Facing Knight, by Charles Matthias

Story name: Facing Knight
Author: Charles Matthias
Date: Spring 706 CR, 2 weeks before Easter
Location: Metamor Keep cellars


Matthias's visit to Sir Saulius almost ends in disaster.


The morning after the events of Support Group, Matthias readies himself for his morning ritual: meeting the five rats who live in the cellars, ashamed of being rats. Matthias hopes his visits are changing their minds.

He ponders the structure of the cellars as he descends. At the very bottom is an artesian well, which he has never been to. On the opposite side of the Keep are the meat cellars; elsewhere there is the wine cellar, to which he has occasionally indulged himself. Several layers were dungeons for prisoners; one such prisoner, a man who never showed his right hand, escaped the Battle of the Three Gates, and it was he who first told Matthias about a place where people's forms changed. Matthias hoped that by coming here, he could escape the Sondeckis.

As he walks through the cold, dimly-lit corridors, he hears Saulius in his armor; he is in another of his delusional states, attacking the rats he thinks have imprisoned him. Matthias tries to talk to him, but Saulius does not recognize him, and accuses him of trickery. Despite Matthias's plea of forgiveness, Saulius lunges with his sword, and by instinct, Matthias dodges and hits him in the chest.

Matthias suddenly snaps out of his battle stance, horrified by what he has done. Saulius lies five feet away, his breastplate indented with his palm. Saulius is dazed, but now he recognizes Matthias. Removing his breastplate and inspecting the damage, Matthias orders a rat to get the healer Brian Coe.

Matthias stays by Saulius's side and comforts him. Matthias almost cries when Saulius calls him a gentle rat.


Main Characters: Matthias, Sir Saulius

Mentioned: Kimberly, Tallis, Dr Channing, Michael, Copernicus, Phil, Brian Coe

Points of Interest

  • Dr Channing has a fascination with astrology and astronomy.
  • Matthias sometimes drinks too much, and apparently sings in his stupor.
  • Tallis is first mentioned here. He attends the Writer's Guild meetings.
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