Over the course of the hundred years that comprised the Flame War in what is now northeastern Dolovai and was at the time a principality called Dallarjon, the descendants of a farmhand named Oswin Noscar rose to increasing prominence. By the formal end of the Flame War in SC 1706, Oswin’s descendants had changed their family name to Nascre and named themselves the monarchy of the newly formed kingdom of Dallarjon, which nobody challenged, given their position at the head of all the former principality’s armies.
Dallarjon was built out of the ashes of three waves of Flame War invaders coupled with huge numbers of those invaders living in the region as settlers. At the end of the Flame War, Octavia Nascre I, the first queen of Dallarjon, married Baltasar the White, great great-grandson of the former Jesperi emperor Bjorn who’d launched the Flame War invasions in the first place. Though Baltasar’s family was no longer in charge of Jesper and he himself held no power over the community of settlers in Dallarjon, their marriage was a statement both that the disparate peoples of Dallarjon were now one people, and also that the conflict specifically between House Nascre and the Jesperi settlers was over, putting to rest decades-long frustrations that ancestors of Queen Octavia had, in fact, worked with the Jesperi invaders after the assassination of Emperor Bjorn to weed out those still loyal to him.
With that time in their history definitively past, House Nascre led Dallarjon into an era of rebuilding and prosperity, ensuring within a few decades that everyone forgot about the time when they’d been allied with people trying to conquer their nation. Over the next ten centuries, House Nascre ruled Dallarjon with what historians would consider an iron fist, but also considerable fairness and compassion. They maintained a larger standing army than any other nation on Menechit, but it was used only to patrol their borders and prevent incursions from Dolovai and the Yavhorel nations, the former of which became somewhat more common as time went on. Dolovai was always an expansionist nation and Dallarjon never was, preferring to vigorously defend the territory they had, rather than seek more out.
In addition to defending peace without choosing war, House Nascre also outlawed slavery and built public hospitals in every city in Dallarjon, insisting that all their subjects had the rights to freedom and health, as well as food. They created a national program to distribute grain and other food products across the country, ensuring that their citizens, especially those in the far northern regions, didn’t starve. Dolovin historians like to report on how high Dallarja taxes were, but often fail to mention that those taxes were used to fund social programs that helped everyone in the kingdom. The Nascre monarchy didn’t live as lavishly as monarchs from other nations, though they did of course have a palace with servants and so forth, but House Nascre itself insisted on not being unnecessarily wealthy, devoting their gold to maintaining their nation, and their armies.
The armies were the main point of criticism during the Nascre monarchy’s rule. Even during times of peace they maintained a powerful, omnipresent army that many felt was unnecessary. House Nascre always argued that Dolovai could try to invade at any moment and that the army was therefore necessary. Indeed, Dallarjon and Dolovai did fight a number of small-scale wars, which House Nascre always used to bolster its points. Of course, at the end of the day, they always were the ones controlling the arguably unnecessary standing armies, so nobody was in much of a position to do anything about it.
In SC 2658, the threat posed by Dolovai became all too clear when they invaded Porean. Dallarjon and Porean were neighbours and House Nascre and House Hardtusk were on good terms, but the large mountain range between them rendered a military alliance unreasonable, and so House Nascre could do little but watch and prepare as Dolovai conquered their neighbour. In what many believe to be the largest military mistake in the history of Menechit, about fifty years after Dolovai successfully conquered Porean, Queen Octavia III decided to break Dallarjon’s usual preference for defence rather than offence and attack Dolovai, hoping that their staggered economy wouldn’t be able to support another war in the wake of the recent invasion.
Unfortunately this did not work, and Octavia was unable to extricate herself or her country from the war she’d started. Forty-five years later, she was killed and her young son Otto X took the throne. Many urged him to surrender, and the war did cool off for a few years, but he chose to redouble his mother’s efforts and resume attacking Dolovai, ordering his armies to fight naked as some of Dallarjon’s most famous historical armies did. Unfortunately, Otto seemed to have forgotten that Octavia II’s armies were magically enchanted and didn’t need armour, and that Owen IV’s armies were only naked when they weren’t winning impressive victories.
It is also possible that Otto did know these things and didn’t care. As far as anyone could tell, all he knew about militaries were that he liked to fuck soldiers, and he spent most of the closing years of House Nascre’s rule doing as much of that as possible in the hopes that it would raise morale and help his troops win their battles. For a time the war turned around, Dolovin troops suffering heavy losses thanks to a rainy summer, but eventually on the first day of winter in SC 2801, what is now known as the Battle of the Day of Ice, or Paska Tenevera in Dallarjon’s native language of Chovest, Otto’s armies were definitively routed and Otto himself supposedly killed in battle, dying without an heir and ending the line of House Nascre at the same time that Dallarjon fell as a nation.
The destruction of House Nascre was directly responsible for the immediate and unconditional surrender that followed the battle. The people of Dallarjon couldn’t imagine themselves fighting on without their monarchs, and indeed many couldn’t imagine a kingdom called Dallarjon without House Nascre to lead it. Dallarjon became part of Dolovai and various Dolovin nobles put in place to lead it, none of whom ever reached the levels of popularity enjoyed by House Nascre even at their lowest points. To this day, anti-royalist sentiments are strongest in this part of Dolovai, despite nearly a thousand years having passed since the destruction of House Nascre.
House Nascre, however, was not as destroyed as was reported. Otto was reported to have died childless and unmarried, no part of which was true. Otto survived the Battle of the Day of Ice, escaping with his lover Ewan of West Wood, whom he secretly married the night before the battle. They fled to the town of West Wood, where they lived for six years, happy together but also sad to watch the Dolovin monarchy reverse some of House Nascre’s better policies. After six years, they decided they’d find a way to fight back, and went off on a journey to find a legendary floating castle Ewan claimed to know the location of. Unfortunately, they were killed before they reached it, stopping to defend a town from bandits, which they did successfully but at the cost of their own lives.
Two years prior to that, Otto and Ewan had been drinking heavily and, on a dare, Otto had reciprocated the sexual advances of a merchant’s daughter named Katarina Westbirch. In his first and only experience having sex with a woman, Otto got Katarina pregnant, unbeknownst to both him and Ewan. Katarina’s son Oscar grew up to be a bricklayer and had four children of his own.
Today, King Otto’s descendants live mostly normal lives, most of them in the region that used to be Dallarjon. Their exact number is unknown, since nobody knows they’re there to bother counting them, though if anyone were keeping track, they could trace the oldest children of oldest children directly from King Otto to a modern town called Great Scar. Of course it doesn’t really matter because even if any of them knew they were descended from a king, there’s nothing left for them to lay claim to. House Nascre no longer exists and everyone from old Dallarjon is a citizen of Dolovai now. No matter how beloved they were at the time, if someone showed up today claiming to be the heir to House Nascre, most likely nobody would care except for maybe House ven Sancte, who would doubtless not appreciate the challenge to their sovereignty. House Nascre is gone as is the kingdom it formed, and for better or worse, everyone is probably safer that way.
From “A Primer on Menechit’s Politics Past and Present,” by Tam Son of Matthew, published in the Citadel and updated DN 1991.
6 thoughts on “Friday Lore Post: A History of House Nascre”
“House Nascre is gone as is the kingdom it formed, and for better or worse, everyone is probably safer that way.”
If this were true, there wouldn’t be an extensive lore post about it.
Also, several main characters are Nascres, and main characters change the equation dramatically. As do the ongoing revelations of extensive corruption in the Dolovin royal family, and the future reveal of Djyekkan and its more egalitarian policies, which old Dallarjon coincidentally just so happened to share…
😀 Surely a lore post could hypothetically exist about something that isn’t at all important ever and that I don’t want anyone to know about or pay attention to. Surely.
But yes, you are right that main characters do very intensely change the math here. Maybe they wouldn’t have come to much if their clearest modern branch wasn’t the family of at least one of our main characters, but given all else that’s happening and how their current heir is positioned, there might well be a change coming…and you’re right, the eventual emergency of Djyekkan is going to change the equation again too…
For an ancient fallen kingdom, Dallarjon had remarkably progressive policies. In fact, it looks suspiciously like someone with decidedly modern-Earth ideas of governance (public healthcare, extensive national infrastructure, outlawed slavery, a standing army rather than conscripts and mercenaries) was placed in charge of a medieval kingdom.
It does kind of seem like that! And of course, that’s not at all impossible, so maybe it happened. Or maybe the penguin who decides these things just got uppity. It’s really 50/50 at this point!
“ No matter how beloved they were at the time, if someone showed up today claiming to be the heir to House Nascre, most likely nobody would care except for maybe House ven Sancte, who would doubtless not appreciate the challenge to their sovereignty. ”
What challenge to their sovereignty? Even if Owen were the heir (is he?) and was revealed as such, he married a ven Sancte and took his name. That’s not a threat to sovereignty, that’s a marriage alliance.
This is of course correct! Even if Owen were to 1. Know about, 2. Care about and 3. Make a point of declaring his lineage, all that would mean is that House Nascre is no longer an opponent of House ven Sancte, because they’re the same house now. 😀 Thanks!