16 December 2012 @ 11:18 pm
*NaNo Project* Part the Third - Section the Fifth - The Search - 951AD  
I did the best I could to remain calm, keep myself to myself and out of the way of the Kings guard. At first it didn’t seem it would be all that difficult, being on the other side of town it was unlikely I would cross paths with the soldiers unless I went out of my way to do so. It was as if I had any talents that meant going to the training fields, in fact the opposite was true.

But that only worked so far as I was concerned, there was nothing to stop the Prince coming to find me.

And so it was a few days after the dinner at Lord Folant's while I was walking over the main bridge a voice rang out. “Do you find me funny, Mudmouth? I saw you the other night, laughing at me."

I considering running, but I immediately sensed that would be a useless endeavour, the Prince was more than capable of chasing me down. Instead I took a deep breath, attempted to steel my nerves and turned around.

“I wasn’t laughing,” I quickly blurted out defensively.

“Oh, of course not, you held back, how gentlemanly of you, Mudmouth. You planned only to mock me behind my back?”

“I wasn’t planning to mock anyone,” and I certainly hadn’t been...it had just been a stupid mistake. Couldn’t Prince Caerleon let bygones be bygones?

Obviously not because he took a step towards me, he towered over me and strength was evident in every muscle and sinew. It was enough to make me take a big step backward, the result of that was my back coming up against the wall of the bridge.

“Not so brave when it’s just us facing each other man to man are you? This is why you’ll never be anyone, Mudmouth.”

I didn’t argue with him, because I was quite sure I wouldn’t be anyone, at least not in the Prince’s mind. Also, I was more than sure, that the less I said the better.

But, I hadn’t counted on the fact that the Prince was looking for a fight and nothing was going to change his mind.

In fact, I didn’t realise what I was in for until Prince Caerleon suddenly grabbed me by the front of my tunic and pushed me back so that my upper body was all but hanging over the side of the bridge.

“Still think I’m funny now, Mudmouth?” The Prince snarled, leaning me back even further which sent pain shooting through me.

I could only make a strangled noise and that only made the Prince’s smirk widened.

Suddenly, he yanked me forward so that my back scrapped hard against the stones of the bridge wall. Almost immediately there was a sensation of wetness and I realised that I was bleeding.

“You show a lack of respect for your betters, Mudmouth, one day I’ll be your king, do you really think it acceptable to laugh at your king?”

I couldn’t really answer apart from a whimper.

The Prince threw me roughly to the ground and before I could even make a move to get to my feet he jammed his foot against my back, making it sting even more.

“You know what that is, Mudmouth? It’s called treason, you know what the penalty is for treason?”

The pain in my back was like fire and robbed me of the power of speech.

Just when I thought it couldn’t get any worse, the Prince actually twisted his foot against my back, the result was intense daggers of pain.

“Execution.” The Prince said the word with relish.

I had no answer for him even if I could have answered and it seemed that was the best option for me at the time, because mercifully he lifted his foot off my back.

“But, I’m a benevolent soul,” the Prince drawled, “so...I’m prepared to allow you to live this time. But I warn you, Mudmouth. Cross me again and you won’t be so lucky.”

And with that the Prince turned on his heel and strode away, leaving me face down on the ground in blinding pain, I was unable to move for a good ten minutes or so. Finally, I felt coherent enough to be able to get to my feet and sort of...hobble away.

The Prince’s words echoed in my head as I limped towards home, I took them to heart.

Staying in Caerleon had become even less tempting to me now.
 
 
Current Mood: anxious