Read stranger, the apocryphal words of Saint Neot the Lesser, servant of God and compiler of this, the Annals of the Relic of Saint Pius. It is a tale of Britons and Saxons, of Irish pirates and valiant knights. A song of holy relics and vile heathens, of the bravest of deeds and the most villainous of treacheries.
I should know, for I was there...
Flavius Constans, a man who fancied himself descended from a line of Roman Emperors, stared contemptuously down the slopes of Sorviodunum at the rabble gathering below. Sure, the combined Hiberno-Saxon host had driven him out of Venta of the Belgae– a centre his opponents were now calling Venta-chester, as if they thought he would let them stay. Sure, the barbarous hoards had forced him to seek shelter within the crumbling defences of Sorvidunum – but he had not gone down without a fight. Now, only two enemy warbands remained in any condition to continue the fight: Æthelwulf's band of Angles and a boat-load of Irish pirates led by the fearsome Irish prince, Dubh Fiach.
Behind Flavius, one of his spearmen chuckled quietly at some jest uttered by his fellows. The last of Venta’s stout-hearted militia sat around a collection of small fires, speaking quietly while they prepared themselves for the onslaught that would come at first light. Every man there knew that this, their last stand would be a bloody affair. The only real hope of the British cause was that Flavius’ distant cousin, the Magister Equitum of all the Britons would bring his mounted host to sweep away the opposition.
This is the first 'after action report' of the Relic of Saint Pius campaign, the full details of which can be found here.
The Romano-British prepare for the coming onslaught.
Iseult the Raven leads her men through the small wood ready for the approach.
Iseult and her lads creep to the edge of the woods and wait for the right moment to strike across the open field. The open ground could become a nasty killing zone for British archers and the long awaited mounted British reinforcements.
From the trees, the remaining Irish look on ...
... but in the end it proves futile. By the time the knight's arrived, Aethelwulf was already too well entrenched between the huts. Unable to press their charge, the knights in turn were overwhelmed by a swarm of Irish raiders and ceased to be a viable warband.
Victory points at the end of turn 12:
Aethelwulf's Angles - 9
Dubh Fiach's Irish Raiders - 7
Romano-British Milites of Venta Belgarum - 3
Arthur's British Equites - 0
Follow the victors here.