(co-Written with Aneleda Falconbridge)
King William ruled the MidRealm with his Birch-Queen Isolde. After the great Pennsic Wars were fought, They called Gareth Ostwestly to see Them. He was a lendr maðr in Their lands, a sworn king’s man and he held lands for Them to the east of here, called Ayerton. He was a strong and just thane.
Gangly Gareth had found his fealty walking with his wedding-brother in Rokkhealdon, far from the whale-road. Though young, he threw himself into long labor. His skills at managing accounts was well known, as was his brewing. Many an ale-prow he filled and many a soup bowl as well.
Those who know him tell these tales: Once he carried calm Hillary’s ship-fence, Sif’s supporter, as a favor, finely strapped. Deep in the spear din shone that moon of battle, and rightly, he returned it later, to his grey-sky eye-love. He has spent long hours marking the mighty of men, and finding the battle-fire of noble wolf feeders. He was rightly a reeve of midlands region, before he was höfðingi, beside his valkyrie.
Once at battle-harbor, he left the fray, eyes caught by a child in deep distress. He sat silently with her, a disturbed brief-daughter, nameless. Was she a Norn, knowingly testing? Either way, he broke her smile-ban, and a verse was written about him:
Words downturned / Gareth dismissed
Truthful tears / swiftly taken
Banished harm / handed her hopes.
Meet this man / a mind-mirror
Gives council / gold ring givers
Bold beauty / beckons to him
Sweet sunlight / wrapped in great strength.
It has been five bears-nights since he was made a dragon’s heart. To that, William and Isolde add storm-pale feathers of the Pelican and set Their marks on this telling. This is done at the battles of the ágætr kona, in the Shire of Swordcliff, west of Gareth’s holdings. These marks made on the 26th day of the month, being the one hundred and twelfth day of the reign, AS LII.
(c) 2017 Drew Nicholson