08.09.3013: A Gift and a Curse
Summary: Charlie brings her "Auntie" Agnes a get well gift. Chiron brings Agnes some troublesome news about his sister.
Date: 09 August 2013
Related: None
Agnes Charlie Chiron 

Grand Antechamber — Nether Keep, Khar-Mordune
A graceful archway decorated in delicate helictite and soft flowstone guides individuals into the Grand Antechamber of the Nether Keep. This chamber had once been a small secondary hovel to the greater cave outside, but it has been expanded by manmade means to rival the grand halls of other noble fortifications. Everything about this room's design is about providing light and emphasizing its natural beauty. A vast lacework of bioluminescent fungus covers much of the vaulted ceilings, creating a natural chandelier that is constantly refreshing itself with regrowth. The stone floors have been polished smooth, and bioluminescent veins course thorugh the stone to increase the overall illumination of the sprawling room. Braizers and wall sconces filled with organic, luminous goo provide consistent light. Massive, natural columns run from floor to ceiling along the back of the chamber, and stonecarvers have come in to chisel and engrave the stone in intricate designs. There is a series of turbolifts at the back of the chamber which allow visitors and residence alike to venture down into the rest of the keep.
09 August 3013

It took far too long. But finally Charlie is finished with the project she made for Agnes' most recent injury. Usually the gifts she brings are small and simple, and so until now she has always mage it to the hospital before Agnes is discharged. This time though, she was late. She slips into the antechamber as the sun is setting, her eyes fondly sliding over the room as she walks through. As usual, she is barefoot, her simple pale orange dress has a few leaves caught in the hem, and her hair is hanging wildly about her shoulders. She carries this evening a package, a large box-shaped something wrapped in worn leather.

Agnes is up and around today, still healing, but far better off than she had been. She's currently settled in a chair in an area that is being used for comfortable seating today, with sofas and chaises and such. She's reading her datapad and tapping away at it diligently. The Knight is in a simple tunic, breeches, and boots, with just a tiny bit of makeup and her hair tamed. Seems romance has made her more conscientious about her appearance.

Chiron walks into the Antichamber, his green hooded cloak trailing behind him. He's going to visit Agnes again, the first talk went rather well and getting to know his Knight will only help him out in the long run. He smiles as he sess Charlie walk in and will wave at the girl. "Sir Agnes, Lady Charlie." He says, bowing. "How are you two today?"

Charlie smiles brightly as she sees the pair. Though there's a slight grimace at the bowing, she tries her best to take it in stride. Meaning she ignores it. "Hello Auntie! Chiron, how's your training going?" She moves to Agnes' side as she speaks, offering the gentlest of 'hospital hugs' before dropping to sit in the nearest chair.

Agnes looks up at her guests and she smiles, setting her datapad aside. "Much better, thank you Chiron. I expect that your Ranch chores are complete for the day? Hello Charlie, dear. You look lovely today." She returns the girl's hug warmly.

Chiron grins, "Yeah, I got Loree to do them. What are little sisters for anyway?" He says, his tone indicates that he's not serious. He says to Charie, "It's going well, so far."

Flushing, Charlie hurries to tuck her hair behind her ears and make herself a little less wild-looking. She smiles up at Chiron, with only a slight narrowing of her eyes to show that she has mostly figured out he is teasing, "Thank you Auntie. Are you much better? I'm so sorry I couldn't come sooner this time." There's some serious guilt in her voice and posture as she apologizes.

"Oh, I'm glad you waited, Charlie. I wouldn't want you to see me in the state I was in," Agnes murmurs. Charlie is her gentle soul of all of Aelewen's kids. She pats the girl's hand and gives Chiron a look. "Maybe I'll tell Loree you're to do her chores for the next week too," she quips.

"Maybe I can do my own chores from now on…" Chiron says, grinning a little after being beat. He moves to take a seat next to Agnes, pulling out a small bag of cookies. "Ma' made these for you. I hope you like Oatmeal."

Charlie bites her lip, and tries to decide whether this news should make her feel better or worry more. The joke that Agnes follows with helps her to chose the former, and with a small grin she settles more comfortably into her seat. The cookies bring a wider smile, "Oooh. I've /heard/ things about her cooking. They say its fantastic."

"Cookies!" Agnes exclaims, happily taking them from Chiron. "Oh yes, I love oatmeal. Save a few for Argent though, they are his absolute favorite." Of course, they have oats in them. "I would love to come eat dinner with your family at some point Chiron. Knowing where you come from helps me guide you where you're going." She offers a cookie to Charlie and nibbles one herself.

"Eh, Ma's cooking is alright." He's lying. It's absolutely amazing. He smiles all the same, however, and continues. "I would like that at some point, Sir Agnes. Ma' will /freak/, it's going to be awesome." He laughs a little, a little surprised, but not unhappy with Agnes's reaction. "I'm sure that I could get more of those at some point, Ma' likes to bake quite a bit."

Charlie gives a tiny of squeal of thanks for the cookie. She takes it with glee, setting her parcel aside and taking the cookie in both hands to eat it. She closes her eyes after the first bite to taste it carefully, and when she opens them again they are lit up. "Mmmf!" A few more bites quickly devour the rest, "That's amazing!"

"Hm, that tempts me to solicit her to bake desserts for the Netherkeep," Agnes ponders. Another means to help reduce their debt perhaps? She watches Charlie in amusement. She was always her favorite of Aelewen's babies. So curious and thoughtful and full of life.

"I think she would probably just die if a noble asked to cook or bake for them." Chiron laughs a little more, his mom deserves some attention! "She makes the best pies. Rhubarb pie in particular is my favorite. I can't tell if it's also her favorite to make… or if she just wants me fat."

Charlie shakes her head at the silliness of Chiron's mother. "Can she make honeyfingers?" Its a badly-kept secret that those are her favorite sweet treats. Giggling at the 'fat' comment, she reaches for her parcel and offers it to Agnes. "It took too long, I know. But hopefully you'll still like it."

"Oh, now I'd love to try some of her pies," Agnes notes. "Does she do cherry and apple and blueberry and pecan?" she asks. Then Charlie hands her a present. "What's this?" she asks with a gentle smile. She begins opening it carefully.

Chiron nods, "Yup, yup, yup, and yup." he says to Agnes regarding the pies. "The only pie she refuses to make are Banana Creme… I have no idea why." He watches as Agnes opens her present, smiling some.

Charlie leans forward as Agnes opens the package, "Its something new I've been working on. This is the first good prototype." When opened, the package reveals itself to be something akin to a thick wooden chessboard with a brass top. However, when Charlie leans over and presses a button on the side, pieces rise out of the brass top. They continue to move until a large pop-up book style image of the interior of Peak Castle is revealed. "No banana creme?" She gives a little false pout.

"Oh. Oh my Charlie," Agnes says a little breathlessly. "This is amazing. How does it work?" She seems entirely enamored with the contraption. All thoughts of pie are dispersed in the face of the clockwork mechanism.

"Well." Charlie reaches for the only other thing on the side of the box, wich is a tiny crank. "The leftover energy from this powers the switch. And when you wind this… " She quickly gives the crank another couple of turns, "Then… " A few tiny figures pop up in differen parts of the structure, and move around in time to a simple music box meledy. "Its mostly just a converted music box." She explains humbly.

Chiron lightly claps as the contraption unfolds. "Well done, Charlie." He says, giving her a smile. "I am always impressed with what that brain of yours comes up with. And yeah, no Banana Cream." He frowns some, shaking his head.

"It's incredible, Charlie. How do you ever think these things up?" Agnes asks. She claps as the little figures move about. "I love it. Thank you!" She hugs the girl. "Banana cream is delicious, but I'll take whatever your mother bakes, Chiron."

"I think pie in general is just delicious." Chiron smiles, watching the little figures dancing around.

Charlie beams, and hugs her aunt back more tightly this time (only a little though!). "You really like it? Oh, I'm so glad! I want to make one for all of the holdings eventually." She giggles at Chiron, "Yes, all pie is good pie. well, unless its burned but then I suppose its not really pie… and there are probably people who /like/ burned pie… "

"I'll put it someplace important, where everyone can see it," Agnes vows. She settles her hands in her lap. "So, how are you two doing? And how is your mother, Charlie?" she asks.

"I'm doing alright." Chiron replies, sighing a little. "So… I have a question. If I hit a noble… just /how/ much trouble do I get in?" His sarcastic tone is gone, indicating that this is something he's thought about.

Charlie's smile is almost brigter at the mention of her mother. But then she's been so happy ever since Aelewen returned. "She's just… what?" Blinking, she turns to Chiron, "Did you… hit someone?" And just as quickly she adds, "Did someone hurt Loree?"

"Well, it's a rather big deal if you hit anyone who isn't a Hostile, Chiron," Agnes points out. "But it would entirely depend on the circumstances. Explain."

Chiron sighs again, "My sister told me that a noble 'friend' of mine approached her and forced a kiss. She slapped him, but she's obviously pretty upset about it." He rubs his forehead some, "I was going to talk with said noble… and explain that my sister isn't just some commoner tavern girl you can pick up for a night."

Charlie is silent, listening with wide eyes. Slowly, she pulls one foot up so that she can hug her knee to her chest. Chin resting on her knee, she listens in quiet worry.

Agnes scowls. "Well, I'd prefer you let me handle this, as your Knight. That way I'm on even ground with this individual and, as I consider your family under my protection, it's my duty to handle it. Who was it?"

Chiron glares a little, not particularly happy that Agnes is going to be taking care of it, but it's the best possible move, so he replies after a few seconds. "It was Darious Arboren. He was at the party, you danced with him I believe, Charlie."

Charlie's eyes widen even more, if possible. "Yyesss… " She bites her lip, nods a little, and looks down at her knee, "He was a little strange at the party. I thought for a moment he'd forgotten we were cousins or something." She's reluctant to admit it, though at the same time she's been wanting to for some time.

Agnes sighs and facepalms. "I will have a chat with Lord Sir Darious. Do we have any notion what brought this kiss on?" she asks. "Or is he just a bit," horny, "easily excitable by women?"

"I didn't ask details, you may want to talk to Lorelei about it. I kind of forgot everything that was said after she told me." Chiron frowns some, "Sir Darious has been good to my family, up till now. I would like to believe that he just doesn't know how to properly express his affections… but he could just using his nobility to get what he wants."

Charlie bites her lip, thinking a bit before she answers. "I haven't been around him much," Or any of the family really, "But from his actions at the squiring, I would say probably maybe its the expression of feelings he's struggling with?" She shrugs, definitely not certain in her answer but wanting to help all the same.

"Or he could have been inebriated, or misread your sister's intentions, or any number of other things. I will speak to Lorelei about it first so I don't go accusing him falsely. Then I'll let him know such attentions to your sister are off limits until I tell him otherwise. And otherwise will only occur when Lorelei comes to me requesting that the ban be lifted." Agnes looks deadly serious about this. She takes protecting her Squire's family very seriously.

Chiron nods, "That is much better then how I would have handled it…" He says, looking down at the ground. "Thank you, Sir Agnes. I appreciate your continued care to me and my family. I hope that I can make you proud as a knight one day." He looks up, giving the woman a smile.

Charlie, though nowhere /near/ as deadly serious as Agnes, reaches over to take Chiron's hand. "You will be. You came here to talk about it rather than going and punching him with your gauntlets on, right? You already have good judgement!" She offers a supportive smile.

"Indeed, listen to Charlie. She speaks the truth. The fact you stopped to get advice, rather than charging forward in haste and anger, shows sensibility, Chiron." Agnes is clearly in agreement on this.

Chiron nods, "I'll be honest, I considered to just go talk to him… But the risk of loosing my chances of becoming a knight wasn't worth it." He sighs again. "Thanks, you two. It means a lot."

Charlie beams, both for the fact that Agnes agrees with her and for Churon's consent to their words. She gives his hand a squeeze before sitting back with a smile.

"Every day you reinforce that I made the right decision in chosing you as a squire, Mister Quellton," Agnes says with a soft smile. "And Charlie, you are your mother's pride and joy, and I am so proud of how brilliant and beautiful you are."

Chiron blushes a little, "I'll be honest… I wake up every day wondering if I've woken up from the best dream ever. What made you decide to Squire me? You didn't know me at all… I just don't understand, but I know that I'm truly blessed by the Six to have met you."

Charlie laughs softly. She draws her other knee up to her chest tilting her head to wait for the answer like a kid waiting for the part of the story she knows is going to be the best part.

"It was a fated meeting. I felt the Knight's hand in it, Chiron. And once I saw your military transcripts I knew you had the right outlook. Your concern for your family reinforced that. Mostly, you were very respectful of me, of others, and of yourself. And that is something even the richest of noble children cannot compete with. It's something that is hard to teach, and you already had it."

Chiron smiles, "I try my best, and hope it's good enough. The important thing I've found is to never stop trying." He scratches the back of his head and leans back. "I just want you to know how grateful I am for this opportunity."

Charlie smiles softly, hugs her knees a little tighter, and listens happily. After a while she giggles, "You know, I think you and your sister are the humblest people I've ever met."

"And I want you to know I'm just as grateful for it. You'll likely be my last squire before I am buried beneath the tasks of a wife and mother." Agnes smiles softly. "Provided Lord Erek approves his son's request at some point."

Chiron grins, "And I'm sure that you will be an excellent wife and mother, if how you treat your nieces, nephews, and my family is any indication." He looks over at Charlie, "I blame that on good parenting."

Charlie blushes at Chiron's sideways compliment, and lenas forward to squeeze Agnes' arm, "You'll be an /amazing/ mother, Auntie. And I just /know/ he's going to let you two get married!"

"Well, on that note, I have work to tend to. Charlie, why don't you show Chiron around a bit? He hasn't had the full tour of the mountain yet, and you know it well enough," Agnes requests.

Chiron nods, "That would be good, I think. Every time I come to the mountain I see something new!" He seems excited at the prospect of exploring new places.

"Sure!" Charlie scrambles to her feet, managing somehow to keep from tangling them in her dress as she does so. "Its one of my favorite places." She gushes, before leaning over to give Agnes a hug. "Do you need anything before we go?"

Agnes hugs Charlie. "You've given me too much already dear. Go, have fun."

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