morningSIDEr

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For one glorious week Christian could do no wrong...

A line which fills me with foreboding. Considering the description of Christian thus far, foreboding seems the right stance, as I am rather worried about what is going to happen with him now appointed King. A small mercy is that he seems to have hamstrung himself in agreeing to sign away some of his powers to Danish nobles, so hopefully they can curb his wildest excesses. I rather think Denmark is about to experience a turbulent reign.
 

unmerged(90806)

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I don't suppose Christian's wife will have much say, at least not presently, she's just a child after all. The Big Mamma on the other hand...

Yes, foreboding is the feeling that I just can't get rid of, even in the midst of celebrating new king's coming to the throne. ;)

At least the new advisor, MoM, right -?!- allows some room for town improvements and other layouts.
 

CatKnight

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Enewald: No to all three. Osel and Estonia would require taking on the Livonian Knights, while Gotland is Swedish. I considered starting a rebellion there to see what would happen, but the Swede AI decided to stick an army there. Financially we are actually in good shape. For now.

Malurous: Thanks. Christian is an interesting person. I'm not sure how it will show in actual game play yet, but that 3 ADM alone hurts.

Chief Ragusa: True: He didn't take back Danish Estonia. I think Valdemar did the best with what he had to work with, though in the end he (and the missions) grew a bit obsessed with the Empire.

I agree. Finding Christian a foreign war to sink his teeth into would be a good idea.

Qorten: I'm not sure what I'm going to do with silver tongue since Christian's ADM is *so* poor. I think it'll help explain his relatively high DIP stat.

Right now the Charter is flavor: An extrapolation of what would reasonably happen. IRL the regent for Valdemar's replacement signed a Charter on his behalf. Further, I rolled dice to see who would head up the regency: A nobleman, a priest and a burgher. All have an interest in taking away some of the prerogatives Valdemar took upon himself. On the next slider move they'll be whining very hard for Decentralizatoin +1

Omen: In CK, where I think these traits are taken from, 'Silver Tongue' WOULD help Stewardship/ADM. There's a chance for modifiers based on his trait, but they haven't fired yet. I think he'll have to go the diplomatic route abroad.

morningSIDEr: We'll see what happens, but I don't think Christian's reign will go down in history as a good thing.

gabor: Big Momma's going to have something to say for the next few years. The regents managed to keep her out, but now there's nothing to keep her from Christian's side. The new advisor is actually a banker - hence his high reduction to interest rate. He was the first merchant-like advisor I could find on the available list.
 

CatKnight

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EUROPE 1372

I was initially planning to do this around 1375, but Valdemar's death gives us a good stopping point to pause and look around the league.


Northwest Europe
1372xxNWEurope.jpg


Not much going on here yet. England and Scotland are doing well. Ireland's showing no signs of unifying. Holland's taken an early lead in the Netherlands.


Southwest Europe
1372xxSWEurope.jpg


Iberia is about right, but look at where Normandy should be. Apparently Navarre starts with territory up there and has done quite well. France apparently always has trouble in the 1356 start - let's see how they do. Savoy looks like an early leader in the south.


Central Europe
1372xxCEurope.jpg


Austria and Bohemia are the big players in the HRE. While Poland hasn't grown much, they are definitely worth watching as they've brought one emperor low and are still fighting the second. Hungary is also quite strong. It'll be some time (if ever) before this area consolidates.


Southeast Europe
1372xxSEEurope.jpg


Hungary chopped a hole in (I assume) Serbia. Given the early start the Roman/Byzantine Empire is stronger and the Ottomans weaker. I'll be surprised if either one of them have a serious impact on the game. Naples naturally dominates southern Italy.


Russia
1372xxRussia.jpg


A huge (but pagan) Lithuania and an impressive Novgorod. Muscowy is growing. Southern Russia is occupied by the Blue Horde, the Golden Horde's predecessor. As you see that's Sweden in Finland (historical) and the Livonian Order in Estonia (also historical).


Anatolia
1372xxAnatolia.jpg


Karaman looks strong enough to keep the Ottomans busy. Depending on the strength of the Blue Horde, Georgia might be enough to protect the Middle East from their depredations. Sulduz and the Jalayarids are both huge.


Northwest Africa
1372xxNWAfrica.jpg


Fez starts that large, more or less. (I wonder if Tlemcen chewed on them a little.) I'll be curious to see whether MEIOU's setup prevents Spain and Portugal from rampaging through here.


Northeast Africa
1372xxNEAfrica.jpg


The Mamluks are scary. Along with their significant historical territory they've also taken over the interior of the Arabian peninsula. I can easily see them filling the historical Ottoman role of Muslim powerhouse.
 

Stuyvesant

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In Copenhagen he developed an interest in public works and spent time with the fire brigade. Later that year they credited him with saving two children from a burning house he happened to be near. He also took up the fiddle.

Not to mention that reference to staring at the bonfire at his coronation for hours... We clearly have a Nero on our hands (disinterested in the actual running of the state? Check. Domineering mother - who's a poisoner, to boot? Check).

If I owned any real estate in Copenhagen, I'd be frantically trying to sell it right now. ;)
 

CatKnight

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Stuyvesant: I thought the fiddle was too obvious. I was starting to wonder if anyone was going to pick that up.

Enewald: Thanks! I never knew that. And what a charming way to die...

Chief Ragusa: That may be next on the agenda. You're very close though
 

CatKnight

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Lords of the Danemark

RoyalFlagSm.gif


Chapter II: Christian I
Part 1: Setback (1372-1376)


Calm Before the Storm

At sixteen years of age Christian I inherited one of the strongest realms in northern Europe. During a celebratory week that would have made Dionysus proud he made any number of exclamations regarding Danish prosperity, strength and superiority but always managed to stop short of insulting his guests from neighboring realms. Foreign delegates found him exuberant, filled with the 'energy and cockiness of youth' as a Swede put it, and perhaps not as focused as his father, but by no means dangerous.

During the first few months of his reign Christian made token efforts to work with the Rigsraadet. Long discussions about this grievance or that incident bored him however, and his attention frequently wandered far away. When he finally provided guidance, it was in a direction none expected.

137205OselAgain.jpg


Almost two decades passed since Henning Podebusk first tried to get Valdemar to head in that direction. Now there was no need to dissuade his king from attacking Holstein. Indeed, attacking Osel Island would almost certainly bring the Teutonic Order into the fray. That would break their alliance with the Hochmeister and so weaken Denmark. They tried to dissuade him. When that didn't work and he insisted on doubling the number of training soldiers, the Rigsraadet politely refused.

Henning Podebusk said:
There is time, my lord. Plenty of time. If it is war you crave, there are enemies closer to home on which we have stronger claims. Osel is a worthless rock to us, far from any of our interests. Should you insist then the relationship between the Baltic Orders cannot last forever. Why waste a friend?

Christian stopped attending meetings after that unless he wanted money for his next pet project. Weeks later the Rigsraadet conceded on the matter of improved defenses hoping that would placate their young lord.

137205Trebuchets.jpg

x 11 provinces

Somewhere around now he first attempted to claim a husband's rights from his wife. Since Brigit was just now starting to enter puberty this did not go well and left her bewildered and crying. This only added to Christian's frustrations. He spent longer periods in Copenhagen away from home or the Privy Council with a band of bodyguards that doubled as thugs. There they raided taverns and generally made nuisances of themselves, shielded from the consequences by Christian's crown.

During this period his mother, Helvig, effectively took over. Time with the Bridgettines seemed to have favored her, for she'd found some measure of peace and no longer sought insult where none was intended. It was her idea to send envoys to Poland led by Brigit herself, ostensibly to gain a potential ally in case of war with the Teutons but actually to give the child time to finish growing up. She also dealt with the latest Lubecker revolt.

In August 1372 a large minority of Lubecker councilmen nominated Oskar Munden to lead the guilds in place of Burghermeister Jakob Pleskow, who they saw as weak for preferring subversive tactics against the Danes. In an attempt to win over the others, Munden repudiated the Peace of Stralsund and raised a host of mercenaries. Danish officials closed the city gates to Munded and sent a messenger cutter to Vordingborg. The ship found favorable winds and arrived that night. Without waiting for the Rigsraadet, Helvig replied with an army of her own.

Two weeks later local militia, reinforced with troops from as far away as Fyn and Sjaelland and veterans of Valdemar's wars, met the Lubecker mercenaries. Munden actually fought in the last Hanse war and so offered an advantage in experience and leadership. Nonetheless he was outnumbered with only half as much cavalry, and while his men didn't mind fighting city militia or even the risks associated with a siege, they had little stomach for battling trained professionals. In two hours Munden's center caved. The Danish reserve, including two thousand cavalry, thundered through the gap and flanked either wing. Munden died in the fighting.

137208LubeckRevolt.jpg


Two weeks after that, with Danish soldiers on every street, over fifty in the hall itself, and in Helvig's presence, the Lubeck council unanimously condemned the rebellion.

In Copenhagen, Christian's revels erased all the good will he'd built up by assisting the fire brigade years before. It wasn't a complete loss however: He oversaw completion of renovations on Absalon's Castle and called it 'the finest place in all of Christendom.' He then sent the master architect, Stephen Bigsby, to the Collegiate Church of St. Mary to complete renovations there: The church had been destroyed in 1314, and a lack of funds defied complete restoration. He also oversaw installation of the improved defenses he'd pushed through the Rigsraadet in the first weeks of his reign. His help in these projects was incidental at best and often reduced to general exhortations, but at least it was benign.

In October a mysterious fire destroyed most of the warehouses in Copenhagen's shipping district and two ships laden with Turkish delicacies which had survived two pirate raids and a freak hurricane. The fire destroyed much of Copenhagen's food reserves leading in some cases to starvation and increased prices throughout the Baltic.

137304FoodShortage.jpg


He returned to Vordingborg to lead Denmark through the crisis. Soon after Brigit returned with news from Poland: She'd spent a great deal of time talking to various members of the Sejm through interpreters as well as King Aleksander himself before his unfortunate death after choking on mussels. The Poles were unwilling to go to war with the Teutonic Order without promises of Danzig, which Brigit couldn't answer for. They did however welcome warm relations with the Danes and suggested creating 'zones of interest' regarding access to and domination of the Baltic Sea. (After the usual stream of RMs, mil access, etc. our relations were about +184. Alliances were still 'impossible.')

More promising news came from Pommerania, where the Austrian emperor finally conceded defeat.

137212AustriaSurrenders.jpg


Between that and a large revolt (Event) breaking out in Austria when word of the emperor's humiliation reached Vienna, Brigit guaranteed the Empire would give up any pretensions regarding Lubeck.

Christian didn't pay attention. He'd noticed his wife looked far more feminine than before, a work in progress that steadily continued through 1373. His periodic attentions received warmer welcomes therefore, and in autumn of that year medics declared her pregnant.

It was a quiet year: Nothing outstanding happened, though as months passed and the Rigsraadet steadily refused to authorize attacking Osel, Christian grew agitated again. He threw himself into plans for a lighthouse that would warn incoming ships at night they were too close to shore with a great bowl-shaped torch. This much the Council was willing to push through until the economy staggered.


Economic Crisis of 1373-74

To make a long story short, the Danish economy began suffering inflation when most of Western Europe was in a stable deflationary period.

Following the Plague years, with one third of Europe dead, labor was in high demand. Whereas before men and women either worked as serfs under ancient feudal contracts or took what job they could get in the city, now peasants and freemen were more willing to wander and seek the highest bidder for their services. England tried to deal with this by freezing wages at pre-Plague levels. Valdemar didn't care: More money for the peasants meant more he could extort to buy back his kingdom. The fact that nobles felt the crunch more than others - Taxes above and higher wages below - didn't bother him in the slightest.

In modern terms, this left less available capital to enter and improve the economy through trade. Danish merchants suffered as well, but in the post-Plague years European rulers and magnates were desperate to get trade moving again and absorbed the excess costs. This is one of the reasons Lubeck prospered in their pre-Hanseatic days.

The economy stabilized in the next decade, but in Lubeck in particular trade continued to decline. Of the 300 guilds extant in 1356, forty-five still existed. (Lubeck's value is still falling: Now in the 400s) They began raising prices to deal with increased labor costs and the lack of customers, but with trade now stopping in Brussels or London instead of the Baltic, Lubeck no longer offered anything to warrant the extra price. This resulted in low (or no) profits which in turn meant lower taxes.

In the meantime, food costs rising soon meant the entire economy inflated. Burghers responded by buying less, which now meant too much silver and gold coinage left circulation devaluing both in foreign markets.

Work on Christian's lighthouse began in July. Labor and supply costs were much higher than expected, while nobles and burghers outside the Rigsraadet frowned at a show of extravagance during a period when austerity would be wiser. He put aside necessary repairs to royal castles and forts in the effort.

137404FortIssuesHalland.jpg


The lighthouse finished in November, its brilliant flames blotting out the stars in Vordingborg's sky. He ordered another round of festivities to commemorate its opening as well as the pending birth of his child. This time there were fewer revelers.

In April 1474 a young knight named Kasper Oldenburg decided to risk the throw. His family served Duke Niklas of Holstein, and like the duke they were impoverished after the war. Oldenburg spent several years fighting as a mercenary throughout Germany before returning home. He recruited an army of desperate men in poorly made armor (or none at all) and an assortment of weapons ranging from steel swords to hoes. Oldenburg himself might have been motivated by revenge or pride, we'll never know. His army simply fought out of desperation.

Oldenburg's army seized and raided several villages, which didn't do much to endear him to the populace but did keep his army fed. Southern noblemen quickly rallied. Many of the levies were now veterans of the Lubeck campaign and swiftly engaged while Oldenburg marched on Kiel. The rebels fought with strength born of desperation, but they fought at less than 1:2 odds with little equipment, indifferent leadership, and while strung out in a column over a mile long. It was a slaughter.

137404HolsteinRev1.jpg


A young knight named Erik Akeleye captured Oldenburg trying to escape and brought him to Vordingborg. Christian ordered the rebel bound in brandy-soaked linen and tied to a stake within the great bowl used to hold the fuel for his lighthouse.

Christian I said:
You are fortunate. I grant you a holy death, for what is closer to God than fire? Its warmth grants life while its touch promises death. It is His Word in visible form.

He then lit the cloth himself with a candle and watched emotionlessly as Oldenburg died screaming. With him was an artist commissioned to capture the rebel's final moments on parchment. Christian liked it so much he had it woven into a tapestry that hung in the throne room for the duration of Christian's reign.

137301Tapestry.jpg


As reward for capturing Oldenburg, Christian named Akeleye (F1 S1 M2 Sg1) Marshal of the Danish army with orders to prepare for war. He still wanted Osel, and by now people were starting to fear him.

Through the summer of 1374 Markus Granntinger worked tirelessly to jumpstart the Danish economy. He found his answer in studying Venetian and Genoan banks. Both states traded far more than the available currency in their cities allowed. They accomplished this through letters of credit, which they in turn learned from Muslim traders. Much as today, a letter of credit made one capable of investments and purchases beyond their actual available assets.

Moneylenders of course existed for centuries if not millennia, but this was a more sophisticated and ultimately more stable practice involving finding 'honorable' (well-qualified) lendees and actively encouraging them to spend. Lenders controlled risk by selling shares in or trading the letters of credit. In the early days interest topped 20%, but over the next few years stabilized at 10-12%, or not far above modern values. Pope Pius II condemned this as another form of usury, but Venetian and Genoan merchants no longer cared and the rest of Europe wasn't far behind.

137409Granntinger.jpg


By September 1374 prices stabilized. So long as nothing ridiculous happened like a war, Granntinger and others like him predicted they would start falling after winter.


Conquering Osel...

1374 also saw the birth of Christian's first son, who he also named Christian. His birth left Brigit exhausted and weak for several months. For all his other traits, the king was capable of gratitude and helped her recover. Helvig died that autumn of influenza at age 55.

This reminded Christian of his own mortality. He wanted to leave his son a strong legacy and agitated harder for a campaign against the Livonian Order. Helvig's death removed the last restraint to his ambition and the Rigsraadet yielded to the chronic intensity of his demands. In November he appointed a personal friend, Kasper Ellbrecht, (F1 M1) commander of the Danish navy with orders to scout the Teuton and Livonian shores. He sent another friend, Maximillian Goye, (F3 M1 Sg1) to help Akeleye prepare the army.

On January 9, 1375, Christian I sent a letter to Landmeister Goswin von Henke demanding Osel. The landmeister declined, and days later another ship arrived from Marienburg. Hochmeister Winrich von Kniprode of the Teutonic Order asked for proof of Denmark's claim that did not involve Valdemar II and the Estonian Crusade.

Valdemar II, the Victorious, led what turned into a crusade against Estonian pagans. Valdemar landed on Osel (Saarmea) in 1206 and built a fort, but couldn't properly man it so ordered it destroyed. He went on to fight in the Battle of Lyndanisse (1219), when legend says the Danebrog first fell from the sky with the promise of victory. The Livonian Order conquered the island in 1227 and was ruled more or less jointly by Danish and Livonian overlords until the St. George's Night Uprising on April 23, 1343. Over the course of the campaign the Estonians brought Sweden into the fighting. The Danish lords in Estonia feared annihilation and so submitted to Landmeister Burchard von Dreileben in exchange for protection.

Von Kniprode claimed that when Valdemar IV sold the last of Danish Estonia to the Livonians, he renounced all interest and claims in the area. Christian replied by declaring war.

137502LivonianWarStart.jpg


The campaign relied on the Ellbrecht's navy to pen the Teutons in and prevent their interference. Transports would drop off Maxmillian Goye at Osel with eight thousand men, and from there invade northern Estonia. Akeleye would then land in southern Estonia and drive for Riga. The Swedes and Norwegians would help clear the Baltic Sea and hopefully make independent landings elsewhere.

Goye landed at northwestern Osel on February 14, 1375. That is about the last thing that went right.

First, the naval blockade was a complete failure. By February, Ellbrecht's navy had been at sea for several months in increasingly hostile conditions. Food wasn't much of an issue, but spars and cordage was. Further, being a personal friend of the king didn't make Ellbrecht a great admiral while his adversary, Karl Joseph von Howen, understood enough naval tactics to know his best chance was to close rapidly and turn the battle into a close ranged brawl.

Twenty Danish galleys met an equal number of Teutons. Ellbrecht fought conventionally, with ships divided into a vanguard, center and left. Von Howen formed a wedge and drove a hole through the heart of the Danish formation. Neither side used catapults or any long range weaponry beyond archers. As such the battle dissolved into a number of melees where the Teutons gave better than they got. Ellbrecht finally retreated in disarray.

The transport fleet, nine galleys and fourteen cogs, passed through days later. The galleys tried to shield their charges but von Howen simply arced around them. Most of the fleet escaped but one cog, the Hector, surrendered.

Ellbrecht recovered off of Gotland while the Swedish navy get von Howen and his Livonian partner occupied. He finally recovered and descended on the tiny Livonian navy (five galleys) seizing one in the exchange.

In Denmark the economy took another downward swing when Danziger and Rigan merchants declared an embargo. This cut off most of the eastern Baltic to Danish traders, while those from Novgorod refused to travel the Baltic in the middle of a major war.

Cardinal Teodoso de Faria received notice from Pius II that he found the fighting 'extremely distasteful' and the king's actions '...against his brothers in Christ an outrage.' He recommended a donation to various institutions would help Pius forget his rage. Bickering with the Pope didn't interest Christian, so he agreed.

137506IndulgencePeddler.jpg


Meanwhile, Landmeister von Henke believed time was on his side. Even if his Teuton 'masters' never intervened, an increasingly likely possibility as the Teutons feared Poles taking advantage of the situation, von Henke felt he could win. The Danish plan of attack foolishly split their army while he was quite willing to mass his and march up and down Livonia.

Akeleye meanwhile suffered from a combination of poor scouting and a hostile populace. While the Estonian people as a rule didn't like their Livonian overlords, at least they were a known quantity while the Danes could be even worse. Further, agents within Riga told Akeleye only one thousand soldiers reinforced the garrison.

He believed he'd caught the Livonians unprepared and so struck at Riga with seven thousand men. He didn't realize that von Henke was in the countryside and amassed sixteen thousand knights and laymen. His harassed, tired and hungry army stumbled into the well-rested and disciplined heart of the Livonian Order in July.

Few details survive regarding the battle. Any details Akeleye recorded haven't survived, while the Livonian chronicler at the time was overfond of the image of the gallant knight on horseback and saw fit to turn every battle into a series of charges and countercharges. What is clear is that Akeleye wasn't ready and over five thousand Danes paid for his mistake. Livonian casualties were under five hundred. He fled south, into pagan Lithuania, who hated the Baltic Orders more than they hated Christians in general and so allowed passage. (When it became obvious I was going to lose, badly, I negotiated MA with Lith. Von Henke proceeded to kick me entirely out of southern Livonia.)


...Or Not

137508LivonianUpdate.jpg

August 1375

After defeating Akeleye, Landmeister von Henke turned north to deal with Goye. In the meantime, Teuton agents worked within Holstein and Lubeck promising active military support in the event of an uprising. They received little support in Lubeck, where those who opposed Christian's rule felt they could safely stay out of the fighting and wait until 1381 when they would vote for independence. Holsteiners shocked by Oldenburg's execution rallied under a Bremen noble, Friedrich Ludwig Albert. Teuton 'Admiral' von Hove took to sea with 21 galleys and 7 cogs with orders to support Albert's invasion.

Kasper Ellbrecht intercepted him with 25 galleys. Ellbrecht may not have been a great admiral, but he had a more valuable skill: He learned from his mistakes. He massed his galleys while von Hove tried his wedge again, with the cogs in the middle of his 'V' formation for protection. Ellbrecht swept along the starboard flank and smashed into the left side of von Hove's wedge. They quickly broke through and struck at the relatively defenseless cogs. All order disintegrated as the Germans rallied to protect their transports. Two hours later von Hove's fleet retreated leaving behind a galley and a cog. (It feels very strange, but it makes a lot of sense for this period of naval warfare: No ships are being sunk. All losses this war were captures.)

Much like Lord Nelson in another timeline, Ellbrecht fell at the height of battle in one of the more desperate parts of the sea melee. A support ship carried him home for a hero's burial only to find Christian had no time for heroes. Holstein was in revolt, and the entire Danish army was on the other end of the Baltic.

Lord Friedrich Albert, self stylized Duke of Holstein-Lubeck, didn't know of von Hove's defeat until after he'd taken the field with three thousand men. Despite the small size of his army he marched uncontested across Holstein. Albert sent a letter to Vordingborg offering to become a vassal and put his army at Denmark's disposal in return for recognition of his title and claim. Christian responded by hiring mercenaries.

By September the Rigsraadet raised an army of two thousand to content Holstein's claim. They were a disparate (and desperate) lot from England, Norway and the Low Countries who suffered from a failure to unify commands. They marched as separate bodies and arrived at the battle hours apart. Albert therefore defeated each unit in detail inflicting over eight hundred casualties. They routed towards Lubeck.

This enraged Christian. He sailed to Lubeck himself with the funds to raise another two thousand mercenaries from surrounding German states. It was there he learned of Maxmillian Goye's fate.

Goye, you'll recall, led the northern campaign against Estonia. Unlike his counterpart, Goye had time to react to Landmeister von Henke's advance with sixteen thousand men. Unlike his counterpart, Goye wasn't much of a soldier. Once more reliable details of the battle haven't surprised but with every advantage in von Henke's favor, one can imagine it was brief. Goye remained a captive until the end of the war.

137510GoyeKilled.jpg


Christian executed the messenger who brought him word of Goye's destruction and retired to his chambers for three full days. When he emerged he forced the Bishop of Lubeck to excommunicate Albert and call for a 'crusade.' The bishop was too fearful (or smart) to refuse. He then summoned the leaders of the different mercenary contingents and forced them to establish a chain of command and enough common words to fight together. Then he spoke through a translator:

Christian I said:
As these are heretics, anything you and your men do in God's name is forgiven. Anything you take from them is yours. Do not suffer any to live. Kill them all, but I want Albert. Alive.

In July 1376, with several holes in Kiel's walls and the city days away from surrendering, (100% siege) four thousand plunder hungry mercenaries slammed into Albert's men. Enthusiasm made up for a lack of discipline and the rebels were slaughtered almost to a man. A grateful city opened the gates to their saviors to find the mercenaries took Christian's promise of loot literally. Kiel writhed and suffered for three days. Rather than punish or dismiss them, Christian sent them to Estonia to help Akeleye.

Later that month Albert arrived in Vordingborg in chains and also paid a hideous visit to Christian's lighthouse. Brigit, hoping to protect their son from the more violent of his father's impulses, asked for permission to move to Absalon's Castle in Copenhagen for the duration of the war.

Christian I said:
You wish to leave? Why...are you uncomfortable? Why would that be I wonder? Don't you know that a woman's place is by her husband, and a child's by his father? I, and my mother before me, attempted to teach you what was expected. Apparently my lessons weren't clear. I can rectify that. Now.

After beating and raping her he spent the night rampaging through Vordingborg. In the end he was too embarrassed to return home and retired to Copenhagen himself.

Along northern Lithuania Akeleye slowly rebuilt his army. While doing so he contemplated the tactics von Henke used to smash him and even learned useful bits from his pagan hosts. It would take years to fully comprehend the ramifications of what he learned, but it would revolutionize the Danish army.

137605LandTech8.jpg


When the mercenaries that sacked Kiel arrived, Akeleye saw them for who they were: A band of thugs rather than trained soldiers. He determined the best way not to have to rely on them in battle was to refuse to fight and so stayed where he was.

Finally in September 1476 Osel fell - through trickery. While the Swedish and Danish armies continued to sack surrounding times and invest the main citadel, Norwegian agents promised lenient terms if they were let in. On a cold, blustering dawn the allied armies awoke to find the Norwegian flag flying over the town. (I have no idea how Norway wound up in control of the siege when I definitely arrived first. I wonder if I left the fort unsieged for a second while dividing my army.)

With Osel unattainable short of attacking an ally, something the Rigsraadet wasn't willing to even consider, there was no point in the war. Von Kniprode agreed to peace in exchange for an admission of wrong doing. Christian refused for three months, but as it became more obvious Akeleye wouldn't move as long as he had mercenaries to deal with, the king reluctantly apologized.

137612EndWar.jpg


Akeleye's soldiers sailed home. The mercenaries didn't: Danish naval commanders, having learned about Kiel, refused them passage. (Disband, especially as I now have superior troops.) Christian returned to find Brigit willing, even eager to forget - and pregnant with the seed of his assault.

At his best Christian could be friendly and gregarious with creative, if not always consequential, ideas. At his worst.... denied his prize...

Denmark trembled.
 

Malurous

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Christian is pretty scary. I really wouldn't want to be in his inner circle, seems a bit unpredictable. :p And that's on top of cruelty...

Norway gaining control was a sad end to that conflict. It seems likely that Christian hasn't given up on Osel however.
 

Enewald

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Ösel lasted that long?
The castle is not that big. :p
I wonder why they even build Arensburg there in the first place, small isle that only produces vodka. :D

Well, better peace next time? Return in 5 years? Ally with Lithuanians?
 

Stuyvesant

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I wonder why they even build Arensburg there in the first place, small isle that only produces vodka. :D

I think you might've hit upon a crucial point there... :p

Christian is a scary piece of work. Not quite as incompetent as Nero, perhaps even more volatile and violent... Nothing good will come of his reign (certainly, nothing good has come of it yet). The alternative use of that lighthouse... Not good. I don't know who will next feel his wrath, but it is not going to be pretty.

PS: Yes, the fiddle part was a bit too obvious, regarding the Nero analogy, but on the other hand, I doubt I would've put two and two together without it. :)
 

Storey

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I kind of like Christian. Yes he is somewhat of a bully and he does have a temper with a short fuse and he does need to work on his bedside manners but in his favor he does have an imaginative mind when it comes to dispatching his foes and besides none of us are perfect. So I say bravo Christian may you rule Denmark for many years to come.;)
 

unmerged(58610)

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Christian is proving rahter nasty and cruel. I don't think I'd want to be Norway after 'deliberately stealing' Christian's prize.

Let's see. Allying with a pagan and attacking the Church's Military Orders in the North. How quickly can you write excommunicate?

That was one nasty bloody nose the Knights delivered Denmark. Christian's sons had better be sneaked away to safety.
 

Storey

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Christian is proving rahter nasty and cruel. I don't think I'd want to be Norway after 'deliberately stealing' Christian's prize.

Hmm, they did do that didn't they. :eek: I guess we'll have to wait and see if Christian/CatKnight is going to take umbrage over such a little misunderstanding. Methinks the lighthouse is going to be very busy.:D
 

unmerged(90806)

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Did you have enough warscore to ask Osel anyway? I don't think so. But if you had, you might have given it to Norway, solidyfying the alliance, and hoping sooner or later it'll be yours.

Anyway, the series of defeats on the mainland clearly shows Denmark is still too weak to take on the Livonian Order... alone. Either Poland or a strong Russian principality might make a useful ally here. And Christian, whatever one thinks of him, is a diplomatic genius, right?

And with Helvig dead, who'll stop Christian now? For starters, I somehow doubt he's going to abide by the resolutions of his Coronation Charter, namely the one regarding Lubeck.
 

Qorten

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Maybe the Norwegians had a general with a higher siege value, giving them command of the Osel siege? It's been quite a long time since I had a siege together with allies in MEIOU.