(2/11/97 - 5/6/97)
After Phlag's departure the ring was offered as a prize in the Tournament of Warlords. Sir Damien Cetran was victorious and, following in the footsteps of most of the winners before him, chose to become a Baron rather to fight the Overlord.
Controversy sprang up around Damien almost immediately after he slipped the ring over his finger. Billy Ray Karnafexx submitted a notice of intent to challenge the very same day. While not a formally binding challenge, Billy's notice of intent would usualy have been honored. But not this time. The official challenge came from Lupton, who, giving up on his efforts to defeat Jeffrey Oakenshield (see Ring Seven), decided to try to reclaim the ring that once was his.
In the end, Lupton might have been better served just holding onto his peer wins. Damien was determined to hold onto his newly acquired ring. The Baron controlled the bout and handed Lupton a 5-1 loss.. perhaps a lesson in manners.
Sir Cetran's second challenge came from "Wicked Deth." Damien, still a relative newcomer to DoS despite having already defended the title once, was given even odds against this one-time Baron. In the end, it was a close match, but the newcomer outdueled the veteran to hold onto his title.
Damien met his third challenge in mid April. This time from Sir Robert S. In a very close duel, Damien again came out on top, defending his ring a third time with a final score of 5-4.
G'nort Espelande G'neesmacher Dragoon Talanador was the next to challenge Damien's position. G'nort jumped the gun originally, challenging within the first calendar month of the defense against Robert. The fault was rectified, though, and a proper challenge was issued when the time came.
Damien was denied in his fourth defense and lost the ring to G'nort who led the match the whole way through.
(12/16/97 - 5/12/98)
A few side notes: Huma, a member of the Questrion household, aligned himself as a Renegade against Dalamar Ar'Daumon. This caused a domino effect in the ranks of the Barons as Moralitor and Ulath Fici, current Barons and members of Questrion, re-aligned themselves Renegade, causing a splash to ripple through the politics of the rings.
The Baron's first challenge came after only a few days of gaining the ring by a second-time challenger Seamus MacDonnaugh. The Baron proved his skill and staying power as he defeated the Warlord 5-1 in eleven rounds.
Whether it was because she wanted to test her skills, was a member of the fractured house of Questrion or a loyalist of the Overlord, next up to challenge Huma was Midnight Blue. For facing an opponent that had held a ring before, the Baron stood his ground staunchly and took home his second defense by defeating the challenger 5-3 in eight short rounds.
The third challenger for this ring came forth to take down the last remaining Renegade and came in the form of a repeat challenger, the Warlord Xyclone. Mid-duel this Warlord was up on the Baron 4-1, but somehow the Baron managed to pull through and defeat his challenger 5-4 in an impressive comeback.
Baron Huma's fourth challenge was issued from a nameless man known sometimes as Duelist. A fair amount of superstition surrounded this match, for no previous holder of the Fourth Ring had ever successfully defended four times. But the sole Renegade of the Baron's Council broke that curse, and broke it in style, winning 5 - 0 in six rounds.
(6/15/98 - 12/3/98)
At this time former holder of the Fourth Huma Dragonbane stepped forth to keep an oath sworn when Jesse took the ring: to take it back. Though the Warlord fought hard, his efforts in the end were crushingly futile, as he was defeated decisively. Baron Zen won 5.5 - 0 in thirteen rounds to keep his new title.
Next to challenge the Baron was Warlord Krollon Arkanan. The match, though quick, was painfully bloody, beginning with the combatants trading blows twice in the first two rounds. But Zen took the lead in the third round and kept it through the rest of the duel to win 5 -3 in six rounds.
Jola Fici stepped forward next to challenge the Renegade, but Zen was not to be removed yet. With a telling 5 - 2 victory, he defended for the third time his right to wear the Fourth Ring.
The Baron's fall came at his own hand, when he failed to respond in a timely manner to a challenge issued him by Warlord Evan Faline. The Barons' Council stripped him of rank and set Baron of the Ninth, G'nort Dragoon Talanador, to defend the ring in his stead. Baron and Warlord met and fought hard, and for more than half the duel the score was tied between them. But in the latter part G'nort was able to pull ahead, and at the end of eleven rounds he defeated the Warlord 5.5 - 3. The ring was placed as a prize in the Warlord Tourney, which began the next day.
Morgan le Fay du Cornwall
(12/5/98 - 2/14/99)
Morgan le Fay du Cornwall, winner of the Fifth Ring at the last Tourney, had only recently lost that ring to challenge. But it was not to be that the Lady le Fay should remain a Warlord for long. In this Tournament she was the last remaining undefeated dueler, guaranteed either first or second place. An odd twist at the end gave her the win; champion of the single-loss bracket of duelers, Daegarth Mithmellon, asked Morgan what her choice of prizes would be should she win, the ring or the challenge to the Overlord. When she stated the ring, he forfeited, desiring the challenge for himself. So the Lady le Fay was a Baroness once more, and declared herself Loyal to Dalamar.
The new year brought a challenge for the Baroness le Fay from Warlord Percival Marchand deClermont. Once more she showed the skill which had made her victorious at the last two Warlord Tournaments, shutting out the Warlord in seven rounds to successfully defend her ring.
Warlord Huma Dragonbane stepped foreward not long after to attempt once more to take back the Fourth Ring for himself. This time he faced Intercession by Overlord Eros, but the Baron of the Eleventh, Gimzak Stonecutter, stepped in on the Warlord's behalf. Nine rounds later, the Baron had defeated the Overlord 5 - 2 and the Warlord took to the ring to challenge the Baroness le Fay. This duel, won by the same margin, was swifter, as a series of well-timed and perfectly-executed defensive manuvers secured Huma the Fourth Ring and the title of Baron in seven rounds.
(10/24/99 - 2/28/00)
Shade, Phlag, Jesse... the Fourth Ring has had more than it's share of abandonments, most coming in league with the vanishing of its current Baron. Combined with Zen's own history of disappearances while bearing a ring, including this one, it was perhaps unsurprising when the Baron departed from the duels. The question was raised how he could remain Baron of the Fourth when he was known to no longer be in the realm. A simple enough question, but in the resulting discussion, information became known which shocked many within the duels, particularly those who held the title of Baron.
Drakewyn Silvertree, The Standings Keeper, mentioned in post that she had, without knowledge or consent of the Supervisor or the Barons, placed tracing spells on all the rings, to be able to locate them in case of disappearance. An unnecessary precaution, as the Rings have never failed to return to the Duel of Swords at need. Though the method is unknown, the Rings are believed to be linked to the Arena and the Red Dragon Inn. The only time one did not return when its Bearer lost the Ring was when the Seventh was in the possession of Lady Kairee, then proprietor of the Red Dragon Inn, which gives some credence to the theory. It was also considered a highly invasive precaution, violating the privacy of every Baron who had held a ring from the moment the spells were made. On her own behalf, the Lady Drakewyn repeatedly reassured the populace of the duels that she had never activated the spell, and would only do so in urgent need. Ultimately, she removed the spells.
This still left the question of where Zen had gone and what would happen to his ring. In the midst of the arguments, Raven, Zen's lady fair, did inform the Supervisor, Valentine Evermeadow, that her love was indeed departed from the realms, and the Fourth could be placed as a prize inthe upcoming Warlord Tourney. The day of the Tourney, official notice was received from the Baron himself that he was retiring. He had left the ring in the care of Overlord Avery Shiv Blade, who now turned it over to Young Lord Evermeadow for the Tourney.
(2/29/00 - 8/6/00)
From the moment the list of participants was officially posted, one brash dueler declared with no humility that he would walk away undefeated. Under other circumstances he might have been decried and publicly humiliated, but such displays were normal for Jesse Troyan. Moreover, he had repeatedly proven to be as good as his word, and this time was no different. After the last blow fell and the last block was made, Jesse was undefeated champion of the Tourney, and Renegade Baron of the Fourth.
The risk of being Renegade is frequent challenges, but this was a risk Troyan not only accepted, but encouraged. The first to rise to the Baron's bait was Warlord Reod Daii. Taking a predator's bait can be a dangerous thing, however, and in this case a particularly painful one. Seven rounds into the duel, the Baron had successfully completed his first defense with a 5 - 2 score.
At this time the issue of the miscreant cur Methous and his right to challenge arose. As per the judgement made by then-Supervisor Goldendust Evermeadow, the Council selected a Champion to face him, and Jesse Troyan was eager for the job. Once again, the braggart was as good as his word, defeating Methous by 5 - 4 in eight rounds. Methous would have to face another Champion at the end of the cycle if he wished to regain the right to challenge for title.
Wicked Deth, the next Challenger, proved as deadly a fighter as the Baron. When the Warlord faced Troyan in the ring, the early duel belonged entirely to him. In the entire match, Troyan took a higher score than his Challenger only once. But that one round was the twelfth and last, and once more the Baron's title was secure with a 5 - 4 victory.
After this, no challenges came to the Baron for quite a while. Baron of the Ninth G'nort Dragoon Talanador retired after being challenged, and a Champion was selected by the Council. When that Champion was not Jesse Troyan, however, the Baron promised to intercede for any challenger in any Test from then on. Tests and Intercessions, however, tend to be infrequent things, leaving the Baron without amusements still. So he made private bets with the Barons of the Fifth and Sixth, Gunthar O'Dwyer and Damien Mortis, to duel unofficially, and the losers must retire their rings. The results of those matches were the Fifth and Sixth left vacant, and hopefully a lesson to all on mixing private issues with public worth.
When asked by Baroness Ellisa Morgan to champion her challenge against the Overlady's Test of Worthiness, Jesse agreed -- and retired his title. An odd twist indeed, to purposefully drop rank before fighting a match, but perhaps no more odd than the Overlady selecting a Commoner as her champion. Jesse won that match, while his Ring went as a prize to the Warlord Tourney at month's end.
(8/29/00 - 8/19/01)
Warlady with a pool cue Karen Wilder came in fourth in that Tourney, and as her prize claimed the Fourth Ring.
The first to bring challenge to the Baroness was Cletus Ganderfald. Only days before the challenge was issued, Zen Rising, three time holder of the Fourth, passed away. Cletus challenged in Zen's name with the purpose of honoring his fallen comrade by holding the ring Zen had so often held. Karen however, had other plans. The two met in a best of three format. Cletus took an early lead in the first round but gave it up to Karen in the second. Cletus' problem? She never gave it back and went on to dominate in an eventual 5-3.5 victory. The second duel was much closer and much longer. After Cletus gave up yet another opening round lead, the two hacked away at each other twenty rounds, mirroring each other nine times. When the dust had settled, Karen walked away with the Fourth Ring still on her finger.
Karen would next be tested by Warlord Strallen Corackshnea. The night would once again belong to the Templar Knight, and the young warlord would leave the ring with his Baronial dreams unable to come to pass. Karen used the best of three to take out this latest opponent, winning the first two matches by scores of 5-3 in thirteen rounds, and 5-2 in seven rounds.
Soon after the challenge against Strallen, Seamus Mac Donnaugh made a plea to all of the Barons of the Duel of Swords community to show their faces and be more of a force in their sport. When Baroness Wilder said at the present she didn't have the time to do such, words were exchanged, and it eventually lead to Seamus bringing challenge to Karen. Once again, the night would belong to Karen as she soundly beat Seamus back in two duels. By scores of 5 - 1 and 5 - 2, in eight and six rounds, Karen's reign continued.
A little over two months after Karen defended the Fourth against Seamus, she followed through on her promise to challenge for the mantle. At the time, the Overlord was Cletus Ganderfald. The two fighters had shown their opposition towards each other in the past, and the end of this challenge would leave little resolved between the two. The Overlord chose the best of three format, and all three duels would be used. Each match ended in a score of 5-2. The first one belonged to the Baron, but the Overlord defended his title by winning the final two.
Karen would not enjoy any type of break, however. Almost immediately after being denied the crown, three time Baron and full time drunk, Damien Mortis laid siege to the Baron's reign. His challenge letter came in his own unique, yet typical fashion. His writing was mostly illegible and his words made little sense to most of those who read them. His peer list was written with style none could match. Figuring out just whom Damien challenged, however, would be the easiest part of this challenge.
When Karen responded to the challenge brought by Damien, she was two minutes over the one-week deadline, and Damien brought the matter to the attention of the Commission. The discussion that followed made it clear that the Baroness was not at fault, and established that Barons have until the end of the seventh day to respond to a challenge.
On the night the two were scheduled to meet, the Baroness failed to arrive. Afterwards it was learned that this was due to an attack on her church. The matter of the forfeit was sent to the Baron's council, and by a vote of 6 - 4, Karen was stripped of the Fourth. On the day that the Council rendered their decision, the Commission stepped in and, much to the dismay and outcry of many of the community, overturned the Council's decision. Despite the heated argument that ensued, the Commission held firm to their decision and the Baron and Warlord rescheduled.
Though the match was rescheduled, the two would still not meet. When the matter of the forfeit was first being discussed, the Baroness stated that should the matter go before the Council, she should be stripped of the Fourth. The Baroness was true to her word, and before any blood could be shed, Karen opted to uphold the wishes of the Council, as well as her own personal honor, and retire the Fourth. The Council wasted little time in voting Baron Unagi Miyamoto to champion the ring against Damien's challenge.
When the two entered the ring, the matter was finally settled. In an extremely close match, in which leads where upset on numerous occasions, Unagi defended the Fourth ring with a timely hit over Damien's midline block in the eleventh round. With a final score of 5 - 4, the Fourth joined the Sixth and Thirteenth as a prize in the next Warlord Tournament.