The Battle of Aldergrove
The Third Word War was particularly difficult for the Royal Families of Houses Meles, Lapin, and Ailurus. Lord Galakrond, Crown Prince of House Meles and son of Sable Aradia, sparked the Word War by stealing The Iron Tome from his mother. When he and ICC DeadPeople both ended up as Night Monarchs, each in control of a separate Undead Horde, Galakrond, now known as Lord GalaWight, took the assault to his family. Queen Sable believed that gathering the members of his family into his thrall would increase his literomantic power through the The Law of Similarity.
It can't have escaped your notice that GalaWight is collecting us like trading cards, right?House Meles was the first to succumb to the Horde. Survivors fled to The Warren to seek refuge with House Lapin. Purpleheart, one of the Brocktrees — the elite guard of House Meles — fell to the Undead Horde trying to protect Prince Xantos Meles when he became separated from the rest of the family and confronted his older brother, Lord GalaWight. He, too, fell to the Horde. Sable Aradia was forced to give the order to open fire and close the magical portal that joined the Warren to Windy Willows when the Undead began to break through, knowing full well her 13-year-old son remained on the other side. The Horde came for House Chiroptera next. GalaWight's sisters, the Archon and the Heir of House Ailurus, were sworn to Chiroptera's banner, and his brother, Prince Jean of House Lapin, was staying at The Cavern. GalaWight successfully acquired Prince Jean, but the Ailurus Heir, Senna Nightshade, made a magically-sealed pact with ICC DeadPeople — she would join his side of the Horde willingly, as long as the system of storehouses maintained by House Ailurus remained untouched by the Horde. This act of supreme self-sacrifice removed her from GalaWight's influence, protected the lifesaving supplies that the living needed to survive the assault of the Undead, and bought her sister, Archon Mykola Void, time to escape. She later received the Lapin Star of Valour for this action. The three House Leaders formed the Woodland Family Alliance and combined their forces and decision-making from this point. They began referring to themselves as "the Woodland Royal Family" and their mutual subjects as "Woodlanders." The Horde now turned their attentions on House Lapin. Suitably bolstered both in numbers and literomantic power, they divided their forces. ICC DeadPeople led an attack on an important power generator and portal relay station in Aldergrove, allowing The Missing House and House Lapin to portal all the way across the continent to the Sauropoda Protectorate if necessary. Meanwhile, Lord GalaWight led the assault on the Okanagan Valley and the Warren.
November 16, 15:18 Pacific TimeWhile in previous years the Undead Horde had not displayed much tactical behaviour, instead focusing entirely on literomancers, this time was different. The Undead forces of ICC DeadPeople attacked the nearby Chilliwack military base, where the other half of the 39th Combat Engineer Regiment and Royal Westminster Regiment were stationed. It is generally believed that their purpose was recruitment, not dividing and conquering, but that may have been a consideration.
November 16, 15:55 Pacific TimeWithout literomancer support, the base was quickly overwhelmed. A massive force of some 5000 zombies moved on to their primary targets; the Aldergrove military station, prototype literomantic Batteries, and Cross-Continental Portal.
November 16, 16:07 Pacific TimeThe Undead forces of ICC DeadPeople began their assault on Aldergrove. Acting on intel that likely came from Doomflower Wither, who had once been Panda Polemarch Senna Nightshade, they assaulted the literomantic Batteries that sustained and powered the portal first. Feral Wayfinder, then Feral (bodyguard) in the service of Archon Mykola Void, was directed to take command of the defense.
By the Tome... just how many are there?The Feral and the non-literomancer soldiers of the Lapin forces set up a defensive perimeter, reinforced with a dozen Tactical Armoured Patrol Vehicles (TAPV) on loan from the British Columbia Dragoons. They were overwhelmed quickly.
November 16, 16:29 Pacific TimeArchon Mykola Void checked in on the forces at the Cross-Continental Portal, just before Feral Wayfinder gave the order to abandon and destroy the Batteries. Houndstooth Company and the surviving Lapin forces fell back to the Portal itself. The Archon was informed that the Portal had enough residual power to keep it active for perhaps another 40 minutes. This advanced the timetable on the evacuation of the Warren by a good two hours, and that evacuation was complicated by the crashing of an evacuation helicopter carrying King Consort Realm of Music and the Forgelings into Okanagan Lake, necessitating a rescue mission.
Hang in there, Sparkles. We're on the way.The Woodlander forces set up a defensive perimeter at the Portal. Knowing the defensive Literomantic shields were likely to fail at any time without the Batteries to maintain them, and knowing their allies would be arriving within their perimeter rather than outside of it, they reinforced it with a large quantity of shaped charge explosives. Some of these were taken from LSB Chilliwack and the armoury at LSF Aldergrove. However, many were liberated from construction supplies that were intended for the repair of the damaged highway system, which had flooded out the previous November.
November 16, 16:48 Pacific TimeThe first batch of Woodlander evacuees arrived at the Cross-Continental Portal from the Warren. Prince Consort Erin Righ and Archon Mykola Void took command of the forces stationed at LSF Aldergrove, the site of the Portal.
November 16, 17:03 Pacific TimeReinforcements arrived at Aldergrove through the Cross-Continental Portal in the form of Good King Bob and Captain Dazzlinkat, along with a company of Sauropodan soldiers. While protecting the evacuees was their primary goal, they also hoped to encounter ICC DeadPeople so they could deal with him personally.
November 16, 17:04 Pacific TimeAlmost immediately upon their arrival, the Literomantic Shields went down and zombies began to make their way to the living forces and the Portal. A pitched battle ensued as the defenders fought to keep the Portal open until the Lapin forces from the Warren arrived.
I'm going T-Rex. Don't jump out of your skin when I do. And give me a shout when Sable gets through. Can you hold them off and back towards the Portal?
You heard the man! We're bringing up the rear, let's go!