Tuesday, August 30, 2016

(Hackmaster) Burning Trogs Rule! #52: The End of Arms

3rd of UnDec, 1136
On the dawn of the 3rd of UnDec, peace reigned across Barthey.  The humanoid armies of the Master either scattered back into Yarbay or into the nearby hills.  Human forces maintained their weapons and marched back to either Yarbay or Parthia.

22nd of Undec, 1136 - Barthey City, Empire of Barthey
It took the Burning Trogs a few weeks to finally return to Barthey City to file their final report.    Military mobilization in Marakeikos and Stronghome, and unconfirmed chaos in Hermetus and Vlachia made most land and sea travel unbearable.   Throw in over 450-plus heavy cavalrymen from another country, and it turns into a quagmire.

Once they finally arrived in Barthey City, they were given audience in the Imperial Palace by General Winters and the Emperor's Chief Advisor, Theodosius Marcin.   Upon hearing the Trogs' oral report, the pair filled them in on the activities of the Imperial Army. 

While the Master's forces had moved in swiftly and secretly into Akorros, the armies had great difficulties breaching the defenses of most other towns and cities.  Certainly villages were no match against their evil, and many interior towns finally succumbed after long sieges, the coastal towns, with support from the Imperial Navy, not only toughed it out, but many times broke out of the walls to break the siege.  Yarbay's navy was a mismatch of pirates and privateers in their hire.  Not much of a match against a well-armed convoys bringing relief. 

Although the Master's armies reached the city of Urstanbakka, 200 miles of the capital, its supply lines were stretched thin and subject to Barthey raids from the north and south. 
The new units from Marakeikos and Danaan had just arrived and were performing well against the nearest fronts before the truce was called.

The Trogs' efforts in actively forming alliances with Danaan, Marakeikos, and Stronghome have strengthened the safety and defenses of the Western Mer Kasp for years to come.  In secret communiques with the Queen of Marakeikos, she has admitted that a trade alliance with her country and the gnomes and halflings was more advantageous, but after years of in-fighting by her own subjects, Marakeikos was more than willing to support and aid her neighbor in any just cause. 

In appreciation for all there efforts, there was to be a formal ceremony with the Emperor himself.  Up until this point, only successful generals had been given such an honor. 

24th of UnDec, The Imperial Palace, Barthey City, The Empire of Barthey
After enough time to get clothing fitting of an audience with his magnificence, Emperor Koprostes X the Constant, the Trogs were fully decked out with every military award previously given (and a few Gnome Titan ribbons Fonzy found in the bazaar.  A little spit and polish and it would be befitting of a General!)

Koprostes was elderly man, struggling under the pomp and circumstance of robes, armor, and crown to find the imposing frame he had as youth.  He did little speaking, relying on his Chief Advisor to do so in his stead.

First the officers of the 1st Barthey Expeditionary Force were brought forward.

Colonels Cassilius, Leonidas, and Bright were promoted to Thematon Agens Vice Legati and given commands of armies protecting the eastern border with Yarbay and Parthia.  Traditionally, commands of the armies protecting duchies, city-states, and minor kingdoms were appointed by the local ruler.  Obviously, this had failed horribly along the border, and the inland provinces, so generals with direct guidance from the Emperor himself, and above the desires of the greedy locals should work better. 

General Backares was the only general in the Empire not to fight against the Master (even General Winters).  He was granted the honorific Backares Marakeikus Invictus and granted a post as Thematon Agens Vice Legati of the garrison of his hometown of Dorylimos.

Almost all of the Trogs, including sidekicks, protégés, and Coreena were called forth and Emperor shuffled over to award them and the military officers a Phalera Tetracross,  a giant disk of the Barthey coat of arms meant to be either inserted into a suit of armor, or worn as a medallion. 

Mutumbo, for his limited action helping the Trogs, was ecstatic.

The Kropostes sat down and the advisor asked everyone, save the Ambassadors Spectacular and Extraordinary who had originally been appointed by General Winters to step down. 

  • Zorin
  • Gwen
  • Fonzie
  • Cecelia
  • Gwen
  • Terval
  • Janus

  • First, by Imperial Decree, the Ambassadors were awarded a special Civic Crown, the highest order given to a civilian.  A gilded wreath of olive branches was placed on each of their heads. 

    They were then awarded Obsidian Medals, for their work evacuating the city during the Siege of Akorros. 

    The Imperial Treasury bequeathed each member an additional 20,000 gold for their efforts.

    Finally, the Emperor granted them each a coastal estate in the autonomous region known as Treibezond.  Treibezond had taken the brunt of the Master's attacks, but these were seaside estates that escaped most of the carnage.  Each estate was a large, self-supported community which generated at least 10,000 gp annually, largely from hazelnut harvests, hardwood lumbering, some mining, and some rental payments from the local residents.    All government services, militia, army, etc where conducted by the Duchy of Sarboria.  The Trogs there were simply feudal landowners with the local title Eparch Patricia (Local Lord or Father)

    While there was no requirement to permanently reside there, any appearance of abandonment, or, any appointment to the landed nobility of another land essentially forfeited ownership.  The Emperor giveth, and the Emperor can taketh away just as easy.

    The Estate Names Given to the Trogs:
  • Zorin - Demurli
  • Gwen - Bacali
  • Fonzie - Yomra
  • Cecelia - Aiden Teppe
  • Terval - Cowbun
  • Janus - Balzmaca

  • .... and with that, the Campaign of the Burning Trogs comes to a close.

    Next: #53 Campaign Epilogue

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