Friday, October 7, 2011

Father and Son; Warlord and Hero

[Originally posted in two parts at Ana Mardoll's Ramblings, the paragraph describing the adoption was here, the story itself was here.]
[ This was a result of thinking about stories that seem to have a theme of, "You're not my father, you're just the person who raised me!"]

What I wrote assumes that the adoption was a result something along the lines of Warlord going, "I have vanquished my enemies and won the day and-" notices future hero, "apparently I've created an orphan baby. Hey little guy ,what are we going to do with you?" and eventually deciding on adopting him.

The Warlord is leaving an army against abby/fortress/thing that the Hero has now sworn to protect. When he realizes that the Hero, his adopted son, is on the other side he calls for a cease of hostilities and negotiation with his son. Anyone close enough to hear the conversation quickly figures out that the negotiation has absolutely nothing to do with the present conflict. The Warlord is offering to let his son return to the fold, no questions asked, reinstatement with full rank. It does not work out well. Swords are drawn, but for the moment everyone waits with bated breath to see what happens.

Hero: You are not my father. You killed my father!

Warlord: Being a father isn't about blood, boy. If I taught you nothing else I taught you that. I raised you. I taught you. I loved you. That's what makes a father. Now please, stand aside. Don't make me kill my son.

Hero: You murdered my parents.

Warlord: I killed the ones who bore you, yes. What did you want me to do next? Leave you to die in the wilderness? [pause] Kakila's given birth. Twins. Once you've killed all of us what do you plan to do with them? Leave them to die?

I don't think you will. When they ask you about their mother will you tell them how she laughed, or talk about sparkle in her eyes when she was winning at knucklebones? Or about how you fought for the army that killed her? And after you've spent 15 seasons raising them, loving them, devoting yourself to them, how will you feel when they tell you they're not your family? How will you feel when they want to kill you to avenge someone they never had time to know?

Hero is silent for a time, then: You're right. I don't have anyone to avenge, I never knew them. You were a good father. But I'm with these people now and I'm going to protect them [pause] even if it means killing you.

Warlord: So that-

Hero: Walk away. [beat] You asked me not to make you kill your son, don't make me kill my father. Just walk away.

Warlord: You know I can't do that.

Hero: And I can't stand aside.

Warlord (adjusting his grip on his sword): I won't hold back.

Hero (raises his sword): I won't either.

Warlord: I love you.

Hero: I love you.

And then they fight to the death. The fighting ends the truce, battle erupts. The hero wins because it's the sort of story where heroes win. He spends the rest of the battle comforting his father who he has mortally wounded and then crying over his body after the warlord dies.

The horde is wiped out. Some of this is probably because the death of the warlord harmed morale. Some of this is probably because the horde's greatest warrior had just given birth which, I'm guessing, is not conducive to peak performance in a fight to the death. A lot of it probably has to do with the fact that the horde was attacking an easily defensible position, so the advantage went to the other side anyway.

A generation of orphan children from theoretically evil races end up being raised by the victors. They turn out all right.

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