Nothing Like Practice

A battle cry rent the air. The horses shrieked, and men spilled into the camp. The knights were on their feet, swords drawn to meet the enemy. Sir Tor leapt into the fray.

Lila froze. Her grip on the sword went slack, and she could only stare. This was nothing like fighter practice with her brothers. This was – the sharp tang of blood wafted toward her, followed by a sickly groan. A body landed next to her. She shrieked. She brought her sword up, but the man standing over her said her name. She blinked and saw it was Arthur. In the dying firelight, blood splattered across his face, he looked like a demon.

Lila wanted to retch. Sir Tor cried out, and Lila saw he was outnumbered. She scrambled to her feet, swinging the sword wildly, trying to remember what her brothers had taught her. One man swung at her. She dodged, lunged, stabbed. She caught the man in the gap between gorge-plate and helm. He gurgled as he went down.

Sir Tor shouted his thanks and dispatched the other man.

And then time stood still.

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