Postfest V, Part II: The Silver Arrows
Date: Tue, August 09, 2005
Topic: Peoples & Culture

Arrows streak to their targets. Throughout the Great Glen of the Gnarly Forest, elf and man are met to celebrate perhaps the greatest archers to be found in an annual celebration of surpassing fine skill. To the winners are given silver arrows from the hand of Lady of Celene herself.

The Silver Arrows
By: Glenn Vincent Dammerung, aka GVDammerung
Used with Permission. Do not repost without obtaining prior permission from the author.

Date: 18th Reaping
Location: Gnarley Wood
Type: Sporting/Military

Archery is likely the most practiced of skills throughout the length and breadth of the Flanaess and in which many take justifiable pride. Hunters train as archers. Yeoman drill as archers as part of local militia. Yet, none so epitomize prowess with the bow than the elves. Masters of forest glen and deep woods, elves excel at archery. In Celene, it is a national sport and every elf there is said to be able to take an apple from a tree or a bird in flight from four hundred paces, six arrows out of seven. So keen is the appeal of archery among the elves that an annual archery meet is held each year on the 18th of Reaping where all may come and test their skills, elf and non-elf alike. Held in the Gnarley Wood, nearby Celene but not truly within her borders, The Silver Arrows is so named for the prizes awarded to the best marksmen - a silver arrow.

In the Great Glen of the Gnarley Wood, elves, humans, halflings and even the occasional dwarf make camp. There they are hosted by none other than the Queen of Celene herself. Divided into a variety of classes based on range and type of bow or arrow, the archers let fly, competing for the silver arrow in each grouping. The silver arrows are presented by the Queen. The best in each grouping then shoot against each other to determine a champion. Almost without exception, the champion is an elf. The prize that then awaits the tourney champion is most unusual. It is an invitation to enter Celene in the Queen’s company, there to receive just reward. What such may be, beyond the invitation, is not known. None are known to have received such an honor and made it generally known. Some few champions never, in fact, return, believed to live on among the elves as if one of their number.

Certainly, fell powers have sought to exploit the opportunity presented by the Silver Arrows to strike at the heart of Celene. Few, however, are so rash as to mount an assault, for practically every soul present in the Great Glade is armed and is an accomplished marksman. More devious and subtle machinations play out among the assembled company. Dark diplomacy and darker conspiracy may unfold upon the sward. Have unfolded. But never has the day belonged to other than the Queen in such eventualities. Rude behavior, too boisterous company, to say nothing of ill concealed guile have been ferreted out and the day won for honor. Yet, every year the opportunity arises anew. For the elves, it is a passing danger, a moment in a long existence, worth the while for the sight of surpassingly well-aimed arrows in flight.

This article comes from Canonfire!

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