Sunday, June 1, 2008

Castellan XIV

The plan for the me this event was to day trip it with my son and Master Robert Fitzmorgan. We all piled into my van and made a early morning day run out of it As far as heraldry went, the only plans I had was to do some list heraldry for the rapier fighters, and other than that was to watch my son and socialize.

Quiet, easy, nothing happening to me, lightweight event... right?

eh... try again.

Things got off to an interesting start when we pulled up to site and were told that court was due to begin in like 5 minutes. About ten minutes later I heard the distant cries of a royal court opening, and about three minutes later mother nature rendered the whole situation mute when it opened up with a rainstorm worth of the title downpour.

So, I got to watch as a hundred or so SCAers did a mad dash to the main hall for cover. While a horrible thing to say, I must point out that several people were making better time than I would have thought possible in their specific garb.

However, I still had to change into garb so I ducked into the administration building to use their bathroom. When I came out, I heard a thunderous, roaring "Vivat" from the main hall. I jokingly said aloud "Wow, sounds like they're about to make someone." And of course, I started towards the hall at a quick clip to see what all the fuss was about. A moment later The herald stepped outside and cried "Her majesty has summoned all members of the order of the Pelican."

"Holy smokes! They ARE making someone!" My hustle turned into a run at that point.

I got there in time to hear that Elizabetta ap Isfjord was being offered the rank of pelican. Considering her history in Northkeep, as well as friendships in Mooneschadowe and across a good part of the north, it was, needless to say, a pretty good way to get an event kicked off with a bang!

Well, the rains cleared, the sun came out and promptly turned the event into a sauna. It took me about an hour to admit it, but I finally had to loose my headgear for fear of passing out in the heat. This was also the first event where I was carrying around my staff. it was nothing more than an 1 3/4" pile from a local hardware store, but I kind of knew that it would be needed given my current condition, the heat, humidity and how long the day was going to be for me.

A short time later, I ran into an old friend who I hadn't seen in a long time, and he was setting up his merchanting tent. During the ensuing conversation, I was offered a trade up in walking stick, he had a really nice, spiral cut staff with an ornamental head (In reality, it was a decorative curtain rod with only one end screwed on.) The plan was for me to carry his stuff around for most of the day and advertise it, he got free air time, and I got a cool looking staff.

The morning was spent walking around and talking with friends, catching up with people I hadn't seen in a while and watching my son, who was being traded off between me and his mother throughout the day. (My wife was camping the event because she and a friend were cooking food for the crown that weekend.)
I'll cover some highlights in separate posts after this one, mainly because of how diverse the topics are.

The afternoon brought the Rapier tournament, which I had asked to do a little heralding for, so that was my big treat to myself for the day. The list was a little smaller than usual this year, only ten people, and the way Dirk was running it meant that all I really had to do was call the pairings. In honesty, I was hoping for a more traditional format where I got to go out and call rounds and salutes, but at the same time I still got to hang out and talk with the rapier fighters, and calling parings is always fun.

After about three or four rounds, I started to feel really tired, a direct result of my medical situation I knew, so I waived down Dirk and told him that I was good for another set of parings and after that I was going to track down some shade and cold water. So, I called the next set of parings, and then handed the cards off to the marshals for the last time. I don't think I was clear of the list field when I heard HE Donnchadh let fly with "This does reopen the court of her Majesty, Vanessa De Varona..." I spun on my heals to see the royal court and champions walking out into the list field with a rather quick spring to their step.

I've known most of the rapier fighters who were their for a long time, so I hung around so see what the Queen had in store for them. The first item of business was the naming of the General of the Rapier army of Ansteorra. That title went to Dona Therese Maria Giovanni, whom I know is not only a good leader, but a charismatic one who the kingdom will follow to the front door of hell if need be.

Next, her Majesty presented the northern region with the Queen's battle ribbon, a fitting rapier counterpart to the Kings battle ribbon which was awarded to the north at gulf wars.

Their was a lot of chatter after that, and a lot of righteous (and well earned) cheering, Figuring that court was over, I decided that I really did need to get a head start on some shade and some cold water. I was less than five feet from the edge of the listfield when the next words came from Donnchadh's lips.

"Her majesty does summon lord Ivo Blackhawk."

Now, understand, with this not being a Mooneschadowe Event, and me not really working that day, I was totally NOT expecting to have any court time.

I handed off my staff, took Lilias's arm, and walked up before her majesty. I have to admit, I was really, really tired at that point, and their was an audible grunt as I knelt down and let my weight rest on my knees. The whole time I was trying to get a handle on the situation, thinking of what possible business the crown would have with me at a Northkeep event. Mooneschadowe usually is pretty good about making sure its own get awards at its event, so I just couldn't get my heard around what the queen could possible have for me.

I don't remember every word, but what I do remember was these. "Everywhere I go, I see this man. And when I see him, he is working. That is truly service to the kingdom."

I don't know why, but at the time I just couldn't think of what award she would be talking about. my head was still swimming in fatigue, heat, humidity, and shock. Then her herald started reading the scroll. About a third of the way through the text, my mind finally clicked and registered what was being read.

A Sable Crane!

By the time Donnchadh had finished reading it aloud, I just remember being slack-jawed and wide eyed over the whole thing. Her majesty placed a huge medallion over my head and the pewter cast piece felt like a lead weight on my neck after so many years of waring my normal largess and awards. Vanessa leaned over and hugged me, and I remember barely managing to reply, "God bless you, Your Majesty, and thank you."

After that it was a lot of congratulations, hugs and handshakes. Their excellencies Ian and Kalandra both pulled me aside and gave me hearty congratulations, as well at Peter Macentire, and a host of other names and faces that will likely be lost to history.

The last time I was in court was 2001, when I got my Thistle in bard craft, so its been a long time since I was at that end of the show.

Court closed on another high note, however, after Her Excellency Kalandra Carmichael was given a Queen's rapier for her work on the rapier field.

While it wasn't all Mooneschadeen, it was still a lot of good friends, and a lot of people I consider Family in many respects.

However, I must say the best comment I got was from His Excellency Uriah of House Wolfstar. He walked up to me and said "So, Ivo, how does it feel to have the whole kingdom give you the bird?" After all of that, I must admit, Uriah's comment just seemed the perfect footnote to a perfect "gotcha" court.

I also spoke with Her majesty after court, I wanted to tell her that as much as the award meant to me, it also meant a lot that it came from her hand. I thanked her again, but she replied that I didn't need to thank anyone, and that I had earned it every step of the way, and it was something that was fitting for my level of service.

A lot of the rest of the day me watching my son, socializing, people talking to me about various items of interest, getting some more congratulations on my Crane and me trying to corral my son.

Other than that, the event went on as planned, and the night ended with the elevation of Elizabetta ap Isfjord to the order of the Pellican, giving Northkeep it first local pelican in a very, very long time.

I told Elizabeta that morning what I thought of her elevation, and I say it here so that others know what I think of it.

"When I heard the news, my first thought was that one of my prayers had been answered."

Lord Ivo Blackhawk
Province of Mooneschadowe
Kingdom of Ansteorra
"God Save the King!"

1 comment:

rubberduckiemom said...

Vivat IVO!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!