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Of Pride and Power Chapter 25 is live


W_L

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Chapter 25

Going to pause after this chapter as the mid-way point for a week, see you all on March 8th

This chapter is the promised Calais Campaign of 1558. Interesting historical footnotes: Thomas Wentworth was in charge of Calais during Mary I's reign and William Grey was a stubborn and capable military commander during the defense of Calais, who would go on to serve Elizabeth well in Scottish campaigns later.

As for this story, all the build up of military technology and equipment was leading to this kind of war. Essentially, the only way to defeat the combined militaries of the New Rome Papal State and German Empire was to borrow a military strategy that the Japanese used against Russia, Kantai Kessen. To win using this kind of strategy, you must be technically superior to your enemy, which Eli has achieved with naval and land forces. This kind of strategy won the Russo-Japanese war for Japan, which should have been impossible due to Russia's overwhelming manpower, resources, and capacity compared to Japan. However, in terms of naval technology and tactics, Japan had far better warships than Russia with higher caliber guns and better coordination between their navy and land forces. I also borrowed the failure of this strategy in World War II against the US as inspiration, because the US was able to break Japanese communication codes in the Pacific, allowing them to easily identify enemy fleet disposition and direction. That was how the US Fleet at the Battle of Midway ambushed the 4 Japanese carriers and sank them, forcing Japan to lose naval superiority after 1942. By combining superior communication equipment with the use of vacuum tube radios and an enemy who does not realize their communications are being monitored, Eli could defeat armies of fifty times larger sizes.

As for the peace treaty at the end of this chapter, it is a temporary peace that was needed by both sides. Displaying a 15 kiloton attack against German army and semi-automatic rifles against Papal troops would be a frightening thing to see. While technically they have Sky Fortress and an air force that could do just as much damage, Eli is technically using better equipment than either of them due to Robert's ability. With reports of tracked tanks and other mid-20th century weapons appearing in English battlefields, this peace treaty may seem like a capitulation by Eli's opponents, but it was a necessary pause for them to adjust their strategies and plns. For Eli, the peace treaty was a breathing room for the nascent reign. A military success and territorial acquisition in France will win support from various people. It also buys time for massive nation-level industrialization to occur in England, Wales, and Ireland. Charles of Lorraine is trying to preserve his family's limited power after all the failures, so he may be an interesting frenemy in the future (Remember he's uncle to Mary Queen of Scots as well, so he has a desire to keep his niece in power, along with regaining influence in French court). In history, his detractors painted him as someone similar to later Cardinal Richelieu or Mazarin, so my idea of this character is in a similar light. He doesn't understand all the technical details about time travel or the power within the church hierarchy, but he is a master of politics and diplomacy, Eli and him will have more dealings in the future.

FYI: William of Orange or in this case William of Nassau is introduced in this chapter. He's the father of the Dutch, so I hope Dutch readers will enjoy :P 

This week is the 28th Law of power, "Enter action with boldness", which teaches people to take action decisively and with courage, despite what may seem outlandish or impossible. Just as the historical lesson I based this military campaign in Calais on, sometimes being bold in action will surprise your opponents and cause confusion.

Notes:

1. Interesting thing, Count William of Nassau-Siegen was the father of William of Orange, but in this timeline, William the younger did not inherit the title of Prince of Orange, so he doesn't get his famous title. Interestingly enough, English king William III was also called William of Orange.

2. We briefly saw a glimpse of Ferdinand of Bohemia, who was the brother of Charles V and should have inherited the Holy Roman Empire from him. He was a good military commander in history as I mentioned and a practical political mind compared to his brother. You may see his latin maxim being used by another character :) 

3. The description of the 15-kiloton blast is taken from the observations of the atomic weapons test conducted by the US and Soviet Union, blast wind velocity at the center versus outlying area. Despite being several miles away, Hurricane-force winds would still be hitting the town as a result. I know not many people may care about this technical detail I used, but I liked the mechanics.

 

Edited by W_L

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