War with the Tomorrow Court 1098-1099

News, Reports and Proclamations
To Arms, Albion

30th day of November 1098
To all loyal Harts,
Let it be known that Katherine, pretender to the Unseelie Throne of Albion has, upon the occasion of the Open Grand Council, declared that a state of War be in existence between her minions and the Realm of Albion. As token of her earnest, her forces were already razing the town of Hereford when this announcement was delivered. This atrocity has resulted in the deaths of many defenceless men women and children, the lifeblood of Albion. There will be vengeance on those who committed this vile act, and those who ordered its execution. There will be no reprisals in kind against unarmed kindred of the foe. Such reprisals will be dealt with as severely as we will deal with those who have begun this unlooked-for conflict.
To arms, Albion. Let each able body of the land supply themselves with a stout staff, cudgel or maul unencumbered with metal, and let those who cannot bear arms roll bandages and store water against arson. Know your friends, of all creeds, races and lands. Guard your byres and granaries – there is a long winter ahead of us. We shall prevail.
Albion forever!
Hugo Charenten KCE

Lord Lieutenant of the Eastern Marches

News from Hereford

3rd day of December 1098
People of Albion
Upon leaving the Open Grand Council and seeing the Queen safely returned to Albion, I travelled to Gloucester to setup a rescue centre and manage the aid to the people of Hereford.
I can now report that the town was complete sacked and all who attempted to take arms to defend were slain. The militia put up a spirited defence, allowing time for some to escape, but would seem to have been killed to a man or woman. No wounded were left alive, and any non-combatants (including women and children) still in the town were massacred.
It is still confused as to how many people escaped, although it is reported a large party of around 100 survivors have been seen. However, hopes of many escaping seem remote, and a final expected death toll of possibly 70% or more of the population seems likely. Villages in the surrounding area of the town seem to have been left alone, and have been providing what shelter they can.
Any aid that can be lent to the survivors would be appreciated and should come through the circle at Gloucester. Especially food and blankets and any artisans who can aid in the rebuild of Hereford (carpenters and stone masons particularly).
Further if anyone hears reports of a woman called Grundy, or of her child, should immediately contact me at Gloucester.
Lord Ranulf Farendon

Earl-Marshal of Gloucester

Lord High Chamberlain of Albion

More News from Hereford

3rd day of December 1098
Good people of Albion, Some of you may know me, many of you will not. My name is Quarim Almalik and I am a man of Albion, but recently returned to my homeland.
I sincerely wish that I were able to meet you all in happier days, but it seems that the Unseelie filth of the bitch queen Katherine are intent on ruining my homecoming.I met some of you briefly at the Open Grand Council, but had business to attend to, and was forced to leave early. I journeyed from Teutonia to the Huntshire and so was close to the town of Hereford when the Unseelie of the “Tomorrow Court” attacked. When I heard of the attack, I hurried to the town to see if I could assist. I almost wish that I had not.
I regret to inform you, that, to all intents and purposes, the town of Hereford no longer exists.It seems, from the reports of the survivors, that somehow, the unseelie had managed to build a large force of troops, diverse and terrible, that came screaming out of the surrounding countryside from all directions. There seems to have been no one focal point for the army, they came from all sides at once. Whether they built their forces by bringing a few through the ritual circle at a time is unknown, but it seems likely that some form of magic was used.
Their troops were comprised of many strange creatures, with the bulk of the forces made up of the fae with the black and red spirals, but many other creatures were seen also. Norscan Great Trolls were seen fighting alongside the fae (if “fighting” can be used to describe the wholesale butchery of the innocent), as were many creatures of unknown type.
Some of the survivors described seeing a beautiful woman who seemed to be issuing commands, and whose touch meant death to the Albion troops.
It seems that the fae took the Hereford militia completely by surprise, storming the town in a matter of minutes. Concentrating upon the Albion soldiers first, once the town was under their control they then scoured it for any others that they could find. It was apparent, when I arrived, that the soldiers had been the lucky ones, the fae seemed to have a penchant for bleeding their prisoners to death.
The worst atrocity was saved for the town hall, the Mayor had been nailed above the doors, with wounds upon the soles of his feet, wounds that he had been left to die from. I can only imagine how excruciatingly painful this must have been. Inside the hall the poor unfortunates had been nailed to the walls, as one might hang pictures in a gallery. It seems that the fae had saved the town’s children for their art. Once they had finished their butchery they torched the town, razing it to the ground, leaving only the town hall standing.
I am sorry to have had to describe to you these scenes, but we must know the depravity that drives our enemies, that our resolve against them will strengthen. We must focus our hatred and make of it a weapon to strike to the heart of these vile beings. This must never be allowed to happen again.
Albion Forever
Quarim Almalik

Regarding events at Hereford

3rd day of December 1098
Information that I can disseminate here is necessarily limited by security concerns. I can assure all of you that our scouts and Rangers have confirmed approximate numbers and composition of the attacking force and their muster points. All watches are to remain alert and at double strength. Patrols and pickets are to be kept active. Several days were required to infiltrate so large a force, and more dilligent patrolling may have discovered this attack in time to save the lives of so many; forewarned, the walls of Hereford would have easily repelled an assault of this style.
Albion Forever
Lord Hugo Charenten

Marshall of the Armies

Hereford, Earls Marshall, and surveys

Proclamation by Lord Ranulf Farendon
People of Albion
By command of Her Majesty, Elspeth, Queen of Albion.
On the 28th day of November 1098, the Fey of the one known as Lady Katherine declared war on Albion and then immediately proceeded to sack the town of Hereford. None were spared, survivors are few. Let it be known therefore, throughout the lands that the Harts are now at war with the Lady Katherine and the Fey of the Court Tomorrow.

The Queen wishes to commend the heroism of the town militia. Their valiant defence to the last, in the face of overwhelming numbers, allowed a number of the populace to flee through the smaller town gates. All towns must now increase their guard and Lord Marshall Hugo will liaise with local commanders to give aid and advice where needed.
Because of the need for strong leadership at this time, the Queen, with the agreement of the Privy Council, has decreed the following. As Albion is under populated due to the number of people who left to join the Lions in Avalon, a new title is to be created to fill the gap where the Dukes should be.

This title is Earl Marshall. There shall be four Earls Marshall and they shall be in charge of the four duchies within the Eastern and Western Marches. The Queen wishes it to be known that the following are hereby appointed to those posts.
Ranulf Farendon

Lord High Chamberlain of Albion

– the Duchy of Gloucester
Benedict Karlennon

Master of the Assizes, Leader of House Karlennon

– the Duchy of Winchester
Alistir Crowlee

Speaker from the Council of Barons to the Privy Council, Leader of the Watchers of Darkwood

– the Duchy of Keswick
Remy Dayspring

Leader of the Bacchus’ Bastards

– the Duchy of York
For the 5th Duchy, that of Cornwall, shall the title of Duke remain, in recognition of the special part Cornwall has played in Albion history. General Tarn shall remain as Duke of Cornwall.

Each Earl Marshall shall be in charge of the administration of the Duchy they control. They shall also be responsible for organising the defence of the lands within their area. These titles shall remain in place until such time as there are sufficient numbers within Albion to allow the dukes to rise because a following of their own people.

The Earls Marshall of Winchester and York shall be under the direct command of Lord Hugo Charenten, Lord Marshall of the Eastern March. Since the death of Crown Prince Elias Karlennon, the Queen has not yet been able to appoint a Lord Marshall of the Eastern March. The Earls Marshall of Gloucester and Keswick shall therefore report directly to Lord Hugo for the present.

Each Earl Marshall and the Duke of Cornwall shall appoint 2 Sheriffs to administer the Counties within their lands. These shall be appointed with the approval of the Office of the High Sheriff of Albion. The Sheriffs of the Counties will be responsible to both their Earl Marshall and the High Sheriff. The Office of the High Sheriff has been authorised to appoint a number of Under Sheriffs who will aid the High Sheriff in his many duties.
Finally, as a result of the happenings at the Last Hunt, the Queen has commanded that all lords conduct full surveys of their manors and report anything unusual to the Master of the Assizes.
Written this 8th day of December 1098 at Gloucester
Ranulf Farendon

Lord High Chamberlain of Albion

Hereford Survivors Update

15th day of December 1098
To the People of Albion
It is with great sadness that I must inform you of the death of Grundy, wife of General Tarn. Grundy and her son had been staying in Hereford recently (one of his former baronies). When the fey struck Grundy took arms to defend Hereford as was her nature. It is reported that she with, two members of the militia and the father’s of two families held one of the small postern gates allowing the rest of their families to escape. Her body was found under rubble next to four dead fey. I send my sympathy to General Tarn at this time.
The seven women and children are now safe in Gloucester after fleeing east. However no sign of the boy, Young Tarn as he is known has been found. The escapees reported that Grundy was alone, none of the bodies of the male children that were identifiable found in Hereford were him, and there are no reports of the fey taking prisoners. However a large number of building were burned with people inside them and many bodies are unidentifiable.
Further family of three have been found taking shelter in the Greenwood by a party of Elven rangers, and a young girl and her grandmother were found in an old ruined shepherds cottage in the hills. However the grandmother had succumbed to cold sometime prior to their rescue. This brings the total known survivors to 139.
Over the weekend the cold weather has warmed, consequently the funerals cremating the bodies of those fallen at Hereford have been speeded up. A number of bodies remain to be identified, but with the warming of the weather this task may have to be ignored for reasons of public health. Many trees and woods near to Hereford have already been felled, but a program of re-planting will be initiated in the spring. The last of the funerals should be later this week, and will involve many of those who fell last including militia. There will be a service of remembrance to honour and remember all those who fell.
Any who wish to come are invited to attend on the 18th day of December at Stretton.
Ranulf Farendon

Earl-Marshall of Gloucester Lord High Chamberlain of Albion

Victory at Chester

15th day of December 1098
It is my pleasure and privilege to be able to report our first major victory over the forces of the Usurper Katherine since War was declared. A force estimated to comprise around a quarter of that which devastated the City of Hereford at the changing of the month was broken on the approaches to the Chester Pass into Cymrija in the dawn hours of Friday 11 December.
Around 200 enemy are confirmed slain or prisoner. Having held the field in the main action and most of the subsequent pursuit and skirmishes, our casualties were predictably light. The names of those fallen in defense of Albion cannot be released until next of kin have been informed, but their comrades know them, and their names will be remembered.
This victory can be rightly claimed by the foresters and rangers of Cheshire. Their vigilance gave warning of the threat, and their tireless pursuit gave the enemy no time to scout the earthworks and other defenses of the Chester pass approaches before their unheralded dawn attack upon defenders they supposed unprepared. Their haste was to cost the Fey attackers dear, as pit traps and tripwires, stakes, caltrops and siege engines disrupted their initial charge. Their second charge faltered also, and a sally by the brave defenders separated a large section of the attackers from their fellows. That was enough for them and they retired from the field in good enough order that we could not hope realisitically to pursue the main body which was observed travelling Northwards.
The isolated group which was forced South was another matter entirely, travelling as it did into a county warned and ready. A series of skirmishes and running fights almost entirely wiped out the retreating Fey, while we sustained negligible losses.
Although this is a significant victory which should give our enemy pause, we must not become complacent. More than a thousand Fey, including their Generals and other exceptional assets are still loose in Cheshire and Ellenbrooke Counties, and we did not stop all the Fey heading over the border into Cymrija. This was just the first battle, and we have not won the War. Yet. They will not underestimate us so badly next time.
Remain vigilant, remain resolute, remain prepared.
Albion forever!
Hugo Charenten KCE

Lord Lieutenant of the Eastern Marches

Marshall of the Harts Armies

Articles of the Rules of War

15th day of December 1098
To: Katherine of the ‘Tomorrow Court’
Regarding articles of war.
While the massacre at Hereford perpetrated by your forces might be taken as an indication of the rules by which you would conduct this war, it pleases Her Majesty Queen Elspeth of Albion, upon the advice of her Marshall, Generals and Privy Council to offer the following articles to govern the conduct of both sides during this conflict:

  1. Transgressions of these articles shall be considered a capital crime.
  2. A white flag shall be a sign of truce. The bearer of such a flag shall neither initiate hostile action, nor have hostile action initiated against them. This also shall apply to those who are within sight of the flag.
  3. A white baton shall be the sign of a Herald. A Herald shall not initiate hostile action, nor shall hostile action be initiated against them.
  4. Surrender will be accepted where offered. Prisoners taken will be treated fairly, with enough food, shelter and care provided to preserve their life and limb. Reasonable methods of restraint are permitted.
  5. Quarter will be offered, and where accepted will be taken as token of surrender.
  6. Captives will not undertake any hostile action until they have been free for two sunrises. They will not be expected to give greater parole than this under duress.
  7. Captives will not be used to labour for their enemy.
  8. No form of attack which corrupts a Life Pattern shall be used. Specifically, this includes the use of Cold Iron against Fey, and the use of Necromantic assault.

While these Articles may be incomplete and in need of clarification, it pleases Her Majesty that they be the rules by which the folk of Albion shall conduct this conflict, until such time as they be altered by her hand.
Albion forever!
Hugo Charenten KCE

Lord Lieutenant of the Eastern Marches

Marshall of the Harts Armies

Encounter with Katherine’s forces

17th day of December 1098
People of Albion
I write to you to report an encounter between a small party of Albiones and a band of Katherine’s unseelie that occurred over the weekend.
After leaving Hereford, I and my companions travelled northwards to continue our expeditionary forays into the hills between the Greenwood and the Cymrjan border, our party numbering six.
We travelled two days westward into the hills, when we first found sign of the enemy. Within a small copse of trees we discovered the remnants of a camp. It had been well concealed, but I suspect that they had been in a hurry to leave as they had neglected to cover certain signs of their stay. We discovered signs that they were headed for the Cymrjan borderlands and so followed their trail, until Corley, one of the best trackers I have known, realised that these tracks had been laid to deliberately confound us. We backtracked, and picked up the true trail heading northward.
We followed them for nigh on eighteen hours, gaining very little ground on them (it seems that these foul creatures can run like the wind), until finally we caught up with them. A party of sixteen fae, accompanied by two of the “Norscan Great Trolls” had made camp in the centre of a piece of woodland. Concealing ourselves in the brush around their camp, we spent several hours listening to their conversation as they rested. Of the information garnered, the following has been cleared for public release:

  1. The unseelie fae seem able to run without tiring noticeably. The Great Trolls do not share this ability.
  2. Their leader referred to one “Lord Christopher”.
  3. After the attack upon Hereford, the unseelie forces split into much smaller groups to leave Albion.
  4. There are relatively few Great Trolls assisting Katherine’s forces.
  5. The Unseelie fae referred to some sort of military unit, known as a “Claw”.

I do not know how they discovered our prescence, but discover us they did. Taking up arms, they started searching the bushes for us. We were left with no option but to flee. I regret to inform you that only four of us made it. The next of kin of those who were lost have been informed and have given permission for them to be named.
Missing In Action:

Adam of Tewkesbury.

Sargeant Martyn Fletcher of the militia.
They will both be missed.
The rest of us made it from the wood, and we intend to continue to scout for signs of Katherine’s forces.
Albion Forever
Quarim Almalik

Response from Katherine to the proposed articles of war

17th day of December 1098
To: Katherine of the ‘Tomorrow Court’
This message was posted to the Main Erdrejan nexus by a creature of Katherine:
People of Erdreja,
For some time now, many of you will have been aware of the dispute between my Queen, Queen Katherine of the Court Tomorrow, and the rulers of the Harts of Albion, and most of you will know that at the Open Grand Council of 1098 we declared a formal state of war to exist between the Court Tomorrow and the Harts.
My Queen wishes it known that this was not a decision that was taken lightly. The Harts have proved time and again that they are without honour, that their attitude to diplomacy is barbaric at best. They have refused utterly to discuss the matter, have assaulted and killed our emissaries, stolen our items and insulted our people repeatedly. They even tried to assault my Queen herself, when she came in person to try and open negotiations with them.
After long and hard consideration, and with a large amount of regret, a decision was made. We can no longer tolerate these actions, and as the leadership of Albion has not responded to diplomacy, we have been left with no choice. Our first action of the war was an emphatic victory, as we had known it would be. The town of Hereford was destroyed as a message to the leaders of the Harts. They can not hope to win this war. We can, and will, carry out dozens more attacks on the same scale as Hereford if the Harts do not accede to our demands. We sincerely regret the loss of civilian life involved in actions such as this, but we are resolute in our determination to win this war.
How may this be stopped? Simply. It is our wish that the current government of Albion be removed. That the leaders, who have led their people, through foolishness, to war against a superior foe; quit their positions of authority, and present themselves to us for trial. Trial for crimes against the Court Tomorrow, and the fae of Albion. If this should come to pass, then the Court Tomorrow will withdraw its declaration of war, and no more innocents need die for the pride of a powerful few.
Hugo Charenten, who is in himself partly responsible for this war, has made public his “Articles of War”. This document, whilst I am sure that it is deemed satisfactory by the leaders of the Harts, is yet another attempt by these criminals to enforce their own views upon us, with no regard to our culture or our desires. As such, the Court Tomorrow refuses to accept it, and wishes to make its own public declaration. There will be no quarter asked for or given to either side, until our demands have been met. There will be no use for Heralds or white flags of truce, the time for talking is over. The capture, use and release of prisoners will be dictated by the conscience of each side. No form of attack which corrupts a Life Pattern shall be used. Specifically, this includes the use of Cold Iron against Fey, and the use of Necromantic assault. This is the position of the Court Tomorrow and its Queen.
We shall triumph, Coll Alpha

High Ambassador to Queen Katherine of the Court Tomorrow

Scribed this 12th day of December, 1098
The Response:
Coll Alpha, Ambassador of the Court Tomorrow:
But for one item, I will not here dispute the facts you claim as truth. The time and place for that will be upon the fields, amidst the forests and in the streets of this Land of Albion and its Arcadia. Know that your message has been received. Know also that Tomorrow is ever the other side of midnight, and your Court’s time will never be.
I am pleased to receive your rules of engagement and doubly pleased that your Folk repudiate the corruption of Patterns. Tell your Queen that we will still be pleased to receive word of her surrender by Herald, marked by white baton. Let it also be known that while you leave us no option but to fight to the death, we will still accept surrender from your soldiers, and they will be treated as we would expect our prisoners to be treated by a civilised foe.
So, finally to that matter you claim as fact. That you soundly defeated the City Militia of Hereford is not in doubt; 2000 elite troopers attacking the 27 on-duty guards without warning can hardly be considered a fight, let alone an emphatic victory when you still lost personnel. That the ensuing massacre of more than 4000 civilians, even down to the 952 who were not even of majority age, could be considered merely regrettable simply emphasises who your real enemy is. The folk of Albion will resist you to the last. In truth you give us no option. If you were to prevail, it is clear that Albion would die with its last defender, for you have forsaken her, and that which you once were.
Hugo Charenten KCE

Lord Lieutenant of the Eastern Marches

Marshall of the Harts Armies

Hereford Update

19th day of December 1098
People of Albion
The last of the bodies have been laid to rest. A fitting service of remembrance has been said and goodbyes made. Searches of all outlying farms and countryside have been completed, and a final four survivors have been located. Two dwarf families who had left Hereford early on the morning of the attack to attend a family wedding in the mountains. In typical dwarven style it lasted 2 weeks and they have only just returned.
This brings the total known survivors of Hereford to 143. I have little hope now of finding anyone else alive. This brings the death toll to 96.5% of the approximately 4000 inhabitants prior to the attack.
Many people have asked for more details of those who survived. After talking to many of them myself I have managed to ascertain the following:
The majority of those that escaped were human, although there were 28 dwarfs from 200 odd members of the merchant community who traded out of Hereford for products from their mountain caverns to the west. Most of these escaped together via one of the postern gates, forcing their way through the fey lines and making into the hills south.
Of the survivors there were:

– 90 Females

– 53 Males
This has been further broken down as follows:

Aged Number
0 – 5 9
6 – 15 42
16 – 55 58
55+ 3 4

As can be seen, most of those too young to escape by themselves were killed. Of those older children many were dropped over the walls by their parents who stayed to fight. This leaves many orphaned children who have need of caring families. If any had friends or relations in Hereford with children please contact me to see if any escaped. Most of the adult survivors were women, although there were 16 adult men and dwarfs. Of those aged over 55 the majority were dwarfs.
Ranulf Farendon

Earl-Marshal of Gloucester

Lord High Chamberlain of Albion

The Hereford aftermath

Account dated 8th day of December 1098
Account delivered to Brighthelm Stane Library, 25th day of January 1099
It’s a cold blustery morning and after a night’s camp devoid of comfort Taliesin D’Schall and I have joined up with a supply train travelling to Hereford. The troops with the train have heard tales of the sights at Hereford, and their faces are set grim. There’s little levity amidst the toiling mud. December is no time to be running the third train in as many days along the road to Hereford; the Empire’s paved roads are a memory long faded.
According to the carters we were still a league from the last crest above the town when I first caught the faint wafts of smoke and roasting meat. It takes a lot of wood to burn a corpse. Clouds are building from the south as the oxen labour up the churned back slope of that ridge towards the saddle from where I’ll be able to see the terrible place, and the pale cold winter sun is quickly obscured. The troopers at the beacon merely nod in response to their fellows’ quiet greetings, and the hauliers rest their teams after the long climb out of the Vale of Stretton.
From the top of this rise we can see the ashy smudge that must, only last week, have been Hereford. Smoke still rises from places in the ruin of the city, but more rises from locations between us and the North gate. The crematorium smell is stronger now. The wind brings the threat of rain, and, pausing only to make our subdued goodbyes to our travelling companions of the last twenty-four muddy hours, we begin to make our way down the treacherous muddy road together. An hour later we pass the outer piquets. Not a problem, you would think, but these troops look drawn and twitchy, and we’re closely watched while the knight in charge inspects our travelling passes. They only relax slightly when he motions us through. All are armed with clubs or blank staves as well as the usual sidearm or bill, and half the arrows nocked are unpiled; it’d make no difference at this range.
The wind has dropped now, but it’s not so calm that smoke won’t move, and the smell of the crematoria is only just strong enough to hide the smell of death. It’s fortunate that the week has been chill and dry. Could have been colder, though, so the mud wasn’t just a thin crust of ice. The clouds still lie low and threatening, grey with smoke and winter’s dimness. Looks like they’re settling in for the day, at least.

Almost without warning the road bends out of the woods where many axes ring, and Hereford’s North gate looms. Banks of smoke roll from the fires and over the rows of white shapes lying in the field at the edge of the road. As we proceed, the chanting of the Incantors drowns the sound of felling timber. A procession, ghostly in the smoke, bears its sad burdens to a large unlit pyre, the incantors’ incense putting a sickly edge to the smoke’s already charged aroma. By the time we reach the gate another ten bodies are being returned to the earth and sky by fire and tears. During the next few days they will have to do this more than four hundred times.
The gatehouse itself is largely undamaged, barring soot marks from the arrow loops, but the gate is missing, used to fuel a pyre maybe. Its hinges hang bent awry, two of them, anyway. No battering ram did this. Above the smoky remnants of arson, there’s another, sweeter, smell now, cloying at the senses. Blood. There’s some on the walls in this gate passage, but not enough to account for the smell.
Through the gatehouse and into the street. Or what used to be a street. Now it’s just a mostly clear space between burned out buildings. Frontages have collapsed into the street here and there. In the open, the smell is more of the burning. but that stench of death underlies it all. And now we can see why. The gutter down the centre of Gloucester Road is full, caked with dried blood. There are no bodies. They’ve all been collected, and it’s too cold for them to start to putrefy. But the deathly aroma of blood hangs in the air like thunder, oppressing the senses the more because there is no battle rage and all of a sudden those clouds hold a promise not a threat. We carefully pick our way to the centre of the city, and the blood stains the cobbles more and more strongly. Even in the alleyways and backstreets we use, directed by hastily chalked signs around a blockage too treacherous to clamber over or through.
It takes nearly fifteen minutes to negotiate the route from North gate to Town Square, where the town hall, raised by the proud burghers of Hereford as a monument to its pivotal role in the local economy, stands. Buildings either side of it are charred, fallen beam alone, even the wattle burned away. This is the most complete burning I have seen in all the city so far. Like all raiders the Fey had no time to be thorough in their arson. What time they had they used for their sport with the townsfolk. And buildings further from the town Hall are more typical of the haphazard incendiary vandalism we’ve already seen. On the floor, the blood almost sticks us in place. The soldiers have worn paths in the gore, which we try to keep to.
The steps to the Town Hall are clean, the Mayor’s blood washed away so as not to disturb him in death. I can almost feel the rage of the unquiet spirits of those who died here, though I can’t see so much of their blood. Every wall has nail holes in it and there’s some blood splashed around, but no more than you’d find in a butcher’s, say. The Council Chamber is the worst. Little bundles of white cloth lie silent in rows on the long tables, the floor. Hereford was a township of over 4000 people. Over a thousand children met their untimely end in this place. We decide that we really don’t want to be here when the sun sets.
Another quarter hour or so later, we exited the town through the South gate, on the Bristol Road. Darkness is falling as we report in to the Adjutant of the way fort that will be home to some hundreds of soldiers while this dreadful work is completed. We’re upwind, now, and the stench of smoke and death is less overpowering, but the barely-hidden rage and despair is evident in the grim, sooty visages of those who return from the fires North of town. The camp is quiet over dinner, and afterwards, any drinking is to drown memory, not warm hearts. Sleep does not come easy after what I’ve seen today. I have witnessed the carnage left in the wake of Undead attacks but I prefer that mindless slaughter over this callous disregard for Human life. The memory of those little corpses will be firmly in my mind when I next have to face these creatures. They are not fighting a war of conquest, they are not soldiers. They are ravagers, destroyers. They have no regard for innocence or honour.
I apologise if some of these images are horrific and the stuff of nightmares but you must realise that Albion is under attack and unless you are spurred to action it will be your husband or child that is the next plaything for their Trolls or victim of amusing experiments.
Contact your local Wardens Office and enlist today.
Apollo, The Shining One

The Battle of Sherburn Keep

9th day of May, 1099
The attack started late last night, some time after the midnight watch. The Fae came on us out of the Forest, not slowed by the darkness in the slightest. There were creatures wreathed in fire, those with skin like treebark and many high ranking mages.
The Sherburn guards played their parts well, the constant drilling of the last months paying off as they shepherded the mothers and children into the keep, some guards bearing litters of those mothers still recovering from difficult births. Others held up the Fae, concentrating their attacks on one target at a time, taking it down and then moving to the next. Many soldiers fell at that point, guarding the retreat of the mothers and children.
Once the majority of the civilians had reached the Keep, my bugler sounded for an orderly retreat and we fell back the 200 paces to the gate, paying for each step we took with the lives of more soldiers, but managing to hold against the Fae still pouring out of the forest.
Some six of us out of the 150 that had stood and held made it in, and none of us unwounded. The Fae torched the town and butchered those that did not make it into the Keep in time. Mothers, children, visiting fathers; all who the Fae found, they killed, and none of the deaths were easy. Tomorrow Court interlopers had also infiltrated the Keep. Of the civilians who made it to the Great Hall, about half fell to assassins’ blades before visiting husbands and the litter bearers could finish them. Civilian losses are near 6 in 10. Military losses are near 8 in 10.
My seneschal reports that the Tomorrow Court forces numbered perhaps 600, and that they left towards Winchester before first light. Information has been passed to the heliograph network, though no reports have returned from the Winchester post yet.

As you can see, the fae have committed one atrocity too many.
I have sworn a blood oath to the Morrigan to eradicate this fae menace or perish trying.To this end I am going to ask Lord Hugo’s pemission to form the cream of the troops of Albion and let me strike and end this senseless bloody war!
We have a need to rally together as a nation and prepare to fight like hell to put an end to the killing and live in peace so we may blossom and grow. Alone if need be I shall face this, but alone I shall not be for I am not one alone. We are part of House Karlennon and we shall do or die together.
Sir Joseph FitzLachlann K.D.A.

Sheriff of Sherburn Keep

House FitzLachlann, Harts of Albion

Vale of Avalon

12th day of May, 1099
By Selene’s speed, I hope this reaches someone.
Harts, Legions of Katherines forces have entered our lands.
Out of the mists they came, swarming like flies from the Eastern Vale. How so many entered the Vale without detection, we not yet know, but know this, many of us have died trying to hinder their advance. For every Spawn, and Beastkin in our ranks, there was about a half a legion of Tomorrow Court forces. Their Attack started on Sunday, as they swept through the Marsh Dwellers’ settlements. All civilians were lost, but a few. It was the smell of gore, and noise of torture that alerted a hunting patrol of Wolfen Beastkin to their presence. Glycel quickly ordered a muster, and I led several mixed attack groups, comprising of mainly Fire and Shadow Spawn,and Wolfen. It was soon apparent that a standing battle was suicidal against such overwhelming numbers, too many, were lost, too quickly, swept away like leaves in a spring flood. We fell back to the Escarpment, and I regrouped with the other units, assignng them into small, strike and fade units. Our only way to escape total slaughter was to hunt them, as small packs. Picking off battalions at a time. The Fey had purpose, and were heading to the mid Vale. They are hampered by the low visibility, and unfamiliar terrain. I don’t believe they were ready to be faced by Spawn, and Werecreatures, they have been used to Albion’s more regular populace.
Over the last 3 days, we have fought nigh constantly, hitting and running, luring them to the Great Circle Lake.Bast at least smiled once upon us, as we joined an advance patrol of Beastmen, who were in mid battle with a seperate unit. In good time too, they were losing ground and numbers to a group of Trolls. Myself and a pawfull of Garou struck hard into the rear unit of the Trolls, as the Spawn led by Chem and TriClaw attacked from both sides. Victory was cleanly ours in that small skirmish, and it was decided that word MUST get out to the Militia. Chem, Glycel and the wounded Spawn and Beastkin, joined unit with the Beastmen, to head out of the Vale, to warn Albion.
I, along with several battle SPawn, and just a bout a Pride’s woth of Garou and Bastet, are staying here to try to keep harrassing the enemy, to keep them in the Vale, to drive them in circles looking for us, so we can break up their numbers and pick them off. Bast give me strength for this, I’ll be lucky not to have a lame paw since it was crushed by a Troll. We have few healers, and are slowly being whittled down ourselves in these attacks. I am told that we face perhaps 10 Legions now, the crows will be feeding fatly for a long time. Time is short, we move into position for another raid within the hour. By tooth and by claw, people of Albion, we shall fight to the last.
Albion forever!

War Leader

The Host, Harts of Albion

Albion, to Arms!

13th day of May, 1099
Those of you who would take up arms, you are needed now. Our capital is threatened, the troops will not reach there in time. We muster at Wickham Village at Dusk on the morrow.
Now is the time that our strength of purpose and our resolve shall be tested. We shall prevail,
Elspeth, Queen of Albion

Alarm! Alarm!

14th day of May, 1099
Albion Stand to, stand to! This is Poynton Keep. We are under heavy attack. Direct assault by in excess of one thousand Fey, positively identified as Tomorrow Court. Special assets observed include Trolls and flame-wreathed entities. Additional numbers bypassing the Keep difficult to estimate in the dark, but certainly large. We can hear the pounding of their feet.
This will be the last message from this installation; they have breached the Bailey and we are unable to deter the gang of trolls from the Keep door; the flaming thing just eats up the boiling oil and hot lead we pour upon them. We will sell our lives as dearly as we can.
Albion Forever!
Martin Arrowsmith

Corporal, Royal Signal Corps

Victory at Winchester

24th day of May 1099
After 4 days hard fighting, and the same mopping up, Albion is once again free of the scourge of the Tomorrow Court’s troops. No concentrations larger than lance sized have been detected for 48 hours as I write. Victory is ours.
The lead elements of the Tomorrow Court’s host encircled Winchester at around noon on Friday 14 May, completing the investment of the city by dusk. At this point they lacked sufficient strength to storm the walls in the face of the reinforced garrison, but it was anticipated that they could eventually concentrate enough troops to overwhelm the defenses. Their buildup was disrupted by the actions of special assets along the axis of advance of their reinforcements, delaying the time when the enemy were ready to lauch themselves against Winchester’s walls for a full day. When it came, before sunset on Saturday, the storm was fierce, and the stalwarts of Winchester resisted doughtily. No quarter was offered by the merciless enemy, and the defenders fought for their lives, and maybe more. Against the fire and stolen might of the foe, it could not last, and two separate breaches were forced in the outer walls by midnight, and the fighting became house to house, bite and gouge brawling, the fiercest of the campaign, and all the Guilds of Winchester, Academicals to Wheelwrights, did themselves their forefathers and Albion proud that flaming, bloody night.
With dawn, the City stood in balance, and the Morituri sallied from the Citadel. Two hundred and fifty patriots, volunteers to lay down their lives for their kith, kin and Queen smote the Tomorrow Court, seeking their elite and doing war upon them at even odds, inspired by righteous rage. These heroes led the Defenders of Winchester, tirelessly dealing mayhem to the invaders, and with the concerted action of all our allies, drove them from our Capital’s precincts.
And then the pursuit. Defeated, but not routed, the Tomorrow Court Forces withdrew from Winchester to the West, screening their retreat with those warriors Endowed with the stolen vitality of good Erdrejan folk. By sheer weight of numbers and a growing desperation, they forced a breakout past Sherburn Keep, and kept going, not daring to rest, for fear of the Morituri, yet unable to outrun them.
Albion’s Battalions, buoyed by success and moved by the atrocity of the Tomorrow Court harried the main body west, past wounded Hereford, where the criminals paused to attempt more mischief on that ill-starred town, but were held for as long as needed by the garrison, and did little harm. By Friday last, all that remained of the Tomorrow Court on Albion soil were stragglers and insurgents, and the majority of these have now been neutralised. Katherine and her twisted Court have fled over the border to the haven granted them in Cymrija by Lord Arcane with a still-substantial force.
We have a number of prisoners, isolated and captured in the fighting in Winchester and afterward. They are soldiers and will be treated humanely, but will not be allowed to assault Albion again. No Endowed were taken alive. Also recaptured, and precious to the Queen, are many poor folk of Erdreja whose vitality has been leached to empower the parasitic elite troops of the Tomorrow Court. The simplest way to restore these good peoples’ health and life is to slay those Endowed with their attributes. Other avenues are, however, being explored by our ritualists.
Once we have secured our lasting peace, monuments will be raised to the dead who gave their lives for our tomorrow. until then, let us salute them, morn and night.
Albion, we remain at war with the Tomorrow Court which presents a clear and remaining danger to all our security. Be vigilant, be true and we shall prevail.
Albion forever!
Hugo Charenten KCE

Lord Lieutenant of the Eastern Marches

Marshall of the Harts Armies

Events occurring at Wickham

May 14th 1099 to May 16th 1099

Hunter Stryker
I arrived a little late to the muster, having been sweeping the area between Winchester and the Muster point for signs of Tomorrow Court activity, taking a diverse route in case they were attempting to flank our troops or even by-pass Winchester in order to strike at smaller targets.
It was strange, this action of the Tomorrow Court, for I had noticed they had restricted their activities to an area of Albion just south of the Greenwood. But there was little doubt that they were making a bold move in this war they raged against us. Still, the call to muster had been issued and I, and my team, traveled en masse, burdened with supplies of arrows and wood cudgels, bandages and rope to give our aid to the Crown.
On arrival, I found the camp to be a hive of activity. Indeed, it was some time before I managed to gain a briefing as to what to expect, and an overview of the part we would be taking. My group was to form the Reserve, to act in support of any other group as and when required. The first duty was to secure the perimeter while one team went to Sherburn to re-open the ritual circle there and a second team was out on a resources raid.
There was no real activity that night for the camp guard, save for sightings of villagers in the tree line going about their business.
The next day, a magical transportation system had to be assembled as the nearby temporary transport circle had failed. This transport system was rather unusual, but for reasons I shall refrain from going into, I will decline from describing. Never the less, the system needed guarding and a safeguard put in place in case an attempt was made to trace back the teams using it and a retaliatory force sent. To this end, I and my associates set up a command triggered deadfall trap over the area. This did require that there be a guard at the trigger at all times, but this was easy to arrange.
Teams went out to attend to various tasks in an effort to bolster the support and resources available to bring against the Tomorrow Court. Items were sought, supplies and means to match the Empowerment the Tomorrow Court elite were using. Some of these were achieved, though others were not so successful. During this time, four Seelie fey appeared that were under some sort of compulsion. They struck at the guards and wrecked havoc through the camp. They were dropped once only to re-appear and be dropped a second time. The third time, however, a thing had been noted – they were seeking a box and wanted release. We did not know the location of this box, and were unable to simply sit and chat as they were compelled to strike out at any within their reach. Yet still we managed to communicate, learn of the situation of these fey and instill in them the knowledge that we would help them in their plight. They disappeared, not to re-appear again.
Several of the reserve had become restless so arrangements were made for them to rotate onto various teams to give others a chance to rest. Patrols were sent out and it was noticed that, by late afternoon, that Tomorrow Court scouts had found the camp. Others had also located us, including a group of Skaven who had secured some Tomorrow Court prisoners, and a few items that could help us in our tasks. These Skaven were a little nervous around me for some obscure reason. I never understand why…
Still, travellers appeared that had news to share, and entertainers that brought a dog with them for me to play with. Then also was the incident that night of the shapechangers who dared impersonate Dan’Arell Flynn, Finn and Franji. They beguiled many as those present sought to ensure the three were not the real people under some form of compulsion. In the end, the truth was known and the three were dismissed from the camp. Also that night, a team were sent out to identify the location of the Tomorrow Court seer. This mission was believed a success.
On the Sunday, we made ready for the expected attack from Tomorrow Court troops we believed were in the area. We were confident that they knew not our full strength, even though teams were still being sent out – despite the transport system becoming unstable and hazardous to the users. Time passed and scouts were observed. A few skirmishes occurred, but no major action. As the teams that had gone out returned, more Fey appeared in the surrounding woodlands and we waited. The Tomorrow Court attacked, their numbers including a few Trolls. They were repelled repeatedly, but they would not maintain a sustained assault. As they stood off, our archers had plenty of opportunity to shoot the opposition with the plain wood shafts that had been prepared. Time and again, the Tomorrow Court had to either give ground, face slow death or advance to attack the prepared lines of defence.
In the end, the Tomorrow Court troops pushed forward and an open skirmish followed. Several proved immune to all by a few weapons and those were quickly brought to bear on this opponents, they being hounded by teams of Albion troops who worked in rota to keep those weapons in use, despite individuals being feared, weapons being shattered or stolen, and wounds being inflicted.
Once these troops had been dispatched, it was decided that there be a sweep of the area while the bulk of the Albion troop assembled made ready to march to Sherburn. During that march, word was received from the scouts that there were Tomorrow Court troops in the area. All reports indicated that they may well be chasing us, until further intelligence was received and it was realised that they had been routed. Teams were then dispatched to various locations to reinforce garrisons or warn locals of the movements of these hostile forces.
At this point, I returned to the Greenwood to make use of the Ranger network there to aid in these tasks.
Sir Hunter Stryker

The Aftermath – to End A War?

25th day of May 1099
At six in the evening the Special Forces left Wickham and set out to the west. Heading for the safety of the ritual circle at Stretton. They were harried by only one small force of the Tomorrow Court before they stopped to rest for the night.
At dusk they made cold camp. Sleeping in rotation, in small groups, hidden as much as possible. Those guarding reported small numbers of the enemy passing during the night; they did not seem interested in engaging the Albione forces and were permitted to pass by.
At first light the camp roused. They had to move hard and fast if they were to reach safety by nightfall. With power returned, those who had been carrying wounds were healed and it was with renewed vigour that the Albiones set out once more.
The morning passed without incident.
At around mid afternoon, the scouts encountered one enemy unit; this was dispatched with little difficulty. However those set to guard the rear soon reported significant enemy numbers behind, moving with some speed.
A hasty conference between the commanders, later, it was decided to press on as fast as people were able. It was clear that there were too many of the Tomorrow Court behind to stand and mount a defence.
A group of the swiftest movers were sent on ahead to give warning to those at Stretton and Gloucester.
In the early evening it became obvious that the Tomorrow Court were not actually in pursuit, they were certainly headed in the same direction, but a pursuing force would have caught up by that time. This gave hope. If there was a significant Tomorrow Court army heading west, then Winchester must have held. The Tomorrow Court was in retreat.
Finally as dusk was falling the tired forces reached the village of Stretton, about 3 miles from the ritual circle. The news they heard there was not welcome.
Alithiel, the Ritualist at Stretton was dead, as were two of her contributors. The rest were attempting to recuperate their strength after the gruelling time they had spent, firstly maintaining the transport circle at Wickham and then with the help of the Sherburn Circle holding open the transport gateway. Worse still, the power of the circle had been overused and it would not operate, even to effect a transport.
Again the Commanders met. Their concern was that they would soon face a force from the Tomorrow Court, of unknown strength and numbers. They only had a small force with them and although these numbered amongst Albion’s elite, they numbers they faced were certainly too great.
Additionally, the countryside must be warned. Villages and farms must be evacuated, and the dwellers within the nearby Greenwood must be given time to prepare.
The decision was made to split the Albione forces.
Those who were most at home within the woods were to head straight to the Heart of the Greenwood to raise the alarm there and thence to Elf’s rest to spread word of what was happening. The leader of this group was Malik, Lord Lieutenant of the Western Marches, with Alistair Crowlee as his second. After a bracing two day forest yomp, these woodsmen reached Elf’s Rest and were back in touch with the world.
The second group, lead by s’Kalion were to head with speed to the Underdark entrance at Silverlake. From there to try to organise any forces available in order to relieve any siege at Gloucester, were it to be necessary. This mission was unsuccessful, as the main body of the Tomorrow Court were “advancing to the rear” along an axis between Silverlake and Hereford, and this detachment was forced to hide and sneak, eventually crossing to Silverlake as the last Fae were driven out of Albion.
A third group, composed of the Karlennon Cornish, under Lady Knight Lerianneth Penhaligon, was charged with reaching Worcester and spreading news from there, and with reporting on the situation in the Duchy of Cornwall. They encountered little or no difficulty on their two-day hike.
The last and largest group, led by Benedict Karlennon and Iseeyu Yuseeme were to go directly to Gloucester, to help reinforce the wall should it become a necessity and to escort the evacuees from Stretton which had been deemed indefensible. Moving slowly away from the smoke of Stretton, it was estimated that the lightly armed Fae scouts would catch the encumbered column in the open before the safety of Gloucester could be attained. Hence the group turned north and made for the Keep at Charenten village. The Queen’s twin brother Edward welcomed the motley band into the stronghold of his Demesne as dawn broke on Wednesday morning.
Elemmhir Lanatrea

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