"A New Wind Blows" WAR

Come, brothers and sisters, share with us your tales, from before your joined to today! Tell us of yourself and your travels and travails! (IC Please, OOC labeled!)

"A New Wind Blows" WAR

Postby Crispian » Thu Oct 25, 2007 8:34 am

The lands of Albion lay seemingly abandoned. Over the course of a few months the once thriving and well defended lands had fallen victim to beasts both natural and unnatural. The biggest of the threats of course being the dragons, but even they had seemed to settle down, their attacks coming with less frequency. Sarekonna frowned as her pale horse took her across the yard of Adribard’s Retreat. In the past, she would have dismounted at the guard’s tower but now, with all the creatures both living and undead littering the yard it was easier to dismount at the entrance.

She murmured a greeting to the somber guard on duty handing him her reins. Repositioning her cloak on her shoulders she straightens her back and mounts the stairs leading to the castle entrance. The great doors give way as she approaches and there to greet her is Magus Edaev. Without a word she flings herself into his waiting arms. Edaev held her silently for several minutes knowing this would most likely be the last time he saw her, because of this, he was free with his words, “My beloved daughter,” he kissed the top of her head as he held her away from him, he gazed into her green eyes a moment before brushing a strand of her golden brown hair from her face, “what news have you?”

She pulled herself up her face paling slightly before she put to words what she had discovered, and even now what danger her family, members of St. Crispin’s League, were putting themselves into. “The vanishings are happening across all three realms. Our contacts there have all confirmed phenomenon very similar to what has been happening here.”

Magus Edaev nodded his head gravely, “and what of your traveling companions? Why have you arrived here alone?”

Sarekonna couldn’t help a smile despite her grave news. Edaev had never liked her traveling alone, but her skill was capable of keeping her more than safe. The news of her companions was not something she looked forward to sharing. The image of Mellyora Kyndale flashed briefly through her mind and she winced knowing their next encounter would not be pleasant.

A few days earlier…

“I dun care what you say, yer not going through! Yer brother would kill me fer allowing it…not ta mention that Kyndale lass. Yer betrothed now man ye can’t be thinking like this.” Lord Allonan said the last with finality as he towered over the small mercenary using his size as well as his threats in an attempt to intimidate him. Jashen’s smile belied the deadliness of his intent as he leaned against the tree next to him folding his arms over his chest. His eyes flashed a moment to Father Tobyas who remained irritatingly neutral in appearance.

“Who would you suggest then go through? Lady Sarekonna? Father Tobyas?...”

Allonan scoffed and Sarekonna raised an eye brow in his direction. He ignored her indignation intent on Jashen, “Me, me ye fool! I’ll go. I have no one here ta worry if I don return and I am not going ta deal with the hysterics that will be involved with yer loss!”

Jashen smirked, again, a quick glance in Tobyas’ direction showed impassive neutrality, “Hysterics? You do my lady a disservice, she knows what I am and what I do and no one here is better suited to scouting what is beyond that rift. I won’t hear anymore about it. You think my brother will kill you if I go missing? Things would be far worse if I let someone else go missing doing MY job.” He pushed off the tree raising his hand as Allonan began to object, he knew he needed to act quickly before Allonan could object again with what Jashen was sure would be finality. “I’m the best suited for this mission. Allonan you’re no sneak, you don’t hide from anything…”

“Jashen,” Sarekonna suddenly interrupted him, “at least let someone go with you…”

Jashen’s expression changed as she began to beseech him and Tobyas finally spoke up as he took Sarekonna’s hand in his own. “Our Lord vill go vith Jashen, and by His grace, Jashen vill return to us. Sarekonna, you must ride to warn Crispian that his fears are realized. Allonan and I shall remain here to provide assistance to Jashen should he require it vhen he returns.”

The words were spoken with such authority that no one thought to even question. Sarekonna quickly hugged Jashen kissing him on his cheek. Jashen saw her on her horse and on her way not wanting her to be witness to his passing through the portal. When she was safely on her way Jashen kneeled before Tobyas who said a blessing over him. When he stood Allonan grabbed him roughly by the arm escourting him to the rift.

“Be safe my brother, and the hysterics I’m worried about have nothing ta do with yer lady…it’s Crispian I’m worried about!”

Both men chuckled with some of the stress relieved. Allonan slapped Jashen on the back and with another quick prayer to himself Jashen stepped into the rift.

Since the most ancient of times, the regions of Cornwall and Dartmoor lay abutted to each other, joining two reaches of the realm and creating two houses of nobility. Over time, things change and things remain the same. However, in the sixth year of the campaigns, there was definitely a change in these lands. Mayhap, twas the dragon presence, or something else altogether, but for whatever reason no man could name, reports of a shimmer, an oddity in the surface of the world made their way from shepherd to scout to traveler to Lord. And that Lord was troubled greatly.

The turret chamber was an off-shoot of the Lord's suite, and over the years, Crispian had become accustomed to breaking his fast alone in it. It offered a sweeping view of the lands of Cornwall, of which he was protector, and since the maps of Albion had been installed, it gave him chance to study the course of the war as well. However, on this fall morning, view nor maps were cheifmost in his mind. It was instead a dream he had had.

His thoughts were interrupted as soft hands slid underneath his collar and massaged the rough skin at the back of his neck.

“Mmmmm…..” he closed his eyes and let himself relax under the caring ministrations of his wife. She did not typically join him in this room nor did she usually disturb him when he was here, but he knew that if there was an urgency she would have addressed it plainly.

Meriabeth felt her husband relax as her hands moved skillfully from his neck to his shoulders. Finally she kissed him on the top of his head but before she could move away he was pulling her down onto his lap. She snuggled into his embrace and laid her head against his shoulder.

“What brings my lovely wife to my tower? Where are the boys?”

“The boys,” she chose the easy question to answer first, “are with their tutor. I believe they are currently very disgruntled to be taking a lesson in etiquette.” She couldn’t help the giggle that escaped as she caught her husband’s look of disgust.

“Poor lads.” He muttered.

“I,” she pulled away to look into his grey eyes, her own eyes clear and sparkling with her love and concern, “am here because the man sleeping next to me last night was very restless and left my side long before he should have.”

Crispian tightened his arms around her squeezing her tightly for several moments. Meriabeth relaxed in his embrace and waited for her husband to tell her what was on his mind.

he leaned forward, breaking the intimacy, as he wrestled with his thoughts. He had, so far, spoken to no one regarding what his dreams were of and grappled with how to phrase them now. "I have been having dreams at night, disturbing visions of a land torn in strife and tumult. Somehow, I think, the League is being called to it." He rubbed his temples as the visions came of a city ravaged with illness, plague, and creatures rising from that course. "But we've always been of Albion, and her struggles are ours. I know our ranks grow restless, and many have become docile in recent times, as it seems this struggle will not improve, nor be won."

He stood, walking to gaze out the window. "But how do we sever ties with our home? And why?"

She watched him go to the window taking over his seat as he vacated it. She fingered the small cross that hung from her neck as she listened to him. It was the first she had ever heard him speak of leaving their home but she had known whatever was bothering him was a large issue. For several moments after he asked his question she remained silent watching him as he sought his answers on the horizon. Finally she stood and joined him at the window her hand sliding across his back.

"If there is a greater call some where else that you feel is worthy and necessary to answer I will be content as long as I am close to you." Her other hand slid up the front of his chest resting over his heart. "My home is here and the ties can not be severed."

As ever, he felt a rush at her touch. Warm, soft hand that burned through his doublet like fire upon dry plains. Both lover and companion, spouse and adviser, Meriabeth encompassed all to him.

"It will not be easy, and I am not certain all of the League will...leave." He shrugged, a heavy motion from the weight of the decisions before them all. "We should pass word through our contacts, get a feel from those we can reach. The time grows short, and trouble looms in a distance place."

From the court, he could hear Tannir tuning a lute. The fine chords hung in the morning air. Each counter-point note ached with a longing that he felt in his heart as the sound faded into the fog of the glens.

Not all would leave. In an instant her thoughts went to her father and tears sprung to her eyes. He was older now and had a thriving business in Camelot. She knew instantly that leaving Albion would mean leaving her father behind. Not only would she likely never see him again, but her sons...she stopped herself.

Again she looked into her husband's eyes. She could tell by his expression that he had seen something in hers but she would be strong for him. Her father would expect it of her she knew. She touched his face.

"Those who are able will follow and those who can not will ease our minds as we leave these lands. It will be good to know that capable hands keep the realm safe." She rubbed her fingers together, "Now, what halls would you like me to contact on our behalf?"

"We should work on a list of whom to reach now, and whom we should wait on." He fidgeted with with his signet ring. "And those who respond, of course." His eyes again sought the horizon. "And I'll tell the suppliers that a sumpter train shall be needed. Not all coming can ride, either any longer or yet, and we must make preparations for either."

Already, his mind turned on the details of moving a house as large as the League had become to a strange, new land, and the challenges that could wait them when they arrived.

Jashen rolled out of the rift and landed on his knees. His hands caught himself before he fell flat on his face. His head spun and finally he was sick as he tried to acclimate himself to the new surroundings. The feeling was much like his first experiences with being called back in Albion. It had been several months before he could make a recovery without becoming ill.

The terrain around him was oddly alien, but somewhat familiar. It was not Albion, as he knew it, but rather worn differently, as if nature herself where not the same here. His eyes adjusted but slowly to the light from a moon that seemed paler. As he waited to see properly, he checked his blades and made sure none were snagging from anything that might have happened during the strange transference. Assuring himself that he’d be ready for what might come, he paused and slipped away from where he had appeared in this strange land.

He moved through the surroundings with patience and deliberateness, making barely a noise as he strove to become another shadow on the land. There was a barrenness to this area and he wondered at it for just scant moments. Seeing below him a fire, he crept to within ear shot and lurked silently.

There were three people about the fire, from what he could see, and they were obviously at their ease. Either the portal place he had came through did not see much use, or it was unknown altogether. He could not understand what they were saying but that came as no surprise to him. Even in Albion there were language barriers to overcome. As the fire crackled and leapt, he got his first good look at what could only be described as mutated features.

Their skin had a hue to it that, even under the uneven light of campfire, was not quite human. Their features were heavy, almost as if bone had grown where it did not belong. Their shoulders and arms mirrored this heavier-than-human shaping. A sense of feralness lingered over them.

He watched the typical camp activities for only a short time longer before slipping into the dark of night. Again playing shadow in shadow, he dodged away making for the darkest areas he could pick out. Little moved in the night, it seemed, but on the far horizon plane, peaks of light danced again. He moved with a steady even pace toward them, resting as needed and being cautious in the extreme.

The far fires grew larger as he closed on them, first taking a real shape then becoming a solid object in his vision. They did not have the large, built-up feeling of the other encampment. These fires were banked and ringed, neatly burning and giving off better light and, Jashen assumed, better heat. He slipped closer still.

The watchmen were vigilant, and he did not get as close to these camps as he had gotten earlier. Still, he could see the guardsmen well enough, even in the dimmer light. They did not have the heavy features the others had. Rather, their faces were much like Jashen’s own. The gear he could see on the one closest to him was exotic, featuring familiar blades, and odd objects that seemed to be a metal tube atop a wood base of some sort. He could not quite fathom what it was, precisely.

Quietly, he moved back out of the light, seeking a place to await the coming of the dawn. Surely, more exploration in daylight would be easier, if more risky.


In Albion, wagons groaned under the weight of burdens loaded for a journey, and a conflict, as yet unknown.
Crispian Pontiff, Precentor, St. Crispin's League

"For he to-day that sheds his blood with me
Shall be my brother" Henry V
Warlord Central Staff
Warlord Central Staff
Posts: 483
Joined: Wed Oct 09, 2002 3:42 pm

Re: "A New Wind Blows" WAR

Postby Crispian » Thu Nov 29, 2007 5:48 pm

The promised dawn came, with streaks of sun opening through lowering clouds. Trees swayed in a barely felt breeze as the spy awoke. Jashen took barely a moment to ease his aches from sleeping cramped against a tree the few skant hours he could, then he stood and slipped into what shadows remained, watching the countryside about him. There was much of this land to learn, and he intended to bend his will to it until he could find his way back to Albion, a way he had been assured would again open to him.

In the hall, chaos grew with each passing day. More items were stowed and packed, more crated hauled to the wain court, more barrels filled with valuables that could not be left behind. The treasures of the war band known as St. Crispin's League were being laden in for the journey, though some months yet remained. Her members were flung to the corners of the world, carried by the winds of desire and change beyond the war that engulfed their fair Albion. A large oak chest, stained dark with age, counted the cloaks folded into it, number each a cherished memory of the wearer. The chest, almost sentient for the value it carried, stood in a quiet corner, under the faded arms that had long been the League's emblem, unchanged through wars and unheavals.

The once ivory cloth of their inaugural standard was yellowed with age. The black of the tower now more a ashen gray, bleached out by sunlight that fell on it in its place of promience. The blue of the chevron, a deep cadet once, was faded to a paler shade. Much like her members, the emblem was thread-worn and a little frayed. But, like her members, it was still once piece, one symbol.

"I don't think your betrothed would approve!" Shalomar said sharply, as the needle she wielded flashed through the fine ivory line draped over her waist. "If we're going to make like genteel ladies and prattle at needle work, it should be on your bridal suite and not this." Her tenor failed to bear out the harshness of her first comment, for she had noticed a stray thread and examined it as she paused.

Sarekonna quirked an eyebrow, her fingers and hands moving in steady pace at her own stitch work. "I know you'd not be too vexed if he came home to complain," she chided, mirth dancing in her eyes as she watched the reciepient of the comment color. "And I hear from the girls that you might even calm him down a bit with your wiles."

Mellyora was fighting a losing effort not to laugh as she blushed. "Of course I would, but only within proper bounds." She examined the wide swatch of Inconnu woven cloth they were sewing on. It was certainly finer than what she had seen from the local looms, and she decided it had been worth what was paid. The ivory tone had a pleasant milkiness to it, and the blue embrodery was showing nicely, a rich dark cadet once again. The three woman chattered more of her impending marriage, as if a date had been set, as they picked and sewed, slowly making a wide chevron of blue with each move of their needles.
Tannir scowled. "You're leaving this behind?" he yelped, looking at the display wrack holding the embellished armor of a Captain-General of the Armies of Albion. "Just leaving it?"

"It's not really mine, Tan. Argyle wrangled the title of Protector for me, and from there things just sort of rolled on. When we leave, I want to be just Crispian, Seneschal of the League, and leave these other trappings behind." He toyed with an old battered sword a moment before throwing into the chest he was packing. Few memories of Albion were being taken along with them, and his most cherished had no mementoes to show for the memory they were.

"Just a band captain and his lady," Meriabeth smiled. Her own fineries were long since packed into wide, low-drawered chests and bundled off to the wain court. She had not intended on bringing dresses and such but her husband had insisted he'd not buy them all again on a poor mercenary wage.

"And sons!" pouted Judan from where he watched, perched atop a pile of rugs destined for storage someplace in the castle.

"And sons," Crispian agreed, lifting the boy to his shoulders and turning about as the lad laughed. "I can't think of a reason to bring something so ornate, anyway."

Tannir stood, arms crossed in a fashion that signalled the matter was not yet settled. "We all may be leaving behind station and titles as we go forth, my Lord, but that doesn't mean we want to appear part of a rabble does it? I'm not saying wear the armor every day, but if you don't have it, you can't break it if you need it." Tannir himself had cleared his possession of much extraneous weight but still had made sure his finest gear was laid into a chest to bring along.

"I'll think on it, Tannir," Crispian promised as the dinner bell chimed below in the great hall. "But not on an empty stomach!" He whirled about, listening to Judan's laugh then called to Jasper, "Come eat, son!" and tromped from the room, a trio of golden-haired men laughing.
Crispian Pontiff, Precentor, St. Crispin's League

"For he to-day that sheds his blood with me
Shall be my brother" Henry V
Warlord Central Staff
Warlord Central Staff
Posts: 483
Joined: Wed Oct 09, 2002 3:42 pm

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