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Thralldom in the Isles

The question of thralldom has long irritated the morality of the Compact, with many calling for its abolition and Thrax defending the institution as a necessary evil. Matters have finally come to a head. Highlord Victus Thrax has announced his willingness to roll out reforms, Marquis Ford Kennex abolished thralldom entirely in Stormward, and other houses are considering reforms or resisting such.

In the chaos following House Kennex declaring all its thralls free, the Compact is faced with a choice to either put its money where its mouth is in supporting economic reforms that will replace slavery in all but name, or allowing what the traditionalists call a necessary evil to continue.

Prince Victus Thrax, highlord of House Thrax and Prince of Maelstrom, assisted by Princess Alarissa, Princess Consort of Maelstrom, announce their intentions towards thralldom reforms. It will be implemented slowly, but Victus' reforms are as follows:

1. Only a Ruling Peer or Voice ("Lords") of a house of the Thrax may create new thralls.

2. Thralldom may only be imposed as punishment for a criminal act ("criminal thrall") or for waging war against the Thrax or their vassals ("war thrall").

3. Any thrall entering service shall have their fine formally set. This debt must, unless otherwise authorized by paragraph 4 or 7, be achievable within the natural lifetime of a human.

4. The imposition of criminal thralldom with a debt that cannot be repaid within their lifetime ("thralldom until death") requires the decision of a panel of judges and the approval of the liege of the Lord imposing thralldom.

5. A criminal thrall's debt may not be increased or extended in any way unless the thrall commits further crimes that would result in punishment by thralldom on their own. This increase requires approval by a lord of their representative such as a magistrate.

6. A criminal thrall's debt may be reduced or forgiven as a reward for excellent behavior.

7. In addition to repayment of debt, a shav-born war thrall may be held until they show enough understanding of the culture and religion of the Compact to be sworn as a Prodigal.

8. Thralls must be put to use in a specific field of duty, with an eye to building useful skills for their eventual return to free society.

9. Thralls used as warriors or crew on ships must spend their last year of service ashore apprenticed to a free person who practices a trade or craft.

10. A thrall whose service ends either by order or by repayment of debt is a free person of common status, and must be treated as such.

11. A thrall's whose service ends in their death shall have their debt recorded as having been paid in full. The debt of a thrall is not transferable.

12. A criminal thrall's allegiance as a free person reverts to what it was before their period of thralldom, unless the thrall chooses to swear allegiance to another house.

13. A war thrall must actively swear allegiance to a House of the Compact, the Crown, or the Faith to finalize the end of their thralldom.

To progressives outside of the Isles, it seems minor, but to routine offenders inside the Isles, most of the proposed reforms eliminate the worst abuse cases in individual owners arbitrarily increasing the debts of thralls to keep them in chains forever. It's received very well by the more progressive houses in the Isles, though among traditionalists it's mixed. Some of the hardliners don't want to see any movement, particularly those who make very good livings by selling war debts through reaving, and the 'no one can create thralls save lords or their representatives' creates some sticky situations in taking Abandoned prisoners from skirmishes without anything approaching a magistrate or lord anywhere nearby. That will have some wildly different interpretations of the law and its application based on just who is doing the reaving.

The crisis in Stormward, the demesne of House Kennex, has become a cause celebre for much of the Compact. Roughly fifteen million silver in economic damage had been done to Stormward by the immediate abolition of thralldom, but overwhelmingly heavy investment has come from the Faith of the Pantheon, the Crownlands, the Crown, the Oathlands and the Lyceum in particular to offset the economic strain. The social hardships are another matter. Several hundred warships from dozens of houses go to Kennex's waters for peacekeeping, and House Grimhall immediately smashes and crucifies some very obvious mutineering pirates, but there still seems to be an upswing in piracy as singleton ships outside of the massive convoys of the noble houses are picked off. There is a massive disapora of refugees settling throughout the Compact, even with Kennex lands stabilizing, and millions of silver has gone into helping those refugees find new homes through a score of different domains of the Compact. The damage to Kennex has largely been offset by investment, in particular the massive amount of freedmen traveling there, though it is almost certain to have longstanding cultural shifts because of it.

Response by Isle traditionalists has been surprisingly muted, almost certainly due to Kennex's survival. Some are not particularly thrilled by the massive amount of other naval forces in Kennex's waters, but as a lord's perogative in inviting whoever he wants to his own waters is a traditionalist's stance, that's not a fight they are about to pick unless another does it for them. Some might have been privately hoping (or loudly hoping) that Kennex would collapse or face open revolt from armed thralls to give more credence to their arguments, but for now, most stay quiet and wait for the other shoe to drop. There does seem to be some alarmingly non-Isles like beliefs popping up in Kennex, and while the progressives like it, hardliners will almost certainly find -something- to hate in the coming days, if Kennex continues to recover. For now, they'll just gripe that piracy hasn't been wiped out, and about cultural changes that are sure to happen.

Action by Carita for Thralldom in the Isles

(Public Action, OOC Date: Nov. 4, 2017, 3:27 p.m.)

In one fell swoop of a flourished signature, countless thralls have been released of their debts and set free. Many of these freed are Abandoned - citizens not of the Compact that will need a place to go as they leave Stormward March. Lady Carita Darkwater offers Darkwater Watch (and, as a part of that - the village of Coldreach) as a safe place for this freed men and women. This will be a laborious process, as she will wish to see that anyone that she offers succor to will be a valuable member of society.

The only caveat is that are willing to bend the knee and swear fealty to Darkwater. Then, depending on the various skill levels of individuals - they will either be invited to work and live on Darkwater Watch, or live and learn valuable skills at the village of Coldreach until the are able to acclimatize to life being a citizen of the Compact.

Refugees do come to the Darkwater, with more settling in the Watch itself than Coldreach. The number of new freedmen that settle is more than enough to offset the thralls that slip away from the Watch.

Action by Aleksei for Thralldom in the Isles

(Public Action, OOC Date: Nov. 12, 2017, 12:03 a.m.)

The Liberators of Skald have promised aid to all freed thralls: relocation if they wish it to any demense of the Compact, room and board within the housing of the Faith, and assistance finding work or training for it until they have found their feet.

The Liberators of Skald were not expecting twenty thousand people to need this aid at once.

And so Aleksei has reached out to -- pretty much everyone. All the noble houses. Merchant fleets. Friends who have maybe one ship! Basically he's organizing a mass effort to make contact with the newly-freed thralls in Stormward and either get them resituated in Stormward or give them transport elsewhere in the Compact that they may want to go. All of this is stuff he's already set up, but he's having to haul in major support to try and do it on a much larger scale than he was anticipating.

Aleksei will endure the terrors of seasickness to travel to Stormward personally to oversee the efforts of the Liberators and do his best to keep matters calm where possible and work as efficiently as he can.

For those generous enough to offer ships for transport, Aleksei will make sure each ship will have some sort of representative of the Faith on board to help keep an eye on things and discourage any untoward actions in regards to the freed thralls.

Indeed, the Valorous Few are Being Helpful! Since Victus so kindly invited people, Audric (and Shard, and probably a handful of the friendlier types) are heading up with the Liberators. First and foremost will be offering the fabulous life of a sellsword, to any who wish to join up! Money, plunder, see the world, get to kill people fairly frequently, there's nothing but upside, really. Oh, and I guess if there's any room left over they'll help transport some people.

After speaking with Aleksei, the Few have agreed to find space on the ships they're using both for his Faith representatives and his freed Thralls. In fact, Shard's stated her intent to pack everyone in as tightly as possible for the journey, comfort be damned so long as the crew can still function, so between that and Audric's hope to annoy the ears off of the poor priest who gets stuck on his boat, it probably won't be a very pleasant series of trips at all, but at least there will be more people getting to where they need to go.

In addition to this, Shard will be putting in a few words--or many words--or some not so gentle nudges--and maybe some heavy coin--to some people she knows who know some people who know some other people about extra boats and ships for the sole use of Aleksei's cause for the duration. Just don't look too hard at these boats or ask where they came from. They don't take kindly to questions.

Killian is dispatching ships from the Ashford navy to assist with the evacuation of freed thralls, per Aleksei's request. The ships will be providing transport, and staying together with one another, their orders to guardian one another and transport their passengers safely to the appointed destination.

Nicia has agreed to aid Aleksei and the Liberators in their task of helping to resettle the freed thralls, as such she has decided that one galley, and three longships from the Laurent military should be sent to help resettle the freed thralls. Allowing them to choose where they wanted to go, the help is not dependent on them coming to Laurent lands, although she will also make a point of stating that Laurent is willing to accept the resettlement of thralls in their lands.

Belladonna is putting Pravus's fleet at the Liberators' disposal for this. They are fresh and probably antsy for something to do. A skeleton force will be held back to patrol Setarco's borders as they have been, and a scout vessel or two are kept standing by in case the fleet has to be recalled swiftly (plus the ship kept in Arx!), but otherwise they can have use of the fleet as per the terms laid out by Aleksei. They are placed under Alrec's command, and Alrec is directed to report to the Faith on this one (using his judgment). Members of the Faith are most certainly allowed to be on every ship.

As well, she has put forth to both Aleksei and Bianca that those particularly suited for the role of a courtesan and interested in doing so, she will pay for their tuition to and support during the attendance of one of the courtesan schools in Setarco. And! Pioneering spirits that she might be able to interest in Luciva, they are being accepted that way too.

Boots on ground in Stormward while ships are there and have access to people (likely very briefly, but still), they are directed to aid in calming the populace, and provided talking points to do so by Belladonna.

Ford will be kept in the loop by her men as a matter of course throughout the entire mission.

Thena has agreed to assist Aleksei by providing as many Solace agents as can be spared to represent the Faith on ships transporting and resettling freed thralls. Since these agents are already out in the field acting as protectors to travellers and pilgrims, and have a presence long established in the Mourning Isles, shuffling things around shouldn't be too difficult. In addition, Thena is slated to send aid to the Mourning Isles for the Darkwater exploration and should be able to combine these efforts.

Thena is also dispatching a newly commissioned galley to help with transport. The galley will be crewed by freed thralls.

The Knights of Solace will accept freed thralls who wish to work either as soldiers or support staff and pay them a living wage for their services. They need not take vows, though should any wish to follow that path, instruction will be arranged.

Aleksei has asked for support to guard the ships, and knowing that the Knights of Solace will be focusing on supporting the Thralls this means the Templars only need worry about protecting the ships and ensuring that the ships are not mobbed when they land. Accordingly, Preston is making available Templars from the Arx Templars to sail out with the ships and hold order while Solace and the others help the former Thralls. The priority for the Templars is preserving the majority - the boats, the Faith people helping the Thralls. But they are also not the local police force. So. If the boats are at risk of being swamped or a mob forms and attacks the rescue attempts, they will defend. If a mob forms and isn't threatening the boats? Thats for Kennex.

Although she cannot be there in person, Katarina will be sending part of her fleet in her stead; three longships and a galley. These assets are to be used to help ferry newly freed thralls to their intended destinations, with gentle emphasis on a wealth of opportunity that can await them in Valardin-owned lands.

Hana is not the world's best teacher, but she's often been lucky in instructing others. And she's nothing if not enthusiastically devoted to Jayus -- the god of both crafting /and/ of hope. So she travels to the Isles as well, trying to give hope to the former thralls who need to learn a new trade -- those who worked menial jobs and desperately want to do something new, something that provides a chance at a better life. She'll be organizing lessons, yes, but she'll also have worked to encourage other Disciples of Jayus to the same -- to travel with her, and to teach /their/ skills as well. Tailoring, baking, carpentry, and so on. Hopefully, it at least makes a small difference.

Without question, Saedrus has agreed to assist Aleksei. First and foremost he intends to accompany Aleksei, and other Liberators, to Stormward not only as a Disciple of Skald, but as a composed and diplomatic voice in what might be a chaotic situation. Though he cannot offer ships or safe escort, he can be present to try and mollify vassals (or persons of the general populace) crying out against the current crisis. A little charm can go a long way, and hopefully Saed can keep things calm.

In addition, though he cannot take many, he will let it be known that the Grotto can take on a small number of ex-thralls as attendants, board and basic needs seen to, and assistance in finding them trades and future work. Furthermore, pending approval of the Radiant, he can take a handful in under the Whisper House as house staff until either they settle to other livelihoods or to continue on for potential future training. The total is miniscule in comparison to the twenty-thousand, but every little bit helps.

As a Liberator Ferrando is coming along to Stormward to try and generally help un-clusterfuck the situation. He's not really a logistical type or a big public speaker. He's a bouncer! It's fair to say his #1 skill to lend to the effort is an ability to move around heavy stuff. He's probably just going to end up dealing with minor things Aleksei is too busy for.

As promised the Scholars of Vellichor are ready to assist at the word of the Archscholar. Messengers have been sent to the parishes of the discipleship present in Stormward to open the doors to their smaller libraries and utilize donations already in stock to help in upholding the offer of a living wage to freed Thralls seeking higher education or tradeskill apprenticeships. Bianca will also be accompanying Blessed Aleksei to Stormward directly to aid immediately with her own diplomatic abilities and personal resources.

Mydas will be making use of his substantial ability in logistics and economics to ensure the resources deployed to aid the newly freed Thralls are not ill spent or wasted. To summarize, Marquis Mydas Nightgold will play the role of the accountant.

Seraph Ailith will reach out to the local Seraphs in aiding the Faith's efforts of providing solace, community outreach, and humanitarian efforts for the many believers. Using her presence and prowess of propaganda, she'll help kindle hope, compassion, and support among the Faithful and within the Faith such as sermons with stories of the compassion, love, charity, and hope, the many gifts of the Gods, in hopes to soothe and provide a steady familiar place of solace (worship in the shrines) during this chaotic time. When not doing these things, she personally heal the injured and sick who come to the Faith and assist them on their way to the outbound ships, should they be departing.

As minister of warfare and with authorisation to release about half the Velenosa armada into a committed liberation fleet, Talen is overseeing the leading arrangements in that regard. Ensuring the that there are captains who know what they're doing to act as transportation for ex-thralls is key. Faith and Liberator representatives are permitted aboard and allowed to direct the efforts with all reasonable requests to make things easier. The Velenosa are focusing primarily on carrying people, so any security escorts to defend the ships from external attacks will come from the Thrax, and Velenosa vassals organised by the Lyceum aid council.

Lianne is lending ships from Nilanza's navy to aid with the safe transport of the recently freed to Arx. Modest financial assistance will be provided to individuals or families interested in resettling in Nilanza, particularly if they are skilled in a trade or capable sailors interested in enlisting in the navy. Representatives of the Faith will be welcomed on board each vessel.

Victus will be providing transport via the 1st Thrax Fleet, namely in his stated offer of paying work in the Maelstrom and safe haven until they can be transported elsewhere in the Compact. Aleksei's Liberators and other agents of the Faith will be allowed passage on these vessels making runs to and from Stormward to assist in the relocation efforts for Thralls lacking employment. With the exception of any ships provided by Grimhall, per Harald's request. It should be noted that freed Thralls who have gone on to commit crimes against Kennex will not be offered the same on Victus' own vessels, as they are Kennex's right to judge for their actions.

In an unofficial capacity, though with no less focus, Rook will be duplicating the efforts of Mydas Nightgold in an effort. It can't hurt to be certain, can it? Resources in, out and spent all about. In addition there's the counting of ex-Thralls shipped out, sprinkled across the Compact, giving as accurate a set of numbers as possible to all takers of the refugees. Did any go missing, how many died, do they have at least enough coin and resources to keep this mission up until all of Stormward's loose freemen are, well, free?

Lacking much in the way of funds or resources, Fortunato employs his skill and that of his apprentices to make flyers, encouraging people of great means and small means to donate to the resettlement effort and otherwise help smooth out the transition, perhaps by hiring the displaced. Need someone in the back room? Someone to knead dough? Someone, perhaps, to draw more flyers?

Monique will accompany the flotilla and use her charm and diplomacy to convince freed Prodigal thralls to resettle in the Compact, using her knowledge of their native tongue to win their trust. She will also use her significant silver to see they are set up with necessities when they arrive at their destinations.

They manage to avoid violence, which is no minor miracle as of the sheer amount of naval force in the region now. Setarco's massive navy is significantly larger than the pride and joy of many Isles houses, a fact most seem completely unaware of even as House Pravus' dromonds and dozens of longships arrive in Kennex waters under the command of Admiral Alrec to assist the liberators. This is not, in any way, to diminish the forces sent by the Knights of Solace, House Laurent, Lianne's fleet of Nilanza, or the detachments by House Velenosa, Katarina's Oathlands fleet, Ashford or Thrax, but all combined it roughly doubles the overall size of the force, which would likely make any lower rank peers of the Isles distinctly uneasy if they realized its scope.

Fortunately, that's unlikely to happen, as the fleet takes place in a great disapora. There is still a significant percentage that opts to stay in Kennex lands with the support to do so, and in this, the Faith is instrumental. The Faith is one of the great consistent institutions across the entire Compact, even in the shamanism heavy north, but the Isles have always been closer to the Faith than that. Orazio, Thena, Preston, Bianca, Ailith in particular are able to make a great deal of difference in many staying, particularly with the economic work by Rook and Mydas helping to make a chaotic situation be broken down into stabilizing a destroyed economy, and peacekeeping efforts from the forces sent. Killian's Ashford men, Nicia's Laurent forces, Lianne's Nilanzans, Audric and Shard's valorous few, Preston's templars, Thena's knights of solace, Setarco marines all do a part to keeping peace on the ground, with the aid of the Valorous Few being a little questionable and a few of them seem determined to put the 'liberation' in Liberators to mean goods that belonged to individuals. A few hangings by Audric fixes that (and these were the friendlier ones, a shame), as well as Ferrando helpfully letting others know where the problematic elements are.

While a small but significant percentage stays, what truly happens is a massive disapora led by the combined fleet. Some prodigals. Setarco, Nilanza, Maelstrom, Maelstrom, and Ashford lands all see a significant amount of ex-thralls wishing to settle, with Setarco as an example seeing a large bump in capable courtesans at Setarco's schools. The Lycene is a bit more popular as in terms of climate, Setarco or Nilanza is closest to the saffron chain, and what the vast majority of former thralls originally came from. Monique as a prodigal has a great deal in common with many of the newer, louder voices from factions of former thralls, and is able to help many peacefully find new homes throughout the Compact- a smaller percentage opt for different vocations in Arx, with Hana having new weaponsmiths, Saedrus having some new employees at the Grotto and potential Whispers, the Valorous Few see a bump in questionable fellows replacing the ones hanged with Shard sorting out the most promising. There's quite a few new templars, knights of Solace and Scholars, particularly from those wishing to see Arx as godsworn. All in all, a massive amount of refugees are resettled peacefully.

All that's the good, the bad is minor but still significant- the huge amount of ships flying Oathlands and Lycene flags are allowing some pirates to take advantage of the confusion and fly false flags to escape justice, with hundreds of ships in Kennex waters without an overall central command, no one really knows who is who which is allowing some smugglers and pirates to hope that Thrax doesn't have the balls to pick on Oathlands or Lycene ships and provoke an incident (unfortunately for all involved, this is probably untrue). Also, while the great disapora helps the refugees, it doesn't help Kenenx- the recovery they see is modest, as most of their workforce is, in effect, leaving with only a minority staying. They still need a massive amount of investment to survive.

Action by Tobias for Thralldom in the Isles

(Public Action, OOC Date: Nov. 10, 2017, 4:38 p.m.)

With Thralldom abolished in Kennex, Tobias makes it known via messengers and other means that mercenary minded former thralls (former soldiers, support personnel, logistics people etc) who swear fealty to the Compact and want to come to Arx are welcomed to see if they have the skillset to get into the Crimson Blade logistics force -or get tested for initiation into the Crimson Blade training squad and see if they can make the cut- and will be given the essentials to sail over to Arx (mostly via Thraxes fleet).

To make sure that people have a chance of being hired, and aren't just looking for free silver handouts, Tobias is going to send a Captain with a couple bodyguards over on the Thrax ships to screen candidates for the skills the Companies and support personnel need.

If they cannot make the cut once in Arx, Tobias will direct them to others who will help and hire them.

Most are untrained, and the Blades have always been about skill over numbers, but Tobias is able to find some thralls who had a great deal of combat experience even if it was -against- the Compact and why they became thralls in the first place. About a dozen all told, but they are battle hardened veteran elites, even if their loyalty might be questionable at this point.

Action by Harald for Thralldom in the Isles

(Public Action, OOC Date: Nov. 10, 2017, 3:35 p.m.)

Harald is committing the Grim Fleet to the support of Kennex in the following ways: first, in hunting down the renegade Kennex longships which newly freed thralls took over, as well as cracking down on any other pirates looking to exploit the chaos. He will lead this effort personally. If found, the leaders of the mutineers will be publicly crucified as traitors in Grihem's Point, and the crews returned to thralldom under Grimhall.

Second, the fleet will escort any Kennex Freedmen who accept passage from Stormward March to Grihem's Point, where they will be considered free serfs. They won't be paid much, but they'll have work, shelter, and food for their families. Harald rejects Aleksei's placement of Churchmen aboard his vessels in this relocation.

Third, the fleet will provide escort to any mainland ships bringing aid to Stormward March, to ensure pirates do not prey on idiot mainlanders who announce they are transporting loads of silver and supplies.

Lastly, the Grim Legion is being prepared against the possibility that Stormward March falls into open revolt. Should this happen, Harald is prepared to land his troops together with Thrax to prevent a lengthy civil war and impose an overlord's order on the March. Should this be necessary, the army will bring supplies and silver to encourage cooperation, so that there is a carrot to go with the stick.

Ian will be going along with the grim fleet (hopefully together with Aethan and Porter). He's not just there to lend his blade to the fight, but also his expertise; Ian sailed Kennex waters for years, and if it comes to fighting pirates, it's a fair bet that they'll be pirates who became thralls after a ship Ian was on caught them in the first place. He knows the tactics that pirates in that area use, where they like to hide, etc. More personally, he's spent a lot of time with the grim legion, and also wants to go because he feels a certain obligation to dive into trouble alongside them. As an aside, it may or may not be worthy of remark that the Brothers Kennex, who used to have a reputation as pirate hunters, at least in their own House if not on the Isles as a whole, are together again on a reunion tour of sorts, and together under Grimhall's banner. Given the tension between Ford and Harald, it might set tongues wagging.

Aethan is joining his brothers in sailing with Harald to hunt former thralls turned pirate.

Faelan is going to come along with Harald to fight and hunt down the renegade Kennex freedmen. He is also going to bring Navegant soldiers with to help.

Traveling with the Grimhall Fleet, Edward will go as someone to meet with traditionalists and progressive who are concerned over their loss of thralls and provide financial and economic advice on how to spend the monies they should expect and demand of House Kennex and the Compact to help with the transition, recommending wage prices for thralls who want to stay and how to incentivize them to not leave on the great fleets that come to pick them up to take them away. This will include conversations to confused and lost thralls who do not know what to do, encouraging them to stay and continue their trade and craft - with examples of how wealthy a crafter in the Compact can become. And for those who still desire to escape their Kennex cages an encouragement to resettle inside Thrax instead of without - his focus then on places like Navegant and Whitefrost.

Melinda will be using her skills in Propaganda to help her father keep morale amongst his crew and his ships. She is also getting Artorius to lend more ships to her fathers cause.

Sameera, being more of an organazier, it set on keeping track of the inventory of the Grimhall fleet as well as organzing those on reserve for occupation Kennex, should it come to it. She is heeding any change of orders that Harald might give her or acting on any ill actions done by those following the Grimhall Duke. As a note, if Harald or a Grimhall, especially Harald, is in a situation of risk she will, absolutely disregard the orders Harald gives her to keep them safe. She will also attempt to try getting former thralls to follow her command, using her status as a former thrall, to draw them in and convince them to cease and then swear themselves to Grimhall. She will be nudign Torstein to join her, under her command.

Torstein will be assisting and playing bodyguard (babysitter) to Sameera.

Let's get some pirates! And probably do some other helpful and boring stuff, too. But mostly catching some pirates!

The High Lord is providing Thrax's own marine forces to assist Harald in combating piracy and aid in whatever other military campaigns that the Duke sees fit. By Victus' order, they will be led under Harald's command until order has been restored to Stormward and the mutineers are brought to swift justice.

Piracy? In our waters? Against our people? No. That will not stand. The Lady Regla Navegant, alongside the Marines and Navegant fleet will assist in anti-piracy and escort operations.

Two things go extremely well, from the standpoint of the Isles. First, no revolt happens under the watchful eyes of Isles' military might, which in turn stops the flow of blood due to anarchy and help stabilize the freefall of Kennex's economy. Most of the traditionalists are happy about that, even if they are disinclined to put their own money forward to buy old thrall debts that have now been abrogated by Ford's actions. Secondly, two renegade longships have been run down by their forces and destroyed. They were flying Kennex colors, but the flayed crucified bodies of their former commanders on decks made it not very ambiguous about whether they were legitimate Kennex vessels or not. Those ships were run down, cornered, and slaughtered with the surrendering survivors brought back to Grihem's Point to be presented to the sea. The overwhelming force combined with the vastly more disciplined soldiers made them extraordinarily one sided, with only three Grimhall men dying for 78 former thralls being slain in combat, and one of the deaths was from a man named Rolf trying to leap from a boarding plank, hitting the side of a longboat, and then drowning.

As a result of the show of force, a small amount of refugees choose to settle on Grihem's Point, Escuma, Whitefrost and Maelstrom. They all see a modest boost in their labor forces as a result.

It's not a complete success, but that is largely out of their control and their forces wish for more clarification on how to proceed, since they are crossing into some dangerous waters (a pun which they all argue is not intended). The problem is there are now hundreds of ships of the Compact's houses in Kenenx waters helping with relief efforts. While the morons on the two renegade longships were easily dealt with because they got carried away, more professional pirates and smugglers are much less stupid, and are taking advantage of the chaos by flying false flags. This is a predicament because many of the other ships are ducal houses from the Lyceum, Grayson, and the Oathlands at least. And some suspect that some pirates are flying Thrax colors as well, and this creates issues as asking any other ship to stop to be boarded could provoke some extremely ugly incidents- particularly since most would expect Kennex to be the ones doing this by law, and they aren't here. Grimhall could argue they have the rigths for this, as the liege of Kennex and it being a problem, but some of the craftier pirates might be flying Grimhall flags. It's very hard to tell how many are out there, but there was at least 3 attacks on isolated ships after the two longships of Kennex mutineers were killed, meaning -someone- at least is still in the business of piracy, and those ones are being extremely careful. Most of the large fleets of the Compact are traveling in far to big detachments for pirates to risk, but for smaller groups of refugees fleeing, it's a serious concern.

Action by Calaudrin for Thralldom in the Isles

(Public Action, OOC Date: Nov. 9, 2017, 7:30 p.m.)

With House Kennex having abolished thralldom within its borders and ships and ships going there to bring back anyone who wants to leave, it's probably safe to assume a nice chunk of those newly freed thralls are going to end up in Arx. And those people will be looking for work! And for those people, there's the Iron Guard. They'll be hanging around, happy to direct anyone (without a significant history of ugly criminal behavior of course!) to their barracks. Where there will be (kind of lumpy) cots, food (cooked by Sparte?!) and plenty of training by reasonably seasoned guardsmen. Calaudrin will be one of people taking those thralls in and teaching them the ropes of being a guard. Hopefully it won't go too poorly.

Sparte is aiding Calaudrin by taking time to get to know the people joining the guard and, perhaps just as importantly, talk to them about their life ahead now that they're out of Thralldom. While he'll see to food for the thralls he expects he'll learn as many recipes as he shares with them, and perhaps will take a different view from most others - Kennex lands were their homes, and still can be. They are free, and should be treated fairly, but that doesn't mean they need to leave the lands they once loved. If anything, they now have a voice to make those lands better. He'll also lend his skill to helping train them.

Sparte will advocate for allowing them to leave the guard and return home should they wish it, even if that is a loss of resources to the guard for having trained a guardsman who doesn't end up serving.

Silas has helped recruit displaced peoples into the Guard before, and will happily provide any law-abiding Thralls room and board in addition to training if they desire to join the ranks of the Iron Guard. They will be held to the same standard as every other guardsmen, but Silas will make sure they're welcome within the barracks in hope they will appreciate belonging to 'family' of sorts.

Once their basic training is complete, their strengths and weaknesses will be assessed and they will be placed under the tutelage of a senior guardsman who specializes in the skill sets they may be interested in.

Among the surge in refugees in Arx, a fair number decide that the Iron Guard is the life for them. For many, it's greatly empowering, since some see it as joining the military that everyone in the Isles would have to answer to. So the good news is that they have a surge in recruits. The bad news is some iron guardsmen might have strong biases against anyone from the Isles, and they might need to keep an eye out on new guardsmen trying to abuse Isles commoners in Arx.

Action by Edain for Thralldom in the Isles

(Public Action, OOC Date: Nov. 11, 2017, 11:19 p.m.)

House Valardin is donating 700,000 silver to help with the initial cash of the economy in the hopes that these funds will be used to help those most afflicted. We will also waive trade tarriffs on Kennex ships coming to Sanctum and ports controlled by the Valardin to help them beable to start financially recovering on their own. Other houses have been invited to donate what they feel they can, and offer aid in otherways to help House Kennex recover. Duchess Nicia Laurent will oversee that the funds that are being sent by the Oathlands are put to their intended purpose.

Alis is contributing some of her own economic resources to assist in setting up any trade deals and helping reduce tariffs on current trade to Kennex. She would also be volunteering to help with the hunting party to provide food and hides for those who need it.

Fiachra will primarily be assisting with organizing hunts to provide meat and hides for those who need it. Fia also knows how to make hardtack (as well as Alis and Eirlys) and will teach those who would like to learn the process. It's not the best-tasting stuff in all Arvum, sure, but when any food is better than no food...

House Keaton will be assisting in aid with the hunt for meat to donate forth to those that are hungry. They will have hounds brought in for the hunting parties to aid the efforts and a storage shed will be made on their property to store the preserved food. In addition to this, Keaton has done a fair amount of trade of lumber with Thrax, and are willing to offer House Kennex a deal (should they take it) where they are the center point in supplying Keaton lumber to Thrax for building vessels, creating profit for House Keaton but also giving a healthy commission to House Kennex.

Reigna Keaton will be helping to set up a trust account into with the Oathlands donations will be put in. She will help administrate this trust to ensure the funds reach the freemen that are to benefit from this trust.

Ryhalt is directing a substantial sum of silver to Countess Reigna's trust at the bank of Arx as well as contributing his experience in financial matters to help grow the principal of the trust until such time as it is expended, finding profitable, short trades that he feels are within acceptable risk parameters to make the initial contributions go farther.

Princess Isabeau will do what she can to assist Nicia in the bookkeeping and paperwork aspects on the economic side of the situation. She possesses some mild familiarity with the concept of economics and she can alphabetize.

As asked, Nicia is going to oversee the funds, collection and allocation of, and make certain that there is no shady sleight-of-hand happening. As such she will be checking everyone's bookkeeping, on all sides, making certain that things are signed off on, and that there are no unusual inflations happening for goods that are being purchased, or donated, and that there are in fact an accounting of every item, every silver. She will be making certain that Kennex keeps good records, approaching the Marquis and her cousin, the Marquessa, as well as Lady Octavia to make certain that what is being donated goes to proper use.

For her part, Katarina contributes both time and energy into raising additional funds to compensate the initial cash investments of House Valardin. Being the wife of the Crown Minister of Coin has it's benefits. She will also use her connections throughout the various coastal ports of the Oathlands to encourage local businesses to open their ranks to potential newly freed thralls that might make their way back from the Mourning Isles under the ships she's already sent to ferry them wherever they might wish to begin their new lives.

The Oathlands' efforts have an immediate, significant effect on dealing with the immense economic damage that House Kennex has suffered. Reigna's idea of a trust is an excellent one, particularly when being overseen by Princess Isabeau and Duchess Nicia in making certain there's no malfeasance that takes part with the funds. Ryhalt's contributions from the Duchy of Westrock with all of its shipping concerns, which combined with Edain's tariff forgiveness and Katarina's contributions takes a good step towards getting Kennex's trade up and running again. Fiachra and Kael's hunting skills, aided by Alis, helps teach the new thralls some subsistence methods, and staves off a great deal of starvation concerns- something that almost certainly would have happened if not for their efforts.

Action by Sophie for Thralldom in the Isles

(Public Action, OOC Date: Nov. 10, 2017, 7:28 p.m.)

Sophie will be doing what she can to help the Mercy chapter in Stormward (and anywhere else) with the recruitment of novitiate Mercies from the ex-Thralls. Victus offered passage, and those who wish to relocate and train in Arx, she'll see about making that happen.

She also has plenty of logistical experience dealing with overflow, and she'll pass on what she knows to any Mercy chapters in need. She and the gaggle of Mercies accompanying her will also lend their healing skills in the places they visit.

Further healing efforts will come with the coordination of Eirene and the Physicians Guild.

Cybele will join Sophie and aid in educating those in need, as well as giving medical aid.

A surprising number of thralls were working as healers in House Kennex, already doing much the same work that the Physicians and Mercies would have done, and a great number of those leap at the chance to finally see the city of Arx and have their own training and knowledge vastly expanded. Sophie, Cybele and Eirene help with the current crisis in making certain injuries are seen to, and in return they see a extremely large uptick in individuals wishing to train in Arx. Both the physicians and mercies have new members, and will see a small increase in their incomes accordingly.

Action by Alaric for Thralldom in the Isles

(Public Action, OOC Date: Nov. 11, 2017, 9:36 p.m.)

Alaric is marshalling the various Crown organizations to respond to the crisis. Three million silver total has been budgeted to the Crown's overall crisis response. As the Faith is concentrating mostly on outreach to the freed thralls, The Crown Observers are leading the Crown's effort to assist non-thrall citizens of the Compact mitigate the effects of the economic disruption, with the Ministry of Defense tasked with arranging the Observers' (and all that cash's) security through their various contacts. The primary focus is on small individual families that were reliant on thrall debt payments for support, giving them a bridge and a buffer to make their future plans without the threat of immediate bankruptcy forcing their hands. Back in Arx, the Ministry of Infrastructure has been tasked with finding 'underutilized areas' of Arx to repurpose to handle the influx of housing needs from newly arrived freedpeople.

Alaric personally is holding lots of meetings to drum up overall assistance, encourage cooperation between the various efforts, smooth over disagreements, and generally instill confidence that the Compact's collective actions will be equal to the task before them.

Canvasing neighborhoods within the upper and lower boroughs, the Minister of Infrastructure has sent out her staff to knock on doors and perform a small census in specific areas. Each empty home or apartment is noted and rented by the Crown to home freed thralls who wish to relocate to the captial city with the expectation that they will learn a useable, marketable trade, becoming productive members of society within a year of relocation.

That level of investment with Alaric and Jaenelle's help has a profound effect on Kennex's ability to recover. Stormward's regular citizens, particularly the ones that had been bankrupt by thrall debt being wiped away, are able to recover, and the economy begins to function once more. In Arx, there's a significant number of refugees that find housing and employment, particularly in the boroughs. Arx sees a small but significant uptick in economic recovery as a result, and both Kennex and the Crown sees their incomes increase as a result of three million silver in investment.

Action by Corban for Thralldom in the Isles

(Public Action, OOC Date: Nov. 11, 2017, 9 p.m.)

With so many freed Thralls, many are looking to (hopefully) resettle to other lands. Lord Corban will lead the lent West Rock merchant marine, escorted by its traditional allies, the Telmar navy, to Stormward to recruit those that may wish to resettle in the Oathlands. Corban will also detail soldiers as security forces in case troubles should arise on the voyage back home.

Unlike some, Corban is not looking for just crafters or those in thralldom from debts. He will accept prodigal warriors for Telmar, seeking to grow the army ranks, and those that Ryhalt might show interest in, inspiring them with tales of the lives of honor and service that could await them. (Since the Oathlands are so far from the Isles, it is not as if these warriors would battle their old neighbors). He will also use his silver to set up resettled thralls with the necessities of life where they land.

Ryhalt is sending a number of ships from the Westrock fleet as well as a complement of armsmen to help keep things orderly just in case, bent on ferrying former thralls that need a place to live and work, settle areas in the westrock marches that are away from Darkshore influences, or go wherever in the Oathlands will take them if they prefer.

Thanks to their efforts, a number of refugees settle in both the Telmarch and Westrock Reach. Their military forces do a great amount of peacekeeping, and under their watchful eyes, there's no attacks on any of the refugee movements, though there are rumors of pirate activities on isolated shipping away from the convoys. Both Westrock and Telmar see small population gains.


Efforts have continued in Stormward and the Isles around it, since the demesne of House Kennex has found some hard won stability through the toil and treasure of the Compact. Duke Harald Grimhall coordinated with many of the other naval powers still in Kennex waters and set up a system of watchwords to identify friendly vessels and catch those flying false flags. The initial result crushes the remaining piracy in the region, or at least forces those remaining pirates to lay very low for the time being, with at least six ships being taken as prizes by House Grimhall. On Stormward itself, the Faith has been extremely active in making certain the recently won fragile stability does not collapse, with outreach led by Archlector Aleksei, Thena and her Knights of Solace and Legate Orazio. The Legate takes great pains to get the new zealots calling themselves 'Sentinels' under some measure of control, to mixed feelings of many traditionalists in the Isles. Separate outreach efforts led by Lady Khanne Halfshav and Lord Corban Telmar see some immigration and acclimation to Whitehold and the Telmarch in turn, and by and large Stormward is quiet. Many in the Isles quietly wait (and some hope) for something to still go wrong.