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    Real Strategy Requires Cunning

Jestor

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"England's throne has fallen to William the Bastard. The Normans have taken over the court and the nobility. Only a few Saxon territories remain and even they swear fealty to William. I worry, Cadgwan."

The marshal was certainly right to worry, mused Count Cadgwan Meriadoc. William's coronation took place only the day before and already there was talk that the Bastard planned to keep going with his conquests, not stopping until all of the island fell under his sway.

"Tell me your opinion of the Scots and the other Welsh lords" ordered the count.

Gwrgant Meriadoc smiled. Although giving up title to the counties of Glamgoran and Gwent was the hardest thing he'd ever done, he sensed the spark of destiny surrounding this young cousin. His own children were worthless and the marshal would be the first to admit that. Iestyn, his lone son, already boasted five children of his own at just 16, the first one born when Iestyn was 11. A lustful lout, that's what his middle child was. Gwrgant's eldest and youngest were both daughters, pretty enough he supposed, but without any reedeeming talent to speak of.

"King Malcom of Scotland rules over a sizeable domain, but a poor one. The Scots are fearsome warriors capable of protecting their homeland, but that is all. As for our own kinsmen, the Duke of Gwynned is a talented man, but the Duke of Deheuberth is as able as my son and his brood." The marshal spat to the side in distaste.

"And neither of them with anywhere near the troops necessary to withstand William's massive armies" concluded Cadwgan as he looked thoughtfully out the window overlooking the forest, "Which means there can be only one solution."

"And that is?" inquired Gwrgant with a small smile.

"We must find a new homeland."

Shock jolted the marshal as the stunning sentence slammed into him. Gaping, he stepped forward and gripped Cadwgan's shoulders with both hands.

"You can't be serious! To run away from our home, from the very country our ancestors paid for time and time again in blood? To surrender our birthright without so much as a whimper?! Cadwgan, tell me this is only a passing fancy! Tell me you will give up this madness and never think of it again!"

The count stood implacably in his only worthy courtier's hold, his face grave.

"We have no choice, Marshal Gwrgant. It is better that we should go far from here and build a new country, a new Wales, than be crushed under the callous Norman boot. We must leave to a new land and a new life. In the fullness of time, perhaps some day some future generation of Meriadoc will be able to return and reclaim these lands."

Pain shot through the old noble's heart at those words and he fought his tears as he nodded his acquiescence.

"Yes, you are right of course. But I have one request of you. I am an old man and do not wish to go to some foreign land. This is my home and I wish to die here. Will you allow me to stay?"

Cadwgan embraced the man who'd given up so much already for him, his voice as firm and strong as his grasp.

"You can do more than stay, Gwrgant. You will be made Count again of whichever you prefer of Gwent and Glamgoran. I owe everything that I have to you and I will it that you will not only die in beloved Wales, but die as the nobleman that you are."

A weathered hand wiped his eyes for the Marshal as he took a step back and exhaled slowly.

"Then give me Gwent, so that when that future Meriadoc does return to reclaim Wales and sails into that harbour, my ghost will be there to greet him with joyful and open arms."

Cadwgan22.jpg

Makes you wonder where he's planning on going, eh?

Gwrgant.jpg

The loyal Welshman and Marshal, soon to be restored to the County of Gwent
 

unmerged(51164)

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A new Wales? Sounds interesting.
 

EvilSanta

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Welsh spreading their sheep lo...um, Welsh spreading their influence? Sounds scary.
 

phargle

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If this AAR seriously is about fleeing Wales and setting up a new kingdom in a new land, that would be bad-ass. It also gives me an idea on a game to play, since my Capet game is basically over after breaking the power of the French dukes.

Wales is not a bad starting point too, since they get a surprising number of troops and face an immediately dangerous foe.
 

Dairpo

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I've tried a few Wales games (some of my first with CK.. I've only had it since May) and always lost. The best I did was end up exiled in Ireland, quitting in frustration to try something easier.. like Saxony.

GL on this one... All i ask is for maps :D I love the AARs with maps :D Especially if you're making a new Wales!
 

unmerged(51292)

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Very enticing. I suggest moving to Iceland. Irelands too dangerous to fork out a dynasty in due to all the waring tribes. The Swedes in Iceland can be easily subdued and you will be generally safe from attack. Iceland is a great place to expand your er.. influence as it were.
 

Veldmaarschalk

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New South Wales isn't on the map :)

So my guess would be .......................... Finland
 

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Veldmaarschalk said:
New South Wales isn't on the map :)

So my guess would be .......................... Finland

No thats way too far from Wales itself. You need to colonise teritory which is reasonably near to your homeland.
 

Jestor

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east_emnet: Thanks :) And I'm sure it will be interesting. :D

bigdan: Oh, I'm pretty sure England is going to eat Wales. I just hope not to be around by then. :D

EvilSanta: No, sheep love is the Scottish. ;)

phargle: It is indeed about fleeing Wales and setting up a new nation somewhere else. :)

Specialist920: Thank you :) I love the premise myself.

Dairpo: Yeah, back when I first got CK I fiddled around with Wales a lot, too. Between my repeated run-ins with William the Bastard and Roger de Hauteville of Apuila, I've really gotten to despise the Normans. :D

(Praetorian): Interesting idea. Nice, safe location thanks to its remoteness... but then, Iceland is a terribly small territory and an ambitious Welsh lord would have to travel far to make impacts elsewhere. :)

Veldmaarschalk: Sigvard of Kalmar definitely hears you on that one. If I'd only listened to my first hunch in that game... but wouldn't it be a bit much to try the same avenue twice? :D

(Praetorian) again: Conventional wisdom would dictate staying closeby, yes... but conventional wisdom also says William will consolidate Wales under his rule, too.

In short, gents, I've known since I started this dynasty where I'm headed.. and you'll find out either tonight or tomorrow night just where that is. :D
 

Jestor

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The screams of angry men and dying horses clashed against the clang of metal everywhere across the searing desert, the cacophony of Hell's own devising.

Deviltry, too, in the snarls of those dark-skinned men who attacked again and again the brave, yet small Welsh army. It seemed as though things had always been this way. The dark, rich green forests at home only a fairytale, the lakes and streams they once knew the stuff of a child's imagination. Their wives and children never existed. There had only been this; the fighting and the shouting and the dying, only this since time's inception and nothing more.

There was no greenery here, no pleasant and shady leafy bower. Only this torrent of flying sand that stung the eyes, as fine and numerous as dead men's ashes upon a pyre. The corpses that littered the opaque, endless yellow expanse of this barren, jaundiced version of Lucifer's lair were not ash yet, but they shriveled a little more with each passing moment, as the blood drained from their bodies to feed and bathe the ever-hungry, ever-starving sand.

Cadwgan Meriadoc looked to his right as he ran one through one of Lucifer's own Moors. What was that scream and why was it so familiar?

Gwrgant staggered two steps right, another diagonal left. His watery eyes widened with anguished disbelief, the jaw and mouth already losing form and firmness as his face crumpled. Three seconds later, the marshal's heavy body slumped to the sifting earth, an infidel's blade through his heart.

Tears of rage and grief blotted out all semblance of order and shape to the world and Cadwgan roared his disbelieving fury as he swung his sword at whatever moving blurs happened to come near, be it friend or foe.

And then everything vanished, a bright white light descending from the cloudless, windless sky.

"This is what awaits you if you do not change your course, Cadwgan of House Meriadoc. Is this the destiny, the new homeland you dream of for your people?"

Cadwgan started and cried out.

The bed beneath him creaked.

He was no longer in the desert, but in his bedchamber in Glamgoran.

It had been just a bad dream.

But a nightmare he would listen to. Everything must be changed now, the initial plans he'd shared with Gwrgant entirely rewritten.

That horrible vision must never come to pass.
 

Veldmaarschalk

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Where will they go ? I just don't know anymore
 

unmerged(37096)

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Well I'm more confused now than ever...

Are we not leaving Wells, or are we simply choosing a new destination, preferably one without Moors
 

phargle

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Jestor said:
The screams of angry men and dying horses clashed against the clang of metal everywhere across the searing desert, the cacophony of Hell's own devising.

Aha, I knew it! My silent guess was North Africa. It was one of my two choices for a homeland when considering playing this scenario. Good choice, and good luck to you.
 

Jestor

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Veldmaarschalk: I'm back to the drawing board myself. :)

Quirinus308: We're still leaving Wales; a new direction just needs to be found.

phargle: Well as it turned out, North Africa was... not the best of choices. Hence why I'm back to the drawing board. :)
 

Jestor

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Specialist290 said:
I take it that Cadwagan's "bad dream" was the result of a save and reload?

More or less. :)

What happened was I went after Tripoli in North Africa. Our armies actually fought in, of all places, Vermandois. The good guys won and we eventually landed in Tripoli and began sieging. Note: It took just over a year to get from Wales to Tripoli in the first place.

So we're sieging, sieging, sieging... keep beating back the resurgance of Tripoli troops and our numbers are getting smaller and smaller.

Then Gwrgant dies while I'm running fresh troops down with Cadwgan. It was one of those... "..Oh.****." moments.

Anonymous commander gets routed well before Cadwgan gets there.

Kingdom of Fatamids says "Oh look, an idiot Welsh count is still traipising around North Africa!", declares war and eats me, ironically enough about the same time that William is taking Gwynned. I didn't mention this part in the dream for purposes of storytelling logic.

So... it's back to the starting point. :D At least I can keep the AAR going, though.
 

phargle

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Playing as Gwyned, I pledged allegience to England to forstall invasion and then claimed Duhbeheuruthethwatever. I took the duchy title in a peace treaty and then saved 'til I had 250 ducats, claimed the king title, and lowered my budget for military to 1/10 of the max. Then I marched to the baltic and seized a province. Quite doable at the duchy level, and it was fun, too!