By DonalBane of Blakmers
For the Pennsic Independent
On an overcast morning in front of the fort, the royalty and populace of the Known World gathered together Sunday to officially open Pennsic War XXXVI.
The Kingdom of Æthelmearc took their customary place as the first to arrive at the fort, as TRM Rurik and Angelik waited on the dais while their subjects sang of Æthelmearc’s glory.
About 20 minutes later, the East and Midrealm marched side-by-side to the dais, followed by representatives from every kingdom in the Known World. When all had assembled, HRM Rurik spoke first.
“We welcome all of you in friendship to our Sylvan lands,” HRM Rurik said. “You do us great honor by being here as friends and family. We hope that you all have fun.”
HRM Rurik then yielded the dais to the belligerent nations. HRM Dag of the Midrealm spoke first, greeting the East in friendship.
“We have word from our brother in Æthelmearc that your armies have come to their lands,” HRM Dag said. “We hear your intentions are questionable.”
“Their lands?” HRM Gryffith responded, drawing laughs from the crowd. “I have you know that my brother stood here at Pennsic XVI and XX as King of these lands. I have camped here to reclaim these lands.”
After both sovereigns made claims of friendship and complemented each other’s armies, the War Arrow was broken and the cannons sounded, officially opening war.
The Dragon and Brigantia Principal heralds then began the roll call of Kingdoms. HRM Rurik declared first and, perhaps miffed at HRM Gryffith’s ignoring of his Kingdom’s independence, declared Æthelmearc for the Midrealm.
In quick succession, Atenveldt, Meridies, An Tir and Drachenwald declared for the East, while Caid and Ansteorra declared for the Midrealm. HRM Valharic of Atlantia paid homage to heroes, and then remembered his former kingdom by declaring for the Midrealm.
Artemisia, Ealdormere and Lochac soon declared for the East, as did the Holy Kingdom of Acre, honoring their long-standing alliance. Calontir, Trimaris, Gleann Abhann, Outlands and Northshield declared for the Midrealm, with HRM Hrodir drawing the biggest cheers, noting, “We are taught in my realm that, to be a hero, you must come to Pennsic and kill an Easterner!”
The Great Dark Horde declared last as Khan Rowena led her “peaceful pastoral nomads” into court. Rowena remembered the many warriors who were not able to be at Pennsic.
“They fight a real war in the Holy Land,” Rowena said. “We are privileged to fight in Valhalla, as war should be fought.”
Rowena then paid homage to all the royalty on the dais and said she would declare for “a real king; the first who will give me a kiss.”
HRM Rurik then sprinted off the dais and earned the Horde’s allegiance with a rather passionate kiss, much to the crowd’s delight.
Master Rocco Barbarossa and Legio Darkyard then performed their annual duty by bringing forth the Pennsic War Horn.
HRM Gryffith gave a weak blast on the horn, before HRM Dag passed it to a champion who gave a mighty blast.
“Here we come as friends,” HRM Dag said. “All of us share the same dream. Let us remember that.”
“You do us honor by coming here from lands far and wide,” said HRM Gryffith.
Their Majesties cried “East!” and “Draco Invictus!” to their respective kingdoms as the ceremony ended.