Monday, 15 November 2010

Old grudges fan the flames of war

160PC Battles of the Privateers

By the year 150PC a renewed peace between The Holy Sigmarite Empire and Mellvellon saw trade and commerce between the two nations flourish once again. However the alarmingly common raids of the Kaalroen Empire upon the trade routes caused the Council of Sigmarheim to send an entire army along the Easting Road in 159PC as it saw an increasing need to deter further ambushes; the Kaalroen Empire had managed to extend its reach as far as the southern Branmeren Hills.

The Dragon Lords of Mellvellon took an entirely different perspective. Insular and haughty, they refused to accept the Kaalroens as anything other than barbarians and savages. Even after a number of military defeats at the hands of the Kaalroens over the past century, dogged High Elf pride refused to let them acknowledge that the Kaalroens proved a credible threat. So it was that when an army flying the banner of the Holy Sigmarite Empire marched up the Easting Road towards Averacium the Dragon Lord’s took great insult at the thought of foreign armies on “their” soil. They could only assume that the Sigmarites had once again reneged on their treaty. Conflict was inevitable.

After the defeat of the Sigmarite host at the Battle of Averacium, Prince Saravael decreed the alliance over. In 160PC he loosed the Elven privateers upon the high seas so that they might seize Sigmarite goods and ships as they had tried to some twelve years earlier. Over nine months a number a small skirmishes, chases and minor engagements took place between the Elven privateers and the navy of the Sigmarites.

The conflict came to a head in the winter of 160PC. The Elves massed their efforts to ambush a large Sigmarite convoy bound for Cacauaxochitl as it passed the southern coast of Armaethor. The convoy was protected by a number of cruisers and lead by the mighty battleship Sigmar’s Blessing. Arrayed against them were the nimble vessels of the Elven battle-group led by the now infamous battleship Tears of Isha – she had accounted for more than a dozen prized Sigmarite merchant vessels in the past year.

At first the Elves looked to have the upper hand, their swift craft easily out-pacing the Sigmarite warships. Yet as battle was joined, the fates turned against the Elves and the winds changed direction. Now favouring the Sigmarites, they were able to close quickly upon the privateers. Well-drilled gunnery proved its worth and the fragile Privateers ships were pounded at close range. Sigmar’s Bleesing drove into the heart of the enemy fleet and blasted the Elven crusiers.

In an attempt to turn the tide of battle, the Elven mages aboard Tears of Isha began to summon a magical tempest that would wrack the Sigmarite ships. Yet as they reached the climax of their incantation Sigmar’s Blessing levelled a devastating broadside that tore through her Elven counterpart. As Tears of Isha splintered and sank the mages were disrupted from their sorcery and lost control. The eldritch storm swept out in a cataclysmic explosion that destroyed the remaining Elven cruisers and caused heavy damage to nearby Sigmarite ships. The remaining privateers took flight, denied their chance to seize the valuable convoy.

The Sigmarite fleet limped into port at Cacauaxochitl two weeks later. It took many months of repairs before some of the ships were once again sea-worthy.

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