The world in 520.
The collapse of the Roman Empire was an opportunity for the Bulgars. The Bulgar Khan sent his hordes Thracia and Asia to conquer the lands for himself. Although the newly and temporarily independent cities and provinces of Asia submitted to his domination, Constaninople remained proudly independent, perhaps due to the large number of bishops crowding its streets, or the remaining navy in the harbour.
(Not sure what happened here, but the Bulgars moved in, but the city didn’t change hands.)
In 520, King Hilderic of the vandals reviewed his mighty army. Thousands of horsemen clad in shimmering armour stood arrayed in southern Hispania, seemingly out of time.
The mighty knights of the Vandals.
Hilderic then dismissed his army, as he had no fleet to transport them anywhere he wanted to go.
The Sassanids had also planned naval expeditions, and had recently conquered Cyrpus, and made an alliance with the Bulgars for the use of ports. However, the plan came to nothing when the entire Sassanid Mediterranean fleet was destroyed by the Blemmye Raiders, whose numbers had been swelled by defections from the navy of the collapsed Eastern Roman Empire.
The Dromons of the Blemmyes.
The Blemmyes utterly destroyed the Sassanid navy, so Shah Kavadh ordered another built at great expense. However, this navy was then destroyed when a powerful storm swept the harbour of Antioch. Shah Kavadh then ordered the building of an even more powerful navy of 5 squadrons of galleys, and by 525 the Ex-Roman Blemmye nav had finally been defeated. This naval victory did not stop Blemmye raids on land however, and the Blemmyes raided Jerusalem, pillaging and burning monasteries, cathedrals and churches in Judea. Large garrisons had to be stationed to defend against the raiders, defeating them in near constant battles.
It was in Gaul where the greatest wars of this decade took place. The King of the Alans believed that his dominions were far too scattered and disjointed. So in 524, he declared war upon the Vascones, who occupied much of southern Gaul. The war itself was relatively short. The Alan light horsemen easily occupied Gaul, it was only in the mountains where the Vascones or Basques were able to make a stand. The war ended in late 525 with the Basques ceding most of the Gallic territory to the Alans.
The next on the chopping block were to have been the Gallo-Romans, but fate intervened. The Bavrians had defeated the Suevi, and gained territory bordering the Alans, and in 526, the Bavarians swarmed over the Rhine. The border towns had some fortifications however, and the Bavarian hordes suffered from the availability of food in these areas.
The Bavarians attack.
The winter also came along, but the border towns were taken by the Bavarians and sacked. Numerous battles between the Alans and Bavarians took place, fierce, bloody clashes. These battles drained the life blood of the Alan and Bavarian alike. Finally, the Alan king was able to convince one of the Bavarian armies to mutiny, and the remaining Bavarian armies were pushed back across the Rhine. The Alans then attempted to force the Bavarians to become their vassals, but the Bavarian numbers were too great, and eventually a status quo peace was declared.
In the east, new peoples appeared on the Steppe. First the Avars, then the Khazars appeared. However, for the moment these new people did very little.
November of 527, war suddenly broke out between the Visigoths and Bulgars. Many believed that the war would be long and hard, and were surprised when almost as quickly a truce broke out.
In 528, the lands of the Sassanids were again wracked by rebellion. The Mazdakites, a breakaway sect of Mazdeism, launched a series of attacks.
The rebels were quickly brought under control by the famed Cataphracts.
The Thuringians continued their reign, which was, a before one of constant revolts and corruption. Things got slightly better for them when the last pagans converted to Christianity, leading to a slightly better administration.
Italy had been relatively quiet since the Herul invasion. That was to change in late 529, as a new Germanic barbarian tribe, the Lombards sought to take Italy for its own. However, there was only room in Italy for one Germanic invader, and the Heruls prepared to resist.
The World in 530 (roughly).