|Full Name||Cedmir Kade|
|Date of Birth||July 22nd, 184 AC|
|Date of Death||September 9th, 246 AC|
|Real or Mythical||Real|
|Claim to Fame||Chancellor of Regalia|
Cedmir Kade was a Regalian Chancellor who’d been raised a soldier, and although although he had no intention to serve his father’s post, ultimately came to be known as one of the most savage leaders in Regalian history for his supremely cruel but effective conclusion to the civil strife that plagued his time. He is often seen as a direct extension of the failures of his father and predecessor, Chancellor Alexander the Giant, who strode with similar recklessness into wars the state could not fund and, in the process, led Regalia closer to bankruptcy. Near the end of his term leading to his abdication, however, Cedmir had managed to solve the economic calamity, but in the process created the period known as the “Purple Bleeding,” wherein dissidents and innocents alike were slaughtered, their properties seized, and entire families extinguished for the benefit of the state.
Origins and Early Life
Cedmir Kade was born to Alexander the Giant and Marie-Madeleine Ivrae de Sange in July 22nd, 184 AC. Cedmir supposedly had a miserable childhood, receiving the brunt of his mother’s frustration over his negligent father, and evident mistreatment from his elder brother Aeldwynn. Ultimately, Cedmir was sent away to squire at the Viridian Order, far away from the court where rumors of his elder brother Aeldwynn’s legitimacy festered.
Cedmir excelled with the Viridians and quickly rose in their order, honing the skills that saw him brought into Emperor Allestrain I’s personal service. It is said that Allestrain and Cedmir got along splendidly despite the Chancellor’s ongoing rivalry with the Emperor; with Imperial influence, Cedmir’s status in the Order soared. When Allestrain died in 219 AC, Cedmir lost much of this influence but still had close ties with pivotal figures in the military. Cedmir then, controversially, married Fien Kerstelberg, a woman of a lowborn military family. The match only added to their problems when she gave birth to the twins Tarnan and Sarvan Kade, the former which had been sickly, and the latter slow. But fate soon reversed course for Cedmir as the untimely death of his brother Aeldwynn called him into public life. The task that specifically called his attention was the task of reining in aristocratic lobbies, furious at the time over Alexander’s reckless actions, and bitter over money they’d loaned the state which was then poured away to fund the Chancellor’s sudden invasion of Nordskag. Cedmir treated these lobbyists with the same rigid ruthlessness that he treated his Viridian underlings; through violence, brutality, and intimidation, he bent them to heel, albeit temporarily.
When his father fell on the winter fields of Nordskag, Cedmir was vilified by the public for tyrannizing the feudal and mercantile classes, and soon became the scapegoat for the debt and state deficit. Despite this, the young Emperor Justinian I is said to have been terrified of the infamous Kade, and so as to not anger him or his loyalists, extended House Kade’s dominion over the Regalian Chancellery. Immediately upon his appointment, Cedmir leaped into action and manufactured a claim for war against the island of Arvost. The newly made Chancellor concocted a plan to solve the debt by striking the supposedly vulnerable nation and seizing their wealth, but upon the initial invasion swiftly learned a hard lesson about Arvost’s defensive capabilities when the Arvostians managed to repel most of the Regalian attackers. What was intended to be an easy war quickly became pyrrhic and financially unsustainable, and so Cedmir was forced to withdraw. As an immediate consequence of the failed incursion, the Regalian state was forced to default on its foreign loans. This angered many of the nations surrounding it, and even moving both Arlora and Torse to action, who declared that they shall have their money by one way or the other, just prior to Torse attacking the Empire’s trade routes in the area, and Arlora pillaging nearby Regalian colonial holdings. Cedmir had managed to delay the inevitable betrayal of the money borrowed from prominent Regalian landholders, using his bought time to attempt a decisive naval victory over Torse, but was defeated after a large portion of his fleet flipped sides due to being severely underpaid, underfed, and underequipped.
Defeated twice more, Cedmir returned to Regalia in disgrace and saw the Empire sliding towards bankruptcy. Despite public demands for his resignation, he issued a national edict that all internal loans within Regalia were forfeit by the divine will of the Imperial Spirit. It is unknown if Cedmir colluded with Justinian I prior to the announcement, but regardless, he’d produced a political shockwave that rippled across the archipelago, raising enraged landholders and merchants to arms as it went. As population centers bore witness to a surge of violent protests and nobles began calling banners, Cedmir set fully armed men into village, town, and city alike, committing massacres across the Empire and confiscating the estates of the dead. The Chancellor then made a declaration that all opposition to the state and his earlier declaration were both treasonous and heretical and that he would be gathering a great army to purge the dissidents, wherein every soldier would be paid in blood-money and loot. In a financially downtrodden Empire, this enticed tens of thousands who flocked under Cedmir’s banner, sparking the decade-long burning flame which is now called the Purple Bleeding, where the Chancellor paraded about the archipelago for ten years, policing and slaughtering swaths of traitors and innocents alike, seizing a great deal of private wealth in the process, and later funneled the finances to the state and military. Records support the theory that the Emperor remained mostly dormant during this period, as Cedmir’s brutal strategy had quickly solved his debt crisis and the rebels had begun to protest the intervention of the Spirit rather than Cedmir himself, thus polarizing the Imperial family.
As the most brutal phase of the Purple Bleeding came to a slow, grinding halt, Cedmir’s tenure had become both silently abhorred and loudly feared, his loyalists ingratiated with power and wealth and his opposition either crippled or outright entirely eliminated, but it had all come at a cost. While kept behind closed doors for years, it soon broke out that Cedmir Kade’s mental faculties were rapidly declining, and there were doubts about his physical ability due to his advancing age. Still, for another decade the bleeding continued, although at a much more controlled level, and it was only in 246 AC that Cedmir was swayed to resign by his son Tarnan Kade, who had developed leprosy at an early age. Opting then that neither of his twins alone were capable heirs, the perhaps not completely sound of mind Cedmir issued that the twins, his leper son Tarnan and his slow, epileptic son Sarvan should share joint rule as Chancellor.
After his abdication, Cedmir enjoyed his retirement only briefly before dying of the same illness that had taken his mind long ago, leaving behind one of the more complex and tainted legacies known to Regalian leadership.
Cedmir was a poorly spoken, harsh, and strict man who held no qualms about committing brutalities for the greater sacrifice of the Empire’s benefit, but those who’d known him before his elevation as Chancellor recalled a more lawful, loyal creature; the product of a child raised by the Viridians. Once, the Kade knight had been complacent and unambitious, expecting and desiring nothing more than to die a retired and accomplished knight. It is supposed that after the disaster of Arvost and its consequences, Cedmir snapped. Under the pressure of humiliation, seclusion, and paranoia, his morals slipped away in light of solving the problems which had plagued him since he’d taken office initially. Having been a soldier for most of his life, he treated the Purple Bleeding like any other war and had conveniently ignored the countless civilian and innocent casualties caused as a result.
With irrefutably one of the more complicated legacies in Regalian leadership history, Cedmir is remembered foremost for his many failures and conclusive massacre which viciously ended many innocent lives. Simultaneously, he had managed to end an economic crisis that seemed unending and paved the way for Tarnan and Sarvan’s exceedingly peaceful and progressive tenure. Additionally, by extinguishing and replacing many ancient lineages with younger families loyal to the Kades, Cedmir had defined the next few generations of Regalian aristocracy. By most present standards, Cedmir is the ‘black sheep’ of chancellery history, in that most scholars neglect to account him for his achievements due to the atrocities he also committed. At the time, Cedmir’s legacy was a terrifying monolith of intimidation that had been inherited from the Purple Bleeding period, which the next Chancellors were able to utilize positively, rather than extend the disastrous strain of tenures that Alexander and his son, Cedmir, had perpetrated.
Cedmir married Fien Kerstelberg at an early age and had three children; two twin sons, Tarnan and Sarvan, and then a daughter, Catherine of Axford. Cedmir’s father was Alexander the Giant, to whom Cedmir shared many similarities, whereas his mother was Marie-Madeleine Ivrae de Sange with whom he shared a bitter relationship. This also meant that his former liege and friend, Emperor Allestrain I, had been a distant cousin.
- When the Purple Bleeding had reached its height, rumors had surfaced that Cedmir had poisoned his older brother Aeldwynn to seize the chancellery. These have since been likely disproven; while the two were not on good terms, Cedmir had not yet shown signs of malice or cruelty at the time of Aeldwynn’s death.
- Cedmir still served as Chancellor for a decade with a rapidly deteriorating mind, and records offer insights into his erratic tendencies; often, the elderly Kade threw childish tantrums over his defeats or began long-winded tangents about the sailors that betrayed him in his war with Torse. While he seemed to forget the names of those around him in the present, he had never forgotten the names of the many traitors he had punished.
- The Viridian Order had actually formally expelled the old knight during the later stages of the Purple Bleeding to preserve the codes and tenets of honor and mercy, which the Kade had all but utterly violated. This expulsion is still a sore subject for the Viridians, as he was previous to those atrocities widely considered a model knight of their organization.