TITLE: ARTHUR AND THE HEADLESS KNIGHTS OF THE FLYING ROUND TABLE
GENRE: MG - Arthurian retelling with a sci-fi twist
Stale sweat inside the executioner’s mask soured my snotbox, forcing me to breathe through clenched teeth. It stank, and so did my sister Fay for making me wear this hood backwards to keep her precious tunnel secret.
Rats squealed as she maneuvered me through another puddle. They must have recognized Fay, because they scurried ahead faster than a fox leaving a henhouse with takeout. A rumored shortage of rat tails, the key ingredient for casting spells in her also-rumored magic practice, kept Camelot’s rodent community on high alert.
Inspired by blindness and the tunnel’s acoustics, I sang, “Three blind mice . . . see how they—ouch.”
Fay jammed a rat-nosed elbow into my ribs, expressing displeasure toward my dream of becoming a minstrel
“Why drag me along?” I asked.
“To keep the cow slayer from catching me.”
I yanked my makeshift blindfold off. “How? I have no sword.”
“No worries. I can outrun you. Besides, I’d be madder than a bag of ferrets to let you wave a sharp object around in the dark.”
Great. Hoodwinked into missing Saturday Night Juggling to become beast bait. I debated leaving, but my recent chivalry lesson on Damsel in Distress dictated I stay.
We reached a ladder leading to the surface and climbed up into a tree hollow. Outside the gnarly hole, Fay's breath fogged. “We’re here.”
I scratched my head beneath branches besieged with mistletoe, staring at a moonlit meadow ringed with giant rocks. “Where’s here?”
“Road apples! Stonehenge takes three days by horse.”
“Great tunnel, don’t you think?”