Monday, March 16, 2015

War journal of Christopher Köch Day 4

I killed a man today. 

It was different than I thought it would be. There was no dramatic note played, no feeling of superiority or heavenly sent deliverance. There was just the moment, the opening where their hilt revealed the bare heart and time itself slowed as I slid the blade into his breast. His eyes lit up, and then faded. That's the truth of combat really; it matters not what you say or look like in the battle but if you live or die. I fought with honor, I fought for life as did he. My blade simply struck true.

That's not how my day started of course, the bloody light of dawn pierced the trees and awoke the camp in time for breakfast and organization of day activities. Many member of my party were soon hard at work, my lovely wife departed to join the artisans with many other women. I myself made my way down to the camp followers myself, to learn new skills. That's the advantage to such a large campaign, so many camp followers present that many begin to reach their skills and crafts to any who would listen and learn. I learned a great deal on improving my methods of cooking over fire and spit, many Arabic dance styles, water infusion of fruit and other spices and even a class from a court wizard on magic performance for nobility. As an apprentice of course I love to learn and grow, and thankfully there was much opportunity to fill my notebook.

I soon heard that the King had commanded all his army to be inspected and seen fit for battle the next day. Nervously I donned my still shining air and sharpened my fresh blade, and lined up for inspection. I was graced by one of the Generals personally inspecting my armor and deeming me for for battle. I admit, I choked up a bit with pride. It has long been a dream of mine to fight for my King and serve with honor; to have that so soon within my grasp because of a simple marking designating me as inspected for War filled my heart with joy. I left with several of my companions, talking and preparing for our war plans in the days to come when we unwillingly walked into a blood feud between two warring families.

The town outside of the night fortress is a lovely place, and as war has yet to tear into the location it still bustled with people. What we were not aware is that a blood feud between two families has been brewing for generations and finally had spilled over into the streets. Caught in the middle was our Trimarian forces, myself having the bad misfortune of wearing the bright colors marking me as a "supporter" of the opposing house. The fighting was intense, we lost few but had many wounded. We returned to inform our commanders of the fighting and gleamed that our foes were behind the escalation of violence in the town. I hear whisper that we will begin battle soon and the town itself may be an early target.

After cleaning my wounds and cooling down from the battle, my services were required by my King once more. Watching him atop horseback was a regal sight and he continues to be the kind and gracious man every King should be. I served him well this night and he rewarded me with a gold bracket from his wrist, I felt a swelling in my heart and will wear this article of his favor for the remainder of my battles as a token of good luck. I was pleased to witness a very large Kingdom send their personal best fighters to announce their support of our cause. I cannot say whom just yet, but I was pleased by the offer and I can see a great weight off my Kings shoulder at the positive news.

I write tonight from the halls of my favorite tavern, the Green Dragon. Heather of the Dale has traveled a long distance and is currently singing for the crowd gathered, and for tonight we are all friends and brothers. My wife sits besides me, my friends gather near and a pint is shared with toasts and promises of alliance and trust flow freely around the hall. 

War begins tomorrow. Pray to God that our countrymen return, and we are victorious.