King slayer by Suzanne-Helmigh on DeviantArt.com

The siege lasted a fortnight. Now, all had perished except them. He had escorted the Earl, Countess and the boy up the north tower steps. Before dawn, rhythmic pounding and Germanic shouts foretold their doom. Now, a barbarous roar as the tower door below crashes inward.

Sir Gareth of Sussex waits. Across the stone room, the royals cower in a dark corner. The grunts and growls grow louder as they ascend — shouts Edmund doesn’t understand but knows they mean death.

He spreads his stance, gripping the longsword with both hands. The first is nearly decapitated, but there are so many.

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