(1310-07-08) Provincial Capital Delights
Summary: A lady-in-waiting on trial meets a frail daughter of the Duchesse of Eisande.
RL Date: 08/07/2018
Related: None.
ortolette evelyne 

Rooftop Garden — Ducal Palace

At long last the insufferable heat has broken, and Ortolette is celebrating the moderately cooler weather up on the rooftop garden, having been carried upstairs without her chair and settled in place on a satin pillow laid upon a marble bench. She seems to be on the mend from her latest round of fever, which had kept her in bed until the day before last, and she's enjoying every moment of her upswing in health, getting some sun and feeling the wind tug playfully at her braids, trying to find a loose hair to play with, even if in vain. She's brought her embroidery upstairs and is plying her needle half-attentively, indulging in a little bit of a daydream as she looks down over the rooftops of the city. Her faithful bear Girard is by the stairwell, half-dozing in the relative security of the hardest point of the household for a villain to attain, but, like a dog, always with one eye open if anyone comes up the stairs, the one point of access to his ward, or if she should come over faint or summon him.

On trial. Yep, it seems Evelyne has been granted that trial period by the Lady of Marsilikos. At least… here she is, stepping out onto the rooftop garden, on her own. Attired in the courtly fashion as would be expected in one of the Duchesse's ladies, blonde hair fashionably arranged with hair needles, grey silk with a few embroideries of green apples cascading down from the bodice to the skirts. And yes. There is that faint scent of apples that gives away the origin of this lady, that looks like she is still in her late teens. Once safely outside, Evelyne exhales with relief. And then draws a deep breath through her nose, for now perhaps oblivious to anyone else being there already in the rooftop garden. Nostrils flare and her lips curve in a smile, as this Somerville elects to open her eyes slowly again, eyes that closed from the wonderful moment of having successfully made her momentary escape.

Oblivious to both Ortolette and Girard? Can such be possible? Eve appears vaguely astonished to find herself having intruded upon the tranquility already enjoyed by yet another lady. And the one tasked with watching over her.

Girard moves— as if a mountain in the distance had decided to sit itself up, no doubt, for the maiden for whom he had blended into the background. But he recognizes the Lady-in-Waiting-in-Waiting, if he can so call her, and so he doesn't ruin the quiet with queries or greetings, just nods to her and sits up a little straighter, the more diligent now that his ward is no longer on her own. Not that Ortolette has, as yet, any idea. Between the needlework keeping her hands busy and some train of thoughts keeping her mind busy, she presents a staid and neutral countenance to the city which can not see her in the depths of her contemplations, unless possibly a certain astrologer with his telescope. A deep breath is stolen from the lofty zephyrs, and let out in a vaguely audible sigh. Ortolette puts aside her needlework.

Truth be told, Evelyne hasn't been around for long yet, until she received word from the duchesse to come to the Palace to begin the two weeks that will decide her fate. But then again, what harm can there be in such an amiable looking l'Agnacite lady, who has apparently gotten as far as the upper floor of the Palace, without any guards denying her entrance. For now, the blonde lady-in-waiting dips into a curtsey, with an expression that is somewhere between apologetic and slightly sheepish. "I am sorry, my lady. I didn't realize there was someone already here… I didn't mean to disturb you." Perhaps the young delicate Mereliot has been pointed out to her from afar, as the frail daughter of the duchesse. "My Lady Ortolette," she adds, to emphasize the fact that she at least knows who she is talking to.

Ortolette turns and looks when she's addressed, composing herself and putting away the sigh that came so petulantly to her lips. She moves her needlework back to her lap and resumes the rhythmic draw of her needle and tug of her thread with only a brief glance to re-orient herself with the piece. Her hands know what they're doing. "Not at all. My Lady de Somerville, I presume," from the odor, if not from the apples on the young lady's dress. "How fine it is to have you in the house— I hope that you shall stay with us for a while," is a sweetly voiced welcome, though it could possibly be interpreted as a warning to do well on her trial period. "Evelyne, isn't it?" She pays attention to the goings on in the house, as well. Possibly more than people think.

"Yes. Evelyne de Somerville," the same confirms with a vague smile. "Her Grace, your mother is giving me a chance, for which I am very grateful." The lady's blue eyes regard Ortolette with friendly curiosity. "As for whether I'll stay or not… We shall see." Her shoulders lift in a light shrug. "My family would prefer it to be so. And then again… it is interesting to see how things are handled in the countryside." A slight lapse in tact perhaps, but then, Evelyne has been sent here to learn about all these subtleties. "Do you have anything you need at the moment?", the Somerville lady adds then, perhaps remembering duties and courtesy. "Or shall I have you fetched anything? A drink perhaps?"

"In the countryside?" Ortolette simply asks, not scolding, but inviting Evelyne to clarify her meaning— as though not at all sure what she means— while, just perhaps, at one and the same time, giving her a moment to think about how that might have been poorly phrased. "No, my Lady de Somerville. I'm well, nor am I thirsty. Do you sew?" she wonders, glancing to the space beside her as though to invite Evelyne to come sit and look at her needlework with her. "I find it soothing. Keeps the hands busy, lets the mind clear and other thoughts come into focus."

"Oh!" It seems her faux pax sinks finally in, and Evelyne lowers her gaze, the scent of apples intensifying for a moment. "I meant… the provincial capital. Of Eisande." With her cheeks still a little rosy from that hint of a blush she adds, "I was in Elua before." As if that would explain a little. "And no, I don't sew. I ride and enjoy going for a hunt. I dance. I know a little swordplay, as my brothers showed me some."

After a moment she adds, "Oh and I enjoy reading. Fictional works." A smile there. "I… would like to write some stories of my own. But I probably lack the talent."

Ortolette begins to feel somewhat alienated from the Somerville maiden; the list of things that Evelyne likes to do eerily parallels her own list of things she cannot do— or at least cannot do very well. "I held a sword, once. It was very heavy," is as close as she can come to relating on any score. "I like to read, as well. Though my tastes in prose tend toward treatises and commentary. I love to read poems. And I have a collection of opera libretti which I have all but memorized. It makes me wish that I could sing," she smiles faintly. "What would you write about, were you to write?"

"Oh… I learned to use the thinner, lighter blade. A sword, a real sword would be too heavy, even for me." Evelyne clarifies this with a smile. "Poems… yes, I enjoy those. I'm not sure I could… craft such artful rhymes. No. I would consider writing prose rather. Adventurous tales. Some taking place abroad. I hear many foreigners come to the city of Marsilikos. How intriguing." Remaining standing for now, Evelyne elects to take a slow stroll about the roof garden, remaining close enough to continue the conversation. "Opera libretti? Are you fond of the opera, then? I hear you have a theatre here in Marsilikos. Is it any good?"

"j'adore l'opera!," Ortolette answers, first and foremost, her voice finally taking on a deeper tone than that girlish squeak with which she usually talks, as though she might swoon at the very thought of the opera itself— a real passion taking her voice and calling a rosy flush to her cheeks. "Ours is quite good, for a home-grown venture. I am become a patron there, myself. I have a box, now, right next to my mother's. And I am in negotiations for a troupe to come from the Unitas and perform La Truffata— it's one of my favorites. How I would melt to see it performed in its entirety!" Oh, she's riled, now. "Yes, our port calls people from all over the world to trade and diplomacy. Maybe that is why your father has sent your brother here. He is to be a diplomat, he gives me to understand."

"This truly is good news," Evelyne announces with a brightening of her eyes. "Not that I would have doubted the arts would be well presented here of all places." A shoulder lifts in a light shrug as she half-turns to regard Ortolette in her seat. "Perhaps… if they have a play or opera performed there, this would be a good opportunity for the duchesse and her ladies to attend such a thing?" Not that she shows any signs of being acquainted with the particular Caerdicci piece Ortolette references. "Ambassadors and adventurers…", Eve echoes instead, lips curving even further as her eyes glint with mischief. "I see… I would probably meet them, here at this court?" That is until she hears her brother being mentioned. And for a moment, Evelyne looks too astonished to even phrase the question. It comes belatedly. "Laurent? You are speaking of Laurent? Impossible, he's abroad with uncle Javier. In… Khebbel-im-Akkad, I think." Her brows lift. "He is here? That is… if we are speaking of the same Somerville. Are we?"

"Oh, yes. We have an ambassador from Hellas living with us even now, whom your brother is eager to meet, having spent some years in Hellas, himself— as you well know," Ortolette defers to the fact that Evelyne is obviously more in the know about her brother's doings than she. Until it turns out that— no. Ortolette titters a small bit— she can hardly help it! "Oh, dear, have I ruined a surprise? He was here, looking for you, yester-eve, as I finished my music lesson, having just arrived from the company of your uncle abroad. Summoned dictu patris, for the foreseeable, to make port here and wait for further instructions. It's all terribly intriguing. Did your father send you here, as well?"

"Father sent me here yes. In a way.", Evelyne responds, her demeanor souring just a little. "I came here directly from Elua… So… I have a aunt and an uncle living here, at the Somerville Residence. I… have to visit them later today, as they will be inviting some friends of the family. So I'll stay there overnight. I should be back tomorrow, though." She smiles.

<FS3> Opposed Roll — Evelyne=Composure Vs Ortolette=Perception
< Evelyne: Success (6 4 8 6 4 1) Ortolette: Good Success (4 7 4 2 3 8 4)
< Net Result: Ortolette wins - Marginal Victory
<FS3> Evelyne rolls Persuasion: Success. (1 6 4 5 7 2 3 1)

The Somerville lady may not be telling the whole truth there. But can one be wroth at her, really, when she brings it forth with such a sweet smile. "Speaking of which… I have to choose a dress to wear for the family gathering. Pray excuse me." A swift curtsey is offered, and there she goes. Evelyne sweeping towards the door that leads back into the solar.

A family gathering indeed. Ortolette only wishes she could attend a family gathering of such a sort. Still, she accepts the excuse with an incline of her head. And returns to her sewing. "Good day, my Lady de Somerville."

Unless otherwise stated, the content of this page is licensed under Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 License