The Melting Pot
The overall Migrant arrivals led to consternation in the Videan, with some lamenting the arrival of uncouth, barbarian savages barely worth their citizenship, some fleeing for the comfort of the burgeoning Remnant in the south (at the time, only a faint rallying cry), and Vaneisa (Vaneis-Hilde) pre-emptively burning their bridges in a misguided fear of invasion.
The Northband and Hinterland populations grew steadily for a time, as the Migrants made homes for themselves in and around the populous centres, depending on prevailing attitudes towards them. Indifference to their arrival was common, though Montilida (Monte-Hilde) was most proactive in welcoming outsiders, seen in the expansion of its silver and iron mines, and the increase in land taxation. While known at the time to favour its wealth more than anything, conditions in Montilia were vastly improved at the same time, the foreigners swiftly becoming equals of the Videans.
This growth continued the movement of conservative Videans into the South, some passing the Tualbid centre of the peninsula and making new homes at least in the Middings. By 225 motions had settled and in some cases reversed, a number of Soithics moving up the peninsula in pursuit of Montilia’s burgeoning wealth.
The next motions to shake the Videan came from Ghomal, as the kingdom grew rapidly enraptured of the new religion brought from out of the Near Mosels by the traders. Truth be told, the early Cistinian faith took its hold on the port-cities, though withered before reaching the interior, stayed by the pulsing movement from disparate versions of the same Edda swiftly becoming the Esieric faith prominent in Talbadic rule.
However, this was nothing next to what happened in Ghomal that transformed the relatively-small, well-meaning faith into the being it is today. In the parables, Ghomalans seemed to find common ground, folk delighted by tales of miracles and hope, folk frightened by the darkness of the chief deity’s vengeful wrath. Soon enough, the first churches were built, reshaping the centre of life from the common to the church; but it was met with resistance from the most conservative Galls, who had fought the Old Empire to reinstate its own practices.
Formality became paramount, the faith turning from its travelling preachers into a council, and then into a war council. The faith represented power, and soon members of the Ghomalan aristocracy and the disparate overlords gathered to the centralised beacon. As history shows, Ghomal became a singular entity almost overnight, using its faith to bring its people into union. What the Church baulks at, however, is memory of the underhanded tactics used to achieve that union.
Force applied, whether through misinformation, pleading, cajoling, or at knifepoint, is force applied. And once Ghomal had a taste for it, getting it down to a fine art in 253 with the capitulation of Massivs city-states, their attention turned outwards. The Cistinian Church, and more importantly the Cistinian Conquest, began.
The Haernic Banner
At a time of centralisation in the Videan, Migrant tensions settled by the steady thrum of trade between north and south, Ghomal was bringing the light of salvation across the Pyrineis. For an invasion, it was amongst the most peaceful division and conquest, those who would listen to the sermons through allied translators and accept baptism became Sapics, while those who would not listen or did not agree became the Iberics.
Soon enough, Sapia left behind its tribal roots and adopted the unified kingdom initially under Ghomalic rule before it would shun the influential tide and create its own identity by 365. With enough territory under its belt, and enough funding to embolden its purpose, the Cistinian Church came to rule all parts of life in Sapia, until its moves into the Catalic centre came not with the light of salvation, but with sword and fire.
Enough is told in Sapic history of how tensions arose, and apologists in the Church have since denounced the lop-sided Pogroms as a dark day in the early Church. It led to the disparate south-western tribes to band together, putting aside all debts, enmity and rulership and sign to the Haeren banner.
In tradition, a haeren banner is a blank banner used to signify neutral ground used for the purpose of signing treaty. Indeed, it was a tradition upheld by the Imperium to promote fair meetings with the barbarian nations that came to fuel the Empire itself. A sign of mutual cooperation, when the Far Sapic Caelt tribes acknowledged it, it became instead a desperate sign of survival against all odds.
Their very existence threatened by the Cistinians, who routinely adopted the Imperial standard of flushing out and slaying the Druids (the traditional lore-keepers in Caeltish society), the Haeren Caelts made fearsome enemies for the Church and its early crusaders, visiting the wrath of the Pogroms upon the instigators in the dead of night. While it led to a rallying of Cistinian forces in Sapia, ultimately seeing the Far Sapics fleeing their homelands, it cemented something inherently Talbadic in the Videan.
For those who cannot make the connection, these Haeren Banner tribes, known best to history as the Haerenic Caelts, took a perilous path up the Iberic’s western coast, crossed the Pyrineis behind the Cistinian press, and transferred through southern Ghomal and into the Axial reach. From here, as the Cistinian press into Gemain and the Northlands in the late 280s ruptured the barbaric civilisations, leading to a similar exodus through the treacherous Alpes, Haernism became unique in the Videan.
It even became a people: the Hearnes.
© Copyright 2013 Trent Michael Shannon - All Rights Reserved