Chapter XII After some days of travel the roman army finally reached the city of Curia. Luckily for them the city still existed, serving as a refuge for the local population and the inhabitants of neighbouring destroyed cities. Although the roman authority had totally vanished from the region, attempts of coordinated resistance were made by prominent bishops or former officers of the Raetian army. Fortified city offered protection against barbarian raids, but now with the destruction of smaller settlements, they also became the new targets of attacks from the germanic populations. The biggest threat for the Raetian were the Alemanni, a germanic population that tried to establish a kingdom in the territory of the former provinces of Raetia, Germania I and Maxima Sequanorum. The Alemanni posed a bigger threat to the local inbatitants than the Rugii or the Heruli, yet they were also increasingly subjected to the power of frankish kings, as recent battles showed the superiority of the franks against them. During the first year of the campaign the roman army didn’t see any important battle, instead Nepos ordered his soldiers to repair local infrastructures: while marching further north, the romans provided for the reparations of roads and bridges, forts were built on strategic positions, while roman officers were temporarely the detached from the main army with the task of training the locals. New recruits along with the small militias of fortified cities were organized into units of “limitanei”, while former soldiers, previously abandoned to their destiny by the empire, slowly rejoined the ranks of their original units. Nepos main objective was to ensure the link between the various Raetian cities and forts with the Roman authority in Italy. However he also established local autonomous authority by seizing the powers of local bishops and restoring it to the Praeses of Raetia I and Raetia II, while the military commands of local units was assigned to a “Dux Raetia Prima et Secunda” subjected to the Magister Militum Praesentalis. Depots of grain were built or restored to ensure the supply and the payment of the Limitanei (foods composed a great part of the “Stipendium” of the roman soldiers during the Late Empire), necessary to avoid desertions of entire regiments, while Nepos also tried to bring people back to their villages and lands. The years saw small engagements between isolated imperial units and local bands of bandits or barbarians, constantly pushed north by the romans in an attempt to bring peace and security to the provinces. However small units of defeated barbarians were allowed to join the growing ranks of the roman army while their families where settled in depopulated villages in the southern part of Raetia, and occasionally northern Italy. By doing so Nepos hoped to incorporate part of the enemies, by giving them a place to live under the rule of the emperor and a reason to fight for Rome. Example of a roman fort, usually home to a small garrison of 500 men. This particular fort is situated at Saalburg. But the majority of the barbarians still preferred the old way of devastations and raids, forcing Nepos to constantly push North with his army while limiting the range of movement of the enemies. The more he moved North to bring order, the more the barbarians opposed organized resistance to his attacks. In 484 during his march to Augusta Vindelicorum and the Danube, after being reinforced by almost one thousand men from Italy, Nepos was forced to face the first serious threat to his campaign as an Alemannic army of almost 7000 men stood on his way to Augusta. Despite the almost equal numbers of the two armies the Alamannic king Valdomar totally underestimated the strength of his opponents, considering them equal to the roman garrisons he had faced during his previous campaigns. The following battle proved him wrong: the soldiers of the imperial army showed a resistance superior to that of Raetian while the Ostrogoths of the Scholae were able to surround and kill king Valdomar, provoking the route of his army. With the city of Augusta finally liberated from the immediate threat, Nepos proceeded with the reorganization of the defenses on the Danube and the restoration of the fortification in the city. During the winter that Nepos spent in Augusta he received important news from Noricum: similar results were accomplished by his general in the region, however the army had to stop the operations due to the sudden death of Ecdicius, who undefeated on the battlefield died of old age. While his son Eparchius Avitus, commander of the elite unit of the “Ioviani Seniores”, was too young to take the command of the entire army, he was promoted to the position of Comes Domesticorum Equitum, while Constantianus would take the role of Magister Militum Praesentalis and the command of the campaign in Noricum. Even more interesting was the news from Gaul, about the death of king Euricus of the Visigoths, who was succeeded by his young son Alaric II, a weak leader in the opinion of many, probably a great opportunity in the opinion of Nepos.