A warrior needs a mantle to protect him from danger.
To protect his body and his heart from lethal attacks.
The warrior must be strong, proud, and skillful.
He knows he has the power to triumph over all of his enemies.
He knows he has the will to overcome any challenge on the battlefield.
Here is one such battler.
His never ending dream was to be the strongest in the land.
A warrior's quest for strength is never over.
When a warrior ceases to hone his skills and develop his power, he succumbs to the inevitable sting of death.
So he trains day in and day out to grow faster, stronger, smarter.
And he cleans and tends to every armament he has to assure his protection in battle.
His mantle, his gloves, his helmet, and every concerted piece work together as his allies to lead him to the light of a new day.
But one day... he decides to discard his protections.
He begins to think that armor is nothing special to a true warrior who has power of his own.
After all, pieces of it break off in almost every bout, forcing it to be replaced time and time again like torn pieces of parchment.
Why hold on to such cumbersome protection that is depended upon by the weak and only serves to slow down the strong.
And he grows like never before into a mighty warrior, unparalleled in ability, striking terror into all who oppose him.
So he begins to seek strength with no bastion save for his own power.
And yet, for every battle, he leaves with wounds.
Injuries of no consequence to a warrior such as himself, too small to stall his crusade.
And day after day he battles on thinking of nothing other than his next conquest and his further ascent up the ladder of dynamism among warriors of renown.
However, for each victory, he finds himself growing weaker.
His body becomes ever slower, every swing of his blade more sluggish than the next.
His mind becomes consumed in a creeping haze.
And every scar he acquires through the heat of discord that adorns his body like medals of honor become slower to heal.
And every gash and injury brings a lasting pain that never ceases from wounds that never heal.
The man who had once risen toward the greatest heights of valor and fortitude soon became no more.
Every fight that once brought him closer to his greatest desires now served to blow him further away aloft an unstoppable gale.
A warrior knows he is destined to die in war.
He fight on and on through his last days, with every last visage of his strength.
Until one day he decides to take his fate into his own hands.
To end his dishonorable dissent into the dark depths of frailty and fragility that men such as he would rather dance with death sooner than to meet the shame of it and face the certain demise of their soul and spirit.
In his final hour he faces the grandest soldier of them all, known to the world as being the indomitable man without equal on this earth.
With the last of his will and strength he trades blows with the man who holds the greatest title of them all, the seat which he had fought all his life to reach.
But the warrior would not sit in the throne as the king of bloodied men.
He loses to the one and true proprietor of the warrior’s aspirations.
And as he takes his final breaths upon the cold earth, the man says, “If you had only worn an armor perhaps I would have been the one to see death today. A man can be strong in his own right, but a great warrior surrounds himself in a mantle he can trust with his life.”
And so the great warrior closes his eyes for the last time as he rests at the end of the path to promised weakness….