Friday, July 04, 2014

The Dragon Throne

Francis, Mattahius’ younger brother, took the reigns of power. This did not sit well with William II of Anglamay, however, who sought to give the County to his own nephew. The King sent the Dukes of Thrace and Beiuel south to represent his case. They claimed that William had not promised to invest any but Mattahius with the County of Kareelia and therefore Francis should yield to the King’s nephew. To this, Francis replied with these stern words: “My Lords, I thank thee for your kind representations of the monarch of Anglamay. But I would have you bring him word of my displeasure at his claims so that he may know I reject them utterly. And, my Lords, you have but two days to clear my lands or I will have you drawn and quartered and your entrails fed to the fish.” They fled north to bring news of the disaster to the King.

Francis’ act of rebellion benefitted from two simultaneous events. The first occasioned a religious rebellion in Anglamay. In that Kingdom, as in no other, the worship of Ore-Tsar had taken a firm hold. There were many doctrinal disputes between the early priests, not the least of which was who controlled the Church, the King of Anglamay or the Bishop in Avignon, a city that had grown rapidly after the fall of Aufstrag. Rebellion and war spread throughout Anglamay, keeping the King from responding to Francis’ insult (see Anglamay).

The second occasion marked Francis as one of the greatest heroes of his day. An ancient blue worm descended upon the County. It terrorized the whole region from the Twilight Wood to the sea. Francis armored himself with plate and shield, took up the lance of his father and rode to give battle to the creature. Upon the way he met an elf who befriended him, saying that he was an old friend of Meltowg and wished to return the kindness which Mattahius always showed the Elves. He gave over a sword that he claimed St. Luther bore in combat against the dragons of another era. With the dragon slayer at his side, Francis rode to war.

He met the dragon beneath the eves of the Twilight Wood and there they fought a horrible dual. The air thundered such that the calamity of the battle could be heard for miles around. They felled trees and shook the earth in that contest of arms, but in the end the dragon slayer took the life of the beast leaving Francis the victor. The Count payed homage to Utumno, the dark god of dreams, and left that place where, it is said, the bones of the dragon lay still.

Francis placed the dragon’s hide upon the floor before his throne and mounted the beasts four great paws upon the throne itself, and the snout and head he set upon the chair, so that whoever sat in the throne was crowned with the horns of the dragon. Ever after has that throne been called the Dragon Throne.

~The Codex of Aihrde

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