(1311-03-29) It's Not as Bad as All That
Summary: Laurene comes to give what for and receives a dinner invitation.
RL Date: 3/30/19
Related: Husband Shopping, Target Switch, In the Cards.
laurene etienne 

Etienne and Symon's Rooms: Les Tanières

This small sitting room is wood paneled and cozy. It has a small fireplace with a shared flue, with two comfortable chairs in front of it, with a small table on a green and black rug between them. There is a small writing desk and an X shaped oak foldable chair in front of it.

Étienne is having a quiet day in. He is reading… something in a comfy chair, wine at elbow. What he s reading is best not mentioned.

There's a banging on the door. Not the dainty unobtrusive knock of a servant, but a loud "lemme in!" bang.

Robert being out gathering provisions, the young heir to Berck closes the book and tucks it under a cushion, before answering. He is dressed in plain, sturdy hose and a loose linen shirt. Opens the door legitimately confused as he wasn't expecting anyone. Long, glossy black curls fall to his shoulders. His face has a slightly unformed look, though the bone structure is good. Large, startlingly blue eyes with long dark lashes blink at the uninvited guest.

The unvited guest is a young woman. While she isn't particularly tall, she's of rather rotund shape, making her look taller than she is. She has taken some care with her appearance, hair done up prettily, a dab of make-up and acres of expensive dark-blue silk around her person. "Well, whoa.", is her first comment when the door is opened and she sees the young man. "Do tell me you're Etienne Arguil and not some servant."

Still with a mild expression, he peers at her with those ridiculous, angel kissed eyes, "I'm Etienne d'Arguil, but are you sure you're not looking for Lord Symon? He's out." He leans casually in the door frame, quite possibly trying to block entry.

"No. That loser can go to hell.", Laurene replies simply, "It's you I've come to see. Are you going to let me in or not?", she asks, crossing her arms in front of her chest while trying to peer behind him. "I don't mind if it's not clean. I'm used to it from my mother."

Étienne's expression hardens at the insult to Symon. "Might you be the Lady Laurene?" So not quite as foolish as his open expression might make him look. "It's clean, but I do not enjoy people just barging in after insulting my friend." He doesn't move, beyond shifting his stance casually to make it harder to know him over. He's of average height, wide shouldered and slim waisted. Something about the quality iof stillness suggests long training in either dance or the sword.

"Yea, that's me.", Laurene confirms and frowns. "He met me once and decided I wasn't good enough for him. Or scared of me. Or whatever. Anyway.", she shrugs, "He hurt my feelings, so forgive me if I don't think of him too highly right now."

Étienne sighs and steps out of the way, "It wasn't a matter of not good enough, just a sense that ou wouldn't suit each other. I am sorry he hurt you feelings, but it seemed kinder to be straightforward about it."

"Well, it still meant that he didn't like me.", Laurene points out and steps into the room, once he clears the entrance. She looks around curiously. "And it was just one stupid meeting with my mother hovering around like a vulture. So what did he say?", she asks, remaining standing while waiting to see if she's offered a seat.

Étienne manages not to sigh. "We have wine if you like. You didn't…bring a chaperone or anything?" He checks the hallway just in case, hesitates, then closes the door. "He is new to the whole looking for a wife process. And your offer confused him. And me, honestly."

"Nah, the last thing I want is some spy on my back, reporting straight to mother.", Laurene replies, "I can handle myself. And I wouldn't mind some wine. What offer are we talking about? It's not like I offered him to get laid straightaway."

Étienne eyes her warily, but pours her a descent table red from the decanter. "Have a seat." He pauses, trying to find the right words, "The offer to meet alone on the dock is not a …usual one. We couldn't figure out just what you meant by it.

"I won't stay long.", Laurene reassures him, but accepts both the seat and the wine. She chuckles softly at the confusion. "I just wanted to talk to him. Anywhere. Get to know him without my mother around. Didn't expect him to get cold feet so quickly.", she then explains

Étienne settles in his own chair and takes up his wine. "Ah. Perhaps a more specific destination next time." He crosses his legs with the same unconscious grace that characterizes everything he does. It stands out in much the same way his eyes do, when so much of the rest of him is so ordinary d'Angeline youth. "We neither of us have much experience in the looking for a wife business, and for Symon, the right wife is particularly important." He studies her, "Why are you so keen to get out from under your mother's eye?" he doesn't sound judgmental, but rather curious.

Laurene gives him a long look. "Have you MET my mother?", is the one simple question she then asks, leaving the rest to be answered or discussed later.

Étienne shakes his head, "I fear not, though Symon seems to like her. I only have his impressions to go on. Why don't you tell me your side of it." he leans back, his face far to open for Marsilikos really, but kind enough.

Laurene considers for a moment, then speaks. "She tried to find me a husband here and seal the deal without giving me - or the guy - a chance to even meet first. That's all you really need to know about her.", she begins, then warms to the subject. "She was too scared that guys may be put off by me. And yea, I know I'm not pretty. I know I'm fat. I know I don't have the greatest manners, but that's what you get from growing up in a rural backwaters with parents who don't care, no tutors and no trips to anywhere important. And I know I got other stuff to offer. I can run your household. I'm great with numbers and can take care of your business. I'm a great cook. I'm good in the sack. So yea, if you need a pretty little damsel, all gorgeous to look at and perfect manners, but otherwise completely useless, I'm not the right one for you. But if you need a partner who'll be at your side, run things for you and doesn't care what you get up otherwise, I reckon you could do worse than me. And all I ever wanted was to have a fair say in who I'd shack up with for the rest of my life and not be sold off like the proverbial cat in the bag, just to be rid of me!" She's talked herself into a fine fury by now and chugs the rest of the wine down, before leaping to her feet. "I should go. I know I came unbidden."

Étienne cocks his head and says quietly, "It wasn't your looks put him off, and if he'd have known you were good at accounting that really would have counted in your favour. You did scare him though and it was still a very rough decision for him. None of us wants to be sold off. Not him or me nor my sisters. I know it's a whole lot worse for you, given the givens, but we have feeling and doubts and thoughts too."

"Yea, well, he could have given me a fair fighting chance, not judge so fast. Same goes for you.", she adds suddenly, hinting that perhaps she caught some talk somewhere. "Would I want you, based on this short meeting? Probably not. Sitting down for a longer conversation and get to know you though? I wouldn't mind that. Think about it. And thanks for the wine." And she departs as abruptly as she had come.

Étienne rises to show her out, "Would you like to have dinner with us sometime? I know place that does really amazing things with shellfish."

Laurene pauses at the door and turns back, offering him a genuine smile. "Yes, I'd like that. Just send me a note when and where."

Étienne gives her a polite little bow, smiling back, all straight strong teeth and dimples. "I will consult with Symon and let you know when we are free." He is already thinking of bribing Symon with kottabos after to get him to go along with it. "May you have a pleasant evening."

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