Reinauld sought to carry the cross, to hold it aloft and provide guidance and comfort to the men that marched behind him. The weight of it was ever pressing, and more so following their route. He was not the standard bearer, that man had fallen in the battle. Reinauld took it up because he could not let Christ’s followers fall to the demon hordes.
His push for a retreat had been fought from within. Others saying that martyrdom was the only path for them now. To let the devil’s minions overwhelm them was to fall from god’s grace. To Reinauld those were the words of doomsayers and madmen. To give in now just the sake of glory or honor was an antiquated notion that would result in little beyond wasted blood.
No, Reinauld knew they had to retreat, even if it meant a new trial for the men. Their only escape across the dragon dunes to the west. It would be a hard march, one that did little to help their morale. But it, like the battle before it were a test, of that Reinauld was sure.
Or he had been. Driving the men on, men whom he now thought of as his for he’d taken on the responsibility of guiding them to safety was a weight greater than the cross he bore. Even the armor which felt fused to his skin under the desert sun was lighter than the duty he owed the men behind him.
Today’s art is courtesy of Jama Jurabaev from London, United Kingdom.