The State of Braelin
The war among the nations of Éras progresses on many fronts, with victories and losses for a host of different factions. Many have begun to wonder whether this is more chaos than war.
In Gavell, the rebellious patriots have been forced into a retreat as Braelinese forces led by High General Knight Iolanthe la Hale swept southward from Caxton, restoring order and ultimately capturing territory in Fleet, where the rebels were most deeply entrenched. Unfortunately, the rebellion’s instigators have escaped, most likely fleeing to Estercoast.
County Icemont of Blacknall is reeling in shock at news of the sudden and tragic assassination of Count and Countess Erewaker, as well as their eldest son and heir, Conrad. Not much is known about the assassins: they have been described only as “strange folk,” though rumor suggests the Braelinese officials have more information than they are letting on. In the wake of this unexpected blow, Blacknalleer citizens wonder what is to become of the county, even as the younger Erewaker sons vow to avenge their family…
There is also grave news from Zikari: the port-city of Ilios has fallen, and the Serenites have taken the islands! Rumor has it that the Braelinese did not assist in defending Zikari against the Serenite invaders. Could it be that Braelin, in its extremity, has forgotten its protectorate? Unrest and resentment lurk among the people who were once Braelin’s most loyal allies.
In the far west, the Xirosi have been massing troops along the Xiros-Hawksworth border for a while now. They claim that they are simply being good neighbors, preventing lawless raiders from entering Hawksworth and, if the need arises, preparing their soldiers to move quickly against the Beast-people in the mountains should the Beast-people invade. But some Braelinese ascribe them a darker motive, wondering if the Xirosi look back in history to a time when their country included the full range of Hawksworth and Blacknall…
Meanwhile, Braelinese and Serenite troops of massive numbers are even now converging on the much-contested city of Zála. The former Serenite slaves who have declared the city theirs have turned their backs on offers to surrender to Seren, instead looking to the advancing Braelinese army for assistance in maintaining their independence. Those who were formerly known as thysia are now calling themselves szabad–unfettered. But will the combined Braelinese-szabad forces be strong enough to hold the Serenites off? or will Zála and the dreams of the freed slaves be crushed as two kingdoms clash?