The Westgate-Starmantle Trade Dispute on the Dragon Coast Nov 29, 2019 15:08:44 GMT -5 gathera, fisheyes, and 11 more like this
Post by DM Hawk on Nov 29, 2019 15:08:44 GMT -5
Sailors from the Sea of Fallen Stars bring news to Cormyr's seaports. On the 17th Uktar in the Year of the Vindicated Warrior, war on the Dragon Coast ended with the signing of the Seven Years' Peace.
During the conflict, trade between Cormyr and the Dragon Coast slowed to a crawl. The signing of the peace agreement reopened trade and southern trade goods began flowing into Cormyr again. With these came the tales of the traders and sailors.
The war began nearly four years earlier over a tax Westgate levied on goods traveling from Starmantle to the east. The tax was designed to discourage merchants from trading in Starmantle and establish Westgate as a more favorable port of call. The tax was successful and Starmantle began to lose trade.
Starmantle partnered with Teziir, another city of the Dragon Coast competing against Westgate dominance. Together the two cities began constructing a new trade road to circumvent Westgate's tax.
Westgate threatened Starmantle and Teziir with ultimatums, demanding that work on the new road cease or Westgate would stop it by force. Knowing Starmantle could not withstand armed conflict with Westgate for long, two Starmantle lords traveled to Cormyr and Sembia to ask for help.
Lords Walther Starling and Thurmond Sextant found little encouragement in Cormyr or Sembia. Both realms had been weakened by a mutual, costly border war several years before. The Sembian merchant lords were daunted by the risk of investing in Starmantle when Westgate seemed sure to win. The Forest Kingdom, beset by years of challenges, responded that it had no strength to spare.
One Cormyrian noble, Davion Roaringhorn, was moved by the plea. Roaringhorn recruited the partnership of Sir Jostlyn Huntsilver and the young Lady Gwyndaelyn Wyvernspur. The three agreed to form a business venture to support Starmantle's resistance against Westgate. The Starmantle Protectorate was created by which assistance to Starmantle would be in the form of a private enterprise independent of the Crown's ruling.
The three nobles traveled to Immersea for the Shieldmeet Tournament in the Year of the Blazing Hand to win attention in the games. After being unhorsed in a joust at the tourney, Davion Roaringhorn made a plea for adventurers to hire with the Starmantle Protectorate to win glory and riches in a just cause. Also competing at Shieldmeet, the Ironsworn Mercenary Company was intrigued by the speech.
On the Dragon Coast, Westgate marshaled a large army under the command of several generals from houses Bleth, Cormaeril, Dhostar, and Thalavar and marched against Starmantle. Starmantle fielded a much smaller army under Lord Walther Starling which held the Westgate advance at a strategic location called the Long Arm Crossing.
Westgate circumvented Lord Starling's position with the help of a pirate lord named Ravenskull. Infamous for mutiny during the Cormyr-Sembia border conflict, Ravenskull stole away with a squadron of Sembian warships and turned to piracy. Now receiving gold from Westgate, Ravenskull raided the Starmantle coast behind Lord Walther's position and enabled Westgate to claim the strategic position. To make matters worse, Ravenskull blockaded the Starmantle Harbor and began a stranglehold on the city.
In Cormyr, the Protectorate held a series of feasts to sell shares of stock and raise funds for the endeavor. With these resources the Protectorate was able to employ the Ironsworn Mercenary Company and hire six ships, including the Wandering Scholar of Marsember, by which to sail to Starmantle. Ferrying materials for the war to Starmantle, Roaringhorn's fleet became adept at running the Ravenskull blockade.
In Ches of the Year of the Black Blazon, Roaringhorn, Wyvernspur, and the Ironsworn Mercenary Company set sail on the River Regis, the Wet Whistle, and the Wandering Scholar with the intent to run the Ravenskull blockade and deliver soldiers, food, and war materials to the embattled city of Starmantle.
The journey was met with resistance by Ravenskull who had been directed to prevent help from reaching Starmantle. Davion Roaringhorn was lost at sea when the River Regis was sunk by Ravenskull, undead pirates, or a horrific storm at sea...the tales vary.
The remaining ships of the Starmantle Protectorate succeeded in reaching the city only to find it bleeding from a raid by Ravenskull and the Starmantle army in full retreat a few days from the gates with the Westar on their heels.
The Ironsworn, Roaringhorn, and Wyvernspur forces of the Protectorate marched out and held against Westgate long enough for the Starmantle forces to regroup and join them. The Westgate advance was halted.
A bloody war of attrition took place over the following months on the Reddansyr road. The Starmantle defenders outperformed the attacking Westar but could afford fewer losses. Following the loss of a heroic Starmantle Captain, the Ironsworn began conducting a series of raids against the Westar positions. The raids succeeded in rescuing Teziir soldiers taken prisoner by the Westar army and capturing several Westar generals.
Lord Starling was killed during a Westgate counter attack and the Starmantle admiral fled the harbor while stealing Starmantle's best ships. Commander Dimitri Golde of the Ironsworn and Captain Vennis Haler of the Wandering Scholar were appointed as Starmantle's new marshal and admiral respectively.
The war grew more bleak for Starmantle with the arrival of the Grey Legion. The dead from both armies killed during the war were animated into undead soldiers marching on Starmantle. With the Grey Legion approaching, two Starmantle lords led half of the Starmantlar out of the city in surrender to Westgate for protection. The remaining Starmantlar did their best to ready the city to face the army of undead soldiers.
The relentless march of the Grey Legion upon Starmantle was grim. While the defenders were facing the undead, traitors within Starmantle struck. Lord Rolando Penceton coordinated with Fire Knives assassins in attempts to eliminate individuals key to Starmantle's leadership or defense. The betrayal was costly and reduced Starmantle's defenses. The defenders were forced to yield the outer walls and fall back to a citadel within the city, with the remaining civilians crowded inside.
The defenders held against a relentless sea of undead and the horrors brought with them until help arrived. A druid in the Ironsworn company befriended the Gulthmere Druid Circle who had been neutral in the trade conflict. Evidence of the Grey Legion stirred the druids to act and they moved to Starmantle's relief.
Additional help came unforeseen from another quarter as well. A squadron of Sembian galleons arrived in Starmantle's harbor carrying refugees from Shou Lung who were fleeing famine in the east. With the help of the Shou and the Sembians, Starmantle was able to overcome the Grey Legion and win back the city.
Having a moment's respite, the Starmantle League of Merchant Lords replenished empty seats by appointing the heirs of Lords Starling and Penceton. New seats were created for their allies, appointing Admiral Weir of Sembia, Hiro Min Su from Shou Lung, and Valera Serena of the Starmantle Protectorate Company of Cormyr.
The bolstered forces of Starmantle marched to retake the Long Arm Crossing. A successful assault coordinated between the army and navy won the strategic position back for Starmantle, captured another Westar general, and drove off Ravenskull's fleet.
Being aware of a fresh Westar army on the march, the Starmantlar decided to gamble on a night raid against the Westar camp. Landing ashore by sea in the dead of night, the Ironsworn struck the primary camp of the Westar vanguard, catching the enemy off guard in a devastating assault. Sembian and Shou raiders hit smaller camps that night with similar successes.
Afterword the defenders of the Long Arm Crossing were not met by the Westar Army but instead by Lord Sebastian Bleth under a flag of truce. Lady Valera Serena led the Starmantle negotiations with Lord Bleth and terms were met in an agreement called the Seven Years' Peace. Lord Bleth vowed that Westgate had no hand in the Grey Legion and would bring those responsible to justice. Prisoners were exchanged and nearly three thousand Starmantlar who fled the city returned home.
There was still to be another casualty of the war. The Wandering Scholar caught fire while at dock by mysterious circumstances, losing her main mast and suffering significant damage to her hold before the fire could be brought under control. The shipwrights advise it would be months before the caravel is seaworthy again.
In the tendays that followed, Starmantle began rebuilding with the help of new neighbors from Shou Lung while a squadron of Sembian war ships patrol its shores. In the city of Starmantle a celebration took place to remember the fallen heroes of the city and to celebrate its heroes that have seen the war through to its end.
Lady Valera Serena was confirmed before the people of Starmantle and pledged to support the rebuilding of the city. The Cornucopia Trading Company plans to relocate it's headquarters to Starmantle where Lady Valera now resides. Fear not, as a Cornucopia trading post will undoubtedly open soon at a location near you. In the meanwhile, Lady Valera maintains a reward in gold for information about a missing hin named Dorothy "Dot" Popplebottom who disappeared during the siege of the Grey Legion.
Marshal Dimitri Golde and Admiral Vennis Haler retired from their official military posts but were awarded with the Knighthood of Starmantle. The Wandering Scholar Captain and Alizarin Headmaster was invited to open an Alizarin campus in Starmantle. The Ironsworn Commander was asked to raise a new unit of Ironsworn garrisoned in Starmantle to help bolster its defenses during the Seven Years' Peace.
For steadfast devotion to Starmantle during the war, the Knight of Starmantle honor was awarded to Lieutenants Mara Iron-Heart, Gertrude Harlaw, and Bao Gur of the Ironsworn.
Several surviving Ironsworn Mercenaries who served with bravery and distinction beyond the call of duty earned the Hero of Starmantle honor: Sergeants Togar, Bryce Vaylan, and Scar Caellen; Corporals Calah Cain, Jay Stormborn, and Nathaniel James Collins; and Privates Grillo, Eldarel, and Snaer.
The adventuress Loria of the Wandering Scholar's crew and bodyguard of Lady Valera was also recognized as a Heroine of Starmantle.
Additional surviving members of the Ironsworn Company were recognized as Veterans of Starmantle: Corporals Lypilla and Tavore D'arle and Privates Yashiera Jassaan, Otto, Ezra, and Willem Littledale.
Corporal Jay Stormborn, Hero of Starmantle, was invited into the Druid Circle of the Gulthmere. Stormborn agreed to serve in Starmantle as their representative with hopes to strengthen bonds of friendship between the Circle and the city in the years to come.
On the 29th of Uktar in the Year of the Vindicated Warrior stability returns to the Dragon Coast and Sembia seeks to profit for it's unanticipated investment in Starmantle. The Trade Wind sails into Marsember's harbor. She is the first Sembian war ship to do so in nearly six years. This time she sails under a flag of peace with war weary Cormyrian veterans from the Dragon Coast on her deck, eager to return home to their lives in Cormyr.
With the arrival of news from the Trade Wind, Starmantle Protectorate Stock reaches an all time high proving to be a good day for Shareholders.