The Battle of Charandaprash was an important milestone in the Shadowmaster wars detailed in She Is the Darkness. It was fought by the Black Company and the Taglian armies under their command against the Shadowlander forces assembled by Longshadow, the last surviving Shadowmaster. The location was the Plain of Charandaprash and some of the heights of the surrounding Dandha Presh mountains.
The battle lasted for days and was marked by three major themes: Croaker's fastidious attention to tactical detail; Longshadow's irrational encumbering of Mogaba's excellent generalship; and Blade's defection and surrender of a sizable Shadowlander force.
She Is the DarknessEdit
The Battle of Charandaprash was immediately preceded by the Battle of Lake Tanji, during which the Company wiped out a hellish avalanche of killer shadows. With his supernatural army exterminated, Longshadow next attempted to repel the Company with conventional (human) armies at Charandaprash.
Croaker the Liberator of Taglios (and the Company's Captain) led an army of Taglian soldiers and a separate force of 60,000 expendable, armed camp followers. Croaker's subordinate commanders were Lady and the Prince of Taglios himself, the Prahbrindrah Drah. Longshadow's generals were two defectors from the Company, Mogaba and Blade, who commanded very well-trained Shadowlanders. It took place on the Plain of Charandaprash, part of which was the only practical pass through the sprawling Dandha Presh mountain range.
The most decisive moment was Blade's betrayal. He led a quarter of Longshadow's army into a trap in which Croaker's army surrounded them and forced them to surrender and disarm. Blade's maneuver was disguised by a mob of 60,000 armed camp followers, who were sacrificed by Croaker at no cost when he had them pushed into the Shadowlanders' front lines. The trap had been laid months before by both Croaker and Blade, when Croaker ordered Blade's defection in order to put someone believable and reliable into Longshadow's military hierarchy. Longshadow, who was very unstable at that time (due to Kina's manipulation), panicked and ordered a retreat. Both his enemies and allies noted this to be a huge tactical mistake. He and his most important allies mounted Howler's flying carpet and tried to escape, sowing panic among his ranks. The carpet caught fire and almost crashed when it was fired upon by Croaker's carefully-placed snipers using fireball projectors. Longshadow, Howler, and the others on the carpet only escaped because a towering representation of the goddess Kina materialized without warning, ostensibly to save the Daughter of Night. Lady, whose sorcery was being restored to her, repelled the frightening apparition with the help of incoming fireballs that perforated it. The vision of Kina turned out to be the work of the unaligned wildcard Soulcatcher, and not the goddess herself at all.
After Blade played his part, the Prahbrindrah Drah used 12 war elephants to spearhead an assault. However, Mogaba had trained his men how to deal with elephants, and the beasts were quickly killed alongside many of the Prahbrindrah's Taglians.
Eventually, Mogaba was badly hurt, but stayed and fought bravely. Finally, Lady used her sorcery, and Mogaba's army was forced to flee south, through the Dandha Presh, back into the Shadowlands. The victors were too tired to pursue them immediately. However, many fleeing Shadowlanders were picked off by Goblin's top secret expedition, code named "Shaded Road", which had been placed on the far side of the Dandha Presh well beforehand.