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Battle of Lake Ladan

Canonical event

15 Keltier 1140 HC (164 MR)
shores of Lake Ladan
Complete Vos victory


Commanders and Leaders
 ~50.000 men
~30.000 men
 (est.) ~37500 died, ~12500 scattered

The Battle of Lake Ladan is one of the most famous battles in Brecht and Vos history. It is considered the moment of defeat of the Free League of Brechtür, which dismantled shortly after.

[top]Historical context

The Free League of Brechtür was coming from a series of victories from Kal Kalathor, or so they thought. Their victories were actually part of Tsarevic Basil Zariyatam's plan: the Vos leader had planned for them to conquer the Vos lands, with the tsarevos offering only token resistance. This had built a sense of confidence in the Brecht leaders, who did not gave enough attention to the small, strategic points they were leaving behind them in their easy conquest. Also, while the Brecht's mass battles had them victorious, Basil had organized a series of small attacks, slowly degrading their resources.

This had led the league's army to scatter to defend the provinces from the Tsarevic, and from themselves - with so many lands conquered, some of the Brecht nobles had started to complain that the share was unfair compared to their investment.

[top]The days before

Thanks to the new Temple of Might, Kriesha had gained much more favour between the Vos, and this resulted in winter of 1140 HC being one of the coldest Cerilia had ever seen. Eager to end the winter campaign, the Brechts camped near the shores of Lake Ladan and the nobles among them met to divide up their newly gained southern Vosgaard territories.

This was exactly were Basil wanted them to be, for two reasons. First, as predicted by Kriesha's high priest Pesepola, the lake was frozen - to the point that Basil's specialized varsk riders, the kaerevesk, could ride from the lake without fear for the ice breaking.

Second, with the loss of resources due to the small strike attacks, the Brecht army had no choice but to scatter and forage for supplies. Basil knew that this could last weeks. A race of merchants, he deemed them, he knew not one of the young Brecht nobles would be satisfied until the exact terms of any division of land could be stuck - they would have their armies freeze to death before giving in to a "bad deal". And he read correctly.

[top]The attack

On the dawn of the 15th of Keltier in 1140 HC, with the help of an early storm, the Kaerevesk rallied from the iced lake and attacked directly the big tent where the leaders where just started their morning council. Unprepared and still bickering among themselves, many of the nobles and their best captains died without ever realizing what had happened. With the army's head decapitated, the rest of the Vos army begun to attack. Many brave Brecht warriors fled into the winter's cold without even challenging the varsk riders, convinced they were snow demons come to destroy them.

There are accounts of two lines of organized defense on that day: Graf Kurth Roslöw-Ulfer organized a line of cavalry that ensured a portion of the army fled north, towards the Mistmoor; while a southern line, commsnded by an unknown general, was utterly overthrown by the goblins of Kal Kalathor - the goblin king had them hidden in tunnels, waiting for a signal from the Tsarevic. Both lines were defeated and their generals killed.

[top]The aftermath

The Vos boast that the only Brechts to survive the Battle of Lake Ladan were the ones the Vos themselves were too tired to kill. Although the only numbers known come from those who survived the journey back home, at least 75% of the Brecht army was defeated that day or in the following week.

The army scattered north through the Mistmoor and south, through Kal Kalathor (now showing its true force), up to Berhagen and Grevesmühl, starting what is known as the "Vos retaliation" or "Vos counter-invasion" of Brecht lands, in which Berhagen was almost overthrown and rescued only by the Royal Navy of Müden, Grevesmühl barely saved itself thanks to the dwarves of Daikhar Zhigun, and the realm of Roschlöwen disappeared from the map.

[top]Behind the courtain: Basil's fate

It is worthy of note that HotGB reports Basil to be dead during the battle, while TotHW reports him to live a bit longer, and die during the counter-invasion.


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