Count Sir Thorvald's Challenge

 

At the Coronation of Palymar and Aislinn, his Excellency Count Sir
Thorvald the Golden issued a challenge to all the Knights, squires,
and those nobles participating in what had basically become a kingdom
fighting practice. His Herald read forth from a scroll stating that
Sir Thorvald would like to honor the new Queen by issuing a challenge
of combat to as many of the assembled individuals as time allowed. It
would be a contest of arms in any manner they chose. If accepted the
defeated combatant would agree to sign a scroll, pledging to provide
service in honor of Her Majesty Aislinn. This service could be
anything the person doing the service deemed fit, but it should be
done during Her Majesty's current reign. Sir Thorvald then held aloft
a sword (a real metal one), stating that the one who displayed the
most prowess, courtesy, and chivalry would receive the the sword as a
token of the qualities they displayed that day.

Sir Thorvald is one of the kindest and generous people I have ever had
the pleasure of knowing. If you ever have the chance to meet him (he
is easy to spot, usually dressed all in white), do take the
opportunity. I watched as he went and challenged various Knights and
armsmen. I did not think he would ask me. I had only authorized that
year (just before war, actually), but it was a pleasure to see the
bouts.

However, much to my surprise and delight, his herald did approach me
and asked if I would accept the honor of his challenge. After talking
with his herald a bit, I accepted. Did I expect to win? No, of course
not. But the honor of the challenge was enough for me. It was my
first one, and it made me feel...well, like Midair MacCormaic, not
Charles Cohen.

So, after he was done his latest bout, I approached Thorvald and told
him personally that I accepted his challenge. He was very pleased, and
we talked about about how the contest would follow. As I knew nothing
about how these things worked, he suggested several varieties, and I
chose the "first to get five legal targets." This means that even
just a leg hit would count as a full hit, and we wouldn't get on our
knees or anything. He saluted his lady, and mine was there also and I
saluted her (that was fun!) and off we went.

The combat was fun, for me anyway. It seemed to me that Thorvald
enjoyed it. He said I surprised him, and I did actually get in two
hits! Now if I could just remember to breath while fighting...

After the bout, I said that would happily sign the scroll, but I asked
him a favor. If he thought that I had fought honorably, would he please
tell my Lady so. He readily agreed and went over to my Lady Alina, and
I watched as he spoke to her for quite a while. I'm pretty sure that
is the first time a Knight has spoken to her about my combat prowess,
and later she said that it was a lot of fun for her, a magic moment
actually.

I'm a writing this now because I have had the opportunity to fulfill my
commitment. At the wonderful small event hosted by Talonvale
recently, I volunteered to serve feast. I told the above story (a
shorter version!), and explained that I would doing this service as a
tribute to Her Royal Majesty Aislinn, and to tell me of any
difficulties they might have that evening. I served feast, cleaned
dishes, and basically tried to be useful. I was told later by many
of those at the table that I had fulfilled my obligation honorably.

 

Last Updated: 28 June 98
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