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August 2016
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Melee at Grassy Vale
IC Date: 28-09-162
RL Date: June 04, 2011.
Participants: Alek Reyne, Dagur Saltcliffe, Anton Piper, Alyard Corbray, Elmer Crakehall, Willard Ryger, Justyn Serry, Galan Lannister, the Green Lion, Myles Hightower, Ser Randyll [Puppeted by Luthor], Ser Josyn [Puppeted by Alek], Edwyd Bulwer [Puppeted by Dagur], Kendros "Longaxe" Goodbrook [Puppeted by Dagur], Ser Bleddyn [Puppeted by Allos], Ser Gavyn of the White Shield [Puppeted by Reyna], Gormon [Puppeted by Reyna], Ser Stig, [Puppeted by Anton]
Locations: The Reach: Outside Grassy Vale (TP Room: Highgarden: Great Hall)

Summary: The search for Ser Josmyn Reyne turns to blood upon the fields before Grassy Vale.

Logfile from Blood of Dragons.

Gloaming has folded the land in its gentle embrace. Somewhere, a bird trills the day’s last, lonely song; the cool breeze is redolent of all that is green and growing and bountiful. The night-insects have begun to chirp in the fields, and off in the distance, a squat, solid keep has been transformed by the hour into something altogether more delicate, as if sprung from a bard’s tale, one of its towers crowned by the rising moon.

But there are harsh, alien sounds in this quiet hour. The jangling of harness. The pounding of hooves. The desperate, heaving breaths of horses that are close to foundering; the panting of riders that are not much better.

For see, the chase is an end. Seven days and seven nights of relentless riding have brought the hunters to this place, with keep of Grassy Vale right there. And thundering across the field towards it, the prey, racing for its bolthole—Longaxe and Edwyd Bulwer’s company, reduced from its original strength as tired men have fallen away over the course of the chase, but still formidable.

And just a few minutes behind them, burnt by the sun, made haggard by exhaustion, the Iron Serpent’s company. Like a pack of wolves, then thunder forward in utter silence with the ironman himself in the lead. Their blades are drawn now; one last effort and it will be steel-to-steel. Their horses, the last remounts are all but done; at the back, one goes down with a shrill neigh and its rider takes a hard spill, but no one stops for them.

Riding near to the front of the company, looking as tired and exhausted as any of them, is Ser Alek Reyne. His green eyes are focused ahead on the fleeing company of Meadows, Bulwers, Goodbrooks and smallfolk who have cast their lots with Longaxe. His axe is drawn, a mailed fist clamped around the wooden handle to prevent from dropping it as he continues to ride solidly with the main group.

His charger breathing hard, him in full armour, wearing the shining goldcloak of the King’s Landing City Watch, Ser Anton Piper rides near the front of the pack chasing Longaxe and company. His cloak flapping in the air behind him, Anton is silent, his eyes staring forward.

For this last effort, Ser Myles has saved his courser—wise, as it is quite an expensive mount. Even now sweat lathers along its neck and haunches, and its flanks show red where the Hightower knight’s spurs have urged the beast on. His leathers are dusty and he stinks of the road, but then so does everyone else. His blade is drawn, and he is not far away from Dagur, near the front of the party as would be expected of him.

Aberyn is riding in the middle of the group of hunters. His one arm clutching his Halberd, the other the reins of his tired horse. The ays of sun glimmering off his leather armor. He has discarded his heavy armor. He watches through the row of men the fleeing company of kidnappers in the distance. His armor is adorned with the signet of House Crane.
Elmer is driven by his personal desire to bring his brother-in-law back as well as by the will to revenge the insult brought to the House of his wife. The tall knight is wearing light chainmail, his heavy Lannister cloak stashed away in his saddlebages, this is about speed, and his sword is drawn, but he keeps his gelding from running too fast, he doesn’t want him blown when they reach their quarry.

  The Corbray Knight makes for a recognizable figure, his armor reflecting the moonlight off mixture of lightweight white scales over ringmail as black as jet. A flowing white cloak is attached at the shoulder bears his personal arms, a single black raven in flight with a crimson heart held in his talons. The rider is sweating already, his long black hair slick with sweat.

As he pushes harder to reach Alek and Dagur at the front his horse whinnies, lather hidden against the white coat covered with travel dust. Alyard yanks at the reins and keeps the beast in line. His long wavy locks flow behind him in the breeze as he rides, revealing his grey eyes. Looking out across the landscape he inhales deeply, taking one last breath of clean air before his nostrils fill with inevitable the smell of death and gore. He unsheathes his longsword and takes his reins in one hand, prepared for battle.

Lightly armored and lightly armed is the young Lord of Southshield, Justyn Serry, his waterdancer’s blade held firmly in one hand, his heater shield in the other. He attempts to keep pace with his good-uncle, Ser Alek Reyne, but his horsemanship simply is not up to that level, and so he lags somewhat behind, still toward the fore of the group, but by a narrow margin. The hard riding of the past few days has taken quite the toll on the young man, but he seems quite heartened to finally spot the quarry they have been searching for this entire time: the Meadows, Bulwers, and their varied associates, foes he expects to fight very soon.
After spending his time in Dorne as a member of the Outriders, Janden is well equipped for long, constant rides. Even so, the grueling ride through the questionable terrain has take it’s toll on him as well. But, the adrenaline flows, the prey within sights. The games of Highgarden are a distant memory. He closes in with the rest of the group, his sword unsheathed, ready to strike.
Ammon Massey leans close over his horse’s neck, clinging tightly to the reins with his left hand. His blade is clutched in his right hand, the polished steal reflecting the light of the rising moon. A fair rider at best, Ser Dagur’s squire struggles to keep up with the main body - a feat not helped when he looks back towards the fallen man. With that, Ammon faces forward again and puts his spurs to the horse’s flanks.
Looking to his sides Ser Willard Ryger sees his fellow knights - solemn, steady, unrelenting. For the first time he is actually riding in the company of knights as one of them, on a just cuse. The feeling is exhilarating and he makes his horse make that last effort. His sword is still in his scabbard, waiting to be pulled out at the moment of truth - one of Willard’s hands goes for the pommel of the sword and strokes its fallling-star shape for good luck.
Trebor follows silently, with his eyes fixed on the foe ahead. He wears the most modest of armors, and yet keeps his golden cloak, symbol of his position as a member of the City Guard. His face is expressionless, and does not betray his true thoughts. He is ready to do what needs to be done.
Galan the Green Lion rides on the north side of the charge. His ringmail loooks polished, but his golden mane trailing out the back of his helm outdoes it. His dirty white charger however seems to not care for his noble visage as Ser Galan. He crouches in the saddle, trying to keep his height from being a liability in the inevitable charge.
The hunters reach the bottom of the small rise they had crested earlier, thunder on into the field before them—the field across which their prey is racing. And the Iron Serpent risks a glance back over his shoulder at his own depleted company, for many of his own men have fallen aside over the course of their chase as well, unable to keep up.

“Edwyd. This is Edwyd’s doing. Only he could have planned this,” he rasps, dry-throated, and then saves his breath, urging one last burst of speed from his mount. For the hunters have found signs during the chase of their prey having taken remounts—again and again. Remounts obviously left carefully along the way when Longaxe and Edwyd first rode out to set their ambush. This has been most carefully planned.

But even though their enemies’ horses are fresher, somehow, the hunters gain. Closer and closer—one last gasp, a last surge of speed and will now.

Albin Sarsfield rides solidly next to his master, the young squire’s axe drawn also. The boy, however, is there solely for backup, under Alek’s express orders to turn tail and run if the fighting gets too rough.

Alek, meanwhile, has his breastplate, adorned with the rampant crimson lion of Castamere emblazoned on his chest, his light silver cloak streaming behind him as he urges his tired charger, a sleek black stallion, onwards, relentless unless the beast falls. Otherwise, the old lion wears leather armour on his arms and legs, in an effort to keep himself light.

Anton does not speak, he simply urges his mount to give it everything the poor beast’s got. One final push and they’ll have reached their quarry. Finally Anton places a hand on the longsword strapped on his belt.. His other hand remains on the reins and he leans his head down to try and get as much speed as possible. His leather armour is a benefit in this regard, the less weight allowing his mount to charge faster ahead.
Elmer comes up, almost behind the Iron Serpent, and his voice booms. “Any instructions, Ser Dagur?“He asks, knowing that skill will not be enough here, and the knights must work togeter. He watches his uncle too, a smile dancing on his lips, as he seemingly considers teasing him, but then he changes his mind

Ser Myles twists his blade in his hand. “We’re almost upon them!” He manages to call out. “Dick, fall back!” he shouts to his squire above the din of hooves, Richard Mullendore of Uplands, though most just call him Spotted Dick. “Stay out of the initial charge, and then come in and go where needed!”

The squire begins to drop back in the ranks and Ser Myles turns his attention upon the pursuit.

Alyard bears a wry grin as they approach their prey, his stormcloud gaze already flickering across potential targets like a falcon selecting his prey. Kicking hard into the exhausted Frost’s flanks he urges the beast into one large gallop. Ebony hooves kick up grass and dirt in a wide arc behind him as the mount gives every part of his being to this final charge.

The final few moments where time feels like it stands still and all sound dissapears before the Falcon dives.

Everyone urges their horses for the last effort and so does Willard. His horse, his last horse, is visibly giving all he’s got as the RYger knight speeds him on. Before the last ride he slipped a mail hauberk over his boiled leather armor and now smiles to himself as it seems this move may have been smart. Willard rides up to Ser Anton, to again hold his side, just as he did when the Goodbrooks and Meadows attacked them at the hunt.
If there was any sign that Alek knew of the world around him, the old lion didn’t show it. He doesn’t respond to Elmer’s words, nor even glance at his nephew as he rides up behind, his green stare fixed directly ahead, intent on catching the company ahead.
The rush of battle. Janden says nothing, trying to hear everything. His eyes dart around as he continues to charge. Noting the positions of the men on his side and the arrangement of the men that they chase. He kicks hard against the sides of his horse, urging the last ounce of power from it’s great legs.
Ammon gains on the group, somehow, and once again finds himself in their midst, close to the Green Lion. He is sweating in his leather and mail, his mouth set in a determined line. Ammon pays no mind to the other squires - those falling to the back of the group. With a quick, muffled curse, he spurs his mount on again.

So close now that the prey’s stink of sweat and desperation fills their noses. And the weakest of the herd has fallen behind; a man-at-arms who spurs his foundering horse desperately, panting, not daring to look behind as the hunters’ hooves pound closer and closer.

In the end, with a desperate cry, dragging his sword out, he begins to pull his horse around to face the enemy, eyes impossibly wide in his sun-browned face. And the Iron Serpent’s sword licks on, bisecting his face, giving him a scar he will bear the rest of his days, taking one of those eyes. The man-at-arms screams; his horse stumbles drunkenly, almost into Alek’s path before folding to its knees, thankfully out of the hunters’ way.

But something is happening now. At that scream, there are shouts from up ahead, a ringing of steel. And Longaxe, Edwyd and their men begin to slow, begin to turn. They seem to have realised that the hunters are too close behind. And so they choose to fight instead of being taken in the rear.

And, finding their order again, at a hoarse yell from Longaxe, they charge. The two companies crash into each other.

Alek doesn’t divert his course as the man and horse stumble about, licked by the Iron Serpent’s blade. As the prey turns, Alek’s gaze turns on Edwyd Bulwer. The Reyne knight charges, his axe moving free, swinging for Edwyd’s side.
Alek attacks Edwyd with his mass weapon…
...and sees his blow go astray!
Elmer moves forward, finally giving his gelding free rein, as with the burst of speed he charges too, just behind Ser Dagur, and his own breath is faster, finally the hunt is at an end. “None so fierce!” he roars, charging towards Ser Bleddyd, his shield held up and his sword going down in a viciosu bite towards the man’s leg.

At orders from Longaxe, Ser Petyr of Tumbleton pulls back on the bridle and turns, drawing his blade. Crag-faced and old, the hedge knight appears nevertheless a grizzled veteran. His shield is dented but of sturdy oak, painted with a red ferret, and his helm bears more than a few marks of combat. His sword is notched also, and he lets out a great yell as he crashes into the Iron Serpent’s men, swinging as he goes.

Elmer attacks Ser Bleddyn with his sword…
...with no result as the two warriors battle!
Despite being tired and saddle sore, there is a fierce grin on the lips of “Ser” Randyl Flowers, or as he prefers to be called, the Black Bastard as Ser Kendros’ company draws steel and wheels about to face their pursuers. He spits on the ground and draws his blade from over his right shoulder and grips it in his right hand while his left grips the reins. The man smirks to White Shield before he begins his charge. “Death or infamy eh?” he japes before he kicks his the frothing flanks of his mount and charges into his pursuers with his bastard sword flashing.
The gaunt, mail-clad figure of Ser Bleddyd, the hedge-knight, turns with the abducting company. His pale eyes light upon a large knight and, draw the weapon at his hip, he spurs and howls at his steed, sending it thundering forwards in a glossy mass of hooves, flesh and wild eyes. As the two sides clash, he makes for a strong opening blow.

And with an almighty woosh sound comes back as sword and shield clatter all around the Corbray knight. Blood splashes over his horse as someone nearby takes a hit. Alyard’s eyes narrow on Ser Randyll, the grin never leaving his lips, even as his nose wrinkles in anticipation. He kicks his heels and raises his blade, swinging in a wide arc he aims at the flesh between the man’s nose and mouth.

Growling as he turns, the fierce form of Ser Josyn of Grassy Vale wheels around and charges head-long into the persuing company, sword being yanked free from its sheath as he clashes.
Alyard attacks Ser Randyl with his sword…
...and strikes him with a hard blow!

With a loud roar, Anton charges straight for his cousin, Ser Kendros “Longaxe” Goodbrook. “This ends today, KENDROS!” His longsword out in a flash, and Anton is slashing at the Longaxe with all his might, a massive overhand swing that is aimed at the Longaxe’s arm.
Anton attacks Kendros with his sword…
...and strikes him with a swift blow!
Galan Lannister lets out a howl, “Casterly Rock!” as he reaches Gavyn the White Shield. When he reaches him, he throws his armweight behind a strong sideblow aimed for the arm that held his namesake shield.
Speed is a weapon. Janden watches as Ser Petyr wheels around, leaving enough space between him and the next man that the knight feels comfortable charging full speed toward him with little chance of taking a blow in his back. His sword raised high, it cuts down fiercly toward Ser Petyr when he crashes into range.
Galan attacks Ser Gavyn of the White Shield with his sword…
...and merely strikes a glancing blow!

Even wearied, Edwyd Bulwer is a formidable opponent, towering above the men around him. One of the Iron Serpent’s men tries to take him on, only to be battered out of his saddle. And then, suddenly, Alek is there, and the Bulwer knight is dragging on his reins, pulling his horse aside just enough that the older knight’s blow whistles past harmlessly. And in return, rising in his stirrups, he hammers hard at Alek’s head.

Janden attacks Petyr with his sword…
...and strikes him with a shattering blow!
Ser Bleddyn attacks Elmer with his sword…
...and has his blow intercepted by Elmer’s shield.
Edwyd attacks Alek with his sword…
...and strikes him with a shattering blow!

Ser Stig, the hedge-knight looks around for a target before settling on the squire of the Iron Serpent. Roaring in defiance, the knight charges straight for the young man, Ammon, Massey, his sword arcing before him.
Grinning with joy as the men of Grassy Vale begin to turn to face them, the Lord of House Serry looks over to his uncle briefly. He’s going after the leader, is he? Justyn chuckles to himself, then settling upon a man for himself, one near to Ser Alek’s. Sword held high and pointed at the man, Justyn attempts to use the momentum of his charge to run Able through.
Justyn attacks Able with his sword…
...and strikes him with a hard blow!

Gavyn has already fought this lot of men, and lived to tell the tale of it; Galan’s blow skitters over his boiled leather vambraces without doing much damage and he only lifts his longaxe and swings back with a grunt of effort, all business and no bluster.

Ser Gavyn of the White Shield attacks Galan with his sword…
...and strikes him with a hard blow!
Alek grunts out as Edwyd’s sword rings out against his helm, the man wearing steel there, also. The Reyne snarls out, axe whirling out for Edwyd’s sword-arm.
Alek attacks Edwyd with his mass weapon…
...and strikes him with a powerful blow!
Randyl spits blood as the blow strikes home- blood and a couple of his yellowed teeth. “You smirking fucking pig spawn,” he snarls though with a bloody face and missing teeth it comes out an incomprehensible spewing of noise and blood. His sword though makes a more eloquent reply as the grizzled hedge knight lets go of his reins grips his bastard sword with both hands and swings, hard, for Alyard’s head to return the favor.
Ser Randyl attacks Alyard with his sword…
...and strikes him with a swift blow!
Elmer lets out a groan as the other man’s sword bounces off his shield and he grins widely as the battle is joined and the sound of steel on steel is all around. He moves forward and if earlier he tried swinging low, now he hits high, at his opponent’s head.
Elmer attacks Ser Bleddyn with his sword…
...and strikes him with a shattering blow!
Willard rushes headlong into the resounding clangor of steel against steel, the whinny of horses and the cries of men. He slows down and looks around - everywhere men fighting, swords glinting in the sun. Willard shakes hi head and wipes the sweat from his eyes “Get a hold of yourself, Wil!” he whispers to himself as he unsheathes his sword in a swift motion and takes his shield in his left, looking for a target. He notices the fierce form of Ser Josyn nearby and with a haunting yell rides at him, his sword aiming for the mans back with a powerful thrust.

As the fracas begins, Ser Myles Hightower sets his eyes upon his quarry: Gormon. He knows not that name but only the face in front of him, and he gives the spurs to his mount one final time as they meet.

“We Light the Way!” the knight erupts with the words of his family, slashing in a horzontal, backhanded arc.

Myles attacks Gormon with his sword…
...and strikes him with a hard blow!
Able is smaller than most of the men in the fray. However, he looks as though he has put in his time fighting - and while not having great strength or reach, he has speed and cunning. He wheels his mount around to face the fire and discovers Justyn only feet away, raising his sword to block the blow but only pushes it to the side, taking the bulk of it against his shoulder. He snarls and stands high in his saddle as the horse turns to engage Justyn, striking back at the knight.
Willard attacks Ser Josyn with his sword…
...and strikes him with a shattering blow!
Ammon’s eyes widen as Stig charges; his training takes over. A quick pull on the reigns and a kick of his feet and his horse moves aside so the men are not head-on. With a warcry containing no words, Ammon brings his sword around at the charging hedge knight.
Able attacks Justyn with his sword…
...and has his blow intercepted by Justyn’s shield.
Ammon attacks Stig with his sword…
...and merely strikes a glancing blow!

Ser Petyr meets Ser Janden with the fury of the ferret, but it doesn’t amount to much because the Valeknight’s first attack is a good one, biting through his leathers and drawing a gash in his shield arm. The hedge knight howls and swings wildly at Ser Janden to buy himself a moment to regroup.

If Edwyd Bulwer is an aurochs bulling his way through the melee, the Longaxe is a wolf, vicious and ruthlessly fast. The longaxe that has given him his name leaves behind a trail of blood as it arcs through the night; there are already two broken, maimed bodies in his wake. But at that roar, he too lets out a wordless bellow and charges at Anton. And shrugging aside the blow that slices across his left arm and brings blood, he sweeps his longaxe in a flat, chopping arc.

Petyr attacks Janden with his mass weapon…
...and strikes him with a shattering blow!
Josyn falls against his horse at the powerful blow. “So! All men who ride with cowardly lions are craven, too?!” He swings out his sword for Willard’s side.
Ser Josyn attacks Willard with his sword…
...and sees his blow go wild!
Kendros attacks Anton with his mass weapon…
...and strikes him with a hard blow!

Connecting with a hard blow begins the slow numbing of Alyard’s swordarm, preparing for the attack he wheels his horse around and lifts his blade. Not quick enough it would seem, he shifts his head and takes the hit on his shoulder. His mail splits and blood drops onto the horse, causing it to lash out, biting at Randyl’s mount. Alyard uses the chance to lunge again, aiming for a stab into the knight’s gut.

Alyard attacks Ser Randyl with his sword…
...and strikes him with a powerful blow!
Justyn lets out a wry laugh as he moves his heater shield to intercept Able’s blow. “Is that the best you have, you cur?!” Justyn cries out. Pulling the slender blade free from Able’s shoulder, the Lord of Southshield swiftly stabs at the shorter man once again, aiming for his shoulder again to attempt to disarm his foe.
Justyn attacks Able with his sword…
...and strikes him with a powerful blow!
Ser Bleddyn, perhaps not noble but a tenacious fighter nonetheless, is struck full-force in the helm by Ser Elmer’s hack. He clings on and immediately, even from his uncertain position, attempts a counter-cut to his opponent’s sword-arm. As he hacks, his face twists into a lupine snarl, “Fuck you, boar.”
Ser Bleddyn attacks Elmer with his sword…
...with no result as the two warriors battle!

In the wild chaos of the melee, Ser Bleddyn and Elmer are carried apart from one another.

Gormon, a pimpled hedge knight without much in the way of armor, squeaks most unmanfully when Myles strikes, and the blood flows at once down his sword arm. “Owwww!” he yelps, using the force of the blow to turn his horse completely around. Then he swings his sword back at Myles, with more strength than skill.

Stig is momentarily surprised and nearly charges past Ammon before managing to swing his horse around. This lapse in judgement lets the squire land the first blow, a light cut along Stig’s shield arm. With a roar of pain, the hedge-knight turns around and launches an overhand blow aimed at Ammon’s shoulder.
Gormon attacks Myles with his sword…
...and strikes him with a hard blow!
Janden feels his strike land true and hard, but his horse stumbles at the contact. Janden struggles to shift into a good position, unable to raise his shield or sword to intercept the return blow. The heavy weapon hits with authority into his side, rocking the Vale knight in his saddle. He swears as he gets his beast under control and tries a fast overhand strike - the kind of blow toward Petry finish a fight quickly.
The Blow catches Galan in the side. If it had been a straight blow or if Galan had been unarmored he’d have been in two pieces. As it is though, the axe side hits him and screeches against the rings of mail, though the tip manages to put a gash in his more lightly armored leg. Galan pulls at his reigns, attempting to twist away from another blow as he makes a stab to Gavyn’s chest with his bastard sword.
Galan attacks Ser Gavyn of the White Shield with his sword…
...and strikes him with a powerful blow!

Again, the Bulwer knight sends his steed dancing aside. But this time, he cannot escape Alek’s blow entirely; it thuds into his ribs, raising a cough of pain from him even with the hardened leather armour he wears. And in reply, he barges into Alek, trying to use his superior size, hammering at the other man in a frenzy.

Janden attacks Petyr with his sword…
...and strikes him with a hard blow!
Elmer laughs merrily, the battle fever taking over him, and he chuckles. “You have weird tastes in your bedpartners! But no matter, they end today!” he smiles, his dark eyes sparkling from behind his visor and again he hits high, cutting in a backhand stroke at Bleddyn’s helmet.
Elmer attacks Ser Bleddyn with his sword…
...and strikes him with a shattering blow!

Ser Bleddyn is rocked back in the saddle by Elmer’s blow, but manages to keep his seat!
Edwyd attacks Alek with his sword…
...and strikes him with a hard blow!
Alek takes the charge hard, trying desperately to cling to his saddle, righting himself before he rises in the stirrups to bring his axe down on Edwyd’s sword-shoulder.
Willard smiles when his sword strikes true against his opponent’s armor. He then swiftly changes his horses direction making the desprate counter go completely astray. He laugh at the attempt and mocks “The craven are all here, attacking a hunting party with women present and running away like cowardly rabbits for their burrows!” and he accentuates his words with a savage flat blow to Ser Josyn’s head.
Alek attacks Edwyd with his mass weapon…
...and strikes him with a swift blow!
Willard attacks Ser Josyn with his sword…
...and strikes him with a powerful blow!

Ser Josyn is driven from the saddle!

Ser Myles strikes home, but is unable to regroup in time, as Ser Gormon’s blade hits the top of his shield and carries through to bite into his shoulder. He howls, and his warhorse whinnies and bites at Ser Gormon’s mount.

The Hightower knight is bleeding, and the battle has just begun, but that is the way of most battles. He brings his sword in an overhead arc down towards Ser Gormon’s helm.

Myles attacks Gormon with his sword…
...and strikes him with a swift blow!
Able is swatted again by Justyn. The Lord hammering him again. He sways in his saddle, grunting from the pain of the blow. “I gave tha best I ha’ to your fat fuck of a mother, my lord!” Able strikes out swiftly toward the man again as he spits the words.
Able attacks Justyn with his sword…
...and has his blow intercepted by Justyn’s shield.
Another unintelligible curse issues forth from Ser Randyl’s bleeding mouth. His horse rears and Alyard’s blade strikes home opening an wound in the man’s side. His horse crashes back down almost on top of Alyards it’s cries almost human as the wound Alyard’s horse gave it starts to bleed. The two knights are thrown together, so close Randyl could smell the man’s breath if he could smell more than his own blood right now. Too close for his bastard sword, Ser Randyl spits his own blood at Alyard’s face and kicks his horse away, when the distance opens, he swings a wide arc at the Vale knight’s chest, two-handed meant to crush ribs and knock the other man from his horse.
Ser Randyl attacks Alyard with his sword…
...and has his blow intercepted by Alyard’s shield.
Ser Josyn, completely unprepared for the blow, yelps out as the flat of the blade smacks him right in the face, causing the hedge knight to be sent sprawling on the ground.
Name set.
Stig attacks Ammon with his sword…
...and strikes him with a powerful blow!
Struck again, viciously in the helm, the gaunt hedgeknight, Ser Bleddyn, is knocked back across his horse and clings on by some mixture of horsemanship and luck. Reining his horse about he bellows as he attempts to thrust for the larger knight’s throat with his long-sword.
Ser Bleddyn attacks Elmer with his sword…
...and strikes him with a hard blow!

Ser Petyr is locked in combat with Ser Janden, and he takes another wound, but not so bad as it could have been. He preserves his pock-marked head, but his shoulder takes a blade wound, cutting through his ill-used armor like it was Myrish lace. He howls and thrusts his blade forward towards Ser Janden.

Gavyn is hurt this time, and he grunts in pain when Galan’s sword bites deep into his side. But it is not enough to slow the White Shield; as soon as he has wheeled his horse and found Galan again, he swings his longaxe down in an obvious attempt at removing the Lannister’s head.

Gormon, meanwhile, is reeling from the dunt of Myle’s sword on his helm. His swing is wild when he returns the blow; no doubt from the bashed noggin.

Ser Gavyn of the White Shield attacks Galan with his sword…
...and strikes him with a powerful blow!
Gormon attacks Myles with his sword…
...and strikes him with a powerful blow!
Petyr attacks Janden with his mass weapon…
...and has his blow intercepted by Janden’s shield.

And again, Edwyd takes that blow hard enough to make him reel. His face is grey with exhaustion and pain. But there is a wild light in his eyes; the battle-fever is on him and he rises in his stirrups, raising his axe high.

“Die, whoreson!”

And brings his sword down like a thunderbolt.

Edwyd attacks Alek with his sword…
...and strikes him with a shattering blow!

Alek is driven from the saddle!

Anton is ready for Longaxe’s counter strike, but the other knight is simply too fast and try as he might, Anton distinctly feels the axe pierce his leather armour and draw blood on his shield arm. The blow is a deep one and causes Anton a slight pause. But the Piper knight clenches his teeth and with another roar, launches an overhand swing against Longaxe, aimed at his shoulder.
Anton attacks Kendros with his sword…
...and strikes him with a swift blow!
Again the Lord of Southshield uses his shield to block Able’s blow. He scowls at the man, roaring, “You’ll pay for that, dog!” Instead of his sword, as Able might expect, Justyn edges nearer and attempts to shove him from the saddle with a wild swing his shield, putting all of his strength behind the bashing blow.
Elmer feels the rasp of steel against his gorget, and he curses. “Not so fast, fool.” He laughs and he dahes again, surprisingly nimble in the saddle as another of his trademark blows is brough against Ser Bleddyn.
Justyn attacks Able with his sword…
...and has his blow intercepted by Able’s shield.
Elmer attacks Ser Bleddyn with his sword…
...and strikes him with a swift blow!

Ser Bleddyn is driven from the saddle!

Ser Myles lands his blade on the helm, but it does little real damage. It does unbalance him in the saddle, however; he is unprepared for the wild counterattack and takes a wound on the bicep of his sword arm.

He presses the attack, however, as he notices the daze in Gormon’s eyes, swinging for him yet again.

Myles attacks Gormon with his sword…
...and merely strikes a glancing blow!
Janden is better positioned this time and with a firm mount beneath him. The thrust from Petyr is straight and Janden easily pushes his shield in front of it, pushing the heavy weapon away from his body and striking with his sword heavily once more.
Janden attacks Petyr with his sword…
...and strikes him with a powerful blow!

Petyr is rocked back in the saddle by Janden’s blow, but manages to keep his seat!

Randyl’s blood finds its mark, splatting across Alyard’s cheek and mouth. Alyard looks him dead in the eye and grins, his white teeth a contrast to the dark liquid across his face. “Die…” He utters as the men shift apart, lifting his sword to easily parry his foe’s attack. His horse whinnies again, blood tricking from its mouth in long dribbles. Alyard strikes, looking to decapitate the knight smoothly.

Ammon is rocked backwards as Stig’s blade catches him in the shoulder. Blood sprays, though the wound is not especially deep. With another cry, Ammon attacks Stig again.
Alyard attacks Ser Randyl with his sword…
...and strikes him with a shattering blow!

Ser Randyl is driven from the saddle!
The old lion tries to bring his axe around to block the sword-stroke down, but howls out in pain as it lands against his shoulder, cleaving into the flesh and overbalancing the Reyne knight sending him sprawling into the dirt.
Ammon attacks Stig with his sword…
...and misses by a narrow margin!

Ser Petyr takes another wound, but it is not so much the sharpness of his foe’s blade as the raw force behind it which catches him, unbalancing the hedge knight. It is all he can do to keep the saddle; years of experience serve him well here, though, for he manages it. Ser Petyr attacks wildly, thrusting at Ser Janden.

Gormon whines when he is hit again, even though this is not such a hard blow. “I’m becoming a septon if I survive this,” he pules, wheeling his horse nonetheless and aiming a nasty blow at Myles’ shoulder.

Petyr attacks Janden with his mass weapon…
...and strikes him with a swift blow!
Gormon attacks Myles with his sword…
...with no result as the two warriors battle!

And like a wolf, Longaxe slinks beneath that blow; it scrapes over his shoulder and barely slows him. He is close now; close enough to Anton for his spittle to fleck the other man’s face when he snarls, “Come, coz. Die for me!”

And shortening his grip, jabs brutally at Anton with the spike atop his axeblade.

Able laughs as he leans back and dodges the violent blow from Justyn’s shield. “Ahhhh - funn-eh that. Your mum couldn’t get me off either!” He nudges his horse and it reacts well to his gesture, shifting in close to Justyn for a swift strike, trying to get inside his guard.
Willard yells a cry of victory as Ser Josyn goes down from his strike. It feels good to fight, to finally show someone he’s got what it takes. The heir to Willow Wood turns his horsearound, slashing at a passing man-at-arms, looking for new pray. Or for someone to help with an overwhelming foe…
Able attacks Justyn with his sword…
...with no result as the two warriors battle!
Kendros attacks Anton with his mass weapon…
...and strikes him with a shattering blow!

Stig is a wiry fellow and a good rider, which means he manages to dodge Ammon’s next attack by turning at the last moment. With a laugh, the hedge-knight follows through with the momentum of his original sword swing and uses the hilt of his sword to smash at Ammon’s head.
Stig attacks Ammon with his sword…
...with no result as the two warriors battle!

“Uncertain, are we?” is all Ser Myles manages to gasp; he is breathing hard and sweating. The cool of autumn turns his sweat to steam; or perhaps the Hightower knight is on fire like his sigil? None can say.

He knocks aside Gormon’s blow with his blade—a simple parry, and then counter-attacks with a diagonal arc at the other’s sword-shoulder.

Myles attacks Gormon with his sword…
...and merely strikes a glancing blow!
Galan suffers an ax blow to the head and part of his helmet caves under the blade. Galan can feel the wonce solid steel of the helm biting into his cheek as the blade comes far too close to his head for his comfort. He twists away again, attemptint to block another blow from the longaxe and get close to Gavyn’s horse where his his blade can stab upwards through the White Shield man’s guts.
Galan attacks Ser Gavyn of the White Shield with his sword…
...and strikes him with a swift blow!

Ser Gavyn of the White Shield is rocked back in the saddle by Galan’s blow, but manages to keep his seat!
Alyard’s parry sends Ser Randyl’s high and wide opening a gap in the man’s defenses he scrambles to fill. He does not scramble fast enough, steel finds flesh and whatever last words the Black Bastard might have spoken are lost in a gurgle of blood as he tumbles from his mount, bleeding from the neck. When he hits the ground, his head tears free and rolls to a stop in the grass eyes looking sightlessly up at Ser Alyard.
“Damn you.” Janden is thrown off balance by the weight of his own attack, expecting the man that caught the blow to fall. He doesn’t. Petyr somehow keeps his seat and Janden grunts in pain as the swift blow finds a weak spot and cuts lightly into his flesh. Without a pause, Janden swings his blade back in a backhanded arc at his opponent.
Glares at Able with a mix of determination and spite. Fortunately, this fury seems to hamper him none, as he continues to parry away the small man’s blows. Instead of retorting to the man’s taunts and jeers, this time Justyn continues his bloody business in silence. Continuing to bat away Able’s sword with both sword and shield, the Lord of Southshield waits until he sees and opening - and then he strikes, again aiming for the man’s sword arm with the lethal point of his blade.
Justyn attacks Able with his sword…
...and strikes him with a powerful blow!

Able is driven from the saddle!
Elmer feels his sword sink into flesh and he laughs, that’s what he was made for, and if there’s a swirl in the battle he causes his gelding to rear, the hardened hooves striking a man-at-arms in the face. As he scans the field he sees Ser galan doing well, then as Ser Myles is fighting his own man he charges forward, yellins. “none so fierce!” To warn the other knight as he attacks.
Janden attacks Petyr with his sword…
...and strikes him with a shattering blow!

Petyr is rocked back in the saddle by Janden’s blow, but manages to keep his seat!
The heavy backhand chop of Ser Elmer Crakehall bites heavily into the gap between Ser Bleddyd’s mail and helm, severing a good portion of his throat. Arterial blood spurts free and rhythmically. The man’s body falls from the saddle and the sudden spurt of wet warmth onto the horse causes it to scream and flee. As the lean courser bolts from the field, the man’s foot caught in the saddle. Bumping along the uncertain surface, Ser Bleddyd’s neck appears to tear further, leaving a grim trail from the melee.
Elmer attacks Gormon with his sword…
...and strikes him with a powerful blow!

Gormon is driven from the saddle!
Ammon snarls as he parries Stig’s next strike. Sparks fly as steel rings against steel and the swords lock - but only for a moment. Ammon lashes out at the wiry hedge knight once more.
Ammon attacks Stig with his sword…
...and sees his blow go astray!

“KENDROS!” As the words leave Anton’s mouth and his second sword strike is again only able to nick the other knight, the spike of Kendros’ longaxe pierces Anton’s leather armour at the shoulder, causing a large wound and drawing blood… lots of blood. With a roar, the pain from this strike makes Anton drops his longsword and nearly lose his balance atop his horse. “KENDROS!” With another roar, Anton’s right and left hand find his greatsword at the same time and he draws it in one smooth motion, launching a horizontal swing that attempts to decapitate the Longaxe with one mighty blow.

It isn’t much of a blow, but it’s enough to set Gavyn reeling in the saddle. He mutters something under his breath that only his beard can hear, then turns and swings at Galan with a vicious sidewise cut of the longaxe.

Gormon twists his body to avoid Myles’s blow—only to be cut down by Elmer. He lands hard in the mud and there he lies.

Anton attacks Kendros with his sword…
...and strikes him with a hard blow!

Ser Petyr howls his accomplishment as he hits Ser Janden, but then is caught completely off guard as Ser Janden retaliates. It is a hard blow, and it HURTS, but he somehow manages to stay in the fight. The hedge knight lashes out wildly with a swing of his weapon.

Petyr attacks Janden with his mass weapon…
...and strikes him with a swift blow!

Janden is rocked back in the saddle by Petyr’s blow, but manages to keep his seat!

Laughing at the poor showing from the squire, Stig is again able to dodge out of the way and avoid any harm. This time, he’s not as flashy and attempts a simple slash against Ammon’s sword arm.
Gormon attacks Myles with his sword…
...and has his blow intercepted by Myles’s shield.
Stig attacks Ammon with his sword…
...with no result as the two warriors battle!

Alyard looks down at the lifeless eyes and simply grins, even with the taste of the man’s blood on his teeth and lips. He eventually looks away in time to parry an incoming blow and wheels his horse around, almost coming between Janden and Ser Petyr. He waits until the knight swings at the other Vale knight and aims a savage blow at the Hedge Knight’s extended sword arm.

Alyard attacks Petyr with his sword…
...and strikes him with a hard blow!

Petyr is driven from the saddle!
Able’s mouth is soundly closed. Still unable to land a solid hit against Justyn, he’s left with little ability to defend. The Lord’s next blow takes him cleanly from his saddle, landing him hard into the dirt below.

And through all this, there is the Iron Serpent—right there, in the heart of it, fighting in uncanny, icy silence as he always does. It makes his viciousness all the more unsettling; that cruel blade slashing throats and piercing chests, running with blood.

But there is something strange tonight—for he doesn’t try to face Longaxe or Edwyd Bulwer. Instead, he is cutting his way towards the press, seeming more intent on winning through his enemies them than actually downing them.

With good reason. For there, beyond the melee, is a man-at-arms who has almost finished changing his foundered horse for a comrade’s fresher one—and slinging across the saddle the bound, motionless form of Josmyn Reyne, golden hair gleaming in the moonlight. And nearby, Ser Edwyd Bulwer too, his opponent downed, has cut his way back out of the melee, is thundering towards the man-at-rams, roaring hoarsely, “Ride for the keep! Ride!”

Ammon parries again, finding a bit of a rhythm. His sweat is flowing freely now as he counter attacks.
Ser Gavyn of the White Shield attacks Galan with his sword…
...and has his blow intercepted by Galan’s shield.
Ammon attacks Stig with his sword…
...and strikes him with a hard blow!
Noticing Ser Dagur’s squire battling ineffectually with a tough hedge knight Willard motions his horse that way. He rides headfirst onto his opponent and aims a swift strike at Stig’s weapon hand.
Willard attacks Stig with his sword…
...and strikes him with a hard blow!

Stig is driven from the saddle!
Janden takes Able.
Elmer laugsh again and salutes Myles with his bloody sword. And now he prowls the field, looking for targets, his eyes fierce behind his visor. But as battles are engaged, noe catches his eyes, and for now he’s merely riding through foes.
Allos takes Ser Bleddyn.

Myles hits his target, blocks the riposte, and before he can press his advantage the Crakehall knight comes from nowhere and unhorses his opponent. The Hightower howls at the Westerknight. “I’m having his ransom or his horse either way, ser!”

And he calls back to his squire. “Dick! Take this man.”

And then Ser Myles puts the spurs to his flanks and charges back into the Melee.

The squire’s next blow is a solid strike and causes Stig to actually lean back in surprise. His eyes almost immediately narrow then and with a savage grunt, the hedge-knight launches another slash, again targeted at Ammon’s sword arm. . . but at that exact moment, someone else rides into him from the side and a savage blow forces Stig off his horse. The hedge-knight falls to the ground and does not move.
Being so close to Gavyn of the White Shield proves to be an asset when it the Green Lion easily blocks the weak axe blow. Capitalizing on the stretched arm, Galan makes a stap at the inside of the man’s elbow joint, where the armor is weakest.
Galan attacks Ser Gavyn of the White Shield with his sword…
...and strikes him with a shattering blow!

Ser Gavyn of the White Shield is rocked back in the saddle by Galan’s blow, but manages to keep his seat!

Gavyn is set to reeling again, but he keeps his seat. The much-vaunted white shield is, however, as useless as the arm Galan Lannister has just broken. Now he makes a sound, a howl of pain and rage and swings so viciously at the man his longaxe is but a flash of steel in the moonlight.

Ser Gavyn of the White Shield attacks Galan with his sword…
...and strikes him with a hard blow!

Galan is driven from the saddle!

Longaxe wounds his cousin sorely—and in the process, nearly loses his own life. For as he jams the spike into Anton’s shoulder, it catches against bone, and it takes him a moment to tug it free. A moment too long, and he sees that greatsword arcing towards him. Eyes widening, he throws himself back in his saddle as his longaxe comes free. It saves his life, but it doesn’t save him from the bloody line carves across his chest as the greatword shears through his leather jerkin.

He coughs with pain, has no breath left for words now. Instead, steadying, he hammers at Anton’s shoulder with a full swing.

Ser Petyr is hit from behind, with no warning, and is unhorsed. Defeated, he clatters to the ground; his shield goes one way, and his blade th’other. He is done.

Kendros attacks Anton with his mass weapon…
...and strikes him with a shattering blow!

Anton is rocked back in the saddle by Kendros’s blow, but manages to keep his seat!
Janden lifts his sword for another attack, after another solid blow failed to down Petyr - but Ser Alyard arrives in good time, sending Janden’s opponent into the dirt. He nods to the other knight. “Appreciated.” Turning his mount toward the melee again, but staying close with Alyard. He took few solid blows, but man cuts, leaving the tired knight swaying in his saddle.
Ammon prepares for Stig’s next attack - but looks up in surprise as help comes from Willard. He flashes a grin to Ryger knight, but turns his mount and surveys the melee.
The sound of bones shattering greets the Longaxe’s successful strike as Anton left himself wide open with his crazy swing. His left shoulder literally sags under the blow of Longaxe’s and Anton very nearly falls right off his horse. His left arm useless now, Anton somehow finds the strength to lift his greatsword with one hand and launches a hard thrust, straight at Kendros’ chest. . . likely his last strike. . .
Anton attacks Kendros with his sword…
...and sees his blow go astray!
Pain shoots across Alek’s shoulder from the sword-blow delivered from Edwyd Bulwer. Looking up, the Reyne knight tries to stand, noticing the man-at-arms with the golden-haired prisoner. “J-Josmyn!” He yells out before finally slumping to the ground and passing out.

At that point, the man’s squire, Albin, comes riding up, slicing at some enemies, more to keep them away than to slay them. He dismounts and begins dragging Alek off the field from danger.

A hack of his blade here, a slash there, and Ser Myles cuts down a man at arms who never had a chance. The knight and his mount are nearing exhaustion, fueled only by adrenaline at this point. His courser bites the arm of a dismounted man at arms and the hightower knight slashes down at him. It is chaos, but even over the din the sound of Bulwer carries. Myles swings a few more times as he fights his way to the far side of the melee and joins the final chase.

Willard ‘s strike again hits it’s target as another of the Meadows company falls under his sword. He smiles back at Ammon and looks around as well, “Seems we are winning, man”. He then notices some silhuettes detaching themselves from the fray and leaving towards the keep. Willard nudges the squire “There! They’re escaping! Come, we follow!” and with that, not looking back the Ryger knight again falls into pursuit as he’s been doing for the past week.
Galan is caught offguard as the axe catches his own shield arm, and tears him to the ground. He tries to catch himself on his wounded leg, but it gives out under him. Knowing he can’t do anything if he can’t stand on the damndable leg, he stays down, trying to stay out of the horse’s way.
Grinning as his foe is dismounted, Justyn cries out to him, “Stay down, you knave! And my mother was a terrible Lady anyways!” With that, he looks about for his good-uncle, but cannot find him. What he does find, however, is the sight of a man riding away with another slung over the saddle. It’s a curious sight, and one Justyn rightfully presumes to be one of the enemy. Spurring his horse onwards, Justyn pursues with what strength he has left.

The bloody faced Alyard bows his head to Janden and wheels his horse around so he is riding almost knee to knee with the Vale knight. He replies with a curt nod and another bloody grin, kicking his heels into his horse. Swinging his blade down by his side he disarms a felled rider aiming a strike at a friendly knight, literally. “Move through!” He calls out to his companion as they force themselves free of the melee, riding down a man-at-arms on the way.

Longaxe slams his axe haft into that thrust, deflecting it. He is steady again now, rising in his saddle, raising that longaxe on high like the Warrior himself.

“You forgot your blood-ties, cousin.”

But in that moment, there is a bone-deep grief in his eyes twinned with the rage, so that it is difficult to tell where one ends and the other begins. And when he brings his axe down, it is not in a killing blow on Anton’s head, but at his chest to knock him out of his saddle instead.

Kendros attacks Anton with his mass weapon…
...and strikes him with a powerful blow!

Anton is driven from the saddle!
Elmer rides fast, his sword dripping blood, and the gelding is given full rein as he chases. No, they cannot escape! It would be too much! And his anger drives him forth, riding towards LOng axe and the ones who started this whole mess.

Gavyn of the White Shield, the shield itself hanging useless and bobbing grotesquely as he tries to manuver his mount out of the melee, is trying to fight free of the crush. But in order to get free, he must indeed fight, and it is Ammon Massey who crosses his path. So Gavyn of the useless White Shield raises his blade to swing it down hard toward the squire in an effort to win free.

Ser Gavyn of the White Shield attacks Ammon with his sword…
...and strikes him with a shattering blow!
Gormon is no longer listening.

Try as he might, Anton simply cannot dodge out of the way from this last strike and with a scream of pain, blood and phelgm roaring from his mouth in equal amounts, the sheer force of the next blow by Longaxe forces Anton cleanly from his horse. The axe cleaving clean through Anton’s leather armour and leaving a long trail of blood, and a scar that’ll likely remain with the Piper Knight forever. Anton lands hard on the ground, his greatsword clattering nearby, and lies still, coughing up even more blood while his dazed eyes attempt to look around and see what’s happening.
Willard notices his companion getting attacked by Ser Gavyn and winces as his blow strikes true. The Ryger knight deftly turns his horse around in a a shallow arc, shouts “Hold on, Ammon!” and aims a powerful blow to the attacking knight’s head.
Ammon hears a crash and cry and sees Galan Lannister driven from his saddle - and then Ser Gavyn is on him and attacking before he has time to react. It is a hard blow, turned aside by Ammon’s helm, but still quite effective. He /almost/ falls from his horse, but somehow keeps his seat. With a feeble cry, the Squire brings his sword around with all his remaining strength.
Ammon attacks Ser Gavyn of the White Shield with his sword…
...with no result as the two warriors battle!
Willard attacks Ser Gavyn of the White Shield with his sword…
...and strikes him with a swift blow!

Ser Gavyn of the White Shield is driven from the saddle!
Riding hard on the company that attempts to flee to the keep for refuge, Justyn hoarsely cries out, “Stay, you knaves! Stay and face justice for what you have done!” Taking a deep breath, Justyn mentally prepares himself for the clash with the Knight of Bulwer, a man who - little does Justyn know - took down Ser Alek. His slender blade at the ready, he attempts to close enough to land a blow.
The melee starts to quiet. Janden lifts and strikes and lifts and strikes again. Less horses appear in his path as he struggles forward. The Vale knight’s attacks slow as he rides, his face growing more pale from the exertion and the loss of blood. It would seem that some of Petry’s quick strikes found purchase.

Gavyn nearly manages to escape. He is so very close when Ammon’s flow goes wild and he is able to squeeze past. But there is Willard, and there is Willard’s blade, and the White Shield has no chance at all when the man’s blade hits him across the chest and knocks him clean off his horse. He lands on his crushed arm, screams once in horrible pain, then goes still.

His eyes glazed and unfocused, Ammon peers at Willard. “Again, my thanks.” The squire slumps in his saddle and heaves a sigh. “I’m alive, I’m alive, I’m alive….” he mutters.

With a desperate surge of speed, Edwyd has caught up with the man-at-arms fleeing with Josmyn Reyne now. He strikes the other horse’s withers with the flat of his blade, cruelly winning a last surge of speed from it. Behind them, others of their number are trying to catch up, while the last few still standing in the melee try to buy time.

A glance over his shoulder and Edwyd bellows something at his men who are trailing. And they wheel away, turning to throw themselves at the Iron Serpent and the other pursuers in a desperate attempt to hold them back. Closer and closer the keep draws and the gates are open now; close enough that the guards can be seen, yelling. And elsewhere, Longaxe too has won free of the melee. But it is too late now for him to make for the keep. And so he strikes off at an angle, thundering towards the woods across the field, bent low over his horse’s neck.
Another foe falls as Willard aims his sword true and he watches with his smile blooming as Ser Gavyn lays still. “Kegs!” the Ryger knight yells, looking around for his fat squire who, somehow, seems to have followed his knight into the fray “Take care of this one, he seems to be valuable” the knight and his squire exchange knowing smirks. Willard nods at Ammon “Aye, man. You’re alive, we’re winning. Yet… somehow I don’t know if this is turning out well” he eyes the escaping silhouettes and the small force riding after them.

As he’s about to move after the pursuit, he notices Ser Kendros unhorsing Ser Anton and he moves that way fast. Willard mutters under his nose “Hold on, Anton. I’m coming for you…” as he closes distance to the Riverlander and the escaping Ser Kendros.

Alyard’s horse slips in some gore and almost stumbles into Janden but regains him composure at the final moment and the pair continue to race ahead. “Keep hard on them!” He calls out to Janden over the sound of battle and the screams of the maimed and dying. “We will ride to the Vale together yet!”

Myles is bloody and battered, but not beaten. His horse’s mouth is bloody and both are smoking; the courser is being pushed to its limits. Far behind, his squire has taken a pair of captives. Yet Ser Dagur is far ahead of him, and so is Ser Edwyd and the Reyne captive. He presses on.

Justyn’s eyes widen a moment as he notes the men breaking away from the rest of the group. Gritting his teeth in determination, Justyn looks about to see who is with him, noting the other pursuers as well. Panting from exertion, the Lord of Southshield steels himself for the impact, fully intent on reaching the hostage that is escaping them.
Janden grits his teeth and kicks his flagging steed again, keeping pace along side Alyard. The Melcolm knight seems a little more stable in his saddle again, head having cleared for the moment. He doesn’t know how long it will last, but he takes advantage of the minutes that come to him.
Elmer rides too, it’s good to be in the company of friends and comrades in arms, and he feels the sweet delight of catching up on prey, but will they manage to actually catch them?

As Anton kind of notices a knight riding towards him, his eyes focus just enough to recognize the figure of Ser Willard Ryger. Moving as much as he’s able, Anton yells out “go. . .Willard, go after Josmyn, I’ll . . . be . . . ok.” The yell is more of a whimper, but Anton’s eyes are fierce when he says his words. Then his head lies back down and he is breathing deeply, his good hand trying its best to staunch the flow of blood from his broken shoulder.

There is one last flurry of blades; the Iron Serpent battles desperately, recklessly, taking cuts as he leaves himself open in an attempt to win free as swiftly as possible. Those who catch up from behind—Alyard, justyn, and others—take the pressure off.

But up ahead, Edwyd and his man-at-arms are thundering through the gates. And slowly, then picking up momentum, they slam shut.

And with that, the Meadows men-at-arms still fighting start throwing down their arms and going to their knees, surrendering, exhausted and bloody. For they have done their job.

“Horse!” Comes the harsh growl of Ser Alek Reyne, who has clearly regained conciousness. “Now!” “But, ser, I-” “Did I stutter, lad?! Get me a damned horse!” Alek yells out. Albin mutters as he grabs the reigns of a nearby steed that has had it’s rider chopped off of it.

Alek, meanwhile, is busy making a make-shift bandage out of his stained surcoat, wrapping the crimson material around his wounded shoulder. He mounts up onto the beast that his squire brought, charging off, the young Sarsfield keeping up to make sure nothing /else/ befalls his master.

Ser Myles checks his horse’s gait as the gates slam shut, slowing to a trot to let it catch its breath. His blade still is in his hands, and he finds himself all alone—the nearest other is a hundred yards or so in front of him, and Ser Dagur even beyond that. He wheels his horse to look behind him where the others are surrendering, and then he looks back towards the gates. He waits there, cursing, obviously wary of the keep’s archers.

Ammon has seen better days but, as he said himself, he is still alive. And, the Seven alone know how, still ahorse. His helmet is dented where Ser Gavyn struck him; his left arm hangs limply from when Stig cut him. His eyes still unfocused, Ammon dismounts and stumbles amongst the wounded. He comes upon Anton, “Ser Anton, you’re hurt.” He kneels in the mud and sets to clumsily bandaging Anton’s wounds with the man’s own goldcloak.
Slows to a halt, shoulders slumping in exhaustion as he notes how that last charge did nothing to close the gap. He looks over to Ser Dagur, then back to the other members of the company. Hands shaking from fatigue, he eases the blade into his scabbard, drawing the horse closer to the Iron Serpent, awaiting instruction.

Alyard’s mount somehow leaps over a downed horse, landing into the man at arms getting up on the other side. Swinging his blade again he hacks another knight down, parries a swing from another and his horse bites a third in the face with fury. The fourth man nearby is spared as he drops his sword, Alyard nods in acceptance and points with his sword, ordering the man off his horse. With the men disarmed he moves through the mess to catch up with Dagur.

Willard looks down at Ser Anton, as he tries to yell out his words, then he looks around and motions for some of the men-at-arms still strolling the battlefield “Help Ser Anton! Get him to safety, tend to his wounds or find someone who can! Now!” he looks at the fellow Riverlander and smiles “Kendros will be mine, Anton. I am cannot be felledtoday. This is myday of glory” he motions for three men to follow him and rides after the escaping figure of Ser Kendros Goodbrook.
Galan the Green lion stands. His hands are pushing down on the gash on his leg. He finds a piece of his cloth to keep the bleeding to a trickle. The boiled leather had stopped the worst of it. He manages to scramble on his horse, though he finds it awkward to climb up from the other side of the horse due to the leg. “Mother have Mercy…” He hisses as he settles in his saddle. “Go on ahead without me. I’ll live, but I won’t slow ya down.”
Janden pulls up his horse only moments after Alyard, watching the prey escape and the gates close. “Did we bring a host of engineers with us?” The Melcom knight quips, eyeing the walls and shaking his head. He takes the time to prod at his own body, trying to discover which wound is losing too much blood.

Anton nods thanks to Ammon as the squire begins to help to stop his bleeding. “My. . . sword. . . it . . can . . help . . me. . walk.” Anton gestures with his good hand towards his fallen greatsword. The blood flow is slowing now, thanks to Anton’s cloak. As additional men-at-arms arrive, Anton is able to take a few more deep breaths, to help calm himself.
Elmer rides to Dagur’s side, worry in his eyes. “Are you well, Ser Dagur?” he eyes the cuts on the other man’s body, but he knows that the Iron Serpent will not be denied. “Come on..let’s finish this once and for all.”

“Oh, the hell with it,” Myles finally says, giving spurs to his horse and heading towards Ser DAgur and the others before the walls.

As Alek rides up, face scowling with rage, the lion moves at a charge, heading for the gates. “Cowards!” He roars out. “Hiding behind their damned walls.” He then yelps out as his shoulder pains him once more, slowing his horse to a trot to where Dagur and the others are congregating.

With the help of a man-at-arms and leaning on Ammon heavily, Anton is finally able to stand. His left shoulder and arm are now in a make-shift sling, while his part of his goldcloak is used as a bandage to stop the blood from his shoulder wound. The rest of his cloak is tied around his chest to stop the blood from that wound. Using his greatsword in his right hand as a cane, Anton slowly moves towards the castle walls.

It’s fully night now, and a fair one; two hours have passed since the battle. The stars are clear overhead; it would be a fair night were it not for the stench of blood and spilled guts. At least the shrill neighing of injured horses has been stilled, for they have been put down.

Back across the field the way they had come, the Iron Serpent’s company has set up a crude, rough camp. The captured Meadows men are held near the trees with men standing watch, although there is little need; they are too bloodied and weary to think of escaping.

But as for the ironman himself, he is gone, and a few others with him.

And now he returns. The call goes up; exhausted men stir and begin to gather. He is riding back across the field—back from the keep. Back from his parley, and with him, Ser Almer Connington, the battered, bloodied Anton Piper, Ser Myles Hightower and a Beesbury knight.

His expression is grim, and as he reaches the camp, he dismounts, tossing his reins to a man-at-arms, waiting for everyone to gather before revealing how the parley went.

And the first one there, a man who had been waiting near to the road, a bandage now glistening on his shoulder in place of his tattered surcoat, is Ser Alek Reyne. His blond hair is muddied, with clods of dried blood present also, looking tired, haggard and pale. The veteran knight looks well his years, and he remains silent, watching Dagur, his eyes betraying his worry at Josmyn’s fate.
Janden didn’t sustain any serious injuries. None of the blows against him were so hard as to break bones; only some deep cuts that were tended to. He is sore, but in decent condition. When the sound of hooves echo in the night, he stands and comes forward, watching the group that has arrived back, waiting.
Justyn looks up to Dagur and his company as they return, having patiently waited within the camp, pacing, his blood eager to renew and finish the fight. But that was not to be, not yet, at least. For now, the Lord of Southshield remains silent, waiting to hear what the Iron Serpent has to say.
Luthor has partially disconnected.

Riding a few feet from Ser Dagur, Ser Myles appears haggard, tired, exhausted—they day’s activities tell upon his face. Only pride, perhaps, keeps him upright. He keeps pace with the others, however, as they return to the camp.

Alyard remains kneeling by his Frost, the white horse breathing but calmed and laying down, exhausted. As Dagur returns, he stands and strokes the beast’s mane once more before striding over. A hand is casually draped over the heart shaped stone set in his blade’s pommel. He quietly moves to stand by Janden, gaze set on the returning knights.

Moving slowly and stiffly, Ammon Massey moves towards the approaching men to stand beside Ser Alek Reyne.

His shoulder and chest wound now freshly bandaged and a proper sling for his left arm, some alertness has returned to Anton’s eyes. He also rides beside Ser Dagur, but is quite wobbly in his saddle, relying on his good hand to keep himself upright. Once they’ve arrived back, Anton requires help from a man-at-arms to properly dismount his horse. Looking over the assembled knights, there is the usual frown on Anton’s forehead, but the Piper Knight says nothing, letting the Iron Serpent explain how things went.

Not a straggler, exactly, is the creature who trots out of the darkness to stand by Dagur’s side. A great shaggy wolfhound, blood on her muzzle, drops down at his feet to lick a slight wound on one haunch. But Thorn, for so she is called, does not do this unwarily. Her black eyes watch, her ears prick at every sound, and she is alert as she tends her wounds.

Horses can be heard and hooves beating at the ground as Ser Willard Ryger and three men-at-arms ride into the makeshift camp. He descends from his horse with a swift jump - the Ryger knight is unscathed, although his cloak and mail are covered with droplets of blood, all from his felled foes. He frowns as he notices the coming of Dagur and his companions and comes closer, standing to the side where Ser Anton Piper is.

He gestures as to make himself be seen by Ser Anton and shakes his head grimly as their eyes meet. Ser Kendros Goodbrook escaped into the woods, as night begun, not to be found by Ser Willard and his hunting party.

“Your nephew is safe. Wounded, but not sorely. I saw him with mine own eyes.” It is Alek the Iron Serpent turns to first, telling him what he needs to hear.

And then, he turns to the others. There is a brief silence; he passes a hand, its back laced with cuts and nicks, over his face, dragging down his unshaven cheeks. And then, he stirs himself, reaching down absently to scratch his wolfhound’s ears:

“They’ll not give up Ser Josmyn. Not so easily. Edwyd Bulwer has the bit in his teeth now. And old Lord Meadows is still too weak from his sickness to put an end to this madness. But he was able to rally a little, thank the Gods. Enough for me to strike a deal with him.”

“This won’t end without blood, but at least it will be just one man’s. At dawn, this will be settled with a duel to the death.”

Ser Alyard listens carefully before stepping forward, bowing his head gracefully. Randyl’s blood now wiped from his handsomer face “Sers, I will do this for you, if it please you.” He pauses before explaining. “I do not know Ser Josmyn, love and revenge will not betray me nor cloud my judgement in battle.” The Corbray knight looks to the gathered knights for any objections, the Old Lion in particular.

Elmer is standing, resting on his drawn but by now cleaned sword and he shakes his head. “This is folly. Justice must be delivered , Ser Dagur..” he says. “Not that i think they have anyone to match you, but..”

“This is the Reach, Ser Elmer,” Ser Myles snaps, clearly sick of hearing this by now. “Trial by combat has been just at least since the Andals came.”

Thorn lifts her head under Dagur’s hand, then, as a loyal dog will do, plies her tongue to the back of his hand to lick his wounds until he moves his hand away. But even as she does, she watches each man who speaks in turn, her eyes glittering like dragonglass in the moonlight.

Nodding slightly as he listens to Dagur, the Lord of Southshield manages a slight smile at the news of Ser Josmyn’s safety. A duel to the death catches Justyn’s interest, and he looks to the knight who volunteers to duel on his good-uncle’s behalf for the captured Reyne knight. Biting back his desire to volunteer as well, Justyn simply nods his head, looking away.
Alek seems to untense slightly. “He’s safe…Thank the gods…” The veteran lion mumbles under his breath. He doesn’t seem to have any protests but steps forward. “Were it not for my wound, I would offer to duel myself. I do not wish to make anyone else risk their lives to save my kin, but I am glad and heartened that so many have chosen to ride.” He sighs. “I would have no say in the champion but to give them my luck and blessings on behalf of my lord brother.”
Ammon looks to each man in turn as they speak. He snorts and spits, asking only one question. “Who is /their/ champion, ser?”

Anton sighs and shakes his head. “We have no choice, my lords. My grandfather, he did what he could. Edwyd, that cur, this is all his doing. If I had to guess, he’ll be fighting whoever we choose. My good-cousin is a strong warrior, ser knights, be careful.” He then coughs a little, using his right hand to cover his mouth.
“I’d stand up on behalf of the Company.” Janden declares his willingness quietly, looking around at the faces in the darkness. “Though, better swords are among us, if the intent is to /win/.”
Willard listens to Ser Dagur nodding gladly when he hears of Ser Josmyn’s health. Never knowing the knight it still pleases Willard that the person they’ve been riding to save is still alive. He then straightens himself as he hears the other part of Ser Dagur’s speech and takes a step forward… only to stand still as he wonders if any of these Reach and Westerlanders would ever give him the honor of fighting their battle for glory?
Elmer shakes his head at Myles. “Ser Josmyn’s my brother in law and a Westerman. Aye, I respect the autorithy of the Reach, but a duel would make it look like at least they had justice on their side too.” He isn’t volunteering, there’s enough of that. “I still say we should storm the castle.”
“No.” Alek speaks up at Elmer’s suggestion of storming the castle. “That puts Josmyn at risk, ser. Think it through.”

Myles scoffs, and looks about to say something else before checking himself. Instead, he gestures towards the walls, his voice dripping with sarcasm. “Have fun storming the castle, ser.”

Willard looks at Ser Elmer “They will…” he stops and nods at what ser Alek has said, not adding another word.

“It will not be me. Or Ser Almer,” the Iron Serpent replies to Elmer. “Either one of us could have ended it swiftly enough”—there is no boast in that weary observation, just a statement of fact—“but Edwyd Bulwer says he will not raise a blade against his liege lord’s kinsmen.”

There is a sardonic glimmer in his dark eyes at that. He nods to Ammon: “As Ser Anton says. It will be. Ser Edwyd.”

And he glances at the Hightower knight, then, saying quietly, “Peace.” Louder, to Elmer and the others, iron lacing his hoarse, strained voice: “Ser Myles has the right of it. It is in the Gods’ hands now, and let no man say otherwise. If Ser Edwyd kills our champion, he goes free. If he dies, justice is served. But in either case, we will do nothing against Lord Meadows. I’ll not have a battle when a duel will suffice.”

Elmer sighs and shakes his head. “If it’s not Connington or you, i shall offer my sword too ..” he looks around and laughs. “So how shall we decide this after all?” The big Crakehall knight grins. “I claim the fight by right of blood, if my uncle will give me the spot.”

“Ser, I have won duels before.” Alyard replies, his hand still on the hilt of his sword. He doesn’t appear to be nervous or frightened at the thought of a battle to the death. “I am not a man of the Reach, or the Westerlands. The fued would die with Edwyd or me, no more blood need be shed.”

Ser Myles falls silent as he watches the others all lay claim to the title of Champion, clearly having no interest in the accolade himself. “Mayhaps you should draw lots. The trial will be decided by the Seven, so leave the choice of champion to the Seven as well.”

Anton stays quiet as Dagur explains the situation, then quietly adds “in the end, this is about Edwyd Buler, my lords, not House Meadows. My grandfather is weary from all this, he just wants it to end. One way or another.” As the various knights look to offer their swords, Anton simply looks to Alek. “Perhaps as Ser Josmyn’s uncle, Ser Alek should have the final say. Picking a champion to fight for his nephew.”
Willard says, “Sers. I have ridden with you this past week to find and safely bring back Ser Josmyn. I know not the man, but I have heard enough of the knight. I am glad he is alive and well.” the Ryger knight looks to Ser Alek for a moment and nods “I do know that there are men more suitable for the task - men from the Reach, men who are realted to Ser Josmyn, men who fought more battles then I will probably see in my life” he looks around “Still I would be honoured if I could fight this champion of theirs and show him where the right is in this. If you wish to know if I’m good enough - ask Ser Gavyn and Ser Josyn” Willard smiles, bows his head and takes a step back, looking at the rection of other knights.”
Ammon nods at Anton’s suggestion. “I agree, Ser Anton. If it won’t be Ser Dagur or Connington, let Ser Alek pick his nephew’s champion.”

The Iron Serpent hears out one knight after another staking his claim to fight the duel. But in the end, it is the Piper knight who wins a nod from him: “Ser Anton has the right of it. Whom would you have as champion, Ser Alek?”

Justyn remains awkwardly quiet, looking to each of the knights as they speak. As Anton speaks up, suggesting that his good-uncle have the final say, the Lord of Southshield chimes in - or at least he would if Dagur had not spoken up, making his support for the Piper knight meaningless.
Janden shakes his head as head as he listens, then looks to Alek, waiting for the man’s choice.

Anton slowly walks over to Alek and whispers something.
Anton whispers to Alek, “My suggestion, Ser Alek, if you wish it. Pick a Valeman, Ser Janden or Ser Alyard. Both are not connected to this situation by blood ties and therefore, will mean the feud can end with this fight.”
The old lion sighs as the decision falls to him, but pauses as Anton whispers something into his ear. “I have known most of you a scarce few days.” He says, looking torn in his decision. “And, as much as it pains me to shed more blood over this, I have come to a decision.” He looks to Alyard. “Ser Alyard, if you will accept, will you fight on my family’s behalf, and for justice on these curs? I have watched you these past seven days, I can think of no man better, and a neutral party.”
Elmer throws a bloodied gaitlet to the groud in disgust. “Known for a few days indeed, uncle..” The big knight’s eyes snine angrily and he shrugs. “No offense to Ser Alyard, but..this is family.” He makes a sign towards his squire. “At least I can get drunk then.”
And Alek’s gaze turns on Elmer. “Perhaps you should forgo the wine, so that it may calm that boar inside you.” He says, coldly. “It would give me no joy to slit Edwyd Bulwer’s throat with mine own hand, as well as see one of my kin do it on my behalf. However, think it through! Ser Alyard is a neutral party. He is not closely tied with myself or my house.”

Half expecting to lose out on the honor after the decision fell to Alek, Ser Alyard smirks and steps closer to the Old Lion and takes a knee. “I accept, Ser, if the Warrior favors me I will color his breast red for the Reynes.” He stands again and looks to Emer, not seeing any fitting reply to the outburst, he remains silent.

Justyn simply shakes his head at the outburst from the Crakehall Knight, remaining silent. He motions to his squire, bringing up a flask of wine, from which the Lord of Southshield takes a brief swig.
Elmer shakes his head in disgust, but he nods towards Alyard. “The Sven guide your hand, Ser Alyard…And bring my brother in law home.” he says, without spite, though Alek receives another dark look.

Ser Myles wearily removes his gloves as the decision is made, handing them to Spotted Dick. “Well then, that settles it. In the morning, then. And hopefully no one storms the keep in the night to rob the Father of his justice,” the knight comments, giving Ser Elmer a pointed glance.

Willard watches the old Reyne knight intently as he names his champion and scowls at his decision. He eyes Ser Alyard remembering the knight from their week of travel, thinking of the just finished battle and how he carried himself during it. Finally he shrugs gives out a sigh and comes over to Ser Alyard “Ser, I wish you luck and hope that your blade strikes true. Our cause is just and the Seven should look kindly upon you” the Ryger knight nods and extends his hand.

“So be it. Ser Alyard will stand as our champion.”

The Iron Serpent studies the Corbray knight, his gaze measuring. At length, he says simply, “I will pray to the Seven come down, ser. Join me if you wish.” And with that—from many other men, it may have sounded faintly ridiculous, but not this one—he moves, nodding to those gathered around: “Get some rest, sers. Morning will come swiftly enough.” And he is moving away, snapping his fingers for the giant wolfhound to follow, crossing the camp to see to the wounded and the prisoners.

Anton nods as Alek makes his decision. He does not speak it, but his eyes make it clear he is happy with this choice. Ser Alyard Corbray, a Valeman and unconnected by blood to this current feud. If Edwyd manages to kill him, there is no chance of the feud spreading further. When Alek speaks, Anton nods in agreement. “Ser Alek has made the right choice in this, my lords, he has put the needs of his House and the realm above all else, and for that, he deserves our respect.” With that, Anton walks slowly over to lay a hand on Alyard’s shoulder. “The Seven be with you, ser knight. May you find success on the morrow.” Then Anton leans in to whisper something to Alyard.

Thorn, when she has finished licking Dagur’s hands, yawns with a huge display of sharp teeth and curling tongue. She snaps at the fingers of a man who comes too close, a lazy warning, then turns and trots off to catch up to Dagur, content with this night’s work.

Alek mantains his frosty gaze towards his good-nephew, his green eyes showing the man’s resolve to his decision. He then breaks the gaze to look down at Alyard. “Rise, ser, you need not kneel before me. You are doing a service to my family, after all. My lord brother will be grateful. The Warrior guide your sword, make true of that promise.” He smiles to Alyard, a weary, tired gesture.
Anton whispers to Alyard, “... ... ... ... ...”
“If I have to drag your corpse back to the Vale, Ser Alyard, I’ll be very fucking annoyed.” Janden declares to Alyard, shaking his head toward the man. “Don’t let him get inside that long sword of yours like I was able to do the other day.” With that, Janden makes his way out to find rest for the night.
As the decision is made, Ammon signs and runs a hand through his hair. He approaches Alyard on Willard’s heels. “May the warrior give you luck tomorrow, good-brother,” Ammon says and holds his hand out to the Vale knight.

“Thank you, Ser.” Alyard offers with a smile for Elmer before turning and shaking Willard’s hand firmly with a curt nod. He looks from man to man as he is spoken to, glancing at Anton he nods taking in what he has to say. “I will, you have my thanks.” He takes a step away from the men and looks to Dagur “Ser, I will join you.” Following that, he greets Janden with a grin. “You will have to go beyond Heart’s Home, dragging me to the Eyrie will be your charge.” He places a hand on the Vale Knight’s shoulder. “It will not come down to it.”

Shaking Ammon’s hand, Alyard nods politely. “It’s in the gods hands now.”

“Sleep will serve you better than prayers, Ser. The Seven help those who help themselves, or so the Septons say,” Myles says to Ser Alyard. With those parting words, the Hightower knight heads towards his shelter to bed down for the knight, Spotted Dick in tow and collecting various items of armor as the Hightower knight casts off his leathers in stride.

Alek watches the Vale knight follow Ser Dagur and starts to head towards his own tent before suddenly collapsing, the day, and bloodloss, taking it’s toll. He’s saved from falling to the ground by his squire, however, who manages to support his knight’s weight back to the tent, at least.
Willard shakes the hand of the would be duelist and walks toward Ser Anton.He stands next to him, silent for a moment, then sighs “He escaped me, Anton” the Ryger knight glances at the riverknight his head down “I chased him into the woods, but… he got away. Blast these Goodbrooks, Meadows and their kin…” he coughs and looks again at Anton “Never meant to…” he gestures incoherently in the air.