The House Pescheour was an unlikely defender of the Oaken Throne of Emperors. The self-proclaimed kings of a rocky bit of territory on the northern coast, the Pescheours had been unwilling subjects for much of the Empire existence, prone to refusing to pay taxes and holing up in their forbidding fortress-capital of Corbenic when the Emperors sent their troops to collect them. The Emperor Constans had once declared "Three implacable enemies do I know--the savages of the east, the Nightfolk of the south, and the Peschours of the north--the last are worst, for there's no reasoning with them."--his descendants had generally endorsed this view. Numerous methods had been tried to keep the family under control--all had failed. Efforts to eliminate them invariably proved too expensive--efforts to bribe them invariably succeeded in making them greedy and causing them to start performing acts of piracy--efforts to tie them to the Empire invariably saw them betraying their masters.
Seisyll Pescheour, destined to go down in history as 'Seisyll the First' and 'Seisyll the Shield-King', had been subjected to the latest variation of the this last one, brought up by the Emperor Ambrosius in the royal court and then sent back to Leonais with the idea of being their loyal man in the region, a Pescheour who saw himself as an Imperial subject. Their success had been exceedingly limited--Seisyll sent Aurelian an exceedingly polite letter refusing to send the Emperor men and funds as opposed to his grandfather Caradoc's declaration of 'My men and my coin are in Corbenic, with many sharp axes--if you want them, come and get them,' to Ambrosius--still, the general thought seems to have been about the same. If Seisyll mourned Aurelian, as he would later claim, then he had a softer heart at that time than he generally demonstrated.
However, as the succession crisis began, Seisyll seems to have seen an opportunity. As Baldizar and Ulrich began their struggle for their throne, Seisyll suddenly declared for the young Count Oriflamme. At the time, few thought much of it, the act of a minor lord on the fringes of the Empire from a family seen as little better than bandits.
This was a mistake.