Free Historical Fiction – Stonehearted 2: Chapter 2

First look at chapter 2 of the next volume of Stonehearted. The first volume is By the Sword’s Edge. The second volume doesn’t have a title yet, so I’m going to call it Stonehearted 2 for now. I started writing the second volume towards the end of last year and am making fairly good progress on it at the moment. I thought it would be fun to post here each completed chapter as I write them. They’re only drafts at the moment – no fancy editing, so probably riddled with typos and inconsistencies. Once I have finished this volume I’ll publish it in print and eBook format and announce it on this blog.

Other chapters from Stonehearted Volume 2 can be found by clicking here.

Chapter 2

Minsterworth gritted his teeth. “Tighter than that.”

Richard Stone pulled the strap harder and buckled it.

Minsterworth winced. The muscle of his leg still ached from its wounds, but those cuisses needed to fit well and not come loose. An inch of unprotected leg could be enough for another arrow or worse a blade or spear to pierce it.

Richard buckled the other strap and then fixed the greaves to the lower legs. Minsterworth sat and Richard helped him on with his tall riding boots that fitted snugly over his plate armour.

Minsterworth nodded his thanks to Richard, who returned it with a blank face. “We need to fix you with some better protection. Then you could ride in at my side.”

Richard nodded at this.

“That cross, sell it to me and I’ll give you enough marks to buy a full suite of armour. What say you?”

“I don’t want to sell the cross,” Richard replied. He was still kneeling where he had to help Minsterworth on his with his boots. He looked at the floor as he spoke those few words.

“If you want to be a priest then why don’t you shave the top of your head? Join an abbey. Become a hermit. I’ll happily help brick you in your cell if you like.”

“Don’t mock me.”

Richard got up and stared defiantly at Minsterworth. Minsterworth felt goosebumps on his arms underneath his armour. He looked at Richard’s belt. There was no knife. He was safe. Perhaps.

“Come here,” Minsterworth commanded. Richard stepped forward and into a back-handed slap from Minsterworth’s gauntlet. The blow knocked Richard back and nearly made him stumble. Minsterworth reached for the nearest item from the arming rack behind him, and pulled back mace. He waited, expecting Richard to come at him fired up and angry.

But the lad didn’t. He straightened himself up. His cheek was bleeding badly. But he paid it no heed. He didn’t look up. He just turned and walked from the tent.

Minsterworth shivered again.

***

If you want to read the first volume of StoneheartedBy the Sword’s Edge, then click here.

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