From The Inquisition Legacy
|Januarius 109|| |
Two years into his reign, King Dav's court is frequented by Church and Academae delegation along with the usual Barons. At the turn of the year, Aelwyn Falsteph is ejected from the Court for anti-mage slurs after being by baited by the most outspoken of the mages, Thandok. A few days later, Thandok is ejected from court along with the rest of the Academae delegation. With tensions mounting, the capital’s economy begins to slump. Merchants - the descendants of the ancient Mercers guild – and other citizens begin to move from the city as they sense impending, catastrophic violence.
|Februarius 109|| |
As the economy begins to falter and official negotiations with the mages have ceased, despondent citizens flock toward the underground teachings of the Order sect. A petition is introduced at court by a growing noble contingent asking that the sentence for killing a mage be reduced from murder to destruction of property, akin to common law ordinance for the Charali and Hillmen. The nobility, fearing that the prolific amount of mage advisors across the kingdom could usurp their power base, begin to rally in secret with the Order.
|Maritus 109|| |
The remaining archmages work damage control with Dav and his advisors behind closed doors. The outer provinces report a rise in mage drowning along the Bren. The Academae begins to recall their students into Lithmore and the relative safety of the Tower. Local rumors spread like wildfire; the mages are rallying their forces in the city and are going to overthrow the government. Tanios and Areolus draft a petition for the archmages to be allowed free passage back to the Orkinwood, effectively shutting down the Academae and evacuating the city. Lenoir and Brenalry remain undecided on a course of action. The unnamed Seventh wishes to stand firm and remain in the safety of the Academae. Aelwyn begins to regularly write his former friend, informing him of Order doctrine and the movements within the Church. He suggests that Dav speak to a young priest by the name of Remiel who is cataloging oral tradition into a revolutionary book.
|Aprilus 109|| |
Thandok, Aquiel and the beginnings of a new coven assault the Royal Apartments but are hindered by Lenoir and Brenalry. Brenalry, one of the archmages stabilizing the Circles, is murdered in the fight, marking the start of The Fall. Dav’s family is murdered in the conflagration unleashed by Thandok. Aquiel suffers grievous burns and must wear a glamour for the rest of her life to keep her beauty intact. When Dav awakes on the shore of the moat, he is overcome with grief and flees into the west.
|Maius 109|| |
With the King lost to the Wilds, the Court splits in two. Aelwyn makes a public appearance at the head of an Order delegation, using their sway to help support Aurthyn and Gweran. A merchant delegation rallies and puts forth a petition that a new monarch be found immediately from among the legendary flock of bastards sired by the late King Pinalo. Gweran uses his knowledge of history to stall, disproving every claim of legitimacy that comes before the Council. Aurthyn orders four scouting parties from the already thinly stretched Lithmorran knighthood to search the four corners of the kingdom.
Dav wanders in the moors and hills to the west of the city for weeks before eventually reaching the base of the Tarn. Tanios, weakened by Brenalry’s death, returns to the Orkin in hopes of restoring her power and stabilizing the wavering weave. Unwilling to be blamed for the grief-maddened monarch’s death, Tanios secretly aids Dav by making a trail deeper into the mountains where food and water were plentiful.
|June 109|| |
Dav converses with the Lord of the Springs and receives the revelations that will eventually be transcribed into the Holy Tome. This collection of speeches and sayings is now lost to history but is the foundation for all Order dogma, including St. Remiel’s Scripture, the Five Declarations, the Nine Laws and the Erra Pater.
Dav returns from the Wilderness. The suffering population, a great portion already fevered from the anti-mage rhetoric, greets Dav with open arms. Several days pass as Dav shares his revelations with the Church and his advisors. Couriers were sent out to reconvene the court. Convinced that he had the solution for peace, Dav laid down the Laws derived from his private speeches. These new Laws would promote a stable government and happiness for all men. Those that wielded magic would have their faith questioned by a group of men suited to the task, the Order. The Mercers foolishly railed against the new tithes, saying that business was already collapsing and that the further loss would ruin them. They were driven from Court as mage sympathizers and into the streets by those overcome by Dav’s return and the spirit of reformation.
|Quintilus 109|| |
A month of fires. With the announcement of the tithes, the remaining merchants and their noble support clear out the warehouses of Lithmore. What they cannot pack onto ships, they set on fire. Other fires break out across the city as Order-led mobs flush out mages. Pyres are set up on the streets to contend with the dead. The Academae burns to the ground and the Tower vanishes from the face of the Urth.
|Augustus 109|| |
Lithmore, though scarred, begins to recover from the catastrophes and revelations of the past few months. The fires have died away. For a bizarre few weeks, Lithmore is a ghost town held together by an ever-changing contingent of soldiers and priests. Its people begin to migrate into the west to attend the Springs with their Patriarch Dav. Construction on Nimrock begins on the Flairkin Peninsula; negotiations for land, trade and defense with the local riverfolk lays the groundwork for an explosion of economic development.
|Septembris 109|| |
Vavard comes to life with the influx of capital. With the money and goods flowing into the riverlands from the warehouses of Lithmore, Vavard City is said to have been built in a single month. Meanwhile, Dav establishes an army encampment at the foot of the Tarn Mountains to watch over his pilgrims as his army begins to assemble. Gweran and Aurthyn advise Dav that Vandago is an ideal starting point for the Consolidation. The Tubori are strained to keep a hold of their vassals who have begun to find financial footing in the mineral riches of Vandago. The Reeves are disbanded within the city of Lithmore, replaced by the newly formed Knights of the Chalice. The local law enforcement is absorbed into the growing ranks of the army. The population begins to return to Lithmore to rebuild.
|Octobris 109|| |
Jaren, the Lord of Vandago, sends a petition to the Lord Paramount of Tubor asking for troops to bolster his forces in fear of impending conflict with the burgeoning Lithmorran army. His armories and farmlands make him an ideal first strike target if Lithmore decides to expand in the wake of its tragedies. The Paramount sends a small detachment of lancers to reinforce the border. Dav establishes a chapel near the Springs.
|Novembris 109|| |
Now well into fall, the troops garrison for the approaching cold. The newly formed knighthood begins to drill the core Lithmorran army while they await shipments of arms and armor from slowly rebuilding Lithmorran industry. The arms trade with the Vandagans begins to stagnate as rumors start to circulate about the new army. Vandagans are encouraged by Jaren to raise their prices instead of stop trade altogether. Increased revenue from taxes is hidden from the Tubori as Jaren sets into motion his own plans for reinforcing his army. The cold season also sees Aelwyn Falsteph, first of the Grand Inquisitors, overseeing the renovation of the Cathedral. He commissions a study of local lore and magesigns to better train his Inquisitors.
|Decembris 109|| |
The cold Yule season is a mixture of sorrow and joy. With the social and political disasters in the last year, the crop yield is down. Local commoners face the threat of starvation. Through the monies acquired by the Order’s tithes, the anti-mage nobility and remaining merchants indirectly fund acquisition of supplementary grain from sympathetic ears in Farin. The Order maintains its image as a magnanimous entity through such charity and development projects into the New Year.
As the Lithmorran army begins to develop and organize, King Dav appoints his longtime friend and champion Aurthyn ab Sidharr as Earl Marshall of the Knights. The appointment does not come lightly: Aurthyn slew several rogue knights that rebelled against the Dav’s Consolidation and wished to assassinate the monarch. Faced with the task of organizing and marshaling the new army, Aurthyn turns to history, studying the battles of Garth and Pinalo. Intrigued by the Farin defeat of Dav’s predecessor, Aurthyn begins to incorporate Farin formations into the repertoire to support possible additions of irregular units like the Hillmen.
With the spring, envoys are sent into the Tarn and Arath mountains to seek out the Hillmen clans. Negotiations are smoothed over by chests of gold and the promise of payment by plunder.
The disunity of the clans does not allow for a massive treaty with the Lithmorrans. Instead, a small series of skirmishes breaks out to determine a council to speak for the Hillmen.
Lithmorran industry begins to find its feet again. Armorers pull in ore from Gailiech and Sartez. A fresh season of crops adds a lighter spirit to the city. The birth rate rises and small fetes are held by the Order to celebrate the community. Mages are pursued. Keeping with some old traditions, the ritual drowning of these heretics tries desperately to reincorporate their tainted spirit into the Waters.
As the snows melt, the Hillmen begin to march down from the Tarn and Arath to join the growing ranks of levies from the Lithmorran baronies and counties. With the bulk of the army called up, Jaren is compelled by the reports of his spies to continue his petitions to the Lord Paramount. For months, Jaren is left without recourse. He builds up his internal forces on his own. Though he will be outnumbered by the Lithmorran army, his superior arms give him a fighting chance.
Jaren’s Tubori taskmasters find their trade slowing with rumors of water. Luxury goods like sugarcane, rum, tobacco and coamjar suffer from the growing war economy. The Paramount wagers a deal with the local shipping cartels to begin poaching shipments going into Sartez and Vandago city to supplement their income.
Meanwhile, the Vavardi shipwrights work to design new river boats to aid in the continued construction and defense of Nimrock. The township of Yarsith at the mouth of the Bren becomes a hot bed for Lithmorran spies keeping an eye on the merchants across the Kirulean.
With Dav’s forces marshaled and trained, he waits until the break of spring to begin his march into Vandago. Jaren, fed to the teeth with the negligence of his Tubori lords, visits the tropical island amid a bitter mainland winter. He tells the Lord Paramount that if he will not supply troops to aid in the defense of the Mainland that he will return with an army at his heels. Pirates attempt to seize Jaren’s ship on his way home. The bad blood between the Tubori and the Vandagans festers through the winter. The Paramount begins to prepare a blockade armada.
With the arrival of Spring, Dav marches through the hills and forests to the border of Vandago.
The Hillmen move in hordes along the army’s flanks. Though they are shepherded by the Knights, they support themselves on whatever they can find in the fields and villages. Arguments break out between commanders and chiefs. The Hillmen are told to wait for the real fight, but tension remains. The Earl Marshall, Aurthyn ab Sidharr, brings his concerns to Dav but is told to be patient. When the battles begin in earnest, the king declares, Aurthyn will be glad of the easy price the Hillmen were bought for. The dead cost nothing.
The armies of Vandago and Lithmore meet on the open field. Jaren raises a white flag and rides out to meet the approaching King. Intrigued, Dav meets him halfway. A bloodless agreement is born from the meeting. Jaren is made Dav’s right hand. The Tubori units and advisors attached to Jaren’s army are rounded up and put on a ship. They are sent across the Bay with a message. “I am coming.”
The armada assembled by the Lord Paramount remains near the Island Jewel. Protecting the southern coast from approach, the Lord Paramount maintains a blockade just beyond the fierce, nigh constant squall created by the season altering hex that enshrouds Tubor. Using this unnatural weather as a shield, even the combined Vandagan and Tubori forces cannot initially penetrate their defenses.
The combined Consolidation army is forced to retreat into Vandago. They reinforce the meager Vandagan fleet with new ships and arms, establishing a troop camp just outside of the city proper. The forges across the sea side city blaze with new work, mixing the fading winter snow with motes of ash. As Spring approaches and the alliance begins to hit its stride, new trading posts begin to crop up along the major highway from Lithmore to Vandago.
As the Aurthyn’s begins to integrate the Vandagan natives, Jaren’s rise in position to Dav’s right hand wears upon the Earl Marshall. Sometime in the spring, Jaren commissions a renovation of the Vandagan church in honor of his own pilgrimage to the Springs. With Dav and Jaren off walking into the Tarn, Aurthyn is faced with unrest among the Hillmen clans that have still not found the plunder they were promised. Clansmen begin to desert and return back to the mountains.
With the approach of winter, Grand Inquisitor Aelwyn returns with Jaren and Dav to the coastal city. He oversees the appointment of new clergy and the beginnings of Vandago’s own inquisition. Always a passionate man, Aelwyn’s temperament had grown cold and calculating with the burden of his duties. In spite of this, Aurthyn sought the man’s council. In response, Aelwyn dispatched his inquisitors to round up the deserters as heretics and had them cleansed. The Earl Marshall would not ask for his help again.
In spite of sanitation issues and unrest among the irregular soldiers, the cracking of the Spring Ice in Vandago sounded a rally to the weary army. A fresh naval campaign began to peck away at the blockades, eventually making landfall on Strongjaw. The hillmen were unleashed onto the Tubori shores and began to wade into the tropical interior. Between disease and the hit and run tactics of the Tubori lancers, many did not survive. The sturdy Hillmen and Lithmorran horses were no match for the speed and agility of the Tubori. The Lord Paramount of Tubor retreats into his capital while his forces of marauding ships and guerrilla fighters continue to harass the Consolidation army. By one of his faster ships, he lands a group of couriers to seek out the Vavardi merchants. Taking different routes by land and water, he sends a request for aid to the Riverfolk.
Meanwhile, in Vavard, the breakneck construction of Nimrock is completed in time to greet winter. The Merchant Princes conjure an army almost overnight through the employment and consolidation of mercenary forces into the Knights of the Stone.
The besieged capital of Tubor becomes a final refuge for the Paramount and his government. The light guerrilla fighters of the Tubori cannot eradicate the major beachhead of the Consolidation forces at Strongjaw But the combined forces of Jaren and Dav are not without their casualties. Thousands die to dysentery and other native diseases. Fresh water must be shipped from Vandago as a land-based source had not been secured.
In the spring, the Vavardi make their move and begin to assault the Vandagans on their flank, crippling vital supply lines via the Kirulean Sea. Though fearfully dangerous, the riverfolk use the tempestuous weather to cover their landings and escapes. They attack farms, mining and timber operations without recourse for several months.
Under advisement from Dav, Aelwyn sends an undercover Inquisitor to determine the nature of the Charali. He is never heard from again.
Dav, understanding that his supplies may be cut off at any moment, rallies his troops in an assault on the Tubori capitol. The main city is taken and Jaren puts the Lord Paramount to the sword. The capitol is garrisoned and reinforced with what troops Dav can spare before his attention is diverted south toward the Vavardi.
Jaren is left in Tubor to continue pursuit of the remnants of the Tubori nobility and their guerrilla forces. Tubori naval superiority still haunts the shores. Dav and Aurthyn head south through Vandago to meet the Vavardi at Yarsith. Gweran is reportedly missing.
The Vavardi utilize a feint with their fleet and rout Dav. Historians claim the presence of Thandok and Aquiel among the Vavardi forces. Yarsith is destroyed in Dav’s only recorded defeat. Trying to recover, Dav retreats north into Vandago and musters his forces. His battlefield acumen tells him that he must completely solve Jaren’s mobility problem if he is to bring their combined armies against the Vavardi. Using the passes in Vandago to reach the northern stretch of the Plains, Dav slips his way past Vavardi defenses and into Charali territory.
In the cold starting months of the year, Dav contemplates his first defeat while encamped on the Charalin border. The amassed troops create an atmosphere of both fear and curiosity from the native people. The bulk of the Charalin population is in the southern reaches for the winter, but a few scouts send word back to them that a man of iron is a few weeks from their camps.
After months of positioning and skirting the hunting grounds of the Charali, Dav divided his forces into infantry and cavalry. Aurthyn adapted a new strategy from the Tubori – the light cavalry would use their speed to induce panic and lead their enemy as they wished. Like a broom putting dust into a pan, the cavalry performed raids at night to force the Charali into waiting lines of spearmen and knights. Time and again the hunters became the hunted.
Within a single cycle of Elliueh, the "war" was over. The 30 Days War or 30 Days of Fire resulted in the slaughter of more than six out of every ten Charali. Their livestock are herded north into Vandago. Many Charalin survivors are also taken as groomsmen. Many do not survive the trip. Camps are established to train a new breed of lightning fast cavalry, a variation to the heavy cavalry favored by the both the Lithmorrans and the Vandagans.
The Vavardi, though perhaps aghast with the Charalin slaughter, take the economic opportunity to expand eastward. Several border posts are established with the aid of the Charalin refugees. Historians are uncertain if this was rescue or exploitation.
After years of preparation including ships and cavalry, Dav, Jaren and Aurthyn begin to flood Tubor with their new units from the capitol port. Guerrilla camps are put to the torch and the remaining nobility flee to the eastern edge of the island chain.
Tubori, the island jewel, is formally absorbed into the Kingdom. Jaren sees the last of the old regime turned over to the inquisitors. A church is established by Aelwyn in the heart of the capitol and the inquisitor’s work begins in earnest.
The last of the Hillmen originally brought into the army return home with their foreign spoils.
Dav, wearied by the long campaign, returns to the capitol and remarries amid the lull. Economic growth across the kingdom continues, spurred by the relative peace and the industry of war.
With the Church thriving across the land, some of the war coffers are diverted back into public works. The Cathedral’s renovations are finished. Early incarnations of the Church Square, Royal Hospital, Park and River Square begin construction.
After several years, the refugees of the Charalin war begin to arrive in Lithmore from across the inland sea. The Church, as a show of good faith and regard for life, sends a young scholar by the name of Jaridan on a pilgrimage to the ravaged lands. He spends the rest of his life teaching and learning among the Charali.
After a year of rest, the thirty eight year old soldier and patriarch begins to make preparations for his march to Farin. Calling on the Supplicant nations, Dav rallies troops from dozens of duchies and counties across his kingdom. He marks his departure with a speech remembering the late King Pinalo. In Januarius, Dav declares the observance period of Magebane as a period of reflection for the population.
Dav, Aelwyn, Gweran, Aurthyn and Jaren meet at the southern border of Farin to discuss strategy. The forces of the Consolidation and the armies of the Baron Warsalus could be evenly matched, but negotiations are closed for the sake of pride. Legend has it that the leaders of both sides met before the first engagement with honor, expressing their desire for a fair contest under the eyes of the Lord.
For five years, the land of Farin became a chessboard between giants. Dav’s forces were drawn from every corner of his kingdom. His commanders were battle hardened and his soldiers well trained. The Barons Warsalus had been fighting among themselves and the distant Daravi since before the Harmon kingdom was established. The Farin knew their land but Dav’s forces were led by the voice of the Lord.
At some time during the summer of 132, the Grand Inquisitor received a lead from one of the Order’s informants. After years of searching for the murderers of the King’s family, he believed he knew the location of t, he long lost Tower. He takes a contingent of knights and leads an assault on the reported coven of Aquiel and Thandok. He dies in the service of the Church.
Dav, stricken by grief for the man that so long ago foresaw the dangers of magekind, praised his fallen friend. He dubbed the capitol’s cathedral Aelwyn in his honor.
With most of the known world under the cloak of the Order, Dav at last turns his hardened eyes toward the traitorous merchants in the East. He begins the march in Spring after taking one last pilgrimage. With Aurthyn and Gweran, he visits the shores of the Kirulean and the decimated site of Yarsith. A pillar is erected: “Never again as a Harmon shall live.” Ferries and ships began to take on soldiers.
The campaign crashes upon the Vavardi princes like a hurricane. Dav, now forty seven, is backed with the resources of four Duchies. To hear the legends is to imagine the Kirulean filled with ships thick enough for the graying king to walk from Yarsith to Nimrock without seeing water. Aurthyn would make landfall in Capua. Jaren would breach the north. The only thing that slows the assault down is the coming winter.
In Lithmore, Iain the First is born. As Dav fights his way north through Acrestinosa he receives word of the birth of his new heir. The future of his line secure, Dav battles as if he were twenty again. Vavard would not stand for long.
At the start of the year, the rulers of the merchant cities have retreated into the safety of Nimrock. Dav, unable to breach the walls, lobs incendiaries and dead cattle beyond the walls of the citadel. Forced to leave or die, the last defenders sortied in vain. In short order their number was smashed between Dav’s advancing army and their own walls.
The double-damned rulers of Vavard – having abandoned the Order and insulted Dav with his only defeat – were summarily hung from the walls of Nimrock as a message to the citizenry. For their crimes, the city would remain a supplicant inferior to all the others. They would not be welcomed into the kingdom for another 140 years instead paying a yearly tribute to the kingdom.
Even with Aelwyn’s demise, the Inquisitors headed into the nest of greed and corruption to spread the true word.
With the major kingdoms finally subdued, Dav spends the next seven years of his life bolstering the Church across his united kingdom. The Hillmen clans, dissatisfied with their lot in spite of a generation dedicated to Dav’s war, begin an uprising in the Arath. Though over fifty by this time, he still travels at the head of his army with his Earl Marshall Aurthyn.
At the start of this year, Dav is finally able to hang up his sword. Years later, this would be considered the official end of the Consolidation.
Dav is assassinated by an unknown faction. He is never able to start a push into Daravi territory if that was his intention.