Chapter 15, Slow but Steady
---The private Journals of Jero I, King of the Croats and Grand Prince of Montenegro---
Journal Entry 262, 31st January 1916
I have no head for military matters, despite my Father’s position as Chief Commander of the Croatian army before he became Ban of Croatia, but I’m told that “ammunition area effect calculations” are a big step forward for Croatia - which, to be honest, is still technologically backwards and perhaps the most primitive nation on the European continent.
However, numbers make up for our technological disadvantage, and so the new brigade of troops in Atjeh is a nice help.
Journal Entry 263, 28th February 1916
Surrealism artistry has grabbed on in Croatia this month, while yet another brigade has been completed in Atjeh.
Journal Entry 264, 31st March 1916
Ditto to my entry in January - Some military invention took place this month, and supposedly it improves organization. They call it “Empirical Combat Efficiency Matrix”.
Meanwhile, my Cultural Minister tells me that the new introspectionism thought has become prominent in military circles. Point defence is next on the research agenda.
This comes as Austrian Nationalist’s revolt in seven provinces this month.
Journal Entry 265, 31st April 1916
This month a row between a South German boy and a Croatian officer reached my attention when the boy’s mother, the influential Marquess Valentina of Pancevo, complained to my about this event. I told her that her boy needs more discipline, something that did not go down well with the Marquess.
---The National News, 19th May 1916---
The King of Croatia, Jero I, died suddenly in his sleep last night. The 60 year old sovereign has left behind two children - the 10 year old Prince Gregoric of Croatia, and the 13 year old King Josip of Spain - and a legacy that will last forever. King Jero started the Croatian colonial era, and has led Croatia to its greatest heights in known history.
He will forever be remembered.
---Diaries of Amelia Nazor, Queen Mother of Croatia---
31st of May, 1916
Upon the death of my not so dearly departed husband, King Jero I, I was appointed Regent of Croatia for my ten year old son Gregoric. This, I find, is a frustrating position as I’m confined to wielding very limited power while the Senate, who technically hold most of the powers during regency, bickers over small matters.
At least the rebellion has been put down, and a new infantry brigade is completed in Atjeh. I’d had to abandon the post of Viceroy though, and I’ve appointed Zlatan Alapic, a retired naval commander, as my replacement.
31st of June, 1916
Avantgarde Music is the latest craze in the social circles. I must admit I don’t like what I’ve heard of it, but oh well - I must suffer through it for my reputation as a lively socialite.
31st of September, 1916
Mr Alapic has failed miserably in his duties, letting a colonial rebellion get out of hand and grow into a full blown rebellion. See what I have to put up with?
Did I mention that the Senate decided to break up the forces in Atjeh to cover every province, resulting in the slaughter of an isolated brigade which was trapped by Atjehian nationalists and killed by reinforcements could arrive. The rebels were destroyed eventually, but at a cost.
I however am most overjoyed to find out that the Sixth Olympic Games will be held in Zagreb. It truly shows that Croatia is rising in the world!
31st of December, 1916
I managed to wrangle a massive expansion of the fleet out of the bickering Senate - Some 12 frigates are to be built in Atjeh. It’s perhaps the first constructive thing that senate has ever done.
31st of January, 1917
I’ve slowly been able to get some more concessions from the Senate over the last months. In January, I was able to convince them to let me choose factories to expand and build - I immediately expanded a luxury clothes factory in Slavonia, but I was interrupted from doing anything further when Anarcho-Liberals rebelled and besieged Novi Sad.
31st of February, 1917
Those Anarcho-Liberals vanished before the troops reached Novi Sad, good riddance. I would have preferred if we could have crushed them using force though, so that they would never be able to rebel again. Oh well.
31st of March, 1917
I’m most happy to tell you that Croatia’s athletes did tremendously well at the 6th Olympic Games, hosted in Zagreb this month. Croatia received more gold medals than any other national team -however, I will mention that Austria-Hungary refused to participate because of past grievances between our nations.
31st of May, 1917
Three new frigates reached completion this month, and without breaking the bank - Which proved the Senate wrong. I immediately requested the authority to spend the royal treasury funds dedicated to research, and was granted it - So as Point Defense Systems are completed, I’m now carefully considering what I will use this money on.
The Senate has also approved a series of fort upgrades in every province.
31st of September, 1917
A mighty achievement took place this month. The population of Croats within Croatia reached one million!
While not Croatian myself, I can see why they are justifiably proud of reaching such a number. Indeed, when you consider that in 1838 only 296,000 Croatians lived in Croatia itself, it is an even greater achievement.
However, to my annoyance, Croatian communists have taken arms this week, greatly spoiling this momentous occasional.
31st of November, 1917
Most of the rebels have been put down this month, and a delayed celebration of the one million Croat’s achievement takes place. In addition, several new ships were christened in Atjeh this month
Some type of new revolutionary practice for communist regimes to use has been thought up in Croatia this month. I barely understood the briefing my PA gave me on the matter.
31st of January, 1918
A long overdue review of the government budgets happened this month, with the bickering Senate giving me the responsibility. I found that things are well, besides some problems with the Croatian people getting luxury goods.
Gold mining is actually what keeps us out of debt now, I was surprised to find.
31st of April, 1918
More ships set sail this month from the ports of Atjeh, while I began looking at possible war options. The Senate tells me that the law says I’m not allowed to declare war during regency, but hey, who are they to refuse the royal family anything?
More rebels have delayed any conquests though, dratted Yugoslavian Pan-Nationalist’s rebelling in two provinces.
31st of June, 1918
Our Ambassador to the United Kingdom succeeded well recently, but that is overshadowed by the fact that I decided on what to spend the research funds on. Steam turbines.
31st of September, 1918
Rebellion after rebellion and the finishing of more ships have characterised the last few months. Everyone from Pan-Nationalists to Anarcho-Liberals took arms at one time or another. All fell swiftly, though.
This month is notable because the second Croatian elections are taking place.
31st of October, 1918
Some strange military invention, “Combat Loss Evaluation Scemata” or similar was implemented this month. It all sounds like a load of bunk to me, but hey, who am I to say anything?
The United Kingdom is currently invading China yet again, but nothing else of note is taking place internationally. On the domestic front, Fascists have taken to fighting in the streets.
31st of January, 1919
We discovered Steam Turbines this month, presumably some years after anyone else but the most primitive uncivilized nation. Oh well, but that is Croatia for you.
31st of March, 1919
Mechanical Production is Croatia’s next research project - It comes during oddly peaceful times, with the only events of the past months being a poet who just narrowly escaped being poisoned by our agents, and the invention of flexible firepower.
However, conditions aren’t helped by a potato blight in Kotor.
31st of May, 1919
Staff Command Support has been implemented this month, I’m told by the top Generals in Croatia. In addition, I ordered a crackdown on crime with the establishment of Croatia’s first penal colony.
31st of June, 1919
Another Olympic Games is coming up, and Croatia was invited. I accepted only as it’s rather fun attending those parties for the heads of state who come to the games to cheer on their teams, especially with the divine nibbles that the Olympic caterers whip up.
31st of September, 1919
Pan-Nationalists rose up this month, while I myself spent my time looking into the international situation. Currently, Britain is being beat up by the USA while it attempts to conquer Washington State and Czechoslovakia is invading Ethiopia.
Meanwhile, rebels of some unknown type are occupying Spanish Istria unopposed
31st of October, 1919
Communists took arms this month, much to my disgust. Why can’t these fools spend more time being productive, instead of getting themselves killed?
31st of November, 1919
Mechanical Production was invented this month, improving factory efficiency I’m told. Developing ‘clean’ coal is the next spending project now that this is finished.
31st of December, 1919
For the first time in many months, Croatia was able to recruit new soldiers - A brigade of guards in Sopron, in this case. A republican author has grown to prominence recently, his work advocating a Croatian democracy. I must say he is quite annoying, but supressing the work is too much trouble.
28th of February, 1920
A new decade has come around, and with it the mechanical precision saw and the implementation of local support centres for the needy in Croatia.
31st of March, 1920
I’m told that the invention of the ‘Pitts Threshing Machine’ has greatly improved grain, fruit and tea production this month.
However, the greatest achievement is the ushering in of a new state for the Croatian realm - Atjeh. It was this weekly officially granted statehood, and the new Grand Duke of Atjeh (Zlatan Alapic, previously the Viceroy of Atjeh) given its governorship.
31st of April, 1920
Mechanized slaughtering blocks for butcheries were implemented this month, while those new guards were made ready in Sopron and are being whipped down to Zagreb. Another brigade of the greatly better infantry form is always good.
Laughably, I was just informed that some 3,000 soldiers that Croatia so many years ago sent to invade China have been rediscovered … living in the Crimea. Well, only a thousand of them remain but it is something of an oddity.
A fleet has been dispatched to pick them up, and reintroduce them to civilization.
31st of June, 1920
The nations last penal colonies closed down this month, since we no longer have any colonies. In addition, communists have again taken arms in small numbers in Varazdin.
31st of August, 1920
Over 8,000 rebels in the very heart of Zagreb were a close scare this month, but eventually they were crushed before they could harm the city too much. Lucky for me as I was having dinner with the Queen of Austria-Hungary at the time, discussing reparations, and an interruption would have been most problematic. I mean, our coffee would have gone cold if we’d been forced to flee for our lives!
Oh and fortification upgrades have been completed in all Croatian provinces this month.
31st of September, 1920
Clean coal research was finished this month, bringing with it numerous boosts to production efficiency. Interchangeable parts are our most prioritised next research.
31st of October, 1920
Modern designs for various stuff has been implemented this month, upping national prestige but not doing much else. Also Sharp & Robert’s Power Loom was implemented this month, and I was forced to tell the Count of Zalaegerszeg to put a stop to a problematic south german publication in his county. I’m also having a nice chuckle about the revolting free of Austria in Spanish Istria - While Austria-Hungary still exists, right next door.
Oh and I splashed some cash on opening a liquor distillery in Banda Aceh.