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December 263 – News & Rumors

New Aldoria has been the talk of the town for several months now, their actions deemed good or bad depending on your source. Soldiers wearing the blue and green of New Aldoria’s army were recently seen eradicating the settlement of New Oarsmeet, despite calls for aid from the residents therein. A large number of refugees have flooded the city, although they seem to be well stocked and prepared for winter, even in the face of this drastic population increase. Prince Aylin, as always, remains calm and collected in his public outings, appearing as confident and calculating to his supporters, while those who dislike him see him as aloof and pompous in his dealings with the populace. Whether this confidence stems from his recent actions or those to come is impossible to say.

The colony of Newhope, at least on the surface, seems to be less prepared for the refugees they have taken in. Food, while available, is short in many less affluent sections of the city. Dominet Martingale, a sitting member on the Council of Ten, drew the ire of many citizens during his annual celebration of the new year, a party oozing with opulence and seen by many as a waste of resources, though far from out of character with his past actions. Questions about the colony’s safety have arisen as the guard has noted a small increase in violent crimes, including the murder of a well known shipwright employed to help construct a navy for the city. Though details are limited regarding the crime, rumors abound, and have interfered with the local investigation.

Clan Watchwolf once again pleads for aid from their allies, hoping to prepare for another push from Grimward in the spring. The letters remind the coalition of their long relationship with the Watchwolves, and mention a lack of supplies from the Eastern settlement which were supposed to arrive earlier this month. Reports say that Clan Grimward has moved a large amount of food and supplies to their northern villages and that a large number of warriors are currently waiting out the winter in those same villages. While scared reports of hunters and farmers overestimate it to being thousands of warriors, realistic numbers put them possibly at being several hundred strong.
The clan knows that, should Grimward push before the Watchwolves are reinforced, they will almost surely be devastated in the battle. Concern from the Clan Nightriver war pack currently stationed in Watchwolf territory is that they are running out of food and that they currently show no intention of abandoning their settlement due to their intense pride in maintaining the clan’s sacred spiritual charge.

Hawks arrive to all of the Clans and the human settlement; Laifnar Icefury has been named the new Clanleader of Clan Shattered Spear. With his title comes a more progressive look at the future, solidifying Clan Shattered Spear’s alliance with Clan Nightriver and the Coalition.

The warriors of Stormjarl, after a successful initial push, were unable to make any more significant progress into Grimward territory due to a lack of supplies and reinforcements. They continue to offer payment in exchange for warriors willing to assist them or even defend their homes. The few letters that have gotten through also request aid in the form of reopening supply lines, either by land or by sea, as Grimward controls many of the roads leading into Stormjarl territory, and the Squallborn blockade, while not completely effective as Stormjarl ships respond aggressively, has slowed the supply of food and troops by sea to a trickle. Their plan to push back against Grimward to give themselves a buffer zone to defend should their enemy press them again was not as successful as they had hoped, and a solid effort by Grimward will seriously endanger the lives of many Stormjarl citizens. Continued fortification of settlement defenses continues, but slows down with the onset of winter.

A letter arrives to many key figures among the colonists and their supporters: Clan Ironmound finds itself in a position akin to Stormjarl’s last year. Clan Grimward is on their doorstep, demanding they choose a side in the war. After witnessing the near destruction of the much larger Clan Stormjarl, the Ironmound letter explains that the clan, while they would prefer to remain neutral, will do what it must to ensure the survival of its people. This will likely mean siding with Clan Grimward unless they receive sufficient help to defend their homeland.

Clan Nightriver focuses on their borders and settling in for the winter, but has been attempting to negotiate with the Colonists for plans in the spring. The Warleader has been training troops and the Stormjarl refugees given homes in numerous villages and settlements, but it is obvious that Grimward’s conquest will begin again in the spring. Nightriver says they have sent some representatives to Clan Ironmound, but a hawk was sent back after they found out Clan Grimward reps were there as well. No violence has erupted, but it seems both sides are attempting to sway Ironmound… with Grimward definitely in the lead.

The eastern conflict between Whiteoak and Axhound has seemed to slow down considerably with the onset of winter. Axhound, rich from spoils raided from numerous villages and now the conqueror of one of the southern settlements, has funneled these supplies back to Axhound territory. Clan Whiteoak warriors seem to have returned home from the larger conflict out west, which could mean they intend to retaliate heavily against their hated neighbor. Nearby, the other Clans such as Steinjottun and Goldenfield, prepare for winter after sending their aid and supplies to the war effort earlier in the fall.

Rumors spread about the Mordok presence in the Great Forest being much worse than initially feared, as survivors of Mordok attacks return to their settlements. Some allied Ulven from several packs return home, saying that the Mordok were led by a group of humans. Although this is cast aside as nonsense, this does follow a number of reports of the colonists meddling with the Mordok and their corruption in the Dirge Swamp. If more information regarding this reached the neutral Clans, proof of the colonists becoming involved in and even joining the side of the Mordok could sway heavily on the decision to join Clan Nightriver and the colonists.

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