Beginnings and Endings

I hadn’t realized it had been more than six months since I wrote here, but somehow that’s not a surprise. I know I had forgotten I had this blog until recently- and I don’t even remember what reminded me. I think it was visiting some site that used WordPress.

Anyway, the big story in my personal life of the last month is breaking up with the girl that I had been in a relationship with for two years. While I’ve been wanting to write about it (particularly since we have sort of started communicating again), I also am leery of writing too much here. Among other reasons, it’s weird imagining her reading anything I write here (though I don’t think I ever told her I had a blog), to say nothing of her current boyfriend, her family, or Internet archaeologists of the future. Haha. Anyway, to abbreviate a long story, she had started talking about wanting an engagement ring and a wedding proposal soon, and I didn’t want to propose to her. After several weeks of arguing about it and her departure for the winter break, she gave me the ultimatum of either proposing or breaking up. I didn’t want to propose, so we broke up. We maintained sporadic contact (mostly initiated by her) for about the next week and a half, and at some point I apparently made her think I had changed my mind. Once I told her that I hadn’t, she said she didn’t want to talk to me unless I had changed my mind or unless it was about getting her stuff back. Aside from a few text messages, some of which I’m sure were intended to make me jealous or otherwise upset, we had stopped talking, which has been its own adjustment. I can write more about that later.

Unfortunately, the spring semester began Tuesday. On the bright side, I only have one class Tuesdays and Thursdays, but this good news is somewhat marred by the fact this class is at 9:30 AM (not good news for this night owl, especially on nights I work until midnight) and the fact that Mondays and Wednesdays this semester I have three classes spaced out between 11:15 AM and 6:45 PM. Of course, since the semester just started, I haven’t had any serious assignments yet, but I’m not looking forward to having assignments and projects due.

In other news, I’ve been playing a lot of Stellaris lately (and this was particularly true before this week). I decided to start working on another AAR, this time based on playing as a Trade League (ethoi: Pacifist Xenophile Materialist) after playing a brief game because I had never tried the Corporate Dominion civic. At the moment I’ve been having mild “writer’s block” not quite knowing how I want to start it. I have decided I want this to be sort of a history, rather than the narrative story based on another Stellaris game that I played last summer. With that in mind, I’ve decided I want to start with a sort of prologue of the first ruler’s term covering the first twenty years of the game. Right now I think I’ve decided on listing the achievements of the first term (information about planets colonized, technologies researched, economic growth, diplomacy, etc.) before I start writing the history proper. Of course, before I write that history, I’ll also have to play past 2220, and decide whether I want to go with the random election, or burn most of my current Influence reserve and keep my current ruler for another twenty years. Decisions, decisions.

Well, I’m overdue to go to bed, so that’s all for now. I’ll try to write more here later- if nothing else, writing a blog post might make me feel more accomplished than some of the alternatives.

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So long (in various senses)

Once again, the time has come for me to write here. I hadn’t realized until I logged in and read my notifications that my last post was nearly a month ago- I guess I forgot.

Near the end of last month I realized that my summer was about half over, which was somewhat sad, and I have about a month and a week until my fall semester begins August 21, so that doesn’t help. Unfortunately, my computer has not been working for roughly the past two weeks, so my plans to play many hours of Stellaris have hit a roadblock and I’ve been badly suffering from withdrawal. Well, not really. Unfortunately, my most recent game of Stellaris (featuring my custom empire of theocratic xenophobic militaristic Space-Elves, and the story I had/have been planning based on the game) has suffered; I hope that I won’t have to completely reboot, but it’s possible that I may have to format the hard drive that all of my personal files were installed on, and I may end up losing some things. Continue reading

Deeds of the Dukes of Chariton, part IX

Deeds of the Dukes of Chariton

A Crusader Kings II: After the End mod After-Action Report


Part IX: Wars in the North and South
November 2694 – January 2699

On May 19 2695 Mayor Isaac of Rock Port, who had spent 31 years as Mayor of Rock Port, died in his sleep at the age of 59. After a brief meeting of the city council, the leading citizens of Rock Port elected Isaac’s eldest son Everett to succeed him as Mayor of Rock Port.

In early October 2695, Duke Lyman noticed that his wife had developed an interest in romantic poetry, and sent her books of romantic poetry purchased in Des Moines, Rock Port, and Carrollton.

In late June 2696, there were sordid rumors that Muriel (a courtier of Duke Lyman’s) had been seen in the company of King Franklin.

In August 2696, Theodora Nodaway, the natural daughter of Spymaster Lavon’s wife Pamela, was betrothed to Asa, the heir to the Barony of Lincoln in the Kingdom of Platte.

In December 2696, Muriel gave birth to a son, who was named Morris. She claimed King Franklin was the father, and once the word reached Des Moines King Franklin acknowledged the child as his own. In the same month, Theodora Nodaway was married to Asa Lincoln.

In February 2697, rumor had it that the Rust Cultist Oligarch Grimhilt of Cuyahoga had stood firm and dealt a defeat to the the Ursuline Abbess-General, which prompted Abbess-General Bella Dompierre to make peace with Oligarch Grimhilt and call on her flock to adhere to the peace treaty and pray for guidance.

In early March 2697, Abbott Lee of Bethany requested permission to duel his rival, which Duke Lyman granted. On March 16, King Franklin summoned his vassals for war against Jarl Ollrod of Saint Anthony, declaring his intent to return Rochester and the surrounding lands to their rightful place as part of Iowa. While the armies mustered, Duke Lyman was charged with training troops near Des Moines.

In June, Micaiah, self-styled Governor of Missouri, died and was succeeded as Governor of Missouri by his 17-year-old son Micaiah, who claimed his father had originally come from Atchison, near the State of Missouri’s northern border with the Kingdom of Platte. A few days later, Duke Peter of the Quad Cities announced his interest in assuming the Iowan throne. Later the same month, 4100 Iowan men began to lay siege to Rochester.

On July 1 2697, Duke Lyman summoned his vassals for war against the State of Missouri, declaring his intent to press Count Napoleon of Thompson’s claim to the County of Saline. Duke Lyman’s 2200 men from Maryville and Kirksville, as well as Count Hannibal’s 200 men and Count Napoleon’s 200 men, were ordered to meet at Moberly.

In late July 2697, it was announced that Duke Lyman’s wife Juniper was pregnant.

In early August, Duke Lyman’s army of 2600 men united near Moberly. Duke Lyman’s friend Lavon was given overall command, with Count Napoleon of Thompson commanding the right flank and Theophile Lucerne in command of the left flank. Lavon was ordered to march on St. Joseph.

King Franklin’s first wife died in July after a period of illness, and King Franklin married Rosa Steinbach, a sister of Duke Keifer of Illinois, in late July or early August. Duke Keifer of Illinois accepted his brother-in-law’s call for aid and joined the war against the Jarl of St. Anthony in mid-August.

In late August, the Chariton army began to lay siege to Saint Joseph.

Rochester fell to the Iowan army by mid-October, and on October 18 Ana, wife of Duke Truman’s steward Phineas, gave birth to a daughter named Bertha.

On November 6, Duke Lyman’s steward Phineas was killed by a mob of angry peasants while trying to collect taxes. He was survived by his widow Ana and two daughters. Sheldon, who had previously served as Duke Truman’s steward and Duke Lyman’s steward in his minority, replaced Phineas as Steward. Sheldon’s son Paul, a friend of Duke Lyman, was appointed spymaster and Solomon, Sheldon’s youngest son, was appointed chancellor and sent to Rolla to improve relations with the Duke of Waxhaw.

In January 2698, Duke Lyman questioned his steward about some money that was missing from his treasury. After Sheldon’s confession, Duke Lyman ordered him to pay back the money he had stolen.

In February, King Franklin’s youngest brother Count Cole of Fort Dodge announced his interest in sitting on the Iowan throne. On February 23, 2698 Duke Lyman and Duchess Juniper’s first son Zerubbabel was born.

In late February, a heathen army of 4600 men from St. Anthony and Jarl Ollrod’s allies took Rock Rapids while King Franklin’s army was laying siege to Winona.

On June 11, after a siege of 9 months, St. Joseph surrendered to Duke Lyman’s army. Pinola, the mother of the Count of St. Joseph, and Fanny, an infant girl whose father was unknown, were taken into custody. Duke Lyman’s army marched south and began to lay siege to Platte City.

In early August, Duke Peter of the Quad Cities was captured by Jarl Ollrod of St. Anthony after the battle of Rochester, which saw 4200 Iowans face some 4500 Northlanders. Nearly 3300 Iowans were killed or wounded, while only some 400 Northmen were killed or wounded. In mid-August, Duke Lyman’s chancellor Solomon married Lily, a woman from the county of Hannibal.

On August 24, Platte City surrendered to Duke Lyman’s army, which began to march south to besiege Kansas City. Duke Lyman’s 2200 men began to besiege Kansas City on September 20.

On January 6, 2699, Kansas City surrendered to Duke Lyman’s army. Mayor Fitch of Kansas City had tutored Governor Micaiah Atchison of Missouri and served as the Secretary of State of Missouri, but was unable to personally surrender the city to Duke Lyman’s army due to his being in the field and commanding troops in the Missouri army, or so the delegation of prominent citizens that surrendered Kansas City informed Lavon and the other commanders of Duke Lyman’s army. After accepting their surrender, Lavon’s army marched east to besiege Marshall in the County of Saline, but after hearing that the Missouri army was laying siege to St. Joseph the Chariton army crossed the Missouri River near Carrollton and marched west to St. Joseph.

Deeds of the Dukes of Chariton, part VIII

Deeds of the Dukes of Chariton


VIII: New Wife, New King
August 2691 – October 2694

In August 2691 Duke Lyman of Chariton married Juniper Ramsays of Little Egypt.

In November of the same year, Duke Lyman began preparations for a great feast for his vassals. Due to his obligations in Des Moines, it was to take place there rather than in Maryville. Count Hannibal was dispatched to hunt boar and Duke Lyman spent lavishly on food and entertainments. Count Hannibal of Hannibal, Count Napoleon of Moberly, Abbot Lee of Bethany and Mayor Isaac of Rock Port were invited, and all replied that they meant to attend.

On December 28 2691, after a prolonged illness, Duke Lyman of Chariton’s sister Evanora Still, Duchess of Driftless, died in Dubuque at the age of 23 years. Her husband Duke Roquat of Driftless was commanding troops in Illinois when she died.

Count Hannibal and Mayor Isaac were each attacked by bandits near Des Moines on their way to the feast in February 2692, but otherwise the feast passed without incident.

In March the Atomicist Duke Grannuslav of Calumet attacked Duke Keifer of Illinois, claiming to be the rightful ruler of Kannakee. In early March, an Illinois army and a Calumet army, each of about 1000 men, fought near Kankakee while 3800 Indianapolitans began to retake Joliet and Chicago from Illinois and King Franklin’s army began laying siege to Champaign, which had been held by a small Indianapolitan garrison after its surrender.

In June, the Iowan and Indianapolitan armies met near Streator. In the Battle of Streator, 1700 Iowans under King Franklin met 3300 Indianapolitans, including Northlander mercenaries in the employ of the Duke of Indianapolis. Some 800 Iowans were killed or wounded, and about 200 Indianapolitans met the same fate. Later the same month, the Ursuline Abbess-General declared that any true Christian who took up the cross and fought the Rust Cultist Oligarch Grimhilt Stahlbleche of Cuyahoga, Upper Ohio, and Miami Valley would be absolved of their sins. The Oligarch Grimhilt ruled most of what was once called Ohio, on the eastern border of the Duchy of Indianapolis, and this news was mostly met with apathy in Iowa.

In August the court in Des Moines recieved news that Prince Franklin had been captured by Duke Ralston of Indianapolis after the Battle of Mount Zion, which saw 4500 men from Iowa and the Duchies of Illinois, Little Egypt, Great River, and Lead Belt defeated by some 3100 Indianapolitans and their mercenaries. About 2400 Catholics were killed and wounded, as were some 1200 Indianapolitans and their mercenaries.

In September, Duchess Juniper of Chariton was named High Almoner by her husband Duke Lyman.

Lavon, who had been a friend of Duke Truman’s and ably served both Duke Truman and his son Duke Lyman as a chancellor, regent, and spymaster in spite of his long-standing demonic possession and heretical Neo-Gnostic beliefs, was murdered on the orders of his wife Pamela on October 30, 2692. Paul, a son of Duke Truman’s old steward Sheldon, replaced him as Duke Truman’s spymaster and Melville Baltic replaced Milo Trenton as Duke Truman’s chancellor. Chancellor Melville was dispatched to improve relations with King Franklin.

In late March 2693, a group of soldiers in the service of Count Napoleon of Moberly set up camp in a field belonging to a farmer in Nodaway. The farmer claimed that their campfire spread and burnt all of his crops and, in early April, the farmer brought the matter before Duke Lyman’s court and demanded compensation. Duke Lyman paid the farmer from his own treasury.

In late December, a Consumerist merchant named Marius came to Duke Lyman’s court and requested permission to stay at court and carry out his trade in luxuries and rare artifacts. Duke Lyman granted him permission, on the condition that he answer a few questions about the political situation on the East Coast. A few days later the same merchant came to Duke Lyman requesting special privileges in the markets of Duke Lyman’s lands, which Duke Lyman granted for a period of 6 months.

In early 2694 the Indianapolitan duke made peace with the Duke of Illinois and the various Catholic rulers who had come to his aid. In late June, the Consumerist merchant Marius requested his trading privileges be renewed for another 6 months, which Duke Lyman agreed to. After less than two months, in August the Consumerist merchant left Maryville for Cincinnati.

On October 16, 2694 King Franklin Stonewall of Iowa died at the age of sixty-five years. He was succeeded as King of Iowa by his eldest son Franklin, who at the age of twenty-three became the third of that name to rule as King of Iowa. Prince Peter, Franklin Stonewall’s second son, inherited the Duchy of the Quad Cities, and Prince Cole inherited the County of Fort Dodge. The new king retained Duke Lyman of Chariton as Lord Marshal of Iowa.

Deeds of the Dukes of Chariton, part VI

Deeds of the Dukes of Chariton


VI: Union and Separation
January 2686 – January 2689

In early January 2686 Ana, the daughter of Mayor Isaac of Rock Port, married Phineas, the only son of Duke Truman’s former marshal of the same name.

In January 2686, Duke Lyman invited Count Napoleon of Moberly, Count Hannibal of Hannibal, King Franklin Stonewall, Abbot Lee of Bethany, Mayor Isaac of Rock Port, Isaac’s son Everett, and a few courtiers from the counties of Kanesville and Icaria to a small feast. Everett, the Mayor of Rock Port’s son, was also married to Fairuza, a woman who had come to Duke Truman’s court.

Unfortunately, Abbot Lee and most of the courtiers that Duke Truman invited declined their invitation, but Glen (the guardian of Countess Diana of Icaria) and Mayor Isaac of Rock Port agreed to come to the feast.

Calvin Rodman, former Duke of the Quad Cities and Mayor of Sioux City, died in his bed at the age of 74 in late February 2686. Around this time Daffodil Graham, the 10-year-old illegitimate daughter of Lavon Graham, was betrothed to the 20-year-old Shadrach Maizeflower, the late Mayor’s grandson and, it was rumored, spymaster. The new Mayor of Sioux City was named Asa.

In late April Duke Poynter of Driftless was heard discussing ways to reduce King Franklin’s power over the nobility and Sheldon was replaced as Duke Lyman’s steward by Phineas, son of Duke Truman’s onetime Marshal and Spymaster.

At a feast in May, Duke Lyman befriended Count Hannibal of Hannibal, and around the same time King Franklin made Duke Lyman Lord Marshal of the Kingdom of Iowa.

In early June, Duke Lyman of Chariton married his cousin Countess Diana of Icaria. Continue reading

Current writing projects

As promised, I’ve decided to briefly write about my current writing projects. Unfortunately, being a full-time student and working part-time interferes with my productivity, though doing one or the other would probably be manageable. Of course, if I didn’t work I’d have to find some other way to pay my bills, and that might be an issue from a financial standpoint.

Crusader Kings 2: After the End mod

I’ve written here before about Crusader Kings 2 and the After the End mod, which takes the feudal mechanics and gameplay of Crusader Kings 2 from medieval Eurasia and North Africa and throws them into North and Central America and the Caribbean, starting in July 2666. At present, I have a couple projects related to this setting, as well as ideas for more.

The Americanists, who worship the Founding Fathers and other important figures from Old America (i.e., the United States before civilization as we know it ended about 600 years before the game starts [somewhere between 1945 and 2077]), have believers scattered around America, including near Mount Rushmore, in Texas, and are the predominant religion of Central Florida, Virginia, Maryland, south New Jersey, and parts of Pennsylvania.

The project I may have made the most progress on thus far (even if only in terms of game progress) is my as-yet unnamed game as Elias Waltney, who is Chief of the Mouse in central Florida when the game starts, and (soon) his successors. I have yet to actually start writing the “history”, but in-game Elias Waltney is in his mid-60s, and so probably within a few years of passing away.

The other After the End project I’ve been working on lately is a game as the ruler of Springfield, Missouri. This is, admittedly, primarily because I’ve lived here for a couple years, and I’ve already played a game as the ruler of where I’m originally from (a few versions ago, I admit, but that game is the Chariton game I post about here on occasion). A slight difference from “the Florida game”, as I’ve referred to it, is that I’m trying to write this as a narrative, from the perspective of various characters, as opposed to a more historical and scholarly perspective.

Europa Universalis IV: Super States mod

I don’t have many projects currently going for this game and mod. My current project is as California, which (as of the 1460s) has annexed Baja California and quashed a Baja Californian rebellion, in addition to various other entertaining oddities such as Washington conquering Oregon, New York conquering Vermont and northern New Jersey and northern Pennsylvania, and Minnesota losing land to Iowa, Manitoba, and South Dakota. I’m not sure if I’ve firmly decided on an end for this one, but I think, and have thought, that a history of North America between 1444 (when the game starts, shortly after the American, Mexican, and Australian states and Canadian provinces found themselves thrown back in time) and European contact (1494? probably the 1490s, anyway, assuming a roughly historical timeline).

As with the After the End mod for Crusader Kings 2, ideas here are fairly easy to come by. I’m a Missouri native, so I think playing Missouri at some point would be interesting, though unfortunately in-game Missouri is rather boring and only produces Grain (while California, for example, produces Wine, Naval Stores, Grain, and possibly a few other goods). My current idea is that I might try Missouri in either the next version of the mod or after I’ve made some significant headway on California – maybe after a halfway point is reached or something.