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Writing an AAR takes energy, motivation and imagination. Especially if it is a narrative one. And thus, as all humans need to stop for recreation sometimes -- the writing of Lotharingia makes me inspired and I really enjoy it, but it requires very, very much energy and quite some dedication to get it good.

Thus, I now embark on my fourth campaign in AAR-land -- of these four, two are deceased since I've now officially abandoned A golden lion rampant queue-fourché -- and I admit immediately that I've been hugely inspired by writAARs like phargle, anonymous4401 and Alfred Packer, only to mention a few. For even though I myself usually write narrative, I enjoy reading the picture-based ones the most.

I will thus now try my luck, and try to add yet another footprint or two on the well-walked path of many screenshots and few words. I hope you will enjoy it, and I hope I will live up to any possible expectations. Here goes:

Raoul de Preuilly
Duke of Jaffa 1187 -
I - II - III - IV - V
 
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This is me. The court-artist of the King drew this, and since the King doesn’t like me I was entitled with a horrible haircut. I’ll give my horse – no, my duchy! – to the non-Frenchman that can pronounce my name. I had a German fellow hanged the other day for pronouncing it disgracefully though, so beware if you’re up for the challenge.


To the left, you see my home: Vendome! It’s in north-western France, and all over it are green fields, woodlands, fair maidens that don’t mind getting a visit from the count’s son, and there life was nice.

Right to it is my current residence. It is called Jaffa, as are the oranges from there. It consists of a vast amount of sand, an occasional palm-tree, a few camels and a ton of women that either are married or dressed in tents. As of now, I don't even have a court.


‘Tis the jackass that placed me here. Or well, I guess I ought to be grateful for becoming duke over one of the richest areas of the kingdom – but mind you, those pesky Italian merchants take it all – but the man is an imbecile and I like to blame my horrible placement on him.

In fact, it all started with my father stating, when I became sixteen, that “You lack the right spirit, mah boi! You fight well, but that is about it. I have arranged a transport that will take you to king Badouin’s court, and from there you will make yourself a career as a great military leader.

It all sounded well from the start, but after having spent two weeks in Jerusalem during which I managed, Primo, to fail to qualify to neither the Knights Templar nor the Order of St. John – not pious enough, they said –, Segundo to, after my first night with a local woman, acquire rashes on my Petit Chévalier it was not that fun anymore.

A month later or so there was some heavy bashing with the Saracens however. Since I had nothing better to do – after the incident with the rashes I had avoided all intimate company – I followed on the little campaign. And boy, did we wipe them! Or is it whipped them? Well, never mind. The king appreciated my efforts anyhow, although not enough to let my stay at the court. Thus I am now in charge of a few harbours full of Italians.


A few people have begun to arrive at my court. Mostly local nobles and they are all French, thank God. As you see, I have very appropriate candidates for all posts except for the one of Diocese Bishop – since he is better qualified to do other things – and the one of marshal – as you can see, Guillaume is neither bright nor fierce. He is another worthless son sent away by a disappointed baron of a father.


There’s this guy as well, of course. Interestingly enough, he and Guillaume have almost the exactly same personality. Don’t get fooled by his diplomatic appearance though – Guillaume’s incompetence makes him well-suited as a marshal, since he will obey me more.

It’s rather depressing that the crème de la crème of the warriors in Jaffa are guys like these two. To be honest, it blows immensely.


My brother sent me a gift today, in the form of a wife. I think it is a taunt, seeing as that he enclosed a note saying something about that if she also gave me rashes, He could re-use her himself. As if I’d give him that pleasure.


Booyaka! If it wasn’t for the fact that I, since the incident in Jerusalem, can’t make my grand one stand rigid anymore, I’d be rolling around between the trees by some oasis already. She might be a complete imbecile, even more useless than Guillaume and Thommy, but there’s some great t&a on this girl.


Duke Tancred wants my very qualified steward to marry his marshal, a bearded chap named Roger. I laugh at his proposition and order a servant to kick the messenger all the way to the door. No way that I am trading away her – that would mean that either my git of a wife or, horrible thought, Thomas as steward.


What the... the hell I will!
_______

And so the tale about Raoul of the Hard-to-pronounce-surname has started! And so has the series of disclaimers, for no, this little teaser is not at all a plagiarism of the chroniclAARs like phargle, Alfred Packer and anonymous4401, it has one vital difference: these are fully centred! Truly, no one would overcome that argument.

Look for next chapter, when Raoul hates Thomas, looks for the right hole and disobeys the King as the story of the Preuilly’s continues!



 
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Ii

Raoul de Peuilly
Duke of Jaffa
Count of Acre and Jaffa
II
1187-1188



The Pope has died. To be honest, I couldn’t care less; I am convinced that both the Pope and God have forgotten this land, no matter how holy it is. I mean, it’s just a big pile of sand, I can’t see what there is to fight about. But then again, killing the small, stinking demons that Satan has sent here just to mess with us – the rest of Europe deem them “Saracens” – is fun enough for me to stay true to our goal. Deus vult!


We’re basically becoming a smaller, hotter (then I mean it literally, and not sexually) and slightly dirtier (nor is that intended sexually) version of France here in Outremer. Thus I feel it is my duty to promote the feudalism of our homeland, If not else because I am bored of the lack of doing when there are no Saracens around to kill. Thus I’ll have the local nobles kill each other in tourney instead; if I’m lucky, I’ll be rid of Thomas. The pesky bastard has started making demands of a post in the ducal council lately; I laugh at his mere existence.


Sophie called in sick from the ducal council today. When asked about what illness she had, she refused to answer. My spy master however, the jovial half-bishop Aldéric, told me that Thomas has been rumoured to frequent her quarters lately.

I swear, if Thomas has given my chancellor, one of the most able courtiers I have, some funky disease I will disembowel him, force him to eat his innards, and after that hang him with them.

I just don’t like him, okay?

Arsinde told me today that she is pregnant, and that the child is mine.

No wonder; she doesn’t really have manners or charm enough to get anything else than a drunknen knight. And even then, it would be only because of her looks.

I wonder if there’s something to this. About twelve peasant-girls in France, two maidens and that courtesan with the rashes in Jerusalem, and I did not get any of them pregnant. A few weeks ago, with the blessing of Bacchus in my body, I forgot to think of the risks of contracting another odd disease and actually rolled around a while with my sheep of a wife. She doesn’t look like one, but she has about the same intelligence. Well, I had a little trouble finding the right hole, but when I did, I apparently made her pregnant.

So if I just stay away from her for a longer while until I desperately need another kid, I might have one pop up instantly.


Finally, some war going on! Saracen-bashing underway. Time to try to mobilize the lazy nobles, unwilling Muslims and pesky Italians of Jaffa and Acre…

So; the army arrived successfully in Darum, south of Ascalon that is south of Jaffa. Now we just need to invade the place before King Guy comes and hijack the siege.


And as you can see, the bugger is on his way.


Oh come ON!

It costs twenty-five ducats keeping my army working, and King Guy has about thrice as many troops as I do. We’ve been waging war for half a year, and he takes a peace for 12 shitty ducats? Merde!
This calls for a change of tactics.

Farama is just south of Al-Arish, the residence of the liege of Darum that I just failed to conquer. It is time to strike, whilst King Guy is busy fighting in Al-Arish.


I hate you, Guy de Lusignan. I hate you, and you have made me lose 120 ducats on this bloody war.


You’re not getting away that easy.

As soon as you’re troops are back in their cosy homes, I will declare war upon Sinai. Then you’ll have to go back and fight in Al-Arish. Eat that!


Raoul de Preuilly, you are a genius!
_____

It is truly hard to see whom he dislikes the most, Raoul de Peuilly – Thomas or the King? After this, we can probably be sure that the King hates Raoul at least. And if it doesn't succeed, Raoul will probably hate himself as well.

Will he seize Sinai? Will King Guy sign yet another imbecile peace treaty? Will Thomas give Sophie another venereal disease? All will be revealed as the rumbling adventures of duke Raoul continues!
 
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Awesome! This isn't quite the same as Lotharingia, or the Golden Lion, but is still pretty damn cool! :)

(Sorry to hear about the Lion one dying, btw..)


*subscribes*
 

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A good start to a light-hearted AAR.
 

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Right, since you wrote 'petit chevalier', I'm hooked... :D
 

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Iii

Raoul de Peuilly
Duke of Jaffa
Count of Acre and Jaffa
III
1188-1189



Only six-hundred men are defending Sinai. Now all I need to do is whip them, chase them out, and take the fortress before King Guy arrives. But the sod is only in Jerusalem.

When I finally took the castle, he was in Eilat, just a little north of Sinai though. Still; you got owned, King Guy!

Now, Sinai is basically a mountain in a desert with a few Bedouins and their camels as the only population. When exploring the town with my vanguard, we pillaged around a little. It was especially hilarious to see how upset the locals were over us desecrating some bloody chest with stone tablets in a... I don’t know what it’s called, really. Infidel-church? Anyhow, it was fun to see how upset they got over a few stones with odd scripting. Savages.

Remember Farama? Well, for this campaign to be worth it, I need to get more than just this bloody mountain and a few “holy” stone tablets. Problem is that I due to my beloved and glorious king have a truce with them. But glory is more important than prestige – or is it the same thing? – so I declare war upon them anyway.


A messenger arrived at the siege today with two grand news; First, I have apparently fathered a son. Marvellous! My line is secured. Secondly, everybody’s favourite Father calls to a crusade. Peculiarly enough it’s not to our little Hole Land though, but to free Valencia. Where is Valencia, anyway?


Of course we aren’t Vikings. Why on Earth would we be?


If King Guy was here, and wasn’t my liege with the option of having my head cut off, I would taunt him to his face. Apparently his army is having a lot of trouble up in Al-Arish, north of here. So what do I do now? Oh yes, white peace sounds great, Emir Ubayd.

Who’s laughing now, my liege?

Upon returning home – by the way, I also heard that apparently the King and his troops seized Al-Arish. The problem is that the Arabs seized Darum, so it’s really status quo – I noticed a few things. For the first, Aldéric, my spymaster, has gotten yet a little more intrigous. Secondly, my son seems to be something of a git. Got to be the genes from his mother’s side.


The most interesting thing, however, is that my late older brother Geoffroi’s son Jean has turned up at the court with a claim on my younger brother Jean’s county, Anjou.

I get the feeling that all sorts of meetings with the family in the future will be mighty embarrassing, but I won’t ask any questions in this case.


Okay, this is all getting very weird. This is the second time I’ve boned her, the second time I’ve been drunk out of my mind when I did it, and the second time I made her pregnant.

But that doesn’t mean that I’m not afraid of diseases. This is not likely to be repeated.


So either I pay about twice as much as I am in debt already, or a bunch of buildings fall apart?

Hi God, I love you too.


Somehow, this has to be the King’s fault.

One day I’ll have a Lusignan suffering from all damnation I undergo.


Enjoy your mountain, Thomas.

We got visited by a black-robed old man with a long beard the other day. He was apparently a Jew, and flew – heehee, the Jew flew… -- out in accusations at me over desecrating the stone tablets of Moses down in Sinai.

I can’t see why the Muslims there would have kept them, but still. It is a little awkward at least.


I know it is. I instituted it, after all.

Who cares about peasants, anyway?
_____

And so the duke managed to seize Sinai and Farama! And to the rest of the questions, no answer is given. Also the ducal treasury is severely depleted, books are sold and buildings collapse, and Thomas is ruling a mountain. Duke Raoul has also confirmed that he and his population are not Vikings.

So in short, bad luck seems to be the ruling force for the moment. Can Raoul’s return to Acre ensure the duchy of Jaffa to shine as the oranges they grow, once again?
 
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You have to have periods of bad luck. How else do you earn the periods of good luck? :)
 

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OxfordNik: The lion was mostly experimental, actually. Its main purpose was me searching the ground for different genres and styles to pick up, and through it Lotharingia was conceived.

Glad that you liked it though! Hope you'll enjoy this one even more. And of course, thank you. *courteous bow*

Alfred Packer: Role-playing or not, I felt that comment was needed. By that time it was very easy to get into character, believe me. :eek:

Mettermrck: Glad that you enjoyed it! And yes, the stories of King Guy and the rashes will definitely continue.

stnylan: "There should be sunshine after rain, there should be laughter after pain" to quote Dire Straits. ;) It'll solve sooner or later, definitely. And by then, it will at the same time fart at Lusignan's general direction! :D
 

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Iv

Raoul de Peuilly
Duke of Jaffa
Count of Acre, Jaffa, and Farama
IV
1189-1191



Oh God damn it.

If it wasn’t for the fact that all in the vicinity for some odd reason are rather poor, and that the campaign would put me even further in debt, I would pillage every Muslim province there is. And maybe a few Christian as well; I can have it as an initiation-rite for Thomas.


About the same time as I sent Thibaut to be raised by a noble in the vicinity, I got another son.

He is called Jean, and he is far from worthless. This makes him different from Thibaut.


This calls for a change in inheritance laws. And I couldn’t care less whether it upsets my vassals, seeing as my only vassal is Thomas, whom I have a hard time fearing.


The ‘kingdom of Amman’ spontaneously decided to spawn in the lands owned by the lunatic lord of Oultrejourdain, Renaud du Châtillon. Peculiarly enough, they spawned north of Amman though.

I cannot let this pass unnoticed.


Hehehe.

I managed to seize Irbid before the king arrived, and that in itself is a small victory. And it’s the small victories that count, for if I’d look at it from a wider perspective I’d notice that I lost about 130 ducats during three months to get that province. And thus I’m back at -270, and the game engine will once again claim that I need to “sell taxation rights”. The hell, can’t the peasants starve or something instead?

Luckily, you have to be good to be lucky and lucky to be good.

There was an Italian merchant ship that sank outside of Acre a few days ago, and when I heard about it I took a few knights and went to the wreckage. A bunch of people – if you can call fishermen, peasants and farmers people – were on their way swimming out to it, and some sooth-sayer claimed that there was a treasure on board.
I thus sent out one of my knights to retrieve the treasure and kill everyone who had seen it in self-defence. “What if they don’t attack me, then?” he asked. “Attack them in self-defence anyway, say that they approached you with impudent propositions.” I answered.

The guy caught pneumonia, I got 200 ducats richer, and five peasants are enjoying life at our Father’s side. Haha, yeah, right!


It is rumoured that the first instruments were rocks and sticks that our ancestors banged against each other. The wisest men of my duchy discovered how to make music yesterday.

Today it is October 13 1190, and I, Raoul de Pre-whatever, have three ducats in my hand.

Why is this remarkable?

Because for the last year, I’ve been carrying around -200 ducats.


Listen, for the first time in ages I’ve actually got a positive amount of money. Do you think I am likely to pay 150 ducats and throw myself into the miserable pit of debt again?

If you think so, you are insanely stupid and wrong and you deserve to be laughed at. Now get out of my sight.

And now apparently my brilliant scientists have invented jongleurs. Sometime the future of this desert feels, to say the least, hopeless.


A guy named Achmed calls me the “anti-Allah” down in Farama. The fun thing is that he actually is a Frankish actor by the name of Claude, but I’ll have his head cut off anyway. That ought to keep the jongleurs occupied for a little while.
_____

Raoul is not too much of a merciful character – in fact, he seems to be quite an ass. He is out of debt now however, and has not done anything except for complaining on the retroactive discoveries his “scientists” are doing. Or are they actually something else?

These questions and, for your sake, hopefully something more, you will get answered in the next preposterous piece of work in the chronicle of the Preuilly’s.​
 
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stnylan

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Positive money is always something to celebrate.
 

Aethis

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Interesting :) Good luck with your campaign!
 

Alfred Packer

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I swear, this was your best update yet. I laughed out loud several times, although my favorite was this little gem:

And now apparently my brilliant scientists have invented jongleurs. Sometime the future of this desert feels, to say the least, hopeless.
 

Murmurandus

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Lovely lad, to say the least... :D
 

unmerged(83622)

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V

Raoul de Peuilly
Duke of Jaffa
Count of Acre, Jaffa, and Farama
V
1191-1193



Took a look at the domestic news today. Apparently 48 stubborn rebels have been occupying duke Renaud du Chatillôn’s castle in Oultrejourdain for three years now. The odd thing? Renaud’s got 1500 soldiers gathered just north of his capital that haven’t attacked yet.

It’s times like these that I wonder how we managed to invade this land at all.


My chancellor claims that we are broke and need to lend money from Muslim investors. This is of course first-class horseshit, considering that we’ve got 162 (+/- 100) shiny doubloons in the treasury. After having discussed it with my chaplain, the worst thing that can happen is that my dearest chancellor gets excommunicated whilst I get a bunch of gold.

Well… you know me well enough now, ey? And after all, I WILL use the money to invade more Holy Lands.


After having forgotten how we got here, my brilliant scientists have re-invented large ships.


A young priest named Ali – he’s one of those “newly-saved”, you know – has been bugging me about playing chess with him for ages. Funnily enough, he doesn’t know the rules. And so I taught him, and he won. And so I changed the rules, and I won.


An angel came to me in a dream this night and said that this aged diplomat in Egypt, a guy whose name I misheard to be Falaladin, will attack us and reconquer Jerusalem. Considering that he’s got a truce with King Guy after a short and not very intense war in the eighties, I doubt that he will. Not even King Guy is that bad a military commander.


My constantly angry nephew Jean – remember, the guy that was kicked out of his father’s country by his uncle, my brother? – has developed into something of a rascal lately. The fun part? He’s getting a religious education.


No, never mind anything I’ve said about the king. Apparently I love him and want to bless him.

What would I do without hardcoded irony?


It’s time to start raising Jean. Not my angry nephew, but my son. And not the useless son, but the good son. I don’t trust the monks, the nobles are the likes of Thomas and the nannies are all from Provence.

Thus, I raise him myself.


And through paying for my heir’s education instead of sending him to slimy monks, stupid nannies or sissy nobles, my prestige falls. At the same time, my prostate starts aching and I get a harder time getting future children.

‘Tis the way God meant it, kiddo.


I and my marshal feel that we have drifted apart a little, so we have decided to do some team-building. Since there is a whole bunch of Provençal knights bragging about having found the Holy Grail – curiously enough there is a whole lot of them, and they have all ‘lost it’ on the way back to Jaffa – we decided to go out and find it. This’ll be great.
___

Woah! That is not much happening in one episode. Raoul dreams, taunts, risks the excommunication of his closest associate, raises his kid and goes on team-building with his marshal! How will the madness end? I tell you, with his impending death.

However, we don’t know yet if he will die in the next episode. In fact, he is on his way to find the Holy Grail. Then he will instead get eternal life, as long as he doesn’t take the wrong one in the templar knight’s cave; if he does that, he will age in Fast Forward x32.​