Current OOC Lead: Emilia Stark 'nee Umber [Erin Grashnar]
Current IC Lead: Cedric Stark [Lucien Repine]
The North has always been the coldest--and largest--of the Seven Kingdoms, with its vastness stretching from the Wall to the Neck. Indeed, it has always been a harsh land; cold and brutal. But even here, the wind seemed to take on a certain chill after the life left the very last dragon. Mayhaps one cannot attribute the death of that beast to what would come to pass, but there is no denying that times became more trying after the fact.
It would start simply enough, with bands of wildlings stealing over the Wall to plunder, much as they had done since the Wall had been erected. Though their efforts became more and more frequent, the Night’s Watch honoured their duty to the realm and men by thwarting their every effort. That is until Geron Greybeard appeared. Having managed to rally the savage Wildlings into what resembled a cohesive unit, the styled King-beyond-the-Wall caught the dwindling Watch unawares, leading an army of thousands over the Wall. Rickon Stark, Lord of Winterfell, rose to meet him. Alongside Stark, Lord Roland Umber, Bernolf Karstark, thousands of Northernmen met the savages in battle, breaking their undisciplined ranks apart upon Long Lake--sending Greybeard and his host back from whence they came. For his service in victory, Lord Stark promises to unite Houses Stark and Umber by way of his heir and son, and peace is returned to the North. For a time.
With the last days of autumn at hand, a grand harvest feast was held in Winterfell. Lords and smallfolk alike come out in droves to share in the lavish celebration of harvest and victory. But autumn would not end with victory. It was here that the promise made between Houses Stark and Umber would be broken at the behest of the promised heir. It would set into motion years of discontent. With the death of Lord Rickon Stark, and the succession of his son and his Manderly bride, the North begin to divide as House Umber withdrew its ages old fealty from House Stark.
As winds of resentment blew through the North, war raged on in the South. Lord Edrick Stark made the choice not to send forth any Northernmen to join the Blackfyre pretenders nor the Crown in their efforts. No provisions would be expended, nor blood of Northernmen shed on their behalf. Winter was coming and the North could ill afford to care for lands to the south as the blood upon their own had scarcely been covered by the snows. It would be covered soon enough, however. Winter did come. And this time it lasted an entire decade.
The ‘White Death’ did not ravage in force in the North. Not just yet. The firth in White Harbor had never before frozen over in even the deepest winters, and it did not do so now. Though trade would greatly diminish, it did not halt completely. Natural resources were still plentiful in the White Knife, with the fishing grounds still bringing in catches and stores being well reserved and plentiful.
But the long winter and previous wars left the North weak. It would not go unnoticed.
Tired of their imposed isolation, the Skagosi rose up in rebellion against House Stark, a rebellion that would last years, and claim the lives of thousands. Eventually, the Northmen did manage to restore peace between the North and Skagos. But not without a heavy price.
The rebellion had come during the harshest part of winter, leaving thousands of men dead and their families to face the cold alone. Provisions that were ill afforded had also been expended, and even the most well prepared lands in the North began to feel the White Lady’s chilly touch. Even places such as Winterfell were not above the wrath of the gods, and supplies became so scarce that Winterfell was forced to bar entry to the ancient settlements’ winter town. Hundreds died outside the barred gates and thousands more still throughout the rest of the frozen North. With their own supplies so scarce, trade into The Bite from across the seas became far less beneficial and White Harbor could not feed the entire North on its own. The North would set its eyes to it Southron neighbours of the The Vale to keep it's smallfolk from starving. A trade agreement eliminating any tax on the purchase of foodstuff for the duration of this season was signed, and soon, the trade galleys from Gulltown could be seen dotting the ports of White Harbor.
And so it would be now, the time when they could least afford it, that the cold winds would blow a familiar foe upon the bleeding north. When Geron Greybeard reemerged, and the wildlings came spilling out of the mountains by the thousands, nearly two thousand Northmen rose to meet them. The unorganized and untrained freefolk would once more prove no match for their southron counterparts. Finding himself surrounded on all sides by the forces of the North, Geron Greybeard could do no more than watch as his forces of freefolk were scattered and ultimately smashed.
As spring settled in, wounds from war would begin to heal, though others had continued to fester. The North remembers, and despite his victories against the wildlings and efforts to aid a recovering North, many had not forgotten the slights--perceived or otherwise--of House Stark. Noticeably absent from the most recent battles had been the Karstarks of Karhold and the Dustins of Torrhen's Square. Both of whom now gave open threats to withdraw fealty from Winterfell in support of Last Hearth if peace was not brokered between Houses Stark and Umber. With whispers of more following suit, Lord Edrick had no choice but to make concession with Lord Umber.
On the surface, the discontented houses had been appeased, honor restored and the North was once again made whole. Now the King has called the lords great and small for a grand tourney in Tumbleton. Fealty to the Crown beckons Lord Stark forth, and with him, his council and their families are set to enjoy the warmth and festivities of the South. Most Northernmen seem eager to see the duty done and return home to continue rebuilding their winter ravaged homes. Others however, harbor southron ambitions and hopes for prosperity. The rifts in the North have barely had time to mend. Will they stand together now, or fall apart at the thaw? Only time will tell.
• The Timeline •
Birth of Edrick Stark.
Wildling raids becoming more frequent south of The Wall. The sporadic attacks are successfully thwarted over the next few years by the Night's Watch, though the victories come at heavy losses.
The Night's Watch continues to drive back most of the unorganized forces of wildlings. Reports of successful raids have become even more frequent. The Watch has dwindled in number by well over half.
Wildlings begin to pour over the wall by the thousands, led by King-beyond-the-Wall Geron Greybeard. The dwindled Night's Watch is caught unawares. Lord Rickon Stark rides forward to meet the threat, along with Lord Roland Umber of The Last Hearth and Bernolf Karstark.
The savage but undisciplined forces of Geron Greybeard are defeated upon the shores of Long Lake, but not without heavy losses. Greybeard survives and flees back behind The Wall with what is left of the wildling army. Lord Umber and Lord Donnel Stark, brother of Rickon, are amongst the slain.
In gratitude of Lord Umbers aid, Lord Rickon promises a pact in marriage between Houses Umber and Stark by the way of Lord Roland Umber's daughter and Edrick Stark, heir to Winterfell.
For his loyal service and valor in battle, Bernolf Karstark, is named Holdstark and given the seat of Icegard Tower at Long Lake.
Lord Rickon Stark hosts the harvest feast at Winterfell. During the festivities, a young Edrick Stark is caught abed with Lord Manderly's eldest daughter Alys, by her mother, Lady Jeyne Manderly. The Stark heir insists on taking the hand of the Manderly girl in marriage, in refusal of bringing her dishonor. Lord Rickon reluctantly agrees, mainly in part to Wyman Manderly being a childhood friend.
Lord Edrick Stark and Alys Manderly are wed in Winterfell.
The new Lord Umber, receives word of the union, effectively setting aside the marriage pact between Houses Stark and Umber. House Umber renounces Lord Stark as their liege.
Lord Rickon Stark dies. Edrick Stark is named Lord of Winterfell and Warden of the North. Lord Stark sends his brother, Cedric Stark, to the Last Hearth to remain as a study of the sword and in an attempt at reparations with Umber.
Word reaches North of a rebellion against the Crown of Westeros. As was like to do for the Lords of Winterfell before him, Edrick Stark refuses to embroil the North in Southron politics. House Stark takes no part in the Blackfyre Rebellion and the North remains neutral, expending no forces nor provisions.
The white ravens fly from the Citadel. Winter has come. Due to the decision of Lord Stark to keep the North out of the war of their Southron neighbors, the lands above the Neck are fairly well provisioned and begin to hunker down for a winter that would last ten years. They would not remain so deftly provisioned for long.
No sooner has winter tightened its grip, does the forcibly isolated island of Skagos declare an open rebellion against House Stark. The Skagosi are met in battle by Lords Stark, Cerwyn, Glover and Cassel. The rebellion would take years to quell and results in the death of thousands of Northmen. House Umber is noticeably absent.
'The White Death' begins to take it's toll on the North. The Skagos rebellion begins to leave even the well provisioned winter lands in a desperate struggle to preserve resources. The firth of White Harbor escapes a hard freeze, but is now the North's only viable food source. Starvation begins to become widespread and unrest grows in the towns of refuge as there are now far more refugees than resources. Winterfell is forced to close its gates, denying refuge in its winter town to those seeking shelter from the 'wrath of the gods'. Smallfolk perish by the thousands. Nobles also see heavy loss.
The Skagos Rebellion ends as the Skagosi are driven back. A new alliance is formed through a marriage pact with House Cerwyn. Lord Glover has perished in battle and Lord Cassel succumbs to The White Death, which continues to ravage the North.
Geron Greybeard reemerges in the mountains north of the Wolfswood with yet another wildling army, even more vast the the one previous. His host is met yet again by Lord Stark who is this time accompanied by Houses Cerwyn, Cassel, Holdstark, Manderly, Bolton and Ryswell. Late, but generous aid would be sent by Houses Mormont, Tallhart and Wull. Twenty skirmishes and a moon’s turn later would see the King-beyond-the-wall’s reign ended upon the sword of Wyndall Manderly’s son, Castiel.
The White Lady begins to withdraw her chilly embrace and Spring begins to thaw a wounded North. Some loyalists praise Lord Stark and accredit his leadership and defense for surviving the decade long winter. Others still lay the blame of their dead at his feet.
The rebuilding of a wounded north continues. Wool, hides and timber can once more be seen making their way down the thawed Kingsroad. Ports begin to bustle once more at White Harbor.
Lord Dustin and Lord Karstark implore Lord Stark to make amends with Lord Umber to bring the North back under one banner. After careful deliberation with his closest advisors, Stark travels to Last Hearth where he and Umber set aside the past differences and Last Hearth once more is sworn to Winterfell. For his treason, however, Lord Umber is sent to the Wall and the North is made whole.
The Great Tourney at Tumbleton.
Lord Edrick Stark's wife, Lady Alys Stark 'nee Manderly becomes ill within a few months of arriving in Tumbleton. She never recovers, and her remains were sent back to the North.
King Maegor met his end; assassinated through poison. A prolonged period of mourning began but not before Haera of Myr, Lord Footly and a Red Priest by the name of Visandros were implicated. Lord Footly found his death at the blade of another, rumors of the time hinting at murder under suspicious circumstances; Visandros of Asshai met The Stranger at the trial as he was found guilty -- Haera of Myr sentenced to exile, never to be seen again. Though, many stood in defense of the Myrish former Queen; her innocence proclaimed despite the verdict rendered. Lord Regent Dakario having excused himself from the proceedings after Lord Edrick Stark mentioned the Dornishman's bias toward Haera.
The newly appointed Lord Regent, the former hand of Maegor II -- Prince Dakario Martell; acted swiftly in the period of time that followed the Red Dragon King's death, having named Lord Steffon Hightower as the new Hand of the King alongside having sought suitable others with which to fill the remaining seats that were left empty upon a Small Council that lacked a designated Ruler.
Lord Edrick Stark is murdered by faith militia just outside of King's Landing. The region undergoes a dark mourning period, his son, Rickard, is named Warden of the North. Lynara Stark returns to Winterfell with her father's body.
The King's body departed Tumbleton with a Royal procession. Many followed toward King's Landing, yet due to heavy flooding and unforeseen weather; Greywood Keep was where the funeral took place.
Lord Rickard Stark refutes the authority of the Lord Regent, Dakario Martell. He, along with several other Northmen present, draw their swords during a session of Court. Amidst the quarrel, Lord Stark loses his hand, and he and his men are sent to the blackcells. Eventually, the Northmen escape the cells, but are invited back to the capitol by the Master of Laws. Lord Umber and Lord Stark refuse to return, and travel back to their respective homes. Lord Stark arrives at Winterfell to become bed-ridden from his infection. His eldest uncle, Eyron, is named to handle matters in his place in Winterfell, while his uncle Jon Stark is appointed as representative of the house in King's Landing.
Lord Eyron Stark, Grand Marshal of the North, returns to the capitol for a time. But his visit is short, and he returns to Winterfell to tend to spreading fears of an illness.
The North is greeted with travesty and grief, as months later It is announced that Rickard Stark succumbs to the rot. Disease then spreads throughout the castle, taking many lives including those of Brandon Stark, Eyron, and his children.
Lord Jon Stark ascends as Lord Paramount of Winterfell, and returns north to lay the dead to rest.
Lord Bran Bolton turns against Stark, declaring him unfit to lead the North. Bolton turns to both Tytos Lannister and Daemon Darkstone to appeal for the seat of Lord Paramount, ousting Stark from their ancestral seat. Both consider Bolton's offer and make promise to offer him such a seat should either be crowned King.
War erupts in the realm. The Westerlands declare independence and attempt to lay siege to the Capitol. Lord Stark calls the banners to rally at Moat Cailin, where ten thousand Northmen march south to offer support to the crown.
Lord Stark aids the crown in its subsequent siege of Casterly Rock, until peace is made.
Castiel Manderly is made Master of Laws by The Hand of the King, the Lord Daemon Darkstone. The realm has no King
Daemon is killed by a collapsing bridge, with his younger brother Aeron becoming Hand of the King in his place.
Jon Stark supports the bastard born Aeron's claim to the throne during small council, on condition he immediately take the name Targaryen. Aeron complied, and named himself rightful heir with Jon and Jamie Baratheon as witness. Lord Baratheon is named as Hand of the King.
Bran Bolton openly supports Tytos Lannister in court but once Lannister turns to show that his intentions are nothing more than greed and self-sering, Bolton changes his support to the newly risen Aeron Darkstone, openly refuting his prior alliance with Lannister. He is pardoned by Aeron Darkstone.
Jon Stark finds out about the arrangement Bolton had made to attempt to usurp Stark from the seat of the North and demands that Bolton be sent to the Wall. Bolton refuses. Stark then demands that Bolton's heir, only 5 days old, be turned over to Stark. Again, Bolton refuses. Bolton signs a contract stating to be loyal to Stark and becomes an advisor to Stark.
Lord Bolton dies while leading a Northern cavalry charge against the Lannisters, leaving behind an infant son as his heir. Lady Bethany Bolton, all 5 daughters, and the infant heir return to Dreadfort.
Jon returns to Winterfell shortly thereafter, with duties requiring his attention including securing of the Bolton heir as ward. Absent for the coronation, but with younger sister Roslyn staying in the city. The heir is never obtained, hidden well by the Bolton family. Eventually, the heir is forgotten about.
Roslyn Stark is chosen by Aeron to be one of the nine candidates to stay in the maidenvault, from which one is to be made his queen. Marleah Martell is selected. Roslyn walks out of the banquet feast at the choosing, upon the arm of Castiel Manderly.
Jon and Osric Stark venture north of the Wall due to wildling raids - their bodies are discovered slain, buried under an avalanche. With the death of Lord Stark, the North goes into mourning. Waylar Bolton and Ares Bolton, along with his wife Tove perish. Royce Bolton arrives to KL, joining his sister Meya.
Brandon Stark, the younger brother of Jon and Osric, is named Warden of the North. He sails south for King's Landing to attend to his sister there, and the politics of the realm that threaten unrest yet again, with the reappearance of Blackfyres and the Gold Company within the city. Leaving his younger brother Cedric as Castellan of Winterfell.
Some of the more prominent maesters and stewards of the region urge the Lord Paramount for the taxes to be raised so there would be more money to spend on serving the realm and our holdings. But there are of course also lords and merchants that disagree and believe it should be kept as is.
Brandon Stark leaves King's Landing and travels to Last Hearth, along with his younger brother Cedric, to organize his own marriage to Lord Umber's daughter. When the party leaves shortly after, the lady Emilia is with them, wed not to Brandon but to Cedric. They travel to Winterfell and then sail to King's Landing without delay to make the wedding of their sister Roslyn.
King Aeron and Queen Marleah welcome the birth of their twin sons. Queen Marleah dies several months later in the winter riots.
Roslyn Stark is wed to Lord Paramount Jamie Baratheon, Hand of the King. Forming a historical alliance between the North and the Stormlands.
The young heir to the Dreadfort, Benjen Bolton, mysteriously and suddenly dies when commanded to be presented to the capitol as a ward to Cedric Stark. Lord Royce Bolton becomes Lord of the Dreadfort.
Brandon Stark is declared lost at sea, Lord Paramount and Warden of the North is bestowed upon Cedric Stark by King Aeron Targaryen.
As Master of Laws, duties sent Castiel Manderly sailing West to attend the trial of Loreyon Redwyne, who was charged with numerous crimes by his liege, Lord Hector Tyrell. With the king unable to leave King's Landing, Castiel was to represent the Crown with his presence and mediate the quarrel between Reachlanders. A trial by combat was demanded by Redwyne, placing him against the Lord of the Reach-- a title that soon passed to Hector's son, upon his abrupt death. After numerous grave events unraveled and more scandal surfaced, Loreyon was stripped of his nobility and lands by a grieving son and sent to King's Landing to answer to the King's justice. As a fellow Councilman, Castiel took it upon himself to return Lord Redwyne to King's Landing aboard his ship, accompanied by fellow Blackfyre brothers. The mission was interrupted by a fleet of Redwyne vessels that interfered and placed the crew in a precarious situation. Blood was shed and lives were lost on both sides-- Castiel was amongst the severely wounded and neared the Stranger's doorstep. The quarrel proceeded until Arbormen nearly flooded the single Northern ship and terms were met, being negotiated by Blackfyre siblings and Arbormen. Such need for negotiating was facilitated too by the arrival of Tyrell ships, which engaged in the fray. Whatever was decided had left the Manderly and his surviving men to be cared for in the Reach, while Blackfyres made their return to the Capitol, along with Loreyon Redwyne. Hindered by a grievous wound and too weak to travel, Castiel was forced to recover in the Reach and to be cared for by a Maester employed by House Tyrell. Eventually, the bannerman was sought out by Cedric Stark and Jamie Baratheon, both men who had crossed miles of land to find the lost Merman. Instilling the battered Northerner with strength and inspiration, the lords assisted Castiel and ventured back to the North on a personal mission to bury the twenty-seven casualties at White Harbor, before returning to the Capitol.
Cerdric and Emilia Stark welcome the birth of their twin sons: Bran(don) and Beron Stark.
Hoarfrost Umber, Lord of Last Hearth arrives in the capital.
Cayn Manderly, brother to Lord Manderly, arrives from White Harbor to join his brother in the capital.
Royce Bolton is sent to the black cells on charges of kinslaying, murder, treason, and gross slander, and is found guilty. Royce attempts to kill Cedric Stark with his shackle chains as he is brought out of the cells. Cedric, King Aeron, and guards move to subdue Royce and in defense, Cedric beheads Bolton.
Jorah Bolton, Lord of the Dreadfort arrives in King's Landing, accompanied by his cousin, Lyra Bolton.
Twin Lords of Umber, Alf and Ulf Umber attempt to unseat their nephew Lord Umber. Lord Bolton aids them in their attempt and sends men to Last Hearth to fight alongside them. Lord Stark, hears of the unrest in the north. Stark men journey to Last Hearth.
Lord Gerold Arryn leaves King's Landing. He travels to the vale just before King Aeron accuses him of sedition and treason
Castiel Manderly weds Alys Tully, daughter of Lord Lucas Tully, forming an alliance between the Riverlands and the North.
Presence of the North continues to grow in the capital. In a month's time, Lord Tiberious Mormont arrives from Bear Island, Master Eddard Forrester arrives from Ironrath, Lianne Ryswell joins her mother from the Rills along with he cousin, Lady Besandra Ryswell. Mayra Stark returns from a brief trip back to Winterfell. Not long after, Lord Owynn Karstark makes his way to King's Landing from Karhold.
The King accepts the resignation of Lord Jamie Baratheon. Lord Ryon Reyne is named as the next Hand of the King.
Lord Stark and Lord Baratheon, along with their bannermen living in the capital travel to Storm's End. After a time, they reach out with a list of demands in order to renew relations with the crown. At the top of the list was that Lord Ryon Reyne be removed from the office as Hand. After the crown agrees, those staying in Storm's End return to the capital.
Gerold Arryn announces the Vale's separation from from the Crown. He is named King of the Vale. Rowena Arryn gives birth to their first child, a son.
Not long after arriving in the capital, Lord Mormont ventures to Last Hearth to assist the Umber lords and the Bolton men, siding against Lord Stark and the rest of the Northern bannermen
Lord Roger Ryswell is arrives in the capital seeking out his daughters and extended family after hearing of unrest in the city.
Lord David Bolton, cousin to Lord Bolton arrives in the capital alongside his wife, Rhyannon Bolton 'nee Ryswell.
Lord Ryon Reyne is releived of his duties as Hand of the King. The King, Aeron Targareyn, appoints Jamie Baratheon the title, once again.
Lord Roger Ryswell rides to Last Hearth to aid Stark Men in the battle at Last Hearth. Northern banners, with exception to Bolton and Mormont, send men to the site at the request of Lord Stark.
Lady Berena Ryswell journeys to the capital, seeking out her husband, Lord Ryswell, and daughters, Desmera and Besandra. Shortly after, Lady Melisandre Karstark arrives through the gates to find her brother, Lord Karstark
The battle at Last Heath concludes. Among the casualties are Lord Umber, his opposing uncles and four thousand Northern men. Lord Mormont and Lord Bolton are beheaded by Lord Stark. Lord Roger Ryswell marches back to the capital bruised and worn. He is named Marshal of the North.
Jeor Mormont is named Lord of Bear Island. Barthogan Bolton is named Lord of the Dreadfort.
The King is found dead. His twin sons, missing. Lord Jamie Baratheon is named Lord Protector
More northerners are seen entering the gates of the capital. Over the course of a few days, Ladies Cordyllia and Lysa Manderly; sisters of Lord Manderly arrive from White Harbor. Lady Bryanna Glover, daughter of Master Baylin Glover and Lady Myranda Glover 'nee Manderly comes to the King's Landing at the urging of her parents. Lady Alyce Ironsmith, daughter of Lord Alyn Ironsmith and Lady Cynthea Ironsmith 'nee Waterman journeys to the capital at the request of Berena Ryswell. Lady Leyla Mormont, niece to Tiberius Mormont arrives from Bear Island as a ward of House Stark. Lord Bryan Cassel journeys from his home to seek out his liege lord to offer aid as needed.
Cerdric and Emilia Stark welcome the birth of their daughter, Arya Stark.
For more information on The North, please read The North History
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