All my life I’ve been told that I am a reckless man. I am the man who will jump down a hole not knowing how deep it is, if the urgency seems grave enough. I am the type of man who will take risks to save my friends myself, instead of taking the time to go for extra support. “Fortune favours the bold” are the words that I live by. With that said however, it is no exaggeration that my uncle makes me look like the careful monk in comparison.
Let me tell you about the other day when we rode out to see if we could find the pack of wolves that has been troubling the sheep at Hindon. Sir Victus, rode ahead of me, scouting, despite being 20 years my senior. The man can sure handle a horse despite only having one leg but, with the stories he has to tell, I still don’t see how he has managed to keep alive to the age of 70.
“I’ve learned that two knights should always ride a bit aside like this,” he said smiling broadly as we came up a hill. “I remember the time when I and Meliodas killed a fachan in Summerland. If I hadn’t rode ahead he wouldn’t have spotted the creature. Came at me from the side, all invisible, but Melidas saw it coming”
“Uncle slow down, what is a fachan?” I asked following in his tracks.
My uncle turned his horse around laughing heartily.
“I tell you nephew, it’s the strangest thing. A single leg supports a torso with a single arm and hand protruding from the centre of its chest, and a single eye protrudes from the centre of the fachan’s forehead. It’s invisible if you look at it from the side too. That’s why I couldn’t see it when it attacked, but Meliodas told me where to swing my sword and I cut the thing in its single eye.” He chuckled. “I’ve always been pretty lucky with those things.”
“Like when you fought the hell hounds?” I asked riding up beside him looking out over the farm land below.
“As I told you before, we picked up our lances and decided that we would try to spear the hounds all the way through to see who killed the most.” Victus motioned with an invisible spear towards the ground. “I always seem to lose count of my kills and so Meliodas wanted to know who of us would actually slay the most. ‘Let’s pick them up like wild berries on a grass straw’, he said.”
I laugh as I write this tale down. Having actually fought hell hounds myself I know that they are nothing like wild berries, and the image is just too absurd.
“Then,” continued my uncle. “We rode out together like you and I are now and started to pick them off,” he made a face, “only the damned things are slippery when you run them through. To make them stay on that bloody spear was nearly impossible. And also, they didn’t die from a single attack now did they? One attacked me while hanging from the spear in its neck. Bit my leg off my leg too,” he grinned and added, “but it was only the wooden leg. You should have seen the confusion on its face. It even cocked its head like a puppy.”
I am not surprised if you shake your head. I shook my head too. Sir Victus stories would seem unbelievable to any man but I could tell by the look in his eyes that he was being truthful, believe it or not…
“Meliodas always seems to come up with the most stupid ideas,” Victus added. “Did I tell that I once dressed up like a large chicken to lure a dragon out? In truth I was supposed to look like a hippogriff riding on my horse, but I mostly looked like a chicken in armour on a very confused horse.”
At this point I had completely forgotten about the wolves we were looking for.
“Dragon?” I said in disbelief. “The one that killed sir Segurant the Brown?”
“The very one,” Victus confirmed grinning. “I rode out alone, a little bit like bait…”
“Or very much like bait,” I filled in.
“Yes well, it was Meliodas idea,” Victus said with a slight hint off shame to his voice, “and I strutted around like Hippogriffs do. The trouble was that dragons must prefer knights in feathers to any food because it came flying breathing fire like no man would believe. When I finally was side by side with the others again I told him, I told him many times: This was a really bad idea Meliodas.”
I guess it’s not to your surprise, dear reader, that we didn’t find the wolves that day. Who can focus on such a dull task while being in the company of the one-legged-knight?