Neal's GPC

Year 499: Siege of Ilchester and the taking of Sir Caulus

The spring court at Sarum is the time for a new knight to introduce himself to the court. Sir Benedict is a Roman Catholic, short, portly with facial blemishes. He wields a mace instead of a sword. He is very pious.

Our knights gather in the main hall at Sarum as is the custom and drink to fallen comrades and to killing Saxons. The Countess Ellen announces that Prince Mark of Cornwall, son of King Idres, is to arrive shortly and he will be asking for knights to fight for Cornwall for pay. They have been putting Jagent to heal and the town of Ilchester is next on their list.

The knights of Salisbury consider this. Fighting for Cornwall could be beneficial in the long run since King Idres is on the war path and may consider Salisbury a target. On the morrow, before Prince Mark arrives a messenger arrives. He is from Jagent and has been sent by Earl Tegfan. He wants knights to help defend against King idres. Sir Miles carries his message to the Countess.

Sirs Benedict, Morians and Miles have agreed to have an audience with Prince Mark, along with a number of other Salisbury knights. Sir Judhail amonst them. Sir Morians is keen to know if Salisbury is next on King Idres’ list but Prince Mark merely remarks that Dorset will be under his father’s control soon. The pay is £2 a month and Salisbury’s finest agree to the terms. Sir Caulus refused an audience. He felt that adding King Idres whose next target is Sir Caulus’ ally of Dorset would not be honourable. The Bear decided to stay in Salisbury.

A few days later Prince Mark leads his troops and the Salisbury contingent west by north west towards Ilchester. It takes a week or so to arrive and when they do they see that the siege is fully underway. In the nearby woods trees are being felled to make siege ladders and bridges to span the ditch before the curtain wall. Our knights get into camp and spend the next few days just waiting. Practicing at swords and drinking is all they can do.

It’s early in the morning when the cry goes up that an attempt is to be made on the wall. Knights are needed to scale the ladders and our knights rush to be first onto the wall. They run with the engineers who span the ditch with long planks and then set the ladders to the wall. Sir Morians and Sir Miles are first up their ladders with Sir Benedict, who had stopped Sir Miles from falling into the ditch, next in line. The knights fight defensively to get onto the ramparts and then start to hack, slash and in Sir Benedict’s case, bludgeon their way through the knights of Jagent. Morians and Miles make their way to the gate house, they must get the drawbridge lowered. They fight valiantly but neither can get through. Sir Miles manage to enter but was pushed back but an older knight. More of Prince Mark’s man rushed through and overpowered the Jagent knight. With a clang the drawbridge was lowered. Sir Benedict had been protecting the rear of the two knights and dispatched a number of men, his mace making light work of helmets, shields and mail.

With the drawbridge lowered, the men of Cornwall rush in and the outer section of the town was taken. Sir Miles took a bad wound during the battle. A few days later the siege was lifted. Earl Tegfan agrees to bow to King Idres and become a vassal of Cornwall.

Our knights return to Salisbury victorious.

Back in Salisbury and before our knights had returned from Cornwall. Sir Caulus and a few household knights were sent out on border patrol. They had been gone for a day when Sir Caulus spied some saxons on the horizon, smoke also rising to the skies.

He spurred his horse into a trot with the other knights close behind. Five knights from Salisbury. When they got closer it seemed a sizable host, some fifty men were pillaging the village of Tangley. Land of Sir Laur. Sir Caulus didn’t wait, he didn’t, couldn’t think of anything but to put these saxons to death. He lowered his lance and charged. A number of Saxons saw the charging knights and quickly organised a shield wall. Sir Caulus’ lance shattered through the chest of one man and the saxon was trambled under his horse. As he draw his sword and whirled around looking for a target, a large bearded Saxon called out a challenge. He was wielding a great axe and wanted to face Sir Caulus. The Bear got down from his horse, deciding to face this Saxon on foot. As they danced the dance of death, Sir Caulus took two blows from the great axe, shield splintered and was downed. Before he passed out he saw his fellow knights fighting bravely and the Saxon, Framric Offason, slayer of Sir Jaradan looking down on him.

At the winter court it is announced by Countess Ellen than Sir Caulus and another knight have been captured by Framric Offason. No ransom demand has been made as of yet.

Sir Miles is given permission from Sir Samlet of Silchester, brother to Sir Morians to talk to his daughter Ceridwen. The knight enjoys her company and is pleased to see she likes a drink as much as he does.

Sir Morians becomes a father again, a girl is born and is named Ffiona by the Lady Sara.

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This was a very fun session. It was great to get back into it after such a long hiatus. I think it was last year sometime we last played. Unfortunately real life has been up and down recently and taking up a lot of my time.

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