Report from the Tournament at Baron's Howe

William Scrymgeour reports on the Tournament at Baron's Howe held September 3-6, 2004 in the Canton of Flaming Sky in Ealdormere.

From William Scrymgeour's private journals, a servant in the employ of Laird Colyne Stewart and Lady Thorfinna gra'feldr:

My lord and lady had informed me that they would be attending the Tournament at Baron's Howe, in the Canton of Flaming Sky far to the north of their demesne. As per usual it was up to me to organize the household for the trip. We were to travel with the Van der Eychs, and so I contacted their chamberlain--a M. Chocolat--and we discussed departure times and routes, finally settling on Friday morning before 8 am.

In the early morning the wagons of the two houses began to rumble up the king's highways, stopping occassionally when one of the lords or ladies wished to stop to peruse a shop. Like a good servant I bit my tongue as these stops pushed us farther and farther behind schedule.

When we arrived, I set up milord and lady's pavilion at the top of the rise where wagons first drive up to the lip of the bowl, and just to the right of a cairn of stones. The Canton of Petrea Thule had been accomodating enough to let milord and lady squat on their earth. M. Chocolat set up the Van der Eych's pavilion--colloquely called the Squire Lounge--next door right by the cairn. The lord and lady Van der Eych then treated us all to a meal in the local town. That night my lord and lady had a quiet night and retired early as it began to rain. A storm had been approaching for hours, and at times it looked like a war in heaven, with great explosions of light coming from behind the clouds.

The next morning milord informed me that although he usually found nights at Bonfield cold, this year the Van der Eychs had given them a Viking slat bed. With it keeping himself and his lady off the ground, and a great gray plaid duvet cover, they had both been toasty warm. I smiled and pretended I was pleased for them. I, of course, had slept on the earth with a sparse blanket for cover.

Milord and lady then worked at the gate for a couple of hours. As they were preapring to go and armf or the days tournaments, milady Thorfinna fell and twisted her ankle and scraped up her knee. Wounded, she was not able to participate inthe tournaments all weekend long. Milord Colyne almost did not fight either. He felt in a around-about way guilty for her injury, but she urged him to go and fight. In the end he did so.

The first tournament was a team battle in the wounds, where fighters attempt to capture and ransom each other off. I was still trying to balance the household's books from debts incurrede at this tournament fromt he year before, but milord ensured me he would do better this year. Milord ended up on Sir Mordain's team, along with Sir Cennedi, Iohannis, Grimroth, Berend and Rouad from Calontir. And indeed milord did do better this year. In fact I do have to admit that his team did well, even managing to capture all of Sir Finnvarr's team at once.

After the tournament the fighters moved to the local fort. The king-at-arms had all members of the populace of Skraeling Althing (and those who recently lived in Skrael, such as Sir Cennedi) inside defending, and everyone else attacking. The fighters seemed to enjoy the exercise, and milord once managed to almost knock the gate down by himself (though this was unobserved by pretty much everyone except Iohannis, who was inside and was the one who kept it to 'almost' opening).

When the fighting was done, many of the weary combatants retired to the Squire Lounge. Later, milord and lady were invited to the De Taahe manor for a meal cooked by lord and lady Van der Eych themselves. Milord Colyne said it was "yummy." I ate with the other servants, so what do I know. Then they all went back out to the Lounge where they sat and dranka way the night.

On Sunday milord fought in Mordain's Rings. He ended up in an alliance with his squire-brother Lord Tiberius of Warwickshire, THL Dafydd ap Sion and Lord Dak. They did well, and so teamed up again in the second round. During this round milord was scolded by a fighter for not engaging him before striking. Milord thought they were, the kngiht thought they weren't. This got milord's back up, so he did not fight inthe pas d'armes. After the pas he and the knight talked and seemed to settle the matter. Later, Lord Eirik Andersen's ethereal illuminations proved that the knight had been correct, and milord was wrong. A missive was sent and all was well between them.

Milord and lady then went into town with Lord Eirik and ate fare they found to be sub-pare.When the returned, they went to the Thule fire and drank very sweet polish mead with Tiberius, until Mistress Ragni Dzintara of Amberhall called Thorfinna down to a central bonfire to sing. They speant the rest of the night at this fire sitting with several members of House de Taahe, Raoud and a fighter named Mog (who had authorized that weekend against milord Colyne).

I arose Monday morning to find that milord and lady's pavilion had been blown onto a weird angle by high winds. We woke milord and milady and then took the tent down. The Squire Lounge and several other tents followed, and then our wagons began to lumber for home.

I was regaled all the way home by milord's war stories, which I pretended not to have heard a million times before.