Thursday, July 1, 2021

Kisah AKU n The Valyrian Revenge


Malam ni terasa nak menaip lagi cerita, tapi bukan a part of mini-series Reyne of Castamere, cerita tu dah habis. Ni spin-off story and will take us to Essos, instead of Westeros.

The year is 260 AC, two armies met at the field of Stepstones. The War of the Ninepenny Kings is about to end when the Royalist's army loyal to King Aerys Targaryen led by Lord Roger Reyne faced the usurper's army under the command of Maelys I Blackfyre. After three days of battle, the rebellion has been effectively crushed with the death of presumably the last known member of the male lineage of Daemon Blackfyre, the bastard son of Aegon IV Targaryen. A victorious Lord of Castamere captured Tyrosh and sailed back to Westeros and presented Maelys's head to the king. However, the Blackfyre's lineage does not stop there. Maelys's pregnant wife, Queen Jena managed to escaped death and later smuggled to Pentos by Ser Derrick Fossoway, an exiled Westeros noble. She changed her identity and lived a commoner's life under the protection of Ser Derrick. A few months later in 261 AC, she gave birth to a son, Valarr. Unknown to her, Maelys also had a 10 years old son named Rhaerys from his secret wife, Lady Allyne Connington - sister of Lord Armond Connington, his loyal bannerman who is also the leader of the Golden Company. 

Ten years later, Rhaerys secretly wed Lady Eleanor Celtigar during his visit at Claw Isle, and a year later gave birth to Fredrys Blackfyre who brought back to Essos without her mother. It's believed that his father just wanted to preserve his Valyrian heritage by marrying lady of Celtigar, an old Valyrian noble house. Luckily for Fredrys, he grew in a well-balanced family - trained in swordsmanship and properly taught politics by his grandfather, Lord Armond and art of love from her charming father, Rhaerys. Due to his reputation, Armond was given a position in the Qohor's council holding a title of Master of War while Rhaerys served as one of army commander.

291AC - A 20 years old Fredrys decided to leave his family's estate to gain valuable experience, as well as in a secret mission. According to her father, there's still one Blackfyre lived somewhere in Essos and they are not the only one left. Before his journey, Rhaerys gave him the Valyrian ancestral sword named after their family's name, Blackfyre and the armor of his ancestor. Shortly before he left Qohor, his father, Rhaerys was being assassinated by a member of Targaryen's loyalist on his way to the army barrack.

A grief Fredrys determined to fulfill his father's wish. Joining his entourage is his personal maester, Sylva. Together, they travel to cities on the western Essos - from Qohor to Dothraki's city of Ashefa Asazar, magificent city of Volantis and bustling seaport of Myr many more. After a year of travel, they arrived at Pentos. Unable to complete his mission, Frederys feel disappointed and prepare to head back to Qohor until he was approached by an old knight named Ser Derrick Fossoway. Recognizing Fredrys' Valyrian sword, Ser Derrick quickly told him about his uncle, Valarr who lived with his family's estate outside the city. 

The two met at Valarr's house. Surprised with the reunion, Valarr asked Fredrys to join him to rebel against the Pentoshi's lord, Magister Ilyrio Morpatis in order to restore House Blackfyre which he later agreed. He sent raven to his grandfather at Qohor notified him on the mission accomplished. Lord Armond was disagreed on Fredrys decision to join the rebellion as it will bring unnecessary attention from the other Essos kingdom especially Braavos who eyeing for dominance of the Northern Essos. 

As a member of Blackfyre's family, Fredrys survived a number of assassination attempt from the Targaryen's loyalist. Although both family, the Targaryen and Blackfyre were related in blood. However, the Blackfyre claimed the Iron Throne after Aegon IV's decree that legitimized all his bastard sons including Daemon I. The latter caused a total of five Blackfyre Rebellion which ended with the death of Maelys at the Battle of Stepstones.

A year after the Blackfyre's faction started their rebellion against Pentoshi authority, they managed to captured town, villages and the capital itself. Thus, House Blackfyre was reinstated as the master of Pentos once again, sixty years after Maelys's death with Lord Valarr as the King, and his nephew, Fredrys as the King's Hand.

He was rewarded with an ownership to the castle of Laziros and its surrounding villages.

An ambitious man unlike his uncle, Fredrys always set his goals to restore the Valyrian kingdom in Westeros. He met Valarr and discussed on the prospect to the West which later rejected by the King. But, as the King's Hand he will not do anything without his blessing. 

During his diplomatic mission to King Stannis Baratheon of Dragonstone on 292 AC, Fredrys was being invited to join a feast. House Baratheon of Dragonstone is the cadet branch of House Targaryen, however Robert's Rebellion ten years ago managed to toppled their overlord. In addition, few houses such as House Velaryon and House Celtigar were both originated from Old Valyria and sharing the common heritage with House Blackfyre. This gave him an insight on his ambition to establish a Valyrian kingdom in Westeros.

During the feast, he met Lady Laena Velaryon and both of them fall in love. Shortly after that, he asked permission from Laena's father, Lord Monford to marry his daughter in which he gladly accepted due to their shared heritage. The married couple sailed back to Essos to start their new life.

Shortly after he arrived, he received dire news from his squire with the coalition of Braavos-Myr crossed Pentos border from two sides - Braavos from the North and Myr from the South with a combined armies of 90,000. He sent his wife back to Driftsmark, ancestral seat of House Velaryon and quickly rode back to the Royal Palace to meet the King. The Blackfyre currently have less than 40,000 troops in disposal - 5,000 Royal army led by the King, 10,000 troops from House Blackfyre and 25,000 soldiers from other Pentoshi lords. Heavily outnumbered, the King still optimistic in their chances to repel the invasion. As for Fredrys, his main concern is on the quality of troops, only half of the forces is well trained and supplied while the rest is a rookie soldiers with little or no combat experience. Braavosi's army led by their leader, Sealord Ferrego Antaryon is known for their swordsmanship and its formidable navy. Myr army however is on par with the Blackfyre's army.

The invasion forces crossed the border and lay siege of Vaeltaris. The defender led by Magister Groleo Taterous survived for almost three months before surrendered due to starvation and illness. Despite their lacking, Magister Groleo managed to inflicted heavy casualties to the Braavos's army with a total of 10,000 dead or wounded. To the south, Myr's army captured Goyhan Drohe after the Pentoshi's army sallied forth and destroyed by Magister Ario Albersan. Around 40,000 soldiers now marching northward directly to the capital.

Fredrys, also being under siege by the Braavosi's army with a strength of 20,000 soldiers against 10,000 Blackfyre's troops. The besieger under Lord Master Tormo Fregar scale the wall of Laziros during night attack but such action only brought disaster to his army as he suffered 5,000 casualties. Refused to risk another failed attack, Lord Fregar decided to continue the siege. As for Fredrys, his army are well drilled and have enough supply to sustain a one year siege, but the situation outside the wall is different. Sealord Ferrego advanced southward after their hard victory at Vaeltaris and merged with Magister Ario at Velvet Hills before resuming to siege the capital.

Fredrys led a breakthrough attempt to crush Fregar's army. He lined up his infantry, some 5,000 Unsullied purchased from King Orea Talordis of Qohor to form the vanguard, while his archers is in the second line well protected by the Blackfyre's knight at both flanks. 

In response, Lord Fregar sent 8,000 Braavosi swordsman to break the line, despite their attack, the Unsullied firmly hold the line with their wall of spear as the missile troops continue to shower the advancing enemy with a shower of arrows and bolts. An hour later, the Braavos commander executes a flanking maneuver to support its faltering center. Again, Fredrys's knight led by his uncle Ser Jon Connington managed to absorb the attack. 

At the height of battle, Fredrys pass the baton to Ser Connington and join his Dothraki's cavalry well concealed behind the hill. After receiving smoke signal, he led the charge against the Braavosi army with 1,000 Dothraki's raider forming their famous Cantabrian circle and another 500 Blackfyre's heavy cavalry smashed into Tormo's rear. A brutal massacre happened during the full encirclement as the Braavosi's army was being decimated at Laziros. 15,000 Braavosi's soldiers dead or wounded, with 5,000 captured while Frederys lost 2,000 men. 

He continue his thrust to the capital but later received a grim news from the front. Pentos is already in Sealord Ferrego's hand due to treachery from Pentoshi lords who surrendered the city. His uncle, King Valarr Blackfyre and his family was being executed, this made Frederys the last of Blackfyre. He called his war council and seek their advice. Heavily outnumbered five to one, Fredrys decided to abandon the fight and escaped from Essos. 

Knowing his retreat to Qohor will only sparks the war between the two kingdom. He sent raven to bid goodbye to Lord Armond and then advanced westward to the hidden jetty of Ahrios which have been prepared in the case of emergency. From there Fredrys and his 8,000 troops sailed to Claw Isle where he seeking political asylum from House Celtigar. 

He purchased a small island from Lord Adrian to establish his court there while planning for his next move. To fortify his army, he sent raven to his grandfather to commissioned another 5,000 Unsullied. He also received another 2,000 Blackfyre's knight led by Ser Derrick from his late uncle's army who managed to crossed Narrow Sea. In total 15,000 troops were being assembled by Fredrys but he is unsure whether this army can help him to reclaim Pentos as Sealord Ferrego already tighten his grip.

Lady Laena also arrived with her entourage to Fredrys's new fort. Their first night ever five months ago ensured Blackfyre's seeds growing inside the Velaryon's womb. A pure Valyrian blood as he wish.

301 AC - He was being approached by a lady with silver hair, speaking Valyrian language - similar like him. The lady introduced herself as Daenerys of House Targaryen. Surprised with the visit, as both houses were hostile to each other. In addition, he was being marked for death many times by her loyalist and survived. Daenerys later explained that it was his brother, Viserys who wanted him dead together with Pentoshi lord, Magister Ilyrio. Both were dead now and Daenerys requesting Fredrys to raise his Blackfyre's banner to help her to reclaim the Iron Throne. In return to his service, she will legitimize him as Lord Fredrys Targaryen, the legitimate member of House Targaryen. He agreed to join the invasion and recognized Daenerys as the Queen. But, will not change his family name as it always be his duty to carry Blackfyre's banner in the battle. Daenerys agreed and the duo start to plan for their grand invasion of Westeros.

303 AC - The Targaryen invasion of Westeros begin with 90,000 troops landed at different points of Westeros. Most of Targaryen's army landed at Dragonstone and lay siege the castle while the Blackfyre's army land at Crackclaw's Bay, moving inland to clear the peninsular from the Royalist. Prior to his landing, he sailed to Claw Isle to alert his uncle, Lord Adrian Celtigar on the imminent invasion. After an hour of deep conversation, Fredrys managed to convinced Lord Celtigar to defect to their Valyrian kin and denounce the Lannister from the Iron Throne. 

20,000 Blackfyre's troops landed at Crackclaw's Bay and quickly attacked the castle of Dyre Den. The attack begin at 10am in the morning with Fredrys led the vanguard attack against the castle wall. Although outnumbered, the defender led by Ser Bennard Brune offered a bitter fighting to defend every inch of their castle. After three hours of fighting, the Blackfyre army managed to seized the castle.

Dyre Den was the first castle to fall during the invasion by force, followed by Dragonstone which was captured by Queen Daenerys's army with the help of Greyjoy's rebel fleet. Fredrys assigned the castle as his new operation base to plan for his next action. Fearing Driftsmark to be the Queen's new target, Fredrys managed to convinced his father in-law, Lord Monford Velaryon to defect his cause to the Targaryen. With House Velaryon defection, Driftsmark switched their allegiance and participate together in the invasion.

Lord Fredrys with his 15,000 Blackfyre's troops continues their thrust and stopped near Brownhollow, this castle is lightly defended as the Royalist has been drawn to faced much larger invasion force at Blackwater's Bay. Later, he sent raven to both of his kin, Lord Monford and Lord Adrian to mobilized their army and sailed to attack Stonedance at the tip of eastern Blackwater peninsular

After seizing Brownhollow with no further casualties, Lord Fredrys push westward and entrenched near Rook's Rest to wait for reinforcement from Queen Daenerys. His swift maneuver managed to wreck havoc to the Royalist army with the fall of Dyre Den and Brownhollow in less than a month. His army is moving too fast and left unprotected at their flanks. 

The Blackfyre's army is intercepted at Kingsroad by the Royalist force led by Lord Symond Staunton.  Possessing the high ground, Fredrys does not have any problem to repel the mediocre attack. Confidence that the Royalist retreated to Sweetport Sound, he moved his army directly towards Rook's Rest while sending raven to Queen Daenerys to send a reinforcement to conduct a diversionary attack against Sweetport.

Rook's Rest's is heavily defended by their lord, Eustace Brune due to its strategic location near the town of Duskendale, the principal port-city of Crownland. Lord Fredrys lay siege of the castle and forced the defender to surrender. When the latter refused, Fredrys burned and loot the villages nearby to cut off any supplies, poisoned the water source. A checkpoint was setup to ensure no smuggling activities. 

The Royalist, although suffering still resolute hoping the Lannister will arrive to save the castle, but such heroic action already reach its breaking point. Fredrys sent a soldier disguised as a cook to drunk the army which he succeed. A white smoke signaling the commencement of the attack as the Blackfyre's troops scale the wall and captured the castle with ease.

After the fall of Rook's Rest, the Blackfyre's commander decided to stop his advance to balance his flank. Queen Daenerys managed to captured Duskendale and setup her forward base there. Unknowing to him, a large force under Lord Axell Florent around 40,000 Royalist soldiers is now advancing to Fredrys' position ready to retake the strategic castle from the invader. Well informed by his scout, he quickly fortify the castle with improvised defensive approach. 

Lord Axell commenced his attempt to retake Rook's Rest in a daring night attack. He sent 20,000 troops in the initial attack which managed to breach the first wall but recaptured by the Blackfyre knight a few minutes later. A heavy fighting occur at the top of the wall to control the dominance where it changes hand for almost ten times in one hour.

A fearless commander, Fredrys joined the fray, fighting shoulder to shoulder with his men and lead by example. A skill swordsman, he cut down a dozen of Axell's bodyguard including two of his brother, Alester and Ryam. The instant death of two senior commander start to take its toll as the leaderless Royalist soldiers start to waver and retreating at the Southern wall.

Brutal sword fight rages on the Northern wall as it's under heavy attack by the Royalist elite troops command by Ser Leyton Hightower. Seeing the critical situation, Fredrys quickly race to the battle and assess the situation while fighting bravely to boost the morale of his troops. 

While the battle start to favor the Royalist, Fredrys took his fresh reserve of Blackfyre's knight and use the secret tunnel dug three days before the battle to strike Leyton's troops from its rear. Cornered from two sides, the Royalist is unable to maintain its cohesion and easily cut-off. Some of the Royalist's knight chose to fight to the end, but most of the common soldiers gave up their arms and surrendered. 

As the situation at the Northern gate is stabilized, Fredrys make his way around to finish off the remaining attacker at the Eastern wall. Here, he was being intercepted by Lord Axell Florent who challenged him for a single combat. A former King's Guard for the late Aerys Targaryen, Lord Axell feel confidence with his swordsmanship but little did he know, Fredrys is trained by Lord Armond Connington, Axell's former master before he defected to support Maelys Blackfyre. With his Valyrian sword, Fredrys broke Axell's sword, disarmed and decapitated him. With the death of their field commander, the attacker fled the battlefield and retreated to the main camp.

The Blackfyre's army suffered 4,000 casualties during the first attempt, as the Royalist number of dead or wounded is roughly estimated around 15,000 men. Fredrys ordered his commander, Khal Addrivo to take 2,000 Dothraki's raider to attack the Royalist camp. Circling the camp with their famous Cantabrian's tactic, the Dothraki start to shooting arrow to the enemy's camp showering them with thousand of heavy arrow.  This is just a diversionary attack, as Fredrys's main army is advancing to strike the Royalist from its rear

8,000 troops consisted of Unsullied Legion, Blackfyre's knight and missile troops starts to forming their battle formation. This is where the battle will be decided for the Blackfyre's army. There were no reinforcement's army left at the peninsular, the closest army under Daenerys is moving westward to seize castles under the Westerland's control after their victory at Duskendale, ignoring Fredrys' request for reinforcement.

The Royalist commanding officer, Lord Gilbert Farring upon seeing the small Blackfyre army break camp and advance to Fredrys' position with their full strength while ignoring the Dothraki's at their flanks.

18,000 Royalist troops commit to a massive frontal attack in three waves against Fredrys center, right and left. As usual, the Unsullied led the vanguard of the army. However in this battle, for the first time in the campaign, the Unsullied line was unable to absorb the sheer number of the Royalist infantry and broken. The Blackfyre knight at the both flanks also struggling to counter furious strike from the Royalist knight led by Lord Farring.

Fredrys rallied his 300 cavalry knight and ride hard to his wavering left flank. The heir of Blackfyre smashed the Royalist rearguard to temporarily stun the Royalist, thinking there's still a large number of cavalry en route. Upon the first impact, Fredrys quickly collect 150 cavalry knight and later strike the Royalist' right with the same objective. This small maneuver managed to deliver a lethal impact to the Royalist, especially on their morale as the rookie soldiers starting to flee the battlefield fearing the encirclement.

The Dothraki's raider under Khal Addrivo joined the battle after successfully overrun the Royalist camp. With the additional horseman unit at his disposal now, Fredrys is controlling the battle and ordered a general advance to his remaining troops. The infantry pressed forward, missile troops mercilessly release their load to the retreating enemy, the cavalry shadowing their movement. It's a complete nightmare to the retreating Royalist to their camp, unknowing the camp itself already being burnt and looted.

The Battle of Rook's Plain is a pyrrhic victory for the Blackfyre. Although managed to destroy the last Royalist army at Crackclaw's peninsular, his army suffered another 5,000 dead or wounded which left him with only less than 5,000 troops. Nevertheless, his victory allow the invader to gain complete domination on the peninsular having secured key castles and towns, defeating two field armies and capturing a number of high ranking Royalist nobles.

A number of lords captured and sent to Duskendale's dungeon. Their fate rely on Queen Daenerys's mercy. Those who refuse to bend the knee will face the her wrath. 

To the south, Fredrys received multiple raven from his kin. Lord Monford succeed to capture Stonedance, while his uncle, Lord Adrian managed to defeat Lord Bar Emmon and seize his ancestral seat of Sharp Point. While the threat at the south neutralized, both army some 22,000 strong entrenched in Massey Hook to prepare for any incursion from King Renly Baratheon, the throne's usurper. However, the threat is proven minimal as Dornish troops (Daenerys' ally) under the command of Prince Oberyn Martell and Lord Gendry Baratheon invaded Stormland.

Fredrys moved his army to regroup with the main forces under the Queen's command at Stokeworth. As her rear guard, Fredrys brilliantly attack the castle while suffering light losses by manipulation. He tricked the defender to sally forth by leaving 1,000 troops at the camp. 

When Lady Stokeworth attack the "defenseless" camp, they were being trapped and crushed. Lord Fredrys entered the castle unopposed and hoisted his Blackfyre's banner to signal another fall of Royalist stronghold into the hand of the Valyrian invader.

The largest battle in the campaign - Battle of Sow's Horn participated by a total of 80,000 Targaryen's troops and 60,000 Reach-Westerland soldiers ended with the defeat of Ser Jaime Lannister in the hand of Queen Daenerys. This victory paved road to the capital, King's Landing. 

The first year of Targaryen invasion of Westeros was a resounding success with both Valyrian houses seized control of the Crownlands - House Blackfyre (black) and House Targaryen (brown)

Lord Fredrys is now the current head of House Blackfyre and was being granted title Lord of Duskendale and Driftsmark by the Queen Daenerys Targaryen due to his vital contribution in singlehandedly secured Cracklaw's Peninsular during the initial stage of the invasion.

True to his word, he pledged his allegiance to House Targaryen and continue to served the Daenerys until the capture of King's Landing on 306 AC. Cersei Lannister retreated to from Crownlands with her army. The Baratheon's usurper King Renly was defeated at Battle of Storm's End by Lord Gendry Baratheon whom later ordained the title of Warden of the South. To the North, King Jon Snow bent the knee and appointed Warden of the North and Trident while the young Lord Robin Arryn bowed to the Queen and retained his title as Warden of the East. Currently, there were only three regions continues to challenge Daenerys, the Westerland-Reach-Ironborn alliance. The war is yet to over as both kingdoms still possessed a considerable armies, ready to die for their de facto leader, Queen Cersei Lannister.

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