Eli Wang 12/1/2020 Character Sketch – Characterization D1 English 2 Lit and Comp – Uncommon Valor, Section #1 Honor over Riches Carrie Chapman Catt, a women’s rights activist during the 1900s once said that “Living for a high purpose is as honorable as dying for it.” Choosing to oppose the opinions of the current time is often important because it makes people question whether public opinion is the right opinion. When people discover a more honorable way of thinking about things, it often adds to the quality of the way we live. Ragundiae from Gordon Greenhill’s Flight of the Sky Cricket also pursues an honorable path, going against what his peers or betters want him to do. The king had offered him a position of power if he married the princess, but he rejected the king’s offer, saying that he would rather earn honor through hard work than through marriage. Even though he didn’t get the power or riches he could have possessed, he ended up as a happier and more contented person. Gordon Greenhill leads readers to grudgingly respect Ragundiae from his “Flight of the Sky Cricket” through Ragundiae’s actions towards the protagonists, as he shows a hardworking nature, honorable attitude, and humble personality. Though Greenhill depicts Ragundiae as the antagonist because of his nationality, Ragundiae still manages to maintain an honorable attitude towards his opponent. Ragundiae could have acted as the classic mocking villain, but he instead compliments and respects him. For example, when Dashonae provokes the court and insults their honor, Ragundiae accepts his challenge of a duel (Greenhill, ch. 36). Ragundiae did this not because of malicious intent, but because he needed to protect his honor. Agreeing to fight Dashonae, the only way not to look cowardly, became his last remaining option. Because Ragundiae accepted Dashonae’s challenge, he kept his honor in front of the court (Chapter 35). Ragundiae also proves his morality when he compliments Dashonae in front of the girls. As they watch Dashonae training in the stadium, Ragundiae approaches them and remarks “He is magnificent” (ch. 36). Ragundiae appreciates Dashonae’s skill and prowess with a sword. Instead of scorning him like a regular antagonist, he has a respectful attitude towards his opponent. Because of his honest nature, he can restrain himself from making cruel, unnecessary remarks. To Ragundiae, a person should work to maintain integrity, and keep it up through thick and thin. Ragundiae doesn’t boast about his prowess or strain for power. He just wants a simple life filled with hard work.. For instance, when the koning, or king, offered him a position of power, he declined, favoring a more humble life. Even though he could have inherited vast riches, he gave it away for a more honest living (ch. 36). He did this so that he could gain power the proper way: starting at the bottom and working your way up. Ragundiae also shows humility when he serves under his younger brother, the onderkoning, with unwavering commitment. As the more worthy and noble man, it might be hard for him to restrain himself from talking back at Tengomaniah, but he does not. “Ragundiae spun around angrily to respond to the princess, but Tengomaniah said lazily, ‘I’ve heard enough. Tara, have the accused dismissed’” (ch. 34). He withstands his brother because of his humility. Ragundiae doesn’t regret his decision to decline the position of onderkoning. Assuredly, Greenhill uses Ragundiae’s humble ways to build love for the character.. Unlike his dull brother, Ragundiae strives to work hard. He takes on tough jobs, often with his men beside him, and wins the support of those under him. Specifically, Ragundiae goes on missions along with his men. Ragundiae attended the hunting party that captured the protagonists, a job well below Ragundiae’s position (ch. 33). He does this because of his humble attitude and hardworking nature, which no doubt earn him popularity with his men. His men support him so much that they even doubt his brother’s right to occupy the rank of onderkoning. “why do you let the princess speak to you this way?” they ask, “You are more worthy to be the onderkoning than your brother, we all think so” (ch. 34). The soldiers think that he deserves the post more because of how hard he works. On the whole, Greenhill shapes the reader’s opinions of Ragundiae by showing his hardworking ways and how he earns respect. Gordon Greenhill creates the character Ragundiae as a respectable and humble antihero, inspiring readers with his humility, honor, and hardworking nature. Ralph Waldo Emerson once said that “a great man is always willing to become little,” and Ragundiae reflects this. Though he clearly deserves a higher position, he eats humble pie and gains power and honor the hard way, and also earns the respect of his men through his hard work. Every once in a while, everyone should try getting off their high horse and considering the way they live. When people get caught up in public opinion, they can easily get lost without a sense of right or wrong. By stopping and looking themselves over once in a while, they may discover their opinions lie further from the truth than they think. Works Cited Greenhill, Gordon. Flight of the Sky Cricket. Kindle, Brookstone Publishing Group, 2019.