In the two days I had left in my home town of Whithorn (set by the fact that I'd complete the sword I was working on in that time), I slowly ramped up my ingame presence. Mainly in the taverns, encouraging, cajoling, daring others to come on the crusade. Several townsfolk who were not in the army came and spoke to me privately, getting my assessment of the situation. Some of these decided to collect supplies, arms and armour and come with the RSA.
What had upset the locals across Galloway was not so much the theoretical point that an army (our county's army at that) was about to annexe another town from another scottish county. Nor did we get upset so much at the fact that the people of Girvan were probably going to suffer majorly as a result of this. Nor that the Girvanites best efforts to defend their walls against possible attack were subverted by their (elected) mayor letting the ('foreign') Ducal Guard inside the town hall.
No, what seemed to most upset those of us in Galloway that had followed events was that the Ducal Guard had marched across the border to Girvan, despite the promises made at its formation that it would not be used outside of Galloway's borders, and would there be used only for defensive purposes. And they were doing it in our name. And our Council rates were paying for it. Basically, the fact that we'd been lied to.
Some of us had even served for a time in the Guard as a sign of goodwill between RSA and Campbell, soldiers and the elected council. In fact, some of these 'goodwill' soldiers were still marching under the flag of the Guard when it had marched north into County Ayr (they had left its ranks in the day before it marched inside the walls). By marching inside Girvan's walls the Guard had set a clock ticking that was as inexorable as the steady blows of my hammer on steel in the forge on King Street, Whithorn.
I had somehow hung onto my small stockpile of swords against just such an eventuality as was now occuring. After checking to see that there were no likely potential commissiary agents of the Ducal Guard in Whithorn, I managed to sell the lot within two days. In normal times a sword can sit on the market for months without a buyer, so selling four in a day showed how people were thinking that push was coming to shove.
Having sold my stockpile, I packed my clan sword and my newly made spare sword on my donkey and headed off to Wigtown.
11 hours ago