Andrzej I

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"Daddy, where do children come from?"

"Well... when a brother loves his sister very much..." :p
 
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dragoon9105

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Oh but wait, Chris still has yet to earn that nickname.

Chapter 31: Round 2
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Dishonored and disgraced the Muhammids Caliph did not take his defeat. Caliph Zeyd returned to Baghdad and called for a Renewed Jihad against the infidels who had stolen land from god's chosen people. Over a hundred thousand from across the Muslim would would answer his call, the largest armed force ever assembled in recent European history. With a clear goal, The conquest of all lands east of the Bosporos starting with the recently taken lands of Anatolia.

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Meanwhile Kaiser Christopher had returned to Vienna to raise his firstborn Reinhard. The Young lad had quickly taken to religious studies and had inherited his Father's talent for the written and spoken word. When envoys from the Byzantines arrived in Austria speaking of a great warhost the Kaiser once again was forced to rise east, This time to save his newfound allies in the Byzantine Empire and Knight's Hospitallier.​

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The First force to arrive in Anatolia was the Imperial retinue. Originally formed under Christopher's Father the Knights of Leopold were well trained but not particularly well adjusted to war in the Anatolian foothills, Progress was slow and Muslim armies quickly overrun the western front. Imperial command weighed thier options and decided it best to wait for the main army to arrive.

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The Italian, Serbian and Austrian legions arrived within a year and formed a loose front along the Anatolian foothills. Imperial command decided it best to strike through the center and force the Muslims to the coast where the Bedouin armies would be trapped against the Imperial fleet and the Kaiser's Armies. The primary thrust would strike the arid region of Kaiserreia and then procede from there.

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Thing of course did not go according to plan and Kaisereia quickly became the major battlefield of the war. The Terrain made it difficult for both sides to even give battle and starvation and disease ran rampant throughout both camps. When the armies did finally meet the Imperial force with their superior logistics vastly outnumbered the Muslim armies. In reaction to this the Muhammid commanders quickly sent Messenger birds to the surrounding area and the Muslim hosts converted on kaisereia.

The Battle raged for months, but despite the Muslim efforts to fortify the region Imperial Cavalry eventually broke thier lines and set the Muslim camps to the torch. The Cost was great and the commanders of the Empire demanded the right to return home for a year to replenish thier manpower and tend to thier cropland. The Kaiser had no choice but to accept and was left with only his remaining knights and the Loyal Templar, Tuetons and Hospitaliers.​

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It was then the Next Muslim host strike at Mikissos, and like before they lost but not without inflicting heavy casualties of Allied and Imperial forces, again forcing a further retreat. The Emperor's own plan to cut the Muslims off at the Armenian mountains would be delayed once more.​

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The Emperor's children whom were safe in either Constantinople or Vienna quickly had adopted traits of thier parents. Walpurga had become a miniature of her mother, manipulative and determined to rule.​

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With the Break of a New year the Kaiser returned at the head of a new Host of Knightly Orders and Imperial Guard. This time the plan was simple, Push the entire muslim line back beyond the hills and disallow them the opportunity to form into a more massive host. With an inspiring Victory the Kaiser had hoped he could finally persuade the Electors to return to the front. The Plan was set in motion and the results were spectacular. The Heavy Cavalry of the Empire was superior to any force the Muslims could muster and the great charge forced them further and further back into the countryside, out of Imperial territory.​

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Successful the Electors of Italy and Sicily gathered a reasonable force and arrived in southern Anatolia by sea and fortified the region. The Emperor's new plan came into effect, An Imperial Wall.

A line of fortifications would be constructed along the Anatolian Border, and a time old Austrian strategy was reintroduced of constructing wayforts throughout the occupied territory to restrict enemy movement further. Combined with the existing Byzantine fortifications in the region the Kaiser hoped to make the Peninsula interpenetrate and was reasonably successful, when the Muslims returned they could gain no ground and the Christian armies who had since become accustomed to the terrain had used thier cavalry to great effect to relieve any beleaguered forces.
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Meanwhile unrest was spreading back home. The King of Germany had refused to send anymore soldiers to a fruitless war and instead prepared to fortify his own borders. The Elector of Serbia, the Emperor's spymaster discovered the German King's intent and quickly asked permission to have him arrest. the Emperor approved and the King of Germany was brought to Vienna in chains.​

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More letters from home also revealed the Empress had eloped with a lowly count in Zagreb. The Emperor's heart sank and in his depression and resentment took a particularly attractive camp follower named Chinzhay to bed and fathered a Son with her named Leopold. Though not long after the Muhammids had gathered the remaining might of thier Jihad and struck Imperial fortifcations in Cilica. The Kaiser rode to battle with his retinue and smashed the army, A battle known to many as Christopher's Hammer.

Caliph Zeyd had taken control of a small wayfort in Cilcia and and quickly became embattled with the Imperial garrison in the region. The battle would drag on for days until one morning Imperial Knight's arrived atop an unassuming hill and rode down into the Muslim camp, taking Caliph Zeyd's life and three of his commanders. The Battle turned to a slaughter and the cheers of the Kaiser's armies was said to have caused an earthquake in nearbye greece.​

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Defeated and broken the Caliphate could no longer threaten the Empire. The Caliphs remaining son was merely a boy, not even old enough for a proper education yet. When the Emperor sent a letter to Bagdad demanding peace he was met with almost total surrender. Christopher had won, against all odds, where both the Romans in Greece and the Mongols in the North had been left wanting.​

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TheAnguishedOne

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100% decadent? Well, that boy is going to be overthrown in a month. Too bad the sister-wife cheated on you; I thought it was a match made in heaven. Still, if your kids are taking after their parents, perhaps the tradition will continue and a few heirs down the line, you'll be happy to have a normal kid.
 
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Chapter 32: Tales of Sunset
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With peace once again in the Empire The Kaiser returned to austria. Though the Kaisers was welcomed with great fanfare his mistress was not. The Empress quickly went about reasserting herself and had her quickly disposed of forgotten, only worsening relations between the Anniona pairing.

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In the chaos of the war the King of Germany had also escaped custody and returned to frankfurt where he planned to resist any attempt of the Emperor to bring him back to Austria, though. The attempt never came, Christopher was content to let the old man live out his days in fear rather than rebellion.​

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Next the Kaiser had made efforts to stregthen new alliances first with Cordoba and then to reinforce the existing Byzantine one. The Greeks had long languished without a true emperor's blood and Christophers hoped a long enough tradition between the two Imperial houses could one day unite the Empire with more than blood.​

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Christopher himself had grown tired in his old age. His youthful vigor and drive had turned to wisdom and experience. His pursuits of Wine women and song ended and slowly he became to administer the empire and study the texts of his ancestors alongside his dear sister.​

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When Reinhard and later his younger brother Johann finally came of age the Emperor thought it fitting to finally end the bad blood between the Anniona's and the Umayyad dynasty. After all, Europe should prosper in such times of peace, not resort to petty rivalries. Though the Umayyad Emperor did receive a substantial sum help lubricate new relations between the Empire and Spain.​

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Another one of the Kaiser's seeds had born fruit as well. The Mansa of Mali had converted to the true faith. Not to be outdone or intimidated by the other lords of Catholocism the Mansa journed north on a great pilgrimage with vast hordes of gold. When the Masna arrived in rome he donated a substainial gift to Vatican and gave generously throughout Italy.

Though this great influx of pure wealth quickly crashed the Italian Economy. Osterhild instituted a new policy to relieve the pressure of selling Church and Imperial land to the Italian merchant class who benefited the most from the Malian Pilgrimage. Though the Italian Merchants were perhaps not the most loyal of the Empire and this Policy while helpful for Italy in the short term could have lasting consequences due to a new landed Italian nobility.​

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With this new Influx of wealth in Europe the New Mongol Khan of the east had made a fateful decision. Named Genghis this new Mongol warlord envied the wealth of Europe, and of China and declared a great conquest of all the Known world. Though when Mongol soldiers reached Perm the Powerful King of Ruthenia rode armies to meet the Mongols. There was never a Clash but the intent was clear, Genghis would not waste his strength in russia, Yet and seized Perm and the outlying European lands, then headed East, to China.​

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Meanwhile in Vienna the Imperial curse had reared it's ugly head once again. The Emperor's Grandson was born deformed by some strange curse from god. Though this infant thankfully did not live for long and Reinhard eventually produced a healthy if uninteresting son several years later.​

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The Kaiser himself ruled for a great many years after the Anatolian wars. With the mongols pacified Osterhild had grown increasingly important as the Kaiser's Wife and de-facto co ruler. Thier resentment of each other slowly faded and the two began to depend on eachother once more.

One fateful day Osterhild had worked her charms on the Emperor over a dispute about the Imperial Titles of Francia and Germania. Christopher accepted Osterhillds Proposal and declared the Roman Empire split into three, The Western Roman Empire, whos lands would consist of the Former Empire of Francia, England and De-jure Hispania, The Holy Roman Empire who would rule absolute over Italy, Panniona, Germania and Wendia and the Eastern Roman Empire who would retain the rights and claims, with some losses from Constantine s original split centuries ago. Of course though Christopher did not split his Empire as constantine did and instead named his Wife Empress of the West.​

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Not long after Scandal rocked the Empire once more, though not to the extend it would have if Christopher's reign wasn't has controversial as it already had. Osterhild, not the Emperor's wife but his daughter had become Pregnant despite not being yet married to her Betrothed. The Father was unknown but many suspect due to Anniona custom it may have been a Brother or cousin within the Imperial court.
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Not long after the Empress Osterhild had taken ill. In her old age Osterhild had quickly become infirm and week. The Kaiser found himself distraught and never too far from her side. As the Empress' grew weaker the Kaiser had found he truly still cared for his wife, despite both thier faults. Osterhild merely wished to rule and had manipulated her Brother into breaking all custom and tradition into enabling that, Only when she had laid the web did she find herself caught in it and in thier last days, they had come to that realization that perhaps they truly did care for eachother more than they had originally thought.

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When Osterhild Passed the Bells of Vienna had rung for a solid day. A Goddess had passed, and her Husband had fallen into grief, one he would not stirr from even as his own health eroded with age.​

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A second regency had begun, As the aging Christopher could not bring himself to rise from his own depression and Illness. He longed for the return of Osterhild and had ceased eating or even ruling the realm. Though Reinhard was competant as Regent the Kaiser yet lived and fey winds were blowing, The Empire would need a strong Ruler to resist the coming tide.​

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Or Perhaps a Miracle.​
 
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TheAnguishedOne

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Some powerful alliances being made by the HRE, and the timing couldn't be better. The Horde has arrived, and mysterious enemies from the East are on their way... Forget breaking up the blob, you need all the power you can get. :D

Reinhard might be average at most things, but a 20 in diplomacy should keep the vassals happy. As for his sister... do you know who impregnated her? Tell me we don't have more incest.

The marriage is certainly a stain on his reputation, but Christopher's anguish over his sister-wife's death is sweet. A nice way to end that particular aspect of his reign.
 

HIMDogson

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Wait what the hell is with that Empress of Mali? That seems a bit racist. Whatever the case, let Reinhard resist the advances of the Free Aztec Alliance! This is an anime mod, after all.
 

dragoon9105

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Thats just the Ugly trait graphic, It gives any character buck teeth and that weird looking mouth. Attractive if you have noticed adds Anime style stars around the portrait which is frankly, hilarious. Unfortunately I dont think any other traits seem to have an effect.

Also some theme Music for today's Update, and yes I know its not time appropriate :p

Chapter 33: Things get worse
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At First the Aztec Traders were peaceful, However language and religious barriers within the Empire quickly saw these strange feathered men expelled from Ports across England and France. The Pope in rome, blissfully unaware of the situation in France had seen fit to declare a Counter Crusade against the Muhammids who were now once more gathering in strength.​

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Of course Thousands would answer the call, Thousands of Fighting Men, Men that would be desperately needed in the coming days.

A new first wave of ships merely attempted to intimidate the English and Breton traders to reopen thier ports. The English and Breton survivors had believed these 'aztecs' had used foul demonic magics to poison thier brethren and violently refused, then The aztecs defended themselves they took captives and sacrificed them to thier dark gods. letters were sent to the Kaiser asking for a response and the response was swift, the Imperial Navy was mustered in Italy and set sail for Cornwall.
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The Sea's glowed red with Greek Fire and the few aztec ships that escaped did so telling tales burning men alive at sea, and strange metal men powered by ungodly magic.

Victorious, Prince Reinhard disbanded the Fleet and left for Vienna to report to his father. Though it was be a short reprieve, In two years the Aztecs returned, with a great fleet, their Emperor at the head, determined to conquer and subjugate this new land of Metal Men, strange spices and poisoned drinks.​

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The Aztecs first landed in France, Starved from the Journey across the sea the Occitan countryside was pillaged and rendered barren to feed the massive Host. The Aztecs captured thousands and surrendered their hearts to their demon gods, and enslaved thousands more. When the initial landing was Finished the Aztec Emperor had begun construction of a new Great Stone Pyramid atop the ruins of Gascony, the beginnings of a Colonial Capital from where he planned to have this new world governed.​

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Next the Aztec warfleet arrived in Southern England. A similar chain of events to those in France broke out, however it did not take long for the Celtics to organize resistance to the Aztec Invaders. Welsh Longbows had found thier ways to the hands of the Breton and Anglo Saxons of southern england and they were used to great effect harrassing Aztec supply lines and keeping thier actions restricted to the coastline.​

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Nearly Two Hundred thousand Aztec warriors had Invaded the Empire, and More were expected to arrive should this initial wave not be defeated. Initially of course there was a Panic, and Anarchy has french Nobles quickly fortified their castles and prepared for the worst leaving the small folk throughout western France to fend for themselves with disastrous results.

Others still Joined the Invaders, though the Language barrier made this difficult and many prospective traitors found themselves being sacrificed upon makeshift wooden altars for the Aztec sun god.​

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The Kaiser, had taken ill in this time, The letter he had received from Land's end nearly two years ago had given him a strange disease that in his old age he could not resist. Eventually he passed, leaving the untested Reinhard as Kaiser to the Holy Roman Empire.

Reinhard's first action was to send an Envoy to this Aztec Emperor in Gascony. Anuid Alt Clut was a talented diplomat and had experience with these Aztec traders before being summoned to the Kaiser's court. With hopes of reaching a peaceful agreement with these new Peoples the Kaiser had hoped Anuid was perhaps the only man suitable for the task.
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The Aztec Emperor had seen to a fitting response, Anuid was sacrificed on the wooden scaffold of the Emperor's Pyramid and Anuid's heartless corpse was sent back to the Kaiser, A Declaration of War.​

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Reinhard's reaction was swift, The Imperial fleet was gathered once more, Supplies and meager reinforcements would be ferried Enmass from untouched Germania to the English and Bretons who resisted in England. The Aztec sailors, who had explicit orders to sink any Imperial ships quickly remembered the tales told of Fire breathing boats, After only a few skirmishes confirmed these rumors the Aztecs returned to Lands end, praying this Kaiser's fleet did not venture further west.​

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The Main bulk of the Empire's Levy was raised and gathered in Northern France. The Loire had been fortified centuries ago to protect against viking raiders, and perhaps Ironically the Aztec raiders were no less effective. The Aztec ships shared many designs with Norse raiding craft, though with some modifications to travel the great long expanse of the Atlantic, how the Aztecs developed ships so close to Nordic designs was quite the mystery.

Nevertheless the Loire did not protect Britanny which became subject to a raiding force of Ten thousand. Imperial Command, the King of Britany included in thier number quickly decided Britanny too important and mobilized a large levy to Anjou to run the raiders out of Northern Francia.​
This move however had consequences. The Aztecs had spent nearly a year fighting poorly armed peasants, smaller local lords who could not muster any reasonable or cohesive force to challenge a real army on the field. Naturally Aztec commanders did not expect much more resistance, simply more peasants, in greater number, something their Jaguar warriors could easily break. Fully confident in their ability to win the Aztecs charged the Imperial army at Anjou.​

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The Sunset Invasion had begun.
 
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Crushric

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Well, I for one am eager to see House Anniona defeat the Sunset Invasion. I hardly ever play with that DLC on myself, since I bought it but I never much liked it. Still, I hope this goes well for you!
 

TheAnguishedOne

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You've been preparing for this for some time now. The Aztecs are expecting an easy conquest... I don't think it'll go that way for them. Still, their presence here means a lot for the EU4 segment to come.
 

dragoon9105

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Well in all honestly I'm probably going to turn off SI for Eu, mostly because The two American powers never seem to really do anything except sit on their laurels all game and cause problems for colonial powers, and the AI is already terrible at colonizing properly. In V2 they do even less since they'll convert as Absolute Monarchies so they wont even absorb immigrants.

Chapter 34: Liberté!
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When the Aztecs had realized the true danger in their assault it was too late. After several initial skirmishes Imperial Cavalry quickly blinded and declawed the small aztec force, however their number was still too great to simply assault with the forces in Anjou.

The Aztecs were unprepared for these strange soliders mounted on wild beasts and quickly sent word requesting help from the coastline and the Main Aztec army located somewhere in Burgundy. This calls for help however inadvertently saved the more meager reinforcing battalions still en route to france that otherwise would have been completly overrun by the main aztec host.

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Aztec Reinforcements from the coast were quickly intercepted by French Cavalry based in Bourbon. The French Viceroy had captured nearly ten thousand Aztecs blissfully unaware of how fast Christian armies could move across the french countryside and now stood to shatter the unprepared masses of Jaguar warriors. The Aztecs that opted not to venture directly into Anjou and crossed the Loire near the coastline had evaded the French Viceroy and managed to successfully reinforce Anjou. though this would be to little too late.​

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The Previously unchallenged Aztecs had been humiliated. Twenty thousand of their number were captured or killed when the Aztec commander charged a small diversionary regiment of light infantry and bowmen. While this regiment would be butchered by the Aztec force Imperial Heavy Cavalry was something they could never expect. German Knights rode into the Aztec flank and the flimsy stone weapons of the Jaguar warriors were completely ineffective against these strange metal warriors.

When the Aztec emperor finally received reports of this embarrassment he had several of his top commanders sacrificed before the Gods and new ones appointed, Young commanders with some experience against these warriors of Metal.​

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This effort however would be to little to Late, Austrian and French Generals seized their opportunity, crossed the Loire and unleashed a storm of steal upon the Aztec Raiders in France. The Coastal armies crumbled before the might of Anniona Cavalry the Main aztec force however had arrived with a new commander at the head one who had adapted his army for war against the East.​

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The Aztec army met the Italian levy in Bourbon. The Commander there was a sickly and cowardly man and quickly upon seeing the Aztec hordes had fled the battlefield. In the chaos the soldiers Paniced despite initially having superiority in Numbers. When another Ten thousand Aztecs reached the field from the rear, chaos ensured and nearly the entire army was wiped out.​

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Of course, this action would not go unanswered, despite the defeat the more competant Commanders of the west could not allow this and enacted a new plan. The Emperor's Fist.​

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From Three sides Imperial armies crashed into Bourbon. A small French levy would attack from the south and be presented as Bait, a weak army the Aztecs could overwhelm and attempt to escape. Meanwhile the Cavalry heavy army led by the Knights Templar would harrass and cut the eyes and ears from the Aztec force, blinding them to the true threat, the Hammer in north. A vast levy of nearly fourty thousand would arrive at the Aztec rear, combined with the Templar cavalry on the west and several small outrider forces in the east the Aztecs would be enclosed in a great metal hand.

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The Aztecs were crushed, completely and utterly and when the Emperor of the West sent an army to relieve the main force it to was surrounded and crushed into dust. The French countryside had become a barren wasteland, and despite losses the Kaiser's soldiers had been victorious, and the Aztec commander was brought to Reinhard in chains.​

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Cacamatzin was perhaps the greatest Military mind in the whole of the Aztec Empire, and now he sat in a cage in the Kaiser's Warcamp and with his capture the remaining hostile forces in france were subsequently crushed, butchered and dealt with. When the Emperor's allies finally arrived it was a clear Signal, The Conquest of France had failed. The Aztec Emperor was forced to flee to his remaining forces in Britain in the dark of night and his great new Capital in Gascony was put to the torch.​

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Of course, the War wasn't yet over, Britannia could not stand without her Kaiser forever.​
 
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TheAnguishedOne

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A sound defeat for the Aztecs. The invasion is not yet done, but this is likely a preview of what's to come.

As for the plans to undo the SI in EU4, do you have any plans of making changes in the New World or Far East then?
 

Crushric

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Huh. That went fantastically. Primo victoria!
 

dragoon9105

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Well since I have the Nation designer I could probably do something interesting. I have actually finished my test run in CK (I usually run it around 100 years or so ahead of me) and started the EU testgame.
Chapter 35: Back to the Sea
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With France Liberated from the Aztec threat the Kaiser turned his full attention to Britannia. Retaking the British Islands would be new challenge. A series of winter storms had forced the Imperial fleet to harbor in Flanders and without supplies the Bretons in southern england quickly began to starve. The Aztecs had planned for this eventuality when they arrived, they planted vast temporary fields of strange brown roots that they could boil and eat or turn into bread. When Winter finally broke it was time to return to the north.​
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The Aztec military had covered the southern coast of England and had now begun to finally crack open the ancient fortresses of the old Saxon Kings. The Old Imperial supply route into Dover had been rendered unusable as Aztec raiders had lined the entire southeastern coast. The Kaiser demanded action and top Imperial commander, Prince Agilia of Cordoba drew up three plans.​

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(Yes Prince Agila is married to my Strong-Genius Sister Walpurga)​

The first plan, aptly named The Dragon plan was simple, Burn a swath through the Aztec fleet and harass the southern coastline looking for an ideal place to land. Not particularly complex but Confidence was high after the great victories in France and it provided a potentially quick end to the war.

The Second plan was named the Warhammer plan. Even more brutish than the first plan the Hammer plan involved sending the entire imperial army into Middlesex and securing the valuable Thames estuary. This plan was risky however as a full blown naval invasion on such a valuable city could easy result in more casualties than the Kaiser was willing to take.

The Third plan and the odd one out was named Woolen Plan. For its safety and its choice of landing zone. The more cautious imperial commanders decided on a new approach, The fleet would first destroy the Aztecs at dock in Cornwall, then escort transport craft into Wales. the Aztecs had failed in every attempt to make it into the Welsh Foothills, each time deterred by local resistance in the form of Long-bowmen. A large army of Bandits, bowmen and rebels had gathered momentum in northern England, led by a Mysterious King Hood. While the Saxons were on poor terms with the Empire overall they hated the Aztecs who butchered Celt and German alike with little scrutiny.

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The Kaiser had favored the Third plan. While Reinhard had a medicore mind in terms of military mattered he saw the importance of the army remaining cohesive, intact and ready should the aztecs return, or opportunists from the East making a diffrent move entirely. The army landed in Dyfed and quickly were greeted with open arms with the Welshmen Raiders and Scottish Volunteers garrisoned in the hills.

As expected the Aztecs reacted as swiftly as possible to run the Germans out of Britain before thier numbers swelled and retreated from eastern England, allowing another army of fourthy Thousand to make the crossing from flanders and retake middlesex.

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The Aztecs quickly found themselves boxed in. The Imperial Wall tactic developed in the Armenian crusade was put into full effect and a third army was sent to oxford to defend the gap between Middlesex and Gloucester The Trap was set.

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Seeing thier deaths stand before them the Aztecs decided to fight and strike the first blow rather than be trampled by an Anniona cavalry charge. They attacked Oxford in full force attempting to break free northwards into the more wild country in scotland where they could potentially build new boats and flee home.​

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The Wall collapsed in and flanked the assaulting Aztecs but still they came, Thousand after Thousand one last charge for thier Emperor and third gods, as if the world would end should they fail. Finally when the Aztecs had no more more, and the fields of England had turned a deep crimson red was there quiet. The Kaiser had won.

Not to be delayed however the Kaiser charged further south, to meet the Aztec Emperor himself in open battle. When the Aztec emperor attempted to flee Anniona cavalry caught his army at the small town of Carisbrook, and annihilated it as well.​

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Of course there was still work to be done however. England had been put to the torch, and still some Aztecs had held tightly onto the few castles that had managed to surrender to their warhosts. The great hordes of animal skinned warriors however had been swept aside by German steel.​


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The Kaiser had won. Where Roman had failed before against hordes of Barbarians Reinhard had taken a stand. The Kaiser had stared at the endless hordes of the Abyss, the Empires enemies, Armies spawned by hellish tides and demonic magic and had sent them back. Rome would not fall so long as Reinhard the Bold and House Anniona wore the Mantle of God.

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Victory came with a Price, as it always does. France had been left a smoldering ruin and the British Isles had been infected wholly by this strange new Plague, a curse left by the Aztecs as one final blight upon the Celts left in Britain. Though with the Aztec defeat their strange ships had fallen into Christian Hands, Templar hands in fact.

The Grandmaster of the Templar order swore to study these strange foods, weapons and technology the Aztecs had brought. Things that may prove valuable should the Aztecs ever return, Or should the Kaiser see fit to return the favor.​

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One thing was certain, when the smoke settled and the Sun finally set. It was the Annionas who had won the day, for better or ill.


 
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TheAnguishedOne

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King Hood, eh? Nice touch. Reinhard might have been born from incest, but his victory over the Aztec Invasion should assure his place in history as a well-respected Kaiser.
 

dragoon9105

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Chapter 36: Something completely different!
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As the war ranged in the West, a different victory was being won by the empire in the east, One not of swords and steel but of the pen and spoken word. The great Khagan of Mongolia, the Grandson of Genghis the Conqueror had seen the light and embraced the Holy faith.

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With entry to the Catholic brotherhood the Kaiser saw fit to properly welcome the Mongols with a marriage. Prince Reinhard was the Emperor's first choice for a marriage. Though when the Emperor's firstborn died Reinhard became the Heir and the Kaiser decided against bringing the Mongols too tightly into the family and instead married off a Second son in reinhard's place years later.

Of course as was the the reoccurring theme, the Empress of Austria was an important Woman, seen by many throughout the country. She like many before her found solace in the arms of another while the Kaiser was away on campaign.
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The Kaiser arranged an immediate divorce and married a younger Noble courtier from a german house. The Byzantine Emperor was furious though there was nothing he could do and Nikarete returned to Byzantium, stripped of all signs of nobility or heritage wearing a common rough spun robe.​

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In his later years the Kaiser turned his focus to his heir Reinhard. It was critically important the Empire stay strong, the Many vassals within her borders broke bread hundreds of miles away, speaking of independence, heresy and weakening the Kaiser's authority. Without a strong, honest and diplomatic Kaiser the Empire would fall victim to the very fuedal system the Kaiser's ancestors had exploited to restore the Roman Empire.​

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To further this end the Kaiser took it upon himself to raise his niece, the lass Ursula. Merely a young women Ursula was wise, and strong much like her grandmother Osterhild. Though not completely as the Kaiser one day found Urusla in a storeroom kissing one of the cooks daughters.​

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Of course Ursula was betrothed to the crown Prince, She would be expected to produce an Heir. This development had complicated things. In less civilized Times Ursula could have been stoned, killed or sent to a Nunnery, This was an Annionan Europe however, One in which the great Eugenius IV had banned violence against sodomites in any form centuries ago.

The Kaiser needed a new alternative, when the templars approached him with an option. A strange spice from india that had found its way into pleasure houses in Wien. Seeing no other option the Kaiser had given the Templars his approval. The Crown prince and Ursula were given a drink laced with spice, and locked in a room.​

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Of course, Perhaps giving underage childrens strange spices wasn't the best Idea as Ursula quickly developed the age old Anniona taste and had used her natural talents to slip away with the Crown Prince, or some of her Handmaidens whenever she felt in the mood.​

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Interesting Tastes aside the Crown Princess had blossomed into a fighteningly talented young women, The Greatest Diplomatic mind Europe had even seen. What Ursula wanted she received with a soft word. Though she desired little and was rather a Paragon of every virtue but one, and its not like anyone in the Empire particularly cared that she was close with the Crown prince or her handmaidens, after all the Empire Needed and Heir and Reinhard was her only lover capable of producing one.​

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Speaking of Reinhard, the Boy had grown much like his father, inheriting his own silver tongue though not much of his skill in anything else at all and still eclipsed entirely by his new wife. The Kaisers prayers were answered, a talented, if a bit of a savant heir and a future Kaiserine that would put Osterhild, Gisela or his Grandmother to shame.​

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Of course seeing the younger generation going at it had gotten the Kaiser quite bothered as well, His new wife was rather distance and had avoided the Kaiser since the Wedding night and always seemed to snicker whenever she looked Upon any of Christopher's descendants. However, Tenkil of Mongolia, sister to the Kaiser's daughter in law Sorkhagatani didn't seem to mind as much.​

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The Emperors Youngest, Sigmund was to be tutored by the great Martial Minds of Empire. Sigismund however had grown nervous around Princess Ursula and asked his father to serve out his days as a Monk. The Kaiser approved.​

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With the kids growing up the Kaiser set about re-assembling the council for his Son. Age was steadily becoming a facotr and the Kaiser wished to ensure only the most talented were on the council. The old guard was shuffled out and replaced with a new, young and talented council.

King-Elector Bernhard of Bohemia, A ward of the Emperor at one time who had learned the art of negotiation well from his tutor as the Chancellor.

Helferiech of Urgell, son of a Great commander from the Aztec invasion. Undefeated Duelist and top commander within Austria. Given the the position of Marshall and sent to ensure the Knights of Leopold were in top shape and properly organized.

Hartmann, The Brother of Princess Ursula, a talented economic Mind, Hartmann saw everything as an opportunity. When his sister was betrothed to the crown Prince he worked tirelessly to prove himself to the Kaiser, and was amply rewarded. From his position head Treasurer and Stewart of the Holy Roman Empire he had begun to amass a vast personal fortune investing in Brothels, Trading companies and the Indian Spice Trade.

Wigerich, the oldest member of the Imperial council who had proven his usefullness after the Kaiser was nearly assassinated shortly after Wigerich was fired. Many suspected Wigerich himself had ordered the attack but he had quickly used his contacts despite being in the Imperial prison at the time to reveal evidence that it was none other than the King of Germany. For his loyalty Wigerich was given back the Position of Spymaster, though the Kaiser had prepared a replacement should Wigerich die.

Finally there is Engelbert. The court chaplain had quickly become a position of irrelevance in the Imperial court, The Holy father held the spiritual power in Austria, whether he was given a chair on the Kaiser's small council or not. Engelbert had nontheless proven his worth however as he was the missionary who had converted the Mongol horde to the light of Jesus.

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Speaking of the Holy Church. A strange phenomenon had occured. House Anniona had monopolized the Papal elections Five times in a row. More radical elements of the faith claimed corruption and scandal, these elements were of course hunted down and burned at the stake. The Holy father abandoned all sense of Dynasty when taking the throne of saint peter.

Though it was strange that the Seal of Rome had adopted the Anniona Coat of Arms. When a Papal bull was passed legitimizing the Right of Emperors to marry close family, it had become apparent that the chair of saint peter was no more than a puppet of the Kaisers in Austria. More Bulls would follow, of course, though the Bible had slowly become less and less of a factor in Papal decisions.

After decades of war, and decades more of peace, Finally Reinhard passed in his sleep. In a peaceful and organized succession his Son Reinhard had taken the Crown of Mathias and declared himself Kaiser. It would be up to the new generation to continue this new Austrian golden age where Christopher and Reinhard left off.​

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Ursala is amazing! If only you could have made her heir. It always pains me when a niece or nephew of my current character would make for an amazing heir while my heir is just skilled at one or two things.
Interesting to see the Papacy becoming more and more an extension of the royal family. Looking forward to how that plays out.
 

dragoon9105

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Mar 14, 2012
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You have no idea how many genius kids have slipped by the wayside thanks to Primogeniture Succession XD. On the bright side their genetics always get recycled back into the main line eventually ;)

I thought at about this point I'd have to start making interesting things happen myself but Crusader Kings just loves to prove me wrong. Hell It practically writes itself sometimes. :p
Chapter 37: The Dark Arts
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Reinhard had a relatively quiet succession in comparison to his father. For the first time in several years the Kaiser was in an ample position to keep the electorate both happy and unified. The Kaiser's coronation was a grandiose affair marking the economic high times of the Empire. Though Reinhard wasn't the ideal Emperor many hoped for, outside of appearances Reinhard had developed a rather wild streak, and many questioned the state of his mental health as he grew older.

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In memroy of his Father Reinhard commissioned a great Tournament in Vienna. A great event for all Knights of Austria and Commanders of the realm could compete and display their skill. One of the only tournaments commissioned in centuries by an Emperor himself.​

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For three months did the celebration last. When the lists had finally come to an end Ronan a knight from Britanny had the Tourney and a great purse. Ronan dedicated his great victory to the Kaiserine Ursula over his own wife. Needless to say after his victory Ronan was not invited by the Kaiser back to Wien.​

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Following the Tournament the Kaiser enacted a series of new Legal reforms purposed by Ursula. Internal wars within the Empire would henceforth be formally banned without the Kaiser's explicit approval. The law was passed by the electorate not long after it was purposed and the Kaiser went further, restoring a more ancient and dated Imperial administration to help deal with the growing number of Vassals within the empire.​

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Outside of his duties as Kaiser, Reinhard had become more and more entranced by legends of Magic and the occult from Aztec prisoners and merchants from the east whom now could finally reach Europe safely thanks to Mongolian Khanates. The Kaiser became so interested in fact he had the Holy Father declare several objects that had stayed within the family line such as Leopold's Sword, the Crown of Mathias and Cross of Martin declared holy objects. To commemorate the occasion Reinhard had the lands around Wien blessed by their powers in a strange ritual involving incense from the east and chanting in latin.​

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In his studies the Kaiser had begun to compare the Aztec studies of the sky, the few that the Templar had recovered. Learned Templar Monks had already discerned the Importance of these star maps, and claimed that they would be a gateway to a new world far to the west. The Kaiser's his own studies discovered something different.​

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Reinhard's studies kept him awake far into the late hours of the night. Empress Walpurga had grown tired of the Kaiser's late nights with books of all things and chose instead to ambush the Kaiser in the morning for their daily, bonding time. The Imperial court decided it best to appoint Osterhild whom had experience in such studies to serve as the Kaiser's aid. Reinhard however felt her interest was in more than just the stars.​

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After a rather awkward conversation one night Osterhild had requested she be allowed to resign from a Position as the Kaiser's assistant. Osterhild herself was a bastard and wished not to mother an illegitimate child herself, let alone one with her Cousin the Kaiser, as it was well known by this point close pairing in the Anniona blood carried the risk of deformed, and tainted children.​

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The Doge of Armenia to grant her wish while also providing a means in which the Kaiser would not question her absence. He paid a large bride price to the Kaiser's own estate in exchange for the right of his firstborn Manfred to wed an Anniona as learned and talented as the Kaiser's assistant. Still a bit off balance over the incident several nights before, the Kaiser accepted.​
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Meanwhile the Kaiser's studies turned to the actual stars and away from the Aztec charts. He became increasingly convinced that some arcane force was at work in the heavens above and he would discover it.​

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Ursula who had become increasingly worried arranged a return of Nikarete, Reinhard's mother from Byzantium. She explained her worry about her Husbands late nights, and found Nikarette willing to speak with the Kaiser. Not that Ursula would have had any difficulty convincing her had she said no.

The Kaiser was undeterred. In fact the acknowledgement of the danger of his research made him almost press harder into the ancient texts. Anniona's had conquered the known world, now they could conquer one of the spirit, no were destined to conquer the realm of the spirit.​

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The Kaiser's studies would bring him to a single book. Referenced to in all of his texts as "The Dark Book", "The Black Book" and of course "The Book of the Dead". A complete collection of knowledge of the Arcane and obscure. Reinhard would not take no for an answer and traveled with an elite retinue to Egypt, the last known location of the book.​

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In Egypt the Kaiser discovered a secluded hermit who claimed to have a copy of the book. After a long day of conversation the Kaiser convinced this scholar called Ibrahim of the importance that he have this book. Ibrahim refused of course, but the Emperor brought several sacks of gold, and of course the Imperial Guard.​

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The Kaiser returned home, and his studies only intensified. The Book was written in another language but appeared as clear as Latin to the Kaiser. As he delved deeper however the Court noticed a change in the Kaiser. He had begun to wear garments of black and his eyes had taken on a strange energy. Tales of strange experiments and colored lights from the Kaiser's solar in Wien had begun to appear and the Kaiser appeared one day in court with shocks of white hair running across his otherwise youthful scalp.​

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The Kaiser had discovered something from the book. This Grimoire had predicted a great plague to come from the east. Of a great Lich that in far away Hindustan worked tirelessly to bring about the death of each on of gods living creatures. There was only one logical course of action, the Kaiser would continue his studies and learn of a way to defeat this dark wizard, lest the world fall to darkness.​

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With his discoveries made yet again the Kaiser finally felt ready to face this dark power gathering in the East. Reinhard first told his wife of his mission, rumor say she laughed so loud that she was heard outside the castle. The Kaiser of course knew the most reliable way to make Ursula believe him and after a rather steamy night Ursula quickly changed her mind and helped the Kaiser convince the Imperial court, and the Holy Father that the Armies of Christ would need to march east, Into the Shadow to stop the coming doom.​

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