This was only the second Crown Tourney I’ve ever attended, and I hadn’t been in the SCA long enough to really appreciate the first one, so I hoped to get a chance to really experience this one. Being more familiar with everyone involved definitely added to my enjoyment of the day.
The hall was resplendent with banners and standards of all shapes and sizes when I first arrived; Iolanda and Normand had already claimed a space—Iolonda’s Green Bison hanging proudly above them—for Ardchreag to gather in. We were a strong presence, with at least a dozen of us there, not including our two newest recruits—Colyne’s brother Stephen Scrymgouer and his lady Jennifer—attending their first event ever. Upstairs, merchants offered their wares, a children’s area offered activities for the younger SCAdians, and competition and display tables offered examples of A&S works for the populace to vote on with various beans to denote their rank. Everything from garb and horns to illumination and shoes were entered or displayed.
Soon, the tournament commenced, providing a splendid display of martial skill for the gathered onlookers. In time the contenders were narrowed to a final five: Sir Mordain, Sarnac Kir, Sergeant Malik abd' al-Rahman, Siegfried Brandboern and Master Sergeant Worgen MacGregor. It came down to a best of five between Malek and Sarnac that had them tied at two fights apiece, with the Crown resting on the outcome of one final battle. In the end, Sarnac emerged victorious and was acknowledged as Prince of Ealdormere, and the line of the North was once again secure.
In the afternoon, Brandt held a leather-working class and taught the art of belt making, and Colyne taught his first Games Guild of Ealdormere class on Tafl, both of which were well received. The classes offered a break from the fighting (naturally, the main focus of the event) for those not as interested in watching every match, or just for a bit of a break. Afterwards, it was time to set up for Feast.
This Feast was the best I’ve been to yet; the presentation of each dish was carefully planned and displayed. From chicken pastries decorated with tiny sails and tarts served on shields, to spearing monks and dead fish in bloody soup, it was fantastic and culminated with the presentation of a great Golden Stag. Heralded by a procession of beach party-goers tooting their horns, the beast was presented to the Royal table and then wheeled around the hall by Master Hector, who (with great relish) shouted out “Deer Guts!” to all as he served.
During the dining festivities, Kersteken, Skeldergate’s A&S Minister, handed out the awards for the Arts & Sciences competition. Ardchreag was represented well, with awards going to five of our canton-mates: Mahault for her garb research and sewing, Iolanda for her Nalbinding and shoe-making, to Berend for his Viking Sax, and to Elspeth. Normand also had an example of his tiny, 128-ring piece of chainmail on the display table. Wassail Creaggers!
Earlier in the day I had been seconded by Kersteken and the Queen to assist as Lady in Waiting and had the privilege of handing His Majesty the tokens given to each of the combatants and their inspirations in the tournament - a hand crafted beeswax trillium tea light. Colyne was also grabbed to act as spear bearer for both courts, and protected Their Majesties diligently. I was relieved of duties for the evening court, charged instead with taking photographs of a ‘special event’. My friend Eogan, Kersteken’s husband, was given his Award of Arms for his exceptional dedication to the art of heavy combat. Despite camera troubles (the batteries were dying) I captured the moment, and made sure to get a picture of the proud new Lord.
Once court had ended, things pretty much seemed to be over and people began to pack up and go home. Colyne and I had been hoping to have a little Games Guild demo, but there was no one left to play! Instead, we were invited to the Post-Rev at Berus and
place, but in the end the day had caught up with us and we decided we should
just head home to bed. It was an extremely fun-packed event for me, and has
actually inspired me to get more involved in the planning of events (God help
me). All in all, a great day! Marion