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Post by Orc on Sat May 09, 2009 10:09 am

-Originally posted by GrayWatch-

The year is 1782, and the world will never be the same.

Nineteen years ago eccentric inventor James Watt unveiled his Steam Engine.
At first dismissed as a curio, albeit a potentially useful one that
nonetheless would never replace the current methods, he launched into a
cross-Europe tour, attempting to find any backers to use his engine. He
was eventually taken up by a mining company in the Gaul, in which his
engine was primarily used to pump water out of mines. Curious about the
sudden increase in mine out-put a bureaucrat of the Empire investigated.
The man must have been of a mechanical bent, for when he saw the pumps
and the engines that drove them the entire area was immediately locked

Five days later the lock down was lifted. The engine, along with Mr.
Watt and the bureaucrat himself were long gone.

Five years later the Gaul Empire responded to a minor border raid from the Alexandrian Empire with devastating force. The few survivors described terrible automatons of metal and steam. Reports indicate that a lucky shot caused one of the automatons to explode, shrapnel and steam inflicting heavy casualties on
both sides of the conflict, as well as substantially damaging the other
automatons. Following this the response team managed a successful

Incensed by this sudden escalation of hostilities the Alexandrian
Empire brought its’ standing military to order. Unwilling to enter into a large
scale war Gaul opened diplomatic channels and attempted to sue for peace.

Willing to listen, the attempt was received, if in somewhat ill grace.
Approximately six tense months later the schematics of Watts’ original steam
engine was given over to the Alexandrian Empire, and a political marriage between one of the Gaul royal family to a cousin of the Alexandrian Steward was arranged, and peace was declared.

Shortly following this, in an attempt to maintain the balance of power a mole from the UWI obtained the plans to Watt’s Steam Engine and sent copies to every major European country. The UWI denies it was an agent of theirs to this day, and only the man’s own testimony under torture supports this conclusion.

Over the following six years most of Europe
underwent something of an Industrial Revolution, steam power and invention
making themselves known. However as the “patent” for the steam engine belonged to
the governments any company employing them quickly found they had best have a
member of the nobility to support them, or risk being taxed to death.

Seven years later seditionists in Southern Gaul
organized a massive blow against the Empire. Nearly overnight the Emperor and
his immediate heirs were killed. With the succession unclear the Alexandrian
Empire declared that the royal family member married into their family now held
the right of succession, and moved to create the Greater Alexandrian Empire,
from the union of the two nations. The other nations immediately objected,
citing various members of their own nobility as likely heirs. Indeed even the
experts admitted that the succession was unclear.

The Gaul people themselves were in uproar.
The war was barely over and they were already being asked to bend knee to the
foreign dogs that had haunted their borders so long? Never! As such several
dozen factions have arisen within, all proposing different candidates for the
throne, some actually proposing different forms of government. For now the state
is still running without an Emperor, but cannot remain so for long.

As the assorted arguments grew more intense an attempted assassination on
the Alexandrian "traitor prince" was carried out by Gaul
nationalists. Though the attempt failed many of the identified participants
fled to Iberia.

Backed by the political bloc supporting Prince Yeager for the Throne
of Gaul the Alexandrian military attacked eastern Gaul, but found itself outmatched
by the Gaul armies.

Mean while on the border of western Gaul
riots were breaking out, seemingly over the rising cost of food, due both to
the unstable economy following the rapid success of industrial plants using
steam-engines, and the cost of war. As the riots began to spiral out of control
local forces were dispatched by heavy-handed nobles to quell the riots.
While better outfitted the quelling forces were severely outnumbered and not
accustomed to house-to-house fighting found in cities. In response to such
callous treatment by their own nobles one "Lady Bleu” managed to marshal
the rioting forces from a set of squabbling angry bands into a nigh full-scale
rebellion, which proceeded to devastate the quelling military presence.

To Be Continued

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