Kid Beowulf Eddas: The Paladins Tale

PeerPortrait_BLOG
An homage to Kevin Maguire’s famous JLA covers featuring The Peers. Left to right: Turpin, Ogier, Anseis, Berenger, and Oliver (poking his head up in the back).

A new story is in the works and I wanted to share its progress on the blog.  This is another short story from my Kid Beowulf Eddas series and features some of my favorite characters from book two, Kid Beowulf and the Song of Roland, namely: The Peers.

The Peers were Charlemagne’s elite fighting force – similar to King Arthur’s, Knights of the Round Table or, for a more contemporary reference, Marvel’s Avengers.  They helped him defend France against the Saracens, and are featured heavily in the epic poem, The Song of Roland.  In the epic poem there are 12 Peers (or Paladins); in my story we begin with six: Archbishop Turpin, Ogier the Dane, Berenger, Anseis, Oliver, and Roland (Charlemagne is sometimes counted among them too).

PAL_002_BLOG
This page recaps the unfortunate events at Roncevaux.

If you’ve read the second KidB. book or been reading the strip recently on GoComics then you’ve met the Peers already.  The Paladins Tale (the working title until I can think of a better one) is the story of how the Peers were framed, exiled, and imprisoned by Ganelon after their defeat at Roncevaux, when they were ambushed by the Saracens and Charlemagne was gravely wounded.

PAL_006_BLOG
Anseis is trapped on an island prison and all he wants is a smoke from his pipe.

The Peers are a powerful unit so Ganelon decides to separate them and lock them away in four different prisons across France.  The Paladin’s Tale is a prison break story told from the perspective of each Peer – we watch how each one uses his own specific talent or character trait to find a way out of prison.

PAL_011_BLOG
Ogier gets sent to a prison full of inmates he helped put behind bars!

So far it’s been a fun story to write and draw – I like the interplay between the Peers and how even when they are separated their comradeship pulls them through.  Look for the completed story later this year!