A chance meeting between a prince and a peasant results in consequences that will not only change their lives, but also the kingdom.

Cover by Zillah Designs.


8. Chapter Eight: Khyber


      “Since when have you been a bookworm?”

      Abelard was lounging in a chair beside me. I hadn’t noticed him walk into the library which was where I had been all afternoon.

      “What do you want?” I asked rather grumpily as I reluctantly closed the book I had been reading.

      Smirking at me he replied. “Well little brother I was going to see if you wanted an archery contest, but if you’re going to be like that.”

      I rubbed my eyes. It would probably do me good to go outside seeing as I had spent the last few days inside the library either reading or being taught by Howlin. Standing up I stretched my stiff legs. “No, I will come.”


      The archery range was already set up when Abelard and I arrived. Night had fallen without me observing and torches lined the perimeter, bright against the night sky. Two servants were waiting with bows and arrows on a wooden table.

      “If I recall correctly I won last time.” Abelard grinned, snatching his bow from one of the servants without a word of thanks.

      Ignoring my brother’s taunt I realised that I had been just as rude as him up until recently. I had taken servants for granted all my life, but wouldn’t anymore.

      “Thank you.” I said as I accepted my own bow from the servant.

      He looked rather startled and I saw a small smile tug at his lips as he bowed.

      Abelard narrowed his eyes at me while knocking an arrow in his bow. “Leave us.” he ordered.

      The servants bowed simultaneously and left the supply of arrows on the table.

      “Father paid me a visit earlier.” Abelard told me as he lifted his bow up, taking aim on the target in the distance.

      “Oh yes?”

      There was a twang as the arrow was released and a thud as it landed in the ground beside my foot.

      “What in the name of the Goddess did you do that for?” I demanded angrily. The arrow had been mere inches away from lodging itself in my foot.

      Abelard pointed the tip of his bow at me menacingly. “Tell father what I’ve been doing again and next time I won’t miss.”

      I was furious. How dare he threaten me? Just because he was older than me he thought he could treat me how he liked, as if I was one of the servants.

      “You’re lucky I didn’t tell him about all the whores you bed.” I growled, clenching my hands into fists.

      Laughing cruelly Abelard said. “You think father would give a gahl about that? He isn’t nearly as innocent as you think brother.”

      “What do you mean?” I asked warily.

      He looked away as if I wasn’t worthy of his attention. “Nothing, just think about what I said.”

      Watching as he strode away I pinched the bridge of my nose. I did not need Abelard as an enemy. He already made a nuisance of himself as it was.

      But what had Abelard meant by what he had said about father?

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