Game Location: Nov. 20, 2015, at Ron W.’s house (Wheat Field Circle in Bluffton, SC).
NOTE: The aspects of this session that specifically involved Sir Lenton of Rydychan and the Doomsday Song Contest are collectively a Royal Insignia Adventure, based on the Twilight Zone episode, “Mr. Denton on Doomsday.”
Alex S: Thelsadar (Squire) – Cymric Pagan
David C.: Folkvar (Squire) – Saxon Christian
James P.: Turpin deLoure – French Christian
John H.: Galien – French Christian
Josh K.: Romulus – Roman Christian
Rod F.: Jaufre – Occitanian Christian
Ron W.: Damahaut – Cymric Christian
Tony G.: Tony G.: Donecus – Roman Jew
Absent (but only due to a losey wifi connection at the medical facility he was confined to):
John S.: Celsus – Roman Christian
Sir Omulf, an avid hunter, visited Beale Valet and took some of the characters on some wondrous hunting trips.
No one has been able to draw the sword from the stone in London yet.
The special rigged chest, designed with a trap to release a cloud of sleep gas, has remained untouched in Earl Davydd’s treasure room. As detailed in the log for Session 12, this chest contains ordinary rocks, but the characters released some rumors stating that it was a stash of diamonds. The idea was formulated by Squire Folkvar as a means of capturing the thief (or thieves) responsible for the mysterious burglaries which have plagued Huntington County for years.
The main adventure of Session 13 involved traveling to the Barony of Tribruit for the very first Banbury Fair. Baron Meilyr and the Baroness Daygla decided to host a gathering in field outside the large walled city of Banbury (incorrectly marked on the Pendragon map as Tribruit Castle). The idea was to promote peaceful endeavors such as art & culture to show that despite the brutality of the dark times people were living in, Logres was still a place of civilization. The plans for Banbury Fair included competitions centered around art, dance, singing, poetry and theater.
When asked why, Baron Meilyr said, “Well someone has to do it! Besides, it’s civilized. Civilization should have a few gentle hobbies.”
NOTE: John H. received a glory bonus for being the first to correctly recognize this quote as having come from “Camelot” (the musical).
A number of people from Huntington County went to the fair, including the characters, their wives, Earl Dafydd, Countess Lanna, and their children Faulkas & Synduil, as well as Theronde the Sage.
The Yellow Rose
During the journey to the Banbury Fair, the characters went on a hunting foray and came upon a river with several pavilions near its bank. Guarding the ford to a small island in the river was a big knight named Sir Maldyn. On the island was a bush bearing a single yellow rose. Also present were three noblewomen: Duchess Bethan, Countess Maygan and Baroness Glendys.
The bush is known for bearing a single yellow rose each year on the same day. According to local tradition, the rose should only go to the “goodliest of women” and must be plucked within the noon hour. Moreover, a champion is needed to defeat Sir Maldyn in order to win the right to secure the rose. Any deviation from the tradition will invite ill fortune upon those involved.
Sir Maldyn was a hardy foe: recouperating in the pavilions were the would-be champions the three noblewomen brought. Because the noonday hour was almost over, there was no time for the characters to bring their wives (and the lady who is to recieve the rose must be present at the ford).
Each of the noblewoman desired one of the character-knights to be her champion. Bethan & Maygan acted very mean and spoiled, declaring themselves to be the prettiest, and berated Glendys. Glendys did not defend herself, and looked like her feelings were hurt, but she did not leave. Unlike the elegantly clad other ladies, Glendys was clad in well-worn outdated fashions, and the others denounced her and her husband as being veritable paupers.
On the side, one of Bethan’s squires let it be known that his lady would reward whoever won her the rose with certain illicit favors (“Nudge, nudge, wink, wink!”). One of Maygan’s squires let it be known on the side that his lady was rich and would make it “worth the while” for any knight to get the rose for her.
The decision was made for Sir Galien to be Baroness Glendys’ champion and he jousted with Sir Maldyn, which ended up in a duel for “first blood.” Galien won, and gave the yellow rose to an extremely delighted Glendys. Moreover, she said that her gratitude would extend to all the noble knights of Huntington County, being in their debt.
Also on the way the characters came upon Sir Lenton of Rydychan singing drunkenly. He was once renown for having the greatest singing voice in all of Britain, but since then he became a total drunkard, destroying his voice with alcohol. He once competed with a young knight for the hand of a lady, and defeated him in a singing contest. The young knight committed suicide, and Lenton has felt very guilty over this ever since, seeking solace in the bottle.
Nevertheless, Lenton intends to enter the singing contest at Banbury Fair, which everyone suspects he will not only lose, but in a disasterous way.
At Banbury Fair, it was determined that the characters would represent Huntington County in the following competitions:
Acting Contest: Galien
Dancing Contest: Romulus
Poetry Contest: Celsus
Instrumental Music Contest: Jaufre
Singing Contest: Thelsadar
After the preliminary aspects of the contests were over, but before the final competitions, Thelsadar came across a wandering peddlar who claimed to be a “dealer in everything” including potions. Knowing that the squire was in the singing contest, he allowed him to sample a potion in a small, square bottle made from orange glass. Fatum called it a “Fast Singing Voice Developer”, which makes the person who drinks it able to sing with a wondrous voice over the next seven minutes. Discovering that the potion did, indeed, work, Thesladar bought it for the contest.
Rumors Discovered at the Fair
The following rumors were uncovered during the various events of Banbury Fair:
“Three grim-looking knights are around who have tunics displaying a silver star in the middle of a black triangle. They have no proper sense of fashion, coming to an elegant fair wearing travel-worn cloaks and mud-splattered boots. They did not seem interested in any of the festivities, but were instead asking about a knight named Sir Turpin and his wife, the Lady Solei.”
“Lots of people can hardly take their eyes off of the beautiful Lady Claressant of Thaddeus Hall. But Sir Kenmark was leering at her with an intense lustful gaze of the most venomous sort.”
(NOTE: In A.D. 499, which was Huntington Campaign Session 5, Kenmark lost to Celsus in a duel associated with the Honorable Challenge of the Huntington & Brun Squires. Kenmark was a member of the Company of the Iron Fist who was compared with the Black Panther)
“There is a handsome minstrel named Dygmon who tours taverns and town squares throughout Logres. He has the reputation of being a womanizer, who takes pride in his amorous conquests the way a knight takes pride in his jousting record. Now it seems he has gone too far. It is said that he started secretly meeting with none other than the Lady Synduil, the young teenage daughter of Earl Dafydd!”
“The Fens are a very dark and dangerous place. I heard that Duke Derman of Anglia sent some of his troops into the Fens to try to find a secret way to attack Huntington County. They were never heard from again!”
Contests at the Fair
The poetry contest specifically involved crafting a poem about Doomsday, based upon the contestant’s religious views (i.e., the Book of Revelation for Christians, the Day of the Lord from Judaism, Ragnarok from Wotanism, and the falling of the heavens into earth for pagans). The singing contest involved crafting a Doomsday song from the poem and then singing it.
The final results of the compitions were:
Acting Contest: Sir Galien vs. Baron Eemil. Galien won.
Dancing Contest: Sir Romulus vs. Sir Danilo. Danilo won.
Poetry Contest: Sir Celsus vs. Sir Gian. Gian won.
Musical Instrument Contest: Sir Jaufre vs. Sir Bruno. Bruno actually suffered a heart attack and died during his performance. Jaufre wins.
Singing Contest: Squire Thelsadar against none other than Sir Lenton! After arriving at Banbury Fair, the drunken Lenton was suddenly able to sing with brillance, making his way to the final round. When he squared off against Thelsadar, he was seen drinking from a small, square orange bottle. It seems that Lenton had done some shopping with Fatum as well! Empowered by the Fast Singing Voice Developer potions, both Thesladar and Lenton sang with awe-inspiring brillance. It was a hard thing for the judges to call, and the decision came down to a 2 to 2 tie. The fifth judge who had the tie-breaking vote turned out to be none other than the Baroness Glendys! Stepping to the stage, adorned with the yellow rose Galien won for her, she cast her vote for Thesladar. After all, she felt indebted not only to Galien, but to Huntington County, and was more than happy to vote for the Huntington representative.
A Treasure Map?
The characters who won contests were awarded chests containing various prize items. At a later point, Galien noticed that his chest had a small secret compartment compartment with a scrap of paper. Written on the paper (in Latin) was the following message;
The search begins at the lucky stone of the Usk River.
Venture there at noon on a sunny day.
Take a sundial.
And a shovel.
And a fast horse.
And a sword and shield.
Ensure that no one is looking.
Walk 20 paces to the north.
Then walk 7 paces to the west.
Dig about 3 feet until you find the leather bag.
Leave as quickly as possible.
Another Theft in Huntington County!
When the characters returned to Huntington County, it was discovered that a theft occured in Earl Dafydd’s treasure room. Somehow, someone managed to get the sleeping potion out of the rigged chest without otherwise disturbing the chest (the lock and chains were intact). The potion was used to render the guards in the area unconscious. A chest of coins was stolen, and written on the wall in charcoal was the following poem:
“It seems Folkvar’s plan was set in motion:
a chained-up chest and a Solei potion.
Although truth is not my specialty,
I know false rumor from reality.
Still, while you were at Banbury Fair,
I came to accept your little dare.
I am not one thwarted by locks;
so I took some coins…
…you keep the rocks."