***Words from the Author***
I do not know why I wrote the following passage. It is not based on a dream, but it came from a strange sort of spontaneous inspiration. I hope you enjoy. Before you is the Last Knight.
***End Words from the Author***
I dreamed I rode an old winding road that would take me from one place to another.
It was at a crooked and sickly elm hanging over the path where my eyes were caught.
Under the elm slept a man. Or at least it had been assumed that it was a man asleep.
Under layers of rusted armor set with empty sockets that once held jewels.
Out of the closed visor sprang tufts from an old gnarled white beard.
His chest no longer drew breath that is to say he did not move as I passed.
The only movement was the waving of his rotted tabbard in the wind.
I think it once held markings that told of his once noble station.
I stopped in front of his feet, and dropped down from my saddle.
Holding my reins in a hand, my other prodded his side with my rifle.
He did not move, but there was a whistle as the gasses of death escaped and filled the air.
Flies flew to the winds and maggots crept out of hiding.
I wretched to tell the truth. Never had I seen one who was dead and left to rot.
His shield was strapped across his back and it helped to hold him erect.
His sword lay at his side fallen from his grasp.
I wondered if he had tried to hold off death with his now lost blade.
Looking through his visor I saw black sockets swimming with grubs and worse.
As I began to stand and pull away from the carcass it sprang to life.
His sword hand grabbed at me.
My collar was caught and I was drawn to his plated helm his visor pressed against my cheek.
I felt hot wet blood drip from the wound the point inflicted on my soft skin.
His other hand pulled free the visor and revealed his cracked and rotten flesh.
Gnarled brittle lips curled and broke in defiance as he began to speak.
"Where has nobility gone?" he asked in a horse whisper through brown and crooked teeth.
I awoke at this time to find myself in a panicked sweat.
My lungs grasping for air.
I felt my face and found it was wet.
Crimson stuck to my fingers, but there was no wound to be found.