Today on The Tattooed Book Geek I am pleased to be bringing to you a book excerpt from Sir Edric’s Kingdom by Thaddeus White.
When King Lawrence is poisoned and consigned to his sickbed, Sir Edric Greenlock, the Hero of Hornska, is thrust into the position of Lord Steward.
But with the King half-dead and vultures circling, Sir Edric soon discovers running a kingdom is about as relaxing as being a gorgon’s barber.
Aided by his trusty manservant Dog, Orff No-Balsac the man-eating slaver, his feisty paramour Corkwell, and the sorceress Lysandra, Sir Edric must navigate his way through the murky scheming of murderous conspirators and fend off invasions to keep the kingdom, and himself, in one piece.
Book Excerpt from Sir Edric’s Kingdom
[At a banquet to celebrate Prince Edward’s triumph over the Ursk…]
Sir Geoffrey grinned, distorting the long scar that cut across his mouth. “Not far off. There’s a rumour the King is thinking of remarrying the old queen, and that he’ll announce it tonight. The daft coot’s too damned soft.”
Must be why she kept having affairs.
Sir Edric popped a finger-length piece of pike into his mouth. “Utter madness. She’s got the sexual appetite of the man-eating mermaids of Bloodmilk Bay.”
“Maybe the King’s heart simply yearns for his one true love?” Caroline intervened.
I don’t think it’s his heart doing the yearning.
“I can appreciate the sentiment, for the heart is a cruel and fickle master, ever led astray by whimsical desire. I imagine you yourself, sweet Caroline, have had many marriage proposals since your husband’s tragic demise,” Sir Edric replied.
“The mourning period has only just ended, Sir Edric, though I thank you for your kind words.”
Nothing like months of simmering frustration, bereft of male companionship, to make a woman so hot she’s all but boiling over.
“Watch out,” Sir Geoffrey warned her. “Sir Edric’s renowned for his rakish habits.”
Sir Edric jabbed his fork and drew blood from Sir Geoffrey’s medium rare beef. “How very dare you,” he retorted, putting the pilfered meat into his mouth. “Dear Caroline, the city is full of rogues and rascals, but I am renowned as a paragon of virtue.”
“It’s true. He won’t even bed his wife,” Sir Geoffrey replied.
“Would you?” Sir Edric asked his friend.
“Not for my weight in gold.”
Sir Edric laughed, Caroline and Sir Geoffrey joining in the merriment.
“There’s nothing quite like wine for a social lubricant, don’t you think, Edric?” Caroline asked.
Sir Edric shrugged. “I prefer foreplay myself.”
She giggled, and he made a mental note to keep an eye on her.
Wouldn’t want her falling into ungentlemanly hands. The city is dangerous for a young lady at night. Chivalry demands I escort her home. And my house is nearer.
Before he could suggest they take in the midnight air together, the seneschal thumped his staff on the stone floor to silence the chattering of the banquet. Prince Edward was still in the field, so King Lawrence was joined at the high table only by Lord Chancellor Malthus and Philippa of Lorney, his niece. The King rose to his feet to deliver his speech and Sir Edric shifted his chair so he could look in Lawrence’s direction whilst enjoying the more pleasant sight of Lady Hawes.
Lawrence smiled broadly, and vomited half a gallon of blood onto his dinner.
That is an unorthodox opening.
The King slumped over the table, and struggled to support himself. Malthus and Philippa rushed to his aid, and supported the King as he staggered away from the feast. The hall burst into hushed excitement as the nobles and knights spoke empty words.
“Dear gods, was his food poisoned?” Lord Pendlebury wondered aloud.
“No,” Sir Edric said, speaking with such certainty that the dozen nearest nobles stared at him.
Why must I be surrounded by idiots?
He pointed at a very nervous-looking servant behind the King’s chair. “Do pay attention. His food taster’s still there.”
Stamping steel boots announced the arrival of the Royal Guards. And rather a lot of them, at that. There must have been a hundred of the elite soldiers, enough to ensure not a single nobleman could slip away unseen. The lovely Captain Corkwell was with them, although her golden hair was hidden beneath her shining steel helmet.
A hundred guards is a lot. Are they here to protect us, or has Lawrence ordered bloody revenge for his bloody speech?
“The King is grievously sick,” Corkwell proclaimed. “He commands that the Privy Council gather in the council chamber tomorrow morning.”
Huzzah! I’m safe.
“Except for Sir Edric,” Corkwell added.
Sir Edric’s Kingdom by Thaddeus White
Sir Edric’s Kingdom is released on the 22nd of September and until the 29th of September will be available at the special offer price of only £0.99 and $0.99.
About Thaddeus White
Thaddeus White is a writer of speculative fiction, including fantasy, sci-fi, paranormal and comedy-fantasy. Sir Edric’s Kingdom is the second full-sized comedy he’s written and his sixth novel. It’s a splendid book, more fun than a ferret in custard. For the future, he has already written the next novel, Sir Edric and the Plague, and will be working on Crown of Blood, the third and final part of The Bloody Crown (for those who prefer less mirth and more grimness in their fantasy).
Probably best not to attach an author picture, I’d rather entice than frighten potential readers 😉
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