495: The Battle of St. Albans...

In a state of grim determination, the army of Llogres assembled at Sarum including of course Sirs Erec, Gaelavin, Maelwine and Dylan. The Saxons had continued their sweep through the land from the north reaching the city of St. Albans. Although seriously ill, Uther gave orders to march upon the city and defeat them. Many believed that he had finally completely lost his judgement, and that only further calamity could come from this encounter.

Our knights watched as a group were sent to attack the city - Uther had seen the gates were open upon our arrival, but it was a trap and only frustration and injury were acheived as the cowardly Saxon archers shot from behind the walls.

At dawn the next day, King Octa and some 9000 men marched out to meet us...

The battle was fierce, one the likes of which we have never seen before, and pray that we will never see again. We were however victorious! The sun shone on our troops and we bore down on the Saxons, grinding them into the dust where they belonged. Maybe at last we will be free from their tormenting!

The Fate of Sir Gaelavin: Sir Gaelavin proved himself an able knight, worthy of the faith that Sir Roderick has placed in him over the years. Over the four gruelling hours of conflict his determination stayed high and his blade true, creating many a Saxon widow as he despatched foe after foe. Was it his dashing good looks or just the advantage of horseback over his other foes that saw him through in such confident fashion - it actually doesn't matter! His valour will be sund of for many a year. (Round 1: critical, round 2: success, round 3: success, round 4: critical, round 5: critical, round 6: critical, round 7: critical, round 8: critical)

The Fate of Sir Maelwine: Maelwine also carried himself with honour through the fight, surviving having taken the life of many a Saxon. Maybe his art on the battlefield wasn't as refined as Gaelavin's, not surprising being a number of years younger, but nevertheless it proved functionary and kept him alive, demanding respect and glory. (Round 1: critical, round 2: partial success, round 3: success, round 4: critical, round 5: success, round 6: success, round 7: success, round 8: success)

The Fate of Sir Dylan: Sir Dylan had a battle of highs and lows, moving from irresistable force to falling under enemy blows in moments. Like Maelwine alongside her though, his god smiled upon him and kept him from death. Of note was the fearful moment when only half an hour into the conflict he was unhorsed, a fate potentially leading to disaster as it was height that gave the advantage over their foe. With skill and the aid of his squire, Dylan managed to escape with his life and rehorse himself. Flush with adreneline and relief, this scare motivated him to some particularly vicious fighting in the middle of the days combat. (Round 1: partial success, round 2: partial success, unhorsed, round 3: critical, round 4: critical, round 5: critical, round 6: partial success, round 7: success, round 8: success)

The Fate of Sir Erec: The tale of Sir Erec's part in the Battle of St. Albans is also a glorious one, but a sad one. Erec 'the Reckless' was always going to meet his end in battle - a time would come when his famous skill on a horse would not be enough to see him through. The battle started well. With ease he was charging through the Saxon opponent, cutting paths in their midst at will. It looked as if like Gaelavin he would emerge victorious and high in the ranks of Roderick's men. Sadly at the end of the second hour of engagement he met a wild beserker who cared little for the refinement of his skill. When Erec failed to run him through, the Saxon's axe cleaved through bone and marrow, dealing Erec a wound from which he would not survive... (Round 1: success, round 2: critical, round 3: success, round 4: bugger the beserkers...)

Taken from the battle by his loyal squire, Sir Erec stayed conscious to breathe his last words to his friends.

"Come closer friends...
I think I'm hit...
Tell Lil' Erec to look after his manor, kill every bloody Saxon he can find and beware Brastias the coward. I ask my friends to look out for him.
Turn my face towards the East so I may see the Dawn.
It hurts...
I am not gone, merely looking for my horse."

With that Sir Erec breathed his last, leaving his land and a letter to his son telling him to learn from Gaelavin and to see if he is willing to squire him with an aim to becoming a knight as soon as possible.

& The Infamous Feast

You can imagine the scenes of festivity on our return from battle. The sense of joy and relief were palpable, and celebration was in the air with a lightness we hadn't felt for many a day. A feast was laid out and the festivities looked to continue into the night. Even the King was lifted from his depression of recent years! No one was surprised when Sir Gaelavin found some wench to slip off with. Maelwine was determined to enjoy the festivities with a clear head, but not Sir Dylan who drank like there was no tomorrow!

They're all dead!

In the midst of his lovemaking, Gaelavine was stirred by sounds of screaming from the Great Hall. Pulling on his garments he rushed out to see what was afoot. Had the Saxons come seeking revenge in the night?... Running in through the gate his eyes met a terrible scene. They were all dead. Bodies everywhere. The King. Roderick. Knights of Salisbury. All dead. Of the few that remained standing, stunned by what they had witnessed was Maelwine. It seemed as if his temperance had saved him from the poisoned wine that had been drunk by so many that fateful, infamous night. We thought we had vanquished our foe. It seemed that through betrayal and dark deeds, theyin fact had acheived the upper hand...

Is this the end for hopes of glory? Surely anarchy will be all that remains...

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