Battles for the Reunification of the People and their Flag
General overview and goal of the campaign
After the Duiniken fled their old homeland between the Sévo Mountains, the Central Erana Mountain Range and the Grey Sea, they moved east in search of a new home. Their battles with the Mdûlûn to the south were long and the early Tarrabaenians pushing in from the north led to a steady exodus, that lasted several hundred years. When the last stand of the Duiniken had to withdraw, they wandered through the northern stretch of Andaperna, where some Duiniken from earlier waves of refugees had already settled down under the leadership of a certain Talmoudahh, a member of a noble house closely related to the royal family. The royal family's lone survivor, the then 13-year old king Fhairias and his retainers fled the old homeland last and also made their way to the east. On his way he and his entourage were attacked by Talmoudahhs men and while getting away safely, lost the royal flag.
Talmoudahh was brought the flag but not the news of the young kings survival. Fhairias and his surviving retainers on the other hand were oblivious of the fact that the attempt on the kings life was planned by Talmoudahh, mistaking it for a bandit raid. With his remaining loyal retainers and the Regalia of the Kings of the Duiniken made it to the east. Being the legitimate heir to the throne, he orchestrated the rebuilding of the Duiniken kingdom there in what is now called Nuat Duinis Talou, with the full support of his most reliable men. The Duiniken, being a proud people with a strong consiousness of tradition never lost confidence in their king, since they believe his house to be the oldest of dynasties on Erana.
In the east, the loss of the flag was soon forgotten, as Fhairias commissioned the making of a new, slightly altered flag to underline his claim to authority, while also reflecting the renewal of the Duiniken kingdom. In Andaperna though, Talmoudahh consolidated his power to become king of the northernmost part of Andaperna, originally called Warhûtnê. He used the seized flag as a token of legitimacy, claiming that the royal family was all but wiped out and that he, as the closest living relative, was their rightful successor. Thus grew two kingdoms, Hhrábintein ohh Duinis in Andaperna and Nuat Duinis Talou on the far eastern shores. Unbeknownst to each other, both claimed being the original kingdom of the Duiniken.
Three generations later, after the Duiniken to the east had established their new kingdom and pacified and incorporated the local petty states, they started to expand further south and tried to establish new trade routes to neighbouring political entities. This eventually brought them into contact with the Duiniken of Warhûtnê and brought attention to the fraudulent use of the royal flag by Talmoudahhs successors. This eventually started a series of battles initiated by the eastern Duiniken to reclaim the royal flag and bring it back to the rightful successors of the old Duiniken Kingdom.
Course of the campaign
Retrieving the flag was not an easy task as the forces of then-king Tuata 'Edhain had to cross a mountain range as well as a big stream to even be able to enter Hhrábintein 'ohh Duinis. While the first attack was successful at first, the following two were marked by failure. This led to a very surgical and ultimately successful fourth attack conducted by Nuat Duinis Talou, which, though not enabling them to wipe out the illegitimate rulers of the local Duiniken, at least facilitated the recovery of the flag.
The first aggression
After being informed of the rightless use of the royal flag and thus, in extension, the false claim to the throne of the Duiniken, Tuata 'Edhain immediately mustered an army of 800 in the year 1271 of the Era of the Earth and crossed the mountains and the river to attack Hhrábintein ohh Duinis. The attack came unexpected and 'Aidh 'Ou Dhán, commander in charge, managed to push forward to the city walls of the capital, Hhlachdún. The walls were stronger than expected though and even with their initial successes the army feared to be cut off from their way home and was forced to retreat as they had no means to lay siege to the city.
The battle by the river bank
When two years later another attempt was made, 'Aidh 'Ou Dhán lead 1300 into battle. This time though, the king of Hhrábintein 'ohh Duinis, 'Eifhálad, was prepared and had his army take positions right at the river. Aided by that natural boundary, the already much stronger army of 'Eifháhad fended the attack off. More than 200, including 'Aidh 'Ou Dhán, died trying to cross the river, which resulted in a retreat of the troops of Nuat Duinis Talou.
The battle of the shaky bridge
With the death of the commander king Tuata 'Edhain himself set out, accompanied by his military advisor Borian and the second military commander 'Almarain in 1274. This time a force of 3000 was mobilised, about half of which military and the others being supporting troops, pioneers and workers. On their way to the river, on the slopes of the mountains, the soldiers and workers cut lumber and transported is a bit up river, out of sight of where the Hhrábintein 'ohh Duinis laid down their military camp, eye to eye with the camp of Tuata 'Edhain. The presence of the king at the battle was known to the enemy, so the situation was tense with 'Eifháhad being ready to cross the river and kill the greatest possible threat to his claimed leadership over the Duiniken. After two weeks had passed with only small skirmishes, about a dozen ships came down the river. They had been built in the upper camp, with the lower camp being more an elaborate distraction. From the ships auxiliary troops rained missiles upon the enemy and steering the ships just at the right angles and positions, fixing them to one another with ropes and using wooden bridges and ladders, made the flotilla sort of a bridge. While the forces of 'Eifháhad were driven back, they still outnumbered Tuata 'Edhains forces and still had the better tactical position, just having lost control over a narrow stretch of land by the river.
Expedition to burn the capital
While, again, no advances could be made by either side, Borian and 'Almarain deliberated about how to end the situation in a way that meant at least victory, even if a defeat of the enemy was impossible. Messengers were sent out, back to Nuat Duinis Talou to rally volunteers to join their kings forces, but also south, to the neighbouring Andaperna city state of Anavé. These messengers were to recruit mercenaries. With the city states of Andaperna being warlike and constantly vying for power over each other, mercenaries were easy to find and with Nuat Duinis Talou being a coastal state with established trade routes, the ressources to pay for them were likewise easily available.
To keep the attention at the main camp and the flotilla, the king stayed there and coordinated attacks and defences. Meanwhile part of the more experienced troops where withdrawn and replaced with volunteers coming in from home. A few hundred of them joined forces with the mercenaries and started attacking from the south, forcing more military to be draw to that border as well. Almost a thousand went north, led by 'Almarain, this time carrying some siege equipment. They secretly made their way through the northern mountains until they reached Hhlachdún.
The city, with Hhrábintein 'ohh Duinis being attacked from two sides and the king being on one of the battlefields, was without a shield and without a head. The wall was breached within four days, too fast to recall troops to the city. 'Almarain spared most of the population that didn't resist and plundered the treasury, including the royal flag. He retreated immediately to the kings camp. The mercenaries were disbanded, troops withdrawn and Tuata 'Edhain marched home, victoriously showcasing the retrieved flag on the way.
After the retrieval of the flag, that was witnessed by almost all the citizens of Hhlachdún and was considered a major disgrace. With Hhrábintein 'ohh Duinis being a well functioning state, the people stayed allegiant to their king as the people of Nuat Duinis Talou were loyal to theirs. So the underlying conflict of two kingdoms claiming to be the rightful follow-up to the old Duiniken Kingdom continued to be unresolved for another threehundred years. This only ended when the Talmoudahhian Dynasty ceased to exist.
The old flag was actually given a proper name, 'An Sein Meirhhe' (simply meaning 'The old flag'), and then made a part of the Regalia of the Kings of the Duiniken. It did not re-replace the newer flag devised by king Fhairias, but rather became a token of rememberance of the old homelands to the west.
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