Quarrelled With Winter
Timeline of Monarchs
King Oberon & An Unrecorded Series Skirmishes between Faerie-King Oberon and a long unrecorded succession of short-lived human kings dot what history was recorded in Albion pre-Raven King (then called an older name for Albion, which was England). It seems that, in their struggle for control of the land, humans had held out from sheer numbers and fey from their wild magic, causing some 600 years of stalemate. Constant warfare wasted lives and energies of both races, such that they fell behind other potential empires around the world, such as the Remun Empire that dominated mainland Europe.
The Raven King One human commoner’s brief tryst with Faerie-Queen Titania (recounts of this event contradict one another; William Shudder-Lance eventually popularised the Unknown Author’s account of the human’s metamorphosis into a ‘reverse satyr’ – donkey head, human body – in his play in 1559) produced a half-fey who later overthrew both kings. For the first time, Albion was ruled as a united kingdom of fey and human subjects, and he ushered in a new age of unprecedented magical development and power.
Much of this was due to the races bleeding into each other. The humans were quick learners of magic, though their methodical practise of the art bemused the fey to whom magic was innate and whimsical – the magicians stemmed from this. The fey were gleeful about the concept of laws and oaths, something which they took great pleasure in adapting and perverting for their shrewd tricks – the terrible dangers of a ‘fairy bargain’ are remembered to this day.
His reign lasted for about 400 years before a group of human Martians (worshippers of Mars) – then a minority and thus overlooked – produced treachery to a scale uncommon of humankind and opened Albion’s gates for the Holy Remun Empire. The Empire and their god Mars drove the Raven King from his throne and severed the connection between Albion and Faerie. Many rebellions were plotted against the Martian Church, but the fact remained that magic had dried up in Albion; the remains entombed in history and books did not function properly, and around the turn of the 12th century ceased functioning at all.
Mars The god officially ruled for 3 months before he appointed a human monarch from his followers. This is the only recorded instance of Mars governing directly (that is, without acting through an exarch), and many attribute this as the reason why anti-Martian rebellions died out so rapidly. Others say Albions just never really liked fey.
King Henry VIII The House of Plantagenet that Mars appointed led on to The House of Lancaster, who were later succeeded by the House of Tudor, who produced Henry VIII. After five hundred years of goodwill with the Martian Church (London had become thought of as ‘the second capital of Mars’ after Remun in Italy), Henry VIII separated Albion from Remun and Mars in order to annul his marriages. The end result of this later became a skipping rhyme in his daughter’s rule: _p=. King Henry the Eighth, to six wives he was wedded: One died, one survived, two divorced, two beheaded._
Queen Mary After the death of Henry VIII, policies were interrupted by several squabbles for the throne, including the reign of Lady Jane Grey, ‘Queen of Nine Days’. The crown, however, finally fell onto Mary, and she began to revoke the religious separation between Mars and Albion. However, her contact with Remun mysterious stopped during her three pregnancies, the product of which was one child. For some reason, she did not resume the Martian policies, even after the birth of Princess Alice.
Queen Alice Since Henry VIII’s severing of Remun ties, there has been religious confusion within Albion. The majority of the population, tired of the strictness of Mars, have begun to practice a form of loose Martian faith, where the values of law and good are still held but relaxed and without the absolute devotion that Remun demanded. The advent known as the Revival occurred in the last years of Mary’s reign, and from it emerged an increasing amount of magicians for the first time in four hundred years. Because of this, many have also turned to Faerie for religious fulfilment, much like in the first days after the Decline, where magic lingers but is disconnected still.
At the tender age of 13, Queen Alice seems unprepared for these challenges. Even from this early stage of her reign, however, she doesn’t seem to sway one way or in the other in the religious debate as her mother and grandfather did. Her one agenda seems to be hunting down her half-aunt, Elizabeth…