Called Into Court - Now what?
Some wonderful easy to understand advice about what to do when you get called in the court from Meister Konrad Mailander, OP of the Middle Kingdom
Their Royal Majesties Command into Their Presence...
You have just been called into court by the herald. All your friends are looking at you with big grins on their faces and everyone else's eyes follow. The herald is scanning the crowd looking for reaction.
Don't Panic! You are not in trouble. Someone has written the Crown a recommendation that you receive an award and they have agreed. Your friends may have even tricked you into being in court (especially those sneaky heralds or plotting scribes). Now it is time to go and receive your award from the hands of Their Majesties.
Take a deep breath, relax and stand up. Remove any weapons. You should not go into Their presence armed. Small knives do not need to be removed – they are tools that everyone carries. Larger daggers, swords, axes, spatulas, etc. should be disarmed and handed to friends or placed in a safe place.
There are usually one or more aisles through the assembled populace leading to the thrones. Make you way to the nearest aisle and approach the thrones. At about 10 feet away stop and give reverence (bow, curtsy, or whatever is appropriate to your period/culture) to Their Majesties. Men should remove their hats, it is a good idea for ladies as well if the hat is not tied, braided, clipped, or pinned to your head. If there are additional nobles in the presence give reverence to each in order of precedence. If you don't know who to bow to first or there are several on each side give reverence to those on the Crown's right (your left) and then to those on the Crown's left (your right) and then give reverence to Their Majesties again.
Approach Their Majesties and kneel on the pillow. Really, just a little closer, that is what the pillow is there for. Good, isn't that more comfortable on your knees than the bare floor? If you have a reason that kneeling is difficult, or painful (or getting back up would be) just quietly let the Crown know and stand in front of the Crown.
The herald probably started reading the scroll as soon as you began approaching the Crown. When they finish they will pass the scroll to the Crown. The Crown will hand you the scroll, possibly after getting an ooh, aah by showing it to the populace and talk to and/or about you. The may also have a token for the award for you, a circlet for an AoA or medallion of the awards badge to put around your neck. It's a good thing you took your hat off now, isn't it?
When this is all over, stand up. S-l-o-w-l-y, you don't want to fall down in front of everyone, do you? Take the King's hand if he offers it, he doesn't want you to fall either, especially on him. Back on your feet, give reverence again. If the Royal Presence is on a dais, stage, etc, don't back up (remember the bit about falling down), just skip ahead to the next sentence; otherwise back away from the Crown to where you first gave reverence and give reverence again. Turn around and go back to your seat. Recollect your armament and sit down and stare at the scroll in shock while your friends all pound you on the back, whisper their congratulations, etc. (ok, the shock is optional).
For the Recipient of the Last Award, Hubah!!
Meister Konrad Mailander, Hauptmann der Rotenkompanie
Apprentice to Master Brusten de Bearsul OP, OL(Gaming)
Squire to Sir Gunther von Brandenburg