Author Topic: Festival of Sail 2022  (Read 65 times)

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Online DaveIronside

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Festival of Sail 2022
« on: July 17, 2022, 09:37:32 PM »

Initially David had never enjoyed nautical affairs. As a boy he had often found the going ons in Portworth more interesting than matters down by the harbours and port. Slowly things had changed in part because his nine year old daughter Rhiannon enjoyed the festival so much but also he was now married to Stasya who had grown up on an island and around yachts and sailing. The city of Portworth was already swelling beyond its usual one million people and as the largest city of East Moreland it was used to major events. The beaches and seafront walkways were already filling up with crowds eager to see the floatilla of ships head into the Naval Docks that would for the next few days be home to the major part of the festival. As had become tradition the King and Queen spent the evening "on station" at the Navies Officers Mess. The officers there had held a banquet the night before for the monarchs and David sensed that even though he had been in bed by 10pm the officers would have been up into the small hours. This was confirmed as the King and Queen arrived at the large white tent that was errected to the side of the officers mess and would serve as the VIP area for those given accreditation by the Royal Household. Quinn Germaine, the King's Chief of Household was paired up with Alexandra Samuel the Queen's equivalent of Quinn as the duo peered over lists. It turned out there had been a slight mix up as some names appeared on both monarchs lists and now they hurried to ensure they had both sets of ID cards and lanyards and then destroyed one to ensure no one could blag their way in. Already chefs in neatly pressed whites were filling giant dishes up with sausages, bacon, scrambled eggs and a vast variety of other breakfast staples as one of their young helpers hurried to ensure the fresh pastries were stocked up. "Good morning" David greeted the busy staff as he made his way to a table overlooking the water. "Your itinerates" Quinn handed both monarchs a sheet of paper with who they were meeting and when. It would be a busy day, each had agreed to meet various people, the King mainly diplomatic matters while the Queen had a variety of charitable causes to drop in on. Rhiannon even had her own schedule but that was more about ensuring she meet her mother at midday rather than royal duties.

Princess Freya arrived her adopted daughter Evie in tow. "Morning" she greeted her brother cheerily as she dropped her Army peak cap on the table. A Naval steward was over like a shot, dropped a small plastic token an hurried the hat away. Freya pocketed the token and watched as she saw the steward place the cap in a black box and slide it into what could best be described as a giant shoe rack. It was little quirks like this that Freya liked seeing from the other services and while she'd done her time in the Army and two secondments in the Air Force the thought of being stuck on a boat lost its appeal after Safraen. "Who you got lined up for me." She asked as she thanked the server for the coffee.

"You've various meetings with military types." David informed her, Freya was rather relieved to hear that.

"And what about me" Duchess Orlaith Kade asked as she took her own seat. The Kings cousin served as Foreign Minister and had joined them for breakfast.

"The new Lodjain Queen is in town. Make sure she is looked after until I get done with the Abertone and Holmvik leadership." David waved the steward over and asked for some toast and jam as the final member of the welcoming committee turned up.

"At ease everyone" Brigadier Jim Corey casually rolled up his Red beret and stuffed it under his epulette. Unlike Freya he was not dressed in his best No.1 uniform but instead looked like he was about to go and invade some foreign land. He bowed to the royals and then took a seat. "Just been checking on the lads, everything is in place for the various delegations." he confirmed as he poured himself a large black coffee and added four sugars. "Should be a decent day, the Mhorish is like a mill pond." He tasted the coffee and determined it wasn't sweet enough and added another. The group sat and ate breakfast while discussing matters for the day.

The party were greeted at the gates of the Mess by a group of Red Legionnaires sweltering in their Dress uniform. Freya knew they'd much rather be anywhere other than here and likely these men had lost various games among their squad to land up with this duty. With their swords drawn they formed a protective ring around the King, Queen and his party and made their way down the quayside which was now filling up steadily. At the far end were the main dock was a large temporary grandstand had been set up and already some of the various VIPs were being guided into their seats.

Out at sea the ships formed up in three "roads" as the Naval Officer in charge of the floatilla had described. The one furthest out to sea was made up of those ships without their own power, the Abertonian "Vento di Lupo" and Paracambi's replica of the HIMS Insolent  were sandwiched between the pair of Tytorian masted ships the HTMS St. Joseph and St. Linus. Slightly behind them came KS Saviour from Heyra and the Daitioan SS Kamakiri-maru and SS Akatatsu bringing up the rear of that "road". The middle road was reserved for those under their own power. The MV Atom fresh from its routine inspection was at the rear while various war ships from various nations lead the way.  A convoy of cruise ships sandwiched between them with the  Flettner Rotar powered cruise ship Grace standing out perhaps the most with its unique cylinder extending high above the others. Then in the "road" nearest to the beach came the small ships, Samantra's floating Church being among the largest as a plethera of fancy yachts and private ships easily chugged along. It was these luxury yachst like those from Heyra and Lodja that Stasya admired the most.

"What the hell is that?" Freya asked pointing to the oddly shaped Prisan from Holmvik.

"It's mental" Brigadier Corey chuckled, "Can we get one please?" He grinned at King David.

"I think on this occasion I'll not be asked the treasury to bank roll you." David responded agreeing that the ship looked rather odd. No doubt he'd find an excuse to go and have a look at some point.

David watched as the ships got closer and made the turn to head straight in towards the harbour rather than along the beach front. Not all ships would initially enter the dockyards as there wouldn't be enough room but in the hours that followed would be directed to berths in various dockyards of shipwrights, private mariners and the port. For now though as many of the ships took up their position as close to the dockyard as possible you could see kayakers and paddelboards making their way out to have a closer look at many of the ships. Now zooming along the sea front came the INS Phoenix and IDN Suirō , stark reminders that East Moreland had recently lost its own GEV during the conflict in Lodja. Even now the skeleton of its replacement was visible in one of the dockyards. Rather oddly though for the Festival of Sail an aircraft engine could be heard as a Lifter cargo plane from the Air Force flew from the city out to sea and then curved back to fly over the heads of the ships, the timing had to be carefully done and the aircraft dropped low over the water its belly just a few feet above the waves. Unseen to the crowd in the grandstand its rear ramp had dropped and the treadmill like ramp spat out the Heimney Navies Shallow Water Ship The ships momentum carried it into the docks mouth so it was now at the head of the patrol and a small RHIB took its two man crew and some Black jacketed East Moreland Royal Marines to the ship. Its engine was gunned and it shot into the dockyards, did a few figure of eights until everyone else was in position and then made way to the quay that had been set up for this part of the ceremony.

In the cabin the Marines held on until the ramp dropped and gave them dry passage onto the area in front of the grand-stand. In pairs the Marines marched to form a corridor with nine soldiers on each side with their rifles at their sides. "Advance the Royal Sword" the Marine Sergeant yelled and the final Marine marched up the ramp, his was a march less stiff than the others and with a sheathed sword in hand the others waited until he had passed them turned to face the direction of travel and marched with him. As they reached the bottom of the grandstand the Sergeant yelled once more "HALT!" and in unison all did. "Detail, move to the left....left turn.!" BANG all their feet hit in precision.

"They look very shiny but can they tab 50km in a night and then raid an enemy position armed only with a spoon and a smile." Brigadier Corey smirked to Freya.

"PRESENT ARMS" The soldier with the sword saluted awkwardly while the others held their rifle vertically before them. The East Moreland national anthem played and once it had finished the soldier with the sword moved forward.  With poised practiced motions he presented the sword hilt first towards the King who drew it leaving the Marine with the scabbard. The King held his sword high for all to see and then with a swift downward cut sliced the ribbon that was symbolic of the day being open.

"Before you go Corporal" the King spoke to the Marine who had now handed the scabbard over to Quinn Germaine and was thus unladen. The King had ensured the microphone was on. "Corporal Carr." The King said twice as the microphone buzzed slightly. "It is my honour to present you today with the Distinguished Combat Medal. During your time in Lodja your platoon found themselves cut off on the island of Zhoya and under heavy fire. Without regard for your own safety you moved to an exposed and elevated position to repeatedly call in air strikes to ensure a corridor for the extraction of your comrades. You meanwhile saw your position hit by an RPG and despite your injuries continued to call in air strikes and relay intelligence. Your actions likely saved lives and I am extremely proud to be permitted to present you with this." He pinned the medal to Carr's uniform and offered him a handshake which was returned with a hand missing all but pointer finger and thumb. "Stay there Corporal" David commanded.

Stasya stepped forward. "In defence of the country of my birth I have been asked to present you with this." She handed over an envelope. "This letter is an invitation to travel to Lodja and receive on behalf of the East Moreland Royal Marines the Queen's Unit Citation, the first given in Lodja's history to a foreign military unit. Your actions not only saved you're comrades but helped save the Queendom, our ally." Stasya still felt awkward talking about Lodja in a way that showed her ancestor but not as a homeland. She kissed the Marine on each cheek "Thank you" she smiled at him as he stepped back, saluted and then raised the letter towards his escort who cheered their units recognition as the crowd applauded. The parade of ships was now in position and with a quick radio check that everyone had checked, double checked and then checked again a command over the radio sent hundreds of guns firing in a sequence that made it sound like thunder rolling down the coast. Some like East Moreland's own Fast Frigate fired just its fore gun while others like the historic HIMS Insolent from Paracambi fired broadsides, all minus projectiles of course. The Festival was now officially open and the Rhiannon and Evie were already heading for the line to see Nya Aland's Red Dragon viking museum. David had talks to attend while Stasya had a shopping list to go find a yacht. Freya was on hand to mop up any foreign VIP's along with her cousin Orlaith. That just left Brigadier Corey to deal with any military matters that may present themselves.

Offline Achkaerin

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Re: Festival of Sail 2022
« Reply #1 on: July 18, 2022, 11:15:15 PM »
For Commander Brie Keane of the INS Phoenix duty at the Festival of Sail was a welcome change of pace after the events concerning the fate of the HDMS Morelander, the only thing she had to worry about was making sure the ship was correctly berthed which wasn't something too difficult but with all the traffic in the harbour it wasn't without risk. However once it was safely parked Brie looked to the rear of the craft, her job was done now it was up to those her ship was base camp for, she did find it slightly amusing that she was in the home of the Ekrabadger in command of a GEV. "Kettle's on." came the voice of Lt Commander Hermione Bennett "What do want?"
"Builders." Brie said "When's your first display?"
"Three hours time." Hermione said

Also parking up was the Pedal Whale, the human powered boat famed for traveling from Hygelac to Hrothgar, being pedaled once again by the quartet of Sammy Lawson, Melanie Parker, Molly Cooper and Bridget Portman, keeping up in the parade had been a little challenging even with this crew but now as Bridget slid off her bicycle to head to the hatch and grab the mooring line, everything evened out, the pace nice and slow as the small vessel glided into the berth. The four women climbed out of the ship and onto the dockside, setting up the pop up display that detailed their voyage.

From a diplomatic perspective Emperor Peter had spent most of the build up to the festival getting told by Major Sapyiat Kaltev what was expected of him as Prince Llewelyn's sword father, the Major was herself shield mother to Princess Rhiannon so was reasonably able to explain these things. The Emperor was intent on mingling around the festival grounds, it was an opportunity to do some diplomacy, hopefully make a few friends and who knew what else? As for Sapyiat she went through what had sort of become her tradition she headed for the Alanders to check in on Rhiannon, giving Freya a nod on the way.

Offline Lymm

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Re: Festival of Sail 2022
« Reply #2 on: August 03, 2022, 11:11:21 PM »
The Sovereign Lands of Lymm was supposed to have a two tick system for foreign affairs. Two of the three bodies involved in government had to approve any measure, the monarch, the president and the Royal Assembly. The monarch though did have an advantage as they could veto anything they disagreed with in this field and it had hamstrung the government for some time. Queen Octavia had her own personal agenda for the nation and it was one that the President nor Royal Assembly shared. She wanted to tie the nation closer to her beloved Cult of Helus while the rest of the members of government favoured a more Abrahamic based involvement. With this in mind the Queen had been denied any formal opportunities to deal with East Moreland or any other nation as she could only ever get one tick, her own. That though did not apply to this as she attended not as an official delegate but rather as a private individual keen on seeing the festival. She had made it appear even more like a personal trip by arriving a few days before and visiting the Gods Forge that was important to the Cult of Helus.

The day of the festival she had dressed down, wearing just a Lymm Green polo shirt and jeans. If snapped by the media it would give the impression that she was not there for any political agenda. She took up the seat in the grandstand flashing her pass at the security as she took her seat for the opening ceremony. The ceremony over the Queen had first sought out the King but there was no sign of him. She hadn't made any appointments for fear of the President back home finding out and calling it a diplomatic meeting. Instead she spotted Princess Freya and made her way over. "Princess Freya" She smiled at the sister of the King. "I wonder if I might get your services as a bit of a tour guide. This is my first time here and I've not really got much idea where to go."