The knight without armor

N. Lygeros

Translated from the Greek by Vicky Baklessi

The stones were tearing his feet but he didn’t stop walking. He had to find the sword with the strange hilt. He scrutinized the walls searching for the slightest flaw. In vain. The bricklayers of this village knew the technique of the old and their walls were impregnable. At least that was what they believed until the barbarians arrived. The knight without armor collapsed. He thought that he had been late in dying. His head on the floor, he felt the blood running down over his eyes. His temple was open. In this new purple reality, he remembered the battle of the trenches. The barbarians had infiltrated like serpents. They swarmed into the water and there they were transformed into a filthy beast trying to attack the broken drawbridge. They weren’t but a handful to hold the blow against the attackers. The others were dead, drowned in the masses. Armed to the teeth, some hours earlier, they had nothing but swords for their defense. No armor had endured the strikes of the flail. But they were still alive as if the Lord had placed his hand over that handful of people. Only that the beast even wounded was coming back to attack. And this time they knew that they couldn’t sustain the blow. They had to find a way out. They turned towards the wall; they looked at each other and made their decision. They would pass from the sky. They approached the wall and forced the first sword in the slit of the stones. Then they broke the sword so that a step is created. They repeated this until all of the bursts of their swords generated a mental staircase in the wall. In the end, they had but a single hilt of a sword. They disappeared in front of the astonished eyes of the filthy beast. Its prey had left it only traces of metal. It had to take revenge and it attacked violently the main door of the citadel. They knew that it would be raved by the barbarians. Only that they needed to save the sacred books. They plunged inside the crypt and opened the tombs of the ancient. They knew this was a sacrilege but it was the only capable to save the codices. The tombs had been closed again over them. They would wait for the end of the black centuries before they see the day again. They had been prepared for this sacrifice from the initiation by their master. The moment had come to accomplish it. The stones became even more red and the master closed his eyes for the first time. He hadn’t found the sword with the strange hilt but he knew already that the disciples were accomplishing his work and he died in peace. He would come again in some centuries. Thus ends the first life of the knight without armor.

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