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Of the battle at Walsh’s gate

Steve Lechner | Monday, April 6, 2009

Sing, O Muse, of the rage of Sorin, of the otter-band, valorous, justice-loving, yet fated to die. Sing of the rage that cost the College so many good otters and sent so many vital, hearty souls down to the dreary House of Death.

Tell, O Muse, of this dorm of many devices, that wandered many ways after it had waged war upon the Amazon’s nation.

Nigh on seven days ago it were that they sprang to arms ‘gainst the terror that invades our lands. Though some warned them of the dangers they tempted, yet laugh did they at such wisdom in counsel.

But what has conspired since they set out? Is blood yet spilt? Or does the otter-band still sit comfortably in its tower of jasper and adamant feasting upon clams and mead? Did their words last Monday, then filled with justified rage, merely hide shivering spines of yellow?

Nea, I tell ye! Aloft I have spied them, not swimming in glee as they did of old in ages of peace, but with spear in paw and helm on head crying great cries of war!

For swiftly did their might flash upon the enemy, even as the hammer of Thor sparkles in the twilight of yet greater storms, and as unforgiving as Odin’s rune-spear will be their judgment once it finds accomplishment. I tell ye of an epic battle, the Battle at Walsh’s Gate!

Ere it were midnight of the 2nd of April in the year of our Lord MMIX, the troops assembled in the Otter College. Together they marched to feast upon red meat off the bone, as many a goodman and goodwoman witnessed at the great mead-hall of LaFortune. They sang proudly as they marched, knowing well that some would not return.

After feasting to hearts content, the warriors strove in ordered file with hands raised in silent rage towards the fortress of the W.I.L.D. which towered even as do the battlements of Helheim. Together they stood, paws at the ready, as the enemy stirred in its vile keep.

One otter of princely stock, name of Beans the Menace, strode boldly into the den so as to trade words with the W.I.L.D.’s leader and thus come to reasonable terms with little bloodshed. However, no such sanity entertains the cruel halls of the W.I.L.D., rather they refused him as they would a spineless fop.

Even as the bold emissary spoke words kindlier than such enemies deserve, those outside the fortress were overtaken by a devilry new to the horizons of this land. Suddenly, from the tower were flung boulders of brimstone, fiery with dragon’s flame! No mortal hands threw these stones of fury-rather demon hands, for not as rocks did they fall to the ground, but as rockets bursting in dragon’s blood upon spear, helm, and shield.

Many a good otter lay dead after the first volley, treacherous as adder’s venom. Peace the otters still sought before blood, but blood was then forced upon them. But Odin strengthened the Sorin shields to withstand the dragon fire the W.I.L.D. threw upon them, and many an otter-flung spear felled the enemy snakes who hoped to rid this land of liberty. After hours of war-wrought battle, the otters had accomplished their mission -they had laid their trap, surnamed the DDDWCS, which will come into effect at approximately 5 p.m. this Tuesday – and they returned then to their glorious College to burry their courageous dead. The numbers of slain in the fray are still unknown, but the most learned of sources report VII (seven) otters to have joined the halls of Valhalla – Beans the Menace among them for the villains tore him limb from limb within their dark chambers – while as many as DIIIL (547) of the W.I.L.D. perished in flame and curses.

We must not mourn these fallen otters, for they died not in vain as beggars, but for liberty as warriors. Muses and men alike shall forever remember the otters’ great deeds at the Battle at Walsh’s Gate, even as is remembered the shining sun, hidden as it is behind South Bend’s overcast skies.

Thus it is written in the Book of the Otter, Volume CXX, Chapter IX.

Steve Lechner is a sophomore majoring in philosophy. He can be contacted at slechner@nd.edu

The views expressed in this column are those of the author and not

necessarily those of The Observer.