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Stopping the Sharonan advance

"Hell's Gate" and "Hell Hath No Fury", by David, Linda Evans, and Joelle Presby, take the clash of science and magic to a whole new dimension...join us in a friendly discussion of this engrossing series!
Re: Stopping the Sharonan advance
Post by Keith_w   » Sun Sep 20, 2015 6:16 am

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SYED wrote:I bet he never realised how capable or dangerous a non gifted military could be. Or the sheer extent of the losses or duration of the conflict. He thought it would be a short victorius war, but totslly paihting his opponets in a poor frame. He is open to judgement concernibg the logistical and supply portion of the conflict. He now has to work to ensure that he is not tainted or dragged under by the negative results ofcthe fight.
We are guessing that the duke will take action most likely politically. Try to end the war via a peaceful solution, with the hell gate world goibg to the empire.


I think that a successful war, short or long, was not his primary goal, merely a beneficial secondary target. His primary target was the Mythalan war against the Andaran military leadership. He is already beginning to denounce the attack against the Sharonans, lead by Harshu with anti-kerellian accord intelligence gathering by Neshok, both Ardarans. Indeed, if the war had been unsuccessful, that might have been even better for Gurthic's ultimate goal of discrediting Arcanan military leadership.
--
A common mistake people make when trying to design something completely foolproof is to underestimate the ingenuity of complete fools.
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Re: Stopping the Sharonan advance
Post by SYED   » Sun Sep 20, 2015 12:56 pm

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He is currently striping supplies and forces from near by worlds. He might be balmed if his actions have negative consequences. I keep thinking is it at all possible, that war will reach his base. The land and sea distances is too much in unkown worlds.
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Re: Stopping the Sharonan advance
Post by brnicholas   » Sun Sep 20, 2015 7:22 pm

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I'm continuing the structure to try and keep things making sense.

0) You're welcome.
1) Thanks
2) Mul Gurthak's brownie points may well do all those things. But they appear to believe their officers can rise without two and vos Dulainah has already done three in so well that doing it more is unnecessary. So the only real benefit for the plan is 1.

Plan Gurthak is the following

1) Yes it was the original plan and mul Gurthak revived it during his interview with vos Hovan.
2) Yes, it is done, I actually divided 2 & 3 based on what was done by the end of HHNF and what I believe comes next.
3) Yes that his presence is required is speculative. However, we know that he plans to do three things. First, portray Harshu as acting without orders in attacking Sharona. Second, have the violations of the Accords go public. Third, perform the murders you mentioned. I don't see how he can make anyone believe the first if he doesn't move into a position to supervise Harshu closely enough to prevent him from from going rogue again. I don't see how he can save his own career (which I do think he cares about) and avoid having all Mythalans splashed as a result of the second if he isn't the one who puts a stop to them and punishes those responsible. Both of those seem to require him to move much closer to the front, and conducting the murders by letter over a long com delay seems much riskier then handling things personally.

If the plan works

1) We agree
2) We agree
3) If this is what you meant by brownie points I don't see how you think this is more valuable to the Mythal plan then publicly catching an entire division's worth of Andaran officers engaged in illegal and dishonorable conduct which endangers the Union? Can you help me understand?

Nicholas

Howard T. Map-addict wrote:0) Thank you, Nicholas.

1) I agree.

2) This could be both the system and individuals.

It follows) mul Gurthak's brownie points would be
first) for himself, but
second) they would reflect well on other Mythal officers
in the Union Army.
third) This would show that Mythalans are
not necessarily bound by their system.

Plan Gurthak is following:
1) This was the original Plan, before Sharona appeared.

2) This could not be even conceived of,
until Sharona appeared.
By the end of HHNF it had been *accomplished!*
Very quick work by Gurthak. Master Politician!

3) We have seen Gurthak's thoughts about his Plans for
Harshu, Carthos, Neshok, and Klian.
Three of them he intends to murder, in varying ways.
I do not recall him thinking about whether or not his
presence would be necessary to work his Plans.
That Protocol might require his physical presence.
He has so far preferred to work from a distance.
He has already "discovered" those Ill Deeds,
by official messages and by his spies.

If the Plan works)
1) Yes. 2) Yes
3) This is what I meant by "brownie points."

HTM

brnicholas wrote:0) You two have had an interesting discussion that got me thinking. In this case though, my thinking disagrees with both of you. My thoughts are based on two main premises.

1) The Union of Arcana's power structure is quite stable. If it wasn't the Mythalans would have destroyed it in the last 200 years of trying.

2) The hatred for Mythal is based on its caste system and the laws necessary to maintain that, not based on what individual Mythalans have done.

It follows from #2 that when you both say in different ways that "Negotiating a peace would earn Mythal brownie points" you are wrong. The Mythalan caste system must change before Mythal can start earning brownie points. The truth is that negotiating a peace would earn mul Gurthik brownie points. Mul Gurthik earning brownie points might improve his position and thus lead to him being better able to advance the plan but doesn't directly advance the plan at all.

I think the plan mul Gurthik is following (which we haven't been shown in full and whose full contents I speculate about below) will do a lot two advance the plan. As I see it his plan has 3 parts.

1) Using vos Hoven and connections on New Arcana get Jasek convicted of incompetence and dishonor before the court of public opinion. It would probably be better if the court martial actually let him off because that would leave the people convinced of his guilt wondering about the honor of the whole army.

2) Mul Gurthik will use position and agents to manipulate Harshu and the entire officer corps of the AEF into attacking Sharona and torturing Sharonans on their own authority.

3) When mul Gurthik receives Harshu's report of the decision to attack he will act publicly outraged and flabbergasted at how Harshu had misinterpreted his orders. Then he will move to the front as fast as possible (this may take time given the dragon shortage) to reign Harshu in. When he arrives at the front he will "discover" the torture of prisoners and other Kerrelian Accord violations. He can then act outraged at these abuses and toss Harshu and any other officer who is on record as supporting or covering up for such acts (but wasn't actually conspiring with mul Gurthik) in chains and send them to New Arcana for trial.

If this whole plan worked, and we already know Harshu has limited its effectiveness by setting things up so he was the only officer officially responsible for the torture, it would do several things.

1) It would make Jasek and his father politically unsuited to being brought in as outsiders to clean up corruption in the High Commandery.

2) It would sharply reduce public trust in the Andaran Officer Corps by showing a large number of officers to be collectively involved in bad behavior.

3) It would strengthen mul Gurthik's public reputation for respecting the values of the Union. While the High Commandery would certainly blame him for not supervising Harshu more closely and might suspect what really happened, public opinion would prevent them from punishing him.

Given the stability of the Union I do not think this would bring down the Union but it would burn a lot of the Andaran Officer Corps political capital and make it more likely that after two or three more major scandals the public will insist on outsiders (who mul Gurthik's superiors hope will be their agents) being brought in to clean up the army.

All of the above means mul Gurthik's plan will achieve a lot more then just making peace would.

Nicholas

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Re: Stopping the Sharonan advance
Post by SYED   » Mon Sep 21, 2015 2:58 am

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What will happen if his back up assasins are killed during the conflict? Either by the advancing forces or soldier that are disgusted by the accord breaking.

That kid, who was a voice, and who lost his father impersonating him. What world was he in? I ask, because apparently dragon react to a voice, so could he act against them?
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Arcanan retreat re: Stopping the Sharonan advance
Post by Howard T. Map-addict   » Mon Sep 21, 2015 4:51 pm

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Agreement first.
22) Yes, chan Geraith will set the trap with only his
2nd brigade (reinforced) with few more than 3,000
soldiers + heavy weapons.
AEF still has more than three times those soldiers,
+ dragons and unicorns for mobility. If AEF can deploy
them properly, and meet 2nd brigade on a wide-open
plain instead of near a Gate, they could win.

33) I agree with your judgement.
There's no reason to leave more than a small holding
force opposite Salby. But Harshu might stay there anyway,
because of desire to hold what AEF had gained, or simple
inertia. He is a junior officer (colonel-equivalent)
without previous experience in war.

11) Chan Geraith could trap them at either the Thermyn-
New Uromath or the Thermyn-Failcham Gate. If he can hold
both aspects, then he has artillery advantage.
But Weber & Presby will decide all encounters as their
plot requires.
Are you familiar with the French retreat from Naples in 1494?

HTM

brnicholas wrote:11) Chan Geraith {snip - htm} has to be sitting on
the Swamp Portal in Hell's Gate to interfere with
dragons evacuating the AEF. The big question
will be when do they decide the need to evacuate

22) (assuming they do need to evacuate - chan Geraith
is going to be way, way, way out on a limb
they might be able to stop or kill him)
and where are the various people and creatures they need at that time.

33) After all, if they can hold the cut at all they can do it with 2000 men so there is no good reason I can see to keep the whole AEF in Karys.

Nicholas

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PING brnicholas re: Stopping the Sharonan advance
Post by Howard T. Map-addict   » Mon Sep 21, 2015 5:19 pm

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Snipping all points of agreement for some brevity.

My point, as with Peter,
is that the Mythal conspirators expect some things,
but I expect other things.

Magister Halathyn is an Exception to all Rules,
and to all Expectations.
None of his deeds reflect on any other Mythalan.
Mul Gurthak is considered typical among those Mythalans
who became Union Army officers. (He may actually be,
depending on what those others are doing.)
Any honor he earns, or appears to earn,
will make those others look good in the eyes of Ransarans
and other Arcanans.

Of course, any dishonor he is caught in now will make
all those Mythalans officers very suspect indeed.
It would likely ruin their credibility for that whole generation.

That brings me to your question ##3)##.
The Mythalans likely do hold that publically disgracing
a division-worth of Andaran officers would help their
Plan more than anything else. Indeed, that is what that
Plan is out to achieve!

Me, I disagree with that idea.
I doubt that disgracing Andarans will help Mythalans
so very much.
I deem that they would do better to make themselves
look good: like Civilized People who can live at peace
with Ransarans, other Arcanans, and even Outworlders.
Thus I further deem that making peace with those
OUtworlders would help them significantly more than
their Original Plan would.
If Mythalans such as vos-and-mul Gurthak could only see
that (but of course they can't).

And then, corruption within a group might be corrected.
People familiar with large groups know this.
Look at large Earthly groups that have not been destroyed
by massive scandals and corruptions.

Best I can explain.

HTM

PS we do not need to see how things can happen,
for those things to happen.
We can always be surprised.
Especially by a Storyteller!

brnicholas wrote:I'm continuing the structure to try and keep things making sense.

2) Mul Gurthak's brownie points may well do
all those things. But they appear to believe
their officers can rise without {number?} two and
{Magister Halathyn} vos Dulainan has already done
{#} three in so well that doing it more is unnecessary.
So the only real benefit for the plan is 1.

Plan Gurthak is the following

3) Yes that his presence is required is speculative. However, we know that he plans to do three things. First, portray Harshu as acting without orders in attacking Sharona. Second, have the violations of the Accords go public. Third, perform the murders you mentioned. I don't see how he can make anyone believe the first if he doesn't move into a position to supervise Harshu closely enough to prevent him from from going rogue again. I don't see how he can save his own career (which I do think he cares about) and avoid having all Mythalans splashed as a result of the second if he isn't the one who puts a stop to them and punishes those responsible. Both of those seem to require him to move much closer to the front, and conducting the murders by letter over a long com delay seems much riskier then handling things personally.

If the plan works

1) We agree
2) We agree
##3)## If this is what you meant by brownie points
I don't see how you think this is more valuable to the Mythal plan then publicly catching an entire division's worth of Andaran officers engaged in illegal and dishonorable conduct which endangers the Union?
Can you help me understand?

Nicholas

Howard T. Map-addict wrote:0) Thank you, Nicholas.

2) This could be both the system and individuals.

It follows) mul Gurthak's brownie points would be
first) for himself, but second) they would reflect
well on other Mythal officers in the Union Army.
third) This would show that Mythalans are
not necessarily bound by their system.

Plan Gurthak is following:
{snip 1 & 2}

3) We have seen Gurthak's thoughts about his Plans for
Harshu, Carthos, Neshok, and Klian.
Three of them he intends to murder, in varying ways.
I do not recall him thinking about whether or not his
presence would be necessary to work his Plans.
That Protocol might require his physical presence.
He has so far preferred to work from a distance.
He has already "discovered" those Ill Deeds,
by official messages and by his spies.


3) This is what I meant by "brownie points."

HTM
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Re: Stopping the Sharonan advance
Post by Astelon   » Mon Sep 21, 2015 6:32 pm

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I too am unsure how mul Gurthak uses the current situation to his organization's advantage. It looks as if, at best, he can come out looking good and maybe slightly tarnishing Jasek's image. To do that he would likely have to come to some positive arrangement with Sharona very quickly, however the death of Janaki in an unprovoked (from Sharonian view) attack makes that unlikely. The rest of the Arcanans' illegal actions only further decrease the already slim chances (once they are discovered).

As for stripping universes under his command of supplies and transports, mul Gurthak is only doing his duty to the best of his ability. The worst that could be said is that it should have been unnecessary (if no war with Sharona had occurred).

It appears that mul Gurthak truly believed that opponents without magic would not be able to put up effective resistance, and therefore would be forced to accept whatever Arcana decided to give them (with respect to access of Hell's Gate and the portal cluster). If that is the case he is about to find out that his calculations are in error.
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Re: Stopping the Sharonan advance
Post by n7axw   » Mon Sep 21, 2015 9:22 pm

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I don't know how the authors are going to play it, but it looks to me like there has to be a negotiated settlement between Arcana and Sharona sooner or later.

The serious question is how much sparing around and shedding of blood will happen first...

Both sides are too far away from the other's home universe to decisively project force into the other's home base. Raids, perhaps yes. But effective invasion, no. The difficulty of sustaining logistics that far at their current tech level will defeat any attempt to maintain forces large enough to conduct an invasion.

The image going through my mind is Napoleon's invasion of Russia and retreat from Moscow.

What do the rest of you think? Am I wrong?

Don
When any group seeks political power in God's name, both religion and politics are instantly corrupted.
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Re: Stopping the Sharonan advance
Post by PeterZ   » Mon Sep 21, 2015 11:39 pm

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It depends on motivation. If Sharona remains convinced the Arcanans are brutal barbarians, they will spend decades taking universe after universe away from Arcana. At one point the Arcanans break out WMDs. Until then I suspect Sharona will remain motivated to fight and take universes from Arcana.
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Re: Stopping the Sharonan advance
Post by SYED   » Tue Sep 22, 2015 2:22 am

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I can see the war continuing till they have regained that portal in the swamp, it is smaller than most, and the terrain is tricky, so great chock point.
i agree there will be a negotiated settlement. THe arcanum forces are dependant on magic to sustain their logistics. If they augement themselves with technology, magic can be resereved for more important jobs or their system merely improved. That represent such a great value that they might be willing to pay reparations and seed hell gate to them even if there are multiple portals there. The potential markeys of selling hteir unique goods to a muti universe spanning empire is incalcuble.
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