The Battle of Queen's Bridge was a devastating military defeat inflicted upon the Black Company by the elite Nightstalker Brigade of the Lady's Empire. It took place at some point during the first 4 years of the 6-year gap between Shadows Linger and The White Rose, and as such was not recorded in Croaker's available Annals. It is unclear if the battle occurred before or after the events of "Shaggy Dog Bridge" and the events of "Bone Eaters", which also took place during the same 4-year gap.
This battle was the worst of several instances when the Company was overtaken by the new Taken during their eastward flight toward the Plain of Fear. One hundred brothers fell at Queen's Bridge, which was half of the entire outfit. The situation was so dire that Croaker, the Annalist, even buried the Company Annals in the river bank, as the pile of papers could not be carried during their hasty flight. The Annals were discovered by the Imperials and brought to the Lady, who read them and appreciated Croaker's honesty as a historian.
In Shadow Games, Croaker briefly mentioned the Battle of Queen's Bridge again:
|“||We got caught good, there. Only because we were the best, and desperate, and sneaky, had we been able to crack the imperial encirclement. At the cost of half the Company.||”|
|“||When we fought the Nightstalkers at Queen's Bridge they took eighteen prisoners. They marked them all on the left cheek and turned them loose.||”|
Aftermath[edit | edit source]
Regarding the Annals which were lost during the battle: during The White Rose, the Lady mentally contacted Croaker with her sorcery and informed him that she had the documents. Croaker struggled for a long time on how he would phrase his request to the Lady that they be returned to him. She agreed, and he was reunited with the Annals as promised in the Tower at Charm in Shadow Games.