Tuesday, December 30, 2008

The Tarnished Knight

There was little about him that made one see a knight. His tarnished armor, his cracking, jagged blade, he seemed more a vagabond than a warrior. Though he yearned to hide them, his tacit scars spoke of the battles he faced, both in victory, and in defeat.

For longer than he willed himself to remember, struggles had found him, and forced his hand to draw steel. Demons, dragons and villains, all surging toward him, sapping his strength, marring his courage, and breaking his will. It was no wonder that this once noble sentinel had become but a soulless shell, wandering the lands, searching for hope, for peace.

Through his travels, he had found many allies. And though, for a while, The Knight was renewed by their presence... Fate, misfortune, the powers of Hell itself, would always take them away, often too soon, and too harshly. Even when those he'd met stood right at his side, The Knight was alone, in what remaining rubble he called his heart...

... Until that day.

For on that day, as The Knight steadied his hand, and lifted his broken blade to face the new day's struggles, he saw an Angel, one of The Divine's most perfect creations. A vision of beauty and grace unlike anything The Knight had ever seen. As he gazed upon The Angel, it was as if some unknown power invaded his spirit, and The Knight felt strength he had never known. And with this new strength, The Knight won the day, and vanquished the demons that had come against him.

As the echoes of the battle faded off into the distance, The Knight approached The Angel, and saw her wing. To his horror, he saw the wounds she bore, and wept. How could one of The Divine's most precious have ever been damaged so viciously? What spawn of Hell could ever be allowed to commit such a sacrilege?

Through painful tears, and boundless anger, The Knight vowed to do all in his power, be all that his weary soul could be, to heal The Angel. On that day, he made a vow to never forsake her, never leave her side, and to strive to be the saving grace she had become for him.

In the days that followed, The Knight walked with strength renewed, and a sense of purpose unlike that which he had known before. Demons that had once tested him to the furthest reaches of his might, now seemed to fall without effort. Every day, he felt one more piece of his humanity return, and his gratitude towards... and love of... The Angel, grew.

But mere mortals can never hope to become an Angel's savior. The Knight soon saw his frailty, his limitations, and deep within him, past his convictions, past his strengths, an aching formed, as The Knight realized how far away he was... from being Her champion.

Finally, the day came. The Knight, burning with anger at his own failings, raised his sword to face the day, a battle much more fierce than most he had faced before, and turned to gaze upon The Angel from whom his might flowed... and saw only air... and one small feather, falling to the ground.

The Angel had left him, flown away, back into the dreams and fantasies from which she came. Had it all been but a dream? Had The Divine looked down upon The Knight, and chosen to take away the greatest blessing he had ever known? Or had The Knight's own weaknesses driven The Angel away?

A moment of pain... a single tear...

Then The Knight lowered his visor, gripped the hilt of his blade tightly, and charged the line against the enemies before him. For, though The Angel had left his side, he had sworn an oath, to always be her Knight. And though his spirit ached terribly, he swore to stand by his oath...

Even if The Angel would never return to The Knight... Even if he would never again know that strength and grace Her presence blessed him with...

...With his tarnished armor, his cracking, jagged blade...

...He would always be Her Knight

- A Piece by Kenny G.

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