Wilfred was no knight in shining armour. He was in fact a slightly rusty page, but he was also astute. No not mustelid, but a clever and intuitive observer of the things around him.
When the young Wilfred arrived at the border on donkey-back, he was greeted by several raised eyebrows from the Hanonian guards.
“And what exactly are you after?” a overly self-important officer challenged.
“I have come to take care of your lizard problem,” Wilfred announced.
The officer turned and translated the comment, and it was greeted with a chorus of dismissive laughter.
“Very well,” the border official said. He then directed Wilfred to make his mark in the log book. Wilfred was then handed a map, and a sheet of paper with a set of directions written in Kingdom-tongue, Ralulee, and Nordlandish.
“And where will I go to collect my reward?” Wilfred asked.
The officer sneered and then said, “Why of course. An oversight I assure you.” The official then handed Wilfred another set of directions.
With the formalities accomplished, the rusty page turned his donkey towards the indicated destination.
What struck Wilfred as odd was that the road he was instructed to follow seemed very well travelled, with a marauding dragon at large and all. But he followed the directions until nightfall and made camp a little way off the road in a pine glade. He had expended his meagre supply of tinder on the long journey to Hanon. After several failed attempts to start a fire, he wrapped himself in his cloak and fell asleep.
He was awakened in the small hours by what sounded like a large band of men travelling the road below him, but it being a moonless night he dismissed it as a dream and fell back into a deep slumber.
The next morning, he inadvertently took out the wrong map and began to try to find his way to the dragon’s grotto. In so doing he became desperately lost. It was several hours later that he noticed fresh signs of human activity in the wood. As he crested a small rise, he saw the road that he had lost track of, and a huge cave with smoke emanating from it. But what caught his attention most of all was the party of two dozen Hanonian soldiers lying in ambush with their eyes focused on the road.