During the twelfth century, a period that was called the Middle Ages of Europe, there lived a noble called Renault. He owned many lands and was among the wealthiest in the Kingdom of France. Renault had true devotion for God and showed great interest in Church services and sacraments. It was a period during which the Church and the government ruled together and played an integral part in the feudal system. Renault visited the local church every weekend to listen to the spiritual instructions and preaches of Thomas, the priest. In addition, he had always given tithe to the church as a part of his contribution. He was a strict disciplinarian and also expected the same from his family. He had strong inclination towards the classes and system.
Renault had a son named Lycon; he was a knight, who served King Charles V. Lycon was a handsome, young man who was well known in his country for the heroic battles that he fought. His training to become a knight began when he was just seven years old. For the first seven years of his training, he was a page learning skills such as fencing and hunting. Then at the age of 14, Lycon became a squire. During the next seven years he assisted knights on the castle and on the battlefield. He took active part in the crusades when the enemy had taken siege of some of the border areas. Though Lycon grew up with the nobles and the lords, his character was unlike the other nobles. He never looked down upon the peasants who worked in his manor; he always treated them kindly. In fact, he had secret admiration for Timothy, one of the peasants for his life approach in true gothic style.
Owing to the characteristics of knights, he believed in the code of chivalry and was courteous towards women, and served the king loyally. Once when Lycon passed through the King’s palace to visit the famous Bourges Cathedral that was known for its Romanesque architecture, he saw many peasants, working on the church lands. As he was passing by, he noticed a young lady drawing water for the others. She was the fairest lady Lycon had ever seen in his life. At once he fell for her beauty. He asked Martin, one of the peasants who was working there, to find out who she was. He told her that her name was Odelina, the daughter of a poor peasant called Gascot. Though Lycon wanted to talk to Odelina at once, he could not as he was accompanied by his father’s friend Paule Rouz. Rouz was also a noble and he had an intention of giving his daughter in marriage to Lycon. But Lycon had no admiration for either Rouz or his daughter.
After a few days when Lycon was overseeing the fiefs of Herbert the vassal, he saw Odelina working on the fields. Immediately, he went up to her and spoke with her. He was surprised to know that she already knew him and that she had great admiration for his bravery and loyalty to the country. Lycon liked Odelina for her innocence and child like speech. Though she was the daughter of a peasant, he knew that she was the love of his life. Lycon expressed his love to Odelina and wished to marry her. As Odelina held Lycon in high esteem, she too accepted his proposal.
As days passed by, both of them grew fonder of each other. Very often Lycon visited Odelina at the places where she worked. One day, he took her on his horse near the mountain side. Three townsmen: Lucas, Clarin, and Felippe who noticed Lycon and Odelina went up to Renault and told him about what they saw. Renault became furious and called for Lycon at once. When Lycon told his father about how deeply he loved Odelina, he simply refused to accept it. Renault told his son that neither he nor the parish would accept such a thing. He told him that the clergy would not approve marriages between a noble and a peasant. But Lycon overwhelmed with his love for Odelina while at the same time respecting his father found that his condition…