Pendragon the Dark Ages 2nd Generation

Battle with the King of the North
The Adventure of the Road to Achavanich Part 6

Winter aids us as we fight the King og The North.

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The wind blows hard all around us. Snow and sleet blind our foes and the blasting wind takes the from their feet. The magic of the Winter Hag lets us see.

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518-9 The Picts, the Stones and the Miracle
The Adventure of the Road to Achavanich Part 5

We attack! The battle of the Stones Begins.

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We hide ourselves at a barrow overlooking the Pictish meeting grounds. There are many clans arrayed around the horseshoe of standing stones Gwalchmai slips through the night to watch the Picts, and the rest of us stay hidden and quiet, alert for any sound of alarm.

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518/9 Cailleach - The Winter Hag
The Adventure of the Road to Achavanich Part 4

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We restored Merin as best we could, and after some rest we rode from the clearing where we had fought the boar people. Before long we became aware that they were following us on the edge of the the shadows of the forest. We were not sure at first if they intended us ill or not, but on one occasion we heard fighting in the distance and we came to believe they were protecting us from the dangers of the wild lands.

While we rode we heard the tale of our banner riders. They had come into the otherworld in a place where it seemed the very land opposed their every move. A burned and blasted land in which everything existed to kill. All were wounded but none it seemed were unable to ride (or would admit it).

That night one of the Boar People came to our fire and asked us for hospitality. He told us that they had come to the very edge of where they were allowed to travel and had followed the orders of their king before he died in protecting us from the dangers of the journey. He implied that had we not fought honourably we would not have had their help, and when we asked what they had fought he said it was a great beast and that fighting it had been bracing.

At length he told us that we faced a choice. The straight road ahead lead to our destination, but a fork to the right lead to the home of the Winter Hag, and that while the danger was considerable, she might be able to help us. We spoke at length, weighing the dangers against the benefit and in the end we decided on the more dangerous road.

The Winter Hags home was beautiful in the ways that the deepest winters are, but her ugliness surpassed all words. Merin bargained with her for her help and we learnt a little of the Dark Lady. She said we might be able to destroy her and had the means in our possession. The nature of the final bargain is one we do not speak of, and it may be that we got the worst of it in the end, but we did secure the help of winter for whatever we decided to do.

Merin also bargained for the child we found in the Hag’s home, a feral child with the Wolf-eyes of Aurealanus. Morchades declared that she would adopt the child as her own and bring him up in the Christian faith.

With that done we made our way to the meeting stones, and drove the Silverhands spear into the ground by the opening of a giant barrow we found there. We came into our world in a place that was the same but smaller and meaner, and surrounded by the pictish tribes………

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518/9 Away From The Pack Into The Sounder
The Adventure of the Road to Achavanich Part 3

We cross the lands of the Boar People. We fight their king and his guard in honorable combat.

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After a brief rest, The Dragonriders rode north, into rougher and rougher lands as the mist cleared. We had trouble with the mountains and nearly lost Elias but every obstacle that was put in our way, we overcame.

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518/9 The Wolf Hunt
The Adventure of the Road to Achavanich Part 2

We ride through the otherworld and are hunted by the Wolf People.

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We rode north from Patrick’s house hoping for a sign. Cadwaladr played a little on The Harp and soon we saw a White Stag atop a hill. We chased after it and eventually rode over the hill and down towards a mist filled valley. Gwalchmai assured us that we still followed the Stag.

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518/9 The White Riders Ride Again
The Adventure of the Road to Achavanich Part 1 1

Grainne heard about a great meeting of Picts in the North. We decide to do something about it

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518 The Pictish Raid

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Awakening to your door breaking and you guard bursting though impaled on a spear is never a good way to wake up. Merin rolled away from the attacker and grabbed his sword, to protect his wife and himself from this nighttime sneak. He lead the little pict to the door, suffering some minor cuts and then removed the tattooed mans arm and dispatched him.

Disurbing Aelgifu and Elias nocturnal recreations was a foolish thing to do. But these picts are fools. It was only a brief moment before the attacker had a dagger and spear in him as he cooled on the ground. Recreations continued – with a lighting and thunderclap ending!

Morchades awoke to a fight outside her door. As her guard was killed she kicked out her own door and followed the pict’s retracting spear with her own, letting the point go right through him.

Grainne woke to a spear in the dark, and could not stop it raking her with her dagger. Luckily, as she leapt from her bed, her sword fell into her hand, which made short work of her attacker.

Gwalchmai was stabbed by his attacker – luckily he is as tough as old boots and eventually overcame his attacker with help from his wife and Morchades.

Cadwaladr was in his ‘war room’ when a spear leapt from the dark. The picts had saved their best for him, and it was a hard fight. Cadwaladr managed to raise the alarm, and a guard got to his room and killed his attacker.

The Picts do not seem happy with us.

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518 Summer - Still Clearing the Border

We continued with Cadwaladr’s campaign against the Picts. We found one village had been converted by one of the Roman priests we brought to the North. We made agreements with the head man of that village to not raid South for a year and left them alone. The other villages we did not spare.

One village did cause problems. It had steep earth works surrounding it which forced us to ride through a narrow path while they shot arrows at us. The javelins we threw back slew several archers and the rest ran, leaving their warriors to fight us.

We then had problems riding up the steep bank to their gate. Elias got stuck for a few vital seconds as his horse slipped, Grainne scrambled past him, but got a nasty spear blow which drove Merin from his senses. Merin leapt from his horse, ran up the Earth Works and leapt upon her attacker like a mad man.

The fighting didn’t last long, Morchades, Elias and the others making short work of the ‘warriors’. Afterwards, it appears that this village was wealthy.

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518 Summer - Clear the Border

After a fine feast celebrating the Girdle Stanes victory we got down to the day-to-day running of these lands.

We sent an envoy to the Irish King of Eubonia, but his court seems very poor.

Cadwaladr planned a Summer campaign against the Picts to build a ‘buffer zone’ on our northern border. We collected support from the tribes just North of The Wall and rode out during the Summer.

The first few villages fell with ease, driving the survivors North.

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518 Girdle Stanes
The Adventure of the Wound that Wouldn't Close (pt 2.)

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The Lady of the Great Lakes hid us in a deep fog as we travelled the Pict infested lands to Girdle Stanes. Once there we waited for the Picts to start their bestial ritual.

As their ritual reached its degenerate climax we rode forth and attacked. The cross of St Patrick grew hot on Cadwaladr as it protected him from the foul magics the capering Pict wizard commanded. Our dragon banner howled and then became a real dragon belching fire. The ground around us vanished and was replaced by mist with howling red-eared wolves leaping at us.

We destroyed these mist wolves, even though their flaming teeth bit through armour, but immediately found ourselves back at the Girdle Stones with frothing, screaming Pict warriors upon us.

There were many Pict warriors, but only a few were worthy of the title. We have spent many years fighting Saxons, and these Picts may be vicious but are not as strong or armoured. But, they did attack our horses, which give us some problems. However, in a short time, even their best warriors were dispatched, while the Lady and the Wizard fought with magic and one of the standing stones became a moving statue to watch them.

The wizard, who looks to be only part man, leapt into the fire and vanished. The field was ours.
But suddenly we were not there, we were in the same place, but the stones were moss covered, and the surrounding fields were tilled, and a small church stood nearby.

We rode to the church find out what was going on, passing a newly carved statue of a saint. By the church we were met by (St) Patrick, who we last me on the other side. He spoke to us and said the Wizard, an evil man, was under his hospitality in the church and we had an important decision to make. Let him go and he will be a thorn in our side for a long time, or do something else which would have serious consequences.

We chose to talk to the Wizard, who is much more intelligent and educated than we had suspected. He says that he want to see his people survive and that we are the threat. We replied that attacking us would only speed the destruction of his people. There did not seem to be any way to divert his course (or that of the King he follows and loves). We would not break the hospitality of Patrick, so we left. We returned back to the scene of our victory, and after the Lady had used the power to cure Cadwalader, we returned home.

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