The Chronicle

of the month of Jasmarill in the year 147

The Witanmoot has been caught out by the surprise arrival at the city gates of a large delegation from Cascorach, seeking to establish a formal envoy to Linrodeth. Despite rapidly taking over several nearby hostelries, the delegation soon became bogged down in the Witanmoot's internal confusion, especially since most aldermen are far too interested in forthcoming budget and nomination negotiations to stand in for Lord Matthew Dixon, currently indisposed with summer fever. The sheriffs offices also appear to be having some trouble communicating. This latest recurrence of Lord Dixon's illness adds new level of interest to the forthcoming sheriff nominations which are already rumoured to involve new candidates.

Other notables within the Witanmoot have been indulging in a month of intrigue and espionage on their fellow councillors, but it is unclear whether this is the result or effect of a spectacular rift within the Monterey faction. Alan's attempts to play down the significance of his troubles look unlikely to succeed as his rivals move in for a recruiting-fest. Sheriff Ann Tasker appears to be one of those reconsidering her allegiance commenting, "I joined the Monterey faction on the clear understanding that the group's policies would always put the welfare of the city as its top priority. It now appears that we are merely supposed to act as a prop for the current administration." Duthon, Trueman and Perignon have all been displaying considerable interest in the reactions of Monterey's councillors although, in a rare display of tact, none were invited to this month's banquet at the Perignon mansion for members of the recently successful Perignon/Avery alliance. It was perhaps unfortunate that Councillor Avery was called away at the last moment to intervene in a planning dispute, but both Lady Perignon and Mrs Avery seemed to get on very well in his absence.

Watch members were called out to a noisy disturbance earlier this month at Blessop's Carvery in Levestone. The incident appeared to be no more than a particularly large, sticky and enthusiastic bun-fight, but given that it quickly engulfed several aldermen, one sheriff and various gentlefolk from the Citadel, the fate of those youngsters arrested may be dire. The subsequent wrath of Mrs Blessop once the clean-up and redecoration bills arrived was said to be truly impressive, and imprisonment may be the best bet for these perpetrators.

Work on the alleged city orphanage in Faringdon has come to a complete standstill due to lack of funds, despite the hard work of enthusiastic citizens in lobbying the Witanmoot. Various guilds and almoners are also beginning to actively support it and have begun collections in other wards around the city. This made for another trying month for Cllr Hywel Duthon, who found himself once again on the sharp end of a whip-round organised by the Little Sisters of Mercy, an active group of ladies who can command an extensive vocabulary and loud oratory skills should their wealthier victims prove less than generous.

The dusty, hard-baked tourney fields were the venue this month of the fencing encounter between Miss Laurella Lausada and Alderman Aralan Derwent, an event which drew a large crowd of pundits, fencing fans and Witanmoot hecklers. The duel got off to an inauspicious start with Aralan passively awaiting attack and Laurella actually stumbling over the rough ground. Once the scattering of boos had died down, both ladies switched immediately into top form and launched into blistering attacks which left both slightly wounded. A hurried conference between their seconds failed to resolve the issue and the duel was resumed. The next flurry of attacks left onlookers applauding and resulted in another minor wound to Derwent and a slight cut to Lausada. A dodge by the younger woman forced an opening in her defence which Derwent immediately moved in to exploit. However a superb recovery and stylish swordwork finally resulted in a third wound to the tiring alderman. Derwent yielded.

The great and the good were much in evidence as the Kings Theatre opened its doors for the first night of 'The Merry Wives of Faringdon'. The inaugural performance of the recently formed De Loquin Players took place on schedule despite the tragic suicide of its leading actor and sudden illness of leading lady Rosamund Ravensthorpe. Understudy Felicity Mint, thrust suddenly into the limelight, made an impressive debut as Ann Dropstick. Less convincing was Jerome Harding, stumbling into the shoes of the late Edmund Garlick as Sir John. The other leads acquitted themselves well under the sparkling direction of Gerard Boscombe, the performances lifted by the delightful creations of wardrobe mistress Hilda Hobson.