|Battle of the Black River|
|Time||shortly before the Age of Fire|
|Place||close the Black River, Bant|
|Result||Decisive Dragon Empire Victory|
|Ghioz Empire||Dragon Empire (including Bant Uphold)|
| 1 fortified citadel with full infantry and archery force
2 Sissa of Drakwatch (23 drakes)
1 Sissa of Firemaidens (12 drakkas)
human and blighter infantry
|Very heavy||4 dragons killed
heavy Drakwatch losses
all Firemaidens killed except one
heavy blighter and human losses
The Battle of the Black River was the decisive and final battle of the War in Bant.
After the Battle of the Green Dancer, SiDrakkon was sure to achieve an easy final victory and his dragon force was joined by new Bant recruits and blighter warriors. He chose to attack the most important Ghioz fortress in the occupied territory.
Differently from the Battle of the Green Dancer, the SiDrakkon's forces had to engage an already finished (and formidable) fortress. Moreover the Ghioz forces were already waiting the enemy and prepared in ambush a number of war-machines. Bant infantry was more lightly armed (using also cowhide shields) compared to the Ghi-men, and alongside the blighters they suffered heavy losses in assaulting the fortification especially due the enemy heavy use of war-machines throwing rocks and dwarven-made crossbows.
Flying dragons could not get closer, and HeBellereth was badly wounded by a spear. The stone of the fortification was not ignited by dragon fire and when the NiHerrstrath, alongside the drake Rothor attempted to climb the wall, both were killed. The third duelist dragon NoTannadon, refused to make further attempts.
An attempt from Firemaidens to came closer ended with the sacrifice of the full force (including Agania and Mivonia), and the Ghi-men pressed on their advantage, battering the retreating Bant warriors, blighters and drakes of the Drakwatch, while hunting down one by one the drakes.
Of particular deadly effect on dragons has been the use of dwarven crossbows. SiDrakkon announced he was going to take further reinforcement from the Lavadome and left, ordering the retreat.
However Rugaard once looking at the wounded drakes started making something of never seen before. Usually badly wounded dragons considers themselves "vanquished", and waits for the death with none coming to their rescue, trying at the best to get satisfaction of having achieved a good death.
But Rugaard grew as a young drake who learned to overcome his wounds and defeats: he started to rally and encourage the wounded dragons, gathering them on top of an hill. When a wounded drake named Nirolf died on the top after his wounds, the Copper named the hill after him, further surprising other drakes.
During the night Nilrasha appeared alive (the only Firemaiden who survived the battle) after having been struck inside the enemy fortification and being forced to hide before managing to slip away thanks a drain hole under the wall: that was the first meeting between Nilrasha and Rugaard.
The following day Rugaard himself directed the drakes alongside Nivom, when an infantry force of Ghi-men came out hoping to finish and take prizes from the body of HeBellereth, they were ambushed and suffered heavy losses in close quarter fight.
In aftermath of this success, Nivom came with the idea that turned the tide of the battle: he managed to get HeBellereth to fly again and use him to bombard the fortification, throwing large stones from the air. During this pause, even if some blighters went away, King Onato arrived with some human reinforcement.
SiDrakkon's return brought back not powerful reinforcement: only three dragons, two very young ones (with wings freshly uncased) and an one-eyed veteran (but fat) duelist. He had actually gathered a full score of dragons, but most delayed during the travel and kept behind hunting or arguing.
SiDrakkon’s did not agreed with Nivom's plan, and sent his new dragons to fight with few result: this new assault led the quick death of the two young dragons in front of the gate tower, while the older duelist attacked the city from above and was eventually brought down. HeBellereth was allowed to attempt the bombing strategy, employing some aerial maneuvers to launch the boulder while flying at high speed to not being struck by crossbows and arrows.
Eventually the prolonged aerial bombing was so effective that SiDrakkon could just accept the greatness of Nivom's strategy: in just one night of constant bombing the main wall was destroyed.
With the mixed forces of dragons, blighters and Bant's warriors out of their city, the Ghi-men were forced to accept a peace deal.
The battle was the turning point of the conflict and gave the victory to the Dragon Empire.