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  1. Paul Temesch et Moere shows it to all of his best friends. "Karaoke night this weekend?" he smirks. Little did they know, he was a terrible singer.
  2. Paul Temesch stamps it with the seal of Temesch, then the newly-forged seal of the Commonwealth. To the great number of friends of the Republic in Temesch Hall, he smiles the sun's smile.
  3. Paul Salvian smiled the sun's smile as he signed the document. "Our west is now secured; may this be a fruitful treatise to last the ages."
  4. SUMMONS OF ALL THE PETRINE PEOPLES TO CONVENTION Issued from the Office of the Regent of the Commonwealth, 9 Harren's Folly 1884 IC To all those that have declared for Our Commonwealth, It has been my deepest honor to have fought alongside you as brothers and sisters in our war of honor waged against the Kingdom of Oren. The Burning of Garmont has been avenged; the Petrine peoples noble and peon alike saved from the tyrannical actions of the last king's regency. To my most loyal soldiers I give my eternal gratitude. Now it is time for us to rebuild - to turn our siege engines to wheat-carriages, to build new halls of governance and peacekeeping where once the Mardonkeep once stood. A constitution has been drafted to govern our peoples; yet we have held no ceremony to commemorate the end of the Harvest Revolution, nor to award those that so loyally bore our banners in the defense of the Petra River Valley. At the end of the wintering season, this shall be remediated; I call upon all those citizens of our Valley that would put their names equal to mine as founders of our Commonwealth, our Republic, to join us in celebration in Temesch Hall. To those royalist and Arentanian elements that yet seek to remain within Petra; you have three months as of the writing of this letter to seek out our Regency and make public amends for your misdeeds, declaring then support of Our Constitution. Neutrality in that war of annihilation was no better than the support of tyranny; those that do not do so post-haste shall be removed equally quickly. Those that sufficiently admit their faults and declare their support shall be allowed to keep their manors and territories, though all those titles not yet recognized as of the promulgation of this missive shall not be recognized by our Government as per the terms of Orenia Diruta Est. ANVE PETRA, Paul Salvian Regent of the Commonwealth
  5. Paul Salvian Temesch et Moere, Regent of the Commonwealth of the Petra, delves into his book collections. Two are sent forthwith; on the ancient realm of Seventis. Dusty, Arcasian tomes saved from the fall of the Empire. Others - they seem newer, perhaps secondary editions on past histories. Why did he have these...? Who originally wrote them? Who knows. SEVENT ANTIQVE; ARMS OF SARVN The houses of the Seventian Kingdom of Asulon were caught between the ancient traditions of Aegis and prior and the quickly-evolving political landscape that would culminate in their collapse and the rise of the First Empire. Those of Seventic heritage, and whom spoke the classical Seventian language, nearly always utilized Or, or Aurum, in their heraldry – a callback to their Aegisian capital. This is best exemplified by the coat of arms of Seventis itself, Chequy Sable and Or. The only exception to this rule was the personal arms and armor of Princess Maria of the House of Vallark, who used an inverted form of the greater Seventian coat of arms, and with her own House’s colors of white and blue. Notably the House of Drakaene, whose blazon is Gules a Falcon Or wielding in its beak a Cross Argent, did not use individualized coats of arms for its titles held in commandery; instead, these are beheld in nearly all surviving historical documents by imagery of the military coat of the House, Gules a Falcon Or. Of minor note, the County of Ascella retained the coat of arms of the County of Azar from which its rank was usurped, and the two that would come to rule over it in its post-capital era, Marcus of the House of Powell and Jullius of the House of Andromeda, would not change its armorial, but would instead take it as their own coats of arms for the duration of their rule. The other dominant tinctures of the nation were Gules and Argent. Modern experts would take this as derived from the Auvergnat ducal coat of arms of the time – Argent, a chevron Gules inverted in the chief a Cat Sable. Those houses subordinated to the House of Gracchi, whom had risen in stature just as their predecessor, the House of Guivret, had fallen, and both of whom would merge in eventuality to become the House of Valois of Anthosian fame, nearly all donned this same tincture scheme in both their personal heraldries and those of the titles which they ruled. The exception to this rule, of course, comes from the barony of Pont Vert – for in those times, the rule of Human nobility was perhaps less solidified in Asulon, just as many social structures were not left intact from the ancient Kingdom of Oren, and so an Elvish ruler was allowed the rulership of the title. Whilst the Sintels were never raised to Seventian nobility, and instead held the title de facto in perpetuity, the coat of arms of the barony were altered from its original form to reflect their rulership. The furs and verdant green of the Elvish forest were chosen to signify the barony’s holder, and this coat of arms would not change until Seventis’ ultimate collapse. The nation of Seventis was in many ways politically advanced in its formation, allowing only Human nobility and disallowing Human marriages to nonhumans (though documents such as the Memoirs of a Magnate are nearly uniform in their statement that, “...the First Lady Gracchi did by the day [daily] spend nigh Qente [Five] hours with her Sintel ally,” and may point to rather taboo events by today’s standards simply being ignored), as well as continuing hereditary feudalism (whereas the Salvian nation of the time had unmarried co-rulers in Dawn Perea and Enor Sheffield, Dawn originally made famous for her bakery, then her seduction of two generations of Orenian monarchs and eventual death by the Twilight Army, and the Hanseti ruled by a Hochmeister), titular precedence (as is noted in the Sarun roll, where only one title, the Duchy of Old Sevent, holds higher priority among duchies than its subordinates do among counties and baronies, likely due to its prior status as the crownlands), and holdings de jure marked as different from holdings de facto, wherein one might capture the land of another vassal, but would not then be noble themselves (as was the case in the Auvergnat-Green Point Dispute). While it was advanced politically, though, it struggled to outgrow its roots as a tribal domain; it lost battles even against bandits and mercenaries with unusual frequency, was wracked with internal strife, and found its Seventic ruling class simply not numerous enough to produce leadership on the level or at the scale of the Renatians and Hansetians, nor to be able to properly exert control on its peasant class. Such is why the Seventians were both able to wed a princess of theirs to Exalted Godfrey in Rose Amedius Vallark (and from whose womb would be brought such forebears as Pertinax the Dragonknight), but would be unable to protect themselves from simple Subudai horse-raiders; it is also why, whilst Seventis has graced the list of titles of every true claimant to the Holy Orenian throne, it will in all likelihood be unable to succeed at a national level even should one attempt to revive it. SEVENT ANTIQVE; FROM ITS BIRTH TIL ITS COLLAPSE As an entity, the Seventic ruling class of the Asulonian Kingdom can be traced from among the tribes of Northern Aegis; of those city-states within the wastes, two villages in close proximity would eventually go on to be known as “Seventian”. The first, known as Rykalos and whose people were known as the Rykalod, were said to be descendants of Shona, nation of intermixed Highlanders and Farfolk, and the latter, known as Aurum and whose people were known as the Norjuni, were of common Aegisian Highlander stock. From among the Norjuni was born one Dezios of Vallark [now known to be a somewhat primitive combination of ‘Valley’ and ‘Arch’]. Dezios claimed leadership of the tribe in Aurum and called for a show of strength within those wastes. In the early 1310’s, the Norjuni Invasion of Rykalos began, and by 1320 the Rykalod people are known to have submitted, their chieftain Symod-imi Drakaene laying down his spear. The integration of the Rykalods into the Norjuni, however, would be cut short by the Battle at Aurum, a conflict that disputed sources state occurred between Undead forces and Dezios Vallark’s newly combined tribes, causing the death of the ruler and the majority of the Rykalod footmen. Their defeat at Aurum forced them to flee south, where in time they would find themselves minor vassals of the Sheffield king of Salvus. Their eventual migration from the Salvian capital of Solace in the mid-1300’s to the outskirts of the Temple Sanctuaries, and thereafter the founding of the towns of Azar [later called Ascella] and Seventis, would cause a rise to power of magnitudes previously unseen; later, this rapid buildup would be called proto-Sutican by historians of the Axiosian era, though it is this historian's opinion that it is far more likely the earlier Suticans based their ideas off of the Anthosian Salvians [far different, mind you, from the Asulonians of Dawn and the Sheffields, whom would be overthrown in the Twilight March], and the Anthosian Salvians in turn from the Seventians. Whilst such conflicts as Mandarin’s March and the Usurpation of Ascella caused the burgeoning city-state to falter multiple times, and eventually to move their capital from Azar to the newly minted city of Seventis, the Seventic also began to gather international renown. Their alliance with the newly-resurgent Kingdom of Renatus for the legendary Battle of Das Boot would mark the beginning of a golden age for the small kingdom. It is said that silver lined the streets of Old Seventis, its people wove with gold, and that, when called upon by Exalted Godfrey for monetary assistance, a caravan of gems arrived in Arethor not a fortnight later. This prosperity lasted for a decade and a half, around when the beginning of the famed Twilight Army began to sprout among the Salvian peasantry. The masses thinking their long-lived and beauteous Queen Dawn Perea a witch, they called the nations of Asulon to arms. Seventis, once supporters of the Sheffield dynasty, joined the war on the side of the crusaders and their close Renatian allies; long columns famously marched a hundred leagues from the Temple Sanctuaries towards the blood magick-plagued plains of Salvus. It was at this time that the Conversion of Seventis occurred, wherein the Vallark dynasts forcefully converted the pagan Seventic ruling class to that of the Renatians; those that rejected, like Damien the Heathen, were crucified, a punishment later made far more infamous by the White Rose inquisitions. Seventis, however, would not enjoy this era forever. The city of Seventis itself, called Grata in Rykalod, bustled with activity – too much, some began to think, as it was also famed for being a slum-town, with a population triple that of Arethor in a third the space. Many among the Seventic nobility called for a new migration, for the beginning of a Seventian Empire in the eastern reaches of Asulon. Renati, young and ambitious, was inclined to agree, and so even as the beginnings of the Holy Orenian Empire could be seen on the horizon, Seventis abandoned its greatest strengths to found the city of Sarun. It was said that Sarun’s walls reached the clouds and went thrice the length of Hanseti's; historical records note that while this may have been the case, Sarun only ever completed three such walls, as the planned sea-wall along its eastern shores was interrupted by the death of the city's chief architect. The wide savannah they had moved to lacked the necessary mines to construct a new capital in the same quick manner as had been done in Asulon, and soon major issues began to trouble the nation. The stone used to build Sarun's mighty walls and the transport needed to move the nation had run dry the nation's coffers, leaving only a tent-city and five manors within plains no different from without; and the invitation of Druids to revitalize its territories caused a slow souring of relations with the Renatian kingdom. It was at this time, too, that the burgeoning nobility of the nation reached their greatest internal strength; where once they may have served solely as banners, they were now given vast swathes of land to rule as near-dictators – within such regions as Somnia, Green Point, and Pine Harbor, bannermen of such houses as the Drakaene and the power that the family wielded far outmatched that of the House of Vallark itself. Even in the city and capital province of Sarun, it was said that Symodimi Drakaene controlled the land, Cultor Drakaene the sea, and Renati only the palace. Three primary factors caused the depopulation, and eventual collapse, of the Seventic State. The first was the Subudai War – constant Farfolk raids upon the colonizing nation collapsed the import-export businesses it had so relied upon to thrive in the Sanctuary lands and weakened its military forces. The knights Seventis fielded, once renowned as great allies of the Renatians, slowly deteriorated to death and old age, and soon only its vassal levies remained, the national army disbanding for lack of pay and board. The second was the War at Midnight, a time of political turmoil between the Seventics, traditional leadership and nobility of the nation like the Houses of Drakaene and Centaurum, and the Tyrian, new-blood houses raised to balance against them aided by dark forces, namely Ursolon Ironheart, Relgard Sintel, and the Shade Sister. When this culminated in open civil war and great growth in the power of such Seventic nobles as Rhaegal the Cat, Kilgrim Mastersmith, Violet Frost, and Bitazity Shadeslayer, Renati would become a paranoid mess, furious at both the new houses and old and causing a general political stagnation within the kingdom. The half-finished Palace of Sarun was closed to the nobility for years at a time, and relations between the King and his once-loyal nobility collapsed. The final, and by far the most famous, was the Doom of Seventis, known more widely as the Asulonian Plague. Thought to have originated from Subudai merchants, and, perhaps more often, raiders, the Seventic population was decimated by the initial outbreak of the Plague, reduced to but a tenth of its former size. Among the earliest casualties was King Renati, and the majority of the original Seventic people would meet their end along with him. In its place, a severely weakened rump state rested theoretically in Aerios Vallark, who was being tutored in the city that had once been capital of Salvus. His regency council, led by Bitazity Shadeslayer [previously made famous in the War at Midnight], was known to value their own vassal territories more than the health and wealth of the nation - thus sealing the trader-nation to its fate. As Seventis fell, so too did its ability to defend itself – the power of both the royalist and vassal banners greatly diminished, Exalted Godfrey’s vassals became able to make demands. A force of Flay horsemen delivered the letter that would seal the nation’s fate – bend the knee to Godfrey, or face war. Young Aerios accepted, and, never coronated, pledged his servitude to a land he had never seen. As Renatus absorbed its once-staunch ally and began the war of conquest that would eventually culminate in the creation of the Holy Orenian Empire, the last remnants of the Vallark dynasty began to wither away. His sister, Rose, became Exalted Godfrey’s second wife [though upon his death she infamously disappeared - some claim that Orion the Black, known at the time as Horen V, had her executed for a vassal daring to call her as beautiful still as his new Empress], and he was allowed to keep the remains of the destitute Sarunyr wastes as the Duchy of Norjun. His vassals scattered to the winds, becoming nobility elsewhere in the burgeoning Empire or bandit-lords in the wide forests of the continent; he would soon lose all but de jure control of Norjun to those few that remained, and even that would be revoked in time.
  6. "They're trying to steal my name," muttered Paul Salvian, Regent of the Commonwealth and Harvest Lord. "There can only be one."
  7. Paul Salvian, Count Temesch and Harvest Lord, unbuckles his scabbard and rests his blade within the armorial. Peace.
  8. Paul Salvian smiles the sun's smile.
  9. Paul Salvian rested in Temesch Hall, pondering how it had come to this, that brothers were made to fight brothers - and as the first leaves began to fall, he wondered where summer had gone.
  10. TO THE BARON CHERSKAVY Addressed to one Sebastian Andrewson, Baron of Cherskavy, The barren rock known once as Barrow's Crossing has been derelict bordering mine County for a decade; bandits left to overrun it, and from there to accost the already meagre population of the Mardonic territories, including and especially mine own. You ought to thank me for my generosity in clearing the brigands from the poorly territory your father so abandoned. Let us make a deal; reassure me and mine that you shall, for the next twenty-five [25] years; I. Defend said Rock and the Loch and Riverway it protects as your Noble duty demands. II. You and yours shall swear not to accost, make demands of, nor harry otherwise the populations of Temesch, Mardon, or Minitz unless first terribly aggrieved, and shall agree to bring any such grievances before the Count of Temesch for remediation prior to any such actions. III. Ensure no further Bandit Companies or otherwise unsanctioned Groups shall form within the boundaries of the Rock, nor utilize it as their fort. Should you be willing to agree to these simple and nominally unnecessary terms (especially considering this your own territory de jure, and under my protection only de facto 'til such conditions could be fulfilled), the Rock will be evacuated of my men within the fortnight and the lands returned to the rightful rule of the Baron Cherskavy, assumedly you, immediately thereafter. ANVE ORENNES, Paul Salvian Ie Conse de Temesch et Esheve Moere
  11. "Elsilan'cruan ito pario, elsilan'cruan ito eth," sighed an elf.
  12. TEMESCH TAKES THE CROSSING Paul Salvian and Adrian Marcellus pose victoriously before their newly-conquered fortress, 1881. The rampant galloping broke an otherwise quiet afternoon midway through Sigismund’s End of hooves, the gathering of a mighty army within the County of Temesch. “Brothers; fellow sons of the Sun,” called out the rust-haired man at their helm, wrapped in chain and hefty Savoyard gambeson. He looked to his father, draped in Rhen silks of orange and gold; he looked to his many, many soldiers, still wearing the armor of the Principality - the levymen of Savoyard Moere, who crossed the sea and mount to accompany him to far-off Orenia. “Yonder, ‘cross the water - do you see it? A battlement, long-abandoned by our kin, overrun by brigands. Barrow’s Crossing, it was called. Now, ‘tis but a Haenser-themed Rock.” Grumbling, stamping of feet. He raised an arm and pointed at it in the distance. “Old Vienne, Mardon, even Temesch - ghost towns, all because of these northern bandits, and nothing else what-so-ever. It cannot stand.” The beating of swords against shields. “We shall build a wall. A wall of defenses, on land and sea. With the retaking of this. . . this mockery of our authority, we shall begin anew.” And so they marched, seventy-thousand strong - no more needed to wrest that territory from mere bandits. The battle was swift as men besieged the mighty island fort; men died shot by arrows or bathed in hot tar poured from the walls and onto the lake's waters. In the end, casualties were low, and on that day, only the crimson blood of the gentile occupiers stained the lake with their droplets. It was as if Mardon’s waters reflected the plague, blue-yet-dotted with black and red. Despite old age, the Father joined the Son in battle and delivered unto the realm their first victory in the Great War on Terror! It was then upon the battlements beside his goodly heir that the elderly Prince Adrian Marcellus spoke to their roused followers! “Honorable Retainers! Would that I could be allowed to enjoy my retirement in peace! However, as mercenaries still plague the lands, we have fought so hard, for there is still a need for my magnificent and incredible wisdom. We have won! These lakeside barrows are again under the watchful stewardship of Temesch, and we shall take further steps to secure the region should such rueful ilk dare rear their hideous countenance! In these turbulent times, are we not the King's loyal men?” He asked, his voice hoarse and near breaking as he stood beside his son upon the battlements, a fist raised as the legions of soldiers cheered. “Love the King! Serve him well! Fear his Men-at-Arms! His great Temeschir warbands!” “OORAH!” His mighty, vast legions hollered, fists in the air, mimicking their glorious leader. Upon retaking that Rock - a battle which took nine treacherous hours - the merry band smiled the sun’s smile. Their conquest completed, that wise, powerful, and extremely powerful Count of Temesch et Moere returned to its beachhead, nailing a new sign into its old wooden entry frame. In memory of HIM Joseph II, and of its history as a Northern-held territory, Barrow’s Crossing has been re-christened Josef’s Rock. Temeschir Annexation of ‘Barrow’s Crossing’ 14 Sigismund's End, 1881 WITH RECOGNITION that the territories once known as Barrow’s Crossing have fallen into disrepair with the abscondment of its bannerlord and the territory’s abuse by bandits and brigands alike in his absence; The House Temesch et Moere does declare to the realm and those abroad that it has absorbed the territory of Barrow’s Crossing into the County of Temesch and shall hold the lands under its just protection until suitable freeholders are established by dictate of the Crown. Furthermore, this territory shall be known to the smallfolk as Josef’s Rock in memory of the great Joseph II. -=- ANVE ORENNES, Paul-Salvian, Ie Conse de Temesch et Esheve Moere
  13. House Temesch et Moere Ie Meyse de Conse Temesch et Esheve Moere The House of the Counts of Temesch and Savoyard Moere A Brief Summary The Comital House of Temesch and Savoyard Moere (coll. Temesch et Moere) was not so much founded as borne in cadency from the House of Novellen in that time of Imperial Hegemony. Recognized by Philip III upon the eve of his coronation, the House was first among such to be declared. Prior to this new accord, the descendants of His Imperial Highness, Robert Francis, were to receive naught save spite, as the hatred for their forebears was great. Were it not for Philip III and his dynasty, Temesch would have perished in the paranoia that was the reign of Philip II. However, as of now, recovery has been ten-fold. The family is now one historically ingrained within the fabric of the realm on both religious and political terms. In exile for so long, the House of Temesch, upon their return to Orenian society, planted roots within the lakeside shores of northerly Mardon and solidified ties via political marriage to the Principality of Savoie: the gracious hosts. They had held family and kin for the duration of their time apart from the Homeland. Modeled after the Leuven estate of old, the manor was established there. Nevertheless, Temesch also retained its ties to Savoie through the County of Moere, held by Paul-Salvian - a barren beachhead populated by no more than a handful of remote fishing villages and a mere five heads of Hyspian cattle. With the Principality's dissolution in 1872, however, the countryside survived while the state burned. Therein with the passing of the late patriarch Adrian Marcellus, the current familial incarnation is situated with all holdings beneath one roof: Temesch et Moere. As one titan has passed, he is survived by his children, who inherit his legacy as a coterie of expansive bureaucrats backed by an inheritance of good choices. Temesch, unlike most, retains a prestigious lineage and compact form without falling into the obscure fate that has befallen so many other cadet families with time. Whilst Temesch is cemented as predominantly of High Imperial stock; there remains a great pride for the entirety of its lineage. Within Temesch is the blood of Novellen, yet also Basrid and Savoie. Rhenyari and Savoyard. Thus, the family arms utilize an amalgamation of all three quartered within its heraldry - the personal arms of Prince Adrian center stage, a golden wolf with a scroll held in its maw. For official documentation and internal communiques, a melding pot language coined as Noufeille Esheve, which is intentionally unspoken among outsiders to avoid the Auvergnat-Revivalist tendencies seen so often among the disreputable rabble that make up the lesser houses, is used. Titles Current The County of Temesch, Kingdom of Oren Ie Conse de Temesch, Regne Oren The Free County of Savoyard Moere Ie Freconse de Esheve Moere Titles Past The County of Moere, Principality of Savoy Ie Conse de Moere, Pronse Savoia Living Members Paul Salvian, Count of Temesch and Savoyard Moere Raised in San Luciano as a ward of the Savoyard Court. Upon its destruction, returned to the Kingdom of Oren and given a traditional education within the Temesch Manor. His brother, Charles Joseph Raised at first among the Orenian court before being sent for a decade to a monastery in the hinterlands for a religious education. His sister, Helen Marlene (called Héléne Marleaïs in Low Auvergnat) Raised solely by her mother, known to have profound distaste for her family - likely increased since being cut off from the excessive funding allowed by her father, then being sent off to the convent to become a nun. His sister, Alexandra Marcela A sickly young woman rarely seen outside of Temesch. His mother, Athene Olivia (called Athénaïs Olivienne in Low Auvergnat) A native speaker of Low Auvergnat, the Countess-Dowager of Temesch lives relatively estranged from her family, instead preferring the company of other noblewomen. Common Traits Familial members of Temesch are tan-skinned and dark reddish-brown hair - a rather strange combination of traits in modern Oren, their complexion is thought to be a holdover from their minority Rhenyari heritage, and ruddy hair is a Novellen trait passed down from Anne I. Their eyes are the now-common grey of that same Imperial family, and the quirks that once seemed pervasive among their ilk terrorize the line, manifesting primarily in physical ailments. Traditions Upheld Civil Asylum | Citee Alaier | The custom of civil asylum is the idea that any man temporarily quartered under another’s roof is entitled to the unbridled protection of his host, and exempt from all that wishes to bring harm to him, including the host himself. This ensures that a person can not commit violence to another under the guise of welcome. The existence of this tradition makes it so that the Savoyard are very careful of who they allow to set foot inside their homes, and often will refuse the entrance of vagrants and foreigners. This is said to have originated upon the betrayal of Ser Baldwin ‘the Black’, who slew his uncle within his own gardens, and the tradition adopted upon the marriage of Adrian Marcellus and Athénaïs Olivienne. Altar of Saints | Semille des Sant | Within the Temesch et Moere manor, a small chapel or area of worship is dedicated always to High Pontiff St. Lucien of Ulmsbottom, patron of crusaders, change, and family; upon entrance, it is customary to form a lorraine cross before the altar and set alight a candle in a moment of quiet reverence. While the manor is occupied, a candle is kept constantly lit beside the altar, signifying the everlasting flame of the vehement faithful. Perruque | Perruquet | Conflict against the House is not resolved by duels or brawls; instead, the insulter is to be captured by any means required and brought to its seat for interrogation before its patriarch. If no recourse can be made, they are to be wigged (the act of perruque), the false hair attached normally by hot tar, and released into the nearest governmental building. The first case of perruque was said to have been undertaken by a Josephite cabal in secret against a Galbraith that would not adhere to the party line. Feast of the Sunsingers | Fest des Carole Sol | Also traditional to Savoyard doctrine and upheld by the House Temesch et Moere is the Sunsingers’ Feast - though it is no feast, instead a hunt undertaken by those coming of age. This is related to the tale of the ancient Sunsingers, whom lived among permanent frost. When finally the Dark Sun fell, the frost began to thaw, and merry beasts left their hidden grottos - their ancient, pagan god’s gift to his persevering faithful, and the able-bodied were able to feed their families once more. Over time, this fable became conflated with the Canonist truth of Owyn’s return, and the Feast retained a minor place among more important holidays. The Seven Mercies | Set des Ovres | To feed the Hungry, give drink to the Thirsty, clothe the Naked, harbour the Harbourless, visit the Sick, visit the Imprisoned, and bury the Dead - The Seven Mercies are not strictly adhered to, but instead virtuous deeds that one aspires to complete for those that in need. An extension of Civil Asylum grown from Imperial charity. Honored Ancestors Beginning with the tale of Robert Francis, Prince of the Holy Orenian Empire. -=- HIH Robert Francis, Count of Temesch 1793-1858 Wayward second son of HIM Philip II, known as a pilgrim early in life and a vagrant later. Before his mother's unfortunate bout of madness, Robert Francis grew up a typical Imperial Prince. Well-spirited, a bit haughty, but by no means a standout, there were no signs that the young prince would slip into the reclusiveness that gripped much of his formative years. However, when his mother's sickness sapped her strength in mind and body, the young Robert, thoroughly attached to her, fell into a depressed stupor and retreated into his quarters, where he remained for some time. Little was heard from him, except for the occasional weeping and bouts of fury, and it is said that during this time, a demon took possession of his mind, though, by the accounts of Robert (and a fair few of those that later claimed to have been his travel companions), it was actually the voice of God speaking to him. Finally, at the age of fifteen, at the insistence of his sisters, Anne Caroline and the famously pretty Helen Antonia, he mustered the ability to attend the coming of age ceremony of his cousin, Helena Augusta. Despite being a malnourished shut-in for around a decade, the frail, inexperienced Robert Francis partook in a friendly duel against Helena. Although he lost, he held his own against the prominent swordswoman- it was said that God guided his hand in the duel. While Robert Francis would never make his mark as a prominent warrior, from that moment on, he would be known as a dependable warrior and seek a life closely related to that of a soldier. Around sixteen, Robert would be betrothed to Margaux Helvets, the daughter of the Duke of Cathalon. It would cause controversy within the courts, as Margaux had already been betrothed to Peter d'Arkent, heir to the Duchy of Sunholdt. To further escalate this, a few Sedanite knights claimed to overhear the young prince insult and speak ill of Margaux in private. They quickly spread their account, making it a hot topic of gossip around the Imperial Court. Immediately after, they challenged the young Prince to a duel. It was met with silence as per the instructions of the Emperor. Robert Francis and Margaux Helvets soon reconciled, but mere weeks later, he fell into a great fit of madness. Due to his piety or fear of all things holy, his father, the Duke of Crestfall, sent Robert away. He demanded that his son not return until his mind had been cured but was merciful enough to give Robert a few holy relics to aid him. Robert dutifully left the city, where he soon came upon a small Knights company in the Church's service. These knights were venturing to the accursed city of Talon’s Grotto, a port town known to be home to several monsters and sorcerers, to scout it to determine the viability of a crusade. When they reached Talon’s Grotto, Robert and the crusaders discovered that despite their far inferior numbers, Talon’s Grotto was a town devoid of military or central leadership. Seeing no need to report back to the High Pontiff to initiate a large-scale crusade, Robert and the 90 crusader knights stormed Talon’s Grotto and sacked it, killing many of the demonic inhabitants and burning it to the ground. Imperial historians noted that this was the greatest among a fair few causes that led to the destruction of Talonsport as an entity and the formation of the Dark Elven Vortissine state in its place. This brave storming of heathen lands was well-noted by Dame Helena Augusta - and, with issues raised in the Cathalon betrothal eventually ending in it being broken off, Robert courted, successfully, the Holy Dame. His life thereafter, however, grew quiet - until, in 1858, he is recorded to have suddenly passed away in a feverish madness. -=- Holy Dame Helena Augusta 1791-1869 Devout daughter of the Basrid Count of Susa, Iskander Alexios, known to be the strongest Orenian-born woman of the time. Helena Augusta, as a child, if she was not practicing her sparring with a wooden training sword her soldierly father had so kindly given her, always found herself perched beside her balcony, staring west as the first rays of morning began to puncture the sky. Her brothers would say their sister would be daydreaming of mere follies, though her parents knew better. From a very young age, the only daughter of The Princess Imperial of the Holy Orenian Empire and Count of Susa had a vision - a dream - so profound and enduring that her mother, Elizabeth, once likened this passion to a sun that would never set. Although she was born as a member of the Imperial Family, due to her being styled as an Earl’s daughter as the product of a morganatic union, Lady Helena was afforded enough freedoms and parental support to pursue her unconventional interests. By the age of fourteen, the eager Basrid scion became a squire beneath Holy Sir Armande de Rennes, the Apostolic General and most high ranking Equester of the Canonist Church, who later in life transitioned from being a mentor to a dear friend. At age nineteen, Helena debuted, to her chagrin, before all of Orenian society and made a conscious decision to wear traditional Rhenyari attire that included trousers. This roused the criticisms of Imperial High society, though she did not seem to mind; marriage was the furthest probable thing from her mind. Two years later, The Squire-Armiger became The Holy-Dame Equester Helena of Rosemoor and Susa in service of the Papal state, and by extension, GOD. She served without fault for several years and duly took upon several squires, among them the late Viscount of Provins, Philip Pruvia. At twenty nine, Helena Augusta married her longtime companion, Prince Robert, later the Count of Temesch; she endearingly knew him as “Rob”. She would bear four children for him. At the age of fifty, The Holy Dame was promoted to Knight-Commander of Exalted Owyn’s Knightly Order and fruitfully executed the mission she valued most: delivering the remains of her beloved friend and mentor, Armande de Rennes. She maintained such a position until she matured in age, eventually retiring to the crisp-aired coast of San Luciano in her son, Prince Adrian’s, summer residence to quietly mourn the loss of her husband. She travelled alongside her son, Father Ioannes, for a nondescript but lengthy amount of time; the details of her travels are yet to be disclosed by either she or her son. Twenty years later, at the age of seventy one, Helena, the Dowager Countess of Temesch, returned to the Courts of Oren where she served as Concierge beneath the Holy Orenian Empress, Anastasia I, for nearly ten years. When the Emperor and Empress perished and the Brothers’ War began, Helena quietly vied for a resolution but ultimately lent her passive support to Frederick I for his uncompromising promise and piety. At the age of seventy-eight, Helena Augusta of Rosemoor and Susa passed in her son’s estate within the region of Upper Petra and was found upon her balcony, sat upon a chair, while the sun’s rays began to set upon the Heartland’s urban horizon. Although she seemed to be in excellent health for her advanced age, doctors from the Royal Court of Frederick I determined that the Imperial Princess had been quietly suffering from a malignant cancer in her liver but also noted that her passage from the mortal plane to the heavens was nothing short of peaceful. -=- Adrian Marcellus, Count of Temesch 1824-1880 Vice Chancellor of the Kingdom of Oren and promulgator of the eponymous Edict of Temesch, which set the theme of democratic movements for a generation. Closeted within the Basrid Estate at Rosemoor with his siblings, Adrian Marcellus grew as a silent and sickly child plagued by hemophilia for a large portion of his life. Wounds did not clot, he bruised easily, nor could he exert himself too much save a few moments of strain. For this reason, he was kept at home. Unallowed to travel by his protective mother like a bird in a cage. However, despite the ailments of his body, the young Lord’s mind was untouched, a blessing in disguise, and so too was he not wholly alone either. Upon the Estate, his closest companions in those days were his cousin Jasper and his two siblings, Alice and Ioannes. Particularly inseparable was he from his brother Ioannes, his twin. When he was finally healthy enough to vaunt away from the Estate and live at Augustine, this sheltered childhood proved inadequate. For their family had fallen out of favor at Court, particularly with his grandfather Philip II who ignored all out of shame and loathing for his son, Adrian’s father. Thus, he received no privilege, no respect, yet evermore important, no kindness, and so he grew to despise the Court, his grandfather, and the entirety of the farce that was palace life. Connection within the Court was few and far between, his aunts Anne Caroline, and Helen Antonia, and his cousins Anastasia and Philip, before their ascent. As his adolescence ended so too did his patience with the Palace, as his grandfather refused to allow his father’s inheritance to be naturally interred by his children. Should Robert expire Adrian and his siblings were to be left with nothing. It was not an uncommon occurrence. Jasper, too, once heir to Susa, had been erased from the succession unacknowledged. Thus, there was only one route to follow. There was no place in the Empire for them, no promise for ambitious young men, so when Jasper left, Adrian also went, with his brother en-tow, to the southern continent and Savoy. Hosted within the Court of Savoy, the atmosphere was completely different, and he became fast friends with all, including his most gracious hosts. Their self-imposed exile bore fruit and freedoms unavailable previously. It was a time of much revelry, excitement, and carefree adventure. Nonetheless, it was also at this time that the family became disparate. Ioannes left for Du Loc to take the crimson cloth. His sister Alice was married and forwent their household for that of her husband. In many ways, though wild and untamed in Savoy was also a stagnancy, there would be no growth from these conditions. So when his grandfather perished, and the climate of his Homeland changed, Prince Adrian’s ambition was renewed. When the Prince of Savoy mustered his might to aid Philip, Adrian joined resolutely, returning unto the Empire with vigor to aid his cousin in seizing the throne. This savvy success marked the series of endowed choices that allowed familial prestige to be restored. With grandfather no longer in the picture, his regime broken, and his supporters fled or sworn in fealty, respect was easily attainable, and no limitation was put upon the right of birth that had been stolen. Throughout this time, immediate results were commonplace during the reign of Philip III. Adrian served in Civil Affairs, saw his titles restored and properly inherited, as a Grandee in the Diet, and eventually as Director of Intelligence to the Imperial Crown. His calm practicality served him well, as, despite the dozens of opportunists who pervasively infested the new regime, Prince Adrian had competency unfound anywhere else above each. With no prejudice to reinforce the wall he faced, all would be torn down, and everything lost was restored just as quickly as it had been taken away. The task therein would be to ensure that it could never happen to him or his ever again. Thus, as newfound politics shifted, the Prince finally settled upon marriage to Athénaïs de Savoie, the daughter of Oliver Renault, his gracious host. So too did he situate the familial home within the Mardonic territory of the Prince Frederick Charles, the most promising of his cousin’s children. As though despite the successes of the day conflict was inevitable in time. There was almost always more to accomplish. When the winds changed, Temesch rode it with full sails, declaring in all but words for the young Prince Frederick. Even-tempered and calculated, Adrian had learned during his tenure in Savoy the words of his patron well: not words, but deeds. Civil War came, but it was swiftly won by Frederick’s military acumen and the political machinations of both he and Albert de Falstaff. Though politics, as so many find, is a game for the young, of which Adrian was no longer. Thus, in the capacities of Privy Seal and Vice-Chancellor after the War, he did much, though he slowed gradually over time. As he enforced the will of his younger partners he established the grounds for the General-Assembly, the very form of which the Government would take. Wrote speeches, established treaties. He worked even as he marched unto the grave. His siblings passed on with little notice from him, his children provided for by household servants, though he loved them. He did not truly raise them. As he was left with a tarnished legacy, all his labors were to be accomplished therein so that he and his ilk might feel pride in their family newly nourished by power. He was a sheltered youth who exploded unto life, experienced all he could, seized all he could. Just as quickly, he perished, suddenly within his palatial office, slumped over his desk, head in his work. Artifacts in Possession Northern Flamberge of Philip III The blade HIM Philip III wore at his hip during the retaking of Southbridge, it is a crude, torturous thing of jagged, sharp ridges. Proudly received by Adrian Marcellus after the execution of three Sedanite prisoners of war. Ironically nicknamed ‘For the North’. Blessed Blade of the Martyred Saints A sword made of human bone, Robert Francis was purportedly guided to it, and the ancient Arany-Bosca treasure trove of Olde Temeschburg, which had mysteriously washed ashore in the realm of Arcas, by St. Lucien of Ulmsbottom in a holy vision. Artifacts Lost Holy Banneret of Robert Francis Said to have been received by holy gift in frigid Vaelya, the Banneret was given to Robert Francis by his father, HIM Philip II, just before the former departed for a years-long pilgrimage.
  14. Paul Salvian Temesch et Moere is struck by sudden inspiration. Upon returning with the new scandal-sheet to Temesch, he makes a very moving painting and sends it to a few of his closest friends.
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