Journals of The Withered King Saga

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Just some fun exercises in worldbuilding using diary excerpts and reports to tell the story of civil war through the lens of the private messages of the players in this tale.

Fantasy / Romance
Renzo Hernandez
Age Rating:

Dill Master Yuan Zhong Training report

9th day of the 6th month
Drill Master Yuan Zhong of the 3rd conscript battalion progress report to Company Grand Commander Lucos.

The conscripts are raw. Farmers who can't hold a sword, stable boys who can't carry a shield and fisherman who at least had some affinity with a spear but have only ever held a pike on their dinner plate. Though thankfully it's not all disappointments here, we've luckily press-ganged some bandits who've been quite helpful teaching our lads some good knife work. I can see those thieves doing well for themselves in the mobile infantry instead of standing in line with a pike they have no clue using, much less holding a line with it.
But that's just the problem. The recruits are having a hard time even marching in battle order. The only way we can knock those prancing foreign "knights", you want us to fight, off their horses is to use our line of pikes to keep their swords away from our conscripts while our crossbows and what was that new weapon you made some of our other men train with? Muskets? Do the real work. That was the plan.

And the plan centers on our pikemen being able to march, hold and fight in one long unbroken battleline. Your strange lands are flat and wide enough for this to work. We just need to pray that we never bump into the mud on an open battlefield our formation would start to fray and with it our conscripts sense of safety and moral. I hope that never happens Commander. The moment our pikes cant close ranks is when this rebellion you've put us in goes up in smoke. Neither of us were one to play pretty with words since we met in my old kingdom commander and you have to understand we need more time. Our pikes aren't ready to face those turtled up knights in those suits of full plate yet.
Gods, I still have to tell you about our mobile infantry. So those thieves I told you about? Apart from teaching our boys how to knife someone like their lives depend on it, they've quite frankly been both a worry and a boon to our current situation. They're effective junior officers keeping the raw recruits in line and even showing us some promising points of leadership as sergeants and captains. The problem is that those boys are far too over eager to use the rod and lash when disciplining the other recruits. I've had to tell them to calm the hell down, even had those farmers need to give them a punch back or two to be fair. There's a lot of bad blood between the thieves and other conscripts. We'll have to make them work as two units supporting one another in mock battles if they're gonna have a prayer at making it when they meet the enemy.

Lucos this is for your eyes only.
I say this in full confidence that nobody, save for you will see this part of my report.

The men that came with us since my homeland, from Zhongyang Shan? They're getting homesick. Its been what? 2 years since we've traveled from port to port landing here and now training these dirt farmers how to fight. We've managed to hold the passes with our best boy's, but times running out. These peasants need to either show us something we can believe in or our men will tuck tail and go home.
We're mercenaries Lucos, not freedom fighters. You promised our men good pay, decent enough food, and plenty of loot. All we've done out here is raid piss poor towns not loyal to us, ambush some merchant caravans to find pay and use our light cavalry for foraging and raiding outside the passes. We're not going to die out there for "freedom" Lucos not even for your families. Alot of us have family back home. We're only holding on because of the pay houses we've set up for our men's families to collect back home. Our supplies are dwindling, even with the farms feeding our forces we still need to pay our veterans.

We need to make a move Lucos, I hope we can do it soon.
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