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Thread: The Adventures of the Crovan Clan

  1. #21
    Wow, what a great AAR! Might be the best I've ever read. This thread is bookmarked, can't wait for the next episode.....

  2. #22
    General Lordban's Avatar
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    Erlend reads pretty bitter.

    Must be marriage with a wife over 30 years older than he is, and she refusing to die

    Should he have looked for a wife in her eighties?
    "Mankind has only one science. It is the science of discontent." -- Count Hasimir Fenring

  3. #23
    Off Again Alfred Packer's Avatar
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    Rastak, thanks for the compliments!

    Lordban,

    Erlend seems bitter to me too and for the exact same reason. And excellent forshadowing!

    P.S. - the latter part of this comment will make sense in an update or two - one forthcoming today)

    P.P.S. - The post script will never make sense

  4. #24
    Off Again Alfred Packer's Avatar
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    1103-1105

    Erlend Gudrodsson Crovan

    Duke of Western Isles
    Count of Western Isles and of Austisland and of Vestisland



    Reflections on the early middle part of his rule, 1103 - 1105












    With the Duchy of Ulster completely overrun, they have no choice but to give me everything. The best part is, I amost get the nation out of debt with the settlement.











    Since Aslak was severely injured on the campaign when a large tree fell on his tent, (no doubt Irish outlaws were behind it) I am compelled to reward his service.




    Have another swamp dear brother.





    While I was busily doling out rewards to my vassals, I received a curious message from the County of Mide. They declared war in support of their brothers in Ulster.




    At first I thought it was a joke, but then soon realized they were merely criminally foolish.



    I am resolved to punish their crime.











    We, well we and the Norwegians, quickly routed the Midians and sieged their fort.











    Before too long, I offered Count Murchad peace. The conditions were simple: I get everything he owns of value – titles, lands, gold, serfs, and soldiers. He gets to live in exile and in poverty somewhere else.


    Murchad quickly saw the wisdom of my proposal and departed with his meager belongings.











    Who would have ever guessed that Halkjell’s seed could ever be so useful…and also dangerous. I will have to watch this one.





    I am disturbed that I have not yet produced an heir while my brothers seem to pop out spawn every year or so. My plan of marrying aging hags for the money has backfired. I still have the first one and she is not as pleasing on the eyes as she once was.



    If I could afford an assassin, I would do her in and find a younger wench. Unfortunately, assassins like cash up front.











    This itinerant preacher named Franklin of Vestisland appeared in Iceland. He wandered around dressed in gunny sacks and preached poverty and repudiation of worldly goods as a means of getting closer to God. He lived only on charity and donated food. The locals saw him as a harmless man of God and treated him kindly and respectfully. Birds and small vermin seemed really fond of him too, following him around and eating off his hands.





    I use the past tense because I had him executed for promoting revolution against the social order and the Duchy of the Western Isles. Intolerable crimes.










    Clearly I was right to execute that preacher. The people of Vestisland have rebelled, accusing me of tyranny and crimes against God.



    I’ll show them tyranny.











    Marshal Skofte MacLeod, possessor of the greatest name in Christandom, crushes the miserable farmers but fails to kill every single one of them, so I fire him as Marshal. I doubt killing 50 odd farmers will crush the spirit of Vastisland as I ordered.


    I appoint someone of sterner and darker bent: Torstein Halkjellsson. He won’t hesitate to burn the whole bloody county to the ground if they dare rise up again.











    Just because he is Marshal doesn’t mean I trust him. I force Torstain to marry Harald the Bastard’s highly unstable widow. I am hoping for similar results.










    It is not long before Torstein gets a chance to prove his worth in battle.





    Wow! Parts of Ireland subjugated and Icelander rebels crushed. And still, still, no sign of the alleged “revenge” of the Crovans against the Ynglings or Leinster. Seriously, will Erlend every fullfil his father’s vows or will he just keep mucking around tormenting his relatives, subjects, and most poverty-stricken neighbors? And what about Torstein? Will he prove his mettle in Iceland or will Halkjell’s blood show through? Will his shrewish wife drive him as mad as she did his uncle? Is that marriage even legal? Tune in next time for another exciting episode of The Adventures of the Crovan Clan!

  5. #25
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    Quote Originally Posted by Alfred Packer
    Marshal Skofte MacLeod, possessor of the greatest name in Christandom,
    LOL! Sounds like a character in a bad soap opera. Nice update and very amusing.
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  6. #26
    "Lol" and "Rofl" are grossly overused cliches on the Internet, but honest to God, this AAR has me LOLing on a regular basis, and damn close to ROFLing at least two or three times!

  7. #27
    Yea, the whole Bear in the pit thing had me really and truly laughing out loud.

  8. #28

  9. #29
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    1105-1111

    Erlend Gudrodsson Crovan

    Duke of Western Isles
    Count of Western Isles and of Austisland and of Vestisland and of Ulaid



    Reflections on the middle part of his rule, 1105 - 1111





    So, with much assistance, two acts of raw cowardice, and two battles, Torstein finally managed to suppress the Vestisland rebels. Since I publicly mocked the old Marshal right before I fired him, I’m kind of stuck with Torstein for now.











    The Papal Nuncio stopped by my court and announced that God really, really, really wanted me to muster up mine and my vassal’s armies and sail to Spain so that we can go to war with one of the largest and mightiest nations in the world, the Emirs of Zaragoza.




    I laughed so hard I nearly choked on a herring bone.











    The Vestislanders rebel again, so I send Torstein to suppress them again, you know, since he did such a great job the first time.












    For some reason, they don’t seem to hate Skofte as much, so I send the ex-marshal to rule over the remnants of Vestisland.












    Halkjell stormed into the hall today looking very determined. He loudly declared that after a lifetime of service to the family he deserved some respect and some proper treatment.




    I asked what he considered proper treatment and he said nothing less than the Stewardship would do.




    I ordered my guards to toss him in the nearest mud hole.











    Having reduced my debt to only 6 pounds of gold and added up my troops, it seemed that now, finally, nearly fifty years after father first swore vengeance, that I would be able to act on that pledge.



    We have gone to war with the Dukes of Leinster.











    The first Battle of Dublin ends in a total and humiliating defeat. That is because Aslak's Swamp Rats, holding my left flank, turned and fled the battle for no reason. Well played dear brother. You'd better hope you tent is pitched in an open field tonight.




    If you note, however, The Leinsterians lost the vast bulk of their army, while my reserves were yet untapped.











    I brought my wife along on the campaign. During the confusion in our retreat from Dublin, she met with an accident, of sorts. I am a bachelor again.












    The second Battle of Dublin ends much better.












    I marry this woman because she is young and I need an heir. In my haste, I seem to have married a nun. Fortunately, she is not a very good one. I hope she cut Church School on Chastity Day!











    Once again my liege sends a powerful army to support me.

    I’m really having trouble remembering why Father hated the Ynglings so much.






    Erlend is actually fulfilling part of the vow! Who would have believed it? This is a most un-Crovan-like activity! What will become of Leinster? Will Erlend succeed in crushing his foe? Who will he hate if is arch-enemy is gone? I mean besides Halkjell. Were the Dukes of Leinster even aware of this blood feud? I’d guess not! Tune in next time for The Adventures of the Crovan Clan!

  10. #30
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    Alfred, Another great update. Good luck with the new nun-wife.
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  11. #31
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    1111-1113

    Erlend Gudrodsson Crovan

    Duke of Western Isles and of Iceland
    Count of Western Isles and of Austisland and of Ulaid



    Reflections on the latter part of his rule, 1111 - 1113










    Leinster, completely overmatched and overrun, is forced to yield to all of my demands.


    They do so in hopes I am satisfied, but the Crovan Clan cannot rest until Leinster is utterly destroyed.











    Today, an heir is born to me. I celebrate by taunting Halkjell and Aslak to their faces.











    I haven’t been able to get rid of those lousy thieves in the Western Isles, so I make them Erlend Halkjellsson’s problem.











    Here is my daughter Gudrid. Not that I care, I have a son!












    After a short break to father an heir, my forces are ready to take on the Dukes of Leinster in a battle to the finish. Since my armies outnumber his by about 6 to 1, I may not even wait for the King of Norway this time.











    In the epic battle of Urmumu, I outwitted Loegaire, Duke of Leinster. He had challenged me to a stand up battle of champions for the lordship of Leinster and allowed me to chose the location. I did, choosing a nice field surrounded by thick bushes.

    I brought the agreed 230 men, my Huscarls, while he brought the 191 men of his Home Guard. Our small forces faced off, the fate of Leinster and of the Western Isles hanging in the balance.

    Little did he know that Halkjell and another thousand warriors were hiding in the bushes.

    You should have seen the look on Loegaire’s face when they came charging out from all sides.











    With their Duke lying dead on the fields of Urmumu, The Count of the Isle of Man yields his claim and flees. So, after 50 years, this particular Blood Oath has been avenged.











    The Bishop of Osraige yields as well.











    And thus ends the Duchy of Leinster. Nobody crosses the Crovans and lives. Well, at least their children or grandchildren won’t live.

    I guess the original Duke died too, of old age or something, but you know what I mean.











    Torstein, rather than being driven mad by his wife, has instead made her less suicidal and they even have a happy family – with an heir. Torstein adopted Harald the Bastard’s daughter and has treated her like his own child. Time to sideline another rival’s career.




    I fire Torstein as Marshal and then appoint his wife Countess of Osraige, making him her consort. If that doesn’t throw some tension into their lives, I don’t know what will.





    So Erlend has a son, who he named Ossor, bumping Aslak and Halkjell's lines from the succession. Well, Erlend’s mood has certainly improved and final vengeance has been handed out to Leinster – without the help of the Ynglings! Will Erlend turn his conquering eye on Norway? How will Torstein take his demotion and humiliation? What about Aslak, unlike Halkjell he’s probably pretty mad about being mocked to his face? Tune in for the next exciting episode of The Adventures of the Crovan Clan!

  12. #32
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    1113-1114 I've gotta four post buffer and I'm not afraid to use it

    Erlend Gudrodsson Crovan, the Hammer of Leinster

    Duke of Western Isles of Leinster of Ulster of Meath and of Iceland



    Reflections on the end of his rule, 1113 - 1114











    Disease spreads to Uliad. Not just any disease but the death from diarrhea disease. I won’t be visiting Uliad for a while.











    King Kare called up the troops today. In remembrance of all of his support of me, I happily send him my armies.



    Since I still do have a blood oath to destroy the Ynglings, I do not send their payroll.



    This does put any other revenge plans on hold for the time being, but after a lifetime in the saddle, I’m looking forward to spending the next few years at home, molding my son in my own image and tormenting Halkjell.











    Bishop Arne got some horrible disease from wandering among the serfs. So help me, if he spreads his peasant sickness to me, I’ll string him up.






    Of course, I do catch his miserable, filthy peasant disease. When I’m feeling better, I will definitely string him up.



    Leeches are almost as stomach churning and vile as the peasants.



    God, I can’t wait to get up and out of this bed. There is still so much to…hey, what are you doing in here.




    Oh quit sneering at me. You’ll be pooping everywhere yourself soon enough, everyone else around here is already.



    Put that down, I have enough problems around with without your grubby hands all over my pillows.




    Wait get off…




    *murph*





    *muffle*





    *flail*














    After some heated debate with Aslak and Torstein, who both laid claims on the Duchy, the Estates General, happy for something to do, decide to back Ossor as rightful Duke. As Regents for the two year old Duke, they chose: Ragnhild Haraldsdottir, senile spendthrift grandmother of the Duke as Steward of the Realm, Findchad the Random Guy as Marshal of the Realm, Duke Ossor’s mother Gudrun the Nun of Sudrey as the Spy Master and Halkjell Gudrodsson as Chancellor and effective ruler of the realm.




    The Estates General has not had a lot of practice with this sort of thing.






    So wait, Aslak and Torstein just so happened to be in the Ducal Palace right when Erlend died? Do you suppose he might have been *gasp* murdered? How on Earth will the Duchy hold together, what with the armies off with the King of Norway and two very angry vassals heading off to their respective swamps? How will the author manage to write for a 2 year old? Is this the end of this AAR? And how happy is Halkjell right now? Tune in for the next exciting episode of The Adventures of the Crovan Clan!

  13. #33

  14. #34
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    1114-1119

    Ossor Erlendsson Crovan

    Duke of Western Isles of Leinster of Ulster of Meath and of Iceland



    Ruminations on the early part of the Regency, 1114 – 1119 (ages 3 – 8)











    Uncle Aslak is scary. He came by the castle today with a lot of big smelly men. He yelled at Uncle Halkjell alot.



    Uncle Aslak says he wants to have all the rules and duties written down so Halkjell can’t screw him over, whatever that means.





    I offered to show Uncle Aslak my dooty, so he’d be happy but it just made his face red.












    And now there is less dooty in Ulaid. I hope that makes Uncle Aslak happy!













    This is everyone who loves me:


    Mommy and Grammy and Uncle Halkjell and the lady with the crooked tooth and that guy with the big sword and there’s mommy again!













    I was playing in Grammy’s rooms today. She didn’t use to have so many doilies and little porcelain figurines of angels and mice dressed like people. There must be hundreds of them! She also has solid gold knitting needles, rocking chairs, afghan blankets, throw pillows and cats, wow there are lots of cats.




    I got to name some of them!



    Plus there are these huge bowls of hard candies everywhere. Grammy says I can have all I want.



    I’m gonna play in Grammy’s rooms more.













    Mommy says it’s time for me to start going to Court School so I can learn all about being a Duke like daddy was.



    I wonder if I have to yell and kick Uncle Harkjell a lot like daddy did.













    Grammy had some mean man hurt real bad today for saying bad things about me.




    I love Grammy.












    The people in Dublin scared me today, so The big guy with the sword went to hurt them.












    pppbblltlttt! Dirty Peasants!












    Mommy said she was all stressed out.



    The guy who beat up all the peasants, he's called a Marshal!, well he said he knew how to "cure what ails her."



    Then they took a nap together.












    Today I learned that “allergic” means you can’t put milk in Grammy’s mead when she isn’t looking.





    So what? We get thinly veiled poo jokes until Ossor hits 16? Saints preserve us from another regency! Will Ossor's little pranks get his Grandmother killed? Seriously the whole treasury blown on porcelain figurines and cats? And she’s still the Steward? So, what adventures will befall Harkjell next? Slim pickings in the Western Isles as The Adventures of the Crovan Clan continue!

  15. #35
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    Alfred, Two excellent updates. Entertaining and humorous as ever. Nice work.
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  16. #36
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rex Angliae
    Alfred, Two excellent updates. Entertaining and humorous as ever. Nice work.
    Thanks Rex, I'm glad you are enjoying the ride...I like Ossor and I hope everyone else does - I think I've found his voice - I am also glad his minority is over!

  17. #37
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    Quote Originally Posted by Alfred Packer



    Today I learned that “allergic” means you can’t put milk in Grammy’s mead when she isn’t looking.
    This one was really nasty. And it's nice to read Ossor being actually happy when his granny embezzled his funds

    Maybe God's hand directed him to take his revenge by poisoning her unwittingly
    "Mankind has only one science. It is the science of discontent." -- Count Hasimir Fenring

  18. #38
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    1119-1123

    Ossor Erlendsson Crovan

    Duke of Western Isles of Leinster of Ulster of Meath and of Iceland



    Ruminations on the middle part of the Regency, 1119 – 1123 (ages 8 – 12)




    Uncle Halkjell took me on a picnic today.

    It was a lot of fun.

    He brought us each a fresh apricot and some bread and some other good stuff to eat.

    We rode our ponies out to a pretty field and laid out our picnic.

    The whole ride, Uncle Halkjell talked a lot about daddy and daddy’s daddy and about stuff they used to do together. I didn’t understand most of it, but I think Uncle Halkjell was mad about something.



    He laid out our lunches and we ate and talked. He kept trying to get me to eat one of the apricots. I figured he was saving the good one for himself, so I switched them when he went to tinkle. His was really tasty.



    I guess mine wasn’t so good because he had a real funny look on his face when he finished eating it.


    On the way home he got real dizzy and fell off his horse and started getting foamy in the mouth and jerking all over the place.



    Finally he just lay there on the ground, groaning a lot. I tried to hug him, but he just pushed me away.



    He looked real mad and he just kept whispering “you switched them…you switched the fruit.”



    As sick as he was, I don’t know why he was so worried about who got the best Apricot!



    I think Uncle Halkjell is with Jesus now.



















    Mommy says a Crusade will make the people and God like me more.



    I get to go with the Army. So does mommy and her friend the Marshal.











    We beat up the evil pagans and seiged their fort. We didn’t know how to get inside, since the bad guys had closed the door and all.



    We had a big council of war and all the biggest guys were there in armor and everything, which was cool, and suddenly the Marshal pipes up “hey, ladders would get us over that wall!”




    It totally worked too.











    As a reward for his good idea, he gets to keep Angermanland. I told him if he’s really good at being an Earl, we might have to change the name to Happymanland.





    He didn’t laugh.












    Grammy died today, which was really sad. Especially because I inherited all her Precious Moments figurines.



    I don’t really have anywhere to put them.











    Mommy’s been real sad since we got back from Sweden. I think she is pining for the fjords.



    I liked the fjords too, but not as much as mommy.












    Smallpox appeared in Dublin. Smallpox is real nasty. If you do not die, your face still gets really messed up and ugly.




    Luckily, only peasants have died so far. I think God is punishing them for being mean to me.
    Hopefully no one important gets sick!










    Mommy explained this one to me.



    If I let them stop being serfs, then I won’t own serfs anymore.



    I told mommy to keep them serfs. She said I was going to be a really good Duke.











    We send our army to join the king, because we are good vassals.

    Because we hate the Ynglings, we don’t pay for them.

    I am getting the hang of this!










    Cousin Torstein is a jerk. He knows that it’s cheating to do this when my army is away.






    Awww, little Ossor is growing up. But sentimentality is not good for cliff-hanging so: Torstein’s rebellion! Will it succeed or will he join his father as a total failure in life? What about Aslak? Will he join in or is he biding his time for later? Precious Moments figurines? Is that kind of historical anachronism kosher in this sort of AAR? Has the author just destroyed the moment or does it matter, since he “peaked” with Gudrod anyway? Join us next time as Crovan battles Crovan for mastery of the Western Isles in The Adventures of the Crovan Clan!

  19. #39
    Off Again Alfred Packer's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lordban
    This one was really nasty. And it's nice to read Ossor being actually happy when his granny embezzled his funds

    Maybe God's hand directed him to take his revenge by poisoning her unwittingly
    Who wouldn't be happy, he got to name the cats!

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    1124-1128

    Ossor Erlendsson Crovan

    Duke of Western Isles of Leinster of Ulster of Meath and of Iceland



    Ruminations on the early years, 1124-1128




    Luckily Uncle Aslak doesn’t turn his back on me. Since the dirty Ynglings have been keeping my whole army tied up in Norway for no reason, I only have my loyal vassals’ troops to command.

    Uncle Aslak says the Ynglings were behind the whole rebellion. The king was afraid of our growing power and thought a little civil war would help weaken us.

    Uncle Aslak said that his hatred of the vile Ynglings was the only reason he wasn’t slitting my throat and joining the rebellion himself.

    I decided not to travel with the Ducal army after that little chit-chat.











    I gave command of the army to Erlend Aslaksson, who won the big battle, but died valiantly carrying my standard forward into the enemy ranks.

    I doubt that will improve Uncle Aslak’s mood.











    Torstein abandons his family and runs away to live at some miserable Irish lord’s court, his wife surrenders and I pack them off to exile in Sweden.



    I think that Uncle Aslak was right because once the rebellion was put down, the King of Norway released my troops. Curse you Ynglings. We Crovans will have our revenge yet!











    The Saracens have invaded Scotland. Scotland is a fellow Christian nation, so I decided that we should support them. God Wills It, after all!



    It hardly bears mentioning, but Mommy says that I am now old enough to rule and she disbands the Regency. Or what was left of it anyway. Everyone but her and the Irishman were dead, and the Irishman lives way off in my Swedish fief.










    I took the cross in a moving ceremony today and pledged not to rest until the infidels had been driven from Scotland!










    Sorry your Majesty, but they just came home and we’ve just launched this Crusade and all. I hope you understand.










    My best general, Gui Incognito, wins a great battle in Cumberland.










    The Second Battle of Cumberland shows my best General at his finest.

    In fact, his battle seemed so hopeless, I’d already sent off a message to the Emir requesting a white peace.



    Yeah, I know I'd made that pledge to never rest, but, you know I considered this more of a time-out than a real rest and besides, I pledged to "never rest until the Saracens were out of Scotland" not to "never rest until my own Duchy, barren and wasted was destroyed by the Saracens of Spain."

    Besides, treaties with heathens don’t count, so we will be back at war at the first opportunity.










    Look Haldor, the last time I sent you my army you camped them in Norway and talked my cousin into betraying me so, I'm really sorry, but I just don't feel comfortable sending you my army again.











    That’s your response? You’re not even at war, besides I’m about to take on the Scottish Saracens again, so, you know, sorry, I can't let you have them.





    Look out world! Ossor Erlendsson has grown up in a big way! Defying suzerains? Making war on relatives? Crusading in far off lands…or, well Scotland at any rate? What will Ossor do next? Plus, he really seems to dislike the Ynglings – is REVENGE back on the table? Has the author gone insane? Updating this much? He's spoiling both of his fans! Tune in next time for another exciting episode of The Adventures of the Crovan Clan!

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