Blackwood Gazette #87-DEVELOPING: Crowndon Joins Julianos in Apparent Military Alliance

By Chester Seaton, News

26/1- The situation in Monteddor has taken a surprising turn this weekend, after the Crowndon military force mobilized late last week. According to reports coming out of the Monteddorian captial and the surrounding townships, an Imperial envoy was seen docking with Alejandro Julianos’ flagship in the late afternoon last freisday.

Several hours later, the main body of the Crowndonian Royal Air Corps arrived in the skies above the capital. Witnesses say that expected a battle to break out between Crowndon and Julianos’ forces. However, they watched in silence as the Air Corps warships fell in ranks with Julianos’ ships.

As of this mursday morning, the Crowndon military leadership has yet to release an official statement on this apparent alliance. However, we have received reports that the blockades of Blackwood supply routes into Crowndon have been lifted, and ships loaded with Blackwood have begun arriving in Toring, Walsh, and other major centers of trade.

As for the situation on the ground in the Monteddorian capitol, solid reports have been difficult to come by. One source claims that Julianos and Crowndon military officers left their ships yesterday afternoon to discuss terms of surrender with High King Raphael Valiente. More reports of small arms fire in the streets of the city followed thereafter. Whether or not this gunfire can be attributed to conflict or celebration remains to be seen.

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Blackwood Gazette #87-DEVELOPING: Crowndon Joins Julianos in Apparent Military Alliance

Blackwood Gazette #86-Julianos/Desantana Remain Steadfast as Crowndon Amasses for Invasion

By Chester Seaton

19/1- The Triumvirate holds its collective breath today as Crowndon’s military forces begin gathering along the northern Monteddorian coast in preparation for an invasion. The goal of the invasion is to break the siege of the Monteddorian capital by Alejandro Julianos and Yolanda Desantana.

Many have predicted, and hoped, that this show of force may persuade Julianos and Desantana to break their siege or, at the very least, loosen their hold on Blackwood supply routes to the north. Despite the largest military in the world knocking on their door, the duo has remained steadfast.

Reaction to the growing force continues to draw skepticism and downright ire, both from Nor Easter, and from within Crowndon itself. Many analysts argue that Crowndon lacks the resources for a drawn out fight with Monteddor so soon after losing a war with Nor Easter. And Nor Easter is understandably nervous as well, seeing its former adversary mobilizing so soon.

Crowndon military officials claim that they have extended the offer of Alliance with Nor Easter, both to ease their angst and to make use of their extensive talents in intelligence gathering and sabotage. Nor Easter has instead refused such entreaties, calling Crowndon’s decision to interfere in Monteddorian concerns under the guise of restoring Blackwood shipments a pretense for restoring world standing after their defeat.

Of even more concern to some is the involvement of several privateering and mercenary interests based in Libertine’s Roost throwing in with the Crowndon military, as ramshackle ships belonging to those most people would describe as pirates have been reported following in the wake of Naval and Air Corps flotillas.

Plans for the invasion beyond the current muster remain under wraps, though there are rumblings that it could be underway within the next week.

Blackwood Gazette #86-Julianos/Desantana Remain Steadfast as Crowndon Amasses for Invasion

Blackwood Gazette #85- Wreckage of Pirate Hunter Ship Discovered In Roggeveen’s Pass

By Chester Seaton, News

16/1- The wreckage of a ship belonging to the infamous pirate huntress Johanna McKilroy was discovered this past week, according to Imperial Authorities.

The ship, positively identified as the Dismissive Smile, was discovered by Authority search parties looking for lost migrants trying to escape the harsh winter conditions. Among the wreckage were several survivors, including Captain McKilroy herself.

Captain McKilroy had sustained several injuries, including a crushed leg, a severed arm, and a missing eye. The search party reports that she was near death and unconscious when they found her, but she is expected to make a full recovery.

Survivors among her crew told the Authorities that they had tracked the pirate Roderick Beauchamp La Pierre to the area, after hearing reports that he was dropping supplies (stolen from merchant ships, it turns out) into towns cut off by the storm. Unfortunately, La Pierre had anticipated McKilroy’s move, and laid a trap for them in the Pass.

“It was intense, soon as we entered the Pass,” McKilroy’s first mate, a man named Rowanson, told the rescuers. “Our ship was almost too big, but it was the only safe way into the northern territories, what with the storm whipping up over head. We tried to convince her to wait, but once she gets the scent she doesn’t let up.

“We made it half way in when the mountains came down on us. We heard cannon shot, and next thing we know, boulders and snow is crashing into the ship. Knocked us into the wall of the pass. We started breaking up, and all but one of our reserve balloons went flat. The Captain nearly went over, her leg got caught between the ship and the rock. Then the guillotine we keep on deck for executions went wild, took her arm clean off. Nasty bit of luck, that.”

Other survivors corroborate the story. None of them, however, report ever sighting La Pierre or his ship, the Pernicious Platitude.

“Bastard knew he’d never take us in a straight fight,” Rowanson said. “Slippery one, he is. Orchestrating reports of him helping people. Should have known it was to lure us in. Worst thing is these northerners looking at us like we’re the enemy, ‘cos we went after their ‘savior’. Fools, every last one of them.”

Authorities are scouring the area for clues of La Pierre’s whereabouts. So far, no signs have been found, and the people of the north report no sightings.

Blackwood Gazette #85- Wreckage of Pirate Hunter Ship Discovered In Roggeveen’s Pass

Blackwood Gazette #84- Adella Chatelaine Officially Declared Missing; Authorities Fear the Worst

By Maurice Merchant, Editor-in-Chief

12/1- The past few weeks have been hard for us here at the Blackwood Gazette. It is with great regret that I must confirm that one of our own, Adella Chatelaine, has officially been declared missing by Imperial Authorities.

It had been my hope to make this announcement myself, but when Minister McAndrew mentioned it during his written address last week, our offices were flooded with inquiries about Miss Chatelaine’s whereabouts. There have been questions about her status since her articles stopped during the middle of Tenth Month last year, but the uproar last week grew too loud to ignore.

The truth is that I have received three more missives from Miss Chatelaine after her final article. They are unpublished, and will remain so for the time being, both at the behest of the Authority and as a matter of personal discretion. The missives are frightening in nature, and point to a severe breakdown in Miss Chatelaine’s sanity, as well as the sanity of those in her party.

The Authority assures us that they are investigating the matter thoroughly, and that they will keep us up to date as details are discovered. I must admit that it does little to assuage our grief. Miss Chatelaine was more than a colleague and a friend to us here at the Gazette—she was family, and we pray for answers regarding her ultimate fate, if not for her safe return.

Blackwood Gazette #84- Adella Chatelaine Officially Declared Missing; Authorities Fear the Worst

Blackwood Gazette #83- Imperial Edict for the 281st Year of the Triumvirate

By Sir Alaric Wolstenholme McAndrew V, Crowndon Minister of Propaganda

8/1-Greetings, citizens of Crowndon, and citizens of our neighbors in Nor Easter. Also, Monteddor. We see you. We just aren’t very happy with you at the moment.

Many of you may be wondering why I, the Honorable Sir Alaric Wolstenholme McAndrew V, am writing an article for the Gazette. It is part of an arrangement, the details of which I am sure would be much too complex and boring for the layman to understand, that Mister Merchant’s father made with the Crown to keep his little newspaper afloat when it nearly went under three years ago. This deal allows the Crowndon military to post a representative, in this case myself, as a member of the Gazette’s staff in times of great national crisis.

And make no mistake, we are in crisis.

Monteddor finds itself embroiled in an internal ‘family dispute’ that has all but stopped shipments of our lifeblood from flowing into Crowndon, and Nor Easter as well. The Empress of Nor Easter, meanwhile, finds it more imperative to gallivant with artists and amuse herself with gossip than address the growing number of protests and myriad groups of political dissenters in her ranks.

Meanwhile, across the Barrier Ocean, our colonies face hardships of their own. A group, nay, and ARMY of bandits terrorizes the western frontier, and grows larger by the day. Too large for the Colonial Marshals to combat on their own. Disease runs rampant in the south, and an entire township has disappeared, along with anyone sent to investigate, including the Gazette’s own Adella Chatelaine.

That’s to say nothing about the disappearance and reappearance of Waystation Bravo, or the various mad men such as Sir Rigel Rinkenbach and the traitorous Ivan Klankenvroot shoveling money and Blackwood into the furnaces of quite frankly insane projects that will likely never see the light of day.

And we, Crowndon, have made the most grievous mistakes of all. We allowed Admiral Roderick Beauchamp La Pierre to walk away in exile when we should have taken his head. He has singlehandedly done more to destabilize not only Crowndon’s economy, but the economies of Nor Easter and Monteddor as well. What the newspapers called a ‘prank’ or a ‘heist’ in the beginning has quickly proven to be much more. It was a declaration of war.

We have inherited a particularly horrible hand as we enter the 281st year of the Imperial Triumvirate, and if we keep along this path, we will not make it to the 282nd. The purpose of the Triumvirate after the discovery of Blackwood was the uniting of the known world into one glorious power, shared between three powerful cultures. Lately, however, the Crown has begun to wonder if the Triumvirate should be a singularity? Who knows? That is a question for the philosophers (and Generals) of our time to consider, not a lowly political mouthpiece such as myself.

We, both as a nation and as a member of the Triumvirate, have faced dire circumstances before, and I am sure we can face these down as well. But we three must face them as one, and in order to do that we must focus our efforts on those problems that present the most direct threat.

As of this day, the eighth day of First Month of the 281st year of the Triumvirate, the Crown is recalling all military forces and fleets, excepting those stationed in the Colonies. And with this combined force, we will break the siege of the Monteddorian capital by Alejandro Julianos and Yolanda De Santana. Blackwood will once again flow north, and our cities and forges will be re-ignited. And I, the Honorable Sir Alaric Wolstenholme McAndrew V, will be right here, to ensure that the citizens of Crowndon, and everywhere else, receive the information that matters most.

Happy New Year!

Blackwood Gazette #83- Imperial Edict for the 281st Year of the Triumvirate