Friday, 26 April 2013

W is for Wall Warden, Arbert

All nobles, iniquitous or benevolent, of Bretonnia are an aloof lot of great property owners.

And owning property comes a great responsibility of serf management in a highly structuralized order of society. Often that responsibility means recognizing peasants for natural talent or a skill often ritualized by family. The peasants do seem to have qualities of even the most inbreed noble clans.

Arbert is such a peasant though his status is never lost in quiet conversation with his wife or his mud hutch corn beer klatch.

He has a natural brain for engineering, and he's not even a Dwarf. Arbert is a Wall Warden for Duke Huebald of Carcassonne. What exactly is a "wall warden"? Arbert is in charge of the very stone walls that protect his liege from any and all enemies, known and unknown.

Wall Wardens literally stand and fall on the security of the walls built by their peasant charges. Arbert is more fortunate than many of his fellows--organized secretly and loosely in peasant guilds across Bretonnia--having a dwarf stonemason passing an art for precision fitting of stone work to himself and others.

And yet Arbert is also a master archer, a skill that all nobles dismiss to the point of abhoring. It is an added value to the Duke to have a wall warden that can hit a target at nearly 180 feet and he passes this skill to the defenders of the Duke's residence.

Yet Arbert harbors an unrequited inheritance, his father's illegally forged "birth sword." In Bretonnia peasants may not possess a weapon of the noble class. Arbert's father felt otherwise. Arbert hides this "birth sword" in his mud hut, only his elevated status protects him from others even thinking he possesses such a thing. And his skill and swiftness with a bow and knowledge of stone dismisses even the slightest rumor that he may harbor the heresy that "just because some watery tart promises a sip from a cheap wine glass" his liege has any authority.

Posted by caffeinated at 9:49 PM in d10