Two lords, one in his early twenties and the other his late forties, sip wine together while watching the bustle of the elder lord’s castle around them. The sun reflects off of the men at arms chainmail as then walk the walls and a farmer haggles with a disgruntled cook in a nearby doorway.
“That is an interesting scar you have on your cheek. How did you come by it?” The young lord asked, staring intently at his glass as he swirled his wine.
“An unfortunate encounter with some thieves many years ago. They came to kidnap my daughter but we managed to fight them off well enough.” The elder lord replied, reaching up to finger his cheek.
“It is a pity that it scarred you.” The young lord stared down at his feet. “My lord, I do not wish to be too forward but I must ask… why did you call me here today? Although our families are not enemies, the relationship between us has only recently grown to be one of friendship and that was due only to the fact that you fought alongside my father in the recent war. Ever since my father’s death, there has been no contact between us. You did not even show up at the funeral. You can understand that I wonder at your motives.” By the end, he was closely studying the elder lord’s face for a reaction.
“I was wondering how the search for the murderer is going. I apologize for not coming to the funeral; the grief was too fresh and I was not ready to face his death yet. I would like to make up for that now. If you wish any help, consider me your loyal servant.” A grimace of hate flashed across his face as he bowed low. “Whomever had the gall to kill such an honorable man deserves do be punished and it is, of course, an honor to help Godfrey’s heir, especially as your ascension to lordship came under such horrid circumstances.”
“There has actually been some development.” The young lord idly fingered his sword as he studied the elder lord’s face. “A servant was found who saw the murderer fleeing the scene of the crime.”
“Really?” The elder lord exclaimed. “Well, speak up boy! What did the killer look like?”
“Well, it was rather odd, actually.” The young lord related slowly. “According to the servant, he had a scar on his cheek that looked very similar to yours. Almost identical, really. What do you suppose that means, my lord?”
The elder lord’s eyes widened just before the young lord threw his glass of wine into his face and drew his sword. “You will pay for what you have done!” He screamed as he slashed at his enemy.
But the elder lord had drawn his sword and easily parried the attack.
“Stay back!” He roared at the men at arms who were about to rush to their lord’s rescue. “Stay back! I have this under control!” He then turned his full attention to his opponent.
“Your grief misleads you into attacking a friend! I have ever been your father’s loyal comrade. His death grieves me as well!” They exchanged another set of blows and then parted, slowly circling. “I had no part in your father’s death!”
“LIAR!” The young lord bellowed as he threw himself forward. He hacked senselessly at his adversary, all finesse forgotten in his rage. The elder lord quickly used this to his advantage, and, with a quick flick of his sword, disarmed him.
“Think a moment! What gain would I have from killing Godfrey? Use your head; do not be led so easily into making enemies of those who wish to help you!” The elder lord beseeched, holding out his hands in a desperate entreaty for reason.
Immune to his plea, the young lord drew his dagger and threw himself forward, but the elder broke his arm with a quick smash downwards of his sword hilt and then wrapped a leg around the younger lord’s knee, sprawling the him to his back.
The younger flinched, closing his eyes as tears streamed down his face and the elder’s sword cut towards his throat.
But the sword clanged into the flagstones beside his head and he opened his eyes in astonishment. The elder’s tears streamed silently down his face as he said, “I did not kill your father, but, based on the similarity of the scar pattern, I think I know who did.”