Monday, January 16, 2012

Courage Part 1

Olivia lay on her bed trying to finish her story.  She had had writer’s block for a month and was having little help in breaking her wall.  She was too distracted with the complications of life to finish the story she knew was in her heart.  If she could only get a little respite from the stifling world she lived in. 

The year was 1512 and England was beautiful.  Though war threatened at every corner, she knew she would be key in preventing war landing at her door step.  Her parents would use her in any way they could to create alliances with possible enemies.  But all Olivia wanted was a quite life with her pens and papers in the solitude of the arms of the love she knew was out there somewhere.  But, as her parents were quick to point out, it was improper for a young lady to write stories, she should be learning the role of painting, and reading, being able to entertain a king one day. 

Yet, for Olivia, she did not want to marry a king, she had simple wishes.  All she wanted was the quite knight who liked to polish his saddle and brush his horse in solitude, always in what seemed quite prayer.  But he was not to be seen as one of the many suitors who continually pursued her for her hand.  Olivia was beautiful, there was no doubt about that.  Her long dark hair would flow behind her swirling in the wind of the moors where she liked to take walks.  Her dark blue eyes and pale skin were contrasts to the mane she wore that drew even the most closed of hearts to her.  She had every one’s heart, except Sir Charles. 

Her thoughts were stifling her.  She had to pull away from her paper.  Olivia walked to the window to get a breath of fresh air.  The cool breeze was welcome relief as it hit her face and incorporated itself into her very being.  She breathed deeply.  She could see the castle stables from her second story window.  From here they looked like peaceful churches, but she knew what was really happening within.  All the knights from every district was in there brushing their horses, polishing their suits of armor, or working on their fighting stances just beyond the stable doors.  There would be commotion through out the stables.  Every knight had only one thought on their mind – win the tournament and receive Olivia as the ultimate prize. 

Olivia’s eyes began to burn with tears as she realized she would never be happy with any of the knights in that stable.  She realized she was just a bead at a bizarre being bid and bargained for.  She was not a human with a soul, but a piece of meat to go to the highest bidder.  Anger shot through her like a lightening bolt.  How could they expect her to resign herself to this? 

Then, as if an answer to her prayer, she saw the one being she could never seem to reach, no matter how she used her many charms.  Sir Charles, tired and sweaty from practicing his sword play, slowly walked his black stallion, Magnificent, toward the stables.  His copper hair reflected the sunlight as it stuck to his face from sweat.  She could see he was talking to someone, but could not hear the words.  Maybe he was talking to the horse, after all, she had seen other knights try to pump up their animals before tournaments before.   As though he could hear her silent calls to him, he looked up to see her tear stained face in the window.  She quickly turned away.  She could not let him see her in this weak state.  This ugly state.  He did not even like her, she could not give him more ammunition to strike at her heart.  He was the only knight who refused her advances, who refused to look her in the eye.  But he always did as she asked, always respected her, always looked out for her.  What she did not realize, and what Sir Charles did in that one moment of seeing her weakness, was that he loved her.  He loved her with every fiber of his being.

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