26 Apr E8 Camran The Battle of the Warrior
Tales of the Kingdom of Camran
William the Warrior, the hero of our tale, whose strong leadership and assertive guidance save the village from all forms of peril, on days just like today…
William was surrounded by the rapt faces of the villagers, eager to hear the rest of his tale. They often asked him to recount his latest adventures, and William didn’t mind indulging them.
“So, what happened next?” asked Gerald.
But though he wanted to, William didn’t have time to answer. At that moment, a lone arrow, sailing bright with red and orange feathers, flew over the castle wall. It landed just on the other side of the gates, not fifty paces from where William stood.
No matter where he was or what he was doing, William always kept one eye on the village gates. If he, his village, or anyone in it, was ever under threat of an attack, William wanted to be ready. By the time the arrow met the earth, he was halfway to the gate, the rest of the village following his lead.
As Philo lowered the gates to confront the intruder, William was standing tall and confidently, right next to where the arrow had buried its sharp head into the soft earth. He stared resolutely at the horseman who entered, boldly, through the gate, his spear held high.
“You, Page,” said the visitor in a booming voice, “Take me to your leader.”
“Why, that would be the Baron,” said Philo. The villagers had now gathered near the gates, watching the scene which unfolded. Many of them murmured in agreement: the Baron should come.
“I’ll speak for the village,” said William, his voice even lower and stronger than the visitor’s. He took a courageous step forward.
“You, then,” said the visitor, “Inform the villagers that they must leave at once, for this village, this land and everything built upon it, is rightfully mine.” Gasps and whispers spread over the crowd, but William did not avert his gaze.
“I will do nothing of the sort,” said William. “This village is ours, and we will not leave without a fight. Who’s with me?”
William could feel the fear of the villagers as they stood, frozen, behind him. Many looked at him with pleading eyes, as if simply gazing upon his appearance would give them the strength to fight. A few moments later, he was joined by Gerald, the Guardian.
“I will stand by you, William,” he said quietly, “You know that I will not back down. But I have doubts about our chances in defeating this knight. His horse and his weapons look strong.”
“Thank you, Gerald,” William replied, not lowering his voice as Gerald had, “but I will defeat this foe with or without you. This is our land. No one comes in and takes our land.”
“Then we shall fight,” boomed the knight, leading his steed in a circle, causing many villagers to jump back in fear. “Approach me, if you will!”
“But wait!” William looked to his left, where he heard a voice. It was Isaac, the Inventor, standing with his hands in the air, as if to keep William and the visitor separated. “Can we not solve this? Where is Siobhan? Certainly she can think of a peaceful solution!”
William’s hands were itching for battle, but he allowed Siobhan to step forward, gliding with her head bowed, as if reluctant to enter the feud.
“Why is it that you believe the land is yours, O Knight?” she asked, her voice unwavering.
“My father, King of Oberon, reined over everything west of the Forests of Yore, all the way to the sea.” The visitor motioned toward the vast land on the other side of the stone wall. “He told me this before he died, and I have come to reclaim the land that rightfully belongs to our family.”
“Baron, do you know of such a king?” Siobhan looked back, where the Baron had indeed joined the crowd.
“I do not,” said Bartley, the Baron, taking a few steps toward William. “I stand with William and Gerald. This land is ours.”
“Without further information, I cannot reconcile this,” said Siobhan, retreating back toward the crowd. She was met by Hannah, the Healer, who recruited her to assist Meryl, who had fainted from fear.
Though the townspeople may be looking at other tactics, William knew that it would come down to a battle, between he and the visiting knight. He was already planning his strategy of defense and attack when Peter, the Politician, stepped in front of him.
“I have solved many disputes such as this before,” Peter said with confidence. “I’m very well qualified to mediate. Please, allow me to be the one to bring peace between you.”
“There will be no peace!” bellowed the knight, drawing his weapon. But William was one step ahead. Before the knight’s sword was fully bared, William had plucked the visitor’s own arrow from the ground. Using his bow, he deftly fired it back at the knight with such strength, it pierced through his chain mail armor, and buried itself deep in to the heart of the unsuspecting visitor.
The body of the knight slumped forward on his steed who, not knowing what else to do, turned and galloped back through the gate, and out of sight over the hills around the Kingdom of Camran.
William was satisfied. He had administered a single, deadly blow. He and the villagers were no longer in danger.
The villagers celebrated around him, clapping him on the back, relieved that they were no longer under threat. William knew that they would be asking him to retell the story of this day for years to come.