Mud Pool by CBasco on DeviantArt.com

“Boy! Give me your hand,” ordered Sir Ballard, knee deep in bog mud.

“You gave me your hand yesterday,” said Haymuth. “Across my face.”

“For impudence.”

“For defending my sister’s honor.”

Ballard’s waist disappeared. “Your sister was a whore.”

“She was a maiden yesterday morning. By noon, a harlot. By evening, a corpse.”

Ballard’s breastplate was engulfed. “I did not kill her.”

“Your lust did.”

“Fetch a rope!”

“My sister used the rope. When I regained consciousness, she was swinging from a rafter.”

“I should not die like this. I’m a knight. Chivalry …” Ballard’s head disappeared.

“… is dead.”

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