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Previous Challenge Entry (Level 4 – Masters)
Topic: The Pen is Mightier than the Sword (04/08/10)

TITLE: The Scholarly Knight
By Amy Michelle Wiley
04/14/10


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Once upon a time, a beautiful village lay nestled in a flowering valley. Yet all was not well, for often the vile Bruteeders drove their herd of boars right through the middle of town, caring not what the heavy beasts ruined or trampled upon the way.

One day, Maiden Mayliss was working in her garden, planting sprouts she had received from her cousin far away. “Push your roots deep, dear ones. Grow strong so you will flavor my soup such as no one here has ever tasted.”

Mayliss patted the last herb in place. But as her hand touched the ground, she felt a deep vibration that could only mean one thing. She leapt to her feet. Already she could hear the snorting and stomping of the boars.

“No!” The beasts were headed straight for the garden. Panic mingled in her heart with fear for herself and her precious herbs. The beasts ran closer and closer. She could see their beady eyes through the dust, focused, determined.

With sudden panic, the lady realized they were not swerving. She froze as surely as if she herself had been planted firmly in the ground. Ground that in only seconds she would be trampled upon.

Something slammed against her, knocking her down with a whoosh of air. She covered her face and waited for the end.

“Maiden Mayliss, are you all right?”

The male voice broke through the darkness, and slowly Mayliss realized she was still in one piece.

“This is an outrage. We must do something to stop the Bruteeders.”

Mayliss opened one eye and discovered that she was surrounded by villagers, including the ever-handsome Sir S. Ward who had, apparently, rescued her from the boars. She blushed.

The mayor stepped forward. “Hear ye! Something will be done. The knight who concocts the best plan within three days will have full backing of the city counsel.”

The villagers erupted into a cacophony of excitement. Many of them crowded around Sir S. Ward, congratulating him on rescuing Mayliss.

“Of course I had no thought for my own safety,” he answered, his head high.

One knight stole away from the crowd and paused by Mayliss’s elbow. “Are you truly all right, my lady?”

Mayliss felt a flutter in her chest. “Yes, good sir. It is my poor garden that has suffered.”

Sir de Pen touched a mangled leaf tenderly. “What were they?”

“Rare herbs.”

He shook his head sadly. “It is time something is done.”

Over the next three days the village was astir with preparations and finally the time came to make the announcements. One after another, the knights stood in the town center and described plans. Silly plans, vague plans, and lofty plans—all were booed by the crowd.

Finally Sir S. Ward drew his sword and cried, “For many months we’ve stood back and let the Bruteeders do whatever they pleased. But no longer!”

The crowd cheered.

“We shall defend ourselves. Not only shall we no longer let them destroy us, but we shall destroy them!”

There was a great shout and clamor of armor. Amidst the commotion, it was Mayliss who first noticed Sir de Pen, clutching a crumpled paper.

He cleared his throat. “Do we really want to start a war? Shall we repay their malice with evil?” His voice was quiet, barely reaching the edge of the crowd. “I suggest we send them a letter, asking them to desist. In the meantime, we’ll build a gate, making it impossible for the boars to enter the city.”

Mayliss touched Sir de Pen’s hand. “Is that paper the letter?”

“Uh, no, it’s just….” Sir de Pen thrust the bit of paper behind his back. Unfortunately, Sir S. Ward was standing behind him, looking none too happy about the people’s shift in attention.

“I’ll read it.” The other man grabbed the paper.

“The Bruteeders have ridden
The boars have stomped
All through our town
Your people have tromped

From neighbor to neighbor
We ask so nice
Think of us and
Stop this vice!”


The crowd laughed. Sir de Pen blushed. Sir S. Ward sneered.

The mayor stepped forward. “It is clear to see Sir de Pen’s plan would be the safest and simplest of the ideas. The city counsel hereby agrees!”

The people applauded. The flags waved. Sir de Pen blushed harder, and Sir S. Ward glowered darker.

Maiden Mayliss beamed and whispered to herself, “It just goes to show, de Pen is mightier then S. Ward.”


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This article has been read 729 times
Member Comments
Member Date
Patricia Herchenroether04/15/10
Cute little fairy tale; gave me a smile.
Jackie Wilson04/17/10
An engaging tale. I especially like the last line with the play on words!
Lynda Schultz 04/18/10
So cute and clever too! Well done.
Laury Hubrich 04/18/10
Oh boy, sure didn't see that coming:) Cute story! Romance is surely in the air.
Angela King04/21/10
Cute! I really enjoyed the play on words!
Amanda Brogan04/21/10
Maidens of fair and mighty but gentle knights . . . this is a fun story to read. :) I too, enjoyed the word play in the names. Very creative with a perfect ending!
Beth LaBuff 04/21/10
This is a fun allegory with creative character names. Your ending is LOL funny. ;)
Gerald Shuler 04/21/10
Scholarly! I like the way you put this together. Excellent build to the play on words at the end.
Rachel Phelps04/21/10
This is a masterful showing of wordplay and fun to boot! Great!
Sarah Elisabeth 04/21/10
I'm so slow...it took til I read the last line to "get" your very clever fairy tale names! I loved the tale, so glad Mayliss wasn't fooled by S. Ward ;-)
Edmond Ng 04/22/10
Very well written piece! I like how the story involves knight, S. Ward and Pen, and how it progresses from wasting time discussing, to suggested warfare, and finally ending with proposed peaceful settlement. The ups and downs of the story make it a very interesting read.
angelos2 wark04/22/10
Just the right amount of whimsy!
I thought the last line was the kicker! Good Job!!