1221-1224 Third War of the Ûr Lords

1221 Concentration and Destruction

After the Second War, the Ûr Lords needed time to replenish their stocks before attempting again to ravage and destroy their weak neighbors to the west.  In the Third War, the Ûr Lords made a temporary pact to join almost all of the clans in order to attack the pusillanimous West in a great invasion.  The opening of this invasion focused on the citadels of the dwarves in Kharin and Kazden Dûn.  Five clans laid siege to each of the citadels, strangling the great ancient keeps and keeping them out of touch with the West.  As the sieges and minor assaults of the citadels continued, another 10 clans plunged through the Gorgen Gap and headed directly towards Thearth.

Immediately the dwarves sent word to the other Houses of Raj Gohn to tell them that the clans were heading for the West.   In response to the news, the House Lords began to attempt to rally support from local fiefs in an attempt to raise troops to fight against the horde.  Thangku’Ur was the first to raise troops and sent them immediately into Roane.  Soon after the other Houses began to raise troops in their locations, just as the horde arrived in the Hoff Hills in northeast Thearth.

This time, the horde remained concentrated and would not divide.  The horde immediately dove on to the Roane Plain and ravaged settlement after settlement.  Lord Maddich of Thangku’Ur gathered his troops and moved out of the mountains and into the fields to stop the bloodshed of the civilians as the other Houses mustered and began their march to the northeast.  The Ûr Lord Abdank-Godcau stopped his widespread sack of the valley and drew the horde together so that it would not be picked off piecemeal.  Then the horde assaulted the much smaller army of House Thangku’Ur at the Battle of Bywydeg Spring.

The battle was a disaster for the West.  All but one of the House leaders and 80% of the feudal lords present at the battle were killed. [1] The army of Thangku’Ur was shattered and in full retreat into the mountains of the east.  The horde had been bludgeoned a bit, but Abdank-Godcau decided that he must maintain momentum while he had it and immediately drove the army south across the into Azmunth.

The next closest army to the horde was House Detmanth in the Wedyn Hills of .  Lord Baalil of Detmanth had marched into southern Azmunth in preparation of joining up with House Thangku’Ur, but he had fortunately heard what had happened at the Battle of Bywydeg Spring.  Lord Baalil decided that he should wait for the other Houses to join him before assaulting the horde, and so he retreated the army back into the hills and the relative safety of the Detmanth Keep. 

Many of the lords protested because they knew the settlements, towns, keeps and fields would be destroyed by the horde, but Lord Baalil could not sacrifice his entire army to the horde.  Instead, he sent out smaller groups of skilled raiders to pick at the horde as the Bond Sylvanicana had done during the Second War.  The devastation to Azmunth and Surrin was horrible, but Abdank-Godcau had great difficulty in keeping the horde cohesive because of the continuous attacks from the Western raiders.

1222 Southwest in Flames

At the beginning of 1222, Abdank-Godcau had finally been able to return some cohesiveness to the horde to make it a reasonable force to attack with.  However, instead of besieging and assaulting Detmanth Keep, he decided to break up the horde into two groups.  Half of the force would besiege and periodically assault Detmanth Keep while the rest of the horde struck solidly against Vaddoren’s army.  Abdank-Godcau had summoned some winged-demon beasts (known as Ithbaad[2] in Ûr Speak) as mounts for some of his scouts and had determined the position of both the Caer Ddaden and Vaddoren armies.  From this information, he realized that since Caer Ddaden was still north of the , he would be able to launch an attack against Vaddoren alone.

As Lord Banzig of Vaddoren descended from the East Mote Hills, he viewed the horde army marching towards him in the Cyfail Plains below.  Lord Banzig reviewed the situation and knew that he was probably not going to receive any aid from either Detmanth or Caer Ddaden, so he commanded the bulk of the army to head towards Angleside while keeping a few raiding parties in the East Mote Hills to badger the horde as they pursued.  Lord Banzig also sent word to Caer Ddaden, Detmanth and even the small army forming at Thangku’Ur.  Hopefully the horde would follow Vaddoren’s army to a point where at least Caer Ddaden could help out.

Unfortunately, Abdank-Godcau did not pursue Vaddoren.  Instead, he marched straight through the Mote and into the and plains of the Southland.[3]  For months, the settlements of the south were ravaged as the horde made its way across the West.  Again, the horde became unwieldy to command and Abdank-Godcau was forced to spend time rejoining his army.  This gave enough time for Vaddoren and Caer Ddaden to join up and reach the plains of Surrin.

1223 Two Great Strokes

At the start of 1223, Vaddoren, Caer Ddaden and a force from Thangku’Ur had joined up in the Wedyn Hills north of the horde laying siege to Detmanth Keep.  Now the forces of the West were able to join up and annihilate the besieging force of the horde.  The Western lords knew that their own lands were being destroyed by the other horde army as they fought so no quarter to any soldier of the Ûr Lords was given.  This time, the power of the West was whole and vengeful.

Now the Army of the Houses left the southeast and headed northwest to make sure that the Ûr Lords would not be able to cross the and return home.  Abdank-Godcau had been able to get his army in order and began, as expected, to make his way north when he heard of the destruction of the besieging force.  When Abdank-Godcau reached the Kreenan Plain, he was confronted with the Army of the Houses and two dwarven armies from the Coten Halls, and the .  The Battle of Bloody Stone resulted in the complete destruction of the other horde army, but not without grave casualties to the Western armies as well.

The Houses of Raj Gohn had successfully eradicated the horde from the West, but they felt that they needed to help out the dwarven citadels who had notified the West that the invasion was coming.  Therefore, the Army of the Houses crossed the and made its way to the northeast into the hills of Thearth south of the Gorgen Gap.

1224 The Great Relief

The citadels of Kharin & Kazden Dûn were tremendous when they were built and remained so because the clans therein spent their entire lives improving their construction and defenses.  The siege of the citadels, however, had been going on continuously for 3 years where the besieging force was 5 times the size of the besieged force.  During 1223, Abdank-Godcau had sent back word that the invasion may not go on much longer so the remaining clans at the citadels began assaulting at a much greater frequency.  It was uncertain if the citadels could hold out for another attack, let alone another year.

Fortunately, the Army of the Houses had crossed into the Gorgen Gap unbeknownst to the besieging forces around Kharin Dûn.  The horde attacked the Great Gate of the citadel and as it shook from tremendous pounding of flesh and magic, the army of the Houses attacked.  The Ûr Lords were being cut down from both sides and soon none would be left to return to the Steppes.[4]

The dwarves of Kharin Dûn sortied and joined the Army of the Houses and headed to the East.  The dwarves of Kazden Dûn also sortied for the besieging army there had heard of the devastation that had just taken place and had returned to the Steppes as well.  The dwarven armies met with the Army of the Houses to decide whether they should continue their pursuit into the Steppes.  To help with the decision, they sent out scouts and when they returned they revealed that the Ûr Lords still maintained numerous clans.  The 25 original clans had become 50, leaving a tremendous horde still to be contended with in the Steppes.  However, the Ûr Lords were also concentrating on themselves again, and the lure of the conquering or destroying West was no longer a consideration to them.  Therefore the Army of the Houses returned to the West, as did the dwarves to their citadels.

Next, Fourth War of the Ur Lords

[1] The only remnant of the Lord Maddich found at the Battle of Bywydeg Spring was the Shield of Black Light.  The shield was said to have the power to blind any opponent who faced it in battle for too long.  The shield was recovered by some of the Ûr stragglers and carried into the .  The bodies of the stragglers were found by some hunters who had been following them, but the shield was never found.

[2] The skulls of the Ithbaad have been made into helmets of terrible power.  Once worn, the wearer begins a slow, but accelerating turn towards evil.  However, as the evil grows, the wearer also gains the ability to fly as well as some dark powers.  One of the Helms of Ithbaad is known to be in the hands of the noble house of Teldor, but many may still exist.

[3] In the high peaks of the , Abdank-Godcau brought out a demon to help him in his savagery of the Southwest.  After one year, however, the demon left the Ûr army and now guards a portal to planes of the dead gods in an underground cavern deep in the .

[4] It was a common practice of the western Thearth warrior clans to collect and clean the skulls of their victims.  In one ancient fief of these lords, supposedly near Fryhain, there was a chapel constructed from the bones and skulls of the Ûr killed at the siege of Kharin Dûn.  The chapel was consecrated to Tuonetar and the font therein was supposed to give its warriors great powers in the next battle they fought.  The chapel has long been sought, but never found in either Lund Moor or the Heddwich Hills.