Their blazon is a white sunburst on black, and this scheme is found throughout their house and its banners. The members of House Karstark have words and their motto is, "The Sun of Winter" and this has to do with their ancient begginings in the north.
The earliest members of House Starke as they begin leaving the Empire found their way past Arnor into the region of Westros. When they arrived in Westros they kept moving south until they arrived in the Bolten region. When they arrived in Bolten they begin setting up roots, and quickly became the leading House in the region. The conflict between Brenten Starke the patriarch of House Starke and his younger brother Josin Starke reached such a point that they devided the House into those immediatly related to each of the men, and in this way the devision of House Starke was started. Josin Starke promised his loyalty to the House but in actuality he was working behind the scenes at creating an alliance with House Bolten which would allow for his half of the House to remain in control of Karhold but remove his older brother that he believed was holding back House Starke.
The earliest members of House Starke as they begin leaving the Empire found their way past Arnor into the region of Westros. When they arrived in Westros they kept moving south until they arrived in the Bolten region. When they arrived in Bolten they begin setting up roots, and quickly became the leading House in the region.
The Home of House Starke came to be known as the city of Karhold and only truly came into existence during the rise of House Starke who travelled south from Norway during the Great Migration and settled in this region. Their numbers and intelligence during their early time here allowed them to accumulate a large amount of wealth which eventually spawned a large scale settlement in their region which slowly came to be known as Karhold. House Starke used their wealth to create the foundations of what still stands today as the keep of Karhold. The Keep stood as the center of what was at the time an independant micro Kingdom ruled by the Starkes.
During this rise the city gained widespread notice after the Starkes constructed a large wall around the city. This brought the attention of the growing Kingdom of Bolten who begin setting their eyes on expansion. During this time the House was led by Brenten Starke, and he was silently facing resistence from his brother Josin Starke, who wanted to rule on his own without his brother.
Fall of the Kingdom of Winter
Main Article : House Starke Civil War
In the trailing days of the Kingdom of Winter, the Lord of House Starke in Brenten Starke would sit and look at his family. He had four sons, and one daughter of which his oldest son Brenten the second was his heir and beloved by the people of the land. His second son Artolf was a twisted man, that had spent too much time in the hands of the Urnet's, and Boltens and had been twisted by that influence. The third son Eddard had spent his life as a squire for the Hornwoods, and had the love of the east. The final son Rodrik was a quiet young man that while skilled with horse, and sword was more apt to be found reading then he was to be found fighting. The final child in the form of his daughter Lyanna Starke I. was beloved by all of the Starke's, but the love her brother Artolf had for her was a dark taboo that she kept secret for fear of his wrath. This peace would end in a most tragic way, as following an attempt by a northern house to leave the Kingdom of Winter the King of Winter would send his son Brenten to end the rebellion, and during the attempt he was accidently killed by an arrow from his own men. The death of Brenten Starke II. would send the entire house into a tailspin as everyone agreed tht in no way should Artolf be named heir, and when Brenten told Artolf that he was being passed over in favor of Eddard, it was with great rage that Artolf fled Karhold, and made his way to the Dreadfort with his sister Lyanna as a silent captive.
The fleeing of Artolf, and the kidnapping of Lyanna Starke caused Brenten great sadness, and despite the ability to storm the Dreadfort he feared the death of Lyanna and thus continued for the rest of his sickness shortened life to get his son to return to Karhold. Upon the death of Brenten Starke the Winter Kingdom would fall to Eddard Starke I., and Eddard sent another letter to his brother and this time his brother would send word that he wished to return to Karhold and be forgiven by his family. Rodrik Starke would plead with his brother not to allow him to return, and when Eddard rejected his please Rodrik would flee the Winter Kingdom with his family for the Moonset Islands. When Artolf Starke arrived he arrived with the heir to House Bolten, and House Urnet, and after a happy meeting the city would awake to news that Eddard Starke had been killed in his sleep. Outside the city the armies of the Urnets, and Boltens had arrived and the search begin for Eddard's family, but they could not be found because Rodrik had arrived in the night and taken them out of the city and moved them by boat westward into the Divine Lands where the Goths of the Winter Kingdom had no reach. Following this Artolf Starke would rename himself Artolf Karstark and alongside the children he had fathered with his sister Lyanna his family became known as the Karstarks after the city they had taken. Artolf would be shocked though when instead of ruling the Winter Kingdom he found himself pushed aside as the Boltens set up a council of which quickly became the Boltens ruling the land, and despite his attempts to resist this he watched the name of the Kingdom change, and the Winter Crown was forgotten.
Growth of Bolten
See Also : Rickard Karstark Rickard Karstake would become the new Lord of House Karstark following the death of his father Arnolf Karstark in the battle of Pontus. His reign was one of a diminshed loyalty towards the Kingdom of Bolten (diminished but still remained the most loyal member of the Kingdom), but with the coming of Rickard Karstark whose best friend was
Conflict with Lorderon
Domeric Bolten would travel to Hornwood so that he could attend a tournament they were holding there, and also so that he could see Halys Hornwood and his family of whom he knew very well and loved as his own family. Arriving there Halys would tell him that he had sent some of his men to follow Ramsey Bolten around, and from this had discovered that Ramsey had a small keep north of the Dreadfort and would use it to capture, chase, and then rape and kill women. Learning this as well as the plans that Ramsey was beggining to form alongside the power he was gaining Domeric would return to the Dreadfort with Halys, and several of the Hornwood vassals. Domeric and his party would meet Rodrik Cassel a little west of Hornwood where he was awaiting more boats for transport for himself and his vassals, and from Rodrik they learned that followed Domeric leaving the Dreadfort Ramsey had called a meeting of the Kingdom of Bolten, and Rodrik was already running late.
Taking a ride with the Cassel force Domeric and the Hornwood forces would reach the Dreadfort days before they would if they had been marching, and would arrive just hours before the meetings were to begin. Domeric would have a long talk with Josh Cole of whom warns Domeric that the Karstark's and the Urnet's are solidly behind Ramsey and that he and his forces will not follow Domeric into a conflict they cannot win. Hearing of the Karstark's joining with Ramsey Domeric meets with Halys Hornwood but finds he has come with a sickness and can barely move forcing Daryn Hornwood to join the meeting as the head of House Hornwood. Arriving at the meeting Ramsey, and Mallador Locke would taunt Daryn over the sickness of his father and would carefully make it known that they were the reason behind the sickness. The arrival of Trevor Hayford would stall the argument and they all entered the Dreadfort Keep where the meeting took place.
Entering the meeting the assembled noblemen would hear a speach from Roose Bolten which to the shock of many inside the room was praising towards Ramsey, and slightly insulting towards Domeric. This speach did much to turn many of those who might have followed Domeric, and turned them towards listening to Ramsey instead. Following this Rickard Karstark spoke of growing attacks by Dragonoph fanatics sent by the Kingdom of Lucerne against the western border of the Karstark lands, and Domeric would stand during this and tell the assembled that these attacks were not happening. Ramsey would attack Domerics honor and call him a liar who was secretly in the pay for the Lucernians which noone believed but turned the attention away from the lie about the Lucernian attacks on the Karstarks. Daryn Hornwood did his best to speak on the side of Domeric but was shouted down by the Locke's and Urnets of whom laughed at Daryn and rediculed his lands, and his weakened father. As things broke down and it became clear that Ramsey was going to have the war he wanted, Domeric would look across at Josh Cole and saw him smiling sadly at him, and as the meeting ended Domeric went after Josh Cole and spoke with him alongside Daryn Hornwood. Josh Cole told Domeric once again that the Cole's were not willing to die for some wasted war that the insane Ramsey Bolten wanted, and that Josh Cole was not going to do it, and Domeric realizing this could mean turning to the Lucernians, or staying neutral attempted to persaude him, but despite respecting Domeric there was no agreement from Josh.
Domeric in that moment knew things were darkening in Bolten, and warned Daryn to take his father and their vassals and return to Hornwood and prepare the army because he would need them when the time came. Doing this Domeric was left alone and went to see his father of whom would be in his throne room with Rickard Karstark. Speaking with the two of them Domeric got the sence that neither agreed with Ramsey, but couldn't get them to tell him why they had sided with him, but Roose did tell Domeric that he needed to follow Ramsey this time, or else. When he resisted this Roose would command it as his king, and knowing the honor bound Domeric would follow this he left the room with the horrifying thought of having to follow Ramsey and his madness.
| Conversation Incoming |
"Sometimes it isn't our place to understand why we are commanded to do things. Sometimes those below the top cannot see all things."
"What am I not seeing father."
"There are many things that a king sees, that his heir cannot. There are many visions that I know of that you can only grasp at."
"Ramsey is my blood father, but he has fallen into darkness. I cannot get him free of that. I cannot save him from himself."
"Of this I am painfully aware of."
"Then why give him the lead."
"Your just going to have to listen to him this time Domeric. Trust me when I say that I have a plan. I have a plan that gives us both everything we ever wanted. All you need to do is listen to Ramsey for a period of time."
"He will lead our men to the slaughter."
"Lord Domeric that appears to be your task then."
"What do you mean Lord Karstark?"
"I mean that you must protect the army from his version of war."
First Bolten-Lucerne War
Main Article : First Bolten-Lucerne War
- "The Kingdom of Bolten was the first time we were ever met agressively by an oponent, and at first we were shocked at their actions. I determined quickly that they had to be stopped at any cost, and this led to our promise to defend our two major allies in the region, and a massive influx of our troops into the region."
- -William Lovie III.
With the taking of Westbrige the region of Bolten became more interested in its own growth and in particular they really wanted to get the Lucernian army involved in pitch battles which they had the numbers to survive. In order to do this they begin threatening several allies of Lucerne in western Westros in the form of Koenisburg, and the town of Jeutenburg. While these threats rancheted up the Kingdom of Lucerne did exactly what the Boltens hoped they would do when they brought huge forces to bear on the defences of the Westros river crossing of Levin. The Lucernians also made it known that any action taken against their allies in Koenisburg, or Jeutenburg would be deemed a decleration of war against Lucerne itself. This promice to defend meant a lot to the two towns, and most believed that with that the conflict would be ended before any blood was spilled. This idea changed quickly when the Kingdom of Bolten sacked Jeutenburg in a massive siege that took place in the guise of a peace mission.
| Fall of Jeutenburg |
Jeutenburg was the first act of a truly insane man. Instead of offering quarter and hoping for any kind of assistence in the Divine Lands he butchered the first city he found and expected the rest to what...give in to him peacefully. Madness, and stupidity.
Fall of Jeutenburg
The city of Jeutenburg with the promise of Lucerne to defend it should the worst come stood tall as the army of Bolten came to its door, and House Banner blocked there entry. At first the Boltens sent in emissaries of whom promised peace and they simply wished to pass peacefully so they could get to Koenisburg in order to stop Lucerne from taking Koenisburg. Nikolas refused this offer as he was now aligned with Koenisburg and told the Boltens they would not peacefully be passing by the city, and when this happened to his shock the Bolten emissaries said they would do this the following day. Despite these promises during the night spies, and mercenaries scaled the walls of Jeutenburg infiltrating the main gatehouse and once they got inside the walls they showed hidden weapons and overpowered the outnumbered guards they had before occupying the gatehouse. The forces of Jeutenburg were somewhat unprepared for this sudden attack and despite attempting to resist the taking of the gatehouse the Bolten forces held out for nearly twenty minutes while the army of Bolten reached the gate. With the gatehouse in their control they filled into the city overwhelming every point of resistance with their vastly superior numbers and for nearly an hour the sacking of the city went on before Domeric Bolten, and Daryn Hornwood were able to control the palace and large enough segments of the city that they slowed the killing.
During the sacking of the city Jeutenburg was given very little quarter with nearly half the city killed, and the survivors forced to live under the occupation of House Urnet of whom spent their time ransacking the city of its ancient wealth and history. As the army of Bolten did this their was division as the forces under the command of Domeric Bolten, and House Hornwood would protect several areas within the city, and were the main reason the entire city wasn't massacred. With conflict between this force, and the more chaotic forces of Ramsey Bolten looking likely a raven arrived from Roose Bolten who tasked them with quickly moving towards Koenisburg before the Lucernians could react. A meeting was held in the old Jeutenburg palace where Ramsey Bolten commanded the entire army leave Jeutenburg except for House Urnet of whom would hold the town alongside two companies of mercenaries. Domeric was able to trick Ramsey into allowing House Hornwood under Daryn to stay behind as well after he convinced everyone that Daryn was about to capture the Banner family. Following this meeting Ramsey would lead the army outside of Jeutenburg alongside Domeric of whom went along with him but during the first night of the march he abandoned the army and returned to Jeutenburg to meet with Daryn.
Behind Enemy Lines
Daryn Hornwood would be leading his forces alongside Orsen Stout and others in his personal council, and during his searching for nobles of Jeutenburg he captured Nikolas Banner and his family bringing them back to the Hornwood quarters in Jeutenburg which were once the Banner home. Daryn Hornwood would send word of the capture but by this point Ramsey and most of the other leaders had already left for Koenisburg and thus he was sent a raven saying he should kill all members of House Banner he had before taking House Hornwood, and his vassals towards Koenisburg. While an honorable young man he was also driven by duty, and thus when he first received this command he planned on following through but Daryn would have a change of heart after he spent the night talking to Nikolas's daughter Corina Banner. Originally meeting her by mistake when he was planning on going to tell Nikolas about the execution he found her crying and without thinking consoled her. Corina would see quickly that Daryn was a good young man and someone that didn't want to do what he told her had been commanded to do by the raven sent to him from Ramsey Bolten. The two spent the entire night talking and as he prepared to leave she would steal a kiss, and from the second that happened the already conflicted Daryn Hornwood didn't know what he would do when he raised the sword to kill Nikolas.As he debated this in his mind he went to his war council of whom consisted of Jonas Intris, Lorant of Hornwood, Rafford of Wisborne, and Ser Roger Horntree and together he discussed with them his misgivings on what was happening. Lorand, and Rafford were very much behind the idea of protecting the people of Juetenburg but Roger and Jonas believed that they would be branded traitors and that the hostages held by the Boltens in the Dreadfort would be in danger. Roger Horntree had a son in the Dreadfort as a hostage and argued that his child would be killed if they did anything to hurt Ramsey Boltens ideas. Not coming to a complete agreement after talking for almost two hours they would break up but before they did Jonas who also had a child in the Dreadfort convinsed Roger of the honor of what Daryn wanted to do and thus Roger relented on trying to protect at least noble women and children. With this in agreement Roger would take the forces of House Horntree alongside several hundred others and begin rounding up women and children and bringing them east of the town to the main army of Hornwood who was camped there. While the Hornwood forces arranged the saving of so many women and children it was the Urnet's led by Gunthor Urnet that were hunting the streets for more gold, and women when during one of their raids they discovered that the Banners had been taken from a hiding spot to the Palace and thus he realized that Daryn Hornwood had not killed them yet. For Daryn Hornwood though, the rest of the day was drawing away and Daryn knew he had to make a decision, and he found himself outside the makeshift cell of Corina Banner of whom he kneeled before the bars and rested his head against them. Corina would come towards him and gently rub his hair trying to make him understand that she understood that he had to do what he had to do. Entering the cell he pulled her into a hug and laid with her against the wall where the two would discuss what kind of life they could have lived together as Daryn came to the understanding that if he didn't kill her and her family then his own family including many people he knew from his time in the Dreadfort would be at risk. The two would kiss and the heated kissing was only interupted when Rafford would arive to tell him that several Urnet men had arrived and were demanding to see him. Rafford would depart and sadly Daryn went to go as well but before leaving she would give him a necklace that her mother had given her when she was a child, and the two would kiss again.
Daryn returned to the top level of the castle to find Lorant, Jonas and Ser Rafford talking to Gunthor Urnet of whom was accompanied by many of his men including several Karstark men led by Atolf Karstark. Gunthor revealed he knew they had not killed the Lord of Jeutenburg yet and was here to make sure the deed was done to the satisfaction of those above and heavily threatened death to the Hornwood hostages in the Dreadfort if the task was not done to their satisfaction as well. Daryn to the surprise of his council would tell Gunthor that they were fine to do it now, and that he would summon the family right away, and Gunthor could witness it himself. Rafford, and Lorant went to gather the Banner family, and while they did this Atolf Karstark begin bragging about the number of young girls he had been with during the sacking of Jeutenburg to the point that Jonas nearly attacked him before Daryn commanded him to stand down.
When Rafford, and Lorant returned with the Banner family Nikolas kneeled before Daryn and closed his eyes as Daryn prepared to execute the man. Daryn would raise the sword once before putting it down briefly when Atolf Karstark begin rubbing the hair of Corina's younger sister Cersei and taunted Nikolas about what he was going to do to the young before she died too. Gunthor Urnet would then taunt Daryn calling him a coward and this led him to raise his sword once more, but this time as he did he felt Corina's presence behind him, and as he turned to look at her she gave him a sad smile before closing her eyes. Daryn knew in that moment that he couldn't do it and smashed his sword against a block of wood nearby. Gunthor would push his way past Jonas screaming about the commands of the Boltens and calling Daryn a coward and a traitor. As Gunther Urnet stepped forward to try and kill Nikolas it was Jonas Intris that stepped forward and slit the throat of Gunther before he could kill Nikolas.
The several Urnet, and Karstark men in the room tried to fight back, but were overwhelmed by the more numerous Hornwood forces and killed leaving only Atolf Karstark of whom begged for mercy, but without a word Daryn dragged him out of the courtyard and away from the Banners and once out of sight decapitated Atolf. Nikolas was set free from his bonds along with his family and Daryn would assist him in locating the loyalist members of his vassals along with his sister and her family. Following this he would set his men to helping Nikolas in exiting the city and as they left he stole his own kiss from Corina Banner before she was rushed from the burning town. Nikolas would thus be able to escape with much of his family and a significant force of his most loyal banner men. Staying behind under orders from Nikolas was his step-brother Otto Dragoon the bastard husband of his sister of whom led the rebels within the city while Nikolas rallied the Divine Lands to retake Jeutenburg. Daryn Hornwood would leave behind his knightly house in House Intris in order to better assist Nikolas Banner, and to make sure that his actions were not discovered by House Karstarke and Urnet who remained in the town with several influential family members.
| Siege of Koenisburg |
If they take Koenisburg it will prolong with this war for so much longer then it needs to be. Hold the city and we can break them now. Hold the city and we can end this before it begins.
Siege of Koenisburg
Main Article : Siege of Koenisburg
When Jeutenburg came under siege this was a huge indicator that the diplomatic message wasn't going to be enough so William ordered House Starke under Jon Snow, House Lannister under Tyrion Lannister, as well as House Clegane under Hedrik Clegane III. to send their forces to assist in the defense of Koenisburg as the city was now completely under threat. Word was sent to Koenisburg that this was happening and Britt Lancave would prepare herself for the ultimate defense of the city she loved so dearly. Word was also sent northward to Kul Tiras of whom was to send a large force of ships to Fairmaket in order to send the forces incoming to the Divine Lands. Kul Tiras would send two ships to Koenisburg under different purposes led by Wilheim Caellin, Dilon Borrell, and Tandred Proudmoore of whom would land in Koenisburg planting there house flags on two of the towers of the city making it appear once more there were more forces present then there would actually be. At the same time as this was going to happen William sent one of his greatest generals in Jamie Lannister to the small town of Grandlen where if the Boltens besieged the city of Koenisburg Jamie was to move southwards from Grandlen and hit them from behind and destroy the Boltens before this got out of hand. Jamie Lannister joined heavily by forces of House Reyne, House Brax, and other vassals of Castamere would arrive two weeks after leaving in Grandlen alongside a force of some two thousand cavalry, and they would make camp a days march east of Grandlen and await word from Koenisburg.
Jon Snow would arrive alongside Tyrion Lannister and a small force of House Starke and House Baratheon into Koenisburg, and were met with great applause by the scared locals of Koenisburg. Jon Snow and Tyrion were shown to rooms by Britt Lancave and when they were both situated Britt met with them to discuss what was happening in the theater. She told them that the Boltens appeared led by Ramsey Bolten, and were massing a large army outside of Karhold in a direct threat to Jeutenburg, and while the armies of the Divine Lands were large they were not even close to capable of defeating the amassed army of Bolten. The three would talk some more before Tyrion left leaving just Britt and Jon Snow alone, and she would ask him about how his situation in the north was going. Shocked that she remembered from briefly telling her years ago he told her about the letters and told her that it was taking all of his strength to stay himself from leaving for the north. Britt would explain to him the way Bastards worked in the Divine Lands, and told him how sad she was for him feeling so unloved just because of the manner in which he was born. Feeling comforted by this he was shocked when Britt suggested they marry, and despite finding her very attractive he still longed to see Ygritte again, and was forced to reject her offer. Things continued in a spin mode for many days until as they were meeting in the keep news reached them that Hedrik Clegane III. had arrived in Koenisburg and they went to the docks to meet him. Meeting with Hedrik Clegane III. he would give Jon Snow a letter passed onto him from a Maester from Stormwind, and labelled from Jeor Mormont he excused himself to read it, and digest what it would mean.
Hours after the arrival of Hedrik Clegane III. the city was alerted to the sudden arrival of more Lucernians as they were further joined by Sawyer Shephard of whom brought nearly a hundred Order of the Red Dragon men and flags with him as well in order to help. Using these flags and honor guard they mounted themselves all along the walls of Koenisburg, and alongside the earlier arrival of the Kul Tiras forces the walls were arrayed with different sigils and gave a very clear impression that House Starke, House Clegane, the Kul Tirasi Houses, and House Lannister had arrived in force. Tandred Proudmoore would also have his highly trained Kul Tirasi marines captain nearly every ship in Koenisburg to the point that the port looked filled to the brim furthering the idea that there was large force present. By this point the Lucernians, and Divine Lands had learned the extent of the destruction of Jeutenburg of which pushed basically the entire Divine Lands into the Lucernian camp including Grandlens large forces.
Devision and Failure
The moment the flags went up on the walls of Koenisburg their was a severe amount of panic among the leadership of House Bolten after Ramsey Bolten went on a screaming spree as he believed his commanders had failed him and brought them all into a trap. Following his ranting Ramsey Bolten would call the commanders together and go on another mad rant inside the command tent about the need for the army to retreat before they were overwhelmed by what he believed was a massive Lucernian army. In this moment Domeric would step forward and heavily push that they should attack the city right away as he argued their was no way that the Lucernians could have massed enough troops in the city to stop them. As he was almost finished talking Ramsey would take a knife out and lunge at Domeric attempting to kill him. Domeric was the more skilled warrior and dodged the knife before wrestling Ramsey to the ground, and only the interference of the other commanders stopped Ramsey from being killed right there. With Ramsey losing his mind in the tent it was Rickard Karstark that would suggest that they meet with the Lucernians and at least gauge the forces of the Lucernians from the meeting. Ramsey would reluctantly agree to this plan, and with that a messenger was sent to the wall making it known that they wanted a meeting.
The two forces would meet with Ramsey and Domeric Bolten followed by Rickard Karstark, and John Cole on the Bolten side and on the Lucernian side it was Jon Snow, Tyrion Lannister, and Hedrik Clegane III. alongside Britt Lancave. As the two forces rode out it was a quiet moment for both sides as both believed the other side was going to break the honorable truce of a white flag meeting. Meeting together they would barely be starting to discuss the issues when Ramsey Bolten would intervene and begin insulting Tyrion Lannister for being a dwarf, and Jon Snow for his bastardy birth.
With these insults the meeting begin to fall apart and it nearly came to violence when Ramsey took out a knife from his side and only the quick movement of Domeric Bolten stopped the situation from completely falling apart. Despite this Ramsey and Domeric would nearly come to blows but only Ramsey's knowledge that he couldn't defeat Domeric stopped him from attacking him right there. Ramsey would spit in his face before leaving with everyone else in the party outside of Domeric who remained behind. Britt Lancave would attempt to convinse him to come back with them, but he was loyal to a fault and returned to the Bolten lines.
Following the fight between Domeric and Ramsey Bolten and the collapse of the meeting with the Lucernians it was Ramsey's hatred and madness that led him him to decide to put nearly the entire Bolten army into a full retreat back to Karhold. Ramsey was at this point beyond any sort of rational thought and noone dared resist him despite the fact that many believed that Koenisburg was there's for the taking and Roose Bolten wanted the city taken at all costs. While he planned to have nearly the entire army do this he would force his brother Domeric to return to Karhold from a different direction with only House Hornwood and its loyal vassals. As the armies made their retreat back to Karkhold, it was Ramsey that put into work his real plan when he split from the main army and moved north with a large force of cavalry and planned to burn the town of Pomlet to the ground and thus force Domeric to come to its aid, where he would then say he was responsible for the act and ambush his brother's force. After hearing Ramsey talking about his plan to Reek it was Jordin Bolten that snuck into the force of Ramsey as it split off from the main army, and he would send a Raven to Grandlen telling Jamie Lannister of the change.
Massacre at Green Creek
Main Article : Battle of Green Creek
- "The fool camped for an entire day on the words of a man he hated. He deserved what came on him that night."
- -Jordin Bolten
What Ramsey did not anticipate was the fact that the moment that Jon Snow, Tyrion Lannister, Britt Lancave and Hedrik Clegane returned to Koenisburg they sent a raven to Jamie Lannister telling him to move against the Boltens. Ramsey had not realized that Jordin Bolten had joined his army but discovered his presence and begin to plot to kill Jordin. Before he could do this Ramsey was fed falce information by Jordin Bolten about a scouting party from Grandlen nearbye which caused Ramsey to camp for an entire day and gave Jamie Lannister enough time to catch Ramsey's force on the bed of the River Creek. Jamie Lannister and his three thousand cavalry would smash into the camp of Ramsey Bolten and in less then twenty minutes nearly the entire force was massacred. During the fighting it was Arthor Karstark that was killed during the fighting leaving the usually quiet Rickard Karstark to become furious later about the failure of Ramsey Bolten. It was as everything was falling apart that Ramsey Bolten would switch clothes with his servent Reek of whom he would smash the face of beyond any recegnition so that he could not be found to be not him. When Jamie entered the tent of Ramsey attempting to kill Ramsey or take him prisoner he found nothing but the supposed Reek standing over the destroyed body of "Ramsey Bolten". In that moment Jamie went to kill Reek but was stopped by Jordin Bolten who said to let Reek go as he was nothing but a slave they had captured from the Greyjoy's years past. Trusting Jordin Jamie would let "Reek" go and thus Ramsey Bolten escape the battle and made his way back to the Dreadfort.
| The Dreadfort Court Massacre|
This is the moment where we move past redemption. If we do this we become beyond anything worth saving, but the unfortunate nature of this is that if we do not I will watch my kingdom collapse anyway. Options...Options...
Dreadfort Court Massacre
Main Article : Dreadfort Court MassacreWhen Karhold became completely surrounded by the forces of House Starke and others from the Kingdom Of Lucerne there became a movement by many of the lords of Bolten to try and get their children from Dreadfort of which everyone knew was the next target for the Lucernians. Roose Bolten understood that he only retained many of the nobles loyalties by holding their children and for this reason refused any calls to give up the children, and in fact called for more to be sent to solitfy loyalites. Anderson Cole would start a movement to Dreadfort when he and his friend Hadrian Hornwood would lead many nobles to Dreadfort in order to see Roose Bolten and get their children back. Brodin Isnet fresh from seeing the losses of the Boltens at Jeutenburg would give command of Wishborne Castle to his son Brodin Isnet and then would lead a small force of House Isnet to the Dreadfort where he would arrive just before the arrival of Anderson Cole and was prepared to demand the release of his son and heir. When they arrived they were greeted by Roose in the Dining Hall of the main keep as they wanted to be protected by the Guests Right, and while at first the mood was positive when talk begin on returning hostages it became clear they were not getting their children. Shocked by this turn of events Roose moved forward and they were told to leave and bring their forces to Dreadfort as they were commanded or risk their children never coming home. As this command was given several mostly led by Henrik Stout would argue that the war was not winnable if they did not work together, and that they needed to place trust in the nobles by giving them back their children and not holding them as hostages during conflict. When these arguments arose in the Dining Hall to a level that the tide turned to the rebels, Roose would shock everyone as he ordered his men to break the Guests Right by having the nobles rounded up by his guards and brought to central Dreadfort's square. With the nobles chained to posts in the Dreadfort square Roose and Rickard Karstarke would find every one of their children who were hostages in the capital and of those that they had more then one they executed the children while their fathers were forced to watch the act. In this brutality children as young as the five year old Sasha Cole were executed, and as the bodies piled up a fight broke out as Cley Cerwynn would get out of his bonds and kill a gaurd in front of him. Cley's execution begin the execution of the remainder of the nobles as Roose executed everyone else in the square leaving nearly thirty nobles and fifteen children dead. It was a shocking moment for all those other then Roose, but they all stood motionless as Roose walked forward and knelt down before the body of one of the children and closed its eyes before getting up and walking back into the keep. There was little talk after this as the rest of the men there knew that there was now no escape for them, and the remaining children were brought into the keep where they would remain under house arrest. Realizing that Justin Cole was the only one of the hostages not present Tared ordered him found and brought before him, and since they had another Cole already in Sasha Cole who the others would not know was among the dead he no longer needed Justin. Misha Bolten and Justin Cole were hidden at this point and made their way into the city proper only stopped by a guardsmen who Justin was forced to kill to get past him. Making their way into the town they were close to being caught when a door opened to a house and a man beckoned them inside. Getting inside the man told them he was Veseryan Ongrill and had been sent by the Kingdom of Lucerne to find him. Fearing for their life Justin took out his sword again but as he did Veseryan would knock it from his hand and push him against the wall holding him restrained before saying.
Misha would come between them, and was able to sit Justin down and calm him, and once they were all seated Veseryan told them that he couldn't get them out right now as the streets were filled with men looking for Justin and Misha, but soon he would get them out through the sewers. Veseryan would hide them in a cellar beneath the house, and once inside they found several other children that clearly Veseryan had also taken in so that they would be safe. Learning more about Veseryana and the Lucernian presence from Messaries Condon the oldest of the children in the cellar he was amazed at the level of infiltration the Lucernians had already made. Back on the street the gaurds of Bolten went house to house trying to find Misha, and Justin, and when after several days they had failed to find them the story was spread that Justin had kidnapped Misha after killing many of the noble children in the capital, and thus he was blamed for much of the murders. Veseryan would be able to gain knowledge of who had died from Tyse Hornwood who remained in the keep, and it was that list that Veseryan would sent west to the besieging forces of House Starke so that they could pass that information on to the others. Returning to the house Veseryan prepared the children for the moment they would move to escape, and made them aware that it was not going to be easy, as he had noted improved guarding of the sewers as House Bolten attempted to stifle escapes from the capital.
| The Siege of Karhold|
Surrender now. Everything west of here is gone to your kingdom, and we have this city surrounded. Save thousands of lives and surrender yourselves to the justice of Lucerne.
Siege of Karhold
Main Article : Siege of Karhold
With the fall of Jeutenburg the route into Karhold was completely open to the forces of Lucerne and they would take advantage of the shock caused on the Bolten forces by the destruction of the army at Green Creek. Moving eastward the forces of House Karstark would be fed bad information from the retreating forces who told them that the main goal was the castle west of Karhold in the form of Saltwood Castle. In this way believing they would hit Saltwood first Arnolf who was in command of Karhold would send a significant portion of the Karstark forces to Saltwood under the command of the Bastard and already turned to the Lucernians Wellen Flayed of whom knew that House Saltwood had already defected to the Lucernians and was thus further feeding bad information. As the Bolten forces were going towards Saltwood Castle in order to meet the forces of House Starke head on the true Starke force was now heading directly towards Karhold from the north where due to misinformation and much of the Karstark forces turning to the Lucernians it found basically no resistance.
Battle of Saltwood Castle
Main Article : Battle of Saltwood Castle
The Secondary force from House Starke would arrive at Saltwood Castle before the forces of Bolten and would menaeuver themselves into the forests south of the castle while the Bolten forces could be devided into two distinct sections. The first section of the Bolten forces had remained loyal to House Bolten and the Karstarkes either out of honor or had not been told of other options and thus moved towards Saltwood without knowledge that most had switched sides. The second group were led by House Johanston of whom commanded a force made up of the houses of the area and from elsewhere that had switched sides to the Lucernians and these forces were prepared for the ambush as they marched. Marching forward the Lucernian loyalists would remain outside the castle while the Bolten loyalists split in a further half with one side entering the castle, and the other side heading towards the forest where the Lucernians awaited them. Once out of range of the castle the Saltwoods would reject the call to call for surrenders when they opened fire on the Bolten troops entering the castle, and nearly the entire force was massacred. Trying to flee the Lucernians turncoats that had waited outside the castle hit them from the rear and these forces were more willing to accept prisoners but the Bolten troops were destroyed or captured in their entirety. The other force led by Cregan Karstark II., and Eddard Karstark II. would find themselves moving towards the forest and seeing a now fully deployed and larger force of Lucernian troops awaiting them. Deploying into position they watched the arrival of the other forces but these forces stopped behind them with weapons drawn clearly indicating a trap. Moving forward towards these troops Jaden Ambry, and Trevor Baratheon would bid them surrender and seeing the hopelessness of their position they would surrender themselves as well.
The Attack Begins
Robb Starke and the main Starke force would hit the northern edge of Karhold during the night, and would spy very few sentries on the wall due to the late night and the fact that noone thought Karhold was even threatened. Robb would send Theon Greyjoy, and Gregory Estermont with a small team of troops carring ropes who would ascend the northern wall and open the gatehouse for their troops. Theon, and Gregory would be able to get onto the wall but the alarm was raised as they were opening the gates thus alerting the city to the attack. The army of the Starkes entered the northern gate either way and was able to quickly capture a large swathe of the northern section as most of the defenders were just waking up, and those that were up were either killed or disarmed by the attacking forces. Arriving at the western gate Robb Starke alongside Wilheim Martell would get inside the gatehouse, and open the gate allowing the monsterous Grey Wind to enter as well and Grey Wind would massacre Cregan Karstark and several other men before finally being restrained by Robb and together they left men at the gatehouse before moving to the Keep.
The fighting in the eastern gatehouse was particularrly stiff as Craig Karstark, Urmen Stone, and Douglas Tisler waking to the alarm and heading to the eastern gatehouse in order to try and defend it. Urmen Stone would be struck by an arrow as the Stark men had taken the tower that overlooked the gatehouse and fired shots down at them. Retreating from view of the tower Craig would hold the inner gatehouse and fought off several men before finally Gregory Estermont got into the courtyard and would kill Craig. With the gate opening Douglas Tisler would jump from the wall into the water beneath and while badly injuring his leg he was able to swim to the Karstark side of the river to safety. The Karstarks would resist greatly in the marketplace of southern Karhold, but the main reason for the resistence being able to hold them off was the fact that Robb Starke had ordered a slow and safe conquest of the town believing he had increasingly large amounts of reinforcements incoming and didnt need to risk his forces in a battle he was already going to win.
The Karstarks had been devestated by the fighting with nearly ten of their number either captured or dead on the field, and without much hope that they could hold the keep for long. The sheer number of Karstarks that they had prisoner meant that they were forced to house them all in the walled keep in the northern part of the city, and from there they made Arnolf very much aware of how many were prisoners. Arnolf himself was sickly and was unable to move but in an act of blind arrogance refused to hand command over to his grandson Harnolf Karstark believing that his brother Rickard was laughing at him for failing to hold the city, and thus he would die before he gave it up. Outside of the Karstarks there allies in House Urnet, and House Tisler also lost several members with only Heshen Urnet able to flee out of the city, and returning to the forces of House Urnet. With the fighting intensifying in the southern half of the city the Karstarks awaited reinforcements, but this would be a hopeless wait as well as while the fighting was dying down in Karhold the news begin filtering in that Hornwood was under siege from House Locke and House Hornwood was abandoning the area east of Karhold in order return home, and they were taking all their men with them.
- † Arnolf Karstark. Died of Old Age
- Rickard Karstak
- † Janise Karstark. (Janice Targonian) Killed during the siege of Karhold
- Harrion Karstark
- Taylor Karstark
- Unknown Women
- † Eddard Karstark. Killed during the siege of Karhold
- Sasha Karstark. Killed by Harrion Karstark
- Eddard Karstark II.
- Cregan Kartstark II.
- Lassia Karstark (Lassia Sarn)
- Jared Karstark
- Cyrenna Karstark
- Lassia Karstark (Lassia Sarn)
- Harrion Karstark
- Unknown Women
- † Janise Karstark. (Janice Targonian) Killed during the siege of Karhold
- Arnolf Karstark II.
- Rickard Karstak