Tales of General TanCred; Siege of Gelder (Part I)
Declaration of War
"Well... I guess I have time for another!" "Yay!" cheered the Tavern audience, a man called out to the barkeep, "Please, buy the man 2 mugs on me!" flipping the keep a few silver coins.
The storyteller took no time to finish his current ale and took a deep draw from the first of two mugs. "Ahhh," he exclaimed sitting on his now rather padded chair. Wiping his mouth he continued, "Years later the Fraunki empire quietly fell into debt. Losing money in various deals as their raw materials became lesser in value due to opening trade routes with the south. The King Jholjito sent diplomas to secure trade partners to the east of their neighbors. To the Northeast was the Burganthians, immediately east was the Lombardi, and the quest was to secure trade with the Satjon, the Hunni, the Goleathians, and finish at the capital of the Eastern Trinity Empire." The storyteller took another long drink and tossed greyish-red-purple smoke bombs on the main hearth giving the room a dark almost hopeless atmosphere. A few babies cried at the mood swing in the room.
"The trade agreements with the Gloeathians and Eastern Trinity Empire were secured but it would take nearly 10 years to build the roads necessary to connect trade routes. The Satjons and Hunni took the map information and planned raiding parties, right in from of the diplomats. Assuming ignorance and lack of intelligence. The Diplomats countered by returning with information about battle tactics, unit types, and map information.
'This is not enough!' roared King Jholijito slamming his fist down on the main hall table. It echoed throughout the hall, snapping every council members attention to his majesty. The informant quieted and was too startled to attention. The king took the scroll parchment with the empire's finances. Gave it a shake and read allowed. 'We currently have NEGATIVE,' he bellowed that last word for emphasis, 'Negative, two thousand gold stands.' He took in the room, looking at everyone in turn. 'This means that our Western Trinity allies will own us in 10 years. And why wouldn't they want this land, so rich in minerals and lumber?' 'And beautiful women!' called out councilman Arviantis, 'if I may interject, your majesty.' A stifled laugh from the king turned into a full out laugh fest as many of the councilmen began laughing heartily with the king.
'So,' in an effort to finish the council meeting with a serious note, 'we must find another source of trade or produce something new. Alright, get out of here! and Arviantis, see you at the Tavern. You owe me an ale, my good man.'
"While at the Tavern later that evening and a few festive mugs were thrown back," a cheer rose up throughout the storytellers crowd. "A messenger arrived announcing that Saxenmark declared war on the Western Trinity Empire, to which the empire declared their capital city of Gelder up for grabs. 'Specifically inviting you, King Jholijito to take the city by force within 10 years and they would pay for the expenses of the war effort.' With this news in ear shout, the celebration turned even merrier." A sneaky toss of Ale yellow, sunrise orange, and festive blue smoke balls gave the room a merrier feeling. "The king stood up on the middle grand table of the tavern and announced, 'We march north to conquer Saxenmark!'
That next week and army was prepared and marching north. they encountered very little resistance through the southern portion of the peninsula territory. As they moved closer to Gelder and the city walls came into view, the army slowed and camped in a nearby valley, encircled by trees. It was here that the first resistance hit the king's forces, driving them back. south into Fraunki territory. The force lost over three-quarters of 1,200 men to an army of 800 of Saxenmarks best warriors. A surprise attack planned weeks in advance.
King Jholijito was set aflame and was ready to march north himself, but at a council meeting he was convinced to call upon our hero..."
"TANCRED!" screamed the children in the Taven hall.
"It took TanCred 2 years to assemble what he deemed an acceptable army for a siege of the Saxenmark capital, but also to fight off any resistance along the way. It was the year 74 of the 3rd age during the winter months, TanCred's forces marched north on a campaign to conquer the Saxenmarks and open up all the empire stabilizing resources that came with it. Initially 3,500 total troops were sent north, winning battles at the Saxen forest's edge near the border of Fraunki and Saxenmark, the waterways at Geldenmark, and eventually found the TanCred army cut in half. Meaning, a force of 1,474 men reached the capital which inevitably had less than 1,300 defenders after the many battles leading to this siege.