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SaxBasilisk

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  1. In attendance: Regis of Britain; Baron Sara of the Pinnacle; Sir Gwef of Broughton; Sir Betrys of Kirkby Hill; Sir Cass of Cholderton; Sir Mary of Shrewton; Sir Girom of Hurcot 530 AD, the year of Arthur's invasion of Ireland and the year of Baroness Llylla's death. In winter, the Saxons laid siege to the Castle behind the Waters in the fens of Anglia, where Llylla made her home. The siege continued until the overcast day the Saxons began constructing a catapult. They had no defense against a siege weapon and it was out of archery range. Her daughter Cass, marshall of the fortress, tried to lure the Saxons away by posing a servant in Llylla's clothes and putting the servant in a barge, leaving only Llylla and a skeleton guard in the castle. Unconvinced, the Saxons kept their siege while a violent tempest approached the castle. Cass made land and charged down the Saxon's camp, scattering them and seizing the catapult moments before the storm hit the castle with a great sound of stone breaking. When the storm had passed, the castle was nothing but rubble and all the inhabitants dead except Llylla. Her body was missing even after every rock was overturned because the Saxons had taken her. Cass went to court in a most foul mood, but ended up sitting as a model at Queen Guenevere's suggestion, regardless. It was a normal year for Camelot despite the looming conflicts in Ireland and Anglia. Girom, brooding in the forest, found Queuex and Betrys practicing falconry. Mary attempted to practice her flirting skills with some knights, who were more off-put than taken with her. Gwf was harassed by Agravaine for failing to join them in Ireland, but she asked who he was commanding and embarrassed them. A servant's letter of that year complained about the presence of dwarves in the castle, sent by the wife of King Pellinore. Sir Joran from the land behind the mountains offered Queen Guenevere a decorated belt, but when she declined, he had a fit of pique and offered the belt to anyone who could best him. Cass took the challenge and unhorsed him. Perhaps still in the moment, she made an enemy of the Saxon knight Sir Braith with a bigoted comment. The knights of Salisbury rode to Anglia and took command of the troops stationed there, scouting and preparing for conflict with the Saxon uprising. King Yffi of Deira was in charge of a large contingent and, meeting for negotiations, was still upset about his treatment by Baron Harri. Gwef and Mary soothed his ego and negotiated a withdrawal, giving their forces the advantage in the coming conflict with the rebel Anglian Saxons. The battle was fought at Thetford, with Cass leading the initial charge to devastating results. Through the keen tactical minds of Gwf and Betrys, they were not just successful, but took several important hostages, further demoralizing the scattered rebels. However, young Mary suffered a grievous wound from one of their bodyguards, laying her low for a full month. Despite questioning their prisoners, the Knights were not able to find out how to contact the rebels holding Llylla and resorted to scouting the land. Girom found a castle at the edge of the fens where there had been none a month before. An squire's account of the day: "The castle flew no colors, answered no hails, and its drawbridge remained steadfast. We stood outside the enigma until nightfall, when the bushes came alive and asphyxiated all of us with their roots and branches clogging our throats. Bound by iron, we woke to a scream in the tower above: the lady Llylla had died and her ritual sacrifice summoned forth a horde that sounded like rolling thunder. "The Wild Hunt laid waste to England once more." -Excerpts from Volume 7 of Brother Reginald’s Annales Sorvioduni.
  2. In attendance: Regis of Britain; Baron Sara of the Pinnacle; Sir Gwef of Broughton; Sir Betrys of Kirkby Hill; Sir Cass of Cholderton; Sir Mary of Shrewton; Sir Girom of Hurcot Betrys began romancing Dame Eleri of Rydychan, but was also seen boating with Nimue, the lady of the lake, perhaps receiving counsel. Aside from Sir Mary confusing Gawain for his younger brother Gareth, there was little of note in court. This was the year that Bran's head was excavated outside London. There were misgivings, with both Gwef and Girom failing to sway the course of events because Arthur's resolve was strong. Accounts of the excavation describe confusion, wheeling crows, and a sudden storm as the head supposedly rose from the ground and spoke dire warnings. At the moment Bran’s head burned on the pyre, messengers from across the land converged on London, bringing tides of invasion and insurrection. Baron Sara separated from the rest to ride to Tintagel with her eldest daughter, where she faced Sir Marhaus, an esteemed knight of the round in the service of King Anguish. Marhaus had come for a long-neglected tribute for the children of the Cornish nobles - including Sara’s daughter Rhian. Sara knew Marhaus was destined to die only to the blade of Tristan, then a squire of Cornwall. She sought and found him at a camp in the woods. The Baron asked the squire to take up arms and be knighted, exhorting him to meet the moment. The squire, grasping at a better life for himself, asked what was offered. Promising him the hand of her eldest daughter, she knighted Sir Tristan. The two combatants met on Saint Samson’s Isle among the Scillies. As the two readied themselves, Sara saw Marhaus’ squire treat the knight's lance with a cloth. She cried out against treachery, but the knights were already riding towards each other. Marhaus struck Tristan a grievous blow with the poisoned weapon, but Tristan persevered with the injury and the fight was brought to the ground, sword to sword. Tristan struck Marhaus with a mortal blow, and the man fled to the waters in terror, bleeding all the way. Tristan fell to his knees and asked to be put on the waters in a boat before he succumbed. Sara granted this request. The other Knights of Peryl rode to Surluse to meet the traitorous Malahaut and ambitious Galeholt who had aid from the Knights of the Golden Apple. Betrys kept her oaths to King Arthur and saw herself expelled from the Golden Apple - ever a kingsguard, but twice an oathbreaker. There were several new knights of Peryl: Sir Mary of the Pinnacle, Sir Cass of Cholderton and Sir Girom of Hurton. With Cerise missing, Sara absent and Roderick in Sara's service, only Gwef and Betrys were veterans. The group's strength was much diminished. They were hard pressed to meet the challenge of Galeholt's army. Mary was separated from the group after being unhorsed, leaving her struggling in a tide of enemy forces. Victory seemed uncertain until a knight armored in black and bearing no device joined the battle of Surluse on the side of King Arthur and turned the tide, but when Galeholt retreated to a castle, the black knight joined him. As the siege was about to be called for the year, Galeholt, Malahaut and Sir Ancelote of the lake left the castle and parlayed with the king. Galeholt surrendered and Malahaut begged the King for forgiveness for his treachery, which was granted. Sir Betrys’ lands were restored and Arthur appointed her to the round table in Marhaus's place. As celebrations began at Camelot, Girom was seen speaking, as though in conversation, with a Raven. Some named it a Ysbrid in their correspondence. The knights, burdened with free time after the uprising, decided to visit the Forest Sauvage, perhaps hoping to find some of the Saxons revolting in Anglia against Hervice. Instead they found a castle called Felicity and its head, Sir Felix. Despite splendors and games, they took their leave, and returned to their duties. -Excerpts from Volume 7 of Brother Reginal’s Annales Sorvioduni.
  3. Included a note on Norgales / Gomeret, thanks to Morien. I don't feel like trying to track them all down at this point. I did try to pull some notes out of the old archives, crediting people for their discoveries, so they're more accessible when the first 6e rulebook is released. Please let me know if you see any corrections needed.
  4. Updated Battles of Surluse and Tara text for 529 and 530. (I think I saw this information somewhere else, but I couldn't find it on a quick check.)
  5. Update on Sir Dornar's parentage, prompted by Lamorak marrying a PK's mom and us trying to figure out his family tree.
  6. AD 528 In attendance: Regis of Britain; Sir Sara of Shrewton; Sir Cerise of Cholderton; Sir Gwef of Broughton; Sir Betrys of Kirkby Hill; Sir Girom of Hurcot King Arthur's Court was held at home for the first time in years. There were continued tensions between the Orkneys and the knights perylous, as Sir Agravaine confronted Cerise about her mother's engagement to Sir Lamorak. He believed it to be a sign she was allied against the north with her comrades in arms, seeking to avenge King Pellinore. She assured him she wasn't and she was also taken aback by the news. (Agravaine didn't care.) She was disturbed by what she saw as an admission of guilt from Agravaine, and consulted with the other knights, who then confided in Bishop Baudwin. Sara was elevated to Baron of the Pinnacle for all her great deeds in service to the king. The festivities were interrupted by Archbishop Dewi, who told Arthur his peace was being attributed to a dead man, named Bran, whose head was buried outside London and who foretold that Britain would never fall so long as his head rested there. It is unclear what Cardinal Regis's opinion was, but Gwef's hawk apparently disapproved of her hairstyle, attacking her hair when she went hawking. Cerise's half brother Romulus was knighted this year. That year was the test of Girom, to see if he was ready to join the Companions of Arthur: Sara offered him a test of valor: Girom proclaimed he would die to save the realm. Cerise offered a test of justice: Girom was unsure who to compensate for an injury to an unknown party and was unconcerned with the question of whether failing to check on someone constitutes harm. Betrys offered a test of vigor: Girom claimed that his passions would drive him beyond his own limits. Sara offered a test of generosity: Girom was unsure if he would sacrifice his horse to save his squire, as he “owned them both.” Betrys offered a test of modesty: Girom would not correct the bards if they sung unearned praises. Cerise offered a test of mercy: Girom would take the life of a peasant who shot his eye out by accident. Girom was sadly judged unfit for the order. Betrys was given a cloak as a gift from a young lady, but as he moved to wear it, the Lady of the Lake spoke at his elbow, suggesting that it would suit the young lady better. Betrys put it around her and she became wrapped in flames. Horrified, Betrys tried to extinguish her, but she died anyway. Nineve suggested this was because he had stabbed Morgan when she attempted to steal Excalibur. When the Round Table sat down to the Pentecost feast, they stopped to wait for a miracle, as per the custom. Perhaps famished this year, they accepted the appearance of a lady offering a proposition to the court. She brought a challenge to help an unnamed lady, at which Arthur demurred. Suddenly the young man nicknamed Prettyhands rushed from the kitchen, covered in flour. The king, amused at his brashness, granted the young Sir Gareth of Orkney’s appeal to take the quest, sent out messengers for Ancelote so he could be knighted on the road, and bade him luck. Sara and Queuex went after him, Queuex to prevent his pastry chef's departure and Sara to ensure he knew what he was embarking on. Both returned to the feast after a brief meeting which left Queux injured. There were rumors of a well possessing healing qualities at the site of Saint Nidian's death and the knights rode to investigate it. There, they found a monk, tonsured and barely concealing gold chains beneath his robe. The monk was Sir Roderick, their former companion. Sara took a second before telling the monk's acolytes that she would make conventional medicine available to those who asked, but the well was no miracle. She took Roderick into her service, though whether she did so as a measure of respect or as a method of restraint is unclear. This was the year of Cerise's marriage to Queen Sibelle of the glamoured lands, after a decade of courting. But it was also, just days prior, the marriage of Llylla to Lamorak (who was a quarter century younger). Cerise was known to have suggested Llylla had "taken her subject's hearts," a phrasing with no subtext and unrelated to the proximity of their weddings. Although the new Baron Sara was occupied with her duties and Nerys excused her absence with an elegant letter, all the other knights Perylous attended Cerise's wedding to Queen Sibelle in the forest where they met. Almost all of the court including the Emperor and Empress were there, as was Regis. They all sat on Cerise's side, however. The other side was filled with the diverse residents and royalty of Sibelle's lands. The feast was raucous, starting as Gwef leapt atop a table as the last guests started to file in, downed a flagon and roared. Betrys riled the crowd into a chorus of "Fuck up the single life!" As it quieted down, Cerise introduced her queen wife to the Emperor and Empress, who seemed most pleased. Lamorak, perhaps prodded by his wife, Llylla, started a small scene, but Betrys intercepted and calmed him. Girom found himself challenged by a fellow veteran of Rome, but he called upon his chivalry and shared history to make peace. Somehow, as the evening was winding down, Betrys managed to incite the whole bunch into song, even travelers from distant lands, but all fell silent as Sir Eneko and Cerise turned the chorus into a duet by sheer mastery of the art. And then, the air was dispelled as the most debauched started a final eating contest that left Cerise and many others heaving. Queen Sibelle found Cerise in the shadows of the great hall's buttresses and asked her if she was ready to go, leading her to the courtyard where an entourage waited. Surprised and unsure of her destination, Cerise said yes. The Queen suggested Cerise bid farewell to her companions. Her feet next led her to the Emperor and she begged his leave to go, entrusting her duties to her allies. The queen gracefully touched the arm of her steely-eyed husband, who softened and granted leave of his service. Guenevere wished the daughter of Llylla and Tyngyr luck. Cerise made short goodbyes to her other acquaintances, and she asked her friends to look after her children in her absence. When they asked where she was going, Cerise supposedly said: "I have given her my hand and I trust her to lead me." In the note she left for her mother, she indicated that she intended to return, though she did not know when. Whatever other failings she may have had, she was not known to lie or take her oaths lightly. She was a trusted vassal of King Arthur serving in some of the bloodiest battle, after squiring under Sir Brastias, but she was enchanted by her own beauty and deep love; it is said that the three interlocking rings on the family's standard were for love, honor and beauty. Love always led Cholderton astray. The delusion of an immortal lover in an immortal land must have had great allure to Cerise. Some assumed that other obligations must have bound her to the far lands, though I must assume that she simply ceased to care. I put no stock in the later rumors that she was questing for our kingdom's salvation. Whatever the truth of the matter, Sibelle's kingdom must have been far. Despite castigating King Pellinore for abandoning his lands and his children, she did the same. Her lesser sister Cass became steward. They say that the roses near Cholderton's spring grew silver from this year forward and that Cerise's young daughter, Ashlea, loved them. There is no grave for Cerise la Souris in Britain. -End of Volume 6 of Brother Mordecai’s Annales Sorvioduni.
  7. 427 Session 2 In attendance: Regis of Britain; Sir Sara of Shrewton; Sir Cerise of Cholderton; Sir Gwef of Broughton; Sir Betrys of Kirkby Hill; Sir Girom of Hurcot The year continued at a relaxed pace and Arthur's court in Rome indulged itself in games, as warriors from around the world came to the city to see its new emperor. The knights wandered the grand, ancient city at leisure. Betrys offended some strangers by expressing hatred of Saxons to a Danish warrior, before discovering they were native to the same land, and backpedaling with a flurry of apologies. Taking a liking to the architecture, Sara convinced her king to bring the Pyramid of Romulus back home with them to Camelot. Upon his arrival in Rome, a young Pictish squire by the name of Girom had a dispute with Sir Queuex, the king's confidante, seneschal, and foster brother. Girom grudgingly gave way to the knight, but the Knights Perylous, who had seen the whole event, asked the prideful squire about what had happened. Regis took a liking to the lad and it was decided: He would join their number. They spent the next month in various affairs about the city, with Girom particularly intrigued by Trajan’s Column. On the eve of the tournament, our knights watched Girom take his oath from King Arthur. At the subsequent feast for the knights, due to some grievous error, Sara was seated with the squires, apparently too embarrassed or modest to mention it, but she charmed her new acquaintances. Many writers mentioned Betrys' winning smile and Gwef's inebriation. The games began the next day with the joust. Perhaps fatigued (particularly Gwf), only Betrys of the Perylous managed to make it past the first day, before being unhorsed towards the end of the second day, before the championship. The next day came the challenges for love (and vengeance). The young Girom challenged Sir Queuex; although the king's seneschal was not struck, his own blows didn't even leave a memory. Most of the knights Perylous challenged members of the Orkney clan. Gwf fought Gaheris, apparently a reprise of their duel earlier in the year, and beat him. Betrys challenged Agravaine and unhorsed him; Sara fought Sir Gawain, whose peerless skill ensured his victory. Cerise challenged Sir Ancelot, whose reputation for skill at arms was growing (and Cerise promptly lost). The next game was the melee, where the knights of Britain fought as a team against everyone else. Girom joined them and proved his worth. Betrys was unhorsed early but sang a song in honor of her comrades. Whenever one of their number was unhorsed, the rest would go back to help, putting the team above their own glory. It was an eventful day. The Carcassonians unmounted all the knights Perylous except Cerise, who charged them alone so the others could remount. Among the various injuries they suffered: Sara was shot by a Berber mounted archer, Gwef was overrun by a member of the Order of Dannebrog, and Girom was knocked down by a camel rider. Their victories included Sara unhorsing King Ritzard of Friesland and causing the Count of Urbino to flee. Girom made it to the final day, but was disqualified by a scimitar blow to his chest. Only Gwef and Sara remained in the end, with no spare horses remaining. Still, Sir Ancelot took the day, outperforming even Sir Gawain. Girom came to Rome not just to aid his king, but to seek a torc taken from his people long ago and rumored to be in Rome. Pigboy spoke with locals and led Girom and the other knights to a sacred fountain where the torc had lain for centuries. Following Betrys’ inspiration, Girom offered the nymph of the fountain a gift in exchange and took the prize for his tribe. There was a peculiar song which the knights Perylous first heard this year, recounting the courtship of Tyngyr and Lady Llylla. Rather than considering what parts are inaccurate, I'll let you consider what, if anything, is accurate. Long long ago, the Silver Knight’s foes Sought to keep him from his sweet lady Rose, Come lords, and come ladies, come lend me your ear For this is the tale of Llylla and Tyngyr. For Llylla was fairest of maids in the land, The dearest of prizes for knights was her hand. She’d go down to chapel each evening to pray Each person she gave a kind word on her way. Sir Tyngyr, he saw her walk past in twilight And sought to impress her with wit sweet and light, Yet ne’er his way did she cast her fair gaze, No matter how lofty and truly he praised. As he could not win her with gold, song, or cattle, So bravely he sought her favor in battle. The bravest of barons sought her as his bride, And Sir Tyngyr asked him to meet him outside. The bold baron shouted, “Let us to the field, “We’ll clash steel ‘gainst steel, and I’ll make you there yield.” “I wish you no ill,” our kind Tyngyr said. Two minutes later, the Baron was dead. He rose up again, a demon revealed With black iron sword and fire-breathing shield, The pious Sir Tyngyr did pray to the cross, That horrible demon found out that he’d lost. So Tyngyr did bear that shield to the Rose And on the ground ‘fore her he did repose. She looked in his eyes as he hoisted his lance, And her hand brushed his gauntlet, ‘twas not by chance. Long long ago, the Silver Knight’s foes Sought to keep him from his sweet lady Rose, Good lords and good ladies, now be of good cheer And sing ye the tale of Llylla and Tyngyr! -Excerpts from Volume 6 of Brother Mordecai’s Annales Sorvioduni.
  8. I think I'm two years ahead of RW history, but there were just too much odd supernatural occurrences in Benedict's life to be bypassed.
  9. 527 In attendance: Regis of Britain; Sir Sara of Shrewton; Sir Cerise of Cholderton; Sir Gwef of Broughton; Sir Betrys of Kirkby Hill The house of Staplefort became preoccupied with Sir Roderick's gambling debts and he paid the scutage to return home, receding into the margins of the Knights Perylous story as his family worked to win at mercantilism. This is a shame: the Parisian court that year was an elegant but boring affair, and many of the knights made sport with low-stakes duels and contests, like a horse race that Sara won by a league. So it was that Sir Gaheris staked a duel over the name of a pig that shared his name, against the origin of the name: Gwef. On the day of the duel, Gwef placed the pig in question at the edge of the jousting ground. Seeing it, Gaheris stormed off, alternating between disturbed muttering and loud outbursts about bacon. Sara, Gwef, and Betrys were called to attend their king and held to account for being branded oathbreakers for not fulfilling a vow. Speaking for the group, Betrys equivocated and the king let them go before they confessed their targets. In the spring, Arthur's camp was struck and they marched over the Alps to battle in Milan. There, Rome brought out a chariot of massive proportions, seemingly designed for elephants (but pulled by horses), which the Perylous knights dreamed of seizing. They never got the chance to face it, as Cerise was grievously injured in the first sally. The remaining knights Perylous found challenge after challenge to overcome, but Sara found her zeal fading by the end of the day, ending the battle unhorsed, and was remarked to be unusually subdued in the aftermath of their victory over Rome. Cerise recovered enough to attend Arthur's coronation as emperor with her comrades. Sara, ever devout, was granted an audience with the Pope. She petitioned for her father, Nidian the Hammer, to be sainted in death and, most glorious of the glorious, to become Nidian the Holy Hammer. The pope asked if she and her companions would visit Monte Cassino to find why the construction of the monastery was slowed down. Upon arriving, the abbot Benedict said Mass before Sara and Gwefrfawr. Gwefrfawr noted a blurred inscription below the altar, and Benedict admitted that the site had formerly been a deserted temple of Apollo. The next morning, the abbot had a request for his visitors: to move the boulder standing nearby. Squaring their shoulders, Betrys and Sara rolled it, only to find a hole underneath that might fit a pillar. Descending on a rope, Sara found a bronze statue of one of the Kabiri. Conferring with the monks and nearby peasants, they were warned not to anger Apollo lest they suffer a plagued arrow. Cerise expressed some hesitation. Her father died at her age, so she was paranoid she would die before she married. Still, they removed the statue from the pit and went to bed, except for Gwef, who kept watch with Regis and Eneko. The statue was quiet until dawn, when it released a great belch of flame. Gwef managed to dodge the brunt of it and extinguish her hair. They found a daughter of the old priests of Apollo in town and she guided them to an obscured mural: the god Apollo firing arrows at a multi-headed reptilian monster. The ground rumbled, and the knights faced the hydra that burst through the ground. As one might expect of the legendary hydra, when one of its many heads was removed, it began to grow two more. Thinking quickly, Cerise realized that the flame of the statue had been a ward against the hydra. Thinking far more quickly, her squire realized any flame would suffice and lit a torch. The twitching body and its cauterized neck stumps fell to the ground. The knights rolled the body back to the hole from whence it came and shoved it over the edge. The sound of its impact on the ground below never reached their ears and the bottom was not in sight. Unnerved by this aberration in reality, they rolled the boulder back in place. The peace of Rome ensured, the knights took their leisure in the city. Cerise was known to wander the city and behold its mysteries, while she nervously anticipated her upcoming nuptials and gave thanks to the gods of love and marriage. Sara found a fountain dedicated to Neptune, though she continued to give her worship to God. Gwef was known to have exhausted the patience of the booksellers while looking for new texts to bring back for her mother, Sir Nerys. Betrys sought special gifts for Sir Harri. There is a most amusing- perhaps apocryphal- anecdote about Regis being made a cardinal of Britain by the pope and [This section is marred by a beer stain.] -Excerpts from Volume 6 of Brother Mordecai’s Annales Sorvioduni.
  10. In attendance: Sir Betrys, Sir Sara, Sir Cerise, Sir Gwefrfawr, Sir Roderick Absent: Sir Cerise (player), Sir Roderick (player) (SPOILERS for the Quest of the Red Blade adventure) This is a first-hand account of the adventure of the Red Blade found in the stacks of unknown provenance. Dubious as it is, it is the only surviving account. Here it is, in its entirety:* "Let me, Torver of Eburacum, now tell of the great deeds of Sir Betrys, lady of Kirkby Hill and Cundal, Knight of the Golden Apple, and most humble servant of the glorious King of a Hundred Knights. “We begin at the mighty Battle of Saussy, the final clash of the armies of Britain and Rome. There Betrys could be seen, laying left and right, slaughtering dozens, more marvelous than the valiant Sir Ancelote** or the unkillable Sir Marhaus. She and the other Knights of Peril boldly attacked a battalion commander, but Sir Sara and Sir Cerise were unhorsed and separated. Betrys and the knights were unable to reunite until after King Arthur killed the Emperor Lucius and sent his body back to Rome in a lead coffin for his tribute. “At the camp, Betrys spoke with me about her brave deeds and worked with me to compose a song (still in the formative stages). Sir Roderick bested her in arm-wrestling by employing a foul trick best unmentioned. Sara sought information on the Green Cloak mercenaries, while Gwef bet and lost heavily on arm wrestling and other events. Doubtless, Roderick profited much, despite rumors of massive gambling debts. “Betrys next attended the execution of Count Uffo, conducted by Sara. She noticed that the disgraced and treacherous noble whispered something into his executioner’s ear… What passed through the lips of the dying man, no one shall ever know, though perhaps he lamented ever standing opposite Betrys on the field of battle. “Afterward, Betrys took on the task of helping Sir Cerise seek out the Red Death Blade at the Castle of the Kite, high in the Pyrenees. Our brave knight of Malahaut and the others made their way to Toulouse, where I introduced them to my close friend, the famous troubadour Guilbert. Guilbert reminisced with them of how he had met their parents at the first performance of ‘Owain, Owain.’ Then he cautioned Betrys and her friends to be circumspect in their dealings with King Koldo. “On their way up the mountain path, the Knights met with local raiding knights. Sir Sara first mistook them for Round Table knights, only to have them ask if a raid on Koldo’s holdings was possible. Combat broke out, with one foe driven unconscious and others captured. Betrys watched, nonplussed, as the other knights and the learned doctor Hypatia failed to heal the wounds of the Knights Perylous. Regardless, Sara’s offer of cash to Sir Eneko of Pamplona was enough to bring him on board. “Betrys then led the Knights to the Castle of the Kite. There was King Koldo in the depths of his hall, and a vast bulk swathed in cloth sat behind his throne. Sir Cerise moved to speak, but wisely deferred to Betrys who announced them as the Knights of Peryl and offered to pay a vast sum for the Red Death Blade. King Koldo considered this sage advice, before admitting he was overwhelmed by it and needed more time to consider it. They also informed him of the impending raid. Koldo asked them to swear fealty and ride forth against the raiders, but they considered Betrys’ counsel and demurred. The king offered to treat the wounds of the unconscious prisoner, and then stabbed him. “The next day, the Knights were left to their own devices in the castle. Sara was approached by a slovenly young man called Pig Boy, who claimed to be Koldo’s son. Gwefrfawr took a look under the cloth, finding a vast paw. Curious and canny, Sara proposed they all pretend to get drunk and accidentally pull off the cover. Only Sara and Betrys succeeded in the ‘pretending’ part of this, but those two pulled off the cloth. Underneath, there was a massive stone monstrosity with the head of an elephant and the sucker of the lamprey at the end of its trunk.*** Sara and Betrys left the room to discuss the matter and left the creature in its slumber. “When King Koldo returned, he was furious with the group - until he learned that Pig Boy had vanished! The Knights agreed to help find his son, promptly losing themselves in the darkness. Fortunately Pig Boy found them, revealing that his father planned to sacrifice him for his continued youth. Reluctant to abandon the tenets of hospitality, Betrys reluctantly decided to send him away with Roderick and Eneko while they dealt with King Koldo. “So came the confrontation with Koldo and his knights. The fight was difficult, with Sara reeling under the Red Blade’s blows, but surviving. Having slain her foe, Betrys leaped in to slay the foul king. Koldo’s hall burst apart as the shrouded monstrosity slammed through the wall, grabbed the king, and drained him with his trunk. With her usual aplomb, Betrys led the other Knights away from the castle, speedily scouting the route without a horse to slow her departure. “So it was that Betrys gained the Red Blade for comrade in arms, Cerise. Who can deny the depth of her loyalty, to put aside her oath to avenge King Pellinore to aid her friend? Keening women on an island could not hope to understand this, and should not be treated as reliable sources.**** “More information is available for another shilling." The accuracy of this passage is in dispute. -Excerpts from Volume 6 of Brother Mordecai’s Annales Sorvioduni. * My chronicler player was out, so I had to improvise. ** I think half the players have figured this out. *** I may have swapped the Wild Hunt for Frank Belknap Long's Chaugnar Faugn. **** They gave up on the Island of Fairies. But the repercussions are not over.
  11. One quick note: the statistics in my copy lack damage: King Cadwalader - 4D6 Knight of Meirionydd - 5D6 Warrior of Meirionydd - 3D6 Knight of Gomeret - 5D6
  12. 526 A.D., Part 1 Remnants of letters show that most of the Knights Perylous met before deploying for the year to discuss their duty to avenge King Pellinore. It is believed that Cerise was ignorant of this meeting, perhaps because her sense of duty would have compelled her to make this scheme public. The Knights crossed the Channel at Dover and joined the camp at Barfleur. About a week later, the king went missing. Searching for him, the knights Perylous saw a colossal figure atop the Giant’s Island in the bay, seemingly in battle with a smaller creature. They only faltered in their headlong rush to aid their king when Gwef stopped to consult with some agitated peasants. She sounded a horn to warn them of the quicksand in their path, a warning that some other unlucky souls did not heed. They attempted to find a safe path by forcing some purchased pigs (named, bafflingly, after the Orkneys) to test the ground, but before they got too far, King Arthur returned, giant head in tow. He noted the names of the fallen and they returned to camp. From what we can tell, camp recreation on the road was much as you’d expect of the elegant knights of Arthur’s court: gaming, harp recitations (at which Sir Roderick excelled), heraldry, campfire tales of valor. Those knights Perylous oathbound to avenge Pellinore spent much of the trip searching for others so bound, to pool their resources; they found Sir Erwan and Sir Corentin in the service of Duke Hoel of Brittany. One of the knights may have told those two about the Orkneys. The army arrived in Paris, from which King Claudas had recently fled, and indulged in a great feast to raise spirits. Cerise made amends with Sir Tor, graciously thanking him for his assistance in stopping Lady Llylla’s reign of terror. (There is reason to doubt Brother Elija’s account wherein she essays him on her gratitude for at least four pages, all delivered from her knees.) Sir Marhaus of Ireland, tempting fate, asked the court’s jester how he would die, after hearing of his prognosticative powers. The jester pointed out a squire gaming with Gwf named Tristan and told the knight the boy would kill him. Sir Marhaus laughed it off. Sara, also tempting fate, suggested that Sir Aggravaine should ask for his fortune. Sir Aggravaine chose instead to become aggressive and it nearly ended with a duel between the two. Other members continued their quest to find others seeking to avenge Pellinore. Near Autun a parley was held between the forces of Emperor Lucius and King Arthur. Sir Gawain could not cease humming, “F*ck up the Romans,” a new if derivative song by Sir Roderick. When challenged on his arrogance, he chose to behead one of the embassy and the knights fled back to their forces in hiding. The tide of the battle turned several times, with Uffo’s traitorous forces showing up near the end of the battle. He fled, and the knights Perylous joined pursuit, leaving their squires behind to secure their prisoners. They followed the traitorous count into the woods, where inclement weather forced them to seek shelter. An inviting light led them to a cabin off the trail. They were greeted by a Black Robes friar, who gave them a warm meal while talking at length about chasms leading to hell in the area. As some of the knights, exhausted after drinking the potent wine, nodded off to sleep at the table, he excused himself to look for others of his household, who he had expected home long ago. Only Betrys and Sara still had sobriety remaining. When they heard a noise coming from beneath the floorboards, they roused themselves from a stupor and investigated, only to discover Uffo bound and gagged. His gag removed, he warned them of a cult that was going to kill all of them. The knights made a pact with the traitor, to forestall justice if he would aid them in fleeing. The knights and Uffo fled from a cult gathering in the deep woods. Sir Sara would later claim that the unveiled priest had bat ears. Free of pursuit, Sara chose to spare Sir Uffo’s life for now, and the knights returned to the army camp. On the way to Paris with prisoners (including Uffo) in tow, the knights were ambushed by the Romans. The knights fared poorly in the first charge, with Sara, Cerise and Betrys all unhorsed. Sir Gwef took command of the attached Salisbury knights. The fate of our knights on foot seemed bleak until Sir Ancelote* arrived with fresh mounts and violence enough to drive the forces back. Seizing the moment, Sara took their battalion commander, Gundisalvus Lactucinus, prisoner. He, and all the other prisoners, were left in the security of Paris. Arthur had other plans for Uffo, however. Before leaving Paris, a messenger bore a message for Sir Cerise from her long-time paramour, tasking her with retrieving a red sword from a keep in the Pyrenees. Her fellow knights agreed to help her secure Lady Sibelle’s hand before they departed France. -Excerpts from Volume 6 of Brother Mordecai’s Annales Sorvioduni. * I have faith that they're going to figure this out at some point... but they haven't yet.
  13. Interlude - Gwefrfawr and Una Sax: As autumn falls in Broughton and preparations for next year’s campaign continue, you notice that Una does not seem well. As the months go on, she seems thinner and paler, and with it her mood turns to melancholy. None of your children or those of the staff at Broughton are similarly afflicted. Player: I'm going to get a doctor to check on her. Sax: Want it to be Hypatia? Sara is technically paying her salary. Player: Yes, but Gwf will pay her separately for this trip and her discretion? Sax: Ok. 2 Libra? Player: We'll do 3 Sax: OK. She comes, looks her over, looks at the rest of the family, walks around the site, and asks some questions. Who do you say the girl is? Player: Honestly, Gwf's probably saying it's her daughter. Gwf has consistently acted like Una was one of her own children since Una arrived. Player: If asked beyond that, Gwf might say she's adopted from [whatever branch of the family she told Nerys] Sax: Ok Player: What did Hypatia think? Sax: “It doesn’t seem to be anything natural. So… likely supernatural. Beyond my expertise.” Player: Do I think there's any chance Sarah could have actually cursed Uffo's whole line? Like, can regular non-magical people do that? Sax: rolls Faerie Lore, Religion, Magic Knowledge - No idea. Player: Ha, excellent Player: Who do I know that's likely good at this and not, like, Cerys, since she can't keep a secret for shit? Eliavres, Margawse, maybe one of the ladies of the lake...? Player: Does Morgan's daughter know this stuff? She lived at Broughton for a year or two Sax: Eliavres is out there somewhere. Margawse is at the other end of Britain. The Lady of the Lake might know. Morffyd has some training. Both of the latter are at court. Player: Anyone else? Sax: Conceivably you could find some wandering magician of dubious reputation and power. Sax: There's also Merlin, so same thing there. Player: What about religious figures? Nerys knew some monks or something who maybe don't trust her since she introduced Morgan to her, but not sure who else Sax: There's various religious figures about. Nerys knows the monks at Amesbury, but they're not known for having holy power. Sax: With your Knowledge (Christianity) 0, you're not coming up with much. Maybe pray to St. Nidian? Player: Lol Player: If it is Sarah's curse at Uffo over killing Nidian, St. Nidian seems unlikely to help Sax: So who do you want to approach? Player: Possibly Morrfyd, as she's got the closest ties to Broughton, vs Eliavres who is Roderick's dad or whatever, or Margawse who is...???... with Cerys (possibly lover, possibly grandmother to future children? Weird...) Sax: Margawse does owe you a minor favor, but she's far away. Sax: (I should also point out that there's another Lady of the Lake, Nimue, but she's on an extended honeymoon.) Player: I might need that favor to help actually lift the curse, so I don't want her to just hit up for questions yet Player: Is that with Merlin? Sax: OK. You're a famous Round Table knight. Bringing someone with you to court might attract attention. Player: Hmmm, could I get Morffyd to come to Broughton on the off season? Sax: No - it's some knight named Pelleas or something. Vivianne was into Merlyn. Sax: Sure - it's not too far. Player: Ok Player: Let's try that, then. Sax: Morffyd accepts your invitation and arrives at Broughton. "I'm happy to do what I can d... oh hell no. Hell no. You need to talk to Vivianne." Player: Lol Player: "Why Vivianne?" Player: "And what's wrong with Una, exactly?" Sax: "I don't know - she's got multiple enchantments, somehow. And Vivianne has a lot more experience than I do." Player: "MULTIPLE? She's seven." Player: "What if I can't lift them?" Sax: "She may not recover." Player: "Do you have any ideas about how to slow or stall them?" Sax: "The easiest way is to get the person or people who put her under the curses to lift them. It gets more complicated from there, and this really isn't my area of specialty." Sax: "I could try to counteract some of it, but I'm not sure that will be enough." Player: Gwf would be grateful for anything Morffyd could do, as it's going to take her time to figure out what happened, exactly, and how to fix it. Sax: "I can give her some time - but really, talk to Vivianne." Player: Gwf will do so Player: But also request strongly that Morffyd not mention any of this to anyone. Sax: She swears she will not. Sax: How do you want to reach Vivianne? Player: Where's Vivianne? Is she the one at court? Sax: Yes. Sax: The Lady of the Lake. Player: Would Vivianne like to come to Broughton, by any chance? How do you invite people you don't really know to do stuff in this day and age? Sax: You can certainly invite her to visit. It may take somewhat longer, unless you have something to entice or intrigue her. Player: Wait, other things Morffyd may be able to answer - Does someone have to be magical to curse someone? Like, could anyone have done this to the child, or could Gwf limit her search to the Supernatural types. And ...as much as Gwf hates to ask, is this something Morgan could remove? Sax: She doesn’t know. You could ask Morgan, but you’re not sure where she is. Player: Okay Player: For Vivianne, do I have any idea what she may want to come to Broughton for? We have books. And bees. Also, Regis. Sax: Her religion is largely oral in tradition. You might tempt her with a feast, or with some information of magical or pagan interest. Player: I don't know if I have interesting information. Most of what I have is in books? But I could do a feast, maybe? Sax: 5 Libra. She agrees to come. Sax: How do you want to show her Una? Player: Uh, somewhere away from other people first? Like maybe they could do a walk to see this giant ass tapestry Gwf has, and oh look, it's near Una's room? Sax: She walks past Una's room, looks at her, and looks at you. "Tell me everything. Now." Player: Gwf will start by saying she doesn't necessarily know anything, which is why she brought Vivianne. But she'll also tell Vivianne what she thinks she knows (away from Una) with names omitted - the girl is her daughter, adopted. She has reason to believe the girls' fathers' familial line has been cursed, although Gwf hadn't really thought it was possible, as the person Gwf believes to be the curse-or has no magical talent. Player:But Una is clearly getting ill, and Gwf is desperate to help her. She has done nothing to deserve this; she's just a child Sax: She looks over Una and asks a great deal of questions. Sax: She takes you aside. Sax: "It is possible for even a magically untrained person in times of deep emotion to cause a change in the world that can affect others. But that isn't all." Sax: "There's also hag-magic here - a curse. But it's not a curse on the girl herself, but on someone else." Sax: "It could be handled by asking the person to lift their curse, and then working with them to reverse the hag curse." Player: "And if they won't?" Sax: She sighs. "I have used much magic recently; I do not have the strength to oppose it. What was the wording of the curse?" Player: Does Gwf even know? I don't think she was around when Sarah did it Sax: You heard about it. Player: I think it was a curse on Ulfius and that his line would wither like, but that's most of what I got Player: Uffo, rather Sax: That's it. Sax: She thinks. "I may have a solution, but we must ride quickly. We're going to Cornwall." Sax: The ride to Cornwall is cold and arduous. Una is shivering almost constantly. Cornish patrols block your path, but they immediately let you pass when they see the Lady of the Lake. Player: Sorry, I missed this yesterday! Gwf is doing her best to keep Una warm. Why does Cornwall hate us again? Sax: (No problem. I’ll pick this up in the evening.) Sax: (Cornwall doesn't hate you. They sort of resent that Salisbury didn't side with them during Anarchy, and they prefer to retain their independence. But Sarah has lands in Cornwall...) Sax: On a hill above Totnes, Vivianne leads you into the forest. It opens up on a meadow where once a small Roman temple stood. Now its walls have toppled, with many stones borne away, and the columns lie on their sides. Yet the altar still stands, with an inscription to Venus.. Player: What's it say? Sax: "Titus Sempronius Blaesus here erects an altar to Venus, for the benefit of infants." Sax: “When the Picts were the only people on the Isles,” she says, “it was the custom for those who wished their children to be blessed to come to this site. When the Romans came, they made this a temple to the goddess, but continued the tradition. Now I will use its magic to undo what has been done, as best I am able.” Player: "Is this safe? There is a small chance I could get the curse-or to...well, to at least try to take off the lineage withering part. Although not any other part of the curse. I'm not sure you can undo half a curse" Gwf frowns. Sax: "No, it's not safe. Yes, you should be safe, if you do as I say." Player: “And Una will be safe? Or at least, not worse off?" Sax: "Nothing is ever safe. But this is our best option at this point. Start that incense burner." Player: Gwf'll start the incense Sax: It surrounds you with a rich, heady smell. The wind picks up in the trees around the clearing, but the smoke wafts straight up. Sax: She begins to whisper words that seem to take on a deep bass profundo. You can hear wildcats screech and wolves howl in the woods. Player: Gwf is being very patient. And probably keeping an arm around Una, if she can Sax: Vivianne reaches out for her. Player: Ok Sax: Lightning streaks across the sky as Vivianne takes Una in her arms and walks to the altar. Sax: “Hear me, spirits of sky, land, and sea! Hear me, Lady Venus of the foamy waves! I bring you a child, that she might be blessed and go forth in the world anew.” Sax: (More howling and screeching) Sax: She holds the girl’s frail body aloft. “My child, thou art not Undeg.” Sax: “Thou art not Una.” Player: Uh, but she is? Sax: “Let it be known to all creation…” Sax: “Thou art… Sax: “WITHER!” Sax: Thunder crashes directly overhead. Sax: It's starting to rain. Player: This seems like an odd way to deal with the curse. Do curses care about semamtics? Player: Semantics Player: I'm going to roll my non-existent knowledge (curses) to find out Sax: Magic Knowledge Sax: Fail. Sax: She hands the girl back to you. Player: Does Una/Wither seem any better? Player: Gwf is clearly giving Vivianne some skeptical side eye Sax:: She is breathing more easily. Player: "So.... can I still call her Una?" Player: "Because Gwfwrfrwr is a pretty bad name, but Wither is worse?" Sax: "Call her what you wish, but know her name and make sure she knows it. The curse has, technically, been fulfilled. I hope that is enough." Player: "I can do that. We'll see how it goes." Gwf will give Una a hug. "Hopefully you'll be a lot better now, less sick." Player: She'll thank Vivianne profusely. She owes Vivianne a great deal if this works. Sax: She nods. "Later. For now, let's get her out of the rain." Player: Let's go Sax: You make your way home. Sax: In the weeks and months to come, the girl becomes more sturdy and hardy. Her cheeks are plump again. Yet she always has a touch of melancholy. Player: Her name is Wither, so that's logical. I'd be melancholic, too. Player: Did I ever find the girl's mom? Sax: No Player: Gwf is still treating Una like a daughter, but will keep her eyes open for a way to undo what little bit of the curse may still linger. Although she's less concerned, at least Sax: She seems all right physically. Player: I mean, once Sarah kills Uffo, she might possibly be willing to forgive the girl and remove the curse, since the girl really is innocent. Gwf just doesn't think that conversation can happen while Uffo lives, though. Sax: Probably not. Player: I described this to [Partner], with the key sentence being, "Uffo is stupid. You can tell because his name is Uffo." Player: It's a shortened version of buffoon, isn't it? bUFFOon Sax: That's one interpretation. And not an invalid one. Player: I miss Ulfius Sax: He was such a good, manipulative, and sneaky warlord. Player: That's the best kind Player: Top tier Sax: Thus ends the adventure of Wither. Player: Yay? Player: Poor kid Sax: Indeed. But she's all right for now.
  14. 525 A.D. Players in Attendance: Sir Sara of Shrewton; Sir Cerise of Cholderton; Sir Gwef of Broughton; Sir Betrys of Newton Tony. Absent: Sir Roderick of Staplefort. At court that winter, the Knights of Peryl were in disagreement on how best to use the year. Should they track down the traitorous Uffo, at King Claudas’ court in Paris? Should they seek to end Llylla’s abuses of the Anglian peasants? They could venture into the Forest Sauvage to back Gwef’s claim to Medbourne, or find the Kingslayers to avenge King Pellinore. They opted to focus on Lady Llylla’s misdeeds. At court, Sara’s squire acquitted himself quite well in Agravaine’s squire fights. Gwef bet on the outcome but forbade her squire to participate. Gwef also tried to find gossip on the location of Morgan, but had less luck. Meanwhile, Brother Syrion, the king’s treasurer, took Cerise to account for Uffo taking control of the castle entrusted to her by the crown. Her knowledge of stewardship impressed him, so she was given another chance. With the aid of the Lady of the Lake, Betrys narrowed the suspects in Pellinore’s murder, with suspicion turning toward the Orkneys. A Roman tribune attended court that year and demanded an outrageous tribute from King Arthur. He not only declined, but declared Rome to be his vassal by right. He announced his intent to lay claim next year. With the possibility of a long absence hanging over them, Sara rushed to be wed that very year to Lady Nia of Edmonton. They invited the Duchess Hervice of Anglia, Lady Llylla’s superior. According to rumor, the duchess also treated her Saxon peasants poorly (though not as poorly as Llylla), but Sara was unable to wring any secrets from her. Some letters mention how Cerise managed to stumble over Sir Tor in the dance competition, and a priest at the feast declared that the gods shone upon Betrys. Once married, Lady Nia entreated her new wife to join in her efforts to remove the Head of Bran from the White Tower in London, and Sara agreed On the way to Anglia, Gwef decided to claim Medbourne, even if it meant a detour through the Forest Sauvage. They relied on Roderick’s trusty hunting leopard, though it seemed to lead them astray this time. They were truly lost when they heard a hellish baying from the woods. Some of them fled before the hounds of the Wild Hunt. Cerise and Betrys kept their nerve and watched the hunt pass them by, but were separated from the others. Those two stumbled upon a contingent from the Castle of Ease and accepted their offer of hospitality. Due to their vigor, they were able to leave the comforts of the castle without worry on the next morning, though Cerise offered them the hospitality of Cholderton in return. In the Forest, Sara, Gwef and Roderick came upon a terrible hag. The hag introduced herself as the daughter of their mortal enemy, Black Annis, and swore vengeance upon them. The hag cursed Sara to succeed in her own quest of vengeance. To find their path, Gwef gave her words of kindness, which seemed less metaphorical than expected, judging from the less gentle temperament of her letters. Finally, those three came to Medford, and Gwef laid claim to it, to the population’s relief. The entire group managed to reunite in Huntington before splitting again. Sara, Cerise, and Roderick visited the Duchess, while Gwef and Betrys were off to Llylla’s home. The ones investigating the Duchess found her to be overtaxing her peasants and driving them to desperation, while ignoring the crimes of her subordinates. Those investigating Lady Llylla found her culpable of the most heinous murders of her peasants, with testimony from the steward and executioner. All this evidence was brought to King Arthur. Gwef and Sara made a convincing argument against Llylla, so he split the administration of her land between Sir Tor and Cerise. -Excerpts from Volume 6 of Brother Mordecai’s Annales Sorvioduni.
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