Gavin (King Blackheart): Wow, Christopher. I just read the sample from your book where you and Agatha bet each other on who can hold off on sex the longest, and all I have to say is “pathetic”. Never in a million years would Sandy suggest that it’s her “duty” to be in my bed.
Christopher Robinson: Agatha doesn’t really think it’s a “duty”.
Dave Larson: Really? Then why did she call it that?
Christopher: Because she is too proud to admit she wants to be with me.
Gavin: *smirks* Sure.
Christopher: It’s true. And I’m going to win the bet. Before the story is done, she’s going to coming to my bed with the intent of having her way with me.
Dave: I think it’s sad that you even have to make such a bet. If you were truly a hero, you wouldn’t have to resort to a bet to get her to admit it.
Christopher: I am a hero. A fun one, too, if I say so myself, unlike you who ended up being so serious all the time. The problem doesn’t lie with me. It’s her deceased husband, Lord Richfield. I don’t know the details of their brief marriage, but apparently, he wasn’t a good husband.
Dave: I think you’re stretching.
Christopher: No, I’m not. If her first husband was alive, I’d challenge him to a duel.
Gavin: For goodness’ sakes. Think with your head. A duel would get someone weak like you killed.
Gavin: Yes, weak. You haven’t fought a day in your life, have you?
Christopher: I have so. I got into a fist fight when I was seventeen.
Dave: And lost?
Christopher: Hey, if I hadn’t been drinking, I would have won.
Gavin: So you’re not only weak and inexperienced, but you’re stupid. I bet you didn’t even get into a fight over something worth fighting about.
Christopher: The gentleman in question happened to be cheating at a card game and I called him on it.
Gavin: Let me guess. You just spouted this off without taking the time to form a strategy first.
Dave: He said he was drinking. Of course, he didn’t form a strategy.
Christopher: What does it matter? That’s all in the past. I don’t do that anymore. And it has nothing to do with my book. I don’t know why you two are even here. Does it annoy you to no end that my book was featured yesterday? Did I make a big stink and make fun of Gavin after reading his sample last Sunday when we all saw he used magic to force Sandy into marrying him? No. I was very mature about it and didn’t stoop to his level. Oh sure, I could have said something like, “Gavin is such a great warrior that he needs a magician’s help to get him a wife.” But I didn’t do that. And you know why?
Dave: Because you weren’t smart enough?
Gavin: Because Dave was too fast and challenged our books against his before you could?
Christopher: No. It’s because I am a gentleman. A real gentleman. I am the cousin of an earl–
Gavin: Big whoop. I’m a king.
Dave: I don’t care what either of you thinks. Nothing, and I mean nothing, is sexier than a cowboy. I don’t need some lame title or an association to someone with a title to prove that.
Christopher: Yeah, well, we’re not running the poll yet so I wouldn’t get so smug if I were you.
Dave: I don’t need a poll. Men who work hard and know the value of a good woman will always be sexy.
Gavin: You think being a warrior isn’t hard work?
Christopher: I work hard, too. You think it’s easy to be as charming as I am while fending off a stuffy guardian who is trying to make me as boring as he is?
Gavin: Oh brother. You wouldn’t last one day on the battlefield.
Dave: Or one day doing hard labor.
Christopher: That just shows how much you know. I’ve had to clean out stalls and empty chamber pots.
Dave: Stuff we do out west in the late 1800s, and we don’t whine about it.
Christopher: Well, it sucks to be you then, doesn’t it?
Dave: I guess it depends on your wimp factor. I’ve helped my family build houses and barns, and some of those were made of sod. At times, we’ve had to keep warm by burning cow pies. That’s cow poop, Christopher. We didn’t always have a well nearby and have had to go down a stream to retrieve enough to put in buckets or barrels. Sometimes we bathed in cold water–
Christopher: Like I said, it sucks to be you.
Gavin: Yeah, it does. Thank goodness I didn’t get stuck in a historical western.
Dave: Ruth leaves out the nitty gritty of the time period.
Christopher: Even so, I bet you all go around stinking, especially burning all those cow pies in your house.
Dave: We didn’t always use cow pies. They were used as a last resort. Living out west was about survival, not prancing about at balls or playing with swords in a courtyard.
Gavin: Hey, I don’t play with swords. I practice fighting so I can defend my kingdom. You think it’s so easy to be me, you should try it sometime.
Christopher: And you should try putting up with my overbearing cousin.
Dave: Gavin, I do know how to use a gun and a knife. I doubt the sword thing would be that difficult. As for you Christopher, I don’t see how dealing with a concerned guardian is a big deal. If you weren’t going around drinking and accusing people of cheating, you probably wouldn’t need to be coddled so much.
Christopher: Fine. If you think it’s so easy, take a day to be in my shoes.
Gavin: And mine.
Dave: Fine, I will. But there’s one condition.
Dave: You two have to take a day in my shoes, too. Except, I get to bring Mary with me. There’s no way I’ll let you two be in the role of her husband, even if it’s fiction.
Gavin: So we take our wives with us.
Christopher: Without their approval first?
Gavin: If we asked for their approval, they would never give it. They’re far too sensible to do this because we all know we’re going to discover that we’re better off in the stories we were created in.
Christopher: I know I’m better off in the Regency time period. I just want Dave to get an appreciation for how demanding my life is.
Gavin: Then it’s agreed. We all swap stories for one day and see what we learn.