Nicolas saw from behind his defences the onward wave of Englishmen stutter, before regaining its forward momentum up the grassy glacis…
Paris, October 1754
Flexing his rapier against the gloved thumb of his left hand, twenty-two-year old Nicolas de Kérallain faced his accuser. The blade arced in response, glinting in the early morning sunlight. With the slippery dew like scattered diamonds on the grass and with only the calls of the earliest blackbirds to distract him, he held his sword forward in front of him at a slight upward angle. In a similar pose, his taller adversary Monsieur de Forgon glared three yards away in a white shirt which billowed at the cuffs.
Too late now for anything other than first blood,‘En garde,’ challenged the proud and headstrong Nicolas without a tremor or any hint of the turmoil in his mind. He advanced and thrust his steel blade towards the body of the older man who nimbly stepped back and to the side. Nicolas’ blade pierced thin air. In reply, de Forgon thrust his thin shaft of steel at Nicolas who fell back unbalanced, but despite almost falling over, he managed to parry the attack.
‘The young man is unsteady on his feet,’ said de Forgon mockingly. Continue reading “The Adventures of Nicolas de Kérallain”