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Aoife the Celt

The Leopard Brothers

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The Leopard Brothers

 

The Leopard Brothers were a pair of twin brothers called Horik and Hyngwar Rognvaldsson from the Days of Valtia who were born and bred on the island of the same name. They were wildly unpredictable men, constantly oscillating between cold and culculating behaviour and utter recklessness, who were widely known for their delight in playing vicious mind games and waging psychological warfare on anyone around them. For this reason, among others, they were hated by their contemporaries. The brothers were also skilled warriors and manipulators as well as cunning, shrewd and ruthless.

 

Horik and Hyngwar were the leaders of a sellsword company of considerable ill-repute which was known as the Leopard Legion and composed of outcasts and captive mutes whose tongues Horik had ripped out. Until their expulsion from Valtia they served as the heinous henchmen of the Althing of Valtia, due to their willingsness to take up any commission, irrespective of how foul, reprehensible or dishonourable such assignment may be.The Leopard Brothers are, however, best known as the founders of the Duchy of Normandie.

 

The twin brothers' relationship with the Chieftains of Valtia was, even in the best of times and circumstances, quite contentious. The latter had a certain low appreciation for the former as the dogs who did their dirty work, but there was no way that they going to fulfill Leopard Brother's paramount wish of creating them landed nobles for they considered them lowborn scum who were unworthy of such exalted status. Horik and Hyngwar grew increasingly frustrated with not receiving what they truly yearned for through loyal service that one day they decided to try to get what they wanted through intrigue. They spoke of numerous chieftains with scorn and loathing to everyone they met, and lend their swords to every secret plot to bring them down, in the process alienating so many in the Althing of Valtia that they were expelled from Valtia.

 

For some time it seemed that the Leopard Brothers's dream of becoming landed nobles had gone up in smoke forever and would be condemned to spend the remainder of their lives sellswords and pirates, but without the lucrative commissions of the Chieftains of Valtia. Their fortunes, however, changed dramatically when, after having travelled to the Kingdom of Franciana on their own motion to get a piece of pie of plunder in the War of the Hands of Hallvarður, the desperate King Clovis VII of Franciana, whose regime was at the verge of collapse, made common cause with them after he got wind of Horik and Hyngwar not having a Letter of Marque and Reprisal from the Althing of Valtia and they were in fact exiles who were at loggerheads with Valtia's Ruling Assembly of Chieftains.

 

The King of Franciana offered the Leopard Brothers, in exchange for their homage, fealthy and service, the area which nowadays constitutes the Isle of Quercy, and which had already been partially occupied by the Leopard Legion, as a fief. Horik and Hyngwar wholeheartedly seized this quite unexpected opportunity to make their dream of becoming landed nobles in their own right come true. And so the twin brothers, outcasts from Valtia, became King Clovis' men and Counts of Quercy under the provisions of .the Treaty of Pont l'Évêque.

 

Their Leopard Brothers' actions in the Francianish King's service were wildly successful. First they quickly drove the Vermandois and Noyon armies out of the Kingdom of Franciana. The Leopard Legion subsequently turned their attention to the plethora of privateers and warbands, which Horik and Hyngwar together with King Clovis gradually managed to defeat several of them or otherwise to force or coerce them to cease their hostilities.

 

Another contributing factor in the succesful clearing out of raiders and invaders from Franciana was that Valtia was on the brink of war with the Kingdoms of Ibelin and Valenciennes which had hired the Brotherhood of Bodøgård to bolster their forces. This caused many a sellsail company and combatant group, already gotten fat with plunder, to withdraw voluntarily from Franciana to save their strength in anticipation of another lucrative commission from the Althing of Valtia.

 

All this allowed King Clovis to gain enough strength to sue for peace with the Chieftains of Valtia, who were amenable to that because they wanted to focus their attention on the upcoming war with Ibelin and Valenciennes. And thus the the Kingdom of Franciana and the Valtian Free State concluded the peace treaty which is known as the Treaty of Fyrisvellir, ending the War of the Hands of Hallvarður.

 

After the war Horik and Hyngwar took two Francianish noblewomen - Lady Mathilde of Anjou, one of the daughters of Count Giscard of Anjou, and Lady Gisela of Bayeux, the daughter of Count Ralph of Anjou - as their wives. The other members of the Leopard Legion also took local spouses, and it is from all those intermarriages that the present population of the Duchy of Normandie descends.

 

The newly-created Counts of Quercy distributed the lands of the Isle of Quercy as fiefs among their captains, and built a twin castle for themselves in their capital, the City of Quecy. They spent much of thir comital reign consolidating their new-found power by travelling throughout the Isle of Quercy and the other feudal domains they acquired in time.

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The King of Francianan offered the Leopard Brothers

 

Is that supposed to be Franciana? Just curious. Kinda threw me out for a loop for a bit and then I realized that's probably what it was.

 

This was an incredibly interesting read, I am greatly enjoying the work done for Normandie. Incredible!

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Is that supposed to be Franciana? Just curious. Kinda threw me out for a loop for a bit and then I realized that's probably what it was.

 

Yes, indeed. I will fix that typo. :oops:

 

This was an incredibly interesting read, I am greatly enjoying the work done for Normandie. Incredible!

 

Thank you! All of me very much enjoys being able to contribute to the Duchy of Normandie together with mine feoow Patricians!

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