Thursday, December 6, 2012

Paths Ending, Paths Beginning--Part 5

Eurydice sat down on a bench in the hall, and set her basket of hot cross buns beside her. After a moment, she let loose a great sigh, and helped herself to one of the buns.

“Ivanushka still fasting?” asked Julia Upsilon, sidling up next to her, and helping herself to a bun.

“Yes, Squire Sigma is doing that,” she replied.

“These are good,” said Julia, her mouth full. “Sort of like a mince pie. Only… not as pie-ey.”

Eurydice de Fidele shifted from looking at the young nun to glaring at her. It had little effect. “Aren’t you worried about your brother?”

“Some,” replied Julia, helping herself to another bun. “But I figure it’s something he has to work out on his own.”

Eurydice crossed her arms. “What kind of sister could…”

“My kind,” answered Julia with a yawn. She picked up another bun. “Can I have the recipe? These are very good.”

“I don’t know it,” said Eurydice, turning away.

“But I thought you were a cook,” asked Julia, scarfing down her latest bun.

“No,” answered Eurydice. “I direct the cooks. And the maids. And pretty much everyone else in the castle. It’s a family thing.”

Julia’s face screwed up in puzzlement. “Your family are all as bossy as you?” she asked, picking up another bun.

“We’re all stewards!” hissed Eurydice. “Every Fidele has been a steward for centuries! It’s our job! Running Castle Terribel!”

Julia’s expression remained puzzled, even as she continued to chew her bun. “I thought that was the Dark Lord’s job?”

“No, only for the important things,” said Eurydice. “We run the other things.”

“The unimportant things,” said Julia, with a nod.

“The day-to-day things,” muttered Eurydice, burying her face in her hands. “The little things that keep the Castle functioning, but the Dark Lord can’t be bothered with all the time himself.”

“Or herself,” added Julia, helping herself to another bun.

“No, himself! The Dark Lord of the Plains is agnatic!” shouted Eurydice.

“Ahh, boys only then.” Julia nodded. “That’s nice to know. But to return to you--so you handle all the little things, but you don’t do all the little things. Correct?”

“Pretty much,” said Eurydice, as the young nun stood up. “Why are you asking?”

“Oh, trying to place you,” said Julia, walking away. “I was hoping that my brother would have a good cook, but still--someone who looks after people is what he needs.” She smiled at Eurydice. “Tell whoever baked those they were delicious.”

Eurydice watched Julia walk away in bafflement. Glancing at her basket, she saw that it was now empty.

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