|Good Morning Sunshine|
|Summary:||Iulia has been assigned as Lady Isolde's new chambermaid.|
|Lady Isolde's Chambers - Hag's Mire|
|Tuesday Nov 29, 288|
The early hours had not only brought with it the promise of a new day, with new prospects both on the fence of good and bad, but a new servant in replacing the old. Iulia rapped softly the door, the first moments of a good impression. "My Lady Nayland?" She asks on the other side, time to rise and shine with the birds and other animals that hooted or hollered at the crack of dawn. The other hand held a wide silver tray containing the Lady's usuals for her morning rituals from the instructions hammered into this girl's head by her predecessor. Patiently she awaited for some sign of life on the other side.
Drowsy at best, Isolde is awake and at her writing desk attending to a sheef of paper with disjointed attention. When the knock comes at the door, her eyes draw away from the grey of morning outside her window. She sets her quill down and for the moment and hesitates before she clears her throat. Rising smoothly, the Lady is still dressed in her night gown and dressing robe loosely tied at her chest. Dark hair is wild and unattended to yet. She moves herself to the more comfortable chair near her hearth, one with a larger table. "Come in, please.." she says as she makes her way there, a soft sheen of sweat on her brow. She looks tired yet, dark circles under her eyes and a faint palor to her skin.
Once permitted entry, Iulia, though fully dressed, paled in comparison with the Lady while still in her night wear. Her head parted through the door's opening, unsure at first then finally the young girl emerged to scan the room and slap on that pleasant smile she'll have to wear daily. "Good morning my Lady." She used her hip to close the door behind her, both hands latched onto the trey. The curtsey she performed, though hindered, was all too cautious. Caution for not spilling the cup and bowl, caution to not trip over her own feet and send the tray flying. It was likely the Lady would know who she was, by name the summarization of her life living on one of farms well beyond this hall. "I was told you were an early riser, have you slept well my Lady?"
Smiling patiently as she takes her seat, Isolde waits for the tray to be brough tover waiting to give it a look to see if her stomach will agree with her this morning. A hand lift to smooth back her hair and push it over her hair. "I am…more recently than before. Sleep comes when it wants to, but thank you. Here is just fine." She says and motions to the table before her, low as it is. "I wonder if you would not mind setting the hearth going. I feel a chill.." Though the sheen on her brow would suggest she is sweating already. The lady rubs her hands together and looks the girl over. "I am not certain we have met.." She intones and lets her voice trail.
Iulia delivers the tray where designated, the light clink of metal upon the wood frees up her hands which immediately gather before her. "Yes my Lady, we cannot have that now could we?" Already set with a new task, she turns only to pluck the wooden logs from the metal basket then arrange them in the hearth. The girl does turn around when speaking with the woman, daring not to speak over her shoulder, "No, we have not. I am Iulia, Iulia Dewhurts. Unfortunately Asha has taken ill with fever and I have been appointed in her stead." The girl stretches the smile a bit wider, "She has given me detailed instructions to your particulars and I should hope not to disappoint."
"A pleasure Miss Iulia.." Isolde says softly and reaches forth to take up the tea that had been brought for her. She at lesat will have that much and she draws it closer. "Asha knows a great many details. She has been my maid for many years. I am sorry to hear she is ill…I had wondered why I did not see her later yesterday." The lady looks thoughtful despite her tired state. She yawns, late to place a hand before her mouth to shelter it. She sips at the tea, without sugar or the like, instead delighting in the dullness of the taste. "I am hard to disappoint besides…I just wish to be in comfort…so we shall pick one of the dresses that is of softer make..yes? No ornaments either…simple today."
Iulia moved about the hearth quietly, setting the sparks of flint to the kindling until a fire bloomed. She fed its hunger until the flames grew large enough to remain unattended for now. Her eyes did scan the for the shelter that housed the Lady's wardrobe. "It was thought best from the signs of her illness that a distance was of most importance." Her tone sympathized for both Asha and the wariness haunting the Lady's features, darkening and shadowing her beauty in an unflattering manner. Though onward she pressed, searching through the exquisite fabrics of attire she may never have the privilege of. Simplicity was the theme for today, comfort yet protection from the near winter winds. She chose a garment of fall hues: a deep amber velvet gown with fashionably loose sleeves and embroidered gold hem. The square neckline should draw enough attention to the Lady's attributes without appearing scandalous. Iulia returned to Isolde, holding the dress outwards, draped over one arm as the other held the skirt. "Would this be pleasing?"
"Distance yes..I can see that.." Isolde admits and then hmmms as the fire is starting to build further. The flicker is like a good friend and she lets her gaze drift to get lost in the dancing flames. She sips idly at her tea and it is only when the dress is brought before her that the lady looks up. She tilts her head and smiles. "That is one of my lord husband's favorites…yes that will do..with the doeskin slippers. That should do well." She pauses and looks to Iulia. "Do you know how to braid hair, Iulia? I think something loose would be nice…but I must admit that I have not been keeping my hair in the best of shape. Perhaps you can think of something.." She asks and then reaches forward for the nut bread and honey, finding her stomach ready for such a venture.
When the Lady was satisfied it was reflected in the swell Iulia's chest, shoulders and cheeks. She departed briefly to gently lay the garment out and retrieve the aforementioned pair of slippers to match. "Our Lord, your husband has an eye for beauty." The dress or the Lady? Either way, the girl would return to check up on the fire before responding to the woman. "I do my Lady. I did not have any younger siblings however my mother allowed me practice often on her." The girl starts for the dress hosting Isolde's brushes, mirror and other trinkets for the hair before asking, "Would you wish for a bath drawn after your meal?" Not being present for the prior evening she had no clue when to make the bathing preparations.
Isolde smiles pleasantly, but it seems whatever plagues her still has the best of her and she is more oft silent. But the Nayland Lady lifts her head at the mention of a bath and she ponders. "No, I think I shall reserve those for the evening, it seems to help me rest better.." She admits and than set aside what remains of the bread, some of the berries gone as well but in all honesty, not much has been consumed from the tray, though more tea has been consumed than anything. She rises slowly and lifts fingers to undo the dressing gone and move over to the side away from the fire as she disrobes. "Who did you see to before they gave you the task of attending me?" She asks and sheds the cloth, letting it pool on the floor as she waits for the dress.
Iulia makes a mental note and continues on, retrieving the items to brush through the Lady's hair, remembering that simple was the goal for today. Two hair combs were chosen, fashioned of gold and lacking any encrusted gems. All of which was set near the chair Isolde would occupy when it came time to tend her hair. As the woman disrobes, Iulia moves to retrieve the fallen garments, set aside to for laundering later. "Ah, Lady Dovenworth." Her mind had summed up, for a name of mention. "I aided the servants of the kitchen until well. Until I was no longer needed, my Lady. I returned to my parents and luck would have it that Asha was in need of someone she could trust to tend to you my Lady." Iulia then retrieved the undergarments, the gown, and lastly slippers for the Lady. Assisting her, when needed, for dressing, lacing and small adjustments.
The dress is drawn on and with Iulia's help is swiftly tied and cinched into place. There is immediate regret for the loss of loose fitting night dress. Isolde mourns it silently and then turns pulling her hair free. Adjust a few things here and there, she slides her foot forward to slide the doeskin slippers on and to those she finds some relief. Wiggling her toes in them she smiles. "I see…I hope that this proves a welcome exchange for you. Tell me of your talents.." She says and then moves to take up a seat at the edge of her bed so that Iulia has better access to her waist-length hair. Thick and dark it can be quite the battle to tame. You will need to attend the sittings with the Lady Dowager when I visit with her and also we will be heading to Stonebridge in a few days, is this a problem for you?"
Once the Lady is dressed, Iulia takes a few steps back for inspection. No visible frays in the garment, it draped beautifully over her features which would explain why the Lord appreciated this gown. The girl had shadowed Isolde until reaching the bed, there she retrieved the brush and dove into the task of detangling this mess. "It already has my Lady. I am not chasing chickens around for meals." She giggles to herself, taking her time in running the brush through the ends first then slowly making her way towards the crown. "I was told I am passing fair with a needle and at times I was allowed to prepare the meals for Lady Dovenworth. Unfortunately I am not gifted with a voice for song my Lady." Another section of Isolde's hair is parted for brushing. "Or by instrument. In truth my Lady I have very little talents, for some are gifted with beauty from their hands or voice." Iulia begins coiling the left side of Isolde's crown before moving to the otherside, held in place with one of the golden combs shaped like a pair of leaves.
"We all have talents, Iulia. Some are just slowly molded by instruction." Comments the Lady, but Isolde holds rather still, keeping her hands settled delicately to her lap. Her green eyes stare straight ahead and then she considers. " I would not know where to begin in the preparation of a meal…as for song…I was never overly gifted. I am certain you will grow more gifted as well given time. You have much time I am certain." She says with a growing smile, shifting if need be while her hair is attended to. "But traveling, this will not be a problem for you? Stonebridge is not far and there I have my own rooms as well."
Iulia shakes her head at first, though standing behind the female it was likely unseen. "It would not be a problem my Lady. I have very little possessions to pack for such a voyage and my first duties are to you are they not? If you are to depart for Stonebridge, as I will to see that your comforts are met. As for meals they are quite simple really. Given enough time for preparation, I particularly making pies myself." She then picks and plucks with some final arrangements of Isolde's hair before a hand held mirror is retrieved as she moved to stand before the Lady. It's held up to reveal the results, "There we are, simple yet still elegant."
"Meals are simple things for those that are instructed, but never put me in front of a cook pot if you want anything to be edible." Isolde smiles at that and then murmurs her approval to the ability for Iulia to be ready to travel. "Good good.." She says. "I would not ask it of Milicent, though she will be attending, it will be to see to the overall preparation of everything for everyone. I dare say, I would like to leave early so I can help oversee everything being attended to before all arrive, especially for the Lady Dowager.." She stills herself as she then reaches for the hand mirror and lifts it. "Oh it looks such a sight better…" She says with a smile and looking up at Iulia's reflection in the mirror. "You did wonders. I must have been a sore mess for you to look at.." Though there are those dark circles yet.
Iulia shares the woman's amusement, "I should keep that in mind for unwanted visitors." She still eyes over the Lady's appearance, folding an arm across her chest as a hand strokes the underside of her chin. "I am quite used to rising early my Lady." The girl adds, seemingly satisfied with how the hair was set. "We're not quite finished yet my Lady." Iulia steps away, moving towards the drawers and or boxes that held powders and paints for those dolled up moments. She returns then, ready to blot away the evidence of a poor night's sleep, no matter what the Lady had said. "And close the eyes please."
As she says they are not quite finished, Isolde arches a brow, not used to even truly having too much done for her hair lately. She hesitates and then sets the mirror aside. She watches Iulia a moment digging through the paints and powders and she smiles shyly as she draws closer. "I see.." she intones and closes her eyes, lifting her chin a little. "It would be best to never ask me to cook. It could be contention for something bordering on poison." But she quiets then.
There was always something about girls wanting to play 'pretty time'. To wear lavish gowns and look their ultimate best. If not for herself then most certainly for her Lady. Iulia exerted a gentle touch to conceal the shadows of wariness about the eyes, adding a touch of color upon the cheeks then lips. Adding life to her otherwise ghostly pallor. Still, she chuckled at how horrible the woman's cooking skills were. "Some find relaxation or satisfaction it in. For myself it is torture when you cannot eat it. The enticing aroma of a well roasted duck. MMmm." A tongue runs over her lips, already the haunted by the promising flavor. When finished the girl announced, "Much better. Not a soul's business but your own as to how sleep welcomes you my Lady. Is it to your satisfaction?"
The mirror still resting beneath the press of her hand, Isolde holds still as more color is offered to her wan appearance. There is a rueful smile. "Well then, I do normally take my meals in my room as of late unless there is dinner to be had or called by the family. If you would like…you can make my food. And share it with me. I have not been eating as much as of late." She says and then sighs, blinking as she is asked how she looks. Grasping the mirror, she lifts it to turn it about and give a look at her reflection. "You give the idea that I actually slept.." She admits with a smile. "Well done…I think they shall think me getting better." She winks at the girl. "I take my tea again before lunch..and lately berries and cream have been agreeing with me so I shall have that with a small side of cheese. Water tends to taste best so no wine. After my lunch I like to sit and go over the household numbers. If this does not bore you, you are welcome to practice needlework or the like in my room."
More instructions to soak in her memory, Iulia does nod with the appropriate 'yes M'lady' when suited. It is when Isolde appears pleased with the paints and powders upon her face the servant girl does shine. Quite proud that her hands did something beautiful. "I would be honored my lady to prepare your meals. Perhaps we may also see if other foods may agree with you, to have a bit of variety? I can ask the House cook what foods have been tried thus far." She offers, uncertain just how much of a difference it will make with the Lady unable to hold down her food. A grave look of concern washes over the girl as she moves to return the paints, powders and hair items to their proper place. "I do not mean to pry my Lady but how long has sleep eluded you?" Then there were some details that Asha had not mentioned. "It would please me to keep you company. I have a to see to your laundry and bedding though afterwards, I would return."
"I will send word to Milicent that you are to be told what has been tried. I am willing to eat what is set before me though it may not agree with me." Isolde admits and the dips her head. "My lord husband is often out and I do like to keep company so I would be pleased if you would find some time to remain with me. I shall make certain you have some more instructions along with my own, no reason you should not." She says and then looks to her writing table after lifting the mirror for Iulia, handing it back to her. "I think I will go take a walk, so that you may attend to the wash, but I will return in an hour or so. More tea would be welcome then."
"Of course my lady." No reason two girls couldn't find much to occupy their time with, besides the regular chorus of duties. "I will return in an hour, with your tea prepared." For now, the girl would curtsey before gathering the bed linens and night wear to take for laundry. Another servant may return to retrieve the tray and stoke the fire, ensuring that it would also burn ready at Isolde's return.