Aye, I give you my oath. Your enemies are my enemies. Is that good enough?
Likes: Ale, strenuous labor, time to himself, books, honesty, dogs, hunting, forests.
Dislikes: Pettiness, liars, laziness, potato and gruel soup, cats, huge open spaces, boats.
Fears: Being the last of his line, debtors, an unsung death.
Skills/Talents: Not the most able swordsman, Ulfred prefers the heavy woodsman's axe. Brute strength and an almost animal-like cunning carry him through battle. He is not a celebrated field commander or accomplished general, but is well known for his dependability and common sense.
Weaknesses: Ulfred has only a passing association with court politics. He is not a gifted orator, unless speaking to the commons, and he could not carry a tune without accompaniment to save his life. His etiquette relies on humility, he often uses the wrong silverware and chews loudly.
General Personality: Ulfred is a man given to contemplation, and many think him slow. He always backs the honorable path and that probably has something to do with him being destitute. Some men help ladies from carts or recite popular sonnets to woo maidens, considering themselves the height of chivalry. Ulfred is more concerned with being a good man and many think him rude or even unchivalrous. The Mongrel Knight's vice is envy. He envies the lords and landed knights the ease with which they have obtained their position, status, and fiefdoms.
Ulfred wears tarnished chain mail with a stained tabard depicting his charge, a slavering dog. His shield matches with a sable charge on a checkered maroon field. He wears his grandfather's sword at his side, the blade is pitted and scarred with a few rust stains. Across his back is an axe with a sharp edge opposite a heavy and blunt counterweight which can be used like a hammer. His horse Uncle, a temperamental and large roan gelding.
Many years ago, on the border of the Dornish marches, a child was born to a young maiden of no particular pedigree. She named the boy Ulfred after his grandfather. The father of the child, an old and crotchety man whose father had earned the fiefdom over which the old man presided, did not believe they boy to be his but as he had no heir and accepted the child as his own. The man he suspected of being the father was sent away with the child's adulterous mother.
Ulfred Borander was raised in his father's modest hall to work hard right alongside his subjects. When he was eleven years old the nearby river, the source of survival for the farmers, flooded. Ulfred and all the other boys dug deep trenches on either side of the flowing river so that now when the river floods every year the trenches fill up and the crops are safe. While not the most heroic deed ever accomplished it helped to earn him the hearts of his people, though small the number was.
News of a young lad that was popular among the commons reached a very accomplished and landed knight beyond the far side of the river. He visited the hall one fall, after the harvest, and offered to take on young Ulfred as a page. A deal was struck and off he went to learn the arts of chivalry and warfare. Ulfred was twelve.
He spent many years at the knights keep, learning the blade and humility side by side. At first it was difficult, and the other two pages were his age but had been doing this for some time. He lost every practice session the first year, but learned to enjoy privacy and books. He returned home for the harvest with stories of the grand keep and all of the people there. He was older and bigger now, so he helped with the more laborious tasks during the harvest. When he returned to the keep he was not only bigger, but stronger, and used this advantage when sparring. He didn't win every session, but he won more than half.
Many years later Ulfred was returning home from a two year tournament circuit. His father had died when he was seventeen and since then Ulfred had reigned over his small territory with a gentle hand. There was no need to tell the farmers how to do their work, and he did not worry over his people trying to cheat him, they were like extended family. As he rode along the only path in his lands he noticed a distinct lack of activity. After an hour, he was in mountainous terrain, of travel he came across a man he knew to be a craftsman. He called out to the man, but he looked upon Ulfred with fright and disappeared into the woodlands. He rode straight to his hall at a gallop.
Debtors. His father had wracked up quite a debt to pay for his son's knightly training and had never said a word. His holding, his mount, and all of his tourney winnings were taken. He was able to bury his family sword so they could not find it. After a week he was told to vacate the lands. He went to dig up his sword but found it already gone. He tracked it down and found that craftsman who had ran at the sight of him in a tavern with it at his side. In a heated anger Ulfred slew the man and took back his sword. He didn't feel any better.
Again, many years passed and Ulfred found himself in countless engagements, no matter who won or lost the hedge-knight always seemed to get the shaft. After trying his luck across the sea Ulfred returns home as poor as when he left, if not more so. Setting foot on the land of his birth made him come to the realization that he is not getting any younger. Tensions in King's Landing seem to be high, if gossip and rumor are any indication, which they are. Perhaps he can use the situation to elevate himself. Hopefully.