The Sons of Inti Shall Not Perish: Gold Standard Edition

Discussion in 'Finished Timelines and Scenarios' started by King of the Uzbeks, Jan 25, 2018.

  1. King of the Uzbeks Charles Curtis is my Baby Daddy

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    The Sons of Inti Shall Not Perish
    An Alternate History of the Tawantinsuyu
    Book 1: In the Heart of the Andes

    Discussion Thread
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    The Chasqui bore ill news for the Empire. Wayna Qhapaq was dead, struck down by a strange illness. Preparations were to be made for the ascension Ninan Cuyochi. The Chasqui went south with a speed befitting his important message, yet it was not a very useful one.

    Just days after the first Chasqui had left a new one was sent South from Kitu. Ninan Cuyochi was dead, of the same illness that had claimed his father. This Chasqui bore no declarations of who would be ascending to the rank of Sapa Inka, no proclamations of heirs. Just the news of the death. He too went south with all due speed, heading for Qusqu with this ill news.

    They wound south, across gorges spanned by rope bridges, across the mountains, across a wide array of peoples. Carrying their message. They ran, stopping for food, drink and rest at numerous waystations and storehouses. There they passed their message, tied into their Quipu, unto a new Chasqui who, with fresh legs ran south yet again. Again, and again this process occurred until finally the message had reached Qusqu.

    Mourning began with the arrival of the first message, and panic and heated discussion began with the second. And soon the dying began, for passed along with the Quipus came the disease that had killed both the Sapa Inka and his heir.

    And now it was striking the navel of the world.

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    In Early 1527 the first Spanish Conquistadors came into contact with ships from the Tawantinsuyu Empire. It was a brief meeting, hardly worth the time of the Inca merchants who were looking to trade for shells and corals. However, the wealth the traders had shocked the Spaniards. The leader of the group that first met the Tawantinsuyu, Bartolomé Ruiz, sent back a stunned report to King Charles I. "They were carrying…silver and gold as personal ornaments…including crowns and diadems, belts and bracelets…"

    Ruiz's actions did not bode well for future relations between the Tawantinsuyu Empire and the Spanish. He immediately captured the raft upon seeing it, most of the men aboard jumped over to avoid capture. Most of those who were captured were eventually set shore, but Ruiz would keep three to serve as translators.

    Ruiz returned to the San Juan River where the leader of his expedition, Francisco Pizarro. The expedition, seeking to find the source of this trading vessel, went south, but found little. They set up camp on a hostile, completely uninhabited island near the mouth of the Tumaco River, an Island they called Isla del Gallo, Island of the Cock. Soon men began to die at a rapid pace, some 16 or so a month. The men got so desperate that they appealed to the Governor of Spanish Panama, who ordered an inquiry and the evacuation of those who wished to leave Isla del Gallo. Only 13 men stayed behind with Pizarro. Pizarro's fanatical devotion to the cause reaped benefits, in 1528 he began explorations southward and encountered the first true Tawantinsuyu city any European had seen, Tumbez. The meeting of Pizarro and the Tawantinsuyu was cordial, but Pizarro, a man of common birth, was already planning conquest for the riches it would bring him. Further visits to nearby towns only solidified his desire to see the Tawantinsuyu subjugated. He saw quantities of gold and silver, pottery and valuable textiles. He saw a great empire for him to rule for Spain. But upon the expedition's return to Panama he found the Governor unwilling to finance him and bitter memories of Isla del Gallo hurting his recruitment efforts.

    So, Pizarro returned to Spain to seek support from the Royal Court at Toledo in mid-1528. By a stroke of luck, he arrived at a similar time to his old commander Cortés from Mexico. Cortés encouraged his former subordinate in his endeavor. The excitement brought about by the conquest of the Aztec Empire made it relatively easy for him to gain royal approval for such an adventure as well as recruit young men to assist in the invasion. The lure of conquest following the victories in Mexico was powerful and Pizarro used it to his advantage. He gained a commission from King Charles as Governor and Captain-General of Peru. His allies gained titles as well. His partner Diego de Almagro was promised the position of Commandant of Tumbez and the Governorship of territory beyond Peru. Hernando de Luque, a priest who also acted as a middleman between conquistadores and their financial backers, was to become the Bishop of Tumbez. Additional financial support was lent by powerful men in Panama such as Pascual de Andagoya.

    In late 1530 Pizarro left Panama on his mission of conquest, but it would not be until mid-1532 that he reached the city of Tumbez again, do to landing farther north than was advisable and an arduous march south through the jungle and skirmishes with natives who lacked the organization of the Tawantinsuyu. When the expedition sailed from the island of Puná to the mainland they had officially begun invading the Tawantinsuyu Empire.

    The intervening years had been unkind to the Tawantinsuyu Empire. The Sapa Inka, Wayna Qhapaq had been campaigning in the hinterland for control of the area north of Kitu. Wayna Qhapaq had ruled over the empire for years with internal peace, and had been on campaigns to subjugate the areas in the northern Andes that had not yet fallen to the Tawantinsuyu. At this period in time the Tawantinsuyu were at the height of their power. They controlled almost the entire Andes Mountain chain, a sophisticated system of roads tied the Empire together and allowed the court at Qusqu to quickly send orders to the four Suyu. Despite lacking a written language, they kept detailed records using their system of knots called Quipu. Their architecture was a sight to behold and their massive terrace farming system produced large yields of Maize and Potatoes to communal stores. The ruling class was expanding as the Qusqu elite reluctantly allowed the most powerful chiefs from conquered groups to join the highest groups in the empire. But all of that was about to change.

    Smallpox, the deadliest of the various diseases that swept the Americans during the Columbian exchange. The disease killed countless thousands of ordinary Tawantinsuyu, as well as the powerful. Society was destabilized as massive sections of it died. Ironically the excellent road system probably helped spread the disease. The exact percentage of the population that died is disputed but it ranges from 40% to 85%. And it pulls strike even into the heard of the royal family, the supposed children of the sun.

    Wayna Qhapaq had heard rumors of white men from the north and had been preparing march from Kitu to meet them when the plague struck. Wayna Qhapaq was killed quickly, never being able to see the white man, his presumed heir, Ninan Cuyuchi, died as well. Even the great capital at Qusqu was unsafe, Wayna Qhapaq's next son Huascar was also killed by the virus [1], along with several other prominent sons and Qusqu nobles. The deaths of so many members of the Inka's family created a massive power vacuum in the Empire. None of the other sons of Wayna Qhapaq and his many wives had been expecting to gain the title of Sapa Inka. Various intrigues began in Qusqu over who would become Inca, however these games were shattered when runners arrived from the north. The army was marching south.

    At the head of the army near Kitu following his father's death was Atawallpa, one of the Inka's many son's. He had not been born to a mother of noble Qusquan blood, his mother was the daughter of a kingdom subjected by the empire years before. This made him unpalatable to the nobles in Qusqu [2]. However, he commanded the respect of the professional army and the only thing the nobles controlled were poorly trained militia men. He had broad support in the north and while his popularity in the south and central part of the Empire was low what remained of the court at Qusqu failed to present a figure for them to rally around, the capital was still caught up with subtly bickering claimants. At the head of the advancing Army was Quizquiz, a major general from the northern campaigns loyal to Atawallpa. The presence of the largely Kitan Army felt like an invasion of the Quechan homeland, but Quizquiz easily defeated a ragtag militia unsure of its loyalties at Shawsha. When Quizquiz arrived at Qusqu in the name of "Atawallpa, the Twelfth Sapa Inka" the city, having no time to organize a defense made no fight and wishing to avoid a sacking, allowed him in.

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    In the wake of Quizquiz Atawallpa marched south along with his Commander in Chief, Chialiquichiama. They bore the largest chunk of the Army with them in a slow and meandering march to Qusqu, with stops to attack chiefs who had foolishly backed some minor claimant from Qusqu. The third of the great generals loyal to Atahualpa. Rumiñawi, was left in charge of Kitu, Atahualpa's power base.

    Atawallpa’s time in Qusqu lasted from 1524 to 1532, he remained unpopular there with the nobles and his troops became unpopular due to their occupation of the city. He impressed loyalty upon the city leaders, executed or imprisoned a few of the leading pretenders. He assumed the name Tikki Capac, however a combination of his Kitan troops calling him what they knew him as and Qusqu elites privately refusing to acknowledge his rule means he is still often referred to as Atawallpa. His coronation was well received but the new Inka was northern raised and his father had not been in Qusqu for years, instead staying at the front of the long running wars north of Kitu. Though he did not dare say it to the powerful nobles in Qusqu he was considering going through with a plan of his late father and establishing a second capital in the north, most likely Kitu, or perhaps in Tumipampa in order to have a permanent base of operations. The issue of the capital was likely in the forefront of Atawallpa's mind as he turned around and began a long march north. He left Quizquiz in control of Qusqu and left with his grand entourage to the north. Speculation as to why he left varies, some claim he feared a revolt while others say he finally felt secure enough to resume his father’s conquests in the north.

    However, Pizarro was about to shove himself into the spotlight.

    After crossing the frontier, the about a hundred strong Spanish invaders had been using their horses, steel and guns to pillage the disease hit hinterland. Rumors of white gods spun southwards as their advance continued and they continued stealing and fighting. They killed several chiefs along the way and terrified some locals into conversion to Christianity. The first major town they came across was one Pizarro had already seen, Tumbez[3]. The port city had been ravaged by smallpox and was greatly weakened compared to the splendor that Pizarro had seen earlier. It was March 1532 when Pizarro took Tumbez. The city was lightly defended by unprofessional and he'd asked to negotiate with the garrison commander. The garrison commander had brought his forces to the talks only to be ambushed by gun wielding Spaniards on horseback. Not a single casualty occurred for the Spanish as they defeated hundreds of Inca militia men mainly through sheer terror. The occupation of Tumbez was a shock to its inhabitants who had known relative peace for quite some time. Women from sacred temples were taken for the men and readings from the foreign object of a book occurred. The invaders rode on strange beasts and carried strange weapons. The attempted conversion of the populace of what was supposed to be a Bishop's seat went poorly.


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    Word of the occupation spread quickly to Rumiñawi, who by this point was south of Kitu near the town of Saruma. While the other two generals were either keeping down a rebellious populace or in support of Atawallpa Rumiñawi had a region loyal to the Inka around him. Sending word of his plans southward to Atawallpa he marched southwards even further, planning to pass Tumbez then swing north so as to block the strangers’ southward march and ascertain their intentions.

    What Rumiñawi was unaware of was that Pizarro, having received meager reinforcements, was slowly leaving Tumbez and beginning to explore the arid area around the Chira River. Near the town of Tangarara he laid out plans for a new Spanish town but did not settle it [4] due to his numbers having been sapped by leaving men behind to occupy Tumbez. Leaving the area in late September he began to turn inward and begin a full invasion of the Tawantinsuyu Empire. However, he ran straight towards Rumiñawi who, having found Tumbez largely empty of anything but a few lightly armed Spaniards, has been rushing south by a more inland route. They both turned towards each other in early October. The first meeting between the full might of the Tawantinsuyu Empire and Pizarro would occur in the town of Saña.


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    1: This is our point of divergence, in our timeline Huascar survived and helped kick off a civil war.

    2: They supported Huascar IOTL.

    3: IOTL he found Tumbez abandoned due to the civil war.

    4: Unlike IOTL

    The decision of Pizarro to ambush Rumiñawi in Saña was a hasty one. He feared that the longer the Spanish stayed in one place the less awe they would inspire amongst the natives, which would hurt them. He also suspected that Rumiñawi was suspicious of the true motives of the Spanish presence in the empire. While we will never know the truth of the matter that was not an unreasonable assumption considering the rate at which the general was sending news to Atahualpa. Pizarro also was likely afraid that the arrival of even more troops would overwhelm even the well-armed Spaniards, he was particularly fearful of a siege around Saña. Therefore, he believed that his best option was to break the Army at Saña and approach the emperor on his own, perhaps spinning a lie that Rumiñawi had been planning a takeover of Tawantinsuyu and the Spanish had stopped him. So, he had his men prepare a trap.

    The Spanish had occupied Saña for three days by the dawn of their attack on Rumiñawi. They had become aquatinted with the layout of the square and carefully prepared positions in case of an attack. Now they began planning an ambush against one of the most powerful men in the empire. They arranged their cannon pointing towards the center of the square and assigned positions for cavalry charges. The Pizarro Brothers carefully planned the reception of Rumiñawi, knowing they only had one chance to capture or kill the general.

    At the appointed time Rumiñawi entered Saña at the appointed time. There is no indication that he expected any sort of attack, even if he was concerned about the intentions of the Spanish. The thousands of soldiers he brought with him certainly expected nothing. These were professional soldiers, with experience in the brutal warfare in the north and certainly battle ready. But they held no expectations of a fight, instead expecting a festival of sorts. And so, they marched in with the mood of a party, expecting fine food and good drinks.

    The first sign something was amiss was the fact that the Spanish were circled around the center of the square as the Tawantinsuyu entourage approached it. Upon the arrival of Rumiñawi two Spaniards and an interpreter approached the general. It was not the Pizzaro’s, it was Vincente de Valverde, a Friar along with the expedition, and Hernando de Soto, an experienced conquistador. They asked if Rumiñawi accepted Charles V as his Emperor and the Holy Trinity as his God. Rumiñawi replied no. They asked if he acknowledged the supremacy of the Catholic Church, he said no. They presented him with the banners of the conquistadors and a bible and he refused them. At this point Valverde exclaimed that Rumiñawi was beyond saving and demanded his arrest.

    Suddenly shots were fired from the guns of the Spanish, causing chaos in the ranks of the Tawantinsuyu. This was only multiplied by the charging of the cavalry into battle, swords raised. The panic amongst the Tawantinsuyu only increased. Their clubs and axes could do little against the hard chain armor the Spaniards wore and they had little defense against the sharpened steel made in the best forges of Toledo. Their awe of horses turned to fear as the Spanish used their advantage mercilessly upon the soldiers. Hundreds fell. A Spaniard, later determined to be Pedro Pizarro, leapt towards Rumiñawi and sliced a wide gash in the General's cheek with his sword. However, he was then clubbed in the back of the head just afterword’s and fell to the ground. He was found after the battle to have been trampled to death. He was the only Spanish man to die on November 12th. As the slaughter continued the bleeding Rumiñawi was seized by Spaniards. Seeing this the Tawantinsuyu began to flee, despite attempts to contain them for further massacre they began to flood out of Saña and towards the bulk of Rumiñawi's army encamped outside of it. The army, despite lacking its leader, began to mobilize itself in a disorganized manner. However soon the Spanish followed and fell onto the still preparing army with their full power and they began to scatter the shocked army into a retreat, then a rout. A last desperate attempt to rescue Rumiñawi failed, but the general managed to shout word out to retreat towards the mountains. Soon the once proud Tawantinsuyu was straggling up the steep slopes towards Atawallpa bearing the terrible news of defeat.

    Pizarro's victory, though dampened by the death of his brother, now presented him with more options. He now had conclusive proof of the advantages he had over the Tawantinsuyu and experience battling them. He knew reinforcements were due to arrive the next year at Tumbez with supplies and men. So, some Spaniards argued for stopping his march at Saña, consolidating the Spanish rule over the area between there and the north while waiting for reinforcements before marching into the High Andes and attacking the Inka himself. Intelligence could be gathered during that time and the area around Saña was becoming well known for Pizarro's men, making it ideal for a defense against Tawantinsuyu coming down towards the town. It would allow time for the recruitment of Indian auxiliaries as well. However, staying still was making the Spanish anxious and fears that the remnants of Rumiñawi's army would link up with the Sapa Inka and sweep down and slaughter them. Some argued that they should press the Tawantinsuyu right then, taking advantage of the disorganized army and the panic following the defeat at Saña, perhaps using Rumiñawi as a bargaining chip. This faction hoped to capitalize on their advantages before the Tawantinsuyu could adapt to the invasion. Greed also played a role, if Diego de Almagro and his men arrived before the seizure of any treasure and assisted in taking it they would be entitled to a share of it. Francisco Pizarro, still grieving his brother, took his time deliberating.

    His first action was to send a Spanish emissary to the Sapa Inka explaining his actions. He cooked up a fanciful story about Rumiñawi. Pizarro claimed that Rumiñawi had said Atawallpa was illegitimate and that the Sapa Inka ought to be removed. Rumiñawi had though himself a better Inka was preparing a march on Qusqu. Pizarro stated that Rumiñawi had offered the Spanish a quarter of the gold and a third of the silver in the empire in exchange for their assistance [1]. Pizarro claimed that "out of respect for his majesty" he had rejected the offer out of hand. But Rumiñawi had supposedly persisted and then attacked the Spanish to keep his plot a secret. This lie was sent along with the three low ranking Spaniards towards the Inka's encampment.

    When they arrived at the Inka's household outside of Cajamarca it was Atawallpa who faced a dilemma. He rejected the tale quickly, he trusted Rumiñawi and had already heard reports of the Battle at Saña. His wariness of the Spanish had shifted into complete distrust and hatred. It was universally agreed in his court that the Spanish were not to dealt with peacefully. But when and where to strike the first blow against the foreign invader was disputed. Certainly, some of his consuls advocated killing the messengers and sending a gory message back to the Spanish. However, Atawallpa refused this option, reportedly remarking that sending back the heads of the men was not worth the effort of the runners. Though this event likely never happened it shows the cautious but clever nature of the Sapa Inka. Atawallpa still did not know exactly what the Spanish sought or how many there were beyond his empire. He sought to capture at least a few for information. He'd been bombarded with tales of the horses, steel swords, and gunshots. He and his commander in chief of the army, Chalcuchima, both immediately grasped what uses these things might have and sought to possess their power. The awe held my many Tawantinsuyu towards the invaders also played into the decision of the Inka, by defeating them he could solidify his power as an all-powerful ruler.

    So instead of attacking them he politely listened to the men, the first whites he ever saw. He listened to their false story about Rumiñawi's betrayal and nodded. Soon thereafter he retired to his chambers and decide his next move. The three men currently there would not be enough to ransom back Rumiñawi, even with their single horse and their armor and swords. So that option was not open to Atahualpa. In all likelihood the Sapa Inka considered many options. A full-on assault was too obvious beforehand and after the massacre at Saña he had no plans to repeat it. To welcome the Spanish into his court would be suicidal, at least now with the advantages the Spaniards had. He could request a "higher ranking man" to negotiate with. But that would smack of an ambush with such a request, and Pizzaro might take it as invitation to move his entire force on the Sapa Inka. But eventually the Sapa Inka came up with an idea and told his advisors his plan and it was set into motion.

    He returned to the emissaries and thanked them for discovering Rumiñawi's treason and invited the Spanish to come to Cajamarca and encamp near but not with his forces. There they could celebrate the victory and receive rewards. As an incentive he had the emissaries adorned with a fair amount of silver and gold and promised more. He promised the Spaniards a liter full of gold and silver for their efforts, with more for specific heroes of the battle. Such riches were a beacon to the Spanish and soon they prepared to enter the mountains towards Cajamarca. An attempt to get Rumiñawi [2] to disclose information on the Emperor's Army failed. Even if it was a trap they were confident of their ability to fight back an attack in the town, a fact that is probably true.

    Of course the Inka had no plans in letting them get there.

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    1: Without Atahualpa's ransom promise the Spanish still have little idea of how damn rich the royalty was, meaning 1/4 and 1/3 seem reasonable for a lie.

    2: IOTL Rumiñawi is famous for hiding The Treasure of the Llanganatis and refusing to reveal its location under torture.

    The Tawantinsuyu Road system was, in 1532, arguably the best that the world had seen since Rome had fallen into chaos. It stretched from the northern mountains to the southern desert. Storehouses were set up and chasquis staggered to ensure the fasted possible communications. Rope bridges of dizzying height helped keep the Empire together. With no written language messages were either oral or on Quipu[1]. Watchtowers dotted the highways and each community donated portions of food and time to give runners good rest. With no wheels for commercial use all travel was done by foot, or liter for the powerful of the Tawantinsuyu Empire. The only other thing that crossed the roads were long trains of Llamas carrying goods or being traded.

    This road system was good moving Tawantinsuyu troops about with ease and rapid responses. However, the roads made it easy for the Spanish to travel along the coast with greater ease then the invaders had expected. But it was different now that they headed inland.

    The Chancay is hardly even a river, more of a stream, but it flows from the mighty Andes down into the Pacific. A small road ran up its course into the steep hills, going through the town of Chongoyape. From there it turned onto the treeless alpine tundra. Forts dotted the landscape on the way to Cajamarca and narrow passes were often threaded by the road.

    It was into this type of desolate country, the land where the Tawantinsuyu had originated, that Francisco Pizarro and the Spanish marched starting on December 2nd, when they departed Saña for their "meeting" with Atahualpa, bearing the imprisoned Rumiñawi. In doing so they unknowingly surrendered themselves to the Inka's will. At Saña the Spanish had possessed the advantages of being well positioned to exploit their advantages (such as their position being well suited for a cavalry attack), surprise, and their weapons and horses striking fear into the unprepared army[2]. However, the desolate passes were a completely different game.

    The road system had been built for three things, people walking, people running and llamas. So, the roads were more than paths but were not designed with ease of transport in mind. A human is relatively versatile on steep roads with many switchbacks and the llamas were bred for mountain living.

    Horses were not.

    On the smallest Tawantinsuyu roads, of which the one following the Chancay Stream was, the steep and narrow route made riding the horses dangerous enough that most Spanish chose to lead the horses along rather than ride. Fighting on the horses was out of the question, the horses could simply not get the traction needed to charge effectively. And so immediately one of the major advantages of Pizarro was defeated by nature. The narrow roads also forced the Spanish to march single file up the road, keeping their effectiveness further limited.

    The roads were bad enough, but off the roads even foot-soldiers were useless to Pizarro. The terrain was rough and they had no experience with such land. They didn't know the area or where the cliffs were. But the locals did, and the Tawantinsuyu did.

    For all their claims about the "subhuman" natives across the Americas the Spanish faced a very real biological fact entering the Andes. The Tawantinsuyu had lived in the mountains for centuries. Simple facts of Unequal Inheritance[3] caused them to have stronger lungs to breath the thin Mountain air. The Spanish did not have this and many soon came down with weakness likely resulting from this.

    In summation the road leading towards Cajamarca singlehandedly annulled the advantages the Spanish had for almost everything[4].

    Atawallpa did not know all of this at the time, he only had fragmented and panicked reports of their power. But he knew the land well and knew the Chancy road provided a good opportunity for an ambush and began to plan accordingly. He dispersed parts of his army, swelled with numbers from Rumiñawi's force, into the mountains. Watchtowers who spied the Spanish sent off chasquis like clockwork. Locals the forcibly kept silent. At the end of the stream, where the road turns into the alpine tundra, Chalcuchima sat. Officially awaiting to escort the Spanish but in reality, serving as a last line of defense. It is almost certain that some Spaniards expected an ambush, but most expected it to occur in the presence of the Emperor, after all that was how they had organized their ambush. Those who did fear an attack in the mountains still felt good about their odds.

    The exact location of the Battle of Chancay Road is still unknown, as it was not near any specific town. But there are a few firsthand accounts that serve as a guide and the date is recognized as December 9th. The ambush likely started with a massive army appearing on a high hillside into the view of the Spanish. They did not realize the scale of the attack until the first volley of stones hit them. At the time the crossbows were few in number and the guns inaccurate and time consuming. This made the simple stone sling the most efficient projectile weapon in the Andes. A good Tawantinsuyu solider could strike with deadly accuracy with one. The stone volley killed a few Spanish but mostly sowed confusion amongst them. The Spaniards faced the problem of aiming up steep cliffs towards small targets with their bows and guns, a nearly impossible task. So, they attempted to leave the road. Their horses became even more useless off road and the terrain was hard to traverse for inexperienced travelers. Soon Tawantinsuyu warriors were streaming out of the hills. The Spanish still had one crucial advantage however: Steel. Their swords were far, far better than anything then Tawantinsuyu possessed and the armor was effective against the clubs and bronze weapons. But the numbers were against the Spanish and the hills meant they were attacking the Tawantinsuyu up steep hills, and there was only a certain number of hits a Spanish man could take before an enemy solider got lucky. Stones continued to fly down on the Spanish group, scattering attempts to organize as one hit to the face could kill a man.

    All hope of a Spanish victory was lost when a small group of Tawantinsuyu freed the tied up Rumiñawi and brought him back to their lines. The Tawantinsuyu now had a general and a huge psychological victory over the Spanish. Soon the Spanish became bottled on the road, with enemy soldiers on both sides and quickly became surrounded. Pizarro was prepared to fight to the death, which he did, but after he bled out after a lucky cut from an axe the Spaniards fell apart. Those who kept fighting were isolated and killed while many others surrendered.

    An unintentional side effect of the Tawantinsuyu's less advanced weapons was a relatively low casualty rate for the Spanish, some 84 men survived the massacre, and were to be brought before Atawallpa.

    Some were determined to die for their faith and nation and would not yield to a "barbarian" king. But others lacked that conviction, or found that their beliefs were weaker than they had imagined. And so, the knowledge the Spaniards held began to leech into the New World.

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    1: The Knot Things

    2: And an almost fanatical devotion to the Pope

    3: Evolution

    4: IOTL Pizarro wrote "We were very lucky they did not set upon us" while passing the region.

    Following their defeat at the Chancay River the captured Spanish were led up the road by the Tawantinsuyu towards the waiting Atahualpa. At the head was the newly freed Rumiñawi, now bearing a long scar down his face from Pedro Pizarro's sword. His captivity had left him permanently hostile to the Spanish, and he would forever more be an advocate of a harsh policy toward foreigners. They brought with them horses, guns and steel swords, things that all the Tawantinsuyu generals knew would be extremely beneficial to the Empire.

    The highest-ranking Spaniard left alive, Hernando Pizarro, was brought before the Inka bound and gagged. Before interrogating Pizarro Atawallpa told him of one of the punishments for theft in the Empire. To be left, with your hands and feet cut off, just outside of a city and be left to beg for food. The Inka then remarked that the Spanish had stolen one of his favorite generals from him as well as the gold Rumiñawi carried. Atawallpa then reportedly remarked that "there are worse things a man can lose then his hands and feet" and proceeded to grill Pizarro on the Spanish intentions. Soon other Spaniards were brought in, like Hernando de Soto and interrogated. A few refused to talk but the vast majority told the Tawantinsuyu most, if not all of what they knew. What they told shifted the course of history. Previously the Inka had been under the impression that the Spanish were roaming thieves who were looking for as much gold as possible, but now he learned that the truth was that the Spanish were out to conquer his empire. Immediately he realized that the threat was much large then he had imagined. He immediately began to make plans for a strengthening of his armies with Spanish technology and he ordered watches posted on every possible inch of the coast. Realizing that division inside his empire only could hurt him Atawallpa began quietly preparing to try and make peace with the Qusqu Nobles that opposed his rule. He abandoned his vague plans of establishing a northern capital for fear of angering Qusqu even further. He intended to bring the nobles, even some who had opposed him, into the secrets of the knowledge taken from the Spanish, which he intended to keep in the hands of the very few.

    That technology was being acquired at rapidly different rates. The Spanish horses were well trained and, aside from 3 that had been permanently injured in battle, could be ridden rather easily once one learned to ride. Soldiers and generals both clambered to receive the honor of a mount and eventually some of the highest-ranking figures in the empire received horses. They were not as well trained as Spanish cavalry and some were quite clumsy. But the horse was awe inspiring to the average peasant and it gave them an advantage of a Spanish foot solider. Armor and helmets were similarly divided up, as were existing swords. The weapons would remain distributed but the horses were quickly retaken by the Sapa Inka as he gained a more solid grasp on the tactics needed to use them well.

    Just as a good sword and a horse were signs of power in Europe they became signs of a man's standing with the Inka to the Tawantinsuyu. Rumiñawi received some of the best items for his bravery and those most loyal to Atawallpa received rewards in Spanish goods, not always military.

    But the Inka kept his discoveries regarding the secrets of gunpowder and steel to members of his closest family, whose members were considered at the very least Demigods. He discovered that Gunpowder was a mixture of various substances ground together. The men he interrogated were not by any means experts on the subject and technical subjects never translate well but he and his closet advisors managed to get the general ingredients down. Messengers were sent south with orders to collect needed ingredients. The eastern jungle, previously a backwater, became important for charcoal production.

    Wood from the Jungle also became necessary for the construction of crossbows. Though viewed as clumsy and heavy by some Spaniards they were still groundbreaking to the Tawantinsuyu, who had only had limited contact with Longbow wielding tribes in the forest. While trouble with the creation of gunpowder would hold back firearm development Crossbows would arrive relatively quickly to the Tawantinsuyu Army. Some metal was required, but it was not as difficult to forge as other weapons needing metal and in a pinch Bronze could be used, and the Tawantinsuyu had no trouble working Bronze.

    The final major advantage the Spanish had was steel. Though the Tawantinsuyu came into the possession of ample amounts of steel in the form of swords and armor Atawallpa sought to create the metal himself. Though the Spanish expedition possessed blacksmiths who knew at least the basics of forging steel, though nowhere near the quality of Toledo, they lacked any knowledge of where Iron, the crucial component, was available. They could only provide instructions for the smelting of Iron and Steel, not the collection of the necessary ores. And so, Atawallpa sent out messengers to the leaders of the Suyu [1] and other important figures, offering rewards if any found ore.


    Of course, it was not only weapons that the Spanish passed on. From De Soto and Pizarro Atawallpa learned of other European nations who might one day be of help to the Tawantinsuyu. But they were too far away to be of use for now, though they remained a useful option if the empire could hold out. The Tawantinsuyu also learned of the location of Spanish Panama, though they lacked the sailing capabilities to reach it.

    On a lighter note the Atawallpa also learned the game of Chess from his captives, and was quite enamored with the game, his patronage spreading it quickly across the empire. Changes would permeate through the game as it became more "native"[2]. Pawns, called slingers, gained the ability to move two spaces diagonally and jump to capture. The Queen, an unimportant position to the Tawantinsuyu, was renamed the General. Bishops became Priests as well, while the other pieces got Tawantinsuyu names. But of course, this took a long time to seep in. For now, the focus was on the suppliers of this bounty of information: the would-be invaders.

    The question now fell on what to do with the Spanish. Keeping them together was dangerous and they had to be kept from returning to their countrymen. They couldn't be killed as they still possessed valuable knowledge. So, they were split up. The leaders such as Hernando Pizarro and De Soto were brought into Qusqu prosper. The horsemen were sent to Urcos, just outside the city. An armory was planned in Kitu, though later events would force gunpowder experimentation south, the power base of Atahualpa. Iron works would not be established until Iron was found.

    With his plans in place Atawallpa began to organize his supporters. He sent Chalcuchima, his most trusted commander, east into the jungles (long the line at which the empire had stopped) to expand the power of the Tawantinsuyu there and to collect resources. Wood for crossbows was not a particularly intensive thing to collect, but Atawallpa was desperate for Iron and Gunpowder. He personally made plans to return to Qusqu to meet Quizquiz. He brought with him several steel swords and helmets to reward loyalty amongst the city nobles. And he sent Rumiñawi north. For one thing loomed over all else he had heard.

    More Spanish were coming. And soon.


    +++


    1: Provinces


    2: I'm sorry but I'm a bit of a Chess geek. Expect random updates on the situation at random times. If we get to that point expect updates on polar exploration as well...
     
    Last edited: Feb 6, 2018