The letter had arrived early in Spring summoning Brother Cedric to Acromerinth, the capital of the Border Kingdoms. It came directly from Grand Master Valdemar von Vinkelhof, a big man in the Brethren hierarchy of the Border Kingdoms. He was not a man to mess around if you wanted your arms and legs to remain attached to your body, so Brother Cedric set out at once. The journey to the capital was long and wet, but uneventful. The spring rains made travelling difficult so Brother Cedric was relieved when he finally reached the city and was able to get properly dry in the Brethren preceptory there. However, he was not permitted long to rest. The Grand Master was made aware of Brother Cedric's presence immediately he arrived and Brother Cedric was summoned to the main hall shortly thereafter. Worse yet, when he arrived all the junior Brethren present were immediately dismissed. Only the most senior members of the hierarchy and Brother Miles Gloriosus, celebrated victor against the Goblins of Zog-Rot. It would be fair to say that Brother Miles looked less than happy to be there. If anything his face betrayed greater unwillingness to be there than was in Brother Cedric's heart. The atmosphere in the hall was tense. Brother Cedric was really worried now. What had he done wrong this time? Whom had he offended? He knelt before the Grand Master as etiquette demanded and kissed the proferred ring of office.
"Stand up, Brother Cedric." The Grand Master's voice was deep and strong, unlike his aging body, which betrayed all the signs of a hard life lived fighting the Black Moon. The Grand Master had lived seventy winters now and most of those had been spent in the front line, which made his longevity and even greater miracle.
"Brother Cedric," he continued, "Do you know why you are here now?"
"No, Grand Master."
"You have been summoned here, Brother Cedric," announced the Grand Master portentously, "to undertake a special mission on behalf of our order. It has come to my attention that you have upset a number of important nobles near your home preceptory. While we recognise that you acted in accord with your oath of fealty to the order, we feel that it would be better for you to take a leave of absence from the preceptory. Recent events have led to an unhappy situation that we hope you can sort out."
Brother Miles flinched at this comment. Clearly the barb was aimed at him.
The Grand Master continued as Brother Miles looked less and less happy, if that were possible. "Recent events have caused us much discomfort in our ward of the Border Kingdoms. You will have heard of the recent battle against Treyine, no doubt. The Western Marches are now in Treyine hands and we must do something about this. Brother Miles led the defending force against the Treyine invaders and failed us. He will do penance. You will succeed and you will be rewarded."
There was no doubt in Cedric's mind that failure would not be good for his career prospects in this regard.
"Brother Cedric, the Treyine army won by using foul magicks, reinforced by their command of the Spear of Saint Lindorf. You will recover the Spear from them and demoralise their troops. This is your task and you will not return here until you have done so. We have been forced to sue for peace following Brother Miles' failure and we dare not break that treaty yet. However, there is nothing to stop us preparing for the day when we have marshalled our forces and are ready to wipe this stain from our records. You will hasten that day. DO NOT FAIL ME!"
Brother Cedric hastily agreed with the Grand Master and hastily left the hall. He would rather face a whole horde of Goblins than just this one aging Grand Master. He had his task and he knew where the Spear was last seen. Time to gather his retinue and leave as quickly as possible for the west.
The first two months of Spring were uneventful as Brother Cedric travelled through the Border Kingdoms. When he reached the heart of the Border Kingdoms he also rolled a Talk the Talk encounter, which he lost by one roll. Normally this would have led to him lending a figure to another group. However, we interpreted the rules liberally and decided that Brother Cedric should go on a quest to steal the Spear of Saint Lindorf from the Treyine army. This will link our WHAA and WH campaigns a little more closely. It might even see Brother Cedric making an appearance as a hero on the WH battlefield.