[RP Episode] The First War


#1

This is set beginning near the end of A Meet of Figureheads. Any discrepancies between the two are mine.

The Winterkeep

Georgar gazed out his window, sizing up the road ahead. He buckled his armor on, strapping a guantlet on his left arm, and sliding his winged helmet on. He nodded to the men standing around him, and then walked outside into the courtyard. There, thousands of men were gathered, all in full battle-array, with the rangers and knights scattered in among each other. He nodded, satisfied, and then spoke:
“Warriors of the Grimguard! I called you hear to ask you: are your blades thirsty? Do you wish to hit the war trail once again?” After the roar of agreement subsided, he continued:
“I say, let’s hit those cowardly northerners who dare to call themselves the Northern Realm. They hold claim to being the power here, and yet they can’t even bestir themselves to pick up a sword and fight. Shall we test their mettle, and see if they are true northerners, with the blood of the Frostwithers, or are they merely young men playing at power? Who is with me?!” The troops bellowed back, roaring their affirmation. Georgar smiled grimly, knowing that for once, he would have the chance to pay back those lords whose endless politics and bickering had driven him from their ranks. Captains, stand out! Sergeants! Form up your troops! Let’s go!" A aide brought him his horse, which Georgar mounted. "Hyah! Let’s go! He jerked his horse around, and lead the grim faced and bearded men out of the castle and down the causeway, heading North, to war…


#2

A few hours later
Georgar surveyed the sizable encampment. He had led his army down into the plains, and set up a camp from which to plan his operations. The trees scatter across the sweeping plains provided wood to fuel the cooking fires, while the nearby fields and lakes provided enough wheat and fish to supply his army for some time. He watched as the men set up camp, digging trenches around the entire camp, and then using the excess dirt to construct a rampart. He wanted a base of operations from which he could both launch an attack or fall back to defend the Winterkeep.
Turning to the aides gathered around him, he ordered scouts out, telling them to head north. He needed to know if Davos would launch a preemptive strike. If Davos did, a massacre would occur, but not in the manner the northern king would expect.
After sending them away, Georgar walked to the edge of the camp. He had thought long and hard about his decision to attack his erst-while comrades, but doubt still gnawed him. This decision was not easy for him to make, and he knew attacking the Northern Realm would alienate every other nation that did not yet want him either dead or gone. He had been unable to make it to Ebonsgrasp, due to faulty guides and bad snows, but he hoped that the fabled Lord of Ash would sympathize with his actions. He had trifled with the idea of invading the North with the intent to hold it, but after his head had cooled, he abandoned it. He had enough troops to beat off, one, maybe two Northern armies, but after that, it was only a matter of time before he was driven in the Winterkeep and trapped. He sighed. He thought of the long friendship he had with Muzwall, and then of the dreadful night in which he killed him. “Oh, why did he not tell me that he disagreed with me? I never thought it would come to this, invading my first real country…” he groaned. Then, wrapping himself in his old traveling cloak, he fell asleep, curled up underneath a nearby tree.


#3

Some time later, Georgar awoke, to find his lieutenants standing over him, with a worried looks on their faces. “Sir, the scouts have come back.” said one of the name ofJason, a good soldier, and an even better planner. “They report that Lord Kodi has fortified the Blackwood Province, but are unsure of whether he is still in the area. What are your orders?” Georgar thought for awhile. If he attacked now, he could sweep the still preparing Northerners out of the province, but if he waited, they could have time enough to bring in enough reinforcements to keep him at bay, even launch a attack of their own. He knew Kodi well enough to know that he would seek a solution that would shed as little blood as possible, and he planned his strategy accordingly. His lip curled. He had worked well enough with Gerrey on smaller problems of logistics, but once Georgar started planning for wars, Gerrey usually began to find a more peaceful approach. Shaking himself out of his reverie, he frowned. "How would they know we are coming? Did the scouts see any sign of a army arriving? How many men are in the Province total capable of bearing weapons?


#5

“They report about 2,000 men total, most of them archers, with a few men-at-arms. Lord Kodi has rallied them at the port of West Town. If we attack we may take the city, but most of the population will escape through the ships.” Jason replied. “Very well, prepare the men. We march in three days time. I want you to lead our cavalry ahead, if you see any troops, take them out. If you spot the main army, withdraw back towards me, sending a messenger to warn us. Burn and fortifications you find, but spare the townsfolk and peasants. My quarrel is with the lords of the Northern Realm, not its subjects” Georgar said. Jason nodded, and left to gather his contingent. Georgar motioned for the other aides to leave him, and walked slowly to a hill nearby. Gazing from it across the barren plains, he sighed. “I stand at a crossroads. To push on, or to retreat in shameful fear. I tried to live in peace with them, but instead they choose the way of war and murder. I will fight, but I pray this is the last war I fight in.” mused the saddened knight. He waited a few moments, gazing into the distance, and finally nodded to himself. He drew out a small rough drawing of him and Muzwall after a victory. He looked at it for awhile, and then dropping it, walked back toward the camp.
Some time later

The army was on the move.Tramping through the countryside at a brisk pace, they made good time. The dour-handed rangers, with their longbows and swords walked with the longs strides of an explorer, while the knights marched with grim expressions and even steps. Their sword hung from their backs, and their expression was terrible to behold. Georgar rode at the head of the column, musing on how to take West Town. it was one of the few places in the North he had never been to, and so had to rely on scouts. he could see the the clouds of dust raised by the cavalry, as they ranged ahead of the column, seeking the enemy. Nothing moved, neither man nor beast, and the whole land had the smell of war. Crows and ravens circled high above. They knew what an army meant. Food.


#6

Suddenly, a lathered horse galloped up to Georgar, bearing a man with a scroll in his hand. Taking it, Shocklord broke the seal, the seal of the Vanguard, the mysterious group whom he had been approached by some weeks earlier. Quickly glancing through the letter’s contents, his eyes widened in surprise, before he turned to an aide riding nearby. “Call back the cavalry. This campaign is over.” The astonished man started. “Over, Sir? But it hasn’t started yet! What happened?!” he exclaimed. “It looks like the Vanguard have agreed to my proposal, and are finally ready to come out of the shadows.” replied the Commander. “Turn the army around. send word to the 1,000 troops at home, and tell them to prepare to receive a much larger army. Call in every able bodied man, and have them start posting recruitment posters in every city. One stack of diamonds for every able bodied man who joins us, who has had at least 5 years of service in the military. Tell them we will provide the weapons, that the discipline is harsh, and that if we succeed, a mighty kingdom will have been brought down by a mere handful of brave souls.And send an ambassador to the Northern Realm. Buy them off, tell them that as I have lost my friend, and they have lost their king, let us let it go at that. I do not wish for war with my former country, and I was wrong. I beg their forgiveness, and ask to be left in peace.” The aide saluted, slamming his right arm into his chest in a gesture of obedience, and started issuing orders to the few mounted men still with the column.


#7

Georgar reopened the letter. He glanced over it again, thinking of how many people this small document would affect. Hundreds would flee, thousands would die, and millions would be affected. he made no claims to greatness as to his ability to take on a large nation, but the men he was hiring would be a force to be reckoned with, after they had been taught to work and live together. Georgar would fight, and the Vanguard would pay, pouring their vast resources into a magnificent and awesome venture. He order the column to halt and make camp, as the returning cavalry began appearing from all directions.
West Town
Jason gazed up at the hurriedly prepared defenses. He knew that they would not have held back the army for long, but nevertheless, they were an impressive achievement considering how quickly they were built. He looked up at the gate, drew a bow from his saddle quiver, and shouted: “HOI! Stand back from the gate!” Then drawing a specially prepared arrow, he fired Shocklord’s message over the wall, where it thudded into the ground. He heard excited voices, and turned to ride back into the night. He recalled the words of the message:
To the Lords of the Northern Realm,
Greetings,
I, Georgar Shocklord, commander of the Grimguard army, do hereby extend my heartfelt apologies for the suffering and pain I have caused by my ruthless war upon your kingdom. Any damages sustain by the people of your nation will be recovered, with the Grimguard paying for said damages.
I also state my intention to never again lead a army on Northern Realm soil, and I suggest we leave one another in peace. You have lost your king, your dignity, and your strength. I have lost my friend, killed at my own hand, and I consider us even.
Commander Georgar Shocklord.

@Kung Please answer in A Meet of Figureheads


#8

Back at the Winterkeep

Atop the highest tower in the Winterkeep, another guard peered into the snowy wastes. Today was clear, with a bright blue sky and the sun reflecting off the shining snow. Gradually, a long, long line of a men drew into sight. Georgar was still conflicted. The decision to withdraw from Blackwood had not been an easy one, and his men were far from happy. Nevertheless, they would bear with him, for a time. Shocklord was loved by his troops, but telling them that a profitable campaign had to come to an end before they had a chance to fill their purses. He marched the army into the castle, and dismissed the men back to their barracks.
One hour later
Once again, Georgar was sitting in his study. This time however, is work went uninterrupted by assassins, former friends, and upset guards. He drew the the bloodspattered plans he had been working on the night Muzwall was killed from a hidden drawer, and began looking over them. They dealt with waging wars on a larger nation, with scripts and texts from learned strategists all over the world. Georgar had written some of them himself. Pulling out the file on Kleriel tactics, he opened the section on shield wall tactics. “Hit em’ with archers, attack from the flanks, then shock troopers down the middle. Sounds familiar…” he mused. " I could try the heavy cavalry charge with arrow storm strategy, but I think Ara’whatsamcallhim deserves something…special." A knock at the door brought him up short, and he frowned. Georgar liked visitors, but he preferred them to come when he was expecting them. “Come in!” he called.
@Mxlppxl


#9

Mxl strode in with two advisors at his side. Wearing nothing more that simple leather armor, dyed black as to allow him to shift into shadows with ease. “Sir Georgar I presume? Your guards were courteous enough to show me to here, I appreciate soldiers who recognize the importance of the situation.”

“While we would win a straight up fight with Aragottix, it would be a pyryche victory. We’d win of course, but the costs in resources and manpower alone would allow for no real winner and someone could seize the chance to swoop in to pick up whats left.”

Mxl scratched the grey stubble on his chin and continued “I’ve been talking to Bane the last few days though he’s been distant…almost like a shade of himself, only darker.”

Sir Georgar called for drinks and in less than a minute, platters were brought in, some with hot drinks, some with cold. Others had had slices of fresh fruit and baked bread. “You the man” said Mxl as he grabbed a mug of dark coffee and a slice of whole wheat bread.

Through bites of bread and sips of coffee he said “He found something and won’t tell me what it is…said it was dank and evil magic but he able to control it.”

“Sometimes…and that scares me. I’ve seen alot of bad juju and would rather resort to unconventional tactics like the Iraqi Death Blossom”

Sir G interrupted “Exactly what is an Iraqi Death Blossom?”

“That my young friend, was an expected event a decade ago where I was caught in the middle of a firefight. At night, alone, and surrounded I hauled my ass up to the nearest guard tower and climbed for my life. I might have been old then but you’d be surprised how fast you are when someone is shooting at you.”

Sir Georgar chuckled at the last line…“Yes, that is true!”

“Anyway” Mxl started again, “back to the plan. Bane has something he found, I don’t know exactly it is. He won’t tell me, won’t teleport me there yet. But if its powerful enough, perhaps we should use it? Find a small Kleriel village on the outskirts and test it out?”


#10

“Hmmm…I’m not sure. Until we know the nature of this ‘weapon’ I’m not going to agree with it’s use on a enemy.” Georgar frowned. “We should have enough recruits in about three weeks to start training them to work as a unit. Will you be recruiting another army as well? The Grimguard army is strong, and dangerous in it’s own way, but we don’t have the troops as of right now. If you can muster twenty-five thousand men, I can provide another fifteen thousand. Together we can give the Keelish troops something to worry about. I was able to draw out two large armies of about twelve thousand men each with only two thousand men last time I was in Kleriel. Let’s see how that two-faced nether spawn reacts to the entire might of the Vanguard.” Georgar smiled grimly. “So. my plan of attack is to march into the closest Kleriel province and burn it to the ground. No survivors. Anyone still alive can starve or freeze. If that doesn’t draw the Keelish out, I don’t know what will. After that, we can wear them out through skirmishes, and possibly draw them into a full on battle on a narrow front, where they’re numbers will be a disadvantage. My knights wield similar weapons to the Keelish, but we can swing faster, stronger, and longer. Your thoughts?” He gazed expectantly at Mxl. " You know, I never asked how old you were. You look weary enough to be 80 at least." Georgar looked quizzical.


#13

Mxl sighed…very few people knew how old he truely was and he revealed it to very few.
lets just say i’m pushing twice that to say the least

Mxl rolled up his left sleeve and revealed his forearm. With a slow twisting motion, his wrist slid off and into his right hand. “This, along with a few other choice pieces keep me going. I might not be the strongest or fastest anymore, but these little devices Bane came up with help me keep up.”

Georgar was obviously impressed…“Have any extras?” he said with a chuckle.

Mxl shook his head, “Sadly no, the mineral source Bane made these with was gone a long time ago and we never found any more. We’ve tried to recreate the portal to that elemental plane but we just can’t seem to get it right. Each time we try its nothing but demons and the like. Each time we see stranger things than before and whatever comes through there is stronger each time.”

Georgar pondered “Could you open one of those portals deep in Aragottix’s territory?

Mxl spit coffee through his teeth laughing…then coffee began to drip out his nose. After the laughing and coughing fit subsided, Mxl said "That would hilarious would certainly turn his world upside down. But there is one problem…closing the portal is no easy feast. Bane and I have dealt with three of these and the last one almost killed us."

It would certainly ruin his picnic, perhaps wipe him out…and when they were done with his lands, we’d have a mess on our hands when they came for us. I do not recommend it at all. Perhaps with a few more hero elements, we could open one safely in the End on a smaller island…made of TNT of course…

Georgar thought for a minute and replied “That would certainly be fun to watch…now back to the Kleriel problem. What are your thoughts?

Mxl looked straight at him and said “Three pronged attack…your men, straight in, ride, kill, burn, loot, pillage. Draw everything he has out as he can’t sit in his keep and do nothing. 72 hours after you ride in, my ships hit his ports. I’ve got 27 galleons loaded with troops, 4-5 per city and he’s got a second issue to deal with. At the same time, Bane will send in his glider troops. That man is a freaking genius. A glider made from glass, redstone, and paper. I can’t figure it out but it works. And it glides for over 5000 chunks depending on weight load.

Georgar’s jaw dropped “Redstone glider? How?

Like I said, I don’t know…he sits in the basement laboratory and makes things. Some work, some don’t. Some require medical attention and redoing the basement tiles and walls on a weekly basis when they don’t work

Now it was Georgar’s turn to laugh. “So not everything works as planned?

“Ha…no. Especially with redstone. One of those planes we visited was devoid of energy…period. No redstone, no nothing. All our gadgets were useless. Good thing we were actually prepared that time.”

So what did you guys do?” Georgar asked.

Mxl smiled slyly and said “We ran like hell.


#14

Kleriel, having several observation posts in the Grimguard’s region since before they had built the castle, to protect trade between a state to the north and mon-taizon, has picked up on amassing troops and recruitment campaigns and has begun taking precautions of its own.


#15

“Well, I guess there is a time for retreat at some point.” Shocklord smirked. “To get back to our original point, I’m going to move in on the Keelish outposts near here. After I kill a few hundred of them, men will see that the famed ‘Keelish Legionaries’ are not as terrifying as they say. Even though they
ll be outnumbered, it should raise morale, bring more men to join us. I have eight thousand Grimguard, and two thousand more who have just joined. Most of them are cavalry, thank heaven. If I can get 15 thousand men together, I can do enough damage to draw Kleriel’s army out. The terrain around here is good for defense, and my men are used to it. After I get them to come after me, You can hit the coast. We have less troops, but we have the firepower, and the resources to keep them running around, which will be to our advantage. Shall I give the orders?”
Georgar walked to the window, and gazed out across down the mountain. In the far distance, a small series of towers stood. By evening, they would be burning.


#16

“Do it…forces are on the move as we speak”


#17

Georgar nodded. “Good. I’ll get the men on the move right away. I’ll see you somewhere in Keelish territory.” After saying their goodbyes, Mxl and his followers departed the castle, winding their way into the mountains.
One hour later
Georgar and 15 of his best men lay on a small outcropping overlooking the first of the small Keelish lookout nests. They were wearing hardened leather armor, with small section of steel plate. They all carried shields, and Georgar had his trusty double blades on his back. He had debated on wether to kill the Keelish lookouts quietly, but had decided on a full on confrontation to boost his men’s morale, and show them that the Keelish were mortal. He drew his swords, motioned to his men, and the leapt down the side of the embankment calling out to leave no quarter. The Keelish troops reacted smoothly, like the well trained soldiers they were, and rose to meet the charging humans…
@Aragottix


#18

It was 15 soldiers against 4 scouts on the outpost overlooking the valley, clearly it was an attack, and the attacker had no intention of loosing, resisting would be futile. Lucky for the Keelish, the attacker had to very carefully ‘‘charge’’ downhill over thick mountain snow to reach them without coming face first down before them. This gave them a moment of time for two of them to grab their bows and pick at a few while another quickly grabbed what was vital with the last one launching a signal firework in to the sky. Then they all turned and ran further downhill on their slim footpath through the snow in to the valley bellow.


#19

The Grimguard troops quickly overran the camp. While 5 rangers dissappeared after the fleeing scouts, the rest swiftly dismantled everything of note in the little campsite. After a few minutes, the Rangers returned, carrying 3 Keelish bodies and 2 of their own men. Both of them would live, but they one had a nasty cut, and the other had a arrow wound. Georgar surveyed the corpses. “Bury them, then burn the camp. What happened to the other one?” “He got away sir, with an arrow sticking from his leg. Wonderfully enduring little buggers aren’t they?” replied the lead ranger. “So it would seem…” Georgar spoke. He gazed out across the valley. Small fires burned from the other campsites that the Guard had destroyed. "At least now they know we’re coming. But it matters not. Their lands will burn."
Back at the Winterkeep
Men on horseback began pouring in from all directions. Georgar ahd sent out word for every horse in good condition to be confiscated. After once again assembling the army, he lead a contigent of troops, consisting of 500 hundred horsemen, 200 rangers, and 800 infantry down into Keelish territoy.


#20

The one Keelish scout that managed to get away did so due to a timely rescue by others on horseback and rode off in the direction of Mon-Taizon. They had planned to pick up all of them, but it seems bad luck befell the other 3 and made them fall behind in the thick snow and be caught. They resisted, but were at the disadvantage of being outnumbered (again) and having their backs turned. At least the one that got away managed to recover the crate of reports they had written of Grimguard observations and troop movements.

But before Sir. Shocklord could depart for his Winterkeep while they were stripping the Keelish camp, torchlight could be seen on an opposite hill where there was no camp, presumably where their underground base was. Just as they would realise that there were other Keelish on the hill with yet more warning fireworks, they launched them not at the sky, but at the hill the attacker had occupied, triggering an avalanche. After which, they disappear, every Kleriel camp in the region is left abandoned.

High up in Zha’til

Ara is given word that they received a carrier crow with a message from spies in Mon-Taizon posing as delegates, they were the reports from the escaped scouts. Ara immediately gathered his war council.

As they feared, Grimguard was indeed a threat, and according to their continued reports, they have amassed way more support than they could muster on their own. They had another backer, or an ally, and a wealthy one. Ebongrasp was the first accused of this, but these accusations were dismissed as their own allies were showing their displeasure with the Grimguard openly. Kleriel was not the only ‘‘friend’’ the Grimguard had made under Shocklord’s command. The Vanguards were also held suspect, but the council could not think of a reason as to why, they would find out in due time though.

But the Keelish of Kleriel did not just sit idly by while all of this conspired, the imperium too had friends with considerable might, and yet others who would join them out of pure distaste for the rouge state that the Grimguard presented themselves as. Attacking Kleriel unprovoked, without warning, or a proper declaration of war. Akin to barbarians or terrorists, and they would be dealt with as such. Their mysterious ally does not scare Kleriel either, for they have brought their own.

Behind the scenes, Kleriel had been forming a secret coalition of nations to deal with these rouge states and secure continued peace in the world. Kleriel first appealed to the Mercenary Guild (lead by DKfluffyDK) to provide support from the opposite side, so the Grimguard would fight a war on two fronts, and had asked for aid of nations the Grimguard had wronged, or at least insulted in the past. The Merc Guild was all in, ‘‘Taking out competition in the merc trade along the way.’’ they said, the kingdom of Ayrith (lead by shatter) too was eager to be rid of Shocklord’s trouble after nearly causing a war between the NR and the EC, which they obviously blame him for more than others, due to his warmongering reputation. Something the NR held against him as well it seems, to Kleriel’s surprise, the NR (lead by Snev) replied to their request for aid with approval, being nearly invaded by the same enemy before they pulled out of their lands at the last moment, and they even managed to bring in their ally in defence, the kingdom of Charkov (lead by Clumsy) to fight with the coalition.

The Grimguard suddenly found themselves in a state of war with a whole rooster of enemies who were either already here or are on their way. Kleriel’s armies were already gathered, and the combination of their fleets were covering the only channel leading from the outer ocean to Kleriel’s inland sea to blockade any naval attack. The nations of the world are prepared to put this secret entities power to the test.


#21

Georgar surveyed the border. Then, deciding against his former plan, he ordered everyone but the cavalry back to the Winterkeep, and lead the horsemen down into Kleriel. The first settlement they found, they burned to the ground, killing anyone who resisted. The fast moving horsemen quickly overran the first 5 miles of Keelish territory, before coming to a halt. They had left Keelish women and children alive, and those of the men who had not been killed in the fighting, but all the way back to the border was nothing but ash and bodies. “Tell the Keelish people that it is Ara’Gottix who has brought this upon you.” Georgar told them.
After they had reached the five miles mark, the column halted, and began retracing their steps. Once they had reached the border, they stopped, and waited, resting the horses. Georgar was mildl surprised that no one had come after them, until he noticed a large cloud of dust following behind them…

@Aragottix I assumed a retaliation party of about equal numbers to mine would be coming, so I took the liberty of putting that in. To avoid complications in the future, please use the OOC discord.


#22

Upon receiving word that there was a band of marauding cavalry rampaging through the borderlands the local general dispatched a few units of Kleriel’s ‘‘outrider’’ cavalry to chase them down.

Riding in to Kleriel for 5 miles and needing to deal with the local militia of the village, and the inevitable patrol, they would not have the same numbers with which they started with. Riding back to the border, the Grimguard were depleted and needing rest after such a feat, but no rest would be granted with the pursue of Kleriel’s outriders right on their tail. Kleriel being an empire, it was not the first, nor the last time it was being raided like this by outside forces, and it is always prepared. As usually, the civilians flee to the local forts where there are supplies ready to tend to their needs. They say the invader holds Ara responsible for what he did to them, but with his reputation, and with him and his men just burning their homes and murdering their fellow countrymen, they shook their fist at Georgar none the less.

Meanwhile, after dispatching the task force to deal with Geo’s raiding party, a large portion of Kleriel’s army gathered at the north western border, in the direction of the Grimguard’s keep, with lots of artillery in the field, they prepared for larger feats beyond.


#23

Meanwhile, at Ayrith, Garias’ strategic advisor talks with the king on the situation of the war.
He suggests, to Garias’ aprooval, to increase the number of troops on the border, just in case.

The public is also told to be on high alert of any suspicious figures, especially of known Grimguard descent. Anyone with friendly views towards the enemy will be swiftly sent to an internment camp outside the city walls for the duration of the war, if not executed for suspected espionage.

The crown’s naval strategists at Harboria also check on the reports from the recently sent small fleet, patrolling alongside the Keelish.


[RP Episode] Featherst contact