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MikoMonster

The Prince of the North

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Ve Prinzen i ve Jard

A Haeseni folktale

12th of Jula and Piov, 345 | 12th of Malin’s Welcome, 1792

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I write of a story told to me and my brothers by our mother, Marya Baruch var Ruthern, back when we were children many years ago. As the last of her children, and as the sickness spreads throughout my bones, I saw it fit to write this tale down on parchment for the first time since it was originally told generations ago. I dedicate the first written version of this folktale to my four sons: Karl, Rickard, Aldrik, and Varon. May they grow to be strong northerners, as their family before them. 

 


 

Centuries ago, in the faraway lands of Vailor, the isles of olde were riddled with the marring of violence and warfare. The unjust Duke of Courland, removing his vassals from their lands to expand his power, had angered his human neighbors. The strong men of Carnatia and Vasiland allied their forces and set off to battle against the Courlandic threat, led by an ancient Barbanov.

 

During one such battle, that of the Battle of the Curon Forest, the Coalition was in trouble. The forest was slick from the heavy rainfall as the troupes pushed on through the tree cover. The commanders had abandoned their steeds miles back, being unable to pass through the dense underbrush and hazardous mud. The two commanders led their men onwards, toward the awaiting enemy. The Duke of Courland commanded three times the forces of the Coalition, despite this knowledge, the brave soldiers marched forth. The Courland forces hid among the trees not far off, lacking in strength and honour but not in wiliness, they brandished alchemist’s fire.

 

As the sky grew dark and night fell, the troops drew to a halt, setting up camp not a few miles from the front lines at the orders of their Barbanov commander. They didn’t dare light a fire, eating stale bread for their supper and sleeping atop the boggy earth. Throughout the night, the Courlanders lay in wait.

 

As dawn broke, the soldiers ate their measly rations and proceeded, cautiously, deeper into the forest. The Barbanov leader sent a scout ahead, knowing they were drawing near. Unfortunately, it was too late, in the blink of an eye, everything around the troops was flaming. The shattering of glass bottles sounded through the trees. The commander’s horse bucked with the sudden attack, and he was thrown to the muddied ground. His voice rang out over the shouts of his men, commanding them to get back into position.

 

Following the Barbanov’s every order, the soldiers pushed forth, but they were beyond outnumbered. For each Courlander cut down, another two sprang up. The commander led the push nonetheless. As they started to lose ground, the commander realized his men were losing faith. He called out loudly, but the clash of blades and the sounds of combat drowned him out. Through the trees ahead, however, he could see something running.

 

As it drew closer, he realized what it was. A massive northern stag, larger than a fully mature horse, burst through the trees. He continued to fight as the beast ran directly to him, leaving trampled Courlanders in its wake. In a moments gap in the onslaught, the stag lowered itself to the ground, and without hesitation, the commander hoisted himself onto its back. 

 

The Barbanov’s voice boomed louder now as he called out to the soldiers of the Coalition. Far more Courland uniforms now lay still. The commander and the mighty stag cut down all in their path, and the soldiers followed suit. 

 

All at once, an arrow whistled through the air above the battle, and pierced through the commander’s chest as his steed was midstride. He toppled from the stag, the life seeping from his body before it hit the earth. The men nearest him bellowed in rage, but followed as the stag pressed onward. Their commander was gone, yet they pushed forward until the entire enemy force lay still in the mud, and the victor’s banners were waved high.

 

The stag retreated back into the forest from which it had come, and a cheer of northern glory echoed from the men on the battlefield. Despite their losses, they had won.

 


Signed,

The Most Honorable, Marya Annaliese Baruch-Kortrevich,

Margravine-Consort of Korstadt











 

Edited by MikoMonster

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[!] Arriving by squirrel, a letter would be delivered to the Margravine-Consort, sealed in golden wax. The seal itself would bare the symbol of a lion; The Elyra Family crest.

 

 

 

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Reading this work has been an absolute delight, truly. As a newer resident of the illustrious Kingdom of Hanseti-Ruska, it has been difficult at times acclimating to the culture. It is things like this that truly aid in understanding and acclimating to the culture of the Kingdom, and learning of Haenseti spirit and values. 

 

To commemorate this piece, I will be crafting a brew in the likeness of the Stag and what it stood for, and you may expect to find it within the Crow’s Hearth Tavern within a Saint’s week!

 

Ahernan, ah’llir, for spreading this tale to the masses as a whole. Truly, I appreciate it more than you could ever know. 

 

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Nataliya closed the book gently, a small smile grew on the princess’s face, panning down to her now asleep babe. What a wonderful story right Siggy?” 

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