PnP:Shadows over the southern seas/Chapter 6

Campaigns » PnP:Shadows over the southern seas » PnP:Shadows over the southern seas/Chapter 6

Witness3' Shadows over the southern seas, 2019-2022

This article is an Observation
The contents herein are entirely player made and in no way represent official Birthright history or occurences which are accurate. The characters and events listed are of an independent nature and applied for roleplaying, fictional, speculative, or opinions from a limited playerbase only.
This article is Fan Fiction
The contents herein are entirely player made and in no way represent official Birthright lore or history.
The characters and events listed are of an independent nature and are applied for roleplaying purposes only.

[top]Chapter 6 - Into the storm

[top]Spring 556 – The head of the snake

In the last days of winter (and not the first, as predicted), the wind changes drastically to the south. The Vigilant Sisters of Nesirie interpret the flight of the seagulls and declare that the time hath come, the kings must leave without waiting. The kings devise a plan: immediately conquer Seaward and leave Mieres without government, then more slowly eliminate any local resistance inside other provinces. Mieres has a lot of forts, a legacy of the army of Azrai, and the kings know that it will be difficult to move freely in the region.

They organize a pincer maneuver: Diemed disembarks at Seaward and Lathier, while the bulk of the ships block access to the port of Seaward. Another small contingent travels south, to Crenier, to prevent access to the south. The kings are preparing for a long siege, but they have sufficient resources to support it.

Their first battle however will be a failure. The kings will suffer a heavy defeat in Crenier, because the enemy has at his disposal a PyroHydra, and the kings discover at their expense that the spell of strengthening the Governor's troops means that in battle the fate hangs against them. Only by coming into play in person do they have hopes of victory.

When the kings discover that Crenier's enemy units are moving to Lathier, they decide to gather a small band of adventurers and infiltrate the castle packed with soldiers. In the dungeons of the castle they drown the pyrohydra and defeat it definitively.

After an exhausting siege, and several skirmishes around the castle, the troops of Lathier, led not by the count but by the pirate captain Ulric, surrender, the captains of the army will flee and the mierese soldiers will move east, towards Mielen.

[top]The Battle of Seaward

On May 2, 556 two Avanese galleons, with 1200 men inside, set sail from the bay of Arnenbae. Brosengan lookouts intercept them and send the news to the kings, who in the meantime have gathered again in Seaward. After only a month of siege, the kings decide to storm the city, fearing the arrival of reinforcements. Seaward's troops, led by the Avanese general Marcus Laetere, include:

For the Southern Alliance, the ships:

The troops:
  • Diemed: 400 archers, 200 infantry, siege towers and catapults, a group of Clerics of Haelyn led by Cardinal Malik;
  • Brosengae: 200 archers, led by Magnus Mierelen;
  • Ilien: a team of wizards, led by Edmund Volarae, 600 archers and 400 infantrymen, led by Vaesil Radim;
  • Aerenwe: 800 infantry, 400 cavalry, 200 archers, the special infantry of the Hunters, siege weapons, led by Norvien Swordwraith;
  • Roesone: 400 pikemen, 200 infantrymen, led by Daenal Roesone.

At dawn the kings bring the troops to the east flank of the city. While the ships of the Allied fleet destroy the few pirate ships moored at the port, to prevent escape, the Fluganta Serpento attack the units of Aerenwe, converging in the woods all the allied units. Only the winged knights move south and reveal their true goal: Ilien's unit of wizards. the arrival of the archers, although compromised by the woods, will be essential to send the riders on the run and save the wizards.

Powerful artillery units launch devastating attacks on Ilien's ships, but it is not enough to save the escape by sea. Laetere has the catapults taken to a narrow alley in the city center, where they can better control the situation.

Meanwhile Daenal Roesone, along with the knights of Aerenwe and the troops of Roesone, brings the siege machines to the High Walls of the Governor's Palace, and manages, thanks above all to the small number of soldiers on the walls, to enter with his men. However, he finds himself stuck at the gates of the palace, while Laether, aided by a spell from Pyotr, brings his units of archers and pirates against them.

During the month of siege, the Allied forces had spent time in secret to build rams and siege weapons. After many attemps, one of the minor gates of the city is broken. Seaward is a fortress made to protect itself from pirates, certainly not from peasants. Troops enter through the east gate.

Here a first stalemate occurs, because the artillery units prevent the passage to the north, towards the palace, so the allies take control of the walls to the west, where the Fluganta Serpento swoop along with the rest of the pirates, incited by Pyotr. The cleric, in his madness, moves the artillery units to make a wall on the west wall, almost demolishing the walls with friendly fire. He then casts a powerful spell, which turns the walls into burning light, blinding the troops of the allies. In the castle, King Norvien has gone to support Daenal Roesone, who cannot overcome the stalemate against the archers and pikemen of Avanil.

The soldiers, led by the Mierelen brothers, manage to defeat the Fluganta Serpento and Cardinal Malik, war bishop of the Orthodox Imperial Temple, casts a war spell that prevents the captains of the gunners from giving orders to fire. Vaesil will assault Pyotr Seline in direct confrontation, piercing him in the heart with his sword. The cleric flies down the walls of the palace, lifeless.

The Allies then run through the west walls to the Governor's palace, fearing the worst for the two leaders of the East. Upon their arrival Swordwraith and Roesone have killed Laether, and it is a matter of time before the defense of the palace falls. Only 19 men from Avanil will be spared, as hostages.

On May 8, 556, the southern city of Seaward, known as the Head of the Snake, falls.

[top]The secrets of the Snake

Inside the city, the kings begin a collection of all possible information about the governor, which seems to have been missing for some time. In the rooms of the governor, King Norvien, Baron Diem and General Roesone find the mummified bodies of the governor's family, his wife with two children. When they enter the room, his wife's body revives and emits a moan that kills most of those present, excluding the kings. In the documents found, they discover that the governor has created a dwarven palace inside the southern mountains of Brenlie, where he now lives with his Steward, the Lord of Edges.

Meanwhile, Vaesil Radim goes to the warehouses of the port with Edmund Volarae, who has found 5 GB of crates owned by the Freedom Shipping stolen by pirates. They are crates that contain cinnaspice, the spice with euphoric effects banned in many southern kingdoms. The merchant prince strives to quickly embark the crates, hiding them from the kings. As he returns to the governor's palace, a mysterious hooded figure lures Vaesil through the alleys of the city, the figure lets himself be followed up to a dismissed palace of an Avanese family. There the Doge of Ilien meets a mysterious woman with a golden mask, prophetess of Eloéle, who tells the prince that the cult of the goddess of the night has chosen him as a potential lord of those lands. As proof of fidelity, he is given a black ring, with a dagger inlaid on it, which he can hide from the eyes of all the wearer. Vaesil wears it under the gloves.

[top]The Road to the mountain

On May 13, the Avanese galleons landed at Ghaele. The kings will move to conquer Mielen, while Daenal Roesone and his soldiers will go to besiege the fortresses of Crenier. The provinces still have many defenses, but it seems that the rules troops have gone away.

On May 24, an Avanese delegation will meet with the kings in a fishing village, Bonfisho, in Mielen, where General Marcus Laetere, a relative of Seward's general, tells the kings that on their landing they met resistance from the horribly disfigured Mieresi troops, and realized the rightness of their intentions. But the Avanesi also inform them that the troops sent south to look for the governor, all died suddenly. Of the 600 men there is only one left, a horribly disfigured soldier, who tells them that the mountain fell and ate us all. Avanil will maintain order in the provinces while the southern army concentrates in Mielen, to march together towards Brenlie. Their destination is Monteshtormo, the Storm Mountain.

[top]June 556

The kings meet two old friendships. Coerden da gray, now become head of his own church, joins them at the head of a unit of clerics; during the journey in the forest, Sertralin Fogliasonno, the elf who had helped them on their journey to Serien, descends from a tree suddenly on the horse of Vaesil Radim. Both bring alarming news: the spell of Mhistecai has broken, Serien is no longer protected.

As they get closer to Brenlie, the city on the river, the sky becomes darker and darker red, while the climate becomes more and more arid and dry. The kings return to the paths traveled in search of Mhistecai, but the vegetation is much drier and barren than a few months ago. Brenlie, the city on the river, seems shrouded in plague. The guild leader is dead, the governor's soldiers have all died or gone south, the villagers roam the streets extinguished, letting themselves starve. The air is increasingly unhealthy, Sertralin himself gets sick. In a moment of fever, the elf shouts to Coerden as a grey, as he tries to cure him, "Fear the crown! Fear the crown!" and then faints.

Kings will not wait any longer. Yasmick, the head of the local dwarf community, leads the army via trails that allows them to get around the dangerous ravines for the mountain.

So they arrive in front of the mountain, whose fiery tip seems to have eyes, as the stories tell. Suddenly, with a small earthquake, the top of the mountain seems to come to life, and disappears, as if descending from the mountain.

[top]The battle of the storm

The governor deploys all his lieutenants, the Lord of Edges, who advances alone through the battlefield, the Captain Ulric, commander of Mielen, Gyorgaar, the leader of his sea armies, and the wizard Doenovan. They have thousands of infantrymen, pikemen, knights and Fluganta serpento, the riders to live in. Captain Ulric travels to the battlefield riding a PyroHydra.

The armies of the south count about 2000 men including infantrymen and pikemen, plus another 800 archers. The Diemana cavalry, the terrible Dark Knights, has gathered in full. Convoys of the Imperial Orthodox Temple, led by Cardinal Malik, and the clerics of Coerden da grey, bless the Allied units.

Everyone is here: the baron Ectarius Diem, king Norvien Swordwraith, doge Vaesil Radim, cardinal Malik, bishop Coerden da grey, Yacoov, Shabràk and Deanxit, the barons' own adventurers.

Beginning on June 20, 556, the Battle of the Storm was the longest battle in 200 years. Maybe it was the mysterious climate, maybe it was the anger of the enemies, or maybe it was the awareness that there would be no tomorrow without a victory, but what the survivors tell is that the battle lasted well 8 days, without ever really stopping, if not for switching position between waves and waves of clashes. Often a battle zone was hit by a violent earthquake, and this blocked all troops in the field. Every 8 hours, the voice of the Lord of the edges called the Kings to himself, longing for their blood. Gyorgaar will be the first general to fall, beheaded by Baron Ectarius Diem.

But it was only after the 5th day that the Lord of Edges put the Iron Crown on his head. With the crown on its head, a unit of orog, en route to the cave of the mountain, was dissolved – 200 orog became ash with a snap of the knight's fingers. And as many undead woke up on the battlefield, going to thicken the enemy ranks.

Vaesil Radim, doge of Ilien, remembers then a legend, heard more than 20 years ago in Brecht lands. Mariusz Süe was the steward of Raesene Andu, a terrible and ferocious warrior, able to awaken the dead. He was condemned to an eternity of undeath when he tried, unsuccessfully, to kill Raesene to take his place as general of the troops of Azrai. It was Azrai itself, it is said, who cursed him, for failing.

It was then that the kings decided that they could not postpone further. Dropping the enemy, they gathered in the center of the battlefield and ran desperately against the edgy Knight. It was then that they discovered that it was a trap: the Lord of the Edges called to himself a whole unit of heavy cavalry, which surrounded the kings, while Fluganta Serpento descended to feed the heroes. And they would have had the worst, if it had not been for their alliance.

The wizards Edmund Volarae and Deanxit the elf, in the service of the baron, feel summoned by the divine presence of the baron, as well as Coerden da grey, who abandons his unit to run on a chariot to the center of the battlefield. With him come the black knights, who ferociously overwhelm the Mierese cavalry and open a window to the kings. The remaining generals quickly rush to the call of their dark master.

The lord of the edges is armed with an armor full of spurs, and two two-handed swords, wielding one by the hand: Hoko, a sword capable of disarming any warrior, and Kovrilo, a two-handed sword in tighmaevril. King norvien engages in a personal duel against him, while, in the chaos of battle, the dwarves Yacoov and Shabràk manage to kill Captain Ulric. Doenovan the wizard will be the second to fall, at the hands of the Baron.

The kings and their men focus on the lord of edges, who however proves to be a ruthless opponent. Vaesil Radim throws himself at the knight, being skewered by the numerous spikes of his armor, to stop him, and allow the kings to fill him with blows. When at some point the Lord of Edges becomes huge, full of berserker rage, it will be Coerden da Grey to bring him to his knees with a heavy blow of a whip.

His last words are "Forgive me, my lord!"

[top]Three days of fear and glory

The earth trembles, while Ectarius Diem took Kovrilo, Norvien tries to take the Iron Crown. But Edgelord's body is absorbed by a hole in the ground. A tremendous earthquake sends everyone present to the ground, and from the ground emerges The Storm, what remains of the governor. A creature similar to a dragon, but with a swollen body, rigid, like skeletal at times.

Although tired, the kings take up arms and begin to fight, encircling the dragon. Their attacks are almost unnatural, often they do not make big jumps before delivering the blow, which also does not seem to worry the Awnshegh. Magic also does little against him. The storm only needs to flap its wings, for everyone to fly away. In a moment of desperation, Baron Ectarius Diem leaps on the back of the Storm and thrusts Kovrilo into the dragon's back.

For two whole days, as the battle rages on, the dragon will twirl in the air, trying to shake the baron off his back. But each time the Baron, screaming in pain and bleeding even from the eyes, will press more and more inside the sword of tighmaevril. At noon on the third day the dragon will fly lower again, shaving to the ground shaking the knight off his back.

The assaults of the kings will eventually succeed in bending the beast. Just at that moment, however, the beast reveals some hidden energies, awakening with a mighty rage and growing in size just like the lord of the edges did. With a terrifying roar, it emits a frightening breath, a green blaze. Deanxit and Edmund Volarae are dissolved instantly, in a black smoke. Baron Ectarius Diem survives by a miracle, but he's too weak even to wield a sword. The survivors are too tired or scared to fight.

At that moment Vaesil Radim, destroyed by grief over the loss of the steward and his best friend, unsheathes his father's falchion, El Cidro Radim, runs towards the beast and sticks the falchion in the governor's throat. The beast, without a sound, collapses to the ground, and then a sound burst explodes - the devil had exploded, just like the gods did back on Deiismar days. Only then do the heroes faint.

When they recover, it is June 28, 556, the sky is blue its remains have been dissolved revealing the remains of the EdgeLord and the Iron Crown. Nowhere are the remains of Edmund Volarae found. most of the soldiers had fleed away the moment the Storm appeared, but the battle was won just a few hours later by Magnus and Daenal.

The kings, bleeding, help each other stand and surround the Iron Crown, standing inside the storm's remains.

And while King Norvien bends down to pick it up something ugly and dark begins to blossom inside the hearts of all of them.

End of season 3

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