500 Word Flash Fiction – My First Charge

Knights ChargingI still remember that charge like it was yesterday. We were formed up in ranks looking all bright and shiny, and there was me in my new half harness armor standing in the front line all ashen faced trying my best to look brave. This was going to be my first pitch battle; countless hours of drill and pushing straw dolls around had not prepared me for the roar and clamor around me. 

I could barely hear our Lancepesade above the cannons and it wasn’t until I was grabbed by the shoulder that I realized we were moving with bills at port, and learned that we had been given the honor of leading the charge, of being the first to engage the enemy line and to take the King’s Guard. The Lancepesade barked and we moved from port to ready, we quickened now from a walk to a jog. I could see our Lord Zouche amongst us now, sword aloft with the colors flowing before I lost him in the cannon smoke.

Ahead now I could see the King’s Guard all dressed in their best with shields ready and locked to receive us. The gentle patter of arrows started to fall upon us and I was thankful for the Sallet that I was wearing and dropped the visor. The Lancepesade barked once more, this time it was charge. I roared my battle cry and picked my target an ocher yellow shield paired with black.

The moment before impact everything slowed down, I remember the wide blue eyes of the King’s Guard I was about to hit, the roar of my fellows on my back and the stamping of our feet. Every part of me was wired and smash, we hit… Time became a blur, my opponent skewered fell away and our momentum pushed us through to their third rank. It was now down to moments I stabbed, I hacked, I kicked, punched and bullied, wielding my bill with as much speed as I could muster aware that any time now I would be felled; that our flank was going to be rolled. As soon as it begun it was over, the King’s Guard routed and with my blood up I gave chase… We had them and I had not sated my battle lust. Then my Lancepesade’s voice was in my ear, “It’s over Lad, now let’s get out of here before their mates give us a good kicking.”

As we melted away from the events of that first charge we soon became scattered against the larger army arrayed against us. Weary at battle end we left the field in triumph cheered on by all that saw our charge, including the King’s Guard themselves. It was not until later that I learned I knocked the Reenactor with the yellow shield out, and it was my berserk fury, not the charge of our household that routed them, and that I came close to striking the King himself… Thus my Legend was born…