Campaign of the Month: August 2016
Oath of Crows
The presentation of Excalibur
In the year of 487 word was sent that King Uther was going to assemble the dukes and his knights at Sarum. Preparations for the king’s arrival were made and our heroes found themselves at Sarum a couple of days before the feast.
Maelgwyn and Gamond seemed to have resolved the issue between themselves and were now as close as the two brothers had been during their childhood. This showed particularly clearly when Gamond went to talk to prince Madoc, and Maelgwyn helped his brother by retelling the story of how they defeated the three-eyed giant together.
Cadry received a less pleasant surprise when a package from Silchester arrived to Sarum. It contained a rotting arm from an unknown man. Who the sender was, or whom the arm had belonged to was never revealed.
During the preparations the four knights were called to count Roderick’s court. The count warned them to take care of the bandits in Hillfort soon. He had gotten word from Jagent that if the problem was not taken care of the people Jagent would make sure to wipe the bandits out, something that in turn would make count Roderick appear weak.
Count Roderick also had two requests. Firstly he asked the knights to see to it so that sir Blains would not turn up at the party. However this was done, the count did not care for, but Roderick informed the knights that he politically could not afford to have sir Blains killed. The other request was to find a good husband for a young girl, Marion, which was a favor count Roderick was making for duke Gorloy. Some obscure or bad thing had happened with the girl, which had caused her to lose honor, but what it was our knights never found out.
The four knights decided to make sure to take care of the bandits in the summer of 488, even though count Roderick had given them a three year respite. They would make sure to rid Hillfort of bandits in the coming year.
To take care of sir Blains, Melkin came up with the idea of playing sir Blains’ hot feelings for lady Ellen against him. They thus sent out Maelgwyn’s chaplain Meical to supposedly search for a rare flower that count Roderick wanted to find for lady Ellen. Meical would tell sir Blains that Ellen adored these flowers, and that they would make her overcome with joy.
After the knights had talked to sir Brastias from Cornwall about Marion, and Gamond had talked to the harpist Airla about the girl, Maelgwyn decided to take it upon himself to wed the girl when she would be fit for marriage.
The feast itself was grand, and the presents handed out were even grander. Every count tried to outshine the others by giving the most expensive present to the king. Prince Madoc succeeded them all by handing king Uther an extensive treasure of gold, but nothing compared to the sword that Merlin brought for the king. Merlin made a late appearance just as the final gifts were handed out. He presented Excalibur to the king and all gathered. Merlin turned to Maelgwyn, Cadry, Gamond and Melkin and explained that they had helped him retrieve the sword of victory.
Maelgwyn then retold the story of how it had happened, mixing up the details of what had happened when, even claiming that Merlin had turned himself into a goat, but the story was well appreciated, and both king Uther and count Roderick were pleased.
Later on sir Blains finally arrived at the feast (an entire day late). Gamond managed to have a serving girl, give him a cup of mead that had been filled with some laxative medicine for horses. When the feast had ended Gamond was looking for sir Blains again when he stumbled upon a body in the courtyard. The girl who had served the mead had been strangled to death.
The Embassies of Malahut and Linden Pool
In the month of July, king Uther and the royal entourage traveled north towards Linden to see Duke Corneus. The Duke was absent however and Uther demanded to be entertained. Gamond thought that it would be a good idea to entertain the king with a demonstration of violence. It was decided that it should be a fight until one of the combatants surrendered. Sir Moneval was the one who accepted the challenge. When the fight began Gamond rammed his sword right through Moneval but it was Gamond who collapsed with a grievous wound through his abdomen.
It turned out to be Merlin who had disguised himself as Moneval and had used his magic to deflect the damage back at Gamond.
A hunt was also held while waiting for the duke, in which Cadry and Melkin acquitted themselves quite well.
When the duke finally arrived he seemed uneasy over that fact that Uther had come to visit him. The duke held a feast to appease the king and on that feast Uther drew Excalibur and just seeing the mighty blade left the duke and his men awestruck. After the feast Corneus swore allegiance to Uther and promised that he would have Corneus’ vote for him as high king.
Before leaving Linden our four brave knights had a chance to speak with Merlin and ask him some questions. The archdruid proved to be his usual vague and annoying self however and only gave half-answers or no answers at all regarding most subjects. He did however tell that the mysterious potion that had been found in the basement of Sarum during the year of the disastrous feast was something called Hellthorn. Melkin also asked about a lake that he had had a vision of. Merlin said that the lake was real but was a gateway to the Otherside.
The four knights accepted a mission to travel north to Eburacum to act as King Uthers emissaries. After having been kept waiting on his majesty’s pleasure for over two days the knights presented themselves before the Centurion King and delivered their message. The King derided Uther’s claim at high kingship and said that he would come visit Uther at his own pleasure.
One small victory that the knights won was that they were allowed to participate in a counterraid against the saxons. They were put under the command of a knight by the name of Sir Decimus.
Riding out towards the saxon occupied lands the company found a saxon raiding party who had attacked a caravan and was in the process of plundering it. The knights attacked the saxons and soundly defeated them. In the aftermath of the battle all surviving saxons were butchered by the men from Eburacum. A small half-naked and half feral woman was found hiding underneath the wagon and was at first mistaken for a pict. She turned out to be a saxon witch of the fenris line and she cursed Gamond, Maelgwyn and Melkin. When she turned to curse Cadry, Melkin stabbed her through the throat.