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 Post subject: Miss Roder in Vintesse
PostPosted: Wed July 22nd, 5:46 am 
New Girl
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I thought I would start the ball rolling with an little snippet.

You may have read A South Kadorian Romance over at the FPC. This story actually predates it in writing terms, though the Romance is clearly before this in narrative chronology.

Actually the Romance was originally the back-story to Miss Roder's appearance in Claremont, Vintesse - which you will read about here.


Miss Roder in Vintesse

One does not expect to find haunting beauty in a worn calfskin coat; and if one did expect it, one would not expect to find it at the Half-Moon in Queen Street, Claremont. The Half Moon was a slightly run-down establishment with a regular clientele of working girls, mostly brunette. Its main virtue was that it served the cheapest skokhien in Clare County.

Jinty Maltravers dropped in after covering a particularly dull civic event for the Claremont Courier. She could afford better watering-holes than the Half-Moon - just about; but she had gotten used to the old place and saw no reason not to use it when she was that side of town. She ordered a pie and a spritzer and gradually became aware of music; at first no more than a gentle pecking on the strings of a chitern, to which she paid little heed as there was often some mediocre musical activity taking place at the Half-Moon. The South-Kadori folk instrument was not entirely unknown in these regions where the quest for novelty led in many directions.

Gradually, as if out of a kind of musical meditation, the pecking took the form of a haunting melody and a voice joined it; a voice that was both plaintive and harsh, delicate and a little aggressive. It was a decidedly odd combination, but the overall effect was something that made a profound impression on Miss Maltravers.

The singer was a youngish brunette in a rather worn calfskin coat of the type worn by some country-girls in South Kadoria. They are beautifully made and last forever. Some even consider the worn-in look part of their charm in the country, but In town, in the evening it seemed distinctly out of place - especially as this coat was a little beyond worn-in.

The owner of the coat was a lean, rangy brunette with curious hungry eyes, who sang of love and loss and homesickness in words that were unlike any Miss Maltravers had heard: simple yet heart-rendingly communicating the feeling behind them.

A number of the bar's customers began to draw closer and pay full attention, but Miss Maltravers had spotted her first and taken the most strategic seat. When the singer lowered her chitern, gazing thoughtfully into the middle distance, Miss Maltravers moved quickly.

"May I have the honor of buying you a drink, ma'am."

"Thank you kindly, ma'am. I'll have a pint of whatever they do best here."

Miss Maltravers signaled to a barmaiden. "You aren't from about here, I would guess, ma'am."

"You'd guess right there, ma'am."

"My name is Maltravers."

"Pleased to meet you, Miss Maltravers. They call me Roder.

"I am honored, Miss Roder. What brings you all the way to Claremont?"

"To Claremont?" Miss Roder paused, looking into the middle distance once again. "I guess it was between where I've bin and where I'm goin'."

"Where are you going, ma'am?"

Miss Roder pressed her lips and cocked her head in a whimsical manner. "Maybe I'll know when I get there. Then again, maybe I won't."

"You sing as if you miss your home, ma'am. Do you?"

"I feel for it, ma'am. That ain't to say I miss it. I feel for it."

"Why did you leave it?"

Miss Roder smiled. "Why did you leave where you're from?"

"Where am I from?"

"South Quirinelle."

"Is it that obvious?"

"Yep. Were am I from?"

"Unless I miss my guess, Dendrelina."

"Wheee-yoo! Sharp guessin'! Wouldn't care to go for the county, I suppose?"

"Well, you're obviously from the eastern counties, but you're not a Silvertown girl and surely not a Marinilian. No, I don't think I can place you nearer than that."

"Nearest anyone's gotten since I left the country. Most of them say 'You're Kadorian, aren't you?'. Some of them say 'You're from South Kadoria', and think they're real zippy. But yinkers, I told you you were from South Quirinelle and thought I was zippy - so who'm I laughin' at?"

"I went to school nearly a trine in Silvertown."

"The world gets smaller by the minute. What school?"

"High Oak, you likely wouldn't know it."

"I know it. My cousin Esmée went there."

"That wouldn't have been Esmée Windthrush by any chance?"

"The very same. Do you know Miss Esmée?"

"Not really, but she won a fencing trophy when I was there."

"Miss Esmée's got more trophies than a barn-cat's got fleas,"

"That's her. So why did you leave?"

"Why did you?"

"I moved around so much as a child, I suppose I got used to it. I wandered to various places. Ended up here."

"Ended up?" Miss Roder asked, as if Miss Maltravers had confessed to a terminal disease.

"I think so. The wise traveler is seeking something. She is wiser still if she stops when she finds it."

Miss Roder cast an eye around the Half-Moon. "Doesn't look like you've found fame an' fortune."

"I don't live here."

"Y'eat here."

"I don't think I was looking for fame and fortune. Are you?"

"Not sure I'd thought that far ahead. I wouldn't say no if they came knockin'. But no. I guess I know better than to think they'd solve anything."

"What are you trying to solve?"

"Riddle o'the universe? Who knows? What were you trying to solve? And did you solve it?"

"I suppose I was looking for a place I belonged, and people that wanted what I had to give.
There are a number of us like that in Claremont."

"Claremont? Why Claremont? I mean it's a nice enough town and all."

"But what's so special about it? Sai Nimwë College is what drew us here. It is a rather unusual place, doing new and wonderful things. It has all sorts of girls. A surprising number of foreigners like you and I. And some people with really unusual talents - like you."

"I just sing for my supper. Half the girls where I come from play the chittie."

"I think you've got something special."

"City girl, if you ain't the sweetest."

"Would you let me try your chittie?"

"You be right careful then. You know how to hold her?"

"I believe so." Miss Maltravers took the instrument with a loving hand and plucked at the strings with her supple fingers, singing:

Janey-Jane, the moon's on the water
Janey-Jane, the stars are in the sky
Janey-Jane is the pretty miller's daughter
And I'm a-gonna love her till the river runs dry.

Miss Roder could not forbear from grinning and tapping her toes. "Been a while since I heard that."

Miss Maltravers raised an admonishing finger. "Now I can sing Fair Lurleen if I have to, so treat me with caution. The point I am making is that I am not simply captivated by an unfamiliar musical style, I really believe that you have something special, if a little raw. And in the atmosphere of Sai Nimwë, that could develop into something truly wonderful."

"Now just a corn-crackin' minute, honored Miss Maltravers. I've had my fill of schools. I don't need anybody telling me when to go to bed and when to get up, when I can go out and when I have to come in, when to sit down and when to stand up..."

"Hold on. Vix House isn't like that at all. We can do pretty much what we please."

"And I can do exactly what I please. There's a difference."

"Where are you staying tonight?"

"Maybe this place. Maybe someplace else. Haven't thought that far."

"Then stay with me. You can bunk in my dorm-room, meet some of the girls, come to breakfast. It'll be fun."

"I won't be getting you in trouble? Wouldn't want to be getting you whupped by your schoolmistress."

"I told you. This is Vix House. It isn't like that at all."

"And you think I'm liable to join your College?"

"I don't think anything. I just want you to take a look. And it's a free breakfast. What do you say?"

"Ain't never said no to a free breakfast."

Your friend from All-Girl Worlds.

Last edited by Chen-chen Astraea on Sat July 25th, 3:40 am, edited 1 time in total.

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 Post subject: Re: Miss Roder in Vintesse
PostPosted: Fri July 24th, 2:35 am 
Settling in
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Thank you - I simply adore Miss Roder! She gives me goose-bumps!

When are we going to hear more about her. Will she join Vix House? What will happen to her?

Or perhaps I should ask What will happen to Vix house?

Without sounding greedy I want more!

Oops - that did sound greedy didn't it?

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 Post subject: Re: Miss Roder in Vintesse
PostPosted: Fri July 24th, 9:30 pm 
Trois Etoiles
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I must echo Miss Sakura. I love hearing about Miss Roder, the way you have rendered her is captivating!

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 Post subject: Re: Miss Roder in Vintesse
PostPosted: Tue August 11th, 11:11 pm 
Trois Etoiles
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*peek* :-|

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