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[IC] Astier Journals (1895 - 1904)

#1
13 October 1895
Safien, Boudereaux

War has broken out in the Terres de l'est. Some place called Transnura has launched an invasion of our allies in the Arari. I don’t know if we should be over there though. I mean we are literally thousands of kilometers from those lands and the Archon says that it is to protect our “allies” but the boys and I don’t think so. Probably money. It’s always about money and at least from down here the men at the top seem to not be able to get enough of it. Funny how they send us to die for their gain.

Anyway, I arrived in Safien today. Never been here before. Beautiful city with even more beautiful girls than back home though so I guess that’s a perk of being a soldier. The number of ships is beyond belief though, I counted at least thirty when I arrived on the train but there has to be twice that many now. I talked with Phillipe and he says that when he arrived from Valastice that there had been nearly that many in their port too. Another boy from up north says there had to have been two or three times that many there too. Sounds like they’re really going for it.

The officers gave a briefing when we arrived saying we were all being shipped out to the Arari Kingdom, our ally in the east. We would be fighting a force of nearly two million enemies from the Transnuran Dominion. Though they just called them the “Dominion.” Supposedly they’re just some lackeys for the Mattoran Empire. Enemies of ours. Chatter is that this war was a while in the making.

Mom said it would be good to keep a journal. Not sure if I agree but we’ll see I guess. She tends to be right about things, least that’s what dad would have said about it. I miss him. Charles said he’s proud of me and that he thinks dad would be too. Volunteering… not something many boys back home are doing. I don’t blame them.

Officers say the journey will take a couple weeks if the weather is good. I hope so, sea sickness is supposed to be rougher than the waves that cause it. Guess I’ll write more later.
Primary - Parthenopias
Secondary - Wakoku
Steward of - Adler, Matorre, Istria, Syndar, Imarq and Nura
Joint Controller of - Seravano
If you have any questions please don't hesitate to let me know! 
Prime Minister of Selene, RP Councillor and WA Delegate.
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#2
25 October 1895
Somewhere between Home and War

Been at sea for about six days now. My ship, the RS Sinclaire was delayed leaving Safien by nearly a week because of a storm. Scrambled the fleet and caused everyone to lose time. Officers are buzzing about and attending all these meetings. Something big is really in the works. The sixty ships we left Safien with have joined up with another fleet of about sixty though not all were transports. Big dreadnoughts are escorting us with their fleets. Makes you feel pretty safe out here on the sea.

Many of the guys are playing cards or telling stories about their home. I tend to just draw pictures in here. Some of the guys have asked me to draw them some stuff. I’m considering making it to where a cigarette would get a man a half a drawing. Two for a full. Gotta make do with the rations after all.

Keeping this one short as not much has changed. Our expected date of arrival is the second or third of November. We’ll see, the seas are already kind of choppy and they say that we might need to slow ourselves to makes sure we stay in formation. Wouldn’t want to get separated out here.
Primary - Parthenopias
Secondary - Wakoku
Steward of - Adler, Matorre, Istria, Syndar, Imarq and Nura
Joint Controller of - Seravano
If you have any questions please don't hesitate to let me know! 
Prime Minister of Selene, RP Councillor and WA Delegate.
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#3
November 4, 1895
Arari Port of Galmesh

We disembarked a couple days ago in Galmesh, bustling coastal port in this country. Been hearing that the front against the Transnurans isn’t going very well. They appear to have broken through and encircles nearly eight divisions of the Kingdom’s forces and one division of our own boys. Really quite a rough patch to be in right about now. Not something all of us greens want to be hearing. The Officers continue to disappear daily into briefing after briefing. Saw some big brass generals today arrive from a requisitioned ocean liner, lucky bastards got to make that journey in comfort. Can’t say the same for us grunts.

The army is supposed to be waiting here in Galmesh for a couple weeks as the rest of our Expeditionary Force as its being called, arrives. REF, Republican Expeditionary Force. Makes us sound more professional than we are.

Naval lads been talking about a battle that took place not far from the coast of Setsushima, that land in the south near the antarctic. Battle was a victory for our fleet, minimal losses supposedly. Hopefully that keeps those bullish dogs from trying to get into our ocean. Perhaps keep our men safe on the journey from home to here.

Unlike back home these Arari seem to have clear cut most of their jungle. Seen some trees here and there but nothing thick. One of our final briefings onboard the RS Sinclaire was about the landscape. It said that only in the deepest of the interior are there thick jungles anymore, the people here had ancient stories and myths about monsters hiding in them so they straight up clear cut much of it. Now the land is flat and open, floods pretty badly so they build villages on artificially raised mounds, makes them look like large castles really.

The people here are strange though, not like those back home. Temples are everywhere though and that at least is comforting to know they believe in the higher power. If there wasn’t a war going on then I would have loved to travel this part of the world I think, maybe after it's over I will. Not sure if I’ll make it though.
Primary - Parthenopias
Secondary - Wakoku
Steward of - Adler, Matorre, Istria, Syndar, Imarq and Nura
Joint Controller of - Seravano
If you have any questions please don't hesitate to let me know! 
Prime Minister of Selene, RP Councillor and WA Delegate.
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#4
December 14, 1895
Al-Arroun, Arari Kingdom

Been so busy the last month and a half that I haven’t been able to write much. Also had to let an officer go through this. They are being really tight about spies and such. Guess that’s what happens. A few guys were taken by the Military Police soon after and I haven’t seen them since then, last thing we need is to be fighting among ourselves as we continue to see the Transnurans gain lands in the south. Those people fight like demons.

I was dispatched to Al-Arroun on the tenth of last month. Arrived here a week later and been helping dig defenses around the city’s old fortress. Thing’s been upgraded with some heavy artillery and we’ve been using it to shell the advancing enemy armies to hopefully stall them. A few observation balloons have gone up and floated out, not many return though.

We hear the guns being fired constantly. I wouldn’t want to be on the receiving end of them. I feel sorry for the poor bastards out there having to duck in cover whenever the whirring noise can be heard. Shellshock is nothing to laugh out, already I have seen the dead faces of the soldiers coming back from the front, they might be breathing and medically alive but they don’t seem to have any life in them.

The civies in this town appear to be leaving in droves, everyday there are fewer and fewer of them, probably not wanting to be here when the fighting arrives. I don’t blame them, I’m not sure how well we will hold the town. That said more and more reinforcements seem to arrive by rail each day, thankfully this nation has been good about building major cities along the lines. Guess I’ll figure out some stuff tomorrow at the briefing.
Primary - Parthenopias
Secondary - Wakoku
Steward of - Adler, Matorre, Istria, Syndar, Imarq and Nura
Joint Controller of - Seravano
If you have any questions please don't hesitate to let me know! 
Prime Minister of Selene, RP Councillor and WA Delegate.
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#5
December 21, 1895
Al-Arroun, Arari Kingdom

Day of Prayers, least that’s what it is back home today. Thinking about my family quite a lot, especially my younger brother Alastaire, he turns seventeen tomorrow and that’s the army’s entrance age. I hope he doesn’t volunteer and I know we aren’t drafting yet. By the gods I hope he doesn’t join up. I’ll be praying for that and if he does that he joins my unit here. I’d rather be able to watch out for him myself than know some stranger is. Family matters.

The briefing a few days ago was grim. We’ve got an army group here, nearly three-hundred thousand men under General Marrai. He’s a man of maybe sixty and has the whitest hair I think i’ve seen on anyone but grandfather. White like snow, so we’ve taken to calling him General Snow. He’s here in Al-Arroun supposedly because he prefers to and I quote “Be where the action is.” Respect for that man I have. We’ve got a lot of guys here but the enemy is said to have at least twice our number, some rumors say three times. That would be a million man army against us. Not sure I want to believe such a thing, I would reckon though that it would be all the men those demons have here in the Kingdom. If we best them maybe this war could end early.

Made a friend here, names Olivier. He’s from a small town not far from mine back home. Knows the same mountains and the same lakes. Pretty nice to have someone else to reminisce with. Dark news came through, Alistaire got it in his thick head to join up. Grandfather is trying to pull some strings and get him into my unit, I hope it works. Brothers need to be together in times like this. I’m glad Charles isn’t here though, he should stay back home at the factory and help out there. Gods knows we’ll need the bullets.

Saw more men falling back from the front, more artillery being fired by the hour. Enemy can’t be more than twenty miles away now though. Shouldn’t be long before battle is joined. Such a beautiful city, likely won’t be much here when it’s over.
Primary - Parthenopias
Secondary - Wakoku
Steward of - Adler, Matorre, Istria, Syndar, Imarq and Nura
Joint Controller of - Seravano
If you have any questions please don't hesitate to let me know! 
Prime Minister of Selene, RP Councillor and WA Delegate.
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#6
January 3, 1896
at-Turrah, Arari Kingdom

The battle was rough. It was joined en masse on the twenty-third, by the thirtieth most of the fighting had been ramped up and it ended on the first. Hell of a way to spend New Years Day. The gods smiled on us though, we defeated the demons and scattered their armies. We’ve been advancing the last two days and reached the town of at-Turrah. It was burned to the ground by the retreating enemy. As I write this I sit in the charred out husk of what was probably some kind of cafe. Another beautiful place destroyed by the ravages of war.

Already three months into this conflict and there might be an end to this. The Republic has sent a delegation to Matorre to discuss a ceasefire and to begin negotiations for peace, or so the officers tell us. Not sure if they’ll accomplish anything. I’ve also heard rumors from some of the men from the north-eastern front that there is going to be some kind of naval landing in Transnura proper. I hear that a lot of their nation is sand, dunes taller than the tallest temples back home. That would be a sight to see. Offensive could be what we need about now, get off the defensive.

Alistaire is supposed to arrive in country sometime in the next couple weeks, he’s gonna be in Galmesh for a bit and then I’ve been informed he’ll join my squad. Seems like grandfather still had enough pull to get this done. Gonna give Aire a black one when I see him, idiot. Ollie says he’ll help me look after him though, really glad I made a friend in him. He had my back at Al-Arroun, saved my ass from a grenade by throwing me back and then throwing it back at the enemy. Earned himself a étoile de bronze (bronze star). He deserves it, the Captain said that if he keeps this up he’ll find himself wearing a Croix du’Guerre. I wouldn’t be surprised if by the time this conflict is over he’s wearing the Medal of National Honor and Pride. He just seems like that’s the kind of person he’ll be.

Got a letter from Charles today too, second one from home. He says that there are strikes in the states of Malass and Lorlast. Factory workers walking out over the conditions. Archon Saunier is said to be considering nationalizing the factories for the war effort which would for sure render the strikes to be useless. As Charles told me, a strike at a nationalized factory is actually a crime against the state and punishable by imprisonment. Sounds harsh to me, I’ve seen those factories, conditions are quite poor. Sentiment seems to be the same among the soldiers and the factory workers, this war is for the big guys up top and not for us. We’ll see how this goes I guess.
Primary - Parthenopias
Secondary - Wakoku
Steward of - Adler, Matorre, Istria, Syndar, Imarq and Nura
Joint Controller of - Seravano
If you have any questions please don't hesitate to let me know! 
Prime Minister of Selene, RP Councillor and WA Delegate.
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#7
January 20, 1896
Port of Baalbek, Arari Kingdom

General Snow had us march north, we officially repelled the Transnuran invasion in the Kingdom. What’s left of their army is either being evacuated back to their nation or into the Free State in the south. Orders came down a week ago and our army group was sent to the Port of Baalbek. Much larger than Galmesh. Seems to be where the bulk of the money the Republic has poured into the region has gone. Modern roads, amenities and architecture.

A large portion of the fleet has arrived, they’re to ferry us across the Byblos Straight and right into Transnura. Going on the offensive finally. Something called Operation Looking Glass. Officers are being mostly tight lipped about it, spies abound here they say. We’re not allowed to visit the brothels which is a damn shame.

Good news is though that Alistaire arrived back in at-Turrah and he’s been with me since. He looks better in uniform than I thought he would. Ollie and I pulled some strings with the Captain to get Alistaire assigned to him as an aide-de-camp. Should keep him out of direct combat. Admittedly it has been nice to have him here though, someone that actually knows my home and misses it as much as I.

Alistaire is itching for a fight though and that attitude really doesn’t have a place here. I mean yeah this is war but I don’t want him trying to be a hero and getting himself killed. Not sure what I would do if he died here. Too far from home, surrounded by strangers and enemies. Regardless we’ll know our orders tomorrow. The fleet might be setting sail in a few days.
Primary - Parthenopias
Secondary - Wakoku
Steward of - Adler, Matorre, Istria, Syndar, Imarq and Nura
Joint Controller of - Seravano
If you have any questions please don't hesitate to let me know! 
Prime Minister of Selene, RP Councillor and WA Delegate.
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#8
January 31, 1896
Straits of Byblos

Another large armada though not quite the size of the one that we sailed with to the Kingdom. En route to the Dominion’s westernmost lands. We’ve got nearly one hundred thousand men and about ten battleships and their escorts. General Snow has been placed under the command of Field Marshal Lajoie. Though admittedly it’s brought in Generals Halphen and Brasseur under Lajoie’s command as well. The fleet is being led by the brand new RS Braveoure which I have to say is one hell of a beautiful battleship. New guns and all. Seeing those in action will be awe inspiring.

Alistaire and Olivier are becoming fast friends. Always together, really glad about that though. I’ve been promoted to Lance Corporal and lead our squad. Our LC died of cholera back in Baalbek, apparently the stuff was going around really bad and as such they decided to promote me on the recommendation of Olivier, though I think my grandfather might have had something to do with it. I got a letter the day we left Baalbek saying that he had joined up with the Ministry of Defense again and would be serving in an advisory role there. Mother wasn’t too happy about it, said he should just stay in retirement.

We make landfall in a week. Our forces are supposed to split into two pinchers and make landings simultaneously. My squad has been assigned to the advanced landing forces that are to infiltrate the enemy lines and gather recon info. We’ll be dropped off by small boats. We’ll be given dynamite and other explosives to plan on some of the railway hubs, apparently our experience in the mountains back home are supposed to help us here. Not sure the wet mountains back home will be like the desert ones here. I’ll write more when I can.
Primary - Parthenopias
Secondary - Wakoku
Steward of - Adler, Matorre, Istria, Syndar, Imarq and Nura
Joint Controller of - Seravano
If you have any questions please don't hesitate to let me know! 
Prime Minister of Selene, RP Councillor and WA Delegate.
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#9
February 14, 1896
Amarna, Dominion

We landed in our small ship over a week ago. Olivier, Alistaire, a young boy named Lucien and then our guide Ashram made our way from the Port of Kubra to the small village of Amarna. While it might be small this is one of the major railway hubs in this part of the nation. Interior enough to avoid the ship based guns of our fleet but coastal enough to provide ample railway link ups to spread soldiers out quickly whenever necessary. Intelligence provided by the Al-Jarash rebels was spotty but that’s to be expected from the local rebels. They’ve been fighting here for liberation for nearly thirty years, guerilla warfare. The fact though that they are fighting the common enemy makes them an asset.

The objective is to disrupt the enemy lines and if possible take this hub out of commission for the time being. The landings by our forces took place four days ago, the soldiers passing through here have been numerous. The tan uniforms of the dominion forces are in stark contrast to the white uniforms of the Mattoran Army Regulars. They seem to be more well trained, equipped and versed in martial matters. Their soldiers march in perfect columns with great pomp and circumstance. The invasion forces though have been quite successful. What we have been able to glean from local sources is that Republican and Kingdom forces successfully established two beachheads. One at the Port of Nublar and one at the Port of Say’id. Both sizeable ports with piers and docks that will allow the quick disembarkment of troops and supplies. Should be good to help them link up eventually with one another.

General Snow and my old assignments are at Port Nublar. It’s the northernmost of the two Ports and the one we are to link up with when we complete our objective here. I hope to come through this without casualties on our side though I’m not sure we can manage that. Ashram says that I need to speak to his commander, the rather famous D.S. Lawrence. The man is a legend and has been here fighting the Dominion and their Mattoran lords for the last five years, having single handedly turned the Al-Jarashi from scattered tribal guerillas into more efficient and effective fighters. I’ll be meeting with him tomorrow to discuss assistance in attacking Amarna.
Primary - Parthenopias
Secondary - Wakoku
Steward of - Adler, Matorre, Istria, Syndar, Imarq and Nura
Joint Controller of - Seravano
If you have any questions please don't hesitate to let me know! 
Prime Minister of Selene, RP Councillor and WA Delegate.
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#10
March 1, 1896
Port Nublar

The attack on Amarna was a success. We lost Ashram. He jumped on a grenade and saved our lives though, I won’t forget him. Alistaire caught an enemy grenade and tossed it back, killed two soldiers. He was awarded the étoile de bronze for his valor. I couldn’t be more proud of him, though I gave him plenty of shit for such a dangerous act. Could have been killed. Lucien was shot in the ear by an enemy sharpshooter, lucky bastard missed his skull by maybe half an inch. Gnarled ear won’t win him any ladies back home but he’ll definitely have a story to tell.

The meeting with Lawrence went well enough, he supplied us with updated info on our forces and on the local garrison at Amarna. He also made sure to provide us with support soldiers for the attack. We slipped into the garrison building at night and used dynamite to blow it to smithereens with the bulk of the guards. Blowing the rail lines were a bit trickier once the alarm was raised but we managed well enough. Hijacked an enemy armored car and painted a large white “V” on the front so our soldiers wouldn’t mistake us for a foe. Made our way to the Port of Nublar and met up with General Snow’s Fourth Army. They seemed to be having a rough go of pushing the enemy out of one cove to the north. Had to debrief the General of our success upon our return and he promised us a couple days of downtime in the Port before our next assignment.

I have a hunch that we’ll be given another guerilla mission, though Ollie thinks we’ll be assigned to Snow’s forces again. Part of me hopes that’s the case though. Field Marshal Lajoie along with Generals Halphen and Brasseur are at Port Say’id where the bulk of our landing forces are. They’re having an easier time making inroads thirty to forty kilometers in nearly every direction inland. I hope they manage to link up with us soon so we can get the general offensive underway.

Snow says that the orders from the higher brass are that he is to hold the port until we are linked up with by General Halphen’s Third Army. Reinforcements under Generals Gigot and Bellegarde will be landing with another hundred thousand between them at Port Say’id in the coming days. That should really tip the scales in their favor down there. I’ve also been approved for a promotion to Corporal following our success at Amarna. I’ll have fourteen men under my command, with myself being the fifteenth of our section. We’re brainstorming a moniker for ourselves. In the running are the Blue Devils, Blue Knights and Blue Cavaliers. Blue was Alistaire’s idea given our uniforms. A mascot will also be chosen for our patches as well. Gotta go finish my eclair and coffee before we get new orders!
Primary - Parthenopias
Secondary - Wakoku
Steward of - Adler, Matorre, Istria, Syndar, Imarq and Nura
Joint Controller of - Seravano
If you have any questions please don't hesitate to let me know! 
Prime Minister of Selene, RP Councillor and WA Delegate.
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