The Vote of February was a vote of the 12 Families of Tammisaari to confirm King Pikko Vainola's reign. It ended with Vainola's defeat in a 7-5 vote and the election of Laaka Pellervoinen as King of Isle Royale.
The Vote was immediately followed by an attempt to arrest the former king for torture, embezzlement, murder, and other crimes. Pikko Vainola and his uncle, the lich Tomi Vainola, fled on skis with bodyguards, moving west across the frozen lake. They were pursued by the New Brevik Travelers, who succeeded in killing the king's henchman Loki Lekkman and several of the guards and capturing the king's Flail of Sorrows, but lost the Vainolas in a wall of fog created by a Great Bear Clan arrow.
An account of the vote from an observer:
About five hundred elves have gathered around the central public stage of the King's Park and Gardens, resplendent in colorful swirling winter cloaks and long knit caps. The elves have segregated into their twelve respective houses, with those aligned with the king largely along the southern end of the park, and those against along the north. Notably, most in attendance are armed with bows and arrows, a highly unusual - perhaps unprecedented - state of affairs for what is usually a ritualistic and civilized transaction.
The heads of the Twelve Houses stand together on the stage, sorted by their date of founding, with King Pikko Vainola seated at a central table along with his uncles, Manfred and the newly returned Tomi Vainola.
You hear the chiming of ancient bells as the meeting is called to order by elven priests. Snowflakes begin to fall, and there is a scent of fear on the wind.
The King, garbed in a shimmering speaks: "Thanks to all for coming. We hope this meeting will be brief. We all have more important business to attend to."
The head of House Pellervoinen, the gray-haired coffee merchant and timber speculator Laaka Pellervoinen, clears his throat. "We wish to call for a debate of a question..."
At this point, the blond, small, and sharply featured Eve Lahtela raises her voice - "there is no question to be debated, I move that this meeting be disbanded..."
There is a murmur of confusion. Pellervoinen finishes his thought: "Of the question: as to who is king of the elves of Tammisaari and all of Isle Royale."
"We know who the king is!" someone yells from the crowd.
"We know who the king WAS!" someone yells from the northern side of the crowd. More voices are raised in anger.
"Then let us vote," says the king.
There is a moment of silence. Pellervoinen says: "No. There must be debate."
"Seconded." The voice is that of Atlas Makkonen, the new head of the house after the disgracing and retirement of Markus Makkonen.
There is a murmur through the crowd as those present realize that House Makkonen has shifted its support away from the king. The unofficial vote count is now 7-5 in the king's favor.
"I will be brief," says Pellervoinen. "King Pikko Vainola has proven himself unfit to hold his office. He has dithered while the Eagle Clan has rampaged and our friends have been slain. He has moved money from the public treasury into his own accounts. He has tortured his own people in the Vainola family tomb, disgracing hallowed ground and depriving us of our rights. And he has lost the royal treasure. Even now, he appears before you without the birch crown."
Vainola's composure is shattered. "Lies," he yells. "The crown is out of sight, for safekeeping in these dangerous times ... "
An elf in the crowd, amongst the Pellervoinen contingent, raises the crown up so all can see it. "We have founded and recovered the royal treasure," says Pellervoinen.
"You have stolen it!" yells the king. "You are thieves!"
"And you are incompentent and criminal!" yells Pellervoinen. "Even now, our couriers are distributing among our assembly documents that prove your corruption. Resign now and save yourself the disgrace of a trial."
"This meeting is over," yells the king. "By royal order."
"This meeting is not yet concluded," says the aged and dignified Joel Aalto, head of a house viewed as loyal to the king. "There must be a vote."
"Aalto," says Eve Lahtela. "Shut up and mind your place."
"I don't think I shall," Aalto says.
By now the crowd is shouting: "Vote! Vote! Vote!"
A birch stump, hollowed out with a hole in top, is brought to the stage. Each head of house has an option to drop either a black or white wooden ball into the stump, which is then emptied into a glass bowl. Black balls are no votes against the king.
All twelve heads of houses vote... the stump is emptied into the bowl - and there are five white balls, and seven black. The king has lost his throne.
There is uproar and pandemonium, shouts of "treason!" from the crowd, a motion for a vote to confirm Laaka Pellervoinen as king, and another motion to arrest Pikko Vainola, Loki Lekkman, and Manfred Vainola for corruption and murder.
A phalanx of elves with swords drawn and manacles advance on the stage from the Pellervoinen contingent, bent on arresting the king. Suddenly, there is a whistling of arrows; several of the Pellervoinen fighters are hit, and trails of thick steam choke the snowy air, cast off from the Great Bear Clan arrows fired by members of House Vainola.
Nne figures on skiis barrel toward the south wall: the former King, the dwarf Loki Lekkman, Tomi Vainola, two extremely tall, broad-shouldered elven guards, and four more ordinarily proportioned elves with bows and arrows and swords slung over their backs.