|“||Here you pick the ones who know the least to lead, and fix on the biggest fool o’ the whole pack for a commander!1||”|
Chapter Summary Edit
Colonel West finds himself spending more and more time in the smithy. Partly, Pike and the other former criminals seem more honest than the Prince and his lackeys. And partly, a growing attraction to Pike’s daughter, Cathil.
Having been shooed back to work, West runs into Threetrees and Dogman bearing grim news; Bethod and 10,000 battle hardened carls and thralls are five days march away. The trio immediately go to Prince Ladisla in his extravagant tent. West presents the situation to the Prince, and argues for an orderly withdrawal. However, Ladisla, urged on by Lord Smund and the other flunkeys, demands that the army march on Bethod without delay. The Prince imagines a heroic victory on par with Harod the Great and King Casamir, and West cannot dissuade him.2
Outside, Threetrees declares them all fools. His crew won’t fight with The Union, too blind to see they have no chance of defeating Bethod’s host. Dogman tries to see the bright side; he stole an entire fish from Ladisla’s dining table.
|Collem West||Rudd Threetrees||Bethod|
|Pike||The Dogman||King Harod the Great|
|Prince Ladisla||Lord Smund||King Casamir|
Locations and Terms Edit
- As Threetrees so eloquently puts it, how stupid is West to obey his Prince. He knows that they’re going to lose, that they may all die, but he’ll do his duty. Also, a nice contrast between the violent meritocracy of the North and the rigid class stratification of The Union.
- Not only is Ladisla confident in his incredible Union army, but his racist arrogance convinces him that the Northmen are incompetent by "nature".