Blogisode 9: Ari’s experiment

This is part of a series of posts.  To read from the beginning please click here

Ari was the first and only son of Borisgoth.  He had taken a keen interest in his father’s work from a very young age.  His father was glad to share his skill as well.  By the time Ari was seven he was crafting simple tools and shoeing horses.  At twelve he could craft a standard Orisgothian sword as well as need be.  He took great interest in the process of creating these swords.  He was proud of this father’s work and the position his family held with the King.  As a fourteen year old youth his work was beginning to eclipse that of his father’s.  Many of the farmers who came to Borisgoth began to request their orders be made by Ari.  Borisgoth was glad by it.  He could concentrate soley on crafting artisan swords destined for the King’s court.  Because his son was as good as he Borisgoth could produce standard Orisgothian swords at a rate faster than any of his family previous.  Ari was also a skilled swordsman.  His father had many years combat experience and had begun sparring with Ari when he was strong enough to hold a sword.  Since both were blacksmiths each were stout and strong.  By fifteen Ari could easily match many of the greatest soldiers in Orisgothia.  It was at this age he also began taking a keen interest in the science of alloys and experimenting with mixing blistrar and iron in various quantities.  His years passed with frustration; his swords were either too heavy or clumsy to wield or too light and brittle to spar.  It was on this morning, however, that Ari was waiting for a batch to cool that he knew, in his heart of hearts, would work.

The mix had come to him in a dream.  Ari had slept particularly poorly the evening before.  Once he did get to sleep his mind was haunted of dreams – sword combat and metallurgy gone terribly wrong.  After hours of sweaty tossing and turning he suddenly found himself standing before a heated clay pot preparing an alloy mixture.  This was something he had done countless times.  In this dream he loaded two ladles with blistrar pellets and melted them.  Then, moving to a second pot he melted a cube of pure silver.  Then, to his surprise, he poured the blistrar into the liquid silver and stirred.  This mixture was then added to iron which he had heated to a particularly high heat.  Mixing and pouring as usual.  However the moulds that he used seemed to have channels drilled through them.  He watched himself, just after pouring the liquid metal mixture, placing a funnel into the top of one of these channels.  He poured water through the funnel, it bubbled up out of the other channels.

Ari watched as the water dripped from the clay moulding in front of him.  His eyes were fuzzy and red from lack of sleep.  His father had been watching from a distance as well.  Borisgoth had taken an interest in his son’s toying with blistrar alloys.  He had taught his son everything he knew about metal mixing.  Simple as his knowledge was it always astounded him what Ari was able to discover.  He was as anxious as Ari for his latest innovation to work.  Borisgoth watched his son from the hammering iron as he finished a grinding sharp a standard Orisgothian sword.  His son had grown up quickly into a young man.  At 19 he was as good if not better than he was.  He stood slightly taller than most men his age.  His skin was well weathered from exposure to the heat of blacksmithing.  His frame was sturdy and well build.  His arms and shoulders bore the strength of a man who hammered metal.  The high heat of blacksmithing combined with a rigorous combat training regime meant Ari was as quick as he was strong.  His face was framed by his thick brown hair; a few days growth often on his face.  His skin was dark and bore the scars of his trade.  Borisgoth often saw a reflection of him in his youth in Ari.

Borisgoth was a man whose years had aged him.  This long black hair held back by a leather strap was speckled with gray.  His frame was as large as his son’s but showed age.  His skin was darker and more leathery, the heat of the fires having toughened his skin.  His pale blue eyes seemed to stand out and betrayed his age; he was much younger than his body made him appear.  Borisgoth had returned to his anvil when the voice of his son broke his thoughts.

“Father, am I a fool to chase this dream of a better sword?” Ari asked as he looked his father in the eyes.  Borisgoth thought carefully about his answer.  He looked into his son’s eyes and saw a need for reassurance.  They were strong dark eyes with all the intensity of youthful bravery; bravery masking fear.

“After the dream of yours Ari I think it’d have been foolish to dismiss it.”  Borisgoth answered, a slight smile coming to his lips.  He was proud of this boy and loved him dearly.  Ari’s facial expression relaxed and then returned to its previous state of intense concentration.  He returned to pouring water into the clay moulds and monitoring the temperature of the water bubbling out.  Borisgoth continued grinding the last sword he was working on.  He suspected the king had an attack planned.  Usually his orders for new swords increased during this time.  Orders were up significantly and Borisgoth had put in excessive hours to meet the need.  Usually Ari would have helped him with the extra work but he had his heart set on this new mixture.  Borisgoth had considered asking Ari to stop and help him at a couple points during the day but he could see Ari was as hard at work as he was.  Ari even managed to construct a few swords in between his experiments.

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