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An In-Depth History of The Greyspine Rebellion


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An In-Depth History of The Greyspine Rebellion

Written by: Stefan Aleksandr Vyronov






I - The Rise of the Rebellion

II - The Greyspine Rebellion

III - Reformation of Hanseti-Ruska



Chapter I: The Rise of the Rebellion


Eight years had passed since the Great Northern War, where the Kingdom of Haense was defeated by its rival, the Kingdom of Courland. The lands that were once led by the royal family of Barbanov were left to ruin with its people gone besides those that betrayed them. The old Haeseni land would (in the meantime) be watched over by the falsely claimed Kovachev, Duke Francis of Akovia, and Count Joren ‘the Young’ of Metterden. Four years before the Second Battle of Rothswood the Count had repealed the Ruthern Restoration Act that had disowned his cousin, Eric Ruthern, and his son Vladrick var Ruthern. Upon the repeal, he had also appointed Vladrick as his regent and later named Harren as commander of his levy. 


In 1611, a dispute broke out between Duke Francis and Count Joren as the count had invaded and annexed the County of Istria, a county which was a de jure part of Akovia, and where the House of Kovachev once held. Not only such, but Joren had killed the Count of Istria during the invasion. He claimed it was on behalf of the orders of King Joseph of Courland. Due to this occurrence, Duke Francis had rallied his army to siege the invaded County of Istria from the Ruthern Garrison; however, he ended his plans as King Joseph summoned the two to meet with him in Courland’s capital, Aleksandria, in order to resolve the mayhem.



A depiction of the Invasion of Istria, circa 1611



Upon the arrival of Duke Francis and Count Joren (along with his regent, Vladrick Ruthern), the two argued and spoke of their quarrels. The King ultimately sided with the duke; demanding for the apprehension of the count, his regent, and his men. However, Vladrick commanded the bannermen to defend the count– furthermore, leading to a clash of swords within the palace of Aleksandria. The exchange lasted for only a few minutes before the Ruthern men present were defeated. Such resulted in the capture of Vladrick Ruthern and the death of the young Count (who was struck by a stray bolt within the clash). As the news of the death of Count Joren had reached Metterden, his younger brother, Uthred was named Count of Metterden with Harren as his regent. He remained, in spite of the changes, still as the primary military commandant. Thus began the start of the Greyspine Rebellion.


Chapter II: The Greyspine Rebellion


After the death of Count Joren and the accession of Uthred, Harren took full control over the House of Ruthern. He firstly made an official pact with the House of Baruch to assist them in their rebellion against Courland, along with the preparations of Metterden’s defenses. By assisting them, he had gotten the Baruchs to garrison the abandoned castle of Liefgaard (later named Jorenstadt) in exchange to assist them in taking back their family’s castle of Saint’s Rest. Saint’s Rest, prior to the arrangement, had been taken from the House of Baruch by the Kingdom of Courland. 


Harren had received a scouting report that Vladrick Ruthern was seen being escorted by a small party of Courlandic soldiers to the home of Duke Francis, who had sought to use Vladrick as a bargaining tool. The news of this had resulted in Harren gathering a small band of bannermen and ambushing the escort, thus freeing Vladrick.


As the party returned, Vladrick was renamed Regent of Metterden and led the assault with Count Otto Baruch in retaking Saint’s Rest. Due to these events, Courland had lost a large portion of the old Haeseni lands, and the angered King Joseph began to march his armies to the old lands of Haense. Upon the return of Vladrick, he brought the news of what he had heard whilst captured; even hearing word of King Marius I’s second-born son, Stefan, was still alive. Harren was sent to bring Stefan to the Ruthern’s cause, thus boosting the arms of the coalition. Not only this but too was Harren able to hire mercenary groups of Dunamis and the Knights of the Black Sepulchre.


Before the arrival of Stefan and Harren along with their army, they were met with the armies of Courland and the Dwarven Frostbeard Clan of Jornheim that had prepared for the reinforcement armies for the Rebellion being led by Duke Francis, himself. After both sides collided, the rebellion left the clash victorious in the First Battle of Rothswood as the Kingdom of Lorraine, a now-former ally of Courland, had betrayed King Joseph. The betrayal was uncalled for and entirely unexpected, considering its marriage alliance. They sided with the Ruthern cause as their cavalry had struck the Courlandic forces at the rear causing a mass retreat. 


A depiction of the Second Battle of Rothswood, circa 1612


As the reinforcements arrived at Metterden a meeting was held by Vladrick that consisted of Stefan Barbabnov, Harren, King Hughes, and the old Lord Lukas Vanir (former Palatine to King Marius I) to make plans for the upcoming and final battle. On the day of the 7th of the Grand Harvest of the year 1612, Harren led the Coalition army north aiming to reclaim the old Haeseni capital of St. Karlsburg for the reformation of Hanseti-Ruska. Duke Francis and King Joseph marched south to meet the coalition knowing their numbers were greater and to sought to put an end to the Greyspine Rebellion, thus the two met in the middle of the ruined old lands of Haense yet again at Rothswood.


The Coalition army was composed of Haeseni militia, Lotharingian cavalry, and mercenary soldiers. The Courlandic army was composed of man-at-arms, skirmishers, dwarves, and a few cavalry forces. Despite the Coalition forces being outnumbered, Harren was able to quickly deploy his forces splitting his armies in two as the Lotharingian calvary had separated going towards the flank of the Courlandic forces while the Courlandic forces were slower compared to Harren on deploying their forces. It was said upon Chronicles that Duke Francis along with his lieutenants were too confident that he had given a full meal and a warm wash to their men before battle.


Though in order for Harren’s plan to work he had to bait the overconfident Courlandic army in a charge, which had become quite successful due to the Lotharingian calvary that had baited out a few Courland’s companies to charge out into open fire from the Coalition forces. It was also said by an unbeknownst that the Duke had gotten injured early by the arrow fire which led him to retreat from the battle only leaving the King and the minor lieutenants in command. Upon seeing many of Courland’s companies dead due to arrow fire and later killed by the Lotharingian cavalry it was then that Harren ordered for the charge resulting in both armies clashing. As the Courlandic armies began to waver King Joseph fled from the battle while other companies within his army retreated into the slightly fortified Tosali manor where they later surrendered seconds after the Coalition army breached the manor. Thus, the battle was won and the Great Northern War was avenged and King Joseph conceded the former territories and titles back to its people.




Chapter III: Reformation of Hanseti-Ruska


The only thing that remained was a king to lead that would rule for many years to come, after the reformation of Hanseti-Ruska. Despite the Ruthern family seeking out Stefan Barbanov, they sought to claim the Northern crown for their own taking. Such disputes led the National Duma of 1611 and was formed to select a King to lead Haense to a better future. That was when two of the most prominent families of the former Kingdom of Haense with that being the families of Kovachev and Vanir, had created a coalition along with other higher nobility against the idea for a Ruthern King. The split within the Yellow Party occurred as a candidate led his rise with the support of the lesser nobles for the Baron of Rytsburg, Lord Adolphus of House Vyronov. 


The National duma was split into three parties that of the Yellow party, which composed of elder and ancient nobility, the populist White Party in support of Lord Vyronov was made up of many of the minor lords and gentry families, while the Greyspine party was composed of a cohort filled with veteran soldiery in support for a Ruthern King. Despite the split, Stefan Barbanov was able to win and solidify his nomination by winning the vote despite the staunch support for Lord Vyronov. Thus, Stefan was crowned and anointed as King Stephen I of Haense. He went on to appoint many notable people (such as Prince Henrik Bihar) to governmental standing while beginning the construction of the new capital named, Alban.



Credits to Eryane for giving me the idea to write this and her assistance in correcting any punctuation or spelling mistake I may have done. 



The video of the Second Battle of Rothswood captured by Stargush





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