“Nice Gaff you got here” said Eilivaror looking around, nice if you like high walls, towering….towers and a muddy courtyard which smelt of horse sweat and dung, however the “Lord ” (Sir something of Somewhere unpronounceable) had graciously invited them in, so a little politeness was in order.
“Yes, indeed” “we tried to get an authentic Baroque look to the place,” Sir Loin of Pork??” (something like that) looked rather proud of his castle. “when we saw you heading this way we thought to raise the drawbridge and prepare for siege, however once you got close and we realised you where a roving troupe of swimwear models we decided you should sample our hospitality, the ladies in waiting where quite insistent especially my daughter Preachmelda“
“Yeah, about that, its just that…His excuses where rudely interrupted by an angry screech and a large slap, “How very dare you ? I’m a lady of the court and of noble blood, I’ve never been so insulted” Preachmelda stormed down the stairs to her father, a face like thunder which did nothing to improve her looks, which to be honest where in need of improvement, I know woman have a right to be ugly, but she abuses the privilege, and fat?? if she was any bigger she would qualify for her own tax collector thought Eilivaror.
“Daddy” she sobbed, “I’ve been insulted by……Him!! ” Eilivaror looked up the stairs to see Sturla stood at the top, a puzzled look on his face, Oh dear, here we go he thought as Sturla walked down the stairs. “Right, what’s happened?” asked Eilivaror hoping to salvage the situation before it got worse. “All I said was she looked like her dad…… with that moustache” That’s torn it, he thought before the lord who was very red faced, veins popping and eyes glazed spluttered “Sir, I demand satisfaction, on the field of honour” (Yes, honour) “Ooookay, you seem to have the upper hand with this jousting lark, we don’t have any swords, wrestling or maybe a rowing contest perhaps?” he added hopefully.
“No Sirrah!! I demand trial by Blood……Bowl, take yourselves to the field of combat, just down there, turn right, out through the portcullis and its second on the left, you cannot miss it” “My squires and knights are there now training, this will be settled” Hmmm, all very convenient thought Eilivaror, but lets get this over with ” don’t suppose he could just apologise?” the look said everything…….
So, here they where again, 11 v 11 with onlookers lining the castle walls cheering on the home side, a few wolf whistles coming from a group of serving wenches as the Norse “warmed up”, Fluffy looked rather forlorn, her “egg” had failed to hatch and she seemed somewhat distracted, as distracted as 8Ft of fur, teeth & claw could be, the Howler twins tried to spur her on, but to no use….. lets just hope she remembers what’s what when we start, he thought.
So, 4 knights, looking very fine in their shiny armour, 3-4 squires in slightly less shiny attire and some surfs thrown in to make the numbers up, well this should be interesting the thought, and at least his freedom wasn’t at stake.
The whistle is blown and the ball goes up, which is strange because as it sails through the air a large rock also takes flight crashing down on Sturla and knocking him clean out….. Eilivaror looks back along its trajectory to an see an evil looking mountain of flesh with a moustache and wicked smile on its face, it appears Preachmelda didn’t want to wait for her revenge!! “quick guys” he shouted as the opposing team look on in stunned silence “get at em” A lineman (Bert, at least he was upright at this point) Smacks a surf in the mouth, he’s injured!! Fluffy just stands and roars forlornly…. we get the ball, nothing else happens, then the Home side recover and react, a Knight charges Fluffy, undeterred by her size he leaps up and plants head butt right on her chin, down she goes eyes rolling into the back of her head, another one off the pitch. The home team and the crowd cheer.
Howler and Bert both floor their squire opponents, the howler goes on to injure another peasant, however amid the violence they forgot the ball which is scooped up and passed by a knight, when the ball is in the air a surf accidentally steps on the thrower, and he carried off……. and the home team score.
No one returns from the “infirmary” turns out it had nice clean straw….. and no guys in armour hitting you ( Failed ALL 4 ko rolls…with a babe 🙁 ) Maybe having Preachmelda “encouraging them was a bad idea??
Next drive the Norse push hard, so hard in fact they stand on someone, quite by accident, the Ref blows his whistle but a word from Eilivaror about “sportsmanship” and the fact Ref’s don’t wear armour and the incident is overlooked!! Whilst this is happening both Bet and the one remaining howler twin are carried off the pitch, and a lineman gets pushed into the crowd…. not pretty!
Half time arrive and once again the infirmaries grasp on the knocked out stays strong Preachmelda didn’t help, alto 3 guys did stumble onto the pitch to escape her advances..(3 from 8 KO’s this time)
The 2nd half was mostly a blur from Eilivaror perspective as he spent most of it face down, being trodden on and ignored as the Knights scored again (..and again? it was truly a blur), then it was over, the final whistle blew and they had lost, well beaten, humiliated? no, but taught a lesson. Sir loin of Pork seemed to be satisfied with the result, honour was served and insults forgotten.
“So, could I interest you or perhaps one of your fine crew, or even one of those hairy chaps in a small estate complete with dowry?? ” several guys looked round eagerly until it was established he said dowry, not brewery, at which point the area was vacated quite quickly…. ” Preachmelda would make a fine bride he insisted”
“Sir, we are but humble seafarers, however I did hear a rumour that 4 fine horseman had been sighted heading this way, perhaps one of them would oblige? if we see them we shall surely send them your way”
“I thank you captain, now if you head in that direction you should be going in the direction of the port of “Play-Off” maybe if you get there you can find a way to get home, however be warned there are many hazard, I know of a degenerate coven of Rodent worshippers who call themselves a “Holy Order” and there are rumours of beautiful yet deadly shadowy Elves who haunt the land looking for slave to practice thier obscene rituals on…….Captain! Wait!! why are you all running?? its dangerous out there…be care…”his final words lost as the Norse sprinted away, Shadowy Elves? yes please, lets see if we can avoid these “Tree rat worshippers” and find some obscene elves……
…..To be continued….