In the region known as Freeland, no nation rises above Nishra. The sons and daughters of cast-off ancestors, the people of Nishra have found home, and they have thrived. Through persecution, exile, and war . . . they have endured. Held aloft by their strength, their freedom, and their faith. Faith in the one called Roon, the Father, the Guide. A god who preaches self-reliance, strength in individuality, faith in oneself. And it has taken root. The Nishran people praise the works of Roon and the works of Man. A merciful nation, one backed by justice, under the guidance of Roon, the Hebdomad, and the Speaker, has flourished.
But not all are happy to see Nishra rise. Licadeis, an old foe, the enemy of the last war, has begun to move. They have seen Nishran prosperity, and they have seen Nishran Armies, and they are afraid.
Old nobles, squabbling aristocracy, and a cruel Minister have whipped up hatred, jealousy, and fear. When the rumors began again, of Licadian arms beginning to unfurl, to begin to reach far and wide, to began to stoke the old engines of war, never cold, never dead, the Holy Speaker could not uphold the peace much longer.
The rumors of an assault on the northern border forced the Speaker’s hand. Gideon, First Cardinal, ordered all but three of the Armies, and their cardinals, to the northern border. Entrenched, waiting, the Armies found nothing.
A week later, the storm broke. Nowhere near the Northern Border. It swept in from the sea, instead. From a sea supposedly patrolled and defended by the combined Navies of Rastienne, Myscira, and Nishra herself.
When the Licadian invasion force landed, without warning, they took Point Maddox in a night. A combination of sea bombardment, land troops, and a flight of soldiers riding giant black ravens crushed the city. The mystery of the stealthy approach of over a thousand ships was solved, too – the Armies of Rastienne arrived hand-in-hand with the Licadian troops.
Cardinal Donnegal, the only Cardinal still in the region, ordered the evacuation of every city from Point Maddox to Arda Namara, and the burning of all resources between.
The Armies of Licadeis, strangely immune to scrying, have seemingly . . . .disappeared.
One army nows stands alone to defend the great temple-city of Arda Namara, the capital of Nishra.