This is number twenty-two in a series of posts where I document the complete process of writing a novella - Day By Day!
I am documenting (via my blog) the complete start to finish experience of writing a novella that I will be releasing for FREE once it is written.
I will be writing approximately 900 words per day and I will post each day's writing the following morning, unedited, on my blog. This means you get to see my draft with all its original spelling mistakes, bad grammar, and clumsy sentences
The timeline for the experiment is as follows:
- Plotting, Characters and Scene Outlines - April 1to April 20 - COMPLETE
- First Draft Manuscript - April 21 to May 18 - IN PROGRESS
- First Manuscript Edits - July 1to July 5
- Reader Proofs - July 6 to July 25
- Final Manuscript Edits - July 26to July 31
Today's Date: May 10th
Progress: Day 19 complete. Following is the day's writing...
Kieran raised his sword in defense as Bramwel rushed in toward him, swinging his sword madly about him. He turned to offer only his profile, just as the old man had taught him and then he stepped to one side as Bramwel rushed past his left side. He allowed himself a smile and prepared for the next attack.
Bramwel stopped about six paces past Kieran and turned to face him again. The element of surprise was not with him now, Kieran thought. Now he will have to attack carefully. He tilted his sword toward Bramwel a little more and took a couple of steps forward. Bramwel did the same. As soon as he was close enough to reach Bramwel, he swung and connected with the metal of Bramwel’s sword. They stood, swords interlocked, for a few seconds before Kieran broke free and took another step toward Bramwel. He slashed his sword through the air, catching Bramwel’s right arm. Then he quickly took a step back and smiled as he saw the tell-tale sign of blood appear. Maybe he would have a chance after all. Bramwel didn’t appear to really know what he was doing.
Kieran stepped forward again and took aim at Bramwel’s left arm. Swords connected but Kieran found his mark and drew blood once more. As he turned to face Kieran again, he felt the heat of pain as Bramwel slashed wildly across his back. The coward. He altered his stance and faced Bramwel, about four paces from him. “Is that the best you’ve got?” he asked. “You have to attack my back?”
Bramwel lunged once more at Kieran but he easily sidestepped him and caught him a glancing blow to the side as he passed. Now Bramwel was cut in three places. Or was it four? Or five? Kieran was having a little difficulty focusing on his opponent. He shook his head to try and gain his composure and he raised his sword a little higher. Why was Bramwel out of focus? Did he have something in his eye? He blinked to try and clear them and stepped forward once more. The sound of metal on metal rang out and Kieran tried to concentrate as best he could but it was getting very difficult. Suddenly his sword felt heavier and his legs didn’t seem to be working as well as they should be. He pivoted on his legs and briefly lowered his sword to stop himself from falling over. He looked down at his stomach and blinked another few times. Why was there blood coming from his stomach? Why was the ground rising up so fast before him? Why were the birds singing in the trees? Why…”
“Kieran!” Ryann shouted out, running toward her falling friend. “Kieran!” She reached his lifeless body in moments and stood over him.
“Get back,” shouted Bramwel, pulling Ryann away. “I haven’t finished yet.”
Ryann pushed back at Bramwel, and grasped his arm. “You’re not supposed to kill him. That’s not in the rules.”
Bramwel took a step back and lowered his sword. “I didn’t mean to. He just turned straight into me. Like he wanted me to do it.”
“You killed him,” Ryann said again. She let go of Bramwel and dropped to the ground. “Kieran? Open your eyes. Say something.” She roughly pushed at him and wiped off the blood that was all over her fingers. “Kieran.”
Kieran’s eyes flickered and opened briefly. He stared up into Ryann’s face. “Ree? What happened? I couldn’t see.”
“See, he’s not dead,” said Bramwel, kneeling down beside them both.
“Shutup,” said Ryann. She turned to face Kieran again. “Will you be alright?”
“I don’t think so,” said Kieran. “And if I die I want to oath witness everything I have to you, Ree. Okay?”
“Okay,” whispered Ryann, letting a tear drop to the ground. She turned once more to face Bramwel. “And you heard that. He oath witnessed.”
“Don’t leave me, Ree,” continued Kieran, closing his eyes once more.
“I’m here,” she replied, taking his hand in hers and squeezing it tight.
“What have you done?” Lord Cala asked, pulling Bramwel out of his way as he knelt down beside Kieran. He touched a hand to Kieran’s chest and felt his brow. “He’s not long for this world,” he added, shaking his head at Ryann.
Ryann felt Kieran’s grip loosen as she held him and gradually his breath slowed to a stop. She let his hand go, placed it on his chest and leaned over him to weep.
“Come on, little one,” cook said, pulling Ryann free of Kieran. “There’s nothing we can do now.”
Lord Cala turned toward his son and pulled him roughly to the ground. “Well? What have you got to say for yourself?”
“You saw what happened? I tried to cut his arm but he turned and my sword went into his stomach. I didn’t try to kill him.”
Lord Cala leaned forward and pressed his mouth against Bramwel’s ear. “I will talk with you about this later, Bram. Now get out of my sight before I do something I regret.” He let his son go and watched as he scampered out of the arena and back toward the castle. He carefully got to his feet and turned to face cook. “I am sorry, cook. It appears my son was a little over zealous. Please make all the necessary arrangements for the boy.” He turned his head toward Ryann. “And make sure someone stays with her tonight.”
“Cook nodded and, still clutching Ryann close to her, led Ryann back toward the kitchens.