Mirrored from Sythyry.
[OOC: I forgot to post half of this earlier.]
I was distinctly nervous at meeting Saza again — my cousin; my maybe-lover; the one my mother warned me about. So I was crouched nervously on a mantlepiece, between a carved wooden bowl and a surprisingly large acorn, when zie came aboard Strayway.
Saza: “Hi, coz! Glad to see you again!”
Me: “Glad to see you too, Saza!” I tried to sound cheery and enthusiastic but not actively flirty.
Saza: “Your skyboat is looking fine! Not that I saw it when it was bebattered by siege weapons. But I flew around thrice, and saw no signs of damage or even tarnish on your gleaming silvery walls.”
Me: “Oh, the shipwrights of Eigrach are skilled enough, when one breathes upon them enough to get them moving finally. And persuades them that, though one is distinctly and intently traff, one has no particular designs on them.” That is an anti-flirt, by the way, and quite intentional.
Saza: “Ah, I am familiar with the peril! My romantic tastes are quieter and less alarming than yours, perhaps, but when one has a reputation as a careless Mentador mage, one must negotiate intensely and delicately now and then. And pay extra.”
Me: “Have you ever had to threaten a duke?”
Saza: “Not as such. A lord knight of Mircannis, though.”
Me: “Catawomphies! What happened?” (I have no idea why I said ‘Catawomphies!’, or even what it might mean.)
Saza fluttered up to the mantlepiece to join me. There wasn’t quite space, so we shoved the acorn over. We hung our tails in the fire, twined together. That is not an anti-flirt, by the way.
Saza: “He was protecting the residents of the small town of Dosques-les-Fromages from all manner of dangers. At the peak of my last scandal, I found it advisable to rusticate myself for a time, and another cousin — I have many cousins, each and every one of them dear to me — offered me the use of a cottage in one of zir villages. Located with convenient access to the cheese-curing caves, in case I needed a particularly pungent hiding spot where even Cani fear to sniff. So there I was, sitting in my borrowed cottage, reading a tract on the borrowing of splines, when up rides a mighty Herethroy knight wearing mighty chain armor and riding a mighty plowhorse, and tells me to leave Dosques-les-Fromages on the instant, wicked sorcerer.”
Me: “What did you do?”
Saza: “I left that instant, wicked sorcerer! Came back that afternoon though, with the baron of the village and had the knight thrown in prison in the city overnight.”
And so forth.
I perched on the side of Arfaen’s armchair in her cabin that evening, during an hour when I knew that Quendry was off playing with Nalche. This was not wholly uncalculated.
Arfaen: “You are jumpy and nervous, O lizard.”
Me: “That I am, O Cani.”
Arfaen: “At a guess, it concerns the proximity of your cousin, and the attractiveness of the same?”
Me: “I can’t hide anything from a Cani, Can I?”
Arfaen: “Not from a lover and friend, you can’t. Do you need some reassuring that you’re really traff? Quendry’s off for an hour and a bit.”
Me: “I’m really not here to take advantage of you!”
Arfaen: “Sythyry! Are you mistaking me for some flat-eared virgin, or perhaps a faithful and otherwise-cisaffectionate Cani wife?”
Me: “Well, no…”
Arfaen: “I am mistaking you for a member of my longhouse. Which is to say, someone it would be utterly ordinary to take a private hour with now and then.”
So we did some utterly ordinary and quite happy things, and I left when Quendry came back, feeling much more … well, not more strictly-traff, because I’m definitely attracted to Saza, but more like I’m not tossing my whole life aside for the first scaly tail I see.