Part 11: Invasion 1203 - 1215
Following the war for the Duchy of Somerset, we grant the titles of those counties to some of our friends and kinsman. The title to the Duchy of Somerset is granted to Aedan the lusty hunchback. To celebrate our victory, we invite all the lords of our realm to Dublin for a great feast.
One of our Bishops gets into an argument with another of our guests at the feast and steps outside to duel his rival. We rush outside to break it up.
Colman scolds them both for ruining his feast. Our king's opinion of both young Duke Aeden and Bishop Cellach are tarnished temporarily by this event.
Back inside, our steward notices another bishop drinking just way too much and suggests that he stop, only to receive a bootful of bishop vomit in response.
By all accounts, it was Feast of the Year for 1204.
A peasant uprising occurs in Connacht which our personal forces is quickly able to subdue.
Queen Mor bears many children for Colman over the years.
Colman's prestige rises to meet his ambition and he becomes known as 'King Colman 'The Great''.
In a troublesome turn of events, the King of Norway is successful in pressing his claim against the independent King of England. The kingdoms of Norway and England are once again united. This is not good news for us.
Norway is currently ruled by King Einar, known as 'the Ironside'. He is wrathful and cruel, but also brave and diplomatic enough to keep his vassals in line.
At full strength he would be capable of calling up more than 30,000 men for war, but his forces are currently only about a third of that following the war to reclaim England.
Our maximum total forces are just below his, but our current forces are far larger than what he can bring against us.
As it turns out, King Einar's relationship with the Pope is not very strong. Because of this, we're capable of requesting a sanctioned invasion of Norway from the Pope through the diplomatic menu with Einar. You can only request invasions on other powers that are larger than you, and you have to have a situation much like this where the Pope likes you and dislikes the other party.
The Pope allows our invasion to proceed with his blessing.
This opens up the possibility for us to attack Norway with the option of 'Invasion'. This tooltip is full of information about the possible outcomes, but it boils down to this: If you win an invasion, you take that person's primary title and personal holdings, and any of his former vassals who were a de jure part of that conquered primary title become your vassals.
Our combined forces meet the armies of King Einar near the northern border of England and claim victory in the field, causing nearly 4 times as many losses as we suffered.
Prisoners are captured from the fleeing army and tossed into our dungeons.
Our larger forces and extremely talented military commanders keep stealing victories in field battles in between sieging English holdings.
After some successful sieges and battles, our forces are allowed to return home and disband temporarily so that we can call them back up with reinforcements after a resting period.
In the mean time, we use our wealth to hire some mercenaries to continue the fight in our stead.
The mercenaries continue skirmishing in northern England until a large enough Norwegian force arrives to rout them entirely. By then though, our own forces have recovered enough to reenter the battle themselves.
Sad news reaches Colman - one of his sons has died of Pneumonia at the age of 14. Crundmael was shaping up to be a talented individual.
Colman's eldest son Fingen comes of age and proves to be as capable as his father. He is talented in many areas, well-liked, and ambitious. He also displays a bit more savvy than his father in matters of intrigue.
Our forces continue to claim victories in battle against the Norwegians by throwing both superior numbers and superior commanders at them.
Even with occasionally returning home to rest our men and return with reinforcements, we manage to make forward progress and siege our way through northern England.
Colman suffers a grievous wound in a recent battle and becomes maimed for life. Even with this physical handicap though, he remains a capable commander.
More mercenaries are hired to harass Norwegian forces while our levies recover.
The sheer number of battles taking place are filling our dungeons with prisoners. Once the war is over, we'll be able to ransom these men off to recoup some of our mercenary expenses.
By 1207, it becomes clear that the King of Norway is completely incapable of defending his lands or winning a battle. We are on the verge of victory.
Einar is forced to surrender the crown of Norway to King Colman.
With his title to Norway stripped from him, Einar falls back to his remaining kingdom title of England. Some of Einar's former personal holdings in Great Britain transfer to Colman while the English Dukes remain vassals of Einar.
Other Norwegian holdings transfer to Colman as well, such as Iceland.
Mainland Norway becomes a confusing mess of Norwegian Dukes forced to swear fealty to Colman, and scattered personal holdings of King Einar.
Our alert icons explode with warnings of duchies we can usurp or create, rebellious dukes, wrong holding types in our demesne, and other things.
We create or usurp any duchy title that we can and make sure those titles are assigned to suitable candidates. Cities and churches are assigned new mayors and bishops, and any other spare scattered counties that we receive are given to loyal Irishmen.
Since the crown of Norway's succession law is elective, we must nominate an heir to Norway's throne. Clicking on the 'Nominate' button here will bring up a list of possible candidates. We can see the laws for our different titles by clicking on the different coat of arms at the top ot the law screen here. We can also click on titles that we don't control, but where we have territory that is a de jure part of that title, such as England or Scotland.
And for now, we want the heir to Norway to be the same as for Ireland - Prince Fingen. Once our nomination is in place, the dukes of Norway will be able to decide whether he deserves their votes. The majority of them ultimately throw their votes in behind our heir.
In 1215, news reaches us that a Khan from the east is approaching Europe with a grand army. Colman dismisses the news as just stories. I'd like to take all of the British Isles, but I never had my eyes set on mainland Norway. Maybe I should actually nominate another of our kinsmen to the crown of Norway and let him deal with consolidating Norway while we deal with the British Isles. The only problem though, is that I'm worried they'll just immediately lose control and fall back into the hands of Einar or another member of his dynasty.