The Heirs of Locksley by Carrie Vaughn

 The Heirs of Locksley

The Heirs of Locksley by Carrie Vaughn (The Robin Hood Stories #2)
English | 2020 | Historical Fantasy | ePUB | 1.1 MB

Carrie Vaughn is the author more than twenty novels and over a hundred short stories. She’s best known for her New York Times bestselling series of novels about a werewolf named Kitty who hosts a talk radio advice show for the supernaturally disadvantaged.

Carrie Vaughn follows up The Ghosts of Sherwood with the charming, fast-paced The Heirs of Locksley, continuing the story of Robin Hood’s children.

“We will hold an archery contest. A simple affair, all in fun, on the tournament grounds. Tomorrow. We will see you there.”
The latest civil war in England has come and gone, King John is dead, and the nobility of England gathers to see the coronation of his son, thirteen year old King Henry III.

The new king is at the center of political rivalries and power struggles, but John of Locksley—son of the legendary Robin Hood and Lady Marian—only sees a lonely boy in need of friends. John and his sisters succeed in befriending Henry, while also inadvertently uncovering a political plot, saving a man’s life, and carrying out daring escapes.
All in a day’s work for the Locksley children..

Eleanor was nowhere in sight. When the girl wanted to disappear, she was very good at it. But if she hadn’t simply run off, if she had been taken, if there were murderers about and something happened—

“Where has she gone?” Mary said. “Did you see her?”

Henry was also looking around in a panic. “She’s so quiet, I didn’t hear a thing.”

“Isn’t that just like her. Eleanor is so quiet, poor Eleanor who can’t speak, and she uses all that pity to get away with the worst kind of mischief!”

“But what if someone’s caught her?”

If someone had caught her, she could not cry out for help. Mary could shout her name all night long; her sister couldn’t answer.

“Eleanor is very clever and isn’t caught easily, but we must find her.”

Stirring again, Walter said pleadingly, “Your Grace, what is happening?”

“Someone has tried to kill you.”

“But why? My lady, let me go; I’m well enough now—” He pulled away from her grip and stumbled. Mary and Henry both caught him that time.

Deliver Walter to the abbey or look for Eleanor? Mary did not see how she could do both at once, and she dared not leave the king alone. No wonder Robin Hood had kept a whole troop of men and women around him, just to split out some of the work.

Still at the hedgerow, looking across the field, she could just see John—and the men who were converging on him. Insects buzzed around their glowing lantern. John might be able to trick a pair of them, but not so many.

“John, you’ve got to get out of there,” she murmured.

Henry set his jaw. “I will go and show myself. Command them to leave off.”

“Can you be sure they will recognize you and not kill you before you have a chance to speak?”

He scowled. “How is it there’s so little I’m allowed to do? I’m meant to be king!”

“What must I do to serve you, Your Grace?” Walter said tiredly. “I can deliver a message, or, or . . .”

“Be quiet,” Henry said. “That’s all for now.”

“Yes, my liege.”

Walter seemed to be coming around but still wasn’t steady on his feet. That decided it for Mary; John and Eleanor she could trust on their own, at least a little. Henry and Walter, she could not.

“We will take him to the abbey. Then at least you and he will be safe, and I can go help John.”

“I will send guards back with you,” he said decisively, as if happy to think of some useful thing he could do.

A shout carried up from the river. John had fallen. The dark-cloaked men had run him down, and now they closed in on him.

“He’s done for,” Walter stated unhelpfully.

“Eleanor!” Henry exclaimed.

Mary looked and gasped to see the girl running up along the hedgerow. “Eleanor, where have you—”

She held out a bow and quiver of arrows and seemed quite smug to have brought them.

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