Archive for war

The Glorious History of Aathenaar, Part Six: The Seed of Peace

Posted in Shows, Unicorn City with tags , , , , on September 4, 2010 by Greg Landgraf

Bax was a wise and visionary leader, and his peace proposal was almost undoubtedly the single most beneficial moment in Coventra’s history. As magnificent as his idea was, however, he was still a single man, and even though all Twelve tribes agreed to it, he would be unable to carry it out singlehandedly.

Great men and women realize their limitations and take steps to counter them. So Bax knew that he must institute a system of advisors and deputies to lead the peace. Each of the Twelve tribes had by this point, developed some rudiments of modern aristocracy, with Courts and therefore courtiers, as well as basic bureaucracies, with regulations and administrators.

Bax considered these assets, and wisely dismissed them as inappropriate for the job. Courtiers, after all, are unreliable, willing to bend any principle in their desperate attempt to curry favor with their rulers. Bureaucrats, on the other hand, are far too rigid, petty tyrants over their tiny, tiny policies, and far too slow in any event. And administrators are treacherous, with hundreds of private agendas and rivalries waiting at any juncture to sabotage peace.

Seeing that the tools he had to face the problem were insufficient, Bax took what is undoubtedly the second greatest act of Coventra’s history: He developed a new tool, one that could inspire the populace towards the cause of peace, one beholden to nothing other than that cause, and one that could move nimbly to serve that cause.

That tool was the Bard’s Guild.

It was headquartered on the western shore, in the village of Coral. (This was, as you will recall, the territory of Cavin’s descendents; in the Very Bad War they were completely without allies and therefore needed the Guild most of all.) Lest any other region grow jealous, however, Bax decreed that bardhood would be a profession of travelers. “The bards shall travel throughout the land,” he declared, “and through their magnificent tales shall they spread the word of peace directly to the peoples of the world.”

This notion could hardly have been more successful. Those first bards attacked their mission with the industry of an apple-bug preparing for the winter. They crisscrossed the land, and wherever they traveled, crowds would assemble to hear their stories. Invariably those crowds would be delighted, and inspired, and leave with hearts committed to the cause of peace.

And so it was that within a year, through the efforts of these traveling heroes, peace was achieved throughout the land.

The Glorious History of Aathenaar, Part Five: The Very Bad War

Posted in Shows, Unicorn City with tags , , on August 31, 2010 by Greg Landgraf

The Twelve Children of Alatia had children of their own, and thus did the race of man thrive upon Coventra. But just as wherever the fengra mushroom sprouts, eventually will grow up a grove of occa trees, tensions developed between the Twelve’s descendants as their numbers grew.

It was a delegation from Anders’ marshy territory that started the unpleasantness. They had journeyed to the western lowlands, where Jaara’s tribe had flourished, hoping to convince them to abandon reason and trade the prodigious fruits that their orchards produced for the bitter mush that was all that grow in the swamps.

Negotiations never even began, however, for the delegation viewed what clever Jaara’s tribe had built — the magnificent monuments, the stately temples, and the peaceful parks that seemed to glow from within — and became insanely jealous. Upon gaining an audience with Carry, the chief of the tribe, one of the envoys named Serrer declared: “It is clear to us that you are unworthy of what you have wrought, and that we are. Therefore, we are at war.”

Without awaiting response, the marsh delegation turned as one and marched out of the frescoed town hall.

Word spread, and each of the Twelve tribes found themselves on one side of the dispute or the other, or both simultaneously, (as happened with Liekei’s tribe, which had followed Colm’s and supported Jaara’s tribe, but with an undercurrent of dissatisfaction because many thought this would be an issue that would let them break free of their mountain cousins‘ influence) or sometimes creating brand-new sides (as Cavin’s children did; by declaring that war could only hurt their fishing and attempting to remain neutral, they made enemies of all.)

Throughout Coventra, all effort went toward fashioning weapons, and training armies, and planning strategies, and posting guards to defend against the invaders who had once been brothers and sisters. This went on for many months, while fields lay unsown and fruits unharvested. People grew hungry and starved, and buildings fell into disrepair, and society seemed on the verge of crumbling.

Eventually, the mischievous sprites grew weary of watching the race of man waste away like this. “If you wish to be at war,” they said, “it is not enough to merely prepare for an invasion. Eventually, someone must actually invade.”

But the race of man was not accustomed to taking direction from sprites, and declared that it would conduct this war on its own terms. While most of the tribes were satisfied to say that, Bax, the wise chief of the tribe of Marion, and a direct ancestor to our beloved Baron Brange, wanted more. He gathered representatives from each of the Twelve tribes together under a banner of truce and made the following appeal:

“We must put aside our differences, if not for ourselves than to prove that we shall not be manipulated by sprite or goblin or any other inferior race. I propose that we achieve peace.”

This statement was so full of wisdom, and Bax so persuasive, that the representatives of the Twelve tribes unanimously and immediately agreed to it.