|If a Man Teases a Girl|
|Summary:||Nikolus engages in some conversation with a kitchen maid - for unclear purposes.|
|Date:||14/01/2013, 21/01/2013 and 28/01/2013|
|Private Solar, Braeburn House|
|Chairs, a table, a book.|
|January 14th, 290|
A gentle breeze entered the room from one of the open windows, offering cooler winds over the chamber's warmth. Within, Nikolus, was reading in solitude. A goblet loosely garded with one hand as the other flipped casually through the worn pages of the leather bound book, charting the details of last seasons harvest and crop yields. It was here he waited for his breakfast, too late in the day where most should be preparing for the mid-day meal.
Arriving from the stairs with suprisingly little noise is a maid of the kitchens, clad in the characteristic garb of grey-brown cotton and an apron of lighter colour, and a bonnet of off-white linen to keep her hair out of both her face and the food she is carrying on a tray. Evayne raises her gaze from the plate and the glass with watered wine she is carrying and spots the Groves lord at once. Biting her lip slightly she approaches swiftly and places the tray on the table before him, before she greets with a curtsey "M'lord." Immediately the scent of freshly roasted bacon and bread fresh from the oven spreads through the room. Whereas the piece of cheese emanates the distinctive strong smell of a particularly tasty kind.
Not even bothering to lift up his eyes Nikolus replied to the girl, "Smells divine…" He relays neutrally while slipping a page marker into the book and closing it. His good eye surveyed over the meal delivered. "I assume my sisters are too preocupied in their studies to join me?"
Confronted with the lord's question, Evie's gaze drops to the floor, a little perplexed at first maybe, her sweaty little hands opening and closing as she tries not to blunder in her reply. "I suppose so, M'lord. Lady Dyonne is not in the kitchens. At least, I haven't seen her…"
Nikolus pushed his work aside, replacing his attention by dragging the tray closer. "No doubt her Septa keeps her occupied." He comments, plucking one strip of bacon from the dish and sampling a bite. No choking sounds proceeded it so the food must have been decent enough. "Then you, my lovely will have the most unfortunate task of keeping me entertained as I dine here." He then points with his goblet. "Sit girl."
Evayne seems to relax slightly as she sees the food is to Nikolus's liking. Hearing the lord's unusual request, however makes the kitchen maid tense slightly, and even worse, the first signs of a blush start to show. "M'lord?" she says, her grey eyes widening a bit, before she finally follows his bidding and sits down. "Certainly, M'lord." Looking slightly awkward her gaze drops again to her feet.
While reaching for another slice of bacon the one eyed lord prodded, "Do you sing? Dance? Recite poetry?"
Evayne raises her gaze to meet the lord's and nods with surprise. "Well, I sing, M'lord. D'you want me to sing for you, M'lord?" Her gaze turns to the door as if reminded of some other duty, but swiftly returns to Nikolus with an uneasy smile.
While chewing, Nikolus smirked, "I would not have asked otherwise." That's when the Groves male reclines further in his seat. While lifting the goblet still half filled with wine, "Something light hearted. I've had my fill with death and dismay since I've returned."
Evayne sits still and seems to ponder for a moment. "As you wish, M'lord." she says then. "But I'll rise, if you would allow, as I find it easier while I'm standing." Something in the nobleman's manner seems to have calmed her unease, and standing before him now, the kitchen maid closes her eyes before she raises her voice - an alto of untrained yet plain beauty.
"Beams of the sun, they leave a trace
A golden one in dust and smoke
Reminders of a recent feast,
That in this very hall took place.
That in this very hall took place."
<FS3> Evayne rolls Singing: Good Success.
The song, while of a cheerful melody is a little slower paced. The delivery is quite agreeable to the ear, apart from Evayne's lack of training. And she seems pleased as well, her face brightened by a surprised smile as she finishes this first verse.
Throughout the lyrical preformance Nikolus may have been spied closing his eyes, briefly, however the awing was short lived as he drained ocasionally from his goblet. He remained silent, chewing quietly as the kitchen maid was forced to preform, although she could have lied. Nikolus resettled his drink upon the table and now moved for the bread before raising his eyes while she sang.
Evayne pauses for a moment, her grey eyes looking to Nikolus for a sign of displeasure to make her stop, but as the nobleman does not pause in his eating she continues, beaming with the liberating pleasure that singing apparently bestows upon her.
"Apart from who's succumbed to sleep,
The hall is quite deserted now,
For here and there a leg sticks out,
From b'low a table of the keep.
From b'low a table of the keep."
Half finished with the plate brought to him Nikolus raises a hand as the other reaches for the handkerchief as a gesture to pause. Sadly her song was interrupted but he interjects, "You are quite the song bird girl. I was half expecting a banshee's shrill." Then he smiles, "We're in luck you haven't been stolen away by some mummer's troupe."
Evayne seems content enough with the pleasure she has gained from performing that second verse, so she falls silent for a while, almost forgetting that it was not for her own sake she had performed the song, as her gaze wanders to the window, and beyond, to some pleasant memory perhaps, that the words have stirred from the depths of her mind. When Nikolus addresses her with his praise, the kitchen maid looks therefore quite startled at first, but soon enough a bright smile appears on her rosy face, a little chuckle escapes her even as he mentions 'a banshee's shrill'. "Why, thank you, m'lord. I prefer staying here. At Braeburn House." She pauses, contemplating his last remark again, before she adds with a shake of her head: "A mummer's troupe? Nah."
From beneath the table Nikolus kicked at the wooden chair's seat on the opposite side, sliding it outwards in a silent invitation. "They can be quite exciting from what I hear, if you're the sort to enjoy a new adventure nearly each and every day." The Groves male then reached for another slice of cold meat, "Your duties are bound to the kitchen?"
Flinching at the scraping sound of the chair moving over the floor, Evayne's hand moves up to cover her mouth to hide a shy grin. "Adventures? I'm not the adventurous type, M'lord." Despite her modest words, she moves forward abd assumes the seat so openly offered. "Aye, M'lord, the kitchens. Assistant to the cook." Evie remarks, not without pride. "If there is one who knows how to use 'em knives without cutting meself, I do. M'lord."
"You're not? Too bad." He probed impishly at the shy kitchen maid, grinning as he chewed. "Do you aspire to become the lead cook here or something more, Songbird?"
Now this reply has Evie's cheeks blush in the deepest colour, finally catching the hint that comes with it. Gnawing on her lower lip she chooses not to get into that, fumbling with her shortfingered hands instead - clearly feeling a bit awkward. "I do, of course." the kitchen maid replies, eyeing the nobleman warily. And then she adds, in a slightly more confident tone: "Practically I am already doing her duty - when she takes her nap now and then."
A simple nod follows Evayne's admission, whether true or not, Nikolus simply accepts the answer while reaching for his mug of ale. "Not a lady's maid?" He smirks a touch, "Attending all the high brow events as a noblewoman's wont. Being her secret messenger."
Sitting suddenly very still in her chair, Evayne's brows rise slightly as she lets out a breathless: "No. I'm not" Her gaze lingering on the noble with a sudden tension. "Although… I admit… I've dreamt about it, when I was younger." Her voice is still a bit breathless and slightly hoarse, her grey eyes wide with a hope that is about to form, the fear of it being shattered apparent in her hands clinging to each other like a sailor that is about to drown would cling to a piece of wood.
Teasingly he says, "So have I. In a dress to match my eye and all the pretty boys unable to keep their gaze averted." Nikolus grins while reaching again for his mug and the plate Evayne had brought before him was nearly emptied. Now having his fill. The male reclined a little, a satsified groan slipped through his lips. "The meal was good Mistress." Salted evenly, cooked thoroghly.
Evayne listens, her grey eyes wide with incredulous shock, then after an overlong moment she needs to realize that the nobleman is merely jesting she leans back in her chair exhaling deeply as the groundless hope she had nurtured leaves her like the air leaves her lungs. "You're making fun of me, M'lord." she states blandly and with a touch of disappointment. His praise of the food however takes her by less surprise. Cooking is what she is good at. The reason why she was asked to come back. Evayne rises and takes the plate with a curtsey. "I am glad you enjoyed your meal, M'lord." Her demeanour polite if nothing more. Her gaze, invaded by wariness, rests on Nikolus and it seems she will silently await her dismissal, alas, curiosity gets the best of her, and probably assuming she will be allowed a blunt question as she has offered him a most personal information about herself she inquires: "Your eye, M'lord. What happened to it?"
"A bit of advice then, if a man teases a girl. He likes her." The mug was waved in the air, "It's a tradition." Or perhaps he just liked teasing everyone. Nikolus pushed the plate forward, towards the kitchen maid. "That is a story for another time little birdsong. Off you go."
"Certainly, M'lord." the kitchen maid replies, her cheeks slightly rosy, her demeanour controlled, her hands shaking slightly as she picks up the plate. It remains unclear though which part of Nikolus' speech her reply refers to… well, probably the last. For her sudden swiftness with which she disappears through the door leading downstairs is indeed remarkable!