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Tuesday, 13 February 2007
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Ten years have passed since Bohemond left his son in the care of Louen Leoncoeur. Often times he would receive word that Lomant is progressing well in his training, or that he has just defeated a Knight of the Realm in mock combat. But today, when the messenger came, the message was different. The messenger told Bohemond that it was approaching Lomant’s 20th birthday and the end of his training and that his presence was requested in Couronne within a fortnight.

Dismissing the messenger, Bohemond quickly made preparations for his wife, his retainers and himself to make for Couronne the next day. They progressed across the Bretonnian landscape at a brisk pace, and reached Couronne exactly a fortnight after they left. As they entered the city, Bohemond couldn’t help but feel that he was repeating history, as he took the exact road ten years ago. They approached the gate warden, and he simply bowed and waved squires forward to take the Duke’s horse and those of his retinue.

He entered the castle, and was lead to his chamber that he was to stay in. After seeing the door, he asked the squire to help everyone settle in and he headed down to greet the king. Entering the King’s hall, he saw many a knight stand around the throne, and a few Knights Errant were flanking the carpet up to Louen. Each of the young knights was well disciplined and did not so much as move as the famed duke walks past…save one. One turned his head slightly as Bohemond passed…but it was barely noticeable and he quickly turned back.

Kneeling before Louen, Bohemond said, “Louen Leoncoeur, King of the Bretonni. I have come according to your summon.”

Smiling, Louen had Bohemond stand and embraced him in a hug and said, “My dear Bohemond. Enough of the formalities, your son is present here, and has completed his training. In fact, recently he had been dispatched to assist in quelling a Green skin invasion of Montfort. At the battle he lead his Errant companions in a charge that ran down the Orc warlord. Now please Bohemond, come stand beside me, and watch, as your son becomes a Knight of Bretonnia.”
 Nodding to the herald beside the throng, the herald took a step forward and yelled, “KNIGHTS ERRANT! Step forward, kneel, rest your shield’s against your knee and have your helmet under your arm.”

Slowly, starting from the back the young knights marched forward, each joining the line as it came to them, their mailed boots thudding heavily on the oak floor as each walked with pride. They did as they were told, lowering their shields and removing their helmets and kneeling before the king. Louen advanced and drew his sword, holding it high in the air and said, “For courage in the heat of battle, for stemming the green skin invasion, and for slaying the warlord…I hear-by, in the name of the Lady and of Bretonnia, dub thee…Knights of Bretonnia.” He lowered the blade and tapped each knight in turn, dubbing them…but stopped as he reach the young knight at the end and turned to Bohemond and said, “Bohemond, as it has been ten long years since you last saw your son, I feel it only right, that you grant him his knight hood.”
Louen turned his sword to Bohemond hilt first, “Please…” he said. Grasping the handle of the blade, he stood in front of his son and was smiling greatly as he said as he tapped the blade on his shoulders, “In the name of Bretonnia, the Lady, and our King…I dub thee ‘Sir’ Lomant de Bastonne!”

Louen took his sword back and said; “Now arise young knights, and celebrate, for this day belongs to you!” With that said, nine knights whom all bore the symbol of the grail, brought forward a shield for each knight, as well as a helm. Bohemond only paid attention to the knight who brought Lomant his. His helm’s crest was that of a dragon crouched over a large rock, and his shield change from the heraldry of his house, to a red dragon battling a Wyvern. After receiving their heraldry, all the young knights turned to the assembled crowd and as one, all the could be heard from the gathered throng of warriors was, “HAIL! BRETHREN AND KNIGHTS OF BRETONNIA!” To which the new knights responded the same.

Bohemond walked up quietly behind Lomant and tapped him on the shoulder and said, “Congratulations son.” Turning, Lomant grinned and grasped his father hand, then hugged him tight. They finally broke the hug and Lomant said, “Father…I have it arranged, tomorrow I leave for Amorelot’s castle to avenge Lomandalis. I have not forgotten my oath, and nor do I plan to break it.” Nodding, Bohemond said that is what he expected to hear, but first that Lomant had to see his mother.

The next day, Lomant was lead to the city gate by his father and the king. Before leaving, he knelt before Louen and thanked him for the years of training. Then embraced his father once more and said, “Father, fear not…I shall return.” Then, grabbing the front of his saddle he quickly threw his leg over his horse, kicked his spurs into its flanks and sped out of the gate. It was not long before he was out of sight. Bohemond stood staring at the cloud of dust that Lomant’s horse had left, and Louen faintly heard Bohemond say, “Please my Lady…watch over my son and see that he returns to me alive and well.” They both turned and headed back to the castle.

Lomant rode hard for a few hours, the excitement of yesterday still fresh in his mind. It wasn’t until he heard Night-Flash breathing heavily that he slowed to a walk. Riding along, occasionally checking his map, Lomant would just look out at the beautiful countryside and talk to Night-Flash. Just before nightfall, as Lomant was on the edge of sleep, he thought he heard a twig crack in the woods to his right. He thought nothing of it, but when it happened again and Night-Flash’s ears perked he didn’t move, except his left hand, which loosened his sword in its sheath.

As Lomant rounded the next corner, he saw a group of foreign men carrying rusting blades and broken shields. He brought Night-Flash to a halt and said, “Be there a reason that you block the road that a Knight of the Realm travels on?” The largest man took a step forward and replied, “We control this road, either a tax be paid, or you die by our hand, the choice is yours.”

Laughing Lomant said, “I have no money, and I do not wish to kill you. Move aside.” It was then that Lomant heard a rope creak and snap. Expecting a trap, he ducked as a massive log swung through the air that his head had just occupied and swung back into the woods. Just when the rope snapped, the men on the road rushed forward with their blades held high. Grabbing the hilt of his sword in his hand, he rolled off Night-Flash’s back, pulling it out of its sheath at the same time. As he landed on his feet the first brigand reached him and slashed at his gut. Lomant easily sidestepped the strike, and slammed the hilt of his sword into the back of his head, knocking him out. As he fell, his sword fell out of his hands and Lomant quickly grabbed it and readied himself.

Last Updated ( Thursday, 15 February 2007 )
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