Fire Arrows (331 Words)
“Why didn’t you tell me?”
Sir Pedder raised his head. “Tell you?” he questioned, slowly.
“Tell me that you knew my father.”
The knight held the young woman’s gaze steadily. “I did not know him well,” he said. “But I remember him. He was a brave man. It was a loss to all of us, when he died. My duties kept me mostly at the castle, but when I was able I journeyed with him and his men, and was glad to fight beside him.”
Mairi lowered her eyes. The knight’s quiet, calm voice made her unsteady. “Why didn’t you tell me?” she whispered.
The knight stood. He took her by the arms and when she raised her head, faced her directly.
“Because I could only tell you what I saw of him,” he said. “That he was good and full of spirit and life. I could only tell you that I saw when he died, and what would that bring you, but grief? You are a brave girl, Mairi. You have become the daughter such a man would take pride in, and your mother, too. Why would I bring you pain when I could do no more?” He released her. “What is done is done.”
“How did he die?”
“With a goblin’s blade in his breast,” said Pedder. “He did not suffer. It was a sure thrust.”
“Why did he go?” The girl’s voice was brittle.
The old knight did not answer at once. “Because he was foolish,” he said at last, “and like you, he thirsted for a fight. I did not know him well, but there was something in his eye. He was chaffing, restless. Any word of bad news, of goblins, was enough to raise the fire in him. But even so, he loved your mother. He did not wish to die. Wishing is vain, or I would wish that he have lived for your sake. You have your father’s spirit, but you are not so unwise.”
Written in response to Sue Vincent’s Thursday Photo Prompt. Check it out!