By DonalBane of Blakmers
Battlefield Reporter, Pennsic Independent
The 11th annual Storming of La Rochelle
The rapier community kicked off the melees at Pennsic XL with the Storming of La Rochelle Saturday morning. This annual heavy rapier and rubber-band gun brawl took place at the Pennsic Fort. About 200 rapier fighters took part in this year’s battle.
The sides were split into those with orange tape and those without. The attacking side was given unlimited resurrections, while the defending side was given one resurrection. The side that could hold the fort longer would win.
The Orange horde was given the chance to defend the fort first. The Orange warriors managed to deny the attackers the first time it attempted to set its petard with a well-placed gunshot. However, the Non-Orange attackers managed to set their petard on the main gate on their second attempt, causing the fort to shake with an earth-shattering kaboom.
With the doors blown, the Non-Orange force sent a steady wave of fighters crashing into the kill pocket inside the fort. It took multiple charges to break the combined forces of Atlantia and the Midrealm in the center, but once it was done, the end was soon in coming.
Attacking forces from the main fell upon the East’s warriors at the west sally point and drove them back to the middle of the field. The final Orange warrior fell at the 7:15 mark.
After the sides switched places, the Orange warriors set a plan in motion where they initially feinted sending most of their warriors to the sally point. While this allowed a small force of Orange warriors to quickly set their petard on the main gate, the move did not prove decisive.
After a second earth-shattering kaboom, the Non-Orange warriors kept a tight kill pocket, which repulse charge after charge. Elements from Brendoken, Æthelmearc, Wednesday Company and later the Thieves of Hearts kept the Orange warriors in check for at least 10 minutes.
Attrition eventually allowed the Orange warriors to break out and chase the remaining Non-Orange warriors into the towers, where the final warriors fell. However, the Non-Orange warriors had lasted 14:30, giving them the victory.
A final fight then took place, pitting the White Scarves/Bronze Rings/Kingdom Champions of rapiers vs. the rest of the Known World. This fight was a real battle of attrition, as the Known World fighters had to ferret out the White Scarves from every nook and cranny.
The Scarves made their stand at the west tower, where they slowly ground their opponents down. Eight Scarves emerged victorious at the 26:18 mark, having held on despite determined resistance.
Known World Novice Tournament
The Chivalry of the Known World, in honor of the late Count Sarnac of Ba’adur, hosted the Known World Novice Tournament on the red list Saturday morning.
A total of 68 fighters with less than two years of fighting experience entered the tournament. The tournament was comprised of eight shark pools with the top two fighters in each pool advancing to the next round. Two more shark pools then took place to determine the finalists.
The finalists included John the Breeder Davies of the East and Darlan of the Wood from Æthelmearc. Darlan bested John in two straight fights to claim the title.
Tarl’s Little Polearm Tournament
In celebration of what they call “The One True Weapons Form,” THL Tarl and the Shire of Hunter’s Home hosted Tarl’s Little Polearm Tournament Saturday afternoon on the blue list.
The tournament consisted of four bear pits where each victory earned a fighter two points and each loss counted for one point. As is tradition, every one of the 60 fighters in the tournament walked away with a prize.
At the tournament’s end, Count Edward the Red of Ealdormere won the tournament with 67 points. However, in a final best-of-three bouts fight with THL Tarl, it was Tarl who emerged victorious 2-1.
Second Generation Tournament
The Kingdom of Lochac hosted the second annual Second Generation Tournament Saturday on the red list. Nine second-generation SCAdians from throughout the Known World, often accompanied by their parents as inspiration, fought in this round-robin affair.
The finals turned into a prince vs. prince fight, as HRH Quilliam of Ealdormere did battle with Prince Miles Fitz Ranuf from the Principality of the Mists. HRH Quilliam won the final fight with two straight victories.
Also, Einar of Cynnabar was recognized as the most valorous fighter, while Raymond of the Two Baronies was honored as most chivalrous.
Lost Boys Kamikaze Battle
The Boys were back in town Saturday as the Lost Boys hosted their annual Kamikaze Battle at the Pennsic Fort. This fight-all-you-want event saw fighters join in from throughout the Known World participate. Many acts of fighting brilliance took place — particularly from Dirkam McWard of Clan O’Niall.
After 90 minutes of unlimited resurrections, the red army and white army met a final time in last-man-standing brawl. The white army would emerge victorious as forces from Drachenwald rolled the field from the south.
Ealdormere 10-Man Unbelted Tournament
Under the setting sun Saturday, the Kingdom of Ealdormere hosted its annual 10-Man Unbelted Tournament.
Four teams represented their respective kingdoms in this round-robin affair, which traditionally is one of the best-loved fights at Pennsic.
It was the team from Atlantia that claimed the title this year, going 3-0 in the round robin. Æthelmearc (2-1), Ealdormere (1-2) and the Midrealm (0-3) also participated.
Two further notes concerning martial issues:
First, the Midrealm Archery Corps is offering loaner bows so all Midrealm citizens can shoot in the populace archery War Points. Forresters Merlin and Greybarr and Uncle Jack have provided two adult bows and three children’s bows for use. Check in at Midrealm Royal for availability.
Second, Sir Osgkar of the East and a set of distinguished fighters from throughout the Known World will hold the field on Wednesday from 2 to 6 PM as a charity benefit for Mikkel the Builder of Dragonshiphaven. Mikkel was injured in a motorcycle accident and donations from the event will help defray his medical costs. Sir Osgkar asked a $5 donation, which will be good for five single-combat bouts.