Chapter 24 Savage.

“You can’t be serious! Have you lost your bloody mind?!” The reactions were nearly unanimous, and yet Mordred found he simply disagreed with them, the fact was that Sir Bodwin was entirely reasonable, yes he was not in his most current uniform, and yes he had faced a horde of enemies on his own,both things that a man like Bodwin could not consider sane, he knew this because he knew Bodwin, he had watched the man’s career with a matter of interest, quickly rising through the ranks,entirely focused on status and duty, strictly adhering to protocols, and the letter of the law, more so than the spirit thereof. “He is serious, and he has not lost his mind.” he did his best to project all the calmth he did not feel, the truth was his blood still boiled, and he wanted to do nothing more than attack the knight outright, to kill him for his insolence, it was only the strength of his will, and honour, keeping Bodwin alive.”Sir Bodwin is a good Knight, who knows the rules rather well.”He had begun in order to alleviate his frustration, and calm himself sufficiently to form a judgement Not just concerning Bodwin’s ultimate fate, but his own as well.”Escort the former Commander to his chambers!”Bodwin once again interrupted him, and once again the anger rose, unfortunately for Sir Bodwin, it did not just rise within Mordred. For just as Mordred was about to step into the guard of the Knight that so obviously wanted to die, four shields flew across the chamber and impacted upon Sir Bodwins cuirass. The order had unanimously objected before, and Sir Bodwin, secure in his power had ignored them. Now they rejected him outright. Still as a Knight he would be able to maintain his claim, if now only through a duel. “Very well if none of you will see reason! I Sir Bodwin. Hale of body and mind,  affiliated to no Order, challenge Sir Damodred, of the order of the Sword to trial by combat!” Which of course he did. “Seems a tad unfair don’t you think? After all I am fresh out of battle, and ironically due to your teleport, unarmed.” The accusation struck Sir Bodwin hard, challenging a fellow Knight to a trial by combat while weary and unarmed was not exactly noble in the first place, but to be the cause said knight was unarmed prior to the challenge insinuated malicious intent to say the least. Mordred could see the man thinking it over rapidly, he couldn’t afford to go toe to toe with Mordred after he had the pick of the armoury, nor would honour permit him to demand Mordred fight as he was. “Perhaps a champion shall step forward to take Sir Damodred’s place?” That was far from the ideal outcome, Mordred did not relish the thought of another Knight fighting his battles left alone any one from those in this room, Ariadne would make the best champion, yet she was too injured, and the others would scarcely be a match to Bodwin, Mordred imagined he could see the pompous smile on the man’s face, his eyes alight with snobbish delight. He hated nobles, highborn twits that were raised to feel superior to all those around them. “Or perhaps I shall let Lord Mordred set the terms.”Sir Bodwin had spoken with a sing song voice, goading him on, fuelling the anger. Unfortunately for him, Mordred was used to being angry, and knew when he was being goaded. “I accept your challenge, Bodwin, of house Kerwin, and I shall set the terms as is my right.” he paused to see if the man took the bait, Bodwin’s  stance shifted, anger seeping into his posture, good, he spoke before Bodwin could, denying him a reply. “We shall do battle here, the Order of the Shield shall bear witness, our weapons will be restricted to melee weaponry, so empty your gun, and remove the bullet from the breach, if any one wishes to second they may, however we do not pick one ourselves. Is what I said so far clear to you?” He had spoken as if to instruct a squire, and it had the intended effect, Sir Bodwin had once again changed his stance, amused. That however was done on purpose, the limbs were too stiff to be natural. “How do we decide who won?” False mirth made the man sound jovial, and Mordred was relatively certain he had heard a chuckle. “I did not think it would be necessary for me to explain this,,,” A new voice cut in sharply, the edge of which was mechanical, still it warmed Mordred to hear. “It should be, obvious, the fight is, to the death.”  Sir Bodwin seemed to jump out of his skin as he made a full 180 degree turn, only to stand face to chest with what he perceived as a giant monster of ancient myth. “And I, Will stand as his second.” Sir Balin, formerly of the order of the sword, spoke, as he simply strode past the offensive element as were he but a bird before a dragon. “What on earth are you!?” Sir Bodwin sounded genuinely afraid, startled and more than a little confused. Sir Balin looked to Mordred, then turned but said nothing, instead Mordred spoke.”This is Sir Balin, of the order of the dragon, formerly the order of the sword, he is my brother in arms, and my second. He is also a Knight of great renown, and used to be the king of the Sword of Damocles, until combat took most of his well, body, you will apologize to him, or I will kill you in the most humiliating way, and strike your name from all records.” Sir Bodwin however did not apologize, in fact he did quite the opposite, he started laughing. And that was all the warning the Order of the Shield needed to raise their shields and hide behind them. In the time it took to draw a sword Mordred had closed the distance, making the sword utterly useless. Sir Bodwin immediately attempted to bring up his shield, hoping to deflect Mordred’s fist. But the blow never landed, instead Mordred grasped the shield edge and heaved it upwards, sending it crashing into Bodwin’s visor, shattering the lenses. after that he simply stepped back, allowing the blinded Knight to flail about as he tried to hit him.Which eventually he did, but only because his feet could no longer carry the dead weight.

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