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​​My own accounting of this past weekend at the Siege of Seville in
Standing Stones/Wyvern Cliff. Based upon letters I found here (
http://www.dragonbear.com/letters.html) and a bit (OK, probably a lot) of
anachronism thrown in. ;-)

My gratitude to Damien and the crew this past weekend is beyond words. I
had such a lovely time and cannot wait until the next one (next year.
*lol*) Thank you for working with us to make sure Kacey was properly
accommodated for and by accepting the little things that couldn't be quite
period. *hugs*
And Galen - thanks for the fun idea of recounting the weekend's trip. :-)
To my girls, Alessandra and Pádraigín for going along with the crazy
pack-horse idea - you're amazing.
Kat and Anna, next time, my friends - NEXT time. *mwah*
And Richard, Jawhar, and Hildebrand - best men of the valley a lady could
hope to come across. Thanks for being awesome camp-mates.
And of course, Severin and Catalina for giving us a place to Trek. I love
you ladies.

In Service to the Dream,
Eowyth

From Seville, AS 50

To my dear Duke, His Grace, Eringlin, and dearest Duchess, Alethea, who are
like parents to this humble lady, Eowyth, a student of the household of
Aldhelm, greetings and a ready will to do his pleasure.

I report from the lands of the Andulus stallions, whence I journeyed this
past weekend to visit the Qadiya, whom we have had successful and joyful
partnership in the past. Unfortunately, the visit to celebrate the festival
of food did not happen as planned.

After spending the day hunting and riding the lands with you, we packed our
camp, making sure to have enough food, and set off with my wellbeloved
friend, Alessandra, the Archer. We were to meet the astrologer, Pádraigín,
as well as two German ladies, along the road and travel together to the
beautiful city of Seville. We did not meet them along the road before the
Qadiya sent word to us that their city was about to come under Siege and
that I should take a different route, so that I may not fall harm to these
raiders. Unable to get word to Pádraigín or the others, I vowed that I
would travel to a safe area with Alessandra and then find Pádraigín myself
along the roadway, for one is harder to catch than two with a packhorse. I
took your advice and had dressed in a men's cote, so that we might not
present an easy target to roadway thieves as we traveled.

We took a back route headed toward the city that was rocky, but not
impassable. Thank goodness for my ever-present steed, Kacey, otherwise we
would have not been able to travel with our camp through these woods.
Ahead, we could see a clearing. But our excitement to rest our feet was
dampened by the presence of a camp and a few men. Who were they? Would we
be harmed? Alessandra is an excellent archer, but I have not developed your
skill with the sword and so if they chose to charge us, we would have no
protection but our desires to live. Alessandra, being the ever happy
friend, told me to stop my fretting and we should just approach and be
friendly. After all, they did not know I was a woman, and they would dare
not bring harm to a peaceful couple.

And so, we approached and two of the men stood up, another out in the woods
- they were quite tall and bearded. At first, I feared that these were part
of the men setting Siege to the Qadiya's fair city. But with them was a
Moorish guide, so surely these men were not the raiders we had sought to
avoid. As we approached, they shouted greetings at us and admired our
horse. They asked where we were traveling to and given their friendly
natures, I decided to tell - we were headed to Seville, to meet with the
Qadiya. The Moorish guide at this point grew worried and told us we must
not go to the city. Had I not heard it was under Siege? The leader, who
named himself Damien, suggested that we camp with them for the evening.
Surely the raiders would be gone by the next day, either from defeat or
from the desire to return home with their stolen goods. I hoped for defeat,
for the Qadiya and her people have always been good to us, but
understanding these were no normal raiders, I feared the worst. Alessandra
and I decided to stay the eve, for these men seemed honorable. And it was
approaching dark, so heading into the city would not have been wise without
knowing our way. We hitched Kacey and unpacked our camp. They were much
impressed by the goods we brought with us. I don't believe they are used to
meeting noblepersons. After setting the tent, I decided it was time to get
into clothes befitting a lady of my station. Alessandra stood watch as I
changed in the tent and when I came out, properly attired, the men were
quite surprised that two noble ladies were traveling together. Where was
our protection? But they agreed that my disguise had been in good thought.

After making sure that Kacey was set with forage and water for the evening,
we brought out the food and began preparing dinner. We had turnips and
onions and spices and some fare from the lunch we had brought along. There
was salted fish and the men (who had now named themselves Damien,
Hildebrand, Richard, and the guide, Jawhar) had brought sustenance of their
own. We agreed it would be best to share a fire and since we brought plenty
for the journey, it seemed kind to share our food. I, being the thoughtful
host, had also brought mead and other drinks, which were happily accepted
around the fireside. As the food cooked, a Pilgrim approached, known by his
clothing and knapsack. He came from the South, from the direction of the
city, and he brought tidings of the Siege. There had been a festival (the
one we had hoped to attend), but warriors could be seen approaching and so
he left the fair city, desiring not to be caught in warfare. He seemed kind
and was grateful to be given a spot at the fire. We offered him food, but
he had eaten well at the festival and had his own provisions to keep him
sustained. He did accept our offer to camp with us for the evening and he
would be on his way the next morning.

While we sat and talked, I began to grow worried about Pádraigín and the
Germans. The one called Hildebrand left to see to the fate of the city and
I hoped he would find my friends and bring them safely back to us. No
sooner had I started to worry, but I heard loud cries of joy come from the
direction of the city (what a celebration must be happening! I hoped the
siege was ended) and soon enough, the tall Norseman could be seen coming
down the trail with Pádraigín happily following. They brought news that the
fighting had ended, a truce had been reached and there were now dancing
girls, drumming, and drinking around the fires of Seville. The Germans had
decided to stay and celebrate. This made me happy, because where there is
dancing, there is the Qadiya. And her people would not have celebrated if
anything had befallen her during the siege.

And so, with friends safely in presence, we lounged around the fire,
swapping stories of our lands, our different foods, and sharing drink. A
few noble persons came from the city to visit, for it seemed Damien was
known to these people and had much to share with them. A friend I hold dear
also came and sat with us for awhile. We were much closer to the city than
I had realized, so I was grateful the men had stopped us before stepping
into the fighting unknowingly.

As the night wore on and the bottles of drink were emptied, Hildebrand and
I decided to venture to the city, for I wanted to see the Qadiya alive and
well for myself. As the city was close by, we took flame and headed on the
trail. I told Alessandra and Pádraigín that I would be fine. I may not have
mastered the sword yet, but I was deadly with a dagger. Damien instructed
Hildebrand to come back with drink and news of the city. And so we traveled
along a steep hill through the woods. It wound back five or six times
before we reached the main road. The area was empty. There were kitchen
fires set up at intervals and the remains of a celebration, but the
evidence of warfare as well. We walked along and collected bottles of drink
that had been left unopened on tables and stumps. We were about to turn
back when I heard the drums - dancers! And so we wandered towards the sound
of the drums. As we rounded the corner, I could see my dear friend and her
people celebrating the truce. I met her and greeted her with joyous
feelings of gratitude, for she indeed had not been harmed. The city was
wounded, but would recover and the invaders had agreed to leave in the
morning. This evening was a celebration of agreed peace. We spoke for
moments, but it was getting late and I desired to return to my camp and my
horse. We departed with promise to return after the city had settled and
walked back to our camp in the valley.

Having gathered bottles, the camp was much revived and discussion took
place well into the darkness of night. After finishing our last bottle,
those of us left awake decided it was a good time to rest our eyes. The
Pilgrim had retired to the guide's tent (who had left for other
responsibilities) and we disbursed to our sleeping arrangements. It is good
that I was sharing the tent with two others, for the air had grown cold and
the three of us heated the tent comfortably.

As the sun rose, Alessandra brought me a delicious morning drink from
Richard and we set about eating and talking about the long trek home. After
leftover turnips and oatcakes with honey, we packed camp back on Kacey and
said our farewells to these kind men in the valley. I do not know if we
shall ever come upon them again, but I do hope that fortune smiles upon us
and it is so.

I shall travel with Alessandra and Pádraigín for a while longer, but soon
shall be home to the Kings Highway, where I will attend the horses and
learn under your teaching. For now, Farewell.

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