Each day seemed an eternity. The cold of winter did not deter the knight, nor the blazing heat of summer. But time was an ever present haunt. What lives were lost while he walked, or how many machinations were set into motion? These thoughts consumed him.
“I fear for your sanity my friend,” the king said to him. “The mark you bear for me is one I will always respect, but this is madness.” From the gardens of the castle, they conversed in private. “My king, this fate was meant for you, and surely she will try again.” The king slumped into his chair and rubbed his face. “These visions you see are not real. You claim to see monsters in your dreams… beasts that burn the land they walk on, some fly and tear the sky like lightning, and worse still is the woman you describe. She is so vivid an image in your addled mind that you commissioned a painting of her.”
And for the first time in his life, anger gained control of the knight. Slamming his steel gauntlet in the table, he left an indent in the fine oak. “You know this is true! Your -father- even wrote of her in his journey to unite the clans of men! Her eyes, that fanged grin, and her scaled hands all match what you showed me! I had no knowledge of her before you revealed his books, but now you dishonor me -and- him for… what?!”
“ENOUGH,” the king shouted. “You insult both me and my family with your words. My father died a gruesome death at the venomous fangs of Ulgrath the Vicious, not some lunatic necrophiliac! You may have my respect, but you choose to wear away at my patience with this insane prattle! You shall -never- speak of this again.” The knight stood from his seat and with a thrust, embedded the point of his sword into the dented table. “I will trouble you no longer.” And with the loss of his king, all the knight had left now was his code.
For years now, the knight had these visions. Some of them clear, others muddied with shadow and the cries of the damned. So, the knight stayed awake. As long as he could muster before being brought back to the swirling chaos of his dreams. But one day…
He could no longer sleep.