You don’t have to be the king to enter court.
The Best Warriors, the Heroes, can enter the Court. — HOOA, the Way of Authenticity.
If you’re of royalty, either by blood or took the throne by force, and you’re the king, queen, prince or princess, you have access to the court. Others, especially men of low value are doomed. You can’t get in. Unless, you become part of the Knight’s Guard.
For the sake of this discussion the warrior, the fighter, the hero, the knight archetypes are sometimes used interchangeably.
Let’s look at The Witcher, Geralt of Rivia. He fits the Warrior archetype, but by the way he looks, speaks and acts it’s clear as night and day that he does not belong at court. (Season 1, episode 4) Geralt protects Jaskier (who’s name unsurprisingly and very on the nose sounds a lot like Jester – but that’s another archetype for another time perhaps) from harm and acts as a sort of bodyguard (Samurai/Retainer Archetype). It is about a Royal Ball, a banquet, a feast where the princess her next husband will be chose. And through the people attending, nobility, and the way Geralt interacts with everyone, he doesn’t, one can tell he’s an outcast (Shaman / Lone Rider / Cowboy / Vagabond / Ronin Archetype).
– thing about The Witchers, they’re monster hunters. Mercenaries. Hired guns. And a big theme throughout the series, games and novels is that they’re not liked, hated, ostracized, outcast. Like pariah. So that’s already the underlying theme and Archetype of any Witcher, including Geralt. –
Then the Queen spots him, in the distance, his ghastly ominous, predatory presence, and beckons him over, and that’s when he truly enters the Court (for he was already physically within bounds). Reluctantly, Geralt accepts (reluctant hero); Jaskier spurring him on a bit of course (ever so gleeful jester who sees anything as the right moment for immanent comedic rapture).
A myriad of directions from here is possible, as many questions burst in many directions. First thing first, Why does the Queen want Geralt, The Witcher, The Warrior to have Seat at the Table, to have a seat right NEXT to her, she the Queen? What does she see in him? What does The Warrior stand for? What does The Warrior have that the Queen does not, for are those of royalty and elite not within possession of everything?
Here the deconstruction begins. One might argue that the Queen wants a fierce warrior by her side. For protection, maybe, as some sort of selection process for her version of the agema, the Scarlet Spartiate Soldiers; tip of the spear — but no, the scene started of with her storm inside the palace soaked in scarlet herself, after just having seen battle. She doesn’t need warriors, she herself is one. Perhaps it is pure lust, and attraction, but not completely, because she herself is married, and is in no need to cheat on her husband, King, she is of the type that wears the pants in the relationship, but is in such a surplus of energy and drive that she rules the kingdom; rather Queendom. So we’ve crossed of battle prowess and skill; physical presence, visage, looks; two things remain triggered by the traits innate in the Archetype Geralt embodies.
The first is Intrigue. Geralt is mysterious. He stands literally apart from the crowd, brought an unbecoming goofy sidekick, rather he brought Geralt, doesn’t seem to care about status, prestige, having fun, nothing related to games of optics and aesthetics. Geralt does his own thing; is his own man. He does embody a powerful archetype, The Warrior, but it’s a distorted version of it, an offshoot, the Reluctant Warrior/Hero, he wants no part of the pride that comes with earning a medal for a hierarchy he neither works for, nor believes in; he simply has no need for it; thus it is of no value (for him). Add to that his powers bestowed on him, making him an unique specimen, a Witcher, a monster hunter, which literally makes him calmer, more composed, which extends to the soothing, yet exhilarating effect of Intrigue cast upon the Queen. She is intrigued, she waves him over, Geralt, the Reluctant Hero, enters court.
The second Geralt is a Knight of Fate (not to be mistaken, by the Knight of Faith – the two words sound the same, once pronouncing, but are worlds apart, especially in this case). This scene, within this episode, introduces the fairytale deus-ex-machina overpowering law. The Law of Surprise. This is something that cannot be timed, nor governed by mere man, it’s a universal law, that if someone sacrifices their life for another, they get to call upon this law, and you will be rewarded in return. Before we dive deeper into this, a remark has to be made that this specific type of Knighthood bestowed on Geralt has nothing to do with his fighting skills, his monstrous magic, his physicality, not even his lack of nobility, it has nothing to do with the worldly, the earthly, it has everything to do with Fate. The untimely, literally that which cannot be timed, and the unseen, the ungovernable, the unforgiving, yet the giving, you cannot prepare for it, nor can you position for it, towards it. And yet, yet somehow, you always feel it. You feel Fate. When it’s there, present. And somehow, you intuit, when it is coming, and you can try to get closer to the pockets of chaos, where rifts open up, which bring you closer to the paths you’re supposed to walk on.
And this is what happens with Geralt. Invite from Jaskier. Reluctance. Yet he goes. Banquet. Small wordy altercation with less knightly fellows. Queen notices him. The Fated Invite. The seat at the table. The process of selecting a husband for the princess. The hedgehogheaded cursed fellow who claims the Law of Surprise for saving the father of the princess and now wants the hand of the princess. The attempted assassination of him by the Queen’s hand. The intervention by Geralt. Which makes his destiny converge with the man, the princess, and subsequently her unborn child, and thus the Law of Surprise happens. Fate has Geralt exactly where it wants him to be. Geralt is exactly where he is supposed to be; he is knighted, and he now belongs to Fate, and to do its bidding, whether he wants to or not.
To wrap it off, partly, and somehow give a succinct answer to the main question asked, Why does Geralt deserve a seat at the table, why does he get access to Court, and how does one do this in a similar fashion if one is not of nobility, neither king, queen, prince or princess?
It’s not so much about deserving than it is accepting what is given. Within the radical recurring Reluctance resides Relinquishment. Events happen, people act, Geralt acts along. He’s an actor (meta because Cavill is an actor acting the role/character of Geralt) on stage, in the Theatre of Fate, whether he knows it or not, he with a shrug and a smirk and a snarl still solemnly acknowledges it. He even knows what the Law of Surprise is, in the moment supreme, and plays the trump card. He knows life is a theater, that this is an act, and that he is an actor. This is about archetypal alignment; accepting; relinquishing. It takes a special certain of humility to let go of the pride of the self you think you were meant to be; rather than the true self you were destined to be. Some things are not in your control, faster you realize that, the better. Some things are not meant for you. You are not meant to be some things. Not everyone is meant to be the king, prince or hero. And not everyone is granted access to court. But they can be, you can be. And everyone is chosen by Fate to do its bidding, in some role or another. And the sooner you relinquish your stubborn old ways, your muddish bogged down worldly, social sense of self, the more open you become, and let Fate in, and as its conduit, you’ll be untimely as well, and uncanny, and a force to be reckoned with. You’ll be knighted as well.
If you want to learn more about archetypes and how to leverage them to your benefit, check out the Way of Authenticity here.