I’m about halfway through the initial edit of Iron Made so I decided I would post a teaser for you folks who are interested. Enjoy!
When I stepped into the training arena my jaw dropped. It resembled the Colosseum in Rome. Or, a NFL stadium. One of the ones that doesn’t have a roof. Only, instead of seating around the open area in the center, there were different tiers setup with open spaces dedicated to almost every kind of exercise a man could think of.
“Holy Shitkickers, Batman. This has to be the most badass training facility in the universe.”
“It serves our needs,” Rayn said.
I forget that these are the baddest warriors on the planet. Of course, they would have an excellent facility to practice and hone their skills in. As I looked around I noticed that none of the men were working out. Instead they were lined up around the perimeter of the main arena. Whether to watch or because they didn’t feel comfortable working out in front of a woman I don’t know.
“Ye ready, Petal?”
I looked at him and smiled. Was I ready? Do fat kids like cake? Hells yes! I tried to rein it in.
“If you are.”
He walked to the middle of the arena and turned to face me.
“We doing this with blades or without?” I asked.
In response he pulled his claymore from his hip sheath. Alrighty then.
“Sire, ye cannot pull yer blade. She is unarmed,” one of his men said.
“She’s never unarmed,” Rayn said.
I shot him another smile then I reached into the vail with both hands and pulled out my scimitars. The gasps echoed throughout the arena. Which I have to say, it does look pretty cool to watch. What they would see is me reaching my arms out while my hands slowly disappear up to my elbows only to pull them back out holding a couple of swords. For me it’s old hat, but for someone who has never seen it or only seen it once or twice it was freaking awesome.
“Done showing off?” Rayn asked.
I just shrugged and went into a basic defensive position. My feet were spread hip distance apart with the left foot slightly forward and the right slightly behind me. Both of my arms were up ready to block a blow. Then Rayn took a step forward and disappeared. Pahleeease. Like I’m going to fall for that. The most likely thing to do is a one eighty to guard my back as that is where an attacker would typically jump to. But Rayn was smarter than that. He knew the back would be the most obvious place so he came out on my left. Which is were I was swinging my right blade toward. He blocked and I brought my left in low. He managed to bring his sword back in time to block it too. Gods, he was good. I took a step back and went back into a defensive pose. I had to keep my distance. With his weight he could take me down if he got his arms around me. Granted, that’s extremely hard to do with two swords swinging at him but still, better safe than sorry.
He decided to attack the old fashion way this time. And the games truly began. He would swing and I would parry. I would counter and he would block. It was like dancing as we made our way around the arena. One wrong step and it would be all over. Our moves were so fast that they actually blurred and I couldn’t take my eyes off of him or I knew I would lose.
There were a few barrels lining the corner we were currently in. I had backed up again to create space so I took a running leap and used a barrel to gain air as I flew at him with both swords swinging simultaneously from opposite directions. In reaction, he dropped to one knee and raised his claymore over his head parallel to the ground. He put his left hand to the back of the blade to help absorb the blow. The sound of the metal clashing as the blades hit was practically deafening. My momentum brought me over his head, I did a summersault and came back to my feet in time to block the blow he was bringing down on me. And the dance resumed.
On the left side of the arena there was a low platform about five feet off the ground so I opened a portal to the other side of the field, stepped out long enough to wink at one of the men sitting close by, I then opened a new portal to the platform. The added time spent opening the first portal allowed Rayn to do a full circle looking for me. As he was about to turn back toward where I was, I jumped off and kicked him in the side of the head. I landed in the dirt and turned to see that he was standing in the same place with one eyebrow raised. What? No f-in way. That should have given him a concussion at least. These boots were steel toed.
“Feeling lightheaded, honey? Maybe you should sit down for a bit,” I teased.
He just smiled and attacked.
We had made our way back to where we had started when I lunged at him from the side with both blades and he caught them on his sword and twisted them over his head. Instead of getting close to his front I followed them around his left side and slid the blades off of his from behind. It allowed me the opportunity to get in a kidney shot with my right fist. He didn’t even pause. He turned around and grabbed my right wrist and twisted it around so that the blade was pointing to the side. I had to do something quick so I pulled my left back and tried to stab him in his stomach. He managed to move back enough to miss the blade without letting go of my right arm. Once my left was fully extended, he wrapped his right arm around me and used his right foot to knock mine out from under me. I fell and he fell on top of me. Have I mentioned that he almost doubles my weight? The wind was knocked out of me when we hit and he used that opportunity to straddle me and push both my arms above my head. Well, it was fun while it lasted. Of course I tried to buck him off of me but it was a no-go. I finally stilled and waited for him to move since, obviously, he had won. He was just looking at me.
“Are you going to get off or just sit on me for eternity?” I asked.
“Ah like having ye beneath me, Petal. Ah just wish we were in ma bed without so many watching,” he thought to me.
“Just get up.”
He smiled. “Oh, it’s up.”
“Rayn, I’m serious I can’t breath. Get off me, you big oaf.”
“Ah say ye owe me a boon for besting ye,” he said.
“And what kind of boon would that be?”
“Ye’ll sing for us tonight after dinner.” Then he said mentally, “And Ah think a wee kiss will do.”
“You have to be crazy.”
“It won’t hurt ye tae sing for me and ma men this evening.”
He raised his brows once.
“Fine, I will sing this evening but nothing else.”
He finally removed his huge self from the top of me and started to walk away.
“Ah cannot wait tae hear yer beautiful voice.” “And taste those beautiful lips.”
“I didn’t agree to that,” I thought back.
He turned around and smiled.
“Nae, but ye will.”
Then he left the arena. My libido was doing a little happy dance.