Tuesday, 22 October 2013

Arrr mateys! (A Day of Piracy, 2002)

Iolanda de Albornoz

So, no joke, there I was, happily traveling on the shores of the Trent-Severn river in the Shire of Bastille Du Lac, when the populace told me the local pirates had made a temporary truce with our High Khan, and were sitting down to break bread with him in a nearby grove.  I could not believe this news, and swiftly decided to find the truth about this.
            In a hilly field, not far from the town, the pirates in question had set out a venue for Our King and for any villager who felt brave enough to spend a day with buccaneers.  They had provided food, drinks and plenty of activities to amuse the populace.  Our Majesty, on his part, brought with him a select group of knights and fighters to demonstrate our chivalry and prowess, as well as rapier swordsmen, bards and archers that would show the seafaring rabble that our Kingdom is indeed mighty.
            I met many friends and acquaintances from the Kingdom, and plenty of villagers from the cliffs.  There were our newly authorized fighters, the Van Der Eychs, and giant Donnerfaust and his lady; our Seneschal, our scout, some of our younger villagers and our well traveled Welsh gypsy, Tarian.
            The day blazed in full glory on a wild field of grass, and while our fighters showed their mettle, the archers had the pleasure of using their arrow-searching skills on a hill covered in high bushes.  We had the opportunity to run several Royal Rounds, separated by nice resting periods to dunk our heads in water and rest for a while.
            All during the day, the sea-dogs showed an amazing restraint and show of manners in an informal setting.  But, try as they might, a pirate is a pirate is a cornhole. <Ooops! Where did that came from?> Shanties—lewd and not—were sung, the spirits flowed and more than one pirate was seen losing their land-legs.  I even saw a ship-hand go sleep on the boat, while the populace roared all around him. There was also the business of locating some rowdy pirates, whose misdeeds had put a price on their heads.  It is good to know that our younger people have a good eye to catch criminals, although the fair bounties in golden coins were more than ample incentive.
            His Majesty decided to deal with some kingdom business, and held a court, wherein he bestowed awards of Arrrr!-ms <that's the pirate pronunciation> to a few gentles of the shire, and extolled the good behavior of the local pirates.  Later, during a very pleasant feast, Master Hector bid us honour the third knight of the realm, Sir Mordaine, who graced the head table, and to meditate on the riches of our Kingdom: it's people.  Our Khan joined him in saying that our Ealdormere is to be proud of its scribes and illuminators, since it is renowned for producing real scrolls in a somewhat timely fashion.
            When the bellies were full, and the mood was quite mellowed, our inventive Chreaggers decided to adopt some pirate habits and proceeded to have bread skirmishes. A company of female pirates, headed by Our Grace, was seen meandering around the tables, pillaging and snitching the best pieces of food from surprised gentles.  It's a pirate's life for me, aye sir!
            Later, as the dusk was creeping, a spontaneous game of bocce took the field, and again Our Khan showed his skills in more than the field of battle.  He proved to be a skilled ball player, winning several rounds, followed by Sancho The Adequate and young Damian of Bastille du Lac.

            I climbed on my cart to travel back home, amazed at the grace and good manners of these pirates, and pleasantly tired.  On my way I thought about our Kingdom and it's people and, even though I've never visited other kingdoms, I must say that none of them compare to my Ealdormere. There be treasure buried here, my mateys, for even the people shine gold!

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