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Mickaelhz

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  1. Egil Ormsson brightly smiles on distant shores as tales of viking raids reach his ears. "And then the serpent consumed them all." He wrote at the bottom of his own copy.
  2. Zhot'Rax, or the golden statue that was left of him, prepares to be put at the top of a massive Krugsmas tree. An orc cast in gold is the best ornament anyone could ask for.
  3. Rex of old times Zhot’Rax, who died by being covered in pure gold, proudly smiled upon the Targoth from beneath his extremely fashionable protective layer.
  4. Freight Cost @Zaerie Dear friends of Petra, I have something that belongs to you, you may come collect this loyal subject at your earliest convenience. After your recent show of might I have a feeling I might be waiting for a long time, though. Come soon if you value this poor man’s life! P.S. we found out he has a allergy of peanuts. All we have here in the fort are peanuts, please bring some extra food for this poor man if you can. Else he will die of peanut allergitis. Signed, The Ferryman
  5. REEL IT IN The great upset of 156 S.A. It was a calm, peaceful morning on the Ferryman getaway island, many infamous faces huddled around a bonfire and discussed how they’ve been enjoying their vacation. The usual topics came up; grilling sausages, painting propaganda, fishing. when suddenly a figure only known as “The Skipper” yelled something from his hammock. “So that’s it? The great Ferrymen were reduced to lazy fishermen! Look at us!” The rest of the island fishermen didn’t know what to respond at first. Skipper was right, the greatest battle they had recently fought was when one of their fishing lines got caught on a rock . It made no sense, until an old, greying man spoke up. “The fishing is practice, I’ll show you how this all applies to the real world.” What followed was an elaborate lesson on how the greatest band of warriors outmatches any military by simply practicing the art of fishing. STEP 1 : Choose your bait Everyone should know that with nothing but a rod and a hook, it’s difficult to catch larger fish. You need something to lure the big beauties into a position where they are even able to be caught. A common technique is using live bait; using a smaller fish to fish for larger fish. In this case the smaller fish was the Crown Princess of Balian. 5 Horsemen rode into the overgrown land of the south, equipped with blindfolds, rope and simple weaponry. They were headed for the capital of the Kingdom of Balian, a nest filled with little vermin that would make some fine live bait. As they rode in, they instantly spotted someone wearing a tiara decorated with fine emeralds, an eye-catcher for sure! The Ferrymen surrounded her and 5 other citizens and brought her to a fortress they had recently occupied. Here the visitors were informed about the reasoning behind their capture, the violations of the A.D.D.F.A. At first the captives didn’t know what this law was, but it was swiftly explained to them. The Crown Princess of Balian was confused as to why their kingdom made such a big deal out of intentionally breaking this act if they knew it would result in violence, so she asked for a calm conversation with the leader of the Ferrymen. She was brought to a cozy tavern room and was handed our finest chair. She was given a drink and enough cake to last her a lifetime. In this tavern room she agreed to follow the A.D.D.F.A., since she wanted Balian to sprout beyond just a shadow of a failed Empire. A peaceful resolution. STEP 2 : Cast your rod Now it was time to raise the stakes and really make their strategy shine. Using live fish has been a technique in circulation since the early days of The Ferrymen, it has been applied time and time again and it has never let them down. They had acquired a fine live bait, the next regent of Balian. The Ferrymen knew this would surely attract some VERY large fish. First, the fishermen released all hostages except for the Crown Princess, this would allow for the larger fish to take note of the fact that there was food in the area. The larger fish would start scurrying around the area where the hostages were released and they would gladly start eating away. Little did the Ferrymen know that the hostages would attract not just any fish, but the largest fish, the fabled Helpless Haenser. This fish specifically is extremely hard to find because they only hide in massive fortified rock formations and only comes out during mating season. As the Helpless Haenser made an appearance, the Ferrymen instantly showed their hand; the Crown Princess of Balian herself. This would ensure that the Haenser stuck around for a short while, buying the Ferrymen time to make further plans. As the Ferrymen gently swayed around the bait, they noticed something awful. The Haenser was infested with Church Mites, making it way more difficult to attack since every time you tried reeling in the fish, the Church Mites would start shrieking, making you lose control over the line. So the Ferrymen took a clear stance, they tried reasoning with the Church Mites, explaining to them that their canonist Princess is safe and sound and that The Ferrymen simply care for the Helpless Haenser. They even offered to hand the Crown Princess to the Church Mites if they could stop latching onto the Helpless Haenser so it may be caught. The Pontiff refused to take the deal, leaving the wellbeing of the Crown Princess of Balian in the hands of The Ferrymen, essentially abandoning her. He also sheepishly demanded that the Crown Princess be kindly delivered to the gates of Haense. STEP 3 : Catch the fish This abandonment of the Crown Princess made it very difficult for the Ferrymen to catch the Helpless Haenser, but they wouldn’t yield. A fish this rare is too valuable to give up on, so as the Church-Mite infested Helpless-Haenser departed from the bait, it was trailed by our merry band to its fortified nest. Upon reaching the capital of the Kingdom of Haense, they were met with closed gates. As usual, the Helpless Haenser had locked themselves in once more. Luckily it had not retreated into its dark hole entirely, instead it was guarding the gated entrance. Along with the Church Mites, the hole was also infested with Bald Balianites. A considerably smaller fish without teeth. Anyone who’s read the Ferrymen encyclopedia for exquisite fish knows that the Helpless Haenser is a prideful animal, especially when in the company of smaller fish. So to lure the creature away from the entrance of its hole, the Ferrymen mocked them until the Helpless Haenser’s blood started to boil. It start to twitch and shake until it finally made an attack on the Ferrymen. It departed from the entrance and charged at the brave fishermen, who swiftly put down the craven beast. 410 Haensemen were found dead that day. After the hole was breached, a few Ferrymen took it upon themselves to explore the hold, finding many riches. STEP 4 : Cook the prize Great celebrations found the Ferrymen island that day, they had reeled in enough fish to make for a fine feast. Banjo music echoed on the waves, dancing caused clouds of beach sand. It had been a great day. The only thing that was left to do is to filet the fish and get to eating. There is one thing important to remember when feasting on the Helpless Haenser, it is very difficult to remove every single bone. You need to watch out when eating or you might choke to death! This fish, even after it has been bested, will make fickle attempts to either claim victory or discredit events. So to remove every bone and doubt, let us summarize: Dear Pontiff, you abandoned the good canonist Crown Princess of Balian and left her in the hands of a violent organization. You left her to die a horrible death. After the Ferrymen razed the city of Haense, she was safely let free. She was well fed and wasn’t harmed. This was not because of your baseless demands, this was because our organization has more honor than any now-dead Haenser that abandoned her on that day. You have no sway over us. We have never been, nor will we ever be a canonist organization. You may excommunicate us, but this will not change the fact that yesterday your prayers weren’t answered by your god, but by us. You chose to expose yourself to this situation, we made it clear we cared not for church matters and only for the Helpless Haenser. 410 Haensers lay dead in their city today. This fact was not changed by your prayers, it was not changed by your appearance in front of the keep, it was not changed by your demands. This is not a matter of church, never blame a man from putting fish on the table for his starving family. Signed, Your ferry friend
  6. The Ferryman enjoys his cup of tea in camp Sibyl
  7. CREDITS: MUSIC: FROM BENEATH THE WAVES History from under a teal mask WRITTEN, 19TH OF THE SUN’S SMILE 155 S.A. An organization so prolific to this realm’s tumultuous history, it’s almost impossible to find a page of recent history not featuring the teal-faced marauders. Be it by tales passed in whispers around campfires, century-old leatherbound tombs, bursting with the exploits of mercenaries long dead. The odds they faced were astronomical, hundreds - if not thousands of rivals and soldiers from across the globe were set against them in eternal conflict. Yet still, despite the damning odds levied against them, The Ferrymen emerged victorious time and time again. To some they are the righteous keepers of the land's balance, fighting tooth and nail for the common man against the exploitative machinations of the plotting nobility. Others paint them as nothing but filthy, cutthroat murderers who routinely exploit the weak and downtrodden for their sensationalized propaganda and a quick pay-day. In reality the truth is somewhere in the middle, between the stories and the books. Who are they? Where did they come from? What do they fight for? These are questions people of the realm have struggled with for decades, receiving only glimpses of the mysterious order’s true intentions. Now within a comprehensive study, assembled by the bright-minded survivors of the Almarian Exodus, these burning inquiries will finally be laid to rest. CHAPTER I - GLORY ROBBERY 1773-1780 Between hanged and wigged men An oil painting, depicting the bloodsoaked warzone between Orenian and Sutican lands. The Ferrymen originated from another mercenary group called The Hangmen. Their naming scheme may be similar but the groups were far from alike. The Hangmen were very noble, not dirtying their hands with petty banditry but instead strictly reserving themselves for sophisticated warfare. The Hangmen motto spoke: “We shall hang for your sins.” They were founded by Fahad the Figurehead and Heahmund Bren alongside a nobleman known as Antonyus “Big Tony” Horen, who would later go on to become one of the very first Ferrymen. When The Hangmen were first formed on Arcas in 1773, the three founders originally intended to serve Orenian Emperor Peter the III to aid him in ridding his roads from a seemingly never ending bandit plague. They butted heads with the Heusstandarte company, another mercenary company who the Hangmen saw as some of the rats tainting the roads. Bad blood quickly developed between the two companies as they found themselves in dozens of skirmishes over the next couple of years. It didn’t take long for Hangmen Keep to be decorated with hanging bodies dressed in Heusstandarte attire. However, their blood feud was quickly cut short due to a larger conflict escalating. Holy Emperor Peter III was growing old and felt the opportunity to permanently mark his name in the history books slowly slip between his fingers. He dreamt of expansion like any Emperor before him, yet he didn’t possess the strategic mind needed for anything grandiose. Peter III ended up reaching for the fruit hanging so close to the floor it developed a shell made out of hardened mud: Sutica. The Free state had recently been taken over by the canonist King Corwin, an outspoken enemy of the Empire of Oren at the time. This was enough for the Orenian Emperor to point his greed-fueled cannons in the miniscule city’s direction. In 1775 the conflict finally surpassed attempts at diplomatic resolve when the Emperor of Oren officially declared war on the Free State of Sutica. The Hangmen fairly went to both sides, starting with the Suticans where they were presented an offer of 70,000 minas and a voucher for a plot of land for their company to put a new fort upon. During these negotiations the Heusstandarte company was nowhere to be found, scouting out the situation from beyond the horizon as they awaited the Hangmen to make a decision. The Hangmen then faced the Orenian Emperor to tell his Imperial Highness about the Sutican offer he had to counter to buy the Hangmen’s loyalty during the upcoming war. Antonyus Horen was then met with a dwarf-sized response: “The Hangmen are not worth a coin of the Orenian treasury.”. This statement, although early in the war, had already determined the outcome of the conflict then and there. Without bargaining with the Suticans, the Heusstandarte company blindly signed with the Orenians shortly after the Hangmen signed with Sutica. A depiction of the discussion between The Hangmen and Peter III. Over the course of 3 sleepless months The Hangmen and the Suticans made friends at a rapid pace, finding allies in The Kingdom of Norland, The Grand Kingdom of Urguan and the Principality of Vanmark. These nations would soon form what history knows as the Begrudged alliance, the seedling of what would later sprout to be the Iron Accord. Despite sprouting an alliance of 5 nations overnight, the Sutican side of the war was still majorly outnumbered, so they sought to fuel hatred between the Empire and her vassals instead. This approach quickly proved fruitful due to the aggressive Orenian stance towards their vassals over the last decades, with the Empire showing signs of their leadership being drunk on power. The largest of these political victories occurred in Haense, a vassal of the Orenian Empire at the time. A detachment of the Hangmen were sent out to practice simple combat with the Haeseni military, quickly becoming extremely close acquaintances with them. They fought together, feasted together, and drank together. The connection between the Haenseni military forces and the Hangmen mercenary company became so close that most of the Haeseni soldiers refused to keep fighting against those who treated them better than their own Imperial overlords. The honorable highlanders would instead show up to skirmishes with dulled wooden blades instead of sharpened steel crafts in support of the Hangmen’s efforts. This brotherly relationship quickly came to the attention of the King of Haense at the time, who then in return warmed up to peace talks with the Sutican King, yet before any major discussions took place, an Orenian insider officially signed Haense away to fight for the Empire. Upon hearing the news, the Haenseni King committing suicide at his desk as a final act of retaliation against imperial oppression. At the King’s funeral Haense opened up their city for both the forces of the Begrudged Alliance and the Orenians. The Imperials called for a speech but were promptly told to keep quiet as the people of Haense were eagerly awaiting Antonyus’ speech, which was then delivered as requested. Following his magnificent oration, the coalition forces showered the late King’s resting place in roses and departed from the city without showing any aggression. A painting of Antonyus giving his speech at the funeral of Sigismund II. It wasn’t long after that the Orenian higher ups were forced to face the reality that they would not win this war. This was primarily driven by a standoff between the two armies where, much to their opposition’s shock, the Begrudged Alliance outnumbered the Empire by a substantial margin. Before the battle could even occur, Emperor Peter III chose to attend peace talks with Corwin Alstreim and soon after surrendered with admission of defeat. In spite of this humiliation for the Empire, many members of the Begrudged alliance thought they had been slighted by how gentle the terms were and would’ve rather pushed for a claim to the throne. Even Antonyus himself felt as though he’d been robbed of an extraordinary opportunity, the kind that only comes once in a man’s life. Yet by some stroke of luck for the Orenians, the demise of Arcas made further conflict between descendants impossible. Antonyous was forced to confront this situation, and paid out the coin each loyal man was due. The Hangmen, out of work and satisfied with their earnings, went their separate ways, with many members quietly retiring into a life of obscurity and silence. It's a common rumor that some still kept up their swords, venturing out into the new world for riches and glory under different names. CHAPTER II - THE BARREN BOTTOM 1780-13SA The devils who fed families A statue of an esteemed Ferryman on the southern half of Almaris. With new lands came a new plan for Antonyus, and new faces with whom he would work. The voyage to Almaris was a key time for the Horen, where he dwelled on the state of the world, and pondered how he’d pursue the vengeance he so desired against those who clung desperately to their noble blood. It was upon his landing within Almaris that Antonyus would meet a strong ally with whom he could conspire, Balthazar Mareno. Balthazar, the founder and at the time patriarch of the Mareno family, shared the ideals of Freedom and Fairness that Antonyus had made his creed: The belief that the nobles of the world, who ravenously feasted on the labor and toil of the oppressed worker. Moreover, they held a deep seeded hatred for dishonorable monarchs that cowered at the thought of their own losses, all whilst plotting behind closed doors on how to grow their power and sacrificing their uneducated citizenry to do it. There was but one dispute between the two men. Who would lead their cause? For fear of this dilemma causing strife between the two, they deliberated for many days in neutral space, seeking resolve. Wishing to avoid behaving akin to the bureaucrats they despised so much, they wisely decided to let the ideals themself lead. These ideals took on an embodiment; a form of a perfect leader who could give directives perfectly in line with the beliefs these men shared. In time, this concept was given a name: The Ferryman. Just as the one who moved souls from one life to another did not discriminate between wealth and status, neither would they. With their grand idea of the future laid out before them, the two men set to work building The Ferrymen, named for their leading entity. Antonyus made use of his keen eye for talent, and recruited experienced fighters from underground brawling tournaments and illegal black markets. Aiding him in this endeavor were Balthazar’s three sons. The youngest, Arsenios, had a knack for finding other thieves to meet with. The next oldest, Basiyl, often tested the might of the recruited men by engaging in combat with them himself. The eldest, Cyrus, became a sort of right-hand man for Antonyus. He was able to replicate his experience very quickly and showed excellent leadership qualities. This impressed Antonyus, and the relationship between himself and the Marenos grew stronger as Cyrus was allowed to marry Antonyus’ only daughter, Claudia Helane. Meanwhile, Balthazar was able to secure rudimentary equipment for the men, and even a temporary base of operations. Almost symbolic of their now humble beginnings, this location was a rat-hole of an abandoned dwarven factory. It was in the dusty basement of this factory that the first of many plans were hatched. Referred to as “Even out Evening,” Antonyus proposed a raid on two locations simultaneously that would state loud and clear who The Ferrymen and what their intentions were. The Orenian Empire was the obvious first location for the men, but the second took some thought. Concern was voiced by a singular Dark Elf among the men, that Elvenesse ought to be the second target for the wealth flaunted by its Prince and Council. Antonyus approved of this notion, and divided the men into two raiding parties, each comprising 50 members. The party set for The Empire stormed into the capital city of Providence, and immediately directed themselves towards the garrison of guards. They were facing worse than three to one odds and in the enemy’s city no less. However, their rally was led by Antonyus himself, and he devised a clever ploy to bring the battle to their terms. First the men feigned a retreat towards the city’s walls and engaged in careful skirmishing to keep the soldiers of the ISA following. Knowing that ISA officers cared more for feasting than fighting, Antonyus had calculated that they would be clumsy upon the edges of the walls and liable to fall outside the city. Such was exactly the case, and the ISA soon found that they had their backs against their own walls, fighting an enemy that had full control of an open field. The result was a resounding success for The Ferrymen, defeating the entirety of the Orenian force without so much as a single casualty. Unfortunately, the plan within Elvenesse did not start as smoothly. The men infiltrated the city and identified a councilman who they quickly surrounded, but an error upon entry had led to their discovery and the alarm was quickly raised. With little time to act, The Ferrymen were only narrowly able to avoid being surrounded and positioned themselves facing off against the elven forces on a coastline. It was here that the skill of the men themselves shone, as they fought with such ferocity it sent the elves fleeing. In this commotion, the councilman they had come for was killed, an incidental success for The Ferrymen but a success all the same. These two victories in short succession worked exactly as intended, with news of a force of skilled bandits spreading across the land like wildfire. For The Ferrymen themselves, they found that when it rains it pours, and success after success came to them with ease. During this time their ever expanding fame also led to an influx of supporters. Lower class men that found truth in the ideals of The Ferrymen. Many of these supporters even went as far as to prove their loyalties and join the bandits. Roads became unsafe for tea-room nobles as both The Ferrymen and their supporters were frequently watching them. It came to the point that supporters of The Ferrymen were so frequent it was often hard to rule out that there weren’t any around. A perfect instance of this state of things was demonstrated by a new Ferryman named Brick, who single handedly ran into Providence, stole a large wig which he placed upon his own head and proceeded to escape without so much as a scratch. High ranking Orenian officers were slaughtered or scarred, and The Grand King of Urguan’s beard was shaved. Wealthy merchants returned to empty stores, and noble parties were sacked. Kidnapping, heisting, vandalism, pillaging, even an alleged assassination of the High Pontiff, no one was safe. For the wealthy enemies of The Ferrymen, security was nothing but a distant memory. In the midst of these successes came a sudden shift in the world, entirely unrelated to The Ferrymen. Another member of the Begrudged Alliance that felt that their last war with Oren had been cut short took an opportunity to renew the fight. The Kingdom of Norland declared war upon The Holy Orenian Empire. CHAPTER III - MIDDLE GROUND 14SA-36SA Acknowledgement of necessity of evil The fully constructed structure of Shipwreck Keep. The specifics of how the war between Norland and Oren began are often clouded in biases and half-truths. What is entirely factual is that a Norlandic citizen was beaten and forced to kneel within Oren. Most Ferrymen observed this and believed that while Norland may have had a better path of action than declaring war, this was indeed an injustice for another poor man at the hands of nobles. On the other hand, Antonyus saw an opportunity to make some coin from both sides of the war. He proposed that most of The Ferrymen ought to make a deal with Norland and he himself would squeeze Oren of wealth. The idea had created uncertainty within the group, yet no one could deny it sounded practical at the moment. And so, Antonyus ventured towards Oren and The Ferrymen towards Norland, with no plans of further communication until the end of the war. In Norland, The Ferrymen did exactly as the plan laid out. They bartered for a sum of a few thousand Mina and a plot of land they could operate out of. The Marshal of Norland at the time, saw to it the men got their due and a particularly well positioned roadside plot of land. For the duration of the war the keep was a hobbled mess of stone and wood, but as time progressed it was built into a powerful fortress known as Shipwreck Keep. However despite getting started with a good deal, there were some adversities to working with Norland. Many of Norland’s citizens, primarily their vassal of Elysium, were disinterested in the war, and seemed to be hoping for a quick and peaceful resolution. The Ferrymen who were ready to go on the offensive, often found that they had to remain vigilantly defensive. They were, by all accounts, more experienced than the military of Norland but were unable to influence the war’s direction as they had initially hoped to. Around the same time, Antonyus arrived at the gates of Oren shortly after the war broke out. The Emperor of Oren was reluctant to work with Antonyus at first given the history of his anti-imperial aggression, but upon hearing that The Ferrymen were aiding Norland, John VIII made every concession Antonyus wished for. It was here that Antonyus’ desires deviated slightly from the plan. He did not ask for money so much as he did points of pride and benefits for his own sake. He would be knighted, and his Horenic lineage would be acknowledged, officially making him part of the Helane family and even granting him the title “The Champion of Horen.” Several years of war passed with varying degrees of success on both sides of the conflict, with most significant wins attributed to either Antonyus or The Ferrymen. The greatest success for The Ferrymen during this time was at the storming of the bastion, a counter operation whilst a larger fight was ongoing at Luciensberg. There, Ferrymen mathematicians were able to calculate an optimal route to cut off a fleeing division of ISA officers and enter their holding point at the same time as them. This was done by simply taking a hypotenuse path along a right triangle, whilst the slower Imperial forces took a ninety degree angled road. The result was a complete nullification of the imperial defenses, and the annihilation of their men within the bastion. It was shortly after this occasion that The Ferrymen heard of Antonyous’ dealings, and many of them were outraged. The Ferrymen forcefully captured Antonyus Horen, and forced him into a negotiation that would later be known as the Segregated Sit Down. During this discussion the proceedings for the war, and The Ferrymen, were decided. Antonyus would be allowed to win the war for Oren as a show of respect due to his years of leadership, however henceforth he would no longer be welcome to wear their colors. He had been scorned, labeled a traitor to the cause and outcasted with only himself left to fight for his beliefs. His position was taken by Basiyl “Banjo” Mareno, who coined himself as “Captain,” a rank subject to the idyllic Ferryman, but able to make enforced decisions when they were needed quickly. It was because of this change in leadership that a shift of Ferrymen behaviors began to appear. For one, Basiyl had a reputation for being a rash fighter and ill-tempered, whilst still being clever and capable enough to lead. For another, it was at this timet hat Balthazar I succumbed to the Mareno curse, and was lost to sea forever. With the two initial founders of The Ferrymen gone, their ancient values faded, replaced by a radicalized approach that encouraged the slaughter of the cruel and rich rather than thieving from them. All the same, this was a very successful time for The Ferrymen. Several promising new members joined the ranks and there were a multitude of successful battles. The most notable feats during this time were the rescue of Andronikos Mareno, The capture of Vivian Maelstrom, The Murder of the High Pontiff and The Rosemoor auction. The Rescue of Andronikos Mareno was a rare occurrence for The Ferrymen, where one of their own was captured by guardsmen within the The Domain of Vortice. In a desire to act quickly before he could be executed, the rescue party left early, numbering only Sixty men when they arrived at the city. The Vortice guard against them, numbered over Two Hundred, with a defensive position no less. Fifty Ferrymen stormed the gates, making it in before they shut and trapping themselves within the city. Yet, the fear that was stricken into the guards made them come to a stern realization as they clashed in the courtyard. The Ferrymen were not trapped in the city with them, it was they who were trapped in the courtyard with The Ferrymen. The guardsmen broke rank, and did their best to flee with little success. They were slaughtered in their entirety save for Eugeo de Astrea, The Duke of Elyisum, who was captured and used as a bargaining chip to exchange for Andronikos. This great success led to his freedom, but it was far from the end of the conflict. There was one other key mistake that Vortice had made. They had executed a young and beloved Ferryman named Juan Pablo by burning him to death. The cruelty enacted upon him was beyond outrageous, especially to his younger brother Jesus Pablo. The Ferrymen formed a grudge against Vortice, and soon enacted their revenge by capturing their Monarch, Vivian Maelstrom, and taking her as a hostage within Shipwreck Keep. A counter force was soon prepared, consisting of soldiers from Urguan, Norland, Elysium, Vortice, and a few unknown rival bandits. It was looking to be quite the difficult battle but a crucial stroke of luck came for The Ferrymen. During the battle, a party of older bandits not seen for over a century mysteriously joined the battle and supported The Ferrymen. A party of Reivers made an appearance, flanking the besieging party and causing chaos within their ranks. At this critical moment, The Ferrymen sallied out of their keep and were able to completely obliterate the attacking force. This became a historical moment for The Ferrymen, establishing that Old Blood approved of New Blood as successors of the road. Vivean Maelstrom was ultimately released, though not without having her right arm severed for her actions against the group. In light of this victory, The Ferrymen chose to establish themselves as the top of the mercenary food chain. They called for a gathering beside a sunken ship within the southern desert of Almaris. There, every mercenary and bandit company agreed that The Ferrymen were to be acknowledged as the rulers of the roads. They had officially become the best within the domain of outlaws. The Ferrymen were actively clashing against most of the world at this time and winning, but one drastic event would nearly unify the entirety of humanity to fight against them. A single Ferryman had caught the High Pontiff wandering the roads on his lonesome, and saw an opportunity to strike at a corrupt organization. He was able to swiftly kill him and word of his actions soon spread. Whilst he was praised for his actions within the group, the Ferrymen soon realized that all those who followed the church’s orders would soon need to fight against them. Their solution was to go to trial for the crime and absolve themselves of this particular crime. Luckily, the greatest lawyer on Almaris was an advocate for the Ferrymen. He was able to conclusively argue that there was insufficient evidence to prove their guilt. Despite their notorious reputation as outlaws, they were declared innocent of this crime and allowed to walk free. This chain of events wasn’t nearly enough to deter them from continuing their villainy. They returned to their exploits, which soon resulted in The Rosemoor Auction. This tale differs from the other historical victories of The Ferrymen, as it was entirely uncontested. In a storming of the Orenian capital, five women were kidnapped with no resistance whatsoever. The lack of an attempt to stop them led The Ferrymen to believe that their ransoms were worthless, and they determined the best plan would be to auction them to the highest bidder. Thus, The Rosemoor Auction took place. A Ferryman with good ties to Sedan arranged for it to be hosted in their walls and crowds of bidders soon flocked to partake. The final result was thousands of mina in profit, something that became a recurring pattern during this era. As the successes of The Ferrymen began to pile up, so too did their gold and stolen treasure. Initially, they were content to give it all away but many realized that they needed funds for themselves. A stockpile of treasure was kept for the highwaymen, with only a part of what was initially gained given to those who needed it more. Alongside their collection, they chose to monopolize the natural resources of the world. The master-smith of The Ferrymen was a dark elf known as Diomé Indoren, who had previously spent several decades perfecting his craft. Now, he could put his skills to use. With his direction, The Ferrymen collected the entirety of deposits as soon as they were discovered, often forcing others away from them. Their methods of collection were so effective that they seemed to completely drain Almaris of its natural deposits. Be it a thanhic warhammer, a boomsteel sword, or an azhl spear, soon every Ferryman had a powerful weapon to call their own. Those who wished to attain these materials for themselves were forced to barter with bandits and only very few were able to do so successfully. However, these calm yet demanding trades soon became a sign of what was to come. The Ferrymen entered a quiet lapse of hostile activities, though continued to act within the shadows. CHAPTER IV - A CLAIM TO LEGITIMACY 37SA-52SA A brief attempt at blending in The Ferrymen had reached such a level of success that they were leagues ahead of any other force on Almaris. Yet, despite the astounding results, the unending and repetitive nature of taking wealth by force had become tedious. Many began to consider alternatives for a permanent solution. It was this desire that compelled Cyrus Mareno to make a grander plan that could tear into the established way of the world and leave a scar. He and several of his relatives entered into various realms of humanity as nothing more than laymen, seeking to integrate and establish connections that could be used later. Jace, Stavros, and Phineas Mareno established the Mareno Company within The Kingdom of Haense and very quickly became beloved by nobles and commoners alike. Cyrus himself and his nephew, Andronikos, entered into The Holy Orenian Empire and enlisted into the ISA alongside running a small tailor’s shop. The two Marenos quickly proved to undoubtedly be the finest soldiers within the entire military structure of Oren. This was in no small part thanks to The Ferrymen and Cyrus employing a clever plan to allow Cyrus and Andronikos to rescue several captives from bandit hands. No one was the wiser. There was an unplanned, yet equally as clever development when a group of lesser bandits began to act up on Ferrymen roads. The Mareno family captured their leader, and handed her over to the General of the ISA, humiliating her whilst also bolstering their standing in Oren. Unfortunately it soon became clear there was no ground to be gained in Oren without falling into the same rodent-like behaviors that The Ferrymen so starkly opposed. They were denied promotions, acknowledgement and largely viewed with envy for their competence. For fear of falling into the same trap as Antonyus had years ago, Cyrus removed all Mareno presence within Oren except for a single allied operative who persisted to grant valuable information. Marble structures on the outskirts of Myrine. The Marenos reconvened and made alterations to the plan, discussing how best to adjust. It just so happened that the newly formed Principality of Savoy was looking to house vassals, and believing The Mareno Family showed promise, they were granted a Barony within their lands. Cyrus accepted this offer and named the land Myrine, a tribute towards the lady of the sea who had been his mother. In the hopes of making the barony successful, many Ferrymen temporarily left their positions on the roads to settle down and aid Cyrus. However, that’s not to say they disappeared entirely. A particular Ferryman known as Yonash became infamous for quick thievery, followed by running circles around the ISA as they tried to catch him. The land prospered and grew quickly, and the Prince of Savoy soon granted Cyrus the title of Marquis. With his new title, Cyrus also took the name Balthazar II. He declared each of his successors ought to do the same, so that every Mareno ought to strive to do as well as his father did. Yet, it was not long after this that the curse of the Mareno family showed itself once again, and Balthazar II was soon lost to the sea much the same as his father did. He left his rule to his only child with Claudia Helane, ensuring the legitimacy of Horenic blood in their family’s head. Cyril Mareno soon ascended to the position of Marquis, and took the title Balthazar III as his father had wished. It was under his reign that Myrine fell silent, as the call of war soon sounded again. Those of Myrine who had been Ferrymen found that the nature of settled life had become stale for them, and they were eager to return to the familiarity of conflict. It soon became clear that neither their blades nor their skills had dulled in the time of peace and they soon took the center stage within the War of the Wigs. CHAPTER V - VILLAINS OF WAR 53SA-71SA Tilting the scales of justice As war sparked in eastern Almaris, Basiyl Mareno reassumed the position of Captain despite his age, and struck a deal with the Grand Kingdom of Urguan. The Ferrymen would be granted a tower bordering Oren to use, as well several thousand mina in exchange for their help against The Empire. This tower later became known as Stone Tower, for the fine work of masonry that had gone into its construction. Initial fights of the war were decisive victories entirely attributable to The Ferrymen, and it was due to these successes that other nations felt comfortable entering an alliance against Oren. This soon formed into the Tripartite Coalition. The Ferrymen also found an unexpectedly close ally in the troops of Blackvale, another primarily human band of warriors within Urguan. These two groups quickly distinguished themselves as the most skilled in warfare, and between them they were able to defeat the Empire in a multitude of skirmishes. Most notable during this time were The Battle of Stonetower, The Battle of New Providence Bridge, and A raid on Providence that later would be referred to as “The Lobster Trap.” A group of Ferrymen sailing east, prepared to join the War of the Wigs. The Battle of Stone Tower emphasized two key factors of the War of The Wigs. First, the dynamic actions of The Ferrymen and Blackvale were conjoined perfectly as Ferrymen skirmished the Orenian forces in the front and concealed the true size of their rally. Meanwhile, Blackvale’s men snuck from a tunnel within the tower to a position behind the Orenian forces and stormed out of it in droves, collapsing the enemy. The second display was how helpless the Orenians truly were. They turned tail to flee immediately, and were slaughtered almost in their entirety in their attempted retreat down the roads. While this victory had been on home turf for The Ferrymen, they soon took the fight straight to the gates of The Empire, starting The Battle of Providence Bridge. It was a much harder fought battle than many others during the war, with The Ferrymen only numbering 200 to the ISA’a 400. However, through clever skirmishing and hit and run tactics along the road, The Ferrymen were able to cut their enemy’s numbers in half. In response, the ISA fled back into their city and cowered behind their gates. This became a recurring pattern when The Ferrymen attempted to engage in combat. The ISA was all too content to call their cowering a victory so long as everyone was behind the walls. This left everything save for the capital as free reign for The Ferrymen, but they found it was insufficient. They desired to infiltrate the city and deal a devastating loss to the Empire within its walls. Thus, they devised a plan of espionage. Ten of their best thieves and rogues were dispatched with the task of breaking the city’s defenses, undetected. They were only scarcely able to do so, sliding past guardsmen and lockpicking through doors until they managed to gain access to a segregated section of the city, alongside its gatehouse. Then came the easy part. One hundred more Ferrymen stormed into Providence and caused a ruckus within the city. The entire standing garrison of the ISA responded by grouping all of its men together in an orderly fashion, aiming to prevent anyone from being picked off before they could congregate. Unbeknownst to them, this was exactly what The Ferrymen wanted. As the soldiers gathered, The Ferrymen waited besides their infiltrated gatehouse with unrivaled patience. In the exact opposite manner, the ISA soon came rushing towards them. They were hurriedly focused on catching the men before they could escape the city and in their lust for victory, they forgot to consider a trap. The battle ended in the single second the gate was dropped. The Ferrymen needed only to dispose of the men on the same side as them, and then open the gate and charge down those who remained on the opposite side. It was a flawless victory without so much as a single casualty for the bandits. Despite what one might think after hearing of The Ferrymen’s impressive actions, it unfortunately wasn’t the case that everything was going over perfectly for the coalition. In fact it seemed that Ulfric Frostbeard, The Grand King of Urguan was not in the least bit interested in victory so much as his own glory. Within the same time of the Ferrymen victories, he made two incredible blunders that were stark defeats for the Tripartite. The first was such an embarrassment that even the coalition couldn’t help but jest at the stupidity of it. Ulfric Frostbeard conspired with an Orenian maiden who claimed she knew a secret that could destroy the empire. The Grand King was so overtaken by this proposal that he chose to meet with her without so much as a single bodyguard to protect him. This proved to be his undoing when a force of Imperial soldiers stormed into the capital, late at night when the guards were lower in number. They found the king cowering in the corner of his office next to the Orenian maiden, hiding in absolute cowardice. The few Ferrymen that were present were quickly able to deduce what had happened, and despite taking the lives of a few Orenians, they were unable to prevent an escape with the captured Grand King. He was brought before Emperor Philip III, who mercifully decided to shave him and send him home rather than killing him. This proved to be a wise move for The Emperor, when Ulfric’s ego caused the loss of a dwarven fleet at the Battle of Cape Whitcombe. Envious of the many battles won by The Ferrymen, Ulfric attempted to lead a dwarven battleship and face off against the Empire’s Navy. The result was the total destruction of the ship, and several Dwarven casualties. Were it not for a few Ferrymen acting quickly and managing to kill a few Orenians that fell overboard, the battle would’ve been a flawless victory for the ISA. This incident alongside his own capture, proved The Grand King to be utterly incompetent. Tripartite troops began to talk about Ulfric being unfit to rule, and that he ought to leave the sailing to the seafaring Ferrymen. Thus, The Ferrymen assumed leadership in the siege of Southbridge, alongside The Blackvale mercenaries. They directed a clever flank towards the enemy trebuchets and were able to render them useless during the first minutes of the battle. However, with all of their best men on the front, the dwarven trebuchet ships faced interference with an Imperial counter offensive. Captain Banjo himself led a small detachment away from the main fortress and provided relief for the dwarven forces. During this time Southbridge was entirely breached and The Tripartite forced themselves in. Any Ferrymen not with their captain remained vigilant, and were among the first up the ladders and into the fortress. The end result was a decisive win for the Tripartite, and a devastating loss for The Empire. Emperor Philip III considered the loss of Southbridge a breaking point, and was ready to consider a surrender. However, he delayed peace talks with the hopes of being able to negotiate a better deal. This decision paid off, as the Empire soon found its greatest stroke of luck in over a century. Grand King Ulfric’s envy of The Ferrymen had led him to believe they were villainous. He deemed they could not be trusted to reside in Urguan’s land. They were a threat to his own position on the throne. Driven by his selfish delusions, he went back on his deal with The Ferrymen and claimed they had no right to hold Stone Tower after the completion of the war. For The Ferrymen, this was the ultimate disrespect. It was one thing to have to clean up after Ulfric’s negligence and incompetence but another to violate a contract. However, it also meant that the deal The Ferrymen had agreed to was now nullified, and they were under no obligation to continue to fight with The Grand Kingdom of Urguan. The doorway had been opened for them to both acquire more from the war and prove that Ulfric had made the worst mistake imaginable by ousting them. The Ferrymen hastily made plans to contact The Emperor of Oren. A sealed letter was placed on the corpse of a dead ISA officer, which was in turn dropped at the gates of providence. It didn’t take long for it to pass through Orenian leadership and to the Emperor himself. Its contents were a proposed meeting on neutral ground between just The Emperor and Ferrymen leadership. Desiring to return in kind, the Emperor had a pig dressed in a dwarven uniform, slaughtered, and delivered to the gate of Shipwreck Keep. Further communication ensued in similar manners. Eventually The Principality of Fenn was chosen as a meeting place, given that its Prince at the time, Vytrek Tundrak, was familiar with both The Ferrymen Leadership and Philip III. Disguised as a simple scholar, The Emperor journeyed to Fenn to meet with the Ferrymen leaders. It was a long discussion, but to The Ferrymen’s surprise, Philip III seemed to be an Emperor who was intent on making the Empire a better place for the common-man, not just the nobility. He made as good an impression as any Orenian nobleman could hope to and they were able to come to a deal. The Ferrymen would receive a large sum of mina, as other arrangements were made for them. Namely, Basiyl arranged for the marriage of his nephew, Cyril, to a close Novellen relative of the Emperor. Some rumors of The Ferrymen aligning with Oren had circulated before their deal was signed, yet it still came as a surprise to the majority of Almaris. In Oren, celebrations were held to welcome in the heroes they hoped could turn the tide of war, but the Tripartite held quite the opposite reaction. They were panicked and distressed, whilst trying to present a facade of capability. They pushed propaganda that their numbers alone could lead them to victory. Only one group was within the Tripartite that saw the writing on the wall. The mercenaries of Blackvale understood that this was a shifting point for the war, and took the opportunity to broker a deal with Oren for themselves. Being composed entirely of humans, they found themselves better placed in The Empire than under a Dwarven monarch. Thus the two best fighting forces of the war were reunited again. What had been an absolute loss for The Empire had turned into a position where they chose to make a gambit of reclaiming their land. The Tripartite continued to cling to their strength in numbers, believing it would be enough to take them to victory. These beliefs led into some of the most brutal fighting of the war. Rallies of equal capability clashed in stalemates, with few decisive victories. Then, everything came to a head when the full might of both armies clashed, at the Battle for Lower Petra. The Tripartite outnumbered the Imperials by nearly three-hundred men, a figure which both sides had predicted and planned for. As both armies marched towards each other, the Imperial army consolidated beside a towering evergreen tree, under the command of Hugo van Aert of Blackvale. Inversely, the Tripartite spread their forces, planning to envelop the Orenians and force them in on themselves. This proved to be a fatal error; it was a plan that The Ferrymen and Blackvale forces had predicted in advance. Separate detachments of experienced fighters led by Captain Basiyl Mareno, Diomé Indoren, and Gaspard van Aert secured the sides of the primary Imperial forces. Far surpassing their adversaries in skill, they punctured holes in the spread out formation the Tripartite had taken. Within minutes they were set upon the backlines of the Tripartite’s army. Most critically, they were able to decimate the entirety of their enemy’s cavalry. Now with superior mobility, they were able to quickly turn around and return to the front line of the battle. They pushed the Tripartite into the Imperials beneath the tree, and encircled the fight. Orenians breaking away from the fight were given relief, whilst those of the Tripartite were swiftly killed. A heavy toll had been taken on the main Imperial forces, but the end result was the annihilation of their enemy. The news of defeat hit the coalition homelands in a wave of shock. Their leaders maintained they could stall for victory and defend a siege, but the people knew the truth. The Ferrymen had proved they were the defining factor of the war. There could’ve been no bigger mistake than breaking the deal with them. Meanwhile in Oren, the Ferrymen were hailed as heroes that had done the impossible and turned the war in their favor. This stark contrast in morale was ever present moving forward with the war. The Grand Kingdom of Urguan had granted their claimed land to The Prince of Sedan, and constructed the village and fort of Haverlock over it. In order to reclaim all they had lost, the Imperial army would have to siege Haverlock, and that’s exactly what they planned to do. They enlisted new recruits, and gathered more men to march forward on Haverlock. In contrast, the Tripartite had a difficult time regaining their numbers. On the morning of the siege, it was revealed that the Tripartite had fewer men than the Imperial army, much to the humiliation of the former. However, this was where luck ran out for the Imperials. Gaspard van Aert, the leader of Blackvale, perished from a stroke moments before the siege began. This incident led to a disarray of communication for the Imperials and each soldier was left to fend for themselves. But it was during times such as these that the Ferrymen excelled. Each individual Ferryman was still worth a dozen of their opposition, and they starkly held the front line until order was restored. At this point, the Imperial forces flooded into the city and overwhelmed its defenders. It was a swift and decisive victory, and officially marked Oren reconquering the lands it had lost. The political balance the world had known before had been restored. The siege of Haverlock. The Tripartite was in ruin. They had been victorious only to have it taken by the same mercenaries that had granted them it. Now Urguan was facing the potential of Oren continuing on the offensive. Grand King Ulfric Frostbeard was finally forced to accept reality. He had been a failure of a monarch, and there was no recovering it now. He abdicated the throne, succeeded by Bakir Ireheart. Bakir was known to be rash at times, yet even he understood the dire situation he had been left to resolve. He understood that in order to defend the Grand Kingdom, he would need the help of The Ferrymen. A brief cease of hostilities was arranged between the two sides, and it was during this time Bakir arranged a meeting with Captain Basiyl. There, he swallowed the pride of his Kingdom and atoned for the ignorance of Ulfric. He admitted that there was no chance for his kingdom without them, and beseeched the forgiveness and aid of The Ferrymen. Basiyl took pity on the Dwarven King, and resolved that it would only be right to prevent the destruction of The Grand Kingdom. The idyllic Ferryman would have wanted nothing more than to aid those who could not aid themselves. Yet, he knew this decision would not go uncontested. Many Ferrymen still harbored spite against The Grand Kingdom for the actions of Ulfric, and believed they deserved what was coming towards them. Understanding their desires, Basiyl released every Ferrymen of their oath. An effective disbandment that would allow each man to fight for what he believed to be right. He himself later proclaimed to still be captain, and declared open Ferrymen support for Urguan under the official name of the organization. Battle was now ahead, and all eyes eagerly watched to see the result. The two sides clashed at east fleet, both on its shores and with ships in the bay. The Imperial army attempted to maneuver across the bay, but was halted by Tripartite archers. It was then that the Imperials made their move, attempting a cavalry flank. It came as a surprise for the Tripartite who had planned primarily to engage in naval combat. However, they were able to withstand the horse charge whilst keeping the Imperial ships from attempting a landing. Seeing that their impact had lacked the significance they hoped for, the Cavalry force regrouped with the main army. The Tripartite realized the threat of their return, and called to take the naval offensive, rather than withstanding further land interactions. With experienced Ferrymen sailors leading Urguan’s vessels they were set upon their enemy in no time. The battle was hard fought, but it was proven the Orenian navy was no match for the nautical expertise of The Ferrymen. It was a Tripartite victory and Urguan had withstood the ordeal. Shortly after the battle, the war passed the official mark of continuing for 17 years. Both sides had been entirely depleted. The Holy Orenian Empire had no further chance of advancing and worse, they were facing a schism in their homeland. On the other hand, The Grand Kingdom of Urguan was simply relieved to have withstood what they thought was a certain loss. The two sides sued for peace, ending what was the most vicious war descendants had seen in centuries. Through the turmoil, each side had lost a great deal, yet there was one group that had won every major battle. They had clearly been the dominant force, turning everything in their favor. The Ferrymen had become the most influential presence on all of Almaris. CHAPTER VI - THE SHIFTING OF POWERS 72SA-88SA Fulfilling the fall of the empire A group of Ferrymen sailing for shore after the naval battle at East Fleet. Peace was not long for The Holy Orenian Empire. After the end of the war, Emperor Philip III left the throne, and disappeared altogether. Without proclaiming his successor, his two eldest sons both laid their claim to the throne. In a matter of days, two factions were formed between each of their supporters and war broke out between them. The elder of the brothers, Peter, believed that the Empire needed to be sustained by working outwards, and gaining new vassals. In contrast, his younger brother, Frederick, believed that the Empire ought to dissolve into a Kingdom and focus on inward reformation. Thus the two sides were deemed the Imperialists, and the Royalists. Among the supporters of Frederick was Prince Lucien of Savoy, whom Balthazar III had pledged his loyalty to. It wasn’t long before Lucien called for those most loyal to him to join him in journeying to Oren to support Frederick. Despite there only being a small handful of men left in Myrine, Balthazar III honored his pledge. He allowed for his own lands to fall by the wayside, and took all he could to aid Lucien. Even then, he sought to do more and called upon the Mareno contract with the Ferrymen, encouraging those bound by it to join him in arms. Both the Mareno Family and the Ferrymen proved to be instrumental in the war that was later termed “The Brother’s War.” Frederick had taken control of the capital city of Providence, but the looming threat of his brother in the duchy of Rutov was greatly concerning to him. He organized the best men he had available to him to send on a special mission, whilst still keeping the majority of his force on the defensive. Their goal was to capture Peter and bring him back to Providence for his execution. Many Ferrymen were in this group, and it’s likely that the mustered force might have been insufficient without them. Acts of espionage revealed that Peter was planning to give a speech to the Imperialists and it was determined this was the only possible time to strike. The Royalists snuck into the Duchy just before the speech began, carefully lying in wait for their chance. It was forced to come sooner than hoped for, as a passing civilian noticed them and ran to alert the guards. However, the pieces were still in place. Peter had taken his position in the castle throne room. The Royalists charged into the room before they could be shut out, and began to fight their way through the crowd. Realizing the danger, several Imperialist guards rashly counter attacked, in a hope that Peter would escape but such was not the case. Andronikos Mareno recklessly pushed past the threat of guardsmen, and apprehended Peter. This was a risky maneuver but he had faith in the others to protect him. The pace of battle was greatly accelerated as The Imperialist forces turned to attempt to save their leader. In turn, they weakened their holding position and collapsed under the might of The Royalists. The battle had been an astounding victory and Peter had been captured. However, The Imperialists remained resilient. With everything on the line, they gathered every last soldier they could, and began to march towards Providence. It did not matter whether or not they saved Peter in time. They had nothing left to lose. This turn of events put Frederick into a state of worry. He had expected his enemy to be so devastated they would surrender immediately. A meeting of Fredrick, Lucien, Balthazar, Andronikos, and a mercatorii Ferryman, known as Mariano, assembled together to discuss the necessary response. They cleverly devised a plan to put everything to an end in a single night. The Imperialist army would be allowed to enter the city, and Peter would be let go to lead them. However, the two armies had to then clash against each other within the city of Providence itself, and the victors would win the entire war. Facing only his execution as an alternative, Peter accepted. In making this deal, the feeling behind both armies could only be the same. Rather than the Imperialists standing to lose nothing and Royalists standing to lose everything, the morale was even. The Royalists remained confident they could prevail in an even fight, and hoped that by offering one their legitimacy would be further solidified. The Battle for New Providence began within the day. The overcrowded square of the city quickly became bloodied by the bodies of men. It ended quickly, with little positioning or tactics of note. Instead, it was every man fighting with all his strength for what he believed in. It was a brutal battle, but the outcome had been determined from the start. The Royalists had been right to bet on an even fight. With The Ferrymen on their side, it was yet another overwhelming victory. Though, this time it came with a cost. During the Battle Balthazar III suffered a devastating injury to his head. He was known to be quite slow in thought in following years and grew reluctant to progress for the sake of the family. With his death by the Mareno curse coming a decade later, he never truly recovered. In all this time, Myrine continued to decay. It fell victim to other claims misusing the land, and eventually became nothing but ruins. With the end of The Brother’s War, Humanity finally reached an era of peace but for The Ferrymen who made war their business, there was still much to be done. There was a small, yet ever present elven minority within The Ferrymen. Most veteran among them was Diomè Indoren, a dark elf who had joined Antonyus Helane after the dissolution of Renelia. He was known to be a close friend of Prince Vytrek Tundrak of Fenn, often lingering with snow elves more so than other dark elves. Vytrek sought to form a new Malin’or, and requested the aid of elven Ferrymen in doing so. Diomè agreed, working out a generous contract and encouraging his elven comrades to join him. This venture sounded promising to many of them, and they agreed to lend their aid. Diomè himself took a greater interest in the plan, and decided to become further involved. He changed his appearance and took the name Vyllaenen to conceal his past. Whilst much less of a direct fighting source during this time, The Ferrymen were still vital to Fenn’s plans. They heavily supported a revolution in Haelun'or, with the rebels eventually departing the silver isles. Ferrymen aid was further provided still, laying the foundations for what eventually became Celia’nor. Alongside the Principalities of Nor’Asath, and Elvenesse, Celia’nor and Fenn formed the new state of Malin’or. Vytrek Tundrak had attained his goal, and was elected High Prince, however it came with a cost. He was unable to sustain the Principality of Fenn. To solve this, he dispersed the Snow Elven peoples through the other lands of Malin’or, asking they aid each of those places respectively. With Fenn’s dissolution, every nation of Malin’or was situated on the western side of Almaris. This drew the attention of another group in the West that had recently been expanding rapidly, and sought to end Malin’or in its infancy. The Horde, a conglomerate of peoples, led by the orcs of The Iron Uzg. With barely any time to situate itself, Malin’or was in a state of war. The Ferrymen were still in active support of Vytrek, and quickly drafted another contract to support the war. It soon proved to be a mistake of The Uzg to initiate a conflict. Between The militaristic nature of the Snow Elves, the established influence of The Ferrymen, and the backing of each major elven nation, it was hardly an even match up in anything but numbers. At the battle of Karimir Mountain, the two sides were faced off against each other with only a disparity of sixty troops in Malinor’s favor. The Horde took positioning on high ground, on the side of a large hill. It soon became clear they had no intention of doing anything other than remaining there. The Ferrymen skirmished on lower ground than The Horde, sustaining some light damage, but diverting their attention. Meanwhile, the entirety of the elven force made a long maneuver to get to the peak of the hillside. The Ferrymen called for an early charge, concentrating their Orcish enemies on a single point near the edge of a cliffside. Then from above, the forces of Malinor came crashing down on The Horde. The entirety of The Horde’s force was destroyed, without a single survivor. It was one of the most decisive victories in known history, not just of a battle but an entire war. Through its duration, Malin’or and The Ferrymen won every single skirmish, battle, and raid, with under a hundred casualties. Such an accomplishment was not without its drawbacks. Vytrek had expended himself in forming and defending Malin’or, and stepped down from his position of High Prince. Alongside this, the Princess of Celia’nor disappeared. With recovery needed on the horizon, Vyllaenen made a promise to Vytrek that he would take care of Malin’or. Vytrek supported him as his heir, and Vyllaenen was unanimously voted to be High Prince. Over the course of two decades, he worked tirelessly to support each of Malin’or’s nations. With his influence and connections, Malin’or became the leading nation of Western Almaris and a world power. After those twenty years Vyllaenen left his position of High Prince, believing each nation to be in stable positions. However, they were unable to elect a new High Prince, and Malin’or dissolved into separate states of elvendom. The Ferrymen themselves were still active during these ongoings, with another separate event being quite important during this era. The conflict that marked the end of this era sprung from a battle between the Kingdoms of Haense and Oren. The Ferrymen joined the BSK in their attack at the battle of Acre, with Captain Banjo signing a contract only days prior. Andronikos Mareno kept the ranks in close knit formation all the way from the gates of Karosgrad to the approach of Acre, and ensured that they could not be caught off guard in their approach. Upon their approach to their city, they broke into a charge, and were able to overwhelm the Orenian defense with superior force. This battle alone saw the capture of a few of Acre’s leaders, whilst many commanders of the Kingdom itself had not been present. To die for a cause that was not their own rightfully disturbed the populace of the small farming village. Rather than allowing any of his citizens to fall in a war that was not their own, Baron Gustaf de Vilain declared an official withdrawal from the war. Peace between Haense and Oren was declared soon after, but the turmoil was far from over. King Frederick declared the Barony traitorous, and things soon escalated into a full revolution. Very few Ferrymen were able to fight alongside Acre, with the conflict happening so closely within the center of Oren. Some of those that did have access even chose to withhold their efforts to prevent the notion of the Acreans relying heavily on mercenaries to rebel. There was however, one Ferryman heavily involved within the revolution. Valentin Mareno had taken up residence within Acre even before the revolution, and when the time came he fought for its freedom. His actions in this warfare set forward the path of future interactions between The Ferrymen and Humanity. CHAPTER VII - ESTABLISHED PRESENCE 89SA-129SA Reigning over the never ending war for equality A depiction of Balthazar proudly watching The Ferrymen’s actions from afar during his afterlife. The last decades of Almaris were filled with The Ferrymen aiming to maintain a balanced order in humanity after the fall of Oren. The pattern of entire conflicts being decided by their presence continued, and it became a near persistent need to constantly be managing the world’s troubles. Most significantly, it could be seen in the events that were in support of The Commonwealth of Petra, and the opposition of the Kingdom of Aaun. In the time after Acre, Valentin Mareno became a loyal Petran. He was a friend of the Arch-Duke, and was even knighted for his valiant efforts in helping the commonwealth grow. It wasn’t until the reign of Petra was passed to Renilde I, that trouble began to arise. Her husband, Constanz Noevellen was a deep imperial sympathizer that aimed to pull the strings through his marriage. As a seasoned Ferryman, Valentin could see the trouble brewing from a mile away, and warned Renilde to be cautious of her husband. This warning was heeded but in an odd fashion. Rather than ousting Constanz, Renilde began to have an affair with a Haeseni Prince. Despite his greatest efforts, Valentin soon found that he himself was being ostracized from within Petra by the growing presence of imperial supporters. Without the Arch-Duchess’ ear, he turned to his comrades in the Ferrymen for help. A small series of raids against Petra eventually culminated into a full scale battle in the desert. It began with a group of Ferrymen taking a handful of Petrans hostage, and taking them to the Desert. A note of challenge was issued to Constanz and his supporters specifically to come and fight them for the release of the hostages. By either a stroke of luck, or pure coincidence, Paul Montalt was among these captured men. Paul had been a close friend of Valentin, and was another man who heavily imposed the imperial side of Petra. The two conversed as they waited for the Petran army; they both knew that the civil war to come was inevitable. It was out there in the desert, through simple dialogue, a protective relationship between The Ferrymen and Petran Loyalists was formed. At the time, the young son of Balthazar III, Caius Mareno, was the captain of the Ferrymen, with much oversight and aid from older members such as Vyllaenen and Andronikos. Through Valentin, they agreed that if it were to come to a coup attempt, they’d support Renilde’s claim. Paul Montalt was also offered a position within the Ferrymen, which he later accepted. When the Petran army arrived, they outnumbered The Ferrymen two to one. What’s more, they took a defensive position within an old Savoyard tunnel to prevent them being caught off guard. However, there was a hidden advantage for the Ferrymen that proved to be critical in dealing with their enemy. Decades earlier, during the time of Myrine, Andronikos had constructed an emergency gate to fall at the entrance to the tunnel. The Ferrymen chose to hedge their bets on the functionality of the gate, and moved forward enough to activate it. To the total shock of the Petrans, the gate fell and split their forces in half. The physical effect was only temporary, with the old gate only managing to keep them separated for so long before they found a way through it, but they felt they could no longer trust the tunnel and were forced to fight in an open field. With their entire plan having been to hold the tunnel, the Petrans had failed to bring any sort of cavalry force with them, whilst the Ferrymen had fine steeds and skillful riders. Even with such disadvantaged numbers, it was only a matter of time until their skillful cavalry and skirmishing tactics were able to cull the Petran army. When only a handful remained, they attempted to flee across the old bridge of Savoy, but by congregating together they only made it easier for the Ferrymen to run them down and finish the majority of them off. It was a slaughter the likes of which hadn’t been seen in years. Despite this overwhelming victory, the conflict in Petra proved to be an imminently looming threat. Just a few short years later, Constanz discovered the affair Renilde had been having. In shame, humiliation and outrage, he declared that he and his supporters would seize Petra for themselves. Renilde fled to Haense temporarily, and fearing she would be unable to do much in the way of the war effort on her own, she called for the help of Valentin and Paul. With them came the Ferrymen who had previously pledged their help, and within a matter of days The Ferrymen led a raid wherein they captured Constanz, and brought him to a forced meeting with Renilde. It became clear that he would not relent to peace, and the obvious solution was to execute Constanz on the spot. However, the objection was raised that to secure a respectable political position, the Petrans would have to win the war with the majority of their own forces. The Loyalists agreed, and Constanz was released. Over the course of a month or two, the entirety of the Petran army was trained forcefully by The Ferrymen. It was inadequate time, but any improvement at all was a necessity. The time for battle rapidly approached, and it seemed the loyalists were to be outnumbered by the rebels. The two sides were both hesitant to approach each other, firing volleys of arrows rather than attacking directly. In that brief time, the loyalists were able to strike down a few foes, evening out the numbers slightly. Realizing what was happening, the rebels called for a charge and the two sides clashed violently. It was a blur of fighting, with both sides hard to determine who was winning, but when the dust had settled the loyalists had narrowly managed to claim the victory. The training had paid off and Petra had been saved. Both before and whilst the Petran conflict had been happening, the other domains of humanity, had also been filled with turmoil. The Kingdom of Aaun had been created through the destruction of the Harvest Confederacy, when lustful men saw their chance to gain an edge over others. This was a unanimous injustice in the eyes of the Ferrymen, and they began to take action against the Kingdom. The most notable of the early attacks was a simple attack on Balian with the plan of luring out Aaun as their allies. However, this soon became a much bigger event later to be known as “The More Roses Auction.” The Ferrymen enlisted the help of the orcs of Un’Satum, small grouping of Uruks that resided near the same ground where Myrine had once been. Both of these groups shared a mutual enemy in the Kingdom of Balian and quickly agreed to work together. Next they planned to strike during a ball, one where many valuable hostages would be present. The only concern was whether or not the gates would be left open. If they were forced to enter by ladder, it’s likely their position would be discovered and it would be harder to round up hostages. Thankfully, the overworked gate guard was caught asleep. Feeling that he could likely use his rest, The Ferrymen left him where he was to enjoy his nap. In a surprising yet poetic coincidence the attack was remarkably similar to the Rosemoor auction. They entered Balian's capital, took several noble women hostage with no resistance whatsoever, and moved them back to Un’Satum to be auctioned for ransom. They began to auction them off one at a time, and there was a decent profit made. However, the greatest reward was still yet to come. The forces of Aaun and Balian gathered together, planning to besiege Un’Satum and rescue the kidnapped women. Leading them was none other than Charles Alstion, the King of Aaun. They began to besiege the small orcish village by placing a ladder beside its walls. The Ferrymen and orcs quickly spotted the weakened position, but rather than quickly swarming it they feigned ignorance. They were aware that their enemies were out of shape, and the questionable stability of the ladder could only allow so many of them up at a time. With that in mind, they allowed about half of their enemies to climb the ladder and fought them within the city, whilst a flank squad consisting of a singular Musin sprung off the walls and cut at the base of the ladder, shortening it beyond repair. The forces stuck within the city were slaughtered without their reinforcements from the outside, and the Musin was able to make a quick escape undetected thanks to his small stature. Following the slaughter of the men that breached the village, The Ferrymen swiftly regrouped and led a charge out of the front gate. They ran down everyone that had been left behind outside, including The King of Aaun himself. He was captured and held with the other hostaged. Within the hour, the news of the auction had been altered to display that the King of Aaun himself was for sale. He was ultimately returned to his own people for 5000 mina, albeit extensively injured. The notoriety of this act did much to instill a sense of fear in Aaun’s leadership, but in truth the blow was of less substance than the Ferrymen had hoped for. The mina could be remade in a matter of years, and the status quo of the vassals remained in place. After thinking upon it thoroughly, the Ferrymen decided that they needed a new foothold in humanity and decided that Aaun would be a good choice due to their proven lack of warriors. It is also worth noting that the Mareno family and the Barclay family, one of their vassals, have an extremely long and deep history together. The entirety of the Kingdom of Aaun noticeably stood upon two vassals, with the capital itself being a quiet ruin of what had once been Vienne. The Duchies of Adria and Minitz each had a substantial presence, and Caius began to have close relations with the latter. Alongside him were a handful of friends and followers that on their own far surpassed any soldier in Minitz’s military. The Duke himself even tasked Caius with carrying out an assassination on his behalf. It was easily a success, staged to look like an unfortunate run in with a handful of common bandits. A group of Marenos and Ferrymen discussing their plans for the future. Unfortunately this time of cooperation came to a sudden end. A confrontation occurred between a handful of Minitz’s soldiers and two of Caius’ best men named Darius and Demetrius. When simply conversing with the Duchess of Minitz in passing, Demetrius was accosted by a certain guardsman that implied he may be trying to coerce her into acts of infidelity. Darius, feeling his comrade’s honor had been assaulted, hit the guardsman roughly enough to knock him to the floor. The guard quickly stood up and drew his blade, threatening the life of Darius. What ensued next was an escalation of violence from every guard within the area. The guards of Minitz attempted to subdue Darius, whilst those who were friends with him quickly rushed to his defense. The brawl that ensued was naturally devastating for the average guardsmen. It was at such a level of brutality that one level-headed man, known as Travis of Myrine, even began to subdue his fellow supporters of Darius, out of a desire to put a stop to the fighting. When the dust had settled it was immediately clear there were going to be issues. Darius and Demetrius were called to trial and directed to plead their case. Naturally, Caius went about getting them the best lawman that Almaris had to offer, an associate of the same man that had once defended the Ferrymen in Providence decades ago. With conclusive arguments alongside Travis’ actions showing that Caius’ men meant no ill will, they were acquitted of all wrongdoing, with the medical fees of a particularly injured man being paid for. However this event left a sour taste between the two parties, and it became clear to Caius that it would be difficult to continue working with Minitz in any capacity. His direction focused closer to the duchy of Adria. Adria itself was a more inclined fit for the Marenos than Minitz. It was open minded to the ideas of self sufficiency and understood the past wrongdoings of Aaun’s king. But better yet, it happened to be the home of the van Aerts and descendants of the Blackvale mercenaries that the Ferrymen had fought alongside decades ago. The patriarchs of the Mareno and van Aert houses met on fictitious terms at first, but it was soon cleared and the two acknowledged each other as old friends. It was only a few years later that a plot to overthrow the present Duke Heinrik Sarkozic of Adria was revealed. Worst of all, its conspirators included the King of Aaun himself. War broke out near immediately, with the Duchy of Adria calling together its troops to gain independence. The Ferrymen were instructed to join Adria in their struggle for freedom, and their help contributed greatly at the battle of Rolly’s hill. This battle itself was enough for Aaun to yield and give Adria its independence but their aim of deposing Duke Heinrik was far from over. A growing alliance that became The Canonist League called for Heinrik to atone for his sins in the Cathedral of Haense. Wary of the idea but wishing for nothing but peace, Heinrik took a small retinue of some of Adria’s finest men and journeyed to Haense as requested. There, whilst he was kneeling in prayer, the intentions of the League became clear. They ordered for Heinrik to be seized and taken prisoner and began to surround him with numbers far surpassing the Adrian retinue. Seeing the treachery of their enemies using a holy ground for a political ploy, the men of Adria had no question that they would fight to the last breath to defend their Duke. They clashed against the force so many against their own that in mere moments all of them had been captured, yet it was not in vain. Heinrik had escaped out of the church and waiting for him there was a man on horseback known only as ‘John’. He quickly allowed Heinrik to board onto his horse, and rode away with such speed and agility that they escaped the pursuing force with ease. Unbeknownst to anyone at the time, this same John was an active Ferryman, with close ties to Caius, and many others. Upon their return to Adria, they realized that they were likely to be besieged within a matter of hours. Many of Adria’s finest men were held captured and even more were still unable to partake in battle again so soon after the battle of Rolly’s hill. Yet they remained steadfast in their conviction of protecting Heinrik. They pulled together what men they could, designating Valentin van Aert, John and a young Mareno named Archie to lead the battle. A handful of Ferrymen were also able to arrive on quick notice and join in the fight slightly bolstering the numbers. Even so, the men of Adria were outnumbered nearly two to one, with their only defensive advantage being a small stone keep. The battle commenced with several Adrian’s and Ferrymen skirmishing at the front of the keep’s gate, with a few successful maneuvers made by John expertly executing flanks to focus weakened soldiers. However, as the battle progressed it began to drag as though it were a stalemate. For hours the two sides clashed against each other, with equipment breaking before the men did. Suits of armor were held together on mere threads, and blades were broken or bent. As the two sides fought on, it became clear that the Adrian’s were direly running out of arms faster than the combined forces of the Canonist League. Concerned on how to move forward, the Adrian’s withdrew into the keep and held their position. Every option was considered as their enemies continued to try to force their way up the wall, shouting jeering insults and declaring victory all the while. Eventually, as they were running out of ideas, John and Archie both seemed to have had enough. Together, they pursued a singular man who was crying insults at the front gate, and crushed his skull in with a warhammer. Upon seeing this act of bravery, the Adrian men were inspired to rally together and charge out of their keep. Despite being outnumbered and under equipped, they charged out with such ferocity that whilst some of the Canonist League’s soldiers held their ground, others struck with fear and retreated, including the King of Aaun himself. Despite every advantage they began to crumble and fall. They took their last refuge in Adria’s church, abusing the holy building in an attempt to survive. It was without success, as the combined force of Ferrymen and Adrians stormed in and made sure every last soldier that had run into the church was defeated. For how the battle began and concluded, it was termed the battle of two churches. It seemed that the war was set to continue, and The Ferrymen were ready to align with Adria against a coalition of Haense, Balian and Aaun to defend their independence. However, another factor came into play that few would have predicted: The Mori’quessir incursion soon ravaged the world of Almaris, making it inhospitable for descendants. The Ferrymen were among the first to realize how dire the situation was. In particular, Vyllaenen and a Celia’norian Ferryman named Húrin Ibarellan were present in the adventuring party when the slumbering hydra was discovered beneath elvenesse. Having ample time to prepare and well predicting the inevitable outcome, The Ferrymen destroyed Shipwreck Keep and used the remnants of the wayfarer ship that previously formed the gatehouse of the fort as a means of transport to travel to Aevos.
  8. THE A.D.D.F.A The Anti Deep Dolphin Feeder Act Dear friends of the Ferrymen, Today I write to notify you of a horrible upset of our serene balance. In recent times we, The Ferrymen, have allowed the world to turn by itself. We have done minimal raiding, left the roads relatively safe and shown more genuine care for those fortunate enough to encounter our merry band. This is because we believe that we’ve reached a point in history where there is no clear oppressor of our ideology, giving us no clear opposition. Due to this, our men have finally had the time to feast on the fruits of their labor, some even enjoying multiple years of forceful vacation. As a result of this lavishness, our presence has greatly diminished. Now it’s important to not act a fool, we are not gone.. - and we see everything. We feel the need to set things straight, and for that we require to be enabled by the brave and proactive leaders of this realm. If you’ve ever wanted to be in good standing with the Ferrymen, this is your chance to make your stance clear. The Lavish Luxury Leech Lurks It is an immense slight that this news was brought to me during the Ferrymen’s yearly memorial day for all victims, male and female, of the Orenian social seasons. In recent times, the voices in our ears have spoken more and more of attempted Orenianism, idolizing everything and anything that has to do with both the Kingdom and the not-so-holy, single-state “Empire” of Oren, some even claiming titles that are related to the name “Oren”. As you know, since the dawn of time, the Ferrrymen have bravely fought against these horrible people in hopes of forging a safer environment for all of the realm’s youth. Oren, Kingdom or Empire, is our ever-enemy. It should also be yours. As to return to brighter times, we declare to all of this realm that: I - The Cultural Marooning |1 Novellen, the name, will not be used, not even for signing documents. |2 Oren, the name, will not be used, not even in landless titles. |3 Paintings, statues, drawings that portray figures depicting Orenian nobility, politicians, soldiers, cities or non-religious buildings are forbidden from being displayed in public or on the ground-floor of your domicile. |4 Uniforms that are or closely resemble those of Orenian militaries are contraband. |5 Publicly praising anything Orenian is now forbidden. |6 Being formerly associated with anything Orenian must be reported to your nearest Ferryman base of non-violent operations. |7 A nation shall not fraternize with people in violation of these rules, they will be considered just as guilty as the Orenians doing the deed. This also contains having ongoing pacts or agreements with places proven to be in violation of these rules. |8 A nation shall not stand up or defend people proven to be in violation of one of these rules. II - The Consequences |1 Anyone found in violation of any of these rules will not instantly implode on the spot. They will instead face my men as a hurdle in every single political endeavor they wish to embark on. My men will blindly choose the opposing party, in or outside of an official war. Relentless violence will find you and we will not stop until you are depleted of courage to leave your rat-infested basement. To Our Current And Former Allies We understand that we have been out of the geopolitical space for more than a while, yet we do not forget the times of daily Orenian reaping. After all hardships, the Ferrymen extend a hand to those who at one point in time were able to bathe in glory alongside the Ferrymen. To those supporting us in keeping the roads clean of the wigged vermin, we open up our doors for friendly conversation once more. As such, we are eagerly expecting signatures from the following friends of old. To ignore our call is to declare yourself an accomplice to the to-be Orenian renaissance. Any support granted will only be taken in the context of this document specifically. |1 The Most Serene State of Lurin |2 The Grand Kingdom of Urguan |3 The Kingdom of Haense |4 The League of Veletz |5 The Exilic Kingdom of Numendil |6 The Iron Horde |7 The Kingdom of Norland |8 The Principality of Talar’nor |9 The Commonwealth of Petra |10 The Crown of Amathine We also expect a more formal announcement from the following places who are currently known to be in violation of one or more of these rules. Let it be known that the Ferrymen are open to support a path of redemption. |1 The United Kingdom of Aaun |2 The Kingdom of Balian Signed, The Ferryman, Emperor of Snoren O SAINTE RÈGNE PETRÉRE HER ROYAL MAJESTY, Renilde I, by the Grace of GOD, Queen of the Petra, Marquise de Val d’Estenou, Countess of Temesch and Moere, Baroness of Garmont, Valfleur , Vallagne-en-Petra, and of the Phoenixspire, Protector of the Meadows, Defender of Liberty The Silver Lubba Garedyn The Emerald, Grand King of Urguan, Chief of the Mossborn, Prophet of Yemekar, Seer of Hefrumm, Zealot of the Triad Veynora Wynasul, Flame of Talar’nor ooc: comment to have your sign added
  9. Mickaelhz

    PVP NOTES

    WEAPONRY NOTES official ferrymen->haelunor information care package test is on monday ALL STATS ARE FETCHED FROM RUNNING /SURGE STATS ON AVERAGE RARITY EQUIPMENT RARITY LEVELS ADD +O.25 DAMAGE AND IMPROVE SECONDARY EFFECTS. Iron weapons Netherite weapons Off hand Ranged weapons Iron Armor Netherite Armor
  10. Pretty good guy, handsome, charismatic, and all around wicked nice guy wicked nice 

  11. Heads or Tails Like many things, a coin has two faces. On the continent of Almaris, during the period known as the Barren Bottom within the Ferrymen, they were loved and praised by the realms of the North. They stood shoulder to shoulder with Haense, Norland and Urguan against Imperial Orenian expansion, quickly forming a very tight and what seemed to be an unbreakable bond. The Ferrymen were fairly given a piece of Norlandic land to do with whatever they pleased in exchange for their mercenary services. This idyllic period in time of course did not last. Once the Ferrymen and Norland no longer shared a common enemy, the Norlanders decided that they didn’t want the Ferrymen as allies anymore. The men of the North and their vassal of Elysium made multiple attempts to forcibly kick the Ferrymen out of their main base of operations, Shipwreck Keep - unsuccessful, of course. We understand that the current leadership of the Kingdom of Norland might not have the same beliefs and opinions as their past rulers; but the traitorous leaders involved with these decisions are still lauded as heroes, and the Ferrymen demonized as the villains. The Grand Kingdom of Urguan on the other hand granted us a tower on their most valuable towers that proudly flaunted our banners for nearly a century. Because of this history, the Ferrymen feel the need to clarify their stance on the ongoing conflict the Norlanders - age old adversaries of the Ferrymen themselves - entangled themselves within. The Ferrymen believe that Norland’s obstruction of justice by intervening with dwarven grudges is an act that warrants retaliation by the Grand Kingdom of Urguan. The Ferrymen believe that the Norlandic coronation was not the correct time and place for the Grand Kingdom of Urguan to attempt to resolve their grudges with the Vale tribesmen. Everyone at the coronation was a guest of the Kingdom of Norland and attacking their guests can be seen as an attack on the kingdom’s sovereignty itself, circumventing diplomatic channels to harm a longstanding ally’s people. The Ferrymen believe that the Norlandic punishment of the arm sacrifice bestowed on Bakir Ireheart was too harsh for the crime he committed. The dwarves should’ve simply been removed from the coronation, and Urguan’s folk have every right to pursue retribution. The Ferrymen urge both sides of the war to remember the true catalyst of the war, the grudge that the dwarves originally attempted to resolve at the coronation. This grudge to our understanding was directed towards the Elvenessi refugees inhabiting the Cove of Nevaeh’len. As a result of the above, we consider both sides of the war to have a valid reason to take up arms, so long as no nation is fully destroyed. As such, the Ferrymen will not take a side in this war with Norland or Urguan, but shall opt instead to fight as a third party during skirmishes in this war. It is the principle of the Ferrymen that spoils of war ought to be collected by our warriors from both sides at swordpoint. This policy shall endure until other diplomatic arrangements are sought out from Urguan or Norland. If the conflict ever escalates to a point where the existence of either the Kingdom of Norland or the Grand Kingdom of Urguan is at risk, the Ferrymen will organize an auction for their services where the Kingdom of Norland will start at a balance of -2000 minas due to their past attempts to drive our people out of their homeland. Signed, The Ferryman
  12. THE FERRYMEN A coin for your troubles In this world there is a certain balance to be kept. This balance is not seen, yet when you close your eyes, it is present, undeniably and without question. The Ferrymen serve this balance by mending its fractures, and with unwavering resolve, waging war in its name. Their belief stems from the disparity between the impossibly wealthy nobility and the dirt-poor, hardworking farmer. How can it possibly be that a laborer, toiling until their weary back gives way, settles for meager bread at day's end, while a council member, lounging with feet up, indulges in a gluttonous banquet? DOCTRINES Rules of the Ferrymen Nobility / Nobles - Ever since their creation, the Ferrymen have primarily set their sights on those who claim noble ancestry. Their belief is rooted in the notion that they are destined to bridge the gap between hard working peasants and the privileged palace dwellers. In earlier times, the Ferrymen would seize noblewomen during grand gatherings and demand exorbitant ransoms for their release. Additionally, they took pleasure in maiming public figures. It is worth noting that their quest for equilibrium isn't always marked by violence; they also resort to overcharging royalty for their mercenary services as a means of levelling the playing field. Common Men - The Ferrymen, as a mercenary group, hold a distinctive stance when it comes to the common men. They see themselves as champions of the hardworking masses, aiming to uplift and advocate for their rights. These men, in most cases, are to be spared. It is crucial that members of the Ferrymen give part of what they squeeze out of the rich to the masses in the name of balance. Noblemen who have majorly slighted farmers have previously had their mansions razed and riches redistributed as a warning to their kind. Common men labelled as “luxury leeches'', on the other hand, are to be treated as their overlords. The Value of a Life - Within the ranks of the organization, the value of a life is measured in a binary fashion: it is either deemed worthless or esteemed as a single golden coin. This determination hinges on the individual's conduct during their final moments, as their true nature is believed to be revealed in their dying breath. Should a Ferryman perceive that their adversary fought valiantly and displayed acts of courage in their last stand, it is customary to place a solitary golden coin beneath the fallen foe's tongue. This token serves as payment for their passage into the realms beyond life, ensuring a more favorable journey into the afterlife. Selflessness - One Ferryman's triumph is heralded as a collective victory within the organization, emphasizing the profound significance of selflessness among its members. Rarely does an accomplishment belong solely to an individual Ferryman, for their achievements are intertwined with the shared efforts and support of their comrades. In this close-knit community, the concept of individual glory takes a backseat to the recognition that success is derived from the collaborative spirit and unity of purpose that permeates every aspect of the organization. The ethos of selflessness is deeply ingrained, fostering an environment where personal achievements are celebrated as a testament to the unwavering dedication and cooperation of all Ferryman, solidifying their bond and forging a collective legacy that transcends the accomplishments of any single individual. Territorialism - The Ferrymen are renowned for their vigilant presence along the borders they safeguard, commonly referred to as the shoreline, where they diligently enforce a substantial fee for those seeking passage. This practice reflects their profound beliefs regarding the afterlife, mirroring the notion that a revered entity known as the Ferryman exacts a toll as a prerequisite for traversing into the realms beyond. Those on good standing with the Ferrymen, however, are free to roam wherever they please. APPEARANCE Attires & Clothing Status - In order to avert the targeting of specific high-ranking members during skirmishes, the Ferrymen ensure that there are no distinguishing characteristics in the appearance of their ranks. This deliberate choice eliminates any visual disparities based on status. The organisation has long held reservations about the practice of adorning Commanders with attention-drawing attire, which serves to attract undue focus and potentially endanger their safety. Examples: Traditions Culture & Heritage Coins for the Dead - The ultimate show of mercy. In the eyes of the Ferrymen, the placement of a singular golden coin beneath the tongue of the fallen adversary transcends mere symbolism. It is an act of mercy that seeks to ensure a more favourable journey into the realms beyond life. By offering this token of recognition, the Ferrymen extend a compassionate gesture, granting the fallen the opportunity for a dignified passage into the afterlife. Preventive Measure - In its essence, the most straightforward tradition practised by the Ferrymen is the sacrifice of an eye. This ritual serves as a form of punishment for individuals who exhibit a condescending attitude towards others. Those who have engaged in such behaviour have their eyes extracted, ensuring that they can never again look down upon their fellow beings. The origins of this tradition can be traced back to an incident involving a soldier from the Imperial State Army. It was upon this individual that the act of sacrificing an eye was first carried out, setting a precedent for its subsequent use within the Ferrymen's practices. Initiation - When the ceremony of initiation takes place, a recruit reaches a point of no return and becomes a fully fledged member of the organization. It consists of two parts: the Seafarer’s rite and the River Crossing. First the recruit shall recite the following oath, which has been recited by many scallywags before them: “As I sail for distant shores, I leave this simple life behind me. Exchange my bed for a pair of oars. To finally be free. I vow to take up arms for those that don’t have any, to even out the scales. Take from those that have plenty. Like those before me did, in their legendary tales. Only justice, I'll deliver. And know no other true allegiance, even when things go south. Until my body floats down the river, with a coin in its mouth.” After this, the recruit will be given their first coin for the dead. To earn it they must partake in the River Crossing. The recruit is to put the coin in their mouth and be forcefully submerged in a vessel of water by a high ranking member of the organization until they are rendered unconscious. If at any moment they spit out the coin in an attempt to breathe or fight their way out of the water, the recruit fails the ritual and will have their throat slit for their disrespect and incompetence. This part of the ceremony symbolizes the recruit letting go of what they once were and fully embracing the dangers that the life of a Ferryman brings. Afterwards, the recruit is resuscitated and allowed to keep the coin as their own to hold if they ever fall in battle. Celebrations are usually arranged later at the former recruit’s own accord after they are given some time to rest from the ordeal. Relics Treasures & Heirlooms Shipwreck Throne - A throne made from the remnants of the ship that was stuck in Shipwreck Keep on the realm of Almaris. The throne lies dormant due to the nature of the leadership within the group, they would rather sit at the same table as the rest of their men. Instead the throne remains empty for every meeting, leaving room for the idyllic figure known as the Ferryman. The River Crosser - A gladius of pure carbarum forged and wielded by the dark elven mastersmith of the Ferrymen. Its name was granted after it aided in delivering over one hundred separate souls to The Ferryman. Banjo’s Banjo - A Banjo designed as both an instrument of music and war. It is a Banjo fitted with a sharpened and resistant edge of thanhic steel, functioning similar to an axe. The odd material gives it a strange sound, yet one that has become notoriously enjoyed among the Ferrymen ranks. Its first use was in the tavern of Oren, in a ballad about Emperor John VIII’s mother. This later became the most popular song of 37 S.A. Beard #31 - A mighty beard retrieved from the 31st Grand King of Urguan during a skirmish known as the “Run through them”-incident. During this skirmish the King was captured, hung from his ankles and given a clean shave. Language Glossary & Terms Captain - Brought into existence by Basiyl Mareno, the title was originally used as a title just below the idyllic Ferryman but has since his resignation been used to denote any form of leadership figure within the Ferrymen. “It might be a tough task, but they're captain's orders. Ferryman - A long-time member of the organization who has proven himself in battle and has been a devoted follower of Ferrymen doctrine for a very long time. They have proven that they understand the deep meaning behind the actions of the group. They are trusted to teach the sailors and scallywags. “A singular Ferryman is worth 100 soldiers.” Sailor - Someone who has frequently sailed with the Ferrymen. They’ve been oathed and by doing so declared that they’re fully supportive of their cause and aspire to grow alongside the organization and become a true Ferryman one day. “That sailor is on the right path to become a Ferryman.” Scallywag - Someone who just started openly associating with the Ferrymen. They just heard about their goals, situation or cause and only recently decided to give the life of a mercenary a chance. They have not taken any oaths and have not proven their worth. “Stay in line buddy, scallywags don’t get a say.” Oarsmen - Often seen as the driving force behind the Ferrymen, oarsmen are simple laborers who aid the the organization by hard work (Farming crops, tending to animals,...) instead of fighting. “Without the oarsmen there wouldn’t be blades to fight with.” Helm - Someone who has been assigned leadership for a specific operation. They’re responsible for guiding and coordinating a group of Ferrymen exclusively during said operation. “A well respected man, he was the helm for even-out evening.” Wig - The enemy. This term is used to refer to the deceptive, silver-tongued nobility of our realm, making people believe something that is simply not true. Much like a wig tries fooling people into believing its wearer isn’t bald. “Never trust that wig, he couldn’t speak the truth if he wanted to.” Luxury Leech - A simple man who instead of joining the ferryman's cause, resorts to becoming a slave to the upper class in exchange for nothing but a little of luxury and comfort. “You’d be a good man if you weren’t such a luxury leech.” Deepwater - A dangerous, unpredictable environment with unknown risks and treacherous conditions. “Those streets are deepwater.” Siren’s call - An offer, opportunity or proposal that seems too good to be true, potentially luring members into a trap. “Don’t enter the city through the gatehouse, that’s a siren’s call.” Salt-blood - A term of endearment or camaraderie among the Ferrymen, emphasizing the connection they have with the sea. a Ferryman calls another Ferryman a salt-blood if they consider them to truly belong to the group. “He might seem a bit distant sometimes but he’s a salt-blood through and through.” Barnacle - Used to describe people that entirely depend on the Ferrymen for their dirty business. In other words, people who “cling” onto the Ferrymen to save them. “They can’t fend for themselves, a whole lot of barnacles they are.” Squabble - A small-scale conflict with little to no witnesses. “Was Nothing but a squabble.” Marooned - A Ferryman who currently resides in a high-security prison within enemy lands. “We’d be lucky if we ever see him again, he’s been marooned for over 10 hours now.” Seafoam - A term used to describe something superficial. “I have no idea why jewelry is so expensive, it’s all just a bunch of seafoam.” Tidewalker - A warrior that won’t risk their life even for the greatest of causes or protecting their people. They refuse to fight at difficult odds yet always show for skirmishes that are won before they start; thus hiding when the water rises but showing their face once the water (risk) is low. “It will become easier once we start winning, for most of their knights are tidewalkers.” Driftwood - A member of the organization that has lost contact with the bulk of the group, someone we haven’t heard from in a while. “All of the conflict with our leader turned him into a driftwood.” Shoreline - The borders of territories or region where the Ferrymen actively exert their control. This is often done by demanding a toll. “It’s an honor to be sent to the shoreline, that’s where all the action happens.” Click this button for discord invite. ^ p.s. none of this post is public.
  13. Utak Ireheart raises a mug to the initiative shown by the young King of what should've been. "To build a home fo' all t'a sons o' Urguan. To abandon et es tuuh abandon yehr ancestors. From the rubble of the war of the beards tuuh da glorious 'alls et es tuuhday. Every drop o' sweat, every bead o' blood. Let our efforts nae be disrespected."
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