Tears watered the young man’s eyes. “I was frozen. If it wasn’t for Jarik I would have joined you in Tormier. He sprang out of the shadows while I just stood there.”
The captain patted his son’s head. “Man to man, tell me what happened after my death.”
“Jarik pinned the wizard and cutting upon his flesh.”
“What did you do?”
“I did what you taught me. We don’t condoned torture in Catheldor. I was going to bring him back alive to pay for his sins. Prince Arlin saw it differently and cut him down.”
“It pains you doesn’t it?”
“It does, father. The battle was over. He was unarmed and defeated.”
“You did your best, my son. Sometimes the death of the surrendered upon the battlefield is just as good a justice as our jails here. It is done now, no sense lamenting upon it any further. The captain of the guard retrieved a chest from the back of the storage closet. He opened the chest with care. “This is something I have been saving until the time was right. It was mine when I was your age, but I had outgrown it,” he patted his gut then pulled a suit of steel and leather armor from the chest. “This will protect you from the evil you encountered. Enchantments on this armor are hungry to feast upon one thing.”
“Justice?” Gaston interrupted.
“No,” his father winked. “Magic. This armor will afford you some protection from spells. It does not devour every arcane force, but it will reduce the pain spells bring.”
Gaston smiled. “Thank you father. I don’t know what to say.”
Captain Kaarlo patted his son on the shoulder. “There is nothing that needs to be said. Just wear this armor with pride. It will aid you while you are training with the guard.”
“You’re allowing me to join the guard?” Gaston beamed.
“No.” Gaston’s face fell, but Kaarlo continued. “You showed great skill and forethought on the field of battle, which eared you special tutelage. I don’t believe for a moment that Ildonia was not planning an attack against Catheldor and you foiled their schemes. Soon enough they will attack again and we must prepare to fight their powerful mages. I will train a squad of men to fight magic with steel, and I want you among them.”
“Thank you father.”