The Warrior Code

A warrior tells a fellow traveller his code.
Reading time: 4 minutes.

The Warrior Code xtalesnet Suraj Singh Sisodia beastboysuraj

The winds were strong outside this wooden shack of a tavern half covered in snow in the middle of nowhere. Those few people in it were trying to find warmth and refuge in the arms of good old moonshine. The storm was raging outside like a snow breathing dragon. It would not take moments to kill a fully grown man out there. And yet, there was a knock on the door.

The owner opened the door to introduce this huge man covered in fur and reintroduce the cold chilly killer winds. Everyone shuddered and hollered at the owner to shut the damn door. The huge man shook the snow off his shoulders and walked to the bar. The owner put a glassful in front of him, which he gulped down in a single go and asked for a refill. The owner complied and went off to serve others. The man then took off the fur coat to reveal a long heavy sword tied to his waist, resting in its sheath.

The sword of this warrior grabbed everyone's attention. But no one dared to come to strike a conversation except for one fellow. He was also covered in fur, but he hadn't taken it off. He walked next to our warrior and waited for him to make eye contact. The warrior gave this man a nod as a silent greeting, to which the man replied by raising his cup.

“Long journey?” the man asked the warrior.

“The longest.”

“Where does it end?”

“The valley of the magical flowers.”

The man laughed inaudibly. “There’s no such place,” he said.

“I believe there is, and I will find it.”

“In this storm? You will find death before you find any flowers.”

“I do not fear death.”

“You don’t say,” the man mocked him. He then looked at the sword. “Are you any good with that thing?”

“I believe so. Yes.”

“Well, can you demonstrate? Entertain us all a little?”

“No, I apologise. It’s against our warrior code to un-sheath the sword unnecessarily.”

“Your code?”

The warrior had been answering the man without looking at him, but this time, he turned his face towards him and said, "Yes. It's a set of principles that anyone who wields a weapon has to abide by."

“Then, perhaps you can tell us this code. We all have been tamped up in this wooden shack for a looong time. Some form of entertainment, it will be.”

“Okay, I’ll be honoured.”

Thus, the warrior began to tell his code.

“The ancient warrior code is a sacred text, and it begins with the last rule.”

“What?” someone asked.

"Yes, the last rule is stated first. It's a reminder that reminds us who we are; a warrior. It states, ‘You are a warrior; you might have to kill. You should always be ready to do it and should never want it.’”

Everyone in the tavern was in awe; they exchanged looks as the warrior continued.

“The first rule of the warrior code is ‘Take pride in everything you do.’ That is why I’m proud to share my teachings with you.”

No one spoke this time; the warrior had their attention.

“The second rule is ‘Never take an innocent’s life.’

“The third rule says ‘Evade the fight as long as you can, but when you can no longer evade it, then fight for your life.’

“The next rule says 'Never stand to injustice.’

The warrior went on for hours, yet no one stopped him. They were all intrigued by this code of conduct. They have never heard of anything like it. The warrior also mentioned some of the great teachers of their clan, such as Miyamoto Musashi, who was supposedly the best warrior. Every generation of warriors learned from him.

“The next rule says, ‘Have absolute control over all of your senses.’”

“What does that mean?” someone asked.

“It means,” the warrior replied as if nothing had happened. “You should be in control of your senses and not the other way around.”

“A warrior is undeniably skillful. The next rule says 'a warrior should never demonstrate his skills just for entertainment.’ However, there’s a slight modification to this rule.” The warrior smiled and winked this time. No one could believe their eyes. “Anything for children.” Everyone smiled with him this time.

The warrior went on; he took a few more names of the great warriors of the past, such as Diarmuid Ua Duibhne. No one had ever heard his name. The warrior narrated all the great things he had accomplished. Everyone gaped at him as he painted a word picture of what it was like to stand before a great warrior such as him. They were all regular folks and had no idea about the great army or any code of warrior clan or anything like it.

But some elements disliked the warrior just because it was in their habit. They started to trouble him.

“Well, you said a warrior should never seek luxury, yet you are on a search for this valley of magical flowers. You are nothing but a fraud!”

Their supporters started growling. They wanted to throw him out, but the warrior stayed calm. He did not even flinch, but he did explain himself. "It's not for me," he said calmly. "It's for my deceased wife.”

The tavern fell silent. No one spoke a word, but as some people are imbeciles, they rose and cursed him. The warrior silently stood up and started to leave. When these ill elements of the society didn't see their way, they charged towards him. The warrior did not even waiver; he simply moved aside and let these men bump into walls and things. Someone tried to reach for his sword when the warrior was at the door. That's when he grabbed this man's wrist and twisted it full circle. The man screamed in pain.

“The second to last rule is regarding the display of power,” the warrior said as he let go of the man and put his fur coat back on. “It states, “Never do it more than it's required.”

He then stared deep into this man's eyes and said, "And once again, the last rule. You should always be ready to do it but should never want it."

The man shivered, not because of the snowstorm but the words, the mere tone with which they were said.

The warrior then left through the door out into the storm, and everyone just kept staring at each other.


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