Kiev, Principate of

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Contents

Information

Kiev.gif
Foundation: 1739-date (T205-date)
Capital: Kiev in Kiev
Religion: Eastern Orthodox

By Rob Pierce, updated by Martin Helsdon

Description

Kiev controls territory along the north side of the Black Sea, and has been a close associate of the Swedish Empire of Russia.

The History:

Still to be written.

NewsFax Entries

1739-1740 T205
Kiev: Diplomacy: Carpathia(making trouble)
Accompanied by thousands of settlers, Vladimir returned to ancient Kiev and reclaimed the province from the ravages of the Ice. His court was restored to the ruins of Kiev the city, though hardly anyone else was actually in residence there. Soon afterwards, his wife Anna bore him a son, Boris, and the prince was well pleased. Aid flowed in from certain foreign powers, and the Prince's agents were quick to turn their attentions to possible foreign provocateurs.

Despite wading through several volumes of Diderot, Vladimir felt almost happy and took to hunting in the frost-rimed forests with great vigor. Princess Nadia (when not reading racy and enticing letters from various members of the Baklovakian senate), spent her time hunting and fishing in Dobruja, though her humor only slightly improved.

However, just to break the hearts of everyone in central Europe, young Nadia did accept an engagement offer from the Duke of Carpathia (who was also handsome, though no Ned I must say) and the two were wed in a furtive ceremony at Christmastime in '40. Her father's hope to lure the duke into an alliance with Kiev had, so far, failed but at least the Carpathians no longer allied themselves with the People's Republic. Then Nadia broke everyone's hearts by suffering a heart seizure a week later and dying entirely unexpectedly, in her lover's arms.

The queer and self-destructive fascination of the Kievian nobility with the legendary village of Stegiocavar in Transylvania claimed another victim - young Ivanovitch Kalganov - who simply disappeared from his inn and was never seen again.

Baklovakia: The death of old Smyslov, the First Citizen, forced general Wachowski to return to Komaro - and in turn allowed the nubile, yet treacherous Nadia to sneak into Carpathia and suborn the dim-witted (but handsome) Count. Corralling enough sober senators to elect him First Citizen occupied the rest of Wachowski's time.

1741-1742 T206
AR&F: In Rostov an enduring point of tension finally relieved itself when prince Demetrios of Epirus (the husband of the Duchess of the Three Isles) finally came to the conclusion that no one was coming with ships to pick him up, and he (and his eight hundred retainers) would have to walk home. So they left Rostov in the spring of '41 and started walking west.

Kiev: Diplomacy: Carpathia(t)
Like all peoples living at the edge of the Ice, the Kievians rejoiced to learn the chill was creeping back towards the pole and the dead, empty cities of the Hyperboreans. Indeed, the province of Atelzuko was settled to (1c7). Still - between bouts of begetting - the prince found time to settle down with book sent him by a "friend" in London; Moll Flanders by Daniel Defoe.[1]

Efforts began - particularly in Alfold - to woo the Hussite populations there to follow the Orthodox rite and put aside all this trouble of Catholics and Hussites alike. There was little success. Similar efforts in Transylvania enraged the local citizens, leading to a general rising against Kievian rule and the rout of the garrison, which fled to Carpathia to take refuge with Count Alexsandr.

The mayors of various towns in the Lower Danube valley (particularly Craiova) were startled to observe a small army of eight hundred Epirotes marching past their gates, banners and flags bravely flying, as they headed west. Prince Demetrios nodded gravely to the townspeople and his men were well behaved - though a more dreadful-looking lot of sell-swords and murderers you never saw...

(1) First published in London in 1722, though the parts set in the Virginia plantations (in this reality) are set in South America instead.

Baklovakia: In Komarno, comrade Wachowski barely escaped death at the hands of two large men in tall fur hats, smelling of vodka and beets. There was a fierce scuffle between the only-slightly inebriated Senatorial Guards and the assassins before the attackers were driven off. Wachowski was surprised - he had not expected that arch-villain Vladimir to take such an over step in their feud!

1743-1744 T207
The War Against the Beast
January/February 1744: The Kievian count Vasilyko arrives in Vasi and takes command of the Swedish army stranded there by the death of general Tarasuik.
Early May: The Kievian/Swedish Cossacks under Count Vasilyko invade Georgia. Late June: The Kievan/Swedish army of the Caucasus conquers the province of Georgia.
October: Vasilyko’s Kievan/Swedish army of the Caucasus conquers Azerbaijan and lays siege to the city of Tabriz.

Kiev: A festive weekend – celebrating the birthday of princess Anna Kournos[17] – was rudely interrupted when a band of swarthy men (dressed in fur hats, heavy overcoats adorned with hammer and sickle symbols) stinking of vodka attempted to rush the stage where the prince was presiding over the poodle-parade. Shouting “death to the oppressor of the workers, peasants, laborers and ox-throwers” these ruffians were immediately set upon by brawny guards. A scuffle ensued and amid the tumult one of the assassins’ beards was given a mighty tug – and it flew off!

Moments later, everyone stared in amazement as the “Baklovakian assassins” were revealed (down to their underpants) as Polish agents! How cunning…

Though he was perturbed (but not surprised) by the villainy of the Polish hegemonists, prince Vladimir still issued a wide-ranging and startlingly liberal “declaration of religious tolerance and worker’s rights” which promised protection and acceptance of Hussites and Catholics alike.

Of course, while thousands of edicts were being printed and distributed (along with an autographed 8x10 woodcut of the princess – no, not in her birthday suit!) the Orthodox clergy were pressing their missionary efforts in Alfold. Only the presence of Count Rhakovski and an army of Cossacks kept the Hussites in the province from open rebellion, and more than a few Hussite priests were given the sack as a result. The cruelty of the count was only exacerbated when Vladimir granted the entire province to Rhakovski as his personal fiefdom in ’44. “Mine,” chortled the count, “all mine!”

Angered by the religious pressure of the Kievians upon their cousins in Alfold, and urged by certain foreign powers, the Carpathians repudiated their fealty to Kiev and refused to pay tribute.

A very strong force of cavalry was dispatched to assist the Swedes in their war against Georgia, and an even larger force of specially-imported French poodles were shipped up the river to Komarno in a long string of barges laden with casks and wicker Sunday picnic baskets.

Baklovakia: Even as the Senate presided over the opening of a new bath-house and distillery in Komarno, urchins ran up from the docks, shouting grand news. “Pastries! Free pastries! And spirits!” A veritable river-fleet of barges – some even flying the jaunty flag of Kiev – were arriving at the Komarno city docks amid a cacophony of barking. As everyone soon learned, princess Anna – so well loved by the citizens of the Republic, even though she was a naughty Kievian – had sent them presents!

Poodles – imported French poodles – in number sufficient for every single citizen, large and small, with hand-lettered tags around their poodle necks saying “not for the eating.” And pastries – oh, such wonderful cream-filled, extra-sized vladovas – again enough for every man, woman, child and ox to gorge themselves to oblivion. And the vodka! Not just vodka, but special Kievian vladka, which as everyone knows is double the strength and twice as clear, like air! And everyone needs air to live, right? A massive, nation-wide party began, notable for the fine BBQ.

Frankish Commonwealth: A strange message arrived from Kiev… a wild request for every poodle in France. The Archon’s advisors were never able to explain to the Archon’s satisfaction what this affair was all about. The whole thing was absurd! Did the Kievans really expect the Commonwealth to dispatch its leaders to deliver poodles to the easternmost recesses of Europe? Did they not realize the Archon had much better things for his people to be doing? The Archon dismissed the request with a hearty – though somewhat strained – laugh. Perhaps the Kievans were trying to lessen the tensions of leadership through comedy.

In any case, there was a strange shortage of poodles thereafter, though Jacques could not abide the barky little things, so he was secretly pleased.

1745 – 1746 T208
The War Against the Daemon Sultan
March 1745: Count Vasilyko of Kiev and his army in Azerbaijan abandon their positions and stream north across the mountains into Georgia. There is considerable disagreement between the Count and his Swedish officers.
March 1746: Dame Maksutov’s Swedish corps in Azerbaijan besieges the city of Tabriz, which will otherwise threaten her supply lines if she moves further south into Kurdistan. The feckless Kievian Cossacks are observed to be, once more, operating in the region – thoroughly looting everything in sight. Maksutov was outraged – now her army could not forage, since the Russians had stolen everything in sight – and her supply trains from Baku were exposed to Georgian raids.
Late May: Dame Maksutov’s Swedish/Kievian/ARF corps advances into Kurdistan.
Late June: Dame Maksutov’s Swedish/Kievian/ARF corps reaches Nineveh, where the Cossacks have been cooling their heels for months, trading sniper rounds with the Georgias in the city. The ‘southern’ ARF squadron finally finds them as well. With the appearance of so many airships overhead, the Nineveh garrison runs up the white flag.
September: Dame Matsukov and her Swedes, Kievians, and ARF troops reach glorious Baghdad to find Faridun and his Persians in possession of the city. A tight cordon has been thrown around the entire locale, including the rubble piles where the airship factories and industrial works had been.

Kiev: As it did in many nations, famine stalked the streets of Kiev and no family was untouched by the ‘frail hand’. Indeed, the only amusement the populace found was to gather in the public kreml and read the casualty lists from the war in Georgia. Complete starvation was fended off by a government sponsored program to provide the citizens with tinned poodle meat. Luckily, the Baklovakians had not consumed all the breeding stock. Pickled rat was also popular, with a side of bark tea.

A bit of scandal involving the public morgue attendants in Debrecen and Craiova was hushed up by the prince’s minister of Agriculture and the young men involved were hung by the neck until dead. Sadly, guards had to be posted around the gibbets to keep the crowds from tearing down and defacing the corpses.

The Cossack force which had recently been camped in Georgia, looting the local farms and villages, was withdrawn. Vladimir sent a vituperous note to the Swedish Foreign Ministry, demanding a great sum of money to defray the payroll of the various Imperial Swedish Army regiments now under the nominal command of Count Vasilyko. Part of the dispute regarded an enormous number of Catholic priests who had shown up to ‘minister’ to the Kurds. These fellows were left behind when the Kievians went home.

Baklovakia: If things were grim and shot through a gray filter in Kiev, they were no better in formerly-happy Komarno. The ox which all had seen fly so high had plunged into the roof of Mrs. Toporosky’s shed and caused a violent explosion. Within moments, the entire distillery district had gone up in a mammoth conflagration of burning potatoes, grain mash and badly-refined alcohol.

Even Wysowski, who had previously accounted it a poorly day to go with only a “wee dram” of the spirituous liquor, was now forced to try and restore public order, round up the few surviving poodles, dig out the ruins and deal with widespread famine while completely sober.

As a result, when more Cossacks (disguised very cleverly as pastry delivery men) attempted to make off with him, the First Citizen flew into a mighty rage and tore the three burly Kievians into small bits with his bare hands. Then he wept, on his hands and knees among a huge litter of pastry boxes. “Empty!” He wailed, heartbroken. “All… empty… the horror! The horror!”

Swedish-Russia: Starvation and famine threatened the Swedish districts in Russia no less than down in Kiev.

Vastmark: Investigations into the banking scandal continued, though the Stadholder was not pleased with the results. “The Kievians,” he growled, “couldn’t steal a pastry from a pig! Even a drunk, Baklovakian pig!”

1747 – 1748 T209
Kiev: A great deal of trouble was brewing in southern Rus lands. The prince had become convinced his government, his military, his groundskeepers were in the pay of none less than the Swede! Roused to unmitigated fury by the perfidy of his northern neighbors (who weren’t even sending him a subsidy anymore…), Vladimir ordered his jackbooted lackeys to start breaking down people’s doors and dragging the Swede-loving scum out into the street.

The prince was certain the Swedes were actively working for the annihilation of the Grand Principality – certain documents he’d received indicated they are hand-in-glove with the Cult of the Bone Mother whose debauched wheezing ghouls feast on the flesh of Slavic Kievan children!

All the Swedish merchants, tourists and expatriates in the country were dragged from their beds and many were lynched by enraged mobs of Slavic peasants and workers - anyone who bloody well spoke Swedish was dragged from their houses and received, at the very least, a sound kicking. Armed agents from the new Bureau for Protecting Citizens from Corrupting Foreign Influences and Reprehensible Practices swooped down on any unwary Swedish citizens or other suspicious types and put them to the question. Many of these unfortunates were executed on the spot.

To make matters worse, once the mob had a taste of looting and burning the houses of the ‘Swedish sympathizers’, they turned their attention upon those well-to-do enough to have escaped the worst of the famines.

In at least two instances, the enraged mob stormed the gates of some boyar’s estate and crashed in upon their household at dinner before thinking “Hold on! We've become a mob! Woe! Woe! We were so swept up by the mob mentality that we were gonna lynch this poor Russian, one of our own.... Hold on! What's this? Cultic paraphernalia! And children's bones in the soup! He’s a cannibal cultist! Lynch him!

Vladimir became more distraught as reports poured in from the countryside; not only was he dealing with foreign infiltrators and cannibals but, worse, they had reduced the Orthodox sons and daughters of Kiev to the level of cattle! The noble men of Kiev died fighting Sweden's war in Georgia but now the Swedes used them as a food source! The Orthodox clergy in his realm was only too quick to pin the blame for all these horrific events upon the Catholic priesthood… most of whom were Swedish!

As the ‘dark year’ of ’47 progressed, Vladimir and his ‘Iron Guard’ – led by Belanus and Vasilyko – seemed to have crushed all opposition in their realm. Hundreds of Swedish sympathizers and spies had been caught in the enormous dragnet. Actual cultists had been arrested and executed, their homes and hidden temples burned and sown with ash and salt.

Then, in the winter of ’47, while Vladimir was attending church services with his youngest son Alexander at the great Orthodox cathedral in the kreml of Kiev, three men burst into the Royal box and opened fire at close range. The prince and his son and three of their attendants were instantly killed. Pandemonium ensued and a wild firefight broke out in the nave of the church between the assassins and a group of green-cloaked men who’d burst in only moments later. The assassins were all killed before the Kievian guardsmen (enraged and crushed by their failure) could intervene. The green-cloaked men, distraught at arriving too late, disappeared soon afterwards.

Within the week, Queen Anna was proclaimed Regent for her son Boris Vladimirovitch, who was still only eleven years old. Pressed to make a statement, the Queen could only say the men seemed to have been ‘servants of the Pale.’

Norsktrad: Malcom also wondered if young prince Ivan would have a home to return to, for the Principality of Kiev was tottering upon the edge of the abyss, now aligned as a neutral against the Swedish Empire of Russia on one side, threatened by Poland and its Baklovakian henchmen on the other, and from within by the hideous cult of the Bone Mother.

Swedish-Russia: The ‘kansler breathed a big, big sigh of relief – believing the crush of events and war had finally slowed enough to allow him to see to the simple welfare of his kingdom. And indeed, work began on restoring fields long left fallow and new factories and jobs and economic stimulus… and then the first newspaper reports appeared about the catastrophe in Kiev.

During the advance of the Ice, with the cooperation of both Kiev and Riga, hundreds of thousands of Swedes and Russians had migrated south into Kievian lands, finding new homes far from the deadly Ice. Now, with the southern Rus in the grip of some endemic, virulent nationalism, they were dying or being forced to flee in droves. With the famines and chill weather already gripping the land, an epic-scale humanitarian disaster was in the making.

Krycek ordered Marsk Kutuzov south with his army to ‘drive the cultists from Kiev’ – for what else could have inspired Vladimir to such horrific excess?

Back in Russia, the ‘Kiev Crisis’ was rapidly reaching explosive proportions. Not only was Kutusov’s army advancing into the country from the north with orders to support the Vladimirist government against the ‘cultic conspiracy’, but Emperor Solomon’s refugee fleet – packed to the gills with Swedish burghers and Russian babushkas, sunburns, bleached hair, trinkets and all – was rapidly approaching the mouth of the Dnepr.

...

Luckily for the pensioners, a Royal Navy courier zeppelin intercepted Solomon before he could sail into harm’s way. The Emperor, learning of the atrocities being committed in Rus lands, immediately put his charges (including his family) ashore at Kherson and then set off for Kiev himself aboard an armored river boat.

Kutuzov, meantime, had rushed down to the walls of Kiev itself and there he found the Rus army had decamped southwards. Troubled by the sight of so many graves lining the road into the town (and suspicious-looking mounds of freshly turned earth in the fields) he entered the city. Everything was in a great uproar – Vladimir just having been murdered – and there was scattered fighting before the Marsk managed to find Queen Anna and assure her the Swedish Army was, in fact, here to help.

Between the Queen’s appeal for calm and the Swedish troopers in the streets, order was restored within a few weeks. Kutuzov visited the Patriarch and assured that rather frosty gentleman of his intentions to support the Church against any cultist aggression and made sure every ex-Swedish citizen in sight was safely encamped within an enormous laager built on the river-bluffs south of the city.

Emperor Solomon arrived only a month later and met with the Queen. While expressing his regrets for the untimely death of her father, he also made it plain to Anna the rights and liberties of even ex-Swedish citizens would be protected by the Empire.

“If these men and women are no longer welcome here,” he offered, as they sat to dinner – no tinned poodle meat in evidence – “then allow them to return to their homes in the north. I will arrange transport, food, housing and so on for them. There need be no further bloodshed.”

Under the guns of a sizable Swedish army, there was little Anna could do but oblige the Emperor’s request.

Field Marshal Belanus, meantime, had taken his Cossacks south into Atelzuko. An abortive foray across the Dnepr into Polovotsy found the Rus facing a host of Swedish regulars come up from the south. Belanus retired to Odessa, and then – when Dame Maksutov crossed the river to occupy the town – the Rus withdrew west into Pechneg.

1749 – 1750 T210
ARF: Some of the zeppelins on the run to Kiev were switched to the newer, more lucrative routes.

Kiev: The late troubles between the southern Rus and the Swedes settled out as the Queen-Regent assumed complete control of the government in her son’s name. The notorious Count Vasilyko was sent off to count land-lots in Banat and the Swedish Emperor was feted and shown every courtesy during his visit to Kiev. The withdrawal of Imperial troops left everyone feeling quite relieved.

An attempt by the Swedish Catholic Church to mend fences with the Eastern patriarch failed miserably, as the EO priests had no interest in reconciliation with the Western devils. Despite this hostile welcome, a number of Papal emissaries were seen going to and fro about the countryside, apparently searching for something.

Swedish-Russia: The Senate demanded that the temporary capital be fortified in case the cannibalistic-trouble in Kiev spilled over into the foothold the Empire still retained in the north.

Norsktrad: Johannes read the newspaper reports from Swedish Russia with growing distaste. “Have our office pared to the bone, to run with no more staff than are absolutely necessary, before the Kievians recall that we too are cousins to the Swedes,” he muttered. “Let us hope this madness has run its course.”

Malcom (Johannes’ heir) sadly watched young prince Ivan at play. Though old enough for lessons, he was too young to understand what is happening in his homeland. All newspapers relating the Kievian crisis were kept from him. Malcom ensured the Norskvarden guard the family compound from any attack, be they Golden Dawn cultists, Communist recidivists, or Kievian kommandosoldat. “And what of the Bone Mother cult?” he mused.

1751 - 1752 T211
Kiev: Exhausted from their previous efforts, the Russians stayed home, kept the wooly dogs warm and slept in. Surprisingly (for such strange looking men and ships had never been seen in on the river before) a number of Aztec merchants reached Kiev and soon did a bustling trade in gold, feathered cloaks, skis and other accoutrements.

Unexpected trouble flared up in distant Alfold, requiring the swift intervention of Count Vasilyko and his Mountain Regiment, who had been training in Banat. Baron Rhakovski of Alfold - while chasing some 'brigands' - defeated a force of mercenary Polish cavalry and (much to his great surprise) captured both Wilhelm of Lausatia (husband of Duchess Frieda) and Mikhail Dobryio, exiled King of Wallachia (last seen drinking too much in Naples). Apparently these two malcontents (and the notorious 'Laughing Boys') had been attempting to raise the old Wallachian provinces in revolt against the Queen-Regent. A terrible scandal!

Poland: Not to be outdone by their Kievian rivals, the Poles welcomed the arrival of Aztec merchant ships (the first in generations) at Stralsund and Sopot.

Frieda was greatly, greatly displeased to learn her drunken husband had gotten himself thrown into a Kievian jail and charged with fomenting rebellion and unrest against a sovereign nation.

1753 - 1754 T212
Kiev: Diplomacy Alfold(ˇun)
Despite the war-mongering of the Poles, the Queen-Regent minded her own business and saw Kiev province resettled and citizens once more on the streets of Kiev-city. A power struggle began to strain the government however, between Anna and her son Boris, who (now that he was sixteen) wished to rule in his own stead. Queen Anna did not think that was a good idea. In fact, she was finding Boris' younger (and better educated) brother Ivan to have a steadier head on his shoulders, a keener wit and a far sunnier disposition.

The military prison in Banat was attacked by Hussite commandoes attempting to free the imprisoned Duke Wilhlem of Poland and Mikhail Dobryio, the King of Wallachia. Unfortunately, those two dignitaries fouled up the other-wise flawlessly executed attack by trying to drag along a "cask of infinite beer" they had found, and claiming that two Carthaginian agents named Al'Muldari and Sculazi were helping them secretly. In the ensuing gun-battle with the Kievian guards, Wilhelm was killed and Dobryio wounded and recaptured.

An effort to convince Baron Rhakovski of Alfold to pay more taxes ended with mutual insults, a slapped glove and Count Vasilyko bleeding his life out on a dueling ground. The province of Alfold repudiated the Kievian regime immediately thereafter.

To: Her Excellency, Anna Kournos
Regent for Prince Boris, Principality of Kiev

My Dear Excellency,
It is with profound shock and sadness that I write you. It has recently come to my attention that a member of my household has by their own accord placed themselves in the service of the Dobryio family, formerly of Capri, formerly of Wallachia, and that they have engaged in what can only be described as a nefarious enterprise, an enterprise whose apparent sole purpose was to infringe on the sovereignty of your good Kievan Principality.
Rest assured that, ancient historical ties between Wallachia and Poland aside, it is the official position of my government that Prince Boris and, by extension of the office of Regency, yourself, are the sole and legal sovereigns of the province of Alfold, or indeed any other province which may have in the near or distant past been ruled by members of the Dobryio family.
Words cannot express the feelings of shame and anger this individual has generated, a man who has caused such difficulty for my country by willingly, indeed enthusiastically, engaging in unlawful acts of rowdiness. I hesitate to use the term "international desperado" only in the knowledge that it would only please said individual greatly, and that it conveys a level of competence that has not, to date, been displayed.
Excellency, at this moment I wish to convey to you that despite the fact a warrant for the arrest of Wilhelm of Lausatia was issued by the Royal Polish Constabulary dated March 14th, 1752, on a charge of high treason, my government will not seek to extradite the accused now in your custody, for we have supreme confidence that the Kievan High Courts will be able to pass a suitable and appropriate sentence.

Most sincere regards,
Frieda Leczinski
Duchess of Poland

1755 - 1756 T213
Kiev: The exiled Wallachian prince Dobryio, held captive by the regional authorities in Banat, managed to crawl out the window of an outhouse and escape into the woods. He was not recaptured.

1757 - 1758 T214
Kiev: Minded their own business. But would anyone leave them alone? No!

Baklovakia: to time they had noticed the tyrannically-oppressed natives of Banat were more-or-less understandable, also liked a good pastry, and brewed some mighty fierce fire water. Unfortunately, these like-minded patriots had long been the despotic, iron-handed rule of Princess Anna of Kiev.

So, when Banat suddenly erupted in revolt in the spring of ’57 and the Baklovakian Revolutionary Guard just happened to be loitering around the border, waiting for an excuse to go charging across into Kievian territory, everyone put it down to a happy, though unlikely, coinkydink.

Prince Ivan of Kiev, however, did happen to be on watch in Banat with four thousand Russian troops and this led to a bit of a scrap at Passelovitch’s Brewery between the Revolutionary Guard and the Russ. Despite the Bakkies fielding nearly twice their number, the Russians under Prince Ivan fought the attackers to a draw, slaughtered the rebellious peasants and then managed to slip away in the night while the Bakkies were stumbling around in a stunned daze at the beating they’d received.

Unfortunately for Ivan, he’d suffered heavy losses too, and while he retired in good order, he no longer had the men to garrison the province, so it fell to the Baklovakians anyway.

1759 – 1760 T215
Kiev: With Prince Boris still missing, the Queen-Regent ordered all security doubled for her other sons and the more reputable generals. At the same time, the cities of Debrecen and Nikolayev expanded to handle a steadily growing foreign trade. Work also continued in repairing the damage done to Kiev province itself.

Anna did summon the patriarch of Kiev to her, along with all of his advisors and theologians and she challenged those white-bearded old men to rectify the emergence of supernatural forces upon the Earth with what was foretold in scripture.

“Is apocalypse upon us?” She asked. “Is this the end of days?”

But the holy men had no answer for her.

The failure of the religious establishment to deal with the new realities of the world was punctuated by the absolute collapse of an effort to convert the Hussite peasantry of Wallachia to adopt the Greek rite. The presence of the bull-headed Marshal Belanus and ten thousand of Cossacks in the province didn’t help anyone’s peace of mind though. There were rumors of arrests and ‘dissapearances’.

As prince Boris had not returned from wherever he’d been taken, and no demands had been made by his kidnappers, Queen-Regent Anna declared her younger (handsomer, brighter) son Ivan Prince of Kiev and heir. Ivan immediately married a rich Moldavian girl and got her preggers.

Swedish-Russia: Swedish clergy attempted to pursue reconciliation with the patriarch of Kiev, but even as the prince of the south had failed to get the quarrelsome and reactionary priests to agree on anything, so too were the Swedish overtures rejected.

Republic of Spain: A tidy trade in Russian wheat began, providing the cities of Spain with bread and the Kournos dynasty in Kiev with ready cash.

'1761 – 1762 T216
Kiev: Under a new forward-looking regime, the southern Russian principality continued to thrive. Babadag in Dobruja and Debrecen in Moldavia expanded. Nikolayev was fortified against further trouble in Sweden. The bright future did not, however, include Queen Anna who suffered a stroke and died in the fall of ’61. Her dutiful son Ivan at last became Prince in fact as well as name.

Under Ivan’s rule, an immediate program was started to modernize the army, restore discipline, and regional autonomy was granted to the Galich, Volhynians and Gorynites. By these means the Prince hoped to focus his efforts. Of course, this didn’t mean the Principate wasn’t going to keep a close eye on the Polish border – oh no, Marshal Belanus was soon in evidence with 9,000 cossacks to patrol the frontier.

1763 – 1764 T217
Kiev: A rare creature among the squabbly Europeans, the Kievians minded their own affairs. The city of Debrecen expanded, and a string of custom’s sheds were established along the Baklovakian border to try and stamp out the poodle-smuggling trade. Prince Ivan did, however, turn some his attention to the mercantile interests of the Principate and invested in nearly a dozen ships with the larger mercantile houses.

Efforts were also made in the south to quietly edge out the Hussite liturgy used in many rural parishes.

1765 – 1766 T218
Kiev: The prince, having followed the discussion of Nemesis in the papers with close interest, ordered the construction of an impregnable redoubt at Targu Neamt on a high plateau overlooking the broad valley of Moldavia. His family was immediately sent to safety there, while Ivan bravely continued to administer the realm from Debrecen. The Principate also continued a long-standing program of fortifying the borders.

Efforts to convert the last of the Wallachian ‘old believers’ – that is, the peasantry still practicing the Hussite liturgy in Wallachia and Dobruja – failed, as they were stalwart and pugnacious in their faith. “The true king will return,” the peasants muttered in their beer, “he will come to save us when things are worst.”[2]

[2] This ignored the demonstrable fact that the True King of Wallachia, Mikhail Dobryio, spent his days drinking and whoring in the fleshpots of Warsaw.

1767 – 1768 T219
ARF: The air courier service rearranged its priorities and opened a number of new routes. AirPost mail traffic into and out of Rostov now included swift deliveries to Kiev, Semnan, Kingston, Astakana, Rome, Komarno, Warsaw, Baghdad, Valetia, Alexandria, Augostino, Bukhara, St. George the Defender, Mount Tabor, London, Corunna, Cimmura, Paris, Al-Harkam, Kabul, Riga and Cerkes.

Kiev: Despite the fact that no further meteors had crashed to earth, the Kievians continued to work on their hidden mountain fortresses, digging them deeper and stocking them with more supplies, just in case. In the south, Orthodox missionaries continued to plague the Hussite farmers with cheaply printed tracts, long dialogues on the materiality of Christ and demands for donations.

1769–1770 T220
Kiev: After one of his ministers mentioned that the hardy peasants of the land had been neglected for years, the prince decided to make monies, agricultural advice and supplies, better schooling and hospitals available to the country people as they attempted to reclaim the country from the nightmare of the Ice. Sadly, Ivan realized the cities, in particular old Kiev, are not what they might be, but in an age of famine the country must be verdant before anyone dared move back into the cities.

Part of his effort at rural revitalization was the promotion of a tobacco crop in Kiev. By the end of '70 the state-sponsored Tobacco Trust had distributed a series of snappy posters to promote itself throughout Russia, Sweden, and beyond! "Breathe deep, citizens! What you taste is the future!"

Soon after trying some Kalach Sweet the Prince suffered a near-stroke and heart-palpitations and was bedridden for much of a year before recover. "Hooo… that is strong!"

The general resurgence (one cannot truly say 'renaissance' yet, as the goats wandering the streets of still-ruined Kiev know no Latin, though are familiar with many Greeks) led by Prince Ivan extended to the Orthodox church as well, where many priests were dispatched to Wallachia to win back the hearts of the mostly Hussite peasantry.
Much more rarified circles - that is, the court – where entertained and enlightened by the arrival of the Elder Zosima, a man of renowned piety and theological knowledge. The grave, white-bearded monk had been summoned to attend the education of the Swedish Tsarevitch Kjell, who had recently been dispatched (no, not banished you trolltongued wretch!) to learn the quaint ways of the Kievians and keep him far from his mother's machinations in Riga. A great deal of wheat and rye was sent north in exchange.
One of Zosima's first lectures to the truculent and bored, Kjellevitch was a discussion of the noble lineage of the his hosts, the Kournos: "My son, it is a point of fact not often realized by foreigners that the House of Sviatoslav enjoys rule over Wallachia de jure as well as de facto. They are the true heirs to the Ferenczy dynasty, as Grand Duchess Raina of Pechneg, the Pale Filicide of Craiova, murdered the reigning branch of the Ferenczy family (her husband Lodmund Ferenczy and their young son) in (turn 175).
Jamis Thurn, maternal ancestor of the Kievan royal family and cousin of the old Wallachian House of Ferenczy, had previously made himself master of Kiev with the 'Zap Gun' in (turn 172), liberating that city from the tyranny of Sigismund (murdered by his own serfs) and Lodmund Ferenczy.
Through Jamis's only child -- a daughter -- your host, Prince Ivan, traces his claim to the Wallachian throne, as opposed to the usurping, bloodthirsty (literally, some say - for all that Pripen of Hundora may have had some good in him) Dobriyo clan."

Princes

  • Ivan Kournos 1759-date
  • Anna Kournos (regent) 1747-1759
  • Vladimir III 1739-1747

Players

  • T219 Open
  • T217-TT218 Roger Bennett
  • T216 Open
  • T215 Scott Stricklin
  • T209-T214 Leslie Nielsen
  • T205-T208 Leslie Dodd

Last updated: 23 September 2003

© 2003 Robert Pierce

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