Gulf Wash XXV: Spin Cycle – Wistric’s Thursday, the Day of Days

 

Thursday morning was set aside for order meetings (where I discovered the best way to do an order meeting is standing in the back, drinking mimosas, banned by law from voting) and for the champions duels.

I watched for a while, hang out and chatted, and then wandered back to camp to get ready for the afternoon’s battles. First would be the Armored Field, followed immediately by the Rapier Town, so again I prepped to hot-swap.

 

Armored Field

The first run had siege and archery, so we formed up on the rez lines (Meridies in a block on the far right) and let the siege engines dial in their range, then advanced out towards each other, about a quarter of the field away from the rez lines, and let the siege engines duel some, and the archers go skirmish. We did the “Ballista!” dance a few times as it started to sprinkle on us.

Bored to death standing in the back end of the block, I moseyed over to the left side of the Meridian formation, in the gap between us and the next unit over, and hung out to watch the battle develop. Atlantia pushed forward on the far side of the field. Our archers went out to harry their flanks. Their archers, with some protective shields, came out to chase our archers away. His Highness said “I want to go skirmish” and trotted off towards the exposed shields and archers. Skirmishing being my preferred method of dying, I followed. I ended up on the far end of our unit, closest to the enemy line, with two spears facing off against me, and an archer trying to get a shot at me. I kept shuffling around to keep an enemy spearman between me and that archer (but making sure he didn’t turn his attention to His Highness). A few moments later somebody yelled “Heads up” at me. I looked right and saw a shieldman in full out charge at me. I skipped back, he pulled up short and faded back from our archers. We’d lost an archer in there, though, and His Highness called us back to the army. I fell back, but not before I killed one of my opposite spearmen.

After a little more waiting Meridies and Calontir charged into each other. I ended up in the scrum, got legged, and while legged a legged shieldman jumped on me and stabbed me in the Jimmy with what, I’m sure, was not a thrusting tip. I still called good.

 

Second run, Meridies formed up across from Atlantia. MORE FRIENDS! This was a pretty solid scrum from the word “Lay on” (because no archery, and Atlantia). At one point Sinclair charged into us near my position. He went to his knees in front of one of our shieldmen and I was not in a position to do much, so I put my elbow in his armpit and my head against his forearm so he couldn’t throw a shot. Somebody landed a kill on him, and as I stood up somebody chopped down on my wrist. Fencer brain went “I’ve lost my hand” so I spent the next thirty seconds throwing spear shots left handed before I got a break and realized “Oh, wait… heavy rules.” I got a bit of two-hand spear playing in, and somehow in there I died but I can’t actually recall how.

 

By now it was really starting to rain, now with thunder, so we mustered up on the lines and I shed my helmet and gauntlet, waiting for the announcement that the rest of the battles were canceled. And then they were yelling “Hats and bats.” It was the fastest turnaround time between battles I’ve ever seen.

We formed up and charged out. We hit the unit across from us (I can’t remember who it was). Two sets of war doors came charging in on our forward right flank, I turned to face them with the other flank guard, and took an arrow to the ass. Muttering vulgarity, I dropped to my knees right about the time the shield wall hit. I realized: They could not hit me around their gigantic war doors. So I put a shoulder into them and started pushing forward. Somewhere in there my spear got tangled up in their legs, and a few moments later there was a hold called. I was sitting there fishing my spear back out and the door in front of me moved aside. The guy behind it was offering me a hand up. “I’m good,” I told him, and hunkered down again. As they called make ready, he set up with just a little gap between his door and the next, enough for him to throw down on top of my head. So at Lay On I bailed sideways (Aikido turns out to be useful in so many situations) and put myself against his door again, and continued pushing him back. A pulse charge hit them  a moment later, and wiped the two shield walls away, and I was facing an open field. On my knees. With a spear. So I charged. I got an exposed flank on one shieldman, then engaged a couple of spearmen. They killed me, I dropped into the mud (Here’s where my collar got muddy), and Meridies swept over my dead body.

When I got back to the field pavilion, I was informed that the rapier battle was canceled for the day, due to the weather, and so I headed back to camp.

 

Thor Turns Against the MOD

David, Morgan, and Brendan came back and we sat around chatting. David’s wife, Dori, was due in any minute, since he would be elevated to the Order of Defense in court that evening.

At one point our phones all chimed. “Did everybody else get a tornado warning?” I asked. “Yep,” they said. I looked around at all the tents, all the lack of cover, and the sky which didn’t seem tornado-like. “Well,” I said, “If you hear a freight train, we all run for the ravine next to camp.” Then I opened a beer.

Dori showed up and they unloaded their car. David started getting dressed for court. I got dressed as well and headed up to court as the rain thickened. When I arrived, Her Majesty asked me to see if David would rather do it the next day. I ran back to camp, he confirmed he really, really would rather not do it in the rain, and so I ran back to court and let Her Maj know. Then I stayed to relieve Her Excellency South Downs’s retainer and hang out behind the thrones.

What followed was the fastest bit of shot-gun court I’ve ever seen. Her Majesty, a force of nature, had thirty-five pieces of business to get through and by god she would. Eventually she lost patience with the herald, who was trying to tell her the next piece of business, and called it herself. It was a bit like an episode of Oprah. “You get a GOA! You get the AoA Arts award! You get a GoA!” At piece of business 17 a general alarm went up and Her Maj called one last piece of business.

Then the storms came (with me moseying through them, because it wasn’t that different from the afternoon in Florida). The rest of the war, including at least two MOD elevations (David and Damiano), was canceled. Dori was on site for only a few hours; they loaded up and headed to a hotel. We grabbed a hotel, too, packed down the next day and drove home.
Which means I actually did fight all of the war point battles. IRON MAN!

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