Battle of the Alse

The Battle of the Alse was what began the chain of events that led to the eventual destruction of the Empire of Lethea.

The Conflict

Prelude

For thousands of years, the Empire of Lethea had ruled over the peoples of Southern Lethea, but in the year 5354 BA, the Lethean government began forcing their genetic modifications on their subjugated people, forcing the people of modern-day Pallernia to rise up and resist the tyrannical move.

Alse river
To stop the uprising, the Empire sent an army that was stationed in the territory of Alminthas. The army consisted mostly of Zheans from the home islands of the empire, as well as Alminthian and Rükish archers. By the time their army arrived near the Alse river, the rebels had already amassed a sizable force, ready and eager to fight for their freedom.

Deployment

The armies of Lethea came from the northeast, from where the town of Nauretrot lies nowadays. The separatists came from the south, from the Sullehacht heights, and both armies arrived at the river ford at around the same time. The rebels could afford to wait on the other side of the river, but since the Letheans knew that, they hoped they could quickly cross the river and send the rebels running back home before they even reached their defensive positions.

The Pallernian separatists noticed that their foes were approaching with the intent of crossing the Alse, and so they quickly rushed their light infantry to defend the river banks, and the archers and battlemages stood up on the high ground, ready to make use of their range advantage. Before the battle, the rebels had raided several armories and acquired heavy armor for a few hundred men, these men stood on the slope of the hills, right behind the light infantry and in front of the vulnerable archers.

Battlefield

Battle of the Alse

Conditions

The weather had been cloudy and the temperature around 13°C, but despite the cloud coverage, the winds had been calm, allowing the archers to be as effective as possible. The weeks leading up to the battle had been dry and so the river had become shallow, allowing the soldiers to move across it. For most soldiers, the water reached just below their belt.

The Engagement

Positioning

As the army of Lethea approached the river, the rebel light infantry units rushed to keep their side of the river protected. Rebel archers began attacking the approaching Rükish and Almithian archers and since they had the high ground, the arrows of their foes couldn't reach them. The rebel mages targeted the Empire's medics and heavily armored units.

Flanking

The light cavalry units of the Empire were the first ones in the river. They tried attacking the archers from the rear, but the rebels reacted in time and intercepted them. With the cavalry busy with the rebel infantry, the Pallernian archers kept picking the riders off from their horses, and the mages opened up the ground beneath their feet for a split second, trapping many of the horses and crushing their legs.

Crossing the River

At around the same time, the Lethean light infantry entered the river and marched as best as they could, against the center of the rebel infantry. The heavily armored infantry followed, but compared to the men wearing only gambesons and simple skullcaps, they were incredibly slow in the water.

Retreat & Regroup

As the light infantry of Lethea clashed against the rebels, the heavy infantry behind them began to split up and targeted the soldiers on the rebel flanks instead. For a while thing had gone steadily and it had been difficult to tell who was going to win the battle. The rebels on the southeastern flank had done well and they encircled their foes, but the other flank had been forced to retreat. When the fleeing rebels reached near the top of a hill, they noticed that the other flank had done incredibly well and their confidence returned.

Encirclement

The remaining line of men who had faced the brunt of the Lethean light infantry charge had been forced to retreat between the hills. The Pallernians who had regrouped saw it as an opportunity and they charged from their side at the same time as the other flank maneuvered around and moved between the Letheans and the river, cutting off their main escape route. Several hundred rebel light infantrymen had crossed the river and routed the archers right before the encirclement and without their deed, the encirclement would have been impossible.

Rebel Victory

Despite possessing far better arms and armor, the Lethean infantry perished, many ending up as prisoners of war but most refusing to submit to genetically inferior foes. Almost all of the Rükish and Alminthian soldiers offered their allegiance to the rebel leaders, in exchange for their promise to help liberate Alminthas and Rükenland.

Outcome

Despite all odds, the Pallernian separatists managed to encircle and slaughter the Lethean army, inspiring others to rise up and fight for freedom.

Aftermath

The separatist victory started a chain of events that ended with the dismantling of the Empire of Lethea.

Somehow, through all the chaos, the brave freedom fighters had managed to encircle the heavily armored Zheans and after their blood had turned the river red, only then we realized that we had achieved total victory over our enemy, and the word of the battle began to spread like wildfire. With each passing day, more and more joined us in our righteous fight for freedom.
— Galtea's Diary, one of the only written sources with detailed reports about the battle and it's legacy

Historical Significance

Legacy

By the year 1567 AA, the Battle of the Alse, as well as the dismantling of the ancient Empire of Lethea, remains mostly unknown to the general populace. Only a few historians have ever heard anything about that time period and Galtea's Diary, the only remaining book with detailed reports of the battle and the rest of the war, lies in the hands of the Emperess of Pallernia.

Conflict Type
Battle
Battlefield Type
Land
Start Date
Fennor 19, 5353 BA
Ending Date
Fennor 20, 5353 BA
Conflict Result
Separatist victory

Belligerents

Separatists
Empire of Lethea

Strength

7820 Total

2560 Pallernians
1850 Montlers
950 Latsolians
900 Ambrelians
875 Liklanders
685 Oltlanders
8590 Total

7550 Zheans
520 Rükish
520 Alminthians

Casualties

4812 Total

1510 Pallernians
1112 Montlers
441 Latsolians
715 Ambrelians
709 Liklanders
325 Oltlanders
7845 Total

7215 Zheans
415 Rükish
215 Alminthians

Objectives

Defeating the Lethean army in hopes that the victory would inspire more oppressed peoples to rise up and join in the rebellion.
Destruction of the rebel army and the capture of their leaders in hopes that without leadership, the rebellion would swiftly end.
Genetic Engineering
Technology / Science | Dec 16, 2018
Dismantling of Lethea
Military Conflict | Dec 12, 2018
Pallernic War of Independence
Military Conflict | Dec 12, 2018
Alse river 2
Alse river 3
Alse river 4

Casualties and Discipline

The Battle of the Alse is well known by those who are aware of its existence, by the sheer amount of casualties that both sides suffered from. While in normal fights one side would have retreated and sought to fight another day, both the Letheans and the rebels were unwilling to retreat. The Zhean soldiers inside the Lethean army were all genetically altered to be more disciplined and to avoid fleeing without an order to do so while at the same time, the rebels had seen the battle as their only hope at achieving freedom from foreign rule and the freedom to remain free individuals, unaltered by advanced Lethean genetic engineering technology. The only ones unwilling to die were the Rükish and Alminthian archers who were forcefully conscripted into the Lethean army.

Comments

Please Login in order to comment!
11 Dec, 2018 22:56

I like it, a lot of content. Gauging by the numbers, it almost feels like a battle where everyone lost...

11 Dec, 2018 23:07

Ooh, I do like your use of images to help give an idea of how everything moved. The sidebar under area seems pretty empty, perhaps you could play with your information in rows / columns ? I wish some of the information from the engagement and such was in the blurb at the top, to help give readers a little crash course in the war and it's fighting.   Do you plan on making an article for the genetic alterations that one of the sides was working on? I think that could be a great thing to expand on !

12 Dec, 2018 12:10

Thank you for all the feedback! I agree that the area under the sidebar is a bit empty and I'll try to come up with a way to solve that problem.   I will definitely write an article about the genetic alterations and the decision to force it on people and once that article is done I will display them under the sidebar.

12 Dec, 2018 18:50

There's a section in the 'Design' tab, where you can enter in above, inside and below the sidebar! You could use that to put some info in to negate some negative space. : D and awesome, I hope to see more from you!

12 Dec, 2018 10:40

Good clear description of what happened at the battle. The maps help a lot, too. I wish I had a talent for visual aids because they do add a lot to these articles. It reads very much like a historical account, which adds to the .verisimilitude

12 Dec, 2018 11:17

I'm glad you enjoyed the article!

16 Dec, 2018 04:30

Damn! Its great! Its simple, but therefore enjoyable. I feel like the battle I just did may be a bit too complicated. Btw what did you use to create those images?

16 Dec, 2018 07:39

I'm glad you enjoyed the article. The first image was just a small part of my world map and that was created in Adobe Photoshop. The battle map was created in Adobe Illustrator.

16 Dec, 2018 16:42

Ah. I made my battle in paint :/. I'll see what I can do with Adobe

Powered by World Anvil