Hello everyone! How are you enjoying the party so far?
Anyway, I have a snippet to share with you guys today. It's the opening for A Lady Made, which is the prequel about Maid Marian. I need to finish writing this book...
Once upon a time, in a land called Bookania, two youths stood together on an archery field, bows in hand, eyes fixed on the target, a lively argument flying between them.
“The Locksley tournament is for men and boys,” said the elder of the two, a tall young man of fourteen with yellow hair and dancing blue eyes. “Even with your unconventional education, you couldn’t hope to enter, Marian.”
Marian, a girl of twelve, a girl of twelve, with thick black hair contained in a braid down her back, her brown eyes sparkling with determination. “It wasn’t always,” she insisted, making use of every inch her small frame afforded her. “In the days of old, the tournament was open to man or woman, and with no respect to rank. Ah, to live in the days of Queen Robyn!”
“Queen Robyn is surrounded by more myth than fact,” her friend pointed out. “They also say that she was a personal friend of the fairies, even joining them in their battles against the Thwarter. And everyone knows…”
“Everyone does not know, Robert!” Marian insisted, stamping her foot in annoyance. “Besides, my father has spoken with King Maximilian and he is not so against girls participating.”
“Oh, but everyone says that King Maximilian’s a tad touched in the head,” said Robert, shaking his head. “Always has had strange ideas.”
“You’re just scared I’ll beat you in the tournament.” Marian tossed her hair as she let fly an arrow that soon quivered in the heart of the target.
“Come now, what makes you certain of that?” asked Robert as he, too, let an arrow fly, and it soon quivered next to hers. “I let you win when we practice.”
“Let me!” Marian cried, indignant.
“You’re a Lady, Marian, even though you don’t act like one,” said Robert. “It’s only proper, after all. However, it would be a very different story in an actual tournament.”
“Well, maybe I don’t need you to ‘let’ me win,” Marian pointed out. “Maybe you just don’t want to admit that I’m just as good as you are.”
“Marian, I didn’t…”
But Marian was already putting away her bow and heading for the gate. “I need to go prepare for supper, that’s a time-consuming business for a lady such as myself. Good day, Master Fizooth.”
She paused in the gateway to give a quick curtsy, and then disappeared.
Robert shook his head as he saluted her with his bow. “And good day to you as well, Lady Gamewell.”
Feel free to speculate.