Secular Brother
Lord Daniel von
Born: In the year of our Lord 1068 in the
Hamlet of Ravensfeuld  which is near
Frankfort-a-Main in the German Barony
of Hessia. Parents: Pater;Dravid von
Ravensfelder,Countin of cavalry. Damim;
Mistrss Lorna Fulford, an Anglander war
bride. My Pater was a mercinary with
Duke William when the now King of
Angland had to conquer what was truely
his birthright.

As the eldest of three children I was
squired to a northland Knightmy Pater
had been employed by to protect
merchants that traveled his
road through is fiefdom.
Lord Daniel's Heraldic device

Voyages to distant lands!
When I turned 18, I set sail from the port
of Brest on a trade voyage to the fabled
city of Constantinople!
We were only three days out of port when
a storm drove us many leagues off
course and caused much damage to our
trading cog. By the time the storm abated
the cog was low in the water with much
flooding. I can assure you that there was
much prayers being said to God with
many promises to the Almighty if he
would spare us.
  All day we tossed cargo into the sea
and bailed a river of buckets overboard,
but to no avail, the hull was rent below
the water line and we were surely
doomed. Then when all seemed lost, the  
look-out at the top of the mast shouted,
"SAIL HO!" and knees hit the deck in
prayers of thanks. A square rigged sail
hove into view, bobbing over the still
mountainous waves looking like a dark
sea bird searching for its' next meal. Alas,
it was no mysterious sea bird. But, a
Viking longship, searching for prey! New
prayers began on the sinking cog,
'Deliver us from the Northmen O Lord'
was heard in several different tongues.
  Several leapt into the sea rather than
be taken by the dreaded foe! The rest
began to arm themselves, 'Take some of
them with us", Became the battle-cry.
The raiders prow was a fiercely carved
sea dragon, its' sail was blood red with a
black-winged daemon! The cogs captain
cursed and spat, "Drafn" he proclaimed.
The raiders from The Isle of Iceland,
the stronghold of the last of the blood
thirsty Vikings. Drafn, I knew the stories
of Drafn, my knight had told me of them,
he had said he was once a member of
their mighty and feared warband, in fact,
he still was, by their law, once a member,
always a member.
  When the longship was close enough I
hollard at them to parlay, but was
answered with a hail of arrows. In
desperation I bellowed a war cry I'd heard
my Knight use on occasion, "Pona'
  The Vikings suddenly changed their
demeanor, they lost their vicious snarls,
and one began to call out. Who is it that
exclaims the ancient War-cry of the
mighty Drafn?  as the cogs crew looked at
me in astonishment I answered the
northman in his own tongue. I am squire
to Sir Nigal Grimsson, great warrior of the
Drafn. We are his men on a mission to
Constantinople the city of marvels. There
was a moment of silence as both ships
crews just stared at each other. The
longships captain broke the silence, I am
Sir Trigvii Thorvalson, I see that you are
about to drown, You are friends of my
friend, you are welcome to safely
passage with us, we too are going to the
city of gold, Constantinople. Will you join
my crew?
  The journey was long and crowded, but
I made several good friends amongst the
northmen, Halfdan, Tanar Scarpedon,
Tungii and Greywolf to name but a few.
At several landings we had to fight to
protect our camp from hostile locals, the
Drafn shield-wall was unbreakable! By
the time we reached The great city, the
crew was nearly all
sworn Drafn. I was nearly Drafn due to
my Knight, but after several skirmishes
with them I was given a cloak in a
ceremony which made me one of them
for life, a Drafn shield-brother.
  It was the desire of the northmen to
seek employment with the personal
bodyguard of the Emperor who valued
highly the sworn oath of the mighty
warriors of the northlands.
It wasn't long after we were moored in the
Golden Horn that an emissary from the
Varangian Guard came swaggering up to
our longship. After much insults or
possibly they were backhanded
compliments as were the custom of the
Drafn we were challenged to a test of
strength and resolve before we could be
considered as candidates to the guard of
the Emperor! It was a bridge fight, we had
to hold back an equal number of the
guard from sunup to sundown. Wooden
weapons were substituted for our steel,
but otherwise we were armored as
normal for battle. The Varangians fielded
their biggest and best. But we had just
rowed half the way from the north sea
and fought several pitched battles along
the way! The fight was vicious, if steel
had been used we surely would have all
been killed outright or died soon after
from our wounds. Both sides charged
several times, hen just the spear-men
stepped forward and dueled with one
another for hours. Many men were
knocked unconscious, bones were
broken and one lost an eye. But both
sides still stood firm. It was late in the
day, and the Varangians were massing
for a final assault on the Drafn shieldwall.
Lord Trigvee called for us to withdraw to
the end of the bridge and form a killing
pocket when they charged. We
pummelled them so soundly from three
sides that we drove them all the way to
the other side of the bridge and off the
road. We had won! Pona' Sha'pulya!!
went up the victory cry. Their Duke
Gregory, (of York) stepped forward and
proclaimed us Varangians, just as soon
as everyone converted to Christianity
that is.
Second Adventure:
Family, Friends and the Companions.
After six years of campaigning in the
vaunted Varangian Guards,
and reaching the rank of a Gold
boarder,(Sargent of the line) I was
approached by Count Balin of Torr, the
newly appointed Captain
General of the Army of the distant
Kingdom Caid. He asked me to
assist him with the rebuilding of the
Caidian Army, now a distant
ally of the (Byzantine) Roman Empire.
Upon accepting the position of
Aide-de-camp to the Captain-General
of Caid I was tasked to create his
personal bodyguard unit, the
Companions. This warband was
patterned after Alexander the Greats
personal bodyguards.
It was also at this time that I married
Katherine Sabine the
daughter of a merchant, and began the
adventure of husband and
fatherhood. Together we had three
children, first came my princess,
Paula the Fair. Then, Daniel the III, and
finally James the innocent.
I am proud of each and love them all.

The Army of Caid was rebuilt, and to such
a degree that no foe
could best it for five years of constant
campaigns! The Companions
were equally respected. Many enemy
units were destroyed by our
lances, maces, and swords.
The Companions, my family and the army
all were too much for my
fair Katherine to cope with, she left us to
live with a hermit in a
far off mountain retreat.
The Companions too, broke apart. I left
the army and dedicated
myself to the church. It was a long 9
years before I returned to the
service of the Crowns of Caid.
Third adventure:
Return to the Kingdom!
When I did return, it was with great
anticipation. Many of my old
friends welcomed me back, but it was
some new friends that I found a
home and a new brotherhood. The' Clan
Gryphons' welcomed into their
homes and campfires. Many a campaign
we fought together, great was
our honor to serve the Kingdom of Caid,
but a new call came to join
in a Crusade to rescue pilgrims to the
holy city of our Lord. En-
Masse we joined the Holy Order of the
Hospitallers of St. John.
Already we have won acclaim on the
battlefield of the Great Western
War. Soon we will travel East to do
battle with those who bar the
way to Jerusalem.
The Order marches with his Majesty, so
must I.
Deus Volt!!