Occupying the northeastern area of the former Krissen Empire, the Iblia Kingdom ruled over 5 provinces including the Northlands, as well as the Madras Duchy which was subordinate to the kingdom in name only. The current power the Iblia Kingdom was fighting against is the Melein Duchy, which was the loyal supporter of the Third Prince’s Andinaq Kingdom and served to defend the former royal capital from the Second Prince’s forces. For the Second Prince to be able to conquer the royal capital, he would have to first find a way to handle the Melein Duchy. The problem was, Duke Melein used to be the commander in chief of the armies of the former empire and his troops were among the most experienced and skilled. The Second Prince had been quite unsuccessful in his attempts to defeat the duke’s forces.
The nobles under the Second Prince included 2 dukes, 7 marquises, 19 counts, more than 40 viscounts as well as 100-odd barons, among which 90 nobles were newly-entitled by the Second Prince himself, essentially giving away titles for more funds, resulting in the hilarious situation of some counts having territories that are even smaller than the neighboring barons. One of the 2 dukes under his service was Duke Fisablen who used to be the general of the Border Defense Army of the empire that was mainly responsible for keeping the barbarians of the plains out of the nation. During the power struggle among the three princes, he supported his son-in-law the Second Prince and he’s so influential that he can be even said to be responsible for the founding of the Iblia Kingdom by himself.
The second duke under his service was Duke Loggins.
The Northlands took up about half the area of the Iblia Kingdom’s territory. The only thing about it was its relatively low population.
House Norton’s dominion occupied a third of the Northlands that was mostly desolate and undeveloped. Duke Loggins’s dominion was the most prosperous part at the south of the Northlands, right across the Watar River. The duke had ambitions to make the whole of the Northlands his dominion to form his own duchy. But due to the lack of military force as well as the pressure from Duke Fisablen, he had no choice but to accept becoming a part of the Iblia Kingdom. He formed the Northland Army to have some leverage against Duke Fisablen’s army that he would use as his main force to form his own duchy in the future.
During the formation of the Iblia Kingdom, the Second Prince has agreed to make Duke Loggins the overlord of the nobles of the Northlands to gain his support.
This is the main reason why the Norton Family was subordinate to the him.
However, the Second Prince also granted more than 90 titles to some new nobles, among which more than 40 of them had been enfeoffed land in the Northlands. Viscount Kenmays was also one such noble.
The sudden entitlement of so many nobles was because the Second Prince had hoped that the Northlands would develop faster with the new nobles in charge. But, it has caused quite a bit of trouble for Duke Loggins. After gaining their titles, the nobles have been involved in countless conflicts for territory and 3 newly-entitled noble families and 1 old noble family have already perished. The duke had since changed his plan on taking the whole of the Northlands by force and is instead secretly fanned the flames of war among the nobles to reduce their power and force them to rely on him. Therefore the situation of the Northlands was incredibly volatile and no noble was safe from it.
Initially when the Second Prince found his kingdom, he used his authority to entitle others and enfeoff them land to sell noble titles, causing most of the land within the Winston Province apart from the royal capital to be sold away and tens of new noble families to appear. That's why the Iblia Kingdom has the most landed nobles compared to the other powers nearby.
The Second Prince relied on the funds he gained from selling titles and land to build an army to attack the Melein Duchy. But little did he know that he would proceed to suffer huge losses over the next two years, with the battles he fought turning the whole Southern Province of his kingdom into a ravaged wasteland. The nobles who had bought their titles could also foresee their stark future and had long escaped to the royal capital to protect their wealth and also to pester the Second Prince to be responsible for the damage he caused to the Southern Province.
The Second Prince wasn't able to borrow any soldiers from Duke Fisablen, he still had to give some kind of satisfying resolution to the nobles who stayed at the royal capital. That's why he decided that he would try to conquer the Madras Duchy's Delamock Province and move the dominions of the nobles within the royal capital there while trying to make a small profit for himself all the while resolving the food debt he owed Duke Madras.
Given that the Delamock Province is well known to be one of the largest food producers of the former empire, the land of Winston Province which is situated right next to it was not any worse. In actuality, the Second Prince lacked the power over his subordinate nobles unlike Duke Madras, and wasn't able to stop the nobles he entitled from doing whatever they wanted after they were enfeoffed their land within the Winston Province. Hence, the nobles stopped focusing on planting food because it was unprofitable and instead started up all kinds of fruit wineries and plantations. That's why after the Southern Province of the Iblia Kingdom was rendered useless, the Iblia Kingdom began to lack a good food source, with most of the food being within the hands of the nobles of Winston Province. The high price of food was solely the fault of those nobles.
And given the high price of food, the nobles of Winston Province took the opportunity to stockpile more and more of it while trying hard at the same time to prevent other sources of food from entering the kingdom so that they could profit by maintaining the high market price of food. That naturally incited the envy and jealousy of the nobles of the ravaged Southern Province, causing much conflict to manifest between the two factions. That was also one of the main reasons why the Second Prince was so reluctant on returning to the royal capital as he couldn't be bothered to mediate between the arguing nobles.
That's why when word of the three families led by the Norton Family attacking the Winston Province spread to the royal capital, the nobles who stayed there actually cheered for their arrival because that meant that the Winston Province nobles that they envied so much would finally be getting the short end of the stick. That is also the true intention behind Lorist’s actions. That was the reason for his explicit instructions to the Felim Family and Hennard's forces to not kill the nobles they pillaged and only take all their food and movable assets as well as their commoner subjects so that the Winston Province nobles would be on bad terms with those at the royal capital. If he raided the nobles at the royal capital, all the nobles would be united in their hatred towards them. But because he didn't touch those nobles at the royal capital, they would be jumping with joy at the losses of the nobles of Winston Province.
The nobles of Winston Province hate the fact that they moved their commoner subjects away the most. Without them, they would not be able to gather wealth and plant food. And given that the Northlands had a natural border, the Metropoulos River, there's no way that they will be able to retaliate against them. If they wanted more commoners, they would have to take them from other people. But since the Norton’s moved the poor commoners away from the royal capital, those nobles wouldn't have anyone to rally. That means that they will have no choice but to prey on the Delamock Province of the Madras Duchy.
The last time the Second Prince attacked Delamock Province, the ones who funded that operation were the nobles of the Southern Province who stayed at the royal capital with the Winston Province nobles only reluctantly providing small amounts of food and few soldiers to fulfill their obligation. So naturally, if the nobles of Winston Province wish to attack Delamock Province, they would receive strong objection from the nobles of the Southern Province.
When the Iblia Kingdom was formed, it encompassed five provinces of the former Krissen Empire. The province of the Northlands itself already took up more than half of the area of the kingdom and was governed separately in its own right. Apart from suppressing the Duke of the Northlands to stay within the kingdom, the Second Prince had never found a way to truly integrate the Northlands into his control.
As for the Eastwild Province and the Wild Husbandry Province near the Great Eastern Plains, those belonged to Duke Fisablen himself and was also the home base of the Frontier Legion. Unless the Second Prince had gone insane, he would never even attempt to take those provinces for himself.
In other words, all that remained within the Iblia Kingdom was the Southern Province as well as the Winston Province where the royal capital, Windbury City, was located. However, the Southern Province was ravaged badly by Duke Melein and his Fiercegale Legion.
When the Second Prince formed his kingdom initially, for the sake of his pride, he split up the Southern Province into three commanderies and the Winston Province which had a larger area was split into four commanderies. And to sustain his lavish lifestyle, he had long sold off his personal land to other nobles at a high price to the point that he wasn't able to find a place for himself to train his troops.