Britannia Lost: Dark Ages
The Battle For Maiden Hill
For months leading up to the siege, rumors and sightings of the Lost Legion, a particularly infamous troupe of True Fae, had been circulating the freehold. Notably, that their path seemed to be a bee-line for the Summer court. The Northern-most outposts of the freehold, Hadrian’s Wall, was found overrun and its inhabitants massacred by a suspected attack from the Wild Hunt. The legion had been slowly yet surely following its path South, and was now reported as close as 4 days away.
Despite Drust’s insistence to cut their losses, call for allies and withdraw until the threat had passed, the general had already given orders to shore up defences and hold the ground. Fear and panic rapidly set in, scuttling any realistic chances of a safe and cost-less withdrawal. Drust, refusing to let any of his beloved courtiers be abandoned to a horrid death due to their abandonment by their court, relented. The decision was made: Maiden Hill would be defended, and glory or death bestowed on its inhabitants.
Over the next two days, Maiden Hill assembled an arsenal of arrows, ditches and supplies that would put many an army to shame, before the attack took place. The night before saw nearly as much drama as the siege itself. A delivery of food from Spring was rejected out of the court’s pride.
Bridei, as expected from his title was forced to investigate the dead body of a blacksmith, which appeared to be an apparently suicide – a slit throat had spilt blood all over the remnants of a mask, which bridei recognised as the remainders of a certain True Fae’s tooth he had previously claimed. Robin Goodfellow took it upon himself at this instant to make himself apparent, stating his interest and possible delight in the Mask’s creation. Given the potential for trouble-making he was subsequently grappled by Guards and placed into a cage. This cage happened to be guarded by a former Summer noble known as Corrodhain, who had been relieved of many of his duties for his shameful and potentially oathbreaking behaviour towards the redcaps. Robin Goodfellow, ever the antagonist, seized this opportunity, sowing ideas into the head of Corrodhain that would ultimately decide much of the battle’s result. Rumor had it that he was also seen leaving the general’s tent, but such knowledge is lost or perhaps poorly remembered.
The early morning saw a horde of cultists, driven mad by their worship of the unholy fae, or perhaps mere slaves forced into duty, charged the castle. While they fell in droves, the attackers made use of slings to injure the defenders, and very nearly lit the gate alight. Whilst the attack was repelled, it burnt through much of the supplies intended for the Lost Legion, and disturbed many of the defenders, who were now sleep deprived. During this time Jack was contacted by the winter court, who requested he fulfil an important job to save the freehold. Using his exceptional speed, the deer-man found the Winter Courtier he had been assigned to find, and delivered him the gift requested. The strange courtier, covered head to toe in strange markings and speaking exclusively in Mourning Cant (A Winter Courtier dialect), agreed to fulfil his duty, and followed Jack back towards the siege.
Several hours later saw the main assault. The legion marched forth on the tower, revealing several ballista which fired upon the palisade. Whilst the freehold rained death down on the soldiers, much of the time they simply stood back up, or completely ignored the blows that would have felled lesser beings. Eventually they began bashing the gate, whereupon an almighty monster leapt upon their group, tearing into the ranks and eviscerating several men. Whilst noone recognised the beast, the being was Bridei and was the terrifying results of the mask that had cost the blacksmith his life.
However, even this was not to prove enough to turn the odds in the freeholds favour. With the gates beginning to be broken in , a retreat was called, and an attempt to withdraw began to be made. At this point, the sound ofa horn that chilled the entire court to their core was heard. The Wild Hunt had been called.
Who, or what , brought about such a horrifying conclusion to the day is not known by most, but the facts are as such:
In an act of exception pragmatism and cold-heartedness, the Queen of Winter had decided the Summer court truly doomed by its own grandeur and strength, and had done the one action she deemed to truly assist in the destruction of such a foal enemy: The Queen summoned the True Fae to fight the True Fae. With the ringing of the horn, the terrifying host known as the hunt descended upon the fortress, smashing through the gate opposing with ease, their rampage continuing into the fort as Bridei evacuated the final stragglers. He watched on in utter horror as the wild hunt levelled their spears on the Lost Legionnaires they found themselves staring down, and with an almighty heave, closed the gate doors.
In the fallout after the attack, Summer scattered to the winds. The General was nowhere to be seen, Drust was presumed dead, and Thresh, in the orgy of violence and blood he had been exposed to, had lost all capacity to think past his primal state of rage. While the court had possibly dealt two massive blows to two renowned threats to the freehold, they had sacrificed the court to do so.