Life’s still ugh, but at least I can say…
On the sixth day of fanfic my H.G. gave to me… six knights a-training!
Leon stood before Gwaine, his sword raised as they sparred. Sweat poured off both their faces.
Leon struck to the left. Gwaine blocked, and instantly Leon pulled his sword off and brought it up. Gwaine blocked quickly, but this time he made the next slash to the right. Then up. Over across. Leon pulled his sword away from Gwaine’s and swung quickly at Gwaine’s waist.
And Gwaine fell over, laughing and hopping up. “Lucky those are dull,” he chuckled, clapping a hand on Leon’s shoulder and shaking back his shaggy brown hair.
Leon laughed, too. “Lucky.” They both sheathed their swords, pleased. That is, pleased until they looked over at Percival, borderline attacking Lancelot with focus and finesse. They both sighed.
It was no surprise when Percival beat Lancelot, and Arthur beat Elyan. The four came over to Gwaine and Leon, clapping shoulders and smiling.
“Merlin,” Arthur called to his servant, polishing armor in the corner. “Bring over some water, be quick about it.”
“Would it kill you to be polite?” Merlin asked.
Arthur glared at him.
Merlin sighed. “Alright, alright…” He began filling goblets from the flagon.
“Now as you all know,” Arthur said, turning back to his knights, “the Christmas tournament is coming up soon.”
“Really?” Gwaine asked, pretending to be surprised. “I thought this was all for fun!”
Leon, Elyan, Percival, and Lancelot laughed, but Arthur frowned. “This is no time for jokes, Leon.”
“Calm down, Arthur,” said Elyan gently. “If we don’t win the tournament, there will always be another. ”
“But this is the Christmas tournament, so he’s afraid the King won’t give him a present if he fails,” Gwaine teased.
“Or Guinevere won’t,” Percival said, and they all laughed, even Arthur.
“Or I won’t,” called Merlin, balancing the goblets on his hands with one atop his head.
“You have to get him a gift,” Lancelot said. “He’ll fire you if you don’t. But anyway, what is so important about the Christmas tournament?”
“I hear knights from all five kingdoms are coming,” said Percival, raising his eyebrows.
“I hear that there will be lots of girls,” said Leon. “Pretty ones. Ones who’ll give you their scarf to wrap on your lance if you fancy them.”
They all grinned at the thought.
“Hey, maybe even Percival can get a scarf,” said Gwaine, punching the muscular knight’s arm.
“Alright alright, it would be very nice to have a girl’s scarf,” said Arthur, snatching the goblet off of Merlin’s head and taking a deep swig. “But that isn’t the point. You have to all be prepared for this. The best knights in the kingdoms will be here to compete and I will not have my personal trainees looking like fools.”
“It’s not so serious, Arthur,” said Gwaine, taking a goblet and dumping it on his head. “It’s just a tournament.”
“But a very important one,” Lancelot said, mimicking Arthur.
“The tournament,” Arthur continued over the laughter, “begins tomorrow at noon. I will expect you in the training grounds by dawn to practice. The winner,” he said louder, as Gwaine and Percival had struck up an impromptu battle with their goblets, “will be given five hundred gold pieces and a place at the high table with guests he selects for himself.”
“Such as all the girls whose scarves I get?” said Gwaine, pausing the battle to wiggle his eyebrows.
They all laughed, even Arthur.