And that’s how you lost our Star Stone to an unnamed girl?’ Gareth realized it was impossible to hide his mistake, so he confessed the whole story. His father frowned. Gareth knew it was the face his father made when he tried to contain his anger. Gareth spoke with a trembling voice, ‘Sor…’

        ’How could you be so reckless? Do you have any idea how important the Star Stone is? It’s not your toy! It’s connected to the fate of our country!’ Gareth’s father pointed at his face and scolded him angrily. Then he turned to the butler and gave him a slap. ‘I told you to watch him! Look how it has turned out!’ ‘I’m...terribly sorry.’ As he raised his hand for another slap, Gareth yelled, ‘Enough, Father! It’s all on me. Leave him alone!’ His father took a deep breath and stared at Gareth, ‘The Star Stone must not fall into the wrong hands…’ Gareth’s father ordered his guards to seal the city and search for the girl according the Gareth’s description.

        The next day, Gareth and his father waited in the hall of the castle. Moments later, Gareth heard a familiar high-pitched voice. ‘Who are you people? Why am I here?’ ‘You must’ve stepped on someone’s toes again.’ ‘She must’ve mistaken someone’s jewel as a Star Stone and stolen it. Thinking is too difficult for a monkey.’ ‘I can distinguish a jewel from a Star Stone clearly! Shut up if you know nothing about me!’ The girl and her friends were babbling in the hall. Gareth’s father yelled, ‘Hand over the Star Stone and I’ll let you leave in one piece!’ ‘Are you dumb? I won it fair and square! You don’t have the right to take it away!’ yelled the girl. Gareth begged his father, ‘Father, give me one more chance to win against her!’

        Gareth once again sat face-to-face with the girl. He clutched his coin and threw it to and fro. After a rapid manoeuvre, he clutched his fists and held them out to the girl. He raised his hand slightly and asked, ‘Where’s the coin now?’ The girl stared at his fists, pondering, and she said, ‘It’s not in either of your fists. It’s in your sleeves.’ ‘You sure? That’s the end if you get it wrong.’ ‘I’m sure,’ the girl said with a smile. Gareth lowered his head and spread his palms, both empty. He took out the coin from his pocket, and the girl screamed excitedly as he struggled to face his defeat.

        ’I won. Can we leave now?’ The girl and her friends turned around, only to be blocked by the guards. ‘Hand over the Star Stone and I’ll let you leave; otherwise, I’ll have to do what I hate to do.’ Dozens of guards poured into the hall and surrounded them! The knight sprinted to the girl and hid her behind his back. ‘Monkey, keep your head up! I don’t have many lives to spare!’ ‘I don’t need you to protect me!’ As they argued, a guard sneaked behind their back! The girl kicked the guard away and drew her sealed sword.

        In the chaos, Gareth’s father gazed at the girl’s eyes and realized she focused on protecting his friends. Her eyes were firm and warm. She reminded him of how King Uther fought. At that moment, he noticed that her sword was the legendary Excalibur, which was the proof of kingship. ‘Hold, all of you!’ Gareth’s father nervously stopped his guards. He gawked at the girl’s sword and said, ‘My goodness. It’s the real Excalibur . Is it yours?’ ‘Without a doubt! I suggest you don’t bother trying to snatch it from me. You can’t draw it without a Star Stone!’

        ’What’s your name?’ ‘Arthur.’ He was stupefied. It was his old friend’s daughter, alive. ‘Fate, I suppose,’ he said and smiled to her, ‘Take the Star Stone. It belonged to your father in the first place.’ ‘You know him?’ ‘Yes. We were friends. Years ago when we were still young and adventurous, we found this Star Stone in a temple. He gave it to me as a token of our friendship,’ he said. Arthur looked at the Star Stone in her hand and imagined her father fighting.

        ’I hope you’ll continue your father’s will and change this country. Overthrow Accolon and Mordred’s regime.’ ‘I will. A country can't exist without its people.’ Arthur smiled and so did Gareth and his father. As they walked to the entrance of the castle, Gareth’s father said, ‘Can I ask for a favor?’ ‘Yeah?’ He pushed Gareth to them. ‘Take my son with you.’ ‘What?’ Gareth and Arthur exclaimed. ‘No! I have no reason to go!’ Gareth remained reluctant. As his butler threw his luggages to him, his father said, ‘You won’t grow up staying here. Also…’ He patted Gareth’s shoulders. ‘I believe your intelligence will help Arthur ascend the throne.’ Arthur pulled him away and yelled, ‘Don’t worry! I’ll bring him back safe and sound!’ ‘No!’ Gareth screamed as the other people laughed. His father prayed as he watched them disappear.

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