Beck’s Prayer

Narl, I know you have sent your angels to watch over me once again. Though the road was treacherous and the times were challenging, I held faith that you would continue to use me as your instrument to show others the way.
As I stand upon this wall and view the number of fires growing by the dozens, I am not afraid. I can see the fear and worry on the faces of these good town folk and I feel for them. I was afraid many years ago, and I can remember it taking a toll on me, but I can’t remember the exact feeling. Much like a person can’t remember what it is like to be starving after they have gorged on fresh cooked pork and seared corn, I can no longer experience fear.

Those days still seem quite clear when I think back, but the longer back they go, the less I remember the fear, the comments, and the laughter. I still recall the way the carpenter paused and looked over me before selecting me to help build our shelter, and I can still hear the snickers and comments. The hunter, Calbern, selected me in the same manner, a pause, something under his breath, and then, “Yea, ye’ll be with us in the fields as well”. I heard the comments that I should not carry the spears for the others as I was so thin that they real hunters would grab me and throw me as a spear and not realize the difference.

They could not raise any anger from within me, and some of the comments actually made me laugh as well. Until I was faced with the aspect of trying to hunt a boar myself, then things weren’t anywhere close to funny. I was moved to the front of the pack instead of staying with the tents and supplies, I was told to help front the lines in the boar runs and wait until they were spooked and heading toward us, I was told the hold my position and make sure the boar impaled himself on the spear. I was told all that, but heeded nothing.

It was your grace that preserved me from harm that day, but not for my brother, Manson. He was my tent-mate the day of The Choosing. The day we both woke and found the mark, the joy and worry about being the only ones choosen. The thrill of being selected by the gods for great and wondrous things. Manson was displease that all the others were choosen as well, but I felt relief that I would have a thousand mates to help in the trek that I was to set upon. We talked and spent quite some time together, and we finally came to see each other’s point, and settled in the middle.

But that day in the woods, Manson was not able to avoid the boar, but the boar avoided the spear. Many others looked up with a nonplussed attitude, not wanting to get too close as he lay bleeding out for fear they would see themselves in his position. But Manson was my friend and I went to him and stayed with him until you called him. I couldn’t sleep for a week. Every time I was close that boar would charge through any image in my dreams. Manson would show up in my images only to be slain again and again. The others would ignore all that happened and continued as I would scream for help.

Until your angel came to me. He had to be your angel as the Greatsword and Gauntlet glimmered and shone in an otherwise gloomy image. The vision of boar charging, but not winning the fight. Images of the boar stumbling, another being caught in thick vines, another cornered by a row of spears and having arrows shot from above. All images that showed the numerous ways that an opponent could be slain without your glorious angel being in harms way. Showing proof that the survivor and winner will continue to fight another day, and the slain will perish regardless of their skill, strength, and weapons. Only surviving and willing matter. All else is for the bards and tale spinners to put to words and song.

The others chuckled and laughed and I set up my own traps for the boar and used the only weapon I was comfortable with. They opted to humor me in my attempts and spooked a boar to run the path to see what would happen. The boar stumbled as I had expected – as I had seen – and struggled to rise once both legs had been broken in pit that was set as a trap, but left it’s underside open for a killing blow. Quick, efficient, and less bloody than any boar kill before. The laughter stopped for a moment, but soon took up with the jeers that the boar must have been sick or ill already. For each sleepless night I had the week before, you provided me with a different means to kill a boar in each of the following days.

I found the others slowly stopped chiding me, and instead started to speak with me as a friend. Their remarks of my slender arms and trickery with a sword came as humorous jabs rather than the biting comments from previous years. Your visions and guidance had helped out more than just me, as you have shown me that examples and actions do far more than preaching and words. I can only pray that those around us have the abilities to follow the lead that you have granted me as those fires die down and the forces move upon us. Might that we save as many as possible and thwart this enemy that has been set in front of us.

I will continue to do your will, Stormcrow, and embrace the blessings you have granted me.

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