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Thread: [SS 6.3] The Order of Perkunas: Stake and Shaft (SotO 5, Apr 3)

  1. #1

    Default [SS 6.3] The Order of Perkunas: Stake and Shaft (SotO 5, Apr 3)

    Stake and Shaft:
    A Lithuanian Story
    about pointy things and the men that use them.

    They claim that Grand Duke Rimgaudas was the father of stake and shaft warfare.

    Well they don't know any better.

    Chapters in Reverse Order:

    Spoiler for Chapter 1: Beginnings
    It all started on a routine battle chasing down some cocky archers.

    Both sides paused to pray to Perkunas before the fight proper.

    Of course there was no way that a group of peasants could hope to prevail against the general's bodyguard.

    Rimgaudas: Hold! Slow down men!

    Horseman: What are these?

    Rimgaudas: They must have stuck their spears in the ground.

    Horseman: Funny-looking spears, far too thick and crude. And they had swords.

    Rimgaudas: It looks like they've covered a small area with these ... spears. What are they for?

    Horseman: Why don't we ask them?

    They interrogated the bandits' leader, who told them about the amazing invention called "stakes".

    After the show-and-tell session, they hung him, as was appropriate for all bandits.

    It was also a very heroic victory, for some reason.

    And that is how a new type of warfare was born.

    [SS 6.3, Gracul AI, Longer Assimilation, Permanent Watchtowers, VH/VH]
    Last edited by Alavaria; April 03, 2011 at 05:39 AM.

  2. #2
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    Default Re: [SS 6.3] Stake and Shaft

    lol, i like
    and i especially like the pagan lithuanians!
    keep up the good work!

  3. #3
    Karnage's Avatar Centenarius
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    Default Re: [SS 6.3] Stake and Shaft

    Reminded me of the "Mangonel" invention my King had in my AAR. I lol'ed on that one. +1 Rep.
    My work in progress AAR, come and have look.

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  4. #4

    Default Re: [SS 6.3] Stake and Shaft

    Chap 2
    The Rule of Horses

    Spoiler for Chapter 2: The Rule of Horses

    Lithuania's neighbors to the east were happy to enter into alliance with the brave Lithuanians in order to better protect their steppes.

    In those formative periods, warfare was a fast, sharp and highly mobile affair, where horsemen both heavy and light dominated far larger numbers of foot.

    The Grand Duke, for example, defeated a force of (light) foot, siezing Hrodna with great ease!

    Rimgaudas, too, would replicate (and some say surpass) this feat in the taking of Polotsk.

    It was after the snows melted, that he had his fateful encounter with the bandit archers and their newfangled "stakes".

    Thus, with a slightly larger force, he felt confident in taking on a smaller force that was defending the castle of Pskov.

    The castle's many defenders rushed out to battle with their crossbows, bows, spears and axes at the ready!

    Rimgudas' horsemen ran to and fro, happy to exercise their steeds and tire out the enemy.

    The spearmen soon realized they could neither come to grips with the fast archers, or retreat without being shot in the back ...

    Working together with the same unit of horsemen, Rimgudas slowly separated the spearmen from the archers, leaving them exposed.

    The axemen on the other hand, were busily discovering for themselves how elusive their own prey (more mounted archers) were.

    Rimgaudas: This is a good chance. The archers are between us and those crossbowmen. Charge!

    The rebel archers turned and ran with spears at their backs.

    The other unit moved to harass the crossbowmen so that they would be distracted from the general's men.

    However, the cowards thought they were about to be charged and promptly made a run for it.

    The axemen finally "caught up" to their enemy.

    Unfortunately, they first saw their routing "comrades".

    Then the general with his men in a furious charge!

    Then their leader took a spear in between the eyes.

    Rimgaudas thought to apply the same tactic to the spearmen.

    Namely draw them into a bad position and charge them once they were shaky.

    In fact, little did he know that they were not only shaky, they were primed to run the moment they heard the hooves of his men's mounts.

    The last group of crossbowmen was more alert than the rest.

    With their weapons at the ready they prepared themselves to fire the moment Rimgaudas' men showed themselves.

    Rimgaudas: Don't fear them! They only have crude weapons. Charge!

    Indeed, they only downed one horsemen. And it was only his horse, the man himself was unharmed (though shaken).

    This was also another victory for the books! (Though not that many people could read.)

    Rimgaudas moved his men onwards. Several units of footmen were assigned to take control of the castle.

    However, the riots were inevitable. The archers had to put down the mobs in a flurry of arrows.

    The mobs shot back some.

    As Rimgaudas moved to the north-west to secure Lithuanian control of the coasts, the town of Polotsk was the first to begin building a proper (wooden) wall in order to defend themselves.

    In the era of large nations, lightly armed and swift horsemen would not be able to defend the lands forever.

    For one, they were in short supply, and for two they had to be led well or else they could become very ineffective.

    Lithuania had not yet formulated a solution, but it had already landed in their lap. They just didn't recognize it.

    Last edited by Alavaria; September 12, 2010 at 11:06 AM.

  5. #5
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    Default Re: [SS 6.3] Stake and Shaft

    impressive 2nd post
    and i note how you skillfully took on a superior force with horsearchers

  6. #6
    Karnage's Avatar Centenarius
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    Default Re: [SS 6.3] Stake and Shaft

    Great battle. Horse Archers when used properly can be devastating and you proved with.
    My work in progress AAR, come and have look.

    L'État c'est moi, The Monarchy of France

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  7. #7

    Default Re: [SS 6.3] Stake and Shaft

    Ch 3
    Rebel without a Base

    Spoiler for Chapter 3: Rebel without a Base
    Reval was a major coup for the Lithuanians. As a populated settlement, it was larger than any other Lithuanian-controlled population center!

    It would also lead to a major change in warfare. But that is par for the course.

    Rimgaudas and Prince Algimantas met for the first time outside the walls of Reval, with rebels closing in on two sides.

    Algimantas was the first to draw blood that day.

    While the archers taunted and distracted the enemy, he managed to give his horsemen into a unit of crossbowmen, scattering and killing them.

    True to form, when the rebel spearmen realized their error, their ranged support were already high-tailing it out of there!

    The arrows to their exposed backs convinced them to do the same.

    The loss of their appointed leader also helped. Reval's men had been broken.

    A small distance away, Rimgaudas, with his archer help, isolated the rebels' second unit of crossbowmen and put his men's swords to good use.

    It was no surprise that this would be a decisive victory. In fact ...

    The settlement was left open for the taking.

    The former rebels surrendered and the town's leaders gladly agreed to support the Grand Duke with their money and lives.

    In return they came under the Grand Duke's protection.

    Messenger: My Lord, there is news!

    Grand Duke Butigeidis: What is is now?

    Messenger: Reval in the north is now part of your lands.

    Messenger: Some of the woodsmen report seeing polish flags near our borders ...

    The man paused. It was a matter of framing it appropriately.

    Grand Duke Butigeidis: What else?

    Messenger: A polish "cardinal" has been preaching the virtues of foreign gods just outside the walls of Hrodna.

    Grand Duke Butigeidis: WHAT??!

    Now the Grand Duke in his old age was a very religious man, a great believer in Perkunas.

    In fact, he owed his long life (or he would say) to the deity.

    Under his rule, Perkunas worship was all but universal.

    Captain: My Lord! The enemy is upon us!

    Grand Duke Butigeidis: I don't see ... anything.

    Were his eyes failing him in his last days?

    Grand Duke Butigeidis: Perkunas have mercy ...

    Captain: My Lord, it is just the fog.

    Grand Duke Butigeidis: Oh. Well then. To arms!! These rebellious knaves and villains ... what's happening?

    Captain: My Lord, they're beaten.

    Grand Duke Butigeidis: Is the castle secured?

    Guard: Yes sir, everything is under control.

    Grand Duke Butigeidis: Very well. Onto Poland!

    Captain: My Lord? Po-Poland?

    Over in Reval, Rimgaudas was forced to put down prolonged riots with deadly force.

    His elite horsemen had no problem killing the peasants that refused to submit, but there were SO MANY of them.

    Another piece was falling into place ...

    By the way, Tautvilas of Mstislavl?

    He fell foul of the gods for blaspheming Perkunas.

    It was the fault of those Polish and their foreign gods!

    Grand Duke Butigeidis: So what exactly are the Polish espousing?

    The man next to him pretended to be in thought.

    The small bag of coin at his side was only a minor payment, compared to what his employer had promised if he succeeded.

    Messenger: They say that their god is elected from among men, and becomes divine.

    Grand Duke Butigeidis: That is new to me ...

    The man stopped as though interrupted by the Duke's musings.

    He needed something big to convince the man in front of him.

    Messenger: They claim that their god will rule the whole world. And all other gods will bow before him

    Grand Duke Butigeidis: ... it is time for war.

    Lithuania was now united.

    With its population under the rule of the Grand Duke, they were prepared for the great undertaking ahead.

    The Grand Duke only nodded wisely when he heard of the Jihad called on Jerusalem.

    He didn't really care much, but nevertheless, something had occurred to him.

    Grand Duke: We are here, in Polish lands, to spill us Polish blood.

    Grand Duke: The enemy is prepared and so are we. To battle!

    The first Pagan Holy War had been declared against the enemies of Perkunas!

    Grand Duke: Let us show those arrogant, deceitful ... blasphemous ... ignorant popites just how much their man shall avail them!

    Grand Duke: Attack!

    (by the way, general use of "Pagan" corresponds largely to "Perkunas, but in an inclusive manner"

    The pieces thus far:
    • Stakes
    • Lots of peasants
    • Perkunas
    Last edited by Alavaria; September 12, 2010 at 11:07 AM.

  8. #8
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    Default Re: [SS 6.3] Stake and Shaft

    i like it, especially the way u portrya the messenger needing to frame his words to the Grand Duke lol
    keep up the good work!

  9. #9

    Default Re: [SS 6.3] Stake and Shaft

    Ch 4
    A Tale of Two Polish Nobles

    Spoiler for Chapter 4: A Tale of Two Polish Nobles

    Butigeidis felt a surge pass through him as the Polish banners appeared down the road. There was little doubt, in his mind, that the soldiers carrying the standards were about to turn south to reinforce Plock.

    Never mind that that they themselves had only just crossed into Polish territory. No, wait, could it be ... ! A blaze of understanding burned up the haze, and he saw clearly the master plan of their foes.
    The Poles had intended to attack them all along, waiting only for a suitable chance?!

    Grand Duke: We will never fall, as long as we have faith!
    Grand Duke: Now to strike the first blow!
    Grand Duke: These enemies are given into your hands, men. Attack!

    The position was perfect. The Lithuanian horsemen spread themselves atop a steep slope, putting the road easily within range of their bows. As soon as the Polish foot were all spotted and identified, the men began to lay down a hail of fire. There was a moment of sheer confusion as missiles rained down upon the unsuspecting enemy, who by sheer instinct scattered one from another to minimize missile casualties.

    The polish "shooters" quickly saw their assailants, but upon seeing the Grand Duke's glorious retinue, hung back like the cowards they were, vainly shooting their small crossbows up the steep slope. With no other alternative, the infantry marched upwards. Their large shields were of little aid, as they were being shot from either side by Lithuanian bows.

    The Poles were doomed to an inglorious defeat at the hands of Lithuania's first Holy Army. After one unit routed, the other cowards followed in short order, with the swords of horsemen chasing them all the way.

    The battle had been won with eerie ease. Eerie, that is, to all but the Grand Duke. He took it calmly and with great joy.

    Grand Duke: And that will teach YOU to expel Perkunas' priests from your land!

    The prisoners were brought, such as were left. Butigeidis looked on them with pity. They were only poor militia, for the most part, and ineptly led. Perhaps they were intended as a garrison force, but nevertheless could also have been intended to bulk up a Polish invasion. Or even as an occupational force ...

    Unsure about their true purpose, and not willing to delay further, he decided on mercy.

    Grand Duke: Let them go and tell their foolish masters to repent. Perhaps they will be spared.

    Butigeidis stared at the wooden gates of Plock, tightly shut in front of his armies. The tip of his bannerman's flag pointed toward the rough walls - a fair wind that blew towards the enemy, giving his bowmen greater range.

    Grand Duke: Who is this Boleslaw, and why does he continue to insult the one who sent me?

    In return for peace, the Grand Duke had demanded only a mediocum of religious respect from the man who had expelled the priests of Perkunas from his lands. Despite the blasphemies of the Polish priests, Butigeidis was still unwilling to take the decision of removing them from Lithuanian soil.

    Captain: Sir, we are at war, there is an easy reason why they might decline to allow Perkunas' priests to preach within their walls.

    Grand Duke: I don't care to hear their "clever" excuses. I will make him into a sacrifice for this impudence!

    Horseman: The troops are ready. And these mercenaries ...?

    The Holy Army had enlisted some hired spears who could be a useful battlefield element. When the remnants of the earlier militia force met up with the men under Duke Boleslaw's command, they defiantly turned around to face the Lithuanians.

    With the usual shocking uncare of an unbeliever, the Duke sent his militia up ahead. They were shot at by the Lithuanians, and, recalling their earlier arrow-filled defeat, broke and ran.

    The Duke's better trained spear militia advanced in close formation, hoping to keep the Lithuanians at a spear's length and therefore avoid defeat by cavalry charge.

    Discipline and shields cannot save the heathen. The Lithuanian horsearchers easily rode to the side and fired a dense hail upon the catholic formations.

    Though possessed of great range, the arrows were rather light. Yet despite this the (unarmored) faithless fell in great amounts.

    The Poles tried to move to the safety of the forests. The Grand Duke ordered his men to mow down as many as possible, to avoid polluting Perkunas' domain with war slain.

    Boleslaw probably saw his end coming. Lithuanian arrows had already killed his finest knights with well-aimed close fire. As the thundering of light Lithuanian horse drew closer, he cursed the pagans with all his might.

    Boleslaw: Curse you a thousand times! Foul heath- !

    Butigeidis: Be quiet and lie there in your own blood if your pope cannot save you. I must see your men on their way before we meet again.

    Boleslaw: ... (dead)

    The Polish ran here and there within the forest, but the trees themselves conspired against them, to deliver them up to the Grand Duke.

    The Holy Army killed or captured every man on the field that opposed it that day.

    Butigeidis: A mighty victory!

    The Grand Duke led his faithful men onward to Plock, leading all of the prisoners behind him.

    Captain: My Lord, what are you going to do about these Polish? Already we are near the walls of Plock.

    Butigeidis: Make an example of them so that these civilians will think better of the errors of their leaders and turn towards life.

    And thus the prisoners were executed before the gates of Plock. Seeing the great faith and power of the Holy Army, the elders of Plock immediately flung open their doors and surrendered to the Grand Duke, begging his mercy.

    After they had supplied his men with food and drink, and given up all the possessions of the late Boleslaw, the Grand Duke pardoned them their many offenses. His next act was to drive out all the catholic priests and razing their church (which offended Perkunas). A summons was sent out to two priests of Perkunas who were capable of setting up a proper place of worship.

    The Polish of course were unwilling to admit their sound defeat at the hands of Perkunas' soldiers. They roundly condemned the forced institution of Perkunas worship. Their pride must have been deeply stung by the quickness with which Plock capitulated to the invading pagans.

    Margiris of Druskininkai, a man who followed the Grand Duke faithfully, was appointed to patrol the surrounding lands.

    In the meantime, the Grand Duke himself was busy overseeing the control and maintenance of Plock, as well as welcoming all the Lithuanian settlers who arrived in a steady trickle from the north-east paths.

    Despite reports of Poles gather just north of Plock, the Grand Duke would not hear of giving up his recently won land, instead preparing a militia who would keep the settlement in order in case he and the other professional soldiers had to march out to fight.

    The settlement was teetering on the brink of chaos, with riots being put down by force. The Grand Duke was grieved that they were so willing to die for their Italian gods. God. Whichever it was, he didn't really care to know.

    Prince Algimantas: Excellent ...

    The man who had just delivered the news of the Grand Duke's new war only smiled at his employer's glee.

    Prince Algimantas: He musn't hear that I was already on the march before his announcement, of course. But perhaps you could suggest to him that it must be the work of Perkunas that I just happened to be near the border at the time.

    Messanger: Of course Prince. He will definitely consider you a true son and worshiper of Perkunas.

    Prince Algimantas: Kantibutas, your silver tongue won't work on me. Here. as promised. Your coin.

    Kantibutas: I live to serve, Prince.

    Prince Algimantas: Tarry for a while. Hopefully I will be able to send you to the Grand Duke with a heroic tale and we shall both be embettered by him.

    Kantibutas: Of course my liege, may you live forever.

    Prince Algimantas: Why would I live forever if my father doesn't. At least, I hope he won't ...

    His plan had worked out perfectly.
    Last edited by Alavaria; September 14, 2010 at 02:46 AM.

  10. #10

    Default Re: [SS 6.3] Stake and Shaft

    A very enjoyable read! Just gotta love the Grand Duke!

  11. #11

    Default Re: [SS 6.3] Stake and Shaft

    Ch 5
    It's a Slippery Pole
    Spoiler for Chapter 5: It's a Slippery Pole

    Grand Duke Butigeidis: Margiris, take some horsemen out and drive those Poles away. If I ride out of these gates the whole town will explode on me like a ...

    Margiris: I will go without any delay.

    Butigeidis: May the forests rejoice over your victory.

    The Polish had by this time probably become aware of the Lithuanians' arms and tactics. As a result, when they saw the horsemen approaching, they immediately secured themselves atop a small hill, hoping to use their bows to drive off the archers, while the spearmen would keep the enemy at bay.

    Such strategies had been employed with great success against the somewhat lightly armored (if at all) horsemen, and been very successful. In fact, this bit of history was not lost upon later generations of war-aspiring pagans.

    Unfortunately, the polish levied archers were short on training and good weapons. Their weak hunting bows and equally weak arms could not outrange the Lithuanian mounted bowmen! The cavalrymen laughed from their position at the bottom of the hill as they fired upwards, their arrows coming in near-parallel to the slope of the land and cutting down the peasant archers who had little more than their shirts to protect them from the barbs.

    While the archers nervously shuffled back, Margiris and his armored cavalry nobles began climbing up the slope unmolested by the archers who could not see them on the slope. The men at the base of the hill raised a loud cry and ceased their fire as their general neared the top of the hill. As soon as the arrows stopped falling among them, the poles rushed forward, thinking to quickly close within bowshot - only to hear the terrifying horn as, spears at the ready, they were charged by a wall of heavy cavalry!

    It was a massacre. A large number of the archers were slain outright. As the spearmen hastened to their aid, the survivors ran blindly through their ranks, disrupting their formation. For their part, many of the spearmen only heard the cries of both Pole and Lithuanian, and started to run as well.

    Some of the braver (or more sensible) ones tried to form into a circle as the enemy rode around them cutting down router and fighter alike. It was a doomed effort.

    Almost as though controlled by some higher magic, the Lithuanians avoided the steady spearmen, shamelessly chasing after their fleeing prey. Instead of a brave last stand, all the remaining polish received was a withering dose of close bowfire.

    It was more of a massacre than an actual fight. Despite having more than three man to each Lithuanian, the Polish were utterly vanquished! Surely their prayers went unanswered that day.

    Margiris: Send the whipped dogs back to their kennel.

    After despoiling the defeated men of their weapons (they had no armor to loot), Margiris sent them running to Thorn in disgrace.

    However, Linas of Volhynia would lead the men further west, following the scurrying enemy. There were many rumors about what happened to Margiris.

    In particular, one sect (the Perkunites, as they would later be known) claimed that Margiris had died because he allowed so many of the enemy to escape. For his part, Linas claimed that Margiris had actually been mortally wounded in the battle.

    No one knew the truth, however ultimately agreement was reached that he would be best avenged (or his wrongdoing transgressed for) by the killing of the Poles that he had released. Unfortunately, the enemy ran with great swiftness westwards along the road while the Lithuanians mourned their dead leader.

    Following the Grand Duke's invitation to priests of Perkunas regarding the building of a new site in Plock, two adventurous colleagues set out northeasterly, and began preaching in the plains near Novgorod. The Novgorodians were allies of Lithuania, and their peasants in the fields were not unwilling to listen to these foreigners talk about a god of forests and rain, both of which they knew a lot about.

    Such men - from either side of the Perkunas-worshiping spectrum - on divine missions would be known as "missionaries". They were vital, if unwitting, players in the diplomatic game of the world.

    Kantibutas: My liege, a small force of Poles are approaching our position from the northeast!

    Prince Algimantas: Just as planned ... inform the men that we will be packing up and moving west. In a hurry.

    Kantibutas: Yes my lord!

    As the man ran into the camp shouting at the men to prepare, the prince smiled, looking in the direction of the shabby-looking wooden castle that he had just been laying siege to.

    It was the perfect setup. If the polish noble cooped up within could be lured out of his defensive wall, it would be so much easier. More expedient than a messy assault. It would also make him look like a genious.

    ... but don't worry over much in any case. They won't be widows for long ...

    Prince Algimantas: Stop sounding so ungrateful, you fools!

    The men muttered as the skies poured down a generous helping of rain. It interfered with archery, and the mists that came with it made seeing hard. The prince's own men had to be careful when moving on the slope - the rain had made the grass slightly slippery.

    Prince Algimantas: Isn't Perkunas the god of rain? This is surely a sign ...

    Prince Algimantas: that we will drown our enemies in the rising tide. Now SHOOT unless you wish to waste this time!

    After the infantry had been mostly dealt with, one of the scouts spotted the Polish noble, leading his men of war onto the field. The banner was eye catching enough, but the bright white-barded mounts made them attractive targets.

    The fool was sure that, if only he could close with the lighter Lithuanians, his heavy cavalry would crush them. Sadly, though the rain had stopped, the wet grass and slope made climbing the hill a difficult, and more importantly slow, matter.

    Following the prince's earlier command, the archers fired on the knights with great gusto, possibly realizing that the rain, now lifted, was in fact a great boon to them. One by one the knights fell or were dismounted.

    Then Duke Zbigniew finally managed to "close" with his enemy. All of him and his personal bodyguard. Against the Prince's 40+ men. Who were charging him. Downhill.

    It was a far ... quicker ... death than those of his men unlucky enough to not be shot to death would receive.

    The prince watched with great glee as his enemies ran for their lives with the horse at their back.

    Algimantas: Capture them alive. As many of them as you can, but at least make sure that none escape!

    They carried out his orders to the letter.

    Algimantas: Ah, this is a moment to savor. We are victorious, the enemy are beaten. The castle is ours for the taking. Victory.

    Algimantas: That might not have been the best order to list them in ...

    Kantibutas: My prince, that is the last of the enemy. The rest are only bodies on the grass.

    Algimantas: Very good ... very good ...

    Algimantas: This is a great day for Lithuania! And the advancement of Perkunas' ... interests. As such, we must celebrate with all our might! Unlike Margiris of Druskininkai, I know to offer a great sacrifice! For a great day!

    Algimantas: Impale all the prisoners. Alive around the walls of the castle. Let the unbelievers see it and weep!

    Kantibutas: All hail Prince Algimantas! Lithuania! Perkunas!

    Men: *Cheering*

    It was on that bloody day that Prince Kantibutas of Lithuania founded a religious military order that the world would come to know, loathe, and especially fear. The Order of Perkunas (also known as Scythes of the Death God in some areas).

    Following the agenda of the devious Prince, they would be a force to be reckoned with by any opponent of Lithuania. Their signatures: the war scythe and two-handed axe, though the former was far more common. Although not bound by any oath to the contrary, retreating was so uncommon that it almost never happened. And a rout inconceivable.

    Even later, when the worship of their pagan god and the mass enlisting of his followers into Lithuania's armies was common - and Holy War the only war that it seemed Lithuania fought - the Order's men were zealots among zealots. A few of them could stiffen even a rather half-hearted regiment of half-volunteer half-levy men and transform them into a bloodthirsty whirlwind of scythes almost by magic.

    Indeed, later popes would be very vocal in condemning the "magics" of the Lithuanians, but with no effect on the "practitioners".

    Algimantas: Ah. It is well done.

    Kantibutas: Masterfully, my liege.

    The two men stood atop a watch tower in Halych's walls, looking out over the dark countryside. The dying, or dead, men outside had ceased to be visible an hour or so ago.

    Algimantas: Go and tell the Grand Duke about the great events of today. But be careful what you tell him, so that he will look favorably upon you.

    Kantibutas: I will remember all your commands my liege.

    Algimantas: Good ... well?

    Kantibutas: A question, my prince. Who is Margiris of Druskininkai? I have not heard of such a man before.

    Algimantas: All in good time. Be faithful to your word and hurry to the Grand Duke.

    Kantibutas: By your leave ...

    Grand Duke: My prayers have indeed been answered! What a great miracle that none other than my own son was there to strike fear into the hearts of the faithless!

    Grand Duke: Tell me again the story from the beginning, from the first arrow until the duel. Before I send you out to fight god's battles, I will surely be hospitable to the one that my son has sent to me with such good news!

    Kantibutas: Of course my Lord. As the enemy advanced towards us in perfect formation, the rain began to fall in great amounts as Perkunas opened up the very skies ...
    Last edited by Alavaria; September 15, 2010 at 12:08 AM.

  12. #12

    Default Re: [SS 6.3] Stake and Shaft (Ch. 6)

    Ch 6

    "Pole"ing the "Hungary"

    Spoiler for Chapter 6: 'Pole'ing the 'Hungary'

    In the south-eastern lands, just outside the walls of Halych, the prince celebrated his latest acquisition by driving the confused Poles out of what was now his land.

    The fire of his levy and mercenary archers proved more than capable of defeating the Polish mounted crossbowmen.

    Spoiler for Easy Victory

    Despite not being substantially stronger by its two latest conquests, Lithuania had nevertheless ramped up production of military equipment. For some time the Grand Duke had worried more about finances than defense, and as such the settlements had lean garrisons and standing armies were very few.

    His own Holy Army was himself, his household cavalry and some light mounted archers. As for the Prince, his own force relied on spearmen better suited for standing watch on walls and hunters taken from shooting deers onto the battlefield.

    The Hungarians had sent a small force, armed of course, through the passes that breached the mountains that formed Lithuania's (new) southern border.

    Uninterested in spreading his war across the world, the Grand Duke sent a swift messenger eastwards to inform his Prince to avoid antagonizing this third party. They might have come to aid the Polish, but then again perhaps not ...

    From the eastern lands a new form of levy was being instituted. The Eastern Levy were armed as disciplined heavy spearmen. Although the more common Baltic Levy were numerous, their equipment and training were not wholly up to scratch when they were called upon to fight outside of defensive walls.

    The new eastern styled units resembled the elite horsemen of the nobles (dismounted, of course). They were equipped with the same long spears and large shields as their Baltic compatriots, but had heavier armor of thick leather, reinforced with metal plates, disks or scales. Their training also made their formations more cohesive and tighter, perfect for holding off even a cavalry charge. This came with a small price as the units were never quite as well filled-out. (Oddly though, they did cost less on a man-for-man basis, due to being closer to professionals).

    All things considered, the militia Baltics were ideal garrisons who could also make some money on the side. The "Easters" were a capable battlefield force, that would shortly come unto their own ...

    Prince Algimantas hurried eastwards along the road. A small scouting force had been spotted. He well knew that the Polish territories were now divided due to Halych. He intended to strike further east and round out his lands with the settlement there.

    In order to accomplish this, he had to ensure no warning would reach the town. Additionally, the small force was about the right size for a pre-siege offering to Perkunas ...

    Prince Algimantas: This "war" thing is very good, when one wins, that is.

    The battle somewhat resembled a turkey-shoot.

    Finding a good (gentle) slope, Algimantas lined up his archers, placing the horsemen on the right and himself on the left, the better to capture some sacrifices ...

    Between the torrent of arrows from their front and the steady stream from their right, the Poles were destroyed before ever reaching the bowline.

    Spoiler for Whizz Thud! (arrows in flight)

    It was a spectacularly easy victory for the Prince's force - the only casualty a poor peasant struck by an enemy bolt.

    Furthermore, they had captured a goodly number of popeites, all the better to slake his blood-thirst.

    Prince Algimantas: I want orderly lines, on either side of the path.

    Prince Algimantas: Make sure about ten paces on either side of the road are clear. We will be marching this way at some point.

    Just as he had planned, the Prince "staked" the enemy prisoners along the road, near to where the battle had taken place.

    He then retired to his castle, which by now had been quite thoroughly cleansed of all the heathen artifacts that had earlier adorned ("profaned") its walls and towers.

    Prince Algimantas: Linas, of Vilnius, are you? Any relation to Linas of Volhynia?

    Linas of Vilnius: No my Lord, the only connections we have are our names and worship of Perkunas, my Lord. And loyalty, my Lord.

    Prince Algimantas: My men tell me that you are a capable quartermaster. What do you say?

    Linas of Vilnius: I was quartermaster first at Vilnius, but your Lordship himself selected me ...

    Prince Algimantas: Can you defend a castle, Linas?

    Linas of Vilnius: I may have a good command of logistics, but I am no mere clerk.

    Prince Algimantas: Very good Linas. You shall take command of Halych, and coordinate supplies. I must march eastwards when the portents are right.

    Linas of Vilnius: An honor my Lord.

    Just a little north of the castle, Vilnius had just completed a modern set of stone walls.

    There was now enough space in the courtyard, and facilities for training Lithuania's professional archers. A large step up from levied hunters and motley mercenaries, these men of war had strong bows, and shields that helped defend them a little from counter-fire.

    Most importantly, however, was the training that allowed them to - in an orderly and timely manner - place stakes on the field. The very same kind of stakes that the Order of Perkunas would find occasion to use on their unfortunate captives. Thus they were well known as Lithuania's "Stake and Shaft".

    The merchants of Novgorod had sent a small group of men southwards along the roads joining Polotsk and their namesake capital.

    From his position in Pskov training men to form a militia force, Rimgaudas did not pay much heed to the news. If indeed he had heard it at all ...

    As soon a the snows fell, Algimantas received his good omen - a hunter brought down a beautiful white-coated wolf, with fangs still bloody.

    His men cheerfully followed their general eastwards, marching to the border with a carefree, but fast pace. Along the way, they spotted a several small sprouting trees in the location where they had sacrificed their prisoners some time ago.

    Over in the west, Kantibutas was patrolling the land with the Grand Duke's faithful cavalry and some militia, more of a training march than anything.

    However, they happened to be nearing a bridge south of Plock when they caught an even smaller band of Polish trying to cross it!

    (if you look closely, you can see that the Grand Duke has been convinced to take a tour of his lands, hehe...)

    Prince Algimantas: Don't hurry so quickly that we miss any Poles sitting in the snow, men.

    Prince Algimantas: There's more an enough time ... we'll take it all soon enough.

    The march continued.
    Last edited by Alavaria; September 15, 2010 at 10:38 PM.

  13. #13
    Karnage's Avatar Centenarius
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    Default Re: [SS 6.3] Stake and Shaft (Ch. 6)

    Great read and great updates, Lithuania's been busy, keep up the good work, with these amount of successes, I doubt the Teutonic Knights will be a problem when you get there
    My work in progress AAR, come and have look.

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  14. #14

    Default Re: [SS 6.3] The Order of Perkunas: Stake and Shaft (Ch. 6)

    Ch 7

    Revenge and Riposte Both Start With ...

    Spoiler for Chapter 7: Revenge and Riposte Both Start With ...

    Kantibutas moved swiftly to take advantage of the chokepoint offered by a narrow bridge, showering the infantry with arrows, scorching them with fire and routing them!

    The enemy general, Gorka Borkowicz, met a quick end when his horse tossed the fool over the railing and into the freezing cold water, where he most likely met a very chilly and wet end.

    Spoiler for Bridge !

    Kantibutas contemplated dumping the enemy dead - and their living, for that matter - into the cold and fast flowing waters to dispose of them in the easiest manner possible. Fortunately for the unsuspecting population of Plock, he thought better of dirtying his own water supply. And Perkunas probably wouldn't look favorably on someone messing up his river.

    Looking around at the steep sides of the river, he called over several of his men and ordered them to gather up the fallen enemy and cart the bodies to some distance past the slope to ensure that they wouldn't fall into the clear water.

    Kantibutas: After you have piled them up properly take the captives up there as well. Start planting stakes in circles around the heap.

    Captain: I understand.

    Kantibutas: When they've been properly cowed by the thought of decorating those stakes then you may let them run back and tell their masters how foolish they are to oppose us.

    Kantibutas: But don't give them back their weapons, either. They might not be enough for a decent sacrifice, but they're enough for snacks ...

    Kantibutas: Try not to harm them, chewed food isn't as delicious.

    Captain: Their bowels will surely loosen whenever they think of this day ... if they make it back to civilization, of course.

    Kantibutas: I wouldn't have said loosen, but regardless, hurry. I Want to have those captives released just before nightfall. So they can stumble in the darkness.

    And that's what they did.

    Lithuanian spies reported that several days after the battle, about half of the released men made it to Thorn, quite sadly driven insane. It appeared that a pack of wolves had decided to make dinner out of the group of battered and tired militia.

    Kantibutas merely chuckled and commented that not every sacrifice had to be fitted on a stake.

    Grand Duke: I don't believe it!

    Page: The reports are quite certain. The, uh "ji-had" has taken Jerusalem. Supposedly the pope may order its return or recapture.

    Grand Duke: No, I mean their horsemen, I've never seen anything like them.

    Page: Er, horsemen? The Muslim ones?

    Grand Duke: That's a brilliant idea! Putting metal barding on your horse! That would make them even better than the polish ones with their padded armor!

    Page: Where does this ... my Lord, are you having another vision?

    Grand Duke: Call the armorer, I need to ask him something.

    Page: *runs off to call the smith*

    The page ran back in after only a few minutes, leading a tired horseman straight towards the Grand Duke.

    Horseman: The merchants of Novgorod have invaded us treacherously my Lord!!

    Grand Duke: ... Who's stationed in the east? Do we have any forces there? Counter-attack!!

    It was at Polotsk that the first "official" unit of Lithuania's soon-to-be-infamous Fanatic Unarmored Farm Implement Levy was formed.

    Prince: That's the most stupid name for them.

    "Followers of Perkunas" sounds so blase though.

    Prince: Scythemen any better?

    Fine. Well Polotsk was where the first true grouping of these fanatics was formed in order to defend the walls against the invading Russians. With a long polearm-like weapon (the war scythe or two-handed axe) they were slated to hold the walls against laddermen.

    As fate would have it, they wouldn't take part in the next few battles against the Russians.

    Rimgoudas: It seems we have made it in time!

    His small army of horsemen and mercenaries raised a small cheer as the town of Polotsk came into view.

    The Novgorodian banners waving at the base of the hill they stood on showed that the city was still in Lithuanian hands.

    As the Russians turned to engage the enemy that had suddenly appeared at their rear, Rimgoudas' men fired bows and crossbows at the most prominent banner in view - the enemy general's.

    Rimgoudas himself charged into the fray, hoping to kill the man, but the latter escaped, dodging a hail of bolts as he ran. The tables turned abruptly as Russian horse archers swept over and began to attack the Lithuanian horsemen.

    In the end though, Rimgoudas' men brought down their prey, tossing him from his mount and trampling him.

    As this was happening, his hired spearmen had been surrounded by a small horde of light axemen who eagerly hacked into the armored formation. The archers and crossbowmen a little further back were also beset by the enthusiastic Russians, and forced to fight them with knife or, for the luckier, short swords.

    The spearmen lost their nerve and it looked as though the rest of Rimgoudas' hired soldiers would be massacred by the many axes already ripping into their flesh.

    A triumphant unit of spearmen, axes still bloody, ran towards Polotsk, hoping for more glory and of course loot. Several things happened.

    First they saw Rimgoudas' banner. Then the banner of their fallen general. And then soon after the sound of many men approaching them at a full run!

    The defenders of Polotsk had gathered together and sallied out in a heroic fashion to win the day! First the one unit of axemen, then the rest of the undisciplined Novgorodians turn and ran.

    However, between the (surviving) mercenaries in front, the fresh militia behind - and the horsemen among them! Not many would make it away from the Lithuanians, who were utterly bent on revenge!

    It was a great day for Lithuania! And the ones who bled the most, after the enemy of course, were the paid soldiers - who were given their coin and shown the door.

    Rimgoudas and his horsemen were at the head of the triumphal entry into Polotsk.

    The civilians gathered there (and militia, who had formed ranks on the walls and in the streets) cheered the general who had made an epic journey from his castle in the north just in time to lift the siege.

    Then the matter of the prisoners.

    Polotsk's more extreme worshipers of Perkunas felt very strongly that the treachery had not been an attack only on Lithuania, but also on Perkunas. Furthermore, the two "missionaries" who had thought to spread their religion northwards had been ejected from Novgorodian lands before the attack.

    The men were insistent that the prisoners be handed over for a ritual sacrifice. Not familiar with this new "practice" Rimgoudas ordered that the captives be handed over to the, figuring that it was better for them to be executed by the people who had been under siege by them just that morning.

    Of course, he was shocked when he was informed later on what exactly was intended.

    Last edited by Alavaria; September 18, 2010 at 01:36 AM.

  15. #15

    Default Re: [SS 6.3] The Order of Perkunas: Stake and Shaft (Ch. 7)

    Ch 8:

    Pushing Them Back!

    Spoiler for Chapter 8: Pushing Them Back!

    With his motley force of trained horsemen and infantry militia, Kantibutas had his hands full repelling small Polish intrusions around Plock.

    The villagers of Plock, now swelling with Lithuanian farmers, found their new governor to be a very valiant and encouraging man. Under his eye, the plot of land that the Grand Duke had set aside was turned into an appropriate shrine.

    Plock's very "forceful" priests of Perkunas, sharped by the constant threat of a Pole attack, were both religious men, and inspiring warriors, when they took up the war scythe. Many of them would lead dedicated units of scythe-armed dedicates into war in the years to come. More importantly, Plock was the spawning point of some of the Order of Perkunas' most fanatic followers and leaders alike!

    Kantibutas: Now that is a better showing! Men, do your best - perhaps we shall be allowed to celebrate with a new "forest". To arms!

    Spoiler for Arrows. Lots of arrows.

    It was not a hard fight, but a very long one. The Poles, even though out-maneuvered and taking Lithuanian arrow-fire from multiple angles, did not run. Doubtless they had heard of the fate that had befallen their earlier associates.

    Kantibutas looked on the scant number of prisoners that they had managed to catch. Those cursed mounted crossbowmen had shot up his own but managed to run for it thanks to their steeds. One day he would find and stake them all!

    Kantibutas: I'd say these Polish need some exercise, they seem unable to really come to grips with men like us.

    Kantibutas: A good run will invigorate these lads - take all their equipment and send them on their way to Thorn castle.

    Needless to say, when the survivors reached the gates of the Polish castle, they were rather far gone.

    Kantibutas had a hard time keeping his smile from being too large when he heard the villagers' rumors of a massive pack of wolves - a perfect dirt-brown, ash-gray or snow-white so that they could hardly be seen - that was said to be prowling around the vicinity of Plock.

    Furthermore, it seemed that the unfaithful Polish, who had only half-halfheartedly converted to Perkunas' service, had a tendency to go missing sometimes when outside the town walls. Only some time later might a half-eaten half-rotten body be found some distance away from where they had disappeared. Perkunas' shrine was filled with offerings of hunted meat, wood and grain.

    The Polish, for their side, seemed to take great affront by the sudden turning of the people to pagan gods, and vowed to exact vengeance for their pope. Kantibutas wondered if perhaps they were actually preparing to attack or not! In any case, he had material and men gathered in order to expand the small shine to include a small smithy who could arm the more faithful members of the congregation with suitable weapons, all the better to continue the Holy War.

    In no small part to Kantibutas' secret devotion to the Order of Perkunas, the First Lithuanian Holy War never ended until the Poles as a people had been completely converted (or killed). There were always small raids, scouting parties, and in times of extreme quiet, the occasional mauling of a blasphemer by the town's strange guardian wolves. It was said they had teeth like daggers ...

    Over in the southeast, the Lithuanian people found new brothers in the Cumans. Both Catholic and Orthodox considered them to be pagans - so that was sufficient to convince the Grand Duke that they had be comrades - of a sort!

    The siege of Zhytomyr continued, with no aid in sight. The Prince would only receive some spearmen from his castle in the east - Lithuania's southern holdings were in full alert because of the Hungarians. In fact, a popite spy had been caught by one of Linas' guards trying to count the number of men headed to the Prince's aid.

    Needless to say, the Prince sent back word to Linas when said reinforcements informed him about the spy. The Prince ordered that, on the spot where the man was captured, they should take and stake him.

    The situation was rapidly deteriorating. The Hungarians of course did not openly admit to having sent a spy, and therefore didn't have any real reason to protest when he was staked. Nevertheless, they made a military show of force.

    Linas (not the castle commander) was dispatched south by Kantibutas with strict (and secret) orders. Ostensibly to protect their lands, Linas would attack any Polish forces that were tagging along with the Hungarians. Because the Hungarians were not openly at war with them, only the Polish were to be attacked.

    However, in order to demonstrate his devotion to the Order (devotion and Order both yet secrets) he was to stake all Polish prisoners, be they many or few. This would reinforce Lithuanian possession of the land as well as - hopefully! - deter the Hungarians from any ... foolishness.

    Linas' orders came directly from the Order's Grand Master, and his fulfillment of them would forever change the landscape, political and religious, of Europe.

    Historical records in the Vatican showed that until that point, the Pope had largely heard of - but ignored - reports of Lithuanian attacks on the Polish.

    While this view shifted only slightly at the time, he would soon enough make a full turnabout in considerations of the Great Pagan Calamity that was about to befall his spiritual "subjects".

    The First Holy War was the first for a reason, after all ...

    Ooh, the plot thickens. The Prince is a real bastard, that's to be sure.

    Glad people are enjoying the story. I myself was wondering exactly HOW it was that the Grand Duke survived to 85+. I didn't reload to keep him alive, either ...
    Last edited by Alavaria; September 19, 2010 at 01:04 AM.

  16. #16

    Default Re: [SS 6.3] The Order of Perkunas: Stake and Shaft (Ch. 8)

    Ch 9

    We Looted The Vodka To Stay Warm

    Spoiler for Chapter 9: We Looted The Vodka To Stay Warm

    Taking with him Polotsk's garrison, and trusting in speed, Rimgaudas raced his men northwards, back to Pskov.

    Amazingly, though he had expected the castle to hold out against the force that was approaching it even as he left, it seemed that the Russians were disorganized and had not even begun laying siege lines! Let alone begin working on ladders or rams.

    He had no trouble entering his castle and gathering up the garrison within in order to form a truly massive force - the largest in all Lithuania to date, actually. Unlike previous armies, his was composed largely of light foot and archers, with relatively few of Lithuania's horsemen - as they had been moved south.

    Rimgoudas: Never fear, men. Stand strong and loose missile on them. We'll send these fools back to their own lands, where they belong!

    He need not have worried much, however, as the enemy force was much smaller, and not more mounted than his own.

    Rimgoudas set his men in the "jaws" formation, thinking to utilise his archers to the full. It was unsuccessful only because the enemy did not advance into it!

    In order to deal with the enemy Boyars, Rimgoudas moved his own bodyguard into a good angle and instructed his archers (and Latvian crossbowmen, as yet untested) to fire upon them.

    Though protected by barding, quite a few horses were downed by the fire. Then Rimgoudas charged in, spears ready to impale the Novgorodians!

    The fight was relatively short. The Boyars withstood the charge and fought back briefly before retreating. The crossbowmen took the opportunity to lodge rough wooden bolts into their backs.

    With the Boyars and Russian horse-archers out of range, the crossbowmen zeroed on on a good target: two-handed axemen with light armor and so shields.

    Each volley of bolts had a devastating effect, much unlike the arrows of Rimgoudas' many levied archers (of course the archers fired faster).

    Even though the Lithuanians were on a slight incline, the Russians decided to advance. They had barely moved forward a few feet before entering the firing range of many bows.

    Although weak, the missiles nevertheless were impressive in flight and succeeded in cutting down many crossbowmen before they could even fire once!

    The Boyars returned to the field to help their struggling crossbowmen. Rimgoudas attacked them swiftly, and with the help of some spearmen firmly routed the arrogants.

    The crossbowmen retreated for the moment, realizing that they could not out-range the archers, as the latter had a height advantage (the slope also made crossbow fire ineffective).

    It was about this time that the enemy's mounted archers were routed. They had foolishly moved to attack, and fired their bows from behind their crossbowmen.

    The archers on Lithuania's side, for their part, quickly advanced and began firing arrows, some of them lit on fire for effect. The enemy had only 160 bows compared to 400 peasant archers, and were quickly convinced to run.

    With the way clear, the Lithuanian horse moved to a flanking (and elevated) position, loosing arrows into the Russians while circling around to the rear to cut off retreat and capture routers. This prompted a sudden and very brave charge by the enemy infantry, upwards and right into the Lithuanian ranks!

    Sadly, the charge was more courageous at its start then the end. Rushing uphill into flights of arrows limited their ability to break though the far more numerous pagans.

    When Ringoudas' men and the other horsemen moved into their rear, the Russians lost all hope, panicking and making a run for it.

    It was another great victory to add to Rimgoudas' list, and a new take on the balance of horse-foot in Lithuania's forces.

    The opposition was not as strong as at Polotsk, and the Lithuanians much stronger - however what made this victory so exceptional was how little it cost.

    Very few Lithuanians gave their lives for victory, compared to the hordes of Novgorod men who did in their defeat.

    Spoiler for Details

    General Rimgoudas sent the cowardly Russians running back to Novgorod before the Followers of Perkunas were able to arrive on the scene.

    His first "contact" with the Order of Perkunas occurred just a few weeks earlier, when he had surrendered the men of Novgorod to the population of Polotsk (or so he thought). The honest man had already felt uncomfortable about slaying prisoners, but after all, they might as well have died on the battlefield ...

    One can only imagine how shocked he was when one of his trusted men informed him that a violent cult of Perkunas had taken the men away in order to perform a rather horrific ritual sacrifice. Unsure about how well releasing or ransoming the Russians would go over wwith the people, or the Grand Duke, Rimgoudas came up with a most cunning plan ...

    Rimgoudas: Order the men to armor and saddle up. Raid the place where they are holding the prisoners, then leave before they can do anything.

    With the need to demonstrate Lithuania's resolve, as well as teach the Novrogodians a sharp lesson about betraying him, Rimgoudas prepared his men and marched northwards back to the base of those knaves - Novgorod itself!

    Last edited by Alavaria; September 19, 2010 at 11:41 PM.

  17. #17
    Karnage's Avatar Centenarius
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    Default Re: [SS 6.3] The Order of Perkunas: Stake and Shaft (Ch. 7)

    I must admit, 85+ for a character in medieval 2 is quite amazing, I can barely get my guy's pass 65+. Another great update
    My work in progress AAR, come and have look.

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  18. #18

    Default Re: [SS 6.3] The Order of Perkunas: Stake and Shaft (Ch. 9)

    Ch 10

    Rimgaudas' Counterattack

    Spoiler for Chapter 10: Rimgaudas' Counterattack

    The Hungarians sent one of the noble princesses, Margit, over to negotiate freedom of trade between our peoples. Relieved at this turn of events, the Grand Duke sent back an enthusiastic agreement to her proposed terms of cross-border trade.

    Merchants began merrily journeying into Hungary to sell their wares, and even bring back some exotic Hungarian goods!

    Stung by the Order's priests, Rimgaudas decided to prove his devotion by mounting a daring counter-attack on Nodgorod itself!

    He had little doubt that he could pull it off, and demonstrate his piety in doing so. After all, formidable odds had never stopped him before. Besides, there were a lot of angry Lithuanians, who needed to be set a difficult task, lest they take up rioting or other undesirable activities.

    Marching as the snows melted, they caught up with Novgorod's leader, Knyaz Svyatopolk. The old man had gathered to himself quite a large number of militia, unsteady men armed with short bows and equally diminutive axes.

    Was it only a reactionary defense force? Or perhaps they were thinking of a show of force after their invasion met such an ... unfortunate end.

    Perhaps they were thinking of even a second thrust? No matter, they would only be marching into their graves!

    The Russians perched themselves confidently on a hill under the command of their leader, and watched as the Lithuanians marched up to them.

    Their ballistae fired, but since a bolt could only kill a few men at a time (as Rimgoudas remarked: "A unit of archers kills more men") the attackers slowly marched up and sent the Lativian crossbowmen forward.

    With their shields and strong wooden crossbows, they were an effective unit, even under fire! They began firing on the Russian archers, who were unable to retaliate despite being on higher ground.

    The Russians moved forward, doubtless unwilling to trade ballista bolts with the fire of a crossbow unit.

    Rimgaudas himself charged forward, discomfiting the enemy archers. The undisciplined axemen behind them charged forward at the sight of the large Lithuanian banner that Rimgaudas' men bore. "Kill the Perkunites!" was their cry as they charged forward!

    The land was just perfect. While the Russians were on a hill, the Lithuanian position was itself on a slight slope.

    Rimgaudas sent his mercenaries forward, since they were more expendible than the Lithuanians with him. Furthermore, seeing only a horde of weakly armed enemies, they thought an easy victory was ahead. The two-handed axemen, however, turned back to catch a flanking unit of Russians.

    Although a unit of Baltics was engaged with the enemy, Riumgaudas held the rest of them back in order to let his archers and crossbows fire into the melee unfolding below them..

    Someone spotted the large and beautiful standard of the leader of Novgorod, and all the men began firing on him. Spotting their rich armor, the mercenary axemen rushed to attack him.

    Rimgaudas: "Is that him? Is that the man? A coat of metal to the man who puts a bolt into his head!"

    Not recognizing the hired axes below, the Lithuanians happily complied, sending a stinging hail of fire towards the general.

    The militia broke soon after and were captured in great numbers!

    Running from the "Perkunites", it would be the third time that the men of Novgorod would be soundly beaten by the Lithuanians, despite their arrogance.

    Spoiler for Details

    Rimgaudas: Spare no time on these weakling fools, men. Let us press onwards to their great city itself!

    Rimgaudas: Onto victory!

    Hoping to catch the Russians by surprise, Rimgaudas did not stop to loot or bury, but raced onwards to the east.

    He was able to catch them by surprise., facing only a large horde of militia. Men fighting on their land, for their homes, but nevertheless ill-trained and ill-equipped men.

    This would be the first coup for the Order of Perkunas, at at the same time, no one knew about their hand in the whole issue.

    The Lithuanians formed up in their units, ready and eager to burst out upon their enemies and seize their lands and possessions for themselves!

    No one noticed the small addition to Rimgaudas' banner. One of his servants, while repairing a tear caused by a Russian arrow, had embroidered a small symbol in a corner - a symbol that would soon feature prominently and by itself on far larger banners.

    It was the flag of the Order.
    Last edited by Alavaria; September 22, 2010 at 01:47 AM.

  19. #19

    Default Re: [SS 6.3] The Order of Perkunas: Stake and Shaft (Ch. 10)

    Ch 10-2

    The Order Strikes Back!

    Spoiler for Chap 10-2: The Order Strikes Back!

    Rimgaudas opened the battle by targeting the terrified remains of the men that his army had just beaten a few days ago.

    They had scraped together enough wood to make some ballistae, so he took them out first, scattering the archers as his men ran towards the siege engines.

    Rimgoudas then routed the archers as he returned to see the last axemen running from his men.

    Enemy reinforcements from the north were closing in. He had his mercenaries and some Baltics throw themselves against the light militia while he took a moment to run down the routers.

    Then he returned to charge the militia in the back, routing some of them as well! But not all were cowards in equal measure, however ...

    From the south, citizens of Novgorod (the city) itself advanced in good order and deep dense formations.

    All of Rimgaudas' remaining unengaged infantry formed up into a massive shield line in order to stop the Russians' massed charge with steady Lithuanian ranks!

    On the left-most flank the enemy general sent two units of powerful two-handed berdiche militia. He himself joined the fray, hoping to roll up the Lithuanian shield wall.

    Rimgaudas' archers fired burning arrows to frighten the enemy foot. Because of their large weapon, the berdiche militia were left open and took frightening losses!

    Then Rimgaudas saw the enemy general hurriedly moving away from the line, their horses probably frightened by the flaming ammunition. He hurriedly called out an order to his crossbowmen!

    "Fire on the largest banner!"

    He was forced to turn away, his southern line now capable of holding out a little longer. On the north side, the axemen were still fighting his mercenaries.

    With Ringaudas' help, however, the Novgorod reinforcements were firmly routed. The few surviving hired soldiers turned to march south and reinforce the spear line.

    The enemy general was shot by crossbows. Even the peasants with their bows fired on his men, hoping to bring down any, if possible.

    Hoping for an honorable death he finally charged the smallest unit on the Lithuanian line. Unfortunately for him, Eastern Levies are always in smaller units, but the men are stronger. He met his end on the point of a sharp Lithuanian shaft.


    Not only was Gorislav shafted by the spear of an Eastern Levy spearman, he was also staked (his corpse rather).

    At that point, however, the Russian ignorance of Lithuanian valor was quite throughly corrected! Seeing their general dead and more missiles pouring from Ringoudas' ranks, the rest of the militia followed their leader to the stakes!

    Spoiler for Details

    Novgorod was taken easily. The prisoners were brought out and executed (it was only later that night that the Order's men went about staking). The population was terrified as their enemies entered their streets.

    Unable (and somewhat unwilling) to control his men, who had been whipped into a small frenzy by the Order's most vocal proponents, Novgorod was brutally sacked. A few thousand civilians were killed trying to resist their plunderers, and their bodies were thrown out into the streets and later piled up outside the city walls.

    Devotees of Perkunas' extreme cult also make sure to hunt out the priests of other ... leanings ... and took to burning where possible (looting where not) all of the religious places that they could identify. However, some artifacts were hidden by them when civilians convinced them that the smell of incense was actually perfume! Thus at least one chapel was unlooted (though the perfume shop next to it was not so lucky).

    Novgorod was taken, and Rimgaudas was sure that the Russians would be willing to quiet themselves and submit to their superiors!

    Last edited by Alavaria; October 12, 2010 at 09:32 AM.

  20. #20
    Indefinitely Banned
    Join Date
    Nov 2007

    Default Re: [SS 6.3] The Order of Perkunas: Stake and Shaft (Ch. X-2)

    hahaha!! very nice!! yeah!!!
    love the pagan factions;
    the order of perkunas marches!

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