Saturday, November 11, 2006

529: Adventure of Camille's Rebellion

Sir Clydno, Le chevalier Doight
Sir Trently
Sir Leodegrance the Lesser
Sir Galonors

The Adventure
After three years of vassal service for my good brother, the Earl of Marlborough, he at last gave leave for me to seek adventure. I was present as a spectator at the unearthing of Bran’s head. Even though Sir Griflet asked for knightly volunteers to help I of course did not do any physical labor.
Immediately upon the burning of the gigantic head the King received word of invaders to the north and west, and also another Saxon rebellion in Anglia. (Those Saxons there—Angles I hear they are called—certainly love to rebel again the Duke!)
I was thrilled to be in the company of a Round Table knight, Sir Trently; and his companion, Sir Leodegrance; both famous knights of Salisbury well known to my brother. And also Sir Galonors, another young Salisbury knight who was, nonetheless, more famous than me—but who is not?
So off we went to Anglia to help Duke Hervis. We were well received there. The Duke was very pleased to have the two famous knights, who had grained great fame and riches in their last time here when they were present in the sack of Guinnon. It phased me not that they had, it is said, acted dishonorably. I was eager to follow them and learn the ways of the great!
And they are gamers too! We threw dice several times over the next few days, and I came off much (£2) the richer for it. What sport!
We had been told that the trouble was with large bands of Saxon bandits emerging from the Fens. We spent several days patrolling its edge to no avail. We found some merchants who had been robbed, and Sir Trently suggested that they e used to draw our foes from their lair. I paid them to do so, for they ere reluctant to expose themselves to the Saxons again. Our squires commandeered a wagon, ox and other merchant-like props to lure them. And back we went, but still to no avail.
One day, however, as we passed by a place at the marsh’s edge once again we were astonished to find a castle there! None had been there before. It was surrounded by vast, well-kept gardens. Our merchants were terrified (of course, being just commoners) and so I paid them half their wage and they scuttled away to Lynn to hide. We camped in the garden, out of bow shot.
That night we were attacked, but not by the Saxons we expected. When they fell upon us I managed to strike one and realized it was some sort of plant monster. Another grabbed my arm, but I managed to drag it into the fire where it burst into flame. Before I could deal such with others, however, they smothered me in their greeny weight and I shamefully succumbed to their embrace.
I woke in a dungeon with Sir Leodegrance and Sir Galonors. We had no arms or armor, and I was wounded. Sir Leodegrance bandaged my arm. We had no light save the torches in the hallway visible in through a little window in the door to the outside.
We were served with miserable food by a pair of comely Saxon maidens. Leodegrance and I fashioned die from some bits of the food to while away the time. Our boredom was otherwise broken only by the mumbled prayers of Sir Galonors, a religious type given to this habit. (I, of course, with the family artifact of Saint Alban’s finger, have never needed such practices.)
When the ladies brought us our dinner each day (heavily guarded, I add) it was perhaps inevitable that one of them as attracted to me. I am, after all, naturally loveable. Sensing a possible way out I flirted shamelessly and, to my delight, saw she responded. We chatted and she was enthralled with tales of my beautiful city of Marlborough and of the wonders of Camelot and London. She told me she wished she could see such sights. After a few more days I had her convinced that I needed to see her under the moon or starlight.
Before that true tragedy struck! Our great and glorious king, Arthur himself, was brought to the cell along with Sir Trently, who had succumbed to the planty things defending his Highness. What horror, but we swore to defend him with our lives to do all that we could to get him out. He was there for several miserable days, but when the guards came to take him away to Camille we all prepared to trade our lives for his safety. But he ordered us back—we must agree. He said he could handle discussions, even with a sorceress. Me, I was pleased to see Leofaled again.
Arthur returned safely. That night Leofaled held her promise. She got a guard drunk to facilitate our tryst, and we went out into fresh air at last. She was even more beautiful under the starlight, and when we kissed I heard birds singing and the music of the stars. She, of course, felt the same, if not even stronger emotions.
She—beautiful Leofaled (and indeed, I noticed she is a beautiful lass)—confessed she served her mistress, a sorceress named Camille, only under duress. I asked if she would help me to escape, and she said she would, but only if I swore to take her too. I swore instantly, and she led me to the armory where I found my arms and armor, as well as that of my friends. I armed, then took the mail and weapons of my friends back to the cell. I was thrilled that I bore Excalibur itself in my hands!
I had left my shoes in the doorway to keep it from closing. Thus as I made my way back tot he cell I met my companions on their way out. They were glad for the armor, and armed quickly. We then led the king to the gate and to safety.
But I wasn’t done! I couldn’t leave without my precious relic! I couldn’t face my brother the Earl if I abandoned such a precious family treasure. At the gate I paused and begged the King to let me go and recover it.
"We must get the King to safety," hissed Sir Trently. Sire Leodegrance concurred. But the king surely recognized my courage and need.
"You have done well so far tonight, Sir Knight," he said, "You have my leave."
"And I will accompany him," said Sir Galonors, "For it would be mortal sin to leave such a sacred thing in the hands of Pagans."
Leofaled said she could lead me to the tower where it was kept. We crept again across the courtyard and ascended a tower. It was much to tall to be natural—taller than it looked form the outside. At the top was a door.
"He magic is in her books and boxes," she whispered. Poor lass! She was pale with terror so I kissed her once more and told her to wait at the bottom of the stairs for our return. She fled.
We took torches from the wall and entered the room. There, on a bed, lay the witch and her lover who, when he rose, I saw was a giant. "Burn them," I told Galonors, "I’ll defend you." And I rushed the giant. He could barely fit in that chamber! He picked his sword form the bedside and we engaged. Alas! Without the protection of the Finger of Saint Alban I was but a victim, and the last thing I saw was his blade descending upon me. I remember great heat, burning, Leofaled weeping as I lay in agony upon the stairs and, briefly, being borne down those stairs again into the night.
I learned later that Sir Galonors had put torch to those flammable books and unguents, and then after the giant had struck me down dragged me to the stairs to safety. Then he paused, for he didn’t want to leave the relic to be destroyed. Brave soul! He went back into the burning chamber for it! There he fought the giant and a great lion while he searched, and surely God was with him, for he found the finger and escaped! Leofaled, when she saw the smoke issue from the window far above her, had dashed up the stairs to find me bleeding there and staunched my wound. The good night then escaped and bore me away to safety. When we emerged from the tower there was no castle at all and we were upon the edge of the marsh.
I am told that it was Nimue herself who kept me alive—no one else could have done it. They bore me to Guinnon where Leofaled herself tended me sweetly with chirurgery as I recovered over the next month. I remember Sir Galonors presenting me with the finger—blessed day! And though I spent the rest of the autumn in recovery it was with my dear lady and Sir Galonors, who I swore would be my best companion.
When I had recovered sufficiently I told the Lady Leofaled I wished to marry her, unless my brother objected. Sir Galonors, in private, questioned this, pointing out she was a Saxon and landless. Further, I owed her no debt other than to take her where I had promised. But I protested such thoughts, for she had helped to save out King, I owed her my life but more importantly I was, indeed, in love with her as well.
As the long winter nights came upon us we returned to Marlborough where my brother blessed the union and we were wed. My companions in the adventure came from Salisbury to witness it and rewarded me with wonderful gifts. Leofaled was taken into the household of my brother’s wife, and my good brother the Earl gave us a private mural room of our own to spend our marital bliss together. I have spent the winter doing my household duties, exercising to raise my strength, and performing the most pleasant duties of a husband with a gorgeous and loving wife.
529. Adventure of Camille’s Rebellion. 75 Glory.
Defeated plant thing. 20 Glory
Chirurgery, 4 weeks. (Major Wound, no stat loss)
Marriage to Leofaled. 25 Glory.
Winter Glory for Traits, etc. 88 Glory. TOTAL GLORY = 2015.

Best line of the night:

"With a crit you grab the finger."
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