The smell was almost bearable, almost. Lllorente gave in and vomited what little he had in his stomach over the nearest pile of corpses still awaiting burial. Sir Frederic’s insistence on doing the right thing carried its own burdens, and a little extra would make no distance. Trying not to take too deep a breath, he continued to dig.
The voice sounded like Sir Frederic’s. but the Knight was over the far side of the village carrying out his own burial detail.
“I said hold!”
Llorente turned and the familiar sight of mounted warriors met his eyes. This was in some way déjà vu with respect to his last visit to the area. At least he did not look like a magician as his rifle was out of sight, but obviously once again these people had jumped to conclusions. Enough was enough!
“Who the fuck are you calling knave?” he spat, straightening up and gripping the spade in his hands more tightly.
“You,” sneered the horseman, drawing his sword, “and I intend to teach you a lesson…”
“What would that be,” asked Llorente with a smirk, having noticed Burns rifle poking from the nearest cabin, “how to behave as an educated gentleman?”
“Why you…” the horseman rose up in his stirrups, fully intending to strike the obnoxious Llorente down where he stood.
“Hold!” a louder voice roared and Sir Frederic appeared, trailed by a number of other mounted and lightly armoured men and boys.
“Who are you to tell me…” began the irascible horseman. He never finished his sentence as the spade slammed into him at full swing, knocking him from his mount to sprawl amidst the pile of bodies.
“Llorente!” roared Sir Frederic.
“Sorry,” mumbled Llorente, trying ineffectually to hide his pleased grin, “but the prick was being disrespectful.”
Sir Frederic also tried manfully to retain his dignity, but a rueful chuckle escaped before he could control it.
“My cousin has always been a bit of a prick,” he agreed quietly with Llorente, before turning to face the new arrivals he had brought with him.
“You want me to hit him again?” asked Llorente, eying the moaning cousin where he lay.
“Only if he deserves it…” began Sir Frederic, and then as Llorente eagerly raised the spade he finished, “…again.”
The solid thud of the spade against armour gave him his reply.