K. Ryan

"My Lord Wyldon," Kel mused, "Was not right, but he was not wrong, either."

"Oh, hush." Alanna, adding kindling to their fire, glared over her shoulder at her companion. "Your Stump is hardly the master of ambiguities."

"Don't call him that!"

"It's a good name. Neal was inspired—"

"Neal, Lioness, is a bad influence on most folk."

"Wyldon of Cavall," Alanna sniffed, "is never right about anything that doesn't involve bitches and whelps."



"Nothing. No. Truly."

"Stop laughing, then, you wretch. I will own he has excellent heroic timing—the scars to prove it—but we can't all be everywhere." Alanna sighed. "How was he right, Kel? Tell me that?"

"If you'd…" Kel sighed, sitting down by the flames and laying a hand on Alanna's shoulder. "If you'd been there, through my training. Physically been there, taken me as your Squire—"

"—That would have been jolly, as your friend says—oh, fine. I'm listening."

"Would we have had this?" Kel took Alanna's hand in hers, examining it, thumb gently pressing the palm, the wrist. "You would have been my Knight Mistress, and I simply don't see—oh."

It seemed, as it so often did, better to kiss her then, than say anything more. Somehow, explaining the joys of 'taking the Squire' might tarnish the magic of the two of them, simply there.

Note: Written for the first round of Goldenlake's SMACKDOWN: A fanfiction fight for Kel's non-canonical hand. Competitor: Alanna of Pirate's Swoop and Olau. Characters are in no way mine. The competition is the brainchild of Goldenlake message boards. They, likewise, neither own nor profit from these characters and/or their geographies.