King Miquel I de Forez of France sat in his palace outside of Paris. Looking over some maps of Southern France and Aquitaine and the Kingdoms beyond the Pyrenees, that had been destroyed by Muslim conquests. This was but one of the many things that troubled the King of a France that had slowly decayed. Another pressing matter was his wife, whom his father had married him too just so happened to be his father's half-sister so therefore it was Miquel's aunt. Sure they had had kids in fact had already given birth to a healthy baby boy named Sevarics. But it would always kind of worry him every time his wife's belly would puff up.
It was partly this and partly his Father, the King of Burgundy's doing, but the King of France was craven at this moment in life. He hated the idea of wars and marching alongside his men, so it was a trait that made him stay in his planning rooms, browsing maps and reading books. It is said that this Miquel had been the most learned and studious of all the Kings of Burgundy that came before him.
It was in August that word reached Paris that King Miquel of France had been chosen King of Burgundy and Jerusalem by the electors and also that through succession laws he would inherit: Lotharingia, England and Scotland. And so King Miquel rode out with his retinue of French knights bound for Pusignan. Upon his arrival he would be crowned King, and informed of the current state of the Realm, mostly having to do with the war against the Duke of Moray.
The war only lasted for barely a year after King Miquel I of France would assume the true Burgundian regnal name as King Miquel IV de Forez. But the Duke of Moray was destroyed and he capitulated, and shortly after this as word about the King's reign in France had been whispered from realm to realm it became normal to hear of the fourth Miquel referred to as "the Just".
After the Victory was announced that Moray had fallen back into the fold, the King began to ponder what to do about some very serious issues. His wife/aunt had given birth to several perfectly healthy children, but unfortunately little Elysa was completely and totally inbred and would be born so disgustingly malformed and twisted and comatosed that Miquel the Just would briefly forget about his virtues and murder his wife.
After the murder of his wife, Miquel would retire deep within his castle at Pusignan and try to forget the sight of the monster his wife had given birth too. In some ways it even made him freakishly scared to even look at his eldest child and heir Sevarics for fear of seeing the boy malformed and twisted, slowly morphing into some demon. Life would continue this way for the King, who should in all likelihood be out with his army's and marching from battle to battle and getting a better view of the realm. But the king would stay in Pusignan, and refuse to leave even after hearing the grave news that the independent duchy of Athens had lost its holdings to a Muslim Jihad for Africa.
Perhaps the King's cravenness was the reason that the Wars had so far been postponed. But it was also for this reason that a diplomatic effort sent to the Prince Bishop Jaufres of Auvergne was met with him coming to Pusignan and kneeling before his rightful sovereign swearing fealty and steadfast love to the King. It was after this swearing of fealty that the King would bring in his Marshal and begin discussing plans on what the beginnings of a Burgundian Reconquista should look like. However, once more these plans would be placed on hold by the Roman Ambassador, who requested Burgundian help once more to put down his own rebels all the while King Miquel was dealing with his rebellious Duke Sabastiaen I of Valois.
After the successful conclusion of that rebellion and the realm's issues taken care of with knowledge that his Council, headed by his Chancellor would be more then capable to take care of the Realm while the King sailed for the Eastern Roman Empire. His first stop at the army he headed would be the occupied territory of Adrianopolis of which his forces would liberate on the 17 of July 1257. The very same day that Miquel would receive word that his wife had given birth to a baby boy named Miquel de Forez.
The auspiciousness of this birth of Miquel's on the day of a successful military operation, and the fact his wife was kind enough to name the boy Miquel well, it made the King begin to wonder if he should even allow Savarics to ascend the throne. It would be a decision that would tear Miquel in many different directions through his reign and would lead him to educate both Princes to see who would be the best heir for him.
And then a year later a boy named Raimon
At this point Miquel had more or less mashed every Byzantine rebel lord he had found and now all that remained were two. And so he regrouped his forces and sent one contingent back to England to deal with some Peasants that had been burning crops. But it was hear towards the end of the Byzantine Civil War that King Miquel IV "the Just" de Forez would forever lose his Craven trait and prove himself to be a man and a soldier, and a leader destined for the greatness that his grandfather had achieved.
With the end of the Eastern Roman Empire's Civil Wars finally ending with the death of a rebel lord on the 16 of September 1259, King Miquel would return once more to Pusignan where he would meet with his Marshal who had some very wonderful news, for the Marshal had already allocated enough resources and man power and drew up the final plans in which a three pronged attack in Muslim holdings would commence.
First the joint English/Scottish Forces, would sail to lay siege to the former Christian Duchy of Asturias of which the King would lay claim too in a Holy War. Then there would be the Burgundian Invasion of Aquitane as French forces amassed to sail behind enemy lines and cut off all supplies and also to lay siege to important holdings as well as to reinforce any generals who needed reinforcing.
And so with that the plans were set for on St. Valentines Day of the year Twelve Hundred Sixty King Miquel IV "the Just" de Forez would seek to reap vengeance upon the Muslim hordes.
The Holy War for Aquitane was King Miquel's true goal on his joint declaration of war against Beja and Sevilla. However, he wished to inflict more harm to the Iberian peninsula's then just recapturing their conquered lands in France. He wished nothing more then to show the Muslim leaders that there was a new power on the scene in Europe. A power that would make the Kaiser look like a mere minor lord.
All the Burgundian forces gathered at their mustering points throughout France and Burgundy awaiting for the leaders to organize them into more coherent and organized units before the march to liberate Aquitane and bring its people back within the army of Christendom. In England and in Scotland word was received, and the lords of Albion called their fighting Saxon/Norwegian/Scottish-Norman bands together to gather at designated ports in Kent and Lancaster, where they would board the Burgundian Armada and set sail for the shores of heathen Iberia.
By the time the Armies of England and Scotland landed and set siege to the Muslim held Emirate of Asturia the siege and occupation of Aquitane had already begun. The King's armies successfully repelled attack after attack and stormed the walls of castle after castle. And all the while King Miquel sat waiting word to come from the Emir for he knew that surrender was imminent.
On May 1st, 1261, the largest pitched battle of the Wars was fought known as the Battle of Lumbrales. On that day many thousands of men good Christians and even heathens would die but the most notable of them all was Count Rolland of Innse-Gall, who had his head nearly lopped off by Muslim infantry. That same Count Rolland who bent the knee to King Miquel IV's father so many short and quick years ago.
It was the Burgundian victory at Lumbrales that seemed to put the nail in the coffin of Emir Yahya the Wise of Beja. For the Muslim Emir had no desire to further struggle against the superior forces of Burgundy. He would surrender later that year, on August 29, 1261, forfeiting Aquitane back into Christendom.
Before the King boarded his men in the ships sitting off the coast of Aquitane the King called forth a Kinsmen Sanc de Forez and raised him up to the title of Duke of Aquitane. Once more carrying forth the tradition that had thus far gathered the family so much power. The continual elevation of family, for in many European circles it was beginning to be whispered that God had picked the family of the golden dauphin to one day rule all. But those are just rumors and whispers of the fanciful townfolk and peasantry. The truth is the de Forez's tried to keep their family bound, and thus far in our history it has worked out well for them.
So now the sole focus of the war was slammed upon the Emir of Sevilla, who had until this point missed the largest brunt of King Miquel's forces. But they descended upon him like some demonic locusts, pillaging the lands of Iberia and raping their way through hoping to get a chance to meet the Emir in open Battle. Alas, such a glorious day would not happen though, for Emir Ahmad the Great of Sevilla had witnessed the crushing blow Burgundian forces had placed upon his friend and fellow believer in Allah, the Emir Yahya the Wise.
With that and seeing there was no hope of victory Emir Ahmad the Great cut his losses and capitulated, surrendering the Duchy of Asturias to King Miquel the Just. This duchy he would later grant to Payen de Forez as Duke but at the moment just gave him the two Counties that made up the duchy.
A year before the surrender of Ahmad, Pope Lando II, the same man who had given all the glory to King Miquel IV grandfather King Miquel the Great, forty years ago in the Crusades for Jerusalem. Had apparently grown restless, and at this time, was encouraged by the Burgundian focus on Iberia. For the Pope feeling that the Sultanate of Mauretania would be a pain to overcome should they ally with other Iberian nations that get attacked through Holy War. He decided he could end their influence with one well planned and coordinated Crusade. Unfortunately this Crusade King Miquel the IV could not join right away as he was finishing his sieges in Sevilla.
But rest assured while taking note of the castles in Asturias after the peace treaty King Miquel viewed his men and spoke with is Generals regarding the Crusade. He sought answers and whether they would rather return home to recover from these two coinciding victories or if they were eager to pick up arms along side their Christian brethren and sack the North African Sultanate of Mauretania.
The answer the King received shocked him at first. For he could not believe that these battle hardened men who had already spent several years away from home would ever wish to return to their ships and set sail south down the coastlines of Portugal, and onto the beaches of Morocco. But his men were eager and there was a great clamour among the rank and file yearning for a Crusade. So that they too could bask in the glory of their grandfathers who had seized Jerusalem.
And with that wave of support behind him King Miquel IV "the Just" de Forez sent word to the Pope that his men would soon be seen, for Burgundy would once more ride to crush the Muslim hordes.
So without missing a beat or turning his forces around to return home, King Miquel began boarding his armies back into the Burgundian Armada, and officially joined the Crusade on March 6, 1263.
As the Crusaders set sail around the northwestern tip of Iberia and began making their way south, the King's wife would once again give birth to another child. There has been many many boys born to the King at this point and his unquenchable libido is something to be discussed some other day and chapter in the future.
One month after setting sail from Asturia, the Burgundian King would disembark from his ship and step foot on the coastline of Marrakech for the first time in his life. Once his soldiers were finally prepared and organized after the disembarkation they began the slow hot march to the capital of the Sultanate.
This Crusade would lack in serious battles as far as it concerned the Burgundian forces who chose instead to sit and siege rather march out and fight in pitched battles. But that was understandable and Pope Lando II more then understood that the levies of King Miquel were the hand of God, whose only purpose was to smash and grab all land belonging to the Muslim Lords.
And so a year would pass, as the Just Dauphin Scourge of the Infidels continued lay siege to the Sultan's prize province, when news from the Isles arrived fro his kinsan Duke Martin, stating that a lucky inheritance had occurred and the Duchy of Apulia in southern Italy. So yet another piece of land once more added to the Kingdom de Forez, this piece of land would also go along with other various odd inheritances that year as the county of Krain long ruled over by the de Forez family offshoot, would swear allegiance to the Kingdom and so would a small province directly to the east of Hebron which had formerly been under Swedish control.
But alas back to the Crusade, for Marrakech had fallen finally and the Sultan was on the run and rumors had it he was last seen riding to the northeast upon a camel, running away to his inevitable exile.
He would be caught though, and surrounded outside some poor county, where he would request peace from Pope Lando II and surrender his lands completely to the Bishop of Rome on the 19 of April 1265. On the day of celebrations the Pope invited King Miquel to a Palace in Tangiers where the celebrations were to be held, and greeted the King warmly for the Pope owed all Papal success thus far to the de Forez family.
It was that night of celebrations that Pope Lando would make a proclamation:
"Dear King Miquel IV "the Just Dauphin" de Forez King of Burgundy, Lotharingia, France, England, Jerusalem, and Scotland. You are Christendom's most upstanding monarch, a true defender of our faith. You are set upon the footsteps of your Grandfather the Great Miquel, and perhaps one day your accomplishments may outshine his. But for today as you are the reason for our victory over these Muslims, I hereby grant you all Mauretanian duchies. They are all yours to divide up among your family as you see fit. And may the Lord our Father and Saviour, Creator of Heaven and Earth forever continue to bless your dynasty, and lead you on further into greatness!"
The King of Burgundy knelt surprised that Holy Father felt so powerfully about his family. But then again it was not to be a surprise for this Pope in his younger days had been a good friend of Miquel II "the Great" de Forez, and had even travelled with him a bit in the Holy Land, and it was even fro time to time rumored that Lando had at some points in time traveled to Avignon to meet with the aging Great Dauphin and keep him in tune with the latest happenings throughout the realm of Christendom.
Two days later with the Pope by the King's side he called forth a list of nobles to raise to the lordships of Mauretania, they were as follows:
Payen de Forez the Count of the Asturian Counties would be proclaimed Duke of Asturia from this day forward.
Berenger de Forez the King's 13 year old half-brother would be raised to become the Duke of Fez
Prince Peire de Forez the Kings 15 year old Half-Brother would be raised to become the Duke of Marrakech
Cousin Otton de Forez became the Duke of Tangiers
Kinsman Ricard de Forez became Duke of Tlemcen
Kinsman Simoun de Forez became Duke of Alger
Such were the newly minted an forged nobility of Mauretania. The new rulers of northwestern Africa and would one day in the future perhaps be the anvil to be used against the Iberian Muslims as the hammers from England and France and Burgundy would one day hopefully for Christendom smash the Iberians upon the face of that anvil.
Very nice going... on your way to turning the Western Mediterranean into a de Forez lake.
The years after the Crusade would for the most part see peace and the return of Burgundy's youth as the King would finally be able to retire to his castle after such a long time away. These years in which little to no wars or conquests occurred would see dear King Miquel IV, transform yet again. For te wars fought in Byzantium along the emperor's side destroyed the King's cowardice but this time in the castle as he looked back at all the blood spilled in his name and that of God, he began to wonder what it all was for.
In fact one of the first ever royal journals kept by a King of Burgundy was started by King Miquel IV "the Just" de Forez on the night of his eldest son's wedding to the heir to the Kingdom of Rus Yevpraxia Rurikovich.
This was a match orchestrated by the old Emperor Averado I de Forez, feeling it would be a very big deal to create a union between Rus and Burgundy, therefore bringing yet another large orthodox realm under Catholic de Forez control. But, it was this night that the dearest of Kings would sit in his study and begin to think and wonder about the lives he had taken:
Tis the night of the 8th of May Twelve Hundred Sixty Seven and my son marries the young heiress to the large Kingdom of Rus, of which is having to face the might of the Hordes at this time. I am sure their are Russian men dying on the frigid steps even now, arrows impaling their poor soft flesh. I've seen much of war and heard it proclaimed in the name of God the Holy Father, I've heard wars proclaimed in my name, King Miquel IV de Forez Defender of the Holy Church of Christ.
But why? Why should I as King spill the blood of my citizens in the name of some God who would allow my first wife to give birth to the twisted monster that clawed its way out of her womb. What God would allow me to in turn kill that wife? The priests and even Pope Lando II said it was necessary and gave me absolution for that sin, claiming my wife was much to close in blood to me and therefore our three kids were our punishment. If this is so why is Savarics such a strong and knowledgeable young man? How could something so perfect come from a mating so sinful?
It's been said that at that moment or some years later, the King lost his zeal for religion and even at times began to openly argue and debate the authority of the Church in his court. In fact it is said to have gotten so bad that King Miquel turned to sins of the flesh to prove that God was truly not watching the monarch's of Burgundy.
It was during this time that Duke Abelard of Lothian would rise up in Rebellion after hearing several of the heretical things Miquel had done in Court, the Scottish Duke decided that perhaps Scotland should never have accepted this supposed King of France and Burgundy as its righteously appointed King.
But Miquel would not even catch wind of this rebellion until it was long over. For the de Forez Lords of Southern England rode North to Lothian and scattered the Duke's armies and took him prisoner to await the King's Justice should the King ever decide to make his way to his private holdings in Kent to hold Court.
A few weeks ago I received word from the Duke of Norfolk that Lothian's rebellion had been put to a swift end. But it did not matter, I as King no longer deal with rebels. As I have way too many other more scholarly and intellectual things to stress my mind. And even though I was utterly tempted to ride head to Provence or head north through France on a Kingly Procession and hop the Isle at some sad Norman port, I stayed home for my lovely wife was in the throes of child birth once more.
My new son Ubert would be the sixth son she had given me and the seventh child in total. Counting my first wife my half-aunt if that is what is proper to call that woman, I have now had ten children, one died just months old, but so far the other two turned out perfectly normal and healthy adults. And thus far the seven children that this current wife has bred for me look and appear to be of healthy stock. And a good thing too, we need more de Forez boys to spread around the world. I dare say one day there will be no where else to place a de Forez. What a scary world that could be.
In November of 1271, I was walking around the castle brooding over life and the other grand themes of discussion that I would have with the learned scholars from our universities in Lyon and Marseille. Of course there were always Bishops present to offer their heartfelt theological ideas to these debates. But getting back on point I was walking around my castle when I bumped into a lass who I knew was a kinsman of mine visiting from Markward I of Norway's Court. That norwegian look about her just aroused me to no end...and well her hunchback just added some other kind of kink to my now growing desire.
The lady was excited, and I think she sensed this (I must note it had been a while since my wife let me into her bed) so she lifted her skirt and beckoned me to plant my seed.
Just to note the King never mentioned it in his journal, no one is sure why, but some think that perhaps King Miquel IV had grown tired of helping the Byzantine Emperor and no longer cared about that branch of the family. But anyway Emperor Averado I de Forez died on September 19, 1271, and was succeeded by his oldest son Averado II de Forez.
With the beginning of the year 1272 war broke out in the Holy Roman Empire, this time it was the Duke of Luxembourg. A territory that by rights belonged to the Crown of Lotharingia. And so finally King Miquel IV was called into action, and awoken from his rather studious slumber, as war was declared and levies were mustered and the march to Luxembourg, this time to claim the city of Bouillon once and for all. As a direct result of this war, Burgundian forces would for the first time since Independence clash on the battlefields against Imperial forces. As the main siege body laid waste to Luxembourg the rest of King Miquel's forces engaged the might of the Imperial armies to prevent them from laying siege to Luxembourgian lands and therefore preventing the successful war of King Miquel's
Alas on the 19 of February 1273 Duke Udo II of Luxembourg would surrender the county and city of Bouillon over to King Miquel IV de Forez and for the first time since Burgundy became free had they acquired lands from the de Jure territories of the Holy Roman Empire.
This fateful day would mark the the beginning of a period of questioning in Europe, for it would be feared from Oslo to Palermo and from London to Constantinople that the two mightiest members of Catholicism may in the end begin to devour each other. And so it would fall upon the Pope to begin a series of talks to try and prevent the unthinkable from occurring.
The years of King Miquel IV's great reign would seem to be overshadowed in his final years. For against the entire council's opinion the King would usurp the title of the Sultan of Mauretania and call himself King of Mauretania. A seventh crown upon Miquel's head but it would be the beginning of sinking his realm into years of civil war, and would lead to the second uprising within the de Forez household.
Not only was this by far one of his worst decisions, but it was thrown atop his affair with the hunchbacked monstrosity from Norway, and to finish it all off he had had his daughter-in-law the former heir to Rus murdered all because her far away brother had sired an heir. It began much seem to the people of his realms that the Just King was slowly turning into the Mad King.
It was during this time frame that weird outlandish visitors from the Eastern Steppes arrived in France, as a Captain of the Golden Horde seemed to be lost and wandering his warband about Continental Europe. They caused no trouble, well besides trampling some poor farmer's crops from time to time but they would eventually leave, nonetheless their sighting seemed to tell of a day when the Horde and Burgundy may cross paths.
Then on the 12 of February 1275, emissaries sent from the Duchess Fausta I of Baden entered the Castle of Pusignan, with word that the King's promise to back the plot to lower Crown Authority within the Holy Roman Empire had come, and that Civil War was now the only option. And so the King would send word throughout his realm that once more, it was time for Burgundy to march against the Emperor.
But before the King set forth to do battle his hunchbacked lover complained and complained about not seeing enough of her sweet King. And so the King not knowing what to do with this ugly annoyance decided to take her hunting for bear, hoping he'd be able to find something that would eat her and take her off his hands, but alas it failed.
A year would pass before any major engagements in the war would occur. The first of the two major Burgundian led battles was the Battle of Vaudemont on May 10, 1276, in which Duke Udo II of Luxembourg was captured and summarily executed on the 19 of May that same year. Its said the only reason the King had him ran through with a pike and left hanging outside Bouillon's main gates was for the simple reason that Udo still tried to proclaim being Duke of Luxembourg.
Two months later May 8, 1276, the most earth shattering battle to take place in Europe since the death of Kaiser Gebhard at the hands of the Cordoban Emir over one hundred forty years ago, began. The Battle of Bastogne in which an army of 24 thousand Burgundians marched against Kaiser Herbert I's main body of 18 thousand troops. That day it was the King of seven kingdoms against the Emperor of the Holy Roman Empire, both leading their forces headlong into battle. Both hoping to deliver a decisive blow to the other.
On this day as the son began to sink below the horizon and the Imperial troops had begun to flee and rout, that a bloodied captive was seen being led behind King Miquel's horse. The man it was said that day as whispers and rumors grew that he appeared important. And the fact that at his side was what appeared to be an Archbishop only could mean one possible thing.
It was on May 8, 1276 outside Bastogne that the de Forez family would forever have the Kaiser chained and detained. It was in many ways the one and final form of revenge the family could possibly inflict upon the Imperial nation after a Kaiser so many years ago had allowed King Miquel I to languish and die in prison.
What made one wonder is after the Kaiser's capture and subsequent imprisonment in the King's dungeons in Pusignan the Holy Roman Empire began to call Herbert I the Great even after he lost the war. And on top of that somehow the Kaiser in his depression of being called the Great and being in a de Forez dungeon began a systematic pogrom of revokation within the Empire starting with the Duchess of Baden.
It was at this time that King Miquel's brother Prince Piere Duke of Marrakech would begin sabre rattling. For he had been completely happy with his lot in life until Miquel created the Christian Kingdom of Mauretania. And the young half-brother was highly highly desirous of a crown. So the King would plot to kill his little brother and would in fact have a small group of plotters but with enough skill and finesse that is should beyond a doubt get the job done. Unfortunately someone had become drunk and informed the Duke of King Miquel's plans. And then there was a botched assassination attempt on the Duke as well that only made matters worse.
To top off Miquel's string of incorrect decisions he became infirm on the 15 of May 1277, which would thrust Prince Peire into action.
A month after the King's councillor's ordered the raising of the troops, Kaiser Herber I "the Great Imprisoned Kaiser" Staden was found to be dead within the King's dungeons.
The war against Duke Peire I would a little over a year and a half and would also encourage two minor de Forez Counts from Venaissin and Montferrato to join in Prince Peire's attempt to claim the Throne of Burgundy. But alas as with all rebellions it was doomed to failure, for Duke Peire of Marrakech was imprisoned on May 18, 1279, after his surrender.
Prince Peire would prove to be a very long lived prisoner however for the King would order him into the Oubliette assuming his little brother would quickly waste away but the persistent Duke would live another three almost four years, and on top of that managed to send word to Marrakech to kill the King's wife and Spymaster.
Word would reach the Castle and Prince Savarics the Chancellor of Burgundy and heir to the throne, that the Emperor Averado II "the blind" de Forez had been killed in battle by his rebelling Doux Manuel I of Nikaea on July 3, 1281. And that his son Kallistos would now assume the title of Basileusof the Eastern Roman Empire.
King Miquel IV "the Just" de Forez whose reign started shaky, was solidified by his braveness and iron fist in battle, and spiraling into an uncontrolled madness finally released his grip on the world by falling into a coma on the 23 of August 1282 leaving his heir and chancellor Prince Savarics to run the Kingdoms as Regent. And finally only a month later after the King fell into his coma, he would be declared dead, allowing Savarics to finally be crowned King.
Just an update on what the world looks like at the moment these are the mapshots I took just a year or so into Savarics reign.
This first one is the Independent nations map:
Second is the Dynastic map:
Nice going. You look to be in a good position if you want to move into Spain and mop the western edge of the map. if I were you would be tempted to give away a King title and get rid of all the odd bits like the top of Norway.
But I've been thinking of giving away Mauretania lately, its been a bit of a headache too keep. But we will see perhaps I'll try and hold it till I get too many angry de Forez dukes there and then pawn it off to the kinsman who likes me best lol.
The irrationality of King Miquel IV in his later years had put a large strain upon the King to Duke relations within the ever enlarging Kingdom of Burgundy. There were few Dukes who were happy with the way things were going and even less happy about this line of de Forez's staying in power. In fact there have been numerous sources that say many many people were more frightened of King Savarics' rule as no one knew what to expect from the product of a nephew-aunt marriage, for the man could consider himself of pure de Forez blood.
The first round of independence had started with the Duke of Lancaster, of whom had rebelled against Savarics' father but had been released after 10 years in prison, but as the saying goes once a traitor always a traitor. This rebellion would be put down rather quickly however for six months after it began Duke Eardulf I of Lancaster would be placed back in the same cell he had once occupied for so many years.
Next in line for independence would march the Duke of Valois, who would rebel shortly after Eardulf's failed bid, and sadly for Duke Bernard of Valois he would be crushed and become neighbors with Duke Eardulf in King Savarics dungeons in Pusignan.
After Valois was subdued Duke Trond de Forez of Hereford and several other places of note, and former Steward of King Miquel the Just's would raise his flags in revolt against King Savarics. As the King's armies marched forth to engage one of the more powerful dukes in the Realm King Savarics would send his half-brother Prince Borel off to marry Duchess Elisabeth Gerulfing of Franconia. At this point in time it would almost seem as if the Burgundian policy towards the Holy Roman Empire was instead of engaging in armed conflict they would just hereby fill the Empire with de Forez's in hopes that some day it would be taken over by the family. But in truth King Savarics had no desire to fight the Empire for he was much too busy with the homefront and when he wasn't fighting rebels he kept his eyes to the southwest eager to begin launching more wars against the Iberian Muslims.
A month after Duke Trond's surrender and imprisonment the King's spymaster would notify him that unfortunately the Duke of Anjou was plotting to steal the Crown of France, and so the King wishing to place yet another ungrateful Duke in his Dungeon ordered the arrest of Duke Osborn who would become the fourth Ducal resident in the Dungeons of Pusignan.
Two years of peace would proceed after the after the arrest of Duke Osborn, making King Savarics feel that ll the nobles he had placed in his dungeon ha finally taught the rest of the Kingdom to obey and respect the divine rule of the de Forez Kings. With this sense of security the King would declare his first Holy War, this one against the Emir of Beja for the final French territory that was still within Muslim hands. And thus commenced the Holy War for Gascogne.
As the King was marching out of Pusignan a rumor that would ultimately petrify the rest of the Burgundian realm and start rumors that perhaps their new king the product of an incestuous relationship was a product of the devil himself. For a rumor started that day that the King had kidnapped a small boy to cut him open to read his insides hoping to catch a brief glimpse at what the future may behold.
There is one conversation that would happen before the battle in Foix that the King would lose right before the end of the war. It was a conversation between the King and the Prince-Archbishop of Auvergne and commences as follows.
Originally Posted by Archbishop of AuvergneAt this point according to the Archbishop's journals he slunk away not believing that at first the King lied about not kidnapping the boy but how here on the eve of battle, the King would blatantly admit to sacrificing a small child in such a satanic and unchristian ritual. In fact the Archbishop would go further then this and write a letter to Rome informing them of the insanity and heretical nature of the new Burgundian King.Originally Posted by King Savarics
The day battle was struck in Foix the King's army was massively outnumbered 2 to 1, and had no way of holding their lines against the Bejan forces. However, the Occultist King was seen charging to the front of the battle lines and dismounting from his steed and engaging the Muslims on foot even as the large remnants of his host began to route King Savarics would remain beating his steel against other steel. Luckily however the Emir would appear on the seen along with a retinue headed by the Burgundian Chancellor, and the battle would cease for the Emir of Beja was willing to surrender finally.
His arrival on the scene was well timed for at that moment the King and his ever shrinking retinue of soldiers had been surrounded and were probably mere minutes from absolute slaughter. And so it would seem that perhaps the King's way of seeing the future caused him to act so valiantly, even though it almost resulted in his death. But one has to wonder how many more poor children of the realm will be sliced open upon the Kings table just so he tell the future and make his decisions.
And so it would be that the King would send forth his riders to tell the entire realm that there would be a Tourney in celebration of his great victory in Gascogne, and also a belated celebration for his coronation. And as would prove to be a personification of King Savarics reign, there would be an inordinate amount of blood spilled during this tournament and would even claim the lives of four gallant chivalrous knights.
The Grand Tournament King Savarics I de Forez held outside Pusignan was a bloody affair, and cost the lives of many a great knight that prevailed against the Muslims in Gascogne. As four such men would perish in the jousting that occurred during those two months of festivities. Although rumors about Lyon and the rest of the realm held that the truth behind these deaths were not due to wounds themselves. For they were brought within the King's Castle for medical treatment of his learned practitioners from the East, and it was said the King stayed many nights inside their rooms standing over their beds chanting in tongues no one of the Latin speaking cultures could even begin to understand.
Their wounds would begin to fester and shrieks and cries of absolute agony were heard from outside the Castle for weeks, culminating in the King returning to the tournament looking younger and some would say slightly more handsome. It was proof positive the King was in commune with the devil and had forsaken the Creator of Heaven and Earth.
His practicing of ancient occult pagan and satanic rituals would be the cause of what occurred next for an old Countess that was bedridden and comatose would walk again speaking of things that no one quite understood, and yet the King put up with her nonsense smiling and enjoying it as if it were a grand theatrical show.
Even the sound of fighting would be heard and yet no one could claim they saw any men there that afternoon, and yet the Countess that was on the brink of death and otherwise unable to walk or speak or anything for that matter would walk into the Throne room and proclaim her victory over the ghosts that possessed the Castle in Pusignan.
These were indeed strange times in Burgundy. Days when clerics were all to forward about criticizing their King, and a time when the entire de Forez family would begin to break their oaths of honor and allegiance one by one.
Two more Dukes were vanquished in those years, the Duke of Apulia and the Isles and the Duke of Galloway. And then another odd event would occur in Hereford were Duke Eystein III would die suspiciously. But rather then suspecting an assassin rumor throughout the English realm was that the King had sent his devil's minions off to Hereford to sack yet another kinsman whose loyalty had been faltering as of late.
One day deep within the dark passageways of Pusignan the King was hard at work reciting various incantations, for what it is quite unknown but some say he lusted to become as attractive as his father before him, and was trying his hardest to find the spell that would work. But it would backfire as at the doorway the Archbishop of Auvergne stood reciting the Lords Prayer trying to wish away the demons that haunted the depths of the Castle. The King was not to be fooled by this however, for a voice from deep within the room whispered to the King that a man of the cloth was listening, and that the King should be more careful for now on.
And then later that year more rumors would be spread as the voice of his dead mother would be heard from his bedchamber sending his pregnant wife into such a shock that she almost lost the child that would be their 7th son together.
(Savarics would finally have a daughter on his final try at having a child, 8 kids in total 7 boys 1 daughter)
On the cold wintry day in February of 1295 King Savarics would finally rise from his castle ordering his forces to be mustered and calling a Holy War against Beja once more for the Duchy of Navarra. And several months later the Pope seeing his window of opportunity loom ever perfectly used the sinner's feint to call a Crusade for the Kingdom of Portugal against the Emir of Beja. The Burgundian Holy War would be fast and quick for the Emir would surrender as he was unable to fight both Crusaders and the Holy War on two different fronts.
Then without sending his levies home King Savarics joined the Crusade from Navarra, leading his troops over the hard terrain of Iberia straight to the heart of the Emir's lands, but he would be too late for the Pope would force Emir Abdul-Razzaq of Beja to surrender, and would hand award the Kingdom of Portugal to Duke Cadell of Cornwall, who would from that day call himself King Cadell I of Portugal, although he would soon be overrun by the Emir of Sevilla turning the Kingdom of Portugal into a lone duchy on the southwestern tip of England.
King Savarics would award his brother Miquel the duchy of Navarra after the Crusade and would never return to Pusignan. Some would say he started to act himself after the Holy War, but other's would say he knew where his final destiny lay. For he would declare another Holy War this time to seize Aragon on the 22 of August 1297.
A year later as the war was progressing a bit slowly as the Burgundian troops were tiring of being stuck in Iberia, a massive battle would take place on the fields of Palencia. It was a battle that would test the fortitude of the King's occult ways, but it would seem that the Islamic Allah would have something to say about this. For as forty thousand men clashed and the lines splintered and the field flooded with blood King Savarics charged head on into the fray of battle. Only to be thrown from his saddle as a Muslim spear pierced the steed's flank, and from there the King would be cut and stabbed and spill his royal blood upon the Fields of Palencia.
Originally Posted by King Savarics I
(before we begin the telling of the histories of King Simoun the I here is a look at the family tree page of the De Forez Family).
The coronation of Simoun de Forez would take place upon the camp of Palencia the night the Muslims routed and fled the bloodied fields of Palencia. The body of the crazed occultist King Savarics was laid atop a bier, for the Captains of the army were relieved their King did not survive the battle, in fact many were more joyous about the man's demise then they were of the grand victory that was achieved that day. Although many were questioning and on edge for no one could be sure if his eldest son Simoun would be any different, for he had been closely watched and tutored by his father growing up, and therefore could also lean towards the dark arts of his father.
But the new King Simoun I de Forez had a plan that would hopefully rally his vassals around him and his new reign, so that he could hopefully avoid any possible revolts. For the young man ordered his father be burned that night to rid the world of the ghosts and demons that he had awoken during his reign. And he would even go a step further to tell his royal scribe to hereby censure Savarics, and begin a period of cleansing in Pusignan in which all monuments Savarics had commissioned in honor of himself be destroyed so that the only mention of that ill minded King would be within the notes and histories that the scribes had written in those years.
And so men rode out of the encampment on there way to the Burgundian capital of Pusignan intent on cleansing the castle before the King would return to take his seat upon his lofty throne. They would scrub the castle clean with salts, and Bishops and monks and holy men would go through the castle, through every room of that magnificent keep sprinkling holy water and exorcising the rooms one by one to be sure that all fell demons would be scared away and never return. It was not so much Simoun's superstition that led him to this decision but it was one way he felt he could assure the loyalty of his vassals and that of the peasantry who had cowered in fear of the King that communed with the evil spirits.
Once all that was done on that night Simoun would bury the charred bones of his father there on the battlefield of Palencia, leaving no grave marker or sign saying King Savarics here rests. For his father would be the first King of Burgundy and the first de Forez to not to find his body entombed in the family shrine in the County of Forez.
Later that day King Simoun would meet with his Captains and go over the current situation in their battle for Aragon, and set up what they hoped would be the final sieges of the war. And set out to march the Army on wards to glory. For two months later after becoming King of Burgundy and six other Kingdoms of note Simoun would receive the Emir Abdul-Razzaq of Castille and accept his terms of surrender thereby giving the Kingdom of Burgundy yet another duchy in Iberia.
After the victory King Simoun would continue with de Forez family tradition and elevate his brother Prince Miquel of Burgundy to become Duke of Aragon. The sheer spreading of the de Forez family to every available duchy in the realm of which they ruled is said to be the cause of many problems that had been facing the family over the reign of King Savarics. For some historians have argued that the size the family had achieved at this point in time was overwhelming to the Kings, and the fact that branches of the family had become so far removed that perhaps they no longer felt so strongly tied to the throne and had their own ambitions and desires over that of the glory and honor of their Patriarch who reigned from Pusignan. But other men who study the subject of the de Forez dynasty have stated the hatred and in fighting in the family merely came about not from dishonor and petty jealousies but rather from the string of less then extraordinary leaders that had more or less failed to live up to the greatness of King Miquel II "the Great" and that of the Mighty Dauphin the Duke Miquel of Dauphine.
Also after the victory it should be noted that the man who had slayed King Savarics had been found in a village in the duchy of Aragon. A muslim man of strong build by the name of Ma'n mn Casares. He was brought before the King in chains, and everyone assumed Simoun would deal a punishing blow to the man that would make him a head shorter. Instead the King granted him fifty gold and ordered him released from his bonds and returned to his family in Castille for as the King had said no man should be punished for ending the reign of a devil.
It was after that event that the King finally set out with his army over the Pyrenees Mountains on their long march home to Pusignan where they could celebrate in the glory and spoils of war. And also so he could finally feel his wife's warm embrace. As they marched the King received an interesting messenger telling him that a war in Africa had erupted. Not between rival de Forez's but the Duke of Alger Simoun II de Forez had declared a Holy War for the duchy of Kabyllia and was so far winning. That land was the last known bastion of the former Sultans of Mauretania that had been crushed King Miquel IV.
King Simoun finally made it to Pusignan, the march took a little less then a year, only because they made frequent stops visiting the Dukes of Aquitane and Gascogne and other such noteworthy vassals along their way. But as Simoun finally could take his seat upon his throne and finally hold court for the first time during his reign from his seat of power, the ambassador of the Byzantine Empire would step forward first.
He relayed some sad tidings to Simoun, for another ruler of the de Forez family had fallen in battle to the hands of yet another Muslim, but this time on the other side of the world in Anatolia. For on June 23, 1299, Basileus Kallistos I de Forez was killed in battle against the Mullah of Tzofar Amir. And the Kallistos I's sister Stephania had been crowned empress of the Empire. Simoun nodded when he heard the news and showing he understood the ramifications of such a significant event he inquired about the newly anointed Empress's marital situation.
And that was when the Court of Pusignan would be shocked, for the Ambassador simply stated that the Augusta Stephania was matrilineally married to a Sunni Muslim man by the name of Majid and that they had already had two children, one being a strong lad by the name of Anthemios de Forez.
King Simoun I had barely gotten used to the golden crown upon his head before the first rumors of Treasons against the King began to surface throughout the Realm. He would even have a difficult time getting comfortable upon his throne in Pusignan due to the level of chaos that would boil to the forefront all due to his father King Savarics.
The first such plot was that of the Duke of Orleans, who thought he somehow had the God-given right to acquire the Kingdom of France. Normally King Simoun would actually sit and hold a trial and listen to his vassal's story and alibis, but Duke Gilbert would be different, for he was the first since the quickly crushed Berrian Independence Revolt, to actually try and question the might and right of the Great Dauphins. And so without a trial, without really anyone knowing the better, Duke Gilbert I de Toulouse of Orleans was arrested in the black of night, gagged, blindfolded and thrown in the back of a cart to live out the rest of his days in the accommodating Dungeons of Pusignan.
The year 1300 would finally roll around with the usual celebrations that a centennial celebration would hold. Many people congregated in their respective churches to hear mass on New Year's Day, and many others including the Royal de Forez Family would travel to Avignon where the Holy Father had traveled to to give a sermon and conduct the New Years Mass. But once again Simoun would be unable to grow comfortable upon his royal seat that year either for Duke Richard I of Tlemcen would declare Independence. And it was this Rebellion that King Simoun I de Forez would be most irate about.
Duke Ricard was a de Forez one of the landed elite that had received his Duchy of Tlemcen after the successful Crusade for Mauretania, but he would turn around to bite the Royal Hand that had given him this grand title. It would not help that he had heretical leanings, and it is said he was none too happy about the fact that the King held the Count of Orania and the Barony of Ahfir as his own direct vassals when they were de Jure vassals of Tlemcen. But King Simoun had attempted to appease the Heretic de Forez, to no avail of course for the Count of Orania and the Baron of Ahfir had joined Duke Simoun II de Forez's Holy War for Kabyllia and therefore could not be turned over to their rightful Duke at the time. And so no longer wishing to be swear allegiance to his kinsman in Pusignan the heretic Duke would declare his Independence in a futile bid to rid himself of the oath of fealty to the King of Mauretania.
King Simoun I de Forez would decide to gather his levies and personally set sail from Marseille to go deliver his royal decree and punishment to the rebellious family member. It would be a year long battle to quell this treason, for the shores of Tlemcen were a ways away and gathering Burgundian forces and travelling there would take the better part of that year of thirteen hundred. And while the King laid siege to the holdings in Tlemcen word would be recieved from further East that Duke Simoun II of Alger had finally finished his Holy War for Kabyllia and now held two ducal titles. Shortly after the Emir of Kabyllia's surrender to Alger would come the surrender of Duke Ricard I of Tlemcen, for the Duke could no longer withstand the forces of the King and his vassals that were returning from there own private Holy War.
After subduing Duke Ricard de Forez King Simoun would turn his eyes to the Byzantine Holy War for Armenia Minor in which he had promised his Kinswoman the Empress Stephania that he would join, and set sail for the shores of Asia Minor, hoping to deliver a blow that would help the Eastern Roman Emperor's further reclaim their lost territories. But before he could get there with his contingent of men the Empress would prove to be victorious.
The King would return once more to Pusignan, and would receive a few short years of peace and tranquility within the realm. And even better news would be received as well. For the King of Brittany had died without issue allowing his wife Gerberge to be crowned Queen Gerberge III of Brittany on October 18, 1302, making Prince Nicolau de Forez the sole heir to Burgundy, France, England, Scottland, Lotharingia, Mauretania, Jerusalem, and Brittany.
A year after her coronation in Brittany the Duchess Benedicta of Poitou would rebel in a bid for Independence on the 14 of August 1303. Yet another French Duchy trying to shake free from Burgundian Overlordship, and would fall to the same fate as that of the Duchy of Berry and Tlemcen.
After the quelling of this little rebellion the King still would be unable to rest and return to Pusignan to sit upon his throne, for the Duke of Tlemcen Ricard de Forez had died in the dungeons, and his son was appointed Duke of Tlemcen as Ricard II de Forez, who would prove to be heretical as well and desirous of the County of Orania and the Barony of Ahfir just as his father. And this second Ricard would also have an itch to pay the King of Burgundy back for allowing his father to sit and rot in his waning years in the Pusignan Dungeons. So the new Duke of Tlemcen would declare his War to Depose King Simoun I just days after his father died.
As the King once more marched to Marseille to board the ships and head to the North African Coastline, a messenger from the Holy Roman Empire would arrive bearing news that the King of Norway had died and that his son Prince Markward de Forez had ascended that Northern Throne, under the regnal name of King Markward II de Forez.
King Simoun would reach the shores of his rebellious vassal and lay siege once more to those holdings, not enjoying the fact that only four years ago he had been doing the same exact thing. The only upside to this was that the walls were weak and the food stocks were far from as expansive as they were the previous rebellion, which in turn made Duke Ricard II's little rebellion even easier to smash. And smash it Simoun would.
The end of Duke Ricard II's rebellion to Depose King Simoun I would prove to be the final one in a long span of seven years that had seen assassinations, and power grabs, and oaths of fealty, and fires of rebellion. But Simoun it would seem had finally put an end to the hatred and bad blood that had been created by his father the evil minion of the devil himself King Savarics. The remainder of his reign would see little to no problems with rebellious vassals and in his now later stages of life would actually prove to become Just and listen to his vassal's opinions and take their aspirations to heart in an attempt to build Burgundy even greater.
It is hard to say what could have been had Simoun not had to deal with over seven years of in fighting and on again and off again civil war. For he was a grand administrator and even better tactician and had ambitions to finally end the Reconquista and unite all the lands of Iberia under the Catholic faith. But due to those seven years of rebellious vassals his dreams would not come to fruition but that is a story for another Chapter, for the years of Holy War would soon begin.
After a brief bout of influenza King Simoun would rise out of bed to partake in the coming Christmas Feasts and other such activities that would be going on in honor of our gracious savior's birthday. These festivities however were not of historical importance. What was however, was the company our dear King kept while on his sickbed those autumn days, for the Bishop of Avignon would be the only man to enter and to leave the Royal Chambers, as Queen Gerberge was ever absent from Pusignan as she had her own realm to rule in faraway Brittany.
The Bishop of Avignon had just returned from Rome, pleading, and begging the Pope to declare another Crusade that could be led by the mighty armies of Burgundy in hopes of helping to speed along the Reconquista and forever exterminate the Islamic threat to Western Europe. But the Pope would prove to be infallible, and unable to budge on his stance. Besides why should he the Pope expend his revenues and treasures on a Crusade when the de Forez family was more than capable of vanquishing all Muslims anywhere in the world without the banner of the Crusades.
The Bishop of Avignon it was said tried to even sway the College of Cardinals hoping to find someone with a friendly ear. He even stopped in Orvieto where the Countesses husband was the brother of King Simoun, but alas no one would prove willing to help the Bishop out. So he returned to Pusignan finding his King sick and bedridden. He did not know what to make of this as losing another King after the last remnants of rebellion had been wiped out would probably destroy the entire country especially if the wrong man became Regent.
So he sat on the bed keeping his sickly King company, constantly praying, praying that the Demons that King Savarics had borne into the world were not present in the Castle still, praying that if they were they would leave his lord alone. And leave them alone they would for Simoun would come through and smile at his faithful and fervent Bishop, not sure what to make of the man except that he seemed worried and stressed out.
"What is it Bishop?" Simoun is said to have asked.
"Well, sire, I traveled far and wide trying to gain support for an Iberian Crusade, but the Pope and everyone else has said the Papacy has no need for Crusades anymore as the de Forez's are the Sword of God."
Supposedly Simoun laughed at this and then coughed up a handful of bloody vile, before collapsing back onto his pillows before he would say what would become the words that would shape the next decade of European history and would ultimately relegate Muslims solely to the Middle East and portions of North Africa.
"If the Pope is too Craven to help then Burgundy shall rise to his challenge of being the Hammer of Christendom, and if the Pope seeks to gain any note in history for accomplishing anything I am sure he will seize a chance to call a Crusade at the last possible moment. But nevertheless my faithful Bishop of Avignon, we shall march to war and you shall send word to our vassals to prepare their troops for we set out in the Spring to retake both Castille and Leon."
Simoun would go back to sleep then but would recover as previously noted and march at the head of his massive armies through the Pyrenees once more returning to Iberia for the first time since the death of his Occult Father Savarics.
The two wars would not last all that long for Emir Ahmad the Great of Sevilla would subsequently surrender Leon as quick as he possibly could afford to giving its lands to King Simoun on the 28 of February 1208.
Following that success a few short months (seven to be exact) would come the surrender of Wali-Emir Abbas I of Castilla, in which he would forfeit the Emirate of Castille formally ending the Burgundian War for Leon-Castille. And following this unable to usurp the Duchy of Castille, King Simoun would only elevate his brother Prince Martin de Forez to become Duke of Leon on the 2 of September that same year. However he would name his brother Prince Humbert to the subsequent Counties that made up Castille in hopes that soon the Emir of Sevilla would end all his wars so that Burgundy could lay its hands upon the Ducal Title for Prince Humbert.
Without returning home King Simoun would board his ships, and set sail once more for the shores of the Eastern Roman Empire in hopes of helping the Empress once more this time in her Holy War against the Ilkhanate for the Duchy of Mosul. Burgundian involvement here would be rather short-lived for upon sight of the King Simoun's men the Khagan sued for peace and turned his men around to defend against the southward marching armies of the Golden Horde.
Upon King Simoun's return to Pusignan once more victorious as was the way of the de Forez's when it came to Martial matters, he would declare two months of festivities showcased by a Tournament, for a time of festivities seemed due for King Simoun I de Forez for the realm had undergone years of Civil Strife, and followed by a strenuous two year span of Holy Wars. And he wanted to get the populaces mind off constant conflict. And hope that they would not remember his father's previous bloody tournament in the process.
For the King felt it his duty to give his people a spectacle of which they could enjoy and be entertained by. So he went through great expense to set these months of festivities. Only to know deep in his heart of hearts that this festival would only be the precursor to a much larger and more arduous offensive into Iberia, one that one begin three years later, and would ravish the Islamic Emirates, and put a stop to Imperial expansion in the Peninsula as well.
Very indepth and interesting so far, subscribed
King Andrew Wolfgang I of Wales
Religion: Athiest (heretic?)
Elusive Shadow, Quick, Proud, Patient, Cynical, Decietful, Ambitious, Scholar, Greedy, Weak, Lustful.
The Tournament would fail to be the bloody affair that his father's grand tournament had been for only four people were injured and no one would succumb to their wounds during the games. In fact two of the top finishers of the Tournament would hail from two former Great Houses that had been brought low and devoured into submission by the conquering arms of House de Forez. But first place would belong to a relative newcomer, a Hedge Knight who had seen many battles in Iberia during his service to the King and was one of the better men at destroying rebel Lords.
Unfortunately nothing of note would ever be heard of again in the annals of history with regard to the victor Artau de Gabarret. Second place however would go to Henri de Bourgogne, of a house that had at one time ruled over France and the Duchy of Burgundy for the better part of the twelfth century but had since been reduced to subservience and simple meager knighthood at the ever growing power of the Forez Dauphins.
Third place would belong to a man whose ancestry is one from the grand barbaric Normans who had invaded Sicily so many odd years ago. For the knight Fulk d'Hauteville, would earn his place at third in the lists of the Kings Grand Tourney, hoping that Simoun would remember his exemplary jousting abilities and reward him with a County or better yet the Family's old estates of Apulia some day. But alas, as we all know a de Forez cannot give land to someone without the proper surname and so this hedge-knight from an ancient family would also fall into obscurity unable to capitalize upon his five minutes of fame.
After the festivities had ended the Roman Ambassador from Constantinople would once more bring in horrendous tidings to the Pusignan Court, announcing that the Empress Stephania de Forez after eleven short years upon the Imperial Throne passed away from the same strain of influenza that our dear sovereign Simoun had suffered from not that long ago. And that her son Anthemios de Forez had ascended to the Imperial Purple upon proper proclamation of the Senate and Armies. Simoun's Basileus of a kinsman's first act in the royal purple was to send an urgent request once more seeking Burgundian assistance in yet another Holy War this time targeting another member of the Ilkhanate the High Chief of Tabriz.
King Simoun would send the Ambassador out of Pusignan with a simple "NO" to this request. For, the King saw no need to engage in yet another Asian adventure when there were still pressing matters in Europe to consider. As well as the fact that Simoun was in the middle of a contested debate within the realm on whether or not it was the just thing to raise Burgundian Crown Law to a level unimaginable in the time of the Mighty Dauphin Miquel the Great. But alas the Nobility of the realm would submit to Simoun's law, and sign onto the Royal Charter dictating a High Level of Crown Authority further hampering the freedoms and liberties of the Burgundian Noble Class.
With the turning of another year into 1311, the King would seize upon another opportunity presented before the dynasty by the House Komnenos, for the King of Trinacria was single and Simoun's daughter was eligible. And so the wedding bells would ring and once again the two families that had united to save the Eastern Roman Empire would once more unite in a cause to further bind the families and allow them to further their plots upon the Italian realms, that had slowly ever so slowly become a target of the Doge of Genoa and the Duke of Apulia.
Sadly there would be one Duke in fact an entire Ducal family that had inherited the Duchy of Savoie from the powers of the de Forez family, began to revolt over the King's new found Crown Powers. For Duke Norbert II von Susa would plot to lower Crown Authority within the Kingdom, only to be arrested and thrown into the Oubliette for his treasons where he would sit and rot and die only two months later, leaving his two year old son the Duke Lambert III von Susa as the Duke of Savoie.
King Simoun who had earned the name "the Just" a few years before decided to once again use the father's treason's as an example to what would happen should another family get out of line. But the Child Lambert was the punishment to be dealt, to bring fear into the landed nobility of all the realms, for Simoun the Just would want to leave an indelible mark on what would happen to one's family in the future should the father betray his liege. For on the 28 of September in the year of 1312 the King would kill the two year old child in his sleep, and seize the Savoyard duchy and pass it on to his kinsman Bernardo de Forez the Count of Montferrato.
Another year would pass as Pusignan sat in majestic tranquility. No wars, no rebellions, the realm was quiet, but nevertheless the machinations of war had been turning. Horses were being gathered, the young men who had been boys during the last set of Holy Wars were beginning to be trained and fitted with armor. And it was rumored that messengers had been distributed to all the realms that all 172,000 men of fighting age and training within the lands of the de Forez's were to be mustered and began the arduous march for Iberia once more.
These rumors were just that rumors and the peasantry once more sat on edge, waiting and wondering what their Just liege lord would do. For they all knew of him to be ambitious and in some cases cunning. But what they didn't expect was the ambitious announcement that was made on the 8th of June 1313, during the festivities of the elevation of his brother Prince Humbert to become the Duke of Castilla.
For on that fateful day, King Simoun I "the Just" de Forez, would declare three separate Holy Wars on three separate Iberian states, and would stem the Kaisers ambitions of reaching Gibralter before the de Forez's could, which would have effectively cut off easy troop and trading access between the Iberian states and Mauretania. So acting on geopolitical necessities and under the advisement of the Bishop of Avignon the Wars for Toledo, Badajoz, and Sevilla would therefore commence.
Upon issuing of this declaration of war, King Simoun would also dispatch two ambassadors to Brittany and to the Holy Roman Empire to earn international support in his Holy Wars, in which both the Queen of Brittany (his wife Gerbege the III) and the Kaiser Thietmar II would happily swear their allegiance creating an Alliance against the Islamic states that even the Pope would be envious of.
The wars would be underway and the massive armies of Burgundy would once more lay siege to those ancient Iberian holdings. And a large battle would once more take place under the leadership of Duke Sanc II de Forez of Aquitane in the Battle of Bejar on January 4, 1314, in which Burgundian forces almost captured the Emir Ahmad II of Sevilla, but instead of being captured the Emir would decapitate Duke Sanc sending the Duke of Aquitane into the warm embrace of the our Lord and Creator of Heaven and Earth.
A month after his narrow escape and the utter annihilation of his armies Emir Ahmad would be the first Iberian Muslim in the three-pronged war to capitulate surrendering all of his holdings in Sevilla to the de Forez family, forever granting that strategic rock known as Gibralter into Burgundian hands at last. Then, a short six months later the Emir of Cordoba Adfuns II would capitulate as well, for he too saw no hope of withstanding against the might of the Dauphin and Kaiser, and would turn his holdings of Toledo over to King Simoun the Just.
The 15 of November that same year would come around with only one final Muslim left standing, the Wali-Emir of Badajoz who would beg on his hands and knees for a lasting peace, of which King Simoun would grant him, after acquiring the holdings of Badajoz.
Once more came a time of celebration throughout the realm for all of Iberia save the eastern coast had been conquered. And the grand King Simoun the Just victorious once more, would again staying true to his family traditions place de Forez's upon the ducal thrones of those Iberian lands. But unfortunately the King would never return from that peninsula, as it seemed that the Burgundian King's may actually have had a curse placed upon them, or as the peasantry so liked to say that the ghost of King Savarics had returned one sad November day as the King was visiting his kinsman in the Duchy of Navarra, for the Just King, reincarnate of the Mighty Dauphin would fall ill with pneumonia.
A week and a half would pass once more with the Bishop of Avignon by his King's side the entire time, praying and constantly on vigil hoping against all hope that the ghost of King Savarics would not enter the Royal bedchambers to steal his son's life. Sadly, the priest's wishes and prayers would not be answered, and it would seem the ghost of the Occult King would win, and claim the body of his son.
And here ends the reign of King Simoun I "the Just" de Forez after a short 18 years upon the Burgundian Throne, he would be yet another de Forez to fail to return to their humble castle in Pusignan after an adventure in Iberia.
Last edited by tnick0225; 04-06-2012 at 21:39. Reason: Will post map in an update later today!!!