|Event Name||Chrysant War|
|Dates and Times||March 286 AC - April 291 AC|
|People Involved||Regalian Empire, Essa Empire, Ailor, Slizzar, Allar|
The fall of the Essa Empire, more commonly referred to as the Chrysant War, was a five-year lasting conflict between the Essa Empire and the Regalian Empire, at the height of the Regalian Pessimism. The war is called the Chrysant War in Regalia, as Regalians have always associated the Hadar Archipelago with the Chrysant Flower, one that only grows on the southern continent, and that became a symbol of victory afterward. The war started with Regalian fleets invading the Essa Empire in the spring of 286 AC, lasting until the autumn of 291 AC. The war is more commonly remembered by Alorians for the destruction of the Allar homelands; the establishment of Ailor colonies in the far south, along with a mass genocide of the Slizzar.
Starting in the late 260s, Regalia suffered a prolonged period of economic and moral decline, referred to as the Regalian Pessimism. This period of two decades was dominated by a severe decrease in nationalist sentiment among Regalians, as well as the decline of the momentum of the Unionist faith. A series of corrupt Chancellors and weak Emperors had brought the Empire into a steady decline since the high days of Chancellor Vladimir’s tenure. Before its dissolution in the year 291 AC, the Regalian Senate still dictated a large part of the political and military decisions within the Regalian Empire. The noble families themselves were severely politically fractured, even the Kades, only standing at a small minority in the Senate due to the rampant rise of the Iron Bulwark. Lead by the heads of House Medavinci and Sangiovese, the Iron Bulwark more aggressively voiced their desire to wage holy wars on the lesser races, believing the fervor for war would bring an end to the Regalian Pessimism and herald in a new era of hegemony. Despite Regalia’s considerable wealth and power, her actual political power in Aloria was not that much larger than its contemporaries, the Songaskian Masaya, and further south, the Sendrassian Empire. Eventually, the Emperor and Arch-Chancellor acceded, and the plan to wage war with external states was approved.
Choosing a Target
In Hadaria, the Essa Empire had just been formed by Empress Miko Missa, a Slizzar who had managed to charm the most powerful Digmaan into helping unite the various Chrysant Kingdoms into one large political entity. This empire was rapidly growing in geo-political power, as well as in military means, thanks to this unification, particularly focusing on smaller naval vessels carrying Allar troops, ultimately combining alchemical knowledge and gases with Slizzar agility and precision. Unbeknownst to the Regalians, Empress Miko Missa had been building up a military force for an invasion of her own. Miko Missa’s goal was to invade the Sendrassian Empire to the south of Hadaria, which had several million Allar out of their homeland many years before. It has never been determined whether Empress Miko Missa had any designs beyond Sendras to invade other nations. The Regalians, acting on the information of military buildup, chose to invade The Essa Empire, as the Empire of Sendras was too far away and the Songaskian Masaya was dormant in confident power. The fleet set sail for Hadaria without the Essans even knowing, the invasion having been made without a declaration of war to maintain the element of surprise and the momentum.
The Fall of Osstissa
Osstissa was the northernmost Chrysant Kingdom (or member state of the Essa Empire), to bear the invasion at full force. The majority of the Regalian battle fleets descended on the coastlines of the smaller state, shelling cities and temples to complete ruin and destruction. The tactic chosen for the war by the Iron Bulwark had been one of annihilation and repopulation. The idea being to eradicate the Naylar populations and resettle the lands with Regalian citizens. Within a week, the kingdom of Osstissa was utterly eradicated, save for some citizens escaping into the jungles or by fishing boats; all cities were razed to the ground, and thousands of Allar and Slizzar died in the opening of the war. Empress Miko Missa was caught by surprise and attempted to mediate with Regalia in order to save her Empire from utter destruction. During this time, attacks persisted, but the Senate refused to allow more attacks on official Chrysant Kingdoms, resulting in many small unaffiliated settlements being brutally purged. By the spring of 287 AC, a truce was close to being reached between the Essa Empire and the Regalian Empire. The Dragons Faction and the Red Faction in the Senate were in favor of a truce, yet the Iron Bulwark remained adamant that the only acceptable victory would be that of complete surrender. Ultimately, it was Empress Miko Missa who retracted the branch of peace first, enraged by reports from her Chief Digmaan of these massacres and the destruction of Nessrassian Temples. The terms from the Regalians were also extremely harsh, and so the war continued in a much more dramatic fashion.
The Fall of Uesston, Allossa, and Ssesollosa
The short period after the fall of Osstissa, saw the loss of Uesston, Allossa, and Ssesollosa, at the hands of the Regalian forces. Similar tactics had been observed as had been used against Osstissa, though more direct resistance was offered by Allossa and Ssesollosa. In Uesston, their capital was an island city, and so the Imperial Navy surrounded and blockaded them into submission. In Allossa, the final point of major resistance, only a single attack was attempted against their mountain ridge capital before the Regalians employed another blockade, unable to bombard the clouded city. Ultimately, the capital of Barazzt surrendered itself when its Cro-Allar leader saw he was not going to get reinforcements. Ssesollosa, on the western coastline of Hadaria’s largest landmass, put up far more of a fight. Several back and forth battles were fought over the capital, though it ultimately fell to the Regalians.
The enormous success of the Regalian Empire in their blazing campaign can be chalked up more to the failures of the Essa Empire. Their navy was made up of new, but mostly rudimentary ships armed with bows and arrows, being no match for Regalian cannons and ships that were years ahead in technology, despite many of them being almost a decade old themselves due to the stagnation of the Regalian Empire. Allar chemicals, while often devastating when deployed, were limited due to the complex methods of their creation. In addition, Regalian cannonballs could easily ignite and destroy vessels carrying the biological weapons into battle. On land, despite the huge size of the Essan military, the Cro-Allar commanders often surrendered without a single battle being fought, in the hopes it would save the people considering the devastation Regalian bombardment could inflict. The Slizzar leadership were slowly considered dark manipulators as Slizzar officers, priests, and advisors melted away when the Allar needed them most, mainly due to their intrinsical survival of the fittest nature. Ultimately, this would have dire consequences, but back then, Regalia returned to the Hadar Archipelago and began their final campaign.
The Final Campaign
Regalia’s victory had been assured early on in the war, and much of the outcome of the battles validated that prediction. Back in Regalia, the war had indeed done what the Iron Bulwark hoped. The Regalian Pessimism came to an end and was replaced by nationalist fervor for the war effort. Mothers gladly sent their sons off to war in the fleet, the victors returning with crowds cheering. The economy went back into overdrive as mining output increased every year, resulting in more employment and rising earnings among the artisans and craftsmen. Meanwhile, the Essa Empire was close to collapse. Regalia had carved a wide C of destruction and often, eradication as the main fleet moved to the east before swinging back to the south of the island chain, to the Essa Empire’s capital of Fessa Huallo. The capital was situated on the southern border of the Essa Empire, on the opposite end of the sea, separating Hadar and Sendras. Various Chrysant Kingdoms not yet attacked, already started to surrender to the Regalians while others declared neutrality to try and escape the onslaught. This did nothing to deter the Regalians from sending rear fleets their way to subjugate these groups, though it can be argued it saved many Allar lives when compared to the alternative. By that time, in the minds of most Allar, the Slizzar had brought about this apocalypse, resulting in many attacks on the Slizzar populations in Allar and Regalian held territories.
The final battle of the Chrysant War was to be the Battle of Fessa Huallo, where the Regalians thought Empress Miko Missa was gathering a large fleet to strike back at Regalia. In truth, however, Empress Miko Missa was gathering a fleet to evacuate the city, loading the people onto as many civilian ships and fishing boats as she could find. When the Regalians arrived, they opened fire on the ships which they thought were warships. The ships did indeed return fire, as many of the ships had soldiers on them, in the hopes of sailing south and establishing a new base of operations on the north shores of Sendras. There were hundreds of ships in the harbors of Fessa Huallo and only forty Regalians warships strafing the horizon to open gunfire on the smaller vessels. Between the screams of terror and drowning Allar and Slizzar alike, a few Allar war vessels raced forward to try and save their people by acting as a distraction for the civilian ships to get away, to no avail. The ships were quickly dispatched, and the slaughter continued. In an act of utter desperation, Empress Miko Missa used an ancient and unique magic to summon Deep Sea Serpents, Slizzar gods made flesh, to the surface to aid their people. Four of these creatures surfaced near the battle and immediately descended on the Regalian war vessels. The first warship to shatter was the Calemberger Adler, followed by the Anglian Empress Crown and the Girobaldin Battaglia Girobalda and Claro Elessa. The sudden panic in the Regalian fleet caused the rear admirals to realign their ships around the Emperor’s flagship Julianus der Grosse and the Kade warship the Laridae II. The wall had no effect, as the largest of the snakes burst out from the sea below the Laridae II, ripping it in two and causing a huge gunpowder explosion that ironically enough also killed the snake itself. The Regalian war vessels started shooting at random around themselves, somehow managing to kill the two smaller snakes before the last one broke straight through the Calemberger Köning Frislau and the Vixhallian Sacre Vert but fell short when the Imperial flagship opened a full 120 cannon barrage on the beast.
Only after the battle did Regalia fully realize they had destroyed a civilian fleet, a fact that was later well hidden from the Regalian population and quietly sanctified as a holy act of purging. When Regalia entered Fessa Huallo, Empress Miko Missa was promptly arrested and beheaded on the spot at the top of one of the Slizzar temples by an Imperial Guard. The remaining inhabitants of Fesso Hualla were summarily executed, civilian or military, and the city was torched to the ground. There wasn’t much left of a unity to negotiate with after the war. Various states had broken away from the Essa Empire and went to war with each other over what little land was still left that wasn’t seriously damaged by Regalia. The lands directly controlled by Regalia were cleared of any Slizzar presence, resulting in an influx of Regalian citizens and establishment of several Regalia controlled Naylar states. Reprisals against Slizzar became common across the Aloria, and it was estimated that eight out of ten Slizzar died in the years following the Chrysant War.
One of the big events that Regalia did not foresee was the ultimate revenge of the Slizzar on Regalia. As deadly as simultaneous, Slizzar killers descended on the noble houses of Regalia when they were celebrating their victory, killing as many of the nobles as they could. Overnight, Regalia would lose a sizable chunk of its nobility. It is said to this day that nearly every family lost someone important. Some earls died, some dukes. Princes of the Imperial family, children and wives, sons and fathers. Despite this loss, however, the fire of Regalian nationalism had been rekindled, and the state’s aggressive foreign policy was back in full swing. The political implications in Regalia turned against the Iron Bulwark, however, as the events of the war spelled an end to the bad reputation the Kade family was suffering this war. Following the years after the war, the Kade family would continue to gain ground in the Imperial Senate until it had enough power to disband it with the consent of the Emperor. To the Allar, the event was both destruction and a wake-up call. The Soor-Rassa-Allar, which was ultimately held captive by Regalian for their political power, worked hard to show the Empire the value of the Allar as allies. Ultimately, this would come to succeed, and the Cro-Allar became unique as the only form of legal non-Ailor nobility.
Their homeland for decades, however, was in ruins as Regalian bombardment had deeply scarred the land while in the water, chemical pollutants from sunken Essan boats killed or corrupted certain wildlife. There was also the fact that during the war, two new races had exploded onto the scene that ultimately lead to the Essa Empire’s downfall. The Circci had surfaced from the jungles and attacked rear supply lines, obsessed with their visions of Empire. The Maiar had come to the surface in order to escape the imbalance in the deepwater ecosystem due to the Deep Sea Serpents surfacing, going on to aid Regalia in destroying Essan flotillas with explosives or traps. The majority of the Allar states that were left either remained under Cro-Allar leadership or were directly made governorates of Regalia, particularly the city of Osstissa. For the Slizzar, the war marked their lowest point in history. Most view the Allar as a traitorous race as in the aftermath of the war, they killed far more Slizzar than the Regalian Empire in revenge. Those Slizzar that survive scattered across the world and many of them also curse the Regalian Empire as having killed their greatest leader as well as ruining their chances of world-renown greatness.
- The holiest place for the Slizzar, Ssasrakand, was destroyed by the Allar with the power of magics and alchemy shortly after the war. Today, a Vannhestia dances on the surface of the waves above the sunken temple.
- The Sendrassian Empire shortly considered invading Hadar at the same time as Regalia, though when Regalia was clearly winning, the Void Worshipping group backed down to conserve their power.
- To this day it is still not known how Empress Miko Missa managed to summon the Deep Sea Serpents. Whatever magic she used has been lost with her death and those of her direct cult followers, all of whom were Slizzar. Some have taken to assume the magic was Void-based, as Es-Allar dislike using such magics.