Vanya and the Green Knight
Holdwyf un Guirmean
Knight of Sheafollow, Hero of Branwail
He is bare headed atop, but a silver knights-tail comes from something like a monk’s crown. His eyes are pale hazel, but it is hard to catch the colour for the sparkle of them behind his spectacles. He does not fear to wear them. But his body was still hale, five-and-fifty years and still able to best many men in tourney should he care to, or to bear full arms and armour. When he was in his thirties he rode the Wall with Roland Ardrain of Worthing Keep, and impressed the young knight greatly. They’ve kept up correspondence in the twenty years since.
He fought in the Battle of Branwail at The Wall.
A tale from an old knight who was his friend, he took the arm from the Mountain Giant captain before he could blow on a great horn. It is just in a study on a side table, with other collected knick-knacks.
Aneirin’s song of him
“Frost for beard on horse and man
ageing neath their clouded breath
like statues among stones waiting
then stones rise up to lead the van
and horn is lifted hauling breath
the ice shatters with their charging
ahead of all the other men
holwyfs sword is cleaving
his cry a banner white streaming
and the horn is silent falling”
The cards were round, comprising 9 suits that each had 13 cards. Each was crafted from paper that had been coated in clear lacquers and leafing, then fitted at the edges with decorative frames. Rings, Scepters, Jewels, and Leaves were ruled by Queens, Youths, Knights and Squires. Swords, Cups, Coins, and Beasts were ruled by Kings, Maidens, Knights and their serving Squires. The last suit, which Holdwyf named, “Celestials”, was governed by the faces of the River, Maiden, Youth and a Guardian Knight. This last suit, covered in stars and constellations, painted with deep skies of lapis and pieces of precious stone cut thin as fish scales, was the enigma of the deck. Oftentimes they sorted it out and set it aside before play.
The old knight always showed a preference to keeping the suit of leaves in his control, and disliked the cups.