Ryan looked around at the strange billboards and advertisements. While
running his fingers through his longish dark hair he absently thought
about the need for a cut. He kept seeing "Just chivalry" everywhere. It
seemed to be the slogan for some group called The Knights. And Ryan was
quickly realizing what the Knights were. "Uh, guys."
"What?" Wade Wells hadn't much patience for Ryan lately. He reminded
too much of her loss. She looked to be in need of some rest and a shower.
Her jeans were well worn and her t-shirt was developing holes in the
seams. A gray zip-up that had seen better days seemed to be her only
protection from the biting wind.
"I think we're on Camelot world." Ryan had been getting good at outwardly
ignoring Wade's bitterness. It wasn't his fault that Quinn was dead.
"Hmmm. I think Ryan might be ri--" Before Professor Maxamillion Arturo
could finish his statement a vocal group of young people approached. The
logos on their clothing ranged from "Guinevere's" to "Morgana's Your
Mommy." Shaking his head the Professor prepared to continue when the
youngsters noticed him.
"Master Max!" The young woman practically bounced up to him. Her long
blond hair confined by a barrett. "What are you doing out here? Who are
your friends? You are staying at the Mansion still right?" Her bright blue
eyes seemed to take everything in as she impatiently waited for an answer.
"Er. Uhm. My friends are--"
"From Canada." Rembrandt Brown interjected. He wasn't sure who the
Professor was being mistaken for, but claiming to be from another country
might be a good idea. It would give them an excuse for asking questions.
"Oh," the blond nodded sympathetically, "are you seeking asylum too?"
"Uh, yeah." Rembrandt played along.
"Honorable. Well, the place to stay is Gawain's. Most famous chain of
hotels this side of The Modred's Kingdom. Com'on I'll show you the way."
The group of youngsters had effectively corralled the group and chattered
amiably as they led the way to this world's version of the Dominion.
"Thank you." Remmy seemed the only member of the group capable of speech
at the moment. The others were digesting what they'd learned on the walk
over. Their state of disrepair had worked in their favor. It made the idea
that they were political escapees from Canada plausible. Apparently New
Camelot had been founded by the families and knights who had escaped
Arthur's final battle. Safely ensconced in their suite, rested, bathed and
fed the foursome got down to business.
"We need to find out about the history of this world." Rembrandt, fully
control of the situation for the first time since he started sliding,
continued, "Professor I think you should stay out of sight. We need to
find out more about your double. We have twenty hours until the next
slide. Ryan why don't you hit the streets as a tourist, Wade you and I
will hit the library."
Bemusedly the group agreed to Rembrandt's plan. No one had taken a real
leadership role since Quinn's death. They had all floated from one
adventure to the next. Rembrandt had been instrumental in helping them all
deal with it and somehow had found a new confidence. At the library or
Merlinery as the locals called it Rembrandt and Wade had a field day
taking notes and digging into the history of the world.
While they worked Ryan hit the streets. He had grabbed a complimentary
notebook from the hotel and started asking questions. The locals seemed
eager to help and share information about their jobs and their country.
Everyone assumed he was working for some sort of a news agency and Ryan
did nothing to disabuse them of the notion.
Meanwhile, the young blond woman who had led them to the hotel was
chatting up Master Max as she insisted on calling him...
Ryan held the elevator for Wade and Remmy. "You two won't believe the
these people operate. This country is all about the barter system and
"So we've discovered," Wade answered. "It was founded by Guinevere and
Lancelot. Apparently on this world Arthur heeded Merlin's prophecy about
Guinevere being meant for Lancelot and ordered them to marry. It turned
out to be the salvation of at least some of his people. Arthur married a
woman named Mag who was whispered to be of fairy blood. They had three
children, two of whom fled with the refugees. The other died in battle
beside his father."
The elevator stopped and the three opened the door to their suite. The
Professor was in the midst of a conversation with the young blond woman
they had met earlier. "Oh, you have returned. You remember Lya?" Without
waiting for an answer he continued, "we've been having the most
enlightening conversation." The significant look he cast the others caused
them to keep quiet for the time being.
"Master Max we should bail. Been honorable," Lya sketched a half-bow
dragged the Professor out the door.
"What was that all about?" Ryan asked.
"I'm not sure, but I saw the Prof stash the timer between the couch
cushions. Perhaps we should finish sharing information and track down the
Professor at dinner."
Dinner came and went without the Professor's presence. The threesome
beginning to worry when a segment on the television caught their attention
and kept them quietly at their table...
The screen showed the Saint Frances Tournament grounds where the world
famous Master Max was said to be entrenched pending his formal acceptance
to New Camelot. The announcer went on to sketch out his life story; born
in poverty he had become a page and risen to become the right hand of The
Modred. Due to a recent falling out over the fate of some Irish rebels,
Master Max had fled Engoland with his life in jeopardy. Next came the
pictures of Master Max guiding and teaching local youngsters the basics of
chivalry and honorable conduct. Finally came a brief interview with Master
"So Master Max, what do you think of Saint Frances?"
"This is a beautiful community that does it's commitment to the Round
Table proud. I would be honored to be allowed to stay here."
"Wonderful. And what has been your most enjoyable experience so far?"
"I would have to say getting to know some of the local youth. What a
"Thank you for your time. Any last words?"
"Only this," prompted by Lya, "Chivalry counts. Oh and see you at the
Remmy checked his watch. I guess he'll be back by six a.m. Why don't
get some rest?"
Lya watched the portal close. Shaking her head she smiled at the thought
of staid Master Max seeing the video she and her cohorts had put together
with the Professor's help. Turning to walk away she thought of the roller
coaster ride, jousting and fencing they'd taped yesterday.
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