Sir Haldorin is a distant relative of Mandorallen's, his third cousin, twice removed. As it is unseemly in Arendia to spill the blood of kinsmen, Sir Haldorin liked to call Mandorallen "a bastard," since there was some temporary irregularity about his birth which still raised questions about his legitimacy.
SIr Haldorin was a swarthy knight in black enamelled armor. Barak found his insults offensive (especially about Barak's title) and Sir Haldorin found himself on the receiving end of a huge punch that swept him from his saddle and gave him a concussion.
"Of Sir Mandorallen the bastard we have all heard," a swarthy knight in black enamelled armor sneered, "but who is this red-bearded ape who so maligns his betters?"
"You're going to take that?" Barak asked Mandorallen.
"It's more or less true," Mandorallen admitted with a pained look, "since there was some temporary irregularity about my birth which still raises questions about my legitimacy. This knight is Sir Haldorin, my third cousin-twice removed. Since it's considered unseemly in Arendia to spill the blood of kinsmen, he thus cheaply gains reputation for boldness by casting the matter in my teeth."
"Stupid custom," Barak grunted. "In Cherek kinsmen kill each other with more enthusiasm than they kill strangers."
"Alas." Mandorallen sighed. "This is not Cherek."
"Would you be offended if I dealt with this?" Barak asked politely.
"Not at all."
Barak moved closer to the swarthy knight. "I am Barak, Earl of Trellheim," he announced in a loud voice, "kinsman to King Anheg of Cherek, and I see that certain nobles in Arendia have even fewer manners than they have brains."
"The Lords of Arendia are not impressed by the self bestowed titles of the pig-sty kingdoms of the north," Sir Haldorin retorted coldly.
"I find your words offensive, friend," Barak said ominously.
"And I find thy ape face and scraggly beard amusing," Sir Haldorin replied.
Barak did not even bother to draw his sword. He swung his huge arm in a wide circle and crashed his fist with stunning force against the side of the swarthy knight's helmet. Sir Haldorin's eyes glazed as he was swept from his saddle, and he made a vast clatter when he struck the ground.
"Would anyone else like to comment about my beard?" Barak demanded.
"Gently, my Lord," Mandorallen advised. He glanced down with a certain satisfaction at the unconscious form of his senseless kinsman twitching in the tall grass. - Queen of Sorcery