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The Scotsman

Thursday, March 2, 2017 13:54
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In the years following the fall of Camelot the continued struggle to unite England waged on. To the north in Scotland warring factions of Vikings continued their brutal and savage pillaging of local inhabitants. For over three hundred years up until the 9th century both England and Scotland were so divided wars and bloodshed was a fact of life. So little time for peace and prosperity and what little there was of both swiftly came to a violent and savage end. Out of this period rode a man who would change the landscape of England and Scotland. Silas Moore a Saxon noble whose own linage can be traced to the court of Charlemagne arrived in Southern England at a time when the English Saxons were constantly being threatened by Danish invaders from the East. 
 
Silas a tall fair skinned man with flowing reddish hair, bearing a scar across his left cheek knew the ways of war as very few men of his time knew. From the time he was born in 850 AD Silas was groomed for combat. By the age of 10 he already was an excellent marksman and at full gallop could shoot an arrow straight through a standing target. When he turned 19 he was in the court and at the right side of Charles King of Aquitane because of his bravely in fighting the invading Vikings. When Charles died in 877 Silas took leave and headed across the channel. After all he was very well suited to serve Alfred the Great in a time when they both needed each other. 
 
In 877 with his loyal followers he and his men made their way to Wessex. With the Danish invading all along the east coast of Britain it was Silas that eventually came to the aid of the new Saxon King.  For the next 9 years Silas and his men fought the Vikings. Battle after battle the savagery only continued. Where ever Silas went he was met by invading Norsemen. By 885 Silas Moore that noble Saxon who single handily defeated many of the Vikings attacks now aligned himself with Alfred The Great. It was Silas after all that secured Alfred The Great’s future success in defeating the Dames at the Battle of Ashdowners. In doing so Silas Moore earned his place at the side of Alfred the Great. It had been almost ten long years since Silas was again at the service of a King. Although the victory at Ashcowners was short lived for the next two years the Danes continued to wage war. Soon the battles reached Alfred’s court in Wessex and it was Silas who convinced Alfred retreat to the marches that surrounded the town. Silas then used his military training to usher in tactics that have become known as Guerrilla warfare. With Silas’s help Alfred finally defeated the invading Danes.  
 
It was Silas whose own military skill that helped secure the last remaining independent Saxon stronghold in Wessex England. By 886 with the aid of Silas Alfred forged a treaty with the Danes leaving a divided England. The North and East of England between the Thames and the Tess rivers was to be Danish territory while Alfred gained control to the West and South.  Now that peace had finally been achieved Silas turned his attention to the North, Scotland awaits. With his band of brothers ever so loyal to Silas they made their way into the highlands of Scotland. It was at this time the Vikings landed in the Orkneys and Northern Scotland. This was around 888 A.D. under their chief, Stirgud the Stout. When Silas reached the Roman Antonine Wall he was greeted by Hugh McGreggor. The McGreggors’ were the military arm of Donald II. 
 
It was some 400 years earlier that the Romans in their attempt to conquer Scotland built the Antoine wall in the center of Scotland in a vain attempt to contain the northern tribes of Picts and Celts. After the Romans left and for the next 400 years Scotland continued to be brutally and savagely attacked by invading Norsemen. By 887 the Norsemen were only continuing their attacks. The savagery of the Vikings was only matched by the brutality of the McGreggor’s and even Silas. In the fall of 887 it was up to the McGreggors to come from the east and his band of fighters to try again to stop the Vikings. But, when Hugh McGreggor met up with the arriving Silas he now knew that the two combined forces could mount a counter offensive in driving the marauding Vikings back into the North Sea. 
 
The mission to unite Scotland and drive the Vikings back across the North Sea seemed realistic now that Silas and his men arrived. It was just like old times when Silas arrived in Scotland. For it was just a few years ago Silas arrived in the nick of time to help Alfred The Great. When the Vikings attacked and destroyed the village of Dumbarton Silas and Hugh McGreggor mounted the counter offensive that would seal the fate of Scotland. With stealth and cunning Silas and his men managed to trick the Vikings into thinking that the McGreggors were going to attack from the North when they were actually going to sneak up from the south in the cover of darkness. 
 
On the night of October 13th the McGreggor’s men slowly moved in while Silas came from the West. With his band of men they inched closer to the Viking encampment with their horses in tow. Just when they say the flames of their fires they quickly mounted and charged into the slumbering Viking camp. Riding tall in his saddle with Broad Sword in hand red hair flowing Silas was the first to swoop down severing the heads of Vikings as he and his men galloped on through the now awakening Vikings. Soon panic spread and blood spilled covering the ground red. The McGreggor’s army galloping thru the encampment using bows and arrows, swords and spears as they managed a bloody and savage retaliation upon the Norsemen. One by one the Vikings fell. The battle was over in less the three hours. Stirgud the Stout was captured when he fell of his horse just as Silas was about to strike.
 
The captured Viking chief was begging for his freedom promising never to return if he was let free. Upon their return to Dumbarton Castle where Hugh knew King Donald was held captive it was Silas that negotiated a exchange for their chief if the rest of the Vikings relinquish their hold of the Castle and release Donald II. In this exchange Silas would grant the remaining Norseman safe passage back to the east coast where they were free to sail back across the north sea. The exchange was met and on a dark late October day both Stirgud and King Donald II were set free.
 
This peace though came at a high price thousands of Vikings lay dead in the Highlands just a few miles from Dumbarton Castle and too many Scott’s gave their lives in defense of their homeland. As for Silas the bloody years of fighting took it’s toll. As he watched the last Viking ship set sail the sun had already set on the life and times of one of histories long forgotten knights in a time known as the Dark Ages.   
 
 
 
 
 

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