For several weeks, excitement has been building in Kenabres – Armasse is coming! Traditionally an opportunity for scholars and priests to come together to study the lessons of history from wars past, since Aroden’s death, this holy event has become more about training commoners in weaponry, choosing squires, and ordaining new priests. Over time, Armasse has grown to encompass jousting competitions, mock duels, battle reenactments, and other festival events. In Kenebres, the festival (which takes place on the 16th of Arodus) is eagerly anticipated, for it provides distractions from the horrors of being on the front line of the war. Smiles on faces normally marred by downcast eyes and furrowed brows do wonders for city morale in the weeks leading up to the event.
Armasses is a citywide celebration, but the majority of the event, including its jousting matches and other entertainments, takes place at Clydwell Plaza, just west of the cathedral.
It is here that your adventure begins, with you all in attendance near the cathedral’s facade – you’ve been lucky enough to get good spots to observe the opening ceremonies at noon.
Standing near the front and abreast with the other crusaders is a beautiful woman with bronzed skin and dark, exotic eyes. Long caramel hair cascades down her shoulders and halos her glimmering armor that flashes like the sun in the bright afternoon light. She is shapely, but clearly strong, with a majestic air that puts to shame the shining exemplars of light and beauty around her.
Nearly a head taller than any other spectator there lurks a mountain of a man near the shadow of the nearby ally leading away from the plaza. Rippling muscles pull at the seams of his clothes and his intimidating shadow has left a small gap between him and the other onlookers. A dark hooded cloak is pulled tight around him and obscures the features of his face, but it is still clear that he is looking towards the shining exemplars of the city with deep interest, if not admiration. The heavy handle of a warhammer is just visible from beneath the cloak and a weathered hand rests warily on it, almost as though he might need it at a moments notice.
Sitting astride this giant’s shoulders is a young woman with gently pointed ears, and bright blue eyes beneath neatly trimmed umber bangs that hang in a straight line across her forehead. She is wearing a simple deep brown corset over a white peasant blouse and a pair of riding breeches and boots. A belt and bandoleer hug her shapely figure and she carries twin blades at her belt whose polished hilts glimmer in the noon sun. Simple silver ornaments adorn her, and a faint smile is on her lips as she gently offers the large man beneath her a reassuring pat on the shoulder.
Beside the both of them, perched lazily on the low bough of a tree, is an elf with pale skin and raven dark hair that falls down his back in a loose braid. Aside from leather pants and boots he wears no clothes in the traditional sense save for archers gloves, bracers and a single shoulder-guard. His fair skin is emblazoned with wild elvish tattooes that run across his slender frame like waves of fire, crossing his body from his cheeks to the hem of his pants where they can be seen no more. Though he seems disinterested in the ceremony, he does seem to be keeping a close eye on his companions and the people surround them with the eyes of a cat watching so many mice.
A hush falls over the crowd… the ceremony is about to begin.