From Storm-General Galen Claves-ith-Lelad, Warmain of the Dawn, Strategos of the 33rd Imperial Legion, the Fists of Lightning, to Ironlord Qorran Cieng, commanding the Third Army of Ochale, greeting.
I have the honor to command the forces of my Empress, which even now approach the strongpoint you have made of the city of Echiran from the south, as your scouting parties will doubtless have confirmed for you. I regret that I must further inform you that we have successfully secured the outlying villages to the south, and our five-furnace dragons have taken up position along the Chiran Ridge, from which they are able to successfully range upon your position.
Despite the regrettable necessities of war, I wish to assure you that neither I nor Her Divine Majesty have any desire for the devastation of cities, the deaths of your people, or any unnecessary effusion of blood.
To that end, it is my wish to offer to you an alternative to bombardment, house-to-house fighting, and other such barbarities. If you will vacate the city, we will meet you in the valley to its west. In deference to your current superior defensive position, I give you my personal assurance that we will permit you one day beforehand to establish your positions in the valley, and will refrain from engaging you there with our five-furnace dragons.
In the event of our victory, we would require that you withdraw from the city of Echiran, without sabotage, pillage, or further engagement, a minimum of three days’ march; likewise, in the event of your victory, we will undertake that neither we nor the 55th Imperial Legion, the Doom Hammers, currently approaching from the west, will attempt further engagement nor pass north beyond the city of Echiran for the three days following the battle.
In surety of our good faith, I pledge you my personal word, my word as Warmain of the Dawn, and in the voice of my Empress. May I have your response before daybreak?
Given under my hand and seal this day, 11 Cálith,
What exactly is “five-furnace dragons”?
Giant and ornate steampunkesque tanks that fight with incendiary blasting shells and discharges of live steam. Basically.
Holy shit. That is…goddamn Cool, man.
Thus five-furnace dragons are one of Empire’s many super heavies, I presume?
Well, they were at the time.
Technology’s moved on quite a lot since then (this would be set about six millennia before “present time”, the time of the Core War fics), but for their day, quite definitely!
1. Wow. That is quite looooong. Thus exactly how old Empire of the Star are? About as old as Culture, perhaps?
2. What modern(Core War era) Empire’s prominent variants of Super Heavies are?
1. “Present time” there is 7122 by their calendar; the years aren’t quite the same length, but that’s about 6500 Earth years.
2. The modern-day heavy stuff is described here: http://eldraeverse.com/2015/02/11/the-emperors-sword-heavy-cavalry/