"Go on, be gone: I'm done with you. …except to exact my revenge."

"What on earth could you possibly to do us?"

"I will eviscerate you in fiction. Every last pimple, every last character flaw…I was naked for a day. You will be naked for eternity."

/~/

The buffoons. They did not realize the potency of the written word. 'Naked for eternity,' he had warned them. And they had laughed in his face! They did not realize that he was serious; that he knew how best to expose them, to torment and humiliate them, with no more effort than the energy spent on a few flourishes of the quill. His only regret was, though countless people would undoubtedly scorn the fools, they would never know it themselves. How he would love to see their faces as they realized the entire country now saw them for the incompetents they were!

"A voice he had as small as hath a goat….no beard had he, nor never should have," he muttered, his face pressed so close to the vellum he could smell the bit of cow that remained in the hide. "They should be begging for mercy at my feet."

"Geoff?"

"Hm...ah, William!" he turned to face the knight, unaware of the frightful gleam of vengeance in his eyes that set the fearless jouster shifting nervously from foot to foot. "What brings you here?"

The knight looked uncomfortable, studying the floor under the writer's gaze. "Wat said you'd locked yourself in your room, and Jocelyn insisted that you not be late for dinner..."

"So she sent you." Chaucer grinned. "Good boy. Now, if you don't mind, I'm exacting revenge on the brutes who despoiled and humiliated me not six months ago. Tell your lady love that I am dreadfully sorry, but am otherwise occupied and will not be able to make what I am sure will be a delightful repast."

Will looked unhappy with the answer, and not at all pleased to have to deny his new bride; but he left without argument. There was no arguing with a writer on matters such as these.

"Now, where was I...?" humming an indecipherable tune under his breath, Geoffrey Chaucer again immersed himself in the world of parchment and ink, a world where he was the Creator, and men mere playthings. "A smooth it was as it were late shave. I trowe he were a gelding or a mare."

~fin