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The king’s march has come to a halt, after the inexorable push down the south had proved so successful. After the Battle of the Rampart, the Dornish forces seemed to lessen their raids against the march, although outriders could often see enemy horsemen on swift sand steeds shadowing the march, and signs of Dornish spears having been just ahead of them. Still, contact with the enemy was rare. But each day drew the force a little nearer to a river cutting across the Boneway, a river in a deep gorge, its only crossing a ford at the base following a narrow and winding track. Such a place where
The king’s march progressed through the Boneway, despite the minor skirmishes and raids suffered all along the line of his great army as it wound through the red mountains of Dorne. Each day meant a day nearer to Yronwood, under siege by the largest of the Dornish armies. Yet each day also meant a day further from the source of much of the king’s supplies, and each day meant that his army was outstripping his supply a little more. Water in particular had become a precarious thing, and on some days the army was forced to march into the night to be able to rest, exhausted, at a watering place.
As the rebels of Dorne seize back more and more of their land—Salt Shore, Yronwood, and Wyl the last of King Daeron’s strongholds—battle has been joined in the Boneway, as Ser Sarmion Baratheon led forces under the Baratheon banner to force their way up the mountain pass. Their purpose? To throw back Lord Manwoody and the rest of the rebels, to relieve Wyl that was virtually under siege, and to meet the Young Dragon’s seaborne force. But Lord Manwoody, that wily old lord, succeeded in delaying the greater force of stormlords. The king would have no help.
Well over a hundred galleys,
After the fall of Vaith and the execution of Beslon the Bad, the Dornish forces under Ser Baduin Santagar and Ser Laurent Dalt occupied Vaith while planning—in concert with Krazdan Big Nose, the new captain of the Bright Banners—what they would do to liberate Godsgrace from King Daeron’s garrison there. The next day, the former pit fighter from Meereen led the greater part of the Bright Banners eastwards, loaded with much of the coin they were paid for cutting their banners and joining the rebels. A week later theyreached Godsgrace. There they were allowed to enter the town, under the false
A hard fought battle led to an interminable siege at Vaith, with the Dornishmen under-supplied and the Bright Banners within the walls of the town isolated from any likely help. Would the Dornishmen try to storm the town? Would the Beslon the Bad attempt a truce? Matters hung in the balance, before a parley was called and Beslon and some of his officers rode out to meet Ser Laurent Dalt and his companions half way between the walls and the Dornish siege camp. For the most part, it seemed as is Smallwood was quite bored and sought the parley as entertainment. The banter traded back and forth
The rebellion in Dorne continues apace, with Lord Velaryon holding Salt Shore still, now awaiting word from King’s Landing for when he should strike against the Planky Town and Sunspear, and in the Boneway Lord Manwoody has achieved notable victories even as the stormlords march towards Blackhaven under the Baratheon banner; even the garrison at Wyl is threatend, it is said, and a number of watchtowers have fallen to him and to Red Rhys of the Scourge and Alyx the Witch. But in the south, a force under the Martell finally stirred to threaten the king’s garrisons that still hold along the
Ser Alyn Velaryon and many of his captains have been returned to their fleet at the command of Prince Marence, discharging his duty to them according to the ancient laws of guest right, though few of his subjects are pleased by this decision. Soon after, it was said that a pair of galleys from the fleet—having halted its plans to assault Sunspear to free Oakenfist, now that the master of ships was freed—were seen off the coast near Sunspear, making all sail for the Broken Arm. Doubtless, they carried word to the king of the latest events. This did not alleviate the concern that the king’s
... are going to war.
After three weeks of inexplicable indecision, Prince Marence Nymeros Martell gathered his councillors to reveal to them that he intended to raise his banners against the foreign king, Daeron Targaryen, who had forced Sunspear to submit to him three years before almost to the day. There had been great unrest in the shadow city in those tense weeks, as the rest of Dorne rose up in arms against its oppressors, with a number of lords now gathering forces to assist in removing the last of the king’s garrisons still holding out in the Dornish strongholds they have taken. From
A fortnight has passed since the assassination of Lord Lyonel Tyrell and the destruction of his force of some three thousand knights and men-at-arms at Sandstone. Lured there to see the tar-covered, desicated head of Andrey Blackmont, he found the old blind lord of the castle solicitous, though his castellan Ser Mavros was away. As was his custom, Lord Tyrell took the lord’s bed chamber for his own, and having developed a fondness for Dornish women, he pulled a bell-rope to summon some slut to warm his bed. Unfortunately for him, at the pull of the rope, the bed’s canopy fell open and
The feasting hall of the Sandship witnessed Prince Marence hosting Ser Alyn Velaryon, the king’s master of ships and commander of two of the chief forces in Dorne, and a number of other knights and lords in the king’s service. It was a relatively somber affair, the Dornish men and women present less enthused than even the knights from beyond the red mountains for the most part, and some of the guests at the high table were less than pleasing conversation. Ser Alyn, the famous Oakenfist who seized the Planky Town and smashed a Dornish fleet off the Broken Arm, was a genial man, it’s true, but
In the Prince’s Pass, the outlaw lord Andrey Blackmont and a handful of his men crept from their hiding places in the fastnesses and tracks of the red mountains of Dorne. Their purpose? A parley with Lord Qorgyle’s castellan, Ser Mavros Uller, a man once exiled from Dorne and now rising high thanks to an old, blind lord’s trust and the esteem of the Young Dragon. For weeks now, Ser Mavros at the head of a troop of Qorgyle spears played a cat-and-mouse game with the rebel who had done so much to choke traffic across the Prince’s Pass and who bedeviled Ser Wallace Chester in Starfall. A number
Lord Stark has returned now to his seat in the North, after his visit with the king. In Braavos, the Sealord deals with the preparations for his wedding in the coming year to Princess Rhaena, while the Archon of Tyrosh and the Prince of Pentos threaten war against him. It’s said that reavers from the Iron Isles have skirted Fair Isle and the shore of the westerlands, to the concern of Lord Loren. And in King’s Landing, matters great and small are carried out. Black-winged ravens carried missives to Dorne, orders and commands, while a Dornish hostage—soon to be an heiress, if the Dornish do
Carried on black wings, word has reached King’s Landing of Lord Chester’s assassination in the midst of the shadow city. King Daeron, the Young Dragon, had planned to go to a last hunt with the Sealord of Braavos before his departure back to his city; with the news, he gave up the notion, instead closeting himself with his councillors for a time. Birds could be seen winging their way from the Grand Maester’s tower, flying south, some hours later. More, rumors ran that half a score of royal galleys were to be prepared to journey to Sunspear as swift as may be with fresh levies and knights to
In far away Dorne, in the Sunspear of the Martells, there was a feast of farewell of an evening for Lord Belion Chester, known as Reaversbane. Having been in Starfall after taking part in the hunt for Andrey Blackmont and other rebels in the western end of the red mountains of Dorne, the lord had developed a reputation as a man who was not afraid to spill blood to pacify the countryside for his king. So he was called upon by Lord Tyrell to aid him in doing the same to the region about the Greenblood, and he stayed at Sunspear awhile to consult with Ser Alyn Velaryon. It was at Oakenfist’s
Word sweeps like wildfire through the Red Keep when a raven from Dorne announces that King Daeron has decided to return at last to King’s Landing after nearly two years spent conquering and pacifying Dorne. The news spills over its high walls to the streets below, and excitement is in the air; in some quarters of the city, flurries of celebration—near-riots, according to the City Watch—erupt spontaneously. The bells of the septs of the city, from the greatest to the very meanest, toll with joy, and not long after it’s said that his grace’s kin are seen amidst a small throng of the court at
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