The very next month, a delivery was made of an invitation from House Morvissen, this is shown below:
From: House Morvissen
To: Clan Erathorn
Invitation to a tournament
To celebrate the 250th year of House Morvissen, a tournament will be held commencing on the 25th day of August 993. You are cordially invited to attend, normal limitations applying.
The schedule for the tournament follows:
Day 1: Arrivals, presentations, exchange of gifts between clans and houses, evening banquet Day 2: Morning: Initial rank challenges made Crossbow competition Evening: Archery competition Rank challenges carried out Day 3: Morning: Burials Non-Rank challenges made Evening: Non-Rank challenges carried out All day: House/Clan consultations Day 4: Joust list entry, announcement Joust list fought, celebrations for victor Burials Day 5: Foot list entry, announcements Foot list fought, celebrations Burials Day 6: Burials Any remaining challenges Challenges to House Morvissen champion Banquet Burials Day 7: Final house/clan consultations Departures
Note: Urgent challenges may also be carried out immediately subject to available grounds and approval by House Morvissen and the Dragon Boridarinth
We await your reply
Morvissen, Head of House Morvissen
This tournament, though fraught with danger, was obviously a great opportunity for us to deal in politics, and show our mettle to the other factions on the island. Once again calling on the good sense of our King, we were able to bring a number of fine Neustrian knights with us, to both take part and act as guards in the case of foul play. Making our preparations in good time, we journeyed to the appointed field, and watched as other Clans and Houses arrived, and Boridarinth raised a great globe of force around the grounds, isolating the tournament. Of the background goings on I will let Lebron speak shortly. The tournament itself was a great clash of steel on steel, many deaths and wounds received by all. In archery, Clan Clearwater of the Northwestern forests prevailed. In the crossbow competition, Clan Wyzzen (Undead) was victorious. Many challenges were fought during these days, and several weaponmasters died, including Weaponmaster 3 of House Bloodriver, who challenged me. The Joust was the next competition, and once again I took part. The prize was the Princess Lauredana of Corsica, imprisoned against her will by House Morvissen. Furious at this evil, I forced my way to the final, and there defeated the House Morvissen Weaponmaster 3 in melee, after his horse had collapsed, and a very long joust where much skill was shown by us both. I saluted his skill, but not his choice of master. The lady was released into our custody. Next was the footlist, where once again I participated. The Knight Wold of Neustria herein died, killed by a grotesque vampire creation. I managed to pass the preliminaries, however, and was the only remaining challenger to the House Morvissen champion, a great netherling wielding two large broadswords. The ensuing melee was terrible, and only by stretching myself to the very limit, wounded and weary did I manage to kill the being with a mighty strike at the critical moment, thanking King Roland for his gift of an enchanted sword, and the gods for their inspiration. The prize for this effort was a massive full suit of armour which Morvissen would never have parted with willingly but for the presence of the Dragon, Boridarinth. The Monk Fraadin used his powers to heal me, and the next day I was ready for the final challenge, a great Golem which House Morvissen offered as a champion. Dodging its massive and powerful blows, I destroyed the beast of rock and won the prize. My task was completed, and success was bought only at the narrowest of margins. We returned to Clan Erathorn to mourn our dead and celebrate our victory. Soon after, we were joined by Pertakus and several other men from Clan Wisp, they having decided to toss their lot in with us.
Clan Wisp was twelve years old when the invitation to the tournament came. The Clan was made up of individuals from many places and walks of life. However, the core was always a number of individuals of Atlantlan origin, whose services to the government had been cut short by an internal power struggle. Determined not to be caught up in the manipulations of other players, this core established Clan Wisp, to work for themselves. I became the leader after three years, on the assassination of the previous leader by House Morvissen mercenaries. Our clan was always small and relied upon our elusiveness for survival. Progress to House status was to be made slowly, and was further complicated by Morvissen, which recognized the possible threat our knowledge might pose. We were therefore always in the background, and learnt to use the knowledge we had to the full. The underlying principle of Clan Wisp is therefore the mobilization of power outside the clan rather than the accumulation of power within it, because the latter cannot be done to the degree required.
Presence at the tournament was a must. We were not there for honor or glory as some of the other Clans, but to keep our ear to the ground and see what alliances were being made and broken. Several new clans were present. Notable amongst these was Razzin, a new clan of Ratmen, and extremely agressive. A new human clan, Erathorn, had a heavy presence, with a number of knights. As the tournament progressed, two things became clear. Firstly, Razzin's agressiveness was not matched by talent, and secondly Erathorn performed extremely well in the melee events. Their weaponmaster in particular was highly skilled, and their Clan Leader, Althax, showed some cunning in dealing with Clan Wye, which had plans to eliminate him. I furnished Erathorn with some such information, both to secure their continued presence, and to find their disposition towards cooperation. The result was more than I had expected, as Erathorn offered a merging of our two clans, our specialist knowledge supplanted by Erathorn's strength of arms. We immediately refused, in such a way that Althax would understand it as an affirmative. The rest of the tournament was spent in observing events, and watching the Clan Razzin contingent get decimated. Our path now set with Erathorn, where we would supplant each other rather than compete, we took leave upon completion of the tournament, and arranged an attack by Erathorn upon our current camp. We then returned to Erathorn and merged with the population of the clan. Our Gray School lesser Mage Darius became Clan mage, and Corwin took charge of the bodyguard of Althax. The merging was complete, and work could continue.