Calling the Banners
As storms brew in the East the Compact prepares for war. Legate Orazio, on behalf of the Most Holy Domunis of the Faith, labels the coming battle as a Holy War. He frames it succinctly in terms easy to understand - this is a war of survival, and their faith will be tested. The Templars and the Knights of Solace have been mobilized. Every willing hand should consider how best to serve the Compact. This is the hour where the Compact must come together - and come together they do.
With the urging of various leaders across the Faith, with the help of the Scholars to give the word, people start pouring into the points of muster. Templars are mobilized, Knights of Solace are traveling to the battle. And everywhere, men and women of good heart and strong faith are not just answering the Faith's call, but answering the calls to muster of their liege lords. The work of the Faith strengthens not just those called to godly service but to temporal service as well.
As the Faith mobilizes, the Mercies are also preparing. Bandages are being rolled and medicines are being made - Countess Reigna Keaton is the go-to name here, for she has organized huge groups of healers, apothecaries, alchemists, unskilled bandage-rollers, herbalists - you name it, she probably has them organized. The Mercies of Arvum, the Physician's Guild, along with other healers are volunteering to keep the troops as healthy as possible under battlefield conditions, and the response is excellent. It's clear that the ranks of support are deeply concerned with the success of this initiative.
Redrain Fealty works together to call their banners. Every family - Sanna, Halfshav, Nightgold, Acheron, Redrain - even various tribes are called as the messengers go out. Under Prince Darren's call those of Redrain stand together. He's not asking for the moon and stars - he's asking for two-thirds of their fighting forces to respond. He's asking for Redrain to stand united.
The shaman consult the spirits. The faithful pray. Those of Redrain sharpen their axes and halberds, they repair those irritating breaks in their chainmail, they stock the stores and get the barrels of alcohol ready and they prepare.
Well armed and well inebriated, Redrain follows their High Lord's call: "Let's kill some pirates in the snow!" As an enemy fleet sails to Crovane, Redrain marches to war.
The Valardin sound the call. To Arms! Remember our heroes of legend! Be strong and true, fight for the Gods. The Dominus calls us to Holy War and this is our moment! From every corner of Valardin domains, the faithful warriors raised on scripture and legend pour forth. In support of the Faith, in support of their leaders they come. They sing the battle hymn of Sorrel Wyrmguard as they travel to their points of muster, awaiting orders for deployment. Valardin heeds the call!
Under Archduchess Eleyna Velenosa, the Lyceum mobilizes. From every corner they respond - duchies and counties, marches and baronies - small groups and large hear her call. The entirety of the Lyceum leadership stands behind her, and they speak to loyalty, to duty, to oaths of fealty. They speak to the pride of the Lyceum, reminding them that even roses have their thorns. They are a varied bunch, embodying kindness and grace, diplomacy and charm and tact. And manipulation and blackmail, persuasion, bullying and even a little outright threat. (I mean, did you /see/ what the Archduke-Consort considers armor?)
But it is a very Lycene call to arms, and the Lycenes respond appropriately - with approval and adoration for their leaders who understand them so well, and they flock to the mustering points and get their swords and their navies ready. As a fleet sails toward Setarco, the Lyceum sails to war.
High Lord Victus Thrax has called the banners of Thrax. From Tyde to Grimhall, all Duchies and Counties, Marches and Baronies in the Mourning Isles are called to arms.
"People of the Mourning Isles. I come being the bearer of bad news. We are beset upon by by an enemy who shrouds himself in his ignorance. He has bent the knee to those who would destroy the world, taken every evil in his path for power. The Deep 'King' and his followers hold onto a dying past which they seek to rebuild on top of our ashes. For one thousand years Thrax has held these Isles together with the force of our might and we shall do so by a fucking thousand more.
"The Isles will stand united as one. One fleet, one legion, one order to destroy the tide of darkness that seeks to swallow us all. Bear arms and army, ready yourselves across the deck. The time of Thrax is now and forever. We do not fall. Make ready the united fleet, our "Mourning Onslaught"."
And the Thrax respond. Oh do they ever. The leaders of Thrax step up with tales and songs, legends to inspire, threats and obligations, talk of duty and responsibility. As one united fleet they prepare to sail against that which would destroy them. Thrax sails to war.
Tears in our wake, never at our wake indeed.
The Graysons call the banners. Even a couple of weeks ago, Grayson vassals wondered if their leadership was going to be able to pull it together. But now as the call goes out to muster, the leadership all speak with one united voice. Greatly relieved, the people start responding. Supplies start being stocked. Armor repaired and refitted. Horses are shod and ships repaired, and all is made ready. In every direction, across Grayson lands people respond, showing up to the muster points in droves. General Reese Grayson is amazed at the turnout - amazed and proud, as all Graysons should be.
None Greater Than Grayson, after all.
Another vessel nearly caught in the fog that now surrounds the Darkwater Watch brings a note of hope. They saw a lone light still shining through the fog: the lighthouse on the Watch, the fire still burning. A single beacon that suggests that whatever the fog might conceal, the small garrison left at the Redoubt still remains at their post.