Chronicles of Darvania
The Northern Wars were a series of conflicts between the Nordic Kingdom and Tsardom of Thull. The first lasted 2 years, and saw Thull force the Nordic Kingdom to become a vassal state. This period lasted for 22 years, and in the North it is known as the "dark times". Exactly 22 years of the first war ended, the king, Adolphus Light-Bringer, refused to pay the yearly tribute, and declared war. The Second Northern War lasted for 3 years, and was one of the most one-sided conflicts in history. 4 separate Thullian expeditions were crushed by the numerically inferior northern army. When it was over, the Nordic Kingdom restored its ancient boundaries, including the east bank of the River of Serpents. The Tsardom reluctantly recognized the new border. But when Vladimir Ivanovich III, the current Tsar, died, his son, Alexei, took the throne, and promptly declared the treaty null and void. The Nordic Kingdom declared war the following day. The Third Northern war was the longest and most destructive of all of them, and lasted 6 years. It saw drastic shifts in fortune for both sides. The initial Thullian invasion was repulsed in the Battle of Olaf's Farm. Ragnar Sword-Shatterer, now King of the Nords, saw that the Thullian threat must be neutralized once and for all. He crossed the River of Serpents and invaded Thull with an army of 15,000. They marched only 120 miles before being ambushed by the Thullians in the Battle of the Steppe. Ragnar retreated home, with only 7,000 men alive and in fighting condition. The Thullians launched a second invasion, and were barely defeated at the gates of Valdenthar. By this point, that war had lasted 5 years, and both sides were exhausted. Alexei sued for peace with the Nordic Kingdom, but when he announced he was willing to give concessions, he was killed by his own bodyguard. His younger brother, Ishum, then took the throne. He immidiately refused to negotiate and announced his intention to conquer the Nordic Kingdom. Emmanuel Eilhart, Emperor of Maguria, sent an ultimatum to the Thullians: to back down and negotiate, or face war with Maguria. Ishum finally agreed to a ceasefire. However, neither side was willing to back down about who would control the east bank, and war almost broke out again, when the Magurian mediator suggested that neither should have it. A demilitarized zone was set up, both sides were given 1 year to evacuate it. Despite the lack of protection, many civilians; both Thullian and Nordic, stayed behind. This was their home. The DMZ has kept the peace for 34 years.