Walachia. The Middle Ages.

by Rio Vin
9th May 2022

Autumn that year was cold and dank. At the beginning of November, snow was already falling from the dark sky, hanging over the narrow streets of the gray city, filling them with tentacles of thick fog mixed with frost.
In the ancestral estate of the local governor Basarab, on the coldest day of that strange autumn, the second son was born. He was named the same as his father. Then this nickname also meant "Dragon". Strong, wise. But the words "Dragon" and "Devil" were too similar.
That's why, over time, they began to call Vlad the elder the Devil. It was clearer this way – who but the devil could rule Wallachia for so long, while the rulers usually did not stay for half a year – the battles for the throne and battles with enemies were so cruel.
Vlad the Elder took the throne of Wallachia, the central province of today's Romania, in 1436. And being a Wallachian prince was very difficult at that time. On the one hand, the Hungarian Kingdom, which was eager to seize the lands of Wallachia. On the other hand, the Turks and their powerful troops, who do not know defeats, and absorb everything in their path.
⠀ Life in war. Life between the cross and the crescent. Constant bowing of the head to one, then to the other. Again, a tribute to both. Constant fear for their power – in addition to the Turks and Hungarians, numerous representatives of the Basarab family were also dangerous - after the accession of Vlad the elder, a new branch, the Draculesti, arose, and the tribal war became even fiercer. And the new ruler of Wallachia was in constant fear for the children.
And this fear came true. In fierce battles, in order to save his life and the lives of his people, Vlad the Elder had to sacrifice the most precious thing he had. Sons.
14-year-old Vlad and 6-year-old Radu, the youngest son, went to the Turks as a pledge of loyalty to the Wallachian ruler. And no one knew how he felt when he sent his children to the enemies.