About his victory for the second year in a row, Headmaster Rife said, “The boys have fun and that’s really all that is important. They work very hard all year, and the Festival is an important part of rewarding that work. Plus it allows them to, you know, show off their skills a little, show the world what they can do.”
Vespith Academy’s Riley Stauking also won the Junior Cup at the Senior Joust. Headmaster Rife seemed somewhat stoic about this victory, it being well known that he doesn’t approve of his boys participating in the Senior Joust, but he congratulated young Stauking, nonetheless.
“I’m afraid we set a precedent a few years ago when we allowed Gunnar Flith to compete,” Headmaster Rife explained when asked about Vespith’s participation in the Senior Joust. “Now all the boys want to do it, and say it’s not fair if we don’t let them. So we decided to allow them to choose one competitor from among themselves to represent the school. I thought that egos would preside and they’d never be able to settle on one person. However, I’m afraid I underestimated my boys. They chose Riley, who did compete brilliantly, and only suffered a few broken bones, so well done, Riley. However, we made competition in this year’s event contingent upon allowing Riley to decide after the event if the school would compete in that level again, and made the boys sign an agreement with us that whatever Riley decided would be honored.”
When asked what his recommendation would be, Mr. Stauking replied, “Headmaster Rife is a thoroughly honorable man and he really does his best to protect us. Even though we don’t understand that always, he’s only doing whatever he can to keep us out of harm’s way for as long as he can. The Senior Joust truly is brutal. Still, so is life, so as to Vespith competing in the future? I say bring it!”
In response, Headmaster Rife whacked the boy in the back of the head and walked away.