The Lay of Moldred
The Story of the so-called "black knight" in two chapters.
"Take this helmet, my son. And never take it off. Let nobody see your face"
Morgan Le Fay.
Disclaimer: I don´t own Fate stay night. Parts of Type-Moon´s "Character Concept" Of Mordred were used in this story.
Chapter I: Morana
There she was. She wasn´t born. She was made. A magical circuit surrounded by flesh and bones. Magecraft with a name. And her name was Morana Pendragon, the clone and daughter of Arturia Pendragon. Morgan, the ever-jealous sister saw in the stars that if her half-sister had a son, that son would bring her downfall... so she began to plot.
Morana wasn´t born of love , she wasn´t born of care. She was made out of hate. But the destiny had a different path for her in the end.
Morgan did not hate her sister because of her rank, nor her kingdom.
The little witch had resentment towards the King because Arturia had gone to Camelot and left her all alone. Alone as she had been ever since. Alone with the cold. Alone in the dark. Alone with a cursed blood that made her do horribles things that banished her from society. Alone. Always Alone.
That´s why when Morana opened her eyes, an unexpected light opened to the witch, shining on the darkness. The homunculus wasn´t only her daughter, it was exactly like her sister, and even more, she provided the dark witch with company. In the end, both of them were too alike. Two lonely and cold hearts trying to warmth each other. It was brief but both of them where happy.
Morana lived with her mother for a handful of years at the castle, mostly running to the forest to find new pets to adopt. She may had the face and body of her father, but she inherited all the traits and fears of her mother. The little red-eyed girl never wanted to be alone. Alone in that cold castle that she called home. Alone with the kind woman that turned into a beast when she wasn´t around. Alone with no other human to talk to.
Eventually the homunculues Morana matured. Thanks to an accelerated-aging field that surrounded the castle. That field allowed Morana to have the body of a 12-years old girl, even if she only had 4. That same field turned her pets into old-shadowy selves within a year or less: at the age of 4 Morana was too well-acustomed to dead.
The original plan was to enter Camelot with that daughter, and proclame the adultery of the king at the kingdom´s gates. Because by Camelot´s law adultery was penalized by dead, even for the king.
But now Morgan couldn´t bear parting with the only star in her life. As a last resort, she tried to fool herself "i can´t let her go without training, she would die."... and thus, Morana´s training as a Knight began.
She was a great student and progressed fast. Mostly because her inner magical core, the ultimate magical circuit that every first-class homunculus has. Once she saw any technique she would duplicate it. Flawlessly. Therefore no technique would get past her defenses twice. In just one year she learned everything a Knight should learn: Combat, strategy, etiquette, chivalry code. Even act like a man. The little red-eyed lady became the promising red-eyed knight. Finally Morgan caved in and that day the proud mother gave her son a bloody-red armor with the horned helmet, with a teary goodbye and a final warning:
-"Take this helmet, my son. And never take it off. Let nobody see your face."
The Knight nodded and armed herself with a grin. With the body of a 17 years-old she was at her prime. With a mind of a 5 years-old she was doomed. Morgan still didn´t want to let her go. But she noticed that ,with each passing day, her daughter was turning more and more like her mother. Paranoic, harsh, always afraid.
As someone who was doomed with the shadows she didn´t want that fate for her daughter.
In a vane hope, and with her original plan long forgotten. She sent her daughter to her father not to destroy Arturia, but to protect Morana. All the lonely witch could give her to keep her safe from being discovered and burned as a heressy was a warning. And an protective armor, tainted with the blood of her departed pets: her only friends within the castle walls.
So the Knight Morana departed. Her cold and scared heart began to melt as she knew new people, new places, new havens. Not before long she began to pity her mother, forgotten and rotting in her cold chambers. However the core of her heart was still of ice and still frozen.
Finally she reached Camelot in a golden morning. The gray walls seemed golden under the sun light. The white and blue flag in the highest tower of the castle. The strong winds in the grass. And above all the happy faces of the people. People without fear. People secure. That morning Morana found a new home. That morning Morana found a new hope. And her heart unfroze completely.
She lived in the town for a while. Her knowledge of herbs gained her enough to live as a apotecary. The people was kind and she was happy. But she still followed her mother´s advice: she never took her helmet out. She didn´t know why, but she instictively followed it nonetheless. She became important in Camelot. And her fame as a herbalist and combatant grew each day.
And so the day came, the day when the King´s right hand visited her following the rumor about the "herbal Knight". The first impression of Sir Lancelot was that he was a straightforward person. One who loves a protects his friends and respects his foes. All that you wanted in a knight: Fair, just and above all brave. But deep inside of him Morana felt a black spot. She had to focus hardly in his eyes to see it. Something very small but nonetheless there. A little black shadow staining the Kingdom´s White knight. She wanted to help him and greeted him. When he called her to the Knight´s tryouts she accepted inmediatly.
In the few days that followed she carefully monitored the people of the kingdom. And felt the same black dots here and there. Her eyes, accustomed to the apparent happiness, had missed that. That darkness that made her remember her mother somehow. Doubt, tension, fear. She quickly decided to take away that blackness out of HER golden kingdom. And with that in mind she pledged herself with the king to help him, since she knew about his fame of good and just. The knight´s tryouts were a piece of cake, as someone which her magical power and upbringing would have felt.
She was about to swear her newly-bought sword to the king when she finally saw him.
For a moment she couldn´t believe her eyes. He was exactly like her, albeit he seemed a bit younger. The same factions, the same hair-type, even the same lonely aura she had when she was with her mom. However he was different, too. His hair was golden while hers was pale-yellow and his eyes were Emerald-green while hers were Crimson Red. But above all, she sensed the cold heart she had and that melted months ago. She sensed his eyes focused not in the present, but in a distant hope. A fake, unreachable hope. And she sensed the same darkness that polluted the kingdom, even thickier than anywhere else.
It seemed that the more scared person in the kingdom was the king himself
That night she cried, she cried for her father. As she knew he was when she saw him. Alone and desperate just like her mother. Both rotting on their thrones. Both too proud to ask for help. One putting all her hopes in being forgotten. The other putting all his hopes in building a kingdom none can forget.
She decided to go back with her mother and ask questions. Why didnt she knew her father was so close?. Why aren´t her mother with him, when they are so lonely ? and above all: Why can´t Morana say her true name to her father?.
That night Morgan looked at her daughter for the first time with hateful eyes. It was clear that her daughter preferred her father over her. As if she had the fault for being banished. Her reaction was natural, but not counscious. She hated being displaced by Arturia, yet again. She hated her weak mother and her plotting father. She hated her destiny as a black witch. But above all she hated herself for throwing her precious daughter to her destruction. Because she saw the blackness in Morana´s heart, as Morana saw it on her father. Morana had hope, and now she is scared of losing it.
As a final and desperate attempt to save her daughter she played the role of severe mother:
-" You can do whatever you want with him. But know this, my son. Should you reveal yourself to him, you wont be acknowledged."
Then, reverting to the small and scared witch she is:
-"There are other kingdoms, other kings"
finally, almost like a plea: "and you can always come back here."
But that wasn´t enough for the Knight now. As someone who has seen the golden light, she didn´t want to renounce to it. She didn´t know that for shadows to exist, lights are necessary. She decided to reveal herself to her father.
In her final attempt to save Her, Morgan Le Fay just doomed her son.
That night, the "herbal Knight" as she has been called until now revealed herself to her father, and him alone.
Arturia frowned a bit at the identical face with crimson eyes before of her. But her real disgust came from those deep and hopefull eyes. With a solemn voice she asked:
-"What is your reason to do this?."
The words where cold, emotionless. Morana tembled a bit but restrained herself.
-"To be acknowledged, father. To be your heir and help you clean this kingdom so it can be golden forever."
Morana played her hand, her faith and her entire heart with those words. Arturia felt it. And she felt anger. Because she saw herself before she took Caliburn out of the stone. All hope, no brains. As she calls herself now.
-"Hmph. Certainly you are my son. But as a heir you are unfit."
Morana was so surprised that stood up and looked at her king in disbelief, breaking all protocols.
-"But father you can´t burden yourself with the entire kingdom."
That was a bad selection of words. She attacked her father´s core beliefs without knowing it. Touched in her deepest wish, Arturia raised from the throne.
-"I will do what the king must do. I already told you. You are unfit to rule."
Morana finally broke. Now she understood why her father were called "A necesary Evil". A just, but cold king.
With that Morana turned and left. She was too far away from her father when he said: "Dont do it, Morana."
As she was about to left the throne room, she faced her father a last time.
-"The next time, Father. You will acknowledge me. I will make sure of that."
And left with a smile. Because Morana, behind that cold facade her father had, could sense a small girl trying to fix a problem too big for her on her own, and Morana wouldn´t left her father alone, never.
Back in the chamber, Arturia´s legs gave and she felt to the throne. Because, behind that fair facade her son had, Arturia could sense a desperate plea for attention. She mumbled for herself.
-"Don´t put all your hopes on me, son. Dont burden me anymore... please."
From that night onwards the "herbal knight" became Sir Mordred. And fought savagely for her king, trying to earn her acknowledgement.