Enlighten (King Arthur and Her Knights Book 5)

By: K.M. Shea

Chapter 1

The Lancelot Hateclub



“This marks the opening of the tenth meeting of the Lancelot Hateclub. Attendance will now be taken. Morgan le Fay?”

“Present,” the beautiful sorceress said, smoothing the skirts of her blue dress that set off her eyes perfectly.

“Nymue?”

“I still don’t understand why you make us go through this. What is attendance anyway?” Nymue asked.

“Are you here or not?” Britt asked, ignoring the faerie lady’s question.

“Clearly, I am.”

“And I—the founding member—am present as well,” Britt said, sliding the wooden stool she was seated on closer to the table. The three ladies were seated outside, in a garden that was barely starting to bloom now that the chill of winter was, for the most part, gone.

“What is the purpose of today’s meeting, Founding Member?” Morgan asked. She more willingly played along with the required vocabulary Britt used to conduct Lancelot Hateclub meetings.

Britt tapped her fingers on the table surface. “Spring has come after a long, long winter,” Britt said.

“It wasn’t that long. This year’s winter was actually quite mild,” Nymue said.

“Yes, but you weren’t cooped up in a castle with Lancelot dogging your every step,” Britt said, her upper lip curling in dislike.

“Oh,” Nymue blinked.

“It felt like a very long winter indeed,” Morgan said.

“But now spring is here. Mostly,” Britt said, conveniently forgetting the cooler temperatures that had plagued medieval England for the past week. “Which means my knights have begun to leave and go out on quests.”

“So?” Nymue asked. “You designed that system. You said questing would ‘expel their youthful energy, make the country think better of your courts through their good deeds, and get them out of your hair.’”

“I did,” Britt acknowledged. “And it’s a very good system. It’s been working gloriously. There’s just one problem.”

“And that is?” Morgan asked.

Britt abruptly launched off her stool and leaned across the table to hiss, “Lancelot isn’t going out on quests!”

“That is a problem,” Morgan agreed.

Nymue frowned. “Can’t you make him? You are King of Camelot.”

“I could personally assign him to a quest. I want to, but we haven’t really had anything quest-worthy pop up, and whenever I mention it, Merlin makes a squished face. He thinks it would be bad of me to boss around a prince.”

Morgan chopped her hand through the air, disregarding Merlin’s answer. “That is preposterous. Merlin orders the Orkney princes around as if they were stable boys.”

“Yes, that’s the catch, though,” Britt agreed, sinking back onto her stool. “King Lot and King Urien are beholden to me since I have their sons in my courts. King Ban—Lancelot’s father—and King Bors—Sir Lionel and Sir Bors’ father—are my allies whom I owe a lot.”

“I think Merlin allows you to be king only when it’s convenient,” Nymue said.

“Yeah. So, back to our topic: How do I get rid of that self-indulgent weasel?” Britt asked.

“Poison?” Morgan suggested.

“If you send him towards my lake, I will curse you with a perpetual itch,” Nymue warned.

Although she was less-than thrilled with their answers, their clear dislike of Sir Lancelot du Lac warmed Britt’s heart.

She hadn’t discovered Morgan’s great hatred of Lancelot until Camelot held a Christmas feast, and Lancelot—when sufficiently drunk—explained that he had previously made Morgan’s acquaintance when courting a sorceress friend of hers. (“He broke her heart like a clay vessel,” Morgan said. “I wish I could shatter his face in the same manner.”)

It was no great secret that both Britt and Nymue couldn’t stand the flowery knight, and with Nymue and Morgan living in the same area—both being avid Lancelot haters and both knowing that Britt (or King Arthur, as she was known in Camelot) was a girl—Britt couldn’t deny herself the creation of the Lancelot Hateclub.

“Does anyone know of a damsel in need of saving?” Britt asked.

“You would inflict him on another female? You are treacherous,” Nymue said.

“Not necessarily,” Britt said. “Many of the ladies in Camelot enjoy his company.”

“Why?” Morgan said.

“It is one of the mysterious of life. Many of the faerie ladies at my lake are also taken with the Debaucher and the Slobs,” Nymue said, referring to Lancelot and the brothers Sir Lionel and Sir Bors.

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