• Crusader Kings III Available Now!

    The realm rejoices as Paradox Interactive announces the launch of Crusader Kings III, the latest entry in the publisher’s grand strategy role-playing game franchise. Advisors may now jockey for positions of influence and adversaries should save their schemes for another day, because on this day Crusader Kings III can be purchased on Steam, the Paradox Store, and other major online retailers.


    Real Strategy Requires Cunning

Michaelangelo

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1598 – Illness

After convening a meeting with his court, King Ferran IV agreed to pass the Declaration of Indulgence Act, granting all Christians the freedom of public worship and participation within the military and civil services. While all Christians could now openly practice their faith, there were still laws in place to keep them from actively proselytizing their religion. It was still a step forward, many thought, and it certainly appeased many heretics within Hispania.

The first arrangements were made with Cusco to encourage trade and cooperation. The people of Cusco were hesitant to openly trade with Hispania, especially since their neighbours feared this foreign power. To assuage their doubts, fine Hispania goods were given to Cusco as a gift to open them up. It was an expensive decision, but it surely impressed Cusco. Soon trade would be booming once their trust was won. For now though, a loan had to be taken out to afford such wondrous gifts for the people of Cusco.

The Mamluks, after settling their domestic issues, felt that Hispania was a threat once more.



Things started to heat up internationally as Genoa sought to expand its eastern holdings by attacking Georgia and Sweden eyed up the former Danish lands held by Pomerania. King Ferran IV took little notice of this, for he had contracted some dreadful illness and was bedridden for the time being. Some whispered that God was punishing the king for his actions against the Church.

The desire to explore the far-away lands of the world and unknown seas led to the outfitting of two exploration missions. The Alexandria trade fleet was recalled to serve as two separate exploration fleets. Lorenzo da Lusari was given three ships to set off to explore the Indian Ocean, while Robert Johann Lübecker headed west for the Pacific. In time they would return with maps of waters mostly unknown to Hispania. Perhaps they would even find the nation known as Ayutthaya, who had sent a spy to Hispania to steal the kingdom’s technology. ((Honestly have no idea how they managed to do that when we can’t even see them. :p))

The king’s health worsened drastically over the weeks. It was not a surprise in April when he passed away in his sleep, finally succumbing to his illness. Pere was crowned king shortly after. While few doubted Pere’s claim to the throne, nor his capabilities, it could not be denied that the man had failed to produce an heir. His second marriage had yet to be fruitful. With no child of his own, his sister Clara thus became his heir. With her marriage into the Palaiologos family and her son ready to become emperor when he came of age, it seemed likely that the two crowns would be joined in the future if an heir was not born. Perhaps a Palaiologos would be ruling from Valencia in the times to come, that is if another Trastámara did not intervene first.





JpsioAG.png

Presenting His Majesty, Pere V de Trastámara, King of Hispania and Protector of the Greeks & the Knights. ((Charitable, Trusting, Strong))

It saddens me greatly that my father has passed away. He had a troubled reign at times, but he always tried to do what was best for the kingdom and his subjects. I regret that I may have pushed him down a path that forced him to turn away from the Church. I believe that these heretics should be treated like any good Christian, but the split from the Church has been regrettable. With my father’s death, and thus the loss of the excommunication on him and the nation, I have been considering seeking out reconciliation with the Church. Perhaps they did not approve of our ways, but perhaps we can get past that and work together for the betterment of the faith. I shall think more on this later.


((Well that was a very short update. King Ferran could have at least waited a few years before he croaked. :rolleyes: Anyway, I will give ministers until Sunday at 12pm PST to post plans, although since we didn’t get very far I don’t require them. Players may also propose laws in that time. Since we’ve past two religious reforms, the third may now be proposed for any Christian heresy. Other than that, the possible succession crisis may require some consideration, as well as the possibility of revoking the Restraint of Appeals.

))
 

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Clara de Trastámara read over the letter from her brother again as the coast of Iberia came into sight. She couldn't believe her father was dead. She hadn't seen him since the religious debate he had hosted, and even then she had kept her distance. Perhaps she should regret not mending her relationship with her father, but there was nothing she could do about that now. She had greater things to worry about, such as suddenly being shoved into the spotlight again as her brother's heir. Perhaps the allure of being heir might have enticed her years ago, for it surely would have given her the attention she craved, but now it placed such a heavy burden upon her.

The death of her husband three years ago had changed much for her. She had been but a young empress who suddenly found herself as regent for her infant child, Maurianus. She scoffed at that, for recent events had seen that title stripped from her. As a woman stuck in a foreign country without friends, she had few options open at the time. The nobles could not tolerate a foreigner being in charge, and slowly they stripped her powers away, taking over the regency. It took all her willpower and resources at her disposal just to keep her children. Many of the nobles had been circling with the desire to take any of the royal children as their wards and raise them to do what they wanted. She had fought against that with all her might and had sacrificed much to prevent it. She'd even had to marry off her eldest daughter, Zoe, to a prominent duke's son to win an ally for her cause. It left a bitter taste in her mouth, mostly because it reminded her of how her father had married her off so callously for political ambitions. She prayed that her daughter would be treated as well as she had, for Manuel had been a good husband, even if he had held her a bit too tightly. For now though, her children remained under her guardianship, or at least that of Manuel's close relatives. The regency council did not dare go after the royal family now that she had been named heir to the Hispanian throne. If she ended up as queen, they would find themselves sorely regretting any action they took against her children.

Even if her children remained mostly under her control, the empire did not. The regency council had found other ways to get her away from court. Their latest attempt had proved most fruitful. Naming her Ambassador to Hispania, she now found herself forced to travel between Constantinople and Valencia regularly to confer on matters pertaining to both nations. Of course most of the actual work was done by Hispania's Representative to Byzantium, making her role mostly for show, but that had been the whole purpose. It got her out of the capital and that was all the regents cared about. She supposed it was not so bad. It got her away from that viper's nest for a time and allowed her to return to her true home. It also gave her time to plot. If those on the regency council thought they could toss her aside and steal away the Crown's power, they were sorely mistaken. She would get her revenge in time, and perhaps her ties in Hispania would serve her for that purpose.

For now though, she had her father's funeral to attend. She didn't know how she'd react at the ceremony or upon seeing the body. Would she even cry or would her emotions hold back? She feared she'd feel nothing and look heartless in front of the court. Her father had not been the loving figure she'd wanted. She'd try to push back the bitterness still lingering in her heart for his sake, but it would not be easy. What she needed was someone to comfort her. Forgetting her burdens, if only for a few faint moments, would be a blessing. Sometimes the world was a cruel place.


((Seeing as the king just died, we can turn this into a funeral event. Anyone who wants to IC about attending the funeral at the capital may and can say a few words about the late king if they wish.))
 

Renzo da Lusari

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To his majesty King Pere de Trastámara

It is with great sadness that I learn of King Ferran's death. No one doubts his dedication to Hispania and Hispanians. I will of course continue my explorations with the same vigor and commitment I had during King Ferran's reign.

Your humble servant,
Lorenzo da Lusari, explorer of Hispania
 

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Matthias was looking through the latest reports and letters. The King was dead, and another one took his place. A never ending cycle. It happens everywhere... Kingdoms, republics, theocracies. One rueler is replaced by another... It was happening a long time ago, it's happening now, and it will keep heppening... But few words should be said to the King... After all his father just died, a terrible loss.

Your Majesty,
I write to you to offer you my condolences. Your father was a great man. But as all in this world he had to pass away...
I'm sure that you are fit to lead the people of Hispania into a bright future. As I write this letter, I would wish to swear my loyalty to you, as my rightful ruler. I will always support you, no matter what happen.
Your loyal subject,
Matthias de Saint-Pierre,
Head of the Trans-Atlantic Trading Company, General of Hispania
 

Michaelangelo

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To his majesty King Pere de Trastámara

It is with great sadness that I learn of King Ferran's death. No one doubts his dedication to Hispania and Hispanians. I will of course continue my explorations with the same vigor and commitment I had during King Ferran's reign.

Your humble servant,
Lorenzo da Lusari, explorer of Hispania

JpsioAG.png

I thank you for your condolences. He was indeed a great man who did much for this kingdom. Just as my father entrusted you with exploring the unknown waters of this world, I also wish you luck on your journey. May you make a great discovery in your travels.

- His Majesty, Pere V de Trastámara, King of Hispania and Protector of the Greeks & the Knights

Matthias was looking through the latest reports and letters. The King was dead, and another one took his place. A never ending cycle. It happens everywhere... Kingdoms, republics, theocracies. One rueler is replaced by another... It was happening a long time ago, it's happening now, and it will keep heppening... But few words should be said to the King... After all his father just died, a terrible loss.

Your Majesty,
I write to you to offer you my condolences. Your father was a great man. But as all in this world he had to pass away...
I'm sure that you are fit to lead the people of Hispania into a bright future. As I write this letter, I would wish to swear my loyalty to you, as my rightful ruler. I will always support you, no matter what happen.
Your loyal subject,
Matthias de Saint-Pierre,
Head of the Trans-Atlantic Trading Company, General of Hispania

JpsioAG.png

Your words mean much to me. It is good to know that I have loyal subjects and even friends in this troubling time. I shall strive to be the great king that he was.

- His Majesty, Pere V de Trastámara, King of Hispania and Protector of the Greeks & the Knights

((I'm considering making some changes to how the Council and roles work, seeing as they don't encourage player participation enough and mostly end up being used simply for VP boosts. I'll be thinking more on what changes to make over the next week or so.))
 

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Etxeto-arms.gif

A Message from Duque y Conte y Conte Ximon T.L. Etxeto of House Etxeto

The Duque y Conte y Conte Etxeto wishes to express his condolences to the King for the passing of his late and great father, Ferran IV. However he has faith that King Pere II will be a strong monarch that will protect the kingdom from destablising forces within and without. The Etxeto family will attend the funeral in the Capital as is expected of the nobility.

The King is Dead! Long Live the King!

~ Lord Ximon Tomas Luys Etxeto, Duque de Navarra, Conte de Viscaya, Conte de Riojo
 

Michaelangelo

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Prince Pere--no, King Pere, the man reminded himself--watched the coffin carrying his father's body as it was carried away to be interred in the family crypt. Several of the kingdom's most prominent nobles had made an appearance, including the reclusive Duke of Navarra, and courtiers lingered about. It was a difficult moment to watch, especially with his two sisters standing nearby. His youngest sister, Francesca, was clinging to her husband's arm, sobbing so loudly that she drew the eyes of several nearby nobles. Her husband Francesc, a strapping young man who was also their first cousin once removed, seemed incredibly uncomfortable with the whole situation. They had just been married the year before, at the request of the late king, and most likely were not close yet. Clara was a different story. She stood there stony-faced, devoid of all emotions. Some might interpret her appearance as her being strong and holding back her emotions, but Pere suspected she was more conflicted than anything. The relationship between Clara and their father had been a rocky affair. He supposed the fact she had shown up at all was something at least. Next to Pere, his wife Francine squeezed his hand and smiled at him, trying to comfort him as his father's casket was carried from sight.

The ceremony was a lovely affair, although Pere was a tad too emotional to appreciate it. He did his best to maintain his composure as members of court approached him and offered their condolences. As the guests started to mingle in solemn conversation, Pere steered his sister Clara aside. He had much to discuss with her, some of it not pleasant.

* * * * *

Clara let her brother Pere guide her into a side passage. She knew he'd want to speak to her at some point. His letter still came to mind, the fact that she was his heir.

"I can't believe he's gone," Clara said once they were alone. She didn't know what else to say. Her father was this figure looming over her that she had never come to terms with.

Pere remained silent for a bit, grabbing his sister's hand and holding it tight. He seemed to be mulling over something before finally speaking. "I didn't expect to lose him so soon. His passing has left us with a bit of a dilemma."

Clara let out a sigh, knowing what her brother meant. "You mean me being your heir?"

"Yes, that," Pere said. "It's an awkward position to put you and the kingdom in, what with your own son being a future emperor. Many may not like the fact that power may shift eastwards."

Clara let out another sigh. She was already practically exiled from Constantinople, what with the Greek nobles not wanting her at court, and now she was discovering that this new situation might not make her fully welcome in Hispania either.

"There is another matter I wish to discuss," Pere said, eyeing Clara nervously. When she did not respond right away, he continued. "With your husband's passing a few years ago, that leaves you eligible for marriage. As my heir and the mother of the future Greek emperor, you could help us create an incredibly strong marriage alliance to make our position less tenuous."

Clara stared at her brother wide-eyed. "You want me to remarry? I don't think that necessary. I am certain you shall have a child of your own in time and this won't even be a concern."

"But if I don't, we must be prepared. There are several matches I could arrange both within Hispania and outside the kingdom."

Mouth twitching ever so slightly, Clara backed away a step. She couldn't believe her brother would suggest such a thing. Her father had married her off for the sake of politics and now her own brother wanted to do the same. "I did my part for this kingdom by marrying Manuel. I will not marry again."

Clara turned to leave, but Pere grabbed her by the arm. "I know you do not like this," Pere said, "but you must think of what is best for our kingdom. I could order you to remarry if I wanted to as your king."

The last statement struck Clara like a punch to the stomach. No, she could not let herself be forced into marriage again. She was tired of being treated like a piece of meat to be sold and bartered. It was time she decided her own fate. Clara's free hand swung around and slapped Pere right across the face. Her brother staggered back, caught by surprise. Holding back tears, she said, "My husband was an emperor and my son shall soon be. You are no longer my king and this is no longer my kingdom."

A single tear trickled down Clara's cheek as the sudden realization hit her. "This is no longer my home." Holding back further tears, she fled down the hallway, not wanting to be near her brother any longer. Valencia was no longer a place of comfort for her. She should have never left Constantinople.
 

alscon

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myKh8vJ.png

Your Majesty,

My sincerest condolences for the passing of Your father. He was a great man, and a king ruling with a firm hand. A ruler unwavering in his decisions was and is exactly what Hispania needs in these times of religious turmoil. I am certain that You will be able to succeed him as an as good king as he was.
I have to urge Your Highness not to seek reconciliation with Rome though. This can only have negative effects. Your father's decision was made in reaction to his excommunication, but it wasn't made only because of it. The Holy See tried to influence the politics of the kingdom by all possible means, even tried to murder people against its views. To keep Hispania's sovereignty, king Ferran had to take this step, the right one. Revoking his statute would only show weakness, a weakness with severe consequences. Returning to Rome would cause a great loss of confidence and for many heretics the fear of renewed persecution. This can't be combined with the goal of treating them like any good Christian, for it would likely cause a new civil war. With the concessions already made, this one would be far bloodier and shape Hispania for its entire future - Hispania has to avoid more internal bloodshed, and to achieve this, we have to continue on the path that king Ferran has left the kingdom on.

Long live the king!
General Louis Clément de Montségur, Duke of Trinacria
 

Robban204

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sassari_prov_coa_n5059.gif

My grace Pere V de Trastámara, King of Hispania & Galicia, and Protector of the Greeks & the Knights,

My thoughts and prayers are witj you and your family. The loss of the former King was an all too tragic and sudden one.
Your father was a great man who treated his kingdom and subjects, all his subjects, with respect. That is a strong King for me.
I am sure you will do the same, and perhaps even surpass your father, if God willing.

Your loyal servant,

Felipé de Alvaro, count of Sassari
Lux Tenebris Vincet
 

hirahammad

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Dear Goldhirsch,

I apologize for the late reply. ((Let's say I sent this letter before the update, so it is not a decade late)) I was in Nuevas Baleares when the letter arrived. As one dedicated to Tolerance, I appoint you as a Crown Merchant. I also allow you to join the CTC, but you must remember, the Sastres were against tolerance, and as one of theirs is on the Privy Council, you may experience difficulties. However, given that Judaism has been in De Facto tolerance for some time, it should not be too great a trouble for you.

Sincerely,
Santoros Hashem

((I was away from a keyboard for a week.))

Your Majesty,

My condolences for your father's passing. He was a great man. Few have the strength he had to do what he did.

Sincerely,
Santoros Hashem
 

Michaelangelo

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myKh8vJ.png

Your Majesty,

My sincerest condolences for the passing of Your father. He was a great man, and a king ruling with a firm hand. A ruler unwavering in his decisions was and is exactly what Hispania needs in these times of religious turmoil. I am certain that You will be able to succeed him as an as good king as he was.
I have to urge Your Highness not to seek reconciliation with Rome though. This can only have negative effects. Your father's decision was made in reaction to his excommunication, but it wasn't made only because of it. The Holy See tried to influence the politics of the kingdom by all possible means, even tried to murder people against its views. To keep Hispania's sovereignty, king Ferran had to take this step, the right one. Revoking his statute would only show weakness, a weakness with severe consequences. Returning to Rome would cause a great loss of confidence and for many heretics the fear of renewed persecution. This can't be combined with the goal of treating them like any good Christian, for it would likely cause a new civil war. With the concessions already made, this one would be far bloodier and shape Hispania for its entire future - Hispania has to avoid more internal bloodshed, and to achieve this, we have to continue on the path that king Ferran has left the kingdom on.

Long live the king!
General Louis Clément de Montségur, Duke of Trinacria

JpsioAG.png

I fear that this path may lead us towards heresy. While I strongly adhere to the Catholic faith, it weakens our position to be split from the Church that serves as the very foundation of our religion. I shall think more on it for now before taking action.

- His Majesty, Pere V de Trastámara, King of Hispania and Protector of the Greeks & the Knights

sassari_prov_coa_n5059.gif

My grace Pere V de Trastámara, King of Hispania & Galicia, and Protector of the Greeks & the Knights,

My thoughts and prayers are witj you and your family. The loss of the former King was an all too tragic and sudden one.
Your father was a great man who treated his kingdom and subjects, all his subjects, with respect. That is a strong King for me.
I am sure you will do the same, and perhaps even surpass your father, if God willing.

Your loyal servant,

Felipé de Alvaro, count of Sassari
Lux Tenebris Vincet

JpsioAG.png

I thank you for the kind words. My father will be greatly missed. I can only hope I live up to his legacy.

- His Majesty, Pere V de Trastámara, King of Hispania and Protector of the Greeks & the Knights

Dear Goldhirsch,

I apologize for the late reply. ((Let's say I sent this letter before the update, so it is not a decade late)) I was in Nuevas Baleares when the letter arrived. As one dedicated to Tolerance, I appoint you as a Crown Merchant. I also allow you to join the CTC, but you must remember, the Sastres were against tolerance, and as one of theirs is on the Privy Council, you may experience difficulties. However, given that Judaism has been in De Facto tolerance for some time, it should not be too great a trouble for you.

Sincerely,
Santoros Hashem

((I was away from a keyboard for a week.))

Your Majesty,

My condolences for your father's passing. He was a great man. Few have the strength he had to do what he did.

Sincerely,
Santoros Hashem

((Probably should mention that the two crown merchant positions are full, although one is occupied by Dreumel who is in the TATC and could just use one of their merchant positions. I might be altering how these positions work soon, so I might force trade companies to use their merchant positions before taking Crown spots.))

JpsioAG.png

Thank you for the condolences. I shall strive to live up to his legacy.

- His Majesty, Pere V de Trastámara, King of Hispania and Protector of the Greeks & the Knights


((Seeing as there isn't anything to vote on, or at least nothing that can't wait, I'll do a playthrough either tonight or tomorrow, with an update out some time in the next day or so.))
 

delpiero1234

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Jose had heard of the King's death. He was sad but also hopeful. Hopeful as the relations with the Papal State might be repaired now that Ferran was dead.

((To King Pere V))
Your Majesty,
I offer you my deepest condolences and pray to to Lord that King Ferran may find peace in heaven.

Long Live the King!

Your humble subject,
José Fulminate
 

Michaelangelo

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Jose had heard of the King's death. He was sad but also hopeful. Hopeful as the relations with the Papal State might be repaired now that Ferran was dead.

((To King Pere V))
Your Majesty,
I offer you my deepest condolences and pray to to Lord that King Ferran may find peace in heaven.

Long Live the King!

Your humble subject,
José Fulminate

JpsioAG.png

It is good to hear such respect for my late father. I too hope that he finds peace in heaven.

- His Majesty, Pere V de Trastámara, King of Hispania and Protector of the Greeks & the Knights
 

Michaelangelo

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1598-1601 – Iberia

The first year of King Pere V’s reign was relatively quiet. The man was adjusting to his new position and often looked to his council for guidance. Unfortunately, the kingdom still lacked a decent chancellor and Prince Marti’s presence was sorely missed. When word reached Hispania of Morocco’s continued expansion into the heart of Africa, as well as their press against Hispania’s African colonies, the king was unsure how to respond. Mali followed suit and expanded alongside them. Hispania’s African possessions seemed at risk.

Colonies elsewhere were flourishing though. Rio de Janeiro was now bringing in a tidy profit through trade and no longer needed the guidance of Colonist Miguel Villanova. The man headed much further east, continuing the colonization process of the island of Madagascar, focusing on Boina for now.

An opening in the military needed to be filled and a middle-aged man from the colonies was hired to provide guidance of recruitment efforts. His ideas would hopefully boost the army’s manpower.

The late king’s efforts to win over the natives of Cusco had left the kingdom in debt, but by September the kingdom was in the green once more.



Denmark’s position in Europe had been in decline ever since Sweden had risen up and contested their dominance of Scandinavia. Beset from all sides, the kingdom soon found itself reduced to a rump state. Eventually their luck gave out and the royal family went extinct, the crown passing to the ruler of the Palatinate.

As the end of the year approached, King Pere realized he needed a show of strength to show his capabilities and that he was fit to rule. The religious troubles had prevented the late Marti’s plans to conquer Portugal from happening, but such issues were not as troublesome now. The time to strike was now. Armies in Iberia were shuffled around and the transport fleet was ordered to Cadiz to pick up General Matthias de Saint-Pierre and his army to head for Nuevas Baleares. All the heavy ships of the main fleet followed behind to ensure their protection, for the transports were vulnerable out at sea.

Even as plans were set in motion, the constant costs of maintaining such a strong trade presence were becoming more obvious. Another merchant had gone bankrupt and both Treasurer Ferdinant de Almeria and Grandmaster Santoros Hashem agreed to bail him out. It was fortunate the Crown could afford such things.

The first success of the exploration missions paid off as Explorer Lorenzo da Lusari was the first European to chart the Western Indian Ocean. When his ships had finished restocking in Menabe, he headed out again to chart the coastline.

With war on the horizon, Marshal Niccolo Limmona began a recruitment drive, boosting the size of the army stationed in Barcelona to 12k men. When recruitment was done, it was sent west to meet up with General Hernando Francisco de Leon and his army near Lisboa.

With the Alexandria fleet having been used for the exploration missions, Grand Admiral Juan de Porcelli ordered the construction of eight new early frigates to replace them.

When all preparations were complete in June of 1599, war was finally declared on Portugal, right as Queen Francine gave birth to a beautiful baby girl.



Portugal’s army in Lisboa was engaged by General Leon soon after the war began. Greatly outnumbered and with no notable leadership, they were easily routed and the capital opened to siege.

Over in Central America, Itza was expanding greatly at the expense of the Aztecs and the confederation of natives that existed on their border. This seemed a distant event in Hispania, but it would have greater relevance than first thought.

Lusari finished charting the coastline of the Western Indian Ocean, with his next task to chart the waters and coastline of the Arabian Sea, a region of the world that might be more relevant as several nations expanded greatly at their neighbours’ expense. Both Yemen and Najd seemed formidable.

By November, General Saint-Pierre had managed to occupy Portugal’s island colonies in the Caribbean, securing them for now. Portugal still had land in Mexico, his next target.



Savoy was setting itself up as a contender for Italian dominance, wiping Lucca off the map and securing more of a coastline. Genoa was now isolated and Tuscany was being pressed in.

As Saint-Pierre landed in Mexico and encountered another army besieging Portugal’s colony, Hispania was made aware of Portugal’s second war with the Tlapanec people, who ruled over most of the nations in the region. The neighbouring Potonac people already had their country occupied by Portugal, but these natives managed to take Portugal’s tiny colony before Hispania could intervene. Saint-Pierre headed north instead to occupy the more established colonies next.

Both the colonies of Mahe and Sergipe became self-sustaining in February of 1600. King Pere decided to intervene in colonial matters this time and requested a Crown colony be established in Coro, linking the two halves of Nueva Granada.

Lisboa fell in mid-February, sealing Portugal’s fate. Negotiations were stalled, for the king wanted Portugal’s colonies too. The matter was made more difficult by the foreign occupation of the one colony and the disappearance of the Portuguese royal family.



The heathens of Tunis were caught in the Baleares trying to undermine the island’s defences and prepare the way for a potential invasion. It was clear Tunis had their eyes on the island, but no one was sure when they would strike.

By the end of March, Portugal’s Mexican colonies were occupied, but they still had an army pestering the Central Americans. The decision was made for Saint-Pierre to track them down and perhaps aid the natives in their war. If they settled a peace, the last Portuguese colony would be free to claim.

The eruption of Huaynaputina in the Peruvian mountains caused widespread famine and greatly hindered the colony of San Dionisio. The people of Cusco though helped the settlers during the troubled time and in exchange many European trade goods were given to the people. The decision to trade with them was already improving relations. Colonist Miguel Villanova was even recalled from Boina to set up a colony in nearby Nazca.

Portugal’s army was spotted trying to sneak through the wilderness, but Saint-Pierre was quick to prevent their escape back to their colonies. He ambushed them in Guachichil, removing that threat. The Portuguese were especially offended by this attack, blaming Hispania for leaving them vulnerable to the savages to the south. They denounced Hispania, claiming they were no longer friends. Most in Hispania wondered why they didn’t realize that earlier.



Portugal’s fleet had been sneaking around the Caribbean, interfering with the trade between Hispania and its colonies. Nueva Granada finally lured them out and the Hispanian fleet pounced. Portugal fled before the battle progressed further and the fleet chased them all the way to the Gulf of Mexico. There they were dashed against the coastline.

Some dissent at court saw disagreement with the king’s policies. Rumours pointed out how the council was nearly half empty and that other ministers seemed to barely do their duties. King Pere took this this criticism in and considered a way to make his council more active. In an attempt to show his capabilities, he attempted to ratify the first maritime laws, as well as coordinated with Viceroy Ferrante Peralta to raise the income coming in from Nuevas Baleares. It was a good distraction for him, for his baby daughter had fallen ill and passed away.

It seemed that the Portuguese war would not go any further and a peace needed to be settled. King Pere demanded what remained of Portugal’s territory in Iberia, as well as their Mexican colonies, excluding the one held by the neighbouring natives. Their Caribbean colonies were given to Nuevas Baleares.



Iberia had finally been unified under Hispanian rule, although others argued that the Canaries needed to be reclaimed still. This came at a great cost to Portugal. With all their land taken, their government went into exile to the only Portuguese territory left: the colony of Tamaulipas. The colony had roughly 700 people and was still occupied. With their country in ruins, they had no choice by to give in to Tlapanec’s demands. The Tlapanec people had seen the strength of the Europeans and wanted to learn more about their ways. Portugal was forced into vassalage, another member of their confederation, in exchange for their knowledge. Of course the less than a thousand settlers knew little, but it was more than enough for Tlapanec. The whole situation was the talk of every European court, how a once proud kingdom had been forced from the continent and enslaved by savages.

Lusari stopped in Mahe after finishing charting the Arabian Sea. He had managed to explore the coast of India, revealing the elusive subcontinent. Still, he wondered what lay further east. He thus set out to explore the Eastern Indian Ocean.

The people of Cusco reached out to Hispania in the early summer of 1601. Trade was profitable and relations good after recent events. The Cuscoan people felt threatened by their neighbours though and recognized the strength of Hispania. They asked for protection and the court would have to decide whether to offer it.

France had waited patiently for Hispania’s war to end, for they had more plans for conquest. This time they wished to conquer Alsace. While most of its allies were not that significant, the heretic Emperor would be called in and most likely his allies of Aachen and Bohemia. It was time to honour their alliance again, if the court desired. Pere wanted to get the court’s opinion on the matter, especially as he presented a major reform for the council.

Speaking of France, an heir to throne was born as Catherine de’ Medici’s daughter Claude, who was married to a distant Valois cousin, gave birth to a son, settling succession for now.





JpsioAG.png

Presenting His Majesty, Pere V de Trastámara, King of Hispania and Protector of the Greeks & the Knights.

It is good to see all of Iberia now under our rule, to see Hispania do so well. I admit I am shocked by the fate of Portugal, for I had hoped to bring them into our kingdom. It seems God has other plans.

We have several matters to consider. France requires our aid again, or rather wants it for surely they could easily handle most threats. Their desire to expand east is strong, but should we continue to encourage it? There is also the matter of Cusco. They request our protection from their neighbours and we should consider whether or not it is worth getting involved in such distant politics for the sake of trade.

I also wish to announce a change to the council. I feel that while it has served past kings admirably and provided them with solid advice, I feel it lacks cohesion. It needs someone to guide it, to coordinate the various ministers. I thus wish to create the position of prime minister, or first minister if you will, for he shall serve above all other ministers. The prime minister shall serve as the head of the council, appointing each individual minister in my stead. He may also take up a position if he wishes to. His main purpose though will be to ensure the council is filled with those most capable of guiding me and the kingdom. I admit I am unsure who to appoint to such a position. I shall need time to consider such a candidate.



((Time to explain a few changes to the rules then. For awhile now I’ve felt that the council has lacked the player involvement it should, with people mostly taking up positions for VP and doing minimal work. I’m hoping this will change things. With the position of prime minister and his ability to appoint most ministers, this changes the dynamic. Now the players have the power to influence who ends up in each position, either by working with the prime minister or attempting to persuade the king. I’m hoping this encourages factions or alliances as players manoeuvre to get appointed to such positions. I also wish to change merchants a bit, since the current system is a bit too confusing and messy. I will no longer allow members of a trading company to fill the crown merchant slots as long as they have a free merchant from their own monopolies. Members of trading companies may still just take the free VP bonus or use it to serve as a merchant, but not both. So in regards to the recent application, KF25 will be made a crown merchant and Dreumel will now be using a TATC merchant position instead. I was considering changing VP too, but such a major change will be held off unless needed. I am probably going to lower the VP estate bonus because it’s nearly doubling the amount of VP.

This is how the council reform will work. The king appoints a prime minister. That person then appoints all other ministers. They may choose whoever they want for each position, although the old restrictions still apply, so only one position per person or two positions if they’re related. The prime minister may also claim any one position for his own. The chamberlain will still be appointed by the Cortz, the court chaplain is going to be chosen by the cardinals, and the spymaster will still be appointed by the king to maintain privacy. I’m also making it so that anyone in those three positions can claim any second position, since they’re separate from the rest based on how they’re appointed. A player may also hold any number of viceroy titles as long as they’re for the same type of nation (colonial, vassal, PU partners). I’m also going to include the chamberlain in the small council from now on. The king or prime minister may only fire one minister per turn and only with each other’s consent, otherwise a vote is required. The court may object to any appointment and call for a vote against it except in the case of the prime minister. The king may fire the prime minister with the consent of the court. The king will fill any position left vacant or replace ministers not performing their duties, that is until the prime minister picks a replacement. Whenever a new king takes over, the entire council is fired and a new prime minister is hired with the task of replacing the ministers.

Wow, that was a mouthful. I hope it wasn’t too overwhelming. Anyway, I will give players the chance to put themselves forward to serve as the new prime minister. I won’t be appointing them until later, upon which point the PM may choose to keep the current council or appoint entirely new ministers. For now, the current ministers have until Thursday at 12PM PST to post plans. Players may also present laws or reforms in that time.

Pensioners:
@Supergrej

Dying:
@Luqueasaur
@cheif bearpaw))
 
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((To Pere V))

Your Highness,
Once again I have to write you, this time on a different matter as I would like to enquire whether the position as prime minister of Hispania is still available. If so, I'd like to apply for this position. As a royal merchant that is selling fresh fish in most of Hispania I have gained a great amount of experience in dealing with people from different backgrounds. As a commoner of Crunia, I know what it means to work hard to achieve great things.
I'd also want to congratulate you on your victory over the Portuguese. It warms my heart that Hispania has liberated the people of Portugal from oppression. I am sure they will be good servants to you. The conquest of Lisboa could prove to be very valuable for us merchants as the city was once a thriving center of trade. I believe I can expand my fish business to Lisboa now that the coastal city is under your control.

Yours humbly,
José Fulminate
 

alscon

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The war against Portugal was easy enough, as expected, even if it went on a bit longer than hoped. And now, some hundred Portuguese served the Totonac - brutal savages, from what he had heard. Unlike the Cuscoans, who supported the settlers he had funded - a good choice to work together. But now, Louis Clément de Montségur lay in his bed, contemplating his life. His health had deteriorated badly, so it was good that he wasn't needed against Portugal. Thankfully he didn't have to abandon his king in hard times, but could leave without a worry after a fulfilled life.


Name: Denis Vincent de Montségur
Birth Date: 14th August, 1568
Class: Duke
Religion: Protestant
Bio: Spending his youth in Palermo, Denis Vincent de Montségur went on an extensive journey through Europe as the religious turmoil reached Hispania. He finished his military education in Sweden under the watchful eye of his uncle without too much success, before leaving Sweden, embroiled in the War of the Protestant League, for the electoral court of Saxony. His cousin the duke was not involved, and Denis came into contact with the Protestant teachings while being initiated into politics by his aunt. The interests of the belligerents in the war, the manoeuvres at the Saxon court, the influence of the church... After years in Saxony, and hearing of the upheaval in Hispania, he was convinced that the Protestant reformation was right. Returning to Sicily, he found his father on his deathbed; together with other great men, he had advanced tolerance within the realm and weakened the inquisition. He would not hide his faith. King Ferran severed his ties with Rome, and so it was time to further fight for tolerance, maybe convince others of the truth - he could serve as example. He only regretted never to have told his father of his conversion.

myKh8vJ.png

Your Majesty,

From my presence at court, I assume You know that I have the sad duty to announce the death of my father, the Duke of Trinacria, who peacefully passed away in Palermo last week.
I do not possess the same quality in military leadership as my father did, but I have accrued much experience in matters of diplomacy. With few official diplomats, I would offer my service to speak with foreign leaders.
I am well aware that the Chancellor would usually decide of such matters, yet the kingdom is lacking one at the moment. It would be wise to appoint such a man to ease the tasks of Your Majesty so that You have time for more pressing affairs. I present myself for this office, though there may be those who would not want a Protestant appointed to such a prestigious council position, so soon after the chaos of the recognition of my faith. Yet I assure Your Highness that there are no conflicting interests. In Sweden and Saxony, I faced two different faiths, at that time united and different in the aim of the Protestant League. Depending on the situation, one has to carefully judge the course of action one will take, well aware of what consequences, what reactions this will have. Therefore, I would give Your Highness the advice to appoint an experienced diplomat as Chancellor - preferably a Catholic. Am I not contradicting myself here? Not really - a Catholic would be the safest choice for the internal politics, as far as the current situation is. Appointing me would be a signal for the future, a signal to further strive for tolerance, while a Catholic Chancellor would set no such signal. Still, there has been nobody showing interest in the office before. I trust Your Majesty to make the right decision.
The same reasoning can be applied to the new Prime Minister. Whoever it will be, his appointment has the potential for either unity or discord. In my opinion, it should be a well-trusted man of the court, so as not to make the change too drastic, what disqualifies me. Another obvious candidate would be the most trusted man of the council. Not an easy decision to make, and I don't envy Your Majesty for having to make it.
I will of course continue to fund the colony in Nazca, and I have faith that Your reign will continue to see Hispania prosper, just as it does after uniting Iberia under Your rule.

Your humble servant,
Denis Vincent de Montségur, Duke of Trinacria
 
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Miguel was old, he was tired and he had seen everything he had wanted and more. Now he just wanted to sleep.
Miguel Villanova has died at the age of 91.
-------------------------------------------------------------
Name: Eduard Villanova
Date of birth: November 11, 1580
Class:courtier
Religion:Catholic
Bio: The son of the legitimized bastard Hernan Villanova, Eduard was born in the colony of Havana and raised in the colonies with his grandfather, Miguel Villanova. As of the death of the former colonist he is the current head of the Villanova farm. This is due to his father being passed over due to his bastardy.

Your Majesty,

It is with a heavy heart that I must address the death of my grandfather some time before. I have come to take his place in the court and hope to match his exploits. I also request the position of colonist if possible.

Eduard Villanova
((Do I have to wait a turn or can I get the position now?))
 
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I must apologise for the brashness of this letter, coming so soon after your father's recent death- may the Lord preserve him,- but my brother asked of me if you would accept his daughter, Amelia, to join you in matrimony. I understand of course if your father, as prepared as he ever is, has already already arranged a match for you, but my brother and I ask still,
May the Lord shine favourably upon both you and your father up above,
Yours ever truly, Cardinal Juan II de Soneta
 

Keinwyn

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The pain continued to rack Marina’s body, even breathing almost felt like too much effort. She could hear crying somewhere, which she supposed was a good thing. She still remembered with dread the deathly silence that had signalled all her effort for naught.
The midwife’s worried face appeared above her, lips moving, but Marina was too exhausted, both physically and spiritually, to hear.
When she awoke she felt even more tired, if that were possible, and cold, so cold. The midwife informed her that they had tried, but the bleeding would not stop. As that reality sank in Marina recalled with astonishing clarity her mother quoting Homeric wisdom.

“Any moment might be our last. Everything is more beautiful because we're doomed. You will never be lovelier than you are now. We will never be here again.”

The fatalism of it somehow put Marina at ease, and a gentle smile spread her lips as she accepted the inexorable lure of death. First however she summoned her energy and dictated her final letters.

Later that day, Marina Sastre passed to the arms of the Lord.


((Private Letter to King Pere))

My most dear lord and king,

The hour of my death now drawing on, the tender love I owe you forceth me to put you in remembrance with a few words of the health and safeguard of your soul which you ought to prefer before all worldly matters, for the which you have cast yourself into many troubles. For my part, I wish to devoutly pray God that He will pardon you, and no doubt rests in my heart that you shall find his forgiveness.
For the rest, I commend unto you our children, beseeching you to be a good father unto them, as I have heretofore desired.

Lovingly yours, Marina.
 

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The war against Portugal was easy enough, as expected, even if it went on a bit longer than hoped. And now, some hundred Portuguese served the Totonac - brutal savages, from what he had heard. Unlike the Cuscoans, who supported the settlers he had funded - a good choice to work together. But now, Louis Clément de Montségur lay in his bed, contemplating his life. His health had deteriorated badly, so it was good that he wasn't needed against Portugal. Thankfully he didn't have to abandon his king in hard times, but could leave without a worry after a fulfilled life.


Name: Denis Vincent de Montségur
Birth Date: 14th August, 1568
Class: Duke
Religion: Protestant
Bio: Spending his youth in Palermo, Denis Vincent de Montségur went on an extensive journey through Europe as the religious turmoil reached Hispania. He finished his military education in Sweden under the watchful eye of his uncle without too much success, before leaving Sweden, embroiled in the War of the Protestant League, for the electoral court of Saxony. His cousin the duke was not involved, and Denis came into contact with the Protestant teachings while being initiated into politics by his aunt. The interests of the belligerents in the war, the manoeuvres at the Saxon court, the influence of the church... After years in Saxony, and hearing of the upheaval in Hispania, he was convinced that the Protestant reformation was right. Returning to Sicily, he found his father on his deathbed; together with other great men, he had advanced tolerance within the realm and weakened the inquisition. He would not hide his faith. King Ferran severed his ties with Rome, and so it was time to further fight for tolerance, maybe convince others of the truth - he could serve as example. He only regretted never to have told his father of his conversion.

myKh8vJ.png

Your Majesty,

From my presence at court, I assume You know that I have the sad duty to announce the death of my father, the Duke of Trinacria, who peacefully passed away in Palermo last week.
I do not possess the same quality in military leadership as my father did, but I have accrued much experience in matters of diplomacy. With few official diplomats, I would offer my service to speak with foreign leaders.
I am well aware that the Chancellor would usually decide of such matters, yet the kingdom is lacking one at the moment. It would be wise to appoint such a man to ease the tasks of Your Majesty so that You have time for more pressing affairs. I present myself for this office, though there may be those who would not want a Protestant appointed to such a prestigious council position, so soon after the chaos of the recognition of my faith. Yet I assure Your Highness that there are no conflicting interests. In Sweden and Saxony, I faced two different faiths, at that time united and different in the aim of the Protestant League. Depending on the situation, one has to carefully judge the course of action one will take, well aware of what consequences, what reactions this will have. Therefore, I would give Your Highness the advice to appoint an experienced diplomat as Chancellor - preferably a Catholic. Am I not contradicting myself here? Not really - a Catholic would be the safest choice for the internal politics, as far as the current situation is. Appointing me would be a signal for the future, a signal to further strive for tolerance, while a Catholic Chancellor would set no such signal. Still, there has been nobody showing interest in the office before. I trust Your Majesty to make the right decision.
The same reasoning can be applied to the new Prime Minister. Whoever it will be, his appointment has the potential for either unity or discord. In my opinion, it should be a well-trusted man of the court, so as not to make the change too drastic, what disqualifies me. Another obvious candidate would be the most trusted man of the council. Not an easy decision to make, and I don't envy Your Majesty for having to make it.
I will of course continue to fund the colony in Nazca, and I have faith that Your reign will continue to see Hispania prosper, just as it does after uniting Iberia under Your rule.

Your humble servant,
Denis Vincent de Montségur, Duke of Trinacria

Miguel was old, he was tired and he had seen everything he had wanted and more. Now he just wanted to sleep.
Miguel Villanova has died at the age of 91.
-------------------------------------------------------------
Name: Eduard Villanova
Date of birth: November 11, 1580
Class:courtier
Religion:Catholic
Bio: The son of the legitimized bastard Hernan Villanova, Eduard was born in the colony of Havana and raised in the colonies with his grandfather, Miguel Villanova. As of the death of the former colonist he is the current head of the Villanova farm. This is due to his father being passed over due to his bastardy.

Your Majesty,

It is with a heavy heart that I must address the death of my grandfather some time before. I have come to take his place in the court and hope to match his exploits. I also request the position of colonist if possible.

Eduard Villanova
((Do I have to wait a turn or can I get the position now?))

((Indeed, there is a rule now making it so new characters cannot claim roles or leader positions on their first turn to prevent role hogging and to give others a chance to claim them. It's also to represent that those new to court would most likely need to make themselves known first or gain experience before being appointed to any position. As for the Council, I am not filling any of the vacant spots at the moment, since once I appoint the prime minister they'll all be fired anyway. I'm going to let the first prime minister start with a clean state and appoint whoever they like. It doesn't matter anyway, since heretics cannot be appointed to the council until the third religious reform is passed.))

((Private Letter to King Pere))

My most dear lord and king,

The hour of my death now drawing on, the tender love I owe you forceth me to put you in remembrance with a few words of the health and safeguard of your soul which you ought to prefer before all worldly matters, for the which you have cast yourself into many troubles. For my part, I wish to devoutly pray God that He will pardon you, and no doubt rests in my heart that you shall find his forgiveness.
For the rest, I commend unto you our children, beseeching you to be a good father unto them, as I have heretofore desired.

Lovingly yours, Marina.

((Private))

The letter dropped from Pere's hand, slowly drifting down to the floor. He could not believe that Marina had passed away. Their affair had been an unexpected thing, brought on by that day he had wandered into his mother's chambers to find her undressing. He had come to truly love her, for she had always been there when he needed and had not used him as any other woman would. She had comforted him in dark times, even when his first wife could not. His second marriage had dampened things between the two, although that did not stop him from seeking her out from time to time. They had children together, after all, so the ties were permanent. Now he had to consider what to do about them. Arias was a man now and Caterina was also of age. Perhaps he could marry them off to partners far from court. As much as he wanted to be with his children, his position could not allow it. As much as he needed a male heir, a bastard was not the answer. It would threaten the legitimacy of his throne. No, for now, they would be kept in the shadows. He prayed that Marina, God bless her soul, would understand.
 
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