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    Real Strategy Requires Cunning

Lord E

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Windsor



The guards were in shock.
The same morning upon entering the quarters of the young princess of Naples they had found the guards outside the door on the floor, killed and the princess was no where to be seen. Although it was clear that the guard had struggled before he was killed it didn’t seem like there had been any struggle from the princess upon her abduction. The news had not been told to the King yet, the captain of the guard had gone straight to the Duke of Lancaster and John of Gaunt had immitigably sent out the guards to search the castle. Now they had returned to the captain and he went to see the Duke.






”Now captain, any sign of the princesses?.”


“I am afraid there isn’t Your Grace. She must have left Windsor”


”Well that didn’t exactly come as a shock… I have just received news from Sir John in Italy, and he informs that the young princess is no longer princess of Naples, but now she is the queen. So I don’t think we shall see more to her….


Now captain have your men return to their duties, I have already seen to that the ports are closed, but I am afraid she ahs already left England.
Send in some messengers at once!”



A group of men just waiting outside the Duke’s quarters enters quickly


”Martin bring this letter to Sir Simon de Burley at once. Tell him to send the ships to see to intercept and search all ships they see


John you shall go to the Earl of Kent inform him that princess might take the way through France, and that he is to do anything he can to halt her.


Thomas you must travel to Sir John, I believe it his in Siena at the moment. He must at once do anything eh can to halt the princess from traveling through Italy into Naples. She might be the Queen in Naples, but as long as she hasn’t got thee she is still possible to catch. Inform him to not hurt the girl, but he can let his men do what ever they want with her escort and guards…


Also someone send for Earl of Cambridge I guess eh should be informed that his son shall need a new bride… that is if we aren’t able to stop her!”



Quickly rushing out of the room the men travels with all haste to their destinations, but at the moment no sing of the princess are seen, and it seems like she has managed to leave England just before the ports was ordered closed and before the fleet was able to start searching all ships entering and leaving England.


She has got away, but time will show for how long… John of Gaunt smiles. He is looking forward to an interesting hunt across Europe
 

Velasco

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"John, By the grace of God, King-designate of Naples, Jerusalem, and Albania, et cetera, to John of Gaunt, King of Castille, Duke of Lancaster, et cetera, greetings.

We received your letter this morrow. I write to inform you that the King my brother is dead, as is his son. The Pope has ruled the throne of Naples will pass to me if the girl does not marry by August 1st. The girl Beatrice - she who, as you say, is of lower rank - has since been married off, to the son of the Duke of Julich, who you will be pleased to know will one day succeed me as King here in Naples.

I confess I do not know of how or why the girl Joanna left England, although I can vouch for that it was not with my knowledge or support, and neither that of her father, who as far as i can ascertain was deceased before her departure (of which fact she was aware). It is indeed divine providence that her betrothal was broken off (for reasons only my late brother truly knew), and that unless she marry within the next two weeks I will become King. I have heard that she is gone to Castille, although I doubt the girl would have had the wisdom to do so; I would be most surprised if she undertook to do so herself, and had contrived to marry herself soon (as she cannot possibly know of the Pope's ruling). Indeed, I hope that she will not take as husband that usurper and bastard that sits on that throne, and thus blight the bloodline of the royal house of Naples, to which she belongs, disinherited, yet still a part of our most noble lineage.

I hope that friendly relations can resume between our two realms, perhaps you will consider a marriage between Edward d'Anjou and one of my other daughters?

By his own hand,
John I, Regent and King-Designate of Naples"
 

Blade!

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*A letter arrived via merchantship, sealed with the seal of the King of Castilla*

John of Gaunt, Duke of Lancaster, et cetera, as Regent for His Majesty Richard, the King of England:

I write to inform you of the safety and security of one Joanna of Naples. She has been present at my brother's court for several days time, and only now have we learned she absconded from your subject's hospitally under cover of dark and without notice.

This is to inform you that under the command of Pope Clement, King Juan is forwarding her presence to Avignon.

Lady Penelope de Coria
 

Velasco

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A letter from Naples

"John, King of Naples, Jerusalem, and Albania, Prince of Achaia, Durazzo and Taranto, et cetera, to John of Gaunt, King of Castille and Leon, Regent of England, Duke of Lancaster, et cetera, greetings.

It is with the greatest joy that I write to inform you of my inauguration as king of Naples, alongside my consort Joanna II (not to be confused with my niece of the same name, who styles herself Joanna II, despite being disinherited by both Avignon and Rome). Now that I am established upon my throne, I ask that you consider a futhering of the close relations between our two kingdoms, especially as regards to protecting our interests in France (the claims of King Richard upon the French crown, and the aspirations of Louis of Anjou toward our throne). Whilst my brother was at the best of times erratic, I am a man of sound judgement, and can see the wisdom in an alliance between our two kingdoms. I wish to propose a marriage between one of my daughters and an English prince of the blood royal, perhaps Edward d'Anjou, or your own son Henry. It is my expressed wish that, should one day war be once again waged between Naples and Anjou, and/or England and France, to make this future son-in-law of mine Duke in Anjou, so that both the English claims, descending from Count Geoffrey Plantagenet, and those of Naples, descending from King Charles I, who ruled the said duchy, be united in one person.

By his own hand,
John, King of Naples"
 

Velasco

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A letter arrived at the English court, addressed to John of Gaunt.

“John, King of Naples, Jerusalem, and Albania, Prince of Achaia, Durazzo, and Taranto, et cetera, to John of Gaunt, King of Castille and Leon, Regent of England, Duke of Lancaster, et cetera, greetings.

As we recall, the boy Edward is still exactly that, a boy, no more than ten or eleven years. Therefore, we will offer to him our youngest daughter Blanche, with a dowry of the duchy of Sorrento. We propose that the two be raised here at our court, as upon the marriage the boy will become one of the foremost magnates of our kingdom. The marriage could take place any time after 1386, when the girl Blanche will be twelve years of age, and the marriage could be consummated immediately.

Most cordially,
By his own hand,
John, King of Naples”
 

Velasco

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"John, King of Naples, Jerusalem, and Albania, Prince of Achaia, Durazzo and Taranto, et cetera, to John, King of Castille and Leon, Regent of England, Duke of Lancaster, et cetera, greetings.

We are pleased that the proposal encurs your pleasure, and that of your nephews. Any envoy of England is most welcome at our court. We eagerly await his arrival!

As for the Princess Joanna, the matter is one very perplexing and confused. If that bastard of Castille would take her as his wife, he would no doubt wage war against us. The King of Aragon, and his granddaughter of Sicily would also assist him in such a campaign, and most likely that whore of Hungary, and the usurper of Anjou. Not to mention the usurper in Paris! Christendom is in a most sad state of affairs, and we fear it will long before all is well once more. If Juan of Trastamara does not marry her, then she will be free to go, and marry any upstart or mercenary soldier who sees fit to do so, and thereafter beget a whole brood of claimants unto my throne.

By his own hand,
John, King of Naples"
 

Blade!

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*A letter arrived via Cornish merchant cog*


Unto John of Gaunt,

As private secretary to the King, I write in his absence to inform you that I have no record of correspondance from your person to His Majesty, King Juan. King Juan is currently away in Barcelona to meet with the Archbishop of Rome, Pope Gregory, your letter will await his attention, though by its tone I doubt it will warrant great credit.

I can answer your questons, however. Joanna of Naples left this court for Barcelona when the rest of the court departed in that direction. My understanding is that she would be forwarded on to Avignon from there, unless Pope Clement arrives in Barcelona first; I am sure your alleged bethrothee can assert his claim there.

With regards to Pope Gregory, I believe you have been misinformed. In fact, King Juan has departed for Barcelona, where Pope Gregory has agreed to be escorted in order to find a solution to the schism. In fact, disregard my previous paragraph, I suspect you will find Joanna in Barcelona, where Pope Clement is sure to come and meet with Pope Gregory in an attempt to mediate the issues at hand.

~Gomez Cardoza,
Royal Secretary of the First Order
 

Lord E

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Bolingbroke Castle



John of Gaunt was sitting in his chambers reading the letter from Castile once again. Having left Windsor just two days before he was glad that the messengers at Windsor had understood his message that all letters should be sent on from Windsor to Bolingbroke Castle with all possible speed. The Duke had been looking forward to some days of good hunting and overseeing his estates, but now he was furious.




”Bloody bastard! Damn heathen! They should all be executed at once. BASTARDS!”

Having returned to England from the campaigns of the Teutonic Order just a week beforehand Henry Bolingbroke had though he should be able to rest and relax in his birthplace, but after word arrived from his father that he would be arriving as well Bolingbroke Castile had not been quiet. It had been filled with messengers, courtiers and people trying to get favours from the regent of England.
Now the noise from the Duke’s had been so loud and gone on for so long that the servants didn’t dare to enter, and therefore they had sent for Henry to go first into his father’s room, hoping that the Duke would try to have his own son beheaded as well




“Father what is this noise? The servants are getting worried and sent for me to check on you.”

”Damn them to hell, bloody servants I should have them all executed!”

“So what is it father, the French again or the devil of Avignon or is it the usurper?”

”Hehe Henry you know me to well… It is the usurper and the devil in joint forces. Read this…


Unto John of Gaunt,

As private secretary to the King, I write in his absence to inform you that I have no record of correspondance from your person to His Majesty, King Juan. King Juan is currently away in Barcelona to meet with the Archbishop of Rome, Pope Gregory, your letter will await his attention, though by its tone I doubt it will warrant great credit.

I can answer your questons, however. Joanna of Naples left this court for Barcelona when the rest of the court departed in that direction. My understanding is that she would be forwarded on to Avignon from there, unless Pope Clement arrives in Barcelona first; I am sure your alleged bethrothee can assert his claim there.

With regards to Pope Gregory, I believe you have been misinformed. In fact, King Juan has departed for Barcelona, where Pope Gregory has agreed to be escorted in order to find a solution to the schism. In fact, disregard my previous paragraph, I suspect you will find Joanna in Barcelona, where Pope Clement is sure to come and meet with Pope Gregory in an attempt to mediate the issues at hand.

~Gomez Cardoza,
Royal Secretary of the First Order
”Hmm... well I can understand your anger father. But do you really believe what this secretary writes?”

”Of course not, this is all nonsense. He is a bloody liar. It is clear that the hold both the pope and the girl captured and now the usurper and the devil are going to do their evil acts of sodomy on them. This is the work of the Devil, Henry, and it is clear that the devil of Avignon and the usurper is the devils closest allies on this planet.

We must act at once!”


”So what is your plan father. I would think it might be wise to send for the archbishop and ask for the advice of the church.”

”That damned man? He is the leader for a clergy filled with liars and thieves, but well I guess you are right.
Still that isn’t our only act.
Order all harbours to be closed to Castilian vessels, all Castilian vessels encountered by English vessels are to be taken as prises or to be pillaged and burned. The fleet must prepare at once for hostile acts upon Castilian shipping. Tell Sir Simon de Burley to prepare to fleet for war.”


”So we are going to war with Castile?”

”No, not yet. But we are going to do our best to harass their shipping, but it is better to be prepared. The fleet is going to war, but not an official one.”

John smiled and started laughing as messengers entered to bring out the letters. Soon the archbishop would be on his way to see the Duke, and warships were preparing to patrol English waters.
 

unmerged(21085)

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Ambassador of the Ragusa

Alv Tamaslav

He jumped on the dock and smiled at the beauty... it never to cease to amaze him at how dirty London really is. As his and his guards trotted down the gangplank, his thought focused on his Duke's speech to him before he left Ragusa...

After the while, they finally reached the court.

He asked to see King of England about the possible opening of diplomatic and trading link from Ragusa with Kingdom of England and said that he is also the Ambassador of the Ragusa.
 

Lord E

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Windsor

The man from Ragusa had been escorted to the Lord Chamberlain, and after informing the Lord Chamberlain about his business he was taken to the Great Hall to see the King. The Lord Chamberlain, Robert de Vere, 9th Earl of Oxford, Marquess of Dublin introduces the man, and the man is told to go forward and state his business to the King


”Your Majesty, lords and ladies of the court. The ambassador of Ragusa, a trade realm in Italy, to see His Majesty.
 

unmerged(21085)

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Ambassador of the Ragusa

Alv Tamaslav

Alv bowed before the King of England.

Alv Your Majesty. Please accept these gifts of wines from myself. This is Malvasia from land of Ragusa. As well gifts of silks and great craftsworks of gold and silvers for ladies.

He opened three chests and in them is a chest full of luxury wines, one of many hues of silks and finally, jewelys for males and females alike.

Alv We are great peaceful carriers of goods from far east and bring goods around the Sea. We are now expanding into northern realms. So naturally we are looking forward into establishing possible formal trade agreement between us and hopefully it can be shared rewards on both parties.

From Ragusa, we can provide goods from Balkan Hinterlands and from Far East as well like silks, species, ivories for your nobles. What goods can Kingdom of England exports.

I do know that you export wools but we are generally more interested in buying finished woollen cloths. We can carry silks, spices, wine, soap for use in the textile industry, olive oil, wax, currants, oriental carpets, cotton and Italian fabrics for sale in the great Kingdom of England. We want to buy tin, pewter vessels, tanned hides and some wool for cloth manufacurers.

What more, we are willing to invest in projects that can support English industry, we do not like these kingdoms in the French areas since they support the devil's son so we seek ways that will better your Kingdom rather than the devils'. We are loyal to the True Pope in Rome.

What more, Ragusa is well known to the Kingdom of England, we known of Richard the Lionheart whom we saved on his journey back to England and donated large amount of ducats to building of our cathedral. Your Majesty.


He bowed once more and waited for words from the King.
 
Last edited:

Lord E

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Windsor

Richard listened very carefully to the words of the Ragusan, and when the man mentioned his predecessor the King smiled.

“We thank you for these most fine and noble gifts. We are honoured by them.
We are very much interested in trade with Ragusa, and We like your proposal very much. Anything that will hurt the devil of Avignon and the damned Frenchman and their allies is good, and We would be interested in taking steps to increase Our industry in England. We are very much wiling to agree to your proposal, and We hope that We shall be remembered in Ragusa, just as Richard the Lionheart!”
 

unmerged(21085)

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Alv Tamaslav

Alv nodded gracefully and presented the treaty

Mencetici Your Majesty, this treaty is almost ready, however, we are curious if you can give us monopoly over silks and spices, in return, we will give you 8% discount than normal market price in England, of c, this can be change if you desire so.Your Majesty

He bowed once more.

English-Ragusan Trade Accord of 1385

Objective:
In the spirit of establishing trade relations between the Kingdom of England and the Republic of Ragusa, this treaty was created with the effort and negotiations of His Majesty Richard II, the King of England and His Excellency Alv Tamaslav, the Ambassador of Ragusa to the Kingdom of England.

Article I:
The Republic of Ragusa recognize His Royal Majesty Richard II as the legitimate ruler and King of England, and the Kingdom of England recognize the Republic of Ragusa as a legitimate realm and the Ragusan Great Council, Senators and the elected Duke, the rulers of the City.

Article II:
Both realms guarantee that trade between the two realms will be open for each other.

Article III
Both realms agree to guarantee rights of passage to each other’s merchants to smooth the progress of the trade.

Article III:
Both realms ensure one another that there will be no embargoes between both realms. Also, both realms shall not banish merchants from each other realm, unless they are proven to be criminals by the laws of the realm that they are staying in.

Article IV:
The Republic of Ragusa has the right to construct and maintain merchant houses, warehouses as well as accommodations for its own merchants in the cities of the Kingdom of England. Same shall exist for the Kingdom of England in the Republic of Ragusa.

Article V:
Both Realms promises to protect each others’ shipping and all other means of trade. As well as swearing to neither support nor fund acts of piracy or raiding against each other.

Article VI:

Article VII:
In the view of great trading relationship between the Kingdom of England and the Republic of Ragusa, the merchants of both realms will only have to pay 10% tolls. No other taxes or tolls can be levied on these merchants.

Article XIII:
Any changes to this Accord will have to be done in accordance with both realms. This Accord also guarantees the possibility of further negotiations between the both realms and the improvement of the commercial links, if the realms find it adequate.

Article XIV:
This Accord lasts for 25 years to be reconfirmed every 25 years. The Accord cannot be changed unless it is agreed by both parties during the time between signing and the process to be reconfirming start.

[] His Majesty, Richard II of England
[X] His Excellency Alv Tamaslav, the Ambassador of Ragusa to the Kingdom of England in the name of Duke of Ragusa
 

Lord E

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Windsor

Richard looked carefully on the treaty, with his uncle away in the country, and the young King getting ready to take total control for him self later this year he though he needed to prove himself in this matter by taking the correct decision.

“The treaty looks very good, sir. As for your proposal if would give Ragusa monopoly on the trade off silk and spices you say? This sounds very interest, but I would like to know more about if before I sing the treaty. How do you intend to make sure this monopoly stays as a monopoly, and also what fine spices and silks will Ragusa be able to supplied to England?”
 

unmerged(21085)

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Alv Tamaslav

Alv nodded gracefully and looked thoughtfully...

Mencetici |Well, we carry all sorts of spices, ginger, mace and pepper are few of what we sell, same for silks as well. We only require monopoly in ports, you can simply would not allow others to sell silks and spices, you can confiscate them as your right or you can increase the tolls or taxes on other outsider traders so much that it is unprofitable to sell them and so after a while they just do not trade silk or spices anymore. We will be happy to pay for the people who will check other merchants if they got silks or spices. Beside, selling silks and such 8% cheaper do work as nobles and people would rather buy cheaper one than high-priced one. Does the answer is agreeable with you?
 

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Windsor

The King nodded and smiled

“Now this sounds very good sir, and I would be glad if you put that into the treaty as well. When that is done I will sing it at once. I am very glad and honoured to do business with Ragusa and I am sure this will be benefiting for both our realms!”
 

Blinky

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Traveling from the south, a fur-clad nobleman and his party approach Bordeaux bearing a banner from Orleans. Stopping at the local lord's fort, the nobleman inquires at the possibility of an audience. When questioned as to his identity, the thick-bearded man's teeth shine through the bristle. In a large voice, he replies that he is an emissary of His Grace, Louis d'Orleans, brother to His Majesty of France.
 

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Bordeaux

As the group of Frenchmen was seen approaching the castle the guards had called out the Lord to ask what to do with the Frenchmen. Now Roger le Strange, 5th Baron Strange and Lord of Castle stood watching the group from Orleans as they approached. Together with him stood Thomas of Woodstock, Earl of Essex and Buckingham. The two men had traveled to Roger’s castle in Bordeaux after leaving Rouen angry that the French didn’t seem to have any interest in speaking with the English envoys. The Baron turned to the Earl.

“Well your Lordship, it seems like we are going to get to speak to some Frenchmen anyway…”

”Yes, indeed Baron, and I think this time we might get more out of it, perhaps the Duke of Orleans are more interested in talking with England than the King of France seems to be.

Now I think we should go to the Great Hall and await this messenger there, but have the guards search him properly first… and Baron don’t mention who I am. I am sure the talks will flow a little easier if the French aren’t aware that they are speaking to an uncle of the King.”


The Earl smiled cunningly as he walked to the main hall the baron joining him after speaking to the guards.

When the French arrives they are searched and told to give away their weapons and then the guards accompany the emissary into the hall.


”My lords, an emissary of the Duke of Orleans…”

“Welcome good sir; now tell us what can I do for His Grace the Duke?”
 

Blinky

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The broad-shouldered nobleman of Orleans steps into the mail hall where the English lord awaits. Looking to be of a prime age, only a few white bristles can be seen amidst a thick beard. Despite having even his dining dagger taken from him, he looked determined to not let the insult get to him.

"My Lord, I am heartily grateful for your generosity in allowing this audience. As you most certainly know, I speak for His Grace, Louis d'Orleans, having been so commanded and counseled. I am known as Sir Francois of Toulane, having been so ennobled since times of Charlemagne."

Turning around briefly, Francois waves over an assistant of his retinue and whispers something in his ear. The servant nods briefly and begins to walk briskly towards the exit of the chamber. Turning back to the English noble, Francois smiles broadly.

"No doubt as you may be guessing, I have sent my boy to fetch a gift. One which matches the chivalry of such fine hosts." At this point, Francois clears his throat annoyingly. "Which has been detained by your guard. Within a chest, you will find bottles of fine wines from Castille, from which I recently traveled." So as to explain himself before being asked why a lord of Acquitaine would need a gift of wine Francois continues without pausing.

"Variety is what is valued. Would you not agree? I trust that they will be of fine addition to ..." Again, his naturally booming voice halts briefly as Francois ponders briefly.

"By Our Lady, I know not your name, noble sir! First, greetings! Then, business, as my father taught me."
 

Lord E

Non sufficit orbis
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Bourdeaux

The Earl smiled to the baron and nodded.

“We are honoured to meet you Sir Francois, and we hope that the business between Orleans and England can be conducted in a good way without remembering troubles of the past.
I shall at once order for my guards to allow your servant to pick up the gifts from your baggage, as I am sure you understand this is just a precaution…”

The English nobles smiled, and while remembering the Earls words the Baron introduced them, remembering not to tell to much about the Earl’s relations to the King.

“Yes, of course we have forgotten our manners. Now allow myself to introduce this is Thomas of Woodstock Earl of Essex and Buckingham, and I am Roger le Strange, 5th Baron Strange and Lord of this Castle.
Now I hope you will find we are acceptable representatives from England, and that you will be able to state your business to us?”