The Eastern Council : Session Three

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Re: The Eastern Council : Session Three

Post by Shadow-Seeker on Wed Sep 04, 2013 11:40 am

Everard nodded towards the woman

"It seems that absent is absent even from his own county. We welcome you to our Council, Countess Adelaide. Our first vote shall commence shortly on the Marleons issue."

Everard looked to Count Simon

"Count Simon, your ceasefire proposal has not been forgotten, forgive me, but I just wish to bring it up again later in the council when we have more time to discuss it."

Everard had servants pass out the ballots, and some wine to those who have finished their glasses. He also sent one messenger off into the castle.

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Re: The Eastern Council : Session Three

Post by Mordred on Wed Sep 04, 2013 12:02 pm

A load sniff heralded the arrival of another visitor, Florian the Crown liaison to the Steppe. He looked around the room for a seat, but there were none free so he leant against the wall instead, replacing a little tin back into his pocket as he did.

"Greetings, salutations and all that once again. My little birds *sniff* tell me that the order imposed on this council when I last was here has not held up too well, and that there are clamours for some official legislation for progressing the feudal rights owed to you all."

He rubbed at his nose, and then whipped out a handkerchief with only seconds to spare as he released an almighty sneeze into the cloth. Replacing it in his pocket he continued as though nothing had happened.

"It is the curse of the nobility to always want promotion, to climb higher and higher through the social rankings in order to win power of their fellow aristocrats. Currently there are no recognised Duchies or Earldoms in the Steppe, so they must be initiated by you instead. Now the last thing we want to is encourage civil war, gods know the King has enough on his plate without the continual wrangling of his lords."

He paused and withdrew his handkerchief once more, he held it to his nose but did not sneeze this time. Cautiously lowering it into his pocket again, he continued.

"So we need to establish proper claims, and the process behind this is very much open to discussion. My thoughts are that there ought to be three methods by which to achieve overlordship, namely militarily, diplomatically and politically. Militarily the aggressor must win a siege, diplomatically requires a decree from this council, and politically requires the payment to those already in a higher authority so as to earn recognition. We do also need to discuss the rights of those in power, and the duties of the subservient, but lets cover the means of acquiring a county first. In all instances, the Count/Countess will remain in power, but subservient to the claimant."

OOC:
Spoiler:
Military : 2 turn siege, 3rd turn is the battle. Must win by 75%, and the battle continues to cycle on that turn until victory. The delay is to allow allies and mercenaries to arrive, and for diplomatic / political compromise to be reached.

Diplomatic : Majority vote at the Council.

Political : Pay a sum of Prestige / Gold to reach a target. The one being vassalised may also pay against this sum to reduce the claimants investment value. If the defender ever out-paces the aggressor by...25% then the claim failed. Ie if target is 100, and the claimant invests 40, the defender can pay 20 which reduces the progress back to 20% rather than 40%.

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Re: The Eastern Council : Session Three

Post by Psychozoa on Wed Sep 04, 2013 6:11 pm

Vincent kept silent all this time, there wasn't much to say as everything would be decided by votes anyway. The proposal of Countess Eadburgha was good but it gives the rich ones in the Steppe even more power. Why should a poor County lend aid to a Duke just to see themselves become even poorer and fall more behind the other ones in the Steppe. And now they were talking about war again.

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Re: The Eastern Council : Session Three

Post by Shadow-Seeker on Thu Sep 05, 2013 3:20 am

Governor Everard looked to the other lords

"What do you all have to say on the issue of vassalization?"

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Re: The Eastern Council : Session Three

Post by Valdir on Thu Sep 05, 2013 5:15 am

"I would not vote on this matter yet. With the aid we are about to lend to Marleons and the general threat coming from the Mystmountains, attacking each other would be close to treason to the Steppe in general." the count of Talon March said to answer Everard's question.

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Re: The Eastern Council : Session Three

Post by Tysha on Thu Sep 05, 2013 5:35 am

Tysha eyed the Treasurer for a brief moment.

"There is nothing treasonous about conducting honorable warfare in the manner allowed by His Majesty, and agreed upon by the Most Honorable lords of the realm. I question the necessity of requiring a delay before assaulting a castle, however."



OOC: Reduce the military option from a two turn siege with a battle on the third turn to a one turn siege with a battle on the second turn.

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Re: The Eastern Council : Session Three

Post by Valdir on Thu Sep 05, 2013 5:43 am

"As you wish," Valdir grinned

"However, I would not declare someone a vassal when its friends and allies could still be on-route. If you siege and survive the delay without other lords coming to the defender's aid, then you'll get your claim."

OOC: Keeping it two turns before the attack would mean that allies can reach the besieged county before the assault. Otherwise we'd have to make rules regarding the assault of the reinforcements against the remnants of the attacker's army.

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Re: The Eastern Council : Session Three

Post by Shadow-Seeker on Thu Sep 05, 2013 10:55 am

Everard eyed Lady Tysha suspiciously

"In a time when our biggest threat is the Mystmountain barbarians, we should not voting and debating what are the best ways to establish lordship over each other. We should not be relishing the chance of thinking about how best to combat each other, when there is still the major threat of the Mystmountains to handle."

"There is nothing 'honorable' about fellow counts, all of whom are in service to the king and are trusted with the defense of their lands and Pendor, fighting each other. This is no longer the times of the old kingdoms, where lords and nobles took advantage of chaos and disorder to rob each other of land."

"In these times, we should stand united against our true foe, the Mystmountain barbarians. We will not get any closer to getting ready to face the hordes in battle, if we decimate our own forces fighting each other."

"I am not opposed to establishing vassalage and over-lordship diplomatically in this council, or politically to win recognition, but establishing it militarily will only weaken the Steppe as a whole."

Everard looked to Florian

"As Florian has said, the king does not need more wrangling of lords, especially in such a sensitive area, such as the Steppe. If the lords of the Steppe weaken each other, in hopes of climbing higher and higher, what will the point be in being a duke in title, if your lands are susceptible to bandit raids, barbarians, rogue knights, and you hold it with suspicion of the other lords in the area?"

Everard sighed

"We have heard the arguments, and I will present the vote. The first option will be keep the delay that would be granted, to allow a chance at diplomacy, and for allies to arrive. The second option will be to allow the siege immediately, and forgo the delay."

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Re: The Eastern Council : Session Three

Post by Rolando on Thu Sep 05, 2013 11:52 am

The Bishop suddenly broke his long silence, not having the patience to merely analyze the arguments being presented.

"Forgive me, Governor, but it is my understanding that you and at least one other lord of the Steppe didn't provide any aide when there was actual conflict with the North. Now, this was obviously your prerogative and no one would claim otherwise, but your argument that considering vassalage is folly while the Mystmountain tribes are the primary threat seems… hollow. Clearly, you must disagree with your argument in practice."

The Bishop smiled.

"Perhaps my information is incorrect, however. At any rate, yes, let us proceed with the vote."

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Re: The Eastern Council : Session Three

Post by Shadow-Seeker on Thu Sep 05, 2013 11:54 am

Everard looked back to Rolando

"There was more than one battle during the Poinsbruk offensive."

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Re: The Eastern Council : Session Three

Post by Tysha on Thu Sep 05, 2013 12:32 pm

Tysha slammed the Marshal's baton in front of her, quite hard. After a brief pause, enough time for eyes to turn towards the noise, she spoke. Her voice was serene, rather than the angry tone that might be expected with the gesture.

"Yes.  Let me tell you of them all..."

Spoiler:

"The first battles were easy.  We surprised the outer camps, and the fighting was light.  The diversion Count Corax led, which was supported by Countess Azar alone, worked wonderfully.  The trails the Count followed were only lightly guarded and the Tribesmen fell swiftly.  The attack by the mercenaries provided by Count Bazzano met with similar success, as did the center of our force.  The hardest fighting that day was suffered by Countess McCulloch and the brave souls that followed her.  I believe it was Count Margrove that supported her, along with some mercenaries from Count Bazzano.  The slaughtered the Mystmountain Honorguard to the last man.  The tactical brilliance of that engagement will no doubt be remembered in the archives for generations."

She took a slow breath, but lifted the baton for all to know she hadn't finished.

"The second day was where our trouble began.  The flank attack by Count Corax failed to breach the walls of old Poinsbruk.  Alas, that force was 200 men short of what had been anticipated.  The left of our army met with similar misfortune as reinforcements arrived and pushed Countess McCulloch, Count Margrove's men, and the Rabble back... with heavy losses.  The mercenaries paid by Count Bazzano met with a similar misfortune.  The ruins fell in unfortunate patterns.  The center met with the only success.  I wonder what the result would have been had we had more troops."

"The third day was a day for despair.  Had the bravery of the Steppe been of less than legendary quality, we would have failed and a horde would have been upon us.  The Raiders had the same plan as we, and reinforced the portion of the wall that the mercenaries assaulted.  So did the center of the army, and our reinforcements trumped the savage force.  Count Corax assaulted the wall yet again, and nearly succeeded.  Had he had a mere 200 more troops, it would have been a clear victory."

Tysha smiled coldly as she spoke of the fourth day.

"The fourth day was when the mountains fell and the seas would have given way before our fury.  The horde crumbled and the Warlord himself was slain.  Let every song remember the brave who fell, and those who lived.  These were the battles of Poinsbruk.  These were the battles when a brave few stood against the tide of savage steel and let loose a thunderous rain of blood.  The Lion roared, the Raven feasted, and the Steppe was spared the horrors of an invasion."

OOC:  Spoilered for sanity.  Imagine Tysha included your own sigil... I don't know everyones!

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Re: The Eastern Council : Session Three

Post by Shadow-Seeker on Thu Sep 05, 2013 1:41 pm

Everard looked at Tysha with eyes that showed a mixture of boredom and annoyance

"Don't glorify a slaughter Tysha. And don't try to blame me for what happened at the battle that you led, when an army over three thousand men turns into less than two hundred in four days, it is not the question of 'only if there were two hundred more men', the commander doesn't try to blame someone for the loss, that is something that I expect from a child."

Everard closed his eyes and sighed, obviously fed up. He opened his eyes.

"The different battle I speak of was one more to the East. One that didn't end in victory. One that ended in loss and defeat. One that dis-enabled me to come to your aid. One that you are ignoring, to support your self-delusion that it is the fault of others for the tremendous losses at Poinsbruk."

Turning away from the Marshal, Everard looked again to Florian

"Was there anything else that you were to bring to the table for discussion Master Florian?"

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Re: The Eastern Council : Session Three

Post by Laisha on Thu Sep 05, 2013 3:17 pm

Laisha's eyes had been, up to that point, closed as she listened to the proceedings.  Simple brow twitching had been all that indicated that she'd been awake at all...though that was questionable too.  Her eyes opened quite suddenly as Everard's put down of Tysha ended.

"Delusion?" she said loudly, her voice incredulous.  "You think to make the barbarians of the north into a trivial annoyance, something that should not be dealt with at every opportunity?  You think they are a concern like any other?"

She rose from her seat and it seemed for a moment that he emotions would explode out of her.  Then she breathed deeply and continued.  "Yes, the battle was a slaughter for the lords of the steppe.  To this day, many families grieve the loss of loved ones and we grieve alongside them.  Now think how many more families would grieve had the warlord not died that final day.  Think about how our lands would have burned and how the people would have suffered at the hands of a horde strong enough and powerful enough to tear apart an army of three thousand men.

"Whether or not it was wise to fight in the first place is pointless.  Blaming people for that decision is pointless.  That decision was made long ago and you can do nothing about it now.  All I do know is that you did not respond to a threat that may have claimed us all.  That seems the greater delusion in this room."

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Re: The Eastern Council : Session Three

Post by Valdir on Thu Sep 05, 2013 4:48 pm

"Do we have real proof that this, horde of barbarians, was planning to invade the poor Steppe? They had built shrines in Poinsbruk for their God and settled in the city itself without feeling the urge to raid. We, lords of the Steppe, figured that raiding is in their blood and would be their only mindset. Though was there any real proof of that?

You say discussing our decision at that time is pointless, yet you seem to hold animosity towards those that speak up against it. I do not agree with Count Everard's assessment because the mercenaries I send north praised Tysha 'The Lucky' greatly, but however efficient she is in battle, to my knowledge the possibility of a peaceful solution was never raised."

Count Bazzano smiled cautiously, his sly eyes observing the aggressors and the Governor.

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Re: The Eastern Council : Session Three

Post by Mordred on Thu Sep 05, 2013 11:13 pm

"Not from me, no" Florian said, taking the snuff box from his pocket, dashing a little on his finger and snorting it quickly.

"Thank you all for your time, I am sure I can leave it to the Council to determine the intricacies. The Crown would appreciate a copy of any legislation passed on this matter."

With that he gave a small bow, turned and withdrew from the room.

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Re: The Eastern Council : Session Three

Post by Laisha on Fri Sep 06, 2013 12:47 am

Laisha watched Florian as he left, her eyes slowly shifting back to Valdir.  "Peace.  Pah, there can never be true peace with those who wish to plunder the defenseless.  You'd all be wise to learn that.  The only thing the Mystmountain or the Jatu or anyone other barbarian understands is strength."

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Re: The Eastern Council : Session Three

Post by Sir Nickolas on Fri Sep 06, 2013 1:04 am

The warrior sighed. It seemed like there was no point in holding back information any longer.

"The battle Count Everard spoke of was the massacre at Duskfall. Only I was successful in my task, retribution for the raids done by our codpiece-loving lord. When I returned back to Duskfall Sanctuary, corpses littered the streets and fields, the remains of brave defenders trying to protect their homes with mere pitchforks. Tristan's men were nearly wiped out during a normal routine expedition to the north to gather supplies.

The House of Lane may not have participated in the assault on Poinsbruk, but that does not mean I had no intention of participating in the first place. Yes, I did break off my original statement of sending Tristan to the diversion forces. Instead, we were to send two units of Spearmen, three units of Bowmen, and one unit of Light Horsemen. Tristan, Everard, and I were to march on Poinsbruk to execute our flanking maneuver. How can I accomplish that when 300 of my soldiers were either slain on the battlefield or massacred at home? How could I outfit my soldiers when we lack the funds and recruits to do so?

300 men armed with meager equipment is no army and the main Steppe host has already moved out. Thus, I made the decision to hold back, rebuild, and fortify my position. Everard was to lead my some of my men to battle. Due to circumstances, Everard and I were not present during the assault.

The question remains, why do we still dwell on this topic? At the end of the day, Steppe forces were massacred to take down one Mystmountain Warlord. Some of us had other matters to attend to back at home. Yes, the assault was a disaster, but it did prove that most of the Steppe will rally under a common cause. Arguments such as these will only serve to break apart said union."


Simon Lane, irritated by the situation, got out his trusty flask of ale and downed it completely. He then turned to Count Everard, Countess Tysha, and Countess Laisha.

"Now, will the three of you children stop squabbling and focus on the task at hand? This is a Council meeting, if you must throw insults and bicker more do so at a later time."

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Re: The Eastern Council : Session Three

Post by Tysha on Fri Sep 06, 2013 1:11 am

Tysha frowned at Simon Lane.

"Messengers are wondrous people, Count Lane. Count Everard sent no word, and ultimately no troops. Yet he has the audacity to attack the bravery of those poor lost souls. I went to the King rather than squabble for power in this Council of 'Lords' to answer for the invasion. I sent my brother to stay the hands of those many who called for your heads, such is the power of a messenger. You executed petty vengeance for a legitimate raid at the expense of those brave souls fighting for the simple security that allows you to raid. I have no quarrel with you, Count Lane, for you are a proven commander despite your misjudgement in failing to send a simple message."

"I do have quarrels with a Southerner who speaks of the Mystmountain Raiders as an excuse to usurp my noble right to wage war, when that very Southerner was no where to be found. The audacity to accuse me of poor command when he intended to participate in an undeclared flank attack? A flank from where? The mountains and back trails required Count Quiris."

"What of pensions for the fallen, or some deed to improve the defense of the Steppe? I see none from this so-called Governor with a loose tongue. What of myself, the Lady Marshall sworn to and charged with the defense of the Steppe? I was not idle, nor on some holiday in Sarleon. I lobbied the King and acquired a portion of the Royal Army to be placed in the Steppe for the defense of the North. I've acquired two hundred professional soldiers for our army. To be accused by such a lowly man as this 'Governor' is a grave insult when I have proof of my contributions to the Steppe, and proof of my nobility."

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Re: The Eastern Council : Session Three

Post by Valdir on Fri Sep 06, 2013 1:26 am

"calm your tongue now, Lady Tysha, Governor Everard. We are spiraling dangerously towards slander and that's not how we wish to run the Steppe as its appointed officials, is it?"

Valdir, who had tried to bring a balancing perspective a few moments earlier was now fed up with the discussion that seemed to drag more and more lords into it.

"Count Everard, I seem to recall a promise that you'd promote friendly relations between our members. I propose you act on that promise now and show us that there is no quarrel between Tysha's north and your south."

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Re: The Eastern Council : Session Three

Post by Shadow-Seeker on Fri Sep 06, 2013 8:13 am

Everard nodded towards Lord Valdir

"Yes Count Valdir, I had prepared for that."

At this point, Everard took a document from his pile, and unraveled it.

"As the next agenda topic is the Steppe treasury budget, here is my proposal on the topic."

"As I have stated before, I believe that the Mystmountain barbarians are a serious issue facing the Steppe. The lords who realize this the most are the Northern Lords."

"As defense of Pendor is something that we all must attend to, as vassals of King Mordred, I have the following proposal-

1. Southern lords, in exchange for halving their tax obligations to the treasury, may dedicate a force of soldiers no less than 100 heads to the defense of the North. Captains must be provided for said forces, unless a Northern lord states that they will be able to take the force under their command, and works out the details with the donater. The purpose of this is to mitigate any damages to the Northern provinces by raids, and hopefully deter any major Mystmountain offenses.

As for their travel, it shall be sanctioned by the council under three conditions.
-The northern lord receiving aid is contacted by the Southern lord and accepts the aid.
-Any counties that the forces go through shall be asked if the movement is acceptable.
-No hostilities are undertaken by the force in question on their trek to, or back, from the border.

2. As for lords who do not supply troops, I propose that an amount determined by the treasuer of the taxes that they pay to the treasury is dedicated to a fund that provides for either mercenaries, or fortifications in the northern provinces. The nature of the fortifications or defensive measures will be left up to the treasurer to decide."

"Whether or not this proposal passes, I want to press the issue that we all have a duty to the defense of the Steppe. I myself, given the chance, would dedicate 400 men to the north, to not only defend this kingdom from it's enemies, but to show that I do care about the Steppe and it's affairs."

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Re: The Eastern Council : Session Three

Post by Psychozoa on Fri Sep 06, 2013 8:22 am

Vincent could not keep silent any longer, he stood up with his hands still resting on the table. He kept his head down at first.

"Sending troops north or paying more gold which I don't have. I am afraid I can't do anything of those two. If I send troops north I won't be able to defend my County against the bloodhounds at my doorstep. And if I spent more Gold I won't be able to rebuild everything that has been destroyed."

Vincent raised his head to look at Laisha and Eadburgha. His gaze lingered on them for a time until he returned to face the governor.

"If you put this to a vote, I will say no and even if it passes I will not pay anything more nor send any troops north."

He sat down again, leaning back in his chair, waiting for the reaction of the others.


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Re: The Eastern Council : Session Three

Post by Tysha on Fri Sep 06, 2013 8:28 am

Tysha looked with surprise to the other southern lord. Was he hostile to the north, or simply conservative?

"I'm inclined to agree with the good Count. This proposal reeks of a scheme, as it does little for the North. Having disloyal soldiers, who have been sent purely for some Burgher inspired tax reduction, is hardly in the interests of we Northern lords. I'll allow none in Evasolde that I have not requested, nor will I pay any more tax than the lowest paying Southerner."


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Re: The Eastern Council : Session Three

Post by Shadow-Seeker on Fri Sep 06, 2013 8:46 am

"It is not a scheme. Simply an exchange of military service, for reduced taxes as compensation. No more taxes will be levied if you do not send the troops, simply the taxes you already pay will be allocated to a defense fund."

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Re: The Eastern Council : Session Three

Post by Tysha on Fri Sep 06, 2013 8:47 am

Tysha huffed slightly.

"And who would command these southern forces in northern land?"

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Re: The Eastern Council : Session Three

Post by Shadow-Seeker on Fri Sep 06, 2013 8:54 am

"As I said... captains sent by southern lords, perhaps even the southern lords themselves in some cases. Ultimately, they are in service to their host. I wouldn't suggest that Southern forces with no oversight come to northern territories. That would only breed mistrust."

"I instead, think it would be better if we worked together. For example, if the ex-count Andros had sent you a force of 200 men with a captain of his, barring any special terms, they are there to help defend the county, under your supervision."

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