Sunday, May 10, 2015

The Westeros Cup: The Mark on the Spinnaker

There waterside at King's Landing thronged with the undesirables, desirables and the simply plain.

Hawkers cried out for grilled rats, smoked goat's tongue, fried eels and jellied locust. Pockets were picked, roving eyes were caught, honours lost, gossip exchanged and a thousand barrels of mead emptied.

It was the day of the second race of the Westeros Cup, when the great racing yachts of House Lannister and House Baratheon would go head to head for the first time. The betting shops were doing a roaring trade, gold and silver stacked high, odds fluctuating by the minute.

Suddenly a great cheer arose as the two boats were sighted. They were to sail close by the quay-side, as close as possible, as fast as possible, to hear the cheers and receive the bouquets of flowers that would thrown by admirers, both men and women, to the sailors.

It would be a fine spectacle, with the wind on their quarter, maximing their speed, and the conditions were perfect: each would be raising their largest most impressive sail.

First the Lannister yacht, "Hear Me Roar" approached first, followed closely, almost touching, by the Baratheon of Dragonfire yacht "The Furious Fire".

They battled for inches, racing parallel to the enthusiastic, cheering crowd.

Then they raised their great spinnakers.

"They will show a lion and a stag" said a voice from the crowd, male, trying to impress the young woman on his arm.

But when with a crack the great canvases unfurled both were identical. Two triangles, interleaved as an hour-glass, with hands one either side.

The Iron Bank of Braavos.

Which ever yacht was fastest, there would be but one winner today.


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