Aftermath of the Breakup [17 Lage 4385]
I certainly didn't tell anyone about my night with Arfaen, and I don't think Arfaen did either, but it was quickly common knowledge. And not by scrying, either. Anyone who scried on us would see an illusionary pornographic display far more extreme and exotic than anything Arfaen and I did ... or are even capable of doing.
Late at breakfast the following day -- I did not stay to dawn with Arfaen; I went to my workshop for my usual day-and-a-third of solitary work in the hour before the ship's breakfast -- Mellilot accosted me.
Mellilot: "Would you pay my passage back to Ketheria?"
Me: "You're leaving Strayway?"
Mellilot: "Well, yeah. Seems like a good idea just about now."
Me: "It's a big ship. We can certainly arrange housing and schedules and such so you don't run into Arfaen too much. And I know Quendry thinks the world of you." (He does.)
Mellilot: "Fuck that. Arfaen I can deal with, and Quendry's fine. But fuck that."
Me: "Beg pardon?"
Mellilot: "You're the problem. You're totally on Arfaen's side. Not a big surprise, you always have liked her better than me. Now you've picked your side and slept on it. I'm the loser, so I'm going to clear out."
Me: "I haven't picked her side."
Mellilot: "Well, you picked her ass, and her sheets not nine hours cold from me lying on them."
Me: "It's not the same thing. I'm not going to treat you unfairly over that."
Mellilot: "Look, when the girl you just dumped -- and who is awfully upset about it -- is sleeping with the boss -- the Locador-demon-cursed night after the breakup -- that's just the universe's little way of telling you 'Time to cut and run, girl.'"
So we had the following conversation 1,234,871,028,934,182,793,561,872,561,98
Me: "Would not!"
Mellilot: "Would so!"
Ending up with:
Me: "Well, you're not indentured, so you can go any time and anywhere you like."
Mellilot: "Any time, I can do. The time is now. Any where, that I can't do. Can you demonstrate this not-favoring-Arfaen you're so fucking proud of by sending me back home to Vheshrame?"
Me: "You're going to live in Castle Wrong?"
Mellilot: "Maybe I will, maybe I won't. Depends on how the wrongfolk treat me there, I guess."
Me: "If anyone gives you the least bit of trouble, write to me and I will scold them severely."
Mellilot: "Like you're so good at scolding people."
Me: "I'll have Kantele do it."
Mellilot: "Better. Anyways, can you send me back home?"
Me: "Nendrai express, or book you passage on a commercial airship?"
Mellilot: "Passage. The nendrai's one of the things I am most trying to get away from. She scares the shitcakes out of me."
Me: "Me, too. OK, passage, then. Tell Zascalle I said to give you passage and spending money for the trip ... and have her write to a couple of banks in cities along the way, giving you credit in case there's any trouble."
Mellilot: "Well, thank you, Sythyry. I'm going to try not to think that as 'paying to get your rival out of the way'."
Me: "You're not my rival."
Mellilot: "You just keep telling yourself that, little lizard."
Which I am interpreting as "Thank you very much."