Second Songaskian War
|Second Songaskian War|
|Event Name||Second Songaskian War|
|Dates and Times||May 19th - July 24th 305 AC|
|People Involved||Regalian Empire, Songaskian Masaya|
The Second Songaskian War occurred at one of the more turbulent times for the Regalian Empire in recent memory. It spanned the course of several months, ultimately being one of the conflicts that served as a tone-setter for the type of leader the newly ascended Emperor Cedromar I would be. In the end, the Regalian Empire decisively proved a point of domination to the Songaskian Masaya. However, the conflict once again ended prematurely, however, some wonder if that was Emperor Cedromar’s plan all along. Today the war is most remembered as being a conflict that got a Regalian-inclined Massya onto the throne of Regalia’s greatest enemy for the past hundred years. .
Following the First Songaskian War that occurred from 302 to 303 AC, the Songaskian Masaya suffered a series of political problems stemming around their throne. First, their previous Massya died and his successor, Musamansa Koné, was dethroned by his usurper uncle, Kusamanu Koné. “The Usurper” as he is now known immediately sought to track down his nephew, most likely for execution, however, a Regalian Foreign Mission left in the nation after the Truce Accord between the Masaya and the Regalian Empire saved the young man. They smuggled him back to the capital city where he became a guest of the Imperial Court. For the next two years, Kusamanu Koné rebuilt his ruined empire, focusing on a new fleet to try to meet Regalia’s power as well as replenishing their faded army. The Regalian Empire itself saw Alexander I replaced with Cedromar I, the man whose capture had preemptively ended the First Songaskian War.
He seems to have been itching for payback though held off for a time as the Empire had to recover itself from the Bone Horror Crisis and an unwanted conflict with the nation of Mirnoye. The military of Regalia at this time had also shifted from how it had previously functioned. Following along the lines of Cedromar’s preference for competence over birthright, several military “Marks” were created and named with military leaders in them appointed mainly out of credentials. This new system would first see hard combat in this war. The new war officially began on May 19th with a declaration of war from the Masaya following attacks on their shipping routes by Regalian military officers, thus giving the recently appointed Emperor the war he so greatly desired.
An Opening Statement
After a period of organization and recruitment, Emperor Cedromar I gave orders to Ostmark troops under command of House Typhonus to lay siege to the city of Shaqq-Turnaal and exterminate that Farah’deenic city’s non-Ailor populace. On the morning of June 3rd, 305 AC, the Lieutenant-General set his plan in motion. The city was entirely surrounded save for a small corridor to the north, where many civilians attempted to flee. True to the Emperor’s orders, cavalry made repeated charges, slaughtering the civilians in droves as they fled. The battle progressed throughout the morning, heavily one-sided as Regalian artillery bombarded the pearl city throughout the siege. The city’s defenders were also poorly equipped and poorly prepared for the siege, having only skirmish weapons they too were slaughtered by the well-armed Regalian infantry forces. As the day went on, the Regalian forces found themselves in a number of challenging situations with the Emperor himself becoming trapped in an enemy ambush, saved only by heroic actions of others on the battlefield. By the day and battle’s end, an estimated thirty to forty thousand people had been butchered by Regalian siege forces effectively leaving the city under Regalian control. The Emperor had earned the opening he desired for his desert campaign, setting the tone for the battles to come.
A Loss and a Victory
In an effort to regain standing, one of the Admirals opted to divide his ships in hopes of flattening one of the Songaskian Pearl Cities. Unfortunately for the admiral, a Songaskian fleet hailing from Sikassaro came upon the fragmented Regalian fleet’s weaker element. Making quick work of the heavily outgunned Third Line Calembergers, the Sikassaro fleet moved in on the remaining Second Line ships to wipe out the fleet. Fortunately for the Regalians, four of the ships managed to make a retreat despite the severe damage. Meanwhile, the Frontier Armada began laying siege to the city of Massoilagui further up the coastline. The combined firepower from several naughtknigth capital ships paired with the Nebenmark’s fleet managed to fire roughly 11,000 rounds within several hours. Having no functional defense, the city walls of Massoilagui were completely levelled with most buildings either severely damaged or destroyed. Following the brutal bombardment, the Prince of the city offered full surrender if the city’s residents be permitted to live on as prisoners of war which was taken by the attackers.
The Disaster of Altaqq
Following the events of the Grand Armada and the Siege of Massoilangui, the Nebenmark was ordered to lay siege to the city of Diernali. Similarly to the city of Massoilangui, Diernali boasted no local garrison and was quickly overwhelmed by the invading Regalian army. No retinue saw combat upon entering the city, and the civilians were spared as the Emperor felt the war was progressing well enough without the need for civil terrorism. Shortly after, the Frontier Armada, now backed by an additional detachment of ships was able to obliterate the Bou Gasagou fleet left behind after the Grand Armada’s failures. With combined firepower almost seven times that of the Songaskian fleet, the Regalian forces were able to quickly put down any ships they crossed paths with. In under an hour, all Songaskian ships had been sunk, and the Siege of Bou Gasagou began. Due to the walls having been destroyed by the failed Grand Armada assault, the city had no defense and immediately surrendered.
The greatest incident of note, however, was the attempt to take the fortress Altaqq. With a large portion of the nobility joining forces under one banner, the combined force of 19,000 troops marched for the fort. Prior to reaching the fort, however, the combined noble army encountered a Songaskian force nearly twice the size. Numbering near 30,000 troops, it was painfully clear that the Masaya had finally mobilized their armies against the Regalian forces. Left with no option but to stand and fight, the Regalian army dug in and prepared for the battle of Altaqq. With two commanders leading columns out in a desperate defense, the initial force of the attack was stifled if only for a few minutes. The Songaskian force was so large it blacked out the desert sands, slamming into the Regalian defensive line like cannon fire. Within the hour, the defense collapsed, turning into a disorganized route. The casualties were astonishing with mercenary companies losing ninety percent of their troops on average, and noble levies suffering an average casualty rate of sixty percent. With the noble army unable to provide proper resistance, the Songaskians retook the recently captured city of Shaqq-Turnaal which had been left undefended.
The Merciful and the Merciless
Following a period of stagnation in the war, many of the Songaskian prisoners were rounded up by order of the Mark commanders. All Songaskian men were to be executed, and the women and children were to watch it before being placed into slavery. This plan was interrupted however by none other than the Emperor himself. Having realized that executing the civilians would only add more fuel to the Songaskian side of the war, the Emperor declared that they would be spared should they not interfere with Regalian forces. Meanwhile back in the Regalian Archipelago, the elected Undercrown made the bold move to purge the Barons of Drixagh, revoking their titles and handing them to Opper Calem military families. Despite this, the Undercrown dedicated four million regals to paying off the now homeless barons. While this sounded like a good arrangement on the surface, it was quickly discovered by the former northern nobility that the four million was to be divided among all of the barons who had been evicted, making the deal incredibly cheap and one-sided. At the same time, Grand Marshall von Treppewitz began razing homesteads and cities alike in the north, paving the way for the Undercrown’s newly appointed Opper Calem barons. Religious statues were demolished and desecrated, and the famed Arless Johanna Uëxkulla was slain in defense of her holdings, leaving the Drixagh region feeling more like scorched earth. This whole event resulted in a weaker Regalian military push in Farah’deen, reducing the effectiveness of the Empire’s advance.
- For more information on the Burning of the North, click here
An End to the War
One night, while many Regalian troops were asleep, fires began sparking up in Masaya occupied cities across the desert nation. Multiple loyalist factions had sudden spikes in popularity, leading to the Masaya calling for the return of their leader. By the next morning, the Regalian Emperor declared a formal end to the Second Songaskian War, having met with the young Massya who moved to then depose his uncle with the support of many families. The Regalian forces were then ordered out of the region they had just fought for and returned to their former positions across Aloria.
While many believe the Second Songaskian War to be of little consequence, it has in fact further cemented the alliance between the rightful Massya and the Regalian Empire. The relatively short conflict also contributed in part to the government and military reshuffle the following year to ensure commanders and political leaders were truly capable of leading as the system betrayed cracks and failings in certain leaders. As far as casualties of war were concerned the Regalian Empire took significant losses to its noble levies and mercenary companies, while the Songaskian Massya seemed to take negligible losses. While the vast majority accepted Musamansa Koné when he resumed his position on the throne, others still supported his uncle, and a small migration of such people headed east with him. The war also broke the Magic Covenant in two as now; the distant Sihai people were cut off from their allies in the Altalar states, one party then facing war with Regalia while Emperor Cedromar personally oversaw the effort that brought the Sihai into the Crown Alliance.
- The young Massya of Farah'deen was a child in the eyes of his people when he was taken into Regalian custody, and he was largely treated as such among the Regalians. When he returned though, he was a man in the Songaskian tradition, and has taken a far more neutral tone to the Regalians than many might expect.
- Rumors that the Songaskians would unleash hidden Desert Dragons often circled in Regalian camps throughout the war, though these rumors were never to be fulfilled.