Tuesday 27 April 2010

As some of you guessed when Eirik mentioned it to Harald Leki in “Eirik pays a neighborly visit,” some of the refugees from Ramsaa were bound for Lothere. And as of “Kuntigern admits he cares”—namely February 11th, 1086—they finally made it to the valley. I’ve already randomly generated the full cohort and distributed them among the households where they will be going, at least at first, though as of February 11th they’re still resting in Wintermere after their journey before heading deeper into the valley. Eirik headed on alone.

I haven’t made any Sims yet, and some or all of these people might never be so much as mentioned in the story, but I wanted to write them all down here so I can erase them from the notes I added to my outline.

All of the refugees are either widows or the children of widows. Most of them were widowed during the sea battle that preceded the uprising of the town, when most of the Norsemen were slain by Diarmait’s Gaels while still on their ships.

Refugees at Cyrs-​tún

The highest-​ranking among them – a gentlewoman on the level of a Trudi or a Hattie, say – is 19-​year-​old Thorkatla Eyvindsdottor. She and her husband were both born in Norway. They had one baby in January, 1085, which died at birth, and she is now five months pregnant. She will be going to stay with Estrid as a guest.

One other peasant woman will go to Cyrs-​tun (the village below Brede’s manor). 29-​year-​old Thórhild Biörnólfsdottor and her five children will go to live with Burhred the baker. His wife died last November, and he has a few small fry in the house. (Incidentally his daughter Aethelburh is lady’s maid to Estrid.) So maybe a marriage will be forthcoming there.

Refugees at Thorn-​row

A lot of the people will be going to Stein’s manor, Thorn-​row, under Sophie’s command. There is 29-​year-​old Tuathflaith Thorleifsdottor and her two children, who will be staying in the manor house as guests for now. (She is of a good family.)

Also at Thorn-​row is the widow Gróa Throndsdottor; her four daughters, two of whom are widows themselves; and her granddaughter. Sophie will take Gróa on as a nurse to her large collection of children. Gróa’s daughter Lerben ingen Congal is replacing the rabbit-​eared cook that Olaf and Astrid held in such horror, and her other daughter, Doirend ingen Congal, will be lady’s maid to Sophie.

Then, outside of the manor, the farmer Aelfwine will take in Garb Halsisdottor and her children. Aelfwine’s wife died only two weeks ago, on January 30th, and I expect he’s at wit’s end. He has two young boys at home, and Garb has three young kids herself. So I guess that will end up being another match, since a young widow and a young widower won’t get away with anything else.

Refugees at Gærs-​tún

I don’t remember if I mentioned it, but Flann’s former lady’s maid, Muirenn, married Aengus’s steward Caradoc on January 22nd. He’s 49 and a widower, but both of his daughters are married and out of the house. So he and Muirenn (aged 20) are setting up house together.

They will take in Ingibiörg ingen Cináed and her little boy as a lady’s maid to Muirenn. (Muirenn is moving up in the world!) Ingibiörg’s baby was one of the children who died in the river, and her husband died in the battle. She is also 5 months pregnant.

They will also take in Finnecht ingen Atli and her little daughters. Finnecht will be their housekeeper. Her husband died in 1084, but because her father was a Norseman, she was chased out of Ramsaa as well.

Finally, at the manor house itself, a young lady named Caisséne ingen Cúi Dhubh is moving in as a nurse. She is only 17 but has a little year-​old girl. With Maire gone, and Cat so big around the middle, they need someone else to help with the kids. She is of a decent family, so she’s fit to care for a knight’s children. I just hope she doesn’t have touchable red hair. :-P

Refugees at Dunellen

Dunstan’s recently-​arrived steward, 35-​year-​old Bothwin Gebeot, is Lord Cynesdale’s eldest son: a member of the minor nobility surrounding Lothere. Bothwin’s wife died five years ago, and he has two young boys, the eldest of whom is set to become Dunstan’s squire this summer. He has taken in Katla Thorgrimsdottor, a gentlewoman of Norse-​Irish ancestry, to help him raise the younger. She’s the one Eirik mentioned, whose husband and baby daughter were both killed on the Feast-​day of Flannan.

Katla is quite pretty, so he will also take in grim, 39-​year-​old Ben Muman ingen Bíorna as housekeeper and Enforcer of Proprieties. Her daughter Aibhilín will be doing the cooking.

Bertie will also do his part, and take in three of the refugees. He will take Dubgilla Haraldsdottor, another gentlewoman, as a sort of nurse/​guest/​companion-​to-​Anna. (Once she learns English or Anna learns Norse or Gaelic, that is.) And he will also take 8-​month-​pregnant Cellach ingen Hallkell as cook, along with her 10-​year-​old son.

Miscellaneous new arrivals

My random-​person-​generator has been chugging away all this time without much fanfare, so I might as well take this opportunity to mention some interesting new arrivals.

New priest

Sigefrith has a new priest to handle Saint Catherine’s Parish. It wasn’t working out with Aelfden being so ill and overworked, and Father Timothy was getting too old to make the trip from the Abbey to the castle. So welcome Father Blecca, aged 33. I have no idea where he ranks in the Priest Pageant, since I haven’t made a Sim for him yet. :-)

New ladies

Also worth mentioning, to those of you who are into matchmaking, is the recent arrival of a small flock of noble ladies to Queen Eadie’s court. (Much to poor Eadie’s surprise.)

It started when Lord Creistoc – a nobleman living to the northeast of Lothere, whom Sigefrith has been wooing for years now – decided last December that he wanted to do something nice for Sigefrith at last, and he offered to send his eldest daughter, Ealfthryth, to Lothere to wait on the Queen.

Sir Osfrey Ealstan heard about this, and hurried to send his 14-​year-​old daughter Angharad to the court before Ealfthryth arrived. That Osfrey!

And, finally, Lord Hamelan sent his old-​maid sister Egelfride, perhaps because he didn’t know what else to do with her. In “Ralf learns what was not lies” her sister’s brother-​in-​law Ethelwyn reminded Ralf how ugly she was. :-D

Now that I think about it, it would be ironic if Ralf fell in love with her. Maybe she likes cats!

The future Baroness

I believe that Lord Hamelan will also be sending his daughter Agatha to Lothere at some point fairly soon. She is betrothed to Brinstan, as you may recall. Everyone expected Brin to stay at her place for a while longer, and for their marriage to be quite a few years in the future, but now that Theobald is dead, everyone’s plans will have to be reshuffled.

She’s only 13, and Brin is only 15, so I don’t know if she will go live at Thorhold. That seems a little awkward and risky. So she will probably come down into the valley. It makes the most sense for her to either stay at the castle with Sigefrith and Eadie, or else go to live with girls her age. That would be either at Nothelm, with Gwynn and Meggie, or at Dunellen with Brit and Ogive. I guess it depends on how mega-​awkward everyone decides a Brit/​Agatha friendship would be. >8)

Ogive is the future Queen, however, and Agatha is the future Baroness, so there’s that point in favor of Dunellen.

Anyway, I hope she brings her brother for visit, because he’s cute!

By the way, the news of Theobald’s death (and the portable part of Theobald’s remains) arrived in Thorhold very late on Saturday, February 7th. News hadn’t reached Wulsy’s ears at the time of his visit to K early on the 8th, or he probably would have mentioned it, Finna’s death notwithstanding. By now, though, I expect the valley is in mourning, and Brinstan is officially Baron.

In addition, with little Finna’s death, the ominous lack of information about Brede’s and Egelric’s situation, and the arrival of a lot of recently-​bereaved wives (and sometimes mothers) right in the middle of things, I imagine the mood is quite grim among our friends in Lothere. It never rains but it pours.

There is yet balm in Gilead, however, in the form of Mama Gunnie’s plum pies. Hang in there, Gwynn!

Gwynn and Mama Gunnie.