The Winter Dispatch

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http://www.battlemaster.org/icons/winter.jpg The Winter Dispatch
An international newspaper watching the undead and monsters that make Beluaterra unique.

June 29: Demons Raze Plergoth's Capital!

Reports indicate that Demons have won a major battle in Creasur, one of the great cities of the west. For more information, see this article from the Plergoth Press.

June 28: Winter Guardians Disbanded!

The Dispatch has heard from Roland Occam, known face of the Winter Guardians. According to Roland, the remaining Winter Guardians have disbanded is disgust, as their realms have slowly started to chose to ally with one of the two evil factions. The Winter Guardians opposed the Undead and Monsters before and during their initial invasion, but have suffered massive casualties doing so. With the new enemies arriving, they had been largely silent, as pragmatism dictated that many realms would throw their lots in with the Undead. "All that is needed for evil to triumph is for good men to do nothing," Roland lamented.

June 28: Realms choose sides, alliances strain!

Prodded by the arrival of demons onto the island, many realms are discussing or seeking peace with one of the two evil factions that are known: the Necromancer's Servants, or the Monsters. So far, the Necromancer's Servants have proven to be stronger in battle, and have managed to obtain all but two of the unique items. Thus, most realms, being pragmatic, have chosen their side. Several realms have not, and it is clear the evil Undead intend those realms harm. It is not clear (but unlikely) if any realms will actually help the Undead to strike at realms that choose to side with the monsters. It is becoming clear, however, that men will probably not stand in their way.

June 26: Victory in Cwellndell against Demons!

The army of Plergoth, with aid from Mesh, has defeated the Netherworld army in Cwellndell, filling them full of arrows and slaying their leaders.

The human armies took massive casualties, however, and were unable to score many hits with any unit other than archers.

June 25: Demons!

Scout reports from the central mountains show that a group of monstrosities that can be only be described as "Demons" have appeared. Early reports indicate realms are contemplating making alliances with the Monsters or the Undead to combat this threat.

June 19: The Grand Alliance Grows!

When the Winter Guardians first called for a grand alliance of human realms, many realms put down their swords, but few extended the hand of friendship. As the Undead approach Reeds, however, this is changing. In the last few hours, dozens of treaties have been signed, as many realms answer the call; Avalon and Plergoth have already signed many treaties, while other realms rack up the signatures.

Notably absent from recent treaties is Mesh; rumors say Mesh's leadership has been targeted for disruption by Winter forces, possibly in retaliation for the Winter Guardians (whose public face is in Mesh) interference in the Undead's efforts.

June 18: If you want them, come and claim them!

The Winter Guardians and The Realms of Man issued the above defiant call today. Armies from across the continent, man, undead, and beast march to Reeds, for what may soon serve as the largest battle in the history of man.

June 14: Realms consider peace with Monsters, Nobles cautious, but optimistic

In a carefully considered move, several northern realms have begun talking peace with the Monsters who have recently arrived in their realms. Many Nobles and Commoners (including The Dispatch) dismissed the Monsters as evil, and vowed to fight them as they would be Necromancers in the South. Recently, however, the evil-ness of the monsters has been a point of some debate. Some Rulers have been speaking to the Monsters, and have come to the concussion that the monsters aren't evil, just the mental capacities for diplomacy. Even some of the most steadfast opponents of helping the Undead have had doubts about the Monsters. "It may be that they are just bull-in-a-china-shop dumb," said Roland Occam, Duke of Twillen. "I still don't trust them much more than the Necromancers, but further investigation is warranted." Other nobles have pointed out that the Monsters represent life (albeit twisted, savage life) while the Undead represent only death.

Meanwhile, the Undead have begun to look for realms to assist them in wiping out the monsters and any realms who make peace with the monsters. The Dispatch calls on all men to stand against these dark calls, but makes no judgment as to the trustworthiness of the Monsters at this time.

June 12: Undead Obtain an Item!

Vicious, one of the undead leaders, has announced to everyone in the city of Fwuvoghor that he has obtained one the items for which they were sent. No additional details, such as the item they obtained, or who he obtained it from, have been revealed.

Report from Vicious (1 hour, 24 minutes ago)
Message sent to everyone in the region Fwuvoghor (14 recipients)
Thank you...we have recieved one of our items. We still seek the rest.

Those that help, will be compensated, privately and/or publicly, depending on the circumstances.

Please spread the word that progress is being made. Help us before the tables turn on us all...

Vicious


June 12: Adventurers bring strange reports

Roland Occam reports that two Adventurers belonging to the 'Winter Guardians' group have gone missing after delivering a strange report suggesting the existence of third evil faction. According to him, the report spoke of a book, written recently, recounting the existence of a realm known only as Netherworld. The report did not include the book, nor a description of the circumstances in which it was found.

For some time, the Undead have insisted they want to be given unique items not in order to hurt mankind, but to fight some other, greater evil. Most realms have dismissed this as a ruse. If this text can be recovered, it might be evidence that this is, in fact, not entirely false. While the Dispatch suspects this is just more Undead misinformation, Roland has reportedly asked for assistance in investigating the possibility that there is some truth in the Undead's propaganda.

June 11: Undead Armies Spotted Round the World!

While the Dispatch doesn't have the resources to cover stories outside Beluaterra, we've received reports from around that world that Undead armies have been sighted speaking some ancient demonic language. We've confirmed that Atamara and the East Continent both are now threatened.

June 11: Victories all around the Continent!

Reports indicate that the realms of the continent have started to band together, and have scored victories against the monsters and the Undead. Sint defended a region, killing a monster named Twisted Horn. Fronen once again pushed the Undead back, and Enweil fought them to a standstill.

The Dispatch applauds all warriors who stand against these invaders.

June 11: BREAKING NEWS: Avalon betrays mankind!

Witnesses and reports indicate that Avalon has begun collaborating with the Undead, giving them items in exchange for unnatural assistance against their enemies. The Ruler of Avalon apparently, tried to stop them, but was exiled for his decissions.

Those who would side against mankind in furtherance of their own goals are shortsighted, oath-breakers, and without honor. Let the world know that collaborators will be known, and will pay for their betrayal.

June 10: Two monster swarms spotted in Dald

This morning, a scout report from an Ashbornian noble unvealed that there were two monster swarms in Dald, right next to the Ashbornian capital Keffa. Twisted Horn was seen there, while Snarler was coming over from Daisha, a region of Sint right next to their capital Firbalt.

The Ashbornians have aleady expressed that they will have no mercy on the monsters, and that they will take out the monsters in a few turns if they are still there then.

June 9: Fronen Victory in Jyl, Monster Lord slain!

Reports indicate that a monster horde bound for Avalon was intercepted by Fronen forces in Jyl. In the ensuing battle, the valient Fronen army cast down Kri'fahj, a monster lord most likely searching for a unique breastplate. The Dispatch applauds this victory; let it serve as a ringing expression of defiance against the winter!

Meanwhile, reports from Avalon are disturbing. A rebellion continues against Avalon's Ruler, and rumors suggest the rebels motives are so dark that the Dispatch will not report on them at this time, for fear they are false and slanderous.

June 8: Disinformation continues as Evil seeks collaborators.

The Undead and Monsters continue to make threats and spin lies, attempting to get the Adventurers and Nobles of the land to do their dirty work for them. Luckily, most ears on Beluaterra know a trick when they hear it, and few have cooperated in their efforts.

June 6: Guardians call for Unity, Wars Still Simmer

On June 4th, Duke Roland Occam of Mesh, on behalf of a group known as the Winter Guardians, issued a public call to all realms to put aside their wars, and stand united against the darkness. After this call was taken up by many Nobles of the island, many realms have put aside their differences, and signed peace treaties. Talks have stalled between some realms however, with four wars still without resolution.

The Dispatch hopes realms that remain at war will all make the concessions necessary to obtain peace as soon, but as securely, as possible.

June 5: Monsters, Undead seek to divide realms

The Dispatch has received messages suggesting that the Undead-allied group have begun spreading propaganda and disinformation in the hopes of dividing human realms against each other. Their messages suggest that the Undead in the south are not allied with the Monsters invading from the North, and they claim that if the items they seek are given to them, they will withdraw. The dispatch expects the monsters will make a similar claim forthwith.

To this, this newspaper says no. Necromancers cannot be trusted. If these items present a threat to the Undead's power, it would be beyond stupid to hand them over. Appeasement has never worked in the history of the world, and we say now is no different.

We say if they want them, they should come and claim them.

June 5: Vorax, Hero of Riombara, Killed in Battle

While many have already been killed by the agents of winter, Vorax of Riombara today became the first to give his life in open war. "Let us all remember him as the first victim of this Invasion," implored Marche, the Grand Justiciar of Riombara.

June 4: Monsters in the North, Undead in the South

Reports assembled from around the continent have reported these unconfirmed enemy locations:

Thalmarkin:Oepiud

Riombara:Mio Dupaki

June 4: TO ARMS!

The Winter is here! After months of quiet, the storm has come. A huge unit of unnatural beasts has appeared in Mio Dupaki, a province of Riombara. A group calling themselves The Necromancer's Servants have begun making demands, while many nobles, including another group, the Winter Guardians, have attempted to rally all realms against them. See Beluaterra/Third_Invasion for more– John Smith, Freeman

March 23: Realms fight it out, Undead and Monsters Rare

Wars between Nobles, both in the North and South, continue to cause the common folk headaches throughout the land, making the weapons trade good. However, unnatural monters seem rare; rumor has it that even so-called "adventurers" can't find many of the beasties. – John Smith, Freeman Merchant

February 6: Calm Covers the Island

While inter-realm conflicts still brew, the Dispatch has recived no further reports of Undead or Monster clashes, excepting the usual background noise. It seems mankind has been left to cause its own problems for the time being.

January 25: Undead Routed in Eykfar, Suuk!

Early reports indicate that an army (most likely Meshian) has defeated the undead force with a two-pronged attack in Eykfar and Suuk.

January 22: Meshains, Undead Clash!

While clashes continued on the border between Mesh and Joppo, Meshian forces marched against the Undead that previously had massacred their forces. After suffering several small defeats, they won a great victory when the Undead attempted to assault the walls of Eykfar. However, reports indicate that the Meshain casulties rose as undead the next morning a once again drove the Meshians off the field. Comments attributed to Chancillor Legault of Mesh suggest the Meshain army is rallying a sizable force to once again attack the unholy army.

January 7: Mesh Massacre in Suuk!

At sundown yesterday, slightly less than 1000 Undead abandoned their rampage of Joppo and attacked the Meshian army that was making camp in the region of Suuk. A sentry spotted the undead horde just a mile outside the Meshian camp, giving them enough time to for ranks, but not enough time to orginize a proper defence. The Meshian army dug in and held their lines, but the huge horde cut their lines like a hot knife through butter. By midnight, the Undead held the field, and nearly ever single Meshian soldier lay dying. An estimated 13 Meshian Nobles were wounded, with more at risk of capture. All in all, about 800 Meshains died in the battle. By contrast, only about 150 of the undead were slain. Several civilians who the Meshians were protecting (many who had been evacuated from Joppo days earlier) were also killed.

January 7: Huge battle against rogues in Suuk

After the huge horde of undeads sighted in Joppo City a few days earlier, rumours have now reached all sides of Beluaterra, telling that a huge battle has been fought between rogues and the army of Mesh in Suuk, right next to Joppo City. The gossipers could not specify the actual amount of rogues, but they say that it was not much smaller than the horde in Joppo, and apparently there were enough rogues to defeat the army of Mesh. For specific numbers we will have to await comments from people closer to the crime scene.

January 6: The Dispatch Presents the Tale of Joppo

We've sent a reporter to the border of Joppo to try and find out where the horde of 2000 undead may have come from. We present to you here the recent history of the city, as told by those who witnessed it.

My tale begins as the sun rises over a victorious Mesh army. Duke Horus of Joppo had declared his city independent of Mesh a month earlier, and the civil war had now ended with Joppo forces routed and defeated. The surviving nobles of Joppo were mostly new arrivals on the continent, and owed no prior oath to Mesh and no great loyalty to their rebel city. With their army utterly destroyed, they had little reason to remain in their occupied city. They offered a surrender, and scattered to nearby realms like seeds in the wind. General Danny of Mesh ordered a takeover be begun, and the First Army of Twillen implemented the order. The Meshans thought the city would be under their control before week’s end. But late that night, a shrill cry went up within the Meshian camp. “Undead! To your posts! To arms!” –Stephen Boucman, Bard and Historian

‘Twas hours before sunrise when I heard the alarm. I grabbed my sword ‘bout as fast as I ever had, and was out of my tent in less than an instant. There’s 1000 of them, at least, and they were already all around us! A sea of corpses, but walking, screaming, and trying to kill us! We had no time to form ranks nor man the walls; we just starting hacking and falling back. My boys alone took 60 casualties before we made it out of that city, and I saw worse happened to other units. M’lord ordered us to retreat through Suuk, but some units were sent back through Lanngetti. Rumor is they were ambushed by Undead there, and slaughtered to the last man. – Captian Ruben, Captain of the Free Company, Army of Mesh

When the Meshians left, the city grew silent. They’d killed most of the undead on their way out, but the streets were littered with bodies, half wearing the uniforms of Mesh, half wearing just their own rotting flesh. None but the strongest men would leave their homes, for the smell alone was enough to turn your stomach. The Nobles high-tailed it to Suuk and other realms, for after the Duchess left, there was little hope for them, and they didn’t trust the Meshians they’d been fighting to give them asylum. Next thing we know, there’s but one noble left, one Riscoso Bleu Montagne, holding all the offices. A single noble! But he was in charge, getting the bodies cleaned up, and we were ready to go back to work, open our businesses again. – John Smith, Freeman Merchant

I volunteered for takeover duty, and instead I get this. When the recruiter assigned me to the Duke’s unit, I thought it would be a walk in the park. Instead, we get to Joppo, set up our camp, and guess what happens? It’s just before sundown, and we hear a yell. This time, it’s the Duke of Twillen. I think he’s just yammering on about the undead that were here last time, so I go over and take look. By Joppo’s main square there’s a sea of black moving towards us like a swarm locusts. By my estimate there were 2000 of the undead creatures, enough to lay siege to Twillen itself. So the Duke orders us to evacuate civilians, get as many families out as we can regardless of their loyalties, and be outside the walls by nightfall. We got, I don’t know, 500 lucky souls out of the city, and hid 100 more in the Temple of the Great Dragon. But there’s still maybe 5000 living in that city. We’ll be back for them. I don’t know how we’re going to defeat that many undead, but word is that the higher-ups have a plan. I volunteered for takeover duty, but instead, I’m going to see this through. – Duncan Connors, Recruit of the Free Company, Army of Mesh

The Dispatch has also heard that the men in Joppo have mounted a resistance against the undead, perhaps directed by Riscoso Bleu Montagne, but we have been unable to get a reporter into the city.

January 4: Precuser to Invasion?

Reports from somewhere in the west indicate a horde of 2000 undead has been spotted, and have been targeting governmental buildings. An army this size has visibly attracted the attention of Mesh and surrounding realms, but Nobles disagree as to its significance. Does it mean invasion? Or is this mearly a very large horde of undead? - John Smith, Freeman Merchant