Saturday, September 10, 2016

"Plowshares to Swords"

Fargold had tended fields for far too long.

He had convinced himself years ago that the work he was doing was important. And it had been and easy lie to believe. There was, after all, no more practical crop to farm that beluga tubers. They were  naturally repellent to pests as they grew underground, and they thrived in nearly any weather. They sometimes grew large enough to feel a medium-sized man for an entire day, and were rich enough in nutrition that the same medium-sized man would need little else in his diet to live a life relatively free of any major vitamin deficiencies.

The famine had been enough reason, for many a year, to convince Fargold that the work he spent his fourteen waking hours of the day devoted to was worthwhile. And then, it had been most worthwhile; without his crops, his tiny village would have probably disappeared off the face of the map. Most maps of the realm of Jolk already didn't include the village of Barker; succumbing to famine would have been the last straw to ensure that all memory of Barker was blown away like a wisp of smoke, without a single landmark left to represent it or its people.

Of course, it would have been pride for Fargold to take complete credit for the survival of Barker during the Great Famine. All recognition he gave to Orrumatar.

Fargold had been raised with the stories of the Divinity On High, of the battles of the Powers That Be and what had been won for mankind. He knew the tales well, even if he hadn't personally read them for many years. During the battles, Orromatar, the Horseman, had rode into battle as the as many of the lesser Powers retreated, rallying their spirits for final victory. These days, Orromatar represented strength and honor and, most importantly, duty. Orromatar taught that a man always did his duty, no matter the cost to himself. And that was what Fargold did during the famine.

It was good work. It had meant something. It hadn't been a lie, then.