Song of Ice and Fire

A Squire Charges, A Lord Calculates

...Noble Mind

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"Father,

"You are making a mistake. We would be sorely outnumbered against our enemies should we take to the mountains against them, leaving the strength of Oroca Hall, and our best troops would be cut down. Our cavalry is useless in the mountains and we cannot take the full strength of the Blood and Silver.

"But our enemies are cut off from their escape. Call our banners and rally our allies to the north, House Dayne, House Fowler, and the enemy cannot escape. Aided by the archers of the Black Sashes, the Bouddic ships will destroy the boats of our enemies. Foreign troops, and I believe they are foreign, my lord, cannot survive in our mountains, in a Dornish summer, without supplies. An entire army, wrecked by the storm, and without food, must return to Oroca and attempt to besiege us. Where we are strong and fed. Where we will win.

“When they do return, and they must, the Black Sashes and the Bouddic ships will have arrived to support us.

"Our gauchos can watch them unseen to make sure they do not smuggle the prisoner away. If they separate him from the host, Fierro will ride them down. They do not know our lands. Remember the poachers from the Stormlands? It is likely they were deserters from this host. The enemy was after only the Velaryon, which means they were following the Night’s Watchmen from the north. Foreign enemies; lost, starving, and battered. Make them come to us."

Comments

“My son Xanthius:
You have the right of it that their plight in our lands is hopeless! Del and you will lead the Toros to harry them and dispatch as many as you can, furthermore cutting off their escape to the West. I will call a detachment of the black sashes to reinforce the Hall should they survive your pursuit and turn back to our walls. They will find that a Bull is tenfold strong after being roused! They shall all perish!
Nevertheless I will not call the banners for this slight nor strain our alliances. We shall show our visitors what strength we have and deal with these upstarts ourselves. Captain Bendric Bouddic will lend his personal ship to stop these river brigands and halt their retreat (for that will give him great honor), but ravens need not be sent farther than Hornhaven concerning this matter…”

 

The north breed hardy men….foolhardy. Upon further investigation of our silver haired guest one thing is certain. He is of great value. Weather we can capitalize this opportunity is another question. I have not had long to ponder his use. It has only been a day since my beloved brother has returned to me. I have hardly shared a night with him before a viper has reared its head in our midst.

Our halls have been besieged while this snake dawning the cloak of a friend has killed our own and escaped with the Valerian. There has been so little time to plan. A mistake on the part of our assailants, for my brother is the last man you wish to trap in a corner. When a bull has only one direction to go, he will go that way with all of his strength, and a bull’s strength is great.

By our father’s order we were set upon these raiders in the night. Their ploys failed them. They thought they could best us on our own lands. As I said, foolhardy. The archers were rode into the ground first. I had no kills on that charge although I took a man’s hand off at the wrist, this much I am sure.

The second charge was a different matter altogether. Two men fell to my charge. The second was pierced so deeply through the torso I had to let go of my blade. My faithful squire Xanthius had a blade waiting for me though at that point the battle was over. We emerged victorious with nothing but minor cuts and bruises.

At the end of the battle we found not Aeron Storm. We did however capture the enemy force’s commander. A man we would later come to know as Ser Leof Cooper, the hedge knight of an unknown lord. He would come to tell us little of his lord but would indeed solidify the claims of Aeron Storm. The storm has brought many new troubles to our house. But as mother says, the gods only trouble us when they wish to push us to greatness. We have indeed been complacent in our halls these last few years. Perhaps it is a sign that the wings of change breath across us.

Tracks were found separating from the main body of the assailants. The second chapter of our hunt had begun. Taking the Blood and silver we force marched until we came upon our quarry. It would seem the storm was indeed a gift from the gods. While we enjoyed the feast in the comfort of our halls, these brigands ventured the punishing wind and hail. It is a good thing too as the party that separated from the host with our quarry were not of the north at all and thus made speed across the mountains. If not for exhaustion from the elements they may have out paced us.

My squire Xanthius continues to surprise me with his skill. Upon reaching their encampment he removed the sentries and allowed for us to set upon our enemy without any warning. The battle was not worth noting. There is no honor to be claimed for slaying rats. It should be noted that Xanthius found and removed Aeron Storm from the clutches of these brigands and into the tender ministrations of Isabine, our house healer.

We have returned with the Valerian. We have shown bulls strength. Now is the time for a noble mind. We will find who sent this force to steal what is ours. We will find who supported their actions. And when we are done with them they will pray to the 7 for mercy from our wrath. But the 7 do not answer the prayers of honor-less cowards.

As for the viper in our midst, I have seen to her. Torin Sands will draw her out and she will be taken by our men. Should she resist then my squire will be adding another accomplishment to his laurels.

Warlock_Xanatos BloodyMalth

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