In Numen the Slayer, a rebellion breaks out in the kingdom of Umbran. When King Robar Baal lays siege to House Letum’s castle of Foxden, three other noble families are spurred into action against the king. These pictures give you an idea of the heraldry of the four noble families Robar was fighting. House Letum’s heraldry is a rampant gray fox on a white field. They are a cadet branch of House Magnus and live in eastern Umbran and possess a considerable amount of political influence amongst the other barons. As King Robar besieges them, the Letums defend their castle with 400 men-at-arms. House Torren, who formed a political marriage alliance with House Letum, has a heraldry that is a silver portcullis on a blue field. They live in the northeastern region of Umbran, which is the most fertile in the kingdom. They can summon 4,000 men (1,000 cavalry, 500 archers, and 2,500 infantry) in a month, but because of the urgency for war, they managed to summon 1,000 in a few weeks (800 infantry, 100 cavalry, and 100 archers). House Marmor’s heraldry consists of a silver trident on an aqua field. They are the wealthiest family in Umbran second only to the royal family. Their lands are in the center of Umbran, which gives them access to all the major trade routes in the kingdom. They can muster around 3,000 men (2,000 infantry, 500 cavalry, and 500 archers), but do to the urgency for war, they summoned 1,000 men (600 infantry, 200 cavalry, and 200 archers). House Drada lives in the far north, where fierce predators dwell and snow is almost always constant. As a result, they are a family of hard people and the best warriors in Umbran. Their sigil are a pair of bronze battle axes in a cross on a red field. They can muster 1,000 men (500 infantry, 250 cavalry, and 250 archers), but due to the urgency for war, they summoned 500 men (300 infantry, 100 archers, and 100 cavalry). Their combined army numbered 2,500 strong, but the royal army outnumbered them more than two to one. The defiance and rebellion are based on the Barons’ War in 1215.
In Numen the Slayer, I depicted the home of Numen’s mother, uncle, and cousins of House Torren: Bargate Castle. I named the castle after a gatehouse in Southampton, England, which I thought would be a nice homage to real-life medieval castles. However, the Bargate Castle in Numen the Slayer is not a gatehouse. Instead, it is a motte-and-bailey castle that rests on an island in the middle of a lake. The lake acts as a natural moat and the only way in or out of the castle is by crossing a drawbridge that connects the castle with the mainland. The sigil of House Torren is a silver portcullis on a blue field, which are references to the Bargate gatehouse and the Beaufort family, who are the blood relatives of King Henry VII. In Numen the Slayer, the head of House Torren is Braun Torren, Numen’s uncle, and his son and heir is Edgar Torren, Numen’s cousin. Braun’s daughter Katherine Torren is married to the heir of Foxden Castle, Brom Letum, and this marriage ultimately forces the Torrens to take action against King Robar when he lays siege to Foxden Castle.
One of the most common battle tactics would be the hammer and anvil. With this tactic, you have a stationary army holding the enemy force in place and then you deploy another army that attacks the enemy from the rear or flanks. I depicted an interesting version of this tactic in The War of the Gilded Beasts. You would have a stationary army holding the enemy in place and then you would have a flying beast (either chimera or dragon) attacking from behind and above. More than 40,000 men die with this tactic and it delivers a crushing victory for one of the armies.
As you are aware, I wrote a kaiju novella, but I feel that it was not all that it could be. I received reports that it was too rushed to be a satisfactory read. I realized that novellas and short stories are just not my area of expertise. With this in mind, I will be expanded Karmathaur into a proper novel instead of a short story. By doing this, I think I can make my kaiju story reach its full potential and give Karmathaur a debut that it can be proud of. I will keep you updated on any developments on this project.
In medieval times, it was common for kings and emperors to wear crowned helmets while leading their armies on the battlefield. The most famous example would be Richard the Lionheart, who wore his iconic crowned helmet throughout the Crusades. I have featured rulers with crowned helmets throughout my fantasy series.
While drawing inspiration from the Peasant’s Revolt for my third fantasy book, I brainstormed on what kind of weapons the peasants would use. Due to being poorer than the nobles, the peasants would not have access to the more expensive armor and weapons like chainmail, plate armor, and swords. Therefore, I had to think of what kind of weapons they would have access to with their limited wealth and resources. Fortunately, many of the weapons the nobles used were based on everyday tools that the peasants used. For example, instead of the traditional battle axe, the peasants would resort to using a regular woodcutting axe. For legal reasons, peasants were banned to use longswords, but there are ways around this law since there are other weapons to choose from. Instead of spiked or flanged maces, the peasants would use simple wooden clubs to bludgeon their foes to death. Since daggers would be unavailable, the peasants would utilize normal hunting knives as replacements. Knights and men-at-arms would wield spiked balls on chains, but the peasants would use the original wooden version of the flail, which was originally designed to clear out undergrowth. Instead of war hammers, peasants could use the wooden mallets that builders use to erect tents or construct houses. Unlike traditional spears and polearms, the peasants would use wooden shafts from tree branches sharpened into crude spears as well as the agricultural version of the billhook, which was designed to trim trees and pick fruit out of trees. Since most citizens would have archery experience, hunting bows and arrows would be suitable weapons for the peasants to have easy access to. In terms of armor, the peasants would not have access to normal metal armor so they would have to make do with leather armor and helmets since many peasants are farmers and shepherds. As the Peasants’ Revolt proved, even though peasants can be inexperienced and green fighters at first, they can quickly become hardened with each consecutive skirmish like any other soldier. While normal levies gain training through practice, the peasants can gain it from real life, firsthand experience. In addition, with each battle fought, the peasants can scavenge the superior armor and weapons off the nobles they slay. The most important factor of all is that the peasants would greatly outnumber the nobles so what they lack in weapons and equipment they would make up for in sheer numbers. Overall, I can envision a potentially formidable rebellion breaking out in my third fantasy book.
During the reign of Edward IV, there were tax riots spreading across northern England. Publicly, these riots were instigated by the mysterious rebel known as Robin of Redesdale, but secretly, they were started by the Kingmaker, Richard Neville, Earl of Warwick. Because of Warwick’s involvement in the rebellion, it is speculated that Robin of Redesdale was really one of Warwick’s knights, Sir John Conyers. These riots created all out chaos throughout England and were part of Warwick’s strategy to bring Edward IV down. I am thinking of basing a rebellious character on Robin of Redesdale in my third fantasy book.
I have started my first superhuman book, completing the prologue and started the first chapter. It is a fun process when I bring what I have learned of futuristic technology to bear. The prologue sets the stage for the overall setting while the first chapter depicts an average day in a futuristic world. I will keep you updated on any further developments.
Quartered heraldry has been a common practice throughout the Middle Ages. It symbolized the union of two or more noble families and serves as the personal arms of the descendants of such unions. For example, if one spouse comes from a family with a bronze bear for their sigil and the other a gold phoenix, then their new sigil would be a quartered one and it would be their children’s sigil. This can lead to the rise of cadet branches of the main bloodline. I featured such heraldry in the end of The War of the Gilded Beasts and these new noble families will be featured more prominently in the next volume.
Up until now, my fantasy series has depicted only one empire, but I am thinking of creating a FOURTH volume that will introduce a neighboring empire from across the sea to the east. Up until now, none who ventured to the eastern seas have ever returned, but what if that changes during one of the main characters’ reigns? I am thinking of basing this new empire on the Roman Empire and the Empire of Alexander the Great. In fact, I am thinking of basing the various kingdoms on the various nations of Greece that participated in the Trojan War. I am even thinking of depicting a war between these two empires that will be based on both the Trojan War and the Hundred Years War. It will be like the Middle Ages versus the Roman Empire/Ancient Greece.