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Resurrection Day Plus 3: A Day in the Life at D’Aubigny Manor

Eighty-eight lines A lot more damned words than I was planning about forty-four women thirty-nine knights, plus an Arthur.

Arthur closed his office door behind him more firmly than required just to get the latch to catch. It was still morning, he had made the necessary arrangements, and now he was free for the day.

He was not having a repeat of yesterday, when he had barely had a moment alone with Lancelot, who, after crashing Gawain’s motorcycle into a wall, had darted from fancy to fancy, eagerly assisted by his fellow knights. Among other things, a whole gaggle of knights had insisted on a thorough house tour, complete with personal histories (“that’s the sink that Urien thought was a toilet!” and “here’s the place where Tor threw up that time he ate six cans of Heinz spotted dick custard!”). Bruenor had demonstrated the appliances in the kitchen (with Lucan insisting on stepping in when it came to the garbage disposal). Kay had continued to provide explanations about the current state of the world, and how it had arrived there (with a number of rather creative interruptions from other knights). Galahad had explained the ins and outs of modern clothing (using a reluctant Tor as a demonstrative aid). Through it all there had been the incessant trilling of mobile phones as the knights felt compelled to demonstrate that they could indeed speak to each other from anywhere (“See, that’s me on the mobile!” being bellowed from the third floor, the terrace, the roof, besides one’s ear). And, of course, Tor and Percival had gotten into a brawl after a discussion of modern food turned violent (something about Tor taunting Percival about Percy Pig sweets?—Arthur had not followed, nor had he cared to).

Arthur had ended up with a horrible headache and had finally given up on trying to correct all the misinformation that was being thrown about. In an attempt to introduce them systematically to the modern world he had hired tutors for the knights when they had first woken, but that had not worked out quite as well he had believed, given some of the truly bizarre conclusions some of the knights had drawn.

The day had ended with Lancelot flipping through the channels of the telly with apparent rapt fascination. Arthur, who had not been able to pry him away, had eventually fallen asleep on the couch. He had woken once to find Lancelot and Bors bent over what looked like a magazine—but the object had been quickly spirited away when they had seen his eyes open. He had been too bleary to pursue it. The second time he had woken, he had been alone in the room. He had stumbled up to his bedroom thinking to find Lancelot already asleep there, but Lancelot had not reappeared until early morning. Lancelot had promptly fallen asleep, and Arthur had decided to get up shortly afterward.

Today, he fully intended to get back to the room before Lancelot got out of bed, to bar the door, and to spend the rest of the day there.

That was the plan.

He passed Gareth on the stairs, but did not pause to talk to him.

Gareth nodded back to Arthur as he headed down to kitchen in search of breakfast. Despite getting to bed so late, he had woken early. He was going over to see Sarah Jane today. He had not seen her since the excitement about the possibility of Lancelot coming back had started.

He took a detour on the way to the kitchen and stopped at the larger of the sitting rooms. There, sure enough, he found Mador, Lovel, Galleron and Tor sprawled out asleep. The telly was still on, but it showed the DVD screensaver bouncing around. Popcorn was all over the floor as if they had been throwing it. Gareth sighed and tried to roust them out.

Tor managed to ignore a voice that sounded like Gareth’s, but then, between one blink of the eye and another, it was Kay standing over him, so he dragged himself to his feet and stumbled up the stairs to his room and collapsed toward the bed.

Lavaine woke with a start at the crash and lunged upright. Tor was on the floor. Lavaine leapt out of bed in alarm, but then he jerked to a stop as he heard a faint sound.

Yes, that was snoring.

Resisting the urge to kick Tor, he turned back toward his bed, but then realized that, after the rush of adrenaline, he was wide awake. There was no point in trying to get back to sleep now.

It was only as he was brushing his teeth that he remembered. Lancelot was here. Finally. Excited, he swallowed the mouthful of toothpaste and raced to the door. He really did not mean to step on Tor’s leg. It just happened.

He careened down the hallway, passing Tristan, and then across the landing. He skidded to a stop by Arthur’s door. He raised his hand to knock, but paused.

Arthur stared with annoyance at the dark curls peeking out from under the blanket. Lancelot was sound asleep, and attempts to awaken him had been met with firm rejection. Arthur rubbed at jaw, hoping it would not bruise.

He already picked up all the shoes that Lancelot had hurled around the room yesterday. Unfortunately, it looked like the John Lobb’s might not be salvageable. It did not help his mood that it was the one of the pair that he had stepped on which had suffered the most damaged.

He looked again at bed. There was no sign of movement. Sighing, he picked up one of the reports his staff had prepared for him. He would just have to wait.

Lavaine let his hand fall, realizing he did not quite dare. He brightened at the thought that maybe Lancelot was already downstairs. He ran back to the landing, passing Dinaden and then Urré, who stood at the top of the staircase, a contemplative look on his face. Lavaine was in too much of a hurry to wonder what Urré was doing.

Urré studied the smooth lines of the banister and the distance from the landing to the chandelier. He glanced back down the hallway. Arthur had been quite emphatic in his pronouncement of his rule against sliding down the banisters, but Arthur had never said anything about the chandelier. Besides, he would probably be too occupied with Lancelot to notice much of anything for a while.

Urré looked down to the first floor. The wading pool could go directly underneath. Yes, that would do nicely.

He grimaced as sound began to throb out of Yvain and Owein’s room. Those two were going to go deaf, but maybe then they would stop tormenting everyone with their noise.

He needed to go get Lionel and Lamorak. He waved to Palomides who was crossing the foyer.

Palomides walked out into the sunlight, a thick book under his arm. He had been reading in the house, but it was getting too loud in there. On his way to one of the trees that lined the drive, he was diverted by the sound of swearing coming from the garage.

Curiosity led him to the sight of Gawain, sanding with his hands on his hips as he looked mournfully at his motorcycle. It was rather misshapen.

“I think I can fix it,” Meliot was insisting. Gawain seemed less than convinced.

Both he and Gawain turned to Palomides as he stopped beside them. “Don’t look at me,” Palomides said. He tapped a finger on the thick textbook he was holding. “I’m sticking to human bodies.” They returned to staring at the bike.

“Just let me—“ Meliot began, a gleam in his eyes.

“Did you ever manage to put that car you took apart back together?” Gawain asked rather pointedly.

Meliot scowled. “Not yet, but—“

“Then no way.”

Meliot, after lingering awhile and receiving several more curt refusals from Gawain, wandered back into the house. It was nearing midday, which meant lunch preparations were underway. Meliot could smell something burning.

“It’s okay!” Bruenor’s voice called out from the kitchen. “It was only a small fire and I got it out.”

Meliot continued on, unconcerned. As he turned a corner he nearly ran into Yvain and Owein. Owein was carrying what looked like a folding table and two chairs while Yvain was holding a large box. In trying to avoid a collision, Yvain lost hold of a corner of the box and some of the contents slid out, hitting the ground with an unattractive rattle.

“Watch where you’re going!” Owein grumbled. Meliot bent to help Yvain pick up what turned out to be CD cases. Before he could get a good look, Yvain snatched them and dumped them back into the box.

“What are those?” Meliot asked.

“Never mind,” Owein said.

“Where are you going?” Meliot persisted.


Meliot shrugged and the two continued on with their burdens, but then a thought occurred to him. “Hey, while you’re gone, can I –“

“No!” Yvain yelled over his shoulder.

“You touch our computer, and I’ll melt down your precious tool set, after we break your head with your own wrench,” Owein threatened.

“I was just asking,” Meliot said. He caught sight of Bedivere approaching and brightened. If he could just get a good look at one that worked, he was sure he could get his computer reassembled. He did not understand why everyone was being so uptight about it.

“No.” Bedivere said, not even breaking a stride.


Bedivere held the package as though it might contain a small, but vicious, animal. He found Galahad in front of the telly he and Tor used for their gaming system.

“Not that way, Dora!” Galahad was yelling. Bedivere glanced at the screen in time to see a small brown-haired girl walk into a wall. Galahad let out a cry of frustration threw the controller on the ground.

Bedivere rolled his eyes, but the timing was convenient. He handed Galahad the box he was holding. “This was in the mail for you. I don’t recall you ordering anything.”

“Yvain helped me.”

Bedivere held out his hand.

Grumbling, Galahad ripped the box open and fished out the invoice.

Bedivere studied it for a moment, briefly distracted as Tristan walked in from the hall and then exited the room through the terrace door. “You paid more for the expedited shipping than the actual product.”

“I wanted it.”

“That’s not the point—“ Bedivere began, but he was interrupted as Gaheris appeared and snatched the box away from Galahad.


“More important,” Gaheris told Bedivere, ignoring Galahad, who had leaped to his feet, “is what the little bugger ordered.” Gaheris pulled a bottle from the box and frowned. “Tanning spray?”

Galahad managed to grab the bottle. He held it protectively to his chest and backed away. “It’s lotion! It’s nothing.”

Gaheris eyed him, but did not protest as Galahad darted out of the room, nearly colliding with Dinaden.

A sudden booming sound had Bedivere sprinting toward the kitchen. He dodged around Dagonet as he turned the corner.

Dagonet watched Bedivere run. He glanced back in the direction of the kitchen, but decided worst come to worst, Bruenor had incinerated himself, and there was nothing he could do about that anyway. He did not want to get distracted yet again when he was headed out with Kay, who was waiting for him out by the car.

They were going on a picnic. Luckily, Dagonet thought, with a glance in the direction of the kitchen, Kay had insisted that they buy their food on the way. Kay was a smart man.

He could hear Percival screaming about the kitchen. He strode swiftly toward the garage, ignoring the voices that drifted out of the room they used for their poker games.

Geriant, Marrok, Servause and Uwain were gathered around the round table, but they were not playing poker. Geriant rose from his crouch, letting go of his end of the measuring tape.

“Ouch!” Servause complained, as the squiggly metal snapped back on his hand. He too stood up, transferring the tape holder from one hand to the other so he could shake out his injury.

“Wimp,” Marrok muttered.

“So, will it fit? Uwain asked, quickly.

“It will,” Geriant said, checking the piece of paper he held. “If we move out this table. Let’s order it now. Servause, did you get the credit card?”

Servause, still glaring at Marrok, nodded sullenly. “I lifted Bors’. It’s upstairs. I’ll go get it.”

“Good.” Geriant whipped out his mobile and hit a number he had already entered into speed dial. “Hurry up.”

As Servause headed out the door, he heard Geriant say, “Hello, is this Bald Bill’s Billiards Bazaar? You do same day delivery, right?”

Excited, Servause ran down the hall and up the stairs. By the end of the day they would finally have a billiard table whatever anyone else said, and if they did it properly, no one would even be able to trace it back to them. He slowed his pace only when he passed by Arthur’s room. He did not want Arthur to hear anything suspicious.

Arthur sat at the table, trying to concentrate on his reports. Earlier, despite his vow not to leave the room, he had been forced to go across the hall and tell Yvain and Owein to shut off that horrible noise. Again. This really was the final straw. Those two were getting moved from across the hall to somewhere far away, preferably on the other side of the house. Tomorrow. Luckily, the pair had said they were going out. Arthur had not had the heart to question his good fortune by asking where.

Lancelot, of course, had slept through everything. From a man who woke if someone breathed near him wrong, this was vexing, and probably designed just to irritate Arthur.

Arthur had finally started to get back into his work when someone pounded on his door. When he did not answer immediately, yelling started. It was Percival.

“Just call the damned fire department,” Arthur yelled back, but he doubted Percival heard him over the din he was making. Percival panicked about the kitchen every time one of Bruenor’s attempts at cookery went slightly wrong, which was pretty much every day. But conscience caught at Arthur, that and the dread that nagged at the pit of is stomach. He sighed and got up.

On his way to the door, he tripped over a shoe he had missed.

Lancelot, he noted sourly, had not stirred.

Galahad passed by a scowling Arthur headed down the stairs, glad that Arthur barely seemed to notice him. He clutched at his prize. He would have golden brown skin in a few minutes! Every moment that had passed since that sales clerk had called his skin “pasty” had been agony.

He checked the bottle, looking for the directions. “Will darken over several hours,” he muttered to himself, disappointed. But worse was yet to come. In a tone somewhere between a shriek and a whine he read, “for some skin types may result in undesired discoloration”?!

That would not do. Not at all. He considered and came up with a plan.

Tor woke to pounding on the door. He groaned and sat up, sparing a thought to question why he was on the floor.

Before he could lever himself to his feet, Galahad burst through the door. If Tor had been more awake, he might have been wary of the gleam in Galahad’s eyes.

“Are you still asleep? Never mind.” Galahad seized his arm and pulled him up. Tor wondered why his leg was hurting, but he was distracted when he noticed the bottle Galahad was holding in his other hand.

“What’s that?”


“It’s not nothing.” Tor made a grab for it, but Galahad evaded him. “Come on! Show me!”

Galahad stopped backing away. There was a crafty look on his face. “Well, I was going to save it for myself, but I suppose I can share.”

Tor did not notice the look. “You’d better!” He took the bottle Galahad gave to him. “Can I eat it?”

“Don’t be daft. Spray it all over, on your bare skin.”

“Okay.” Tor began to pull off his shirt, then paused. “What does it do?”

Galahad shrugged with careful nonchalance. “It saves you from getting burned by the sun.”

Gaheris automatically paused to listen by Tor’s door, but he heard nothing alarming, so he continued on downstairs. He wanted to go out to the garage and see how Gawain was doing. Mourning over his precious motorcycle, no doubt. Gaheris had warned him about letting Lancelot loose on it.

He saw Lamorak, Lionel and Urré as he headed toward the garage, but did not stop to see what they were doing.

“I think we’ll need a bigger pool,” Lamorak said dubiously, once Gaheris was out of earshot.

“The one we have is fine,” Urré insisted impatiently. They all ignored the yelling they could hear from the kitchen.

They headed out to one of the gardening sheds behind the house, passing Tristan on the way. Lionel pushed open the door to the shed, and they stopped, surprised to find Agravaine, Meliagaunt, Mador, Lovel and Galleron gathered inside. Agravaine glared at them.

A man on a mission, Urré did not seem either curious or bothered by the other knights’ odd place for a gathering. “Hey, I need to get that.” He pointed to what had once been a purple inflatable wading pool, but which was now largely an odd green color.

Mador watched as the three knights left with the heap of rumpled plastic. He wondered what it was.

He turned back to the conversation as Galleron resumed speaking. “But I don’t get it. Lancelot hated that Roman.” He had been saying variants of the same thing all afternoon. Mador did not blame him. He did not get it himself. The last he remembered, Lancelot had, in a rare alliance with Agravaine, been bent on making the Roman’s life not worth living.

It was true that for the last six months he had been forced to accept that the Roman was not, he was told, so bad, and that the other knights, those who had lived longer, had come to respect or at least accept the Roman, but he still cringed at the idea. He did not understand how the others could just allow that Roman to tell them what to do. The only one of the longer-lived knights who seemed to understand was Agravaine, who had met them here to answer their questions.

It was like the others had lost their minds, like in that show about ghosts and demons and two brothers, where the demon had taken over a body of a little girl and forced the girl’s family to pretend to love her. Except most of the knights, unlike the family, did not realize something bad was going on, and Arthur had not taken over anyone’s body, much less a little girl’s. Mador shook his head. He opened his mouth to ask a question, but the door opened again. This time it was a put-upon looking Lamorak alone.

“We forgot the pump.”

Lamorak jogged back to where Lionel and Urré were waiting. He waved at Lucan up on the roof. The maniac was up there, as usual, with one of the bows he and Tristan had managed to make. Lucan, also as usual, did not wave back.

“Okay, I think we’re ready,” Urré said. Lamorak was not so sure, but he followed Urré back toward the house anyway, nodding to Dinaden, who stalked by.

They were nearly to the house when a ball came flying out one of the second floor windows with a crash of broken glass. Lamorak looked up to see Tor struggling with the window frame. After a minute of cursing, Tor just smashed the rest of the glass. He stuck his head out. “Hey, toss that back up here!”

So that’s what it took to break a window in this place. Tor caught the ball on the second try, yelled his thanks and sprinted back out into the hallway. He hoped no one would notice that the window was broken. Or at least not connect it with him.

“That should count as a goal,” Lavaine said from behind him.

They were all still rather vague on the rules of football, especially as they might apply to the hallway variety, but that did not stop Tor from being adamant. “No way!”

Tor had started up this game when he found Lavaine hovering by Arthur’s door. Tor had wanted to go outside and test the sun-proofing stuff (oddly, Galahad, after Tor had finished spraying it all over himself, had merely studied his efforts, but had not seemed inclined to try the stuff himself), but Lavaine had not wanted to leave his post by the door. They had compromised and decided to play in the corridor. Sadok, Uriens, Safer and Pelleas had heard the noise and joined in.

Tor, dodging around Meliot, who was carrying a large box to the room he shared with Ector, took position, and kicked the ball, which careened down the corridor, bouncing off the walls and hitting Arthur’s door as it went.

Arthur pressed his hands over his ears at the sounds coming from hallway. It sounded like a stampede of elephants were running up and down the corridors. All he had wanted was one day of peace with Lancelot. But he was not getting it. Was the house always so bloody loud? Usually, he was not home enough to notice. And why weren’t Kay or Gareth or someone keeping some kind of order?

Arthur had been disturbed, but not alarmed, by the state of the kitchen. He had seen worse. No injuries were reported, and so Arthur had stomped back upstairs, after telling everyone in earshot not to bother him again, and to just order pizza.

Now this. He pressed his hands closer as he heard a noise that sounded like something breaking. He was not leaving the room. He was not.

He glared over at the unmoving lump still in bed. Lancelot would have to wake up soon. God knew how he had managed to sleep through the noise.

Galehaut, ignoring the running and shouting around him, paused, staring at Arthur’s door. He was not sure how long he stood there before Pelleas collided with him. Rejecting the offers to join in the game, he headed downstairs. He just wanted to get away. He opened the door to the terrace and saw Agravaine, coming in from outside.

Agravaine stared at him, and then looked almost concerned. Galehaut knew he could not hide how miserable he felt, and apparently even Agravaine could feel sympathetic. Agravaine put an unexpected arm around his shoulders. “Come outside. Let’s talk.”

Tristan rose out of the shadows of his chair and frowned as he watched Agravaine and Galehaut. That was an odd pair. He thought about eavesdropping, but then he caught the sound of Dinaden’s footsteps in the corridor.

After a half a day spent tracking, Dinaden had been sure his quarry had come to rest here, but the room was nearly empty. A careful eye revealed a quickly filling depression in one of the chairs, which was still slightly warm to the touch.

He sighed, his shoulders slumping. He could not do this anymore today. He went over to the figure beached on one of the room’s sofas. “Bors!”

“Uhya?” The behemoth opened one red-veined eye. “Din? Piss off.”

“Let’s go out and get a drink.”

Bors sat up with alacrity that belied his pose of drunken stupor. Dinaden drew in a sharp breath and stepped hastily back. “But you’re paying. And bathing first.”

Bors stumbled toward the stairs. He was clean enough (he was pretty sure he had taken a bath a few days ago). Dinaden was such a bastard about stuff like this. It was not even as if he had been drinking last night. Or not that much. Once Arthur had fallen asleep, he had stayed up past dawn with Tristan, Gareth, Dag and some of the others, filling Lancelot in on what they knew about modern weapons.

He scratched at his stomach as he walked, yawning hugely. He wondered if Dag would want to go out with them, and if there were a way to get Kay to stay at home.

He passed Lionel and Lamorak who were busy in the foyer. Urré was directing them from the landing. Bors belched as he reached the top of the stairs, and slapped Urré on the back. “Up to something are you?” he said approvingly. Urré, who had nearly gone over the banister, gave him a nasty smile.

Glancing down at the foyer below, Bors was reminded of something. There was that show he had seen on the telly about jumping . . . . What had that been called? Bungee jumping, that was it. It had looked like good fun.

Ector got one whiff and gave Bors a wide breadth as he headed to Griflet’s room. He found the other knight sitting on the floor, diligently sharpening tableware. He had something he had been meaning to show Griflet, but had gotten distracted with Lancelot’s return.

Ector glanced out the window before he settled across from Griflet. He wondered for a moment what that big truck was doing in the driveway, but he forgot about it when Griflet held up a former butter knife. “This metal is pretty good, you know, but it won’t quite take a point,” Griflet said.

Ector looked sidelong at Griflet and then could not repress a grin as he pulled out the steak knife he had pilfered when he had accompanied Arthur to that dinner last week. It was a beauty, and he had been itching to show it off.

Griflet eyed it with some jealousy. He hauled out the box he kept under his bed and said, “I haven’t got anything as good as that, but I have got something nearly as good. He began to pull out a whole trove of sharp and sharpened objects.

“Bring them over to my room,” Ector suggested. “We can compare.”

Galahad used the cover provided by Griflet and his box and checked down the corridor. His eyes widened as he caught sight of Tor. Blanching, he made a break for it, nearly knocking down Uwain.

Uwain ran down the stairs and was dismayed to see Geriant and Servause and two strange men in uniforms still in the hallway with their new billiard table. “Hurry up!” he demanded. He glanced around wildly, but luckily no one else was around. He knew that the table would be discovered in short order, but it was easier to deny involvement if they were not caught red handed

One of the deliverymen, who was chewing something like a cow with cud, ignored him, and said to Geriant, “Look mate, I’m telling you, it won’t bloody fit.”

Geriant was scowling. “I measured.”

The man rolled his eyes. “You measured for the table? But what about the space to use the cues?”

The three of them exchanged alarmed glances. Panicked, Uwain demanded, “Can you take it back?”

The other deliveryman waved a piece of paper. “All sales final, mate.”

They darted nervous looks around. “Just put it out on the terrace, quick! We’ll figure out what to do with it later.”

“It’s not waterproof, mate.”

“Shut up, and hurry up!”

They hustled the movers, and got them back out the door as quickly as they could. Afterward, they hovered in one of the sitting rooms that had a door to the terrace, refusing to look in the direction of the Imperial Ultimate Deluxe Billiard Table.

“Did you at least put Bors’ charge card back?”

Servause nodded. “He didn’t notice a thing.”

“Okay. I’ll fill Marrok in.”

They exchanged a look. And by mutual agreement, they walked away, as though they had nothing to do with the table now sitting out on the terrace, hand-carved with five types of rare wood, for which they had paid nearly the exact amount that Arthur’s car had cost.

When Uwain came along, Lavaine surrendered his place in the game and wandered downstairs, but stopped long enough to tell Tor that he might want to have a look in a mirror, because he looked odd. Tor said he would, just as soon as he kicked Sadok’s cheating arse.

Leaving the upstairs hall meant he could miss Lancelot’s reappearance, but Lavaine was hungry. He scavenged a few pieces of cold pizza amidst the litter of empty boxes in the dining room, and, munching, we went outside to sit on the terrace. He nearly turned back around when he saw Agravaine, but then Agravaine caught sight of him. He was not going to let that bastard see him retreat. He stepped outside, shutting the door behind him. He was surprised to see a gleaming table with a green cloth top sitting in one corner, but then his attention was occupied by Agravaine.

“You. I would have thought to find you crouched by Lancelot’s door now that he’s back. Not very faithful of you, puppy, to leave your post at your master’s door.” Agravaine’s mouth was made for sneering.

Lavaine thought about spitting his mouthful of pizza at Agravaine’s face, but said nothing. It was not as if Agravaine was being original.

Agravaine seemed annoyed at the lack of reaction. He must be spoiling for a fight. Perhaps he had recently been forced to be nice to someone or something. Agravaine persisted, “But it’s not your master’s door. It’s Arthur’s. Was that the problem?”

Lavaine refused to show his discomfort. It had been a shock, finding out that Lancelot was with Arthur, not Galehaut, but Lancelot must have had his reasons. And if Lancelot trusted the Roman, that was enough for Lavaine.

“Or maybe you heard something . . . .” Agravaine’s voice trailed off suggestively. “You know that the Roman is probably fucking Lancelot right now.”

That was it. Lavaine threw aside the last of his pizza and took a swing. It connected pretty good too. But he did not see Meligaunt approach until the other man had managed to grab him from behind. Lavaine, indignant, screamed for justice. Or at least reinforcements.

None of them were prepared for the arrival of Lucan, who seemed to drop straight from the sky.

He landed square on the pretty table, which made an ominous cracking sound.

Breunor heard a weird splintering sound from outside, but he was concentrating too hard to worry about it. He was sure he had it now. He rubbed at his singed eyebrows. He’d show them. He would show them all, and they could just shut up about whether to order Indian or Thai for dinner.

He lit the burner.


Lionel was not sure how he had ended up being the one who got to go first. He was swinging from the chandelier right now, and he had to admit that it was rather fun.

“Hurry up and jump!” Urré yelled. “I want my turn.”

Lionel eyed the wading pool beneath him. He needed to time his release. The pool looked rather small from here.

Just as he was about to let go, a ball came hurtling out of the corridor, over the banister and struck him in the face. Shocked, he let go a moment too soon.


Dinaden was already drunk. Light weight. Too bad Bors had not been able to find Dag before they left the house. He had not even been able to get Dag on his mobile.

Bors blinked as the bartender approached. “Hey, man, can you settle up? You’ve run up quite a tab.”

Bors pulled out his credit card and handed it over.


Yvain and Owein exchanged a look. They might not have been in so much trouble if they had not tried to make a run for it. Yvain began to dial.


Tor, satisfied that he had pounded that Sadok good, decided it was time for a snack. He had a whole box of Lion Bars under his bed. He walked into his room, but caught sight of himself in the mirror over the dresser.


Meliot looked up from the computer parts spread all over the floor to Bedivere who was staring in frozen horror. But Bedivere’s paralysis lasted only a moment before he moved.

“Hey!” Ector and Griflet yelled, as Bedivere appropriated a couple of the most prized items in their collections.

As some of the day’s events came to a culmination, the life-size figure in the portrait stared out of its frame with icy disdain. If something of the man lingered in the likeness, one might imagine that it was thinking that the great grandson of his line should be taken out back and horsewhipped for letting these rampaging barbarians into D’Aubigny Manor.

But, it was likely only a fancy to imagine any life in the old painting. That was fortunate, for, in a moment, the whole painting was dripping with water from the wading pool.

Then came the smoke.


“Hey I think this time Bruenor blew out the kitchen windows! Do you think he’s dead?”

“What are we going to eat for dinner?” Percival wailed.


“Arthur! Lionel’s dead—or at least he’s broken his head!”


“Arthur, we need money, right now! Bors says that someone better get their arse over to the bar with some money or, for every dish he has to wash, he’s going to break one over someone’s head!”


“Arthur! Yvain’s on the phone. He and Owein are in jail!”


“I’m orange! Oraange!!!! I’m dying!”


“Help! Gareth, Kay, Arthur--anyone! Bedivere is killing Meliot!”


“Arthur! Lucan is killing Agravaine and Meligaunt out on the terrace!”

“Shut up and let him!”



A clap of thunder was the signal for the heavens to open up to ruin whatever remained of the Imperial Ultimate Deluxe Billiard Table.

It did not, however, dampen Lucan's determination.

But it did drench the the interior of the house wherever a window had been broken.


Lancelot lifted his head from his pillow. The bed was ridiculously soft, but he could get used to that. Except that the being dead thing made it sound odd, he would have said he could not remember the last time he had slept so well.

He sat up, stretching luxuriously. Arthur was sitting in one of the chairs around the small table, his hands over his ears. There was a lot of yelling and screaming going on outside of the room.

“Arthur,” Lancelot said reprovingly, as fists began to pound on the door. “What have you been doing?”

End Notes: In case you were wondering, and are an ignorant American like me, there really is such a thing as spotted dick custard, and Heinz apparently sells it in cans, and it’s microwavable. There are also (thanks [ profile] darklyscarlett for recently pointing this out) such a thing as Percy Pig sweets. They are made by Marks and Spencer, who have made a brand out of him and his barnyard pals (you can buy stuff like Percy Pig bed sheets and rugs). I, apparently, do not have to make this stuff up.
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