15 January 2013 @ 10:07 pm
*NaNo Project* Part the Seventh - Section the Sixth - The Scribe - 955AD  
As it turned out I didn't have as much time as I hoped to get more practice in, apparently I was among those servants enlisted when occasion demanded it, such as feasts for very important people.

It seemed I was not the only one as I was ushered into the castle kitchens I spotted Gaius who was cutting up various herbs.

"Geoff, they got you too," he greeted me cheerfully.

I couldn't be quite as sanguine. "I was never told that something like this could happen." I spoke as low as I could and still be heard amongst the clanging pots, the sound of fires crackling and the orders of the head servants. "I wanted to do more writing today."

Gaius gave a rather helpless shrug and looked at me apologetically. "With any luck you'll get some time later in the day. Grab a knife and help me, unless you want to be caught stuffing chickens or something."

I shuddered at the thought so quickly took position beside Gaius and grabbed a nearby knife, even though I had no idea how to cut herbs, I had no doubt there was some sort of method involved but looking at Gaius I couldn't actually say what it was.

When he noticed what I was doing he gave a chuckle. "Just chop them, they'll just be ground up in the end anyway."

Well, that was good to know, I supposed, so I started chopping.

"What happens to me if I don't fulfil my scribing duties to everyone's standards?" I asked, as I concentrated in my cutting - which honestly didn't make me feel any better what with visions of an excecutioner's axe on my mind.

Gaus frowned. "I really don't know...I mean it would depend on now dire they consider the failure. Usually transgressions will land you in the stocks, but that's about as far as I've seen it go."

The stocks?! That was obviously supposed to be a comforting remark, but the idea of the stocks was ore than enough to frighten me.

Gaius quickly realised my distress and shook his head. "But honestly, Geoff, there's no need to panic, keep in mind the Duke of Cornwall's party will have a scribe as well, you can exchange notes."

Well, that was comforting at least, and since none of this was Gaius's fault I mustered up a smile and returned my chopping.

If I'd I imagined that I'd be escaping these menial tasks any time soon I was sadly mistaken. There were a multitude of tings to ready for the feast. Thousands of candles to be set up in the Main Hall, hundreds of sets of cutlery to polish, dozens and dozens of serving platters to ready. By the time it was all done dusk was swiftly approaching and there was barely time to catch one's breath before the great bell was tolling, announcing the arrival of the party from Cornwall.

With no time left to hone my scribing abilities or lack there of I allowed Gaius to take me by the arm to the nearest parapet where would could observe the arrival.

Beyond the main walls of Camelot a line of men both on horseback and on foot could be seen striding down the main road, the men walking in front holding aloft banners of a black shield with gold dots arranged in the shape of a triangle. I briefly found myself wondering what the history behind it was and made a note to look it up when I had the chance.

I focused on the men who were on horseback in the middle of the group, they all seemed quite important, although one in the middle seemed to stand out more than the rest and I wasn’t all that surprised when Gaius pointed him out saying. “That’s Duke Dionotus.”

I nodded and wondered if the Duke was anything like the Pendragons or like Caerleon and his son, neither sounded all that appealing.

Bringing up the rear of the group were two litters, which were covered and thus couldn’t be seen into, but it was clear that they must contain women.

“The Duchess,” Gaius explained, “and her entrouge, apparently they’re all extremely pretty,” he chuckled and gave me a nudge. “So it won’t all be bad at the feast.”

I furrowed my brow. “The feast? Are we invited to that?”

Gaius gave a laugh. “Oh no, but we’ll be there, extra duties, you know.”

My heart dropped. “You’re…kidding?”

Gaius shook his head. “Afraid not.”

“But I’ve never served a meal to anyone in my life! I don’t know how any of it’s done!”

Gaius seemed quite blaise waving his hand. “Don’t worry, you’ll pick it up easily enough. If you can lift all those books you can lift a seving tray. And I’m sure you can pour your own drink, so you’ll be set for that.”

I was nowhere near as convinced, but then Gaius had further bad news to give.

“Of course…getting used to the uniform might take a bit of time.”

I gulped. “Uniform?”
Current Mood: worried