Plehew

Plehew

Postby Rance » Thu Aug 08, 2013 12:17 pm

Dame de Lanz always needed to remind the women around her that, no, no, Dame was her real name; it was no lady's title or significant representation of honor. But she was no duchess, no baroness, even though she'd learned the recent habit of turning her nose up at the muddy boys playing in the gutters when she brought out the furs and rugs to beat, beat, beat the dust out of them and sing her song, her new favorite song. A tune she'd written using a familiar, sacred melody of the One True Faith.

And as she stood in front of one of the lodging rooms in the Broken Dagger -- it was the right room, wasn't it? She unfolded the parchment in her left hand to be sure -- she trilled the little song under her breath.

"The ladies call her Lady, for she listens to our needs,
Charity and friendliness are but few among her deeds.
A dandy lass, this Rhaena, whose grace is on us heaped,
She gave to me her smile, and o'er and o'er I weeped."


Crisken always said It's wept, Dame -- wept; say it right or don't say the damned thing at all, but he'd been a brooding, plodding mess of a husband since Pinbone's unexpected death. Rot of a dog, messy old bitch, couldn't keep her hind leggers apart enough to piss let alone take what a hound could give her, good riddance, good riddance, Rhaena would have just as quickly wanted the dog to be put out its misery, she imagined--

She swept aside a sleeve gilded in stark red and shining golden brocade (she thought the Lady's colors fit her quite nicely, and she was glad to be her Lady's -- why, children all ought to eat, and that good Elliot boy and that lovely squire of his were just the most precious little squirts) and drummed her hand once, twice on the door.

"Girl," she bleated. "Precious girl." She cleared her throat, then managed to sputter out, "P-...Plehew," because who would ever name a girl that? Plehew, so hard to say, a twist on the tongue, Dame would have rathered a Daisy or a Petunia or a Lorice or a Feneere or a--

"Oh," she said, then scrambled to turn the page right-side up and read the name as it was meant to be.

She knocked again, then again.

"Child! Delivery for you, love. Girl. Whelp! Time to rise and greet the sun, darling. Letter for you!"
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Re: Plehew

Postby Guppy » Fri Aug 09, 2013 4:31 am

There was someone singing in a high-pitched voice at her doorway, she noted as she blinked awake in her borrowed bed. Someone singing a little ditty that she found most unpleasant. Was that...? It was! Mention of Rhaena! One of Rhaena's people. Rhaena-swain. The thought sent her scrambling out of her bed with wide, fearful eyes. She had been remiss in her duties. The Lady's minions were finally here for her and she should have expected this. Elliot could not protect her from everything. Elliot might not even want to protect her anymore. She had abandoned him. Abandoned their dancing. Abandoned their lessons. She hoped that she was being unfair to the Knight. Hoped that he had no knowledge of this obvious ambush.

Nightclothes were shed in a harried manner, thrown in a pile upon the floor. There was swearing behind the door as she searched for the uniform. It was not difficult to find, the bright harvest colors standing out among her own shades of gray, black, and white. She pulled it on and dragged fingers through her hair to tame it.

Plehew? What was that? She wondered the thought dimly and blinked - actions stilled as she puzzled over the sound. And then? And then, her name came spilling out of the woman's lips and her eyes rolled. Idiot woman. Like all of them. Noble and simple and idiotic.

Breathlessly, she answered the door and leaned against it casually. As if she had not just awoken. As if she had not been sulking like a child and ignoring Rhaena completely. No longer even trying to give the picture of working as her trapper, anymore. "What? Oh, sorry. I was just inside cleaning skins for the Lady," she remarked, arms spread to make herself as large as possible. Seeking to block view of the contents as best she was able. "What is it that you needed? I'm terribly, terribly busy with... skins. And hides. And ... poetry?," she hazarded, trying to think of other things that Rhaena liked. "Ruffles?"
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Re: Plehew

Postby Rance » Fri Aug 09, 2013 5:21 am

"Look at you."

Dame de Lanz let out a stifled gasp as the whelp answered the door. Her wide eyes became wider, more excited to absorb the sight of the young girl in front of her eyes. What electricity youth had, in being dedicated to a cause. What passion, what inspiring presence! The old woman was wrapped in a dress patchworked together from colors similar to Rhaena Olwak's. The fabric was not the same, not as soft or as smooth as the Lady's uniforms, and the colors were faded, dull--

"Aren't you positively an image of the future, sweet girl. I could just..."

No, she couldn't just -- she must! Dame de Lanz reached out one of her wrinkled rows of fingers to try to snare the girl's cheek, and if she did, how she'd squeeze, pinch, like a cheery grandmother who thought the skin of a child was cherub-down; the wildling might have been one of the Lady's beloved loyals, but the sprawl of that sleepy hair, the fluster of a voice interrupted in its work of dedication to Rhaena! Irresistible.

"Forgive me, forgive me," Dame said, snapping her hand back to her chest. "There's just something so charming about little ones finding solace in productivity and belonging. You're one of her dearhearts, aren't you, Wh-..." Whelp? Who'd name a girl Whelp? "Wilhelmina," she corrected. "Poetry. Ruffles. Skins! What I wouldn't give to be young again and putting such vigor into Myrken Wood.

"But alas, all I come bearing is a letter. For you -- or for someone you know," she corrected, before she lay out the folded letter for the whelp to take.
To: Whelp
Attention to: IT
Delivered c/o: My mostly illiterate Wife
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Re: Plehew

Postby Guppy » Fri Aug 09, 2013 8:11 am

Whelp blinked at the woman's command and glanced down at herself. Self-conscious, the girl smoothed over her front as if there were winkles and then spent a moment smoothing down her hair. She glanced away from the woman - at first guilty that she be discovered in such a state of dress and then angry at herself for feeling such things. She was not Rhaena-swain. Why should she care what this stranger thought of her? That shrewd gaze narrowed in a glare directed inward.

Her attention was snared by the woman, however, as forefinger and thumb came to her cheek and squeezed. Pinched. The startled wildling stared blankly at the woman who deigned to touch a stranger in such a manner. So surprised that she allowed the contact for far longer than she might normally. The woman begged forgiveness as she reclaimed her hand in a rush. Whelp lifted a hand and, with furrowed brows and a troubled expression, rubbed at the skin still smarting from the pinch.

Well, at least it seemed that she remained undiscovered. Rhaena cared not for her insolence, still. Though, honestly, she supposed that the Lady did not care, so long as she cleaned up nicely. Those eyes stole over the make-shift uniform, wagering that the woman was not here on behalf of the Lady after all. The colors were not as bright. The fabric not as expensive.

Another bewildered stare at the name. Wilhelmina? Was that what Rhaena was calling her these days? "Um, Noura will do, thank you," she corrected, as politely as she could under such circumstances. The whelp did not waste words. Anyway, the woman in front of her was speaking enough for ten people. She reached out to take the offered letter and her eyes ghosted over the writing upon it. When she was finished, she stole another glance up at the woman and then back at the letter again. Wagering that a reply would be requested in turn, the young woman sought to open the folded letter with slightly trembling hands and racing thoughts.
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Re: Plehew

Postby Rance » Fri Aug 09, 2013 10:14 am

Beneath the wax seal, the writing was clear, still scattered with grains of sand. The hand was not familiar.
From the Scribe, one Professor de Lanz:

I should hope You will forgive the Accompaniment of my Lovely Wife in delivering this Missive. As You can see She is quite the Prosperous Cliche of Compliments and Intellectual Absence (and also Blissfully Clueless). At the Very Least this Change afflicting Myrken Wood has given Her New Purpose and I am left with Abundant Amounts of Welcome Time in which to continue My Research.

I have taken for IT the Following Dictation; I have been informed that You can see the Message to its Proper Recipient.

A second smaller leaflet was attached -- the aforementioned dictation, quaint and slight compared to its preface.
It,

Your Maggot would like to speak with You at Your Earliest Convenience. Seek Me out where You know I usually am. It would be wise to heed This Letter so You know that even Larvae can learn.

Yours,
- Maggot

Over the page, smiling with all of her too-close teeth, Dame de Lanz said, "Good news, I pray. I hope you'll consider giving your Lady an account of my loyal service. I wold be beside myself to get the opportunity to attend one of her balls!"
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Re: Plehew

Postby Guppy » Sun Aug 11, 2013 9:57 am

The letter was skimmed and the girl glanced upon the woman standing with shining eyes and vacant amiability. He apologized to her for his wife, though the woman seemed unlikely to have read the message. Brows knit together and she glanced down again at the letter. With trembling fingers, she unfolded the letter not meant for her.

Things were surely not this terrible between them, were they? Gloria was leaving letters for the creature and not bothering to send any word at all to Noura? What little hope the girl had for their shared friendship evaporated like morning fog.

Those eyes slipped from the paper to gaze at the woman again. For a moment, a very brief moment, her eyes seemed to be flushed with ink. It was fleeting, however, and eyes of pale gray were soon present and fastened upon the Professor's wife. "The very best," she answered, though her voice was monotone and unhappy. "I will speak with my Lady, should we see one another," she assured. Though, honestly, how likely was that to happen?

"Thank you for your time." A pause. "Wait here." The girl slipped into the room beyond, leaving the door partially closed. The room was dark with shadow, so it was unlikely that the woman could see overly much. She returned with Rhaena's broach - that sign of favor - and moved to press it with a flimsy smile into the older woman's palm. "There. That will serve you well," she assured, before seeking to close the door.
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Re: Plehew

Postby Rance » Tue Aug 13, 2013 12:23 am

"I would be grateful if you might mention it. So very grateful. She's taking phenomenal efforts to ensure the prosperity of this place. It's always needed it, what, with all the awful things that have occurred. A good bit of prettiness could go far. Far indeed."

When the wildling offered up the little brooch, Dame de Lanz scooped it up within her aged palm and clasped it like a trinket of some great value. She gasped and slid her fingers along it, feeling the metal press against her skin. She clenched it tightly in her hand, and then threw forward her upper body in a courtesy that brought her graying hair falling like a rope to the floor in front of her.

"Thank you, love, thank you. I shall wear it proudly. I shall wear it for all to see! With hope," she laughed, laughed , a woman without worries, her eyes sparkling with the weight of her mirth and her straight teeth flashing, "passers-by might look at it and not upon this hideous bit of rawhide my mother gave me for a face--"

But the door had closed, then, and Dame de Lanz was left alone in the hall. She was blinded by the beauty of the vine bearing its tiara and brooch, and its metal shone in her eyes as she turned off down the hall.

Crisken would think it was lovely. Lovely, just like Myrken Wood.
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