Crusader Kings Chronicle, part 5: 1112-1128

T.J. Hafer at

And he shall ever be remembered as...

June 1, 1120: King Brian becomes known as King Brian the Fat.

O-FRIGGEN-KAY. YEAH, LET'S NOT GIVE ME A NICKNAME BASED ON BEING A FAMOUS CRUSADER, OR WINNING DOZENS OF BATTLES, OR UNITING IRELAND, OR ANYTHING LIKE THAT. LET'S JUST FOCUS ON MY ONE NOTABLE VICE. THAT'S JUST GREAT. THANK YOU. GLAD TO HAVE ALL OF MY AMAZING ACCOMPLISHMENTS SUMMED UP AND REMEMBERED SO SUCCINCTLY AND ACCURATELY. HERE'S A PULITZER PRIZE. CONGRATULATIONS. YOU SHOULD HANG IT ON YOUR [The rant goes on for another several pages.]

October 20, 1120: King Brian betroths his daughter Máiread to King Grim of England, two years her younger.

December 4, 1120: King Brian grows infirm at 72, unable to rise from bed on his own.

February 2, 1122: After over a year of infirmity, King Brian I ua Brian of Ireland dies in bed at 74. The lords of his realm gather together for the first time since the Grand Tournament to celebrate the accomplishments and mourn the passing of the High King. King Erik of Denmark is in attendance, as he was at the funeral of Brian's father, Duke Murchad. Prince Sigurd of England and King Duncan II of Scotland also make appearances. Vigil fires burn late into the night, and when dawn rises, the second High King is crowned...

I am now King Máel-Sechlainn I of Ireland, grandson of the newly-departed King Brian. By the supposed curse that befell all of the king's sons, the crown has skipped an entire generation and fallen to me. My father was Earl Énna of Connacht, notorious for reconciling with his father, the king, after a rebellion landed him in the dungeons. I had an older brother, Áed, who also fell prey to the ua Brian curse and died at 23. Needless to say, I was a dark horse successor.

At only 25, I am much younger than the two ua Brian patriarchs that preceded me. A misguided warrior with a slight lisp, I am charitable, content, diligent, and just... though sometimes taken to cruelty. My wife is Imag nic Tadg, granddaughter of Earl Muiredach of Desmond, whose subjugation began my house's march to royalty. We have one daughter, eight-year-old Imag.

Imag is older than I, ugly and chaste. That's not going to work. Clearly, this was a marriage made when no one had the faintest idea that I might one day be king. I request a divorce from the Pope, and he consents on the grounds of "consanguinity," which I imagine is just a more official way of saying, "I was bros with your grandfather, so I kind of like you, and you're both Irish and probably distantly related so I don't think God will mind."

Since one virtuous act deserves another, I remarry... my step-grandmother, Thorborg of England. To be fair, she's much closer to my age than she was to that of the previous king. And I want to help my house's chances of inheriting England. And... okay, I'm done trying to justify how this crap isn't creepy as hell. Judge away, I'm going to bed with a hot Norwegian princess who had kids with my grandfather.