Lowly vassals of The Crowne, today’s story ist an interview about sustainable dragon slaying with renowned Green Knight Sir H’Roderick Fustian. If thou dost enjoy Ye Olde Tyme News, rememberest to subscribe, sharest it with thine other peasant friends, and followest His Majesty on Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook @yeoldetymenews.
Dragon slaying: ‘tis one of the Kingdom’s most vaunted pastimes. There be nary a knight whomst boasts not about his slaying expeditions as amongst the fynest moments of his noble lyfe.
And rightfully so.
But doth the practice of mercilessly seeking out all dragons and dragon-like species and slaying them then parading their decapitated skulls through the city streets in triumph have some unintended ethical and environmental impacts?
We interviewed Green Knight Sir H’Roderick Fustian of the Society for the Ethical Slaying of Dragons and Other Foul Beasts of the Realm to talk about such issues, and how all knights should adopt more sustainable dragon slaying practices.
Ye Olde Tyme News: Sir H’Roderick, thank ye for joining us. Cannest thou tell us a little bit about thyself?
Sir H’Roderick: Yea, thank ye for having me. I am Sir H’Roderick Fustian from the Province of Ganlandia, Land of a Thousand Parapets, Jewel of the Mighty Rumpback Mountains, Bane of the Dark Armies of the Myrhhopt Dürg. I am co-founder of the Society for the Ethical Slaying of Dragons and Other Foul Beasts of the Realm, and also I like cats.
According to thy Society, not only do current slaying techniques cause unnecessary pain to their 70-foot-tall fire-breathing victims, but unsustainable questing practices may lead to the extinction of the entire dragon species in as little as 600 years. Whatso inspired thee to lead such a cause?
Well, I cometh from a long line of valiant knights, knights who feared neither man nor beast. Knights with hearts of gold and fists of iron. And whilst I hath slain many a dragon in my day and shall continue to do so smartly, I came to the realization that our current rate of dragon slaying shall lead the entire species to extinction.
This, of course, is a problem for knights, because then no one wouldst be able to slay dragons anymore.
But of course. If we were to run out of dragons, whatso wouldst a valiant knight such as mineself do to win glory?
Some of thy detractors say there are other exploits knights shouldst focus on instead of spending all their tyme slaying dragons, such as helping the poor.
The poor?! There be no glory in that! Nay! Howe’er, the poor are very useful to use as bait when flushing a dragon out of its cave. So I do support helping train the poor for that purpose, and the Society hath a special program for helping peasants land roles as Poor Decoys.
In thy research on the plight of the dragon species, what hast thou found to have the largest negative impact on their population?
The youth! Young knights with their new technologies and lack of respect for the olde ways. They lay out their sheep decoys and use their 60 foot anti-dragon crossbows to kill the beasts by the dozen. There’s no honour in it. Dragons are pulled from their caverns and put in chains. They’re brought to the cities to be killed in tournaments for show like they’re mere Drogmogdians.
That sounds awful. And by Drogmogdians, thou art referring to people from the Province of Drogmogdia?
Well, I’d hardly give them the epithet of “people.” But yea. Such tournaments, while agonizing for the Drogmogdians, are quite entertaining. But subjecting dragons to such horrors is a stain upon our honour.
Many defenders of current dragon slaying practices argue that hunting dragons is vital for the economy, as they protect countless villages and herds of sheep from being burned to ash in an inferno of dragon fire. What say thee to that?
Just look at the numbers. Less than 2 villages per year are torched by dragons, yet we spend 20 percent of the Royal Budget on dragon slaying, whereas 21 villages per year are decimated by plague, and yet practicing medicine is still illegal. Barbarian raiders, ox stampedes, falling into bogs. All of these things kill more people per year than dragons, and yet they don’t get a fraction of the government funding. The industry is oversaturated, and the only way to stay competitive is to slay more, ever more.
Falling-Into-Bog Prevention is a historically underfunded sector. What approach is thy group taking to promote the ethical slaying of dragons?
We require all members to swear a blood oath that any dragons they slay shall be killed honourably, by the blade of a broadsword, the same way we’d vanquish any respectable human knight. And we only slay when necessary. Never for sport, except on holidays and weekends in autumn. And on Midsommer’s Eve. Fyne sporting dragon hunting to be had on Midsommer’s Eve. Also, if the knight doing the slaying ist super rich, we generally let the wealthy do whatsoever they want.
Cannest thou give an example of what ist considered a “necessary” occasion when dragon slaying would be allowed?
Ah, the usual. Obtaining a hidden treasure from the bowels of a curséd mountain lair, rescuing a virgin princess from captivity, avenging the loss of thy liege lord’s favourite horse after a dragon plucked it from the stables. There’s plenty of legitimate reasons for slaying dragons when done responsibly.
How many virgin princesses are taken captive by dragons each year? I wouldn’t think there’d be very many.
72, on average. I saved 3 mineself just this past fortnight.
Wow, 72? I didn’t even realize there were that many princesses in the entire Kingdom.
Clearly there’s a lot of things thou dost not know.
I see thou art wearing a suit of armour made from dragon scales.
Ah, yes, mine dragonskin. ‘Tis impenetrable, but I assure thee no dragon was slain for this suit of armour. I merely performed a dragoncision and made mine armour from the discarded foreskin.
That armour is made from a dragon’s foreskin?
Indeed it is. The scales of the foreskin are just as impenetrable as the armour from any other part of the body. So if ‘tis mine armour’s strength thou worries about, I assure thee it is perfectly durable.
Okay, so slaying a dragon to use their scales to craft an impenetrable suit of armour would no longer be acceptable, but there are workarounds. What about crossing a sacred valley that’s being guarded by a forest wyvern?
If the object of the quest be an honourable one, then I suppose that would be allowed, too. Although we’d prefer you attempt to bargain with the wyvern to negotiate safe passage before resorting to violence.
So, to return to our previous conversation, and sorry if I’m coming off as a bit uncouth, but what’s the big deal if all the dragons die, anyway? I mean, they have been the sworn enemies of mankind for centuries.
What then would the Kingdom’s knights do, if all of the dragon’s were killed?! There’s not nearly enough duels or jousts for all of us to win glory in. Where then are we to win glory? Can one imagine a Realm without knights winning glory? I cannot.
I just thought, maybe get a job...
A job? Ha!
Yea, or maybe get into farming, or something.
Farming? Men of noble blood working the earth like mere yeomen, or peasants? A man canst be put to the sword for e’en implying such nonsense. Nay, slaying dragons is the domain of knights. And we must do e’erything in our power to ensure it remains so for centuries to come.
For our those that want to learn more or support thy cause, what can they do?
For one thing, start slaying dragons more ethically. Swear the blood oath and join our group. If one would like to donate a form of currency to the cause, one could send a carrier crow with a satchel of golden coin to our redoubt. It’s located on the leeward cliffs of Mount Hruntbokr, about 20 furlongs starboard of the Cave of Solemnity.
Seems kind of hard to find. Is there an address associated with that redoubt?
It’s the only redoubt on the leeward cliffs. The crow will find it.
Thank ye, Sir H’Roderick Fustian. God save The King.
May His reign be Blesséd and Eternal.
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