9th of Readying 383ONT, Darwheaton Castle, Sivia Province, Cainia
King Caleb Forbes sat beside his beautiful Queen Sara in the throne room of Darwheaton Castle. The room, resplended in polished marble was a mark of beauty that had never dulled. It was said that the Empress of the Dwarven Empire had beseeched her favoured craftsmen to aid in the construction of the palace as a gift to one of their ancestors for services during the great war. Now almost four centuries later the room looked almost as new as the day it was finished. The ancient doors to the throne room stood eighteen feet tall, with ceilings that ran near twenty five feet, the room was meant to inspire awe and allow even the largest of allies room to stand comfortably. Two foot soldiers is tabards of blue and white opened the door as a frilly shirted man with a tri quarter hat entered and spoke.
“My King, My Queen, may I present to you Master Markandeya Bhatia, voice of the House of Omar” the man stepped aside to present a tan skinned human wearing a turban of mustard yellow and robes to match. He had a red sash with writings that were not common for this land and walked with a stiff backed poise. Behind him came to men, each wearing a bright silver breastplate trimmed in gold, with blue turbans and large brown baggy pants. Master Bhatia approached the thrones stopping at the traditional ten foot mark and bowing deeply.
“King Forbes, the beautiful Queen Forbes I am humbled but the most welcome reception I have received, the civility and customs of Cainia rival that the hospitality of Queen Theiraqule herself.” The Queen smiled as the King began to speak
“Why thank you Master Bhatia, I must admit we are curious, we have heard rumors from our neighbors in Glandora and Pritus, but nothing substantiated”
“Well my devout King, it is my hope that we can all walk away with equitable fortunes today.” He paused bringing his hands in front of him and touching each finger to their counterpart. “The Masters of Omar Trading have purchased the country of Rynus. It has even now been renamed OMARU”
“Purchased the Country?” The Queen whispered trying to grasp what the man was speaking of.
“Indeed my lady, we would also like to put forth the same offer to Cainia. Omaru would like to expand its borders and to do so it would humbly offer 4.6 million Golden Dwarven Crowns. By our calculations more than thrice what your country is worth.” There was a long stunned pause at this. Master Bhatia fidgeted with his fingers for several heartbeats before he once again spoke. “I can see that this will take some time and thought, I will retire to my quarters while you discuss and come to a…”
“No… thank you”
“Excuse me Sire, No?” Master Bhatia replied seeming somewhat surprised by the hasty response from the King.
“No, there is far more to ruling than wealth, and as my father always told me ‘King’s are here to serve the people’ What kind of King would I be if I sold this land and left them without leadership or governance? The Gods themselves selected my family to rule this land, one cannot sell divine providence” The King rose from his throne and stepped down, to approach Master Bhatia “I respect your desire to rule a large kingdom, but perhaps we should turn our conversation on how we can be good neighbors and trading partners…”
“Besides…” the Queen piped in from her throne “Ruling Cainia would only split your Kingdom, you have all of Glandora, and a large part of Pritus between us” the King smiled to his wife and turned a head back to the Omaru nodding that she was correct, he was surprised to see that Master Bhatia was shaking his head however.
“I am afraid that this is no longer the case. You see we have made similar generous offers to both Glandora and Pritus, sadly they refused our offers, and a declaration of war occurred”
“War?” the King and Queen spoke in unison, the Kings face clouding.
“I’ll warn you before we continue, that we have a mutual defense pack with Glandora, they are old allies to Cainia, and if you make war on them; Cainia can and will come to their aid”
“My King, I am impressed, the honour of Cainia is indeed irrefutable… but alas you need not worry about such things… Pritus was eliminated as a country four days ago, Glandora was defeated yesterday, their lands now all belong to the great nation of Omaru” the King took a large step back as he tried to process what he was being told… Glandora was not one of the great nations, but they kept a decent standing army, a well-trained militia and were known to have wizards on their side… to just be gone, without word even making it to Cainia, it was neigh impossible to imagine. “Please, Noble King Forbes, take some time and consider our offer, it is for the best for your people and your family. I would hate for war to come to Cainias shores and hills: Master Bhatia turned to leave, but then as if as an afterthought added “But, if it should, please know that I have twelve warships that are mere hours from your harbour, and six thousand men amassed along your boarder ready to race across your land and wipe you from it. I would not wish such things on your peasants King Forbes… what kind of leadership would that be” with this Master Bhatia turned and began walking back to the great doors of the throne room. He made it maybe three steps when he felt a hand on his shoulder and was roughly spun around.
The Kings Sword, Zor’Tekken, Forged in Skyforge, infused with magic from the Mage Knights of Old, gifted to the family by the Great Goddess Selwyn; was ripped from its sheath and placed to Master Bhatia’s throat.
“Listen here Bhatia. I have invited you here as a guest, let you into my home and treated with you in good faith, I will not be threatened in my own throne room. My Kingdom, The Kingdom of Cainia is not for sale, and I do not care how many men or ships you have, I will not be scared into giving it to some soulless company. Take your entourage here and be out of my kingdom by sundown… let your masters know that if it is war they want, then war they shall get, and I will meet them on the field of battle… now go!” As the King gave the final order he pulled the sword back from the man’s throat and lowered the tip to the floor, nodding to his men to open the doors and see the visitors from his Castle.
“As you wish King Forbes… Such a pity” Master Bhatia said, as he prepared to leave however he pulled a needle from his sleeve and flicked it at the king, stinging him in the neck
“What! What trickery is this?” the King said taking a step forward and raising his sword, but as he tried to he found the strength drain from his body, he fell to the ground, finding no strength in his lungs to pull in air. He could hear the Queen scream, could see in his peripheral vision his men rushing to battle Bhatia’s body guards. Bhatia walked up to him and reached down
“Far too fine a sword to be wasted on a Penny King” but as he reached for it his hand passed through the hilt. “interesting… your sword doesn’t like me… this is gruesome work I suppose” Bhatia said as he pulled a curved dagger from his other sleeve… the King felt nothing as he watched his sword hand be hacked off… watched in horror as Bhatia reached down and picked up his hand, and used the hand to pick up the sword. His vision was clouding now as he heard the Queen cry out in anger and watched Bhatia turn and block her rapier with his bloody curved blade. He felt nothing, his body was in a void; slowly everything just went dark as the world seemed to drain away from him.
And so passed the 29th King of Cainia