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    Real Strategy Requires Cunning

Mr. Capiatlist

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Have a new flag hanging in my room:
 

Vesimir

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Awesome. How much did you pay for a custom flag like that?
 

Mr. Capiatlist

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Awesome. How much did you pay for a custom flag like that?
Made it myself. So like $10 for cloth, $2 for the eyelets.
 

Omen

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That's an awesome wall hanging to have, reflective of all the time you've spent on this project. Really cool.
 

Mr. Capiatlist

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Bastions
Chapter Forty Five: Quid Pro Quo
Part 1


Prelude:
To the dismay of Caliph Ramon III, the war between the sons of Peer de Beauce quickly ended their feud when the eldest son, Duke of Normandy, seized Paris and made it his capital. Attempts to keep the war going failed, and France quickly turned back to normal. Feeling that he had missed his chance with Northern Gaul, the Caliph quickly moved to try to get more influence on Southern Gaul. He tried to drive a stake between the North and South by pushing linguistic differences and claiming that the French were trying to usurp the legacy of Frandism. This struck a chord with the Occitanians and the Vaques of Southern Gaul. Meanwhile, in the East, the Romans under Emperor Stephen I had begun to antagonize the Wallachians by means of funding Bulgarian raids across the Danube. Wallachia, for all intents and purposes was still a protectorate of Prussia, who was not happy with these new incursions. Tensions in the Black Sea were high, Prussia stepped up patrols and their ships were seen farther and farther south. On land the Wallachians prepared to move south in Bulgaria, who was caught between their former masters to the south and Prussia to the far north. The young Prince Doyvát wanted to take part with the fleet, but his father worried that he would lose his only heir and kept him on dry land. Instead, he installed his son as Admiral of the Southern fleet and stationed him in Morcárgrád.


The Black Sea with Prussia, Wallachia, Bulgaria and Rome highlighted.

July 3rd, 1375

The Lord-Protector sat idly in his office reading reports of action to the south. His days were dull and lifeless, spent mostly collecting papers and deciding which were noteworthy enough to be sent north to Memelgrád. Very few pasted the test, and so only a couple letters -one or two- trickled out. The vast majority were just burned. However, the Lord-Protector was building a reputation with the nobles of the south. It was strange, in the south there remained pockets of nobles who did not trust the monarchy, or looked upon Doyvát and his father as usurpers. There were also foreigners: Azowians and Moldavians by the thousands, though now the Roman quarter was nearly abandoned and slowly being taken over by a growing middle class.

Doyvát's nights were often filled entertaining guests: foreign dignitaries, local nobles, fellow admirals, and merchant men from around the world. Morcárgrád sat on the crossroads of Europe, Asia and Arabia. And with the war it was hard for a city based on trade to make any money. It was therefore Doyvát's plan to force open the Bosporus and Dardanelles. He'd burn Constantinople if he had to. It was this mentality that endeared him with the southerners. They wanted a war; the nobles needed to send their sons off to earn glory and honor. The Saxon mentality was alive and well in the South, despite the language and religion being long dead and forgotten. With a heavy sigh, Doyvát looked out of a rain-covered window and into a grey and dull world, not unlike that of Mariengrád. He leaned back in his chair, crossing his hands over his stomach and wished that he was anywhere else. What a horrid town, he thought. Somewhere over the Black Sea, lightning crackled and thunder boomed reaching the town and a dull and faded rumbling in between gusts of rain.

"Mead, m'lord?" a servant asked, startling the Prince with his sudden presence.

"Yes, please." Doyvát managed as he tried to recover his composure. He turned around and watched him slowly pour the golden liquid into his goblet and then took a sip. It had been a bad batch, but then again all beer in the south tasted off, the must be doing something wrong. Or they just fed him piss-water, either way. The servant left with what Doyvát thought was a sly smile. The Lord-Protector cocked his window a bit and poured the remains of the drink out. His only allies in the area were the Azowians, die-hard supporters of the monarchy... so long as they didn't feel their rights were being trampled on.

It was amazing to see how far one hundred years can take a people. Doyvát marveled in their language and customs, found them foreign yet somewhat familiar. A few Prussian Kings had fallen under the spell of the Azowians, but none more than King Kárnák. Kárnák found it easy to give the Azowians nearly everything they wanted and had used them in his wars against Rome, the Mords and the Turks. But in this day and age, the Azowians resented the push for them to centralize, settle down and adopt a less tribal lifestyle. The border between Prussia and Azowia was long and porous: Azowian settlements often popped up in Prussian land for a short period of time before moving off to greener pastures.

A light rapping on the door broke Doyvát's train of thought. "Come in," the Prince called. The door slowly swung open revealing one of the older nobles. He hobbled in with a cane and cursing under his breath the laziness of the young. Doyvát was unphased and instead let him hobble on his own without so much as recognizing his disability or cursing someone of much higher rank. "What can I do for you Koit?"

"When does the war start?" Koit asked, hardly making it to his seat, "When can we plunder the Queen of Cities again?"

"A state of war already nearly exists between us and the Romans, but why would you think we'd turn it into a full-blown war?"

Koit eyeballed Doyvát suspiciously, "I never did trust government-types to understand."

"Koit, not only do I out-rank you as a noble, but I also out-rank you as a military officer. You might want to learn to hold your tongue."

"Bah! I have grand children old than you."

"I greatly doubt that, but still: it is no excuse." Doyvát waited a bit, he was still uncertain to Koit's real reason for being here. He thought, briefly, that he could detect the smell of liquor on his breath. "Why are you so interested in the war starting?"

"I wish to sign my sons up for the navy so that they may capture and plunder and gather glory for the family."

"I think you grossly misunderstand the purpose of the navy. We are not organized pirates with national colors. We are not the Irish last I checked."

"Irish?"

"Never mind," DOyvát sighed and rubbed his forehead with his fingers."Koit, do you have any other reason for being here?"

"Yes, I was going to note that I will be in attendance for Thursday lunch, next week, as will be some of my granddaughters," the old man said with a wink.

Doyvát looked at him idly, "Koit, I've met your 'granddaughters' before; the oldest is what, seven?"

"But she's a pretty little thing, eh?"

"And she's also African... and a boy."

"You government types, always so picky..."

"Yes... yes I am. I am quite picky... I like my potential brides to be of age, of royal decent and women... but when you are heir to the throne of the most powerful Christian realm in the world, you are allowed to be choosey." Doyvát stacked some papers in an attempt to look like he had been doing stuff and still hand things to do, "Now, if you don't mind I am rather busy."

Koit got up and left without more than a slight chuckle. After the clumping of the old man's cane had faded out into the distance, Doyvát got up and stretched. He let out a long sigh and then turned to face the window again. He was surrounded by idiots, the insane and those who wanted him dead. His thoughts turned back to the Azowians. He needed some amount of protection. Kiev was the nearest sanctuary; he doubted he could make it that far in the event of a revolt or anything. The Prince became frightened at how fast the King's authority diminished over distance. Here in the south they were more than happy to pay taxes while they sharpened their daggers. "I guess the alternative is being conquered by Rome and raided by Azowia," he thought aloud.
 

Killerflood

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When I read the servant went off with "a sly smile" I thought Doyvát might have been poisened but my fears were unbased. That's good.

. . . So I guess it really was piss water?
 

Mr. Capiatlist

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Bastions
Culture Updates
The Finnic Peoples


Any map of Eurasia is going to be dominated by one nation: His Majesty's Kingdom of all Mords, Finns and the Steppes, also known as Mordvia. Mordvia is the single largest nation based on land area, stretching from the White Sea to the Robben Sea off the costs of Aleutia. But Mordvia had very humble starts, making its rise to power and continued existence very impressive. Mordvia has its origins set in the Finnic peoples who inhabited much of Eastern Europe. In the dark ages, these people were divided into tribes scattered about by the Vikings and the Kieven Rus. Amongst these people were the Finns, the Mords, the Kola, the Old Estonians and the Old Livonians. The Old Estonians and the Old Livonians were eventually converted into the folds with the Prussians, while the Finns and Kola eventually fell under the sway of the Prussian Empire. The Mords aggressively expanded, uniting their people against the Prussians and the Christians, though eventually they embraced Christianity in order to form closer relationships with Prussia. Today nationalism amongst the Finnic peoples is rare, given their history and the political nature of Mordvia. Instead there are six main groups of Finnic people: the Mords, the Erzya, the Finns, the Kola, the Bjarmit and the Ingrians.

The most numerous and politically powerful of all the groups are the Mords. Mordvin is one of the most widely spoken languages in the world. It is the only official tongue of the Mordvin Church as well as being an important minority language in Prussia, Sweden, Azowia, and the Steppe nations. Given that Mordvia is the only independent Finnic nation, Mordvin policy is often construed as Finnic policy and the Kingdom is only eager to play up this so-called authority. The Kingdom of Mordvia arose in the XIX Century out of several warring states and supported by Prussia. However, in the century before that there was only one major Mordvin principality that wielded considerable authority over the others. This power came from ruling over the Siberian Steppe as well as the Turkish tribes to the south. Prussia had hoped to gain a strong ally, but instead, Mordvia turned its back on Prussia and concentrated on colonizing the East. At its peak Mordvia was the largest Empire to ever grace the face of the Earth. Even today it is the largest nation, though much smaller than it once was. Mordvia was able to secure a place in the world by remaining neutral in both World Wars, which was surprising to many at the time not only because of Mordvia's size and strength, but also its place as defender of Christianity. During the Cold War, Mordvia remained neutral still, focusing on self improvement and modernizing. By the 1960s, it had become a Constitutional Monarchy. And by the 1980s its Empire had fallen. However, Mordvia still maintains a great deal of authority internationally and religiously. There are increasing issues with the Monarchy and slow entropy that threatens to drag Mordvia back into the grasp of dictatorship and paleo-conservatism.

In and around Finland one can find the other Finnic peoples, usually supported at least nominally by Mordvia with the exception of similar movements within the boundaries of the Kingdom. These groups, though, usually reject the support of the Mordvins and accept autonomy and pacifism within Sweden. The three major groups in Sweden are the Finns, the Ingrians and the Sami people of the Kola Peninsula. Of these three, only the Kolans accepted autonomy in favor of integration. The Finns and Ingrians were more than happy to trade autonomy for increased spending in their regions. The large number of Swedes that reside throughout the region makes independence difficult, not to mention the low level of support amongst the younger generations. Also, along the southern coast, Finland has native groups of Prussians left over from when the region was abandoned by the Prussian Empire. These small groups are much more loyal to the Swedes than they are to the Finns. On the Mordvin side of the border exist more Ingrians and a group that inhabit a region called Bjarmia or Bjarmitland.

Nationalism tends to be down-played in Mordvia, where there are several groups both Finnic and non-Finnic who wish for more autonomy or independence. Since the Turkic nations declared independence, other nationalities have also demanded freedom, threatening the stability and livelihood of a nation already heavily dependent on allies for access to European trade. With Azowian considering to join the EU by leaving the Kán Agreement Sphere (an economic sphere created by Mordvia to ensure continued pressure on the Turkic states as well as access to the Black Sea via Azowia), Mordvia will have to seek alternative points of access included alliances with their ancient enemies the Swedes, Prussians and Turks or worse: joining the EU, long regarded as a Muslim organization in xenophobic Mordvia.
 

Mr. Capiatlist

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It is, in my opinion, a damn good flag!
That's an awesome wall hanging to have, reflective of all the time you've spent on this project. Really cool.
Thank you.

When I read the servant went off with "a sly smile" I thought Doyvát might have been poisened but my fears were unbased. That's good.

. . . So I guess it really was piss water?
The Budweiser of the XIV Century, I guess. I sort of imagined that the servant had spit in it.

Nice pan-Siberian Empire I assume.
Koit's comment about his «granddaughters» was hilarious :D
And congrats on a very cool flag.
Mordvia is an intriguing country, I feel.
Koit is an interesting man, even as the crazy ones go. I'm pretty sure we'll see more of him.
 

cpteveros

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An awesome update, Mordvia held my interest from the moment it existed. It's interesting how you split the Soviet/Russian characteristics between Prussia and Mordvia. Love it! Could you maybe put a map up of the region? There's a lot of groups and countries mentioned and I'm having trouble visualizing it all. Keep up the good work man.
 

Mr. Capiatlist

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An awesome update, Mordvia held my interest from the moment it existed. It's interesting how you split the Soviet/Russian characteristics between Prussia and Mordvia. Love it! Could you maybe put a map up of the region? There's a lot of groups and countries mentioned and I'm having trouble visualizing it all. Keep up the good work man.
Can do, after crappy movie/tv night.
 

unmerged(227184)

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I haven't started reading Bastions yet... but I just read through all of Homelands over the past three days. Just wanted to add my voice to the choir: amazing, amazing stuff. :) Subbing this and I'll be able to catch up once my brain recovers from the preceding awesome.
 

Mr. Capiatlist

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I haven't started reading Bastions yet... but I just read through all of Homelands over the past three days. Just wanted to add my voice to the choir: amazing, amazing stuff. :) Subbing this and I'll be able to catch up once my brain recovers from the preceding awesome.
Thank you very much, and don't worry too much: the updating has been slow this semester. ;)
 

Aliasing

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Just a question: Would you be able to make some sort of World Culture map? Like put them into groupings on a map, and section it off as so?

I'm really interested in Bastion's/Modern Bastions has in the case of Cultural differences.
 

Mr. Capiatlist

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Just a question: Would you be able to make some sort of World Culture map? Like put them into groupings on a map, and section it off as so?

I'm really interested in Bastion's/Modern Bastions has in the case of Cultural differences.
I already have a map of the dominant languages by vicky ii province.
 

Mr. Capiatlist

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Sorry to have to ask, But is there a specific page this is on? Or have you not uploaded this?
Not yet, making a casserole tonight. ;) I'll have it up later tonight.
 

Mr. Capiatlist

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Don't want to spoil too much (or post such a large image) so here is the languages of Europe by the majority in a given province:


Notes (in a generally North to South, West to East direction):
Icelandic dominates most of the former Scandinavian colonies like Iceland/Faeroe. English is, of course, the dominate language of the British Isles; though Scots, Cumbrian, Norman and Welsh/Cornish still survive in some places. That's Norman in northern France.

Norwegian has a tenuous grasp in northern Sverge, Sweden-Norway however mostly speaks Swedish. The other Finnic languages also manage to survive. Not surprisingly Mordvin is still kicking, but also Ingrian. Back in the British Isles, Irish is still alive, holding on better than in our time line. Ireland managed to stay independent for longer, so it survives.

Back in France we can see Breton and Vasque have expanded into regions left by the future Carthaginians. "French" or "Gaulish" (the two are much more interchangeable here) is based on Oc Lyonnaise rather than Oïl Parisian. In Spain, the dominant language is Istimari, which is another Oc language. This one is based on Old Catalan, though has faced heavily arabization. In Galacia and Leon, Spanish is still spoken, though it is more often referred to as Leonese. In the very south there are regions that speak Berber.

Italy is divided into the regions that speak the Romance-based Italian and the Semetic-based Sicilian. In Central Europe, German is the majority language though Dutch exists in the Netherlands and Lothgaria. Danish still holds onto the islands around Copenhagen. Around Prague Czech is still spoken as well. Slovene is spoken in and around southern Germany.

Beyond is the realm of the Prussian-speaking countries: Prussia, Silesia and Carpathia (as well as the contested Zilina). Hungarian is often spoken as a minority language in much of the former Kingdom of Hungary, though that area is slowly decreasing. Wallachian is spoken in the Wallachian Autonomous Region. Serbo-Croat is spoken in the majority of Serbia, though Bosnian (which is slightly Arabized) also exists. Albanian and Greek make up the languages of Rome and Greco-Bulgar and Bulgarian are the two official languages of Bulgaria.

Azowian is spoken in Prussia as a minority language, though it is often written in Latin script there rather than the more traditional Cyrillic. In the Jewish Autonomous Region of Mordvia, Cuman is the dominate language. To the south of that is Ossetic (Alanian). Armenian dominates the region that used to be Persian Armenia (Georgia, High Armenia and Low Armenia). To the south of that is Kurdish and Qurati. Arab is the main language of the Near East, with Persian a close second. Asia minor is home to Kwihzihri, a form of Persian that existed in the Turkmen region in the XIV Century and migrated with the Persian hordes in the XV and XVI Centuries.