The street lamps and torches of the town of Ostricester twinkle in the night, a quaint silence hangs in the air. The cool night mist from the surrounding evergreen forest rolls over the hills and spills into the fields and houses around the town walls. Just outside the western gate, a pair of warriors stride out into the clearing, hurling various obscenities and insults at one another.
The warrior leading the way to the clearing is cloaked in a thick woolen vest with a brown tunic underneath. The Jarl sports a bulky, muscular frame with a commanding stature. He takes his shining winged-helm off, revealing a thick mane of long chesnut brown hair. Like the waves this sea-hardened Jarl braves on a daily-basis, his beard pours down from his lips, cheek, and chin. His countenance is like a stormy sea, and his aura exudes the scent of the oud that he transports from the wildlands to the Realms. He sits his helm to the side and draws his jewel-encrusted sword.
“Gaze upon thy destiny, with this sword I will cleave your lying maggot mouth from your swine head,” cries the Jarl, greatly assured of his victory. “You’re lucky my crew isn’t here, or I would take my time. This should be quick.”
“Now, now, that’s no way to talk to the rightful prince of Oteras, or what you savages call the wildlands,” chortled the Prince smugly.
The Prince oozes charm, with his shining blue-metal armor and perfect oaky hair and beard. Prince Charming is leaner and wiry in appearance, but one would be foolish to interpret him as weak. An air of aristocracy surrounds Prince Charming, the smell of cashmere, chocolate truffles, and premium tobaccos swirling in his wake. He draws his intricately smithed sword.
As one might expect, the sway of strong drink at the Ostricester tavern has brought these two warriors of renown together through the combination of a difference of geopolitical opinions and obstinate egos.
The Jarl moves towards his foe, spinning his sword in an arc as he stalks towards Prince Charming. Charming takes a crouched-swordsman’s stance, ready to explode into action at the first inkling of movement.
The Jarl swings his sword savagely at the Prince, who parries the blow. While Prince Charming is an experienced swordsman, with years of training that contributes to his impeccable form, his arrogance allows him to underestimate the Jarl’s years of raiding and battlefield prowess. The Jarl steps into the Prince’s guard and delivers a left-handed hook to Charming’s chin. The punch dislodges a strand of Charming’s hair, causing it to fall down his face. The Prince clutches his lip, a crimson trickle running down his chin. Charming wipes the blood away, a look of fury on his face.
“Ah not used to being smacked in those big flappers of yours, eh Princess?” taunts the Jarl.
Charming charges with a focused intensity, swinging his sword in a series of intricate and measured combinations. The Jarl, though battle-hardened through his raiding career has not faced off against a swordsman quite a well-trained as Charming. The Jarl ceedes ground, struggling to keep up with the precise strikes from Prince Charming. The Jarl realizes that he needs to bring this fight back into his wheel-house. Suddenly the Jarl is able to solidly block a strike from Charming, locking blades, pulling Charming in close, preparing to use his muscular build to bully the smaller Prince.
Just then the Jarl catches a whiff of something familiar. “Is that the Valentine’s Day seasonal drop from Fable Beard Company? I smell light cologne, maybe sandalwood?
Charming stops. “Yes, I worked with the Wizard as part of a favor, he developed this for me.”
“I loved that one, I have it in the cabinet on the ship. The Wizard made a custom scent for me too, because I helped ensure a shipment of spices made it across the sea. I wear it when I come a-shore,” says the Jarl as he produces a glass vial from his tunic.
The two warriors continue to bond over their love for Fable products and the Wizard’s wizardry, and fail to notice a third shining warrior approaching. Finally, the Jarl and Charming notice the sweet aura radiating from the approaching warrior.
“Who are you,” asks the Jarl.
“I am the Paladin,” answers the stranger. “Submit to her holiness, or die,” says the Paladin as he levels his hammer at Jarl and Charming.
Narrated by Brandon Warner