(1312-05-26) Cover My Name
Summary: Aurore and Philomène grow more intimate in their personal and financial dealings both.
RL Date: 26/05/2020
Related: Sausage Trading and Imagining Sea Shanties.
philomene aurore 

Ferrand Suite — Chalasse Residence

This large sitting-room is decorated in bold colours, red being the most prominent, with a frequent motif of wildflowers appearing again and again in the paintings and tapestries. More exotic blooms from all over the known world are woven into the pattern of the dark green carpets. Vases of dried flowers sit on all the tables and a number of live plants are kept where the sun can reach, and one particularly large window has a wide padded sill large enough for two to sit there comfortably to take in the scenery outside. Other chairs and couches are covered in red velvet, including one of those 'gossip' couches that separate a seated pair by the aid of a curving arm, and twin lounges for lying down. A carved sideboard holds wine and glasses; an ornately carved oaken table seats six for dining. One wall of the room has two doors, and on the other there's a single door leading to a bedroom.

In one corner of the sleeping chamber rests a large four-posted wooden bed, with a red and golden coverlet and a ridiculous assortment of pillows. Two wardrobes match the bed, and so does a nightstand upon which rests an oil lamp painted with a motif of wild carrots. A dressing-table opposite boasts an unusually large mirror of silvered glass. The top of it is covered in ivory-handled brushes and combs, and pots of fragrances and emollients, all neatly regimented. Bookshelves nearby hold a wide variety of volumes, from children's primers to serious tomes on history, botany, and gardening. The wall shared with the sitting-room is equipped with a hearth which heats both, when it's needful. A wolf-skin is set before it for lounging. In another corner there sits a large copper bathtub.

The candles are well lit and Thierry's nurse has carried him off to bed. Aurore is sipping wine as she reads a letter from her steward. Her shoes are off and her feet are tucked up on the divan, like a schoolgirl’s. She is not specifically expecting company, but oh is she hoping.

"I'm not interrupting, am I?" comes a low voice from the doorway, where the tall blonde dowager Vicomtesse de Gueret stands, leaning up against the doorframe, ostensibly picking dirt from beneath her fingernails with an easy casualness.

Aurore sets the letter aside and is on her feet smiling, hands out as she approaches her. "Not at all. I had them set uisghe on the sideboard in hopes. Would you like anything to eat? Drink?" Her eyes sparkle in the candle light, "I've been dealing with papers of one sort or another all day and you are… very much a sight to wash all that away.”

Philomène can't help but smile as she limps forward to take both hands, pressing them together and lifting both to her chest. "I know it must be an awful thought to contemplate being dragged away from paperwork. You'll have to forgive me." She pulls back a little to look the woman over, then flashes a wider smile. "I already ate, but I wouldn't object to sharing a little nightcap with you. Never turn down a good uisghe, you never know when you'll next get the chance, hm?"

Aurore lowers her lashes and nods. She steals a quick kiss, then goes to pour herself a finger and rather more for her guest. She offers it, then reaches for her hand, "How was your day, coz?"

"About eighty hours long, and every minute dragged," Philomène admits, lifting her glass in mute thanks before taking a quick, refreshing sip from the burning liquid. Her eyes close for a moment and she untangles her hand from Aurore's, instead to slide her arm around the other woman. "I tried some painting. No, you don't get to see. I burnt my attempts. It's for the best." She smirks. "I don't think I have a second career ahead of me as an artist."

Aurore wraps her arm around Philomène's waist, "Someday you will paint me astride a fat horse. Just you wait." She smiles, "I think I've a way for you to sell your bacon and I my saucisson to the navy if you are interested and we are very lucky."

"If I've got you astride a fat horse, do you really think I'm going to spend my time painting of all things?" Philomène teases, pressing a swift kiss to the woman's shoulder. "Go on? You know the way to a woman's heart is through the sale of pork products."

Aurore laughs softly, then kisses her full on the mouth, caressing her cheek, "Well, my reputation proceeded me, so we can't sell our saucisson under my name, but shipped under yours with your bacon…. we could both make a good profit and the Lady Chimène as well, as I've offered her a percentage for giving us the right introduction if the deal goes through. The catch is, you must meet with her."

Philomène leans into that hand, studying Aurore's face. "That," she insists, "sounds like a trap to me. Too many steps along the way. We go through Zéphyrine, she goes through Chimène, she goes through Athanasius, he goes to the Duc, and eventually we get to the actually victualler, and everyone adds their own agenda along the way. What's Chimène looking for?"

Aurore smiles, "I offered her a small percentage for a few years or a slightly larger one for the short term. i wouldn't want either of us entangled for long with her, but no gift I could offer her would be as good as what she already has, so a small saving she czn squirrel away was the only viable inducement.”

"We're not desperate," Philomène reasons, taking a moment to knock back another good slug from her drink. "If she won't budge to a reasonable position, I'll walk away and we'll come at it from another angle if the opportunity arises. Let me know what offer you have on the table and I'll make sure I know exactly where our red lines are before I go in."

Aurore nods, "I have the numbers ready if you like." She searches her eyes, "Would you be willing to cover my name with yours in this business?"

Philomène's lips twitch for a moment in amusement, before she gives a solid nod. "You know I will. As long as you trust me to negotiate for the both of us."

Aurore gazes at her, "I trust you utterly fierce, honorable Philomène. Do you trust me to provide high quality and wholesome food, knowing what you know? Some wouldn't."

"Knowing that you'd stop at nothing for the ones you love?" Philomène clarifies, setting her drink down so she can smooth back the woman's hair instead. And frankly for her drink to come second place to anything at all is a point worth noting. "Setting up a lasting trade deal with the navy gives Thierry something solid to fall back on. Of course I trust you."

Aurore simply wrap her arms around Philomène and kisses her as if her whole heart is expressed in that touch, "I think you are the most honorable person I know."

"If by honourable," Philomène replies with a smile against the woman's lips, her hand resting at the back of her neck so she can sneak another kiss, "you mean impetuous, stubborn, rash and foolish, then," another quick kiss, "you're absolutely right. I will try to hold my temper for you, and get a good deal, I promise."

Aurore says, "Fierce in defence of those you care about you mean." She kisses her some more, "Thank you. I know being polite to the… judgemental may not be your forte.""

"I am far, far better at stabbing them than smiling at them," Philomène admits. "If I learn nothing else from you, I'd like to learn a dot of your self control."

Aurore strokes her neck lightly, "I admit, the idea of you stabbing my enemies is far more attractive than a civilized person ought to admit."

Philomène gives a short, delighted laugh, then squeezes her tightly in against her, dotting kisses to her cheek and ear. "Know that you only need say the word and I'd do it in a heartbeat, my dear, dear Aurore. I trust you'd give me an alibi?"

Aurore tugs gently at some of her hair, "Oh of course. I would do anything necessary to protect you in my own way."

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