Stormward Defense Meeting
OOC: This RP event will serve to help with the coordination of the defense of Stormward. If you want to pitch in, this is the place to volunteer, or just come to talk about sailing! In addition, there will be teaching offered in related stats and skills for anyone who'd like to brush up before the fight.
Sept. 16, 2022, 8 p.m.
Arx - Ward of House Thrax - Kennex Kay - Library
Comments and Log
Jayne, Burly Sailor arrives, following Wash.
2 Telmarine Guards arrives, following Tesha.
1 Saik Guard, Micana, an efficient assistant arrive, following Lucita.
Wash comes bustling in with servants towing a tiered layer cake. Covered in blue icing and dotted with green and brown, any casual sailor or mapmaker would realize that the cake is a map of the mourning sea and almost four feet across. It is probably multiple smaller cakes but the icing hides that. "Ladies, Gentlemen. Thank you for coming, please hold off on eating any of the important bits until after we have a chance to talk about it a little bit."
It's a Kennex meeting, so, in addition to cake, of course there's alcohol. Laid out on the large library table are a bottle of whiskey, one of rum, wine, and vodka. And of course the ever-present liquor cabinet with whatever it might hold, in addition. Plus tea or something, probably. And maybe some charts, since everyone is ostensibly NOT here to have a party. Based on the fact that he's just now setting out a stack of clean glasses, it's fair to say that Ian has delegated to himself the "helpful" job of making sure everyone who wants to leave the Kay drunk is able to do so. Hopefully he'll have actual real helpful contributions to add later.
Lucita arrives promptly. She has a serious expression and spends time glancing from person to person as she assesses who has come to this meeting. A little nod and smile is given Ian and Wash before her serious expression returns. She makes her way over to stand beside Quenia.
Lucita has joined the overstuffed couches.
Being the Crimson Countess, Ember arrives in full armor, wearing her ghastly skull-helmet. Her cloak is draped around herself, making her look like some kind of quasi-demonic freakazoid. She nods her head to Ian in greeting, as the host of the evening, and then moves to take a seat. She makes no move to remove her helmet.
Prince Victus is here. Healed from injuries and managing to stand up straight without looking tense. There's an eye toward the towering cake. Somewhat skeptical, somewhat impressed as well. After a moment to appreciate, he clears his throat. "I'm afraid I can't stay for long; I wanted to extend the offer of Thrax's standing fleet to Stormward's defense. As much as your defenders believe will be necessary."
Arriving with Ember, Martinique immediately diverted to the liquor area. She just studiously ignores the helmet even as she fetches glasses of rum for herself and the Countess before moving back to seating.
Aedric and Scylla Blackshore enter the library without ceremony or embellishment. After taking seats in the nearest available chairs, they turn their to whichever member of the Kennex family had been tasked with explaining the military situation unfolding near Stormward.
Arriving approximately on time, Denica slips in with an expression that's both serious and still friendly and warm. Dressed in shades of purple and red, she's chosen an elegant coat and a pair of leggings, instead of her typical dresses. Her vivid blue eyes are somewhat obscured by a floppy hat, which she removes once inside the library and she's scanning the room for a place to sit. A drink is lifted with paint-stained fingers, vodka. There's a little smile for familiar faces and she is opting to stand next to Victus while he is here, leaning in to murmur something to him after he speaks. Ever armed with her sketchbook, she might not be a military strategist, but she's here to offer her support and solidarity.
Tesha's not been to the Kay for a very long time, so she only aware of the library's location is by wandering after those that were before her. She's dressed in the crimson of Telmar and being her usual quiet self as she enters. The woman gives a dip of her head to everyone and then moves to find a seat so that she's not in the way of things.
Wash bows to Victus. "Will Admiral Jasher be in command of that fleet your grace?"
Thea has been here early. She's somber today, or serious. Probably about the same thing. Familiar with the library, or the house in general, she's sitting on the couch. While people trickle on in, she gives a polite and proper bow of her head. Maybe even a slight smile.
Caspian slips into the library with a quiet nod and a smile to the many familiar faces. he doesnt have much to offer in the way of forces or tactics, but surely another set of eyes and ears couldnt hurt right?
Thea has joined the overstuffed couches.
Aethan arrives, but not from the direction others are filing through. Slipping in from one of the offices, he goes and finds a seat and gives Ian a little smirk that dares him to proove that he wasn't here all along. As each person arrives, he bows his head in greeting. Victus' arrival and offer is noted, a nod accompanying Wash's question. He settles into some seats and also steals a glance in the direction of the cake.
Victus gives a soft smile toward Denica, his attention quickly snapping back to Wash. "Most likely. I would very much like to be there, but at the moment it is unclear. There's been concerns raised after I fell unconscious at Maelstrom..." He grimaces a moment. "But I digress. Only a quarter of the fleet was lost at Eswynd's defense, we've more than enough to spare."
Quenia is settled amongst the overstuffed couches, paper and writing utensils in hand, ready to take notes.
Ian looks up, standing with one hand resting casually on the table, the other on his cane, when Victus comes in. He takes a step back and bows to the High Lord, a less than graceful gesture, but at least his heart's in the right place. There are a lot of familiar faces here today; slight inclinations of his head or vague hand gestures acknowledge each in turn. He pours himself a glass of vodka, and seems to be sticking pretty close to Aethan, tonight.
Wash inclines his head. "House Thrax's fleet will be a boost of confidence to all involved. Thank you Prince Victus." He gestures to the cake, taking the top tier off, a closeup of Stormward, and sets it on the table so that he can use it to illustrate his next points.
Argent, a silver hound, Tyce the gruff and disapproving, 2 Scarlet Phoenix Guard, Starboard an excited Oakhaven bloodhound arrive, following Juliana.
Haakon eyes the tiered map-cake with the same suspicion he might give to a Cardian bearing gifts, Mangata's Reflection, or Savio pretending to have a brilliant idea. A small shake of his head jars the reaver out of his fixation and he gives ear to the proceedings, offering a short bow of the head to Victus when the Thrax speaks.
Ember looks to Martinique and nods -- though she makes no move to take her drink just yet. It would involve removing her helmet, and that requires a good deal of cajoling first.
There's something like a sigh from Martinique as Ember declines to even remove her helmet for drinking purposes, but she's not going to turn down her own liquor in the meantime. She will instead offer a winning smile to Haakon and a...dubious stare towards the cake.
Wash explains: "We're here to discuss strategy, commitments, and to eat cake. Not necessarily in that order. We've been responding with strength to each of the Traditionalist movements so far, and mostly with success. We expect an assault on Kennex within the fortnight. My plan is to defend the windward side of the island with strength, allowing for the fastest response to leeward. The Kennex fleet must be there to respond to any aggression. But based on the map provided in this comestible, I am encouraging all of our allies to consider both the currents, indicated by these sugar arrows, and the predominant winds, indicated by these flags on toothpicks, when they choose a position to hove their fleet to. However, since these proceedings are not private, I do not wish to engage in any specifics of individual strategy, only to answer any questions about navigating the waters surrounding Stormward, and perhaps share the best routes to and from the Kennex seat for those from outside the Mourning Sea."
Ian is as close as Wash's brother as a person to get without actually being a blood relation, and thus doesn't bat an eye at the cake map. He takes a seat near enough to Aethan to lean over and talk quietly to him.
Haakon gestures for Martinique to pass him the drink Ember won't take. When Wash speaks on the nature of the meeting, Haakon rumbles evenly, "Aught word more delicate I'll send you after, then." All he adds to the immediate nature of cake map is, "Any reefs or sand bars we ought know of, by the tide? Wind troubles me less, as we favor battle by oar."
Taking a sip of her vodka, which is no doubt some lovely flavoured variety, Denica looks a little apprehensive at the large cake like she's worried it might topple. Or maybe something might pop out of it. This might be giving her ideas that she probably won't voice at this meeting, but she goes glance over at Thea briefly. Rather, she goes silent and listens to the talk of strategy, taking mental note of everything.
Tesha's one eye is carefully keeping track of who is talking and then taking notes on what is going on. The Telmarcher wasn't there to interrupt, more find out where they could help in things.
Caspian pipes up in the back, "is there a place to lay in ambush like was done as Eswyndol? a peninsula or cove where ships might be hidden in?"
Wash seems unreasonably delighted by Haakon's question. "Indeed! There is a particularly troublesome reef to the southwest of Stormward. Known as the Demon's Fingers, it is a series of basalt spires that are exposed even in the highest tide. At low tide you can just fit a longship between them with the oars shipped." He leans over and stabs the cake in five places estimating the distance and size of the obstacle in the cake.
Having settled in alongside her husband, Scylla's pewter stare is anything but warm, attention drifting to this person or that with brief acknowledging glances before gaze shifts towards the indicated piece of cake. A slight cant of head in interest of the plans laid out by Wash, a brow lofting at the indicated sugar arrows. Eyes come to rest on Aedric deferring the asking of any questions to him, quietly does the svelte Baroness lean in to speak in a low smokey tenor.
Wordlessly, Martnque passes the drnk over to Haakon as she sips her own. Caspian's queston is met with interest as well, as the Redreef fleet is not large at the moment. "And do we expect any land assault immediately?"
Lady Juliana slips into the library, pausing to take stock in those that have arrived. Quenia and Luci are both nodded towards with a smile, as is Juliana's cousin Denica before she turns her attention towards the Kennex. There is a wink towards Wash and his cake, before the Igniseri moves to find a seat, ending up close to where Aethan and Ian have taken their's. Hands folding and settling on her lap, attention turning towards Wash and his stabbing of the cake.
Wash says, "As for lying in wait, that is more of a challenge since we cannot predict the direction the enemy will approach. But you can see outlying islands to the North and East will create blindspots for either approach from that direction." Wash answers Caspian before turning to Martinique: "I do not expect a landing expedition." Wash points to the stacked layers in the center of the cake. "The highbridge here leads to the lighthouse. It's almost two hundred feet to the water. It will be lined with siege defenses.""
Lucita says, "I'm sending some of Saik's longships amid other types of ships to assist. If Lady Neilda is not able to be with us to command our little fleet, it will be added to the Kennex ships" She glances to that area only accessible by longships as she speaks "... to deploy as needed.""
Aethan spends a long momemnt staring over the details of the cake-map that Wash has laid out, nodding as he takes the entire presentation in. When Ian murmurs something at him, he looks, nods makes a quick response and then looks to the cake. Juliana's arrival is met with a small smile and a wave.
Ian clears his throat. "We have a, uh... A local militia that's going to make a land assault dangerous," he adds to Wash's answer to Martinique. "The rebels have already gotten one taste of running into them, so they know what's waiting for them. I'll be surprised if they try to land ships before they've taken out our sea defenses."
Victus is being prodded by one of his guards. With a grumble, he nods. "May your meeting be productive. And cake... good." He offers a nod and a stiff bow before taking his leave.
12 Thrax Elite Guards, Lilybelle - The Claw of Arx, Scarf, a sinewy, serious, shiny-seeking otter leave, following Victus.
Haakon rumbles aside to Caspian, "None know the Stormward waters so well as Kennex, but it's a rich trade lane. The foe will know it better than they knew the Isles of the East Wind." A nod to Wash. "Most like, they'll follow with transports if they can command a stretch of coast by battle." A look among the various Kennexes, as he draws a breath, but decides not to voice it.
Thea has left the overstuffed couches.
Rocco, the rascally assistant leaves, following Thea.
"A good point Lord Haakon. If they approach from the South or West, that is the more likely place to find a landing place. On the east side of Stormward, you can see that the cliffs range from sixty to three hundred feet. Naturally, the home of Family Kennex is here, overlooking the sea." Those white houses with red roofs have been lovingly crafted from molded sugar too. "It is unassailable directly, but easily besieged as all of the fields farms and production lie on the opposite side of the island." He uses his knife to cut a piece of the palace off the top of the cake and offer it to Aethan. "Your home."
Catching the smile from Juliana, it's returned with one of her own. When Victus leaves, she doesn't sit, rather she leans against the wall and listens. Letting the information soak in, while she sips on the vodka in her glass, canting her head to the side as she considers things with a thoughtful expression.
Aethan nods as Wash speaks, "I agree, though I think they'll hold off on trying to land troops until they see how the naval battle is progressing. If they try it too early, that could be a real disaster on their hands if the transports end up becoming exposed." Watching Wash cut out a piece of the palace, he blinks and laughs as he accepts it. "Thank you."
Ian eyes Wash while he cuts off a piece of the cake-palace for Aethan. He takes another drink of vodka, looks like he's about to say something, and then limits whatever it is towards speaking in a low voice to his brother again.
Lucita says, "I know the lighthouse can keep watch for a pretty good distance... but can some of those fast ships with little armament be used to serve as early warning of a fleet arrival..." Her voice starts to trail off uncertainly, obvious she is not a strategist or a sailor "... spot and sail back quickly?"
Wash says, "We are pleased to add to the Kennex and Thrax fleets, that of Saik, and that of my protege." Wash cuts another slice of cake to offer to Lucita. "We shall have scouts, just as you say. But they will be only slightly faster than the enemy fleet. Anders Nightcove is strategically gifted. A cunning mind. I expect him to try something unusual. What I have learned from the last two encounters is that the houses behind him are willing to take severe losses to achieve his goals. Whether it is burning their own ships or dying to the last man to hold the flanks. If you can free the thralls pulling their oars though, they will be crippled.""
Haakon nods slowly to the ongoing discussion. "I intend to join you with so many longships as can be spared. But ye know well what winter storms are like in the northern seas. If it can be done, I will be with you."
Ian looks up and regards Wash, angling his head. "You know, if there's any time when those thralls would be ready to rise up, it's within Stormward's waters, where thralldom is expressly illegal and by the law every one of them ought to be free."
Lucita goes quiet at Wash's words, one brow lifting silently as she tries to to assess if he means you as a group or you as an individual. Her expression is thoughtful.
Tesha's eyebrow quirks at Ian's words, her scarred face holding a smile as he mentions the Thrall's realizing that they should be free in those waters. "We could hope that they do realize that...or someone could remind them." she states quietly.
Caspian raises a brow slightly at ian's words. "We can hope the thralls would rise up.. but i suspect the enemy is aware of such things as well. Many of the thralls will have families or loved ones, those who might be used as leverage i suspect. while i hope and pray the thralls will cast off the chains, and will do everything i can to help, i don't know if i would count on such an event." he lowers his head, saddened by his own words.
Haakon adds dryly, "Thralldom is no more in all loyalist waters, now. Though tis true Stormward is especially faned for having ordered it sooner." A pointed look and nod to Caspian at the duelist's note.
"Any forces House Eswynd can lend to this fight would be welcome." Wash assures Haakon, making a point to cut the next slice of the cake for him. The serving isn't just him, but Wash is happy to hand deliver it. "Another tactic that I believe would be effective in this fight is if one of our enemies targets you specifically, draw them away from the island. Based on what I saw at Redreef and Eswynd, Anders matches force to force and gives orders for a particular house to move against another. Theoretically, he chooses matchups that are favorable to his allies and disfavorable to ours. But his followers may be overzealous in following his directions so you could use that to lure them out of the theatre of war with minimal casualties."
Caspian grins then and looks to wash, "maybe all the fleets should fly the same flag. leave them guessing what house is what"
Ian nods to Caspian. "They'd need help," he agrees. "But we could look for opportunities to help them. They were eager enough to take the opportunity offered by Lord Mirk."
Wash nods to Caspian. "That could interfere with their planning. It's a violation of the code of war unless... we flew the colors of Thrax and Thrax alone."
Haakon doesn't refuse a hand delivered slice of cake. A short nod of thanks, and to acknowledge drawing fies away from the battle. Once Wash looks elsewhere, the prodigal reaver mutely tries to pass the sugary delicacy off to Ember.
"I like that." Aethan says with a nod. "Flying the colors of Thrax. Showing a single unified front against our enemies while also confusing them as to which houses control which ships."
Juliana sits quietly, her gaze following the discussion as they discuss what is to come. At Wash' comment, her voice rises a little. "Isles Canines can confuse them by not flying colors at all." points out as she leans forward and sticks her finger into the side of the Duke Regent's slice of palace cake, taking back frosting with her as she settles back into her seat, lifting the frosting to her lips. "I also was going to offer my person ship as a hospital ship. Though I will need someone to command her."
Wash turns his attention to Lucita and Quenia: "Would you be amenable to flying Thrax colors for the battle? I don't know that Anders is targetting anyone outside of the Fealty in particular. Well, probably Halfshav if they show up."
Lucita glances toward Quenia and then Wash. "My ships will fly Kennex or Thrax. They are deployed for whichever fleet should find them most useful in this situation."
Caspian gives a smile as his idea seems to actually not be half bad! a shock for all to be sure, him most of all! he adds in then, "And we are sure they could not use the battle to screen a landing party to attack the city during the chaos?"
Ian nods to Caspian. "They could. But any landing party small enough to be subtle would be massacred by our home defense. Stormward is full of a lot of people who have strong opinions about being made into thralls again."
A pack of giggling and gossiping Redreef handmaidens, A pit bull that Ember never bothered to name leave, following Ember.
5 Prodigal reavers have been dismissed.
Mykael have been dismissed.
Wash says, "A winter campaign should begin with an attack on the opponent's foodstores. To create famine and strain infrastructure. Anders did that. If he lands at Kennex it will be to burn our crops before we can harvest. But... mosty we grow potatoes. Hard to burn that. I don't expect a ground engagement unless we completely lose control of the surrounding waters. In which case, I am dead, good luck to you all."
The final statement from Wash about being dead gets a quick grin from Ian and a sharp exhalation through his nose, a silent laugh. He lifts his glass in toast to the idea.
Leaning in to give a final word to Aedric, Scylla Blackshore departs as quietly as she arrived.
Samuel Vallis, captain of The Black Tide, 2 Blackshore Marines, 2 Black Vanguard, 2 Stormblood Sentinels leave, following Scylla.
Jules brows arch at Wash's comment about being dead and Ian's laugh. For a moment the lady's lips part as if she was going to scold or knowing Juliana threaten some dire outcome if it was to come to pass but instead just snorts, and folds her arms to listen instead.
Aethan looks like he might want to say something, but with a quick shake of his head he says, "If they do burn our crops, I guess we'll have to get used to eating baked potatoes for a while. Anyway, this was a good overview of what lies ahead of us. Excellent work, Wash."
Caspian gives a snort and a laugh at that remark. "ah well that does make things easy doesn't it lord wash"
Wash makes sure that a slice of cake ends up with every person, regardless of whether or not they have committed to defending Stormward. "And that about wraps up our meeting. The only conclusive thing we've decided on is to adopt Champion Wilde's suggestion of all flying the same flag. It will at least give Anders' underlings some confusion."
Denica cannot help but laugh-snort at the comment about eating 'baked potatoes'.
Tesha gives a soft nod to things and there is a note made, "Thank you for letting us sit in on this and apologies for the quick leaving." she comments to Wash and the other Kennex's. With that said though she has to make an exit as one of her guards deliver a message to her.
2 Telmarine Guards leaves, following Tesha.
Ian braces on the table and pushes himself to his feet. He leaves his glass of vodka on the table and paces over to the library doors, preparing to shut them, a signal that the tenor of the conversation may be about to change.
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