Secret Knight

  1. Can Eric remodel Camelot to its Former Glory?

For centuries, the description of Camelot has captivated the imagination subsequent to its rich tales of knights, legendary kings and courageous heroes. But after the tragic death of Guinevere, Camelot has become a unhappy and quiet place. King Arthur has and no-one else the public, and the golden age of chivalry is no more. The Order of the round Table has been broken and its courageous warriors are no longer seen. all seems lost, until one day, subsequent to a lone knight appears, sparking subsequent to cartoon a pubescent man's dreams of restoring Camelot to its former glory.

The knight is Eric, a enthusiastic lad, whose daydreams often take him put up to to the fine outdated days of Camelot. But his dreams speedily become reality, subsequent to he overhears the mysterious knight planning to murder King Arthur. terrified and alone, he is unable to locate anyone to take him seriously, suitably he sets off on a quest to make aware the King and save the kingdom.

On his journey he meets Merlin, who reveals a long-kept undistinguished about Lancelot. Realising the upshot of this information, Eric races adjoining epoch to save Camelot and the King from this tragic fate. But can he pull off it? He must fight adjoining time, himself and his own doubts and fears, to look if he can remodel Camelot to its former glory and save the King.

Through his courage and determination, Eric must locate a quirk to reach this task, and prevent the tragedy that threatens to destroy Camelot. His adventure will be filled subsequent to danger, surprises and more, as he embarks on a quest that could distress the vanguard of the kingdom forever.


(Arthurian Saga Series Book 1)

Chapter 1

It was a blazing afternoon in Camelot, nearing Midsummer???s day. The sky was a cerulean blue above the white towers of the castle, and the banners of King Arthur???s court stirred gently in the breeze, scarlet and gold. It had not rained for two moons, and the surrounding fields were turning brown in the dry heat. In the narrow sloping streets of the castle town, the warm air shimmered, and light reverberated from the cobblestones. Down in the hottest corner of the narrowest street, Eric Berinon was labouring in the blacksmith???s forge.

The sweat poured down his face as he worked the bellows near to the open fire. Eric was seventeen, but tall for his age, broad and strong from his efforts here at the forge. He gazed intently into the fire, brown eyes trained onto the small piece of iron in its depths. With the tongs, he flipped the horseshoe over, and as sparks flew the metal glowed an intense orange. Eric was not the blacksmith???s son though he did in fact rather resemble Hadrian???they shared the same black hair, the same tanned skin and broad shoulders. But Eric had been raised by his grandfather in another part of town. He had come to Hadrian five years ago, bored and restless on a summer???s day as hot as this one. Hadrian had taken pity on him and showed him how to mould little birds and horses from scraps of spare metal. From that day to this, Eric had arrived at the forge every morning with his natural smile, willing to work hard and learn everything Hadrian taught him.

Now, in the summer of his seventeenth year, he was Hadrian???s trusted apprentice and friend. The smith was growing older, and whenever possible Eric took on the heavier duties in the forge. Carefully, he used the tongs to transfer the horseshoe from the flames and dipped it into the water butt. Clouds of steam hissed into the air. Eric examined the metal carefully, checking for flaws or dents. He was shoeing the horse of a strange northern knight today, and he wanted everything to be perfect. He left the shoe cooling on the side and turned back to his work, just as Hadrian came in whistling a tune.

The smith looked over Eric???s shoulder at the steaming horseshoe and made a sound of approval. They may not be father and son, but there was an easy familiarity between the two of them, a comfortable silence. Hadrian held up the basket in his left hand and the clay jug in the other, and smiling, turned on his heel and went back out the door. Eric washed the soot from his hands and followed.

The blacksmith???s tiny yard was dominated by the slender trunk and sprawling branches of an apple tree. In the springtime, the blossom on this tree was a thing to behold, and in the summer, it offered a welcome green shade against the heat. The two men settled on the bench beneath the tree, and Eric helped himself to cheese and bread from the basket and beer from the flagon. They ate in silence for a time. Then, plucking an apple from a low hanging bough, Eric peeled the fruit in a deft spiral with his pocket knife. He threw a slice across the table to Hadrian.

???Did you see that knight again on your errands???? he asked.

Hadrian swallowed his mouthful. ???Just for a moment lad. He was strolling about being gallant to the ladies, talking with the town folk and so on. It was gracious enough.???

Eric smiled. ???What it must be like to be him??? that shining armour, and the beautiful horse! He???s the first proper knight come through here in many a moon.???

???Ay, there aren???t so many these days, that???s true. Our king likes to keep to his own company.???

In the year that Eric was born, the kingdom had been caught in a terrible war. For ninety days, the armies of Morgana Le Faye laid siege upon Camelot, and the people had been trapped inside its walls, starving and suffering. Finally, there was a devastating battle in these very streets, and victory had been won??? but at great cost. Eric often heard stories of how it had been before, the gallant Knights of the Round Table, and Camelot, full of people, the beating heart of Britannia. They had rebuilt after the battle, and the city was prosperous once more. But something changed in their Great king back then, and the golden age of chivalry seemed to be over. The Order of the Round Table was broken up, its gallant youths dead or moved away.

A light breeze ruffled the leaves of the apple tree as the two men sat in the shade. Hadrian???s ginger car Peg climbed over the fence and sauntered over, purring and winding herself around Eric???s legs. Hadrian leant back and wiped the crumbs from his mouth, closing his eyes. It was in this moment of their daily routine that he would talk about Alice.

???She was the same as you, you know. Always liked to see the knights riding by. ???It makes you proud???, she used to say, ???watching them. Gives you faith in our Great king.???

Hadrian???s wife Alice had died in childbirth years before, and the boy with her. Perhaps that was why Hadrian and Eric needed each other. Eric???s parents died in the Great battle, like so many others, and Hadrian had lost his family soon after. They both knew loss and loneliness, but together they had created a kind of family from the ashes. And every day, in the shade of the apple tree, Hadrian would tell a story of his lost love. Eric had heard them all before of course, but it didn???t matter. He knew that Hadrian and Alice had planted this tree together and that every spring when it blossomed in pink and white, he thought of her. He knew that Alice had liked to sing as she worked and that she was fond of taking in stray animals and nursing them to health. He knew that this was how Peg had joined the family, brought to the safety of the forge as a half-starved ginger kitten. And above all, he knew that Hadrian needed this, that these words and stories kept Alice alive in his memory. Eric couldn???t remember his parents, and had no stories of his own. But Hadrian???s tales of Alice???her kindness, her bravery, her sense of humour???when Eric thought of his own lost family, it was the quiet rhythm of these stories which came to mind. He settled back into his chair and listened to the smith???s deep, slow voice.

After lunch, the two men returned to the forge and worked in companionable silence. Now and again, Eric???s eyes would stray to the magnificent sword in the corner, which the northern knight had left for remounting. Eric himself had been training with the sword for several years. His grandfather had come home one November day with two rough training blades and announced that they would be practising together from now on. Letholdus was old and frail looking, but surprisingly strong. He knew how to fight well enough, and several times a week he would take Eric into the yard and teach him to cut, parry and thrust. He always supposed it was for his grandfather???s enjoyment more than anything else. He knew that Letholdus had done his bit in the Great battle, though the details of exactly what had passed were hazy to his mind. Eric assumed that Letholdus, like so many others in the town, was nostalgic for the days of chivalry. After all, Eric was a peasant lad, and there was no real purpose in this learning. Even so, he enjoyed training immensely and seemed to have something of a natural talent for it.

Although Eric had some skill with a blade, he had never seen so beautiful a sword as this one. Nor did he have any notion of how to remount it. Though Eric had begged his master to give him a try, the smith had done the work himself last night. As they laboured through the late afternoon, Eric was sorely tempted to pick up the strange northern blade, to feel the weight of it in his grasp and watch the flames reflected in its shining length. A sword like that would make a man feel different???stronger, braver. Perhaps it was growing up under his grandfather???s influence, but Eric felt a deep nostalgia for the old Camelot, the one he had never known. He liked to hear stories of Galahad, Gawain and Lancelot, brave knights long vanished from these lands.

Around four, the knight from the north came to see his horse fitted with the shoe. The mare was a beauty, a sleek grey in the late sunshine, her mane braided with ribbons and tiny bells. She was a gentle creature and crooked her foreleg obediently as Hadrian fitted the shoe. The knight, meanwhile, took up his sword with its new handle, making some experimental thrusts and parries against an invisible opponent. He looked up and saw Eric watching him.

???Very good, very good. An excellent balanced weight now, and a comfortable grip. Did you make this lad????

???No sir,??? said Eric, ???I haven???t the skill. There???s not much call for weapon craft in Camelot these days.???

???No? No, I suppose not,??? said the knight, glancing up at the castle keep.

???Please sir, if you don???t mind me asking??? did you used to come here? Before, I mean, before the battle. When the Round Table was still??????

The knight laughed, a little wistfully. ???I did indeed. Those were the glory days of Camelot, and all Britannia, I tell you. Feasts, dances, quests, tournaments???. there never was a merrier court. And those knights!??? He looked up again at the distant castle towers. ???I tell you, my generation could live a thousand years, and never live up to the deeds of our Great king and his old company.???

???What happened, sir? I mean, I know about the battle, but why did the court break up afterwards????

The knight looked back at Eric and hesitated, frowning slightly and scrutinising his face.

???You boy. Who are you???? He asked suddenly.


???Your family. Is this your father???? the knight gestured to where Hadrian was working.

???Oh no sir, no Hadrian is teaching me his craft. I live with my grandfather. We???re nobody really, my parents, they??????

???All done!??? said Hadrian, coming around the mare???s other side and patting her flank. ???She should ride like a beauty now sir.???

???Good, good, thank you?????? said the knight. He cast a long glance back at Eric, then handed a small bag of silver to the smith.

???Well, I must be back on the road before nightfall. I thank you, gentlemen, for your excellent work. God bless you.???

The knight mounted lightly and rode away, his mare???s hooves clopping over the cobbles as he disappeared around the corner. Eric and Hadrian watched him go. The sun was setting now, dazzling them with a deep golden light that poured through the thatched roofs around them. The two men went inside, tidying and closing up the forge for the night. Eric left just as dusk fell, calling out his farewells to Hadrian. The smith would go to a lonely meal at his hearth, but for Eric, the evening was just beginning. After his dinner, he must go to the local inn, where he earned money sweeping, scrubbing and serving beer to the thirsty common folk. He was young and strong, but these long working days and the hot summer left him aching and exhausted each night. Stretching out his arms, Eric walked up the steep lane towards his grandfather???s house. The heat of the day was still in the air, and the crickets were humming and whirring. Above him, the first of the night stars twinkled into being, and the towers of Camelot made a dark silhouette against the pinkish haze of the sky.

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  Secret Knight

Arthurian Fantasy