burned alive. Their screams seemed a strong enough motivator to the remaining defenders, who promptly surrendered rather than face the same fate. With Foliantos taken, the Casadian’s southern flank was secured. Word soon arrived that the new king of Perth had rallied his men and forced the enemy to retreat eastward towards Tremaine. Now being pressed from the west and the south, the enemy had no choice but to make their final stand at their last remaining position of strength. The war would be decided beneath the walls of Tremaine.

_________________
Guardian of Casadia
Master of the Slayers Guild
Minister of Hermertian History


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