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KungFuFenris

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About KungFuFenris

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    Dane - 20 Years of RPG - Writer - LARPWright
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    Pendragon - 7th Sea
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    Aros - DK
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    The fierce storyteller from beneath the moonlit sky of Danirvangr

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  1. Session 08 - The Great Feast at Linden Pool As he had sustained grave wounds on the battlefield, Sir Branoc was brought to be cared for at a convent near the coast of Wash. After a few talks with the rest of the assembled host, it did not take long for the young knights to realize that King Uther would reach Linden Pool, as Madoc intented to rendezvous with his father at the castle of the Duke Corneus. As their Lord Roderick would be riding along with the King, the four of them scraped their plans of walking to Roestoc, and joins the prince as he rides for Linden. However, as they arrived in the old holdfast, it soon became clear that the Duke was nowhere to be found, much to Madoc’s consternation. According to his servants, Corneus away on business in the northern reaches of his holding. But, neither Madoc nor the heroes were shy about making themselves guests at the Duke’s hall, waiting for the King to arrive. Just a scant few days later, the Royal Progress was spotted, but in the Sarum contingent, there rode a young squire named Tywyn, son of Marshal Elad and squire to his older brother, Sir Drystan. Tywyn, who was already known for his courage and his temperance, was a youth of twenty summers, and almost ready to become a knight in his own right, if only his father would pay the cost for it. Riding to Linden was his first foray into the greater world, and while his brother had already made a name for himself as a staunch defender of Salisbury, Tywyn was still just Sir Elad’s spare. However, that was all about to change. A Bow and Stable Hunt. While the Royal Progress was one of the finest that had been seen here in Linden for many years, as the King was even being accompanied by the renowned heroes of Logres, such as Sir Arnoullant the Fair and Sir Caradoc the 13th, it did little to impress or intimidate Corneus, as the duke was not present. As the King was greeted with the news of a missing Duke, the only thing that could ease his anger was the prospects of taking view of some of Linden’s countryside in the only manner that befitted a King. A hunt. Within hours, the scouts were in motion, and early the next morning, King Uther sat out on a classic Bow and Stable Hunt, where he desired to be in the field himself. The entire Royal Progress sat up camp in the woods near the hunting grounds, an old riverbed covered in woods. Our friends, having greeted their Lord with news of the raids and Sir Branoc’s state, sat out that morning as well. While Sir Aldwyn took to the field along with Sir Graid, Aurelius took to the bow and Reccared decided that the hunt was best spent socializing at the gathering of knights and ladies in the camp behind the archers. As for Sir Drystan, son of the Marshal, he took to the field as well, alongside his Squire, but due to his lack of patience, he sat his eyes on the worst possible prey, as he unknowingly targeted the same stag as King Uther, much to his squire’s horror. Before the pursuing Drystan could spear the fleeing stag, King Uther had lobbed his spear at the same target and with his practiced accuracy, he pierced the prey’s vitals, causing it to stumble and then promptly trip and fall, leaving it right in the path of Sir Drystan’s galloping horse; in turn, that horse tripped as well and both horse and rider were sent into the ground, a fall accompanied by the pained sound of a horse breaking a leg. Tywyn, rushing to his brother’s aid, cannot hope to move the horse of the overeager knight, and the royal glare from Uther is fixated on the loss of his chosen prey. Fortunately for all, Sir Caradoc, the almost giant-like knight, had accompanied the King on the hunt, and with little fanfare, Caradoc lifted the horse up, allowing Drystan to escape without being choked to death; Caradoc then promptly euthanized the horse with a well-placed blade. Having suffered enough by his injuries from the fall, the King seemed to have found that God punished Drystan so Uther wouldn’t have to, and departs, the Royal Ire not stirred. Meanwhile, Aldwyn’s fortune at this hunt was not great, but Graid had quite the catch as he rode down a six-pointer stag right at the edge of the killing fields. Aurelius, on the other hand, had little success with the bow, but a few pheasants did find their end on his arrows. As for Reccared? He had spent the hunt being delightful company to the women of the court while having kept his goblet full. As the sun was setting, the hunt was ended, and Uther was satisfied enough. There would be venison enough for him to be properly catered until Corneus returned. The Squire Talk. After having placed his knight in bed, Tywyn joined the rest of the squires at the campfire outside of Linden. Curious on the exploits of the rising stars of Sarum’s knights, he sought out their squires. While they were younger than him, they had all manners of stories to tell. Especially of the tense raiding along the coast. Squire Ionas, spoke a lot about the raids, especially how close they came to disaster at Maldon and he was supported by Squire Golas, who really couldn’t believe they all survived. They could agree that Sir Bar, was one of the only reasons why everyone got out alive. Then, the talk fell on their previous adventures with their knights, and they had stories of the victory at the Creek as well as the whole madness surrounding Merlin and the Sword Lake. Finally, the other squires asked a lot about Tywyn’s brother, and if he was going to be okay. At some point however, they noticed Felix had wandered off, and was chatting up one of the local serving maids, and the entire group of young men just groaned in envy as those two snuck off together to a hidden corner in a tent somewhere. Feast at Linden Pool. A few days later, Corneus finally returned but afterwards, there’s obviously a mood in the hall, as the Duke quite wary of what the King is intending to do during this visit. The same goes for our heroes, who are not anywhere close to being in the mood for brute force politics; the very same agendas they had hoped to avoid by joining Madoc at sea. But, in the middle of the feast, as if the King finally had enough of Corneus’ uneasy and furtive glances, Uther decided to have Merlin share the tale of Excalibur with the entire court, and afterwards, he asks the son of the honorable Sir Perrin, young Sir Reccared de Toulouse, to recount the tale of Sword Lake. Reccared stood up, and with the well-spoken story he then shared with the assembled hall, he managed to make all of them pay rapt attention. And the end of his tale, the King rose from his seat, and drew the sword Excalibur which gleaming with an inner light, breaking away all the smoke from the room. An awestruck Corneus knelt before the King and promptly swore his undying support to Uther, and as if by the drop of a needle, the mood of the hall changed as all the knights now knew for certain they were on the same side. Reccared recieved a nod of Royal Approval, and was later told that the King rewarded him by expanding his rights in the Chase that his father had been given. All in all, a fine reward for Reccared, though, one that he still wasn't all that great at using. Merriment followed, especially at the Salisburian table, but in the middle of these festivities, Sir Elad, a well-known man of stoic and patient nature, was charged by Count Roderick to undertake a mission of diplomacy on the crowns behalf. Elad was to travel to the cumbrian Kingdom of Malahaut; to secure the support of the Centurion King in the coming wars. Roderick also told that Elad was expected to bring his oldest son, Drystan, which meant Tywyn had to spend winter serving somewhere else, as bringing his heir and his spare beyond the country's borders might be risky. Sir Elad asked his former pupils, and Sir Reccared in particular, and left them with the expectation that they’d put Tywyn through the same wringer as he placed them through. After all, the reward for this task would mean that Squire Tywyn could be knighted next year if he proves himself, and as the son of Marshal Elad One-Eye, he damn well better prove himself. Early next morning, Drystan and Elad were northward bound, in the company of the proud Sir Jareth and Sir Mors, who was a Cumbrian himself. The rest of the Salisburians journeyed back south with the Royal Progress, all of them eager to return to home and hearth again. Returning to Salisbury. When our heroes returned to Salisbury a few weeks later, the lands near Graid’s lands at Stapleford were in odd shape. Many roofs had been destroyed all across the hundred, but most of them had been centred around his manor. When he rode to his hall, his beloved Aline could tell him what had happened. Their houses had been rummaged through by a trio of grey-skinned, salt-crusted giants, that seemed to be searching for something in particular as they had not hurt anyone intentionally nor had they attacked anyone. And Graid’s manor had been their goal, as they had torn off the roof and looked through every nook and cranny, before giving up and wandered off towards the Forest of Gloom. Neither Aline nor the baby had been harmed, but the damages were costly both in monetary value as well as in goodwill from the local peasantry. Graid, as a Cornishman, knew that giants were no laughing matter. And didn’t one of his ancestors fight a trio of sea giants? Many questions were left unanswered, as a few weeks later winter fell on Salisbury and Logres, which spelled the end of 487.
  2. I was considering that, but Aldwyn was in his good graces, and Madoc consider the lanky knight to be a future asset. Mostly after their previous interactions. (It came down to an opposed Just/Arbitrary roll.)
  3. Session 07 - 487 AD - The Daring Naval Raids The year began with a marriage, held in the cathedral of Durnovaria, where Sir Aurelius and Lady Bethany knelt before the altar as Bishop Mesalla performed the ritual; the bishopric here had been the traditional church of the Sertorius family since Roman times and neither Aurelius nor his foster-father wished to change that tradition. Everyone had been surprised at the news of Aurelius’ wedding, especially when it was to a different Lady than the one Aurelius had been setting his sights on so far. Lady Bethany was one of Ulfius’ daughters by a concubine, but still one of his favorite daughters, and it was a bit odd that he would part with her to a simple vassal knight. But, all of it had an explanation. Years ago, Ulfius had been friends with Gessius Sertorius, Aurelius’ father, and had been there at the Battle of Exeter, where Gessius had fallen in the defense of the returning Prince Aurelius Ambrosius. In front of the church, while the joyous couple greeted the attendants, Graid, Aldwyn and Reccared had a staredown contest with the Silchester contingent; a group led by the sly Sir Rhiscart Blains, the Steward of Levcomagus, whom they knew to be a sworn foe of their Lord Roderick. Sir Blains only said a few, well-placed words before moving on, which avoided any escalation in the square, yet left little doubt that this little event was as cordial as Silchester and Salisbury would be in the months to come. After spending a few moments with his new wife besides the stone of his father near the cathedral gardens, Aurelius directed the group towards the ensuing merriment to celebrate this event. The festivities that followed were held in a Roman villa, where Aurelius' sister lived, and here the rest of our knights discovered out that Aldwyn already had a bit of a reputation among the Romano-British nobles of Durnovaria, due to the duel before winter. However, it was still possible to sooth them with some impeccably timed music, and between the luteskills of Aldwyn and Reccared's vocal talents, the assembled Dorsettian citizenry saw this northern savage turned into an actual person with sophisticated taste. In spite of this being his daughter’s wedding, the Marshal of Logres was busy as ever, and had to ride after only staying for a few hours. But, he did impart his well-wishes, and desires to see Aurelius’ become a man with enough influence and wealth that he would give his daughter a life that befitted her. After the wedding, they all returned to Salisbury after Easter, and was set to attend Pentecost at Sarum. Aurelius brought both his wife, sister and his nephews back to Woodford, leaving the old villa in the hands of his sister’s servants. In the days before Pentecost, Aldwyn had business with Reccared, and sought out the Aquitanian knight in Baverstock, where Aldwyn challenged Reccared to a little hunt. After all, Reccared had a proper chase for that purpose. Due to the skills of Squire Golas, Reccared's Hunting-enthusiastic protege, they managed to track down and catch a fallow-deer in no time, and while the animal was butchered, Aldwyn finally saw his chance to express his concern with Reccared not having any kids yet. Not even bastards. Was he made of stone down below? Reccared simply stated that while his path might not be easy, Lady Adwen was worthy of the effort. Aldwyn was confused, but was placated when Reccared told him that he was actively courting the Lady Adwen, with Count Roderick even considering it. A Few Weeks Later... At Sarum, Pentecost was, as always, the time where the Count would find a new direction for Salisbury. During the winter, old Sir Amig had passed away, leaving Salisbury without a Dapifer, and there were many knights interested in replacing him, among those was old Sir Caradoc, who had already begun campaigning for this alongside his trusty, dim-witted friend, Sir Bar the Giant. And while the knights vied for support among their fellows, the Court was opened by Count Roderick, who began with raising a toast to the memory of proud Amig, who had served since the days of Roderic’s father. Then, he could tell of the news. The King had asked Salisbury to accompany him north to Linden. But, for our heroes, the focus was elsewhere. When the young rising stars of Salisbury were asked for their opinion, they said that Count Roderick should ride with the King, while they volunteered to go to the Prince. At Christmas, they had already made a promise that they would join Madoc in raiding the Saxon ships along the coast, just like Aurelius Ambrosius once did. Sending the Heroes of Mearcred Creek might be a good way to placate Prince Madoc if he was not to receive a full retinue from Salisbury. And after a bit of deliberation, Count Roderick agreed. Along with Sir Bar, whose size made it impossible for him to travel that far north due to the strain he placed on the horses, and Sir Branoc the Sailor, who was Aurelius' mentor in the Knightly arts, this was the retinue of knights that was sent to Prince Madoc. A few days later, the group sat off to Hantonne. At the coast, they found the royal fleet, where the banner of Prince Madoc, heir of Logres, was flying high above all else. This was a group of young knights, like themselves, from all over southern Logres. They presented themselves to Madoc, who at first was displeased with Salisbury’s numbers, but that was quickly forgotten when he realized who the knights of the retinue were. After all, they were both heroes as well as some of the knights he were amiable towards. Before an assembled host, Madoc held a speech. This time, it was a different sort of fight. Not a hunt for Glory or Loot, but swift and decisive strikes, setting fire to the ships and rushing back into the sea as fast as possible. It was a matter of strategy! And this time, they were fighting for Logres, not just themselves or their liege. Under the careful guidance of the old Admiral Gwynwyn, the fleet set off up along the coast. Days passed with sailing, nights were spent ashore. Sir Branoc, the only knight of the group who had sailed before, told them of the dangers of the water, especially when wearing armor. And he told them tall tales from the Frisian Campaign, where Reccared’s father had reportedly made a charge from the ship immediately after hitting shore, sending the Frisian defenders into disarray before they had time to react. The young knight marveled at the sights at sea, and wondered why they had never done this before. Night fell, they made a quick camp as the first target was in sight. On the coastline of Sussex, the small settlement of Pevensy hosted King Ælle’s fleet, and it seemed like the Saxons had little reason to expect an attack . In the faint hours before dawn, the Britons were silent as their ships descended on the South Saxons, leaping from the ships to make way for the torch-wielding sailors. Aldwyn roared and lead the Salisburians forward into the fray... Morning dawned as the fleet sailed onwards, leaving burning ships behind them. During the sail, our heroes had high spirits, and even spotted a whale off the bow of their ship. It felt like a sign of good fortune. A day or so later, the fleet approached the old roman harbor town of Dover. The pattern repeated itself, and spirits were high, and when they sailed onto shore in the wee hours of dawn, chaos came ashore along with them. Aldwyn, filled with the rush of battle and to stand beside his sworn brothers, kept a cool head, and lead them forward. But, that when his sharp eyes on the battlefield allowed him to spot a quite well-dressed Saxon man, his arms and armor giving him the distinct air of a nobleman, surrounded by equally well-armed noblemen. They fell on the bodyguards, eager to lay their hands on that Saxon wastrel, but the hunt was cut short as the horns sounded from the fleet behind them. The Kentish fleet was already ablaze. But the prize was right in front of them! They could make it. He roared forward "We'll take that Thane, even if we'll have to carve ourselves through a wall of all the Saxons in Kent to set foot in British territory once more!" and the knight’s blades and spears then carved a way through the bodyguards, with Aldwyn finally slamming his spearshaft into the guts of the Saxon noble and promptly dragging him towards the shore Here, the boats had already begun to leave; arrows from the Saxon reinforcements were beginning to rain down on them from the white cliffs above. However, our retreating heroes had all decided to wear armor in this battle, and not all of them understood what that meant for swimming, but Sir Branoc, with experience on sea, had prepared ropes for them all to hold onto while they were dragged onto the deck. All made it, even the thane. All, except Aldwyn, who tripped in the chest-high water and did not resurface. If it hadn’t been for brave Sir Bar jumping into the water to save a drowning Aldwyn, this would have been the end for him right then and there, but the immense strength of Sir Bar dragged both Aldwyn and himself back onto the embarking ship, out into open water again. On the following day, Madoc came aboard their ship, and had quite a few words to say to Aldwyn and his folly, beginning with the words “Do I need to speak louder if I am going to reach all the way up there?!”. After an awe inspiring chastising that seemed to last for hours, the matter was settled. The prince was going to spare Aldwyn, but demanded half the ransom of the Saxon noble to forget about this little debacle. The fleet sailed forward, aiming for quite fight as they journeyed up the Blackwater River. The port of Maldon was reportedly the place where the East Saxons of Aethelswith, the recently arrived Saxon warlord, had placed his fleet. But, much to their surprise, there were only a few ships at Maldon. They sat them alight, and sailed on. The Admiral thought the Saxons might have moved their ships further up the coast. The course was set back to the coast, and at the mouth of the River Colne, they found a Saxon fleet, ready to meet them on the water. The clash was brutal, the riverbed running red with both Briton and Saxon blood, and the Salisburians were heavily outnumbered as the Saxons poured onto their ship. When the sun finally broke through the rain which had been pouring down all morning, it was clear that they had taken heavy losses. But, the Saxons had been defeated. The cowards running for their lives and the Britons running them down one by one, with all of our heroes eagerly partaking in routing the hated Saxons! Aurelius found Sir Branoc, heavily wounded, beneath the corpse of a Saxon. Fortunately, Aurelius always knew his way with a bandage, and the bleeding was staunched and Sir Branoc averted death yet another time. In the aftermath, the Saxon ships were pulled ashore and burnt as their crew were left the feed the crows and fish. Madoc, for his part, seemed to be satisfied with the performance of the Salisburians, as they had managed to fight off some of the fiercest of the Saxons. After a few days in Yarmouth, the Briton fleet met with reinforcements, and continued up north, towards the murky waters near the Wash, where yet another fleet of Saxons met them. But, for our four knights? The Battle of the Wash was.... a wash. As battle was joined, a stray arrow pierced a part of the rudder on the Salisburian ship, causing them to drift aimlessly while witnessing a bloody naval battle before them, an injured Branoc doing his best to make sure they did not drift off in the sea.. Finally, after nearly three weeks spent at sea, our knights finally ended their journey on the coast of Linden, as the fleet finally disbanded. Now, they could place Branoc in the proper care of a local monastery, while they waited for the disbandment of the fleet. Prince Madoc was pleased, but no victory was without sacrifices, as Admiral Gwynwyn had been slain by a Saxon foeman during the clash. His ship, the old Armorican vessel, became his pyre, as befitted such an old servant of Britain. The four assembled friends were sombre, but agreed that if they could avoid getting into more battles at sea, it would be for the better. Then, it dawned on them. How were they supposed to get home if not by ship? After all, Linden was quite removed from Salisbury. Aldwyn suggested they’d walk up to Roestoc, his homeland, and acquire some horses from his aunt and uncle, the Queen and King of Roestoc. That’s when Graid finally realized that Aldwyn hadn’t been lying when he had claimed that his aunt was a Queen in a northern kingdom. But, that’s when they heard the rumors from the Prince’s retinue. Their path had been swift enough for them to beat Uther to Linden, and thus, much to their chagrin, our four heroes found themselves wrapped into the very same political quagmire that they hoped to avoid by taking this task at sea! Uther was coming to Linden, to show of Excalibur and “kindly” remind the Duke here who he was serving under… At least Madoc wasn’t angry with them anymore.
  4. Winter Phase 486-487 After Christmas, Aurelius got himself awarded an Allowance from Lord Roderick, possibly due to an agreement with the Bishop. He was also asked to take his sister and her children into his household, while her husband, Sir Sabin Africanus, travelled to Sicily(?!) in pursuit of a feud. To make matters worse, heavy floods hit the hundred of Underditch, and it was only through the faithful service of Friar Cahil, the manor’s steward, that the spring floods didn’t wash away the fields. But, in spite of all that, Bishop Rhyder had news for Aurelius in the days after St. Valentine’s Day, of a certain arrangement having been agreed upon between the Barons of two Counties. At Newton, Aldwyn had a rat infestation as well as problem with banditry, though not anything that couldn't be salvaged. However, around the day of St. Valentine; Aldwyn had to duel Sir Cassius, Knight of Dorsette, who claimed his sister was a murderess guilty of smothering his infant son in a jealous fit born from her lustful thoughts of him. In truth, Lady Bryn was blamed for a tragedy because she was a northern pagan, and Cassius and his lady were quite pious. Everyone were sure no one would come to Lady Bryn’s aid. And then, her brother showed up, a tower of a man, who threw the accusing Knight to the ground as if Aldwyn was tossing around a bundle of sticks. In Stapleford; Sir Graid had a daughter with his wife Aline, both mother and child being hale and fit. Following that, his notorious uncle, Sior the Mad, a wandering mercenary knight, showed up at Stapleford, and left him with a Courser as a token of appreciation in carrying on the family name. In spite of a few wolves prowling around near his lands during the winter, everything went well. After performing admirably at the Christmas Court, Reccared's chainmail had rusted during the cold winter, while he had been recovering from his wound, and if that wasn't enough Duke Ulfius had sent him missives, asking for his beautiful sister Eloise, as a concubine in exchange for a Charger. Apparantly, the Duke had spotted Eloise while he had been staying at Vagon Castle, where she was serving as a handmaiden to Sir Elad's wife. Not one to sell women for horses, Reccared refused the Duke. And for all intents and purposes, it was an okay, if hard winter, until a band of Saxon raiders arrived just as the snow began to thaw. Fortunately, Reccared had recently agreed to lodge Sir Osric, an old friend of his departed father, at Baverstock. The two knights along with Reccared’s retinue was enough to turn the raiders away before any damage was caused to the village!
  5. The Courtesy part was saved by this A) Never being said to the Bishop's face; B ) Was said in private between friends; C) Aurelius has somewhat near 16 Forgiving. Soeh... In any case, it's going to be a running problem in the group.
  6. Please do. That could be quite entertaining. Then again, I also want all of the other cut material for SIRES... so... I just want more of that 😄
  7. Urgh. If ever there was a time to desire Book of Salisbury... Does anyone know how there's so much income in Swans as compared to the rest of the hundreds? I'm currently trying to get an overview of the Vassal Knights in Salisbury, to actually have an NPC List. But, damn if it is not difficult.
  8. Session 06 - The Sword Feast & The Prince's Passion The Autumn of 486 It had been a few months since the four knights last met, but all of them decided to make the trip to Baverstock that autumn. Scores had to be settled after all. With Aldwyn rode his squire; four of his cousins who were all of them sergeants as well as Sir Aldwyn’s soldiers. Already at Baverstock, they met with Aurelius and his retinue; Sir Graid, his uncle and squire. Reccared had mustered his many cousins, all of them quite incensed at the injustice that had been done to the name of their beloved Lady Eloise. With their assemble retinue, as well as Sir Reccared’s levy of serfs and freemen, they numbered quite a force. And while Roderick had barred Reccared from putting a permanent end to the slanderous Sir Dallwyr, nothing had really been said about the cur’s financial status. Scarcely across the Nadder River, the small villages around Bridesvale lay undisturbed. But, in the early hours of the morning, a score of armed men rode across the shallow, and began rounding up the results from an almost finished harvest. The raid was fast, quick, and met little resistance as Sir Dallwyr was not present to prevent the incursion on his grounds. The peasantry protested, but barring a few bruises and bumps, no one was harmed. But, Sir Aldwyn decided to earn a bit more than mere sacks of grain and cattle, and along with his equally non-christian cousins, opened the doors of the local church and helped themselves to the silverware at the altar, but the pious Sir Aurelius was quite preoccupied with keeping the soldiers in line, and did not notice until it was too late. Then, as fast as they had arrived, the raiders left again, our protagonists rejoicing at the bounty they had liberated from such a blackguard as Dallwyr. Christmas at Sarum, 486 The fallout from the raid was beginning to show itself. Rumours of the despicable Dallwyr having gotten the support of Bishop Rhyder of Salisbury was circulating, and as Aurelius and Reccared met to debate the situation, it soon clear that their liege lord was not happy with the events. Having knights breaking the Count's Peace was an issue, although not strictly against his orders, Roderick owed justice and protection against such raids. The entire debacle was a mess, but at least they had the excuse of being young and stupid. They decided to make amends, return the plunder and apologize to Roderick for breaking his peace. Meanwhile; In Stapleford, Sir Graid and Lady Aline was entertaining a guest. Aldwyn, having had enough of the winter furs, had decided to travel a bit up the valley to visit his friend before the first snow would fall. They partook in some falconry, as Graid was eager to share his hobby with his friend, but the whole situation with Dallwyr was far more on their mind, which resulted in Aldwyn having little luck with the bird, much to his displeasure. As the snow began to fall, it was clear that the four had to travel to Sarum for the Christmas Feast, but Aldwyn, in all of his wisdom, took a look as his beautiful wife, and decided it was for the best to leave her back in Newton, to care for the young one as well as their second child, growing in Isolde’s womb. And, while he’d never say it out loud, the King was known for his appetites for beautiful women, and he dared not tempt fate… or the King. Truth be told, that was also of of the reasons why Sir Reccared also has recommended his own sister to stay away from court. The other reason being Dallwyr's presence. The four of them met in Sarum, and were cordially greeted the Household Knights of Count Roderick, all of them as cheerful as ever. Sir Leo, Sir Bar and Sir Caradoc were loudly laughing at the folly of this bunch of rash cockerels, but still offered them a spot at their table while they all awaited the royal arrival, which was quite fortunate, as the assembled Vassal Knights, most of them allies or friends of Sir Dallwyr, were giving them the stink eye. Meanwhile, Sir Aurelius sought out the Bishop, hoping to speak his case for his friend, the pagan Aldwyn. But it was to little use. The goblets and plates from the church might be returned to avoid a court of justice, but the Bishop demanded the conversion of Aldwyn to make proper amends to God, which was needed to send a message to the pagans, to avoid following Aldwyn’s example and keep their paws of the church. When Aurelius was about to protest, it soon became clear that the bishop didn't care one fig about Reccared's sister, who was an Arian strumpet, of that there was little doubt! Heretics like that should not be coddled nor encouraged! Aurelius left his fosterfather's house, and went to give Aldwyn the bad news. And to no one’s surprise, Aldwyn pretty much told the bishop to get bend. Why should he start praying to a dead god on a cross when his gods were alive beneath him every day. A few hours after midday, Uther arrived with his entourage. While the royal entourage began pouring into Sarum, Count Roderick was expected to be observing all manners of etiquette, the same was not the case for his knights. While the king was getting settled, Reccared and Aurelius began asking around if the young prince had accompanied his father to Sarum. And, their fortunes were good, as Madoc was here. And Aldwyn had a plan. If there was any way to get Dallwyr in hot waters at this point, it was through getting a prince on their side! Both Reccared and Aurelius were practiced hands at court, and it didn’t take long for them to have the Prince notified of their hopes to pay their respects to him once more. Madoc, who had taken a shine to these knights, acquiesced and graceiously granted them some of his time,s eating himself at the table next to them. The plan had been to tell him about the matter of Reccared’s sister, and Sir Dallwyr. But, before anyone could present this coherently, a passionate Graid began to wildly ramble on about the matter. That's when Graid when he realized he had made a fool of himself and stormed off. In spite of that, Madoc agreed that Dallwyr needed to apologize for his words. In return, the prince could tell them of his grand designs to command the navy that his uncle had once built, and like King Aurelius Ambrosius took the battle to the Saxons of Frisia and burnt their ships on the shore, so would he. The three remaining knights were intrigued by the prospects of going to Frisia, and were quite positive on the endeavor, in spite of ships being involved, and Madoc just smiled his rakish grin and told them to stand ready. Reccared took it on himself to find the sulking Graid. Graid blamed himself for messing everything up for his friends, and he was filled with selfloathing, anger and remorse. As Reccared approached, Graid lashed out with his fist in anger, and by some miracle, Reccared managed to calm his friend by telling him that it was all a matter of finding justice in an unjust world. And he should be there to see justice happen, because he was their friend, nae he was their brother! At those words, Graid stopped and came to his senses, and both of them rejoined the starting festivities. A mighty Christmas Feast began in the hall. And it was glorious. For once, Aldwyn sat close to the Salt, and had plentiful of fun drinking alongside Prince Meliodas who had returned to Sarum along with the royal aire. The two pagans drank, boasted and flirted with women, with Meliodas even giving Aldwyn a gift of a new shield as well as a set of chain and sword. As a memory of a good friendship between the two of them. The other knights acquitted themselves well, with Aurelius even managing to use his sense of courtly intrigue to keep the Bishop, his own fosterfather, from speaking with Uther on the matter of the raided church, and it was only when Aurelius had to attend to Lady Gwiona that he seemed to fall short. But, that was not due to his own shortcomings, but his eyes fell on a young Lady he recognized from the Easter Feast. Lady Bethany, who had been a mysterious guest at Easter, was here now, seated next to Duke Ulfius, and her heraldry marking her as the youngest daughter of the Duke of the Vale. And after that glance, Aurelius forgot all about Gwiona. Reccared, as per usual, cut a fine figure, and Graid had a chance to speak with several of the finest lancers in the realm, including Sir Solis, the White Fox, who offered him a few pointers. Their deeds at Mearcred had not gone unnoticed. Even the King seemed to be in a fine mood. That's when one of them noticed a certain Lady Rhianneth, a young baroness who was making eyes at Prince Madoc. Unfortunately, the one who saw all of this was Aldwyn, the lustful Pagan, who did not care one wit that Rhianneth was a married woman, and allowed the Prince a bit of fun, and the Feast progressed as meant to be. But, as the feast drew to a close, Prince Madoc vanished from the hall, and then, Lady Rhianneth, which only amused Aldwyn even more. But, Rhianneth’s husband, Sir Martinus began making inquiries, and as Aldwyn was the only one awake to answer the man, Aldwyn just pointed the jealous husband in the right direction, but saw fit to follow the enraged knight. In the courtyard of Sarum, the Prince had attempted to ward off the advances of Rhianneth, only to be confronted by Martinus, who would not be made neither a fool nor a cuckold! By some miracle, the knight tempered himself long enough not to run the Prince through then and there, but issued a challenge that was promptly accepted by Prince Madoc and witnessed by several of the present knights. At that point, Aldwyn had an idea, and rushed off to wake up Reccared and tell him the circumstances. Reccared had bare agreed to help, before Aldwyn dragged him off to the armory, where they found a brooding Madoc. The only reason anyone dared to issue challenges to him was due to his low birth, he was sure of that. Aldwyn apologized in advanced, but offered up Reccared to stand champion against Sir Martinus. At first, Madoc was displeased they’d even suggest such a thing, but Aldwyn finally made him see the issue at hand. How could Sir Martinus ever fight with all of his might if he was risking the ire of King Uther? How could a man risk the realms future? And at that, Madoc finally agreed, and Reccared, the son of Sir Perrin and great-nephew of a living legend, was a fitting champion to put his life at risk in this duel. But, there was only one thing that Reccared asked in return. If he won the duel, Reccared would not be the one to end Sir Martinus, he would leave that to the Prince. Madoc was not thrilled with that idea, but he agreed nonetheless. The day of Christmas Eve dawned, and Graid and Aurelius were roused from their slumber by an agitated Sir Elad, who told them of the duel. They joined Aldwyn in the courtyard, as Uther was chewing the entire debacle through, but the King finally agreed on the duel. That’s when Aurelius made a few inquiries to Sir Elad about who Sir Martinus was. And the results? Martinus was a famous warrior, who earned a name for himself during the later years of King Aurelius Ambrosius’ reign, and was one of the heroes of the battle of Salisbury. He had been given Rhianneth’s hand in marriage for his service to the realm during the previous king, making him a loyal Baron of the Pendragons by the virtue of Rhianneth’s holdings. And Prince Meliodas could add had a hell of a reputation from the Cornish War as an unrelenting warrior. Aldwyn suppressed a facepalm, and looked worried to Reccared, who was now being given a few last pointers from his gruncle; Sir Martinus then strode into the courtyard, clad in expertly-crafted chainmail beneath an orange surcoat, and brandishing a gleaming axe and a oak-shield in the other. The older knight had nothing for contempt to spare for either Reccared or Madoc, and only had a few barbed insults to spare before the duel commenced. The combatants first squared off, saluting the King as per etiquette, and the two began exchanging blows. The older knight’s axe carved into Reccared’s shield with little hesitation, but the young Aquitanian held fast and returned as much as he could. A few hits struck true here and there, axe and sword nicking links of chain, with one of Reccared’s stabs extracting blood from the thigh of Sir Martinus, who just endured the pain. The duel went on; with blows being exchanged it was clear there was little room for error, and one slip up was all Sir Martinus needed. The axe finally found a gap to exploit and slammed into Reccared’s shoulder with a blow that could have sever it without the mail, but still sent Reccared reeling back, bleeding and in blinding pain. Sir Martinus advanced, sure of his victory; the axe driving towards the still standing Reccared once more. But, here, the nimble feet of the Aquitanian paid off, as he drew in the advancing foe with footwork; as Martinus struck, Reccared stabbed, his sword biting into Sir Martinus’ gut! Sir Martinus toppled to the ground, and Reccared demanded him to yield, but the older knight kept trying to get to his feet. That’s when Madoc walked into the circle and drove his blade into Sir Martinus throat, declaring his champion as the winner, with King Uther agreeing wholeheartedly to the cheers of the assembled knights. While his brothers and fellow Sarum Knights joined in the cheering, Aurelius however caught a glimpse of the newly widowed Lady Rhianneth, who he could tell was barely suppressing a smile, it confirmed Aurelius’ suspicions of this being a scheme hatched by an ambitious young lady; a lady who was now again the richest heiress in Logres. Aurelius was outraged, but soon his attentions were set to his injured oath-brother, whom they ended up carrying off the field. The next day, the Christmas Feast proceeded. King Uther was in a especially festive mood, and when Madoc presented him with the loot taken from the Saxons in the past year, his joy went sky high. Gifts were shared around, with Uther even handing out fistfuls of silver to the assembled knights! But, it was only when Merlin entered the hall that things became truly spectacular, as the wizard presented King Uther with the only gift fit for a King, and with a grand speech, he gave onto King of Logres; the gift of a blade named EXCALIBUR, the Sword of Victory. When the king asked of where Merlin had found such a precious treasure, the wizard asked the five knights, Reccared de Toulouse, Aldwyn of Newton, Graid of Stapleford, Aurelius Sertorius and Prince Meliodas to stand. This was their tale to tell. Uther was preoccupied with the blade, and of the deeds he could enact with such, that he scarcely heard the warning from Merlin’s lips of remaining Just. But, the King still proclaimed that he and his best bannermen would make the journey to visit Duke Corneus of Linden, who all present knew had not backed Uther’s claim for High Kingship. As the feast continued, and many of the guests rushed our heroes for their account of their adventure, Merlin left quietly, but whispered a few words in the ears of Roderick of Salisbury, who afterwards seemed even more pleased with his four knights. After all, their fate was a special one. But, it was quickly clear that none of the newly minted heroes had any desire to journey to Linden for a political campaign. No, whatever designs Madoc had to repent his royal uncle's feats in Frisia seemed a lot more alluring to them. After all, none of them had seen the Continent since childhood. But first, this winter had to come to an end. TO BE CONTINUED... IN THE YEAR OF 488 AD AND THE DARING NAVAL RAIDS
  9. So. I just discovered the 10x Glory bonus was only to the knight with most Geniality. That.... that changes a thing or two among the PKs in my game, as the Feasts have been quite good to them, especially the Aquitanian. If I had to calculate backwards, it would mean the Aquitanian is 500 Glory ahead of the lowest in the group, as he's been handily winning every Feast by a margin of four to five Geniality. Also. NPKs at the feast. Yes or no? Because they'll need to be rolled for as well.
  10. How would you consider making cultural diversity matter?
  11. Yeah. I'd love to see what you did with the Corruption replacement.
  12. This is so great. It taught me how to enjoy 7thSea2E far more after I had seen it in action.
  13. I am pretty sure the Grand Design doesn't have a fifth part yet? John got to Part 4 before the hot waters began churling around 7th Sea, but if he had the time, one could hope he'd finish the scenarios once 7th Sea is safely at harbor at Chaosium. Right now, I think it is Secret Societies that is drawing attention.
  14. In regards to BoSalisbury, I agree with you. And yes, there's a dearth of late phase material out there.
  15. In regards to pace. I feel you. My game usually takes 3 sessions per year. Which is kinda bad as we only play every 2nd Week.
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