The first two weeks of November I was down with Covid. I’m much better now and am hoping to find my writing groove again. Here is a little sample that might fit into the sequel of “In the Shadow of the Dragon’s Spine.

“Wake up!” Drew called as he gave Cu lain a shake. “Cu lain get up.”

Cu lain waved Drew away. “Let me alone.”

“You missed your weapon’s lesson with Fek Speider already. He won’t complain. That’s not his way. And you’ll miss his usual punishment. He won’t have you running this time. I heard he was late for class this morning. He probably partied all night. He had bet a mark on Asleif winning the tourney and walked away with almost five hundred.”

Cu lain sat up and tried to focus. Then he remembered last night. He had crawled into bed just before sunrise.

“Get up!” Drew gave him another shake. “Arnor is in a mood today. Jae didn’t return last night. And inspection is in half a shadow. Jae’s section is in order. Why worry about where Jae was last night? This inspection won’t affect his standing in the ranks. But it is almost time for your class with Lese Laer. And he takes his reading lessons most seriously. You will regret upsetting him. Took me two years to work off the demerits I got my first year.”

“I’m getting up,” Cu lain answered. “He can’t demerit me. I’m not a student of Virkiflyot. But, I don’t want a complaint to get to the king. He’s the reason I’m getting lessons. A free man needs to read well. And I am free thanks to you and the others.” Cu lain finished as he climbed out of bed.

In short order, he, with Drew’s help, had his area in shape. Drew gave him a shove out the door.

“I’ll see you at noon. You can tell me what happened to you last night then.” Drew told him as Drew headed down the hall away from him. Cu lain turned the other way. His class was in the scholar’s wing, a good quarter shadow’s walk. He would get there on time. Not a moment before.

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