Tuesday, April 03, 2007

538. I grieve. Sir Clydno, Le Chevalier Doight

Alas, I thought, when my brother and my dear wife died, that my life could not be more miserable. But Dame Fortuna tortures me, dashes my simple life upon sharp rocks simply because Time passes.
My son is dead. Sweet lad, strong and full of promise, lies now in the earth, food for worms. The countess, my niece, at the funeral wept beside me, her beautiful face streaked by tears. I too wept, copiously. There cold and pale went my boy Trentley into the unfeeling earth.
I wish and pray his soul to God. I have spent the winter with the bishop, who fills my ears with facts of Faith and the Church and platitudes of Heavenly peace and the love of innocents while my heart is broken and I weep alone in bed after my children are asleep. My only solace is that my other son and his sisters thrive. In the daytime my squire Evan is solicitous and kind, so I drive him hard with training and duties that he will be a noble knight, full of virtue to prove that even Saxons are people.
I went to my niece, the "Little Lady of Marlborough," as they call her. I will admit (privately of course) she seems frivolous and silly, so taken with this custom of Romance and encouraged to do so by the Great Queen Herself. I wished to pledge myself to her protection and safety, to keep her committed to her duties.
"Oh good uncle," she said to me, "You need to get out more. So much tragedy has overwhelmed you. For your benefit and good future, I — your dutiful liege and your loving niece — do hereby command you to go forth and adventure. Leave this place of sorrowful memories and visit the wide world to seek Glory. You are a brave and courageous knight whose vision is set high upon the realm of Glory, and the seat of your brother, my father, upon the Table Round is now empty! Seek to fill it! Go to adventure, and trust my security to the High King and Queen, who look after me as their own child. I will make sure your bairns are safe and secure, and will be raised in the safety and security of King Arthur and his queen."
In truth, I regret to leave my beloved children, but the call of adventure lures me outward. I think they will not miss me too much, entertained and educated as they shall be at the court of my brother. I hear there are dragons to be slain, robber barons who hate King Arthur – indeed., mysteries to be investigated. I am impelled by my sense of adventure to seek these out for the Glory of the realm.
My liege has released me. My grief throws me outward. I will seek knight adventurers of my ilk and go forth to the unknown realms now, and seek Glory.
I ask that God and Saint Alban, whose finger I bear, look upon me and bless me, and protect me from danger. I invoke the power of Saint Alban to open the waters before me, to blind my executioners and to bless me and take me into his presence at the end of my life.
Hark! A herald enters our court, who declares mightily for Lady Griane of the Manor of the Thawed Heart. She seeks those who aided her. I am one! Some others are dead now. Those were friends of mine! I shall not pass this adventure! Friends, gather now or I will seek this adventure on mine own!

Britain, prepare thyself! This hero set forth!!

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