Wail of a Thousand Voices
Ruler of Brevoy vs Rostland (Swordlords)
The Swordlords of Brevoy have resented the crown of since being forced to bend the knee to Choral. Shortly after the disastrous battle at the Valley of Fire, the current Swordlord council took advantage of the shattered power structure and demoralized leadership and staged a quiet coup to take command of the Swordlords. At the time they were very young, having only one member among the old guard (Vassari), with them mostly being up and coming standouts or family scions. The “new” council swore they would not be ruled by zealous honor defense and hot-headedness, instead using prudence and strategy to plan their future return to rulership of Rostland.
Despite this guiding principle, they still have internal struggles as the Swordlords by nature are a tempermental and honor driven faction, and Lord Ianucchi has had to work hard to keep them from open warfare until a more favorable time. It would not take much, however, to push this tense situation into open revolution. Currently, the assessment seems to be that the Swordlords would eventually lose in a one on one with the the Crown, however, they hope for the other noble houses to rise up and contest rulership, at which point they can either negotiate with the usurper or take advantage of the conflict to regain control of Rostland.
Rogarvia lesser noble houses vs Swordlords
Most of the more combative factions among the Swordlords are found in Rogarvian lands, and there is no love lost between the council and the lesser nobles of Rogarvia. Many of these petty nobles took full advantage of their position of power when the Rogarvia family was in control, and went out of their way to bully, abuse, and steal from the Swordlords with impunity. Now that their protector and benefactor (House Rogarvia) is gone, they have backed down and basically ignore the Swordlords, hoping they will either forget the earlier offenses or continue to fall in line and obey out of habit.
The Swordlords have forgotten nothing, and have been sharpening swords, laying siege plans, stealing enemy castle blueprints, and basically waiting for the day they could take back what they feel is rightfully theirs from the ruling Northerners.
Rogarvia lesser noble houses vs each other
When the Rogarvia family disappeared, the glue holding this duchy together quickly dissolved. The nobles are among some of the most conceited, entitled, and arrogant in Brevoy (privileged to be bannermen to House Rogarvia), and can’t agree on whether the sun is shining or not, much less any more significant matters. There has been constant skirmishing and power struggles between the houses, with no clear front runner to challenge for the Ducal seat of power until two feuding families House Harte and House Thane, sued for peace and successfully merged their houses with a marriage of eldest children. With the unfortunate death of the elder Lord Thane at the wedding festivities, his son was thrust into power sooner than expected. The elder Lord was killed in an attempt to re-start the feud between the two families, and only through the cool heads of some young members of both households were the hostilities prevented. Stephan Thane initially struggled, and there were many attempts on his life, particularly from House Baltric who is rumored to be the hand behind the killing of Lord Thane senior. Baron Stephan Thane had to rebuff several assaults on his lands before he could build his power base large enough to hold off any challengers.
Stephan Thane is seen as a rising star among the nobles, and has been courted secretly by House Ardden and House Vessia in an attempt to gain his cooperation should they openly oppose the crown. So far he has remained undeclared, but has subtly suggested that he and the Swordlords would assist if necessary. He preferred to fight his battles economically and politically, and within the span of a few years, had forged enough political clout to be named “interim” Duke of Rogarvia. Though all of the main houses do not recognize them as a full Noble house as of old.
Toval “Garess” vs the Garess Noble houses
Toval was adopted by Duke Garess in the aftermath of his son and the dwarves in the mountains nearby disappearing. Saddened by this loss and able to commiserate with Toval in their shared loss drew them closer and after a year or two, Duke Garess adopted Toval as his son and heir. When the Duke dies, Toval will take over, and likely will face some rebellion and objection to his claim of inheritance. The elderly duke has some distant nephews and nieces who plan to contend for his seat, arrogantly assuming that the Throne of Brevoy will support a human over a dwarf.
This is a longstanding feud that will likely never end. The original Duke Vessia was the devoted friend and loyal sword arm of Choral the Conquerer. As such, he was given first choice of the lands he wished to rule over, and he chose the rocky lands so akin to their home in Iobaria, which gave them advantage of terrain and height against any opposing forces. The Vessia’s have despised the Surtova’s from that very first evening the old Lord negotiated on the beach of the Lake of Mists. House Vessia sees House Surtova as oily tongued, treacherous, and wily, honorless cowards who deserve to be trod under the iron boot of true men. As such, they bitterly opposed the Surtova takeover as regents, but were not as well prepared for such an event as the other House, and could not protest too violently, considering the daughter of Surtova was married to the King, and they had a legitimate, if tenuous claim to stewardship of the crown until a new king could be found. However, no election has ever been mentioned since that first day, and Vessia knows they will soon need to put up or shut up and make their own claim to the throne.
Where the feud with House Surtova is bitter and hatreds run deep, it remains for the most part bloodless , instead relying on political and economic manipulation to combat each other. In contrast, the feud with House Slane is quite bloody. The Slane ships raid along the shoreline, assault merchant vessels and occasionally make forays a bit farther inland, especially during bad weather or harsh winters. The two sides see each other as natural enemies and will typically attack each other on sight. One time an Vessia village negotiated with the House Slane to pay an offering in order to prevent attacks on their people. House Slane broke the agreement and marched on the village and burned it down, putting all there to the sword. Since that time, there is no quarter given and no negotiating between the two sides, though neither will discuss their conflicts in more southerly courts and venues. While the Vessians have few ships of their own, they do possess hippogriff and wyvern mounts that they employ against raiding ships.