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Thread: "Per Audaciam, Ad Victoriam" - The County of Frisia

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    Transnational Progressive AKjeldsen's Avatar
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    "Per Audaciam, Ad Victoriam" - The County of Frisia




    Prologus

    Being a description of those lands called "Frisia", and of the noble families living there. Written by magister Henricus Wangenius as part of his "Treatise on the Northwestern Provinces".

    We turn now to the grafschaft of Frisia, or Friesland, which at this time is ruled by the just and pious graf Ekbert. It is made up of two ancient provinces, the western of which is called Frisia and the eastern of which is called Ostrofrisia. The latter is often known as Ostfriesland in the vernacular tongue.

    These lands lie on the shores of the German Sea, which the Frisians also call the North Sea by virtue of being to the north of their native lands. These same Frisians live on small islands which stretch from Frisia in the southwest to the Danish province of Schleswig in the northeast, and which are often exposed to storms and floods. Both Frisia and Ostrofrisia are rather flat landscapes, which is marginally well suited for agriculture. Fishing is also widespread here. There is very little forest, and the country is also quite devoid of anything resembling mountains.

    Its people, which are predominantly Frisians in the west and Saxons in the east, are for the most part hospitable, loyal and hardworking. The exception are those Frisians living in the marshes and islands of Ostrofrisia, which are well known to be a rebellious and recalcitrant lot. It was said that even Emperor Charlemagne himself had great difficulty in bending them to his will, and to this day, it is only with the greatest exertion of force that one can compel them to do anything against their own desires.

    This recalcitrance extends even so far to the manner of their language, which is very peculiar and completely unlike any other language in the known world. Certainly, this must be so that it is even more difficult for outsiders to rule over them, when even their very language is incomprehensible, just as ours seems to be to them.

    In the light of all these obstacles, one can only consider how fortunate it is that these people have so little of any worth or importance, so that the loss is not very great.

    Christianity is now well established among the people of these provinces, but this was not always so. Indeed, for many years the people living in these parts were strongly pagan, and it was only through the works and eventual martyrdom of the Holy Bonifacius that the Frisians were at last converted to Our Lord.

    Neighbouring these two provinces are several other demesnes, primary among them the two bishoprics of Osnabrück and Münster to the East. To the south, one finds the county of Gelre, and to the north is Oldenburg, whose counts are well known to have had rather poor relations with their neighbours in Frisia, for reasons which not even men of very advanced age indeed can recall. Further to the south and west are the bishopric called Sticht and the rich holdings of the counts of Holland.

    As previously mentioned, the provinces of Frisia are ruled in the name of the Emperor by graf Ekbert van Braunschweig, who is also a vassal of the magnificent Gotfried, duke of the Lower Lorraine. From ancient times, the Braunschweig family grows from noble roots, namely those of the legendary Billungs, whose ancestors now also hold the lands of Niedersachsen as dukes.

    For many generations, the Braunschweigs have been blessed with strong, able and God-fearing counts, who in the past have been known for both loyalty and great feats of arms, and no one who is of sane mind can deny that they will continue this in the future.

    Having thus treated extensively with Frisia, we shall turn our attention to the Archdiocese of Bremen, further to the north…
    "When I was ten, I read fairy tales in secret and would have been ashamed if I had been found doing so. Now that I am fifty I read them openly. When I became a man I put away childish things, including the fear of childishness and the desire to be very grown up.”"
    -C. S. Lewis: On Three Ways of Writing for Children

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    Transnational Progressive AKjeldsen's Avatar
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    Welcome to this AAR that will chronicle the glorious deeds and victories of the dynasty of van Braunschweig. Or maybe their glorious lack of ability to claw their way out of mediocrity. Only time will tell.

    My goals will be quite vague at start. By necessity, I'll take things slow at first, and wait to see if any advantageous events turn up. I do have some long-term plans, but they're not all that important right now.

    One can't deny that Frisia may not be the most promising place to start the long climb up the feudal ladder. With an excellent steward that turned up within a week from gamestart, I now earn 3.2 mark gold per month. Of these, two marks go to my beloved liege, the Duke of Lower Lorraine. I hope he spends them wisely. And apart from the usual hill forts, my two provinces have absolutely nothing, a deficiency which I of course intend to remedy as soon as possible.

    But clearly, skill and audacity are our two greatest resources (besides fish), and we have a fairly good supply of those. A brief run-down of the family and courtiers reveals the following cast:



    The count. A natural crusader, if he survives that long.



    The lady countess. Ugly as sin, but not too incompetent. And Italian, which is always a good thing.



    My only son and heir. Shows promise.



    This glorious lady showed up at my court one morning in January.



    This is Gleb. Gleb is one of the more well-bred Russians around. He is quite high in the succession order of both Pronsk and Ryazan, Novgorod, and Kiev – and, incidentally, Frisia. Apparently, he's the grandson of my elder sister or something like that. Naturally, I have no intention of letting him get anywhere near my son's inheritance.



    And this is count Eglimar of Oldenburg, whom I have decided gets to be my arch-nemesis. Mostly because all true noble dynasties need an arch-nemesis. And because he's my neighbour and has a different liege lord than I, which does open for certain possibilities.



    And finally, these are the immediate surroundings. As can be seen, possibilities for expansion are rather limited at the moment, but I'm sure that something will turn up soon. More to follow soon.
    "When I was ten, I read fairy tales in secret and would have been ashamed if I had been found doing so. Now that I am fifty I read them openly. When I became a man I put away childish things, including the fear of childishness and the desire to be very grown up.”"
    -C. S. Lewis: On Three Ways of Writing for Children

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    Transnational Progressive AKjeldsen's Avatar
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    Chapter 1
    In which a man dreams, and a dream comes true


    There is something about the sight of a great ocean, stretching all the way out to the horizon and beyond, that tends to draw the minds of men outwards, making them dream about places and events far away from their own tedious everyday life, about great deeds of arms and conquests and epic stories being made.

    A man can dream about the heroes of legend who carved out new lives and dominions in new lands with nothing but bravery, skill and faith in God. He can dream of those times of legend, and of going out there and writing new legends to surpass those of old...

    Yes, a man, even a count, can dream...


    "EKBERT!"

    And just like a man can dream, so can a man be abruptly pulled out of those dreams by the angry voice of his wife, who, experience tells him, is genetically disposed against accepting her lot in life, preferring instead to take out her righteous indignation on the hapless innocents that surround her.

    "Ekbert! That horrible woman you hired as steward last week refuses to give me money for new clothes!"

    That might make a man question the wisdom of his dear father in deciding to marry his son to a woman straight out of the most luxorious courts of northern Italy...

    "This is outrageous! Absolutely outrageous, I tell you!"

    ...to say nothing of bringing her to Frisia, definitely one of the least luxurious parts of the Empire...

    "I insist that you talk to her immediately and remind her that I am the countess of this place, such as it is, while she is nothing more than a simple pennypusher who's being paid to count your money and write some numbers!"

    ...where her only pleasures were spending money and bemoaning the epic tragedy of her life.

    "Ekbert! Are you listening to me?"

    *sigh* "Yes, dear. I'll talk to the steward, but I can't promise anything."

    In those situations, a man would quietly remind himself that his wife was twenty years his senior, and that the situation would eventually resolve itself.


    (July 8th, 1067)

    "Mylord!"

    Count Ekbert turned to see his sister Ida, who filled the office of chancellor, and steward Wulfhilde enter the great hall.

    "Excellent news, Mylord!" Wulfhilde exclaimed. "We have finally discovered the documents we were looking for, in the archives of the monastery of St. Bonifacius!"

    "Indeed!" agreed his sister, carefully placing a pile of old parchments on a table. "These clearly prove that Oldenburg has in fact always been a part of the county of Frisia, and that Emperor Otto himself confirmed this over a century ago! This is marvellous!"

    The count shared their exhileration as he carefully picked up the old documents, but he was not surprised. His father had always believed that Oldenburg was theirs by right, and that there had to be documents somewhere to prove it. He nodded.

    "Excellent work, ladies. Excellent work. But let us not speak of this to anyone. The documents are only the beginning, and we have a long way ahead of us."

    He smiled to himself, remembering how his wife had called Wulfhilde a 'pennypusher'. If she only knew...

    Last edited by AKjeldsen; 28-06-2006 at 11:57.
    "When I was ten, I read fairy tales in secret and would have been ashamed if I had been found doing so. Now that I am fifty I read them openly. When I became a man I put away childish things, including the fear of childishness and the desire to be very grown up.”"
    -C. S. Lewis: On Three Ways of Writing for Children

  4. #4
    Remember Carcosa! Fiftypence's Avatar
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    Excellent start. What an unpleasant wife poor Ekbert has, both in looks and personality.

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    Major prussiablue's Avatar
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    I find this AAR interesting. A wife 20 years his senior!!! How can that be??
    When I give the poor food they call me a saint, when I ask why the poor have no food they call me a communist - Dom Hector Camara
    Out of the crooked timber of humanity, No perfect human was ever made - Lord Hoffmann

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    Bad mojo Supermoderator Veldmaarschalk's Avatar
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    Nice start, I will be following this

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    Transnational Progressive AKjeldsen's Avatar
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    Interlude

    (Excerpt from the Chronicle of the Monastery of Saint Bonifacius)

    And in early January of the one thousand and seventieth year of Our Lord, it came to pass that the good lady Ermengarde de Suza, countess of Frisia and beloved wife of the count Ekbert von Braunschweig, died peacefully, and there was great mourning all around. And she was interred in the church of this the monastery of Saint Bonifacius, and the grieving count declared that he would be in mourning for one year, and also donated for the monastery to hold regular masses for her soul, as is right and proper.



    There, that wasn't so bad, was it?
    "When I was ten, I read fairy tales in secret and would have been ashamed if I had been found doing so. Now that I am fifty I read them openly. When I became a man I put away childish things, including the fear of childishness and the desire to be very grown up.”"
    -C. S. Lewis: On Three Ways of Writing for Children

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    Transnational Progressive AKjeldsen's Avatar
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    Welcome to everyone. As an aside, for those who may remember my other AARs, I do intent to keep this one running longer than those.

    Quote Originally Posted by prussiablue
    I find this AAR interesting. A wife 20 years his senior!!! How can that be??
    Not sure, the campaign starts that way. I'd guess that the available options for a count's son from Frisia are a bit limited, though, so a man probably takes what he can get.
    "When I was ten, I read fairy tales in secret and would have been ashamed if I had been found doing so. Now that I am fifty I read them openly. When I became a man I put away childish things, including the fear of childishness and the desire to be very grown up.”"
    -C. S. Lewis: On Three Ways of Writing for Children

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    Bad mojo Supermoderator Veldmaarschalk's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by AKjeldsen

    Not sure, the campaign starts that way. I'd guess that the available options for a count's son from Frisia are a bit limited, though, so a man probably takes what he can get.
    The characters are real historical ones.

    Though Ermengarde/Irmgard was problably born around 1020. This was her second marriage, her first marriage was with the duke of Swabia, Otto II von Schweinfurt. And her mother, Bertha d'Este/d'Ivrea had been queen of Italy. So she was a pretty prestigious bride.

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    Transnational Progressive AKjeldsen's Avatar
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    Chapter 2
    In which the Count promulgates law and sets affairs in order


    (Excerpts from the Lex Frisia Nova)

    Prologus

    Almighty God created heaven and earth, and created mankind in his own image, and after the Fall anointed princes to rule over us and keep us to His divine commandments. Thus, it is the duty of the pious prince to promulgate law for the improvement of his realm and to bring in order all affairs that fall under his jurisdiction.

    These are the different types of law that exist in the land of Frisia. Above all is the law of God, by which all else is measured. The Frisians have their law, which was granted to them by King Charlemagne. The Saxons uphold certain laws in contradiction of King Charlemagne's will. And the several peoples living on those isles named the Frisian Islands each have their own laws which no one have compelled them to change. The various towns each have their own laws, which are commonly called charters. And in the absence of written law, there is custom, which are those ancient practices that are known to all as right and proper…

    (Lord Ekbert: "Wouldn't it be easier to just have one law?"
    Diocese Bishop Adolf van Arkel: "And which law would that be, milord?"
    "Mine?"
    "No, milord. That would be against both custom and God's will."
    "I see.")



    Book 1. Regarding inheritance

    Whatever property a man had at the time of his death is called his heritable estate. Whoever inherits the property must pay the outstanding debts of the deceased up to the value of his movable goods. However, he is not responsible for theft, robbery, or gambling debts, just as he is not liable for debts for which the deceased either did not receive compensation…

    …If a father gives his son clothing, a charger and riding horse, and a mail coat when he needs them and are able to use them, and the father has them to give, then afterwards, if the father dies, the son is not required to share them with his brothers…

    …It is possible for a father or a mother to give one of the sons or one of the daughters the rightful share of inheritance from his or her own property whether the offspring continue to share in the household expenses or not. If, after the death of the father or the mother, they claim their part of the inheritance…

    ("Isn't that a bit too complicated?"
    "Inheritance law is a complicated subject, milord.")



    Book 2. Regarding marriage.

    …If a woman is lawfully divorced from her husband, she nevertheless retains the life estate he gave her from his proprietary holding, and her buildings on that land. She may not, however, raze the buildings or move them elsewhere…

    …Any man who cannot be or does not wish to be without a wife may remarry even after the death of three, four, or more wives. A woman in the same circumstances may remarry and have legitimate children with her last husband the same as with her first. She passes on her estate and her legal rights to her children…

    ("This reminds me that I need to find a new wife."
    "It hasn't been a year yet, milord.")



    Book 6. Regarding theft.

    According to the Saxon manner: When a man is accused of possessing property taken by robbery and still carries the marks of the crime on his person so that it can be proven against him, and the judge is summoned with hue and cry, the judge shall follow immediately and reach a judgement on the robber and his criminal accomplice concerning the robbery speedily on behalf of the plaintiff. After that, he must place the plaintiff back into possession of the property, as long as the defendant does not contest it lawfully.

    But according to the Frisian manner: If someone is caught stealing, and is being accused of theft by the one who caught him, and he denies, than each of them swears alone, and they must be judged in an ordeal with boiling water; if the guilt of the accused is proven, he pays his wergeld to the king and redeems his hand with 60 solidi and pays the single fine for theft.

    ("So that means if a Frisian steals from you, and denies it, you have to take an ordeal to prove it? But if a Saxon steals from you, you don't have to?"
    "That's right, milord."
    "What a silly system."
    "God will determine the guilty party through the ordeal, milord."
    "Couldn't he just do that in the first place?"
    "No.")



    Book 10. On property.

    …But if someone accuses the herdsman of failing to return the animal to the village, then the herdsman can clear himself of the charge if he dares to swear a cleansing oath. In contrast, if someone misses his animal, and goes to the herdsman, and accuses him with two men as witnesses, then the herdsman cannot cleanse himself with an oath, because…

    ("Isn't this slightly too… specific?"
    "Herdsmen are very important people, milord.")



    Closing

    These are the ancient laws of the Saxons and the Frisians, as confirmed and promulgated by Lord Ekbert van Braunschweig in the one thousand and seventyfirst year of Our Lord, in the 15th year of the reign of King Henry, the fourth of his name. Amen.

    ("I still think this is all much too complicated."
    "It's better this way, milord. Trust me."
    "If you say so, lord bishop.")


    "When I was ten, I read fairy tales in secret and would have been ashamed if I had been found doing so. Now that I am fifty I read them openly. When I became a man I put away childish things, including the fear of childishness and the desire to be very grown up.”"
    -C. S. Lewis: On Three Ways of Writing for Children

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    Transnational Progressive AKjeldsen's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Veldmaarschalk
    Though Ermengarde/Irmgard was problably born around 1020. This was her second marriage, her first marriage was with the duke of Swabia, Otto II von Schweinfurt. And her mother, Bertha d'Este/d'Ivrea had been queen of Italy. So she was a pretty prestigious bride.
    The mother was married to Arduin, then? Very interesting. Maybe there's a basis for a few claims there.
    "When I was ten, I read fairy tales in secret and would have been ashamed if I had been found doing so. Now that I am fifty I read them openly. When I became a man I put away childish things, including the fear of childishness and the desire to be very grown up.”"
    -C. S. Lewis: On Three Ways of Writing for Children

  12. #12
    GunslingAAR coz1's Avatar
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    Whay a very nice start. Got rid of that awful wife early on and even had a handy claim on that most hated Count of Oldenburg. 2-province counts can do quite well. Good luck.
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    I like the writing style--not quite a comedy, but not too serious, either
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    Transnational Progressive AKjeldsen's Avatar
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    Interlude

    (Exerpt from The Audacious County: A Brief History of Frisia, by John Paul Wilkinson)

    The years 1071-1074 were a troubled period for Frisia. Although 1071 started out in a promising way with count Ekbert's marriage to Lady Wulfthryth, a Saxon noblewoman from Oxford, the good spirits at court were later poisoned by the illness and death of his daughter, the young Gertrude. Also, by the end of that year, a ring of smugglers established themselves in Frisia, and the subsequent drop in collection of taxes and customs dues put a serious strain on the county's treasury.


    The new countess.


    In late January 1072, news reached court that King William the Conqueror had been excommunicated, sending shockwaves through the kingdom of England and seriously threatening his precarious hold on the throne. At this point in time, only five years after the conquest, the political situation in England was still extremely uncertain, and it was doubtful whether the king would be able to keep the realm under control. Although this did not concern Frisia directly, it was a cause for some concern, as it would certainly affect trade with England.

    In the summer of the same year, the new countess gave birth to a new son, who was named Eberhard. Another son, Otto, would be born the year after, eventually providing the count with three heirs. Also in 1072, the eldest son Ekbert returned from the monastery of Saint Bonifacius, where he had been brought up by the monks. Apparently, he had taken strongly to their religious influence, becoming as much a pious – some would say zealous – Christian as his father.

    The fortunes of the county took yet another turn for the worse, however, when the count was taken ill in the beginning of the year 1073. This illness would combine with the count's strongly held religious views to create a fateful situation.
    "When I was ten, I read fairy tales in secret and would have been ashamed if I had been found doing so. Now that I am fifty I read them openly. When I became a man I put away childish things, including the fear of childishness and the desire to be very grown up.”"
    -C. S. Lewis: On Three Ways of Writing for Children

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    Transnational Progressive AKjeldsen's Avatar
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    coz1: A nice start, but unfortunately, we're entering a period with some setbacks now.

    Specialist290: Thank you - yes, I try to reach a middle way between the two.
    "When I was ten, I read fairy tales in secret and would have been ashamed if I had been found doing so. Now that I am fifty I read them openly. When I became a man I put away childish things, including the fear of childishness and the desire to be very grown up.”"
    -C. S. Lewis: On Three Ways of Writing for Children

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    Bad mojo Supermoderator Veldmaarschalk's Avatar
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    That new countess looks like a nice lade

    Hopefully Ekbert recovers from his illness, all tough it doesn't sound like it

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    Transnational Progressive AKjeldsen's Avatar
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    Chapter 3
    In which the Count holds to his beliefs

    (May 13th, 1073)

    Ida van Braunschweig, count Ekbert's sister and chancellor, looked up from her documents when she heard a loud coughing coming from the hallway – the sound that usually preceeded the count everywhere he went these days. It had been raining a lot recently, and the dampness had clearly gotten to his lungs.

    Though the count didn't think much of it, this illness of his was a cause for grave concern. The younger Ekbert was far from ready to inherit the county, so she prayed daily that the cough wouldn't get any worse. Steward Wulfride did the same, although she suspected it was for slightly different reasons.

    The count entered the room and sat down heavily in a chair. "God's bleeding wounds! Heh. We'll need to declare war on this weather before it kills me." Ida didn't laugh. "Hm. Anyway. Ida, I'll be going hunting with the count of Gelre and his son later today. Have our horses and equipment ready after lunch."

    Ida looked sceptically at her brother. "Are you sure that's wise, brother? Your health hasn't been good lately, and…"

    "Nonsense," he interrupted her. "The count is a good friend of mine, and it wouldn't do to show weakness like that. Besides, I feel fine."

    "If you insist. By the way, I spoke with a scholar from Mainz earlier today. He said that he knew of a mixture that would be able to cure that coughing of yours in no time…"

    "Out of the question, Ida! I'll have nothing to do with those miracleworkers. I've put my health in God's hands for my entire life, and a little insignificant cough will not make me change that! Understood?"

    "Of course, brother." Ida sighed as her brother left. She could hear his coughing all the way down the hallway.


    (July 4th, 1073)

    Ida galloped into the courtyard and dismounted the exhausted horse. She had hated having to leave at a time like this, but the affairs at the duke's court could not have been postponed. Marshal Johann came out to meet her.

    "How is he, Johann?" She brushed off his greetings, and started walking briskly towards the manor. The marshal fell in beside her. "Worse. He has trouble breathing, chest pains, and coughing up phlegma, with blood in it from time to time."

    "And he still won't talk to that medicus?"

    "Absolutely refuses."

    "The bloody fool."

    They came to the count's chambers and entered. The count was lying on his bed, attended by his wife, the bishop Adolf van Arkel and steward Wulfhilde. Ida went to sit by the side of his bed. "How are you doing, brother?"

    "How does it look like I'm doing, woman?" His voice was so hoarse that she could barely understand him. "I'm fighting a battle of life and death, that's what I'm doing. And I don't want to hear anything about that Italian poisoner, understand? I'm not going to…"

    He was interrupted by a fit of coughing that left him gasping for breath. Ida decided to leave him in peace for the moment. By the looks of it, it would be necessary to have a serious talk with his son as soon as possible.


    The count's health worsens...
    Last edited by AKjeldsen; 30-06-2006 at 22:47.
    "When I was ten, I read fairy tales in secret and would have been ashamed if I had been found doing so. Now that I am fifty I read them openly. When I became a man I put away childish things, including the fear of childishness and the desire to be very grown up.”"
    -C. S. Lewis: On Three Ways of Writing for Children

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    Chapter 4

    In which things take a turn for the worse



    It was in January of the year of Our Lord 1074, about a month after Christmas, that Ida van Braunschweig was riding home from yet another one of her numerous travels to the duke's court, contemplating how the affairs of Frisia were finally beginning to look bright again.

    Last summer, the count had hovered at the threshold of death for a few weeks, but then his health had slowly started to improve. Apparently, his belief in the Almighty had been well-placed. By the end of October, he had been back on his feet, although he was still quite weak.

    Also, the criminal troubles that had been plaguing the province in recent years were abating; no doubt the result of the count's emphasis on legislation and the enforcement of law and justice. Tax and customs revenues were up, the neighbours were peaceful, and the population was content, nobles and peasants alike.

    Everything was more or less as it should be. Now, if only they could avoid any more troubles…

    That thought was still fresh in her mind as she turned down the village street and saw a procession of monks up ahead, escorting a carriage with something that could only be a covered corpse.

    The monks were from Saint Boniface's monastery. Wulfhilde the steward had gone to Saint Boniface's monastery for some days to study their archives again. And Wulfhilde had been complaining about stomach aches just before left.

    "No…" She kicked the horse into a gallop and caught up with the monks at the manor gates.

    "Milady Chancellor." The prior, Father Baldewin, was leading the monks.

    "What has happened, Father?"

    "I am afraid that the lady Wulfhilde fell seriously ill with some affliction of the stomach while she was visiting our house. We did everything we could for her, of course, but…" He made a vague gesture of resignation. Ida fell in with the procession as it slowly continued into the courtyard.

    "Surely," she thought, "God hates us."

    Then it occurred to her that she would have to tell the count what had happened.

    "Surely, God hates me."



    A terrible loss to the county, for several reasons.



    (Early February, 1074)

    "Brother?"

    Like most of her fellow courtiers, Ida had stayed away from count Ekbert since Wulfhilde's funeral several weeks earlier. The event had clearly marked him deeply, making him bitter and irritable, and prone to unpredictable bursts of anger. Yet, there was an important matter to bring up, and as usual, she was the one who had to do it.

    "What? What is it?"

    "I know you're still… distraught about what happened, but we really need to discuss the matter of Wulfhilde's replacement."

    "What does it matter? Who could ever really replace her?"

    "That may be true, brother, but we still need a new steward, even if we can't find one as good as she was. With no one in charge of the treasury, or income has already dropping dramatically."

    "Fine. You do it."

    "I'm already responsible for the chancery. I can't do both."

    "Then give it to Baldwin."

    "You know as well as I do that Baldwin would steal even more money than he would collect."

    "The marshal, then. We're not going to war."

    "Johann? He can't even read."

    "WILL YOU STOP PESTERING ME, WOMAN!" The outburst took Ida by surprise. "Have the court jester do it, for all I care! I don’t care what you do about it, just leave me ALONE!"

    He stormed out of the door. Ida looked sadly after him for a moment, then left the room and walked down the hallway in the opposite direction. She came to a door, knocked and entered. Inside was the count's son, engaged in trying to spell his way through some Latin document.

    "Nephew? We need to have a little talk."


    Lady Ida van Braunschweig. Singlehandedly holding the county together since 1073.
    "When I was ten, I read fairy tales in secret and would have been ashamed if I had been found doing so. Now that I am fifty I read them openly. When I became a man I put away childish things, including the fear of childishness and the desire to be very grown up.”"
    -C. S. Lewis: On Three Ways of Writing for Children

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